#408 Meeting Dora

I was about 5 or 6 when my sister took me to go and meet Mickey and Minnie Mouse. It was the late 80s, and back then, it was a BIG DEAL. The photo is hanging out somewhere in my parents house, but I remember the awe of it all, and the humongous queues to get a photo taken with them. It was really, really momentous.

Apart from that, that is my only brush with kiddie fame. And I was thinking today, what a difference a few decades make.

Back then, Minnies and Mickeys only ventured out of Disneyland, like once in a blue moon. And if you met them, that was like the holy grail, the Christmas of Christmases, the highlight of your sweet, sweet childhood.

Nowadays though? Baby girl has been to 4 Wiggles concerts, been in close contact with Lah Lah’s band and posed with the accordion player, had photos with both Bananas in Pyjamas, Upsy Daisy and Iggle Piggle from In The Night Garden, and today, the latest addition.

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And she is only 3 and a half.

She met Dora at Westfield Southland today, and it was amazing. I mean, for her. I watched proudly as she confidently walked up to the top of the stage steps, to wait her turn for a meet ‘n’ greet, and then strode purposefully towards one of her idols for a big all-encompassing hug and photo op.

When I saw the size of Dora, a little part of me went ‘Yikes.’ I mean, this was a super-sized Dora! I was concerned baby girl would cower slightly and need strong nudging before hesitantly making her way towards her.

But nope. This seasoned professional, who has already seen so much, and so many of her favourite entertainers, did me so, so proud.

And the best bit? The novelty HASN’T worn off. She is still as excited and thrilled seeing Dora today, as she was 2 and a half years ago when she went up to Iggle Piggle and Upsy Daisy in the shopping centre and happily gave them warm hugs.

It is still sweet. And I will encourage that sense of wonder and innocence, of youthful exuberance and gratitude in her, for as long as I live.

#407 3rd row at The Wiggles show

I almost broke my bumper bar driving up steep shopping centre car parks to find a park. In the end I didn’t even get one there, having to park blocks away in the only available spot I could find, with 7 minutes to go.

We walked there in 10. Baby girl was tired after spending most of the night crying from a suddenly-developed sore throat. She was dolled up in her Emma costume, but the vibe wasn’t all there. She wanted me to pick her up at many stages, and somehow I warded her off. Carrying her would have made the walk longer, and as it was I was worried we’d approach the Frankston Arts Centre and hear distinctively catchy music already underway.

We walked in to silence and presented our tickets. And then as we walked further into the bustling theatre, full of kids screaming from laughter and fury, happiness and sadness, I scanned the area to find my sister near the front, waving wildly at me.

Near the front.

3 rows from the front.

I had forgotten just how close we were when I booked the tickets months ago. I had been initially impressed by ‘ROW C,’ when the offer came up online during my mad rush to buy tickets, but until you actually see it, you really can’t believe it.

Sis and I, were rapt. I kept telling baby girl how lucky we were, and likewise my youngest nephew sat there taking it all in, also unfazed by our superstar seating.

The Wiggles show was brilliant. I know the close seating made it all the more special. Not only were we close enough to read their faces and all their expressions, make eye contact and catch every thing that unfolded with perfect clarity, but our kids benefited hugely, though they never imagined it: my nephew had his sign read out by Emma at the start of the show, and his name was read out which made sis and I both madly happy and teary; and later while they were collecting all the gifts made to them from the kids in the theatre, Emma was able to sttrreettcchhhhhh out over the 3 rows and get the card being handed to her, by none other than baby girl.

Awwww 🙂

During the show I had a moment, where I realised it shouldn’t be a given that I will see them again. We’ve seen The Wiggles now about 4 times I think, and each time it’s been beautiful to watch baby girl grow and develop alongside them, and interact differently each time she sees them. She loves them now, but I wonder, when will The Wiggles be just a passing phase? Maybe she will still love them by the time the next big show comes along, but maybe my nephew won’t be interested, and so the little outing sis and I have with our kids, won’t be a reality anymore.

It made me truly grateful for the moment, the day, and the fact that on this show, mine and baby girl’s 4th one, and 3rd one with sis and nephew together, we were coincidentally, 3 from the front.

Lucky 3.

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Kudos to The Wiggles. I can say with such certainty, that I love them as much as baby girl. For someone to devotedly spend their time making children around the world happy, I think is really, something, and some-ones, special.

#401 Wiggles Band-Aids

I should really be grateful for my parents and my sister coming to visit us today. It has been way too long since my parents were over, and I was so excited to show the fam around, and head out by the bay into the still and fresh air, and say “here’s home.”

But no. Instead I am grateful for freaking Wiggles Band-Aids.

Because not even 15 minutes after their arrival, baby girl decided to bolt, Usain style, around the corner of the house, for no other reason other than she is a toddler and running is as normal to her as is refusing bedtime, wanting to eat chocolate, and deciding that Mum must not shop in peace. (For any non-parents that are confused, that means all of the above are NORMAL).

She tripped and fell on the uneven path out the back (one of our 1 billion to-dos on our no-existing to-do list) and scraped both her palms, so much so that skin was now missing. It didn’t look too bad – sure there was blood – but still, knowing that the skin had ripped off, even if ever so slightly, I knew it would be stinging.

And then there was the crying. Sure, she is a dramatic one, but she is also a trooper. She is tougher than some boys, and will normally get up after a fall, dusting herself off. That is how we raised her – ‘no fuss, up you go.’

But she would NOT stop.

I don’t think she was use to the constant stinging pain. Nothing would help, yet eventually after screaming the house down, we tried washing her hands, and also, applying Band-Aids.

She has never to this day, allowed Band-Aids on her. Which has made my life hard at times, because when I want to help cover a wound she’s gotten, she will scream “no!” ’til red in the face, and continue to wail. And cry. And moan. And scream.

While I rip my hair out trying to figure out how to help a girl that doesn’t want help.

But, after the application and removal of 8 Wiggles Band-Aids (this was due to the fact that as soon as they were on, they had to come off), we succeeded. Her last pair went on about midday, and thank God they’re still on. She’s napping with them.

Thank F&^% for themed Band-Aids. I don’t know what I would have done without them today.

#388 Babycino break

In order to set a successful tone for a shopping trip, it is essential you pack in the vital vibes early on.

That is, first, coffee.

And in the case of shopping with baby girl, a babycino with two marshmallows please – pink and white.

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(One of each or dramatics will ensue).

It was this simple act of sitting down with her before we started going through shops, that helped us forge ahead and make the trip a great one. And though many parts of our trip were fun and exciting, it was this little act, this little break, this moment in time with my ‘love’ sitting across from me, drinking her babycino like a boss, a seasoned professional, and enjoying that moment with her with the sunshine streaming through the side window, that really made an impact on me.

It was a truly simple, but grateful moment.

And for those playing at home, some of our exciting purchases were these:

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I don’t think I need to tell you what item was for who. Clearly Hubbie had the Prince cd, I had the Wiggles one, and baby girl is totally into 90s Jordan, so…

😉

I mean, Prince in a g-string. How can one get more grateful than to see that?

(Aussie humour – I am LMAO here)…

#364 Our conversation

So I’m at work, and I call Hubbie.

Light chit chat. She slept this much. They’ve done this. It’s so windy here. Why don’t you cook like that when I’m home.

Then, there’s some noises, disruption and shuffling, and I realise, baby girl has taken the phone off of her Dad.

“Hi Princess! Did you have a good sleep?”

“Ya.”

“Are you having a good time?”

“Ya.”

“Are you playing with your blocks?”

“Up up up!”

“Ohhh, you’re building them up! That’s good! Are you watching Frozen?”

“Let it go, let it go!”

“We’re going to see them on ice in 5 months! Are you excited?”

“Ya, woowoowoo!”

“Yes, we’re going to see the Wiggles, too, but in 2 months.”

“Oh.”

Maybe a bunch of nonsense and incomprehensible words for some, but for me, it was the first telephone convo I’ve had with baby girl where not only have I held her attention long enough to pass words between us, but we’ve BOTH understood each other and been able to respond to one another.

It was GOLD.

Aww this girl. She has a big chunk of my heart. 🙂

(Just for fun, can anyone guess what tomorrow’s post might be dedicated to? Just look above, and think… 😉 )

#359 Mum joined facebook

Like, literally. This happened in the real world, TODAY.

I had messaged sis late last night with a whole barrage of various questions

(Do you want to see the Wiggles in Frankston/What size sour cream goes into that awesome dip/Can I get the bread a day in advance)

so it came as a little surprise when I turned on my phone and her reply to me this morning was

“Pls send FB request for Mum when you have a minute.”

What?!

I cared not that she hadn’t answered my questions, nor that I was in the middle of preparing brekkie and a hungry baby girl was nearby… I hightailed it to my FB app and typed in Mum’s name, and lo and behold THERE WAS AN ONLINE IDENTITY FOR HER.

(Angels sing!)

For people who are old-school, and who grew up in a tiny European village with one pair of pants, and a toilet as a hole in the ground, this is a big deal. As forward thinking and open-minded as my parents are, I still never thought I would ever see THIS day. We had been talking about getting Mum a new phone lately, with a FB app so she could connect with family here and abroad, but until I saw my Mum’s profile pic (of her and my Dad, shucks) it actually didn’t seem possible.

I for one, am over the moon. I never thought of the possibilities of my Mum having a facebook account, and I guess it’s just the thought that she can see what I see, and also, see me, and baby girl, and Hubbie online, whenever she likes, especially now that we are living further away from each other. The opportunities are exciting for her, and I know this even if she doesn’t, yet, which is why I am so happy for her.

What did I do upon finding her profile? On her wall:

“Hi Mum, welcome to facebook! ♥”

🙂

I’m chuffed my Mum is on Facebook. Really, words I never thought I would utter.

#320 3 generations on the bed

A continuation of an earlier post.

Last night Mum stayed with my sister during Dad’s first overnight hospital stay.

Tonight, it was our turn.

We had already passed on our “sweet dreams” and well wishes for the night to her, with baby girl repeatedly confirming that Baka, was indeed sleeping next door to her, and followed that with several hugs and kisses.

I was tidying around the house and went into baby girl’s room when I heard my Mum’s loud laughter. I moved around the room, and it happened again. I grinned. “You ok in there?”

She had done her bid: she had caught my attention.

I went into the dimly lit room and sat on the bed with her as she proceeded to tell me some things that had been on her mind, kind of funny, kind of not, but nonetheless I listened and lended her my ear.

Baby girl soon realised I was missing and came charging into the room. She disappeared during our conversation to bring along some Wiggles figurines to the party, and soon, there were 3 generations on the bed… alongside Emma, Lachy, Simon and Anthony of course. Talking to my Mum like that reminded me of our conversations of old, when I would have 3 hour D&Ms with her on a Saturday morning as a teen, sitting across from each other at our old round kitchen table.

I smiled with much content, as baby girl repeatedly hugged her Baka, watching their reflection in the opposite dresser mirror, while my Mum casually returned the embraces and kissed her while not missing or pausing for a forgotten word. When my Mum laughed, so did baby girl, mimicking her characteristic tone.

I was very happy. It is lovely indeed, when you find precious and beautiful moments amidst such uncertainty. It was heart-warming to see such love between them, and seeing how they related to one another, along with the physical resemblance, makes it all the more appropriate that baby girl is her namesake 🙂