30 Dec 2012

Lets Go Fishing

It's been a while since the crafty crew went fishing, a family outing that has become a thing of the past. Old rusty rods and lack of time is no excuse I know, but at least I am admitting my guilt and I am prepared to mend my ways. More family time is high on my agenda for the new year, but hey, why wait till then ? I am no longer going to be the mum who says "not now boys" any longer, I have put too many things on the back burner lately and I am going to put a stop to it now !! we are going to live life in the fast lane in 2013.

So when the boys woke on Christmas morning to brand new rods and tackle boxes, the first thing they wanted to know was when are we going fishing ?

So this morning bright and early we packed the truck, and headed off to try out the new rods. Smiles were on faces, spirits were high, we are a family that loves to fish....the peacefulness, the togetherness, there is something magical and calming about throwing in a line.

The gorgeous beach sky at 6 am
It was windy, to windy to fish really. But that didn't stop us. The sky was fairly clear and the sun was peaking through so we decided to carry on in the hope that the wind would die down.

The boys were eager, they were on a mission to catch dinner, I was living in hope that, that would be the case, there is nothing like a feast of freshly caught fish.

After a refresher course on "how to bait the hook" from Dad, the boys found their own space on the beach to cast their rods, faces plastered in huge smiles and loads of determination to succeed.

Eager to cast
                             




Reminding the youngest crafty member many times over that to be able to catch something his rod has to stay in the water for longer than a minute or two he needs to work on his patience became my morning repetitive motto...the eager beaver was convinced he had a fish every five seconds so reeling in the line became his favorite pass time.

The fish were not biting, the clouds began to roll in and after about half an hour the rain came. We were drenched, but the boys determination was not, we continued to try our luck....
I gave up and walked the beach annoying the boys taking photos that's my prerogative

The rain continued to come and go, so did the bait with nothing to show for it. We decided to move on and try to find somewhere with a little more shelter, it was not to be.

In all honesty the quote "we did more fishing then catching" really applied to us today......

I don't know a whole lot about fishing, but I know that there is fish in that darn ocean, where they are is the issue.

We will return later in the week, when the rain has moved on and the wind has died down. I am determined that my boys will get the chance to catch em, clean em, cook em and eat em....

The fish and weather will not defeat the crafty crew !!!!

We will be back 
                 

29 Dec 2012

Are You Ready For A " Blogtastic" 2013 ?

Has it only been a week ???
It seems as though it has been much longer since I switched on little pink my laptop, and wrote down the frivolous thoughts in my mind.
I've missed it I must say, but there are certain times in life that other things must take precedence over a mothers ramblings......Don't you agree ?

I am back !!
After a fabulous Christmas with family and friends, to much pudding, far to much drink
#hiccup
and a few days R&R. It's time to gather my thoughts and return to the "blogging world" and get ready for a "blogtastic" 2013.

I don't know about you, but I am SO ready to turn my back on 2012. I have honestly had enough of what this year has thrown at my family and I am determined to get my "mojo" back and push my way through the final days, and say farewell to a year that saw many difficult challenges come our way....

2013 is a new beginning, a fresh year, and I am going to throw myself at it with "gusto" and make it a year that I will never forget......

Look out 2013, Crafty is going to make the best of you, I can promise you that !!!

Can you believe it's been six months ???
Six months since Craftypjmum became more than just a nagging little dream, six months since my #BBFF best blogging friend forever Jules gave me a swift kick in the butt, loads and loads of encouragement and an unbelievable amount of help, to make this dream a reality, and for that I will be eternally grateful.
The support so far has been amazing, such beautiful comments left on my posts have given me the confidence to continue writing and blabbering on in my own "crafty world" and though I may never be a "blogging queen" with hundreds of followers, I am most certainly very content with where I am, it's been a giant leap of faith for me, and one that I am excited to explore and gain more knowledge if my mushy brain will allow

2013 is going to bring with it some exciting personal and blogging challenges that I am setting for myself. My goal is to share with you, each and every step of my  personal journey, and to continue writing about my hectic life of raising/living/clawing my way through each day with my teenage sons.....
I hope that those of you who have joined me so far, continue on this ride along side me, and if you are new to my small part of the blogging world, welcome, and please take the time to say hi ......

Lets get ready to rock 2013 together like no year has ever been rocked before !!!
Are you ready ???
Are you up for the challenge ???





21 Dec 2012

Family Traditions, Making Memeories

A cup of love
A pinch of sugar
A spoon full of Christmas spirit

It's that time of year again !! It's time to get cracking in the kitchen and whip up some of those delicious Christmas treats.

I can taste them now ........
White Christmas
Rocky Road
Rum Balls and Christmas puddings
Just to name a few.

It's a tradition in the Crafty household. Each year those of us who still get excited about family traditions spend the whole day baking up a storm. Stirring, measuring, baking and of course taste testing (we do have to make sure that the balance of ingredients is just right) these delicious treats
while Christmas Carols play merrily in the background. It's a magical time.
I love it, and although my eldest three boys are less and less enthusiastic about spending time in the kitchen with their mum, I am sure that it is a family tradition that they will remember from their childhood for many years to come.

This year it was left up to just me and the youngest Crafty member, to get elbow deep in chocolate :) wearing our Christmas aprons and stopping every now and then to belt out a Christmas tune on the "Merry Okee" microphone, we had a wonderful day filled with laughter, music and of course baking.



A memory I will cherish forever...............  

Linking up this Christmas with the lovely Grace for #FYBF



           

19 Dec 2012

Some Say Blood Is Thicker Then Water, I Say, That Depends !

Family.....
That word alone provokes many different feelings for many people. Being part of a family is wonderful and the love that is shared within families is something that everyone deserve to have. But sometimes I think many of us take family for granted.
Grandparents, parents, siblings, husbands, wives and children. Having the love that comes with family is something that should be cherished and held dear.

My childhood was "typical" for a broken home. Weekends at my fathers and split holidays. Being an only child made it lonely and it was hard to cope with it all on my own (I was only 9 and felt that I had no one to turn to) as many young children do when their parents split, I thought that it was in someway my fault....the minds of the innocent play tricks.

Anyhoo enough of that......

The reason for this post is that I am hurt, I am angry and I feel the need to lash out. Circumstances that are totally out of my control are happening, and I am feeling isolated, pushed aside.
See for many years now my father (biological) and I have had a rocky relationship. Without going into to much detail, we are basically no longer on speaking terms. We use to do the mandatory Birthday, Fathers Day, Easter and Christmas phone calls and cards but that has also stopped along with the fact that he no longer acknowledges my children (to be honest, I am totally unsure as to why this is) for a few years now through Face Book and with the contact that I have with other family members, I know how much he "adores" my step sisters kids and that he does so much for and with them....he and my sons would pass each other on the street as if they were complete strangers. This hurts more then words could ever say.
It's been a hard, long road to let go of this, and I am not sure that I ever really will.

Anyhoo moving on, I have got side tracked with my anger......

The reason for this post and my provoked anger is that my Grandfather (Bio Dads father) has had another stroke, he is really not doing well, things are looking very bleak. When the phone rang and it was my father I instantly knew that something was wrong since we have had no contact since the last time my Pop was ill some months back.
I live in another state, and my heart is breaking to know that I may never see my Pop again, I also know that it would be very hard to go and face matters head on, and for that I am torn......
But no matter what is going on with the relationship between my father and I, I don't think that it's to much to ask that I be kept informed, I am after all his only true Grand Daughter and I want to know how he is progressing every step of the way. I should not have to find out everything via Face Book statuses, I should not be left out of this unfolding family tragedy.

Am I expecting to much for my phone calls to be returned ?
Am I being selfish that I cried like a baby when I read how many people were giving my step sister sympathy and lending her support while I am being left out in the cold ?
That it took a Face Book status to tell me that it is likely he will not be going home again ?
Am I expecting to much ?

I am an emotional wreck, if I could change the past I would, but I cant. I know that we are both at fault, but I should not have been the only one making the effort trying to mend things for years on end all on my own, it takes both parties to communicate and other people need to back off and keep their noses out of it...I've given up on ever having a "good" relationship with my father again, but in the end we are still family, we are blood, and that is still, and will always be my grandfather, and that will never change.

May God be with you and let you know that I have always loved you Pop, we have shared some wonderful times together and you need to stay strong. Know that even though I am far away and not by your side, that I am holding your hand tight in mine......

Keep fighting.....
xxxx

18 Dec 2012

My Christmas Wish List 2012

TAG your it !!

Thanks Mrs Bumpy :) and also thanks to Jess of essentiallyjess.com the lovely lady who apparently started this whole game of Christmas tag sometime in the last few weeks. I must have been living under a rock, because before I got tagged I had NO idea that it was in motion.....nothing unusual I guess, I am often in my own world, off with the fairies or at this time of year I guess that I am off with the elves  :)

So even though I was tagged roughly a week ago sorry it has taken me this long to post  I finally have the time to sit and think for a moment about what it is that I truly want.
I mean if its no expense spared, the world is my oyster .... right ?

So let the wishing begin .....

My first wish didn't need much thought actually. My most treasured wish would be to have Mr Crafty home more....(his new job of the last 2 yrs has not exactly delivered its promise)

Wish number 2 ... A holiday for two, to some isolated paradise (we are in desperate need of alone time, and a little romance couldn't hurt)

Wish numbers 3 and 4 are selfishly just for moi !! Botox :) and a gorgeous necklace form the fabulous Uberkate.   *sigh...keep dreaming old girl*

And my last wish is simply for my family to be happy, for them to be safe, content and to live in peace. For them to be able to follow their dreams and to never forget that in life each and every one of them is special and important, and that they are perfect to me just as they are in every single way......


Merry Christmas from Crafty and Crew....

Linking up with essentiallyjess for #IBOT
                          2012

14 Dec 2012

The Gate Has Now Closed...

It's been a long day, it's been a long week. No lets make that a long month. I never thought we would make it, I never thought that the end would come. But here we are at the end of this journey, a journey that we have been on for a very long time.

11 years....
Wow, when you actually stop and think about it, it's quite a long time, but that is how long our family has attended our current primary school.

It's here ....
A day that I can honestly say snuck up on me all to quickly. The day that my youngest graduates and leaves behind his primary years, and heads off to high school in the New Year.

For our family, it is time to stand beside him and watch as he spends his final moments with his class mates and teachers, and for us as a whole to bid farewell to a school that has been such a huge part of our lives.
The entire journey has been a wonderful experience, and though leading up to this day has been tough emotionally, it is with great pride and smiles that we walked through the gate for the final time this morning, ready, but with definite sadness. It's time to say goodbye to some of the most wonderful times and people that we have ever had in our lives. Times that have provided us with so many memories that we will cherish forever. People that will never be forgotten.

The final goodbyes have been hard to make. The same office staff that enrolled my babies are still there, and so many of their past teachers in junior school also. To see them this morning at our final "talent" show, to hear many of  them  say that my family has been a wonderful part of their school community, and that we will be missed brings with it both joy, pride and sadness.

Joy....because my sons have left behind them a wonderful name for themselves, and for that they should be proud.
Pride....because my sons will be remembered as stand out students that always did their best, and contributed in many ways to the school over the years. They have truly grown into wonderful young men that have such fantastic futures before them.
Sad....because it is over, and the time has come when we must say goodbye and move on.

As I sat this afternoon for the last time waiting for the bell to ring, I couldn't help but look around and think back to all the wonderful moments that we have been involved in, it's certainly been a jam packed 11 years and a time that we will reflect back on for many years to come, for that I am sure.

When the bell finally chimed, a smile came to my lips as I realised that we had made it, we have finally seen all four sons successfully complete primary. And as the students poured from their classrooms, the tears started to fall as they bid their fellow classmates farewell, and realised that part one of their journey is complete, and the next stage about to begin seeing them become yet again the "small fish in a big pond" I hope that they are all able to look back on this time with much fondness.

As my son finally made his way to me, his tear filled eyes started me off I am a big sook I had done so well up until now, but seeing his tear stained face and little red eyes were more then I could handle, and as he held on to me we both cried, with happiness, sadness and I am sure with some relief.

The final walk out of the school was a magical moment, we walked hand in hand tears still falling and as we approached the gate I whispered to him "are you ready"? he just looked up at me with those gorgeous eyes and said "This is the last time I will walk through this gate as a student" I squeezed his hand and said "lets go" and as we walked through that gate for the final time we raised our hands in victory......

Farewell Primary and thank you for such wonderful memories.




Linking up with www.withsomegrace.com for #FYBF



11 Dec 2012

Please Santa, I Need Your Help !

Without a doubt, each year it seems that it gets harder and harder to shop for my sons. The older they get, the more difficult it becomes and trying to get ideas from them is as difficult as pulling teeth.

When they were little, I completely enjoyed the planning, the time spent pouring over catalogues with a coffee in hand, then hitting the shops armed with my massive list, never forgetting to "check it twice" it was fun, I was in my element.
Now as the countdown to Christmas begins, it's stress that seems to be delivered in my letter box right along side those darn catalogues filled with smiling parents who make it look so easy !

Yeah right ......
It's beginning to be much more of a headache then a pleasure.

I still ask the boys each year to write me a list, (yeah thanks, big help boys) this year I got the likes of money, money and more money. A request for "get out of school" vouchers, like that's going to happen ! and of all things a coffee machine....yes you read right, my fourteen year old asked for a Delonghi !!! Go figure.

I'm sure they think it's funny to torture me. When they hand over their lists (still addressed to Santa) they do so with the most cheeky smiles, and one son even asked me not to read his list until he was safely tucked up in bed (maybe it was the request for school passes making him run for cover) this left me a little uneasy and unsure if I should even read his list or not !

But all jokes aside I need help this Christmas. So Santa please I'm begging you. I need your specialised help. My Christmas wish is that somehow, in some magical way, you will be able to guide me in the right direction and help me with a few ideas for teenage boys.....
I would be SO grateful and I can assure you that by lending me a helping hand, that I will repay the favour by leaving you out a delicious snack on Christmas Eve :)



By the way, hubby has wished for an Australian Red Cattle dog
*sigh*





Linking up with EssentiallyJess for #IBOT

10 Dec 2012

The Final Week Is Here...

Today begins the last week of school for 2012.
YIPPEE, it's the first sign that this year is almost over, we are now on the downhill run !!

Our house has gone completely nuts (more so than usual) it's full of excitement and energy (from the kids of course)
Me !! I'm hanging in there, I am completely exhausted and an emotional wreck, but if I can just hold on and make it through this final week of school and all the end of year activities, I've won....

This week is going to be a really hard week to get through, I am going to need some strength to get through it. Tears will fall, so be warned. In fact they have already begun.

Our Primary school days are finally coming to an end, Friday will be our last ever day in attendance. I am in two minds about it, on one hand I will now only have two children left at school (cheaper) and they will now be attending the same school (easier school run) but I am also feeling quite sad, my last baby is growing up (too fast) It is the end of our "little kid" years. He is excited......I am trying to hold onto the memories.
I have been reflecting over these past few days. thinking back on the many memories that we have collected over the years since we first attended Primary.
The first days, the sport carnivals. The camps and excursions. The many parades and award ceremonies we have attended and the many wonderful teachers, office staff and friends that we will be leaving behind. Eleven years is a long time to attend one school, and it will be hard to say goodbye.

It's always hard to let go and watch your kids grow and begin new challenges. We have watched three children before our youngest graduate Primary and head off to High school, we have also now watched as our two eldest sons graduate grade twelve, but this time it feels different. He is our last he is our youngest, he is my baby and knowing that is hard for me to comprehend, I just want to take him by the hand and keep him close for just a little while longer, I am not ready to let go.

His first day at school

On Wednesday, we will celebrate with him at his Graduation ceremony and dinner, I have told him that he must expect tears from me, he just shakes his head and gives me a cheeky smile. I am so proud, he is growing into a wonderful young man, but at the same time as we say goodbye to our tween and say hello to yet another teen, I know that my ride is far from over and if his brothers teen years are any indication to what I am in for, I am getting ready to hold on tight for another roller coaster ride to begin.......

Help me and please keep me in your thoughts, as I am still riding the wave with the others !
It's scary, it's exciting, it's a crazy life ......


6 Dec 2012

Meeting The "King" Of Pyjamas

You would be forgiven for thinking that the man in the blue pyjamas, was in fact just another warm and inviting member of the Peter Alexander sales team, but in actual fact it was none other then the "King" of pyjamas himself happily greeting and serving his customers as though they indeed were royalty themselves.

Yesterday, with a belly full of nerves, excitement and butterflies. I was lucky enough to meet, greet and speak with Australia's very own "King of Pyjamas" Peter Alexander. As a long time fan and wearer of his pj's, I was excited and interested to see what the man himself was like in person.

Peter and I
 Charming, friendly, delightful, funny, helpful and gracious.....           

There was not one person he did not seek out to speak to, or pose for photos with on their request. He kindly obliged the media, by answering all questions fired at him with a giant smile, and at one stage even had his picture taken with a giant pink teddy bear.

Peter Alexander is a true entrepreneur. Beginning in 1997, Peter started his "pyjama game" on his mothers dinning room table, and began his career by selling to all major department stores across Australia.
In 2004, his first standalone store opened gaining him instant celebrity success.
Now in 2012, and 52 stores later and counting, Peter is celebrating 25 years in the pyjama business.

Peter says that "in the beginning, his idea to make pyjamas fashionable, was a really dumb idea" he says that he "had an idea to create pyjamas for real girls and that from day one it really took off in a big way"

Yesterdays sneaky purchase

Meeting Peter, I have to say was a definite highlight for me, his friendliness and true interest in his customers was delightful and I wish him continued success and happiness.

So, what did this PJ loving mum wear to meet Australia's very own "king of pj's" Peter Alexander???????
Don't worry, I decided to go a little more classy and leave my old faith fulls at home under my pillow, but if I ever get the chance again......                
Treasured autograph
                                                           

If you would love the chance to meet Peter yourself, he is currently on a "Christmas Tour" visiting stores of his Australia wide. Check out his web site for the new catalogue and tour dates.
www.peteralexander.com.au/



THIS WAS IN NO WAY A SPONSORED POST


4 Dec 2012

Sending Out Hugs And Encouragement

Today I am falling apart. My eyes are burning and my body aching. I have been so busy taking care of everyone else and their needs, not to mention all that comes with running a busy household, especially at this time of year. That I think I have forgotten to stop, breathe, sleep and look after the one person who takes care of everything around here.

 The slave ME !!

In the past few weeks things around here have been non stop. Things have really been happening at an ongoing fast pace. I have been run off my feet with extra days added to my volunteer roster at my sons school, attending many school functions such as graduations, concerts and award ceremonies. Struggling to get through Schoolies week (what an emotional week that was) Trying to organise everything that comes with a big family Christmas and our traditions (crafting, baking, shopping, wrapping, hiding) celebrating birthdays, welcoming an extra addition to our home, and still there seems to be no end in sight yet !
Still to come is another graduation, a couple of Christmas parties, a volunteers thank you luncheon, another school concert, more shopping, cleaning, cooking and preparing the house for an extra five family members over the Christmas period, and of course tomorrow is the day when I will get to meet a very inspiring business man known all around the world. I am so excited that I can hardly contain myself (my family think I am nuts)
But that is another blog post altogether.

Honestly, with how tired I am feeling right now, that if I were a bird  I think that I would literally fall of my perch.

It seems that women are expected to take on a load that is beyond human sometimes. I am no super hero, I can only take so much before I snap (so my family found out on the weekend) I want everything to be top notch, I want my family to have the best of everything that I can possibly provide, but I am just me, just one small person in this universe and I am tired. I will be so glad to see the end of the school year, that instead of the kids I maybe the one skipping through the gate with a huge grin plastered on my face.

Don't get me wrong, I know that in no way am I alone in feeling this way, all of us women feel the pressure at this time of year (and many other times as well)
So I am sending you all a HUGE hug and lots of encouragement, we are doing a great job, and in the end what we achieve will be worth it.
A woman's job is NEVER done, but my goodness we so deserve that cold beverage and some me time when this busy time is over.......



Linking up with EssentiallyJess for IBOT

3 Dec 2012

A Little Christmas Craft

Thank goodness.
I've got my craft mojo back !!
I don't know where it has been hiding, but thankfully it has returned just in time for Christmas.

I have been busy whipping up a Christmas banner and a gorgeous wooden Christmas tree, which I was inspired to make after attending the Spotlight VIP night.

THE TREE

Getting started

Even though I have done my best at giving it a go, I am not very clever at using power tools. Actually, to be honest I am quite useless with them so it's best that I stay away to ensure the safety of all around me (hubby happily agrees) So to avoid any disasters, I purchased a pre-cut wooden tree to make life a little easier. I found this particular one at "Spotlight" it was approx $30 and exactly what I was after.
Next I was on the hunt for lots of pretty bling to decorate my tree, because you can never have to much bling at Christmas, can you ?  I kind of went over board on "bling" purchases, but honestly, it all called out to me from the shelves, just begging to come home with me :) I swear .

Once home and unpacked, I couldn't wait to get started. For months now I have been "craft challenged" wanting to get creative but stumbling every time I tried, so to finally have found a "cure" for my lack of "craftiness" was exciting.
Firstly, I began by roughly painting the tree white, using a sponge roller, leaving it quite patchy in places to give an older, worn effect. Once dry, I began to arrange the bling, not attaching it right away so that I could play around till I was completely happy with the placement. When I was, I made sure that it was securely in place with clear adhesive and I sprayed the finished product with a clear gloss to give it extra shine....
Painting process

I must say that I am quite happy with the finished product. My Christmas "welcome" tree is now proudly displayed in the front hallway of our home, so that it is the first sign of Christmas that any guests see when they visit us this silly season.....
The finished product

THE BANNER

How lucky was I to find Christmas material with Owls printed on it :) yes I do have a slight major obsession with all things "owly" So of course I had to bring it home with me and figure out some way of incorperating it into my Christmas craft. The solution ! a Christmas banner.......
To cute not to buy

To begin, I cut the material into large triangles, then attached them to even larger triangles that I had cut out of gold card stock that I found in my scrap booking collection. I then found some Christmas ribbon and glittered bells that I also used to decorate each triangle.
A close up of the banner

So that I could hang the banner easily, I used tiny wooden craft pegs to attach each triangle to a long piece of gold string, then hung it to the wall above our family dinning table.


Final product hung 



30 Nov 2012

Needle In A Haystack

Somewhere out there, is a conversation going on that does not revolve around my everyday life, and I am yearning to be apart of it...
I have reached a stage in my life when I feel the need for something more.

I have been on a search to find something meaningful, something out of the ordinary (for me) something different. I have a real want for a change in my life, I really feel the need to prove to myself that I am worthy of existing other then being a wife and mother housewife, cook, washer woman and chief taxi although being needed in this way has been very rewarding, and magical. It's time that I find something just for me so that I can continue to feel complete with my life's journey.

What it is I am not yet sure, but I am determined to find what is missing, something to fill the gap now that I am no longer a mother to small children, and needed in the same way that I am use to....

Am I looking for something that only exists in the core of my own mind ? I seem to be searching and going round in circles. I feel stuck, I am unsure in which direction I should be heading, and exactly where I should start.

I have the urge for enthusiasm to return to my life, the need to wake up with more of  a purpose. I need to feel free, I need to find out exactly who it is that I am within, why I was put on this earth, and if I can really achieve something worthwhile.

I want a journey that is all mine....

I am sounding quite selfish, after all I have the most wonderful fulfilling family. Our life together is more then I could have ever hoped for. They are most certainly more then I ever deserved. And I wouldn't change a thing about our life together, we are together forever and this makes my heart sing. If I stop and really think it through, everything that I could ever want is right there in front of me, it's within my grasp, I just need to get out of my own way.

So why am I feeling this urge for change ? Am I alone in wanting something more from life ? Is it just because this year has been filled with multiple challenges that have gotten me down ? Am I searching for a needle in a haystack ?

Honestly I am not sure.                                            

Being happy and fulfilled are wonderful feelings, and don't get me wrong, there are an armload of things in my life that make me happy, my children, and my marriage continue to fulfill me, they are sacred, they are my world. There are many things that I am grateful for, and so far there is not one thing that I would ever change. How I have lived my life has shaped me into the woman that I am today, yet still that need to prove myself, exists......

Linking with Some Grace for #FYBF

28 Nov 2012

Friday On My Mind

Are you kidding ! It's only Wednesday ? Seems to me that this week has slammed on its breaks and slowed to a crawl...it's been busy and chaotic and much to long !!

Already I have Friday on my mind. I am really looking forward to this weekend, I need to flop, relax, unwind and take some time out with my family.
This time of year is my favorite and while I strive to cram in as much as possible and love attending the many wonderful activities and events, it's still always nice to stop and smell the roses ( so to speak ) and spend a few lazy hours with my family and switch off from all the festive stress.
And from the look of my calendar, this weekend is the only one left that I have free until the New Year !

The count down till School ends is on. Only two and a half weeks left
Bliss :)
But with that comes even more events to add to our hectic calendar, and not to mention more time spent cleaning up after my adorable messy gang, and much more time spent in the kitchen feeding my troop farm YUCK !
But on the up side, it also means lazy mornings, trips to the beach and days spent by the pool, just all round good fun and quality time spent with my boys....now, if only these last weeks will pass quickly so the family fun can begin...


27 Nov 2012

Lights, Stockings, Laughter

You know Dasher and Dancer, Prancer and Vixen. Comet and Cupid, Donna and Blitzen, but do you recall, the most famous Reindeer of all ?    

Rudolph
It's Christmas.

It's precious time with your family, the carols and presents.
It's driving for hours on end looking at Christmas lights.
Its feeling full and sleepy after enjoying a Christmas feast.
It's one day of the year when you can cast your worries and calorie counting aside and spend the day without a care in the world.....


It's exciting.

My favorite time of year is just around the corner. It's busy, and chaotic, it's a little overwhelming, but the stress of organising such a wondrous day is defiantly worth every second, when your rewarded with the love, laughter and excitement of your family when they wake on Christmas morn to a day of celebration and fun....


It's tradition.

I've gone crazy with Christmas this year, I've decided on a red and gold theme for my decorating and have gone a little overboard on my purchases. I think it's safe to say that I am a little excited. I'm making up for last year when we spent our first Christmas EVER away from home, without our own family traditions.

I've never been one to plan a "tame" Christmas, I go all out and loose myself in the euphoria of the season every year. I spend weeks planning and shopping, cooking, cleaning, organising and decorating.
Oh ! did I mention shopping : ) 
The week before the big day, my time is filled with wrapping and hiding presents and hours spent baking  Christmas treats,  and making lists (and checking them twice) to make sure that nothing is forgotten and to ensure that all goes exactly to plan. I love it, I am completely in my element.


It's all about family.

Christmas is about family, and the birth of our Lord. It's about love, hope, joy and togetherness. It's lending a helping hand to those less fortunate. It's a time when everyone should come together in harmony and offer peace and good will to all.
It's about the special traditions, you have spent years creating with your loved ones, and the gathering of friends to share a Christmas toast.


It's magical.                                                                                                 

It's the jingling of bells, and the glittering lights.
The Christmas trees getting sighs of delight.
It's the laughter of children, and the letters to Santa.
It's the singing of carols, and the love that we share.
It's Christmas.........

Merry Christmas




24 Nov 2012

Tonight I Will Sleep

I am a walking zombie, a full night of sleep will most certainly be welcomed.
Saturday it began, the persistent nagging in my head, the waterfall of thoughts running through my mind. On and on and on it went like a merry go round that refused to stop. I was torturing myself, and of course I was over reacting, but that just goes hand in hand with parenting...doesn't it ?

We made it, I made it, I really truly made it :)
Lalalalalala

I survived another sons adventures at Schoolies...(I bet you can hear me sigh with relief from where ever you may be) he is home safe and sound, and I am guessing that tonight I will sleep like a well fed newborn baby.



                                       
You cant help but worry when your kids are away from home, and when they are amongst a crowd of over zealous, celebrating teens (not to mention the party crashers ) the worry factor hits an all time high. Of course they don't understand why as parents we are so concerned with them heading off into the unknown, they see it purely as a celebration and believe that they are invincible. They see our safety "lectures" as an intrusion because after all teenagers already know "everything" and nothing that we bombard them with is new to them. If only they knew.......

My son ( as far as I know ) followed the rules we set for him, the ones he broke, well lets just say that I'm not sure I have the desire to know !! He did text me each day as asked so that I knew he survived the parties each night, and for that I am grateful, although that didn't stop me from worrying like crazy. The text, no matter how short ( I received one that simply said "mum I'm alive" ) reassured me that he is sensible and considerate, and maybe that means as a parent that I have at least done something right.

He returned home this morning full of energy and quite chatty ( he is usually very quiet ) so to get a run down on his adventures with such animation was awesome. His experience at schoolies was thankfully a positive one and he and his mates enjoyed their taste of freedom.

Now as they return, reality will hit them like nothing before, nerves will kick in as they await their results, and decisions are made about their future. The realisation that their schooling days are over will actually begin to sink in, and the uncertainty of where they are headed will take over.

I'm so glad my son had the opportunity to experience this week of celebration at Schoolies, even though I was worried sick, he pulled through just fine.
Now as parents we wait along with him, we encourage him to continue to choose the right path and support the choices that he makes......





23 Nov 2012

Why Do I Blog ?

The cheek of some people !

I was recently asked, why do you blog ?
Why are you wasting your time ?
Do you really think people are interested in what you have to say ?

HOW RUDE !

Frankly, I blog because I can, because I want to. It's a way for me to express my thoughts and opinions, to connect with other people, to have fun and be creative. And no, I don't see it as wasting my time.
I enjoy blogging and I am quite miffed at myself, that I didn't pull my finger out and shrug off my self doubt sooner...

I have to say though that I am quite surprised at the number of people that have "landed" on my blog so far, I honestly didn't believe that it would generate much interest. Just like I was asked, I to never thought that anybody would be interested in anything that I have to say...

I was mistaken !

Its actually exciting to know that people do care, and take the time to read what I write. I didn't expect it, but I'm defiantly not complaining, the feed back has been nothing short of positive and encouraging. Thank you :)

So to the person who has such a negative opinion to blogging, I am sticking my tongue out at you and blowing a giant raspberry.....    cheeky of me I know

Your opinion doesn't matter to me, and how you found out that I blog is amusing, as I never actually told you ! So you see, if you think that I am wasting my time, it seems to me that you must be wasting your own, searching the web for blogs to read or maybe you found out by stalking my twitter account, Either way your rudeness has no place here, I am happy to say that I blog and I thoroughly enjoy reading my fellow bloggers posts, they are inspiring, and awesome, and when you say that I am wasting my time blogging, you are actually saying that many fine bloggers/writers are also wasting theirs !!!
So as far as YOUR opinion goes........

FRANKLY MY DEAR WE DON'T GIVE A DAMN


Happy blogging people
                                                                                                     



20 Nov 2012

Through The Eyes Of A Child

This week I watched as my second eldest son graduated Grade 12. It was an emotional few weeks leading up to that final day, tears and emotions were raw and on show. But somehow we made it through and come Friday night, a celebration was had.

I still cant comprehend that two of my sons have now left school.

Emotions however, are still running high in our household, as in the next few weeks we celebrate yet another graduation.....
The baby of our family, son number four has reached the end of his Primary School years and in the new year, will begin the next part of his schooling journey. I don't know how I am going to cope with this one, I really don't.
If I was such a mess last week, I may just completely fall apart on this day.

See, I can't begin to imagine what it's going to be like to say farewell to Primary School forever. It's been  a long and grueling 15 year journey and to think that this part of our lives is over for good is quite sad and impossible to imagine. 

I have spent the past few days wondering what is going through my sons head as he reaches his last days at the only school he has ever known. What he is thinking ? How he is feeling ? Is he scared ? 
So after much consideration, I came up with an idea to do something a little different. I decided to ask my son to write a little "guest post" for Mums blog, to share his thoughts and what is going through that beautiful little mind of his....

And this is what he wrote. 

Introducing Ben...


"I am feeling a bit sad leaving Primary school. It's going to be very different at my new school and I am worried that I might get lost. 
Some of my friends are going to other schools and I may not see them much any more, and this makes me kind of sad, but I will make lots of new friends too. 
Some of my Primary school teachers are really awesome and I am going to miss them, I hope my new teachers will be just as cool.
I am happy that I will get to try new things, and get to choose some of the subjects that I will get to take, I'm looking forward to learning lots of new stuff. But I really hope that I don't get to much homework".


So that is how my 12 year old is feeling about the new path that he is about to take. It makes me smile, and it makes me sad. The time has come around much to quick.
His uncertainty is normal, it is a giant leap of faith into the unknown. But as his mother I know that he will be just fine, that he will tackle this new adventure with a positive attitude.  He is a strong boy who takes everything in his stride, and just like his big brothers puts his all into everything that he does.

Its hard, I am not ready to let my baby grow up yet, he is my last, and time has gone by much to quickly. But no matter what, he is always going to be mine to love and cherish.

Good luck little one, may your High School days be as fun, exciting and rewarding as your Primary days, may you stay strong and continue to be your own special person.
Never let anybody say that you cant do something, the world is yours for the taking and I know that you will succeed at whatever you choose to do with your life.

I love you xx


Linking up with the fabulous Jules for BAM

16 Nov 2012

Today Is Your Day To Shine...

Today I watched you walk through the school gate for the very last time, and though I did my best to be brave, tears formed in my eyes as I took a moment to remember the first time that I took your hand in mine and slowly walked you to your very first classroom 13 years ago.

Your all grown up now, you have reached the end, and have done so with determination and a will to succeed. I couldn't be more proud.

Congratulations....Graduation is a time of celebration, a time of joy. Today is your day, enjoy it. You my boy are going places. You are the only one who can decide your destiny, but you will never be alone, I am forever here.
Some say that your High School years are the best of your life, but I believe that your best is yet to come. Your life is only just at its beginning.

The future belongs to those who dare to dream. To accomplish these dreams, we must not only plan, but also believe. Your dreams will come true if you have the courage to pursue them. Your future is promising, go out and take whats yours.

Part of the fun is the climb, you made it and no one can take that achievement away from you. You walked the path with your head held high and done your family and yourself proud. Always look back with fondness, and never forget how hard you worked to get to this point in your life.

Never forget to dream big my son, laugh loud and often, live your life to the fullest, and hold no regrets.
Go confidently now and live the life you have always imagined.

But always remember I am here. I will never really let go, your stuck with me xx








13 Nov 2012

Restore Yourself

I love spending time alone, no I actually crave it....
The silence, to feel peaceful, to restore myself....
Sometimes I need a quiet moment, I need to escape. A good book, a walk on the beach, time in my garden or time alone in my car just driving, it helps me feel free, feel energized.
In the car I crank the music up loud as loud as these old ears will allow and as they say, I sing like no one is listening !!

It doesn't happen often, but when it does I love it.

The purpose of life is to be happy, from deep within we desire contentment. Spending time alone refreshes us, and helps remove any insecurities that we may be feeling.
Spending time alone injects our bodies with energy and power, giving us the strength to carry on.

But is it normal for me to long for these short solitary moments ? Does it make me a bad person, a bad wife, a bad mother ?
I don't always have all the answers, even though I like to think I do but one thing I do know, is that's it's perfectly OK for me to enjoy some time alone, whether it be a single moment to clear my mind and just breathe deeply, or a day of total solitude to refresh my tired body, doing the things that make me happy, that help revive my mind, body and soul, it all contributes to helping me be the best everything that I can be.

Everyone needs time to themselves to survive, to be at their best, to be happy and content within. When we are all these things, it reflects on our families and makes life easier, happier, more complete, and it's much easier to deal with whatever it is that we need to face.

I use to feel guilty when I escaped left my daily duties as mum, wife, homemaker and did something for myself, but I have come to realise that these moments away from the daily grind benefit not only me and my sanity, but that of my family to. When I am happy and at peace, I am easier to get along with, easier to please, and not so easily annoyed, hence how my time out can help my family cogs turn in better harmony, and what could be more peaceful then that !




12 Nov 2012

We Made It !! Graduation Week 2012...

Well here we are !
We made it !
Its Year 12 graduation week. We survived the ups and downs, bumps and bruises. My 2nd babies schooling years have reached there end, and it's time for him to step through the next door, and transform from child to grown up. What lays before him is exciting, a whole new world to explore, the next chapter of his life is about to begin....

As his mum, I am bursting with pride at his accomplishments, he has worked hard and achieved so much. I couldn't be more proud. The world is his oyster and anything that he chooses to do from now on, I know that he will give everything that he can possibly give. He is a determined young man that deserves every greatness in life.

Why then do I feel so topsy turvey ?
So emotional ?
I just want to grab hold of him, and keep him a little boy for a while longer ? Keep him close. Hold him near.
I'm excited for him, I am. But at the same time I am feeling very nervous....
I am not yet ready to let go of him, he is a big part of my world and I have totally devoted my every being to him. It's silly really, but I honestly thought it would get easier to watch each child grow up and graduate, to see them reach this wonderful stage of their lives. I was very wrong. It gets harder.
One by one my babies are growing up and it seems to me that the years have gone by much to fast.
It seems that only yesterday I held them in my arms for the first time, and looked into their big beautiful eyes so full of wonder, I want that back......

Friday is looming, before the big day, we have a final suit fitting, and a wild head of hair to tame.
He is going to look handsome, I cant wait to see him all dressed up. I am sure that I will be that annoying mum with the camera :)

So my wonderful son, good luck on your last week of school, enjoy your last days and make lasting memories and just remember that you have made your family very proud.

Go out and conquer the world.
And I will go out and buy a really good quality waterproof mascara.

All grown up ... my 2012 Graduate.


9 Nov 2012

I Lost My Knickers !!

"Mum, my quilt cover stole your undies" !!!!

Please, before you start jumping up and down thinking that this is a highly inappropriate post..relax, but these are the words that my son called out to me the other day while attempting to make his bed yes actually attempting to make his bed. My teenage son miracle
Kids say the darndest things sometimes...
He was highly amused !!
I was mortified...

Every household has a hidden "sock monster" and when that monster strikes our home, it usually means that our socks have been sucked up into the atmosphere never to be seen again...
*sigh* I hate odd socks.
This time however, it was the "undie monster" that struck and unfortunately for me, just happened to steal my sexy pair of knickers, not my frumpy mum ones....and even more unfortunate is that the "undie monster" just happened to be hiding in the corner of my sons quilt cover. Shame.

We/I have lots of washing in our house, and so usually each set of bed linen is assigned its own washing day of the week. Quilts, sheets, blanket etc, everything is washed and aired out in the sunshine. Nice fresh sheets ! Love em...

On this particular day (the day my knickers found the inside corner of a quilt cover) for some reason, the washing roster was messed up and things were flying everywhere, work clothes, school clothes, sheets and blankets, you name it, it was piled high in the laundry with no end in sight, and this is the day that the "undie monster" decided to visit and steal my knickers !!

Why me ?
Of all things, and all places for them to end up.....
The boys got a giggle.
I blushed the same colour as my knickers, and I'm sure, about 49 other shades of red too.

So, my house has been invaded by "monsters". Highly evolved organisms that have never actually been sighted, voracious predators that prey on unsuspecting laundry and their mission ! to drive me insane, and now it also seems, determined to embarrass me in front of my teenage sons !!

Well Mr Monster
Your mission is complete ...                            
Well done.

Keep your eyes peeled for this little fella


7 Nov 2012

Crafty's Blunders and Mishaps...Useless Housewife Tips !

It's funny how a random tweet, and poking a little bit of fun at yourself can inspire a giggle, and spark an idea for a "silly" blog post list...and how a "cheeky" response to that tweet is all you need to set that post in motion ! This is exactly how this post came about, and how from a simple tweet an idea can grow.

Today's blog post is proudly brought to you by "Crafty's Useless Homemaker Tips".
A list of my "housewife" mishaps, that was inspired by a wonderful friend in the "Twitterverse".

"T", this is for you.
Sit back and have a giggle at my expense :)
  • When ironing, it's probably a good idea to turn the iron on before you start. Not when your half way through the basket !
  • To cook dinner, it helps to defrost the meat AND turn the oven on.
  • The washing wont dry unless you remember to peg it out. It sure doesn't smell very nice if left to fester in the machine, especially in a QLD summer !! 
  • Cars require fuel....
  • Do NOT forget how many children you have....on a few occasions I may, or may not have left a child behind bad mother moment
  • A pair of socks do not belong in the freezer, and toothpaste does not belong in the laundry.
  • When hubby sends you to Bunnings for a worm farm, don't aimlessly wonder the aisles looking for a "freeze dried" packet, they do not come in "Sea Monkey" form. (Who knew ?)
  • Don't forget to remove the plastic from cheese slices, plastic cheese is not real nice !
  • Don't drive away from the kids school with their bags in the boot of your car, they may need them, and their lunch during some point in the day.
  • When an article of clothing says "Do NOT put in dryer" it's a safe bet not to !
  • Make sure both feet are wearing the same kind of shoe.
  • Do NOT attempt to colour your hair after a few glasses of wine. You may end up the colour of Barney the Dinosaur.
  • Check that your skirt is not tucked in your underpants when leaving a public toilet shame
  • When going to a Theme Park, don't wear a low cut top, the ride camera may just take your photo at the "wrong" time (if you know what I mean) 
  • Boil the jug before you pour that much needed coffee !!
     and finally, the one tip that I need to take notice of, the one I need to remember !!!!!!
     Drum roll please ........
  • PJ's are not appropriate attire for the school run !! You may just get caught !! WHOOPS...
These are of course not all the mishaps that I have had/done, and I am positive that there are many more ahead of me !! 
Hopefully just like me, you have all had a giggle at my expense, and maybe by just giving this post a glance, I have been able to bring a smile to your day :)
Thanks "T" for giving me this idea, I hope that you enjoyed the "silly" read xxx




4 Nov 2012

Six + One = Seven

It's going to be a very busy week here at the crafty household, our family number is about to increase, and there is a lot to do to prepare the room in which our new house mate will occupy.....

This morning began like any other Sunday, hubby starting up the ole coffee pot, while I snuggled down trying to catch a few more minutes of peace before the tribe woke up to begin the day, but this morning, my lay in was interrupted by hubby returning (without coffee) waving a note around that was from our son.

"Dad, when I get up I need to talk to you and Mum"...

Well, there went my Sunday morning peace ! 

Of course I expected the worse, he was fired from his job, he was sick. He was in some sort of trouble, he had been hiding something that could no longer be kept secret...My mind was whirling with possibilities, and unfortunately all of them were making me sick with worry. I should know better, I try my best not to worry, but I think it becomes part of our DNA once we become parents. The fact that we have never been left a note from my son without stating the exact content, made me worry, for him.
After trying to keep busy for an hour or so, I had to get hubby to wake him up. My mind needed to be put to rest (poor kid had been on night shift the previous night) but I knew that we needed to find out what was going on. Hubby was also going through scenarios in his head.

As it turns out, our son was/is completely fine (thank goodness) we had nothing to worry about, but we had a HUGE decision to make. It seems that we have raised our son to be very compassionate and caring towards others (not a bad thing at all). A close friend of his has been having a lot of trouble with the people that she is boarding with and she has to leave. With no where else to go, and not enough finances to go it alone, my son took it upon himself to talk to us, and see if we would be willing to take her in until they could find a place to move into together (they have had plans to share a house with a few others for a while, they just needed more $$$).

It took me back a bit, it was a huge ask, after all we have our other children to think of, and we are  also in the middle of renovations. But we promised to talk it over and and get back to them by the end of the day oh my that didn't give us much time  

With my morning coffee a distant memory, hubby and I decided to go out, have a good STRONG cuppa and talk seriously without interruption about adding to the number in our home. 
Tossing thoughts back and forth, weighing up the decision and coming to the conclusion that a few NEW rules would be necessary, I decided that the decision needed cake, yes definitely cake was needed to go along with my coffee to make a clear decision.

*sigh* there went my diet......

Anyway, diet aside. We came to the conclusion that we couldn't turn this teen away, she needed someone to care for her, she needs our family to lean on, to support her, to be there for her, she needs a helping hand (her family lives away from here, but are aware that she is coming to stay with us)

We have had a family meeting, the boys are all "cool" with our decision and new rules (we will see lol) a lock is planned for the main bathroom door, and a huge room clean and paint is in store for the room in which she will be staying.
So starting tomorrow I am going to be "flat out like a lizard drinking" but I know that it will be worth it, the feeling of helping someone in need is wonderful, and hey it may just be fun to have another female around the house for a while.

Sometimes we need to reach out




1 Nov 2012

Schoolies 2012 .... Here We Go Again !

November 16th .....

This date has me in a tizz. Only 15 days left until this mum becomes a blubbering mess once again. Its time for son number two, to hold his head high with pride and look towards his future. It's time for him to graduate Grade 12. 
The suit and graduation ring has been ordered, the formal tickets purchased, and mum is getting a tad emotional ......
He is my baby, and he is now all grown up !

Graduating is a HUGE deal, but at the moment, the main conversational topic in our house, is of course SCHOOLIES !!
I know that we have been through this before, but no matter how many children you are blessed with, it never seems to get any easier to let them grow up and explore on their own. 

Each year thousands of Year 12 Students descend on their chosen schoolies destination to celebrate the end of their school years and enjoy what is now known as the "ultimate teenage Summer holiday" It's great fun for the graduating students. Its a time for them to let their hair down, celebrate, and just plain old enjoy themselves.
At the same time for parents and guardians, it is nerve wracking, a "stress fest".


My son will be joining in the festivities at Airlie Beach in the beautiful Whitsundays (an hour and twenty minutes from home, and the same place his brother went, back in 2010) security in Airlie Beach for Schoolies week is top priority, and this makes me as a parent VERY pleased. As you can imagine, I am at the moment bomb barding my son with information concerning his safety plain and simple I am bugging him so much he is sick of me but that is of course my job !!
Thankfully, to ensure the safety of all "teens" the team at schoolies.com have a number of safety measures in place, to make sure that this next generation of adults, stays safe.

A  team of volunteers called the "Red Frogs" have been a part of schoolies for the last fourteen years. At least 1200 "Red Frogs" patrol the streets supporting the young people and providing a positive presence. They specialise in walking young ones back home, cooking pancakes, controlling trouble, handing out sugar (hence the name "red frogs") and most importantly offering emotional support through what can be a challenging week.
The site also encourages that the "party goers" add emergency numbers to their mobiles including the Police, their families, friends, and the number of the place that they are staying.

Besides going through what the schoolies.com site recommends and talking about the importance of the " Red Frog" organisation, I have also been drumming into my son that he should always stay in a group and never wonder off on his own. To avoid all offers of drugs and alcohol (he is only 16) and to never leave his drink or food unattended.
I've recommended  that he always carries some cash and his ID on him at all times, and try his best to avoid confrontations.
And though it may seem a little weird, I've also talked to him about the dangers of to many people gathering on balconies. There are to many incidents reported on the news about tragic circumstances surrounding balcony "injuries" and or "deaths" for my liking, and as a parent I feel its my duty to cover as much as I can possibly think about to keep my son safe.

Besides all the doom and gloom, I also have told him to go out and have fun, he has has a tough year, and deserves a little R&R before turning the next corner in his life.

He is sensible, and I trust him, but I don't think that as parents we can ever be to careful.

If you have a son or daughter attending schoolies this year, I would love to hear from you and hear your personal thoughts on schoolies week, and how you have prepared your teen for their ultimate experience.


30 Oct 2012

Goodbye...

After watching the coverage of "Hurricane Sandy" today, it constantly amazes me how quickly things can change. Life holds no guarantees for anyone, and we are all oblivious to what is actually around the corner for us. Day by day, we go about our daily lives not expecting the worse, but hoping for the best. For both ourselves, our family and friends.

A year ago today something unexpected happened in my life. I lost my best friend of ten years. She didn't pass away, but fell into a tangled web of drugs, alcohol, lies and deceit. To watch her destroy herself and her family has been difficult. She has left her husband, walked away from her children, and turned her back on all her old friends.
I've tried hard, as many others have to be there for her, to help her mend her life and get back on track, but all attempts to help have fallen on deaf ears and she refuses to speak to anyone from her old life anymore.

We met when our sons started school, they became the best of friends and so did we. We spent many hours being "coffee buddies" The joy of watching our boys grow up together, and their friendship strengthen was a joy to us, our families were inseparable.

When things started to fall apart for my friend, it naturally began to affect her son, he fell completely off the rails and fell into a "not so nice crowd", a crowd that was known for getting into quite a lot of trouble. Being concerned for our sons well being, we as his parents had to make the decision to cut contact between the boys outside of school. It was tough, at thirteen he didn't completely understand our reasons for cutting his contact with his best friend, he was hurt, but for his sake we stood firm, and thankfully things for our boy have turned out just fine.

For me, I no longer have contact with my old friend. It hurts, a lot. I see her around now and then, she looks terrible, and as sad as it sounds I pray daily that I don't receive a call that she is no longer with us, I pray that she will pull herself out of this slump that she has fallen into, and comes to understand that she is worth saving and deserves to live a full and happy life.

So today, a year after I realized that I could no longer help you, its time to finally let go.
Its time to say goodbye to yesterday, to our friendship.
I think that I'm ready now.
Memories linger in my mind,
My thoughts connect our past.
Tears blur the present,
And hope for your future is in my heart.


28 Oct 2012

I Often Wear The "Bad Parent Crown".... Guilty As Charged

Raising teenagers can be a lot of fun, but it requires a delicate recipe for success. It's an emotional ride of raging hormones, misunderstandings, mood swings, rebellion and attitude, and these are just a few issues we face when dealing with teens.
They will test your limits, try your patience and push every one of your buttons. They will cause you to raise your eyebrows on many occasions, and how we deal with all of this can be difficult, it's like walking on thin ice, a mine shaft, and unfortunately mistakes will be made.

I was reading an article the other day on "common parenting mistakes", about half way through reading, I stopped short, realising that it could very well have been written about me.
I'm the first to admit that I have made many mistakes in my parenting years. Heck who hasn't ? I am yet to see a baby born clutching a "how to" manual, but to be confronted in black and white made me realise just how many of the "major mistakes" I have committed.
Sure, mistakes are prevalent in parenting, but the reality of how many I have made scared the pants of me.

 What have I done to my kids ?

I know at times I have been inconsistent with discipline. Sometimes I've been SO mad, that I have "over" punished by grounding, yelling, and taking privileges away, then feeling guilty later on, I've kind of let them off the hook !!! Bad parenting :(
I have not always made myself available to listen to my teens at the exact moment that they need me, sometimes life with a large busy family gets in the way. I'm not making excuses, I should always as a mother make myself available when needed, but sometimes it just doesn't happen. Again, bad parent ..... "guilty as charged"
But the number one parenting rule that I am guilty of breaking at one time or another, and am not proud of, is being the "friend" instead of the "parent" ....... BIG mistake !! these are of course not the only mistakes that I have made, but probably the biggest.
I don't claim to be a "super mum" or a "super parent", I am far from a perfect human being. Reading the article led me to evaluate my parenting, to reflect on the particular instances where I know that by making these mistakes I could very well be the wearer of  the "bad parent" crown, and this makes me want to change, to be the parent that my sons deserve.


So coffee in hand, and high heels on, I am going to make sure that I pull myself together and make a concerted effort to be a "good parent" a "consistent parent" and leave the "bad parent crown" in the rubbish bin where it belongs.
I'm not saying that I will no longer make mistakes, but hopefully the big ones will be left behind.




26 Oct 2012

Inspired By Beautiful Everyday Women !

Yesterday, I spent a few lazy hours with a coffee in hand, reading wonderful posts from many inspiring women that linked up with "We Heart Life" for their I Heart My Body campaign.
WOW !! I was actually lost for words. I was completely inspired, rocked to my very core.
I laughed, I teared up.

OK, you got me. I cried RIVERS.....

You ladies are amazing, you are brave, you are incredible, you are beautiful, and you all have every right to "love" your bodies, I so want to get to the place that you all appear to be at. I am completely in awe of you.

I use to be proud of the way I looked. I was fit, I was thin, I could wear anything, and even eat anything at all that I wanted. Now, five pregnancies later, and a lot of aging, I'd rather hide behind my bedroom door and not humiliate myself....
I'm not at all happy with the way I now look, and I have no one to blame but myself.
Only five years ago, I was a gym junkie, I spent about 2-3 hours a day, 5 days a week working out, I was a size 8-10, I was happy with my appearance and I felt worthy.
Fast track a few years, and I fell apart at the seems. I cant pin point exactly the moment that things changed,  I just know that things within didn't .... feel right I guess. I gained A LOT of weight :( I really let myself go, actually I kind of gave up, I didn't care. It had nothing at all to do with my family, they are my world, and have always been the light of my life, but it had everything to do with me, myself, and how I felt within. I no longer felt worthy. Just a shadow of myself.

Silly I know.

Today however, I have kind of pulled myself together (with a lot of help from my family) and I am slowly realising that maybe I am worth it, that maybe I can get back to the "old" me. It will be a lot of hard work, but I am ready and determined to make a change.
I am a long way off from "loving" my body, but every single one of those amazing ladies that joined in yesterday with the "I Heart My Body" campaign have inspired me to take a better look at myself, and maybe join in next year with a positive attitude, a smile, and the courage, to maybe take and share a picture of myself in a swimsuit........I SAID MAYBE !!

I may also know by then how to "link" up (I'm still learning this blogging process) LOL

Thank you EVERYBODY for sharing your stories, you truly are ALL amazing women and the people in your lives are so very lucky to have you xx

25 Oct 2012

My "Imperfect Children" Are "Perfect" To Me !!!

I must have been living under a rock for a long time, either that, or I am just plain ignorant. For years I thought that the "perfect child" was a myth. I was mistaken, and today this was pointed out to me !

Apparently, I was lucky enough to meet a "perfect child" today, and frankly I was disappointed.
There was no halo, or angel wings, no ethereal glow. The smiles and laughter was absent, and the childlike chatter of a child was missing, all that remained was just a small child sitting quietly between adults seemingly very sad and very lonely.

I was at my "imperfect" child's award ceremony, where as usual, the younger siblings of the school age children were playing games and laughing at the back of the hall, just generally having fun together, and in no way were they disturbing any of the assembly goings on. They were just kids being kids.

Sitting up the back, and to my right was a little girl sitting stiller then I, intently watching the other kids play with a longing look upon her gorgeous little face, she did not ask to play, she hardly moved, but her eyes were glued to those playing ! At one time, I caught the little girls eye and gave her a wink and a smile, I felt for her, knowing she would love to be mixing with the other kids, having fun, being involved, and making friends.
Her mother saw me caught me and said rather confidently,
"Isn't she just the perfect child, sitting there quietly ?"

Perfect child ? Is there such a thing ?

Me being me....
I think I shot myself in the foot again with my reply, said "I'm not perfect and neither are my children, so I wouldn't know what the perfect child looks like"
Whoops !! I think I upset that mother, it really wasn't my intention, please believe me ! I really do have foot in mouth syndrome sometimes I guess I made a mistake......
I got glared at...If looks could kill.

To me, this was not the picture of a perfect child. This was the sign of a little girl not allowed to live, to be free, to have fun, to be a child. Yes, there are times when children need to behave and all children should be bought up to have manners and to be considerate to others, but some times kids just need to be kids.
Don't get me wrong, I am hard on my kids where manners and behaviour are concerned, I like my children to present themselves well, to be polite and respectful, but I also know that there is a time and a place to let them go and enjoy themselves, to be apart of the laughter and fun surrounding them. The giggles and smiles from children (especially my own) make my heart burst with happiness, and no child should experience the feeling of being left out, for whatever reason.

What is this mother doing to this child ?
She has been on my mind all day.

I may be being harsh, and I apologize if I seem to be. After all I do not really know this mother, but to announce so proudly that your child is "perfect" is kinda off putting. I have never before met a perfect child (or adult for that matter) and if a "perfect child" is what this mother wants and has set out to create, then congratulations to her, in her eyes she has succeeded.

Me however, I am glad for my "imperfect children" they make me laugh, they make me cry. They know how to have fun and they know when to behave (well mostly) I wouldn't trade my "imperfect" kids for "perfect" kids, because to me they are "perfect" just the way they are, mischief making and all.....

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