29 Jan 2013

First Day ... Smiles and Tears

I tried to be big and brave this morning, and I managed to keep the tears at bay until I watched you walk through the school gate with your big brother. That's when the river flowed......

I am going to try my hardest to keep busy today, to stop myself from watching the clock tick by.
It's a big day for you, your first day of High School. A big new adventure, a time to shine.
For me it's a hard but rewarding day, it's a day that I wish did not come so soon, but a day when I am also full of pride in what you have accomplished so far.

You are the baby of our family, loved and adored by us all (even your brothers though they may not admit it) and for that reason I guess I am a little more protective. I know that realistically you will be fine today, you are strong, adventuress and you also have a big brother at the same school to turn to if you are in need....
I still cant help worrying, you are my sunshine, my joy, and watching you grow up into this charming young man so far has been a pure delight. I am by far the luckiest mum on earth.

Watching you pack your bag, and lacing your shoes reminded me of the first day you began kinder and how you needed my help with these simple tasks. My how you have grown. So independent and sure of yourself.......
It made me smile, it made me sad.
I know that you still need me, but things are changing fast.
Its hard for me to accept, but I will in time.
Ready to go

Enjoy your day little one
Whoops !! am I still allowed to call you that ?
Maybe not out loud I guess, but in my heart no matter how big you get you will always be my "little one".
I look forward to this afternoon to hear all about your new experience, what you got up to and what new friends you have made.
Go fourth with strength and smiles and tackle these next few years with the same determination that you have always shown. I have complete faith in you my little cub, enjoy and be happy.

You are my special angel xxx

Linking up with the fabulous jess for IBOT

27 Jan 2013

Things That Made Me Smile - WK4

It's been a hectic week here in Crafty land, one full of heart wrenching emotion that has well and truly kept me on my toes. As some of you may have read on my twitter feed, my wonderful step Dad had open heart surgery on Tuesday and I moved heaven and earth to make sure that I was able to be by his side. This meant preparing and leaving my family (except Mr 13) here at home while I made the long journey North to be by my Mum's side to support her on this journey as well.
It may have been a week full of uncertainty and mixed emotions, but it did however bring with it many reasons to smile.

This week helped to show me that no matter what life dishes out, no matter what your path is destined to be. If you stop, breathe and take the time to reflect, there is always at least one thing that would have made you smile that is worth holding on to, no matter how big or small that thing was, weather it was something you read, or a tender hug from someone you love it is always worth holding onto, remembering and tucking away with all the other smiles that you have collected along your life's path.

The things that made me smile this week that I am truly grateful for are :

  • Safely arriving at my destination in one piece without getting lost ... WOOHOO ...
  • Being by my Mums side when the Doctor told us Dads surgery was a success
  • The comforting hugs from my son when I broke down with relief. He was my rock
  • An evening swim with my boy to give him some form of fun after 10 hours in the hospital waiting room. He was such a patient little boy.
  • The sight of my home town on our return.
  • Getting my nails done (a rare treat)
  • A date night with Mr Crafty, good food and conversation.
  • A long weekend before the hectic return of school
I hope that all my friends have had many reasons to smile this week, that life has been good to each and every one of you, and that this brand new week ahead of us is going to make our bellies hurt with laughter.

Oh and one more thing !
I just received a call from my Mum saying that Dad may be released from hospital tomorrow :) a massive reason to smile .......
My wonderful Dad x

25 Jan 2013

A Walk Down The 80's Lane

Flashback Friday

I am SO there ......
Cathy caught my attention with this fabulous idea via Instagram, and immediately my mind started ticking over.
I have so many weird and wonderful pictures and memories that I could share, the only issue is ....

Where to start ?

Would you believe that the perfect photo landed right into my lap, just last week (how appropriate is that) my mother gave me a whole bunch of old photos, and this one taken on my 11th birthday is the one that I decided to share first .......

Are you ready ? Lets have a laugh then :)

Can you believe that outfit ? and that hair ? OH MY !! It's funny looking back at photos from this time of my childhood. The clothes, the shaggy hair, those big earrings they were big for an eleven year old WAY back then all worn to copy my "idol" at the time "Molly Jones" the much loved character from the Aussie series "A Country Practice" lame hey I am showing my age now

Isn't it funny how we can become so attached to someone/something that it becomes a large part of our world.......not only did I try to copy her 80's "style" but I had posters on my wall from one end  to the other !!
Of course that was before I discovered movie stars and boy bands, but that is a whole other post for the future......

Linking up with the fabulous Cathy for Flashback Friday

I Said The F Word !!

Wash my mouth out with soap....

At some point in the back of my mind it seemed like a good idea at the time....
Yeah right, on what planet would that be ??

A BBQ, swimming, games of table tennis, some good old Aussie Summer fun. Not at all unusual in the Crafty household. But for some reason (I am still unsure as to why the idea materialised in my thoughts) I mentioned to the boys the "F" word ! Yes that's right, I without thinking it through properly, told the boys to invite "FRIENDS"...................

Extra kids, am I crazy ?? Absolutely !! Completely !! Without question !!

Of course inviting one friend each (remember I have four sons) is never enough, oh no ! All the Toms, Dicks and Harry's must be invited, I mean really, who are we to pick and choose who we invite into our home ? The more the merrier, right ?

It started out with an extra two (not so bad) then another (oh OK, I can handle that) then another two, or was that three ? Oh heck I honestly don't know. All I do know is, we had a house full .......

It was fun (I love a good get together) it was noisy (a house full of teenage boys) Mr Crafty and I  were kept on our toes.....

  • 40 sausages
  • 4 loaves of bread
  • A mountain of sauce
  • And more drink on the floor then in cups
It was a mad house (not that unusual really)

We had a constant line up of hungry boys in the kitchen, a multitude of PS3 players competing against each other on some car game which one ? I have no clue, lap tops galore and a very serious group of seventeen year olds engrossed in a game of cards serious goings on

It made me smile, my boys were happy, and that is all that matters in my world. Laughter filling my home is music to my ears.

They stayed, ALL of them, overnight !!
Sigh .....
Have I learnt my lesson ??
Of course not.
It may be a lot of work, but in the end its all worth the effort to make memories for my boys.

Linking up with the lovely Grace for FYBF

20 Jan 2013

Things That Made Me Smile - WK3

At last, it's Sunday....

It's been a rough week to say the least, but through it all there have been some special moments that I can look back on which have put a great big smile on my face.....

And for that I am truly thankful.

Making me smile this week .......

  • A crafty shopping spree so that I can attempt to make my very first quilt
  • My hubby telling me "out of the blue" that I am his best friend
  • Buying a size 14 dress, then having to return it for a size 12 Giant smiles
  • Watching my boys have a great time with their mates
  • Taking my baby to try on and buy his first High School Uniform this also made me cry
  • Seeing the smile on my Dads face when I told him that I was able to make the trip and support both he and my Mother during his heart surgery
This week I have learnt that no matter what life throws at you, at some point the clouds will part, and something special will happen to lighten your mood and turn your frown upside down.

I hope that you have all had an amazing week, and that something, no matter how big or small made you smile....

Heres  to the fantastic week ahead of us. And may we all have many things that will make us smile

18 Jan 2013

Letting Myself Down

Today I am feeling like a failure and I am not proud of it.
I'm exhausted, I have lost my motivation, and I am angry at myself for it. I have hit a wall and at the moment, I am not being the woman that I professed to be this year. To be honest, it was a struggle to pull myself out of bed this morning.....

Maybe its because we have had a jam packed Summer break and the count down to the new school year is upon us. Or the fact that an unforeseen loss of license (the oldest crafty boy) has resulted in my being "taxi" for not only my four sons, three of which have jobs, but I am now left ferrying our guest to and from work as well (yes she is still with us) the car has now become my  home, right along with car parks, and I have a permanent travel mug of coffee in my hand to keep my eyes open and my mind alert.
It could be because my health issues have decided to rare their ugly heads again at an inappropriate time, or the stress of my very ill Grandfather who is still in ICU. This is now also paired with finding out that my Step Father who has been more of a father to me then my biological Father has ever been or ever will be, is facing heart surgery on Tuesday.  I am frantically trying my best to organise things here so I can make the trip (this type of surgery cant be performed here where we live) and be at my Mothers side to support her whilst he is in surgery.

As per usual, as I am sure many of you may agree, everything has a habit of happening all at once, leaving us on the edge and wondering which way to turn, and where to place all the pieces, in the puzzle of life....

I made a promise to myself at the start of the new year, that I wouldn't be publishing another  "I'm feeling sorry for myself" blog post this year, but my mind is blank, other then what we are going through at this very moment and I am hoping that even though I am letting myself down for using this as a "therapy session" that maybe, just maybe writing it all down may help to clear my mind and help me to focus on something else.
I have not forgotten the promise I made, that on each and every Sunday I will write a weekly post on what has made me smile each week for this entire year, and I am sure that if I truly sit and think about it, there have been many moments this past week when my family have put a smile on my dial and come Sunday I will have a blog post ready to go that will put things back into prospective and all will be right in my world again.

Well it's that time again, time to be on the move. Another of my kids needs a lift to work.
Thank you to anyone who took the time to read my babble, I do apologize for the down post......and promise to be back to my old self real soon.

After all I am only letting myself down !!

Linking up for #FYBF with The lovely Grace xx

15 Jan 2013

Mums Are Like Buttons

It's not always easy !

Some things in life require us to clench our teeth. Bite our tongues to stop a gazillion words pouring from our mouths, words that we may regret saying later. Slam a door or two. Or just plain old drink gin grin and bare it ......

I recently saw this quote and immediately my brain started ticking over
When life is coasting along and all the planets are aligned, life can be simple, life can be easy. That is when Mums are the "heroes" of the family. Just like a juggler who has all the balls in the air, the family are happy and full of smiles. But if just one of those juggling balls in life slightly shifts, the chaos it can cause always seems to reflect back on Mum.....

When all else fails blame Mum !
We are easy targets.

When things are going well, we get comfortable, so comfortable that sometimes we don't see that a ball is about to fall. We do our best to be strong, to be there and to keep it together. But no matter how big or small the situation is, its always like a punch in the face, a huge let down when even the tiniest thing comes unstuck.

I try my hardest to be the "button" in my family and keep it together, to face all situations with love, patience and understanding. I am always there to comfort and to hold. And I always do my best to help work out the best possible solutions I can to keep everyone happy and on target in life.

All I ask for in return is a little love and respect....

That's not to much to ask.
Is it ?

If I am to be the button that holds my family together, then I want to be a shiny loved button, not one that has fallen from a favorite piece of clothing and is stuck somewhere in the bottom of a draw, cast aside and unnoticed with that sad last piece of unravelled thread attached. I want to take my place and be on show just where I was intended to be. An important part of a garment family, the one that is needed at all times not just to keep things from falling apart and hanging loose, but embraced and included in all areas.
It's hard work always trying to be strong, but as Mums we see it as a failure if we are not standing tall and being the "button" . Sometimes we feel as though we are forgotten and only needed when the going gets tough.

I no longer want to be the button lost in the chaos of the wardrobe. From now on I am going to take my place in full view and be that shiny button that I am longing to be. The one that continues to keep holding my family together, but also takes the time to glitter and shine alongside them. Mums deserve to be cherished, respected and loved, after all without buttons Mums there would be a lot of garments families with big gaping holes......

Linking up with the gorgeous Jess for IBOT

13 Jan 2013

Things That Made Me Smile - WK2

Its Sunday, and here I am again rehashing my week and what made me smile.

To be honest with everything that went on this busy weekend, I nearly let writing this post slip by until the morning. Two birthdays were celebrated, and we had a lovely family visit from Mr Crafty's parents, but with a slight mishap to end such a fine weekend, I felt the need to go ahead and write......

This week, the things that bought a smile to my face were......

  • A sleep in on Monday morning (a rare delight)
  • The added family member, Charlie the bird
  • Listening to my sons have a laugh and genuinely getting along together
  • The start of my first craft project for 2013
  • Hearing my 14yr old's serious discussion on why Mum and Dad should continue to buy his phone credit even though he now has a part time job (I am saving up for a car that costs $75000 you know Mum)
  • The text from my eldest to let me know that he had safely arrived at his destination 
  • Watching the pure joy and excitement of my youngest son opening his 13th birthday presents

Precious memories that I will hold close to my heart and that will always bring a smile to my face.

What made you smile this week ??

I hope everyone had a wonderful week, and at least one thing happened to make you smile.

11 Jan 2013

It's Almost GO Time

It's a wonderful feeling to sit back and do nothing but listen to the happy banter of your children. Happiness amongst siblings does not always come easy, so when the mood strikes my boys to "get along", laugh and just generally enjoy each others company, it sends tingles of happiness up my spine and at that moment all seems right with the world....

Thankfully these school holidays have been quite enjoyable, yes the boys have had their moments they wouldn't be "normal" if they didn't but all in all its been quite a peaceful and entertaining break.

So far this Summer we have been lucky enough to spend quite a fair bit of time together, and it's been a wonderful happy time.
Fishing, swimming and just general family time, have given us lots of laughs and memories to look back on. It has been special and uplifting.

"Sigh" I am actually dreading the return to school.

I love being organised. I love my "to do" lists and I like to feel "in control" with what is happening around me, but as the boys grow older, I have come to realise that spending precious time with them is much more important. The house is clean (I can NOT stand filth) but I have come to understand that bits and pieces laying around and a few dirty dishes on the sink will NOT end the world......
 Unfortunately, with the return to school almost upon us, and all the activities that come along with it, it means that we are about to loose our lazy morning starts to our days, and our casual dinner times that seem to come so free and easy when the boys are home. It's almost time for us to be on the move again.

It's almost GO time.

It is almost time to break open a new diary, my "to do" list is about to make its come back, the lazy days of Summer school holidays are almost over and I am beginning to hear the house sigh and call out for me to bring some organisation back within its walls.                
The cushions are tired of living on the floor, and the fridge just wants to be closed for more than a few minutes at a time. The PS3 is over heated I'm sure, and the togs and beach towels would like to know the feeling of being dry again.

It's time for reality to set in and get back into some sort of routine, gather our bits and pieces and return to normal, after all a tidy, functional home is the basis of a calm organised family, and that is just the way I like it.

Linking up With Some Grace for the fabulous FYBF

8 Jan 2013

Milestones, Heart Strings and Attitudes

Over the past few months, our family has experienced many milestones. And on Sunday our family will reach and celebrate yet another......

The youngest member of our family is having a birthday and turning thirteen. We are after all these years, leaving our "tween" times behind us for good, and will be surrounded by a house full of teens !

It's a moment that is pulling at my heart strings.

For him it's a big occasion, a moment in time that he has been on the count down to. New challenges, lots of changes and new beginnings as he prepares to enter High School in just a few short weeks. To him it's a definite sign of growing up, new adventures and a whole new world to experience.

For me, I am not ready. I don't want to let go of my "baby". In my past experience, once kids start High School, it seems as though before to long they shake off the last touches of being a"little kid" and enter into another whole new world of adolescence.

Attitudes with a capital A, that new found confidence that makes them ALWAYS right, Argumentative, and not to mention the fact that they think that house rules no longer apply to them. In fact its almost a step back in time to the "terrible twos" all over again.

I honestly don't think that I am fully prepared to go through it all again, I have had my head in the sand, been in complete ignorance that I was ever going to get to this stage again, in my mind my youngest child would stay just that, young, small, impressionable, mine. But alas that is not the case, the time is here all to quickly. Right under my nose he grew up and now its time that this mum must realise that its time to wake up, pull my head out of the sand and head into the horizon with a "can do, will do" attitude of my own......This fourth journey down the road of "teenagism" will not defeat me. It may not be a completely peaceful journey, but its one that I am going to face head on full of determination that only a mother possesses.

So my little one, as you begin this new journey in life, remember that not everything has to be a struggle. Remain true to yourself and shine. Be your own person and continue to follow your own path. There will be times when you will find yourself being led down a road into the unknown and when this happens, stop and think about how this could affect you ? Is it the right path for you to travel down ?

Life is a tough journey. We don't always make the right choices. No matter how old we get, or how much life experience we possess, things are thrown at us in the most unexpected ways. I want you to remember that no matter what happens, no matter what life throws at you, I am here. You are never to old to turn to your mum in times of need. That old attitude with that sneaky capital A need not come between us. We are family and family sticks together through the good times and the rough. Just ask those big brothers of yours, they are finally learning that parents are not "enemies" but here to guide you through life in the best possible way we know how.
Yes we will argue, we will disagree and have times when its best to leave each other alone to calm down before compromising on what ever issue is at hand.
You are a good boy, a sensible boy, continue on that path and your teenage years will be a magical experience that is filled with great joy and happiness....

Happy Birthday Ben

7 Jan 2013

An Owl Obsession

Is anyone else a collector ?
Do you have a particular item that makes you happy to have around ?

I am a collector of Owls. Now don't get me wrong, I am not completely obsessed however my boys beg to differ yes I have ornaments, a cushion and a couple of coffee mugs, but they are not placed all over the house in an uncontrollable, obsessive amount. In fact the few that I have is just the right amount to make me happy....

My collection
Anyway, apparently Mr Crafty thinks that every Owl or Owl item, is up for the taking and that I just have to have it, that I need it and can't live without it ..... Completely not true. I love Owls there is no doubting that, but I really have to love them for them to join "our family" and of course they have to fit in with some kind of decorating theme. I do not want to be known as the "crazy owl lady"

The other day while I was happily stocking on up on craft items in Spotlight, Mr Crafty was over in Bunnings pricing more crap building materials to finish off our renovations. I of course took longer than he returning to the car. After unloading my purchases into the boot, I attempted to take my seat.... and I mean attempt !!!

What the ??
There IT was, in all it's horrifying glory, sitting on my seat and staring up at me was this .........

What the hay ???
Are you kidding me ???
It looks like something out of a horror movie !!!

Grinning at me from the drivers seat was Mr Crafty, so happy and proud of his purchased gift for me, I however couldn't stop laughing and asking what the heck he was thinking. Really you didn't have too, seriously you didn't. Lucky for me it is an outdoor ornament (apparently to scare off any unwanted creatures from your garden)

Yeah ya don't say .... LOL

Outside where he belongs 
So here is where he ended up, perched outside protecting my miniature lemon tree. Hopefully this means we will be getting lots of produce now :)
He is still a part of the family lucky me but is somewhere, where I only get to see him every so often.


Thank you Mr Crafty for thinking of me, it was honestly really sweet and scary.
I love you for it, but please no more Owl shopping for you xx

"No owl was injured during the writing of this blog post "......

6 Jan 2013

Things That Made Me Smile - WK1

Here at Craftypjmum, I have decided to challenge myself and write a weekly blog post that will be published each and every Sunday for the year 2013...

Since I am determined to put the last crappy year behind me and focus on having a fabulous 2013, I decided that a weekly blog post reflecting on the things that made me smile, that I was thankful for, or just made me happy and laugh out loud over the course of each week would help me focus on the good and not dwell in the down moments, giving me something to reflect on throughout the year, and help me realise that the good does out weigh the unfortunate.
No matter how big or small the reason for smiling is all that counts......

So here is the first "Things That Made Me Smile" post for 2013.....

  • A kiss at midnight to bring in the New Year 
  • A glass of wine and a soak in a bubble bath
  • A high five from my son when I was the only one who caught a fish (see mums really do rock)
  • The sun on my skin
  • A family night playing board games
  • Purchasing my plane ticket to Sydney for DPCON in March
  • A quiet conversation and alone time with Mr Crafty 
  • The possibility of buying a new home

No matter how simple these things may seems, every single one of them bought a smile to my face.

I would love for you to join me and leave a comment about what made you smile this week.......

Hope everyone has had a brilliant week, and has at least had one thing happen to make them smile.

4 Jan 2013

Family, Sun, Sand, Surf and Mother Always Knows Best !!

You know it's summer in the Crafty household when there are wet towels hanging from every nook and cranny, everyone is looking a little "pink" and there is sand from one end of the house to the other. That's the advantage of living in such a beautiful part of Australia.

Today we spent the afternoon at the beach, my favorite place on Earth. The boys were reluctant at first, I mean who in their right mind would drag teenage boys away from their PS3's and XBOX machines ????

Um that would be ME !!!

I decided that I needed a lazy afternoon of sun, sand, surf and family, and thanks to my determination and sheer harassment, I won :)

We are lucky enough to live fairly close to the beach, although if I had my way and believe me I am working on it  we would move even closer, the sights the smells it's completely relaxing to me. And although the salty water and sand make your skin feel icky and sticky sometimes, I always feel my best after a dip in the surf and a lazy day in the sun

PROTECTION OF SUNSCREEN, SUN SAFE CLOTHING AND HATS ARE A MUST PEOPLE.....I am not an advocate of frying ones self to resemble a scrumptious cooked lobster !!!

More often then not, the seas are quite calm in our area and waves are rare due to the coral beds of the Great Barrier Reef, however today, due to an Ex Tropical Cyclone, we had waves that are quite unexpected in these parts. And that put a smile on the boys faces....

They were dunked, thrown, dragged and pulled about the Ocean, and they continued to go back for more. As parents of adventurous boys we made sure that we attended a beach with Lifeguards and that the boys continually swam between the flags....

                                   SAFETY ALWAYS COMES FIRST

Heading home after an afternoon of fun

Lucky for us, our Summers here in Mackay are much longer then our Winters thank goodness so we are able to enjoy days like these quite often. However we have to be careful as Summer is unfortunately our high risk season for stingers and more often then not, our beaches are not safe enough to swim in between the months of September to March. We also need to be aware of Salt Water Crocodiles as well as Sharks lucky aren't we Oh well, I guess no matter where you live we all have things that we need to look out for, and if we take the right precautions and are safe then we can enjoy the wonderful things that our Country has to offer....


I am looking forward to spending more lazy days like these with my family, and no matter how much of a struggle it can be sometimes to get the boys motivated and out the door, I know that once they get to where we are headed, they always have the time of their lives....
After all mother always knows best :)

Linking up with the gorgeous Grace for the first #FYBF for 2013

1 Jan 2013

Family, Fitness, Fun and Firsts

What a relief it is to welcome in a brand New Year. We have a blank canvas before us, that is eagerly awaiting to be painted with bright, colourful memories.

I have never really made a New Year Resolution, well not one that I have stuck to for more then a few days anyway. This year however, I am determined to make some changes around the crafty household. This year is going to be one of family, fitness, fun and firsts.....

I have been doing a lot of soul searching, and thinking about where I want this year to lead me. Of course the first thing that came to mind was my family. It's so easy to loose ourselves in the every day rut of life, and we tend to put the simple pleasures on hold as we tackle what forces we come up against. I am raising my hand as a guilty party. I became so involved in trying to push through and survive the last twelve months that I forgot to embrace the most important thing in my life.....my family.
I have decided that this year I am going back to basics, the unnecessary things can wait, this year is all about being together and enjoying what each of us has to offer. We only have a limited time to enjoy life together and as of now I am grabbing every opportunity with both hands and living life with my family in the fast lane.

My fitness took a dive once December rolled around. I had done really well up until then, now I have the "Christmas Wobbles" going on, it's time to get serious, put one foot in front of the other and regain some kind of regime to kick the "wobbles" for good.

I think that somewhere along lasts years road I forgot to have fun....this year I am determined to bring the fun times back to the Crafty household. My goal is to spend time each weekend week days are just impossible  gather the troops who are not busy working and get out doors and experience the fun of just living and appreciating life. Again back to basics and putting family first.

On a personal note, I feel that I need to come completely out of my comfort zone, gain some confidence and put my fears of how others perceive me to rest. I have finally come to the realisation that I am the only one standing in my way. I know it only took me thirty uh um something years to work that out :)
My journey will begin in March, when I pack my bags, leave my family behind and fly to Sydney to take part in the Digital Parents Conference for 2013. I am beyond excited, full of nervous energy and honestly am still stunned that I had the "guts" to purchase the ticket in the first place.
My journey I am determined will not end here, I have a few things in mind that I am itching to challenge myself with, but that my friends is to be kept a secret for now......

So there we have it, my goals for 2013. They may seem frivolous and simple to some, but to me they are meaningful and straight from the heart.

Let the fun and games for the Crafty Crew begin


Well hello there.... It’s been a while between blog posts, I needed time to gather my thoughts and to heal, both inside and out. Most of...