Monday, November 29, 2010

For Amber, for fun.

Where do you live:
Favorite art: The Heidelberg school (Frederick McCubbin, Tom Roberts, Arthur Streeton), my kids' photography, architecture, esp. early 1900s.
Pets: The kids are enough, I don't need anyone else to look after right now. Plus if I can afford to feed a pet, I could be helping to feed someone's starving child with the money.
Favorite neighborhood restaurant: Hah- Dominos pizza on Tuesday nights after athletics training.
Favorite cocktail: Don't drink either, or fizzy drinks (sodas to you). Homemade lemonade that I cheat and colour pink.
Who inspires you: Ooh, toughie. My daughter, for being young and strong in a time when it's difficult for young people to be true to themselves; my ex-husband, for his enormous patience with the children; my baby's dad, for having the courage to face each day even though it will be a struggle all the way; my blogging friends throughout the world, for their thoughts, their views, their experiences, that broaden mine.
Necessary extravagance: Hmm. One perfume, Miracle, that I ration to last 3+ years.
Favorite place in the world: Why do all these quiz questions have to be so absolute? Bangalow, because it's beautiful, and a nice dip into the cultural melting pot of country Australia.

Sew myself from Japanese pattern books; op-shop finds; Country Road if it has to be new.
Jeans: Don't wear them.
Underwear: Undies. What else? This must be a guy quiz question.
Sneakers: Running shoes or Teva sandals.
Watch: Timex Ironman with 50 lap memory.
T-shirt: Plain black, small fit, short sleeves.
Day bag:
Evening bag: Made it myself. See previous post.
Favorite city to shop: Sydney. Kinokuniya, to be more specific.

Bepanthen (baby cream).
Mascara: Eyelash tint every 3 months or so.
Shampoo: Oh, I dunno, um, Clairol Herbal Essences (went to bathroom and looked).
Moisturizer: Something French the ladies from work gave me for my birthday.
Perfume: Miracle (Lancome)
Toothpaste: Macleans Sensitive
Soap: Aldi orange fragrance (in an 8-pack)
Nail-polish color: Never, ever paint them.
Who cuts your hair: Good friend, in the salon where she works.
Who colors your hair: Same.

Amber, I hope you enjoy reading and trying to picture the person behind the answers, as much as I did yours.

Re- The Fog; early parenting is just hard. Harder for some than others - it was hard for me, and still is, with a 3yo, and 3 more in their teens and early 20s. I don't have any advice, except to keep writing, and doing the other things that you love, and that bring meaning to your life, whenever you can fit it in and around all your other roles. Just for fun. And thanks for the quiz.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Been Busy.

Ooh, have been very bad at keeping up here and elsewhere online.

Have been busy close to home, moving half the house into one-and-a-half rooms, so the floors could be done (and now they are); and dabbling a little bit in sewing - an irresistible Japanese pattern for babyG from an upcycled men's shirt, and helping the ex-husband make a crisp white linen blend wrap dress for his GF (oh! but she hasn't tried it on for him - don't know what's with that? I'd swoon if someone sewed something from scratch for me!)

See piccies.

And BLW, I'm following the fashion class again in its entirety, and making notes.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Just for fun (aka Where Are My Shoes?)

I have a wedding to attend :-). Of friends I have made through running. I wonder if any of us have seen each other not red-faced, sweaty and dressed in shorts and singlets? And it's only through judicious op-shopping and sewing, combined with a bit of hit-and-miss eBaying, that I have anything much else to wear.

So, what will I wear? I like a fashion blog by this mummy. So following her style, I'll offer up my compositions so far. Actually, I've only come up with two outfits, but I have some other skirt options I can substitute for the rather short and wide cream one from eBay. One is a navy straight skirt that is part of my work suit - very plain but good tailoring. The other, a dark grey A-line with pintuck pleats. I still have to get the boys to crawl up into the roof space storage to get my two or three pairs of heels down for inspection (sorry BLW, such sacrilege, I know). Also shows about how often I go out in company, doesn't it...

The navy dress is a bit of a sack, but it is very comfortable, and not as short as I thought it was going to be.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Part 2...?

Oh. Knowledge gap on uploading pictures to Blogger identified. Post now, fiddle later.

So, piles of fabric, with two projects in mind. A-line top/dress for babyG; and bloomers for my nephew/niece, still under construction. The nephew/niece, I mean. As well as the bloomers. Inspired by this.

And while I was looking at Katy's pages, visited her sister Jordan's blog. Read and photo-ed my way backwards through Jordan's summer with her family. And then posted her a comment through my tears for her beautiful family times, and my own sometimes fractured ones. But sadly, I used too many words for a "comment", and Blogger couldn't upload it. Funny, it wasn't that long. Anyway, maybe one day I'll find the words or their close cousins, and send her another message to tell her how much I enjoyed my visit with a family from another time zone and place, that is otherwise a bit like mine.

Colour me Happy

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Blogging the Banal.

I'm just back from "visiting" a friend in Blogland. She's a daily blogger, and that I admire, on its own. But she's much more than that. She's clever, thoughtful, philosophical, witty, stylish, wise. And she is getting on with living her not-so-easy, in fact it's probably more like her In-Your-Face-I-Won't-Give-Up, kind of difficult life, and sharing some of it right before our eyes.

BLW at dailyplateofcrazy, you've got guts. And I can't think of many places I can go in Blogland, to read the words of someone who's staring straight down the barrel, and writing it down, word for word.

No fluffing it up, to look pretty. Maybe paring it down, but that's not the same thing.

Zoe also takes me places to think, as well.

My blog is not serving the same function, for me or for anyone else. More like a note stuck to the fridge, to remind me of something. I touch on some of the darker issues that I face in daily life, but I only touch them lightly. I'm not blogging many of life's happy moments, and posting the beautiful pictures and sweet recollections of this life; mostly because I'm too busy doing the things to blog them. But there must be more to it than that.

I hate banal blogging. Of course, there's nothing so wonderful and awe-inspiring about my own words, so I'm not claiming a distinction for myself amongst bloggers. But there's something dull about reading about someone's actions - the stuff they make, buy, do, that leads to a kind of vapid emptiness (is that tautology?) in what many people write.

I spent my afternoon dealing with what is a pretty regular thing for me in my life, negotiating my way around living and parenting alongside a close friend with a mental illness. And I felt like venting, about the difficulty of communicating with someone who has ears but can't hear what you are telling them, above the noise in their mind. About what it's like to have nothing happen to any sort of plan, because you can't plan someone else's state of mind. And about what it's like to see other people pottering along with what I'm sure they think of as hard-hitting, life-confirming, self-defining blogging, and find myself not able to even react to what they are saying.

I find myself most often feeling thankful, for my life. I feel blessed. Even in the tough times. And that's partly because I know, through my experiences, how much tougher, really just how extremely difficult, some people's journey through life is. I've worked in the children's wards, and in palliative care, and intensive care. I read of and absorb the struggle of women and children around the world, in all sorts of settings, and I know, at every level of my being, that they are people just like me.

So BLW, in answer to your own search for meaning, my offering to you, is that Sh*t Happens. And love, care, spirit and determination, mercy and selflessness, make it bearable.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Too much of a good thing?

I have been having trouble getting my boys to take food to school. So in a salute to QA programmes everywhere, I gave them a survey to complete.

Please put a tick beside those items you would like to have included in your lunchbox,
_ daily _weekly _never

_ daily _weekly _never........... Fresh Bread roll (crusty, soft, seeds ?)
_ daily _weekly _never........... Fruit Salad
_ daily _weekly _never........... Pasta Salad
_ daily _weekly _never........... Potato Salad
_ daily _weekly _never........... Fried Rice
_ daily _weekly _never........... Bruschetta and Toasts
_ daily _weekly _never........... Greek Salad
_ daily _weekly _never........... Pikelets
_ daily _weekly _never........... Banana Bread
_ daily _weekly _never........... Carrot Cake
_ daily _weekly _never........... Wrap or Sandwich (your choice of filling)
_ daily _weekly _never........... Pasta with Pesto Sauce (basil etc blended up)
_ daily _weekly _never........... Pasta Carbonara
_ daily _weekly _never........... Hommous, Dip, or Cheese, and Crackers
_ daily _weekly _never........... Vegetable Strips and Dip
_ daily _weekly _never........... Zucchini Slice
_ daily _weekly _never........... Pizza on Lebanese Bread
_ daily _weekly _never........... Caesar Salad
_ daily _weekly _never........... Frozen Milk, Yoghurt or Smoothie
_ daily _weekly _never........... Apple Crumble and Custard
_ daily _weekly _never........... Chicken Pieces
_ daily _weekly _never........... Homemade Sausage Roll
_ daily _weekly _never........... Spinach Pie
_ daily _weekly _never........... Baked Vegetables

Most of the answers came back as "never".
Hmm. I phoned their sister, who's at uni 4 hours away, and read her the list. She said she'd like to tick everything on the list, and just rotate through the offerings, thank you.

So, what' s with the boys? Not esp. fussy eaters at home, although No. 3 doesn't do butter or cheese. No. 2 has a "social" Maccas habit, it seems, so going without lunch isn't bothering him, although that is bothering me. But No. 3 is just fasting all day, running in the door after school, making a drink or some instant noodles, and then rushing off on his bike until dark.

Some funny priorities are at work here. I mean, I get it that they're not "foodies", and that doesn't bother me. When I've got stuff I want to do and the freedom to do it, I'm sure not thinking about food, except that I have to remember to feed the children. *sigh* Back to revision of the menu, I suppose. I don't give up easily.

BTW, I realise this is not a very auspicious return to blogging after a >6 month absence. But, as the Tombliboos say, that's how it goes. Not that I haven't had many blog-worthy things to write about, but just don't have the free time to think and type it into Blogger.
So, sorry. To those who keep blogging, and I keep reading your daily mental workout, I applaud your efforts, like an appreciative crowd applauding as the elite athletes run past in a road race. I am inspired to go for a mental "jog" after visiting your sites. Keep well.

Sunday, January 10, 2010


...for it to get cool enough outside to go for a run...
...for the kids to finish playing games on the TV...
...for baby to finish her nap, so I can vacuum and do other noisy chores... recover the energy to tackle the jobs around the place I need to do because no-one else will...
...and watching as the kids go through the various stages of their "getting of wisdom"...
...for a storage shed that might never be built, so I can rid the dining room of its 6 bicycles...

Enjoyed our camping holiday to see the Grans, and am enjoying being home again, without the enormous jumping ants to dodge, and the water carting. But how cohesive a little bunch we are when we are away - proud of the kids, for the respect they showed each other while we were travelling. Happy times.

Reflected on the above post while I was scrubbing the bathroom floor (am I the only one who does naked house cleaning and contemplates life at the same time?).

Could add to the waiting list...
...waiting for babyG's father to be well, to end the abuse. Some things are a mix of hope and disabused reality, and it becomes necessary to recognise and act on one, while the other lingers and finds its own path.