Raising Will


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Looking in the mirror, and what do I see?

A doubtful woman staring back at me.

Driven & determined, but always with the doubt.

Driven & determined, but always with the doubt.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been highly driven. It’s been my nature since I was a girl. I was always doing something and because I was doing it, I had to do it right; be the best; win the race. But with that drive came crippling doubt. If I didn’t excel at something  I fell flat. I found myself in a pit of my own doubtful despair until the next opportunity came along and I could leave that uncertainty by the way-side; strive onwards with my new direction.

And I’m only just now beginning to understand that life can’t work that way. How juvenile I have been.

We must actually FACE the lack-lustre, walk beside it, feel it’s blemished surface. We often must continue along the same path, waving shiny new ones adieu as we pass their glimmering intersection. I need to accept the fact that I doubt myself and that’s ok. I can still function with doubt beside me. I can still parent my children well. I can still write. I can still have opinions.

I need to work at freeing myself from the fear of doubt’s grip.

Just because it gets hard, doesn’t mean I’m doing it wrong or that I should quit. It just means it’s hard.


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My Week on Instagram…

My Week on Instagram 7-13 Jan 2013

My Week on Instagram 7-13 Jan 2013

1. Selfie on the street where I live. | 2. A rare glass of wine over Project Life 2012 catch-up. | 3. Will, too cool for school, loves his Babiators. | 4. A selection of purchases from Sussan – inspired by Styling You’s Unlock Your Style Holiday Camp. | 5. Some quotey goodness from a sticker book I purchased. | 6. The new Seafoam Collection arrived from Becky Higgins this week – so excited for Project Life 2013 with such a beautiful core kit! | 7. Tried some new protein snacks this week – I give them a 3/10 | 8. I put together a custom notebook on Blurb to keep track of notes for Project Life this year – will come in very handy. | 9. Accessorising it up with the Unlock Your Style Holiday Camp. | 10. & 11. Saturday saw the BIGGEST day in the history of Raising Will – very exciting to have a post that was shared all over the place. | 12. Little Xav all tuckered out after a horrid 48 hours of screaming and growth spurts…. Unfortunately he was only asleep for five minutes then up for more screaming. | 13. Something beginning with ‘T’ from Fat Mum Slim’s #photoaday challenge.

*Note: This post contains no sponsored links – just stuff I love xx

Linking up with Tina Gray {dot} Me for “My week according to Instagram”


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Think Again Mama: A Letter to Myself

Dear me,

I see November 2013 is rolling around and you are getting that itch. That hankering for the ovary-tingling smell. That uncontrollable urge to hold ALL the babies. That sly glance at assorted newborn-sized cuteness. That desire for an uncomplicated little bundle who’s needs are so simple. That thought of proferring your uterus to a wriggly tenant on a nine month lease…..

STOP!

Stop right there Missy!

I give you Exhibit A:

Screamy Baby

Screamy Baby

And Exhibit B:

Tantrumming Toddler

Tantrumming Toddler

And through your newborn-coloured glasses you may not remember the following:

1. At least four weeks of house-bound pain and invalid-ness;

2. Two hours of sleep a night if you’re lucky;

3. Boobs the size and weight of the bag full of nappies you have to lug out to the bin every three hours;

4. Being tethered to a little person who demands you frequently otherwise SCREAMY happens;

5. Always being 30mins late…. ALWAYS;

6. Waving to the wine bottle as it passes;

7. Fashion dictated by whether or not you can get your boobs out quick enough;

8. Unless you want it stretched, broken or eaten – no fancy-schmancy jewellery;

9. Only taking a purse, phone and glasses for yourself in a 45kg bag of crap for everyone else;

10. Getting. Nothing. Done;

11. Stubbing your toe on various tractor-related sharp and pointy things;

12. Never going to the toilet alone….. EVER;

13. Having absolutely no idea whats wrong with the writhing screaming bundle in your arms;

14. Tantrums because the top fell off a sandwich or the juice is in the wrong cup;

15. Being drooled, spewed, weed and pooed on all within 3 minutes;

16. Wearing the drool-spew-wee-poo clothes for four days because the washing machine is running overtime washing kidlet clothes;

17.  Killer back-ache from leaning over the bath/cot/couch/floor/car and under the bath/cot/couch/floor/car – yes! Under the bath!

18. More Peppa Pig, Wiggles, Play School and Pingu than any sane, normal person should have to handle;

19. Always… ALWAYS being required to share half your meal;

20. And NINE MONTHS of feeling like a hungry whale that somebody perched atop two tree stumps and sent off in a V8 Supercar to drive up and down from Bright to Falls Creek at 80km/hr.

Yep! ALLLLLL that!

No –  I don’t want to see……

I said don’t show me!………..

Nooooooooooooo!

Can't handle the cute...

Can’t handle the cute…

Ah crap….. As you were.


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Getting happy after Baby

I had a hard time with the end of Xavier’s pregnancy and his birth. After ten weeks of crippling pelvic pain followed by nineteen hours of excruciating posterior labour followed by what felt like the world’s most traumatic c-section, let’s just say when I held my baby boy for the first time (three hours later thanks to his trip to Special Care) I was in a funny place.

And not funny ha-ha.

While I pottered around in my hospital room for the next ten hours in my clouded, funny state – a familiar feeling crept into my right shoulder. Not only was I dazed and confused, I was now in breath-taking pain thanks to a surgery complication the midwives refer to as ‘shoulder-tip’ pain (I’d also suffered this when I had Will – I knew no fun was coming my way any time soon). Caused by air pockets under the diaphragm referring pain into the shoulder blade – I was literally stopped in my tracks; couldn’t sleep; couldn’t move. As forty-eight hours of this came and went with about two winks of sleep and big fat dose of Pethidine, I somehow emerged with a  little champion breast-feeder. I still don’t know how I survived those first days to be honest. I’ve never felt so unlike myself…. ever.

There's a storm inside...

There’s a storm inside…

Unlike myself? That’s totally how it was. I was full of anxiety about my boys and how I was going to handle them. I was full of disappointment for not achieving the VBAC I had so desperately hoped for. I was full of vicious sarcasm for any midwife that rubbed me the wrong way. I was full of anger for the hospital and doctors that brought Xavier into the world while I screamed in terror at the feeling of all my insides being pulled out. I was full of fear about the thought of another pregnancy (yeah I know – why the HECK was I thinking about that!). If I’d been full of a colour it would’ve been dark, dark grey. I felt cheated, powerless, weak and scared. Not. Me. At. All.

And at the time, I knew this wasn’t me. It was a little surreal, like I was watching it happen to someone else and I was giving them advice about breastfeeding, breathing exercises, feeling grateful and thinking positive. It was as if I was floating above my body shouting ‘this will pass’. But alas, my body was determined to stay in the storm.

Then we came home from hospital. And I cried. A lot.

At Xavier’s four week check, the Maternal Child Health Nurse asked that stupid* question – ‘Are you OK?’…

I wasn’t OK…

I was not OK.

The problem I had wasn’t with my baby. The problem I had was with me and I realised I needed to deal with the dark grey that was clouding my brain.

At the very moment that I understood how serious my situation was becoming, I felt my floating self come down and walk next to me. It’s voice became stronger. Every time I caught myself being negative, my floaty self would sit on that negativity with sunshine blazing out its bum saying “You are ok; this was just something that happened; you are not a failure; forgive yourself”… There was a real internal struggle going on inside me and I’m sure when people weren’t looking, my two selves were literally wrestling each other.

Postnatal Depression Awareness Week

Postnatal Depression Awareness Week | Nov 18-24 | #bePNDaware

Next week is Postnatal Depression Awareness Week.  15% of women and 5% of men will be diagnosed with this condition in Australia this year, so it’s important that people are aware of the signs and have the confidence to seek the assistance they need. Whilst I wasn’t diagnosed with PND, had the MCH Nurse not confronted me about my feelings that day, this may’ve been a completely different post.

One of my favourite bloggers, Naomi at Seven Cherubs faced a true battle with Postnatal Depression. When I was in the dark, I watched Naomi’s vlog post here and identified with so much of what she had to say. Sometimes its the sharing of stories that can be the best therapy – knowing you’re not alone in your battle.

Looking back now from my place in the sun, I know which self won my battle. I’m so glad that the grey is all gone and I have accepted what happened to my body. I can get on with life. I can dream about another pregnancy  I can breathe. And when someone asks me “Are you OK?”, I can say “Why yes, thank you.”

* This is NEVER a stupid question!

Click Here to check out PANDA’s Fact sheet on Postnatal Depression

If you or someone you know needs help you can all the PANDA national helpline on 1300 726 306 or visit www.panda.org.au

**Part of the Postnatal Depression Awareness Week Blog Hop. Click on the link below to see all the amazing posts**



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Raising Will gets a Face-lift!

For a long while I’ve been unhappy with how this blog has looked. Where I was first so impressed with what I had put together by myself, as I became more involved in the blogging community and privy to twitter gems from the Digital Parents Conference 2012 and the Problogger Event in Melbourne recently, it dawned on me that this blog is MY space. It was a reflection of me. And I was not blue and disjointed.

So then began the thinking about where I wanted to head with Raising Will. Lately I’ve been somewhat distant from writing posts – with one MAJOR reason of course. But as I began to ponder on what I wanted to do here and how I wanted to grow, I realised that it was all well and good to want to spend dollars and pretty up the space, migrate to self-hosted and really get serious – but when I can hardly find the time I wish to spend blogging, would that be sensible? Would that be responsible? With only one wage coming into our household – no. It was neither of those things.

So I compromised. Although writing a blog on wordpress.com is completely limited from a plugin perspective (and of course the major issue that you don’t actually OWN your content)  it does allow some flexibility to play with design and themes – so I followed some of my bliss and gave Raising Will a new lick of paint and a fresh theme; one that was more me. Goodbye blue, hello sunshine. Goodbye disconnect, hello seamless (well, almost). I am still tinkering and probably always will be, but I hope you like the new look as much as I do.

Raising Will 2.0

Raising Will 2.0: The new digs…

Lastly, if you’re at the same cross-roads as I am – here’s a fantastic summary of the next big step for some: Moving to Self-hosted WordPress thanks to the fabulous Kelly Exeter.

Do you blog? Do you yearn for the big time? If you could have your blog do anything, what would it be?


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Babywearing with Hug-a-Bub

Last week saw the art of babywearing celebrated across the world with International Babywearing Week. One of my very favourite baby products threw me into a great little challenge for the week but before I talk about that, I want to tell you about how Hug-a-Bub became my ultimate baby accessory.

Welcoming our new little guy into the world was so exciting, but I totally underestimated how hard it would be to get stuff done when I had another mini human to worry about. I found Xavier needed to be held all the time, but I also needed my hands free. So I dug around in the wardrobes and pulled out our old Baby Bjorn Synergy that I purchased when we Will was little-r.

Baby Bjorn Synergy

Baby Bjorn Synergy (now called ‘Active’)
Image Credit: Baby Bjorn

As I pulled on the stiff contraption over my sore, breastfeeding chest and my twingey Caesar incision – I winced. ‘I remember why we hardly used this thing. What a waste of money‘ I said to myself. Alas, I picked up screamy Xav and placed him in the carrier. Major Fail. The poor boy hated it. Where Will had thought it was the bees knees (even though his Mum did not),  Xavier’s reflux and temperament had rendered the thing useless. He fought it every minute, never relaxed and just screamed more. I took my cuddly boy out of his Swedish nightmare and tried soothing him the old fashioned way – in my arms. Everything else would have to wait.

Two hours later, I’d finally calmed the storm and Xavier was asleep. I however, was not.

My mind reeled. How could I possibly cope with having to hold a newborn constantly and entertain a demanding toddler/clean the house/do the grocery shopping!?

Vowing never to use my Baby Bjorn Synergy again, I put out the call on the Twitters as to the best babywearing products for a cuddly newborn. The gorgeous Zoey from Good Googs came at me with:

What the Twitters said...

What the Twitters said…

So off I went to research on the Hug-a-bub website. Within seconds I was in love with their organic wrap carriers. They looked divine and so very snuggly. Best part about the whole thing was that Hug-a-bub had a great deal happening at the time for their Facebook fans – it was a sign! Out came the credit card. An order was placed. By the Post Office I waited!

One very quick postage journey later, I had my divinely soft Organic Cotton Hug-a-bub wrap in my arms. Straight on it went as the little fella began to make his drama known to the whole street.

Five minutes later – screamy baby turned into dreamy baby:

Dreamy Baby... Thanks Hugabub!

Dreamy Baby… Thanks Hugabub!

The more I used the Hug-a-bub, the better I got at tying it correctly. I always underestimated the tension I needed but after a few test runs I had it figured out. After weeks of baby-wearing I now have it down-pat and could probably do it with my eyes closed; and lucky, because the Hug-a-bub is pretty much Xav’s favourite place to be. He sleeps soundly and twice as long than if he was in his bassinet.

For a practice that can be seen on ancient murals in the Pyramids of Eygpt, babywearing has had a long time to prove itself. It has been found to increase maternal (and even paternal) bonding, lower rates of post natal depression and it encourages a calmer infant as their needs are often instantly met. And don’t even get me started on all the things I can now DO!!!!

Babywearing in ancient times...

Babywearing in ancient times…
Image Credit: Marie Parsons

That brings us to last week – International Babywearing Week. The challenge was set on Hug-a-Bub’s Facebook page to take a photo each day inspired by different words – very similar to the Photo A Day Challenge by a favourite blogger of mine: Fat Mum Slim. I had my trusty phone at the ready and Instagrammed the shiz-nit out of last week. You can see the results below:

Hugabub Week

Our photos for Hugabub Week…

So the last few weeks with our new son has been amazing – made all the more so by this brilliant, simple piece of baby equipment. Xavier is most of the time happy and content – and when he isn’t he goes in the Hug-a-Bub and GETS  himself happy and content. I am definitely recommending the Hug-a-Bub to all of my friends (that includes you guys!) – The Perfect Baby Shower Present – Amazing.

*Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post and I have not received any incentive for writing it – I have just been so impressed by the Hug-a-Bub that I wanted to share it with you all.


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Announcing the Arrival of…

Well, it’s been a whirlwind 4 weeks and I’ve finally been able to find some time to sit down at the computer! On Aug 1 at 12.06am, we welcomed our #2 ball of love into the world via Caesarean Section after 19 hours of posterior labour.

Hubby and I are very pleased to announce the arrival of…

Xavier Thomas
3692 grams (8″ 2′)
Length: 52cm
Head Circumference: 38cm

Introducing Xavier

Xavier Thomas – Cuddles With Mum

I will one day write a post about his not so awesome entry into the world, but it’s all still a bit too raw for me to write about yet – so that will come later down the track.

Xav is an angel baby and is feeding like a dream – and if you remember reading about Will’s breastfeeding complications you will know how much of a luxury it is for me to have a baby that just latches and away he goes! He is thriving and at his 4 week check it became apparent that his giant head (which I totally blame for the caesarean) was even GIANTER again! The equivalent of the average 4 month old boy to be exact!

Brothers - Will and Xavier

Brothers – Will and Xavier

I’m very slowly adjusting to life with two little boys (and one big boy) – it’s a hard slog full of complete chaos and unpredictability – but it gets better every day, just as I get better every day as I recover from the c-section.

Anyway – I look forward to sharing Xav’s milestones here as he grows alongside his big brother Will (who is proudly sporting a ripping case of the terrible twos!).

And hopefully, blogging becomes a bigger part of my life again in the very near future – Lord knows I miss the therapy! Ha!

Bump @ 31 weeks 5 days


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Help… I’m Pregnant… And I can’t get up!: The Joys of the Third Trimester

So I’m 31 weeks and  5 days pregnant today. It’s a little hard for me to believe that, if my last birthing experience was anything to go by, I could be holding a new baby in my arms in precisely 5 weeks and 3 days.

* falls off chair*

*gets back on chair*

This pregnancy has been a completely different experience to what I had with baby Will. Where my first pregnancy was all sunshine and rainbows and yoga and acupuncture and day-time naps and massages and nursery decorating, this one has been painful and exhausting and dehydrated and disorganised and stressed and nursery is still a pile of crap in the spare room and keeping up with a toddler is doing my head in.

I don’t think I could miss my last pregnancy more if I tried.

Don’t get me wrong, the phenomenal amount of love I feel for the little bean growing inside my ever-increasing belly is… well… phenomenal. I’m just over my body whinging at me about the hard time it thinks it’s having. GET OVER IT BODY! Not that much longer now, surely you could give me a break from those nerve impulses you’re sending from my pelvis telling me that I am in constant pain. And I’m positive that my stomach can handle more than a glass of water without burning the crap out of my oesophagus! 

“Dear Body,

Get a grip on yourself. It’s a baby, not an elephant.

God, I hope it’s not an elephant.

Sincerely,

Michelle.”

So, I’m hoping to bring back some peace to my pregnancy. A visit to the health food store and a Homeopath today will hopefully make me feel a bit better. Think I need a cup of Raspberry Leaf Tea. And maybe I’ll make a cake. Because in my experience cake fixes most things.

What herbals did you go nuts over when you were pregnant?


Did they work for you?


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Raising Will’s Happy Days in May: inspired by the beautiful Seven Cherubs

Seven Cherubs 'Happy Days in May' Project

There are many bloggers floating around on the interwebs inspiring me every day with their awesome-ness. The gorgeous Naomi from Seven Cherubs is one of these beautiful souls that sings to my heart every time she writes.

When Naomi posted about her Happy Days in May Project back in April, I was so in! I thought to myself ‘There is no way I’m going to be able to keep that up for a month, but I’ll give it a red-hot go!’

So I pulled out a gorgeous little journal that was begging for some thoughts to be written in. My little brother bought it for me last year and I swear it’s been waiting for this very purpose. And write in it I did.

But something happened in the first week of May while I sat up in bed at some un-godly hour jotting down the happy moments from my day. I had just completed the crappest day in history. You know, the one where nothing gets done, your child has turned into a gremlin, there’s a billion other things that need doing, your hubby comes home late from work, you break several nails and you have pregnancy heartburn to rival Krakatoa. How do you write about a happy moment on a day like that!? I panicked. I wasn’t even a week in and I’d ballsed it up.

My Fabulous Journal

My Fabulous Journal

Then I remembered a small glimmer from very early that morning, where Will had just about leapt of his change table to give me the squeeziest hug.

And I felt so much better about my WHOLE day. One moment of happiness rewrote that entire day for me. I went to sleep that night knowing my son loved me very much and that I was his favourite mum. It didn’t matter that the kitchen would look like a bomb in the morning or that my nails looked like I’d tried to trim them with the grater. I had love where some have none and that is always something to be happy about.

So without further ado, here are my moments of Happiness for May:

Tues May 1:  My little Will yabbered with much excitement at all the strange and wonderful people at the supermarket today, oblivious to the fact that his face was covered in chocolate tiny teddies. 

Wed May 2:  Happiness today was having hubster home all day and Will discovering my jewellery on the bedside table, after which I found my ‘lost’ earring sitting in the crook of his ear. We all laughed so much.

Thurs May 3:  Child-free today and loved being able to sit down with a HOT cup of coffee and a biscuit without being interrupted or grappled over or whinged at for the ‘big half’ of said biscuit.

Fri May 4:  Happy about being pounced on for cuddles all day today, and Will and I ate dinner at the table together tonight and he ate MOST of his plate for a change. Think he actually LIKED my cooking today.

Sat May 5:  Will almost leapt off the change-table this morning to give me a great big hug – remembering this moment turned my day from drab to FAB!

Sun May 6:  Happiness was sharing breakfast at the table together as a family and watching Will’s odd way of dancing to Yo Gabba Gabba – must’ve learnt those moves from his father…

Mon May 7:  Watching a tiny honey-eater flit about on the tree outside while I washed the dishes; listening to two girls sublimely sing Adele’s ‘ Turning Tables’ on The Voice tonight; bringing the week’s grocery shop in under $130 – all little moments of joy for me today.

Tiny Teddies Drive Tiny Tractors!

Tiny Teddies Drive Tiny Tractors!

Tues May 8:  Will giggling and walking towards me saying “tedeee tedeee”, then proceeding to show me his Tiny Teddy driving one of his little tractor toys.

Wed May 9:  Such a nice feeling to finish off my latest article for happychild.com on how friendships can help children manage stress. Also, flying through my MYOB course at TAFE. I like to be on top of things.

Thurs May 10: Watching Will demolish a bowl of two-minute noodles almost brought tears of laughter to my eyes today – so very funny. And the house smells of the divine Butter Chicken we had for dinner. Food is awesome!

Fri May 11:  We finally came to a decision on which bed to buy for Will and he was so very polite and well-behaved at the shops today, I could’ve eaten him. Also loving connecting with new peeps on Twitter lately.

Sat May 12:  Happiness today was seeing a flash of my own mischievous self in Will – example: him sprinting over to the off-limits freezer dial after peering into my face and deciding mum was ‘asleep’ on the couch (just had my eyes closed).

Sun May 13:  Mothers Day today and how could I not be happy with a mini-sleep-in, a lovely handmade card from Will and Hubster, beautiful tulips, cuppas with family and finally making a start on moving our office out of the nursery-to-be.

Mothers Day 2012

Mothers Day 2012: Tulips and Cuddles

Mon May 14:  When Will’s face lights up when his Nan appears at our door to watch him for the afternoon, I feel so grateful to have loving family support just around the corner.

Tues May 15:  I am floored every day by Will’s development. How quickly he adopts new words lately – ‘im-mim-mim’ could be heard when Will wanted a mandarin today. I’m sure one day I’ll want him to stop talking, but that day is definitely not here yet.

Wed May 16:  Appreciated a very tasty cappuccino and foccacia today while out shopping sans-child, but then loved returning to Will’s cheeky little face at his Nan’s place – melts my heart that boy.

Thurs May 17:  Soaking up knowledge from a local forum on early childhood brain development – feels like my own brain developed a little bit. I look forward to checking out lots of new authors now.

Fri May 18:  My sister-in-law and her kiddies came over for morning tea today and the house was full of laughter, smartie biscuits and ride-on tractors, bugs and cows. Time spent with family is time well spent.

Sat May 19:  A visit to the Toy Library today brought much joy to our house. It delights me to no end seeing how much Will loves playing with all the farm related toys and we picked up a Duplo barn to play with for the next few weeks.

Sun May 20:  So very lovely to cuddle up with Will on the couch before bed and read his new “Gobble Gobble Moooo Tractor Book”. Story-time would have to be one of my favourite moments of every day.

Crunchy Apple Crumble

Crunchy Apple Crumble

Mon May 21: Thanks to inspiration from the gorgeous Mummy Smiles, I cleaned the house entrance and our kitchen window today. It’s amazing what a clean window can do for your outlook on the day. Also enjoyed a deliciously crunchy apple crumble for dessert.

Tues May 22: After being told last week that my current Obstetrician was suddenly leaving at the end of the month, I finally found a new one today and just happened to run into an old friend in the process. It was lovely to see them again.

Wed May 23:  Feeling very chuffed for completing my MYOB course at TAFE today. Also had the house spotless at the end of the day – woohoo! I look forward to waking up to no mess – always a good way to start the day de-stressed.

Thurs May 24:  Browsed through the most beautiful shop today in Shepparton, it was like I’d walked straight into Paris. Now I lie here listening to a rare drop of rain; loving the smell and the sound.

Fri May 25:  Hubster and I managed to get Will’s big boy bed all set up today and the office completely shifted out of the spare room and the nursery furniture shifted in. Such a big day and an unexpected dinner provided at my parents-in-law’s place was very delicious and very much appreciated.

Will in his new big bed!

Will in his new big bed!

Sat May 26:  After a bit of a disaster day yesterday sleep-wise for Will, I was so happy that he took to his bed with not a problem in the world today. I also had a visit from a friend who I haven’t spoken to in ages. It was so great to be able to sit and chat like it was only yesterday that we last saw each other.

Sun May 27:  I put on a ‘face’ this morning and did my hair all lovely. Loved getting made up and not just pottering around the house in my everyday-ness.

Mon May 28:  Will and I went shopping at the Supermarket today, something we haven’t done for a few weeks because online shopping is finally available here now. Will LOVED it, and I love the way he puts smiles on people’s faces – it makes my day that I get to share his happiness with the world.

Tues May 29:  The smell of freshly dried, clean washing never fails to make me feel good and packing baby clothes for hospital today got me so lovey-dovey. Can’t believe we’ll have another tiny bundle of happiness soon.

Wed May 30:  A special birthday in our family today. I get so much joy out of giving gifts and making people smile with the thought put into them…

Thurs May 31: Small moments always bring the most joy for me – a walk in the Autumn sunshine with Will being curious at every little rock and leaf. I love that he is so interested in the world around him.

And those, my friends, were my Happy Days in May. I think I’ll continue this evening reflection. It brought me so much calm just before going to bed – almost like a sense of closure that I had done/seen/experienced something awesome every day. No more was my stay-at-home life feeling dull – every day is special and I can’t belive that something as simple as writing a positive, happy sentence a day helped me realise that fact.

Naomi, you are such a very clever lady.


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A wishlist for Mother’s Day 2012

Preface…

I was feeling all excited last night, dreaming about the goodies in my post below. It can be a laugh to dream of what you could have if you could have anything. ‘What a fun idea; to draw up a wishlist for Mother’s Day’ I said to myself. When I jumped onto the computer this afternoon to publish this post, I ducked around the interwebs checking out a few of my favourite blogs before I published my own. That was when the ever-wise, ever-real Eden Riley tore at my heart with her latest post over at Edenland.

Eden is recently back from a trip with World Vision to Niger, Africa and her experience whilst there and since she has returned has been…. well…. harrowing to say the least. The haunting guilt she is going through is heart-breaking and I don’t think I could tell her enough how much her readers are sharing that guilt and frustration with her – myself included. After reading the post We Must All Be Haunted, I returned to my WordPress tab and looked forlornly at the completely self-indulgent post below. How could I possibly want all these things when there are still places like Niger in the world.

Eden you are an inspiring human being. Your strength in the face of what you went through may be dashed, but speaking as a woman who quite possibly may not’ve even made it back with my mind intact, you are stronger than you give yourself credit. No one has ever got through to me about the importance of GIVING for this cause. I’ve watched the ads on TV and thought ‘That’d be a nice thing to do’ but never acted. But I’ve read your posts and I GAVE. You make people ACT. You make people THINK. You make people GIVE. And that’s all you need to do. Don’t hate on yourself because you can’t save Africa tomorrow, love yourself because you are helping save people tomorrow.

I nearly didn’t publish my post below. But then I started thinking – what about us, what about our lives? Surely we shouldn’t play the martyr and give up our hopes and dreams and food and shelter and healthy children to solve the African Food Crisis. But I guess that’s it – that word – GIVE. No you don’t need to give up your first-world life. You don’t even have to give up your flat screen or your Kitchenaid. But maybe you could think about giving something and help make a difference. Visit World Vision to show your support.

West Africa Food Crisis - Donate now

Now… On with the Mother’s Day Show! And Eden, just for the record – you are definitely invited to my AWESOME LADY DAY party (see below).

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I can’t believe Mother’s Day is nearly here again. That means it’s May. That means only 33 weeks until Christmas. That means I’m only two and a half months away from holding a  newborn in my arms! AAAHHH!

Mother’s Day is really just like most other days in our house. Hubby’s work still goes on. Dishes still have to be done. Meals still have to be made. I might get a card and some chocolate. I might EVEN get a little sleep-in. But mostly, I’ll take the opportunity to remind myself all day about how lucky, happy and thankful I am to even be able to celebrate what is essentially a “Hallmark Holiday”.

Maybe they should rename Mother’s Day ‘AWESOME LADY DAY’. That would be one heck of an all-day-party!

But back to my simple Sunday at home revelling in the happiness that motherhood can bring… what if wasn’t just like any other day? What if it kinda was like ‘AWESOME LADY DAY’? Where I get to dress up in my pretties and go out for delicious cocktails with all the other AWESOME ladies in my life and be AWESOME and talk about AWESOME things? Where I get showered with AWESOME gifts of AWESOMENESS?

How AWESOME would it be? Here’s what I would be packing into my AWESOME gift bag on AWESOME LADY DAY:

Lean Green Kitchenaid MachineI have wanted one of these for like EVER! A beautiful green Kitchenaid Bench Mixer. Nothing quite says AWESOME kitchen goddess like one of these babies, and I’m absolutely positive everything mixed inside it would taste like rainbows.

I may have a little crush on technology, and one of these bad-boys would be given a fantastic home in my hot little hands. I just love the versatility of the Apple iPad and being able to fit it in my bag and whip it out with ease whenever it’s required is the biggest bonus of them all. Recipes, notes, calendar, email, twitterverse, facey, interwebs, photos, BOOKS, tunes… This contraption is an organisation freak’s catnip… mmmmm… appley-catnip.

The Apple iPad

There are two simple, never-fail ways to this AWESOME LADY’s heart. Flowers and chocolate. Give them to me and I’ll love you forever. Flowers could really be any kind, but deep down my favourites are these gorgeously vibrant specimens – Tulips. They are the flower that just keeps giving and I love every part of their ‘cut-flower-cycle’ except the bit where you have to throw them out *sad face*. 

TulipsLindt Chocolate

And chocolate… Well I’ve always been partial to Cadbury for as long as I can remember, but for a special place in my heart, feed me Lindt! Not to be confused with the stuff floating around in the washing machine… I’m talking about the deliciously velvety, creamy goodness that is Lindt Milk Chocolate. I would possibly lose the will to live if this chocolate became extinct. Thank God for the Swiss.

I’m also a lover of elegance…. and cake. What could be more elegant and cake-related than this gorgeous get-up from another AWESOME lady – Donna Hay. I’m all about the beauty in ‘simple’ and this just screams to be on my kitchen bench. I will deal with how I’m going to keep a toddler out of my cakes at a later date…

                                       Donna Hay Cake DomeDonna Hay Cake Stand

Anyone who loves little sewing projects really needs to check out the lovely Pip Lincolne at Meet Me At Mikes. I would LOOOVE to get my hands on this gem of a book for AWESOME LADY DAY. I saw it online and just know it would be a very well used part of my sewing arsenal.
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Sew La Tea Do - Pip Lincolne
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I’ve always been a sucker for bags…. and notebooks. And where does Michelle go to dream about bags and notebooks? Why Kikki.K of course! I just adore this FABULOUS tote which I can only ever dream about; and a girl addicted to lists like me can never have enough notebooks. What do I make lists of I hear you ask…? Why, anything AWESOME of course!
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A5 Leather Notebook
Black Wide Tote Bag
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Anyone who knows me will know that Scrapping has been a recent introduction into my life. And boy do I love it. I’m currently working on Project Life by Becky Higgins and do quite a lot of hybrid scrapping which led me to the AWESOME LADY that is Jessica Sprague. Her site is full of gorgeous digital scrap stuff (including Project Life) and fantastic classes (which I have done plenty). A gift voucher to Jessicasprague.com would be a very well appreciated addition to my AWESOME LADY DAY gift haul.
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I love coffee, I love George Clooney and I’m a sucker for marketing. Therefore I must include one of these Nespresso babies in my AWESOME LADY DAY gift pack. If George happens to be in there too… Well… I guess I could share a coffee with him…
.DeLonghi Nespresso Citiz Capsule Coffee Machine
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And last but not least, I have a very important piece of sewing equipment to add to my list. An overlocker! My childhood sewing adventures involved my mum’s trusty Janome overlocker and now that I’m actually sewing REAL stuff (not just headbands to sell to my friends for 50c) I have come to appreciate their AWESOMENESS so much more. I have no idea where it might live in my tiny house, but it would be welcome all the very same… 
Janome Overlocker
And that’s my AWESOME gift bag for AWESOME LADY DAY! I am seriously almost as excited about listing these dreams down as I would be about actually receiving even one of them next Sunday. *sigh* A girl can dream can’t she…

What would you put in your AWESOME LADY DAY gift bag?

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