Winter sunshine joy…

Today I went to a little cafe I like in the city.

I don’t get into the city very often but when I do I like to visit this cafe.

I walked in today and the barista, a beautiful lady from York smiled at me.

“I nearly didn’t recognise you” she said. “You’ve grown your hair.”

“Well I haven’t cut it for a while so I guess that’s the same thing” I replied.

“Tell me about your trip. How was it?”

I’ve probably been to this cafe a total of 8 times in the past year or so but she remembered me.

She was so happy to see me and we spoke about the UK and what I saw and what I did on my trip.

After my first coffee I admitted I didn’t know her name.

It’s Alissa or Elissa. It’s hard to tell with accents.

She made me feel so welcome.

The fact that a near stranger could remember so much about me filled up a place in me that was nearly empty.

I asked if she’d planned any trips recently. Not that she would plan any trips because I remembered from the last time we spoke that she had gone on an impromptu trip only to arrive in a country with the incorrect visa.

I remember lots of things about lots of people in a way that usually surprises them.

So it was lovely to spend time with someone who had remembered me.

My second coffee was made of beans from Costa Rica. We both decided we should go there just to drink the coffee.

We talked about my plans for the day and I mentioned I was going to go to the gallery.

She asked if I was going to see the Scorsese exhibition.

Except she couldn’t pronounce his name properly and I wasn’t too sure either.

I went to the other gallery and saw a Degas (also not pronouncing that properly. Is an unpronounceable surname the key to being a great artist).

I paid extra for the audio commentary and had a slight panic attack when I got told off for standing in the members line and I’m not a member.

It turned out not to be the huge problem it was turning into in my head.

I walked through the exhibition slowly.

Kind of gliding in what I assumed was an arty way but in reality possibly looked like I’d sustained an injury that would require water aerobics as rehabilitation.

I felt serene and slightly smug.

Smug for being somewhere so lovely on my own.

Even though I quietly mocked the ladies with their knee high boots and jodhpurs. Well I did until I discovered that the artist painted race horses so maybe the women had an affinity with the work of Degas and weren’t just wearing silly clothes out of context.

There’s something about fancy art in a fancy place that makes you breathe deeper. Almost as if by breathing in all the reverence and beauty you’re actually getting smarter.

It was a lovely day.

A day I needed so badly.

A day of wearing sun glasses with a winter jacket.

A day for sipping hot chocolate from a paper cup in gardens full of trees with bare branches.

A day of me for me.

And I’m so very grateful that I could.

xx

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Then a hero comes along… (Sorry for the ear worm)

In my last post I mentioned that I’m my own hero.

(You were probably too busy to read it so just trust me.)

I mentioned it jokingly at the time in reference to completing household chores.

That somehow by washing clothes, dishes and children on a fairly regular basis I am a hero.

Or my own hero to be precise.

I am getting things done.

Things that I need to have done.

I am doing it because when my husband travels a lot for work (and if I’m honest quite often when he’s home) I’m the only one who does stuff.

I keep things clean and calm with minimal fuss and only the occasional breakdown.

I am fueled by chocolate and coffee.

I can do anything. And everything. Because I have to.

I received an email at work today.

This is not that remarkable apart from the fact that I am the only person at work who checks the email.

That knows how to log on to the computer.

Actually even just knows how to turn it on.

Where it’s plugged in.

Where the fuse box is… you get my point.

So anyway, fantastic news! We are having a wonderful and talented (who the hell am I kidding they won’t read this, I don’t need to be nice) person front the Education Department come out to assess our service.

This is the biggest thing that can happen to a preschool.

The “how to” guide on filling out the Quality Improvement Plan is 28 pages long.

*Insert moderate to high level curse word here.*

It falls to me to complete this glorious task, during my upcoming school holidays because once again I’m the only one who can do it.

I lol’d when I read the email and I very rarely lol.

Bring it on!

Much like Lieutenant Dan challenging God on the shrimp boat in Forest Gump.

(Obscure enough for ya?)

Bring it on I say.

Bring it all on.

In fact bring it all on at once with a 2 week deadline.

It’s quite surprising what you can do sometimes.

I’m a little bit proud of my ability not to fall apart yet.

I usually save that for the lulls though. During times of peak panic and peril I am a rock.

I’m my own rock right now.

Taking care of business.

Clicking my fingers in a poor attempt at sass.

Bring it on.

xx

1,440 minutes to go.

Earlier this afternoon, well at 3:56 pm to be precise I asked my kids how many minutes it was until bedtime.

I then reminded the kids that because we woke up early this morning and we’d need to wake up early again tomorrow morning that bedtime was at 7:30.

Not negotiable.

They tried.

I then calculated that it was 214 minutes until bedtime.

Since then I have felt and lived (auto correct changed that to loved, what does it think I’m crazy) every single minute.

I’ve done a food shop that included ice creams, custard, Minions tictacs and tennis balls.

Funnily enough I just wanted to buy bananas and almond milk.

I’ve made small pikelets for afternoon tea and large pancakes to be reheated for breakfast in the morning.

Pancakes on a school morning are a shameless incentive to be dressed and ready to go before 7am.

I’ve made and packed the school lunches.

I cooked a healthy dinner for the kids and a healthier one for me.

I’ve swept up corn that was flicked across the room at dinner time and a couple of peas that were hiding from last nights dinner.

I vacuumed up the glass from the little hour glass that broke when my 6 year old thought he’d help me by sweeping in a ferocious manner.

I have school clothes and work clothes laid out for the morning.

I’ve done the dishes and put on a load of washing to hang out after the boys are asleep.

I feel like I am my own hero.

I get stuff done.

I am also slightly O.C.D and my house has never looked better.

I am also now worrying that I myself will fall asleep before the 7:30 bedtime allotted to the small people.

My own 7:45pm bedtime is looking like an achievable goal though.

I am as organised and as tired as I can be.

Now to actually enforce the going to bed bit without turning into a tired, screaming witch like creature.

I have 10 minutes to go.

Then I have to listen to my 6 year old read, listen my 8 year old whinge that he never gets to go in my bed and listen again to the 6 year old now complaining that it’s hard for him to go to sleep.

And if all else fails I’ll play dead and wait for them to start snoring.

The good news is that I get to do it all again at the same time tomorrow.

Or in just 1,440 minutes.

xx

Meditating to sleep…

“Let’s begin this meditation with the expectation of letting go of everything.”

This is the sentence I listen to every evening as I try to go to sleep.

I put on my eye mask, insert my ear plugs and then pump up the meditation.

My husband falls asleep the second he closes his eyes.

My nearly 9 year old son is the same as his dad with the added bonus of falling asleep as soon as the car goes over 80 for more than five minutes.

If he had been on the bus in the movie Speed he would have slept through the whole thing.

My six year old on the other hand is like me. He needs to be persuaded to sleep physically. Patting his face, saying soothing things and reminding him the one of the key things to sleep is to keep his eyes closed.

Last night I woke up dreaming that spiders were crawling all over my face.

I made myself stay awake and tried to change my thoughts.

I was woken again at 4am as one of my sons had set an alarm on the iPad.

iPads to be banned indefinitely.

For someone who likes sleep so much it doesn’t come easily to me.

So as the meditation says “try to let go of everything”.

Try not to think about work and the issues that come with working with children, their parents and an all female staff whose bosses are untrained volunteers.

Try not to worry about my kids and all the things I do wrong.

To not to stress about dinner, food shopping and why I bought 2 lots of conditioner and no shampoo today.

Try and let go and ignore the snoring and rocking of the man next to me.

And if in doubt remember that the only good thing about having a super dooper runny nose and cold is the night time cold and flu tablets.

Pop two in mouth, wash down with water and in the words of the Frozen Queen “let it go”.

Stupid is as stupid does…

I’ve gone a bit strange lately.

Well just this week.

I seem to be even weirder than usual and it’s making me nervous.

I shouldn’t be allowed around people.

I say inappropriate things.

I’m feeling a little bit like a loser and that perhaps I’m not worthy to breathe the same air as you.

I’m trying so hard to be normal like the rest of you and it’s not working.

How the heck do you do it?

How do you not say stupid things all the time?

How do you not spend your days wondering what’s wrong with you?

Having said that it’s not always my fault.

Just this morning in fact I was wearing my underwear and lovely little black slip thingy and applying make up to my face when my son fell over outside and started screaming.

He had grazed his leg and required immediate attention and needed to be carried inside.

I did this quickly as the very devout man who lives a few doors down was watching the spectacle of me carrying the child while wearing underwear.

As a result of this morning chaos it was only as I was sitting in assembly talking to a 4 year old girl that I found I out I had not rubbed the make up in properly.

I feel a bit like I’m failing at something.

I’m not getting something right.

I should be muzzled like a dog that can’t be trusted not to attack.

I feel a bit dumb too. Like I’m ruining things and making a fool out of myself without even trying.

The obvious solution is to hide away in bed and read.

Cry a little bit despondently about my plight. (Great word plight.)

But maybe it’s not so bad. Maybe I’m not destroying the world and maybe I’m just a quirky kinda gal.

I don’t know.

I did just read a nice quote in my book though by Melody Beattie.

“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarify. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.”

So instead of wallowing in despair at all the silly things I’ve said and done recently I’m choosing to be eternally grateful to all those who put up with me.

Maybe I I’ll grow up and change.

It’s unlikely though. xx

Little Miss fix it…

I am a people pleaser.

And probably not in the good way.

More of a “please let me inconvenience myself to the point of exhaustion to show you how much I can help you” way.

I want so much to make everyone okay.

To fix them.

To prove how much I like them and value them.

The thought of letting someone down fills me with dread.

I need to be all things to all people.

Except that I actually know that I don’t. Or rather that I can’t.

It’s probably why I spend so much time napping. When I’m asleep I don’t worry as much.

I’m thinking of hiring a photographer to come and take photos of me while I’m sleeping. To see what I look like when I’m relaxed.

But I’d have to warn my family first. Leave a spare key in the red boot. And make sure I’m not dribbling too much.

One of my very dear friends (who is actually one my best friends mum) told me I mustn’t feel guilty about sleeping. That has helped.

I showed her my rash on my tummy today and she said to stop scratching. She is wise.

Mohammed Ali was the Greatest Of All Time. Which means that I don’t need to be.

I will never be GOAT.

I just want to make everything okay for everyone.

I don’t want there to be pain and sadness in the world but there is.

I can’t fix that.

I am not enough.

I should probably stop trying so hard.

And go to sleep instead.

xx

P.S Now I’m worried that this post makes me sound like I think am awesome and that the world can’t turn without my assistance. I know that there are many people who do make a genuine difference to a lot of people and I wish that I could do that while still juggling my life. xo

Crouching Tiger, hiding cervix…

Well obviously I’m trying to attract new readers with quirky blog titles.

How’s it working so far?

Today I failed my Pap Smear. My doctor couldn’t find my cervix. To her credit she sure tried hard. Had 3 fun filled goes but couldn’t find it.

Blah.

Whatever.

I like to think it makes me a woman of mystery. It’s cool how your insides can hide and move around.

Today I also had a meeting with a financial planner who slurped his coffee strangely and laughed too loud.

So all in all it was not the best day.

But I made biscuits and slice.

I had an afternoon nap.

I read my book in the bath.

I FaceTimed my mum and had some serious snuggle time with my boys.

My son and I had an in depth conversation about red hyper super giant stars. We he told me stuff and I believed him because at 6 he’s already significantly smarter than me.

I am happy and warm.

I’m very blessed and I know it.

xx