Weekend Alone!

BerlinBoy is back from Germany for 7 weeks holiday.  It’s been a mad few days of jetlag, heat & humidity, family  of 4 fun and everybody getting used to each other again!  Well, it has been almost 4 years!  Boys, boys, boys!  When did they all turn into men?  My constant thought, when they are together is – Something is going to get broken!!  They are all so big and my little unit is so small!  So far so good.

This weekend, they have taken themselves off to the Jungle Love  Festival, where BabyBoy and his band, In Void, will be playing.  The other 2 have gone as Roadies… They are camping – not something they are overly used to doing and storms are predicted – BUT they are not here and I have a glorious few days alone.

I am looking forward to a weekend of writing and thinking and planning.  This little blog will be going through some serious changes over the next few weeks.  A bit of a makeover for The Mandy Diaries, with the addition of its own Facebook page and email, as well as changes to the format of this page.  There will be regular posting days and maybe a weekly newsletter.

No need to worry … I will still be Me, writing about my perspective on my daily life.  I would hope that the changes will generate more conversations with you, my Readers, but if not – I will continue to write and publish my words because I think that is what I am – a Writer!

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Sneaky photo taken by my friend Marg, late one night and yes, we were at Macca’s! I had no idea these words were on the wall behind me – but so appropriate.  Thanks Marg xx

Can you detect a change in me?  Well, over the last few weeks I have been on a journey with my mental health practitioners.  And for the first time in a long time, I feel like I am winning.  More on that in another post after the relaunch in January.  I’m still travelling on that journey and I don’t want to jump the gun and go to early.  Needless to say, I feel excited and happy leading into Christmas.

This weekend, will also, see me doing some other of my favourite things.  Watching the Cricket Test between New Zealand and Australia; eating fresh Summer platters of food that I have prepared for myself, even though it is still Spring; decorating the house for Christmas – although this will be modified as I will not be home for Christmas but will travel to New Zealand to spend it with my extended family and friends; and wrapping gifts, as my Australian Christmas celebrations begin next week before I fly out in 2 weeks time.

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I hope your weekend will be a great one?

What will you be doing?

So Embarrassed Right Now…

I’ve just done the walk of shame …… and it cost me $86!!!

It’s a catastrophe of Fevtastic proportions.  My dear, sweet, beautiful cat has been kicked out of the cat groomers and told not to come back!

Proud Fev

Something has changed they said.  She was aggressive and hissing and spitting and fighting the whole visit!  I have never heard Fev hiss or spit before.  I am in shock!   Has something happened they asked, as there has never been a problem before according to the notes?  They keep notes at the Cat Groomers!!!

I explained that she had been checked over by the vet recently and everything was fine physically.  I mentioned that there had been some anti – social behaviour recently but that I felt that it was caused by my frequent trips away caused by a family death.

Could it be that I had just got rid of  said goodbye, to some house guests that had meant a change in sleeping arrangements for both Fev and I?

The head groomer, said it was probably a combination of all of the above and would I be able to spend some quality, quiet time with my pet?  Maybe even get her a water fountain to drink from, as she had been most aggressive when they had started to shower her!  It was then that she mentioned that she was suffering from a bad back and she really didn’t think she would be able to groom Fev again – unless things changed drastically!

Fev water

As I picked up Fev in her cat carrier, it didn’t seem right to mention that she already has a water fountain.  With a heavy heart I wondered how settled she would become when BerlinBoy arrived home, in a few weeks, after  3 years away?  They weren’t what I would call close!!!! 

BerlinBoy Fev

After, doing the walk of shame to the car and driving the drive of shame home, I let my half-dried, still very fluffy cat out of the cat carrier.  I remembered the last time Home Grooming had taken place!

Home grooming Fev

It was then that I wondered whether the sharp jet of water from a spray bottle that I been using to stop her scratching my chair, had exacerbated the problem!  It had seemed like such a good idea at the time.

Oh dear, being a parent is soooooo hard!

Loving my kids! Loving myself!

Loving my kids is something that I have always found easy to do.  Liking them …. sometimes, not always so easy!

When my boys were little, although my heart was often breaking for them, I felt  like I could usually fix things for them when they were in need.

Not in a Christopher Pyne kind of way ….https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hc9NRwp6fiI

Hungry?  Easy – bread was my go to filler. Although frozen poppas and frozen tubs of yoghurt took a lot longer to eat!!  Injured? Usually a hug, a kiss and sometimes a band-aid did the trick.  Tired?  A cuddle on the bed with a book was often enough.  Lonely?  I would sit on the floor for a play.  Sickness?  I was the one they wanted  and I could comfort and reassure them and get them the medical help they needed.  Of course with 3 boys, fights were a big deal.  They weren’t so hard either because I had one that was quite happy to go to his room and be alone – so the reverse was required of him.  He had to spend time out in the kitchen or wherever, with me!  And I had one that always wanted to be where the action was – so, of course, he was sent to his room for a while!  The littlest one was usually  left to continue playing!  Being 6 years younger had to have some perks!

As the years moved on, the needs were pretty much the same, with the addition of a few new ones.  Transport, school requirements, money, sporting disappointments, broken hearts were added.  But I still felt like I could help!

Now my boys are men!  I still feel like I can help when there is a need.  If they find themselves in the middle of a problem and they share it with me, I immediately want them close to me.  I want to give them that supportive hug.  That listening ear.  That nourishing hot meal.  That few extra dollars.  Those familiar things that I did when they were young.  I want to do the thing that will take the pain away from them and build them up with love and comfort.

So the question that I am posing to myself is …… Why don’t I do this to myself when I am in need?

The things that I do for my sons, are exactly what I need when I am feeling down.  I need to do the thing that will take the pain away from me and build myself up with love and comfort.  I need to be  kind to myself.  I need to eat nourishing food.  I need rest.  I need to listen to myself.  I need to give myself a hug.  But I find myself, thinking negative thoughts and eating crap (or not eating at all) and not sleeping and berating my attempts to move forward and isolating myself from everyone!

Recognising my needs and listening to them is the only way to love myself.  That doesn’t mean that the needs of others are to be pushed aside.  Never!  But if I know how to and can recognise when to, take care of myself, I am much better equipped to serve the needs of others.

Treat yourself

The Abi Diaries (part two)

I really don’t get it!  Having only been the mother of sons, little girls obsession with changing their outfits multiple times a day is a complete mystery to me.  Now I know I am generalizing here but it’s my Blog so I am allowed!  Don’t get me wrong, I love clothes as much as the next girl but I do not remember wearing more than one outfit a day as a youngster, unless I was going out or swimming.  You also, need to know that all the boys in my life, when little, have been only too happy to dress up when the time was right.

Jon Andrew Dress up
BerlinBoy and BossBoy – early days!
Andrew dress up
BerlinBoy – legs for miles! It must be the heels because he is the shortest!
Patrick dress up
BabyBoy had expensive tastes!

My gorgeous god-daughter, Abi, is a totally different level of fashionista!  She loves clothes and at 4 years of age, has a very definite opinion of what she will and won’t wear.  Did I mention accessories?  That girl knows what she wants!  So after having spent a wonderful day with Abi, while her Mum & Dad were at work, I decided to look back over some of her best outfits and the reason she gave for the fashion story!  Some are from awhile ago but they are too good to ignore.  Some of the photos are taken by her parents and sent to my phone to enjoy.  Others I have taken when babysitting!

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The first series of photos show Abi’s frilly frou frou stage.  If there was a tutu to be found – you should definitely wear it or them!  Over your pj’s, your nappy, your mother’s boots or if the occasion was really special – over another few tutu’s!

As Abi grew – it became all about the accessories!

Abi fashion accessory 2

Abi fashion accessory 4

Abi fashion accessory 3

They are pretty she says!  Too much?  No she says!  Abi loves to clash her colours and accessories.  Almost but not quite, matching colours and BIG flowers are the go!  Any colour big flowers because they are pretty and make you smile she says!

Abi fashion 5

Abi fashion 6

Abi fashion 8

One of Abi’s favourite things to do is costume dress up.  Whether its a party, a game or just to read a story – dress ups are a favourite.  Life is one great big occasion!

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Abi fashion pirate

I love this little fashionista with all my heart and if she continues to bring smiles and colour and happiness to the world with her outfits – I can cope! But I don’t think I will be following her beauty tips any time soon…….Abi cream