Sunday, 25 December 2011

Roughing it. Eccentricess style.


Camping and I are not good friends, but Trickey adores it. He has taken great strides to improve our camping adventures.

Our first camp event (when I write camp event, I expect something with Drag Queens and going to a gay bar with the girls, but apparently Trickey envisions something quite different.) Trickey drove us there in his crinkle cut Torana (so called due to the Smiths Chips pattern on the side door from the "driving into a tree" activity) with a small tent, a sleeping bag and a slab of beer.

Being more familiar with my Dad's version of camping, I foolishly assumed there would be food, mattresses, chairs, toilet paper and that the weather conditions would have been considered. I did find a half eaten packet of BBQ shapes in the car, which made the difference between my throwing a full on tantrum with loud demanding to be returned home immediately and my staying to see how it would go.

Beer makes me ill. It requires mammoth amounts of water for improvement. Forunately there was a running creek near the campsite. No cups. I got in trouble several times for dislodging the motorbiking male's cooling stashes of beer during my ventures into the creek for hydration.

Sobriety did not enhance the night. Sitting on the rotting wood log that my beloved provided for my seating was a continuing form of anticipatory torment, as it was still full of wriggling and occasionally biting life forms.

I had been assured the company of other females, not being very comfortable around males in general. It was so lovely to see my ex-flatmate and her best friend, to revel in the charming conversation with someone whom I enjoyed a state of mutual detestation.

The fumes of the various motorbikes, some in a state of mid repair at the campsite, mingled beautifully with the smoke from the massive bonfire that this restrained group considered sufficient. The clear mountain air I had been promised was available, if I walked far enough away from our group. The aroma did wonders for my joy in this adventure.

The crowning moment for me, however, came slinking in the early hours of the night. Trickey had stolen the entire undone sleeping bag (I should've taken note of this for future bedding expectations, once a Doona thief always a Doona thief) and smooshed me over to one side to be squished up against the tent fabric. I could not move him, so I merely snuggled as close as I could for his body warmth and lay in abject misery, awaiting the warmth of sunrise.

Then the rain began.

Then the rain soaked through the thin tent material.

And soaked me.

After several hours, enough sunlight allowed me to leave the tent with some hope of avoiding the nocturnal webs and the obstacle course of motorbikes, eskies and random logs. I made my way to the fire and proceeded to create a respectable blaze and dry out a little.

Trickey finally awoke and a great trip was planned to a nearby town for hamburgers and other forms of sustenance.

This ordeal has scarred me for decades, with Trickey devising improvement after improvement to his camping style in hopes that I may once again find joy in camping.

So today, we have a large canvas tent, totally water proof. With a patio. Aussie to the core! The interior is filled with a very comfortable mattress, my own sleeping bag and favourite pillow... and he sleeps against the tent wall these days.

A lovely little table set up, with a camping stove and billy for my early morning tea. And lunch time tea. And aftenoon tea. Three Eskies of varying size. Several quite delicious recipes to delight the palate. A large crate full of cooking neccesities, sunscreen and the most important aerogard. I must also mention we are at a caravan park with toilets and showers. ESSENTIAL!

Sitting here, in the shade of my patio, listening to the sounds of delight Trickey, his brother and our Princess are making down by the river, sipping a cuppa peppermint tea, my feet up, surrounded by gorgeous ferns, eucalypts and oaks, ducks waddling by, a tiny creek mere feet from me, I realised that he had finally done it. I wasn't miserable, uncomfortable or unhappy. While I wanted to go home, that is an ever present feeling within me and I could ignore it.

With this level of comfort, I can be a camper. This is my lowest level for contentment.

It is good.

He did it!

(Above written on Trickey's iPhone while enjoying myself at our campsite)

(Below written on my own adored MacBook, in my nice, warm home, with a tabby Diva and new Kate Bush album providing excellent distractions)

NB. I told him all I wrote that evening. As we sat and ate our cold dinner on the patio and watched the rain begin. Then the wild thunder and lightning, I quite enjoyed being part of something so elemental.

Then the hail. Which made me cry for our Beautiful EK out in the rain, having nasty things thrown at her from the clouds.




But I was still happy. I was using some emotional energy to stay calm, as I knew while this moment was exciting, I would be paying for it once the dark came. Once the rain made me feel trapped inside that tent. Once getting out to go to the toilet, or just wander in the night, as I always do, was going to be cold, wet and miserable.

And after waking before first light, staring at the tent ceiling as I have done on so many other camping events, just waiting for enough light to go and start the fire and begin warming my soul and my toes, I was deprived even that, as no fire was going to start in that downpour.

The other thing that makes Camping okay by me, these days? That we stay close enough to home so I can go home when it all becomes too overwhelming. The sun is out, my cat is happy, soon, soon, I will convince myself to drive back to my family and our campsite for one last day by the river.

Friday, 23 December 2011

An ode to yet another household item

Oh sticky tape, Oh sticky tape,
now where could you be?
I have dug my way though
the box of stationary.

I found a small remnant,
from previous years,
I wrapped up five presents
with ever grateful tears.

With many gifts remaining,
vulnerably unwrapped,
I need you before the
child finishes her nap.

I have a compass from Santa,
to give her this year,
please help me to cover it
with paper of cheer.

Your not under the couch,
or behind the T.V.,
I can't find you in the
3rd draw down either, see?

Your stickiness so glorious,
the way it connects,
two edges of paper
so to conceal our gifts.

Please reveal your hiding place,
with a magical boom,
I bet you are somewhere in
the sleeping child's room.

Monday, 19 December 2011

Bah, humbug.

Brain dead. So drained.


Bring on the 26th!

(deleted everything else cos it was all just whinging)

Oh! My girl looked supercute at her Grad. I totally loved that of all the glamourous Grade 6's, my girl and her Besties were totally funky in their own styles. Their is a certain confidence, a belief in themselves, in this shy group.

And her School Report - for the first time ever, my Princess was at her age level. Except in art, where she was marked to be a year above her age level. *eyes pop open for a second before returning to half shut zombie mode*

Tonight I will scan in these results and send them to her tutors with a great big "YES!!!'.

Brain Dead. In Pain. But overall, my daughter is doing well so I am all good.


Friday, 16 December 2011

The fascination of watching my Daughter's personality unfold. (Now with reduced Screaming)

My daughter is really interesting.

She's been home for a while now, with a cough, and we have spent a lot of time talking and sharing and cuddling (Okay, and playing computer games) and I am really liking this grown up version of my tiny Screamy that I am getting to know all over again. She's similar, but different to Baby Screamy, I am seeing the same joys, loves and interests as little Kinder Screamy as well as the same shyness and anxieties, but still, she's different again.

More mature. More capable of expressing through words, where she was a very physical communicator as a toddler (Mediterranean heritage stereotype much?). I like words. This is a big step for us. We have been working on enunciation lately, as Trickey mumbles and can be quite incoherent and I wanted to ensure my Darlin' Screamy was able to express her self clearly.

More controlled. Wow, so much more controlled. The obsessive streak is there, is expressed, acknowledged but with the understanding that it is obsessive and maybe not of interest to anyone else. She spoke to me about Bakugan for an hour straight last night and made it fascinating. It may have helped that we decorated all her Bakugan with glitter two years ago, cos glitter makes me smile.

She will not get the nickname of Tweeny Screamy. Waiting to see about Teener Screamer though.

A different, but still amazingly the same, Princess Screamy.
Without the Screamy. Somedays it's amazing how quiet it feels without the Screaming. We were up the street yesterday, getting lil Miss Cough-a-lot some chiropractic love and I got all nostalgic and sentimental over a child throwing a complete hissy fit in the supermarket.
"She sounds just like you used to, Princess." and gave my Non-Screaming child a squishy hug.

As desperate as I was for a second child, I think the fact that we didn't start trying until Lil Miss Scream-the-second-we-enter-those-supermarket-doors had started Kinder, says something about how well I coped with the Screaming .

This was supposed to be a post about how wonderful my Daughter is! How much I am enjoying her personality. How much fun it is to follow her conversation, just let it flow and see her thought patterns expressed. Not the Screaming. ;-)

I want to make this the "Summer of 2012" that she always looks back on as relaxing, fun, social and a happy space. The in between of Primary and Secondary school where she just creates joyful memories. A shining moment.

With extra tutoring. Suck it up, Sunshine!

'Course, considering how much she loves her tutors, she's already declared that one of the best parts of our holiday plans.




Saturday, 10 December 2011

Incredibly special. (really long, partly autobiographical with fictional addictions)

They were quite a large group. Sylfaen stood up before them, feeling nervous and a little shaky.
"A story? Okay, but give me a few moments to get my thoughts into order." she replied to a query from the crowd.

Sylfaen looked around the room and smiled hesitantly. "As most of my favourite stories begin like this, I shall start here also. "

She took a slow breath and began. "Once upon a time, there was a young girl who had something amazingly special in her life. It was so special and yet an everyday sort of thing. She was both amazed this incredibly special thing was in her world but also accepted it's being hers, very easily. She had always had this wonderfully special thing, it had always been there for her.

"First, I should describe the young girl to you. The little girl was a small child, with long, white blonde hair that became paler every day from the rays of the sun shining on it so often. Her hair was perfectly straight, but it was usually such a mess that no one knew that."

Her hand came up to touch her nose, completely unconciously as she continued, "Our little blonde heroine was covered in freckles, again from her love of being outside. She had freckles in big, odd shaped blotches all over her face. Clothes were not a great interest for her, as long as they didn't hamper her having fun playing, so she usually wore shorts and a t-shirt. This meant that she also had light brown freckles on her toes, as well as her legs and arms."

Sylfaen touched the centre of her waist with both forefingers and then drew them around to the centre of her back, highlighting a circle that would have been just above the shorts waistline.

"There were even freckles around her waist, since she didn't like keeping her shirts tucked in."

From the crowd a little voice spoke up. "Didn't her Mama make her wear a hat and sunscreen? To stop cancer and sunburn?"

Sylfaen was a little stunned by the casual way this was said, as such a universally accepted truth that no one would consider taking such a silly risk these days.

"Indeed her Mother did try to do those things, sewing elastic onto hats because our little blonde girl hated the way they would fly off her head when she was sitting on the prow of a boat, facing into the glorious wind. Trying different colours and styles when the little girl complained that the tight hats gave her a headache. Since our heroine spent a lot of time riding around her home town, far away from her Mama, her Mama didn't know that she would take off the hat as soon as it annoyed her."

The little voice from the audience piped up again, this time sounding confused, "So, why didn't she get cancer, then?"

Very gently, Sylfaen smiled in the direction of the voice and replied, "She did. Our Heroine, between the ages of ten and sixteen, had a doctor cut five moles out of her arm and back," pointing near her left shoulder as she explained, "and one of them was a cancer. After that, she wore long sleeved shirts, hats and even the horrible, itchy, painful sunscreen."

Sylfaen smiled again, this time more delightedly. "She found that her freckles faded, too, which made her VERY happy."

The audience murmured and shifted, with a few giggles.

"Now you know our Heroine a bit better, I'll tell you what she had, this amazing thing, something so special and wonderful and always a part of her life. Something that made the sun shinier, the rainfall sound more musical and the fairies seem more real."

Leaning forwards towards the audience, she spoke very clearly and intently.

"Our Heroine had an Older Sister."

Sylfaen stood up very straight and put on a "quite pleased with herself" expression, one that her little blonde heroine may have used all those years ago.

Several of the children in the audience looked disappointed with this revelation, some clapped in agreement and several, who may have been older sisters themselves, sat up a little straighter in unconscious mimicry of Sylfaen.

"Her older sister was the best fun in her whole world. She would play amazing games with her, involve her in every activity she was doing and tell her the most amazing stories. One day, they were playing out in the backyard, on the frame from the ute tray that they used for monkey bars, when her sister acted all twitchy. Our little blonde heroine asked her what was happening. The Older Sister explained that she felt all magical and was just going to run inside for a moment.

"When she came out, the Older Sister said that she wasn't her sister anymore, because her sister had gone to visit Fairyland in the fairy's body and she was a fairy come to visit the human realms.

"This fairy told her amazing stories about what it was like to fly, live in a treehouse and dance around the mushroom rings that the two sisters had sometimes seen in the parks. Our little blonde heroine listened in rapt fascination, both delighted and a little terrified. Would her Older Sister be okay? Would she come back?"

"She mentioned these worries to the Fairy, who swooshed back inside the house and came out again, but with the Older Sister back in her own body. There were ecstatic hugs from our heroine, who then climbed the frame again to hear how Her Very Own Sister had met the Fairy Queen and been dressed in a beautiful gown made of flower petals. What a marvellous day that was."

"This Incredibly Special part of our little blonde's life also spent hours riding their tricycle up and down the driveway, with the teeny little blonde sitting in the passenger seat. Her Older Sister would make up stories about their ride, how they were passing the store and they had to wave to everyone inside. Next would be a stop and wait while the cows crossed the road..."

Another voice from the crowd called out, "Why were there cows on the road? Shouldn't they be in their farms?" Several more audience members expressed their curiosity as well, having grown up in a city where children were taken to special hobby farms to meet farm animals and understand where milk and eggs really come from.

Sylfaen turned and used the chalkboard this time, drawing a dirt road with large paddocks fenced off on either side of the road. She drew some barely recognisable cows in the paddocks, almost, but not quite, stick figures. Pointing at these, she spoke. "These are supposed to be cows. Let's just believe that and move on. Where are they now?"

"In the big squares!" Called out one helpful child.

With a grin, Sylfaen responded, "Yes! And the squares are supposed to be paddocks. The cows eat the grass. After a few days, what do you think happens to the grass?" She waited.

The 40 or so small children looked at her blankly. A small boy whispered in the ear of the girl next to him and she giggled. Sylfaen asked them, "Please share your funny with the class." The girl went bright red and shook her head and the boy giggled some more. Sylfaen waited. Silently. The boy nudged the blushing girl and she glared at him.

Ever so quietly, the boy said, almost trying not to be heard, "It turns into poo!" and then couldn't hold in his giggles.

Sylfaen smiled. Her eyes met the cheeky boy's and she said, "Yes, it does. Not the answer I was hoping for, but still correct." Her eyes looked around the bright faces of giggling children. "Any other ideas?" she asked, and visibly crossed her fingers with a hopeful expression. "About the grass?"

From the corner, a confident voice called out, "The grass gets really short, like it's been mown".

"Spot on!" With a warm smile, she turned to the board and drew tiny lines to show short grass. Then she erased the cows and re drew them with the necks reaching towards the other paddock with the long grass.

"So, the Farmer wants his cows to be happy and well fed and opens the gate to let them go across to his other paddock. When this happens, all the people in cars have to wait, because cows don't understand road rules. They wait, the cows get across and fed and little girls on tricycles get to make Mooing sounds and pretend they are the farmer driving his cattle across the road or the people in the cars waiting."

Sylfaen straightened up again, and made an odd gesture, something like a cat who was using a paw to clean it's face. "Now, our little blonde heroine was very fond of her incredible Older Sister and didn't like it when she went to her friends houses to play, without her. So, her very kind Older Sister would take her along to play with her friends as well.

"Sometimes, they would get her to pretend to be a cat. Her Older Sister would bring her a bowl of milk to lap up like a cat and all the girls called her "Kitty". When they played pretend games, her Older Sister would make sure that there was some role for Kitty, whether it was crawling around and pretend climbing curtains, the bigger girls lifting her up high while she made the climbing moves or being a Princess Kitty that had these four totally Far-Out girls to serenade her with their latest chart sucesses."

In a quieter voice, Sylfaen continued, "And every night, in the bedroom they shared, the Older Sister would watch over the little blonde as she fell asleep, to make sure she was safe."

"So, that was the Amazingly Special part of our little blonde girl's life. Fun, magic, love and safety, all rolled into one Older Sister." Sylfaen looked around the students in her daughter's class, all sitting cross legged on the carpet and looking at her. The teacher had come back in and the pressure was off to keep these children entertained in her absence. All those bright eyes watching her with smiles was pretty wonderful and she sighed in relief that she'd managed to tell them a story they liked.

Her daughter, with her straight dark blonde hair, that hats covered during any sunlight, looked up at her and said, "It was you, Mama, the little girl?"

She nodded at her own little heroine, who bounced with glee at guessing correctly and said, "Can we visit Aunty Joy soon, Mama? Can I tell her your story?"

"I think she'd like that, Princess."

Sunday, 4 December 2011

Choosing your Santa

So. Santa. Specifically, Santa photo's. Do you get them? Does your child confidently climb onto Santa and outline his/her hopes for Christmas and perhaps pull on Santa's beard to find out if it is real?

Mine declines. Every year. Santa is scary. Big dude, with lots of white hair, being loud in her general vicinity. So not gunna happen.

I asked this year. She's twelve. She believes in Santa by choice. Much the way I believe in Fairies. She gave me a look of disdain that I hope she cultivates for when unsuitable boys start asking her to make out with them behind the shelter sheds. My Princess said, "I've never liked the shopping centre Santa's and I still don't. I've only ever liked the one at the Train Museum who left his boots by the "Flame" car. You know that, Mum."

Funny about the "Nice Santa" choosing Bill's car to leave his boots by.

Funny how well my Princess got along with Bill and all his silly teasing that made her laugh.

Funny how she liked that Santa who was funny and teasing.

Funny, innit!


Saturday, 3 December 2011

You know what's super fun

Watching tv shows where there is romance and kissing with a 12 year old whom is just noticing that boys and girls are different.

SO FUN!

Tweenie is squirming and Mama and Papa are making kissy faces at each other.

SO ENTERTAINING!

Lil' girly thing whose nearly as tall as me, wriggling and making gagging sounds as Frasier and Lilith kiss and we discuss how emotions make kissing a boy a nice thing.

SO EDDICASHUNAL!

The Frasier picks up Lilith and throws her on the bed and we revert back to teasing.

So love my little family.

So appreciate our relationships and silliness and that they are here.


I read many blogs of people who have lost loved ones. We lost another family member this month. Live your Life! Love your people! Do those things you've dreamed of! NOW!


And make your lil people squirm cos it's so totally fun. ;-)

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Listen to your cat's advice.

NaNoWriMo.

Going slowly. *grins* However, as my best from from Primary school said, my positive procrastination is going very well. Lots of other things are getting done as I avoid my novel.

Like the long neglected vacuuming.

One of the first things we ever bought as a couple was an electrolux vacuum cleaner. The salesman knocked on my door and my Tabby and White cat was all over him and absolutely adored him, so I decided to give him a change to tip dirt on my carpet and slurp it up with his fancy schmancy Vacuum Cleaner. Tayocat even smooched the vacuum cleaner. Obviously, I had no choice and must buy it!

That was in 1992. In 2008, the Electrolux of awesome, now held together by duct tape but still doing an amazing job, quite spookily gave up the ghost just after Tayocat departed this world.

Sweeping was good for a while, but then the sneezing became an issue and I went and bought a cheap little vac. I even had a reference from above mentioned friend. I may have bought the lemon in the shop... or just have a much messier house.

It howls in agony when used and fluffs dust out it's rear end with the same strength and regularity as Trickey does after a good lunch of Dim Sims. We are not friends. The cats all zoom out of the house when I use it. Obviously, I should have taken the cats shopping with me.

So, I asked around again and started hearing the magic word, Dyson. I had heard this word before, from a Foster Brother-in-law, when his partner had put them into mountains of debt for her very own Dyson, with every possible attachment known to woman. I knew Trickey's opinion on this issue and it was not "expensive vacuum" friendly.

But I found a tiny one... that was allergy friendly, with hepa filters. Hepa filters and I are VERY good friends. When the outside world is full of little flying enemies that attack my nostrils with their sneeziness and my skin with their swelly irritability, I hermit myself in my room with my Hepa air filter and the world becomes a comfortable place again.

But you know what convinced Trickey to agree to let me purchase this item? It has a digital motor. That interested him.

He's a bit disappointed now it is here. He's just realised I have no intentions of letting him pull it apart and destroy, I mean, explore it.

Shiny toy.

Have to go move the cats off the couch to vac that. Encouraging. :-D




Tuesday, 1 November 2011

NaNoWriMo

It has begun. :-D

The month of once again signing on to try and write 50,000 words.

A novel.

This time, I have the intention of succeeding! No editing. No stressing. Just writing and researching and the whole experience. Possibly no boundaries, since I wouldn't possibly expect this to ever get published.

I'm going to let it grow and change and morph. Let the plot change, let the characters live, die or fly to the furthest planet on moonbeams if they so choose.

Being out of control in a safe and closed environment.

Lets see how long a control freak can manage that. ;-)

So...

Here's an excerpt from today...

A tear splashed down into the sawdust. A circle of sadness on wood that was only good for the fire or recycled art now. Wood that used to be where she spent many happy sunny days, swinging as she twisted and rolled the spiderwebs into little balls. Where she would design the fabric to be woven from the twined webs, as the web soaked in the colours from flower petals or onion skins in her thimble cauldren.


Yes? What? You are surprised it is about faries? That's only cos you were expecting dragons, innit?

Or that I can't figure out how to spell couldren. Cawldrin. Cweriden's cooking pot. *considers possibly looking in a dictionary...*

Hopefully, in 30 days, I will finally be able to say I have written a book. A life ambition. And not about Klingon erotica this time! Yey!


Thursday, 27 October 2011

Book review: Sticking to Mills and Boon

Why do people write books to make other people cry?

Why do people give me these books to read?

Why do I read them without googling them for "teary factor" first?

Having just finished "At first sight" by Nicholas Sparks, the scream that lives inside me is at full volume again and I can hardly hear what is going on in my head over the intense noise it makes.
GO AWAY!

I want happy endings, Disney style, interesting twists that leave me curious, laughter and gleeful excitement at the end of something I read/watch for entertainment. I don't need an author's help to want to cry. The tears will come without the assistance of brilliant acting. I can scream from reading my own diaries, don't give me your fictional agony. My energy goes towards keeping that scream in my heart quiet.

Soothing it.

Calming it.

Reminding it that I have accepted what is.

Stupid authors who think it's alright to go and poke it with a stick.




Thursday, 20 October 2011

How to create an awkward moment

I am dragging out my 40th birthday, by saving gift cards and waiting for friend's gifts that are building lovely anticipation. One gift card from my brother-in-law was very exciting, for a large shopping complex. I had my heart set on an external hard drive and today, I went out to get it!

JB Hi-fi was sadly undergoing renovations and did not have stock of hard drives, but helpfully recommended other shops that would. Dick Smith's do not accept the Shopping complex voucher. Nor do Myer, Big W or KMart.

Some sadness leaching in here, but I ignored it and thought, "There are other things I need here, I will look for them instead."

No Egyptian wigs in either shop that stocked wigs, no plate stands in white, not even a computer game that I wanted for a child's gift.

I determined to use it for my normal shopping, anyway. After all, it's not often I go to the shopping complex. It would be fun!

Knock back after knock back for the gift card, I eventually went to information and got a list of the shops that don't accept the card, to reduce the impact this constant rejection was having upon my mood. It was a large list.

The Chemist accepted the card. Hooray! I could at least buy something!

So now...

How do I tell my Brother in law that he bought me condoms for my birthday?

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Anxiety

Been doing really well.
Sleeping at night. Not even as scared of bedtime as I used to be.
Been very busy. Getting things done. Amazing, feeling empowered.

Wrenched my lower back out of place this morning. The morning cat stretch. I KNOW I shouldn't do this. I am usually cautious as a 90 year old, since that is the medical age of my neck. I was feeling good. I took a risk. It twisted me and made it so difficult to walk.

Now I am sitting here, having an anxiety attack because my heart can't get around the fact that I didn't pick Princess up from school today. Heart says, "Yes, Head, I know her friend's Mama is reliable and soon my lil sparkly one will be having fun, safe at her friend's house. BUT, it's past time for overprotective Mama's to be waiting at the school gate. Go. Go. GO. NOW!".

Grade 6 is too old for me to be waiting at school anyway, with weak excuses like, "I thought she would want her Guides uniform," or "Here is her DS, I know she'd miss having that."

So, I wonder, is there a link between my back being out and my anxiety?

Just for the record... First voltaren today for 47 days. I am gunna kick the stomach destroyer. Just not today. *sighs*

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Tiptoe through the tulips

LOVE the Tulip Festival. Any tulip festival.

Love the "Fairy hollow", where the trees have windows and doors for the fairies and gnomes to go in and look out by.

Love the FLOWERS! Expanses of poppies and tulips and colour, colour, colour everywhere I look. Glorious Rhodedendrons being as pink as they can be. Purple tulips with tips of white, orange tulips woth glowing hearts of pink and yellow.

Poffertjes. I had 2. SO nice. So naughty. The girls had two plates.

Marmie and I sat at the white tables in the pretty garden to have a cuppa and a natter while the girls disappeared. She comforted me through this time of stressing about having to let my Princess be out of my view and learn some independence. Admittedly, most of this came in the form of saying, "toughen up and get used to it", but I know she knew how I felt.

Now I am home, the girls are hooping (well, we can call throwing the hoops as high as they can in the air, and then running for safety as they come down... Hooping, can't we?) and my dominating shoulder Diva is, well, on my shoulder. Being dominating. Claws. She has such good claws.

Today is good. :-)

Monday, 3 October 2011

Shhh, we're quietly, tiptoeing through my 40th.


So I turned 40 yesterday.

There was no big party. I wanted a big party. I've been planning it all year. The plans kept changing from a cream pie throwing party, to a giant get together of everyone I loved at a park, to an afternoon tea where everyone frocked/suited up.

I couldn't commit. There were budget issues, but Marmie offered to help. That's when I realised what was wrong.

My recently deceased and dearly missed cousin-in-law is... was three days older than me. She should have turned 40 three days before me and had a huge party with all her family. My family. We should have been co-ordinating parties around each other's birthday's, whose house to go to for the Grand Final (Not that I care about football, but my family do) and I should have been absolutely exhausted from excessive socialising by now.

Maybe next year it will be easier, but this year. I couldn't do it. I didn't want to. I didn't want to make the family do it either.

For the first time ever, I am older than her.

Wrong on so many levels.
A cuppa tea in her honour, eternally 39.


It was a very quiet birthday. There was a lot of smiling and laughing and it was good. And Lamington Cake. From the Beechworth bakery. Oh I so recommend their Lamington Cake. :-D






Saturday, 1 October 2011

Large things in life

Today, Marmie and I took her aging and somewhat overweight fluffball of a Maltese/Shi'tzu cross dog for a walk, in the rain.

Marmie says he's just got broad shoulders.

He enjoyed it greatly, sniffing all the new-to-him trees, poles and many a letterbox. He must think I am very social with my neighbours, as Mr. Butterball tried to wander up almost every driveway we passed. He didn't seem to mind the rain, but was not so keen on the tall grass. It was taller than him. Intimidating, much?

Since the clouds were flinging much of the watery stuff down onto us, Marmie and I had our 'brellas. My cool paisley one I bought back in Uni and have loved ever since, Marmie with her multicoloured "Umbrella of Ginormousness" that was used as a "family of four" rain covering for two decades. It's big. Quite large. Takes up the whole footpath and we could only walk side by side if one of us sprawled over onto the grass.

There has been much building in the backyards of houses in my area, so much for Marmie and I to discuss as the Round Ball of Fluffyness had walkies. One house was getting a new driveway and had four star pickets (with bright yellow plastic toppings safely covering their tips) on the edge of the footpath, for some mysterious building purpose.

Marmie's "Umbrella of Excessive Diameter" managed to catch on the first star picket. She lifted it higher, but accidentally tilted it and caught the edge of the "Big Stripey Brolly" on the second star picket. We laughed.

I commented, dryly, "There are two more star pickets ahead", and both of us laughed. I started to tell Marmie how much I loved her sense of humour as she very deliberately avoided the third star picket with a grin. She turned to look at me and...

Caught the umbrella on the fourth picket.


So maybe you had to be there. But we laughed so much and I am SO HAPPY to have my Marmie here.



Thursday, 29 September 2011

Living life like an elevator mechanic.


I am hiding in a corner of my house, trapped here by squealing, running, chasing, giggling 11 year olds.

This is good.

That my daughter still is more comfortable having a toy as her "avatar" during social interactions, not so good.

Inch by Inch.
We will get there.


It has been an interesting time, some amazing highs with our Hoops performance (Waiting on photos - hanging out to share them here!), Princess' wonderful tissu act and the Melbourne Juggling convention.

I agreed to volunteer at the MJconvention again... (and showed up with hoops this time!) With some wonderful encouragement and a circus friend to be with, I did some workshops and watched incredible people practice extraordinary tricks, like with this amazing juggler (he had a pink parasol this year)



instead of wandering away to get lunch and texting the co-ordinator that since I had done my volunteer hours, I wasn't coming back. It was too big and scary last year!

Two sisters took this very casual and awesome hoop workshop and taught tricks that would never have occurred to me! So fun! So wish I had become involved in circus before my neck was so badly degraded, but C'est la Vie! Is still fun now!

Lots of exclamation marks!

Some massive lows with panic attacks, exhaustion, so sore neck, insecurity alternating with attempts at believing in myself.

And. Today is my recently deceased family member's 40th Birthday. In three days, I will be older than her.

So much wrongness.

But I have really sparkly nails. See?
And that is very right.

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

How do you react to disapproval?

So last night, I read something written vaguely about me that brought on a full blown panic attack. To the point of being partially immobilised by the muscle tension, spending the evening and night curled up in a fetal position, reading about how to deal with insecurity and anxiety on the Princess's iPod. Hiding under my doona and writing it all out, getting it out of my head.

Today, a 2 hour walk in the rain (with umbrella), teddy bear biscuits in bed with a Meg Cabot book and the world is looking like a pretty nice place again.

http://www.anxietyattack.org/deal-with-anxiety-disorders/

Wish we'd had the internet when I was a kid.




How do you react when someone clearly shows they think you are "doin it wrong"?

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Hidden dangers... are you next?


Many of my friends are involved in the performing arts. This is the time of the year when productions are happening, competitions prepared for with loving attention to detail and sadly, when we push ourselves harder and more injuries happen.

Over the last few weeks an insidious and unexpected danger has revealed it's previously masked existance.

Did I not know of this performing arts risk because it is shamefully embarassing and no-one speaks of it?

Is it an occurance that is new and everyone is standing around in shock at it's rising prevalence?
How can we save ourselves from this horrible and unavoidable (unless perhaps, one prefers to perform only in body-paint. So not for moi.) aspect of performing?

Have you guessed?

Or is it so incomprehendable to those outside of or new to the performing arts world that you would never have imagined the horrific dangers faced during every dress rehearsal, every performance, as I had previously never considered it a chancy occupation?

It is the risk of incurring grevious bodily harm by Costume Changes!!!

A friend's first Calisthenics performance was marred when her neck was pulled out of place by the swift removal of clown wig to jam the next costume on.

Another friend, attempting to slither out of her slinky unitard has done something to her middle finger and can no longer express her displeasure with other drivers in time honoured birdy fashion. Not that she ever would, but still... floppy middle fingers are not condusive to excellence on the cloud swing or tissu.



What can we do to stop these tragedys? Would back stage warning posters be enough?

"UNDRESS WITH CARE!"
"COSTUME CHANGES - THE SILENT MAIMER"

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Ditz

*looks innocently around at the ceiling, floors and other equally "innocent" areas*

Soooo, I'm a bit of a cripple. Things like being awake for a whole day, sitting at the sewing machine for more than ten minutes and being able to focus clearly are not always within my capabilities. C'est la vie. I can work around it.

However, sensible people in imperfect health do not (train with a Circus in the first place but have I mentions SO MUCH FUN?!) volunteer to take on lots of roles to help make the production wonderful. Yes, every item deeply interests me.

The Hoop act.
The ridiculously cute puffed sleeves we are wearing as Wicked Step Sisters at the Ball with Cinderella *that I offered to sew for everyone since no one else sews*
My own costume, which is going to be beyond awesome and really sparkly. Not just sequins anymore. Now with foily shiny too!

Did I mention I have managed to convince the rest of the performers in the hoop act that they need to have sequins as well? Is goooooood. :D We could just stand there and blind the audience and be done with it!

Then, the subject of the flyer came up. Do you know who brought it up?
The coach? Noooo.
The admin? Noooo.
Perhaps even a parent wanting flyers to hand out? Well, she did bring it to MY attention.

Then, I brought it to the Coach and Admin's attention. And promptly volunteered cos How Interesting Will That Be To Do! What fun! I have ideas in my head already!

What I don't have...is time and spare energy. Ditz. Eyes bigger that stomach, or in this case, calendar, Ditz.

Happy Ditz, though! Off to play!
And yes. There will be sparkles on it. Dazzling Diamonds glitter rules! And maybe a Unicorn. Since the theme is Fantasy and Fairytales. I get to put a Unicorn on it.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Procrastination - apparently not a useful life skill

If it weren't for Flylady's wonderful life technique of "you can do anything for fifteen minutes", I would never get anything done (though I DO interpret this as 5 mins, but whose going to quibble over 10 mins with someone whose concentration span won't last the debate?).

I circle the house like a very slow tornado, doing three things in each room.
Until I reach the computer. Then...
Have you SEEN how far I've gone with "Sims social"?
I wen through the entire Premier's reading challenge list today, and found only one book on it my Princess had read. We decided tonight to let that challenge just slide away.
I found awwww-some pictures in my files for the Photo album the Princess is decorating for her Dad for Father's Day!
I googled (yes, it is now a verb, no longer a mere noun) the reaction between pineapple juice and bicarb soda but came up with nothing helpful. I can tell you anyway, it would work just fine for those "volcanos" the kids make at school. :-D
All my favourite webcomics got their turn on the macbook screen.
I looked at a website that a very proud friend had her son's artwork displayed as one of the winners.

Then Hubby came home and trounced all of this low level procrastinating with an immensely procrastinatable (look, Mama, I made up a word!) activity.

He found his half-nieces on Facebook. The ones who disappeared into thin air when our Princess was a newborn.

And there is no doubt at all of their identity, cos the younger sister is the living image of his dearly departed Mother. (Some of you might be shocked and amazed at this as we are, others are calling me rude names *in a sing song voice* cos I don't have a Mother-in-Law! Nyah, nyah nyah nyaaaah nyah.) (Apparently, his Mother didn't like Australians. His family delight in informing me she would have been very opposed to him marrying an Aussie.) (scary) (so scary I have to type it in parentheses)

I must get off the computer and do something now. I must. I must.

But it's so INTERESTING in computer-land!



Saturday, 27 August 2011

All things sparkly are good, even if they are not gold.

My head is full of sequins,
my hands are full of hoops,
stitching up our costumes,
production coming soon!

I'm sure there are other things going on in my life, but atm, my headspace is fully occupied with circus. Our new Hoops coach is amazing, a lifelong performer who knows hooping tricks to make it look better, costume tricks to make them work even when silly girlthings with their eyes full of shiny make them slippery ;-), and amazing "putting it all together" ideas to create a beautiful event.

As much as I know I am going to feel nauseas for the entire day of performance and possibly spend the actual performance dreadfully wishing I was anywhere else (but we can hope for intently focused on the fast paced act, can't we?), I am LOVING the build up to it all. Going shopping with a friend to design her costume, taking better care of myself (what do you mean eating foods I'm allergic to make it harder to hoop?) and sewing sequins.

Very firmly sewing sequins. Cos I don't want to leave a mass of sequins behind for the tumblers to slip on. :-o

Circus. Ran away with it.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Getting back into the swing of things.

Life is getting back on track.

Grief is being dealt with.
Budget is doing what Hubby wants it too and he is acknowledging that without treatment for my back, my life is just clock watching and not living.
Daughter has been accepted into a very exciting school and we are looking forward to the next 6 years. Big scariness lifted from our shoulders!
I have rejoined Circus training and while I am not really progressing in any aspect, it is fun just to be back. No aerial for me until next year.
Hubby's slipped disc is healing well.
I am writing again! It's been moooooonths!

Trivia. Hubby must spend the entire day at work talking with people, because he talks non stop while at home for three weeks, even on valium and tramadol. My interest level in Electronic fuel injection has entered negative values and hearing the phrase, "injector valves" can drive me to housework. Or at least to the spa bath...

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Fancy Dress... If I could be...

My daughter and her friend had a Dress up event tonight.

"Dress up as a famous person or something you would love to be".

My daughter went as a "Crazy Cat Lady", and her friend went as the "Wicked Witch" from Wizard of Oz.

I just needed to share that. I love them so much.

Monday, 4 July 2011

To Quote the Maddy: "Holiday!"

"Holiday! We've got to get together! Celebrate! Take some time to celebrate!"

*Savours for a moment that magic first moment of holidays, when you just know there will be at least some time to recover and rejuvenate and definitely some fun going on.*

Sat and Sun were still very much on the go days for us, so this morning at home was bliss. Jammie Day!

The Diva got some long awaited attention. The Princess got to play on her pc with it's new Ubuntu operating system. New games. Desktop to organise. This computing exploration was supposed to happen with little breaks to practice her times tables, spelling, stretch and tidy her room. These learning moments seemed to reduce in time as the morning became the afternoon. However, by the time her favourite-all-time-person, her Uncle arrived, she could almost spell our last name. We will achieve this by the end of Grade 6, oh yes we will!

My craft room got some lovin', and oh baby, could you hear it weep with relief as chaos slowly revealed a potential working area. Now including, "Diva Cat sleeping spot." We shall see if she takes to that idea over the more usual "walk across whatever Mama is playing with and the sit on the piece that looks the easiest to damage." I shall place my cuppa there, thus enticing her to assume that is her morning beverage, as she does, and hope she settles comfortably in that spot. Maybe I could place some truly cherished piece of scrapbooking paper there, to provide her with an appealing to park her tush?

Trickey's shoulder was still in pain, even after a wonderful Chiro session and he has applied for holidays. His face was horrified when I suggested he spend this holiday resting, walking and generally not using his very sore shoulder, instead of waking early and spending an intense 14 hours playing with the car in the shed. He will need much distracting next week. Or threatening with more of the excruciating but successful massages I was instructed to do by a member of the medical profession. Somehow, I will make him have a real holiday, too!

Tomorrows plans are something the Princess and I have been working towards for quite some time - Painting D&D figurines, making a map and writing a game to play.

Otherwise known as fulfilling teachers requests that she improve her fine motor skills, writing and spelling, plus that one very clever teacher who mentioned that dice games are great for basic arithmetic practice.

I'm so curious to see where she will go with this. Will we make a dungeon, a fairy garden, perhaps a space station or some wild unknown jungle to explore? Will she choose magical creatures or wild animals? Regardless of all these things, will she let me be an Elf? Cos, you know, I really like Elves. Also Dragons.

What would you choose, if you could make a little world to pretend to be something else in? What would it be like?



Friday, 1 July 2011

Distraction from anticipation

*clicks refresh on the Stampin' Up page*

Our Princess is letting out little sighs of agony from having been far too active on her first day back at school, in between little sighs of contentment from being well and on school holidays.

So, Trickey is home and watching "Are you being served". I am stroking my ... If I type Mrs. Slocum's famous phrase, I'll probably get all sorts of unwanted visitors. *giggles*

*ahem* So, to rephrase, while patting my DivaCat, I am sitting at the computer and have been since Utah's midnight, constantly clicking on the US Stampin' up website to see when they will load the new catalog for 2011-12. The Spanish one is there and was exciting, providing many glimpses of exciting new designs, but I am hanging out for the full, complete US version!

*clicks refresh* Gimme, gimme, gimme, I want to admire your pretty new toys! *clicks refresh again*

The last day of school holds a special excitement for Mama's. Except for my Marmie, cos it meant a day of reading about bad behaviour, erratic academia and invited her to do horrible things like "Parent/Teacher interviews", which gave them a personal chance to tell her how difficult, obstinate and frustratingly brilliant her lovely little darlings were. My sister and I knew this day as, "Be vewwy, vewwy quiet. Be silent and still. Not climbing the roof today, no raiding Marmie's wardrobe and makeup, no eating all the banana flavoured toothpaste on THIS day."

My daughter always gets hugs for "good behaviour" on report day. Then I call Marmie to read part to her, just so she gets to know what it's like to hear that a descendant of hers has "excellent classroom manners and interacts well with others".

So, today was the day that the large white envelope comes home with the child.

It gives a glimpse into the life they live in that different world called "Primary school". How they are going academically and socially. It's also an indication of how well your child gets along with that particular teacher.

*clicks refresh and starts scouring Stampin' up forums*

This year, she has an awesome teacher with enviable social skills and thinks he's just lovely.
She adores the other Grade 6 teacher, too, because he is silly and loves maths. Which also describes her. ;-)

I've already scanned in her report, sent it to my Mum and her tutors. Does that give you an idea of how awesome this report is?!

*Princess comes in for a cuddle, leaning on chairs to take weight off her legs and hanging from the chin up bar with a sigh of relief*

Not only is she advancing, but from the descriptions she is advancing in the specific issues that her tutors are dealing with. Awesome! We found what worked!

*Glasses
*Chiropractor for scoliosis
*Circus training for confidence
*Diet altered
*Sleep pattern established after 8 years of doctors visits and one lovely aromatherapist
*Plus tutors of awesome who work on her educational skills and social/inner confidence skills.

It seems a long list, and a looooooong time trying to figure out why my booful and so clever little preppie Princess hated looking at books, but I know people with longer lists who are still searching, so all I feel is a sense of relief and delight.

I will sleep better, worry less and read this report again tomorrow for a little maternal gloating. ;-)

I will *click refresh* again tomorrow, too, as I think those lovely people in Utah are still asleep and won't put up the new catalogue until after their morning coffee. Or whatever non chemically stimulating morning beveredge they prefer, should they be of the Mormon persuasion.





Sunday, 26 June 2011

It's all good.


So. Vodka.

No, really I don't have a drinking issue. Unless the fact that I get reaaaaaally silly off just one (or two, now) vodka's and then POST STUFF is an issue. In fact, you can tell when I've been drinking cos I post about it. So Freaking sad. And yet happy. Cos I'm not contradictory at all. My Hubby NEVER uses that word to describe me. He does say I am "consistently inconsistent", however. :-D

He's really cute.

And really far away.

And I bless the internet and mobile phones. I remember the first time he went away for ten days. We had been together about three years. And they (defined as the company he worked for) sent him to Tasmania. He was soooooo excited. He bought a throw-away camera and took photos. I'll get them processed one day. Did I mention it is our 20th anniversary of the day we met this August?

So. I cried for two days. I wasn't working then. I had just finished Uni.

So I had the luxury to sit there and cry. Then, I got drunk. On Brandivino and coke, cos we were on a very strict budget and Brandivino was like $4. Then I felt ashamed, cos I drank brandivino. Meh. Coke, however, was on our budget. Priorities.

I slept a lot. It was like an instant depression, though I didn't know that at the time. I spent entire days in the bath. Water makes me feel better.

I did no housework. I have no recollection of what I ate. I lived for his phone calls. Which were far apart, due to previously mentioned budget.

When he came home, there was mould growing in the kitchen and I was a pathetic mess. Must have been a lovely homecoming for him. :-/

So, this is why I bless mobile phones and the internet. When Hubby goes away I get pretty pictures. Like this one.



With the comment "they said it would be cold".

I get phone calls every day, when he is in range.

I get emails, of jokes his mates have told him. Of their reaction to the jokes I sent him to tell them. Which are usually "rather off".

And I'm okay.
I can cope.
I have a Princess, of course, to keep me supplied with cuddles and occupied with 11 yr old activities. Like the flu. With secondary infections.

I have friends. I had friends before, but they had all moved overseas, or were busy having exciting careers, cos that's what you do after finishing Uni, unless, like me, you got married and started saving. *and failed at every single job interview, but we won't go there* Now my friends are here.

So. Hubby can go away and not only will there be no tears, but the house is a little bit cleaner than before he left. :-)

And I have done some art to show him. And he missed seeing Madam Princess with spots. And we had chicken noodle soup EVERY night, cos it was all she could eat, but I didn't have to cook him something more substantial.

Is all good. And I might... just have one more vodka. While I watch Spencer Tracey and Katherine Hepburn in " Desk set". With the Diva sitting on my shoulder and purring.

Cos it's all good.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Shooting nerf guns at Virii

I is tooo tireded to be thinking about words and stuffness.

Princess has fever. Overprotective Mama worries and is sleeping in a chair next to her. And waking every 15 minutes just in case.

Diva cat is getting twitchy at the lack of attention.

Tuxedo Boy is loving giving us lots of warm, purry sympathy and playing hot water bottle for the daughter.

The black cat is depressed and indulging in comfort eating until his girl is back to her best. At least he isn't howling in her room and has adapted to sleeping in the lounge.

Nurse on call 1300 60 60 24 - I cannot say enough good things about this service. I have used it many times and they have always been supportive, helpful and calming.

*insert decent sleep here*

The Nurse on call figured out what was causing the dramatic (Do Princess's have any other kind?) pain and that it wasn't emergency room/ambulance requiring. Which is good, as our little Drama Queen was lying on the cold tiles, crying that she "didn't know how she'd get to the car", let alone sit in it for the drive.

I will say that my extremely expressive child will try anything she is told that will help her with minimal fuss, so this reaction broke my heart, as it indicated how much pain she was in. Grrrrrrrrr @ virus! Go away Nastys!

Madam Princess just finished an apple. And is pain free. Has normal skin tone.
Trickey is home. Vegging on the couch with his adored Princess. Looking forward to a weekend of debauchery with the boys. *sniggers*
And I can relax.

Look at them over my laptop screen, Trickey and his girly Mini-Me. with the same mannerisms and looks. These are some of my favourite moments in life, to see the two people I love most, together, happy and being a little bit silly as they watch cartoons together. And intensely debate some of the plot lines. ;-) Cos that's how my family are.

Life is good again.

Saturday, 18 June 2011

Positive reinforcement.

This year, my Princess is taking responsibility for making her own lunches. I get a little gleeful thrill every morning that I gently query, "How is your lunch going, Sweetie?" and get back the quite pleased with herself reply of, "All made and packed, Mama."

I may never get sick of that. My grown-up Princess may still receive calls in the morning, asking "How is your lunch going, Sweetie?" and she'll reply, "All good, Mama and so excited about my Art gallery showing opening tonight/new job starting today/what do you mean lunch, I've got a newborn and I think I ate some week old stale biscuits for brekky but I can't remember, gotta go the baby just woke up..."
She'll be an adult and I'll still be calling her for that little Mama thrill of "my baby can make her own lunch!".

Then I'll pop over to play with the baby so she can shower, eat and all those things that go by the wayside in the first year of new Mamahood.

One aspect of organising lunches is ensuring the correct foods are available to her each morning. Since she is in control, I have noticed that she varies her lunch, just a little, every day. Sometimes a vegemite sandwich, somtimes rice cakes and cheese. Gourmet cheese, mind you, my Princess prefers a fancy cheese.



Ambrosia - gorgeous name.


Sometimes there are strawberries and grapes, other days, she has carrot and snow pea shoots. There are almost always Milo bars and very occasionally a natural flavour snake lolly will find it's way in. Once in a blue moon, she likes a peeled mushroom.


So nice, from this position of "Mama to a child who eats well", to look back to the days when she wouldn't eat unless it was a jam sandwich. Or sausages and chips. Or strained zuchinni. And no food was entering that cute little pouty mouth after 3 pm, even if I drove her around to find a sausage sizzle that was still open.


When she was a baby Princess, I used to go over the road and feed my neighbour's baby, just to experience the sense of achievement that one gets when a baby opens their mouth as the "aeroplane spoon" flies towards them with yummy mushy apple or pumpkin on it. To feel what it is like when a baby eats that spoonful of nutrition down and opens their mouth for more. To see a child demanding you feed them faster. It helped me cope when my precious darling would grin at me, tightly close her mouth, wait until the "aeroplane" was flying at the right point and then tap it away with her tiny little hand, giggling if it made a really good mess on her high chair.


*shakes head and returns to current story* Sorry, I diverged.


To ensure the food our Princess requires is available to her each morning, we bought a lovely fridge magnet with a tear off note pad. She writes down any food she fancies for lunch on there, keeps me up to date with her breakfast cereal status and I make sure the system works by actually getting off my tush and going to the store each time something appears on the list.


The system had a few hiccups at first, such as not being able to read her handwriting or spelling, (all fixed now thanks to her Tutors of amazingnesss!) or me being slack and not going shopping. Lately, it seems to be running very smoothly. This morning, when I looked to see if anything new had been listed and to write down "popcorn", I found this lovely little touch that made me giggle and feel all warm and Mama Happy.



Did you see it?
Not the bit where I have to work on her spelling of bread and please. But the bit in blue, right next to it.
The tick.
The positive affirmation of a job well done.
My daughter gave me a tick.
Ticks are very important to the Princess. Crosses can make her cry and tick's make her soul fly.
She gave me a tick.

Feeling pretty good right now. :-)



Friday, 17 June 2011

Furbabies

I've got three lovely geriatric cats,
Healthy and still going right along,
Fur so soft and glossy that it entices pats,
Whiskers that are straight and oh so long.

Our furbabies, they have grown up with us,
they moved in before we said I Do,
as kittens, they caused all sorts of fuss,
all teeth and claws, a little softness too.

A tiny tigeress of a tabby cat,
who regally sat upon my upturned palm,
so serene, the next moment, a brat,
with sharp kitten teeth sunk into my arm.

The little Diva deigned to sleep on my chest,
her purr of contentment was such a joy,
an hour it took to decide it was time to rest,
spent chasing toes and then looking coy.

Our Tuxedo Man, the silliest of all felines,
Yet somehow a beau of elegance and style,
He sits still, all poise and gracefulness,
then bounds gazelle-like over many miles.

As a kitten he was a gleeful wanderer,
until in one backyard, was found a big doggie,
The neighbour called in those nice firemen,
to assist the fluffed out cat down from the tree.

Our black Burmese, he is not the social type,
cross eyed, bit awkward and so demanding,
He would snuggle under my neck at night,
then rip out my hair at Five am lest I sleep in.

Affection for him has not come so easily,
until our daughter's nightmares he did calm,
Sleeping under her pillow, so squishily
He keeps her dreams from causing any harm.

My furbabies have grown through their adulthood,
Into the restful twilight of their days,
the Diva still hunts some for gifts and food,
then rests up in the sun for several days.

Tuxedo man is forever climbing up those trees,
then crying for Mama to help him down,
I laugh, talk encouragingly, watch him suceed,
thinking of days when he'd leap off in one bound.

Our Burmese howler is sitting here next to me,
By the heater and soaking every ray of sun,
A "Heat Sink" is what he aspires to be,
A summer cat waiting out the colder months.

These babies, these furballs, are so part of me,
yet I know soon that horrid day will come,
I ignore it and enjoy these sleepy, furry beasts,
To whom I am their beloved adopted Mum.

Monday, 13 June 2011

Teenage suicide - Don't do it

Don't do it. As the song from Heather's said.

So, it's not me. (though thank you for thinking I could be a teenager ;-p)
It's not my daughter. (On my knees with thankfulness)

But it is a family member. And that scares the living daylights out of me.

I was reading GoodGoogs blog today, about losing a pet and how she is grieving. I was thinking about our recent loss, as well as our pets. Grief and Loss suck big time, but it is still better to have been through the wonderful love that caused the grief to be so painful.

This little girl has barely begun to live. She has a lot of difficulties to overcome and she's a lot like I was at her age. This could be where my feelings of (obviously) misplaced confidence in her recovery from Anorexia came from, knowing that in 20 years or so, she's gunna figure it out and things will be all good. Her Mum was feeling more confident too. Now we know there is SO much more to be done and I don't have the foggiest what to do. Psychology should be compulsory studies for everyone!

Our family is so distant from each other now and I think this is part of it. The community of caring is stretched out over phone lines, the internet and long drives. People who could share the burdens for worried parents are not part of their everyday lives. Trusted family members who could help the young ones see things from different perspectives don't know the background of their high schools, their friend groups. People who could be someone to talk too that are less emotionally entwined aren't easily accessible to a teen - what teen's going to call someone who is nearly forty to have a natter? But when I am there, we always have some time together. To have someone who only wants the best for you, but isn't emotionally involved to the point where hearing something bad can send them into panic. (Well, that's me and my Marmie, anyway, other family members aren't as prone to panic) We are NOT easily accessible anymore. It's not the case that a young person is just waiting for the next Sunday visit to catch her cousin/aunt/uncle for a conversation.

I remember the first time my niece visited us , at about age 5. She had some really unladylike habits and I didn't even try to hide my disgust. (Nice Aunty, aren't I?) My pretty little niece, with her long, wavy blond hair, her smile that would win over strangers, was quite surprised at my reaction. Not because her Mum and Dad condoned this icky behaviour at all, they were always telling her it was unpleasant and suggesting a more pleasant alternative. It was because she simply didn't believe that what they were saying was important. Didn't believe that it was upsetting to anyone but them. It was quite amazing, as by the end of the week, she had ceased these indelicate behaviours and found new reactions.

My sister and I now discuss ahead of time what she feels are the "priority" behaviour issues she would love to have me react too. It's a good system. I hope when my niece becomes a teenager, she will feel comfortable talking to me about things she may not want to mention to her Mum just yet.

Imagine if we were all living close enough to see each other every week. Or even fortnight. Imagine the effect this could have on all our young people, seeing all the different responses, different opinions and different ideas, all coming from people whom they know love them and are trustworthy. I had this growing up. My daughter has one Uncle whom we see often and I have worked hard to find other adults whom she can rely on, like her tutors, circus friends and some close friends.

There will be another family funeral this year, from that nasty cancer. I don't want it to become three.

So I resolve - To call said family member at least once a week.
To replace her phone next time it dies. ;-)
To hope. Really hard.

And then put on Ke$ha really loud and dance with my Princess till we are smiling again.


Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Waffle. Not the smothered in maple syrup kind.

Were you really shy as a child, so terrified of dealing with social situations that you once stood at the door of your best friend's house, whose family you had known all your life and were too nervous to knock? (Apparently, her Mum watched me agonise and lift my hand, only to let it drop again, through the kitchen window terraline curtains)

Or a total extrovert, always singing ("Oh, Mickey, you're so fine, you're so fine you blow my mind, Hey Mickey!) and dancing (yes, on the lunch tables at primary school, I had to perfect my podium dancing somehow), trying to attract attention?

Did you prefer to walk quietly around the school, sometimes with one close friend, sometimes alone because even asking that friend to walk with you was too overwhelming and you didn't feel worthy of monopolising their time?

Or would you happily bounce into a large group and join in whatever game was going, being a social asset and having a ball?

Would you relate more to memories of only communicating with your first grade 6 boyfriend through each other's friends, even though you'd happily played with him for the last 7 years of primary school, because NOW it was scarier and more important that you not say something silly and scare him off. (And he broke up with you a week later, cos you stopped talking to him)

Or would you then, after that social catastrophe, single out the most outrageous guy in grade 6 and have a wildly temperamental relationship with him, breaking up, screaming at each other with abandon, then making up and going to see a movie together at the local school hall. (where we held hands, nervously waiting for half time to go out the "bushes" where everyone makes out and we got sprung by one of the ushers)

Or how about both? Could you relate to both? Could you co-exist as both personalities in one body, mind and soul and never know which one was going to take the lead in any given situation?

The confident me is SO much more fun. I thought I had her mostly on, these days, buffered by all the lovely friends I have, and the way you really cannot be self-concious at Circus training. When you gotta put your hand there on someone else, you gotta put your hand THERE or people are going to fall over and get hurt. So you just do. And is all good. Cos they don't take it personally. Just anti-gravitically. (Is SO a word. :-p Now.)

I wish I could figure out how to switch her on by choice. ;-)

Today's waffle triggered by a "words with friends" request from a (now grown up) boy I went to High School with, that I was nearly too shy to answer. I'm 39, a mother, still a freak and he was never mean to me at High School. But he's a Booooooooooooy! Geesh @ me.