Bringing in the Weekend

It is a sunny winters day today. The girls are on the couch watching Play School in their pyjamas and I’m gearing up to clean their bedrooms. The smallest is sitting next to me doing some drawing and intermittently yelling at me if I don’t take a texta lid off fast enough. I’m finishing my luke warm coffee and knowing my time sitting is coming to an end.

Today we’re doing some tidying, meal planning, and a few other bits and pieces before heading to our local Winter Solstice later this afternoon. Things have been incredibly busy lately with both KB and I writing reports or marking for school/uni and we’ve barely had time to take a breath. I’m not someone who thrives on busy-ness, I much prefer white space in life and do almost anything I can to preserve it. Lately that has been impossible, contradicting almost everything I’m learning at Yoga Teacher Training! But it has provided me with a different platform to practice my learnings, and I suppose a window into what normal life would be like for many of my future students, who may or may not have an awareness of the importance of creating space in life, let alone the tools to do it.

So I have a toddler on my lap now, precariously lashing out at my keyboard, which means this post is coming to an early end. I’m off to tidy, potter and think about how I can carve out some time (because to carve out time is sometimes necessary when finding time is difficult) in these remaining short days to think about how to move forward as our days begin to stretch out and lengthen once again.

What are you letting go of this Winter Solstice? What are you moving towards?

A Slow Start

It’s Wednesday yet it feels distinctly like a Monday. With school holidays, three weeks off work due to the uni break, Easter, an operation, three trips in and out of Melbourne (for fun) and a seasonal change to boot, the last month has seemed like a circus. A mainly good and fun and happy circus, but a circus nonetheless.

Bird went to school for one day after Easter before having grommets in and adenoids out last week. A big week but overall, a success. That afternoon as we sat in recovery she looked at me and said, “Mum, everything is so loud!” After five years of hearing and congestion difficulties, I breathed a sigh of relief. For all the anxiety that had come in making that decision, will we, won’t we, will we, won’t we; in that moment, it was worth it.

She went back to school today and I’m back to teaching tomorrow and kinder is back and KB is at work and, as such, our life will start to resemble normality once again. No more late nights, dinner when we feel like it, pyjama days or nicking off to the country… at least, not during the week for the time being. Weekends are another story.

Last night I lay in bed as the night folded around us. I heard the flow of gentle breath coming in waves from all except me. My breath was full and awake at the midnight hour, though in the daylight, I long for sleep.

And such is motherhood, flowing from one moment to the next, the uncertainty coming in ebbs and flows, the solidity of our day to day routines seemingly fluid yet always constant and neverending.

Today, we took things slowly on our first morning back. We hung around at school chatting to parents, and worked our way back home to a hot cup of coffee, babycinos and a moment around the table cutting out pictures of dragons and making people out of toilet rolls with sticky taped wool for hair. We are heading off to swimming lessons now.

Even though the routine is back and a rhythm will once again be in place, I welcome it. Sometimes it’s nice to have something to rely on.

(Oh, and I baked a cake… this simple, delicious, refined sugar and dairy free orange blossom cake.)

Wintery Things

_MG_7420

_MG_7356

_MG_7397 _MG_7349

We took a drive out to a beautiful pine forest yesterday and proceeded to wander around it with some friends. I didn’t think I liked pine trees very much, always favouring the familiar pale greens and greys of the Australian bush over the grim regiment of large pines. Yesterday though, these slender ladies made quite an impression on me.

Read More

hello, spring

Where did you come from, you sneaky old thing?

And what joys and pleasures do you plan to bring?

Well welcome, hello, hello to you Spring. 

DSC03746

Within the week, Spring has appeared from no where.

I stood on my back deck yesterday folding washing in shorts, a singlet and bare feet, thinking back to just last week when I stood in the same position in a thick wool cardigan, long pants and uggs.

I feel as though I didn’t get the chance to say goodbye to Winter. To my woollen blankets, steaming cups of tea, evenings curled up on the couch and mornings spent wrapping thick scarves around our bare necks.

So goodbye Winter! I love you, I’ll miss you, but I’m also looking forward to feeling the sun on our backs and the earth on our feet.

staying home

IMG_4548IMG_4435IMG_4431IMG_4436IMG_4428

We have been enjoying a lot of time at home lately. We’ve had a few rounds of tonsilitis, flu, colds, vomiting (yay), and other lovely end-of-wintery illnesses. Many of our friends have been sick too, so all the mamas in my circle have been sending “I miss you” texts and going about our solo ways for the past few weeks.

Something that ordinarily sends me a bit nutty has actually been an absolute blessing. Having to cancel plans and really, truly, actually Slow Down has, in the end, been just what we all needed to close off the winter.

The telly has been on way too much. I’ve been drinking so much coffee because our pot makes enough for two. We’ve spent many a day in our pyjamas and thrown gumboots over the top to go outside. The house has been cleaner despite us all being here all day. Food has been cooked and menus planned. Sewing has been done! Baking has happened.

I think even once everyone recovers and Spring arrives (in just a few days now!) we will stick with this new rhythm of more home time.

It suits us all very nicely.

the rabbit ate my computer cord

IMG_7731

Sounding strangely like “the dog ate my homework” though unfortunately, this bunny excuse is true. Suki ate my computer cord a few weeks ago and I have only been able to charge my computer sporadically. And no, I have not ventured out to buy a new cord yet. This is a prime example of my middle name: Procrastination, interfering with my life and annoying me, intensely.

A friend of mine is moving to Chicago next week for a new job and new life and fresh opportunities and cocktails and people and flashy city lights. I chatted to her on the phone last night. We haven’t spoken in a while so she asked me the inevitable question: “So, what’s new? What’s been happening?”

A brief silence ensued.

Well, many days have been devoured washing nappies, feeding children, playing duplo, doing puzzles, watching play school… I’ve enrolled Birdie in kindergarten for next year (!)… I toyed with the idea of going back to work and then got melodramatic and melancholy and all variation of “mel” words about mothering and parenting and loving my babies and as such got cold feet and re-did the budget and decided against it… I did some cooking… I did the “I Quit Sugar” program… I got hives… I crocheted some hats… I sewed some chooks… We went away for a couple of weekends to the beach… The girls got sick… Prince Charming got sick… I told him he had man-flu and then I got sick… Still sick…

Hmm not really news worthy, blog worthy or telling-single-high-life-living-friend-worthy.

Nevertheless, life is plodding along nicely, we are having fun, and I am trying to stop coughing and recover from this horrendous virus!

Updates from all of you? What’s new? What’s been happening? 😉

crocheted lop-sided rainbow leg warmers

IMG_7301

I made these for Birdie the other week for the Winter Solstice. It was freezing that day and we had to rug up! What better excuse to make a pair of rainbow leg warmers? My intention was to come on here and write my very first extra fancy tutorial on how to make them, because I’m surely sure that as soon as you saw the pictures of these babies your arms jumped on your wool basket and you flung yourself back to the screen with your crochet hook in one hand and ten balls of bright coloured wool in the other screaming TELL ME HOW TO MAKE THEM RIGHT NOW.

But then I opened up the screen and realised about two weeks has gone by since I made them and I can’t actually remember what I did. I do remember that they are both different sizes and one is about double the width of the other but if I’m writing a proper tutorial then I’m not meant to tell you that.

And then I saw that in the photo above there is a stray bit of wool sticking out of one of them and it doesn’t look very professional or fancy.

So. If you’re still with me and you don’t care if one leg warmer is double the size of the other or there are stray bits of wool sticking out of mine because I tied a few bits of wool together and then just cut the ends off instead of stitching them in properly, then you should read the following extra fancy information so you can make your own pair.

Choose as many colours as you want. Decide what order you want the colours in or just make that part up as you go along. I chained 37 or 38 stitches to start but as I chained I just wrapped the chain around Birdie’s leg until I reached my desired width. In the first leg warmer I made a big rectangle and then stitched it together at the end. Don’t do that. Once you’ve got your chain the length/width (gah!) you want, then you just slip stitch it together to form a circle. Then I used treble stitch and did one row of each colour until the leg warmer was long enough. Then to get the extra fancy shell stitch at the bottom (or top, whatever you want) — I’m pausing now trying really hard to remember how I did this — Ok, try this: 2dc, 1htc, then in the fourth stitch: 5 x tc, 1htc, 2 dc – repeat. Does that make any sense?

Ok now go and make millions of pairs of lop-sided leg warmers for your kids and post pictures of them on instagram or on your blogs and tag me (@motherwho) so I can see! Yay for lop-sided rainbow legwarmers!

holidaying

photo-32

photo-28

photo-29

photo-31

I haven’t been getting the camera out much lately. Life has been flowing on day by day and we have been living it. A nice feeling really, not to be constantly viewing your life through the lens. Life first, lens second.

Now it’s holidays. Oh, how I love the holidays. The holiday feeling. Watching movies in the afternoons. Hearing the call of our kettle, filling hot water bottles and bringing our biggest mugs forward from the back of the cupboard for steaming cups of herbal tea in the evenings. Wearing loose trackies and jumpers around the house. Sometimes staying in pyjamas all day… oh, wait… 😉 Opening the blinds to the wintery sunlight…

In a couple of days we will head down to the beach. I love the beach in winter. I love rugging up and wandering the shores in the cold. I especially love it when the beaches are empty, don’t you? All the better to go home to the beach house couch and cosy dinners.

So for now I will just share with you a some more instagram pics, come and say hello there if you like, I’m there every day… @motherwho.

What are you doing this school holidays? Do the holidays mean anything to you or do you just work your way through? If you are in the Northern Hemisphere I think it is the middle of the super long summer break is it not? If so, enjoy! If down here, I hope the fire is stoked and you have a hot cuppa in hand.

Final note – having a school teacher for a husband: I recommend it.

welcome, winter ~ our first winter nature table

Dragged my sorry self off the couch on Tuesday and vowed our house would be a Tinker Bell Free Zone, for one day. We’ve now made it through two Tinker Bell free days and both feel a lot better for it. I can imagine when Baby cottons onto the fact that Tinker Bell comes in times of ill health only – at this point – that there might be a few cases of fake coughing about.

I decided we’d make a start on our first ever nature table – or in our case, nature shelf. Wasn’t entirely sure what to do, although I’ve seen a few photos of some awesome ones. I got the idea to make some winter stars here, and I’m afraid I’m not linking to the correct post as it was a few days ago that I stumbled across it and now can’t find the correct one that had the tutorial to make the stars. We didn’t have any tissue paper, but I figured using scribbled on drafts of my last uni assignment was better for the environment anyway…

It might look like we spent a long time collecting and searching outside in the wilderness, but in reality we went into our front yard for about four minutes, in which time Baby was much more interested in picking clovers and checking the letterbox than finding winter’s treasures.

Nevertheless, it’s a start. We don’t have any of the fancy Waldorf decorations to turn this into something that could end up on pinterest. But it’s ours! If I can get my head around blanket stitch any time soon there might be a gnome or two to add to this. Baby has also requested a winter fairy (Tinker BELLL!!!!) to which I have smiled and given my best elusive “Oh, yes, great idea, Mummy will definitely give that her best shot” type of response. I tried looking up a few basic felt tutorials for winter fairies and gnomes. All I can say is it’s amazing what people consider ‘basic’. Basic, people! (If you do have a tutorial suitable for beginners, feel free to link to it in the comments!)

Till next time.

the loonnnggggg weekend

Usually I love a long weekend. I always love a long weekend actually, who doesn’t? This one was a little different as Baby was more ill than we thought last week. We had two visits to the doctor over the weekend (thankfully they were open on a public holiday) and after a little bit of stress, a suspected case of pneumonia (which turned out to be a secondary chest infection luckily) and some antibiotics later she has woken up this morning smiling for the first time in days.

It’s funny how you always wish for more time at home (or I do, in any case) and when you finally have that opportunity you are bored or frustrated or just don’t know how to use the time. I’ve had A LOT of time at home over the last week, but have ended up feeling trapped and a bit depressed. Yesterday I was moping around and couldn’t shake the sulks… how old am I again?

I’m not able to go to work today because she is too unwell to go out and can’t go to Montessori. I’m glad of a ‘day off’ as looking after her has been exhausting, but I was also so apprehensive about today – starting another long week with PC off to work and me at home, alone with the kid. Yesterday I actually dreaded being left alone to entertain her for the day, again… I felt so guilty about it. She has been mighty cranky, and a cranky toddler is just so much harder to deal with when you’re home alone. We haven’t been able to see any of our friends with kidlets because she is still contagious, so it’s been just us, at home, me trying to keep a smile on my face. I sound horrible, right?

Last night before going to bed I decided I was not about to waste another day with the sulks, and we were going to have a brilliant day today, despite being under the weather. We’ve watched way too much Tinker Bell and Play School over the last week, in our attempts to keep the kid lying down and resting, and I can now understand how easy it is to fall into the routine of turning the television on when the going gets tough. Even after just a few days of relying on tv shows, I was wondering what I would do today to entertain her without either switching on the telly or taking her out of the house, which I don’t want to do until she’s a bit better.

I decided today we would make our first ever nature table for the onset of winter which has just arrived down under. I was so excited as I think she is finally old enough to begin to understand the concept of seasons, and doing something fun together this morning without the telly (despite her persistent requests for ‘fairies’ – how quickly we become addicted!) was just what we needed. I’ll post more on it later but we’ve made a pretty good start.

Other than that, our weekend consisted of resting, some good wholesome food, immune boosting soups, reading books, and I also managed to sneak in a day trip to Daylesford with my lovely friend Em.

What did you get up to?