Monthly Archives: December 2014

Daily(ish) Gratitude 09/12/14

Today I am grateful for:

1. Seeing a very good friend being swept off her feet by a new squeeze. So adorable!

2. Finding some perfect Christmas presents for various people.

3. A glorious 2hr nap with my youngest in the middle of the day.

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Sunday Soapbox: In Defence of Hoarding

For the last two weeks since my oldest’s birthday party I have taken the pressure right off myself and focussed on coasting and resting as much as possible. All of the habits I’ve been carefully cultivating over the past few months have fallen by the wayside: I’m back to neglecting basic household cleanliness until things pile up too much and generally living from moment to moment. Things are pretty chaotic and cluttered and gritty, but we’re still muddling along OK with clean clothes to wear (which is easy enough given that we all have at least two weeks’ worth of clothes stuffed into our closets), decent food to eat (although much gets wasted due to poor planning), and basic standards of punctuality and preparedness being met (most of the time).

My brain has been much happier with me as I’ve been indulging my inner 4yo who constantly stamps her foot and screams “I DON’T WANNA!” whenever I try to get anything done. Rather than do battle with her I respond with “Fine then. Fuck it,” and flop back on the couch. I know it’s not a long term solution – the kids are definitely suffering from the extra mess and once I do get momentum going it takes so much longer to do anything since I’m so far behind before I even get started – but for now? I’m much calmer than I have been for a while.

So in this calm state I’ve gotten to thinking: is hoarding really so bad? I mean for sure, if you have mountains of useless rubbish teetering in piles in every room that’s really not a good idea. Obviously. But what if it’s all useful?

Last week my oldest had her end of year play for her drama class and she wanted to put a rabbit costume together (even though it was optional). We brainstormed the ears and at first she tried drawing them on old toilet rolls but that didn’t quite work out so she switched to regular paper. Then we grabbed a plain headband from her collection and stuck the ears on with sticky tape, adding an old crepe paper rose she made at least a year ago (that she found while looking for the sticky tape) as a finishing touch. Done.

For a snout I cut out a segment from an egg carton and found a stray pink foam heart in a random drawer that was the perfect size for the nose. We glued it on, drew some whiskers on the sides with a texta and attached some pink elastic from a bead-stringing set to hold it in place around her head. Done.

Then we grabbed a white singlet and pink leggings she’s had for ages. She decided to decorate the leggings with hearts and flowers so I pulled out a set of t-shirt markers I bought for her Book Week costume a few months back and let her have at it. Then I found a half used ball of pink wool and made a pom pom tail that I pinned to the bottom of her singlet with a random safety pin that was in the same drawer as the pink foam heart.

DONE.

She had a super cute, homemade costume and we didn’t have to buy a damn thing to make it. This is the sort of situation that validates my “that might be useful someday!” mentality and makes it that much harder for me to conquer it.

So you know what? As of today I’m taking a stand. Hoarding has its place and isn’t always a bad idea. I just have to get better at managing it.

Out of curiosity I tried googling how to live well with your hoarding tendencies and I didn’t find a single positive result. Not one! Just a lot of “How to get over your hoarding tendencies” and “How to live with a hoarder” type of stuff.

Well I blow a big fat raspberry in your direction, Google! I’m going to make my hoarding work for me and be much happier as a result.

You’ll see!

Gluten-Free Coconut Ginger Noodle Soup

Since I’ve been slacking off with my Wednesday Recipes the last couple of weeks I’m nicking this one from craftylittlecoco instead. This looks so good!

Crafty little Coco

Gluten-Free Coconut Ginger Noodle Soup1

It’s getting frosty, it’s the kind of bitter cold that makes me want to hide under layers of blankets, knit and dream of: mac and cheese, soups with cream and spicy hot chocolate concoctions…. Don’t get me wrong I love eating like this, I plan on sharing those recipes someday soon, BUT I dislike the heavy feeling I get right after.

This Gluten-Free Coconut Ginger Noodle Soup is warm, cozy, packed full of flavor, and best of all, it’s not too heavy! It’s the perfect way to spice up the traditional heavy holiday repertoire.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of chopped veggies.
    • I used: onion, baby heirloom tomatoes, carrot, carrot greens, parsley and green beans.
  • 2 tbs of coconut oil.
  • 4 tbs or a 1/4 of tofu. Cubed.
  • 1 green onion stock. Thinly sliced.
  • 1 tsp ginger. Grated. (Tip: freeze your ginger. It lasts longer and becomes incredibly easy to grate)
  • 1 can of coconut milk. (Full and…

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Daily Gratitude 04/12/14

Today I am grateful for:

1. The opportunity to sit in on my oldest’s drama class and watch her “perform” (it was more like a workshop than a performance, really). So great to see her all excited and confident and comfortable in front of all the parents.

2. A solo train trip into the heart of the CBD at dusk for some (mostly unsuccessful) Christmas shopping. It’s been too long.

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❤ this city!

3. MOAR THUNDERSTORMS!! There's a pretty impressive free light show right outside my window this evening. Giving me wild and crazy goosebumps!

Muddy Puddles After the Storm

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Ever have those moments where the universe bludgeons you over the head with symbolism? Where you’re left saying “Yeah OK, I get it. Sheesh!” but are secretly grateful for the boot up the bum to remind you of what you already knew?

Yeah, I had one of those yesterday.

It had been a hellishly hot and humid day, where we didn’t so much walk home from school as swim through the haze. Once home we stripped down and flopped in front of fans, too listless to do anything beyond eat iceblocks and watch a movie.

A thunderstorm was forecast and sure enough the sky got darker and darker, taking on a slightly green tinge. I gratefully opened up the house to let the wild winds gust through and blow away the stored heat until – finally! – fat raindrops started to fall. The girls and I rushed out to the front porch to watch the lightning and dash about in the rain for a bit before the thunder became too scary for my little miss and we went back inside for dinner.

It was still light when the storm passed so we got our gumboots on to go splash in the massive puddles out on the sidewalk. Now I enjoy a good splash as much as the next person but the sheer exuberance with which my girls assaulted that puddle just took my breath away. Every scattered drop was delightful, every damp leaf fascinating, every run and jump a new opportunity to make an even bigger splash.

I joined in for a little while but eventually just stood back to soak up their energy and bask in their happiness. We live right near a train station so every now and then my oldest would say “Stop! Someone’s coming,” and shoo her little sister off to the side while people walked past. Every single passerby lit up to see these two excited, wet, muddy girls in gumboots. They saw the same thing I did.

Joy. Pure, unmediated, unadulterated joy.

Un-adult-erated.

Kids – and especially little kids – really do make the best teachers. Instinctively we know the lessons they teach us, but our stupid grown-up brains need the constant reminders.

Seize the moment. Truly live in and enjoy it while it lasts.

Storms can be scary, so don’t be afraid to cuddle someone who helps you feel safe and seek shelter and sustenance until it passes.

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Once the skies start clearing, look for the nearest puddle and throw yourself at it with gleeful abandon. Jump again and again and push yourself further for even bigger and better results.

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Joy shared is joy doubled. The more people you share your joy with the bigger it gets.

Falls happen. You can choose to be upset or show your muddy bottom to your friends and share an extra laugh. Clothes can be washed (or replaced!) and faces wiped, after all.

And boots filled with water can be an annoyance or an opportunity for giggling over squelchy sounds and pouring games.

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Silver linings are pretty and all, but muddy puddles are more FUN! Always look for the fun.

Help a blogger out?

We’ve been hit by a few unexpected expenses and debts lately (as my husband sarcastically put it: we adult well!). I really need to find a way to bring in some money, preferably from home and in such a way that I don’t need to rely on child care.

My ideal would be to break into freelance editing/proof reading. I really enjoy doing it, but the few leads I’ve chased up so far haven’t amounted to anything concrete. Any tips? Anyone here got writing they want proofed and polished? I’m happy to start out cheap if you’re ok to let me sample some of your work for a portfolio (or even if you’re not ok to do that. It’s all experience).

Alternatively, has anyone got a site they need extra content for? I can write to a topic and word limit and love researching new information.

Finally, anyone here a professional writer/editor who would like to take me under their wing?? I don’t really have the money for courses, or freedom to work business hours, or acumen to start-up on my own! It would be so awesome to have a mentor so I can learn on the ropes. *sighs wistfully*

Daily Gratitude

Today I am grateful for:

1. My girls happily entertaining themselves with quiet, arty play instead of just vagueing out in front of a screen while I made dinner last night.

2. The fact that my girls are growing up in a seriously multicultural and open-minded environment (as opposed to the seriously white, backwater rural city I grew up in) and don’t even register difference as exotic or unusual.

3. Silly text conversations with hubby that made me literally LOL. ❤