2017Life Love and Hiccups: 2017

Monday, 17 July 2017

Is The Internet Making Us (Me) Paranoid?

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Social Media and the Internet has A LOT to answer for.

Aside from all the insecurities that are born from comparing our bodies, homes, families and lives to those of all the others that we see on our phones and computer screens, there is also the added bonus of paranoia to contend with too.

Social media and blogging unleashes ALL kinds of uninvited ring-ins into my already overcrowded paranoid mind and I have to admit I am more than a little curious to know if you ever feel this way too?

Apparently, this overwhelm and paranoia we feel are both perfectly justifiable signs of the times that we live given that we spend so much time talking to each other online rather than in person.

Once upon a time, back in the olden days (kill me now cause I said it again), it was very black and white when it came to deciding if your paranoia was justified or not.

Case in point;

You approach a group of friends who are huddled up close with heads together, clearly discussing something or someone.

One of two things would typically happen....

1. They will pause for a moment whilst you join them, briefly give you the background and then dive back into the discussion.

Or...

2. They notice you approaching and immediately stop speaking and so you then oblige them with a response that includes an awkward laugh and an even more awkward comment along the lines of "ok girls, you can stop talking about me now". They in turn respond with something along the lines of an intense interest in the current state of their cuticles or they simply stare up at the sky and ponder the possibility of snow falling in Summer in your beachside suburb..

Case solved.

They were talking about me.

These days, things are much harder to figure out thanks to the subtle passive aggressiveness and vacant jibing that the internet enables.

In fact the internet is a breeding ground for judgement and paranoia, and there is no place more virile than Facebook and The Blogosphere.

So what the hell am I vagueing on about right now?

Hmmm, it kind of goes like this...

You read a cryptic status update that a friend writes on Facebook about how someone has pissed her off and you respond with an appropriate dose of empathy in the form of a comment on that post... but then your comment is met with silence.

Not a single word in response, not even a like to acknowledge your comment.

Nothing.

Nada..

And so (if you are me), you commence hyperventilating as you mentally recount your last ten conversations and interactions with this person to pinpoint exactly what it was that you did that caused her to be so mad at you.

Now don't expect reason to help you out here.

Nope, Reason doesn't even think of coming to the party and pointing out the fact she could be talking about any of the 1852 people she has engaged with in the past month.

Nah ah, there is no room for reason at this party because Paranoia has arrived people and Paranoia has started a big old paranoia orgy in your head and consequently you have already donned your own shackles and you are now far too busy writing your 98 page apology letter... for something you don't know even know what or if you have or haven't done.

But....Paranoia says you did so you must have right?

Gah!!!

Then there's that blog post a fellow blogger writes about blah blah and how she really dislikes it when people yaya yada, or how she thinks that people who yada yada make her feel blah blah...

You get the gist right?

Of course you do, because that post was written about you right?!

Oh wait, oh sweets... you mean you didn't know she was talking about you?

Bless, you mean you actually thought it could have been about any of the other eleventy billion faceless people she could have been referring too?

THAT my dear friend is the point that reason leaves the building and insecurity and paranoia claim squatters rights.

Now short of leaving a comment on that Cryptic Facebook status or opinion post asking the author if it is indeed you she was talking about and in the process of doing so risk making yourself look like a utter narcissistic looney... there is not much else you can do about it.

I guess you could spend the next few days in self imposed exile doing some deep and meaningful soul searching as you question the probability of it being you or not and whether you can you live with yourself it were indeed you she was talking about.

Or... you could attempt a modern day passive aggressive poke in the shoulder by writing your own cryptic Facebook / Twitter / Instagram update / blog post and leave everyone else wondering who you are really talking about too before you realise that you have now completely lost the plot and surrender yourself and your wounded ego to your local Social Media rapid detox and rehabilitation facility.

Then again, you could just get over yourself, turn off the computer for a while and go and get a life.

Who am I to judge?

Whatever works for you I say.

Do you ever overthink what you read online?
Ever felt like the internet and social media is making you slightly paranoid?





Friday, 14 July 2017

Dyson VERSUS The Kids and Their Dogs

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Brought to you by Dyson & Nuffnang

OK my fellow neat freaks… get ready to be enlightened.

We (we as in our family but let’s face it, we are really talking about me - the neat freak) were sent the new Dyson V8 cord-free vacuum cleaner to try out and with the camera aimed directly at us - we set about putting it to the test.



Impressive huh?

This beautiful machine is like the holy grail… in my humble inner Martha Mudgut’s opinion.

OK, so if you were to sit down with my mum for a chat over a cuppa and ask her if I was always such a neat freak - she would probably choke on her coffee and collapse from a laughing induced hernia because her answer would be a big fat resounding NO.

Nope, I wasn’t always quite so fastidious about keeping things neat, in fact I was probably one of the messiest teens that has ever walked this planet… but then something happened to change me.

At 19, I moved into an apartment with my boyfriend (who is now my hubby) and he was hands down the messiest person I had ever met. I’m talking lose yourself for days in his piles of laundry and dirty dishes kind of messy you guys and it did my head in.

Ironically, his messiness was the miraculous cure for my own untidiness and the beginning of a lifetime spent apologising to my mother for all the years of mess she endured with me.

It was also when Martha Mudguts was born.

Since most of our friends still lived at out home with their own parents, our humble beach side apartment became the go-to party house. Hey, I was always one who was up for a good time, so of course I was totally ok with our place being party central. In fact, I was very accommodating (if I do say so myself) when it came to our multiple house guests and bodies that slept off hangovers on our couch and living room floor, and as long as no one minded me putting coasters under their drinks and lifting their lifeless legs so that I could vacuum the morning after (or the night before if my desperate need for tidiness won).

Somehow I managed to convert the hubby along the way… my years of training eventually paid off and he found his own tidy streak… buried somewhere under all the laundry no doubt.

Aaaaaand then we had kids, three boys to be precise.

Three lovely, happy, dirty, messy, loud and adventurous little boys.

Not content with our boisterous trio, I then insisted on adding two dogs to the mix because clearly I am a sucker for punishment.

I know you are probably dying to know… has my insistent need for tidiness waned somewhat over the years… what with a house full of boys and dogs and all that?

Hell no!!!

In fact I would even go so far as to say that I am as fastidious as ever if not more, and further yet I am cunning in the way that I manage the mess and clever in the arsenal of tools I have at my disposal to fight my endless battle… and at the top of my list (ok, sharing pole position with my coffee machine) is my trusty Dyson Vacuum cleaner.

I have been a total Dyson convert since I bought my first one nearly 12 years ago. I still have that incredible machine and it is now used solely on the car after the kids used it in various role plays over the years.

Then I was introduced to the newest member of the Dyson family and I have pretty much now declared my undying devotion.







The Dyson V8 Absolute cord-free vacuum cleaner takes all the hassle out of keeping our house clean and tidy. As you saw in the video, it is ready to go any time I need it, really handy for cleaning up small messes as they happen. I also love the fact that it has no cords for this self declared Queen Klutz to trip over (or my merry party of mini klutzes for that matter) is absolute winner of a bonus!

At just 2.6kg, it is super lightweight and so easy to manoeuvre. The powerful suction generated by the Dyson digital motor V8 removes ALL the crumbs, dirt, dust and dog hair from our carpets, soft furnishings and tiled floors and the battery now lasts up to 40 minutes (compared to 20 minutes on the previous generations) which is plenty of time for me to whip around the entire house in a my ritualistic cleaning frenzy.

One of the best bits yet…even the kids love using it too. OK, so they probably like to pretend it is a super sucky light sabre or something, but hey…if they want to play and clean the floors at the same time, who the heck am I to argue??!!!

The Dyson V8 Absolute cord-free vacuum retails for RRP $899 and you can buy it here. It is quite possibly the best gift you could ever buy for yourself and your home.

Go on, you self-confessed house-proud clean freak - you know you want to.

I’m curious (because some of my friends think my once or twice a day vacuuming habit is bordering on obsessive - how often do you vacuum your place?


Monday, 10 July 2017

Totally Worth The Pool Of Drool

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Helllooooo and happy Monday lovely people!

It's been a looooong time between drool pools around here, but thanks to a stinker of a head cold that kept me in bed for a few days early last week, I had a chance to indulge in a little bit of Pinterest Porn.

Ahhhh... Is there anything quite like it?

Drooling over other people's perfectly staged homes and then mentally (& sometimes physically) rearranging your entire home to meet the needs of your new style crush?

I think not.

I say scrap the Lemsip and engage in a little swoon therapy instead.

I've been madly crushing over greens and teals for some time now... evidence of this is very clear to see in the teal coloured wall I insisted on painting in our home last year... I STILL love it.

Now if only someone would care to fix me up with a blush coloured velvet couch and maybe a couple of thousand buckeroos to spend on some new plants and accessories, then I think we could put this style crush to bed for a while.

One can always dream right?

In the meantime, here's a little snippet of what caught my eye during my recent Pin Pash!

What colour combos have you currently swooning?
Do you happen to have a blush velvet couch you would like a new home for? I know someone ;)

 Source: Norsu Interiors

Source: ApartmentF15



 Source: Arte Boheme

Source: Patina Studio


 Source: ApartmentF15

 Source: Sincerely Jules





Tuesday, 4 July 2017

The Adventure We Could Have Done Without...

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Brought to you Bravecto & Nuffnang


Yes, she is the family dog, but oh man she is so much more than that too....

It was just your average run of the mill Saturday afternoon with nothing much more happening at home than just the usual comings and goings of the kids. Everyone was just doing their thing and the man of the house was happily tinkering away in the garage.

I had grand plans that involved a day on the couch snuggled up with my new fluffy pillow, maybe a leisurely dinner on the back deck, followed by some more snuggles on the couch in front of a movie that night.

I’m not sure exactly what time it was that I was woken from my nap by the sounds of distant sirens and the friendly neighbourhood pack howling in tune, but I distinctly remember waking with a sudden lust for adventure.

Hey… I was bored. I’d pretty much spent the entire day on the couch and yet the sun was out, the air wafting with the scent of freshly cut grass and snags ’n onions cooking away on BBQs, and the sound of kids happily playing out on the street.

Happy smells and happy sounds, and I wanted to get out there and be a part of it all.

I guess I didn’t really think to let anyone know that I was heading out for a while. I mean, they were all doing their own thing and probably wouldn’t notice I was gone anyway, and so with that in mind I wandered out the front of our house, onto the street and off I went.

I won’t lie… I was giddy with the sense of freedom, I had nowhere to be, no-one telling me what to do and no one pestering me to play with them. It was just me and the open road.

The whine of the sirens grew louder as I wandered across the park not far from home, but when they stopped suddenly, my curiosity got the better of me and I picked up my pace eager to see what all the racket was about.

I made a beeline for the corner where our quiet estate met with the busier road and I think I may have heard someone calling me in the distance but I was distracted by a car that was pulling over in front of me.

It must be Jayde and the kids… they’re the only ones I know who drive a white car like that and so I ran to the opening door to say “hi”.

That’s when things began to happen quickly and truth be told, I couldn’t tell you if I was scared at that moment or just simply startled by all the sudden activity. 




In a rush of noise and confusion I was jumped upon, two strong arms wrapping themselves tightly around my chest and pushing me into the back of the car.

“Quit struggling” a deep voice warned me as I looked around inside the car and realised that there was no Jayde or Iggy or Minty in that car.

Wait, no… this can’t be happening I thought in disbelief. I was just going for a walk… and my family are back at home… I have no idea where I am so how will they even know where to start looking for me?

In a panic I looked for a way out of the car… but the doors were shut and the windows wound up and as the car revved to life and pulled out onto the road I realised… there was no way to escape.

A woman sitting in the passenger seat turned around to look me up and down. I didn’t see her there before. Was she friendly? I looked between her and the driver whose eyes were looking ahead focused on the road, and I just couldn’t tell.

“What’s your name sweetheart?” the lady asked me with a gentle enough tone to tell me that she was trying to make me feel more relaxed, at least a little more relaxed than that dude with his manhandling had made me feel.

I stared at her for a moment or two in silence, trying to figure her out, before moving my gaze back to the window and the unfamiliarity of the streets we were driving along.

“Stupid woman, like I’m gonna tell you my name… pffft” I thought to myself.

My mind drifted back to the kids and my family. Did they even know I was gone? Would they think to come looking for me? How were they going to find me if I didn’t even know where these people were taking me.

It felt like forever that we drove in silence in that car, him watching me through the rear vision mirror and her stealing glances at me over her shoulder.

We took a sharp turn suddenly and I slammed my shoulder into the door as we pulled off the road and onto the gravel lined driveway of a house I had never seen before.

“Yoooowch, that hurt” I thought to myself as the car came to a halt, but I didn’t have much time to focus on the pain as they were both on the move and climbing out of the car.

This was my chance to escape. This is when I should run for it.

I decided in that moment that making as much noise as possible was probably a good thing to do… and so I did. Oh boy, did I make a racket, but as he reached into the back of the car to grab at me again I realised that there was no one around to hear me… no one except them and the youngish looking woman who was opening the door at the front of this strange building.

I squirmed as much as I could as he pulled me out of the car and I threw my head back in an attempt to break free, but his grip was far too tight to fight off.

He carried me as I continued my struggle and we followed that youngish woman in through the door, down a long corridor and into a dark room.

She switched on the light and what I saw before me was enough to cause an involuntary whimper to escape from my mouth…

It was a room with a range of various sized cages in it and it was very clear that they intended on putting me in one of them.

What kind of prank is this?

Who's playing tricks on me?

The cage door slammed shut and as I tried to fold myself into the confined space, my captors exited the room and shut the door behind them.

I was all alone, caged like a wild animal in a room in a house I had never seen before.

The enormity of it all gripped me and I cried out, howling like those neighbourhood dogs I had heard earlier today when I was safe on the couch at home… oh home.

I just want to be back at home with my family and away from this nightmare.

After Lord knows how long, I heard the sound of a car on gravel in the distance and then some muffled voices from another room.

Was there more of them coming?

What are they saying?

Do these new people arriving know that I am in here being held captive?

I need to make some noise and let them know I am in here, and so with every last ounce of effort I began to make noise… a LOT of noise.

Surely they can hear me?

The door opened abruptly and the woman from the front door walked towards the cage I was being held in.

She doesn’t look as strong as the one who manhandled me earlier. I’m pretty sure I can get past her…

As she unlocked the cage I lunged at full force, bolting past her and straight out that door. I paused for a second in the corridor to get my bearings and then I legged it toward the voices.

As I turned the corner into the big room I saw them…

My people.

MY HUMANS!

They had found me.

I barked with unbridled joy as I threw myself onto them, knocking my littlest human friend over in the process. I licked him to make sure he was OK and they hugged me hard in return. My mum was crying as she squeezed me tight and said thank you over and over again to the lady who had put me in that room.

That same lady reached out and scratched me behind my ear. 

Sheesh, that crazy human who had me locked in a cage only minutes ago and now, for crying out loud, she thinks we are friends?

Oh OK, if you insist… go on, scratch me some more before I get outta here and back to the safety of my couch.



Hells Bells, our beautiful Milly gave us quite the heart attack this particular day.

We have no idea how she managed to get out but those few hours that she was missing and we were searching for her… they were absolutely gut wrenching.

Yes, she is the family dog, but oh man she is so much more than that too. She’s our companion, our protector and our snuggle partner.

She is also our middle son Sammy’s best mate.

From the moment they first clapped eyes on each other - it was luuuuurve of the most wonderful kind. I mean, we ALL love this gregarious Groodle but her and Sam… well they have something very special going on.

She has been his constant companion as he has struggled through the years with anxiety. She has keep him company at night, protecting him from nightmares and the under the bed boogie man and monsters, all the while taking full advantage of the warm cosy bed and cuddles in return. She has been a constant for him and a lesson in the responsibilities and the rewards of caring for a pet.

A recent Aussie study of dog owners has clearly highlighted something that we already knew - kids and dogs are made for each other. The Dogs & Children survey commissioned by long-lasting paralysis tick and flea treatment Bravecto, reveals insights into the long-lasting effect of being a dog owner for not only children, but the whole household.

The lessons our little humans can learn from owning a pet are so wide and many, but ranked among the top responses were:



Sam would have been absolutely devastated had Milly not been picked up on this particular day by a lovely couple who spotted her wandering along the side of the road a couple of blocks away from our house. 

We ALL would have been devastated.

Fortunately for us, those fellow animal lovers recognised Milly as an adventurous but much-loved family pet that day (maybe thanks to the size of her generous girth) and they took her to a local vet clinic so that they could scan her microchip and let us know she was safe and sound.

We never got to thank those kind people who rescued her as they didn’t leave a contact number, and even though we spent that night of her return imaging all the details of her adventure, we will never really know what she got up to that day. We can only imagine.

Look, we can’t always protect our beloved pets from everything, especially the chaos they sometimes manage to create for themselves… but we can protect them from fleas and paralysis ticks thanks to Bravecto - a product that truly gets just how important our dogs are to us.

Bravecto delivers 3 months protection against fleas and paralysis ticks for dogs in one single tasty oral chew. In fact, it’s the only oral chew to offer this kind of protection. With Bravecto, you are free to focus on all the important things in life, and be confident knowing your pets are protected.

It’s available in 5 different kilogram packs depending on the weight of your dog. 



For more information on Bravecto and where to buy it please visit: Bravecto Here

Now… I’ve actually got a competition running over on Instagram where you can win a Bravecto prize pack for your favourite family pet.

All you need to do is head on over and share a pic of you or your child with your beloved fur baby and tell us about your special bond. FIVE people will win a years supply of Bravecto for their beloved Fur baby,  but don’t forget to use the hashtags #LLHBravecto #familydog and #winbravecto so we can see your entry.

Entries close 18/07/17 and full T&Cs can be viewed here


So tell me - do you have a beloved fur baby?

Did you have one growing up?

Did she/he ever head off on their own on an ‘adventure’?

To find out more about Bravecto, visit www.bravecto.com.au or join their awesome online community of passionate dog owners on Facebook BravectoAu and Instagram @BravectoAU


Friday, 30 June 2017

A Not So ADULTY Thing To Do

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Deadset you guys, I think I have been more adulty in the past few weeks than I have ever been in my entire adulty life to date and honestly... I've never felt like such a phoney.

I half expect to look in the mirror and see a little person staring back at me, a little person all dressed up in her mum's high heels with a face full of blue eyeshadow and red lippy, a dozen strings of pearls hanging around her neck and a glow mesh Oroton slung over her shoulder.

Except I don't see that... partly because you will never see me in heels 'cause I can't walk in them to save my life.

Instead I just see me.

All 40 something years of me.

OK, so I know that in theory, getting married, having kids and buying a home are all very adult things to do and have done, but the past few weeks have upped the stakes and have seen me and the hubby dealing with car accidents and insurance companies, finance brokers and commercial real estate agents, super fund experts and financial advisors, doctors and grown up tests and grown up waits for diagnosis of grown up medical conditions.

That's a whole lot of grown up stuff.

To top it all off there has been that family situation that has demanded of me; sensitivity, patience, common sense (all very adulty kind of traits) and not to mention a bottle of hair dye to cover up the rapidly appearing (adultish) greys.

Throughout it all, I've just been standing here waiting for a proper adult to walk into the room and say "It's all good Sonia, the adults will take it from here", but that adult has failed to turn up and so I am forced to be as adulty as my non adulty heart can fake.

***Sigh***

You see in my head I am still somewhere between 16 and 25 years old and not a day older.

I think my brain kind of stopped ageing some time about 20 odd years ago but my body and my life just went full steam ahead not even realising that my mind was standing back there waving it's hands going "hey.... HEY... did you forget something" and now suddenly, here I am pretending to be an adult in a big old adult world.

I might look the part, but inside I'm feeling like a scared shitless teenager taking the wheel for the first time... and quite frankly I miss the ease of just being a kid.

Yesterday I woke up with an overwhelming urge to rebel and do the most unadulty thing I could possibly do.

Well, not quite the most unadulty thing, but as unadulty as I could manage to pull off given I had 3 kids in tow.

And so I did this...


Yep that would be a diamond nose stud in my snozzle.

I KNOW RIGHT???!!!

Who am I?

What, why.... I have no idea!

The thing was, as I was sat there in the chair with a stick of Betadine shoved up my nose, the kids had their phones stuck in my face ready to film me and the nice lady was waiting to stab a hole in my nose, and the first thought that came into my mind was "Oh shit, what will my parents say?"

My parents!!!

Here I am a parent myself doing something very unparent like in front of my OWN kids and I am worried about what MY parents would think???

HILARIOUS!

It felt good.

Like RIDICULOUSLY deliciously good to metaphorically stick my finger up at adulthood and let my mind act it's age for once... well the age it thinks it is.

And so that's how I came to have a nose piercing. A completely random, out of character and so not adulty nose piercing... and I luuuuurve it.

P.S so um Mum and Dad... *cough cough* what do you think? Dare I ask?

How old are you in your head?
Ever done anything to purposely NOT act your age?

Header Image source: UnSplash




Friday, 23 June 2017

Do you Believe in Signs?

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Artwork by Pete Cromer

Do you believe in Angels and in the signs they send you?

I do.

I don't talk a lot about my spirituality here on the blog, which is weird I guess considering it is such a big part of who I am or at least - who I have become.

Maybe it is because a lot of what I believe in, others would possibly see as a whole load of whickety whack, which when I think about it...  is really dumb that I should even care.

I am what you would call a spiritual person - but you can't really put a label on my belief system. I sort of subscribe to a universal kind of spirituality.

I believe in angels and energy, in karma and power of positive action. I believe that there is something far greater than us and I can't tell you how much relief that notion gives me.

I identify with what you would call "the good parts" of many different religions, the positive and the nurturing side of all religions be it Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, paganism... just to name a few. However,  as soon as a religion sparks fear or judgment or condones suffering in any form... you've totally lost me.

So someone I love has been going through a really tough time lately. Like REALLY tough.

That person is one of my children and I can't actually say that without a sob escaping my lips... it truly breaks my heart.

It is not my story to share with other people though and as much as I crave the release of writing about it, it is not mine to tell.

What I can tell you though, is that my heart has been feeling pain like no other pain I have ever felt before. My every thought and every breath is consumed by it and as any mother who has ever worried about a child (which is pretty much every mother EVER) will confirm... that worry is possibly one of the heaviest burdens a human could ever be expected to carry.

And so last night as I lay awake in bed thinking about everything, I asked the angels for help, which is something that anyone who knows me knows it is hard for me to ask for... but I did it anyway and I asked for healing and protection and for some extra help to carry us through.

Now the thing about Angels you see, is that they tend to give us signs. Have you ever thought of someone you have lost and then a butterfly randomly floats by or a feather just magically appears? Or maybe you have been wondering if you are on the right track, or have you made the right decision about something and then a number sequence appears like 11:11 on the clock?

I believe they are signs, just a bit of an "Oi, we're just doing this to let you know we are listening to you" kind of message from the angels, and sometime those angels can have quite the sense of humour in the way they deliver those signs... case in point below.

Last night, when I finally fell asleep, I had a dream that I was somewhere in a park with my family... maybe on a picnic or something? I can't be sure as those details are a bit hazy. What I do remember though is that a Rainbow Lorikeet flew down and landed on my shoulder, followed by a whole load of them landing on my head and all down my arms and I can clearly recall the sensation of them on me and the sound of my kids laughing.

I don't remember much else about that dream... except for the birds, but then this morning when I was sitting in the cafe outside my studio having a coffee, I spotted two Rainbow Lorikeets feasting on some bread scraps someone had left behind.

They reminded me of my dream and then suddenly they squawked and took flight. One flew to my left and the other... the other flew so close to my head I could feel the wind from its wings on my face.

It was sign... albeit a cheeky one, a sign that in my heart told me that things will be ok, a sign that the angels heard me last night and were telling me that they have our back.

Whether the lorikeets this morning and the dream I had the night before is purely a coincidence or a real life sign... doesn't matter really.

It is whatever I believe it to be and that in turn it gives me so much comfort and hope.

At the end of the day, isn't that all we can hope to gain from whatever form of spirituality we subscribe to... a little comfort and hope?

I believe so.

Happy Friday lovely people and to any of my fellow mamas whose heart feels heavier than usual today - I am sending you so much love and light.

Do you believe in Signs?
Have you ever received one so perfectly timed that it took your breath away?


Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Winter Schminter; Love it or Leave it?

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When people tell me that they love winter, I kind of want to stab my eyeballs out with the sharp end of a severely charcoaled marshmallow roasting stick.

I should make a point of saying,  just in case you happen to be a devoted winter lover... it's not you... it's totally all me.

You see, in my world, winter sort of sucks bulls balls.

I have all these romantic ideas of winter and they are beautifully bound up into something like one of those special coffee table books people often have on display... only my pictures are in my head rather than laid out on the coffee table.

Think crackling fireplaces (fireplaces that don't actually make the house smell of smoke), big chunky cable knit jumpers (the type that won't make me look like a hippo wrapped in a ton of Cotton wool), and fluffy mittens clutching hot cups of cocoa under the twinkly lights (cocoa of course because I'm pretty sure that a king size tin of Nesquik wouldn't feature in a fancy coffee table book).

Come to think of it... I think I may have pinched all of my idealistic winter ingredients straight out of a cheesy Hallmark Christmas movie or something.

Sounds pretty darn cosy though right?

I should probably mention that I usually start putting that romantic winter picture book together waaaaayyyy back in January, when the weather is like fifty zillion degrees, when the ice in my cup melts so damn quickly that it dilutes my G&T faster than I can drink it, and at night when I am doing to the muggy night toss to the beat of my hubby's mozzy slapping.

I can totally see why people fall in love with the idea of winter, it's just that it never quite lives up to my expectations.

Come winter, my bones are aching, the kids wobble somewhere between feral because they are bored with being cooped up and feral because they have miserable colds from running around in no clothes in minus 100 temps (modest exaggeration duly noted). The sun sets too early, the mornings are too cold, and the constant smell of dampness out near our clothesline reminds of me of musty old motel rooms and my car that once stunk to high heaven after the kids left the windows down during a storm a few years ago.

Things just don't ever seem to run smoothly for us in winter either.

June and July never fails to deliver us a dose of bad luck... but then on second thoughts...r maybe that's because I have come to expect it from those months and so the universe being so giving and all that doesn't want to disappoint me and even chucks in a set of free steak knives in the form of... no... I don't even dare to give it any ideas.

I'm a Spring kind of gal through and through. The new green growth, the smell of blooming Jasmine, the hint of a warm breeze and the promise of stinking hot zillion degrees days and mozzies to slap.

Did I mention that I turn into quite the moaner during Winter? You know, in case you didn't happen to notice and all that.

What about you?

Are you sold on the whole romantic notion of Winter Schminter or does it leave you feeling a little ripped off too? 




Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Hemorrhoids, Zappos and Mummy Meltdowns

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Grab a cup of coffee or join me in a glass of coping cordial and come and sit down for a bit of natter.

If it's alright with you, I'd like to whine chat about the kids for a moment because honestly... I think mine might be out to get me.

No like REALLY, I think they are doing their best to send me to the loopy lock up.

You think I am kidding right?

I know, you are probably sitting there thinking to yourself "Sonia has gone and drunk the Conspiracy Kool Aid and now she spends her days running around with tin foil on her head because she thinks that aliens can't read her thoughts"... wait... I am a bit of a sucker for a man in green... do you think they really can read our minds?

I digress.

But I am not kidding.

I wish I could say that I am kidding, but I am deadset convinced that they have some kind of devious plan to trick me into signing myself into a padded hotel so that they can skip the nightly routine of arguing over showers, homework, chores and bedtimes.

I feel like we are arguing a lot at the moment. Like ALL the time, and about stupid things too.

For example, it took me no less than 11 requests (and some begging followed by a meltdown) for my kids to do their dog poop duty this afternoon. In the end I resorted to bribing one of them to do it by stealing and trading 3 Zappos from one kid and giving them to another.

Their bedrooms are a pigsty, there is clean still folded T'Shirts in the dirty laundry basket and the dishwasher conveniently went through two cycles before it was unpacked. To top it all off I found my Scholl foot file thingymajiggy under a pile of scrap papers on my youngest offspring's desk where he had been using it to make pencil shavings.

PENCIL SHAVINGS????!!!!

Some days I might be all about the silent fist pumping and self congratulations on my awesome mothering skills. Then other days I'm not.

On those other days.... I find myself questioning whether I have somehow managed to break those perfect little children that I willingly broke my pelvic floor in childbirth for, or... have I in my quest to have children who actually like me, become some kind of lame ass pushover who unknowingly led them down the garden path and straight into Turdsville where they have morphed into... little turdy people???

Now don't get me wrong... I love those children.

I love them HARD.

In fact I love them so much I would punch a billion people in the face to protect them.

But after the argument I had just today with a pant missing teen (the 'missing pants' were hanging in his cupboard in case you were wondering) and the argument I had with the ridiculously tired and cranky tween (It only took until midnight for him to finally go the f*** to sleep last night) it would be fair to say that yes - I love them, but I just don't like them... right now.

Oh kill me now, I went and said those cliched old mum words - "I love you, but that doesn't mean I have to like you".

'Gah!

But it's ok right? Because we can not like our kids for a little while but we do still love them.

I know that hiding underneath the snarling teeth and stink eyes, they really are good kids, it's just that clearly, every now and then (cough cough) they like to dress up and masquerade as cranky little hemorrhoid inducing turdy people.

And then... just like how haemorrhoids one day just go away... so too does the turdiness and I am reunited with my nice children again and we will be all smiles and hugs and double shot hot chocolates. with Zappos on the side.

OMG, I just compared my children to haemorrhoids... forgive me... it's has been a particularly rough day.

Anyway, my point is... well I don't actually have a point really except to let you know that if you ever find yourself having a rough day, week, month or year on the old parenting front... you are not alone.

You are SO not alone.

And next time you find yourself wanting to shove your shopping trolley into a litter of nicely behaved siblings traipsing along behind a glowing happy looking mum... remind yourself that she is smiling because she is so darn relieved that her turds have departed and she has her nice kids back again... after all, that's the only reason she would be brave or insane enough to go to the shops with all of them in tow... right?

Either that or the kids have been bribed with Zappos and she has self medicated herself with a Valium Mocha Latte.

Whatever gets you by I say.

Have your kids been to Turdsville lately?
Any tips for getting a 12 year old to go to sleep that DOESN'T involve Phenergan?


Monday, 12 June 2017

The Ultimate Vivid Experience

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So last week turned out to be a little more eventful than we expected. 

We kinda knew it was going to be a big week given the week was host to my oldest boy's 16th birthday, my parents' 50th Wedding Anniversary, and my birthday too... but it was a leeeettle bigger than we could have planned for.

We were recently invited by Ford to experience the Ford 'Freedom of Movement' installation at Vivid and given none of us have experienced Vivid before - we were keen as, and so on Wednesday night we packed the gang into the car and headed off to Manly wharf to catch a ferry into the city. 

Admittedly, the weather was pretty crappy that afternoon and not long after we set off, we found ourselves driving straight smack bang into a storm with thunder and lightening and bucketloads of rain. Unfortunately that wasn't the only thing that went smack bang that night... nope... on our way to the wharf, another driver drove her car smack bang into the back of ours at 60kms and hour and we consequently went smack bang into the car in front of us.

It was not quite what we had planned for the night... obviously... and all ideas of going to Vivid were quickly forgotten in the chaos that ensued.

I am not even kidding when I tell you how so incredibly lucky we were that night. Even the Ambos who arrived could not quite believe that we were all walking away from the crash with nothing more than seat belt burns and bruises. 

I can't even begin to think about how much worse it could have been. 

I mean, my poor little Betty (our nickname for our car) would probably argue with me about the definition of 'worse'... but well, you know what I mean right? When something like that happens and your kids are in the car... I just can't.

After a few days to get over the shock of our rather eventful first attempt, we decided to give it another go and so last night we headed back to the ferry and into the city, determined to experience VIVID in all it's glory.

Two of the kids didn't come with us this time... they weren't quite ready for the car trip just yet (that's a whole other story), and so it was just me, the hubby and one very entertaining and very excited ten year old Flynn.


Ahhh Sydney... she SO did not let us down. 

We've never been to Vivid before so we don't really have anything to compare too, but we are told it just gets bigger and better every year.



The Ford 'Freedom of Movement' installation down at Dawes Point (Hickons Rd The Rocks) is amazeballs, check that... amazeballs with a cherry on top.  You can actually get up close and ride the swings with the kids, or, if you prefer to keep both feet on the ground - the light show is something else and definitely worthy of a gander.

"Drawing inspiration from Henry Ford’s vision: “to change the way the world moves” — Freedom of Movement comes to life through a set of humble swings that combine the wonder of motion with the freedom to ‘go further’. This simple pleasure — the sensation of movement and the delight it creates — is what drives Ford to ‘Go Further’: to push beyond the limits of our imagination, to innovate, and to move people in new ways."

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Vivid's 23 day festival of lights, ideas and music ends on the 17th June, so there is still plenty of time to head into the city and check it out. 

It's massive and spread all throughput the city, so read up and plan your trip here so that you can take in as many of the incredible displays as possible and maybe even download the app here to experience the audio tour.

Have fun.

Have you been to Vivid?
Planning on going?