Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Some pics from my childhood...

Got some photos from my uncle this morning... A real walk down memory lane... Thought I'd start with this photo as it shows what a stable, upstanding family I come from... That's me in front, of course (the big mouth gave me away, yeah?). My mum behind me along with my brother - we all have a flair for the dramatic, don't you think?

There are two stories related to this photo of me aged about 7 months... The first is, my mum always used to tell me how people would see a baby in the pram and go, "Oh was a beautiful..." and their voices would trail off once they focused on the chubby (cow's milk fed), hairless, cross eyed bundle of pinkness... The other story goes that one night we were staying at my grandmothers, and sleeping up in the attic bedroom, when about an hour after we went to sleep, my 9 year old brother is heard howling in distress... Mum runs up and he's screaming, "Take it away, it's horrible, it's horrible!" Mum asks him what she's supposed to take away, and he points at the wall and cries, "The monster, take it down, it's horrible!" - what he was pointing at was this photo of me on the wall... Hmmm, thanks Mike...
But really, it's ok, I grew up a bit, grew some hear, and got a lot cuter! This is me aged 18 months taking my first "official" steps for the camera!
And this is me with my mum, who, at the time was living on a neighbouring farm - I was living with my grandparents (I lived with them from 10 months till 20 months), so this photo actually also commemorates one of mums visits to see me - she didn't get to see me often apparently... No, I never did inherit those great long legs, buggar!
And here's me with my dad. LOL, no, he's not an Arab, but he was almost mistaken for one at an airport in Lebanon, and mum and dad and I were followed through the airport by airport security who thought dad might be a terrorist... I was a bit of a daddy's girl, can you tell?

And then along came Michael. Look how blonde we are, this is why I think there is a good chance Bryn might go blonde. Somewhere between 18 months and 30 months (here), I went from honey blonde to bleach blonde!

Me, aged eight, in my uncle's seaman's hat... Butter would melt in this mouth, hehehe! Real little vegmite, don't you think?

As you can see, the blonde hair didn't last, this is me aged 12, Mike aged 10...

Mum and Dad on their reception day, the wedding day was a few days earlier, when they eloped, much to my paternal grandmothers disgust as she'd organised a huge wedding, complete with channel 7 coming to film it for the local tv "happy moments" segment at the end of the news... I'm in that photo too, actually, though I wouldn't be visible for another 6 months...

And this is just to show I haven't been making things up, Bryn IS the spitting image of his mama - even though I've heard a couple of tales told he's looking like his dada recently - lies, all lies!!!

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Chalk day; time for more photos...

We had some friends over on Thursday, seven kids in all, and our house being as small and echoey as it is, I thought it might be fun to take advantage of the beautiful weather and head outside with a couple of buckets of chalk! The kids went to town, and I just had to get some photos!!! The light was fairly harsh, casting great dark shadows and washing everything out, but I think a got a couple of good shots, LOL...

For this photo I've desaturated L6's face and arms to accentuate just how IN the world of chalk he was immersed. The concentration he exuded seemed to shut out everything but the colour of the chalk he was focused on...

I LOVED this photo as soon as I saw it through the view finder! Is C4 a gorgeous little urban waif?! There is so much whimsy about her, and touch of melancholy too... This is my favourite photo.

Ah, Luey, counting...

And the essence of Erik, that look in his eye, we call it "The Crazy Look", this means he's HIGLY excited and just riding the crest of the wave, completely thrilled with being alive, and zinging with electricty. This state will be one of his greatest attributes one day, LOL, he just needs wide open spaces for it to sing without bursting people's eardrums...

L6, Luey and A7 colouring in our front gate - now I'm craving fruit tingles, hahaha!

New friends, Erik was soooo happy to finally have someone his own age, in A7, to hang out with, and they got along like a house on fire, a true meeting of the minds, I think!

What a little cutie, what a contagious grin! Super D2 enjoying the sunshine!

And the baby of the group, just hanging and doing his own thing... Bryn really enjoyed just being able to roam in and out of the house at will, and mill about with the others... He even came out with "Ope da door!" when he was having trouble pushing the screen door open at one point, and this time I wasn't the only one who heard him, yay!

Ok, the following are just incidental photos from the past few days I wanted to put up, kind of "for the recond"...

The other evening I discovered Bryn studiously trying to put on one of Luey's socks. I didn't even realise he'd taken any note of socks (he never wears them himself), and so I found this quite surprising and was delighted he seemed to actually know what he was meant to do with the sock and was giving putting a sock on his own foot a darn good try (though in the end he asked me to help him, because he just couldn't quite figure out how to do it)...

Speaking of stufying... This is Erik and Luey having spontaneously decided to do some workbooking while I knitted - Luey later told me he prefers when I knit to when I'm on the computer because when I'm on the computer I apparently "don't listen!", LOL, point taken, Luey!

And here is something i've knitted this week... Leah if you're reading this, these longies are a combo of the blue/yellow and the pink/apricot skeins you dyed for me, perty huh?

Gosh, so much more I want to blog, but it's late, got to go to bed, too much to do atm, not enough time to do it all...

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Connectin Parenting ch1 ex.1 and 2

Thanks to Shae, I got my hands on a copy of Connection Parening by Pam Leo today. I read the first chapter and am now up to the exercises. I'm determined to do the exercises and so I'm going to publish them here...
So here's the first exercise.

What do you hope to give and not give your children: write a nurture (do want) and hurts (don't want) list...

Nurture:

  • I want my children to feel safe with me
  • I want my children to be able to come to me with their fears and their joys and know I will always listen
  • I want my kids to feel good about themselves
  • I want my kids to have fun in life
  • I want my kids to feel optimistic about their lives
  • I want my kids to be able to express all their feelings with skill
  • I want my kids to know they can achieve whatever they want in their lives with determination and persistence
  • I want my kids to know I love them
Hurts:
  • I don't want my kids to feel afraid
  • I don't want my kids to feel ashamed of themselves
  • I don't want my kids to feel abandoned
  • I don't want my kids to be yelled at
  • I don't want my kids to be smacked
  • I don't want my kids to be manipulated, psychologically or emotionally, by me
  • I don't want my kids to live in fear of me
I have coloured the experiences I had from my parents in purple. The nurture points I inherited from my parents are my parenting strengths, the hurts I inherited are my parenting challenges...

My parenting strengths:
  • I want my kids to have fun in life
  • I want my kids to be able to express all their feelings with skill
  • I want my kids to know they can achieve whatever they want in their lives with determination and persistence
My parenting challenges:

  • I want my children to feel safe with me
  • I want my children to be able to come to me with their fears and their joys and know I will always listen
  • I want my kids to feel good about themselves
  • I want my kids to feel optimistic about their lives
  • I want my kids to know I love them
  • I don't want my kids to feel afraid
  • I don't want my kids to feel ashamed of themselves
  • I don't want my kids to feel abandoned
  • I don't want my kids to be yelled at
  • I don't want my kids to be smacked
  • I don't want my kids to be manipulated, psychologically or emotionally, by me
  • I don't want my kids to live in fear of me
In th light of these challenges, I have to say I've done a pretty amazing job so far - onwards and upwards from here!!!

Exercise 2

Mini-biography:

My name is Sif, I'm 35 and I'm from all over the place, having moved many many times in life, including in Australia, Iceland and Norway.

I am the oldest of two children growing up.

My mum and dad were married for 13 years in total, five of which were relatively happy years, though they still had many physically and verbally abusive fights. They divorced when I was 14 after 8 horrible years of marriage. My father was very domineering and abusive towards my mother in many way, including withholding money from her so she was completely reliant on her for everything, forcing her to hide money she earned through selling her art, and when he discovered she had that money, he wouldn't give her money for food.

My father's idea of discipline was to withdraw "priveleges". Priveleges included watching tv, or eating dinner, or christmas and birthday presents. At one stage my brother, who copped the brunt of Dad's discipline missed out on two birthdays and one Christmas in a row - no presents at all. Dad also belted my brother and I once when he caught us shoplifting, and me once more for leaving his cheese out on the kitchen counter, where it dried out.

My mum disciplined by smacking, kicking, throwing things at us, pinching, grabbing us. She also said things like, "I have to love you but I don't have to like you". She was always nice to us in public, but one look would tell us we were "in for it" once we got into the car or got home. Her temper was fearsome.

One fond memory I have from my childhood is of painting gingerbread men in the kitchen with mum before Christmas, and watching her decorate the gingerbread house with hot melted sugar and lollies, and then she read Hans Christian Andersen to us before we took our Christmas Eve nap in preparation for staying up late on Christmas Eve to open our presents.

In the following week I'm supposed to take note of the things I do and say that like what my parents used to do and say, and especially what I do and say that they did and said that I want to change, and I'm to add these to my challenges list...

Manifesting and bad things happening...

Everyone is getting into the Law of Attraction at the moment, there is quite a ground swell of people wanting to manifest goodness in their life. This is fantastic.

At the same time, I hear people asking, "Why does bad stuff still happen?"

Here's my view on it...

There is a French philosopher Michel Foucoult who argued that there is no good or evil except that which we deem good and evil. That is good and bad is the what we believe it to be.

As a Pagan, I believe in the balance in the Universe, what Eastern philosophy often refers to as Yin and Yang. It would be very hard to appreciate the light without the darkness! The thing is, humans have a tendency to have preferences, and everything that is not their preferred option is often labelled "bad", "evil" or some other thing.

There is a very strong drive in humans not to feel pain. Many humans associate pain with weakness, and so to be strong is to be painfree, challengefree, always happy, RICH; both financially and otherwise.

And yet, in most religions and philosophies, pain is recognised as the hallmark of transformation; Moses and his followers suffering in the desert on their way to the Promised land; Jesus' dying on the cross to save all our souls; The Buddha sitting under his tree until he let go of all his desires; The Islamic fasting month of Ramadan, and so on and so forth. All require pain to effect transformation.

This is also evident in world tragedies, Tsunamis, earthquakes, drought, these are all events of great change on the planet Earth.

Change in and of itself is not bad, but often change is painful, because it means letting go of what we've become accustom to, and embracing something new.

In Tarot, the death card is not an inherently "bad" card, though it is read by some to be a bad omen. The card itself speaks of an end, which automatically signifies a new beginning.

Which brings us to seeing the positive in "the bad". The true transformative nature of LOA is learning to see the positive in life, not in having a painfree life.

It's concerns me that LOA is just becoming another "prosperity religion" fad, another way for people to hope for completely pain free lives. And yet, there is a very strong admiration of people who have risen above adversity. If none of us had any adversity, whom would we admire? Would there be movies like "The Pursuit of Happiness"? Of course not because everyone would be rich and healthy and happy, there would be nothing to pursue.

If you can't be happy without perfect health or a hefty bank account, then you can't be happy with those things either.

Also, the need for immediate gratification is a concern. I see people putting time limits on their manifestations. A time limit is a form of testing the Universe, it shows distrust, testing, and a focus on not getting.

Another thing I have noticed is "rules" cropping up. One I read today was, "When you have a negative thought, you must replace it with three positive thoughts". There are several things this kind of rule reveals. Firstly, someone, in making this rule is speaking for the Universe, which doesn't ring true. Secondly, it gives far more power to the negative thought than to the positive thoughts. All thought has equal power. Therefore it is not necessary to "counteract" one negative thought with three positive thoughts. Thirdly, by setting up rules like this, it forces people to count their negative thoughts in order to keep the right amount of positive thoughts flowing to "maintain" the power of the positive thoughts. In focusing on counting negative thoughts, people are forced to focus on the negative thoughts. This distracts from positive thinking, and positive processing of life experiences, and increases the amount of negative thinking, especially when people starting thinking, "Oh crap, I have to stop thinking negative! Crap, I didn't it again, and again, and again!"

When you have a negative thought, just change the focus of thought to positive. Don't dwell on it, don't feel you have to "make up for" the negative thinking with MORE positive thinking. Simply by changing the though, you change the energy. Negative energy is not more powerful than positive energy, all energy is equal, In fact, all energy is NEUTRAL, it is just that some energy effects change that we appreciate, and someeffects change we don't appreciate.

Superstition is living by rules in fear of bad things happening. So, for example, breaking a mirror is supposed to mean 7 years of bad luck. I believe superstition is a bit of good reasoning wrapped in several layers of bad reasoning. Sure, it's a terrible thing to break a mirror, to break any possession is a loss. Back when this superstition came into being good mirrors were hard to come by, and prized possessions, and to replace on cost a lot of money, which meant money had to be taken from somewhere else. If you broke someone else's mirror you king of HAD to replace it, which could possibly send you broke, which had a fall on effect to other parts of your life, and ripple effect might well have gone on for several years! However, to then claim 7 years bad luck for EVERYONE who ever broke a mirror was just plain superstition.

Likewise, causing people to believe that having three positive thoughts will negate one negative thought is a poor reflection at an attempt at good practice. Certainly if you can have the ratio of three positive thoughts to every negative thought, then you're well on your way to a happy existence. However to mandate that three positive thoughts should follow any single negative thought, is actually to create more negativity as explained earlier. It is pure superstition and has no place in the life of a person living by the Law of Attraction (unless they're hoping to attract more negative thinking, like "this is too hard", or "I can't stop thinking negatively"...

As they say, the opposite of Love is not hate, but rather fear. People's who lives are filled with fear tend to spew a lot of negativity, bile and general contempt for those around them. People living with that much fear need to feel love to be healed. However, these same people often shut themselves off to love because of the fear they have. More on Love and fear another time...

Monday, January 22, 2007

Four birds on a couch...

They're no oilpainting, but they're all mine...

Packages in the mail for the big boys!

Just as the real estate agent turned up for her fly through visit (gawd, you spend days cleaning a house and she is in and out in 2 minutes, no joke, but as always impressed with how clean we manage to keep the house, especially with three boys! If only she knew, hahahaha!), the mail man also turned up with some packages which turned out to be all for the bigger boys. Oh the excitement!

The first package was totally unexpected, even by me (I usually know when something is on it's way). It was from the Sun-Earth project. A NASA run project to teach schools, and homeschoolers about space. You send in for a package which is sent out at the beginning of the year, which contains a theme for that year (last year it was eclipses, this years it's weather in space). I signed up for this last year because the boys were really into all things SPACE at the time, but I didn't realise I would stay on the mailing list this year as well, so this was an awesome bonus!

Here is Luey standing next to the 3D poster of the sun with his 3D glasses on (only one pair of glasses in the pack, so we've been having to set the microwave timer for 10 minutes at a time to avoid major arguments about who get to wear the glasses when and for how long, LOL)...


Here are some of the other posters, the endangered animals and flags of the world posters were not in the set, they came from The Learning Ladder... Besides the 3D poster there was a mini circular poster of the sun, a poster showing the Sun's rays in space, and post (not seen here) of the Satelite Voyager (which is hanging on the back of their bedroom door), so lots of goodies!!!

The second package for the boys was one I knew was coming, and was a surprise for them from me. They needed library bags for school, and so I ordered these two bags ($10 each, and no cost for postage!) from The Complete Fabrication . Luey's has dinosaurs on it, just like his name tags on his property stickers, and Erik have red and black checks the same colours as his fave pair of pirate socks! I'm really impressed with the quality of these bags! The fabric is nice and thick, and sewing is great too, for $10 these are a bargain!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

New settling arrangements for Bryn...

I've got lots to blog about today, don't I...

In the past 2-3 weeks I've noticed that Bryn isn't really popping off to sleep on the boob anymore. Erik didn't ever fall asleep on the boob because he was a cot baby and from about 7 months was just put in bed after saying night night to all his bears and mum and dad, and he went off to sleep on his own. He did this from about 3 weeks of age, taking a break between 3 and 7 months of age because of itching eczema which was finally treated and resolved at 7 months, but only AFTER we tried Controlled Crying on the misguided advice from our MCHN...

Luey lost interest in boobing to sleep at about 9 months of age, at which time, Dave started walking him to sleep until he was about 15 months of age and go to be too heavy, and then Dave would lay with him until he dropped off...

Anyway, back to Bryn. He's loved boobing to sleep a lot longer than the other two. but like I said, recently he's been more stimulated to staying awake than the opposite when boobed. He was also dropping off sitting on Dave's knee in front of the computer (with Dave either playing movie trailers or music to him), but that hasn't been working so well either lately, with him staying up VERY late on many occassions - which we don't really stress about because we know stressing is pretty futile and "this too shall pass"...

So, now Dave has trundled out the old tried and true "laying down with the child" and Voila! it's working. Just before Dave took Bryn into bed and laid down with him, and was talking to him about the wind etc. and Bryn seemed wide awake (though we all, including him, knew he was tired), Dave's thinking, this is going to take a while. The next thing he knows, Dave wakes with a start, having dropped off (as he is prone to do with this method) and Bryn's fast asleep, only minutes after seeming wide awake, hahaha!

This is not a method I can use because Bryn would want to feed of me, but when I can be bothered I can lay down with him and feed him and he is more like to drop off on the boob if we're in bed. I don't like doing this though because then I don't like getting up again, being such a bedhound myself, LOL!

Happy Snaps

The boys and I had some lovely visitors on Friday, so I took the opportunity to take some pics. They're poor quality though, because the light in the hallway where the boys (all six of them!) were playing with the trains was harsh, lots of deep shadow, and then there was the giant mirror reflecting light as well - argh! But anyway, the kids are still cute as all get out!!!

Playing with trains...

Little K looking contemp;ative - it's hard to get a smile out of a child who doesn't know you well, and has no idea what that big black contraption in front of his face is about to do to him, LOL...

Little K's big brother, E, one of the most photogenic kids I've ever had the pleasure to photograph - here he's saying "Cheese!", which was his idea, he's such a cutie!

Little L's mother might not appreciate this photo, but it was just too funny not to include! Here he is, really "getting into" the trains, LOL!

And here is his elfin face - and I have to say this is the best photo I've gotten of this child yet! His parents manage to get lovely photos of him, but he's too quick for me, always on the move, go go go!!!

After everyone left, I tortured Bryn by putting a hair tie in his hair, turning him from Brynjar to Brynja, LOL, to his father's faint horror - isn't he cute though, LOLOLOL!

Made these longies yesterday :)


Yeah, I'm just a little obsessed with stripes on Bryn, as always...

Friday, January 19, 2007

Bryn in wool...

Well, I finally got some elastic into the shorties Katy gave Bryn for his 1st birthday, and so here he is, wwaring them the day he turned 17 months (five months after he got them) and they're a perfect fit! In a way, I'm glad he hasn't worn them until now because two or more months ago he would have been crawling in them, and would have ruined them and they're so lovely, it would have broken my heart!!!



So, seeing how fab he looked in Katy's I FINALLY got my act together and finished of a pairs of shorties I started for him about 8 months ago! I'd done about 30 rows on them (so just over half the rise, and last night I finished the rest in one sitting between 8pm and 1am (with resettles for Bryn and what not, of course)...

I'm very pleased with the end result and am now thinking I'll knit Bryn some funky pants for Winter, at least with knitting I can have a say over the colours and design (commercial boys clothes mostly suck, and I REALLY would like to learn to sew)...


Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Pursuit of Happiness...

Just got back from seeing "The Pursuit of Happiness" starring Will Smith and his son Jaden Smith. The movie is based on the true story of Chris Gardner, as single father who accepted an internship with no wage for three months with a brokerage company, in the hopes of gaining a position with the company. The cost of him accepting the non-paying internship was that he and his son temporary became homeless.

I LOVE Will Smith, well the image of him anyway. Who knows, in real life he might be a bastard, but certainly the public persona is that of a dedicated, adoring father and husband. He also exudes charm, wit and intelligence (three of my favourite human traits). So, I felt certain I'd love this movie, where he seemed to be putting so much of himself into the role of this dedicated father pursuing his dream.

I LOVE stories about people pursuing their dream, which is probably why I have an ever expanding collection of dance movies, as dance movies are often about people sacreficing for the dream.

I am, myself, a person who is dedicated to "the dream". my dream... I completely identify with the feelings of the triumphant moment, when the dream is realised, as so when I watched the movie tonight, I didn't cry when Chris Gardner had to lock him and his son in the public toilet overnight because they had no where else to go. I didn't cry when the little boy lost his toy and had to leave it behind. I didn't even cry when the two main characters didn't get into the shelter for the night and the background music plucked the heartstrings with a ever melancholy rendition of "Bridge Over Troubled Waters".

I cried when Chris Gardner finally got the job and choked back his own tears of happiness (and probably relief because all the sacrefice wasn't in vain)!

I have to say though. On Oprah the other day when they were interviewing Chris Gardner (the real CG - who, btw has a walk on in the last scene of the movie, so watch out for him), O kept repeating. "This could only happen in America, only in America!" Of course, what she meant was, only in America can a homeless person become a millionaire, as long as they have a dream and initiative and are willing to work for it, but seiously... Only in America can hardworking people end up homeless after being chucked out on the street with NO NOTICE! Bloody hell, it's not like Chris Gardner started with nothing, he just lost everything because minimum wage in the US is criminally low, and there is no real social security (10 weeks of unemployment benefits in YOUR LIFETIME???).

As for going from being on the street to becoming a millionaire, I think that is probably possible anywhere, America doesn't hold the monopoly on dreaming hard and working hard for the dream.

Ah, yes, but I certainly feel replenished with hope and determination and motivation and all that good stuff having seen this movie. It might have to be added to my DVD collection.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Summing it up...

Well, tonight there was an incident that kind of sums up what going on with me atm (wrt parenting)...

The boys were finally in bed (not Bryn, but the older two), and I went into the kitchen to have some yogurt and cereal and just BREATHE... I really look forward to the yogurt and cereal each night, it's like my treat. I'm also very particular about food (as some of you know), I have "phobias"... One phobia is that I can't eat food that is in a container that someone else's saliva might have come in contact with. So, I can't drink from a soft drink bottle someone else has swigged from, for example...

Anyway, so I go and get the yogurt tub (1litre tub), expecting it to be 2/3s full (I eat 1/3 each night), but instead it's only 1/3 full. Erik has been into my yogurt. He hadn't stolen any of my yogurt in weeks, but tonight he had. I know, from past times, he eats it directly from the tub with a spoon.

I stormed into his room with the tub and confront him. "You've been eating my yogurt!!!" He just looked at me with fear in his eyes, cowering in his bed, my mind raced, my heartbeat raced, what now? I wanted to hurt him, I wanted to yell at him, and threaten him, and throw the yougurt tub at him, I wanted to scare him out of ever doing this again. Each thought popped up in turn, and each time I thought, what would that achieve? He'd get upset, I'd feel sick, he wouldn't stop stealing, he'd hate me, I'd resent him, he wouldn't stop... I spat, "I don't know what to say," I stormed out.

In the kitchen, the anger raging through me, I vented at Dave, I through a towel across the kitchen. I contemplated going back into the bedroom and raging at Erik again, but it wouldn't help, it would only harm further.

I felt the powerlessness. There is nothing I can say, nothing I can do, nothing constructive anyway. I can make him pay for the fact that I won't be able to have yogurt tonight. It felt so unfair. So unfair that I can't have something nice for myself with them just taking it from me. I realise that must be how the boys feel when I take their stuff away for doing things that upset me. It's a terrible catch 22. I felt so powerless.

That's it, I feel powerless. I felt powerless as a child, and now I feel powerless as an adult. Ineffective and powerless.

Dark days of parenting...

I've had some very dark days of parenting this past week. I have had several days in a row where I just didn't like E and L, or myself for that matter.

New epiphaies;

  • I get extremely angry with the kids when; I'm somehow already at a low ebb (tired, stressed out, sick, annoyed with someone else), or when I'm in a struggle of wills with them, and I feel powerless to effect the change I want to see (in them).
  • When I'm feeling powerless the anger within me expands like gas igniting, it is sudden and forceful.
  • When I lose my temper with the kids, I then feel angry at them for bringing out the worst in me, and I want them to disappear so I can pretend I never lost my temper.
  • If they seem afraid of me, I feel angrier because they're showing me I'm being a monster.
  • I resent them for hours afterwards because I feel sorry for myself always having to get really angry to get them to listen to me, or cooperate with me.
  • I don't feel this way about Bryn at all. I don't expect him to do what I say, be quiet, listen to me (even though he does these things a lot of the time).
  • My expectations and my inability to let go of my "goal" in the situation leads to my frustration when that goal isn't met.
It's not a pretty picture.

I was investigating Unconditional Parenting again today, and now have it on order through the local bookshop.

Then I came across a reference to a book called "Connection Parenting" by Pam Leo, and found a site with a audio of an interview with the author and when I listened to the interview I wanted to cry. This woman was saying back to me what I used to believe about children and parenting, back when Erik was a baby. Somehow I'd lost touch with those beliefs, and gotten lost in my need to control my kids.

I just want to love being with my kids again.

I have moments of loving being with them, and I always love being with Bryn, but so much in recent weeks I've have my love of spending time with them overshadowed by this low grade resentment of their attitude toward me and Dave. I need to begin seeing them for the children they are and not the people I expect them to be.

I realise I'm a pathetic excuse for a parent, but oh well, I suppose at least I haven't given up completely.

Ok, will have more thoughts on this another time...

Monday, January 15, 2007

Busy, busy...

  1. Book papsmear which is three years overdue.
  2. Book appt. to get prescription for Erik's epipen.
  3. Contact the school and find out what I need to do about the epipen from their end (who to give it to etc.)
  4. Organise to have Erik's photo up in the canteen as allergic to nuts.
  5. Get conscientious objector form signed for Bryn (print of the forms from the net, take CO form to Dr's for signature (grumble, grumble, have to face the disapproval squad again) and the lodgement for to Centrelink)
  6. Lodge Immunization Allowance form with Centrelink.
  7. Get Erik and Luey's eyes tested before start of school.
  8. Set up system for bills so we don't get any more stupid late notices.
  9. Make another big payment on the credit card. and then proceed to spend the money on groceries because the Dr's bill was bigger than expected, argh!
  10. Label the boys' clothing for school.
  11. Get Erik's lunchbox from Laura.
  12. Try to find a suitable container for freezing yogurt in that fits into the boys' lunchboxes. well I *think* this one is done...


As you can see, I've gotten a few more things done on that list from last week. Went to the Dr's this morning and that ended up costing $95 (yes, I get a rebate from medicare, but still, whoa!)... I hate papsmears, and this morning was no exception! Didn't help that my cervix apparently decided to go walk about so the Dr had to insert the speculum twice... I told her about the agonising O pain I've had for the past two cycles, and she said to come in next time it happens and they'll do an ultrasound to see what's going on in there. This month though the pain was mostly overnight, so that would make coming in a tad difficult, anyhoo...

Got the greasy eye when I said I'd be booking another appointment on Wednesday to get Bryn's conscientious objector form signed. She asked if I hadn't immunized any of the obys, and I told I'd partially done the older two, but hadn't had the boosters done so they were technically unimmunised. Bryn was fully unimmunised. She asked if I didn't want the boys immunised and I said because of their allergies (Erik and Luey's) I was advised it was in their best interest not to immunise until later. She asked if I was given a letter to this end. I said no, it was just advise offered by Luey's Paediatric Allergy Specialist, she wasn't wholly convinced I don't think, but who cares. She asked if I wouldn't have them done at the children's hospital, where they could be monitored. I said the reaction might not be immediate, like with Erik, psoriasis take a number of days to appear, but he'd been covered from head to toe this year, to a point where he became socially shy, and I didn't want to risk that again with him going to school. Finnaly the questions ended. I'm assuming she'll sign the form on Wednesday. I'll be objecting on Philosophical basis anyway, as I can't medically prove that the boys' psoriasis, eczema, reflux and asthma are linked to the vaccines... Mind you Bryn hasn't had any of the vaccines and he's also had none of the allergies, funny that...

Dave and I were supposed to be preparing for a house inspection tomorrow, but instead we've spent the day rearranging Erik and Luey's room. In recent months we've had a lot of trouble getting those two to sleep at night. Doesn't matter what time we put them to bed, they mess about for HOURS in there, and it doesn't matter what we do or say, they ignore it all. Mostly it's Luey inciting the buggary because he has always had "going to sleep phobia". Once he's asleep a train ploughing through the room wouldn't wake him, and he routinely takes 3 hour day naps, but he resists going to sleep... So, he talks to Erik, or gets down from his bunk and kicks Erik in the head to keep him awake, or engages Erik in some game or other. Erik just doesn't have the ability to ignore Luey either.

So, we pulled down the bunks, and now Erik will go to sleep in the bedroom, and Luey will go to sleep in the study with the door open so we can keep an eye on him. Once they're asleep we'll transfer Luey back to his bed.

We're hoping that once they're in school, they'll be so tired by bedtime they just won't have the energy to muck around.

I've devised a rhythmn for their school days now...

7am: Up, breakfast, dressed, check bags, and tv (if there is time, we leave the house at 7.55am)

7.55: Leave for school.

8.45: Arrive at school, see them off.

Then they spend the day at school. For February I'll pick Luey up at 1.30pm take him to shopping centre B for a snack then we'll go pick up Erik.

3.20pm: Arrive at school to pick up the boys.

4.30pm: Get home.

The rest of the day will loosely consist of; showers, pyjamas, tv/playtime/reading, dinner, teeth, and in bed at 7pm.

Friday and Saturday night they can stay up a bit later, but Sunday it's back to 7pm bedtime.

I've told the boys how the afternoon will go, so it doesn't come as a surprise to them, especially because the daily shower will be new but being at school, I think they'll need it, and besides I like the idea of washing off the schoolday, hehehe... They get very stirred up by showers and baths, so those need to happen well before bedtime, too. Also I want to have a plan for keeping them occupied between getting home and going to bed because I have a feeling Luey might be likely to nod off at that time of day when he's not getting a nap at least 5 days in a row...

Saturday, January 13, 2007

On the topic of LOA...

Two funny little stories from today...

I've been getting the boys stuff ready for school, and one thing I've been having difficulty with is a tub for the boys' frozen yogurt. The school encourages minimum usage of disposable packaging, with NO disposable packaging on Wednesday and the boys' just love their yogurt. So it keeps, I freeze it overnight. Now I had these fab little Tupperware containers which I was freezing the yogurt in, perfect for a single serve, but unfortunately they were too tall for the boys Tupperware lunchboxes which I otherwise love to pieces. I'd been hunting around for containers small enough to fit the boxes but that were also hardy enough to be frozen over and over without cracking. I had said to one or two Tupperware selling friends that Tupperware just needed to MAKE a container small enough to fit the lunchbox, that could also be frozen...

Well, one of those friends emailed me this morning to say that this month Tupperware is giving away little freezer containers, and wouldn't you guess it, by the measurements it looks like they are perfect fit for one of the compartments of the lunchbox!!!

Second manifestation... While I out carry Bryn in an ergo backpack, and the backpack comes with a handy little bum bag in which I can carry my keys, wallet, and phone... Since the beginning of Summer though I've really discovered that need to carry a bottle of water with me for when Bryn gets hot and thirsty back there, and so I find myself carrying around a bottle of Pump or similar, but that then negates my hands free-ness (creating new words here), and is generally speak a big PITA! So, yesterday I find a disposable bottle of water with a kind of handle over the lid (hard to describe) that I can clip onto the pouch of the ergo with a clip from the pouch. So, suddenly I was hands free again which was great. However, the bottle swung against my legs and I was concerned by it not really being designed to be reused (it's pretty flimsy etc.) and said out loud, "What I really need is bottle I can strap to the belt of the ergo"...

So, today I'm in Safeway looking at school gear for the kids and drink bottles to see if there is anything with any kind of strap and Voila! There's a Smash TM drinkbottle in a cover with s specially design belt especially for strapping to something like the belt on the ergo, and what's more, it comes in the same colour as MY ergo (among other colours)!!! And it has one of those nifty twist tops I've seen some of the girls from the North-West group have for this kiddies...

This manifesting this works marvellously for me, hehehe!

Went and saw the "feel good" movie "Happy Feet" today... Left me feeling a little sad tbh... I know it's just an animated film, but why is it that in the conclusion the humans only take note of the penguins' plight because they're tap dancing, why did it take tapdancing penguins for it to be a worthwhile cause to try and save them, and why did the human have to fly into the pristine territory of the penguins at all, just to see them tapdance?

Loved the soundtrack though, have to get me some Stevie!

Friday, January 12, 2007

Law of Attraction

Today I was sent an email by a friend with the top 100 quotes from a DVD called "The Secret" which is apparently about the "Law of Attraction" - which incidentally I've been living my life by since the beginning of 2006 (and what an absolutely WONDERFUL year that was for me in so many ways!!!)... I thought I'd share the quotes with you guys :)...

It's serendiptous that I received this email today as I have been struggling with doubt about how to fulfill a dream I've barely hoped to dream recently, and then today I learned some information that has further inspired me to dream the dream!!! So, now I'm grasping that hope with both hands and putting it out into the Universe to grow and be my reality!!!

1. We all work with one infinite power
2. The Secret is the Law of Attraction
3. Whatever is going on in your mind is what you are attracting
4. We are like magnets-like attract like. You become AND
attract what you think
5. Every thought has a frequency. Thoughts send out a magnetic energy
6. People think about what they don't want and attract more of the same
7. Thought = creation. If these thoughts are attached to powerful emotions
(good or bad) that speeds the creation
8. You attract your dominant thoughts
9. Those who speak most of illness have illness, those who speak most of
prosperity have prosperity
10. It's different from "wishful" thinking
11. You can't have a universe without the mind entering into it
12. Choose your thoughts carefully ... you are the masterpiece of your life
13. It's OK that thoughts don't manifest into reality immediately (if we saw
a picture of an elephant and it instantly appeared, that would be too soon)
14. EVERYTHING in your life you have attracted ... accept that fact ... it's
true.
15. Your thoughts cause your feelings
16. We don't need to complicate all the "reasons" behind our emotions.
It's much simpler than that. Two categories .. good feelings, bad feelings.
17. Thoughts that bring about good feelings mean you are on the right track.
Thoughts that bring about bad feelings means you are not on the right track.
18. Whatever it is you are feeling is a perfect reflection of what is
in the process of becoming
19. You get exactly what you are FEELING
20. Happy feelings will attract more happy circumstances
21. You can begin feeling whatever you want (even if it's not there)...
the universe will correspond to the nature of your song
22. What you focus on with your thought and feeling is what you attract into
your experience
23. What you think and what you feel and what actually manifests is ALWAYS a
match-no exception
24. Shift your awareness
25. "You create your own universe as you go along" ~Winston Churchill
26. It's important to feel good ( ( ( (((good))) ) ) )
27. You can change your emotion immediately B by thinking of something
joyful, or singing a song, or remembering a happy experience
28. When you get the hang of this, before you know it
you will KNOW you are the creator
29. Life can and should be phenomenal ... and it will be when you
consciously apply the Law of Attraction
30. Universe will re-arrange itself accordingly
31. Start by using this sentence for all of your wants:
"I'm so happy and grateful now that.... "
32. You don't need to know HOW the universe is going to rearrange itself
33. LOA is simply figuring out for yourself what will generate the
positive feelings of having it NOW
34. You might get an inspired thought or idea to help you move
towards what you want faster
35. The universe likes SPEED. Don't delay, don't second-guess, don't
doubt...
36. When the opportunity or impulse is there ... ACT
37. You will attract everything you require-money, people, connections...
PAY ATTENTION to what's being set in front of you
38. You can start with nothing ... and out of nothing or
no way-a WAY will be provided.
39. HOW LONG??? No rules on time ... the more aligned you are with positive
feelings the quicker things happen
40. Size is nothing to the universe (unlimited abundance if that's what you
wish)We make the rules on size and time
41. No rules according to the universe ... you provide the feelings of
having it now and the universe will respond
42. Most people offer the majority of their thought in response to what they
are observing (bills in the mail, being late, having bad luck...etc.)
43. You have to find a different approach to what is through a different
vantage point
44. "All that we are is a result of what we have thought"-Buddha
45. What can you do right now to turn your life around? Be Grateful
46. Gratitude will bring more into our lives immediately
47. What we think about and THANK about is what we bring about
48. What are the things you are grateful for? Feel the gratitude... focus on
what you have right now that you are grateful for
49. Play the picture in your mind-focus on the end result
50. VISUALIZE!!! Rehearse your future
51. VISUALIZE!!! See it, feel it! This is where action begins
52. Feel the joy ... feel the happiness
53. An affirmative thought is 100 times more powerful than a negative one
54. "What this power is, I cannot say. All I know is that it exists." ~
Alexander Graham Bell
55. Our job is not to worry about the "How". The "How" will show up out of
the commitment and belief in the "Why"
56. The Hows are the domain of the universe. It always knows the quickest,
fastest, most harmonious way between you and your dream
57. If you turn it over to the universe, you will be surprised and dazzled
by what is delivered .. this is where magic and miracles happen
58. Turn it over to the universe daily... but it should never be a chore
59. Feel exhilarated by the whole process ... high, happy, in tune
60. The only difference between people who are really living this way
is they have habituated ways of being
61. They remember to do it all the time
62. Create a Vision Board-pictures of what you want to attract ... every day
look at it and get into the feeling state of already having acquired these wants
63. "Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life's coming
attractions." Albert Einstein
64. Decide what you want ... believe you can have it, believe you deserve
it, believe it's possible for you
65. Close your eyes and visualize having what you already want-and the
feeling of having it already
66. Focus on being grateful for what you have already ... enjoy it!! Then
release into the universe. The universe will manifest it
67. "Whatever the mind of man can conceive, it can achieve." ~W. Clement
Stone
68. Set a goal so big that if you achieved it, it would blow your mind
69. When you have an inspired thought, you must trust it and act on it
70. How can you become more prosperous?? INTEND IT!!
71. 'Checks are coming in the mail regularly'... or change your bank
statement to whatever balance you want in there... and get behind the feeling of
having it.
72. Life is meant to be abundant in ALL areas...
73. Go for the sense of inner joy and peace then all outside things appear
74. We are the creators of our universe
75. Relationships: Treat yourself the way you want to be treated by others.
Love yourself and you will be loved
76. Always cultivate a healthy respect for yourself
77. For those you work with or interact with regularly .. get a notebook and
write down positive aspects of each of those people
78. Write down the things you like most about them (don't expect change from
them). Law of attraction will not put you in the same space together if you
frequencies don't match
79. When you realize your potential to feel good, you will ask no one to be
different in order for you to feel good
80. You will free yourself from the cumbersome impossibilities of needing to
control the world, your friends, your mate, your children...
81. You are the only one that creates your reality
82. No one else can think or feel for you .. its YOU .. ONLY YOU
83. Health: thank the universe for your own healing. Laughter, stress-free
happiness will keep you healthy
84. Your immune system will heal itself
85. Parts of our bodies are replaced every day, every week.
Within a few years we have a brand new body
86. See yourself living in a new body. Hope leads to recovery. Happy leads
to a happier biochemistry. Stress degrades the body
87. Remove stress from the body and the body regenerates itself. You can
heal yourself
88. Learn to become still and take your attention away from what you don't
want. Place your attention on what you wish to experience
89. When the voice and vision on the inside become more profound and clear
than the opinions on the outside, then you have mastered your life
90. You are not here to try to get the world to be just as you want it. You
are here to create the world around you that you choose
91. And allow the world as others choose to see it, exist as well
92. People think that if everyone knows the power of the LOA there won't be
enough to go around .. This is a lie that's been ingrained in us and makes so
many greedy
93. The truth is there is more than enough love, creative ideas, power, joy,
happiness to go around
94. All of this abundance begins to shine through a mind that is aware of
it's own infinite nature. There's enough for everyone. See it. Believe it. It
will show up for you
95. So let the variety of your reality thrill you as you choose all the
things you want. Get behind the good feelings of all your wants
96. Write your script. When you see things you don't want, don't think about
them, write about them, talk about them, push against them, or join groups that
focus on them. Remove your attention from don't wants and place it on do wants
97. We are mass energy. Everything is energy. EVERYTHING
98. Don't define yourself by your body. You are an infinite being that's
connected to everything in the universe
99. Our bodies have distracted us from our energy. We are the infinite field
of unfolding possibilities
100. Are your thoughts worthy of you? If not, NOW is the time to change
them. You can begin right were you are, right now. Nothing matters but this
moment and what you are focusing your attention on

Thursday, January 11, 2007

TRYING to get a bit organised...

Just wanted to list a few things I really need to pull my finger out on. I've been so slack lately following things up and the day before yesterday we got a notice in the mail saying Telstra will cut off our phone on the 14th if we don't pay the overdue bill. The stupid thing is, we have the money, it's just that I've been leaving it up to Dave to go pay it, and not following up and he can't remember if he paid it or not, he thinks he did but who knows...

I need to take charge of the bills again. I need to take charge of a number of things I've let slide over the years...

Anyway, the list...

  1. Book papsmear which is three years overdue.
  2. Book appt. to get prescription for Erik's epipen.
  3. Contact the school and find out what I need to do about the epipen from their end (who to give it to etc.)
  4. Organise to have Erik's photo up in the canteen as allergic to nuts.
  5. Get conscientious objector form signed for Bryn (print of the forms from the net, take CO form to Dr's for signature (grumble, grumble, have to face the disapproval squad again) and the lodgement for to Centrelink)
  6. Lodge Immunization Allowance form with Centrelink.
  7. Get Erik and Luey's eyes tested before start of school.
  8. Set up system for bills so we don't get any more stupid late notices.
  9. Make another big payment on the credit card.
  10. Label the boys' clothing for school.
  11. Get Erik's lunchbox from Laura.
  12. Try to find a suitable container for freezing yogurt in that fits into the boys' lunchboxes.
There is probably a lot more but I can't remember right now...

I'm really looking forward to getting the boys to school. They're very excited to go and it lends the promise of having time to "organise" myself, this house, our lives...

Watching Dr Phil yesterday, he had an episode about "Controlling Perfectionists" that left me feeling a bit cold. He was saying that usually people who need everything "just so" have chaotic inner working that would frighten the bejeezus out of the ordinary person because the outward control focus is a way for these people to effect a modicum of calm on the chaos inside. This rings so true for me. When I'm stressed and strung out I have this overwhelming desire to clean, order, and organise. When I see organised spaces I feel calmer, more in control.

I think this also is reflected in my stress sorrounding parenting. Children are ultimately chaotic, and part of me loves that. Sometimes my happiest moments are in the chaos of all three boys playing around me but, in public especially, that same chaos is the trigger for me morphing into "Monstermum". Analytically, I can look at that and say that's because I don't want people to see my inner chaos reflected in my children's "anti-social" behaviour. There behaviour is then perceived by me, first and foremost, but also by some others as a reflection of my inner ability to contain myself.

This is really where my ADD comes into play. Many people might look at me and my life and say it doesn't show that many symptoms of ADD. This is partly because, through how I was parented, no allowances were made for my "scatterbrain" ness, and I learned through aversion therapy to at least keep up an appearance of control... Now, often I don't manage that well, but what I do manage well is spin doctoring mishaps...

Dave helps me a lot. He's VERY aware of how my ADD plays out, and keeps on top of "reminding" me to do things (the "leaving the house" ritual is a prime example. "Have you got your keys, your phone, is it charged? Have you got your purse, is the taxi card in there?" etc. and so forth... It annoys the hell out of me, but at the same time I'm very grateful to him for being this aware...

Distraction is really hard for me. I get distracted without realising I got distracted until something bad happens... Erik has even clued in on my eye rolling thing, argh... When my mind wanders I lose control of my eyes and they roll up into my forehead (extremely attractive look, I'm sure some of you have noticed this)... He'll go, "Mum, you're doing it again" and bring me back while sitting on the bus or in the food court... It's so embarrassing, to both of us... It happens 20 times a day and often I'm not aware until I get that dry eyeball feeling...

Hanging on to a train of thought sometimes can be like trying to hold a handful of water in your fist...

So, all this chaos gets controlled through external sources because I dispair over ever having internal control... Lists and lists of lists, and expectations which can be dashed and rage resulting from dashed expectations and fear of being exposed as "chaotic"...

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Cats, bags and other paraphenalia!

Yayayayayayay! Whoo hoo! and can I just say F I N A L L Y ! ! !

Last night my good friend Jen finally let the cat out of the bag that she is expecting her third baby in August! I'm soooo excited for two reasons. One being that Jen is such an inspiration to me, as a parent, and I think the world can definitely handle another baby brought up by this lovely woman, and the other reason is purely selfish... Jen, along with my good friend Jayne, was my doula at Bryn's birth. She helped me work out my birthplan, and was there with me at my monitoring when I was a week over with Bryn keeping my spirits up and keeping me laughing which kept Bryn moving and reassured the hospital staff that he was alive and kicking in there and happy to stay a little longer... She watched Erik and Luey when Dave and I went for our mid-pregnancy scan too, and was a shoulder to cry on when we were told that Bryn had an echogenic focus on his heart, which turned out to be just fine... So, I've always felt a little pang of sadness that Jen had completed her family and I wouldn't get a chance to be there for her, however she needed me to be, as she went through her pregnancy and labour, or postbirth experience. Jen and I were also doulas for Jayne, and so now with Jen being pregnant it's like our little circle is finally completely - how's that for sentimental, hahaha!

Now, I'm also excited that Jen finally decided to tell everyone for another selfish reason, LOL. When she showed me her hpt on December 18th, she entrusted me with the secret of her pg, and I didn't know if she was just foolish or if maybe she really did think I could be trusted with that information. I'm such a blabbermouth!!! So, I made it my VOW to "keep mum" and I'm soooo proud to say I actually managed to keep my big trap shut, but MY GOODNESS it was such a challenge!!! So, phew!!! Now I can finally exhale, rofl!

CONGRATULATIONS
JEN!!!

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Divinely delightful!!!

Bryn loves his yogurt, and today when Dave brought home an icecream for Luey because Luey had stayed home while Dave and Erik ran an errand and Dave said if they had anything to eat while out he'd bring something home for Luey, Bryn wanted some, and so we offered him some yogurt instead...

This is him making eyes at Dadda having sighted the yogurt! What a charmer!


Here he is just looking all yogurty and yum!


Not the most photogenic of shots, but check out the bliss!


"I love you Dadda, you give me YOGURT!"


Check out the dedicated focus!


Open wide!!!

Mythology and power...

Dave and I watched a documentary this morning about the spear that was used to pierce Jesus' side at the crusifiction. Dave is writing a story about the soldier who pierced Jesus' side for an upcoming project and was interested in seeing if the doco told anything of that man's story, it didn't really, but was still a very interesting doco. It talked about the mythology sorrounding the spear, and how it had been passed down through the ages and said to be the source of Charlamaine and Constantine's success. It told of how Napolean tried to get his hands on it, and how Hitler eventually did get his hands on it...

The spear head itself was tested (non-destructive testing only) to see if it could be authenticated, as at least being 2000 years old and in investigating it the doco reveal how the spear head had been changed and modified by its various owners. Eventually it was found that while connections could be made to various owners dating back to Charlamaine, the spear head itself could not be dated back 2000 years. However a nail that had been added to the spear head by Constantine's mother might be dated back further than Charlamaine, though maybe not to the Crusifiction, and also some other iron had been inlaid on the nail itself, the origin of the inlaid iron might well be connected to the Crusifiction, they were not able to test it, for carbon dating, so it wasn't conclusive, but it was thought perhaps Constantine's mother had managed to get her hands on fragments of the actual nails used to nail Christ to the Cross...

So, why am I posting about this? Well, because this all led to a conversatin between Dave and I about the mythology sorrounding relics porported to be from the Crusifiction (I got him the Indiana Jones trilogy on DVD for Christmas, and he has long been intrigued by the Knights Templar, and series based on this kind of mythology, like Millenium)... He wanted to know what my mum, as a Theologian would make of this kind of mythology of artifacts connected to the Christ being imbued heavenly powers to win wars etc.

Obviously, I can't speak for my mum, just think that as there is no speaking in the Bible of God imbuing artifacts with powers beyond discrete use for the artifact, such as Moses' staff turning into a snake for Pharoah, etc., one would not think that such artifact, did they even exist, might bring unearthly power to the beholder. Mum, if you're reading this, feel free to correct me.

So, this led to a disccussion of the use of mythology to give possessors of religious artifacts powers, or great esteem for their perceivably closer connection to the Divine. In one part of the doco they were saying that the spear head would be brought out for display once a year by the church, and people could have the powers of the spear head transferred to their own artifacts, simply by have their artifact come in contact with the spear, and that commoners could also become part owner of this divine power by capturing the reflection of the spear head in little mirrors, the mirrors then because items of good luck themselves!

Even these days, in metaphysical circles there is a practice of claiming that come crystals are more powerful than others, and therefore these crystals, often more rare as well, are sold for extraordinary prices. Also, people elevated their esteem by claiming higher vibration than others. The clairvoyant I saw in November, told me I had a higher vibration than a friend of mine who has studied metaphysics with much more verve than me, and so even though she seemed to know more, I was more powerful than her. While that might make me feel good, I don't believe it is a true reflection of the Divine energy that sorrounds us. In my own belief, all energy is free to all people. Either you tap in or you don't. You can possess special artifacts, or crystals, which help you focus more intently, but I personally believe everyone can tap into Divine energy fully and freely without any such artifacts. The possession of artifacts is merely the human need to create and have domain over power, the more exclusive the power, the higher it is valued. If people realise they can access the Divine without all the artifacts, secret handshakes, or bloodlines, they might not value it as highly...

Play time...

After another hot night with restless sleep, we've all just been hanging around the house... While Dave and I watched and interesting documentary researching the validity of the spear that was supposed to have pierced Jesus' side at the Crusifiction, the boys were busy in their room constructing...

They used these plastic modular pieces they got "From Santa" at Christmas, to construct a sloping runway for their trains and cars...


Erik has always been into constructing things like this, and building or creating things out of other things. He has a fabulous sense of external balance (as in, in himself he can be a bit unco-ordinated balance wise, but in constructing things he has a fabulous sense of how to make things balance, once building a tower of duplo blocks 1.5 metres high, on cargpet, at the age of under two years old!)...


I'm particularly impressed with the curving "leg" that holds this structure up - fantasic, isn't it?!


And of course, there was need for a stopper to prevent the trains and cars running off and crashing into the ravene! This structure was inspired by the "Back to the Future" trilogy, and in particular the last of the trilogy where the Doc and Marty go back to the wild west and save Clara in her runaway carriage from crashing into the ravene, thus changing the course of history...


Meanwhile, Bryn has been fascinated with this "Tower of Pisa" block set we got him for Christmas. There are so many things I love about this set! The colour, the simplicity, the sturdiness, but also the ingenius idea of making the piece slanted like that so there are endless possiblities in building, and teaching about balance :D...

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Forays into suburbia...

Well, we have three major shopping centres near us (relative near us), let's call them shopping centre A, B, and C... We used to always shop at centre B, but over the years it's become very crowded, and basically the major demographic of the centre leaves us feeling socially and culturally ostracised. So, when we moved back to this suburb after living elsewhere for 18 monts, we found we were just as close to shopping centre A, which demographically was more "home" to us.

Unfortunately, this week we found out the major renovations of shopping centre A that we've been hearing about for about 6 months is far more extensive than we'd thought it would be, and not only is the supermarket we usually shop from closing, but also the alternate supermarket. This leaves us with the option of going back to shopping centre B for groceries, or shopping elsewhere. We really can't face grocerie shopping with three kids (and yes, we all have to go), in the crowded, culturally foreign supermarket where we often feel invisible or just plain ignored with our trolley and kids and whatnot...

Shopping centre C would be an option, but is really too far away, requiring two busses and an hour's travel each way. I don't mind going there for larger shopping trips, or meeting friends for coffee, and it's not far from the boys' school really, the same second bus, but for the major undertaking of weekly grocery shopping for a family of five on public transport, it's too much of a challenge...

Soooo, this is my long, and possibly confusing, way of coming to the point that we had to find a working alternative.

Dave told me last night that one of our local busses actually goes to a small shopping centre in the next suburb if you take the bus in the opposite direction to which we normally would take it. He then tells me the bus trip is only about 10 minutes, so very similar to shopping centres A and B... When I looked at the time table it was actually only 6 minutes away, so shorter even!

So, it was decided (I decided) we should investigate this new shopping centre as a possible replacement for our beloved supermarket at shopping centre A...

Turns out shopping centre D, as it'll be known now, is quite pleasant. There's a nice big cafe there. A supermarket of the same variety as the one we ususally shop at, though more crowded, but the crowd speaks our social language I guess, though about 75% of them are silverhaired... The other 25% seem to be our very own demographic with little kiddies. Certainly the centre has more than it's fair share of those annoying rides for little people.

The supermarket had very narrow isles, but the fruit was in better shape. It also offers the full range of groceries we're used to. We are thinking of trying out the "other" brand of supermarket available at the shopping centre, just to see if it is less crowded and has wider isles, because that would really suit us better with our entourage.

The is one major bonus to this little shopping centre, and that is that it had a video hire place (DVD hire? It's been so long since I've been in one)... Our local one shut down a couple of years ago, in favour of smaller independant places that offered foreign language films specific to the major cultural demographic in the suburb. I'm very excited at the prospect of being able hire movies again!!! I'm so excited that I'm actually going to take the boys down there on Tuesday and get me a card (hopefully, if they don't need a driver's lisence)...

So, it's a sleepy little centre, reminiscent of our local in Bendigo, but yes, it'll do just fine thank you... Thank goodness for that!

On a parenting note. The boys were a bit more ratty today when out, expeically Luey, but I felt like I handled it ok. At one point I got extremely frustrated with Erik who was hopping about not making eye contact with me while I was trying to explain to him why it's dangerous for him to run along the road, right at the edge of nature strip, even if HE knows he won't fall into the road, the drivers don't know that and could have an accident while watching him instead of the road... I ended up yelling, but yelled that I was getting frustrated because I felt he wasn't listening when I was trying to tell him something important because I was scared he might get hurt or someone else might get hurt. He seemed to get that.

Luey was W H I N I N G about everything he could think of especially when we got to the centre. He wanted to put the granny shopping bag, though he'd promised Erik could have it once they got to the centre. Then he wanted a drink, so we went to get a drink, but then he wanted something to eat, so we said we could get something small, then he wanted a ride on one of those bloody machines, and I said we didn't have money for that too, then he wanted the seat that Erik was sitting in, or the seat I was sitting in... Eventually, I took him outside. We sat on the bench and he was crying and whinging and groaning, and I just sat there quietly for a minute, then I asked him why he was so upset, and he said, "I just want what I want". I said we were trying to give him as much of what he wanted as we could, but we couldn't give him what we didn't have, and he could have a drink and something to eat AND a ride. He could pick two of those three things but not all three. He said he just wanted something to eat and a ride. I suggested he'd get thirsty later and then want something to drink because it's hot, and we wouldn't be able to get anything. Then he said if he got an icy pole it would be something cold and wet that he could EAT, and then he could have a ride too...

So, both the boys got icypoles, and a ride.

He was still pretty whiney after that, but I felt like I could deal with it, because we'd come to some sort of agreement over the food/drink/ride issue. He agreed to sit in the trolley for most of the shopping, and then when he wanted out of the trolley he agreed to stay close to us. So, on the whole it worked out, and I understood he was feeling crappy because he hadn't slept well in the heat. After lunch he had a three hour nap...

Friday, January 05, 2007

So happy to say...

After all my bellyaching in the past couple of days, the boys and I had a lovely day out today. At first I really wasn't sure what was going on. I'd decided to try and have as positive an attitude as possible, not to go on and on about them "behaving". not to micromanage them in my fearfilled hope to avoid any kind of public embarrassment. Just to accept them and love them as they were and to move on from any embarrassing situations as smoothly as I could, while gently guiding them...

So, we left the house just before 10am to go catch a bus. As we were walking up to the stop the bus zoomed past. Being that the busses are currently on a holiday timetable this meant a 30 minutes wait until the next bus. This would usually spell disaster because of the boys finding it extremely challenging to stay close to the bus shelter when having to wait for anything more than 5-10 minutes. I decided not to make a point of asking them to stay in the bus shelter and sit still and wait for the bus. Erik did his thing of "racing the cars" on the nature strip in front of the stop, and Luey, oddly enougn, mostly stayed close to me, chatting with me and Bryn...

At one point I showed Luey a little tricky high five (as in high fiving with your hands) game, that goes "Give me five, give me ten, up high, down low, oops, too slow!" He thought that was funny and we showed Erik and all had a good laugh when both boys managed to get me before I moved my hands away...

As so we passed the 30 minutes rather pleasantly, and got on the first bus. On the bus the boys shared a seat and sat in the seat for the ENTIRE time with their hands in their laps, no fighting, no fidgeting, I couldn't believe it! I hardly dared to breathe in case I broke the spell.

We got the shopping centre where we had to change buses, and there was another 20 minutes wait there. The boys asked for a bottle of water each, and I said they would have to share a bottle as I didn't have enough change to get two from the vending machine, and didn't want to go into the centre. They didn't try to bargain with me. Then the vending machine actually gave them two bottles, which was such a bonus, we were all happy about that, and they both happily shared their water with me and Bryn.

On the next bus we had a repeat of the beautiful hands in lap behaviour from the first ride, and I have to say I was gobsmacked. I'm positive they've never done this before (and I'm just telling Dave about it as I write this, and he's just stunned repeating, "Gee, gee. gee!" over and over).

At the play centre they were great too, they usually are. Erik stole money from my purse at one point, which I found out about after the fact, and I told him I knew he'd done it, and it upset me, but I didn't rant and rave, and I didn't refuse to give him the icecream I'd promised him. Later in the afternoon, he stole more money from my purse, and this time, I made sure I was holding my purse at all times, and again I said I'd noticed and I was happy about it, but we still had a drink from the Donut King on the way out of the shopping centre because I wanted to do something else to prolong the good mood among us all...

When we were nearly back at the shopping centre Erik asked if we could have a go on one of the games machines at the centre, and I said no, and explained that I didn't have the correct change because that is what he'd stolen from my purse and I didn't want to spend any more money than what I'd allocated for today because it would leave me short for shopping for dinner. He actually apologised for stealing the money and accepted my answer. He then asked for more water because he was hot, and I said sure I'd get more water.

When we got home, he brought me a dollar coin and said it was the change from what he'd stolen from my purse! Like, wow man!

So, in so many ways, I feel like we've had a great day today, and the boys also felt like we'd had a great day today when I was saying how nice it had been to go out together. Yay for us!

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Having an A-ha moment...

Ok, earlier today, while replying to comments on a previous post, I had an a-ha moment with regard to my relationship with my boys...

I feel like I'm not taken consideration of.

That is to say, I feel like I'm trying to consider Dave's need, and Erik's needs, and Luey's needs and Bryn's needs, and then I come last. And while I don't feel like I have to the right to put myself first, I resent that they often don't seem to want to consider me.

Dave does try to consider me, in practical ways. He's very helpful with the boys, and helps around the house, but he's just plain refusing to get a lisence and I have to be honest and say I feel like he doesn't care about me when he can't see how much him not having a lisence impacts on my life, on all our lives. He also isn't doing anything about his sleep apnoea, and so he's still sleeping in the study and we're living like platonic flat mates who coparent. He's in "his room" right now watching a dvd or something. He is affectionate, and he does show that he cares in other ways,. and we talk and stuff, but these two (nay, three) things really have me feeling like on a basic level my needs don't count.

The boys are just children. To expect them to consider my needs is really too much at this age. They barely understand I have needs - Erik is coming to that age, and it shows, he is being more considerate of late, but then he's just 7.5 and he forgets a lot too that I even have needs seperate to his own. The other two, well, they just can't understand yet, but here I am expecting them to understand, and thinking them not understanding is somehow a reflection of their love for me...

So, there it is... I think that's the basis of my rage. Feeling like I'm not important enough to warrant consideration, when I feel like my needs are being ignored it fills me with hurt and rage. I can see how I've felt that way towards more people than my kids and Dave, I've felt that towards my friends and other family members too, but I can't act out with them.

So, how to resolve this...

Um...

Ok, this is just going to be a bit of incomprehensible drivel because I feel like writing but can't think of any comprehensive theme...

There is still a lot of talk about NY resolutions going on, and the funny thing is as the week goes on it seems mostly to be from the people claiming they don't do new year's resolutions because they don't stick to them or they don't believe in them... Makes you wonder why they're so obsessed with mentioning them then, doesn't it... Maybe their new years resolutions should be to not even bother getting into the discussion of new years resolutions next year, because it would be giving the process too much of their energy - hmmmm, a resolution not to discuss resolutions, sounds good to me!

As for my own resolutions... I think today is my first day of getting into working on some of mine... I'm two and a sip glasses into my "drinking water" resolution today, after 1 and 1/2 glasses in total over the past 4 days... It's a beginning, I guess.

Also did a bit of a tidy up around the house today, which was also overdue. It has helped that Dave went back to work today. Got my room tidied, the boys' room tidied, a load of washing washed and in the dryer. Am about to pack away the rest of the Christmas pressies from the ILs - lots of arts supplies, and a few items of clothing...

Erik has been doing more work in his workbook today, he's really steaming through it, up to page 32 or something already.

Luey is doing his darnedest to bug me today. He's at a loose end and being boisterous. I smacked him on the leg before, just because I lost my temper. Not good. Even now I'm being aggressive just in how I talk to him, I really do need to approach it from a more positive position - B R E A T H E !

Erik has been trying really hard to follow the rules, be considerate and helpful, and I really appreciate it. In fact, he's been more helpful and considerate in the past few days than in a very long time, it's like he's finally getting it...

I resent the powerlessness I feel around Luey because he's so stubborn. He hates cleaning up and so if I ask him to he either just says no, or just pisses off to play, if I get made and try to make him, he does this fake, "I'm scared!" thing and freezes - I know this is fake because he's not actually upset, it's a way of procrastinating or getting out of doing something. If I try to help him clean up, he just doesn't do any of the cleaning up himself, and meanwhile I'm just feel myself getting more and more angry and resentful that it's so hard.

I've actually taken to tidying up the boys' room because I'm so sick of arguing with them about it. Erik would clean it if I asked him too, but it's not fair to him that he has to clean their room all the time. VERY occassionally I can ask Luey to put something away and he will without an argument, but it's the exception, not the rule.

Whinge, whinge, please excuse my whining, I'm just trying to sort this out in my head and sometimes when I write it down I can see where I'm being totally irrational or unreasonable.

While I was writing this, Luey did finish cleaning up, with lots of reminders from me, and now he and Erik and playing in their room. So, it's not as hopeless at it feels at times...


Teenagers and the failing parent...