Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Photos, and a little catch up...

I just realised that I haven't posted on here since early June.  Crikey!  What have I been doing?!

Nicholas turned 11!  We celebrated with a family day, doing whatever he wanted to do.  Shortly before his birthday, he was given an amazing Canon digital SLR camera by a new friend who had recently bought herself a new camera and was no longer using this one.  Wow oh wow!  This woman, who we hardly knew, was so generous with this gift, expecting nothing in return.  Nicholas is thrilled and has been learning more about photography.  His Grandad would be so proud!

I continued to love to take photos of sunsets, 

and sunrises....

I absolutely love starting my day with a walk along the beach.  It really sets the tone for the rest of my day.  It helps me to feel so deeply peaceful in a way that nothing else does.  
I don't go there every day, but I deeply appreciate it whenever I do.

Back in early May, Nicholas and I started volunteering at an organic food co-op.  It was mostly fruit and veg and some grocery lines.  It was going to be something that we just did now and again, because some other homeschooled friends of ours were also going there.  Somehow it turned into us going there every single week, even when our friends stopped going.  I enjoyed being a part of what was being created.  I enjoyed helping other families to be able to buy affordable organic food.  I liked the people that we worked with.  I enjoyed dusting off some of my office skills and helping the co-op to get more organised. 

There were a lot of changes, and it started taking up more and more of my time.  My family was supportive, but I felt like I was starting to neglect them, and some of my own personal goals.  Some things happened that made me question what I was doing.  I thought of a friend of mine who had passed away recently, aged 44...a single mama of four children.  I thought about how we just never know how much time we have left, and just want to be so sure that I am doing the things that are the most important to me.  Going to the co-op started to feel like 'work', and some family matters came to a head that made me realise that I just needed to stop.  

It was such a good decision!  Although it's only been a few days since I told them that we wouldn't be back, I already feel so much lighter, and more productive in other areas.  My family seems happier to 'have me back' too.  

I love living near the beach!  In one of the touristy areas a little north of us, we found this vending machine that has thongs / flip-flops instead of candy bars and sodas!

AJ was letting his hair grow.  Since this photo, he has cut a little off.  He's still going to TAFE to do the Year 10 equivalent and seems pretty happy.

The amazing SWELL outdoor sculpture exhibition was on again along Currumbin Beach.  This was one of my favourites this year...

This one was pretty good too.. 

These huge deck chairs had us feeling like little kids.

And of course I thought of my Dad with 'The Clubhouse'...

We recently bought another old windsurfer board from the tip shop ($10!) and found an awesome kayak paddle that will unscrew so you can have the option to have a short single paddle and a longer paddle (also $10 at  an op shop / thrift store!).  We've been spending a lot of time out on the lake in front of our house.  I used to be pretty fussy and would only go out when it was sunny.  But, I pulled out my wetsuit and now go out anytime that it's not too windy.  Sami or Nicholas usually come with me.  Sometimes I stand up on the board, or kneel, or sit and kayak....

...or I just take it super easy and go with the flow...!

This year is flying by.  Sami is looking for full time work, and is doing some volunteer work in the meantime.  Cary is busy working on different projects.  Just coordinating everyone, homeschooling, and taking care of the home takes up a bit of time.  I've also been working on myself.  After some minor health issues,  I have seen a wonderful naturopath and have made a few changes that have helped me to feel more energetic.  I am remembering to say 'no thanks' to invitations when things are getting too much.  And I'm so glad that I remembered to do that when it came to the co-op situation.  I feel as though a space has opened up for something new to come to me, something that is more in alignment with my purpose.  

I Trust that it will come when the time is right.  

Right now, I am just enjoying every day as it unfolds.   

And, just because .... here's another beach pic!

Friday, June 03, 2016

Facing the fog

I'm not always sweetness and sparkles.  I don't think it's realistic to be optimistic 100% of the time.  I will say though, that my down days are much further apart than they used to be, and they are much shorter in duration.

I thought I was quite fine recently, but Cary sensed that I had an underlying unhappiness, in the way that some people can feel an earthquake coming.  Once he brought it to my attention, it was like it then gave me permission to stop pretending, and look at what was really going on behind the smile.

I tiptoed towards the edge of the fog and retreated.  Again, I went ahead....dare I brave putting a toe in there?  What might happen?  What would I discover that I didn't really want to face?  I retreated, but the fog bubbled and curled closer to me.

We continued the dance through sleepless nights and blurry days.  Keeping myself ridiculously busy so that I just didn't have time to explore the grey feeling.

But it kept growing, and getting louder.  Until a friend asked me "If you could have / do / be any three things just for you (not the family or the rest of the world), what would those three things be?"

What a great question!

Why was it so hard to answer it?

My first thought was that of travelling to tropical islands.  Snorkelling, lazing in the sunshine, feasting on fruit.

My second thought was that I just wanted to get on a big black motorcycle, and ride away.  Just me and the road.  Riding for days and days....

I don't have a motorcycle and I don't know how to ride one.  But that fantasy has been playing in my mind lately.  Speaking it aloud to my friend, I saw it as a sign that I am needing to regain my personal power, and a bit more time for myself.  Hmmm.

I could not come up with a third thing that I really wanted to have / do / be.  Again, a sign that I really need some reflection on what the heck I am doing with my life!

Stewing on all of that, I started to feel the fog pushing me, shaking me, grabbing me.  I fought back.  I swore.  A lot.  I wrote several pages on everything I disliked about my life right at that moment.  And then I cried.  Hard.  I didn't have any answers, but somehow it just helped to release it all.  Cary listened but didn't try to fix anything.

I had to go out and I got chatting to a couple of ladies that I knew, but I didn't know all that well.  The conversation quickly went beyond the fluff, to a deep and meaningful spiritual connection.  I have so much gratitude for these friends!  (For all of my friends actually.  Every single one along the way has been perfectly placed in my life.)

I was so humbled by the timing of that particular conversation.  It totally helped me to remember my real path, and I wouldn't have been able to do if I hadn't faced the fog earlier.

Somehow, I just feel that everything is going to be just fine!   I don't have an exact map of how it's going to be fine.  I am just back in touch with Trusting that it will be.  Of course I know that I don't just sit back and watch it happen.  I know that I need to do the leg work (and the mind work, etc).  I just feel at Peace that the right path will be shown to me.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016


How did it get to be the 17th of May already?!!  Life has been cruising along, and I've forgotten to post photos on here.  Here's a little snippet of the past however many months...

Nicky and I

AJ at Muay Thai

Currumbin Beach...Ahhhh

Lucky and Lady (I don't know which is which, they swim on the lake out the front of our place and  often come together to visit us)

Just beautiful, Bilinga Beach pathway

Cary needed cataract surgery after using steroid cream for the eczema that started when he moved to Australia.  Not many people know that the cream can cause that side effect.  Of course I had to draw a funny eye on his patch.  And we made cupcakes for the doctor when he went to get his bandage off.  She and her staff thought they were great!

Sami and I joined a craft group and started learning some weaving.

Mama and babies...more of the local wildlife on our lake.

Bribie Island

Jayde and AJ at Dreamworld

Sami, Nicky, Geoff (my brother), me and AJ

Just because I cannot get enough ocean sunrise photos!

It's not always sunny here.  It's the subtropics, so we get lots of rain!  This is our front patio.

Over the hills, this is what the countryside looks like.  Which is why we love the coast!

Nicky Angel!

Tallebudgera Creek...a little crowded, but beautiful!

AJ, now 15 years old!

Friday, February 05, 2016


I will aim to post more photos this year!

Here are a few pics from December 2015...

Sami's 18th birthday dinner...

She likes to muck around by posing with my reading glasses!

Another beautiful sunrise...

Playing in our front yard...

Christmas morning walk along the beach...

Seagulls on our lake...

The boys having fun...

AJ being serious...

We don't have a bath in our house, but found two of these long planter pots for free on the side of the road.  Not a bad size for an outdoor bath...

Pelican on our lake...

Sami with Samson...a soft black cat that lives up the road, well, he is supposed to.  He spends a lot of time with us though and is obviously very comfortable here!

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Learning to Relax...

Hello again!

Things that I've been doing....

Cary has been using the computer a lot in the past few months, so I stopped doing youtube videos, to free up the computer for him.  I had enjoyed doing those, but they did take up some time.

After returning home from the family reunion, I focused on upcoming events...Thanksgiving, Cary's birthday, Sami's 18th birthday (!!), family visiting, Christmas, New Years.  It was the least stressed I've been at that time of the year, for a long time.  I just wanted to enjoy each part of the process.  So I did!

Sami turning 18 was a big event!  We didn't have a big party, but some family came to visit.  It was more that fact that she was no longer a child.  Legally, she is an adult!  I wondered...have I done enough to prepare her for that step?  What could I have done differently?  I'm so excited for her and we had a lovely celebration.  She is not in any hurry to leave home and life is pretty much the same here.

Since the beginning of the year, I've been hibernating a bit.  Swimming, watching movies, playing games, reading, along with the usual housework and cooking.  It's been really nice!  I realised that I had been keeping myself so busy, and distracted.  As soon as I'd get up in the morning, I'd get dressed and go for a big walk or jump on the rebounder.  The day was busy, busy after that.  After Christmas, an annoying skin condition I've had, came back in full force.  It's mostly on my scalp and, after trying many different treatments, both internally and externally,  I'm at the point where I am seriously considering shaving my hair off as every single shampoo bothers me.  I've even tried baking soda, apple cider vinegar, salt, and not washing it at all.   Nothing seemed to have helped!  I've already chopped at least 5" off my hair, and before I shave it all off, I thought I'd try something else.   I started thinking that this condition may be caused partly by stress, even though I didn't feel "stressed" as much as I have in the past.  Just as an experiment,  I started doing less.  I started sleeping in, I stopped pushing myself to exercise though I still swim and walk and bounce and do's just more gentle.  And only if I feel like it.  The condition seems to be calming down a little as I allow my body, mind and spirit to release hidden tension and become more peaceful.  I also say "no" much more often and I don't feel as though I 'have to' accept every invitation or request.

Another thing that I've done is to rethink social media and its role in my life.  The thing that I have found in myself, regarding social media, is how I lose myself in amongst it.  I start to judge myself, feel less than others, feel as though I'm not enough...not good enough, not pretty enough, not smart enough, not funny enough.  I get scrolling and I see how interesting other people's lives are.  I know that I have a great life and I am very blessed.   But too much time on social media has me doubting that and just spending way too much time living in a fantasy land.  So I took all social media distractions off of my phone, with the exception of Facebook messenger.  I only check Facebook every couple of days or so when I get on the main computer, and then it's just a quick scroll through.  I removed myself from most groups that I had been on, turned off notifications, and stopped following people and pages that just didn't inspire me in some way.  My newsfeed now is filled with posts from family and dear friends, inspiring meme's and some local homeschool information.  It feels more 'real' to me now.

With the easy availability of checking social media apps and playing games on my phone, (I justified the games in that they were "educational" because they were all about words or numbers or logic), I realised that I was just distracting myself.  Yeah, a little play time is good for everyone, but it I wasn't living as deeply as I wanted to.  I was losing connection with myself.  Removing those apps has been such a good thing!

Sometimes I sit and I reach for my phone to play on.  What a habit that had become!  There is a slight uncomfortable feeling as I figure out what else to do with myself.  Hmm, what did I used to do before phone play?  It wasn't that long ago.  This probably sounds like I had an addiction.  What I mean though, is that, in the little bits of free time that I was getting, the phone was usually my first option.

It's interesting that, by removing that option, I am feeling more productive, and like I have lots more free time!

As I was reading and searching, and trying to figure out my restlessness...that niggly feeling like I'm supposed to be doing something else...more...different.  I was getting a little frustrated that I couldn't quite "get it"....whatever "it" was / is.  Then I saw this...and it spoke to me:

So that's what I'm doing now... relaxing.  Being Patient.  Trusting that this is all unfolding as it should.  I feel the voice encouraging me to go deeper.  I'm listening..

Finding me...

I just found this post that I wrote three months ago, in my drafts...time to post it...

I've been a mama for almost 18 years.  I remember being a little girl, hugging my dolly and longing for the day that I would be a mother.  I didn't want to rush it though... I felt a bit restless as a teen and thought that I needed to experience more of life in order to find myself.  I was insecure, immature, and I didn't always like myself very how could I every really like / love others?  I made mistakes.  So I moved around, kept busy, explored, but I kept going...if I was too still or quiet, then the real me would start to remind me of the things that I had done that I didn't like, that I couldn't change, so I just kept going and filling in the time.  Who I was at any moment, and my short-term plans were about as far as my thoughts would go.  Looking back was often just too sad, looking too deep within was tempting, but a little confronting.

I love being a's the absolute best, and the hardest thing I've ever done.  I adore my kids and have tried to provide a healthy balance of life for them.  It's also been a wonderful way to stay mostly in the moment, or considering our short-term plans.  I didn't have to think too much about who I really was.  I was a mama, and I was living my life around my kids, and that was my joy and my choice.

I went away a few days myself!  I left early on Sunday morning and I came back on Monday evening.  I flew to Sydney to go to a family reunion and I am so very glad that I did!  But I had thought about not going.  The thought of being by myself, with no extra people to be responsible for, was a little out of my comfort zone.  Or maybe more that it was out of my familiar zone.  I was nervous about going.  My extended family already knows that I'm a bit alternative, but would I feel like I belonged there?  Would extended family that I haven't seen for a while, accept me, and would I still feel like I was a valid part of the family?  I aim to not judge others for the way that they live their lives, and I hope that I attract the same energy.

Before the trip, I had worked myself into a little tizz...trying to get my family here organised, trying to get myself organised, concerned about how Nicholas, my little anxiety-prone son, would cope without me.  As it turned out, it wasn't easy for him, but he did manage.

In reconnecting with my family and friends, I felt my heart crack open.  Parts of the past that I had hidden, or judged, or tried to ignore.  Parts of me that want to be acknowledged and integrated into who I am now came to light.  I need to take some time to really find me again.  To find out how to feel whole with who I was and who I am and what I really, really want to give and receive from life and love.   Do I need to find Peace in what was, forgive myself, and surrender into what is now?

I feel that it's time I gave me some more time... there are parts of me that I need to look at.  I need to go deeper into certain feelings and explore who I really am.  Midlife crisis?  Hormonal changes?  Or just overdue?