Grateful for Shrek, raisin toast, coffee & impromptu plans

I’ve just looked at the title of this post and it’s a bit cumbersome.  “Grateful for weekends” probably would have covered it, but here’s why it is what it is:

Grateful for Shrek:  Overall, grateful for the square babysitter really, but Bam Bam’s newfound love of Shrek is giving me some much needed respite from bloody Dora. Plus, Shrek has a very groovy soundtrack and when he gets bored with watching number 1 (over & over & over again) we can always move on to the sequels.

My little ogre & puss (sans boots)

Grateful for raisin toast & coffee: Enough said really.

Grateful for impromptu plans: I’ve just received a text informing me of a devious plan conjured by The Man to ensure his attendance this afternoon at the boating & marine expo (or some such thing). I’m required to provide return transfer services. However, said plan also involves a sweet payoff – a long overdue BBQ with friends.  Superb excuse to ditch the evening routine & embrace the weekend.  Very grateful for the hospitality (& flexibility) of wonderful friends.

What are your plans for the weekend?

Linking up with Maxabella Loves

 

Grateful for friends & bloggers & friendly bloggers

Tumblr_lix4skwuqc1qadhwdo1_500_large_large

Recently, the lovely Maxabella  posted about the friends you never have time to see. This struck such a chord with me as I’m constantly having to change or cancel plans to catch up with friends because, well frankly, life always gets in the way.

I’m grateful that most of my friends are in the same boat (and that they are very patient!) and I’m excited that for the next few weeks while I’m on holidays I’m fully booked with overdue catch ups. It’s a priority of mine that’s long been overlooked and I’m grateful for this opportunity to make amends.

Maxabella’s isn’t the only blog post that has rung true for me lately. Obviously, so many of the wonderful blogs I follow are on the same page as me (hence why I follow!) but recently there have been a couple of posts that have really resonated, like this one about personal expectations of motherhood by Imperfect Mum and this post about blogging by Becky @ BeckyandJames.com . I’m so grateful for these women who bear their souls to the world. Especially grateful to have someone to relate to.

And finally, I’m grateful that there are so many wonderful bloggers out there who are open and friendly. The social media arena can be lonely, daunting and quite overwhelming at times but there are always those who are warm, inclusive and willing to help. I hope you know who you are and how much you are appreciated!!

Linking up with Maxabella Loves

Do you find it difficult to find time to catch up with old friends?

 

 

 

Images from We Heart It & Pinterest

 

Grateful for Luck, Love and Little Heroes

Tumblr_lsa5m1kebp1qk1cdoo1_500_large

Grateful for Luck

Late last week I was trawling through twitter while having a break at work (god bless the iPhone) and I stumbled across a tweet about a giveaway for free blog hosting.  How serendipitous since I had just made the decision to move my blog to a hosted site.  I had the good fortune of winning that giveaway and was pleased as punch.  Later that evening I entered another, even more generous giveaway with the same service for a complete blogging package – hosting, domain,  design, Facebook page.  I admit I was being greedy trying my luck twice, but I thought what the heck!

 

Tumblr_ls59dq785u1r24s6yo1_500_large

Grateful for Love

To be in the running for this amazing prize, I had to rally my friends to like, tweet and comment about me to get additional entries. Friends who read my blog commented, friends who probably had no idea I blogged commented and, of course, other lovely bloggers commented. I was a bit overwhelmed by all love and I’m extremely grateful, especially because it won me the competition!!

Grateful for Little Heroes

Of course, what (who) I’m most grateful for this week is Michelle from Little Hero Hosting & Designs, without whom none of this would have been possible. Her generous birthday giveaways have made me a very, very grateful little blogger and have shown me how lucky I am and how much I am loved. I’m really looking forward to working with her to create a new space for Nee Say.

So tell me, have you ever won anything amazing?

Linking up with Maxabella Loves Grateful For

Grateful for photographs, memories & shared experiences

163704_large

As I’ve mentioned before, I’m terrible with photographs – I take millions but apart from uploading them on the blog or FB, I rarely do anything with them.  I have them stored on the lappy, 2 hard drives, 3 USBs, the iPad, a couple of photoboxes and, of course, my iPhone.  I was grateful for  My Pigeon Pair’s post yesterday on the topic which made me feel less like an archival failure! Photo organisation is definitely on the holiday to-do list.

Despite my haphazard storage of them, I was ever so grateful for photos this week when the Wilful One started asking questions about his great-grandfather. My mum’s dad died when I was 8 months pregnant with him so they never got to meet.  Questions about Great Granddad Fred led to questions about death and what happens when we die and ultimately the Wilful One’s realisation that he will one day die too (OMG those words are hard to write!).  I have to admit I was slightly taken aback by how upset he was, as we have discussed death fairly openly with him up to this point, having lost a few furry and finned members of the menagerie over time. He knew that death also came to people but I don’t think he fully comprehended the gravity of the situation before now.  

I must highlight at this point that the conversation happened at a particularly bad time.  The eve of The Man’s first night away, after a late night home from daycare and with a hysterically over tired Bam Bam present.  Serendipitously, my BFF and I had only recently discussed her own daughter’s reaction to death and I gratefully drew on her experience to piece together an explanation for the Wilful One that gave him some measure of reassurance and got him off to sleep. He was comforted by the knowledge that even when someone is gone we still love them and hold them in our memories and hearts.  

The next morning we looked through the multitude of photos and found some pics of Great Granddad Fred and also the boy’s great grandparents on The Man’s side. The Wilful One yet again stunned me by his maturity and asked if the photos could be put in his room so “I can look at them and aways remember”. I am shamed by (yet grateful for) this request as it is a task I have been meaning to do since his birth – I even have the empty frame still hanging in the ex-nursery. Slackest. Mother. EVER.

And to my dear Granddad Fred, I miss you so much. You would be so proud of this boy and I promise through my memories and photographs they will both know who you are and will love you like I do.

 

 

 

 Linking up with Maxabella Love’s Grateful for… hosted by Lemon Rhodes.

Gorgeous family tree image via We Heart It

Grateful for Shortcuts

5-ma3_large

Shortcuts make our lives easier – how can we not be grateful for them?  Being inherently lazy by nature, shortcuts definitely play a huge role in my mummy/housewife/worker bee arsenal.  Never more so than when it comes to housework!

Recently CRAP Mamma posed the question “Do you clean when you have visitors?”  I love her perspective on the matter and it made me think about why I run around like a mad woman when I know guests are coming (god have mercy on us all if there are unexpected drop-ins).  I’d love to have a picture perfect house.  For that matter, I’d love to have a vaguely tidy house. What I do have is a small house with too much clutter, too little storage and 3 mess generating machines.  I do endeavour to keep things as orderly as possible but when guests are coming it’s like I see the place through new eyes. 

Crash Test Mummy recently posted some fabulous tips for housework in a hurry – most of which I’ve done at some point or other depending on the guests and the nature of the visit, but when I had guests coming this morning I realised I actually have a standardised set of “pre-arrival” shortcuts that I execute to make our little abode semi-respectable.

1. Arrange the cushions. My kids think couch cushions are pseudo playground equipment and they are ALWAYS scattered from one end of the living room to the other.

2. Call the helpers to arms. The Wilful One is very task oriented and loves to be summoned to help with super important grown up tasks like getting all of the farm animal figurines out from behind the couch and ensuring the floor is not a skating rink made of books and puzzles.

3. Stash dirty dishes in the dishwasher. Even if that’s not where they will ultimately be cleaned!

4. Clean the toilet. I live with 3 boys. Enough said.

5. Wipe the bathroom sink. Thank you to the inventor of microfiber cloths.

6. Bust highly visible dust. I’ve previously professed my undying love for the dustbuster. This little baby gets used to chase all the crumbs from under the table and the dust bunnies from down the hall.

7. Pull the covers up on the beds. Notice I didn’t say “make the beds”. You can’t “make” bunks or waterbeds. They will never ever look truly neat (unless you are my mother-in-law, who could make corrugated iron flat with pure determination and a hatred for wrinkles)

8. Dress the children. Nothing broadcasts your laziness and disorganisation quite like children running around the front yard in their PJ’s at 11am.

With these simple little housework shortcuts, I’m sure to provide my guests with a comfortable visiting environment that will reassure them that:

a) they are a far more accomplished domestic goddess than I,

and most importantly…

b) they won’t catch anything too serious.

What shortcuts are you most grateful for?

Linking up with the Lioness Lady who is gratefully hosting Maxabella Loves.

 

 

 

Image from We Heart It

Grateful that Spring has sprung

Like many, the main thing I’m grateful for this week is Spring. Such glorious weather whilst I’m feeling otherwise unwell has cheered my spirits no end. A little vitamin D never goes astray either.

I’m also very grateful for this space in our front yard. For some reason gazing at these two trees soothes my soul and fills me with a sense of sublime happiness. One of the few things I will truly miss about this house (if we ever leave!)

I’m grateful for the shade they provide for my boys to play in, me to laze in and for us to have our special little picnics.

I’m very grateful for grandparents who rescue energetic, non-stop talking preschoolers from grumpy, intolerant  tired, sick mummies, and for toddlers who are easily placated by DVD’s and popcorn.

And I’m ESPECIALLY grateful for this little machine…

Not sure how I could ever survive without it!

What are you grateful for this week?

Linking up with Mira Narnie who is hosting Maxabella’s “Grateful For” this week.

Grateful for… rainy days and mother-in-laws (who’d have thought?)

This post was going to be all about how grateful I was for yesterday being a rainy day. I’m sick. Sinus infection. No fun at all. BUT a rainy day is the perfect excuse to bum around inside, being lazy and, well,  just being sick.

As the day started I was grateful for the telly – it was distracting the kids while I stole a  little extra shut eye.

When I managed to get up I gratefully consumed my body weight in raisin toast and coffee (working roughly on the feed a cold, starve a fever principle).

I was grateful for play dough (which I usually can’t stand in the house because it makes such a mess) because it kept the boys happily amused while I blogged.

I was gratefully reading some inspiring blog posts and so very grateful for the amazing response I got to yesterday’s post.

Then things started to go down hill.

I did not gratefully exclaim a few choice expletives when my mother-in-law unexpectedly arrived. I was not grateful that I hadn’t managed to get out of my PJ’s yet (it was 11am). I was not grateful that the kids had recreated the bombing of Hiroshima in the living room while I had slept in. Overall, I was a bit pissed off.

But then, I was grateful that my mother-in-law was sympathetic to me being sick, grateful she graciously ignored the bombsite, grateful she entertained the kids while I showered, and VERY grateful she cleaned up the play dough.

And in hindsight, I’m grateful she motivated me to get out of my PJ’s because it really did make me feel a whole lot better.

Don’t forget to visit the gorgeous Kymmie over at A Day in the Life of Us who is hosting  Maxabella loves… this week.

Grateful for big boys

Generally I’m waffling on about how grateful I am for the little boys in my life. The big one’s rarely get a mention. They are always there though. There are two particular big boys in my life that I am grateful for, who really are just little boys in big bodies, regardless, they are wonderful dads.  

I’ve always been grateful for my dad.  When I was little he was the centre of my world (or that’s how my mum always tells it). Now that I’m older, someday’s he might not seem as wise and his jokes are definitely not as funny, but I will always be a daddy’s girl.

As a Grandy he is much loved by my boys, too. I love that I can see so much of my dad in my Wilful One.

As for The Man, well he is definitely the centre of  their world and that’s the way it should be. I’m so grateful for his ability to come in and restore order when all semblance of discipline has gone out the window. His ability to patiently to give crocodile rides up and down the pool for hours on end.  And endlessly grateful for his ability to put Bam Bam to sleep! 

Put them all together and generally you have chaos, but it’s a bond like no other.  It makes my heart sing.

Together, my two favourite big boys are teaching my little two boys how to be wonderful men when they grow up. And I am truly grateful for that.

Pop on over to The Beetle Shack (http://thebeetleshack.blogspot.com -my links aren’t working!) who is hosting  Maxabella loves… “grateful for” today.

Grateful for day dreams

It’s been a bit of a rough week. As a coping mechanism I’ve found myself doing a spot of day dreaming. It is with much gratitude that I skip out of reality sometimes!

I’d like to think of it as enhancing one’s life through the power of positive thinking. Realistically though, it’s just plain wishful thinking. 

Step into my fantasy land:

The Man (who for day dreaming purposes is sometimes David Boreanaz) is gainfully employed in a lucrative pursuit that makes him happy.

I am not only maintaining a very witty and successful blog, but also writing regular submissions for several popular publications.

The boys are enrolled in a prestigious, but not pretentious, local school that has amazing music, performing arts and sporting curriculums as well as a very nice P & C.

We live in a modest but palatial house by the water (where I have my own bathroom – no sharing!). We have a house keeper, Joyce, who does the ironing, minds the kids while I’m getting my hair done and has been known to whip up a sumptuous 5 course dinner at short notice.

Our humble abode is in a very private location but still, of course, in walking distance to the local cafe, farmer’s markets and school.

This is fortunate because my personal trainer is world renowned for discovering an innovative weight loss technique which simply involves walking a little and doing the things you enjoy most each day.  Needless to say, with all the latte drinking and ocean gazing, I’m looking very svelte and toned.

Oh, and I drive a BMW X5 (no, I am not a wanker but you can’t expect a girl to walk everywhere).

I know it’s all very materialistic faff and I really am grateful for my humble home and life of privilege, but sometimes it’s nice to dream, right?

What do you daydream about?

 Oh and while you’re day dreaming, don’t forget to visit Maxabella loves…for more thankful thoughts.

 

 

 

 

Images thanks to google and BMW.

Grateful for…two little boys

… with too many toys!!

I am very grateful that my boys are so close.  Not just in age but as brothers and best mates. They are so very different but have already begun to compliment each other’s strengths and together they are shaping up as quite a formidable team.  God help me in years to come.

No matter what the game, they play so well together. So grateful that Bam Bam is now old enough to play along with all of the Wilful One’s complex rules and storylines!

I love that they can play trucks and trains and pirates, all the while relishing in each other’s pure boyness. I’m sure different sex siblings can be just as close and I certainly don’t mean to generalise. We don’t push our boys towards toys or games with a particular gender bias. Believe me, there are lots of games of house (complete with breastfeeding mummy’s) and they have a kitchen set up, play dress ups with my shoes and love putting on my make up. The Wilful One’s favourite colours are even pink and purple!

While we don’t get too caught up in gender bias, I’m amazed at how often I get asked when I will try for a girl. My response – why would I do that?

It is chaotic  rewarding enough with our little family of four. And, quite frankly, I would ruin a girl. The theme of this blog and my handbag obsession are about as girly as I get. I’m really not sure what I would do with a girl, especially now that I’m surrounded by so many boys!

I know for a fact The Man is also very grateful for boys. The thought of dealing with a teenage girl makes both of us shudder and I’m sure,  after finding out we were having a girl, my husband would go straight out and buy a chastity belt and a gun.

I find it interesting that people think that as a woman I would feel the need to have a daughter. I can honestly say even when I was pregnant with the boys I had no preconceptions (pardon the pun) about what gender they would be. I was just so grateful for relatively smooth pregnancies and births resulting in BIG healthy babies. Ok, possibly not that grateful for the big part.

Over the next few weeks I’m going to join in with the Seven Cherubs’ Cherish Your Cherubs Project.  I’ve been wanting to do some posts reflecting more on my boys and this is the perfect opportunity to start. It was this reason I started blogging in the first place, after all.

Today, I’m linking up as usual with Maxabella Loves… because I truly am grateful for my two little boys.