Thursday 8 November 2012


Mini miss has discovered her imagination at just 18 months old!

For a while now she has played with her little people, sending them down a slide or driving a car or swinging on a swing & said the accompanying "weee!!", or walked then around. But this was something different altogether. This required her to pretend!

Tonight in the shower she was playing with her little people. Little people princess was riding the horse and she was crying out "help! Help!" (And we all know how well mini miss can say THAT word!). The farmer then came along and kissed?? ( I'm not sure, I don't understand all her words yet!) the horse. He then jumped onto the horse with the princess and they rode away.

Then they hopped back off and kissed each other (this was obvious as their faces were smooshed together & she made kissy noises!!) and wandered away to "babble, babble, gabble"....

It amazes me that she has such a good imagination!! It is so cute to watch too! Obviously, there would be video footage, but we were in the shower! Nobody needs to see that!!! And I certainly don't want to get my iPhone wet!!!

Saturday 20 October 2012

Pre Wedding Jitters and other stuff

The Wedding. Our Wedding. Its just 2 weeks away now. 

Am I excited? Hell yeah! 

Am I nervous? Well.....

Do I want to run screaming to the hills? Um.....

Believe me, its not that I don't WANT to marry Shane. I do. He is, without doubt, the love of my life. He is my soul mate. He understands me like no one else ever has, including myself! 

But, for some reason I have always feared commitment. I figured, when i found "THE ONE", that fear would just disappear. I don't know if that is because it took so damn long to find him, or if I'm just faulty somehow. Or maybe life experience has taught me to expect disappointment and failure, not love and success. Either way, that fear is still in me. 

When I think of our wedding, its a mix of things I see and feel. 

Firstly, I see me happy. Radiant. Sharing the fun of getting ready, all dolled up, hair and make up done, drinking champagne, eating cheese and crackers and laughing. In this romantic vision, everyone is happy and laughing. Then the time comes, I feel that rush of butterflies in my stomach, happy excited nerves, I see Shane and the rest is a blur of blissfulness. If nothing else, movies have taught me this is how a wedding should look and feel!

Then, the logical me kicks in. I see the multitude of tasks we have to do on the day. I see the time constraints and wonder if we can possibly get everything done before its time. I see a screaming Mini Miss, all confused about where she is and why she has to sleep in a strange bed, and why is mummy dressed in that weird dress, and where is daddy, and why do I have to sit still and wear a hair band.....Yeah the list of logical problems with Mini Miss is endless! All I see is endless task lists and I wonder if I will actually get a chance to enjoy any of the blissfulness listed above!

Then panic merchant me steps in. It's not enough to think about the things that HAVE to be done and worry about those. Oh, no, Panic me has to go into the "what ifs". What if my dress doesn't fit on the day? What if the hair and make up people forget? What if the flowers aren't what I wanted? 
What if people don't like the food? What if someone is sick or can't make it? What if the music doesn't work? What if Shane changes his mind? The "what if" list is endless...I keep myself awake at night wondering. I have nightmares over them.

I worry. It's what I do. I worry, that with all my baggage, and with my depression and anxiety, that I am not good enough for Shane. That he deserves better. It's not that I don't love Shane or question whether he loves me. I know he does. I don't doubt it. 

The thing that gets me is, I want the best for Shane. I want to see him happy ALL the time. I want him to feel nothing but love and joy and happiness. I worry that I cannot give him that. I want the best for him, and I question whether the best for him is me. 

So, yes, on our wedding day I will worry. I will wonder, but I will also make a promise. Not only to love him forever. That part is easy. Swearing in front of our friends, and God that I will love him, and only him forever, piece of cake! But I will also promise him to work on being the BEST I can be, get myself right so he can have all the happiness and joy and most importantly LOVE that he deserves. 

To me, THAT is what a wedding is all about. Promising not only to love the person forever, but to do your best to make sure they live a happy fulfilling joyful life. 

Educating Molly

So mini miss is now 18 months old and a very big squishy sponge, soaking up information, even if sometimes its the wrong information. 

An example of wrong information....every time someone burps or passes wind in our house she says "oh mummy!". Um, sorry, but mummy does NOT ever do either of those things....misinformation supplied by Daddy and Big Sis no doubt!

But, she is loving learning about animals. Courtesy of The Wiggles, Molly has quickly learnt that monkeys go "oh oh ah ah" and Elephants go, um *insert trumpet style noise here*, and that tigers go "raaaaa". (don't know this song? I can teach it to you. I can sing it in my sleep)

We have been using flash cards and books to teach other animals. She now can identify by name most animals like: "cow moo" (no, its not just a cow, its a cow moo. She cannot be told otherwise) and "baas" (sheep, again, she cannot be told otherwise). 

One of my favourites to date has to be a "hore". Yes, a "hore". Haven't you heard of them? They go "neeeeeiiighhh". Yes, she has given the horse a very special name all of its own!

Today, mini miss educated me. 

She even used props to demonstrate. She is very clever after all, and I can be a little slow at times. She showed me a chicken. She said "ticken. cock cock". I looked at her puzzled and slightly amused (because there is always a pre teen inside that laughs at words like that). I said "thats a chicken, what does a chicken say?" "cock, cock" was the reply. 

Ok, so no more left over hens night toys for her....she is clearly soaking up a LOT more information than I am ready for!!!!

Sunday 14 October 2012

Confession....I'm an addict.....

So....its time the truth came out. I have an addiction. Its expensive. 

I spend many hours thinking about it, saving up and planning my next purchase. I belong to a group of fellow addicts and dealers, where we support each, tell each others stories, share the next best place get a great score, encourage each other in our habit....

I am a member of the DAA.

I am addicted to buying gorgeous, hand made with love dolls.

I am not talking about just any dolls. These dolls are special. They are beautiful. They are made with love. Their details are exquisite. Each doll is unique and has a special place in my heart. 

I buy all my dolls from Facebook businesses. I am friends with lots of the lovely ladies who make these dolls, so I know the love and care they take in making each and every one. I am in a group with them, where we share our love of dolls, and also our lives. These women are amazing! I count myself lucky to have been invited to join them! 

This addiction started from one doll. Made by Hello Dollies. The page was suggested by a friend in my online mums group. This was my first taste of the beauty that is hand made. Dawn makes lovely dolls that are designed to be played with, loved and cuddled by little ones. Molly adored her and I was instantly hooked!

Hello Dollies, Aingeals Keepsakes, Babes by Little B, Pins and Needles 

                                                            These are ALL Sugar Punkz!

Monkey Hugs, Butterflybelle Boutique, Over the Raindow

This is a hard one....Freckles, Aingeals Keepsakes, Hello Dollies, Monkey Hugs, Lily & Andie Dolls, Little Stuffed Friends, Butterflybelle Boutique, Little Honeypie. 

I now have over 40 dolls. Some are made to play with, but most are art dolls, or dolls designed to be enjoyed with gentle play and displayed for me to enjoy! My favorite pages include Monkey Hugs, Sugar Punkz, Vivibijoux, Aingeals Keepsakes, Misfits and Vagabonds, Butterflybelle Boutique....the list is endless! If you want to know them all I have a list on facebook that is viewable by the public. This list is so I don't miss anything despite Facebooks decision to stop showing most of them in my newsfeed!!!

I love them so much that I even bought one for Shane for his birthday this year (see Wolverine below!)!! Big Miss got one for Easter, as did Mini Miss! We may even see one or two at our wedding in 3 weeks time!!!

The collection on display here is not all of them! I recently got an absolutely stunning Dorothy from Vivibijoux! She came complete with sparkly red shoes! I love her! Also, from The Faraway Tree, we have a gorgeous soft & cuddly & big bear.

Pipers Cuddles, Misfits and Vagabonds, Miss Pollys Dollhouse, Sweet Delilah, Buttonhead Dolls

The sign of a true addict, is despite having plenty, you always want more!

Despite having over 40 dolls, I am not done! I have many doll makers whose gorgeousness I don't yet have! Lesley Jane Dolls in particular is one page I constantly stalk....Trellis Design & Lilliput Loft are some of the others. I am always finding new and beautiful pages to stalk and fall in love with!

I am aware this is a little odd. A grown woman loving dolls as much as I do. But hey, I figure Shane has his DVD's and Sci Fi stuff....I have my dolls. Fair is fair! I also share my dolls with the girls. Big Miss has a small collection on display in her room (generally the punky/goth style ones!), and Mini Miss has a small collection that sleep in her cot with her! 

Monkey Hugs, Missa Made it, The Sweet Shoppe, Oh Sew Bonnie

So thats it. I have confessed.....

Problem is, I have no desire to give up my addiction. I am learning to budget so I can buy the dolls I love, one at a time! I figure as long as our family doesn't go without to feed my addiction, then we are good!

What is your addiction? Or maybe a better term is "passionate collection"!

I have missed some pages, I know I have. If it is yours, I am sorry :( Its not that I dont love your dolls. Its just I have so many, I cant remember where they all came from! Feel free to leave a link below in the comments to your page!!

Friday 7 September 2012


Today we have had a lot of fun with Mini Miss.

She is almost 17 months old and has a rather large vocabulary already. This means she is getting quite good at communicating.

Unfortunately, with all good communication comes attitude, opinion and argument. 

Today has been particularly challenging;

Me, to our puppy: "do you want to go outside?" (because the dog understands human ok?!)

Mini Miss: "outside!!!!!!!" she runs enthusiastically to the door.

Me: "No, you cant go outside yet, you need a nappy change and to get out of your pj's"

Mini Miss: "outside!!!!!" and bangs on door in a mini tantrum

This afternoon in the car I give her a sippy cup, which she drinks from, then as soon as I look away, starts splashing it all over her legs. Its warm. It would probably be ok. But we are in the car.

Me: "please stop tipping your water everywhere"

Mini Miss: "No"

Me, reaching for her cup: "ta for mummy please"

Mini Miss: "No" laughs and begins to wave it around just out of my reach.

Then again this afternoon another example....

Mini Miss barges at the barricade stopping her from getting in and destroying the tidiness of the inaccessible parts of the house (namely the kitchen). She does this because she is aware from past experience, eventually she will get through.

Dad: "Molly stop"

Mini Miss continues ignoring Dad's demand

Dad: "do you want to have this argument with me now?"

Mini Miss: "yes"

Me : poorly hidden laughter "what? I coughed!"

Because it's only funny when the do it to someone else!

Thursday 6 September 2012

funny mini miss

Today we went shopping with Mini Miss (Molly)

She is now 16 months old and very, um, boisterous and verbal!

Today when shopping at a sporting shop, Dad wandered off to look at something while Molly and I were inspecting the snorkeling gear and other fun water stuff.


Molly notices Dad is missing...

"whereareooo????" This is said all as one word.

"are you looking for Daddy?" I ask, smiling to myself (This is a new sentence so of course, as all crazy parents do, I am encouraging her to use it as often as possible!)

"I said whereareoooo!!" Molly replies in a slightly impatient tone.

Sorry for stating the obvious!!

Finally, Dad comes around the corner....

"peek boo" squeals Molly and runs away, throwing bouncy balls all over the shop as she goes. (yes, I foolishly bought the bouncy balls!)

When then head into the chemist, where she proceeds to run riot, and charming the pants off everyone. I am here to get medication for a migraine, so, of course 

a) the chemist wants to ask me a thousand questions and 

b) I should actually try and LOOK and SOUND as sick as I feel so the chemist believes me & lets me have my medication.

This is impossible. Even with Daddy in tow "managing" mini miss, she is loud and chatty, and throwing her new found bouncy balls in every direction.

Seriously, she turned the chemist, and the other older and sick people into her own personal pin ball machine, but instead of a rolling ball, we had a ball bouncing everywhere....up onto shelves, off counter walls, poles, off peoples get the idea....

So there I am trying to look as sick as I'm feeling, while trying to not laugh at my very humorous child and smiling at the other people waiting` so they don't start a riot over the little kid playing pinball in the chemist with their legs and the parents who are unable to control her!

Needless to say, I came home, took  my medication and crashed....a busy, chatty, excitable toddler is.....exhausting!!!! 

Wednesday 5 September 2012

a whole new world of friends......

When I joined Facebook 4 or 5 years ago, it was to keep in touch with the people I knew. To share my life with the people I loved who I couldnt see all the time.

When I moved to Coffs, it became even more important to me. It was a way of communicating with my friends, people I knew in REAL life. My friends list was small and consisted of people I knew, well. These were the only people I was interested in. I didn't need hundreds of friends. That seemed silly to me! How can you possibly keep up with that many friends?!!! Why would I want to make friends online that I will never meet?!! 

I had no idea!!!

As always things changed. Its hard to believe, especially for me, but many of the people on my friends list these days I have never met, have only known for the last 2 years or less. But I really do count them as friends!

When Maddi & I went on our cruise in 2009, we went with good friends. Real life friends. But I also joined a facebook event for all the people going on the same cruise. I wanted to see what experiences other had had. Maybe meet a couple of people. These people were and are wonderful! Chatty, friendly, sharing previous experience and reassuring those of us who were new to cruising and more than a little worried about the dreaded sea sickness!!  I met most of them on the cruise, and I am happy to still call many of them friends on facebook today!

When I fell pregnant with Molly I joined Bubhub, encouraged again, by a real life friend who had done the same during her pregnancy and made some friends as a result. 

It was lovely talking to other women going through the same things, experiencing the same feelings, emotions, physical changes. It made me feel normal. Then they started a facebook group. I love the girls in this group. My Yummy Mummies laugh with me, cry with me, make me laugh when I need it, offer me support and advice when i need it. I count them all as friends, even though I have only met 2 of them in real life. I long ago stopped using bubhub, but i hope these girls will be around for a long time yet! I feel a love for all the other bubbas I never knew I could for someone Ive never met! When they are sick, I worry, when they achieve or learn something new I celebrate, just like real life friends!! I still hope to meet most of day!

Now, I have become rather involved in the world of facebook. I have met and made friends with many people in Coffs through interacting with them on facebook! In fact the lovely friend organising my very, um, educational hens night, I met on facebook not even a year ago!! 

Also, I have become a lover of hand made items, clothes, but particularly dolls. Through the magic of facebook I have started building friendships with other lovely ladies who are collectors and lovers of dolls and who are the talented ladies who make the dolls I love so much. Its lovely chatting with like minded people who don't ridicule my love of hand crafted dolls! If anything they encourage it....not sure really how Shane feels about that!!

So, to those that say spending time online is bad for you. Restricts your social life. Makes you anti social and unable to communicate in the real world...... 

You are W.R.O.N.G! 

As long as you are willing to combine real life and online life, balance them, watch and make sure you don't spend your whole life online, you can make it work. In fact, it can make your life better!! 

Remember, I met the man I will be walking down the aisle to in just 8 weeks ONLINE! 

Without my online friends, I would be lost. I laugh, cry, bitch and moan with them as much as I do my real life friends. At times when I am feeling lonely because my real life friends are busy with their own lives, its nice to know I always have someone to talk to

Wednesday 29 August 2012

12WBT Finale.....

So I have finished my Michelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation. 

Is my body now transformed? I am now some amazing size 8 goddess transformed and ready to rule the world, long blonde hair blowing in the breeze? Did it give me a virtual face lift? Instantly change my body from flab to fab???

No, sadly it did not........

But.....I did lose 9kg in the 12 weeks, 45cms off my body, dropped almost 2 whole dress sizes.....

I lost 9kg? Well no, I didn't lose it, that suggests I may one day want to find it again! That it is just misplaced waiting to be found....I permanently erased 9kg from myself that I NEVER want to see again!!!!

For me, its what I learnt, about healthy living, about portion control, about exercise, about me, that is the most valuable. The mind set lessons have been incredibly amazing! Learning about how I sabotage myself (see previous post Dear Self Saboteur), about how I make one mistake and throw it all away, fall off the wagon and watch it rolling away & think, nah, too hard to catch back up now, so I just let it roll away! About the importance of dealing with the WHY as well as the practicals of how.

I have discovered a love of exercise that even I was surprised about. I have done the gym thing before, but did because I had to, not because I enjoyed it...but walking, I love. Basketball, I love and now miss....I am actually looking forward to starting bootcamp at ungodly 7am on a Saturday of all days...I am starting the Couch to 5k's learn to run program.

My Iphone has suddenly become my best friend. It is no longer "just a phone". It tracks my calories (My Fitness pal), it tells me how far I have walked and how fast (Map My Walk), It gives me a plan to learn to run and walks me through it (C25K). It gives me music to keep me entertained & even a camera to take inspirational pictures when I walk!!!

So it wasn't an instant fix, but it WAS the beginning of a life long journey. One I no longer dread, but instead look forward to. It will be full of challenges, hard times, as well as successes, but it will be healthy and it will be FUN!!!!

Monday 27 August 2012

our journey so far.....

So we are getting married in just under 10 weeks...not long now....66 days.....

So I thought I would reminiscence on how I met Shane, how our relationship grew and how we got where we are today.....

When I moved to Coffs Harbour in 2007, to me it was the chance for a new start in life. I had lost my Mum, my rock, my best friend and it had left me shaken and unsure. I had had my share of relationships, mostly dodgy, so I saw Coffs as a new beginning. 

For the first nearly 2 years I was busy...I worked full time and was raising Maddi. It turned out that making friends, meeting people, getting out there, especially in Coffs, was HARD! It was harder than on the Central Coast, where I grew up, because I already knew people there to socialise with.

So I decided to give a dating website a go, namely RSVP. I had done this before, and met a nice guy who I dated for about 6 months. I also knew that it involved weeding out the "less than desirables" to find someone special. 

I met up with a few guys, but there was nothing serious, nothing where there was that SPARK. I had decided to cancel my membership to the website. I decided I wasn't meant to find a decent guy, to find my soul mate. I was okay with it. I had made my peace with being single, and I was happy. Happy to raise Maddi by myself, to throw myself into raising her, looking after my Dad and working for a company I loved.

Then, before cancelling, I decided to check the profiles one last time. His profile jumped out at me straight away. He certainly wasn't the type of guy I normally looked at. Sorry honey, but your profile picture was, um, well, more than a little dorky! I sent him a "kiss" which was a way to say, "i'd like to get to know you" He replied with an email, and we started to chat.

I was hesitant. I was happy being on my own, and I could tell he was someone special, and I was scared all of a sudden. Commitment has secretly always scared me for some reason. So, for 2 months we just emailed each other, chatting almost daily. Then it moved to texts. We worked out we worked with a 2 min walking distance from each other, but still I made excuses not to meet face to face. Then, all of a sudden, I caved. We arranged to meet for a coffee at the Coffee Club on August 5 2009.

As soon as we said hello, I knew. I knew he was someone I could easily love forever. Thankfully he felt the same way. I was still very resistant for almost a year I tried to keep it to being just friends. It started getting serious, I broke up with him.

Shane is the most amazing, patient, gentle, caring and loving person. He backed off, but insisted we still be friends, still chat. He came to my birthday party in Jan 2010 and suddenly, plied with a large amount of alcohol I couldn't understand what my problem was....Why was I resisting this amazing guy who clearly WANTED to be with me, was happy to wait while i sorted myself out. Suddenly it was VERY clear I wanted to be with him.

We went away for his birthday that July, then he started spending the weekends at my place, then in August he moved in. The day after he moved in, we found out we were expecting our first baby together. 

I was in heaven, and have been there ever since!! Yes, we go through hard times. I have depression and anxiety, it makes for a sometimes stressful household. But having Shane by my side, a patient, loving man, I feel safe, I feel happy, I feel secure.

We welcomed Molly into our world in April 2011 and in September 2011 we went away for our first family holiday. The first week was spent enjoying time with amazing friends, the second week it was just our little family. Sitting there, our last night, the girls tucked up into bed, at the end of an amazing holiday, just relaxing in each others company.....Shane looked at me and asked me, unexpectedly, "Will you marry me?" Yes, of course....and I cried. I was so so happy!

Since then, the journey has been quick! We have been planning our wedding, raising our girls, getting on with life and its busy, its stressful, its exhausting, its joyous, its happy, its family, its life.

I love it, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Saturday 25 August 2012

I'm CRAZY!!! here is the proof!!

Ever had a phobia? Like a full on uncontrollable fear? I do!

If you look up phobia in the dictionary it will tell you it means:

"A persistent, abnormal and irrational fear of a specific thing or situation that compels one to avoid it despite the awareness and reassurance that it is not dangerous"

The word that stands out in all that is IRRATIONAL. My phobia is irrational and completely extreme. In fact, its hard for me to so much as type the word that it is!

I am afraid of.........Spiders......

*Does icky girly spider dance for 10 mins*

A lot of people are afraid of spiders I hear you say, so why is my phobia so special? Well, its not the phobia, but the extremity of it.

For example, I cannot and will not kill a spider, because that would mean going somewhere near it! 

If I see a fake spider, even knowing it is fake, I cannot go near it or touch.
Not extreme enough?????

If I am reading a magazine and there is a picture of a spider in it, I will put the magazine down (throw it away wildly) and not read anymore.

Still not enough????

The other day a friend posted a picture of a spider on facebook and I almost dropped my phone. Only a survival instinct stopped that reaction ( I CANNOT live without my phone!) But, for the next hour or so, every time I picked up the phone I had the creepy spider feel in me & had to check that there were no spiders in the various plug in holes on my phone....

*Does icky girly spider dance again*

See, certifiably C.R.A.Z.Y!!!

Friday 24 August 2012

We're going to the chapel.....

Well....we are 10 weeks out from the BIG day! 

  • The wedding party is organised (minus 1 groomsman....& I am not letting that stress me!!)

  • The invitations have gone out....(and if everyone comes we won't have enough room to feed them all.....& I am not letting that stress me)

  • The outfits have been purchased (unless you are a groomsmen....& I am not letting that stress me!!!)

  • Venues, flowers, photographer, videographer, cake, hair and makeup, transport.....all organised (as far as I am aware.....& I am not letting the uncertainty stress me!!)

My sources of information have been a little different to what I expected. I bought a couple of magazines, flipped through them, entered some competitions, then threw them out...they had neither the information nor the inspiration I was looking for.

  • Facebook has been a great source of information. 

  • Pinterest....ah, Pinterest....where a girls dream becomes an image on the screen, a virtual pinboard.....which I then print and take to various suppliers and expect exactly the same results! Its great to have a visual aid when planning a wedding, that way there is no misunderstanding (thanks to my somewhat vague English at times, this is a good precaution!)

  • Websites, endless how to organise your wedding on a budget websites, with images, information, tips.....

  • Blogs, also a surprisingly good source of information. Blogs have given me ideas, tips I never thought of, such as making sure there are people actually organised to do all the little "no body thought of it & now its not done" type jobs...

Really it makes sense that I would plan and organise my wedding online. I am a girl of the now, all modern and up to date like..... (bah ha ha!!)

  • I met my lovely fiance on RSVP.

  • My bridal shower is being held online, through Facebook so I can include my friends both in real life and online, because they are all special to me.

  • I plan all my details via email and Facebook messaging.

  • I booked our honeymoon and all the fun stuff that goes with that online.

All that's missing really is Shane and I getting married via Skype. Not being actually together at the same place, but simply saying "I do" via video chat. Me walking down the aisle using a virtual person robot. But, really, some things are still much much better in person! How would we do the "you may now kiss the bride"?? Would Shane be kissing the monitor?!!!

So now, all thats left is the finer details. The ceremony, readings, who will read what, music, gifts, who will organise what on the day.....

Vows. Mine are written, (fiance's are not, as far as I am aware....& I am not letting that stress me!!)

I am booking in for facials, massages, manicures and pedicures, organising hens nights (minus my bridesmaids scattered over various parts of the country....& I am not letting that stress me!!) I figure if I plan the nice stuff for the 2 days leading up to the BIG day, I will relax and enjoy it. Who I am kidding?!! I am the biggest stress head known to man...but you cant blame a girl for trying!!  (hence the "I am not letting that stress me" mantra!!)

We still have a couple of surprises in store for our guests...but shhhh, not giving away of secrets now!!!

So the countdown is on......if you could do one thing for us....pray, send positive vibes, good karma, whatever it is you do, that our day will go smoothly and that we & our friends & family, have an enjoyable day (and if they don't.....I will not let that stress me!!!)

Tuesday 14 August 2012


When I was a single parent with Maddi, people used to always say to me "Oh, it must be so hard being a single parent. Having to do everything yourself".

My standard response was always "Oh, its no different than having a partner who works long hours or has to travel long distances"

I have now done parenting from scratch both a partnership and on my own. Truth be told, and the is just MY opinion.....

Being a single parent is easier.

Sounds bizarre, doesn't it. For me though, single parenting meant no other parent involved, at all - No interest, no visitations, no child support. It was literally just me and Maddi.

So, like a good essay writer, let me give you some examples, why this is so, IN MY OPINION/EXPERIENCE.

Firstly, the most obvious one for me. It was my way, my decisions. I didn't have to consult, discuss or compromise on the way I wanted to raise my child. What I wanted was what happened. Well, when Maddi let me have it my way anyhow! Often what I thought was right, what would work, was in fact the wrong thing. Then, that leads into the next mistakes were mine alone to deal with. No guilt over, "crap, now Ive done it"....Its going to take a week to break this habit, change this behaviour.....When there is 2 parents, if I make a mistake, it affects both of us.

Then there is the little, not necessarily good parenting, but reality none the less, things....

If I yelled at Maddi, there was no one around to make me feel bad for doing the wrong thing. If I was frustrated with her, I could put her in her cot and let her cry it out for 5 or 10 mins. I knew it wasn't going to hurt her, and in fact, in a lot of ways, I think it helped her as well as me. 

If she was having a bad night, she could sleep with me. In fact, she did sleep with me, virtually every night until she was well into school. It made her feel safe and secure, and if she was having a bad night, had a nightmare, was sick or just needed me, I was right there. No having to get up and down all night. 9 times out of 10, a cuddle with Mum was all she needed. If she cried all night, it was only me that she would bother, stress out and keep awake. The next day, I would just doze on the couch while she played in the lounge room.

I could still live my life and work at raising my child around my own needs/wants. Sounds selfish, doesn't it? It is. Sometimes I need time out, a break, to just pack up and go away for a few days. I used to do this all the time when it was just me and Maddi. I did work casually, and it fitted in well with my life. If my house was a mess for weeks on end, it didn't matter. It was just me & maddi. I would eventually send her to mums for the day and tackle it all in one go. Being only 2 of us, it was easy to keep on top of.

There are so many ways in which parenting, for me, was easier on my own....

Now there is not only Maddi & i to think about. There is Shane, and Molly and my Dad. What worked when it was just Maddi & I no longer does. My Dad cannot handle tough parenting, as in letting Molly cry, or me leaving her in her cot crying when I am stressed & need a time out. Shane usually can't leave her either. And when there are others in the house, neither can I. I wonder what they are thinking of me as a mother, I hate the idea that they would think I am a failure. I hate the feeling of being judged, whether I am or not, thats how I feel.

Parenting is tough. Sharing the responsibility makes it easier and harder. There are times when, if I didn't have Shane, I doubt I would have made it as Molly's Mum. She is one tough cookie. 

Mind you, having said all of the above.....

Having someone to hold me, comfort me, tell me & remind me I am a good mum helps, a lot. Being able to go "she's your daughter, you deal with it" is great too!! Having someone to discuss the things & issues you aren't sure of helps. 

Having someone to share the tough times with is great. Being able to share the load, the stress, the emotions. Having someone else feeling the same frustrations, upset, distress that you are, helps. 

Having someone to share the joys with is amazing! First words, milestones, first steps....all those things are amazing when shared with someone you love. Family outings to the park, church, the beach, out to lunch, the footy, are better as a family. The joy, the enjoyment, the memorable moments increases dramatically! Having someone share in the girls successes, including Maddi's, feeling that same pride, that same pure joy, is something that I wouldn't trade for the world!

Having someone to share the housework load is necessary when your family suddenly grows from 2 to 4 in the space of a few months!

What I am saying, I guess, is that for me, being a single parent was easy, sharing the responsibility is hard....but you know what? 

I wouldn't have it any other way!!!!

Thursday 9 August 2012

A new addition.....

So, because my life wasn't crazy hectic enough already, our family has a new member....

A beautiful 8 week old Australian Kelpie pup named Jasper.

He is so cute, and funny, and frustrating.

Adding this new pup to our house has, in many ways, been like adding a new baby, like the girls suddenly have a new sibling rather than a new pet. Suddenly I'm spending a LOT of time saying phrases such as: 

                                          "Jasper, no! Don't eat that toy"
"Molly, put that down! That is Jaspers toy!"
"Jasper! Don't bite Molly!"
"Molly! Don't pick Jasper up by the head!"
"Maddi, don't tease Jasper!"

or the classic

"don't make me come over there!"

The fun really starts though, when, after a LONG day the phrases start mixing, the tone starts blending and suddenly its:

"Molly! Come!"
"Maddi! Drop it!"
"Molly! Sit!"
  "Jasper....come here sweetie"

And suddenly you aren't even sure anymore if its the dog or the child you are even talking to!

Even more fun, was yesterdays outing to pick up Maddi from school. She desperately wanted us to bring Jasper in so she could show him off. Now, for those of you that don't know, Molly has her "duckie". It's a backpack in the shape of a duck, that has a lead (for lack of a better term!) attached. It means that she can wander around with us without the risk of running in front of a car, or disappearing at the shops. Molly loves her "duckie" because, to her it means freedom! 

So, there we are. Molly walking with duckie with Daddy...Jasper running around on his lead with me....I can only imagine what people were thinking!!

And suddenly night time is harder. The first night was good! Both Molly and Jasper slept well. This is a rarity for Molly, so it was extra special! Last night, not so great...Molly ended up in bed with me, and by early morning, Jasper was in the spare room bed with Shane....neither of us really got any sleep, but the babies slept well!

Next week our littlest family member will also be going to "school". So we have Maddi at Primary school, Molly at preschool & Jasper at Puppy school! Funny thing is, Jasper will graduate first!!!

So come spring we will be house training a puppy and toilet training a toddler...I'm wondering, if in a sleep deprived daze, how many times we will try to sit Jasper on the potty and take Maddi outside to "do her business"

But, having Jasper in our house has very much filled a void. We said goodbye to a precious family member a month ago, Kallie. She was 12 years old, and the best friend of every member of this family. She was family. It was a heartbreaking decision to say goodbye, but she was sick, losing control of her bodily functions and had arthritis in both her back legs. Suddenly there is a bit more life. Suddenly my Dad's face is a little brighter. I feel better knowing we aren't leaving Dad home "alone" when we all go out. Sounds weird, but it is a comfort that Jasper is here. Watching him play with Maddi and with Molly is heartwarming entertainment this family can only grow from. It brings us closer, makes us spend more time outside, together. 

What I do know for sure is, there will be lots of hard times, and LOADS of fun times and LOADS of laughs along the way, and I am happy to go through them all with my full, happy, healthy, family :)