Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Please DO NOT keep reading if you are easily offended...

Please Do NOT keep reading if you don't like swear words.

Please DO NOT keep reading if you are sensitive.


I can handle constructive criticism.. welcome it even... I can use all the help I can get.

BUT PLEASE DO NOT TAKE WHAT I AM ABOUT TO SAY THE WRONG WAY...  and please believe me when I say this is NOT a personal attack on ANYONE... just my thoughts, musings, views and beliefs at THIS precise moment in time...

Please do not keep reading if you are already bored... and don't like whingeing... 'cos THIS is going to get MESSY... deep, dark and meaningful... and rude even. ;)

I am using CAPS in the hope that you will GET what I mean... YES!  When I use caps I AM shouting or emphasising at the very least.  When I use "!!!!" it means I really, really mean it... and when I do this ";)"  it means I am "winking"... trying to make a bit of a joke... but I still mean it... but you know, in a tongue in cheek sort of way, giving you a nudge in the ribs, punch on the shoulder in a fun way to say hey, you get me right?

Anyway, look away now for those who are feint of heart. Bare with me those of you whose curiosity I have piqued.  ;)

Lately I have become disillusioned and disheartened... the world around us seems not such a great place to me to be raising five children in... and I feel like I haven't done all the things I wanted to... I haven't achieved all the plans and goals and dreams and hopes I had.

I do believe there are more good people than bad out there but I am a cynic... or rather cynical... especially of the #3. variety about almost everything we are told to believe in and how to live our lives.  This woman is about the only one who gives me any hope that things can in fact be natural for our children's sake. ;)


  [sin-i-kuhl]  Show IPA
like or characteristic of a cynic distrusting or disparagingthe motives of others.
showing contempt for accepted standards of honesty ormorality by one's actions, especially by actions that exploitthe scruples of others.
bitterly or sneeringly distrustful, contemptuous, or pessimistic.

I try not to be, but sadly for me, I am discovering that I really AM my father's daughter.  He is the quintessential pessimist.  He would call himself a realist.  Now, growing up I never considered myself pessimistic.  In fact, quite the opposite.  I was one of these lucky kids who had a wonderful, care free, mostly footloose and fancy free childhoods.  You know, just like the Facebook status quote: 

"If you played in the dirt, got smacked when you misbehaved, had 4 TV channels (& no remote) [actually we had 2], school days started with assembly, shops were closed Sunday, recorded the top 40 from the radio by blocking the holes in the cassette, drank water from the tap, when street lights came on it was time to go home, and you turned out ok, please repost".

Yep, that was ME.  Couldn't have asked for a better childhood.  Full of promise for a wonderful future.  I only wish I could provide one just like it for my own children to enjoy (another bone of contention but I will save that for another post).

You know the thing about good mums?

My Mum was one of those... well to me at least.  I can't speak for the other four of them... I suspect a couple of them at least have "issues". ;)  Anyway, her house was never spotless... there was always kids coming and going and crap everywhere... there was quite often fights and screaming matches... there was most definitely room for improvement in the scheduling department... but we ALWAYS had a good meal on the table, clean clothes to wear and a warm bed to sleep in.  I think I had a fabulous childhood.  I mean, hey, look how great I turned out! ;)  

Guess what?  I have THE dirtiest oven you ever saw and this morning I was wearing socks and no shoes and I SWEAR  I stuck to the floor so bad that it pulled my sock clean off!  This afternoon no homework is getting done, my kitchen looks like a bomb went off and I am typing this instead of organising dinner... but my kids had a ball making cupcakes... all by themselves... I just helped eat them! ;)  Yep, my kids ARE happy... when I am not bitching at them.  Surely that gives me some points on the board? Shouldn't we be measuring our success in terms of happiness, fulfilment and contentment? Not $$$ and material things????

BUT... Lately it seems everything I touch, try to do or see is either too hard, too expensive, too difficult or just plain old too much!  I feel like everything is a fight, every single, little step of the way... and it wears you down.  Deep down to the bones.  Most people at this point will say... "Oh, but you have 5 children.  OF COURSE you are going to find it difficult."  

AND YES! I agree... 5 children IS crazy.... seriously, I mean it... you'd have to be a fucking nutter to have 5 kids...  BUT when you KNOW you can "do better" it is little consolation.  It's bullshit.  For the most part I like to think I am that chick who seems to have it all together... a little nutty maybe... a little out there... a little (ok, A LOT) too opinionated and verbal about it... but the one who holds her shit together and just gets on with it.  I cannot STAND being "pitied".  Mostly I think I pull it off...MOST of the time... just get on with it...  just fucking do it... just make it happen... and it really isn't always that tough when I just go with the flow and let things be... well, organic... but you know sometimes I just hit the wall... and well, things get FUCKED UP! 

So what's prompted this?  Lately I have been really questioning a lot of "stuff" in my life... You know the BIG STUFF... the "Who am I?" and "Why am I here?" stuff.  Can anyone say "mid-life crises"????

  • Life choices... the good, the bad and the ugly
  • Where I am "at"?
  • Where have I been?
  • Where the hell did these 5 kids come from?
  • WHERE the FUCK am I going?
  • How am I going to get there?
  • FUCK ME there is just too much in my way to ever get there!
  • What the FUCK was I thinking?
  • Have I in fact woken up in a parallel universe and / or someone else's body?
  • Arrrrrrrrrhhh FUCK IT, I think I'll just stay in bed.
Now the thing is all this has led me to start seeing things differently... opening my mind and heart to alternative points of view.  I have been talking to people... gathering opinions and information... reading blogs... (this chick is a crack up if you are requiring a little comic relief by now) and getting my head around stuff... LOTS of stuff.

There have been a few things of late that have been signs as far as I am concerned... pointing me in a particular direction.  These were a few of the more obvious ones:

A while ago now Nicole Pomeroy hit the nail on the head for me with this post.  Did I tell you lately that I love you Nicole? ;)

Then a few weeks ago I had a really good conversation on Facebook with Kirsty Campbell.  This chick rocks and inspires... and most importantly of all she shares... her experiences and feelings and beliefs.  It [SHE] got me really motivated to change the direction (or lack there of) I was heading in... I have procrastinated on this... but I think Kirsty is completely right... when the time is right it I WILL do it and make it happen.

Then last night I had a really interesting conversation on Facebook with a REAL and gutsy chick called Crystal Goulding who I have the utmost respect for... because she has the balls to talk about her depression and share... real, down to earth honesty.

While talking to her I started thinking about times when I felt my lowest and really struggled to make myself just barely function.  I don't think I suffer depression... no, I don't think I am in denial... but I do think I have glimpses of it... I just refuse to succumb to it for fear I may never pull myself out of the abyss.  Post natal depression was just not an option for me... there was no-one to fall in a heap upon.  Practical to a fault.. my husband had to work, he couldn't stay home one minute longer.  The mantra "just get up and get on with it" has been running through my head since I was a small child... my mother was ever the pragmatist.  The stupid thing is that I can sympathise and support other people but never myself.   My saving grace I believe has been my ability to recognise those feelings when they overcome me and positive self talk... I just kept telling myself.. you CAN do this, you WILL do this... and most importantly of all, "this too will pass".  (Thank you Joanne, fellow twin mumma, for that little pearl of wisdom that I think on more than one occasion has saved both me and my children much anguish)... PLUS I think I am just so insanely tired that I feel like a cannot take one more step... the irony is I suffer insomnia... so yeah, things get FUCKED UP.

The stupid thing is right, the thing that set me off on this tirade was this blog post... now this is the bit where I beg of you please DO NOT take this the wrong way... I am NOT attacking the Super Organised Mum... I think she is rather clever and I am sure she is a lovely lady... apparently she lives not far from me... and in another life I probably would have liked to have been her friend.  I have never been a huge fan of her blog or anything but I admit I would like to get my shit together a bit more and be a little more on top of things so I have on occasion read her posts and thought, "oh yeah, that's a good idea"... but I don't think I have ever really gotten past the actual thinking it was a good idea and putting it into practice stage... preferring to live vicariously through her efforts (this is a recurring theme for me... Biggest Loser, Masterchef, The Amazing Race, Survivor, The Block... love 'em all... means I don't have to actually get off my fat arse and do it though)...

BUT anyway I got to thinking... maybe I should worry about giving my poor neglected husband more HEAD JOBS first... then cleaning / tidying / ironing / organising second.  I MEAN WHAT THE FUCK!  Being organised is NOT more important to me than my actual life.  The last 3 or 4 years I have spent my life feeling overwhelmed and out of control... like I don't do enough... trying to get my shit together, schedule better, be more organised, menu plan, pack healthy lunch boxes blah, blah fucking blah.  All the while my darling husband has said, "Don't stress, it will be ok.  Why do you do this to yourself (us)? Just come to bed babe... and give me a head job!" ;) By the way, that *wink* means he did not say that literally... but he sure as hell meant it... simple man my husband, dinner on the table, clean work clothes, a cuddle and some lovin' every now and then and he will move the earth for me... I don't know why I constantly demand more... our relationship is just fine when I let it be... and stop worrying about everything being perfect and clean and prim and proper and organised!

I have therefore come to the conclusion that this whole super organised thing is just another load of crap they (as in the corporate "they")  are trying to sell us... just like being thin, driving the right car,  having a spotless home, being green, making sure our children eat the right thing, do enough homework, get straight As, wear a hat, put on sunscreen, don't let your kid out of your sight for a nanosecond, be involved in enough STUFF!!! blah, blah, MORE fucking blah... do you think OUR parents worried about half the shit we do?  Do you think YOU grew up ok?  What I am getting at is all this "stuff" we have taken on board... all this stress and extra (stupid and unnecessary) worry... do you really think it makes us better parents?  Do you think it makes our children grown into better people?  Do you think our world is a better place for it?  I sure as shit do NOT.  If it's not working then why, oh why do we persist in pursuing these unrealistic and just plain fucking stupid goals?  Seriously, it's just insane.

So... here is a heads up... you wanna be "more organised"?  Then NEVER FUCKING SIT DOWN! Seriously, if I spend ALL day... and I mean ALL day... from 6am until 2am the NEXT day (and often beyond)... folding, sorting, washing, cooking, feeding, changing nappies, paying bills, going shopping, cleaning etc etc etc...  then the house stays ok.  Not perfect, but ok... acceptable... just!  How the hell I ever did all that AND held down a full time job beats the shit outta me! Well, I did only have 1 child back then granted but still... fucked if I know how everything still managed to get done.  Ah but there's the thing... not EVERYTHING did get done... not every day in any case... but it got done enough.  No child starved, no husband missed out on a head job and I even felt good about myself most of the time.

Don't get me wrong... if being organised is your thing... and it works for you... and it makes you (and your husband and kids if you have them) happy then go for it... but if it is just another source of discontentment and frustration... if you are working harder at staying organised than you are enjoying your life... then it just ain't worth it!   LET IT GO I say.  I am. ;)

Obviously I mean within reason... I'm not suggesting you send you kids to school in dirty clothes... I'm not suggesting they NEVER do homework... I'm not suggesting you never mop your floor or clean your toilet... I'm not suggesting you eat cupcakes for dinner every night (but once in a while is fun!)... but you know what I mean... just let the reins loose once in a while... and don't beat yourself up about it.

So here's my advice...  More head jobs less "organising".

Go ask your husband... I BET my bottom dollar he will agree. ;)

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Tomorrow's Memories

Mel Connell and Evana Willis have some simply gorgeous classes coming up at Tomorrow's Memories.  If you are looking for some inspiration give the store a call and book your place.

I have also just finished putting together a take home kit that is available for purchase from the store.  It's a quick, simple way to just get those photos scrapped without too much effort.

Not much else to report... the snot train has well and truly arrived at my house and doesn't look like it will be departing any time soon. We have been in the wars a bit around here... coughs and colds and no voices... trips to the doctor and antibiotics for me and Miss D who stepped on a hot ember and burned in between her toes... then ran and jumped on my bed and hit her face and grazed and bruised her cheek really badly on the foot of my bed... slow down dear child, your poor mother cannot take much more of this.  Then Albert decided to take a swan dive off the chair at Miss C's class assembly... and screamed the entire place down (he was fine, thank god)... BUT then came home, promptly fell over and split his bottom lip open... poor little man.  :(

Other than that not much happening really. I am counting down the days until Camp Mojo... I am so looking forward to this break.  It is really the first time I have ever been anywhere on my own... the first time away from my kids and husband...  DH and I DID go to Adelaide without the (then 3) kids for four days back in 2006... but this is the first time I have ever been anywhere without any of them...  it is the first scrapbooking retreat I have ever been on... the first time I will get to meet in real life a whole heap of amazingly talented chickies that I have been chatting online to for the past 5 or so years... it is going to be fabulous and I cannot wait! ;)

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Some more {old} LOs

Going RETRO! ;)

I don't think I have ever actually posted these here... I did them ages ago for Embellished before it changed hands.  They are still some of my favourite LOs (and products).  These first two are back to back on a single sheet of (old) Sassafras Lass patterned paper.

This one was using the (very old!) love elsie (Elsie Flannigan) Forrest range from KI Memories

More love elsie from the Betty range (I told you they were OLD!) and Hambly Screen Prints... HSP are still one of my favourite products EVER! ;)  This photo was taken just after I fell pregnant with Austin and Albert... and I was yet to find out I was in fact pregnant! ;)

I hope I have inspired you to pull some REALLY old stuff out of your stash and get scrapping! ;)

Thanks for stopping by... ;)

Sunday, 5 June 2011

a {BIG} Lil' Somethin' in my mail box

... finally has me creating again!

Thank you so much for such a wonderful and VERY generous {SUR}prize chickie babes! ;)

A Lil' Somethin' is AWESOME!

I haven't been this excited about a product for ages and I am not just saying that because I won either! ;)
I REALLY love them... and I NEVER buy yellow.  Never really liked it... but these gorgeous embellies have me changing my view on that! ;)

Look out for the girls' next release... I for one will be camping out on their door (blog) step! ;)

Thanks for stopping by.
Scrappy goodness to you! ;)