May 2011 ~ My IdeaLife

Superwomen have it all by NOT doing it all

Superwoman really don't exist, it's more like Insanitywoman, so stop pretending and start outsourcing...Read more...

The love of your life

Is it a man, is it a career, no it's superbaby!...Read more...

A lifetime of beauty in a song

Middle East (the band not the place) have somehow condensed the human experience into this soulful song: Blood...Read more...

Thursday, 26 May 2011

that light at the end of the tunnel...it may be just a train

My GP said this to me this morning and it's not yet certain whether she is extremely insightful or some type of witch doctor that cursed me because the rest of the day so far has confirmed that the light everyone refers to at the end of the proverbial tunnel is in fact a train about to run us down. 

So things have been tough lately, my country-bred husband got sick and that never happens, he even went to the doctor which is also pretty rare and asked for antibiotics. As his course finished my eldest screamed his way through a suspected ear drum perforation Friday night and was promptly prescribed antibiotics the next day. The GP appointment I booked on Tuesday for my normal doctor to check what the local toupee-wearing medical centre practitioner had prescribed turned into a mercy dash for my youngest who was also put on antibiotics.
Add to this me being sick while all this is going on and my brain deciding that keeping me awake from 1-4am every night would be a good way to fight whatever viral or bacterial infection I was harboring and you'd think you'd have that train heading my way. Well we're not quite at the trainwreck stage yet. 

After another terrible night consisting of 4 hours of broken sleep, a constant headache and stiff neck I woke begging my husband to work from home to help. He looked as bad as I felt, so obliged. Am trying to get minutes more sleep when I hear the familiar sound of a chair scraping on tiles. Knowing that my husband is changing my eldest I know it's our 8 month old trying to climb on the kids table and chairs. So I jump up and run down the hall only to watch in slow motion him keeling over backwards, chair on top of him. Tears and screaming ensue. Still no train though, just a gentle Thomas-like 'hoot-hoot' in the distance maybe. 

Still feeling like death warmed up I start on feeding the bub and master 2 turns up, chirpy and chipper thank god, and keen to eat his oats. 'Wow, things are looking up' I think, little did I know. So both are now fed but my stay-at-home-to-help husband has disappeared. Now if you've read my previous posts you know this is usual so I suspect nothing and just get mad, and get even madder when I find him in bed. 'What are you doing?' I bark. I'm so cheesed off, 'I'm in flu-hell and he decides he needs a lie down' I fume. 

Next thing he's on the loo, then he's in bed again, then he's on the loo, then he's in bed. So I ease up figuring he must be a little sick so leave him to rest until I have to go to the GP. At this point he's making me look like a picture of good health, still a little mad and not very sympathetic I ask if he is well enough to look after Master 2, he groans which is not much use and I'm running late as usual. So I sternly say 'It looks as though you won't be able to look after him, can you please answer yes or no.' He feebly responds ' I think it would be best if you took him with you.' So off we go to the GPs, again. (I swear the receptionist will be asking us over for dinner soon I know her so well).

Get to GPs five minutes late but spy a parking spot within metres of the surgery - score! I brake, put my blinker on and put car into reverse and wait as is customary in case the car behind wants to go around me to get the lights, which happen to be green. This is all not good enough for Mr. tradie in white, beat-up ute. He pulls up almost to my bumper and expects that his intimidating carry on will make me give up the park and allow him to get the lights. He doesn't know the morning that I've had, so I begin to reverse into the park, he still doesn't move. I wind down my window and ask him to move back. He pretends he's forgotten where reverse is and throws his hands in the air. I motion a distance of 10 cms and not sure whether it was the wild look in my eye or what, but he found reverse and I parked the car. And all I can say is he's lucky the lights changed again or he would have got an earful from a mad woman with a toddler in her arms as I walked past him. 

Doctors' appointment was usual - you rush to get there and then wait for 20mins trying to keep a toddler from licking chairs and disease-infested toys. When I got home is really when the train hit. By now it is lunchtime and having convinced my toddler not to do some 'driving*' and come straight upstairs for lunch, I was feeling hopeful again until I saw my husband, who was sort of green-coloured (this is not normal) and was shuffling down the hallway. I got the kids seated and food in front of them, hubby was trying to help but he then sort of jogged off towards the bathroom and the sounds that emerged. O.M.G it was awful - he was so sick, this time heaving up incessantly. I ran to his aid and felt terrible for being nothing but a biatch all morning. On returning to the table to sounds of 'Ohhhhh nooooo, Ohhhhh noooo' I saw my toddler pointing to my bub who had managed to grab his food bowl and with great satisfaction was decorating himself, the table, the floor and the highchair with a pumpkin concoction.

I got my husband some water and helped him to bed, I cleaned up the baby and his surrounds, I bundled up my toddler and put him to bed. I got the baby's bottle and put him to bed. I breathed a sigh of relief and went to the kitchen to clean up. Everything was starting to feel normal and calm, the dishwasher was on and I started filling the sink to wash the bottles and teats. Suddenly the spout flew off and a fountain of water blasted a metre into the air. In the seconds it took me to turn the tap off the window, the floor, the bench, the appliances and I were soaked. 

Tap looking innocent...don't be fooled

Normally at this point you laugh because if you didn't, you'd cry. I didn't laugh I just stood in shock and then got some paper towel and mopped some of it up, but then I knew what I had to do. I had to make myself a cup of tea, find some chocolate and sit down and write a blog post. Now that's done I can laugh and I do although somewhat hysterically, which I suppose is normal given my day.




*Driving consists of toddler insisting on climbing into front seat as soon as we park in the garage and staying there for at least 10mins. Mama has to sit in the passenger seat and turn the vanity light on and off, before luring him upstairs with offers of food or 'toot-toots'.
© MyIdeaLife 2011

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Who's the party for, when they're still under four?

Nothing new to see here as am feeling guilty again *boring*. This time it's in addition to the usual suspects:
- telling off husband in front of the boys (swear words may or may not have been involved)
- ignoring not one but two whinging children for 20mins who had both awoken early from their afternoon naps
- rushing bedtime so I can sit down and relax

The list goes on but I'd rather you didn't lose the will to live, so the reason I'm feeling guilty today because I saw a photo of my boy looking at the party happening in front of him with a frown.

This was meant to be my birthday boy, at his party - enjoying himself. Doesn't look like it does it? Between rushing around getting people drinks and catching up I noticed that he was surveying the relatively 'out-of-control' scene a lot of the time rather than joining in. I wondered what he was thinking. A few things came to my guilty mind like, ‘Who are half these kids fighting over my toys?’ or ‘Why aren’t Marlowe or Helena from kindy here?’

It’s hard to admit but when I look back on this party there were only a few things that were really for him, namely the cake, that he adored (see below), the balloons, which you may have already heard about and the presents, which he is still enjoying. The rest was for adults, two in particular: his parents. It was a chance for us to catch up with friends, utilise our newly renovated backyard, and let our hair down, well as much as you can with two very little humans to sustain.


It made me rethink the whole party thing prior to the fourth birthday, and I was all ready to try this scrooge-like approach out on our second bub who’s not yet one. Then my hubby said "what about the photos? he’ll look back and say ‘Why didn’t you have any parties for me like you did for my brother?’” So in the spirit of equality I may have to have another fun adult event for a little person who may or may not enjoy it and will definitely not remember it. If I had my time again I think I’d probably alternate years and skip the two-year birthday. Or would I? He did love that cake and his smile was unmistakable when everyone sang him Happy Birthday...mmmnnnnnn.

What do you think? Are there better ways to celebrate when they’re under four?
Have your say on my Facebook Poll



© My IdeaLife 2011, All rights reserved

Saturday, 14 May 2011

How long is a piece of balloon string? and more importantly what colour?

My first baby boy turned two yesterday. TWO! I can't believe it's been two whole years since I met first met him, coughing and spluttering after being dragged into being. What a blur of love, tears, awe, wonderment and it seems balloon ribbon choices. It's with shame I admit I spent at least 3 minutes discussing the balloon ribbon colour with a long suffering, yet very patient, party warehouse employee. You see we threw my boy a bit of a do today and being who I am I wanted everything to be just so. 

The balloon ribbon conundrum basically went something like: 
LS Employee: Do you want to match the ribbon colour to the balloon?
Me: Errrr(pause length not commensurate with level of decision)rrrrrrrrr - matching... no wait, make that contrasting....actually no...can I do both?
LS Employee: Sure, we'll just choose the ribbon randomnly
Me: Sorry, I know this is a little tragic, but do most people choose matching ribbon?
LS Employee: No no it's probably more common but contrasting is often chosen (pause) but most people do choose one or the other. 
Me: Ok
LS Employee: One last question do you want metallic or matte ribbon?
Me(certain this time): Matte
LS Employee: Ok so will send you an email conf..
Me: Sorry, sorry I know this is probably very annoying and I can't believe I'm worried about the bloody balloon ribbon, I mean it's a two year old's party...
LS Employee: Don't worry I have a two year old too, I understand
Me: So I'm not being completely mental? 
LS Employee: No, no I know how you feel
Me: Thanks, well I think I'll go back to the contrasting ribbon only
LS Employee:  Ok done. 
Me: So yellow with blue, blue with red...
LS Employee: Yes that's right. 

The poor girl was obviously the consummate customer service person because in the face of my obvious neurosis she was completely lovely. Maybe she felt pity for me because despite her sharing motherhood of a two year old with me, she's never caught herself mulling over ribbon colour, let alone needing to specify what colour should go with what. I don't know - she was just nice in the face of my insanity. 


Anyway the balloons looked great, (needless to say they would have looked great with matching ribbon also). My son had a great time, and was still singing happy birthday to you before bed tonight. The kids played nicely for the majority of the time, there was only one poo incident and the cake was the most popular attraction of the day (in fact possibly worthy of it's own post). Even my hubby looked happy despite whinging about the cost of the event for weeks*.

As soon as the last guests left I of course took to my bed, well not straight away as had to put two other little worn out humans to bed first, I think it all was too much for me. 'It' of course, being the balloon ribbon choice. LOL.

Has anyone else taken the finer details of a party,
their child won't even remember, a little far?


*It only cost too much because of the gift (a Thomas play table and set) that my hubby actually chose - go figure!

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Time for Mother's Day

If someone asks me what’s the one thing in the whole world that I want for Mother's Day I wouldn’t hesitate: 
I want 24 hours to myself.

I can’t imagine the luxury of it, what a dream come true – all I would need is a hotel room with a kingsize bed, a bath, an internet connection and my own company.

Rewind three years and I wanted a whole raft of things, I wanted to earn big money and climb the corporate ladder, I wanted to have the latest designer clothes, I wanted a big house in the right suburb, I wanted to have a great body, I wanted to be popular and invited to exclusive events. I wanted to win awards and be famous within my industry. I wanted so much.

Now I’d be happy if I could shower every day. 

This basic desire got me thinking about time, ‘If only I had a few more hours a day, I could definitely fit in that evasive shower and god forbid a long hot bath’. Of course wishing for time is like wishing I could fly – it’s only going to happen in my dreams or so I thought? It turns out time can be slowed in a few ways:  
  1. Hang out on a neutron star where the gravitational force is significantly stronger than on Earth,
  2. Accelerate towards the speed of light OR 
  3. Lay down richer memories
I'm no physicist so option 3. caught my attention. Scientists investigating whether people in danger actually experience time in slow motion, discovered that volunteers did perceive time as slower by about 30% during the experiment. ('Imagine what you could do with 30% more time?!' I marveled) 

Such time warping seemed to be an illusion caused by human memory. Researcher, David Eagleman, a neuroscientist at Baylor College of Medicine said the illusion "is related to the phenomenon that time seems to speed up as you grow older. When you're a child, you lay down rich memories for all your experiences; when you're older, you've seen it all before and lay down fewer memories. Therefore, when a child looks back at the end of a summer, it seems to have lasted forever; adults think it zoomed by."[i]

The irony of parenthood is that it is an incredibly rich source of memories and yet everyone talks of it flying by. Does that mean we are not recording the moments? Or do we need to throw ourselves out of a plane to scare ourselves slowly? I’m not about to risk my life to test this theory but I am definitely guilty of wishing time away, all the while desperate for it to slow down so I can get off for a minute.

Shot on location at Brown Brothers Winery, Victoria, 2005
I thought I was busy then...I wasn't.

So for Mother’s Day give me time:

Time to sleep
Time to play
Time to notice
Time to enjoy
Time to write
Time to read
Time to record the beautiful memories unfolding in front of me everyday
Time to slow down.


What do you want for Mother's Day?

[i] Why Time Seems to Slow Down in Emergencies
Charles Q. Choi, 11 December 2007, www.livescience.com

Copyright © 2011 My IdeaLife. All rights reserved.