About a quarter of a century ago my parents wisely bought a holiday house in a very unique part of the world. I have written here about my love of this place. Growing up we spent every summer down at the beach and, for me, it represents everything that is good about childhood. It’s where coast meets country and the air is filled with the scent of pine and salt. It’s my “sweet spot”. It’s where I go to reset, recharge and refocus. It’s where I go to relax. It’s where I go to regift the experiences that my parents gave to me. It’s my happy place….
Lately I’ve been enjoying a new hobby – photography. I love exploring how different techniques can bring a still to life. I’ve been experimenting with light, texture, angles and filters. And I’ve been obeying the most important rule in photography – get close, and then get closer! My girls are willing subjects for me and so I share with you some moments of time I have captured behind the lens. The challenge for me is taking a great photo without identifying my girls. I assure you I can frame a shot but for the purpose of my blog I crop their faces out! Here area a few of my favourite things:
The beautiful Miss A enjoying the last rays of the afternoon autumn sun. I love how her dress sparkles in these shots – the light was just perfect at the time.
Many bloggers do this thing called “Wordless Wednesday” and today I am getting on board. As the name suggests, it’s a post with few words. Today I’ve decided to let my pictures do the talking. Here’s how Miss A and I spent our morning.
Some of you may be wondering where hubby and I escaped to on our 9-day adventure sans kids. I mentioned we were travelling to the US but I didn’t say where. Much as I wished it was an exciting city like New York or San Francisco, it was not. We went to Detroit. You may ask why? Understandably so. It’s hardly a tourist destination and won’t be making any Top Cities of the World lists. But we did not go to Motor City for a holiday. It’s fair to say we are facing a major life decision as hubby has been offered a job there. But that’s another post altogether! For now, let me share with you my musings on Michigan.
I have travelled to the US several times, for both work and pleasure. I’ve been to Seattle, New York and Chicago (pleasure) and Nashville, Huntsville and Las Vegas (work). I am both fascinated and perplexed by the States but there’s a lot to love….
We’ve just arrived home after eight glorious days at the beach. This beach is the most magical place. Regular readers of this blog will know my deep attachment to it. It’s a special spot on the mornington peninsula where life slows down; a place of rest and reflection.It draws me in the moment I arrive and smell the pine and salty air. I am my most relaxed self when I am there with my extended family. I feel so lucky that I get to return to the place that filled my childhood with so many happy experiences. And now I am creating new memories with my own children. A generation on, it remains my “happy place”.
I think the best part about a holiday is slow mothering. Having Mr NASD to share the load means that I can switch gears and shed some of the frenzy that usually accompanies solo parenting. Being on holiday also means relaxing the rules a bit – later bedtimes, meals thrown together at the last minute, a quick hose down instead of a bath, and generally less stress about routines. As someone who likes to be in control all the time, and a self-confessed routine enthusiast, I love how I relax when I am not moving or mothering to a schedule….
Last night, hubby and I saw The Haunting of Daniel Gartrell at our local theatre. The cast comprised two well-known Aussie actors, Max Gilles and Samuel Johnson. It was outstanding. The script, performances and clever plot made for a spectacular and riveting piece of suspenseful theatre. But this is not a theatre review.
At the end of the play, lead actor, Samuel Johnson, bolted from the wings to the foyer to deliver an important message. As the audience left the theatre, Samuel implored everyone to stay for a few extra minutes so he could share a story close to his heart. We were intrigued so we stayed. Luckily most of the audience stayed too. And this is what he shared:…
As nature bursts into new life, spring is the ideal time to give yourself an internal and external makeover. Spring is synonymous with new beginnings, change and growth. Burst into new life with this emotional and physical makeover. It’s time to clear out the cobwebs and create a healthier body and mind. Even if it is not spring at your location, these seven simple steps will help recreate your life.
Spring Clean your Life in 7 easy steps
1. De-clutter your mind
Is your inner critic getting you down? You know: that little voice in your head constantly pointing out your deficiencies and weaknesses. “Everyone experiences the inner critic in some form,” says coach and author of The Confidence Workout, Michelle Landy. The key is to transform that negative energy into self-belief….
If you’re a woman then the chances are you will be familiar with the expression ‘Having it all.’ It’s rather an overused phrase used to describe the push and pull of family life and the pursuit of “balance”. Editors know that by putting “Can women really have it all?” in a headline, the magazine will sell itself.
It is a question that incites a lot of debate. Can women really have it all—balance a professional career and family – and do a great job at both? Recently I was asked what the term ‘having it all’ means to me. Instead of being interviewer, I became interviewee and I shared my feelings in an article that you can read here. I was one of five different people from very different walks of life to share my definition of having it all….
There is a saying exchanged amongst married men that goes something like this: Happy wife, happy life! The chances are you have heard it. And perhaps there is some truth to it -the men obviously think so. But what happens when kids come along? Does the code change?
I believe that happy kids = happy mum; and happy mum = happy hubby; and happy hubby = happy family; and happy family = happy life. Sounds simple enough right? But there’s something wrong with this order. The evidence strongly suggests that kids respond positively to happy parents. If they sense frustration, conflict or despondence, this can have a knock-on effect to their self-esteem as well as their behaviour. We need to be happy within ourselves first. So, how to be a happier mum?…
“You can’t have ecstasy without agony,” said the midwife to me whilst I was in the throes of transitional labour. She was trying to be encouraging, but at that stage I couldn’t see any relief in sight and I wanted to skip the agony part and get straight to the ecstasy! I realised, later, that she was right. The pain and pleasure were intimately linked and I needed to endure one to experience the other. In a similar way, the dichotomy of pain and pleasure typifies the motherhood experience.
One of the things I find interesting about mothering is that the very source of your happiness can also be a source of frustration and suffering. Motherhood is layered with complexity; it connects you with feelings and emotions that are new and raw, and these emotions seesaw continuously. Part of the problem, perhaps, lies in our expectations. We tend to think we should be enjoying motherhood all the time, particularly if it is something we have yearned for. So, we often feel guilty when we feel unhappy….