Cups of Tea

I read an interesting blog the other day and it got me thinking. The main message was that you may not be everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s ok. 

It’s an interesting way to frame it. It made me think of actual tea and how my mood determines what kind of tea I’m after at that moment, and the same goes for the people I surround myself with, there’s the core group, but within the group there’s the chamomile – the person you know that will help chill you down, the fruity ice tea – the person whose always good fun even if it’s just on a summers day and the black tea – the staple go to on a daily basis. 

It made me think of those teas that you take a sip and think straight away, that ones not one for me. And we’ve all had those moments when meeting people. I guess the point of view I’d never considered before was that I may not be everyone’s cup of tea. It’s confronting. Being ok with that may be a gradual process. It’s a great prospective to have and to refer back to. 

Food for thought. 

<insert witty tea reference … nope I’ve got nothing 😂>

Advertisements

Mothers Group for 1

I sit here in a cafe ordering a muffin and a coffee, we’re going to call this morning Mothers group for 1. As a second time Mum I was unsure if I needed a mothers group because I’d been there and done that. It turns out you’re never too experienced to get something out of a new tribe of women. 

Today though when my little one woke with a runny nose I knew the catch up planned wasn’t going to work. As a second time Mum I know kids get sick, it seems like they get sick often! But I won’t be the Mum that exposes a bunch of baby’s to germs – even though the chances are they’ll get sick soon too – from someone else’s bugs. I don’t want the new mums cursing me at midnight as they tend to their snuffled up babe. 

So I sit here with my coffee and muffin hoping my babe will fall asleep in her pram, thinking one of the big differences between new mums and second mums is the “rush”. The first time mums have been keen to try activities with the mothers group. Whereas I’m keen for now for the mothers group to be about the mums, coffee and catch ups, bubs sleeping in prams or playing with toys on the grass. If the kids aren’t on the move why not lap up these waning weeks and let the catch ups be for us. As not a new Mum I know that once the kids are on the move the game changes and then life is all about keeping our babes happy and entertained. But for now let’s be selfish, let’s let these mornings be for us, god knows having company one morning a week is something to look forward to, let’s not hurry this stage of mummyhood. 

So today with my babe and her runny nose, we will sit and chill in a cafe, babe sleeping in her pram and mumma in blogging land, lapping it up. 

Excess – Mum Life #1

Being excessive, it’s something I’ve been accused of. Loving things that are excessive. It came as a shock. First it was the unnecessary birthday party for my daughter, next it was liking an expensive children’s boutique. 

It’s a funny thing perception. A persons perception of how things are, or how a person is. 

Initially I stepped back and analyzed why someone would have a problem with me throwing a birthday for my child. The conclusion I drew was perhaps they didn’t want to do a birthday party for their own child and felt they in some way needed to justify that decision. The thing that people would understand if they actually got to know me is that I roll to the beat of my own drum, and Im not likely to cast judgement on what someone does or doesn’t do, we are all on our own unique journeys. It puzzled me why someone would have a problem with something I chose to do, sure I had a newborn baby, sure I made an effort to cook food and make a cake but again that’s just me, I like to challenge myself and I like nothing more than hosting – something we used to do in our pre child days ALL THE TIME! It’s funny how doing something we love for someone we love could be seen as excessive. I mean when Miss 3 asked if we could have a bouncy castle or unicorns (ponys dressed up as unicorns) I drew the line. 

The liking a particular store blew me away. I bet if I was to ask 100 women if they liked a particular brand of handbag they’d say yes, that’s not to say they would all go to that store on a regular basis and make a purchase. *shakes head* I was actually dumbfounded that something so trivial could be turned against me in such a negative way. 

Excess..or being excessive is not something I would classify myself as. I sniff out bargains like a drug sniffer dog, I worked out today it has been 5 months since I last had my hair cut or coloured. That my friends is not being excessive! 

I wonder how our world would be for us Queens if we all just decided to get on with our own lives, be happy with the decisions we made, supported one and other on this crazy journey. 

Things that are saving my life ~ 2 kids 8 weeks in

8 weeks into being a family of 4 and there’s some things which I’m even more in love with than I first thought. 

Our Smart Tv, a few months back we had to replace our tv (which was only 3 years old, apparently this is normal nowadays but it totally pissed me off – Anyhoo) we bought a smart tv and boy am I’m glad we did. At the touch of a button I can launch Netflix, you tube and any of the catch up tv websites – so if I’ve gone to bed early with the new baby never fear when we get up somewhere in the early hours we can watch that prime time show we’d missed because we were snoozing! Now that’s winning. The other benefit of You Tube on the tv is that Miss almost 3 has a new love for kids yoga so with a few clicks I can bring up her favourite “frozen yoga” – yes there is such a thing and yes it keeps her occupied for at least half an hour! Now that’s winning!  

The next thing is my FITBIT I never thought that a. I would wear one and b. That I would be addicted but both are true. Firstly it tracks my sleep which I love, having broken nights sleep sucks but it comes with the territory, the beauty of the sleep tracker is that it tells you how much sleep you’ve had even if it’s broken sleep. I’ve found the nights where I’ve had little sleep I’ve been able to recognize this and make a point of daytime catch ups. It’s not just the sleep tracker that’s great there are so many awesome features to write about, but if your keen to keep active and are easily addicted/motivated by stats then it’s the product for you. I even wore mine during labour out of curiosity – but that’s a whole blog post on its own! 

Our Slow Cooker, seriously this thing saves my sanity every time I use it. Throw a bunch of things in there when you can find 5 minutes when your baby/kids are occupied and come 5.30pm dinner will be ready. It’s like a magical unicorn has rode into your home delivering food that tastes like you’ve been slaving over the stove all day. I just can’t get enough of this thing! 

For now these are the things which are saving time, motivating and entertaining me with a new baby in the house. I’m sure if I had one of those robotic vacuums them that would be on this list too 😉

The Newborn Bubble

It’s just occurred to me I’ve been living in the Newborn Bubble for 4.5 weeks and life has carried on for everyone around me yet I’ve been so swept up in our own existence I haven’t stopped to check in with those around me or further away. 

So my question is, when days fly by with 2 kids and night of little sleep seem to drag, how long is ok to be in the bubble before your officially a selfish asshole? 

The Village

I’ve often heard people say “it takes a village to raise a child” and whilst it doesn’t particularly resonate with me or even us as a family (we live far from family) in recent times I’ve experienced “a village” type of support and I’m beginning to understand. 

The first week with our second baby we were inundated with offers of help, meals and kind messages of support. Those things cannot be underestimated how much of a support they are. The comfort in knowing we could reach out for assistance if we needed it and it’d be there was so reassuring. 

In the past I’ve thought to myself I should take a dinner over or offer to help in some way, often people are reluctant to accept help, but food on the other hand .. Everyone eats! And especially nursing mothers!! The lesson I’ve learned is even if you think someone has a great support system – that you don’t need to get into the mix there are things you can do. Don’t be afraid to be the village. It turns out one or a few people can be the village to someone. It doesn’t have to be “to raise children” it can be to be an extra set of hands for the parents or some small gesture to make a parents life that bit easier. 

Justifying Child Free Lives

In recent months I’ve seen a number of friends “like” and “post” on pro-child free groups and while i can appreciate anyone’s life decision, I’m just not understanding the need for people to justify that decision. 

When it comes to having kids or not having kids I can see both sides. I wasn’t a girl growing up with the urge to grow up and become a mother, actually not in the slightest! I wanted a career, travel, life experiences that settling down young wouldn’t support. So what did I do from the end of high school to when “settled down” was an 11 year awesome life altering experience combining living abroad in 3 different continents, a uni degree, a diploma, traveling whenever time/funds allowed, working in jobs that I never envisaged, a wedding, buying a house and all that life experience and maturity to get into a role I could never have planned to do, which led to my career. Oh and now we have 1.45 children. 

My point is, had I not met my husband and met someone else who didn’t want a family I could easily chosen that path. 

The thing is, we all have the choice to make our own life decisions and I don’t understand why people choosing a child free life feel the need to justify their decisions. A recent post by an acquaintance made mention of how they can’t imagine their life being any happier… They don’t want to give up what they currently have.. Their pets feel like their children.. Their friends lives (became shit) changed when they had kids… It went on and on. 

My point is you don’t know what your missing out on. So by all means choose your own path but during that process don’t try to justify your decision by reflecting negatively on others lives, for example this post mentioned “our friends didn’t have money to do fun things anymore” .. Translation.. Your friends lives changed when they had children and their priorities shifted, did you think of fun things (that didn’t cost much/anything) you could do with your friends now or did you just discard them because they didn’t fit in with your idea of a fun life?  ….

I guess after reading the posts I really just wanted to give it the middle finger, awkwardly it’s entirely possible now with the emoji. My philosophy is to respect individuals and their own decision, but unfortunately I then expect the same in return. I don’t justify my decisions to people and they don’t need to justify them to me. Can’t we all just live harmoniously together? 

On Authenticity…. 

If you’ve followed my blog for awhile or if this is your first time reading (thanks & welcome) you will know that I’m constantly striding to be my most authentic self. 

I remember one of the very first blogs I stumbled across was a Mom    Amber who wrote from her heart about her struggle with post natal depression, it was insightful, honest and authentic, it was also inspiring. It led to months of deliberation as to how I could express what I thought and be ‘ok’ with putting it out there. {Check out Amber’s blog “when depression creeps into motherhood”  Read it here! }  

It’s amazing the connections we make in the virtual world through authenticity and today it’s got me thinking, how do we encourage our real life peers to be their most honest selves? How do we get people to see that by them showing us their imperfect self it leads us to love them even more? 

For example, there’s another working Mum who I’m becoming friends with, last night we ‘bonded’ over our untidy homes and how our friends need to overlook this when they visit!  In reality they probably aren’t that bad, but we’ve made the conscious decision to leave constantly tidying for spending precious time with our kids.  

It gets me thinking, when we have these REAL interactions with people and friends, how much better does it leave us feeling? I love it. But then how are we best to approach friends who aren’t being real? You know the people who present their lives like everything is perfect 24/7 – when we all know that having kids, toddlers or babies is not plain sailing all the time, there’s ups and downs and it’s all normal. 

So how do you encourage real and authenticity in your relationships? 

Not my monkeys, not my circus! 

It’s my favourite saying at the moment … “Not my monkeys, not my circus!”. I find that I can use it in all aspects of my life – lol except for when it is my 2 year old monkey and then it is my circus! 

As a working parent I feel that the perspective I bring to my job has shifted considerably from my pre-child self. I’m not sure how describe the shift, perhaps it’s more patience, empathy or understanding… Maybe it’s the ability not to get dragged into drama or avoiding drama completely. 

I joked with a colleague yesterday as we read an email, I said how much do you wish you’d won the lottery last night? She agreed. The response to the email would be “not my monkeys, not my circus” and on that note you’d probably need to pack your things and leave!! Lol 

I guess the reality is i can’t “use it” everyday (out aloud) but if I think it in my head then at least it makes me giggle! Then I get on with the monkey training. 

Grocery Trolleys

Have you ever found yourself observing what’s in the cart of people in line at the supermarket check out? 

I’m sort of ashamed to say it, but I can’t help but look and make an observation. The area we live in is full of hippys (and I say that in a loving way) so more often than not their carts are full of chickpeas, kale and lentils, it makes us look like total cavemen with all our meat! 

Today I couldn’t help but notice a Dad and his little girl at the shops, I compared their trolley with mine, the cost difference would be 2-3 times the price (mine being more) and while ours was full of fruits, veggies, dairy, wholegrains etc theirs were full of pre-packaged sugar filled snacks. 

It makes me wonder, is it a cost thing? Is it lack of food education? I wondered how does all of that food affect the child – I know as an adult if I was to eat that much sugar and processed foods I’d feel horrible, and for a small person how does that affect their behaviour or concentration at school? 

Isn’t it insane that healthy food costs so much more. And there’s absolutely ways around that, but usually those take organization, planning or an extra stop at a fruit and veg shop. 

It just makes me wonder what kind of education are young people being given in terms of life skills. I’ve often discussed it with my colleagues – imagine if at high school you were taught instead of how to make scones, how to budget and buy groceries within your means and meal plan (with some food education). Imagine if part of your education to send you off into the world included life skills! Wow – that’s an insane idea huh.