Category: just some thoughts

Mother’s Day shout outs.

I was just going to make a little Facebook post for Mother’s Day, but realised that I have soooooo much to say. Probably a bit too much for Facebook. Which wouldn’t be out of character ūüėā

Anyway, I’ll start with myself (what an ego – kidding – just getting it out of the way)!

I am so grateful to be a mum. When I say that, there’s a lot of weight to it. I have truly realised in the last 3 years of secondary infertility hell that being a mum is not a right. Becoming one is not a certainty for anyone. You can do all the right things (and then some) but at the end of the day it’s nothing but a crazy, lucky privilege (even if it seems to come easier for some). And for all my struggles to add to my family, I am so ridiculously grateful that I get to be called mum (probably 50,000 times a day – more on weekends and school holidays). I am so glad I get to whinge about about how hard it is and so glad I get to celebrate how amazing and heart burstingly fulfilling it is. Whatever happens from here on out, I will always be so glad that I have the Little Mister – he’s made me a mum and I am so glad he was meant to be in this world, hanging out with me and being my kid. I wouldn’t change that for ANYTHING.

Now onto my mum. My mum is amazing. She (and my dad) went through infertility struggles too. These led to the history making decision to adopt. And bam – there I was – in her arms (followed 3 years later by my bro). Well, not ‘bam’. It wasn’t easy. It was a long wait, with a lot of gruelling hoops to jump through. When you adopt, you have to actually prove you are going to be a good parent. It’s like having to earn a parenting license. Not many people have to do that. Maybe more should! But here we are. My mum is someone I have not always got along with (those teen years were a bit rocky!) but I have always been able to trust her. If she says she’s there, she’s there. If she says I need to figure something out for myself, it means she knows I’m strong enough. She’ll never tell me a white lie to make herself feel better. She’ll tell the the truth so I know I can believe her. She’s strong, assertive and confident. That inspires me. She’s also pretty effing amazing at putting outfits together and fantastic for the fashion advice! She’s been there for me emotionally, especially through the infertility stuff. She’s been there physically too. Babysitting and driving the Little Mister to school. I’m so lucky to have such a supportive network of people around me. She cries at the drop of a hat when talking about how she feels about being my mum and that makes me feel kind of special (can you IMAGINE when we went to see Lion together?!). My parents taught me that family isn’t just blood. Because of my parents, I am the compassionate people person that I am. I have no doubts about that. I love you, Mum!

My mother in law deserves a mention too. She loves the Little Mister to bits. She will never say no to being there for him or us and while I insist that we never take advantage of her, it is so nice to know she’s there in our corner. She always calls me on my birthday or checks in if Mr Unprepared is away. Thank you!

To my mums’ group. The OG MG. You have helped to shape my experience as a mum. We met on a fateful day in early 2012 (after a few weeks of trying to get the hang of leaving the house with an infant) and we’ve never failed to support each other or be there since. We have laughed, cried and stood up for each other. We’ve celebrated milestones and we’ve found out we are good drinking buddies when we can get babysitting too ūüėā Thank you – each and every one of you. For being exactly who you are and bringing together our crazy melting pot of personalities in the most wonderful way.

Now, onto you lot.

I wish all of my fellow mums out there an amazing Mother’s Day. I hope you are pampered and loved. I hope you feel safe and happy. I hope the most important people in your life have let you know just how special you are to them.

To all of the women who dream of being a mum, but have struggled. I am so sorry. This shit is hard. I hope that one day your dream is realised. I am sorry that today might be hurting your heart. I’m thinking of you.

To the women like me, who feel their family is yet to be complete – we are so lucky to have what we have, but it’s OK to want more. Our hearts are big enough. I send all of my love to you. I hope this year is our year.

To those who no longer have their mums around. I’m sorry. I can’t imagine.

Happy Mother’s Day to those who have stepped up to parent and love children who are not biologically theirs, whether through fostering, adoption, blended family situations.

Happy Mother’s Day to the single mamas out there. That shit is tough!! I won’t even pretend to know the half of it! You’re amazing. You’re strong. You’re doing the best you can and that is bloody good enough. Probably more than.

My thoughts are with those who have suffered the loss of a child of any age – from pregnancy to adulthood. They were so lucky to have had you as a mum – even if it wasn’t for anywhere near long enough. My heart goes out to you.

Basically, if you are a mum in your heart, I wish you the best. Not just on Mother’s Day but all of your days. No matter what your situation is, I hope you have/find joy and laughter and love.

*raises glass*

To us.

via GIPHY

Style rules that we need to break.

Recently, I have been reflecting on my own personal style. It has become apparent to me that the things I wear may have evolved since I was a teen but the essence of who I’ve always been is still alive and kicking (the recent 90s throwback trends have not helped haha). I have always loved a rock n roll tee-shirt, ripped everything, black mini skirts and bright colour in my hair (something the 12 year old me was peeved about my mum not allowing)! I have days where I feel like laying low with a casual look that blends in and I have days/nights where I want to go all out and get glammed up. Sometimes I’m super feminine. Sometimes I just want bad ass grunge.

I’m married, I just turned 33 and I have a kid who goes to a private school. While this shouldn’t factor into my daily wardrobe choices, it really really does (even when my kid and husband are nowhere to be seen).

I get scared of judgement if I go out on a bit of a limb. Obviously I am mature enough to understand what’s appropriate vs what is wildly inappropriate in certain settings, but I’m talking about personal style rather than say a person dressing like a stripper at a school function for example!!

I am constantly surprised by the old school attitudes towards women who dare to dress differently. I’ve seen women torn apart in the media for daring to look sexy – “She’s a mother now! THINK OF THE CHILDREN!”

What year is this???

Like being a parent stops you from ever being allowed to bare any hint of cleavage or to go out and have a good time while looking gorgeous, because for once you got babysitting and time to actually put an effort into your appearance!

Coupled up girlfriends have faced comments like, “If you’re dressed like that, you look like you’re out on the prowl!”

What the actual fuck? Isn’t that a slightly sneaky version of slut shaming???

Can’t a woman dress for herself in something that makes her feel gorgeous without people believing it’s an invitation for men to have a crack?

Sometimes I get scared. Do I look like “mutton dressed as lamb” if I wear that ripped tee? Is it OK for me to wear pleather? Does my hair look ridiculous with the splashes of turquoise? When will I be too old to do as I please?

I’m not actually very wild, by the way. I look quite ‘respectable’ by old school prude terms. I just have a hint of rock chick about me on good days (i.e. days where I feel confident and actually have more than 5 minutes to put myself together). But I want to be braver. I think perhaps I’m too dialled down to the point where I feel like I lose who I am and I get frustrated. I think I could get away with being dressed a little more like ‘me’, but I often don’t out of fear.

I have so many style crushes on women who break the ‘rules’. Sometimes it’s because I wish I had their style, but mostly it’s because I wish I had their courage. I wish I could just not give a fuck what people might say/think if I dare to be different.

I think it’s time to throw out the ‘rules’ based purely on a person’s age, gender, marital or parental status. We should be thinking about what fits, flatters, shows our personalities and makes us feel awesome.

I have a feeling that like me, a lot of my friends dress down when they really feel like dressing up or that they dress up when they really want to dress down. That makes me feel sad. We should dress however the hell we want and celebrate each other for it!

I love when one person has the courage to just be themselves – it makes me feel brave too. I think it’s contagious.

I hate when I feel over-dressed/under dressed and keep comparing myself to other people. I hate when people make passive aggressive remarks about someone’s choice of high heels. Or ask them “aren’t you cold in that?” when the person is perfectly comfortable. Why do we do that to each other?

A friend told me that she was told that mothers shouldn’t wear short shorts. My comment back was along the sarcastic lines of “Yeah, you have to be careful¬†because your uterus might fall out after all that birthing of children.”

Seriously. WTF.

I hate that some men think we’re dressing just for them if we put an effort in, and that women perpetuate this myth by telling each other not to be too pretty or daring or not to show boobs AND legs at the same time – god forbid.

I say that if you look and feel good (whatever your shape or size), if you can carry off a look with an air of confidence and dignity, then fuck the rules! Rules are made to be broken! There are always exceptions!

Every memorable style icon I can think of broke the rules at one point or another. That’s how they stood out and became so admired. Let’s remember that!

Now I must go and try very hard to take my own advice.

What is your personal style? Do you feel like you’re truly able to express yourself? How do you feel about the ‘rules’?¬†

The selfie struggle.

Oh, yes. It’s a real first world problem, this one!

Lately, I’ve been scrolling through my Instagram posts and asking myself what I can do to make my account look a bit more appealing. Am I showing a great variety of moments from my every day life? Am I getting better at telling the stories behind the photos (and not just posting something with very little captioning that doesn’t make sense to anyone but me)? Does my profile look colourful and is it something that would make me want to delve further if I wasn’t me?

I think I’m doing OK-ish, by my small fish standards, considering I started off with sometimes only 2 likes on my very first photos and now I can get¬†dozen/s (I told you – small fish haha). There is definitely room for improvement and I know I am my own worst critic too.

One thing I noticed that my profile is missing is more photos of me! I know that when I scroll through someone’s Instagram account, I like to see the person behind the profile – it helps me to connect with their content. Makes me feel like I know them (even though I don’t – they could be serial killers for all I know – hahaha). As I am no longer a semi-anonymous blogger, I know that I need to start showing more of myself. Let the people who find me, get to know me better.

I don’t take many photos of my son (I made a decision early on in the piece to not fully reveal his face or identity publicly online) and my dogs only know a couple of poses: “THROW MY DAMN TOY” or “BLURRY AS F*CK”. My husband is a bit social media shy. I feel awkward asking to take pics of/with my friends for public consumption unless they are bloggers too. So that leaves me most of the time. I’ve got nobody else to fall back on ūüėā

I also need to point out that I am concerned that I have a misshapen head and I do not have a reliable Instagram spouse (and admittedly I’m picky and I feel bad bossing someone around), nor fancy equipment to help me take consistently good selfies/photos of myself.

And even if I did, I would curl up and die of embarrassment if people saw me trying to get it right in fantastic public spaces, like all the really cool bloggers do. Because we all know it can take like 50 shots to get one good one (or at least that’s true for me and my misshapen head/face)!

*awkward too loud laugh*

Also, I hate the stigma attached to¬†the ‘selfie’ phenomena. Sure, if you’re doing a Kim K and ignoring all of your life to get constant good shotz (yes I used the ‘z’ ironically) then you may deserve a little bit of an eye roll from everyone around you, but what if you just want a couple of nice shots to prove to yourself that you were actually out on a nice day or to capture your life because nobody else will? I get frightened of people laughing at me trying to get the right angle and making that embarrassing selfie face which usually doesn’t look anything like the person’s actual candid face.

It’s always a bloody relief when I find myself out with fellow iPhone photo obsessed peeps who don’t mind taking lots of pics of everything and understand when I want to as well!

Also, I know I’m getting a bit deep here, but I think I lack confidence and do not accept my face/head etc as they are. I want to get more body (‘face’?) positive.

Some of my favourite pics of my friends are the real ones. Where they haven’t given a shit and they’ve just gone for it and had fun. I want to be more like that.

Anyway, here’s a selfie I took at a wedding recently. I liked my make up that night and felt pretty – I’d put in a lot of effort and it was a big deal because I hadn’t been out in the real world for a little while. The lighting is bad because it was night time and the quality is bad because I used Snapchat, but I’m glad I took it.

I’m going to try to take more selfies and care less what other people think while I’m looking like a dickhead pointing a camera at myself.

Anyone got any great tips on iPhone camera settings/angles/best sides/tricking people into helping you??

Back to School anxiety: mine, not his.

It’s January. That time when it sinks in that the school holidays are not as long as you thought they were and you feel that downward slide back to reality. Another school year, filled with trying to remember stuff and being on time for drop offs and pick ups and SO MANY LUNCHES to be made.

I am looking forward to the Little Mister attending pre-primary full time. I imagine the first few weeks will be full of exhausted after school meltdowns, but I am excited to be able to spread my work hours out over the week more evenly and feel a lot more productive.

The thing is, I get anxious. Anxious that he will fit in and do OK compared to the other kids. Anxious that he’ll be anxious. Anxious that I will forget a whole lot of stuff or be totally awkward in the lead up to the first day back – book lists and the dreaded uniform shop visits (I swear I can never remember what hours or days they’re open).

I know it won’t be as bad as last year. Last year I was a wreck. The Little Mister was starting kindy at the same place I went to high school. I was having all kinds of flashbacks to my time there (nothing horrendous or obviously we wouldn’t send him there – just freak outs because I felt like I was still the student trying to be on my best behaviour and not get in trouble haha). I had never sent a kid to school before. I felt like I was still a kid. How was this happening?! Sure, we’d done day care a couple of days a week in 2015, but this was a big deal!

I had missed an orientation day because I screwed up the dates (and then my husband had unexpected surgery on his toe which would have meant we couldn’t make it anyway). I’d had a couple of false starts trying to get to the uniform shop (see – I messed up their opening hours then too haha). I hadn’t submitted my online booklist order on time, so had to send Mr Unprepared out to scramble for each individual item (which made me nervous because obviously if we got the wrong stuff we’d be outcasts forever haha). I was also feeling like a hot mess for a variety of reasons that had nothing to do with the the Little Mister’s schooling. I was not on top of things. I really was not. Even reading this paragraph back tells me that I was not in the running for “Mum of the Year”.

This year, I feel a little more settled. I know the school. I know the Little Mister has come a long way since the beginning of 2016. I’ve met a bunch of really nice school mums and I know I will meet a whole bunch more. I’ve got my shit sorted on a nice calendar now, which I keep updated. I have planned the final weeks of the school holidays so that I have everything done in time.

But still, I feel nervous. Of course I don’t show the Little Mister this and I really hope he can’t tell. He gets nervous enough on his own, truth be told.

I feel bummed that it’s not all holiday fun and games right now in my head anymore (even though that kid is driving me up the wall and ultimately I will be grateful to have dropped him off that first day haha).

I feel silly for being nervous and I feel like I’m wasting these precious last weeks worrying about school stuff when there’s still fun to be had. I’ve really got to get over myself! Just tick something off the list and then go have a blast, Kez. Seriously, woman!

Just like last year, we will survive this one too. I was struggling to get my head around a whole lot of stuff in 2016 (finally beginning treatment for infertility for one and in all honesty grief – grief that my little boy was starting school already and had no siblings that I’d always hoped to give him by the time he started kindy) and I think I should be kind to myself. It was a rough and scary year from beginning to end.

2017 may or may not be any better, but at least I will kind of know what to expect (probably jinxing myself right there).

Awesomely a little less unprepared, maybe?

Maybe one day, my heart won’t leap up into my throat when my child starts a new school year. Please tell me this gets easier! Lie to me if you have to!

Does anyone else get nervous like me? Am I …normal? Or a silly freak?¬†

 

2017.

A little while ago, I took some time to reflect on the year that was: Oh, 2016, you were a complicated beast.

Now, I would like to look forwards in time. What will 2017 have in store for me? What are my goals? What would I like to continue?

I feel like I’m going to leap into 2017 feeling awesomely unprepared (see what I did there?) and oh my goodness, if the last couple of years have taught me anything, it’s that life will never cease to surprise me.

Still, here are some things I would like to see! Whether life has other plans or not, remains to be seen!!

Goals:

Fertility

While I don’t really feel like writing about it anymore (it can be draining), it would be neglectful to not mention this: Some fertility success would be ideal! While I can’t control the outcome so I don’t feel like it’s an actual ‘goal’ so much as a dream, I do hope I can aim for being much more pro-active in the care I receive. More assertive when it comes to dealing with specialists. I spent a lot of 2016 finding my feet. I hope 2017 can be about Getting Shit Done and making sure the right people are helping me to GSD (Get Shit Done).

Finish the Lady Cave

This epic saga has dragged on for so long it’s embarrassing. I bought most of the furniture. I cleared out most of the junk from the room. I just had trouble directing the moolah towards getting new carpet (by ‘trouble’ I mean I always found other things to do/think about), and motivation towards moving the last of the heavy furniture from the room. It’s a bit crazy, how slow I’ve been at this. I’m sure you could analyse me and find some kind of deep seated emotional/psychological block that’s been holding me back! Either way, I am so ready to make this happen. A little bit of Christmas gift money and Mr Unprepared being a magical furniture removal fairy yesterday while I was out, has made me feel much more enthusiastic!

Now that I write a lot more and I work on my computer a lot, I am more than ready to have my very own blogging lair.

*evil laugh*

Support more small creative business

I know I practically live at Kmart or Cotton On or some of the bigger chain stores. Sometimes my wallet (and my time) can only stretch that far. But there’s something I really want to do. I want to spend 2017 thinking more locally too. There are so many unique things out there: clothing, gifts, etc. Stuff that would not only make my life at least 67% cooler (don’t fact check that statistic I just totally made up), but that would allow me to support those who are out there doing their small creative business thing. I have some special peeps on my wishlist. I’m going to stop talking about it and I’m going to start doing. Because some of that stuff doesn’t actually cost an arm and a leg like I used to believe! It might take a little extra planning but I think it will be well worth it!

Record my happiness more

I’ve written a lot of happy lists on this blog, but they have been quite sporadic lately. I’ve decided to participate in #100happydays¬†to keep me creative and in a positive frame of mind. I start on January 1st, 2017. You should join me! Just register at the website and get started – you can choose your own start date too! I really hope I can stick this one out. Or at least get to 100 within the year haha.

Things I’d like to continue in 2017:

  • Living healthily and striving towards my goal weight. I did so well this year, losing 5kg. I can’t wait to smash the final 3-4 I have left to lose. It really worked well for me, using the school term as a timeline for being really disciplined. If it ain’t broke!
  • It took me until the end of the year to get my shit together, but I finally started using online calendars to organise my life. I feel so much more in control now, so there’s no way I’m going to give that up! Note to self: figure out how to stop getting reminders via email. SO ANNOYING.
  • I’ve made some social changes in 2016. I’ve really enjoyed developing friendships that make me feel good about myself (and hopefully feeling like I do the same for them). I’ve redefined some boundaries and I’ve found my tribe/s. It feels good. I feel much more secure and happy friendship wise than I have in years. I want to stay on that path.
  • Adventuring. I did so much of it this year and it saved the way I look back on 2016. We already have a trip planned for March and we’re working on an idea for July. SO EXCITING.

What do you want to see happen in 2017? Do you set goals or resolutions, or would you rather poke your eyes out with a blunt object? 

Let’s talk about my 2016.

2016 and I have had quite the relationship. If I had to make it Facebook official, I’d be selecting “it’s complicated” as our relationship status.

Because there have been aspects of it that have sucked, but if it hadn’t sucked I might not have had such a good year. Are you confused yet? Like, on the one hand, I want to say this was the worst year ever. But on the other hand, I feel like I really had some amazing break throughs and adventures. I feel like I can’t completely write it off.

Let’s start with the stuff that sucked (in the¬†name of¬†getting it out of the way)…

OK, so maybe it was just one thing. It really really sucked to not be able to conceive a sibling for the Little Mister. Honestly, most things that sucked about my year stemmed from this. I estimate that I had blood taken from me at least 36 times (not including that month I was completely drained of everything having blood tests almost every second day of my cycle or the extra times we needed to be sure of something or when I had my initial standard tests when we decided we needed to get help). Yep. 36 times were just the routine blood tests. Routine. I hate that fucking routine. Some of those tests may have been late 2015 but I can’t be bothered fact checking right this second. I had a lot of blood taken, OK?

I also had at least 12 internal ultrasounds (you know what ‘internal’ means). Yep. It’s a pretty all-up-in-your-bits, confronting experience. Especially when most of the time, the results show it was a waste of time.

I had surgery. A laparoscopy/hysteroscopy. It was nerve wracking. I was sick a lot through winter – so much more than usual. My immune system was so screwed up and I really think it had a lot to do with all of this.

Maintaining some of my friendships proved really difficult. It was so hard to commit to things when you knew your period would/might arrive and wreck everything (and I’m not talking ‘normal’ periods – I’m talking hellishly heavy ones) or you’d be scheduling last minute doctor appointments and scans, all dependent on what your body decided or not decided to do at any given time. Or when you were sick all the time. Or when you’d had awful news and you were feeling so down that you just needed to curl up in a ball and have a brief pity party before summoning up as much resilience as possible¬†to be able to get back up¬†the next day. Some people bothered to ask about it and understood and showed me they were there no matter what, some people stopped checking in. I had to make some tough decisions to allow myself to stop feeling eternally guilty or left out. Or hurt.

Look, a lot of women go through this shit (and much worse). I hope I haven’t come across as totally melodramatic. While it has been an emotionally awful time, it did just become part of a routine and I did get on with it. What choice did I have if we want what we want? I guess, after two and a half years it starts to wear thin. I hope 2017 will be kinder in this aspect of my life.

Here’s the stuff that was good…

I had friends who really pulled through for me. I also learned how to develop friendships on my own terms so I didn’t always feel like I was at everyone else’s mercy when times were tough (the FOMO was strong in this one). I had friends who took the time to announce their pregnancies to me in the most heartwarming, kind and compassionate ways. I felt honoured to be told the way I was and so thankful for their kindness. I hope if you’re reading this, you know who you are.

I found friends who stuck it out with me through the infertility stuff, who never judged when I felt down or couldn’t be there as much as I wished I could, and who comforted me even though I imagine they understandably didn’t always know what to say. You tried and you were there and I cannot thank you enough. You helped me to realise I’m a good friend still too – some things/people led me to be¬†so damn hard on myself, but because of you I am learning to let go of that.

I finally swallowed my pride and joined some online support groups for secondary infertility. Finally, I was talking to people who had been through the exact same stuff as me. I have also found other groups with some of my blogging type friends, where I can just be me (even about the stuff that can’t be blogged).

I found strength inside myself that I never knew I had. I wish I didn’t have¬†to exercise it so much, but I would never take it back! I even became a bad ass comic book super hero, thanks to the love of my fave arty friend, Em.

She has¬†purple hair because I feel like you can’t not kick arse in life if you have purple hair (I dream of actually having purple hair – she’s a bit aspirational haha). Ripped jeans? Check. Lighthouse tattoo (to symbolise so many things but mostly¬†keeping myself and my family safe but also radiating light) and a big heart tattoo, because through all of this I want to remain open hearted and be a lover of life.

Em? You are amazing. Talented. Kind. I shall hang this in my (STILL not completed) office so I can see it every day. She/me symbolises those moments when I am struggling but then I remember I am tougher than anything that is thrown at me and I get the fuck back up. It’s probably a little weird but I have genuinely imagined this ‘hero’ every time I’ve struggled – she’s been so helpful. I highly recommend getting yourself made into a comic book hero (and I’m not even usually into that stuff!)! Hey, whatever works!

I had to ditch a lot of fear and stress. I lost a few kilos (the stress weight I’d added by eating my feelings) and I started living healthier.

I became a school mum. It was nerve wracking at first and I felt awkward and like I just did not have my shit together for half the year (at least) but I made it to the end¬†of the year¬†with a Little Mister who has grown so much in so many ways (I love that kid so damn much). I don’t feel so scared anymore. I feel a lot more settled and I feel like myself again. I think I’ve got this (ha – we all know I’m speaking too soon).

I went on a few adventures too. I said yes to things I would have hesitated to do in the past. The best way to keep my spirits up was to change the scenery – have a little respite. Sure, I wasn’t getting pregnant, but I did not want to stop living my¬†life. I might have felt like I was walking around with a big hole in my heart, but I filled my life with positive things – things I might not¬†have done if I was pregnant. It was not a perfect consolation (nothing is) but it was all a wonderful distraction and a way to make the best I could out of the situation I was dealing with.

I went to Sydney, Melbourne, camping in Kalbarri, camping in Augusta, saw Josh Pyke twice, Bob Evans once and I fulfilled my teenaged dream of seeing Unwritten Law! We grabbed life by the you-know-whats and had so much amazing quality time as a couple and as a family. I said yes more but to the things I ACTUALLY wanted to do. No regrets!

My friend Alice moved to WA to be with my other friend Trent – I cannot say enough about how happy that has made me!

I had the courage/good fortune to go after a working life that makes me happy and fits in with my crazy life. I have jobs that fulfil my creative side, my love of good grammar and my ability to wear whatever the fuck I want at the office. I am grateful for the opportunities that I have been presented with. I like being a working mum (most of the time) and I am grateful that I can work flexibly, which helps me to overcome so many logistical challenges. My confidence has grown (after I had been out of the work force for a while) and I am excited to see where my professional life takes me.

What next?

I don’t know where 2017 will take me. I really hoped 2016 would bring me a baby or a pregnancy. I really thought I’d feel settled and more content. I guess I hope the same for next year (but with a few more adventures thrown in). I think I’ll be braver and I think I’ll be brighter. I do feel like 2016 shook everything up and put it back in the place it should be, all ready for next year. I just hope that fate comes to the party. I know I said that at the end of 2015 but shhhhh. I can’t help but be optimistic, even a little bit. Bring it, 2017. I hope that all of my loved ones have a good year too.

How was your 2016? 

5 ways to recharge (and stay sane) before Christmas.

Oh my goodness. The end of the school year has had me beat! The kids aren’t the only people who are exhausted! I have been so tired. I mean, I’m always a bit tired (because duh I’m a parent and also *ahem* a wife to a lovely but annoying man hahaha) but lately I’ve found it harder to keep bouncing back and to just push through!

I’ve decided to put together a little list of things that, based on past experience, might help me to survive this busy time of year.¬†Things that will hopefully revitalise me a little so I’m not a worn out bitch by Christmas day! I want to enjoy this time of year because it’s my favourite time of year! I’m like Will Ferrell dressed in a fugly elf outfit, yelling out random things about loving Christmas at strangers. But not until December 1st, because I’m not crazy or anything. Geez.

I’m a bit special.

Anyway, where was I?

Right-o. List of things that help me to recharge when I’m bloody exhausted…

Make your bedroom feel like a glorious place to sleep. 

Better sleep makes you less tired! I know. What a revelation. Who knew? Last night, after a sleepless week and a whole bunch of quite frankly overly realistic and terrifying nightmares, I decided to do something about it. We declared it clean sheets day. I aired the room out and let a lot of light in. I lit a couple of gorgeous candles I’d forgotten about (and blew them out before bed time because of safety and shit).

Last night felt like heaven and I slept a lot better. The air/energy in the room felt so much lighter and not murky and stuffy. No nightmares! Yes!

I won’t go on about it because it’s all been said, but go to bed early when you’ve got nothing on. Rest up so you can enjoy other things later!

Let yourself get dumb in your rare down time. 

I used to get made fun of for always watching mindless trash TV or movies that didn’t exactly evoke deep thoughts or complex mind gymnastics. People like to say things like, “Why do you like¬†that mindless junk? It will rot your brain!”

But to be honest, that’s the exact result I’m going for! I spend a lot of time overthinking things, reading about everything that’s going on in the world, dealing with the every day complexities of life. I consider myself to be pretty clever and a not so bad critical thinker. Sometimes I just need to switch off – something I’ve been crap at doing lately!

Ever since I explained that to my trash TV hating people, they have understood and left me to it. I’m always a heaps better person after spending a while being all like, OMG WHUT HAS KHLOE KARDASHIAN DONE TO GET THAT ARSE? HOW IS KYLIE JENNER HER OWN STEPKID’S AUNTY?

Basically, I don’t meditate (probably should) or do yoga (shut up Mum), but watching the shallower stuff really helps me to unwind!

You know, I need a break from being so damn clever all the time! ūüėú

Drink more water and eat healthy things. 

I have been rattling on about this stuff in my Kez Gets Physical updates. I am really appreciating being fuelled by things that don’t make me feel sluggish and gross. You don’t have to do it for weight loss, just do it to feel energised and in a better mood! I love to have a green juice when I feel like total crap (I know I sound like a wanker but it really really works). I also think water is the bomb diggity. It wakes me up in the morning (I know you coffee lovers are looking at me like I’m a freak) and brings me back to life when I am feeling exhausted.

I can always feel the difference between me having a decent salad for lunch, versus the times I’ve indulged in less healthy options (they’re so tempting when we feel like crap and want something quick and we just want comfort food). Not falling into a food coma by 2pm really helps me get through the afternoon!

Acknowledge your exhaustion and communicate well.

I am the crabbiest cow when I’m exhausted. I’ll admit it! I get cranky and I find it sooooo exhausting to be bothered telling anyone how I feel. But it’s worth doing. Things always go better when I confide in my husband about how burnt out I’m feeling, what he could do to assist (martyr shit is pretty much banned in my house) and just give him the heads up so he’s not shocked by my lack of excitement about life or my slightly stabby moods. He can do the same with me. It’s better than both of us just throwing our weight around like angry bears. It’s not a perfect system (we’re only human and life gets crazy) but we try.

Also, I have never fallen into this trap myself, but I have a feeling some people get on the internet and let their crabby moods affect the comments they leave on social media. Dudes, realise it’s your tiredness and stress talking and nobody wants to be on the receiving end! The other person might be exhausted AF too! Don’t fight with people just because you’re tired. That in itself is a waste of energy! Ain’t nobody got time for that! Switch off that screen or walk away if you think you won’t be able to resist!

Be in touch with your feelings, y’all!

Get outside.

I love this time of year. So much sunshine (and Vitamin D). Fresh air is so revitalising. Even if you just stand outside for a few minutes or go for a short walk, you will feel a little better. Exercise is great for building stamina and getting those endorphins, but if you just don’t have it in you (understandably – trust me I’ve been feeling it), just get out for no other reason than to be in the outdoors. There doesn’t have to be a point to it or a task to complete. Just go outside and stand there or sit and have a drink or better still, lie in a hammock if you have one. I need to try this a whole lot more.


Nothing I’ve said is particularly revolutionary, but I hope it helps. This time of the year can be stressful and I think that if we can all practice a little bit of (realistic) self care and be kind to each other, we’ll see the year out in a really positive way (regardless of whether it was kind to us or not)!

What do you do to stay sane during the ‘silly’ season/end of the school year?¬†

5 things you should know about me.

Oh, boy. The US election has definitely kept me glued to my television in a ‘watching a train wreck’ kind of way. It’s kind of hard not to lose some faith in humanity over this – even from as far away as Australia.

The support for Donald Trump’s campaign has shocked and saddened me. It’s one thing to be disgusted by that awful, ugly man. It’s another thing to realise just how many people are willing to support him, despite his overt sexism, racism and every other kind of bigoted display imaginable.

In light of this (and other crap that has happened on our home soil too), I’ve decided to make some declarations about myself. So there’s absolutely no confusion. You don’t have to agree, but you don’t have to keep reading either. I just want you to know what I’m about and I won’t be shy about letting you know what I believe in. I think it’s important you know where I’m coming from (if you’re a regular follower you probably already had a hunch about these things)…

I am fighting the urge to type, “because duh” under each heading, but I’ll try to explain…

I believe in marriage equality

I believe (and know) whole heartedly that our sexuality is not a choice. We are who we are and we will love who we will love. Some of us have more fluid sexual identity or preference than others.

I honestly do not see how someone loving somebody else of the same gender affects my life for the worst. Because it doesn’t. No more than¬†¬†Mr and Mrs Joe Bloggs from down the road’s marriage affects me.

I will always sign a petition to make it legal in Australia. I will always let my gay friends (and anyone else LGBTQ) know that I am with them on this, wholeheartedly – even if they don’t want to get married, they deserve the choice. To not even be given a choice is just horrible in this day and age. What is that saying to those who are coming to terms with their homosexuality? That they’re not valid as people? Holy shit. We can do better than that.

I am against racism (whether you admit you’re racist or not).

I am against the vilifying of entire racial groups, based on the actions/stereotypes of a few. I don’t care if you start your sentences with “I’m not racist, but…” or whether you belong to the KKK. Racism is racism.

I think that we benefit so much from learning about our differences. Just think about all of the inventions we use every day, the words in the English language we take for granted, the food we enjoy every day in Australia. If we benefit from these things, it would be ridiculously hypocritical to condemn entire races and cultures.

We shouldn’t hide behind ignorance. We should try to learn more all the time.

Don’t even get me started on what I think of people who insult people just for the way they look or what cultural clothing they are wearing.

I dream of a world where casual racism is no longer acceptable and where white privilege isn’t so glaring. We have a way to go.

I am a feminist.

Yep. The ‘F’ word. I am out and proud about that one! It’s about equality (as all of today’s facts about me are). Women are still subjected to sexism – both ugly and violent, and insidious and subtle, every damn day.

We’re pushing back and we’re fighting hard to create change. There are men who do not want to change the status quo because¬†they don’t want to share their privilege or be shown up by a woman. It’s sad and it’s disgusting. As humans, we should not try to diminish another in order to feel better about ourselves, and yet we do it all the time when it comes to gender.

We as women have even been taught to oppress ourselves. Just look at all the ‘mummy wars’ on the internet. It’s horrendous. We don’t even know we’re doing it.

I am trying my hardest to teach my son to be the change we all need to see in this world. Imagine if we all taught the next generation how to treat each other with love and respect, instead of letting arseholes divide us?

I don’t care what religion you belong to as long as you’re an awesome human being and you¬†have integrity.

While I think of myself as a pretty spiritual person, I don’t think I’m overly religious. In fact, sometimes I can feel pretty rebellious about it. It’s not anything against your God or other deities. It’s more about the ickiness of when a few corrupt, but powerful, people use the vulnerabilities of others to push their own agendas. I like to think of myself as a free agent. I’m on the side of good people. I don’t care what religion you identify as belonging to, if you believe in love (as a verb), acceptance and you have integrity. i.e. you’re not a hypocritical, closed minded dumb arse.

I believe human rights¬†are more important than ‘free’ hate speech.

If you use ‘free speech’ as an excuse to say hateful things, we may not get along very well. I don’t mind us having a whole bunch of differences, but if your views seek to oppress another person or group of people, then I cannot be on your side and you should know that I believe that with the power of ‘free’ speech, comes responsibility. Be wise in your choices.

You’re either a good person who cares about others¬†or you’re not. If you’re not, it is my free choice to not listen. So enjoy that freedom of speech, but don’t expect your trolling comments to be published on my blog or argued with on my Facebook page. That’s MY choice. It goes both ways.


Glad I got that off my chest.

What should I know about you? 

#MumLife: Labels or Love?

Being a mum/primary caregiver of children can be fucking hard. And I am not even talking about the day in, day out shenanigans that come with just the child care and juggling of everything. I’m talking about the fact that there are big personalities and the publicising of our lives and social media blah blah. I am pretty pissed off that we keep finding new ways to keep up with the ‘mummy wars’. I am pissed off that it’s still even a thing! I mean, COME ON.

Everyone is so quick to label themselves and each other. Talking shit about how they’re not judging, but…BUT WHAT? Come on. We all judge. Let’s not pretend it isn’t human nature. But¬†what we do with that judgement is what matters. Is it not just enough to agree to disagree? Unfollow? Stop watching? Or do we have to hate read everything and set our followers onto someone else’s followers, with torches and pitchforks every time we’re offended?

Do we have to call ourselves a *insert any trendy name here for a collective of people* and feel like we’re in the clique and exclude others because it makes us feel more important and exclusive?

I am calling bullshit. I am calling bullshit on all the labels. I am sick of the fucking labels. Are you a slack mum? A helicopter mum? A free range mum? A fit mum? A sweary mum? A classy mum? A snobby mum? An Alpha mum? A tiger mum? A don’t give a fuck mum? An anxious mum? A make everything from scratch mum? A pre-packaged everything mum? A Kmart mum? An Etsy mum? A working mum? A stay at home mum? An attachment mum? A…queen? Sigh.

Do you get to be proud of your label or should you be ashamed? It’s just exhausting. Bloody exhausting.

I can be every mum at any given moment on any given day. And I am deciding ¬†right now that I will reject all these ridiculous labels. Because at some point in time, I have been just about all of them. It’s called being a REAL mum. And that’s not a label because I’m not going to tell you how to be one or what it means to be one. I am just telling you to live your life, keep it real – your version of what’s real, not what some Facebook Idol has told you is real – honour yourself and keep on trucking. Or take a break. I don’t care. You know what you need, right? You’ll find your tribe and hopefully your kids won’t be scarred for life. Isn’t that all we can hope for?

I have wobbly bits, but I exercise and try to better my diet. Other times I know life is too short to not eat the cake or to cry over my flab. I have given my kid toast for dinner. I have spent hours slaving over a delicious, healthy something or other I found on Pinterest. I have had anxiety. I have melted down. But I have also had my shit together so rock solid that no-one better cross me. I’ve been that forgetful mum at school – whoops, did we leave the library book at home? Forget that permission slip for that thing? I’ve also been that organised mum who breezes in with it all sorted. I’ve slept well. I’ve slept badly. I’ve worked and I’ve stayed at home. I’ve even worked from home. I’ve breastfed, bottle fed, fed everything from a package because I was overwhelmed, I’ve made everything from scratch because I had the time and energy. I’ve pushed my kid to do better and I’ve let him roam free and get his creativity on. I’ve let him watch screens and I’ve told him he’s had enough. I’ve worn lovely put together outfits to the school gate, and I’ve slumped in wearing active wear when everyone knows I’m not going to do anything active because who am I kidding, I just wanted to wear the comfy clothes. I’ve been sweary, but I’ve also been restrained when appropriate. I’ve been a fierce mama bear and I’ve also let him fight his own battles. I’ve sent my kid to school with a fancy bento lunch box…filled with whatever was left in the fridge because as if I’m going to the bloody supermarket AGAIN this week. I’ve been hungover, parenting from the couch on the occasional Sunday when I could actually be bothered going out. I’ve been ridiculously responsible. I’ve been obsessed with inspirational quotes, I’ve laughed at the terrible ones. I’ve dressed like a tragic grungy teen and I’ve dressed like a dork. I can laugh at myself, but you better not be bullying anyone else. I’ve felt mum guilt and I’ve felt mum guilt about not feeling any damn mum guilt. I’ve said yes to things I wish I hadn’t said yes to, and no when I wished I’d said yes. I’ve been that annoying bitch with the highlight reel on Instagram. I’ve confided in my followers, warts and all when it got too much.

At the end of the day, I don’t fit into anyone’s stupid boxes. I take what I like from my favourite social media entities and I quietly leave them alone when I don’t agree. I am mine.

I am real. I am me. I am made up of so many different influences I’ve stumbled across along the way. I am made up of what I brought to the table too. Because that’s just as good.

I wrote this post because I want every other mum out there who doesn’t fit into a label or a gang or a box or a social media movement to know that I don’t either and that’s OK.

I believe in critical thinking – being able to recognise what’s good and what might not be serving me. I have always maintained that my social media and my blog will always be a safe place. I’m not going to tell you who to be, although I will be assertive when I think something is just objectively, morally fucked up.

If you’re trying your damnedest (is that even a word – who cares) to teach your kids to be considerate, kind and inclusive, resilient and emotionally intelligent (something the internet could do with more of), then I am so down with that and I don’t care how you get there. Because we wouldn’t be ‘mummies’ without our kids (who we love to death). But we are also so much more than that and that’s pretty rad.

Mummy wars can fuck off.

The longest winter.

I am cold. I am tired. I am getting really GRUMPY.

Usually, winter makes me feel sluggish and ‘down’ at worst. But now I’m starting to feel some kind of rage. Like I am actually mad that this is still happening. Like every chilly breeze that hits me through my supposedly warm layers of clothing is a personal insult and I am not coping! I obviously could not survive in a colder climate.

giphy-39

I know spring never usually kicks in properly until October, but OMG I am so done. This past winter has been colder than usual and it started in April, I swear. Not cool, nature, not cool! Actually, too cool.

Is it too much to ask for just 2 days in a row of reliable sunshine ever? Is it too much to ask for a few days in a row without rain? Even just some blue sky. BLUE SKY. PLEASE. GRRRR.

And could our night time minimum temperatures just be above 10 degrees Celsius? Could our day time temperatures reach anywhere above 20 degrees on the regular? Seriously. I’m not asking much.

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I crave the type of weather where I can dress for the day with confidence that I will be comfortable. Not have to account for several layers of warmth, worry about whether I need an umbrella or rainproof clothing, overthink my footwear choices, check the weather forecast every freakin’ day.

I am sick of being scared of the shade. Because the shade is fucking freezing. Anything under cover might be dry, but then you freeze. Not. Fair.

I miss incidental exercise. Taking the Little Mister out for a bike ride, walking to the corner shops regularly, taking the dogs down to the beach (we often still do that through the winter but right now I am TOO MAD). The stuff I can do when I can’t get alone time to spend on my treadmill.

I am sick of everyone being sick. It’s been the worst winter on record in my little family and I am so done! FUCK OFF, GERMS!

I keep praying that I’ll look at the 7 day weather forecast and see some kind of light at the end of the tunnel, but it never ends! THIS WINTER NEVER ENDS.

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Worst part is, it’s probably going to be a sudden summer (you know – to make up for lost time) and we’ll all be sweltering overnight and feeling really ripped off that we didn’t get an enjoyable spring.

Every season has its positives, but every season has to come to an end before I end up in a straitjacket somewhere. Seriously.

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Are your moods also affected by the weather? Have a guilt free rant in the comments section if you like!