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Month: February 2016

OOTD effortlessly rad

imageDefinitely my favourite part of IG shopping is discovering small shops that you would otherwise never have discovered if not for clicking from one page, to another, to another and ending up somewhere on the other side of the world 2 weeks ago, to a kid wearing an amazing outfit that you just have to purchase for your own little one.
This is how I discovered Baby Teith and these amazing glitch art leggings. Baby Teith are half a world away from us, literally, hailing from Phoenix Arizona. I’ve been coming across so many creative and inspiring people from Arizona I almost want to move there!
Baby Teith founders are a creative couple who started the label out from designing clothes for their own baby girl and have grown from there, creating futuristic clothes that are comfortable, uncommon and fun. I can definately attest to that being correct, Mister R has been getting up to his usual mischievous shenanigans and the leggings are super comfy and built for fun. Wearable art is my favourite kind of clothing and it will be fun for me to see how many ways they can be styled.
Follow their account on insta here babyteith
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tank by axel and sis

Well I guess this is growing up

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Suddenly, my baby was a schoolboy. Sweet little uniform, new school shoes and a hopeful heart went along to the first day with no tears and barely a backward glance at mum. The first two weeks passed happily and with hardly any and ups or down, smoother sailing one couldn’t ask for. Day 10 as i was waiting for him outside his classroom, he ran to me, begging me to let him catch the school bus. Sure I said, and made the arrangements for the next day. I didn’t think much of it until that afternoon as I sat waiting at the end of the road for his bus to arrive. The arrival time came and went and I panicked a little. Rang the school, he had not been left behind that they knew of, and the bus was fine too, must be running a little late, no need to panic.
It was such an uncharacteristic move on my behalf. I’m not a panic merchant in any way. The bus was running late, and a very happy and proud little boy hopped off and into my arms.
It was only after that I realised what it was. This was the first stage of independence. This was the first time he was out in the world basically alone. Sure he had been to day-care, and had a couple of sleepovers with cousins, and now school. But until now I had dropped him off at the classroom into the hands of his teacher, and been there waiting to pick him up. This was him, making his way onto a bus with kids he doesnt really know, and travelling the 35 minutes home alone. This simple rite of passage is really that, marking his entry into solo navigation. Alone on a bus where anything could happen, and I am out of reach. I understand now why some parents give 5 year olds cell phones.
More than that, it is the beginning of his gradual growth away from me. Until now I was the centre of his universe, his repository of all knowledge. The one person who can make him feel loved and safe. From here on out I am only going to be pushed further away to make room for his life. Though I always knew it would happen, now that it so suddenly has, the sadness seeps in. Even though being asked 15 times what zombies do to people causes my patience to wither, I need appreciate that it won’t be long until he won’t ask me anything, he’ll be in his room on a laptop googling stuff.
So he caught the bus to school this morning, his baby brother and I waved him off as he jumped on and didn’t look back. I miss him.

Dreams of packing it all away

image Goa, 2005.

Nothing evokes in me a stronger sense of nostalgia and happiness then recollections of travels past. From my first solo overseas jaunt at age 16 to Malaysia, India and Nepal, I haven’t yet been able to stem the ever pervasive desire to travel.
That first trip, the plane stopped in Malaysia and I had one night which is a blur of a hangover, because my 16 year old self and my 16 year old best friend drank duty free vodka on the plane. Who said we weren’t mature enough to travel alone! We managed to make it onto the next plane, and 7 hours later walked into Delhi airport, backpacks on and absolutely no idea what to expect. My best friends boyfriend met us at the arrivals area, and we were straight in a taxi to the old delhi backpacker area. I can still feel the intense heat, the immediate strangeness, see the crumbling buildings, the acrid smell of exhaust fumes and the suddenly real flesh and blood children begging in rags, blind and hungry on every corner. I was 16 and thought I knew it all, how quickly I realised that all that I though I knew was just distant images, ink on paper, well meaning words.
The scent of exhaust fumes takes me back, and its a smell that I’ve grown fond of, having been back to India 5 times since those first fateful months. I travelled non stop until I fell pregnant with my firstborn, in 2009. How quickly time goes, its 2016 already, and my worldly self feels like a lifetime ago. As a childfree person, I had imagined that if oneday I had children, I would travel with them too. Being in a volatile and unpredictable, unsupportive relationship made reality quite different, and I soon found myself with all my savings squandered and in debt due to my naive trusting of the man I once loved. And alone, raising our child, pregnant with the second. Still I dreamt of the places we would go, and contented myself with travel in our beautiful country, visiting family and friends. When I started working again when my second son was 6 months old, I set myself a goal to travel before he turned two. Six months before his second birthday I bought tickets to Bali, and then set about organising passports and all the rest.
Two days ago Facebook reminded me of my memories from 2 years ago, which was my little family departing to Bali. I felt a mixture of happiness remembering our adventures, and sadness that two years ahead passed already and we were yet to travel again. I did actually have flights booked last July to NZ, which had to be cancelled because my ex stole our passports and he refused to sign a new application of course, and the process of me applying to have the kids passports issued without his signature was a long and complicated process. It was terribly disappointing, on the bright side the kids still got to see snow for the first time, and only 2 hours from home.
So here I am, wishing I was somewhere else. Maybe someone else. Constantly torn between staying on our farm giving my kids a stable secure childhood, opposite to what I had, and just packing it all in and travelling. I long for days immersed in a culture so foreign to this one, for new horizons, adventures, challenges. The only thing stopping me os the fear of not having anything to come back to. We might travel for a year or two or more. But then what? We will have nothing to come back to. No home, most likely no money. Or we might not want to come back. I don’t know what to do, but I have a lump in my heart, in my gut, and I know that deep down I didn’t choose this life. I’m not happy with this life. Its uninspiring. The people around me here are uninspiring. This close to normal life scares me.
The possibilities are endless, and following your heart is something most people never regret, I figured its the finance factor that has my staying put. An old friend of mine recently travelled around Australia with her husband and two kids and they are not affluent people. Thinking about them, I realised that its the fact that I’m single that stopping me. If I was in a committed relationship and the other person wanted to to travel, I would have no hesitation. Because I would have a confidant, a partner, help and support. I’m not scared to be alone, I loved solo traveling, but for my children. I can’t judge whether it would be the right decision for them. Do I trade security and stability for adventure and life experience ?

that mama hustle is hard alone

imageI was raised by a single mum, and I know it was hard for her to be a mother, made so much harder by her own struggles with her personal demons. So life was hard for us for other reasons the just being an only child in a single parent home. Luckily for me, mum had a lot of support from her parents, so I was well provided for materially whilst growing up.
I actually thought it cool having my parents separated as it meant I got to fly alone to Queensland in the school holidays and got twice as many presents, family and friends. I was always a glass half full kind of person, and thanks to my early education and travel was exposed to a lot of different ways kids were brought up and I knew I was actually pretty lucky.
So when I realised I would be parenting solo, I really thought I could handle whatever that entailed, and do an awesome job of it no worries, as we say here so often in oz land. The reality is much harder then even I could have imagined, with a huge part of that difficulty arising from needing to fulfil the roles of both mother and father. I always imagined being in an equal relationship, and I would have been happy to work and have the father stay home, or share roles equally, I would never have wanted a traditional role of man provide, woman cook and clean. Finding myself with children and single, their father who may as well have been a sperm donor, meant that in reality I needed to worry a lot more about it all. Worrying more meant that I had less time and energy to devote to actually just mothering. It meant that I was far more tired and stressed then if I had someone to help share the load, to have support of and to enjoy the little rewards with. When you are alone in sea of hardships and depressions, having no one to appreciate the little moments of happiness means that they disappear even more quickly.
Having no daddy around means I need to be the kind and gentle mama, and then sometimes moments later the mean and disciplinary mama. I have no support so sometimes they wear my patience so far down that I snap, I tell them things like I wish I could give them away to a family who would be really mean to them, that they are horrible ungrateful children. Then of course I feel terrible and tell them I didn’t mean it at all. I feel like an awful person being so inconsistent, I wish I could be endlessly patient and remain my usual gentle and kind self. It’s the guilt that I am somehow setting them up for a lifetime of dysfunction that eats away at me.
Sometimes I feel like I have to try so much harder to give them a wonderful childhood, buying them things and taking them places, then I feel upset that they don’t appreciate anything I do for them. But am I really doing it for them, or am I doing it to make up for my own perceived inadequacies I feel as being a failure as a parent, failure because I am alone.
I know everyone says that one good parent is better then two arguing, stressed and sad ones, and I want to believe that my choices will mean that my sons will grow up to be better men than their father. The question is how do I do this insanely difficult job whilst retaining my sanity, when I am so alone. I really believe that it does take a village to raise a child, and I don’t understand how our culture alienates and isolates single parents so easily.

procrastination is my weakness

So here I am, procrastinating about writing a post about procrastinating. Oh the irony! Its 10.04 am, ad aside from a mountain of housework and work to do, I have time spare to devote to my passion, writing. Unfortunately all the brilliant prose and with anecdotes that rouse my mind when I’m lying in bed supposed to falling asleep elude me at present. Where to start, with what and how, thus beginning the shifting of priorities, the busying with little distractions and then of course one finds oneself with no time left to write,or live.
So here I am writing. Writing something, anything. Writing because all the great writers wrote every day, some at least a few hundred words, some thousands. At the moment no one even reads what I write, so in that I have some freedom, free of critique, pressure and expectations. I write because I think too much, and if I didn’t write I think my brain would cease function for once an all.
Some topics that are on my mind that I want to write about soon are;
The dating world as a single mum.
Having my first child attend primary school and all the feelings and memories that its bringing up for me.
Being a single mum and how that means you are having to do the job of a mum and dad.
The recent event of Australia day and what it means to aboriginal people.
Holidays with kids when you are single.

So I best get to it!