Friday, March 9, 2012

Day Sixty Five...Tootsies..

I decided that Grace and I needed some girl time - we've been butting heads a lot lately so I wanted to so something where we could reconnect and just be together.

Lucas has Science Camp after school on Fridays so I took Grace to get a pedicure. This is a real treat for her as she doesn't get them very often. And I always go on my own so it was nice to have the company.

It was fun picking our colors, and having her sit in the chair next to me, both of us laughing and giggling because its so ticklish when they scrub the bottom of our feet. We got to chat a little, some of it serious, some just idle chatter.

In that hour I realized how much I enjoy having a daughter, I love doing girly things with her. I look forward to the future, to continue our relationship, to grow as mother and daughter but also as friends. 

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Day Sixty Four... Happy Birthday!

Today is my mum's birthday. Can't imagine not having this woman in my life.

Yes, We've had our ups and downs, what mother and daughter hasn't? But my mum means the world to me.
I go to her for advice or when I need a should to cry on, which isn't easy being here in the States. We've spent thousands on long distance phone calls and I swear we hold the US/Australian postal system together.

Back in the day we used to fax each other when we couldn't wait over a week for a letter to get across the world. Now we have Skype, which isn't as good as being in the same room together, but better than what we had 10 years ago.

I love when we get to be together, cups of tea and yummy cakes - perusing shops, or just hanging out chatting. We enjoy each others company but also know when we've had enough of each other too. I love that I can talk to my mum about anything.

We are planning a girls week away for later in the year to New York. I'm super excited that I can get some one on one time with my mum in a city that we both love. I look forward to the quality time I will get with her. I can't wait to make some memories.

Happy Birthday Mum!! I love you with all my heart.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Day Sixty Three...Don't tell anyone we are friends..

I just love my kids.  They are pretty much my life. And I'm so ok with that.

When I got pregnant with Lucas Grace was only a year old and we realized they wouldn't even be 2 years apart, only 23 months to be exact. I was a little concerned, would I be able to handle a baby and a toddler?
As it turned out Grace was the perfect big sister, she loved helping me take care of "brother" and was an easy child herself.

I couldn't be happier with the age difference - those two are thick as thieves most days - heads together, working on something or playing a game. They get a long way more than they fight, and it amazes me how much they enjoy doing things together. Melts my heart to see them go off, climbing their tree or playing at the playroom table together. I love watching Grace help Lucas with homework occasionally, or Lucas being concerned over his sissy when she is sick. I laugh inside when I hear them call each other butt-heads, because it means they really do love each other.

I love watching them walk into school together, heads usually together, chatting about something - turning back to wave to me. no, life isn't always perfect, yes, they fight like normal brother and sister - but I know they couldn't be without each other and my hope is that they continue to grow closer everyday. Nothing more important than the love of your family.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Day Sixty Two....Brrrrr!

O-M-G!! its cold!!
The kind of cold that makes you shiver all over until it hurts. When your fingers turn purple and go numb. teeth chatter, nose runs...

We are sitting at Lucas's baseball game and I wouldn't trade this for the world.

Grace and I are virtually frozen to the bleachers its that cold. we packed blankets and hot tea but it doesn't help much. But to be able to see my son play, to see the joy and excitement on his face when he hits the ball and gets to run to first base, is priceless and worth every bit of the pain in my lower body.

I love my kids so much it literally hurts tonight! I am such a proud mum I could burst, I would sit through a snow storm if it meant I could see my kids do something they love.

We sat there for two hours, cheering and laughing - shivering and chattering - enjoying every minute.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Day Sixty One....Spring is here!...

I just love Spring time flowers. If I could afford fresh cut flowers every day, I would. This is the best time of the year for flowers - I never get tired of tulips, daffodils, gerberas, and all the beautiful trees that are blossoming, like my Cherry Blossom trees.

Every grocery store I visit I pick up some flowers - right now my favorite is Fresh and Easy - they have a great selection and they are cheap!

This week was gorgeous purple tulips - super tight buds when I brought them home that have opened up and revealed these beautiful bluey centers...who knew this was inside...
I love how flowers make me so happy....

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Day Sixty...Time out..

Oh my gosh! What a beautifully perfect day!!
The weather couldn't get any nicer, and its Saturday!

Today started off early, with opening day for Lucas and baseball. I love seeing my little man all dressed in his uniform, before all the grass and dirt stains. I just love spending time with my family.
After baseball we stopped to get some lunch to bring home. The kids went to play in their tree, Troy was doing yard work and hanging out with them. So I decided I was going to take some time out of my day, put my feet up and enjoy my lunch in the backyard.

My yard is so neglected right now, but I know with a little TLC it will be back in shape in no time. I need to start weeding and re-planting for the Spring and Summer seasons, but for now I will just sit and enjoy my sandwich, indulge in a Coke and just take a load off in the glorious sunshine. Sometimes its just nice to sit and daydream....

Friday, March 2, 2012

Day Fifty Nine..Good Times...

Every girl needs girlfriends. Some come into your life for a while, for a reason, and then go. 

Others stay in your life forever.

Those are the ones that really know you. the good, the bad and the ugly. They have been through thick and thin with you. They love you unconditionally. You can have fights and fall outs, but in the end you come back together. There is an unbreakable bond.
You share so many moments together, some feel like a million years ago and others you'll never forget. You lean on each other when there is a crisis, you feel true happiness when something good happens. These are the girls that you call first with any news or gossip.

Life doesn't allow us to see each other as much as we would like, but we truly make the effort when we can. We have a birthday tradition that is now 10 years strong. I couldn't imagine not spending my birthday without these girls.

We spend time together in the summer, lazing on the beach, catching up while our kids play. Reminiscing about when they were babies. We have girls nights out when we can - laughing about how old we've become because we cant stay out past 10.

 I love how we are all so different from one another, yet we have this connection, and we just get along so well. I love these girls with my heart, and can't wait to see what the next 10 years hold for us.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Day Fifty Eight...Happy Birthday..

Today is my birthday!
I'm a total birthday girl - always have been. I remember as a child birthdays being a big a deal.
We didn't have the big elaborate parties that kids get nowadays, but we always had a party of some sort.

Being the 1st of March, the weather in Australia was always nice for my birthday. Just coming off summer, I'd have a pool party or a backyard soiree of some sort. Ice cream cake and pass the parcel. Sometimes an after school party. But birthdays were never missed and you were always fussed over. It's your special day!

Birthdays are still a big deal and I love having kids so I can now be the one to plan the big event. But being the adult doesn't mean I don't like birthdays -I still want the whole kit and kaboodle! I love the fan fare and being fussed over - its my special day!

It was nice celebrating yesterday with my family - I love my hand made cards from my kids, the sweet gifts and a delicious dinner out. But I still miss the big ol' parties I had when I was a kid...ah, guess its time to grow up.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Day Fifty Seven...We've got the moves..

I just love when we turn up the music real loud and let loose.

Tonight my kids were showing us their talent show act - and it turned into a fun and silly dance session.
I love when we play songs off the radio and all our inhibitions just disappear. When we sing at the top of our voices, make up dance moves and have a free for all.
I love watching my kids personalities shine through, when they aren't worried about who's listening or watching. its just pure and natural.
I love seeing their shiny smiling faces - the laughter and giggling. I love being silly with them. I feel a real connection. I'm more than just their mum.

I'm in awe of these two people that I have brought into this world. So unique but snippets of me and my husband too. My heart is so full of love for them. 
I am truly grateful for them and absolutely cherish these moments.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Day Fifty Six....its raining, its pouring..

Yippee! another cold, rainy stormy day - love it!!

We even got small hail today - but what I really miss is a real storm. One that brews all day - that smell of raining coming, followed by lightning and thunder. I love the loud clapping of clouds bouncing off each other, and the sky getting a dark, dark grey. I love pouring rain, so thick you can barely see through it. I love water gushing down the street and massive puddles - especially driving through them. I love the sound of water hitting my wind screen while I drive and the whooshing of my wind screen wipers.
I love to come home and put on snuggies and turn the fire and heater on. I love making something yummy for dinner, all warm and comforting.

So, I'll take my little Southern California "storm", enjoy it while it lasts, because its as good as it's gonna get!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Day Fifty Five...Girl Time..

Today I got to go to my friends 40th birthday party. It was held at another friends house and as always so beautiful planned.
It was Tuscan flavored, with gorgeous place settings and a delicious meal.

I love how these amazing women all came together, pulling together this party - various dishes were brought, others whipped up things in the kitchen. Everyone busy doing something - a hub of activity. At this point in our lives we are all so comfortable and at ease with one another - we know what needs to be done, and its not all left on one person.

I just love this great group of gals that are now my friends - and as I sat in the sun enjoying my meal, I took in the different conversations around me.
I love that we were able to take some time off from our busy lives and just be together, enjoying each others company. Laughing and sharing stories, catching up.

I think as women we can never have too much girl time - its so important to our well being. Whether its a sister or a really good friend, these relationships are necessary. No matter how old we get or how grown up we are supposed to be, girlfriend time, giggles and a glass of wine thrown in for good measure is good for the soul!

I'm grateful for these girls, some I am closer to than others but all play a part in my life in some way. And today just reminded me how much I need them and how I look forward to our next get together.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Day Fifty Four....Caw-fee....

ahhhhh....I love Starbucks Cappuccinos...
Today I am sitting at my son's baseball practice, enjoying a chat with the team mom and drinking a yummy cap thanks to her hubby who made a coffee run.
The sun is shining, in fact its getting hot!
I'm really enjoying these early morning Saturdays. I should be making more use of my time, or at least taking a walk around the park - but I decide to sit on my tooshy and enjoy the sun, chat and my cappuccino.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Day Fifty Three..Belle of the Ball

Tonight is the Daddy/Daughter Dance at school. I'm so grateful that Grace is well enough to go. She's been excited about this for weeks.

My heart skips a beat when I look at her all dressed up - pink eye shadow and glitter dusting her shoulders. She's getting so grown up and I wonder where the heck the last ten years went.

My whole life I dreamt of the day I might have a daughter. These are the moments I had hoped for - the girly girl moments. I want to embrace this moment, still a little girl, not quite a teenager yet. Still silly and full of giggles and wanting me to do her hair. Like a baby giraffe with those long legs in little heels.

I love that my husband thought to buy her a gorgeous corsage - and I know one day it will be a boy loving my girl, buying her a corsage for a dance. Makes me want to cry because its right around the next corner.
I'm so proud of my girl - my every dream came true when she entered my life. I am blessed.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Day Fifty Two..We've turned the corner..

Yeah!! Grace has finally turned the corner!

Tonight she finally ate something more than a bit of bread. Granted, it wasn't a whole dinner, but I'll take a few mouthfuls of pasta and a 1/4 piece of bread stick!
Her cheeks are pink and she has her a smile in her voice. My girl is back.
She even wants to go back to school tomorrow. Selfishly I want her home one more day - I'd like to get her strength back and I've totally enjoyed being her nurse and getting to baby her a bit, but she's ready.

I'm grateful for my girl, that it wasn't anything major and she is almost back to normal. I love my Beetle!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Day Foury Nine thru Fifty One...

I feel like I have lived a million days in the last two.

Nothing worse than the feeling of helplessness when one of your kids is sick.
Grace started feeling not good early Monday and went down hill quickly. After spending almost 12 hours of throwing up until there was absolutely nothing left in her poor little body I decided enough was enough and drove her at 3am to urgent care. There she received a shot in her backside ( poor bubs has a nasty black bruise that is still hurting her today ) to stop the vomiting, some antibiotics and the warning to watch for appendicitis.
We came home but around 10am after taking a tiny bit of food and her meds, started throwing up again.
So off to the hospital we go.
In my mind I was praying please don't be the appendix. I didn't want her to have to go through that.
After an ultra sound, some blood and urine work and a cat scan, they found an infection in her bladder. She was given antibiotics and fluids through an IV and after about 7 hours we were allowed to come home.

I'm relived there is nothing major wrong with her and that a couple days on the couch watching TV and some meds will get her back to new. I'm grateful that it wasn't appendicitis.
 I know that what happened is nothing compared to what some parents are going through, or what have gone through with sick kids - and kids that wont be coming home like Anthony, the little boy who recently passed away after a freak accident.
But it does make me stop and think about how fragile life can be - and to be grateful for each passing day, to embrace each moment and not sweat the small stuff. To hug my kids more, to take more time, to have more patience. to be grateful for what we have right now.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Day fourty Eight...Snuggle Buggle..

There is nothing better than nuzzling into my boys warm soft neck first thing in the morning.
Lucas is an early bird, wakes up happy and ready to go. So its not often he is still in bed when I come to his room in the morning.

I love how he loves to snuggle with me - he grabs my neck and pulls me into to him. I love that warmth from his body. I love breathing him in. If I could inhale my son and keep him within me forever, I would.
I love his happy go lucky nature, and that he's always ready for a conversation, sometimes fun, sometime serious. I love squishy hugs and nibbling on his ear, if he lets me! I love that he still wants me around.

I'm sure there will come a time that its not cool to snuggle with your mum, so I take as many of these moments as I can, I cherish each hug and each snuggle. I love these moments with my son, and hope it keeps us close.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Day Fourty Seven...Hot air rising...

I can't help but talk about another gorgeous morning here in Temecula.
Going to Lucas's baseball practice again. Love watching my boys be together, doing something they love.

The air is super crisp but there is no wind, so the sun actually feels good on my face and neck. I love taking deep breaths in - makes me feel alive. I love sitting for a couple hours and just zoning out - taking in the practice, and daydreaming. I love listening to the neighborhood sounds - garage doors opening, dogs barking, kids playing at the park. I love just being still.
I love our town, kinda country - with fields near us and  hot air balloons taking off each morning. I love the peacefulness of the morning.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Day Fourty Six..and the award goes to...

Sooooo incredibly proud of my girl - Honorable Mention Award for her project for the Science Fair.
There was some stiff competition this year - its amazing to see some of the work and creativity that these kids have. I felt pretty good about Grace's experiment but seeing all the other boards, and how many were there - well, you just never know how your kid is going to compare.

As a parent you want your kids to succeed - you want them to be winner. I know that's not real life and realistic to always be a winner - but sometimes you can't help wishing that "this time" they should.

I talk with my kids a lot about doing their best, that they should feel good about their work and if they know in their hearts they did their best and they put forward the effort then that's good with us.
Not everyone can get the trophy or 1st prize - that you aren't always a winner. That there is way more in life than just that.

I love helping my kids - I want them to be outstanding - but I also want them to learn how to do things on their own - to take ownership of anything they are working on. To have pride in what they do. To stand on their own two feet.

No, Grace didn't do this project on her own, I helped her. But the majority of the work was her - she performed the experiments on her own, she took all the notes and wrote her work up. She helped with putting the board together.  I enjoyed working with her on this but the ownership is all hers. And I am so glad she was recognized for that.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Day Fourty Five...see ya round like a rissole..

Today I needed some comfort food. Food my oma or mum would cook.
 So I decided to go with Chicken Rissoles. Can't get more comforting than that!

Chicken Rissoles are made from chicken mince, (ground chicken breast) - kinda like a meat ball but bigger, longer. I mix mine with salt, pepper, some finely chopped onion and bread crumbs. Shape them into a "patty" and fry them up. Once cooked I add some chicken stock to the pan, scrap up all the goodness on the bottom and then transfer the lot into a casserole dish to bake for a while. They are so moist and flavorful!! So yummy warm and just as good cold on a sandwich. They are also good with just about any side, mashed potato is the best but tonight I made fries and some veges.

I love that I had an oma and mum that were fabulous cooks with all these yummy delicious dishes they shared with me, and that my mum taught me how to cook. And I'm grateful that my family loves it all too.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Day Fourty Four...My cuppa tea...

I can't express how much I enjoy a good cuppa. Nothing like a freshly brewed pot of tea.
Most days though I settle for a tea bag in a mug. As long as its my Dilmah I'm good to go!
 Being an Aussie I was raised on tea, especially for breakfast. Its my steadfast tradition. I savor every sip.

I bring back boxes of tea, in my suitcase, all the way from Australia, and today I had to open my last precious box. Oh the aroma that comes out is divine! Makes me think of my mum's kitchen. I need my morning tea like a smoker needs their first drag. I also love a good cuppa in the evening when I finally sit down.

I miss my morning tea breaks and even afternoon tea breaks - the English/Aussies know how to do it right!  I love all the tea I get to drink when I go "home". I love how my Aussies love it as much as I do - I'm back with my own kind!
So I will enjoy my last box and I will be putting in a call to mum to mail me over some more quick smart!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Day Fourty Three..Be my Valentine..

You either love it or hate it - but no denying it - Valentine's Day brings out the sap in most of us!

I love all the pink, red and white. The cute singing stuffed toys and the walls of cards in every major store. All the love paraphernalia - from cupcake sprinkles to love treats for your pets. There is something for everyone!
I love and want the cheesiness, the flowers and chocolates and jewelry.

But what I love the most is the handmade stuff. The cute love cards from my kids are the best. I cherish all of them and keep them in a big box. I love how they hide out in their rooms crafting, making masterpieces.
I love how they do this on their own accord, true love from my babies.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Day Fourty Two...What's your talent?...

So happy for my kids today! They made it in the school talent show!
From what I hear about 50 or so "acts" tried out and about 20 got accepted, so I can understand their excitement. It's quite an accomplishment.

I know we have a few weeks of rehearsals, lots of play dates at each others houses - I'm sure I'll be sick of the song they are singing after hearing it for the millionth time. But to see their beaming smiles and the joy this brings makes it all worth while. Can't wait to see them up on stage!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Day Fourty One...the science of it all..

O-M-G!! we are done!!
Grace's science fair project is finally complete!!

I know for most its been a big pain in the you know what - but for us it was kinda fun! I love that Grace has an interest in Science. She enjoyed doing the experiments and writing up her notes and since she does most all of her homework on her own it was fun working with her, helping her to put it all together.

I think it turned out pretty neat and can't wait to see how she does.

But definitely grateful that its done!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Day Fourty...Scentsy Spirit...

Today was Scentsy Spring Sprint in Pomona. A rah rah event - to train and motivate us - to get us ready to launch our Spring/Summer line.

Its not me, but I love to see the crazy gals who dress up - the ones who come with a gaggle of girls, balloons matching tee-shirts. The new consultants and the veterans. But we all have one thing in common, we love Scentsy.
We have invested time into our businesses, we are driven and dedicated. We are "all in". We want to take it to the next level.

I am so grateful for the group of gals that came with me. We are all at different levels and stages of our businesses but thirsty for more knowledge - we want to grow! I love how I've made these awesome friendships with my "Scentsy Sisters" - I love how I can learn something from each one of them - I love that I can teach them to be a leader too.

Scentsy is always talking about our A-HA moment - and mine was that this is so much more than just a business - this is family for me - that I have this amazing network of girls and guys - that we are growing together. That big or small we have the same goals, that we are united. I couldn't do this without them, and I look forward to seeing what is ahead for us all.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Day Thirty Nine...Curry in a hurry...

Today is a normal mummy day - running around trying to get things accomplished, although not getting that much done today!

Was running an errand around 11am when I get a text from my friend "small lunch??" - I just smile. I love this friend for bring spontaneity into my life. I love that she makes me feel like I can just drop what I am doing to be with her. that it's ok to have a change of plan!
I'm so type A it isn't funny and my day isn't right when its not all planned out, but for some reason this just feels so right!

I enjoy her company so much - she introduced me to this little Thai place - with the tacky decor that makes us laugh, but the food is yummy, and inexpensive and we can have a quick lunch without feeling guilty at all.

I'm so grateful for her friendship and that she loves sneaking in Thai with me!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Day Thirty Eight...Songbirds...

It melts my heart to hear my kids sing. They have no inhibitions, no insecurities. They sing pure, from the heart.

Grace loves trying out for the talent show each year at school, this being the third year in a row. This year the brothers will be joining her and Lindsay - and its so darn cute!!

Watching them practice the lyrics and put together a "dance" is impressive. When they put their minds to it they can accomplish a lot in a short time!

As a kid I was so shy, never in a million years would I have stood on stage and sang a song. So to watch my kids do this is blows my mind. I'm incredibly proud - and whether they make it or not, they are stars in my book!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Day Thirty Seven..its here!

Today my new Spring/Summer catalog arrived on the door step. Its always exciting to have our catalog change over - we all wait for the new book and scents - picking out our favorites.

 I had a bunch of catalogs in the car when I went to pick up the kids from school and it was so cute to listen to them in the back seat, oooing and aaahing over the new product, each picking out new buddies.

I love how they have embraced my business and truly have an interest in it. I love how they get just as excited as I do when something new arrives from UPS. They want to help me label bars and bundle stuff up. They want to be a part of my business and it makes realize I made a great decision.

I hope that this shows them I can be a strong individual, working for my family - just as much as I am a hands on mum to them too.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Day Thirty Six...How do you take yours??

Ok, I'll admit it - I <3 Starbucks. There is only one other coffee place in town that does a better cappuccino - but Starbucks is just fine and they are on every corner.
I love how its a hub of activity - I love people watching - what's their story - what makes them grab a coffee today?

I love grabbing a coffee and a gab with girlfriends. Today was one of those days - I got to have coffee with someone I've know for a while but haven't really gotten to know that well. I enjoyed our chat - that I got to know her a bit better today. That we had a few laughs and shared some secrets. I'm glad that we were spontaneous and look forward to seeing where it goes.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Day Thirty Five...ugh.

Today - started off ok - then got not so good. By the time I got to write this all I can say is that I am thankful for my pain meds.
Hate headaches. Hate feeling ugh. Grateful for Aleve.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Day Thirty four...Tax Time!

Ugh. How I hate book keeping. receipts, pieces of paper, invoices, checks and forms. The list goes on.
This is the hardest part of running my business. And I'm really terrible at it. I must admit I have gotten marginally better than last year, after handing my tax agent a baggie of receipts.  (Don't think he was too impressed! )
I got off on a good start and petered out sometime around September. My desk has become a mountain of paperwork and our tax appointment is in 2 weeks.

So I decided today was as good as any to get up to date. Thinking it wouldn't take too long, I pulled everything out onto the lounge room floor and got stuck into it. Blah, I'm still not done!! Close though!

As I was moaning and groaning, printing out invoices back from 3 months ago, trying to figure out what was what and how much this sucked, I realized that if I didn't have all this I wouldn't have a successful business. And without my business we wouldn't have quite a few things.
So I guess today I am grateful for the piles of paper, my trusty calculator and the fact that I made some decent money for us this year.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Day Thirty Three...Play ball....

Another glorious Saturday morning. A chill in the air but the sun trying hard to warm us up. We hit the baseball field at 8am for Lucas's first baseball practice of the season.

I love having a son. I love learning the ins and outs of a boys mind. I love how he teaches me things I'd never learn being a girl. I'll never get it 100% right, I'm wired as a girly girl - but I try my best to "get him". 
I want to be a boys mum, to get dirty, to play Legos, to understand sport and to wrestle on the floor. But what I do know is that I love him unconditionally and look forward to watching him grow into a man.

I love that I have a husband that is so involved with our kids. I love that he wants to be Luke's coach. I love his patience and dedication. I love watching the relationship between son and dad.
They are building memories, just like Troy did with his dad. Makes my heart swell with love for both of them.
I'm so grateful for both my boys - for giving me the gift of enjoying boy stuff.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Day Thirty Two...This little Piggy...

Oh my gosh - there is nothing better than an awesome pedicure!
Today was my day to have some "me" time and I chose to get my tootsies done. I love having a pedi - someone to clean up the polish, massage my toes and feet, and the hot towels are to die for!
I'm trying a new place, and so far really love it. Lilly is amazing - her pedi's rock.

Today I got to talk with her and its interesting listening to her stories about Vietnam. I look forward to going back and hearing more. I bet she has a lot to tell.

So, I am grateful for Lilly and her awesome pedicure, that she's wiling to scrub and polish up my feet,  and I am grateful for having the time to sit and enjoy being pampered.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Day Thirty One...Down in the garden...

For me there is something so peaceful about watering the plants in my garden.
I find it so relaxing.  The peace and quiet of my backyard - I can enjoy the sun, listen to the birds chirp - I even like to close my eye and listen to the water. It's my time out really - away from the chores and the chaos of the house. 

This time of the year is fun, we are almost at Spring and I love to check out what's starting to bud. I'm hoping my miniature apple tree will grow baby apples this year, and I can't wait for my jasmine to start blooming its heady perfume of flowers. I love all my little terracotta pots with a mish mash of various flowers. Can't wait for the color to come back into my faded out backyard.
I look forward to adding more this season, and to be able to sit on my back patio and enjoy my little backyard.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Day Thirty....Comfies...

Nothing beats a good pair of comfy sweats.
And nothing is better than slipping into cozy warm fleece after working all day.

 As I kick off my heels and peel out of my nice work clothes I am grateful for my American Eagle sweat pants and zip up hoody.  I sigh with joy, it's pure comfort.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Day Twenty Nine...Spring in Winter?

Our weather is all screwed up this winter. It's way too warm, and all my plants are confused.

Today I noticed our newest tree in the front yard, christened Tiny by the kids, is blooming. Its a gorgeous crab apple tree - lots of these are around Temecula, and they are all blooming right now.
Tiny isn't supposed to bloom in Winter and I hope we don't get a frost or a bad storm and damage Tiny.
So I will enjoy my crab apple today and the pretty white flowers and hope that we get to enjoy it again in the Spring!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Day Twenty Eight...tastes like home...

I had to make a trip to Costco today - Ugh, how I dislike shopping at Costco. 
Think its the huge shopping carts, and the enormity of the items sold there. Everything is huge, like I'm shopping for a giant or a household of 20. Then you have to figure out where to store all that stuff, and after your 20th can of beans you probably don't even want to eat beans anymore. Plus its almost always crowded, I just don't like maneuvering my cart through throngs of people. Weekends are the worst, I swear most people go there to eat the free food.

But there are a couple things I do go in for so I try and make my trip quick.
Luckily today was relatively quiet, so I spent a little time perusing the isles just in case I came across something I didn't know I needed. Down the refrigerated section I came across these Gyoza Dumplings. OMG! YUM!
Straight away it made me think of my favorite little restaurant back home, near where my mum lives. Pins and Noodles, affectionately called Pins...

The fun thing about restaurants back home, especially in older neighborhood areas, a lot of them are old houses converted into restaurants. Pins and Noodles is one, with tables and chairs throughout all the "rooms" and a kitchen built "down the hallway". I love it! It has so much character. Its basically a pasta and asian inspired restaurant - odd combination but totally works, and they have the best Gyoza dumplings.

I took home the Costco version and fried some up for lunch - I could close my eyes and be back in Pins, that's how good they were. They also remind me of a Russian dish my Oma made, very similar, called Pelmini, one of her famous recipes when we were kids and one that has gone with her. Gosh I miss those days.

So, I savory the taste of the gyoza and smile at my memories of Oma - and also many dinners with my parents at Pins.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Day Twenty Seven...Old school...

Thank goodness for the great weather today!
My dryer decided it was going to quit working on me today. And I can't get a new part until next week sometime. Of course I had just done all the towels and bed sheets. With no dryer, and no washing line. Bummer.

Gosh, how I miss my good ol' Hills Hoist!!

Americans, well at least in California, don't know the concept of a clothes line - I wonder if they even know what one is?!
When I moved here I was baffled - how was I going to get my clothes dry?? The thought of putting everything in a dryer was so foreign to me - and to this day I still rebel and hang dry a lot of my things.

I remember as kids swinging on our clothes line - around and around we would go - like a merry go round.
On hot summer days we would rig up the hose to the washing line, and lay underneath, water spinning around like some fancy water park. I remember washing all my Barbie clothes, and pegging them all up in a row.
Towels would come off all stiff and crunchy but smelling like sweet sunshine.
To me a washing line symbolizes a typical Aussie backyard - wouldn't be right without one!

Each time I go back home I find some gadget, some do-hickey that I can use to dry my clothes that I can't bare to put in the dryer. I have cute little spinning hangers, and the coolest over the door rack that I cant live without.
And today I was so glad I had my folding rack - at least I got the towels dry in the gorgeous sunshine - can't wait to fold those stiff crunchy buggers!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Day Twenty Six...High on a Scent...

Today I am grateful for my job. For this full table of Scentsy. Because this means I am busy.

I love opening up those big white and purple boxes - filled with the delicious scent of Scentsy. I love lining up all  the bars, checking each warmer - labeling and packaging.
I love the home parties, where I get to make new friends each time. I love making deliveries and seeing how happy my customers are. I love the freedom this job gives me. I love the smells and the colors of the wax bars. I love the extra income that Scentsy provides me. I love the travel and the friendships I've made, the Scentsy sisterhood.

Not many people can say they love their jobs, I'm truly grateful I can.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Day Twenty Five...3 Little Monkeys...

Today is a half day from school so we are home by lunchtime. Grace's friend Lindsay has also come over to spend the afternoon. They are always wanting to spend time together, and Lindsay is like an adoptive daughter to me.
So while I am making lunch the kids decide they are going to play outside and climb their tree.

Grace and Lucas learned how to climb our front tree a few months ago and have virtually been living in it every given chance. They even rigged a pulley and bucket system so they can pull up snacks and what not. I even found Lucas sitting up there one day reading a book!
Watching them in that tree reminds of the hours and hours my brother, sister and I spent in our tree.

My dad bought our first house when we were little kids based on the the ginormous Liquid Amber in the backyard.
It was a gorgeous tree, probably about 20 feet tall. Lush green leaves in the summer, perfect for hiding in. And the most stunning array of colored leaves in Autumn. Many days were spent raking leaves so we could jump in the piles! We even had a tire swing hanging from a low thick branch.
The 3 of us spent so much time in that tree, playing games, hiding from our parents and spying on the neighbors.
The tree grew spiky balls that when dipped in mud and left to harden made perfect weapons when fighting with one another. Every few years the cicadas made their appearance, singing their ear splitting tune and shedding their hard shells all over our tree. 

I'll never forget those years of climbing our tree, the hours spent laughing and plotting with my brother and sister. That tree was ours, our haven, our hide out, our place.
So, watching my kids play in their tree brings back so many fond memories and I love how they are making theirs.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Day Twenty Four...Racers, start your engines..

I had a great day today!! 
Another picture perfect day - cloudless blue sky, a crisp morning turning into a sunny and warm 86 degree day (30C). Started my day with a walk, that turned into some good laughs as we tried to jog part of our walk. How great it is to be enjoying a brilliant morning with a close friend and having a great laugh at yourself! so liberating!

Then on to a networking lunch -a great meal surrounded by like minded business women. Enjoyable and productive at the same time -my kinda meeting!
But the best part of my day was the spontaneous decision by Troy to take the afternoon off and surprise the kids and have a fun afternoon together.
He had heard the indoor go kart racing center had "kids drive free" on Thursdays so we drove over to check it out. You should have seen Lucas's eyes light when he realized where we were. Priceless.
Grace and I decided not to drive today - and it was fun to watch my two boys race each other around the track, trying to out do one another - true boy competitiveness. Lucas wasn't too sure at first but by the end was beating his dad. To see his enthusiasm and joy was infectious! He told me next time he's going to take me on - Better watch out boy, this chick knows how to drive!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Day Twenty Three...Walkies!...

Well, I asked for weather and I'm getting it!! Monday was cold and rain, today is clear and crisp with highs later on in the 80's! Nothing boring about it this week.

Today I went on my brisk one hour walk with my girlfriends, and when I got home decided that I would continue my walk and take my old man out with me. Old man being Jack. Poor old Jack, with all his health problems is gaining weight and really needs his walks.
So I wake him from his nap, get his harness on and we are off!!
In the good old days Jack would run his whole walk, and he could go on forever. These days he gets half way around the block and he's pooped out - down to a stroll and then a nail drag. 
But its a gorgeous morning, he needs some exercise and I get to spend a little time with him - even if it's more of a stroll. The sun warming us, the fresh air in our lungs and doing something good for one another.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Day Twenty Two...Office on the go...

Today was a busy day for me - a busy Scentsy day!
Coffee and lunch meetings ( my favorite kind of meetings! ) with two of my Directors - brain storming and chatting about the new Scentsy year.  Meetings with customers - taking orders and closing a party. Chatting with team members on the phone. Busy busy busy, all day long.

The majority of the day was spent in Big Red - my office on wheels.
I love Big Red - the seats are like big comfy armchairs. I have lots of room in the cup holders that hold cups and everything else I could possibly need. I have room for my phone and boxes of scents, my bags with business supplies and passenger seat holds everything from my handbag, to snacks and everything in between within my reach.

I drove from appointment to appointment, chatting, munching on a pastry, drinking my tea - listening to my favorites songs. I cruised around town on a beautiful day, peacefully accomplishing a lot. Grateful for being busy, grateful for my ride. It was a very satisfying day.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Day Twenty One...Rainy Day...

Today is cold and rainy and I love it!! Finally - some weather.

This winter has been really mild and at times way too hot for this time of the year. Most of the year it's so boring, its either hot or hotter. I miss the seasons that I got back in Sydney. I love a good storm, something that we hardly ever get. I miss lightning, thunder and hail! crazy huh??

I love cozy sweaters and scarfs, favorite jeans and boots. I love sloshing around in the rain, drops falling on my face.There's something satisfying about watching my wind screen wipers swish back and forth, trying to keep my window clear. I love wet sticky leaves in the yard, and my plants soaking up all they can.
I love coming into a warm home after being cold and wet.

Mostly I love watching it rain on my window, something so calming and peaceful about it.

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