Friday, 18 April 2014

Weekend Rewind 10 Blog Hop - The Very Very Grateful One

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It's a short one from me tonight and I make no apology for the fact that I am spending time this weekend celebrating with my family and feeling so incredibly grateful.

Despite the title of this post, I am not so sure that I would like this week to rewind... in fact I'm pretty certain I'm glad to see the back of it. But with darkness comes light, with fight comes freedom, with determination comes reward and I for one am glad that I am the daughter of a very determined man.

The good news.... very good news,  is we have brought my Dad home from the hospital for Easter.

He has more tubes than a brewery sticking out of his arms, but that's OK, I happen to like breweries and we are just so incredibly happy that he is here with us.

Ironic that today is Good Friday, a day that is declared by Christians worldwide as such a significant day in their religious calender. I couldn't agree more. Today my Dad is home with my Mum and his precious dog Sal by his side, he is right where he should be and that makes it a pretty damn Good Friday in my books too.

Thank you all so very very much from myself, my Mum, my family and my Dad for your prayers and your beautiful messages this week for my Dad. It has been an awful week, one we are glad to leave behind us.

I know I have said this before but this community of ours never fails to overwhelm me because for all of the negative stuff you here about the online world, there are 100 hundred times (at least if not more) stories of kindness and good.

From my family - complete with my Dad - to yours, I wish you all a very Happy and Safe Easter.

What's your plans this Easter?
What are you grateful for right now at this very moment?

Link up your favourite post from the past week and then pop around and say hello to some of the other lovely linkers. The Weekend Rewind blog hopping party starts every Friday night at 8pm and links will close on Sunday night at midnight. Link up here or over on Bron's blog (Maxabella) or over at the other Sonia's blog (Sonia Styling). It does not matter where you link as your link will show up in all 3 places.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Creating Memories

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Carl took the last few days off work to allow me time to go and see my Dad at the hospital whenever I felt like it. I am so incredibly grateful for a husband that loves his in laws like he does and genuinely cares about them as if they were his own parents.

The kids of course loved having Dad around and they set about getting stuck into a project they have been wanting to do for ages - building a skate grind.

Now I have no idea when it comes to anything skate related. My involvement goes as far as shouting at them to wear their helmets and applying ice packs and Betadine to the numerous wounds they self inflict when they stack.

I do know that you can buy a skateboard grind like this for about $500. No pain, no fuss ready to go,

I have no idea how much this one cost to build and it doesn't really matter as buying one would have totally defeated the purpose of what my hubby and boys were doing. 

Huddled together measuring and screwing, bumping into each other and dropping large pieces of wood onto each others toes - they were creating memories. 

Memories that will last a lifetime. 

Memories that one day our boys will tell their own children about.

Memories that will one day keep them company at night when they need it the most.

You cant buy that for $500 bucks can you?

Do you have memories of making anything with your parents when you were a kid?

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Do You Choose Clean Curtains or Passionate Sex?

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I have heard of sex being used as a crisis coping mechanism and I've seen plenty of movies where the bawling / distraught / frightened or grieving character falls into the arms of the closest breathing human and makes mad passionate love and afterwards peace is restored in their life

Personally I couldn't think of anything I would least feel like doing when I am mid crisis, but hey each to their own.

We all have our ways of coping and it seems that during the recent stress of my dad being unwell I have discovered that I indeed have my own coping mechanism... one I inherited from my mum.

We clean.

For reals.

The other night I rang my mum to check on how she was doing and the conversation went kind of like this;

"Hi Mum, I just wanted to check in and see how you are" I enquired gently as I reached for the bottle of dish washing liquid.

"I'm doing OK thanks love" came the slightly breathless but reassuring response from my mum.

"Have you eaten? What are you doing?" I asked as I furiously scrubbed at a dirty smudge on one of the kitchen cupboards before filling a bucket of disinfectant to scrub down the rest of the cupboards.

"Oh I'm just cleaning the blinds" answered my Mum in a muffled voice.

"Seriously Mum? You should be resting. Who cleans at a time like this?" I demanded as I tried to ram the stupid power motor head onto the Dyson hose thingy.

Ummm it seems we do.

Yep clearly I take after my Mum and we have figured out our own way of dealing with a crisis - we clean! And quite manically at that!

I'm not so sure how this cleaning thing is working out for me though.

After lying on my bed staring out the window for a while the other afternoon, I began to notice how dusty our billowy white curtains were. Overcome by an urgent need to clean them, I screamed out to the hubby who was downstairs "HONEYYY INeedYourHelpCauseIHaveToWashTheCurtainsLikeRIGHTNOW! PLEEEEEEEASE!"

Or something like that.

After a bit of bleach and a good hot soapy wash, I was expecting to have clean dust free billowy white curtains to stare at whilst lying on the bed being all melancholy.

What I got instead was very clean white shredded to shit billowy curtains.

Maybe there is a damn good reason after all that people choose sex in a crisis and not cleaning. Their life might be falling to pieces but at least their curtains would be intact.

How do you cope in a crisis?
Would you choose clean curtains over passionate sex?
Do you have any weird and wonderful coping techniques?

Monday, 14 April 2014

The Centre Of My Universe

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It was twelve years ago, my first born son was just 7 weeks old and my beautiful father was in a coma. Instead of enjoying everything that came with the birth of his first grandson, my dad was fighting for his life in an Intensive Care Unit.

I can remember the night that it all happened like it was only yesterday. My dad had been hospitalised earlier that day with some sort of infection and as evening settled in, my family gathered at my Mum and Dad's house to have some food, get some rest and wait for further news.

When the news finally came, it wasn't what we expected - he was being placed into a coma and machines would keep him alive so his body could have a chance to heal.

I have never admitted this to anyone, but that awful night I rang my Dad's mobile number at least 50 times, just so I could hear his voice on the answering service. For some reason I believed that by hearing him I could hang on to him and prevent him from slipping away from us.

Over the next couple of weeks I bargained with God and the universe. You make my Dad better and I will do this. Keep my Dad alive and I promise I will be all that and more yada yada.

I lost count of the dozens of promises I made to the heavens that night and those following weeks. There was a lot of them and all I knew is that I would do anything to have my precious Dad wake up from that Coma.

And he did.

He beat death by the skin of his nose and in true fighting spirit he won against all odds and continued to improve each day.

For a long time he was still a very unwell man and one day in his confused post coma state, he was convinced that one of the machines in his room was a lemon juicer. He told my mum all about the beautiful juicy lemons the nurses were juicing in his room and had we not known that he was in a completely sterile space with not a lemon in sight, we would almost have been convinced.

Instead we knew it was the drugs and the effects of waking from a coma and despite it being a reminder of such an awful time - it kind of became a long running joke and one we still tease him about to this day.

It seems to be that my family's way of dealing with tough times is to use humour to help us through.

I remember as we sat in that ICU room next to his bed, waiting, just waiting, we joked that if and when Dad woke from his coma, we would tell him a whole lot of BS about what had been happening in the world whilst he was out. Things like how his grand kids were married and he was now a Great Grandad and that Bindi Irwin had become Prime Minister. We laughed at the ridiculousness of the things we were coming up with and it helped us... the laughter that is.

We didn't have the heart to carry it through though. When he finally came to, we were so overwhelmed with relief at having him back... all jokes were long forgotten about.

Although I was so incredibly relieved and grateful that my Dad continued to get better, something changed within me throughout the experience. An invisible wall went up and without even realising it a part of me withdrew from him, frightened that at any stage he would be taken away from me and I would feel that desperate heartache all over again.

As time went on and the memory of that awful period faded, the wall slowly came down and I am ashamed to admit that in hindsight, I began to take for granted that he and my Mum would always be here.

I was preoccupied with my growing family and my visits with my Mum and Dad became less frequent. We would still talk on the phone nearly every day, but I just always seemed to be too busy to find the time to stop in for a cuppa or a glass of wine.

I became complacent.

Over the weekend my beautiful Dad was taken to hospital by ambulance and as I learnt about his failing heart my own heart broke into a million pieces all over again.

Deja Vu... except that this wasn't some fantastical phenomena, it seemed that this really was happening all over again.

Once again the bargaining began and I spent all night apologising to God for not praying except for when I wanted something. I begged of the universe to forgive me for my complacency and to give me the chance to tell my Dad just how much I love him and prove that he and my mum are the centre of my universe.

For now my prayers have been answered and whilst he is still in ICU my Dad is doing better.

When my mum rang him yesterday to say Good Morning he told her about a beautiful orange juicing machine in his room.... my mum nearly keeled over and my Dad the cheeky bugger was cacking himself.

It seems humour is getting us through yet again and the fact that he is up for playing pranks is sweet music to my ears.

The point of sharing this with you, is to remind you... don't hold back from telling someone you love them because you think you have time. You just don't know how many chances you have left to tell them.

If you are lucky enough to still have the opportunity, pick up the phone right now or drive there and tell them, then tell them again and again and again.

Don't let life and it's busyness become more important than spending precious time with loved ones as time is a gift that should never be taken for granted.

As for you Dad - well you had your chance to cark it twelve years ago. You had your chance and you missed it so now you are simply just going to have to stick around and play some more pay back pranks on your crazy family for a while longer.

As long as I have any bargaining power left with the universe - you aren't going anywhere.

I love you!

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Recreating TV Ads - Boys and Their Toys

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Boys and their toys. What can I say except that no matter how old they are, they never grow out of them!
The toys just get bigger and better the older they get. 
What happens when a couple of small boys and one bigger boy (OK, a 40-plus year-old man) get their hands on new Go Pro and a car to test drive?
Well they have to go and recreate a TV ad, don’t they?
Sadly No I'm not joking! 
Want to see this family of mine recreate that Nissan ad where the woman pretends to be in labour? Well you can see it for yourself over at Kidspot where I am discussing boys and their toys.