Sunday, December 29, 2013

It's not a resolution, it's a Project. Or a Challenge. Or Something

Each year I print up a book of all my Instagram photos. Every year it looks as though Mr H does not exist in our lives. He does. I promise. Except he doesn't like being on social media.

I share pictures like this of me and cool chicks at Cocktail parties.

The pictures of me are poorly taken photos of me in a mirror, like really bad selfies at conferences.

There are photos I take that I have no idea what was going on.

I really need to delete more.

Of the 4000 photos I took during 2013 (not including those deleted) there are about four of us as a family. In twenty years time, if you were to look at our photos, I am rarely present.

But I am.

I am taking the photos, watching the photos, organising everything, preparing everything. I am there.

But I am not IN the photos.

So this year I am going to take a photo EVERY WEEK of us as a family. If it isn't of us as a family it will at least be of me and the girls. Or me and Mr H.  Or Mr H and the kids. He still doesn't like to be on social media so he might be edited in the image that I share, but back behind the scenes he will be snapped. There will be photographic evidence that Mr H and I are very much here and a part of everything.

2014 won't start with any New Year Resolutions that I will break within 3 days, instead there is just this challenge to myself. I am calling it the "My Family and Me" challenge and at the end of the year there will be 52 images of us as a family, which will make for a much more interesting book to print up and keep.

The challenge will mean being more courageous and simply asking both friends and strangers to take photos of us. This is something I find more difficult than I should. But, when Immy and I are on a coffee date I would like there to be an image of who she was there with.

I will also have to make time during family get togethers to get everyone to stop and be still for a moment to capture an image. I have no idea how hard this project is going to be, but I am going to give it a go anyway.

I am also not sure if anyone else will be keen to play along. If you are, let me know and I will add in a linky each Sunday night for you to share your images too. If you are not a blogger but you are on Instagram or facebook you can simply use the hashtag #myfamilyandme and I should be able to see your image too (unless your security/privacy settings keep me out).

My first image will go up on Sunday 5 January, wish me luck and let me know if you want to join in!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Rewind 2013: The year that was.

It's been a year of life that was exactly what you expect. There were super funny moments, friends made, children growing out of shoes that you only just purchased, burnt lasagnas and cakes of distinction. There were parties and wine and pilates.

During all the busy I somehow managed to write over 100 blog posts during the year, in case you missed some, here's the highlights reel for 2013!


In January, there was much holidaying including this gem of a spot that you should visit yourself if you are in Victoria at any time.

By February the holidays were over and there were stories to tell and advice to be given all about working and super and good cheese.

I had a ranty tanty in March about people using three little words which still drive me totally bananas. The experts say you are wasting your time and pissing off your readers but people still do it...LINK IN COMMENTS.

It was six months in April that my Dad had been dead. It still hurts to write those words. I listened to my favourite Christmas song ever yesterday, White Wine in the Sun, but it wasn't a good thing to do. The world keeps on spinning without all the amazing people that have made it so great. I owe it to my Dad to live a full life, to be busy, to be the person he dreamed I (and my siblings) would be. We owe it to him not to waste the moments we have that have been taken from him. In the end, that is all we have left to give him.

In May I attempted a challenge to write every day for the whole month. That is 31 days straight. Of course I didn't complete it successfully but a few of the topics I enjoyed. The topics made me think and really concentrate on writing. Like when I wrote about what makes me uncomfortable.

In June I loved writing this post. A Tribute to Goldie and it is not a tribute to a gold fish as many people were expecting.

I discussed the big issue of the paper versus the hard versus the electronic book during July. Last week on ABC radio they were discussing the biggest growth area in books this year has been in children's books, totally music to my ears.

It was in August that I had had enough of cleaning out the microwave and decided to throw it out in hard rubbish. There have been very few times I have thought it would be useful to still have it.

September came along and I did some home renovating for a weekend and showed you how in my first blogging video.

MAGNETIC CHALKBOARD PAINT from Clairey Hewitt on Vimeo.

I did my very best to conquer Frocktober during October, it was tough going, but I did find this new favourite dress and jacket for work.

A few weeks back, in November I talked about people doing the marketing for free for clothing labels, it made me think of my teenage years and my desire to have a Country Road towel, which I never got.

And here we are in December.

Those in the know of blogging suggest that having a plan is essential to being a successful blogger, but being a successful blogger was never the plan. Just blogging until I don't want to blog anymore is the aim here and making connections with people that read along. Meeting people and sharing stories.

An enormous thank you to everyone who has read my blog and joined me during the year. For your comments, your tweets, your love over on facebook and on Instagram. The thrill of receiving a comment from something that I have shared never fades.

Have a wonderful Christmas, may your dance card be full on New Years Eve and your 2014 be filled with sparkles, love, good laughs, yabbie pate, Meredith cheese, sleep ins and party invitations, books to read and family to talk to - for these are the good things that make for wonderful moments.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Turning Five is Beary Fun

Some years we celebrate full on at home, but some years we all think it is best to outsource. This year we did a little of both.

A few weeks ago I took Immy to Build a Bear where she saw all the things she wanted RIGHT NOW. I suggested that it would be great to have a party there with her friends and ten seconds later we were booked in.

I whipped up the invitations on Canva which is still my favourite tool to design things on.

Immy is not a fan of big groups of people so she invited her four favourite friends from Kindergarten and we were set. Once they arrived for the morning they went ahead and picked their favourite bear. Immy knew she wanted the dog and was first to grab hers from the shelf.

It was lovely, when as part of the party her little guests held a red heart, rubbed it on their noses, closed their eyes and made a birthday wish for Imogen. All those hearts then went straight into doggy along with a wish that Imogen had to make herself.

I asked her later what she wished for and managed not to cry when she told me she wished for two things. The first was for Poppy Ray to come back from Heaven and the second was that he bring Monty the black dog with him too.

After all our bears were filled (including Popps filling hers with a song of One Direction) and because you can't eat in the Build a Bear stores, I lined the girls up in single file and marched them to the lovely Koko Black Chocolate shop. They were so excited to march through a shopping centre and were giggling about it being a birthday party excursion.

We arrived in time for our baby hot chocolates and chocolate teddy bear pops. The grown ups ordered their choice of hot bevvie and then out came the fabulous chocolate on chocolate on chocolate cake.

Koko Black has never heard Happy Birthday sung so loudly and with such excitement.

We finished up our chocolate overload and headed home to prepare for the party to carry on with more family members.

The rules are that the birthday person gets to choose the menu for the night. Immy chose lasagna, macaroni cheese and salad - but the salad has to be in individual sections and not mixed together and there was to be NO LEAFY GREEN THINGS.

I may have added just a teeny bit of lettuce and she quickly told me off.

After our pasta loading out came the cake.

This was one of my most favourite and most easy ever cakes to make. I told Immy that her cake would be a surprise because I just couldn't make any of the cakes she requested.

I made a cake that looked very simple and plain on the outside.

But all those smarties were enough to get her excited. I think we forget that kids really don't care about the cake as long as they get the most smarties and the biggest piece.

I did have a couple of extra surprises though.

I made it a little rainbow cake.

I asked the kids to keep a close eye on the rainbow colours as I cut the first piece. 

Check out our faces! 

The kids were so excited when the rainbow cake also spilled out a centre of more smarties.

I called it the Surprise Rainbow Pinata Cake. 

We sang more happy birthday songs, clapped, made wishes, ate more cake and crashed into bed at 10pm. 

Turning five was a pretty good day for us all.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Letter to the world

Dear World.

Can not believe it. Can you? Can you really believe my Mum is still doing this? She is still typing away to herself, telling us that she is working when we know she is just writing stories on the computer because she thinks if she doesn't write them down she will forget everything.

Which might be true, because she does forget things. Like my hat for Kinder and last week she forgot all about Popps needing to be dressed in Zimbabwe clothes for a school dance concert.

Each year she gets me to write a letter to the world when it's my birthday.

But really, Mum is not too bad, she remembers all the good stuff. Mum knows that I like stockings on my legs and not leggings, no matter what the weather. She knows that I love to sleep in onesies - always. I don't like my feet to be uncovered and I don't like to get out of bed in the morning unless I am covered in polar fleece. Not sure how we are going to get through the summer time, but Mum will work out something.

People keep asking me if I am excited about school next year. I say yes to all of them, but really, how would I know? If it's anything like Kinder than I want to be there all day but if they do too much group time and sit on the mat time than I am not sure I will like it.

You know what I really, just really truly love? Baby animals and anything to do with babies. And animals. I asked Santa to bring me a baby lamb, one without a Mummy sheep, so that I can be the Mummy and look after it. But Santa said no. I asked Dad for a pony and he said no. I asked for a new puppy and they all said no. I thought Mum was growing a baby sister for me in her tummy but she said it was just all the cake she eats. So I asked if we could get another dog so that our dog Peppa could have puppies, but still they said no. But when I grow up I am going to be a vet for baby animals. Like a neonatologist for animals.

I love lollies. I love them so much that I ate a whole stack one day and a few hours later I was vomiting from too many lollies, but still, I would do it again because I just love them so much. But Mum is really mean and hardly ever lets me have them. Dad will always say yes, so when Mum says no, you just ask my Dad and you get what you want. Pretty much the same for everything else in my life. And if they both say no, ask Granny, than Nana and then Pop. I have them totally worked out. Best family in the whole world.

That's about all I can be bothered with right now, I got stuff to do, people to see and mess to make.

Send me lollies if you want to be friends.
Immy Molly Moo

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

One Party down

The first Christmas party on the schedule was the creche Christmas party. It was fabulous.

It will be our last one. 

Three years of swipe keys and sign ins, accident forms and paint stains.

Our creche has provided more to our girls than we could have hoped. Loving teachers, the best of little friends, an amazing out door space that is the backyard of childhood dreams and exposure to the cultural celebrations from all around the world only touch the surface. 

I hope both the girls remember the fun times they had here. But if they don't, I will remember for them.