Saturday, 21 February 2015

Sunshine After the Rain

I have been busting to share with you again!

This week I visited my doctor to discuss the results of my last ultrasound report. And she said to me that the dreadful clot was shrinking, and also liquefying - enabling it to be reabsorbed into my body!

All I can say is, THANK YOU GOD!

What a crazy few months it has been. Due to the pregnancy complications, I've been unwilling to fully embrace being pregnant. Walking out of that doctors room though, I had a spring in my step and a big smile on my face that could not be wiped away ~ Baby number three is, Lord willing, safely on its way! But even if the situation had turned for the worse, as heart wrenching as it was turning out to be, I knew that even though I couldn't understand the outcome, God sees the big picture. And loves me more than I can imagine. I find that hard to practice at times. But the more I put my money where my mouth is and actually trust God, the easier, more peace-filled, and awesome life is.

I've noticed a pattern in the big, and little, life struggles I've experienced in the past few years. The hard situation get's worse and worse, until I really look at the situation for what it is - and let it go. Let it go by stop trying to control it, while still doing my best to better the situation, I give the control to God and fully accept His Will - whichever way the situation goes - worse or better.

The build up to that point is really hard. It's a battle for me. There's lots of tears, lots of questions (WHY!!!!?!), lots of inner battles, and outward stress. But I'm learning, the quicker I give it over to God and quit worrying and leave it in His hands - the quicker the situation works out.

I guess I have an issue with trust.

I read this example recently; 'we don't lie on our beds at night, worrying and anxious that they'll be able to hold us while we sleep - we, without thinking, trust that our bed will hold our weight and sleep restfully with that simply accepted knowledge.' That's what trusting God is like.

As long as I'm worrying, that's a clear sign I'm not trusting.

As long as I'm anxious, that's a clear sign I'm not trusting.

That verse in the Bible that says that I need to become like a little child or I CAN'T get to Heaven, has been on my mind a lot lately.

My two little ones are so free in life. They wake up thrilled to be alive, not a care in the world - just feed me, love me and play with me! They don't like it when they are disciplined for doing wrong, or kept inside while daddy is mowing, have the matches they've found taken away or put down for a sleep when they want to keep playing. They fight it in some of those situations. But they trust me, they love me with all they know, and they just expect me to care for them. That's what I'm there for!

God's the same.

Do I really get that? Not sure, but I'm learning! I mightn't like it when the hard stuff comes, but the sooner I trust God and let Him look after me instead of me look after me, accepting that He knows what I need (nap time, safety, or character reforming), while realising He loves me more than I even understand what love is. The more I'll be waking up thrilled to be alive with not a care in the world - just feed me, love me and let me play!

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Treasuring Slow When Life Speeds Up

My heart is aching right now.

It's funny. It seems when life settles into a 'Treasuring Slow' groove, stuff happens.

I am so thankful to treasure slow. The tears are streaming down my face. I am.

The beautiful, joyful and incredible miracle of pregnancy has come to our little family again. I'm just about twelve weeks pregnant with our little number 3. I've seen my beautiful baby multiple times now, through the black and white ultrasound screen. It's so beautiful. So precious. So little. And so mine. Thrivingly healthy and active and developing perfectly.

But since nine-ten weeks, two days after I last shared with you, all has not been well. Life swirled up into a whirlwind again. People, coming and going, busyness and disorganisation.

I've been faced with hard. There's a blood clot between baby's sac and the uterus wall caused by an 'unknown cause bleed'. Apparently that can be a common thing. And that often times when this happens, pregnancy carries through okay. The risk is, if the clot gets bigger, and continues to push its way through and separate baby's sac from its connection to the uterus wall where it gets all of its nutrients, baby won't make it. There's no known cause, no known outcome, and there's nothing anyone can do.

I have to take it easy. But even then, they don't know if that helps it heal or not.

And so far, each week when I've had a scan. That horrible clot has been growing quite rapidly. I've been advised that hopefully, it will settle down.

The fear and anxiety of a mother squeezes my heart. The fear of the unknown petrifies and chills my soul.

But I have to rest in the arms of my Father in Heaven. And trust that He wants the best for me.

It feels like a choking feeling. And yet each time I look at my two beautiful baby girls I am able to hold everyday. I am reminded how blessed I am. And how I truly need to treasure slow. To treasure my family, to treasure the moments. I am reminded how fragile and innocent life can be. And I'm starting to get a faint little glimpse of what it means to have faith.

I have been so blessed to see, through a black and white screen, my beautiful little baby growing so actively and happily inside of me several times now. And that is just precious. And I am holding tightly to the little moments of joy. And pushing away the fears that at times threaten to overwhelm me.

I don't know what the outcome will be. I just really needed to share with you. I don't know the hard stuff you're going through, or may have been through. But I find comfort in knowing that I can share my journey with you, and hopefully, someone understands.

I'm finding that it's easy to dwell on what might happen. And not so easy to relish and hold tight to trust, love, and beauty. But that is what I'm going to endeavour to do. And make each moment beautiful. For myself, for my family and for my unborn baby. Treasuring slow. Finding beauty in every moment and every memory. Even when it kind of feels like I'm sitting in a steam train looking out the window and watching life blur on by, I'm going to enjoy the feelings, the people I'm sharing the journey with, and the little moments experienced along the way.

Love to you all :-) xx

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Treasuring Slow

I am a true adventurous soul. I grew up with my best friends being my two brothers (and then of course, ten years later, my two baby sisters ;-) ). I am the type to try anything once, within reason. I've been sky diving, jumped of crazy height rocks into swimming holes (even while pregnant, if that's legal) [Please Note: Don't be alarmed. For me, crazy heights shrink to a much safer height while pregnant.], lots of 4w motorbike riding, midnight rabbit hunts on my grandparents farm, you name it. I love going places, and meeting people. Crazy and adorable people - you are my loves! Yes. I love the outdoors, camping, dirt, and daggy (though matching of course) clothes. I love to sing at the top of my voice, and dance like nobodies watching most days. I grew up in the country. Bunch of kids, bunch of animals, awesome friends, and not much (hard) responsibility. My childhood was imperfect, but awesome. And it was slow. The slow that builds indian teepees out of bonfire branches and literally plays cowboys and Indians. The slow that plans big dreams with siblings while lying on the trampoline at night watching the incredibly full, star filled sky and shrieks over the many shooting stars that streak across our view. All the while bursting out into favourite Disney songs at random moments and combining our voices in perfect soul chilling harmonies. That kind of slow.

Life did hit me down a few pegs. I felt the sting of peoples judgement. And yes. I let it effect how I saw myself. I still struggle with that at times. Though I'm beginning to realise that everyone has their stuff. And God sees me as awesome. Just the way I am. And I can love everyone else, because He loves me and helps me to love myself.

I need to remember that this is who I am. Because when life does get pushy. I often forget.

Like over the crazy fast months of the Christmas and New year hype. Appointments, commitments, family and friends, work and life, etc. Just read between the lines. Although the moments have been enjoyable, life has gotten a bit pushy. I almost forgot what it means to be our own little family. This brought on some big thoughts and talks. And after the holiday rush, our family has decided to play slow.

Want to know how? I'm happy to share. Just don't judge me. Cus I love you just for who you are the way you and in what you do. Our life choices are what makes us beautiful. To each other, and to God.

Deep breath. Here goes.

We got rid of our tv. Like. It's now unplugged in our garage, along with our dvd player, satellite box and Wii console. We're trialing this for 60 days. Because we want to see if we'll actually get smarter and have more time. It's crazy. So far I've finished reading a book I'd been trying to get through for weeks and read a big chunk of another. Today is day two of no tv. I've been freaking out about not having the sanity of plonking on a show for my girls when I need a break. So far, they've just found their own fun and I didn't flip. Amazing.

I've switched to an old fashioned 2G phone. Like the kind that the only game on board is snake xenia. Yes, the old, original snake game. The phone is slow and steady. But awesome. I find my brain is focusing on my day. Not my phone. Weird feeling.

We have our computer hooked up to wall internet. No more wifi connections or internet dongles. At least not for now. I have to find a moment of peace to actually sit down and check my internet stuff. Yeah, definitely doesn't happen that often anymore!

Over these last couple of months, I've found I don't really know my youngest daughter. And she's got some big personality happening! That's a goal I can't wait to achieve. To know my kids.

We're starting to make time for each other, hubby and wife time. As I've mentioned, these last couple of months have been crazy and I've really missed my man. Last night we attempted a soak in the bath together, I even had my favourite woodwick soy candle burning - trust me, that candle is precious. It has a fragrance of butterscotch vanilla heavenly sweetness and when the woodwick starts burning and crackling away with its wood fire smells mingled with its milky candle sweetness - I'm in another place! My two year old girl thought the occasion the perfect time to stay awake and stir every five minutes with multiple concerns, fears, and requests until ten o'clock. But we treasured the fact that we tried to have time. That alone has given me warm fuzzies to last me today. We're planning time together again tonight. That's special to me.

I'm still a mum, I still have a house to run, and a hubby to love, and life to maintain for my family. But I want to consciously choose to live each moment to the full. We don't know what's around the corner, and for that reason alone, I want to treasure slow. Sometimes, the food can stay on the kitchen floor while I sink in a shell pool with my two year old and tickle and splash. Sometimes, the clothes can wait to be sorted while we pray as a family and I hug my 11 month old.

I don't know how life will look in another few months. Ours seems to be constantly changing, due to season of life, health, work and family needs. This is where we're at right now. Just slow. If we can and where we can.

Slow is still messy. It's still crazy and just a little hard. But it's slow. I can handle slow. And when life speed gets things moving in the crazy patches, I can handle that too. Because I know we're taking stock of our family and our needs. And that means more to me than anything. Even swimming in my favourite childhood waterhole or body boarding at the beach. That's huge for me. And I really want to treasure the adventurous me inside this mummy body. The me that relishes in simple childhood fun and never grows up. And I believe that God is thrilled with that. Because the less I'm worried about the stuff, the more He can take care of it all for me. And that to me is better than slow. That's peace. That's quiet in the storm. And that's home. Our home. To treasure slow. If we can, and where we can.

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Our DIY Kitchen Changes

Having hubby home makes for a great opportunity to tackle house projects I dream up. Honestly, I try not to even try doing big projects through the week. It just puts too much pressure on my family as I get so engrossed in a project, and then neglect to care for my family properly. (Poor kids and hubby!) It's happened before. And it really messes up our week. So I've settled to patiently waiting for my fun when hubby's home for those extra pair of (manly) hands to help!

The last project I was excited to tackle was some renovations on my kitchen. We're renting at the moment, so that eliminated the big change possibilities. Plus we're on a budget, I couldn't go on an all out renovation splurge. But I knew that our kitchen was running very inefficiently with things out of order and I was forever doing unnecessary cleaning (food covered chairs anyone!?).

I stayed up late the night before 'my day' clicking away on Pinterest for ideas and designs and colours I liked and would go well in our current kitchen. Not something I do too often, and it was a lot of fun!

This is what I had to work with:

Oh, and my pantry was a terrible mess. I found it very stressful every time I tried to find something through the week while caring for my babies!
This was my plastics, pots, cups and plates cupboard (not the most dreadful it's been in my life, I've been culling for a long time now!)
We've had this table for a long time, and now with two toddlers it's not the most practical for everyday use. With its cream material chair cushions and chair backs constantly having to be wiped down from food covered little hands.
I hunted on gumtree for a new table or island bench. All too pricey or non-existent locally.
And so, came up with this ingenious idea!
My clever hubby chopped the backs off the chairs for me, and did all the hard work of sanding the chair bases and table back for a real rustic look. While I ducked to Spotlight and bought a good priced sturdy, waterproof material to re-cover the cushions.
And for $30 odd - I LOVE the new look!!! It's like an island bench table with mini functional stools!

My other splurges were a couple of bright tea towels, a couple of jars and a few herb jars, two new mixing bowls and a salad bowl that I LOVE and find it a pleasure to use. A new set of mugs and some sturdy drinking tumblers (no more broken glasses!). The rest was all hard work and organisation.
My organised cupboard. It's so much more functional. The plastics, culled down to mostly glass containers, moved to their own little sectioned area in the under-sink cupboard. I got rid of an old pot and pan and now just have two pans and three different sized pots. That works for us. It's so nice to work with things that we enjoy using.
My pantry. I LOVE it now. I know where everything is. I got rid of any food that was out of date or that we don't eat and had been sitting there for a very long time. I also put some foods in jars instead of bags, much easier to use and find. And because everything has it's place and I've told our household members where everything goes, it's been a week and it still looks this tidy! I'm thrilled. Little things excite me these days ;).

I've only kept out the appliances that I use daily.

And voila, The end result!
I love that I can wipe down the table and seat covers quickly without scrubbing, much more efficient. And everything having its own place makes keeping things tidy a lot easier. My kitchen still gets messy. But I've found that I enjoy cleaning it, it's satisfying keeping things you love nice. And on the days that I don't have time, that's okay too :-).


Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Peace For A Mummy

I've been learning that even amidst my (at times) messy life, I can have peace.

For a long time I've been trying to change my environment in hopes to make my life easier, less stressful. To be on top of routines, decluttering, better sleep and good diet and lifestyle so that I can rest and know that I'm doing a good job.

All those things are great, and they give me a real boost when I get them right.

But I've been learning that it's okay when they're not right too. My environment, kids, dramas, and life shouldn't gauge whether I'm able to be at rest. I shouldn't have to have my house perfect, kids happy, jobs done, amazing life, proper sleep and everything the way I want, in order to be at peace.

No. Not at all.

I can have the peace from God, the peace that passes all understanding, always. Through everything.

Today, I was picking up a few bits and pieces and doing a general tidy throughout my home while my two children slept peacefully. I then proceeded to sweep our tiled bathroom floor (note, avoid having a white tiled bathroom floor if at all possible!) when I had the thought come to my mind that I hadn't spent time with God in this moment of quiet. I thought to myself that I would just sweep and then I would make that time with God happen.

Then it came to me that perhaps I was being a 'Martha'. [see Luke 10:38-42 for the story].

Cleaning, cooking, making things perfect, all the while my Jesus is waiting, yearning to share with me those Words of blessed hope that will give me peace. Peace that will continue with me even after my two children wake up and this moment of quiet is a memory. Peace that will calm my soul, even when my household world and my life is perhaps going a little crazy.

So today, I'm choosing to look to Him. Through my failings and mess. Through all that stuff that just happens and threatens to choke me with insecurity and a need for perfection. And you know what? He promises that all that perfect stuff will happen - but we don't need to worry about it. We just seek Him, and be at peace.

Thursday, 20 November 2014

You Aren't Alone

I want to send a big hug to all the mumma's out there. Not just for you. For me too.

One of my best, dear friends and mummy encouraged me this morning. She said 'Oh huni, I feel the same as you'. And you know what? That made me feel so much better. 

This is me right now.

I'm struggling with feeling like I'm good enough. I don't seem to be able to get my head together enough to create a structured day/week for my family. My kids and hubby don't get planned meals. I want to, and sometimes I get it together, but it doesn't happen every day - sometimes every week. And our night time routine is messy. Very messy. Bed times don't really happen all proper either.

My house feels like it's blah. I feel I need to get a job to just be able to afford things to make my house look beautiful and pinterest worthy. . . because I am so sure that that will make me happy. Happy to be home with my kids in my beautiful house. I'm sure I'll be always smiling then.

I have so many books that I've started. Books that will make my life better, marriage happier and motherhood much more structured. I try and read them - but I get through a page or two and I've either go to re read those sections, or put the book down because I've remembered something I've got to do. OR I get interrupted. or space out. My brain just isn't computing.

I'm so pumped to eat real healthy. You know, clean eating, gluten free, lots of greens. . . . And I do try. But sometimes bread is just easier. Especially with kids. And sometimes all I really want is noodles. And sometimes I like to just feel satisfied - and eat a big plate. Bigger than a half cup serving of rice. Try three cups. Sometimes more. And then some nights I still enjoy dessert. Because that's my second stomach. The one that's empty after having a full tummy of mains. Sometimes I wake up with a food (or baby?!) hangover.

I have good intentions to wake up and read my Bible. Yesterday I wrote down a schedule. 6am I'm to 'Bible'.  I woke up a little after 5. (I didn't wake up. Baby did. Baby woke me up). And I lay there. Spaced out. Hubby woke up and wanted to chat. 6am came. Maybe 10 minutes later I got out my Bible and held it. And then proceeded to read a book about telling myself the truth instead. . . because I was dealing with feeling obligated to do things for people instead wanting to. I didn't read my Bible. I'll probably not be the best Christian today :(.

I yell. I say bad words. I get so upset at myself I take it out on those I love most. Not all the time, but I hate myself when I do.

I compare myself to the gorgeous hot friends I stalk on internet media. Their lives are so perfect - can't you see? They're so happy, getting out and doing things, buying cool things, eating amazingly healthy things, they have flat stomachs and glowing faces. Wish I could do my makeup like they do.

Sometimes I feel alone. Like I'm the only one going through hard stuff. No one would really understand, and if they knew. They'd think I was weird. I better just not say anything.

But you know what. Sometimes I think it's better to say something. Sometime you just need to share. And sometimes you just need a hug.

Here's a hug for you. I don't know the details of the things you deal with. But maybe the hug I'm giving you, is a little for me too.

Here is a little encouragement that has boosted me to the sky this morning:
Please read it. And know that God is right here. Hugging you, hugging me. And reminding us that we don't need to look around us to see how to live. We need to live for Him.

From my heart to yours this morning, hugs xo

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Be The Best You

Do you ever get to breaking point? Sometimes our brains get so boggled with life and pressures we're not thinking straight. When that happens it's time to sit back and revaluate what you need to not get to that point.

I've come to breaking point today - I'm tired, I'm a little stressed, and a little pushed. At least I feel like I am. So I've sat down with a camomile & hint of lemon tea and evaluated my situation.

I need to connect with God. I need a sleep. I need to not be so hard on myself.

In the mean time I'm going to love on my kids and their needs, love my hubby and explain to him my needs directly, and love on myself. I need to make sure my physical and nutritional needs are being met so that my body can cope with daily demands and I need to make sure I'm believing by faith that Jesus loves me as I am. And it's okay to be frazzled, it's okay to not be perfect. Really.

God loves you and so do I. What do you need to do right now to be the best you?