Wednesday, December 25, 2013

The week leading up to Christmas

We have been baking and making some goodies!

My daughters love to get in the kitchen with me. We made gingerbread cookies, truffles, cupcakes and a gingerbread house. It gives them something to do each day while they try to be patient and wait for Christmas. They have all been spoilt and well gifted as have I. This very post comes from my iPad mini! 

Merry Christmas everyone! 

Monday, December 23, 2013

So blessed

To have such beautiful friends! Some people are just meant to come into your life I truly believe. I met Anne by chance, we bumped into each other getting off a train and she recognised me from my blog. I was amazed that my blog was actually read to be honest. Anyway, my dear friend Anne sent me a lovely wooly gift, some yummy purple sock wool to help me on my road to  happiness in 2014. Nothing better than happy knitting! Thanks so much Anne, I can't wait to catch up with you at the end of January!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Reverb 13 last day.

Today, I'd like you to revisit what you wrote on 1 December on the first day of Reverb13. How does that compare to where you are now?

Then, without thinking too hard about it, grab a pen and some paper and finish the following five sentences:

2014 is going to be MY YEAR because...I want it to be.

In 2014, I am going to do...what makes me happy.

In 2014, I am going to feel...Happiness!

In 2014, I am not going to...hold on to burdens that are not mine. I am not going to give up on me.

In December 2014, I am going to look back and say...I did it.

Thank you Kat for leading the reverb 13 journey and all those who have come and visited my blog, I have loved all the comments.


Friday, December 20, 2013

The way forward

reverb 13 - day 20

Forward is the only direction.
The mirror never lies, but everything in it is backwards. 

Look at what you see in the mirror. How does it change if you view yourself with eyes that can only look forward?

What does the future hold? I am hoping to continue with my journey to a healthier me, a more positive and grateful me. Looking in the mirror with eyes that can only look forward, I see choices, and I choose happiness, I choose peace, I choose love. I am looking forward to what is forward! 

Thursday, December 19, 2013


reverb 13 - day 19

The Buddha said, “You, yourself, as much as anybody else in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.”

In the past year, I have been on a mission to understand and practice self-compassion, which is sometimes defined as "extending compassion to one's self in instances of perceived inadequacy, failure, or general suffering," and what I have learned has made me realize that this practice is at the heart of everything. 

How will you practice self-compassion?

I intend to practice self compassion with some of the things I have already mentioned:
- Looking after my mind
- Looking after my body
- Forgiving myself
- Perhaps a retreat
- Just taking time to do what makes me happy.

Take time quotes light sun happy time paint soul

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


reverb 13 - day 18.

I am often surprised where I find peace, it is usually in the midst of chaos.
In the midst of living, did you find moments to breathe? Were there moments that held you in the embrace of peace and quiet and pure contentment? 

Did these moments catch you by surprise or did you create the space for peace to find you?

how will you make space for greater peace in 2014?

I am normally a calm and peaceful person, but this year has been a challenge. I think back about 4 months ago and I am sure I would have answered very differently. It would have been - I have had no peace.
 Now I feel like I am closer to the old me, and it has so much to do with finding moments to breathe:
I found peace when I had some time off work.
I found peace when I acknowledged I can't control everything.
I found peace when I let go of burdens that are not mine.
I found peace in forgiveness, this was a big one and I am still working on it, for my memory is so good and when you can't forget its hard to forgive. Forgiving myself is even harder.
I found peace with good old gratitude, because I am ever so lucky for all that I have.
I found peace with sharing, talking to friends and letting them know how I am feeling.

Pure contentment is another thing.
I embraced peace and quiet in the bath with a good book, sitting up the headland with my husband, reading to my girls at bedtime, and generally when I am at home.

Making space for greater peace for 2014 is a goal. That is why I am inviting in happiness! I am continuing with the above. I would love to go to a retreat, but think I will miss my girls too much. So I have been looking at some day retreats.


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

My word

reverb 13 - day 17.

What word did you select to be your travelling companion in 2013? What gifts did this word bring?
What word will you choose to guide you through 2014? What do you hope it will bring into your life?

My travelling word for 2013 was Gratitude. The gifts it has brought me are endless. I have never chosen a word to accompany me through a year before. The most important gift this word has brought me is knowing gratitude changes everything, it changes what we have into enough.

My word for 2014 is Happiness.It is a simple word and its all I want so I am choosing to be happy and it follows on from gratitude which will stay with me now throughout all of my days so I am hoping happiness will too.


Monday, December 16, 2013

Habits and addictions

reverb 13 - day 16.

Habits and addictions, some are silly, some serious; when we have issues without answers, they can hold us so tight that we stop moving forward with the life we intended.
Were you able to loosen those fetters this year, and if you were successful, how did you manage it? Did you accept outside help, or work alone?

If you still feel that grasp of addiction or hurtful habits, what will you do differently in the year to come?
I have blogged already about my healthy habit changes for 2013. I have managed most of the changes but the healthy eating is the one I come undone on most. 2014 I am committing to better eating and maintaining my exercise. I am accepting that I need support and encouragement for me to be successful and I am opening up to accepting that help.

Another habit from 2013 is falling back on my credit card, I go really well budgeting most of the time but sometimes I just use the card and then regret it. So for 2014 I will be cutting up the credit card and budgeting my way to completely clear the debt.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Sensory Highlights

reverb 13 - day 5

Give us a sensory tour of 2013. How would you describe the year that’s passing in terms of:

Hhhhmmmm, let me think....

Sight? I have enjoyed watching my daughters grow, I see our beautiful coast everyday and I love the colours in my yarn stash too.

Sound? Our house is full of constant chatter and laughter, add in a few girly screams and our dogs barking at frogs and other guests to our garden.

Smell? At the moment my garden is in bloom, the house smells like my teenage daughters impulse deodorant and unfortunately the car smells like wet towels.

Taste? I am enjoying some nourishing vegetarian dinners, loving summer fruits and love sipping different teas.

Touch? My job brings me one of life's greatest touch sensations - I am touching newborns every week, that doesn't beat the touch sensation at home - family hugs and who can go past patting your dogs.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Decisions, decisions

reverb 13 - Day 14

What was the best decision you made in 2013? What were the results? How will you continue the good work in 2014?
The best decision I made in 2013 was to pay some attention to me. I focused on my health which as a mum I have often neglected. So this year I got myself a fabulous GP. My arthritis was diagnosed and I have had physio and seen exercise physiologists for that. Its good to know what I am dealing with and how I can improve it. I have been sorting out my women's health issues and have been getting on to my iron and Vit B12 deficiencies. Starting to feel more alive with all that in order, so I am now back to my weight loss journey. I have also been looking after my mind as I have mentioned before. In 2014 I am choosing happiness and am firmly committed to a healthier me. I will keep my health in check and will nourish my body with healthy foods.
.EAt for your health!

Friday, December 13, 2013


reverb 13 - Day 13.

In 2014, how could you explore what community means to you?
It might be a question of sharing the load, asking for help or signing on someone with a complementary skill set. Or it could be about a creative collaboration that pushes you to explore new ideas and media.

Where might the alchemy be?
Community to me is a group of people living local to one another with similar interests. I want to get more involved in 2014.
 There is a Ravelry craft group who meet up now regularly and I am hoping to join in on that next year. Friends from work often ask me to craft with them, I would like to catch up more socially with my work friends.
As mentioned previously, I would like to get involved in some fundraising for the Hamlin charity.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Turning mud to gold

reverb 13 - day 12

I'm a big fan of muddy experiences. They become our greatest teachers when we're wise enough to exfoliate with them; roll around in the deep until we finally feel ready to get clean.

Today, identify something muddy
that kept recurring for you throughout 2013, and then ask yourself this: What's the clear truth underneath this damn mud if I finally wash myself clean?

I often am hard on myself, you know - I should have....... This is most relevant at work and with my parenting. The two things I don't want to get wrong. When I do take a minute to clean off the mud the clear truth underneath when I am all clean is I am a human. We do make mistakes sometimes but the most important thing is that my intentions are always good. I can sleep at night knowing I mean no harm to anyone and I try my best.

muddy buddy

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Boldly go

reverb 13 - day 11

What challenges lie ahead in 2014? How might you meet them boldly?
Work will continue to be a challenge for me in 2014, I will be courageous and work through the challenges while in search of my passion.
My weight loss challenge and general health and well being maintenance lies ahead in 2014, I am firmly committed to meeting this challenge boldly. I have to love myself enough to give myself the time and nourishment I deserve.
My happiness challenge lies ahead, I will meet this challenge by taking a moment to breathe and enjoy each precious moment.
My  four growing daughters challenge lies ahead, parenting changes every day and I meet the challenge by taking each day at a time, some days can be tough when you feel you just can't win, then you get a hug or a smile that makes it all worth while.

Dance More Always.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Auto pilot

reverb 13 - Day 10.

Living life on auto-pilot can feel disorienting and dull. How did you cultivate a life worth loving during 2013?
How can you turn off your auto-pilot button in 2014?
I was only talking to Jay last week about how sometimes I just feel like a shell going through motions. You know - get up, make lunches, breakfast, tidy up, make beds, go to work, come home, make dinner, help with homework, get everyone showered and tucked into bed, go to bed and start again. Reminds me of Katy Perry's song lyrics in Firework:

Do you ever feel like a plastic bag
Drifting through the wind

I do feel on auto pilot often, to switch back into a life worth loving I invite my friend 'Gratitude' in. I take a moment to be thankful for the routine of my life, there is nothing wrong with dull if you can see the value in it. We are all well and going about life, we are alive, there are gorgeous things happening in our routine, so I need to acknowledge them. Switch off auto pilot and breathe in the moment. Stop and listen to the music.

You just gotta ignite the light
and let it shine

Monday, December 9, 2013


reverb 13 - Day 9.

Who inspired you in 2013? And why?
What gifts did they give you? And how will you carry these forward in to 2014?

Towards the end of last year I re-read "The Hospital by the River" by Dr Catherine Hamlin , a truly inspiring woman. I started following her web sight on Facebook and have been inspired throughout 2013 by her. Dr Hamlin and her late husband founded the first hospital dedicated to fistula care in Ethiopia. She is also training local midwives to prevent this terrible injury.
A colleague of mine has recently been fund raising for the Hamlin midwifery training by selling her crafty goods at our local market. I would love to get involved in this fundraising for 2014.
My travelling word for 2013 'Gratitude' was relevant as always - I recognise the fortunes we have in Australia, one of many is the luxury of running clean water. Dr Hamlin has highlighted for me the luxuries I have to work with and the access to ongoing education are a privilege and I no longer take them for granted.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

What went right?

reverb 13 - Day 8.

What went right in 2013?
Maybe you didn't quit smoking or lose those pounds or go to Paris, but something did work, did happen, and/or was realized. What was it?
Amongst some hard times there have been many rights for 2013 to be thankful for;

My girls have had a settled and productive year at school - Josie's first year of high school, Imogen's first year in the 5/6 opportunity class and Laura and Scarlett in year 3 and 1 are both doing well.
3 of them are getting awards at presentation day, the youngest brought home a merit certificate the same day.
Imogen has been elected vice captain of her school next year.
The girls have been involved in dance eisteddfod's and musicales.
Jay sold 2 cars, which has helped us sort out last years financial difficulty.
I haven't lost much weight, but I haven't put anymore on either.
I have re-joined the gym.
I have made new friends.
We didn't get overseas, but we did have a couple of great mini family holidays.
After travelling through my own personal challenges I have come out the other side stronger.
I know I am worth it, I know I can control my own feelings and next year I am working on happiness.
Lovingkindness Meditation

Saturday, December 7, 2013

The year of the selfie.

reverb 13 - day 7.

Please post your favourite picture of yourself from 2013, self-portrait or otherwise!

My favourite selfie of 2013 is the above one taken at Mylstom on a day out. I love the way the sun rays beam across my face. I have only taken a few selfies, I finally got myself an iphone this year and had to play around with the reverse camera. Since the above pic is hard to really see me I will add another.

Friday, December 6, 2013


reverb 13 - Day 6.

“True wisdom lies in gathering the precious things out of each day as it goes by.”— E.S. Bouton

There are so many “precious things” that are presented to us each day; discoveries and treasures found in simple moments, memories we wish to store in our hearts and keep with us forever.
What precious things have you gathered in 2013?

Which memories from this year do you wish to keep with you always?

The smiles, laughter and hugs with my daughters, each moment with them is precious and each memory I will treasure.
Our mini family breaks.
Movie and lunch dates with my husband.
The new friends I have made.

Photos from our camping trip to Yamba in September.

Thursday, December 5, 2013


reverb 13 -Day 5.

What was the greatest risk you took in 2013? What was the outcome?

I used to take big risks, but I have taken less and less of late. I think I should take more though......

My greatest risk of the year was going back to my old job. The shift work and stress involved in my job led me to take time out last year. I enjoyed the time out from shift work but missed looking after women and their families. So I decided to go back and just work less hours. I was faced with my biggest challenge as a result of taking the risk of going back when I was inadvertently involved in a case that has now forever changed my life. I am firmly committed to confidentiality and can't go into any details about the case. This is probably what makes the whole situation harder to deal with. I have seen a psychologist for the first time in my life and it has helped. The risk I would have liked to take when I was at the cross roads would have been to have moved somewhere else, probably Queensland where Jay could get more reliable work and I could work casually instead. Which would allow me to do the job I love in hours that suit me and let me take time out as I need it. My daughters are so settled in their schools and have good friends here though, so I didn't take the risk. My desire to provide my girls with a stable home prevents me from taking some of the risks I consider. 
growth theme
                                                            Image from pinterest

Wednesday, December 4, 2013


reberb 13 - Day 4.

This past year, we have all experienced so much loss and experienced so much grief -- in relationships, through sickness and death, from mental illness or abuse, because of finances, even due to the need for healthy change.
It is good to honor those shifts, to fully feel them, so that we can let go of what needs surrendered, and remember what is worthy of our love and gratitude.

What have you lost, what are you grieving?

2013 was an unexpected challenge. I was positive at the beginning of the year that it was going to be less stressful than the last.
This year my mum has been unwell and having treatment.
I so looked forward to going back to my job as a Midwife after 6 months of clinical teaching last year. I still love my job but I have lost my passion. This has been my biggest personal grief.
Jay lost his Aunt and his cousin.
I lost my Uncle.

Great Uncle Ian, My Mum's brother was always at a party, this was one of my daughter's backyard birthday parties. He was very family proud! When my eldest daughter Josie was born he drove up to visit us in hospital and said " I knew I would be 'great' at something one day".

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Listening to my heart.

reberb day 3 prompt:

Each day for 31 days, I sat quietly for a few moments with my eyes closed and my hand on my heart and asked, “Heart: what do you need?”

And then I listened. Sometimes the answer came in the form of a word. Sometimes an image. Sometimes a sensation.

Try this today. What does your heart have to tell you?

Another great and timely prompt. I am often in a battle between head and heart. My head is always busy thinking and is miles ahead of my heart.
My heart tells me it wants happiness, it just wants to let go of the weight and burdens and to just be happy. This is a big challenge for anyone who over thinks any situation. So I need my head to think happy and I believe I will feel happier. My heart will than surely be singing, right?
 Image from pinterest.

Monday, December 2, 2013


reverb13 - Day 2

The way we nourish ourselves determines our ability to shine our light in the world. And nourishment doesn't just come in the form of food and drink and sunshine; it's equally important to nourish your spirit.
What made your soul feel most nourished this year?

So true, nourishment is more than food, drink and sunshine!
I find time out with my family on a picnic or a visit to the market nourishing.
I nourish myself with a soak in the bath with a good book to read, a little escape from reality is good for my soul.
I bliss out with a spot of knitting.
I have a pinterest love, and feel nourished after some happy browsing.
I head to the gym or out for a walk when I can and always feel uplifted after some exercise.
I cuddle my dogs, always soothes the soul.

Sunny our Jack Russell cross with Jay.

Polly our Mini Foxy cross Boston Terrier with the newly 9 year old Laura, my little entertainer, not many days go by without dress ups or performances.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

#reverb 13 - Day 1.

I have been invited by the lovely Kat from I saw you dancing blog to join in on reverb 13. I joined in last year and thought it would be good to join in again this year. You can find out more about it by following the link and why not join in too?

Click here for everything you need to know!
It is the first day of December. It is the first day of Summer here in the Southern Hemisphere, but it may  be the first day of Winter where you are.
It is the first day of Reverb13.

How do you feel, on this first day, in your mind? In your body? In your heart? In your soul?

I do love this time of year, the start of Summer and Christmas just around the corner. The first day of December always makes me happy. The school year is nearing an end and my daughters are getting excited about the Summer break. We have put up Christmas decorations and spent a lazy Sunday together today, Bliss!

In my mind I am feeling calmer than  I have for months. I am looking forward to the Summer break too. I will be working, but I am now part time so I can manage having some quality time with my family.

In my body, I am also excited about the changes I am planning. I am signed up for the next 12WBT and am getting back into exercise. I have been struggling with my arthritis and low B12 levels but am making small changes to help with that. My skin is much better than it was a few months ago too, just in time for Summer.

In my heart, I am still carrying a little sorrow for the sadness the year has brought. I know I will forever but I can breathe now and I am working my way through my feelings. My heart is also full of love and pride for my family.

In my soul, I am still a little confused and searching. Happiness is there and I am always finding reasons to smile but it doesn't always come naturally. My biggest struggle is work. I missed midwifery so much when I had time out to do some clinical teaching, and I do love my job. But, finding the balance between home and work is a challenge. There are elements of my job that I wish didn't exist and I often ponder what else I could do. There is only one job I would rather do and that is full-time mum. Best job in the world in my opinion!