Thursday, July 27, 2017

New Career...maybe?

I have a beautiful friend.  

I love her dearly. 

She has been living too far away from  me for 4 years. 

I have been to visit her twice but now she has moved just an hours drive away from me.

Woo hoooo

So for her birthday - that I missed because she was still far away, I promised to help her decorate her new bedroom when she moved. 

As you know June and July have been a bit loopy around these parts but when I get a new idea or a new project I get pretty excited. 

Despite the other things I probably should have been doing I got very jazzed up about this decorating project. 

Suddenly I was bidding on desks and decorative elements on the FB bidding sites and driving hither and yon to pick up furniture and decals and frames and pretty paper and paint..... 

My friend, it turns out, had some pretty firm ideas about her room too.

This would not be in the least bit surprising if you knew her.

She is strong minded and very creative. 

So I followed the list she made of what elements were needed and while I did the bigger projects myself I kept some of the smaller ones to do with her.

So Monday arrived (after they moved in on Sunday) and I hit the highway, my mazda loaded to the hilt and soon I arrived to much excitement and hugs and instructions...

Because that is what 7 year olds do so well.

I spent the loveliest day doing arts and crafts with Miss Penelope and her totally adorable sibling Mr Parker.  And with huge help from the much beloved parents of this duo the room took shape just as I had hoped it would. 

Miss P was so very excited - except when she was mad about something we did.  Fatigue and transitions and excitement make for a somewhat emotional messiness. Mr P was annoyed all day at the lack of attention his room was getting but his birthday is still to come - a fact that did nothing to alleviate his annoyance.

The P's were helpful most of the time 

I so loved their constant chatter and their delight on a hot day, in a chaotic house.  I particularly loved the multiple times Mr P exclaimed his genuine joy that he had found an item that was "exactly like the one he had at his old house".  His ever patient Mother tried to explain it was the actual item lovingly packed and driven across the land but he had trouble with the concept and so we just enjoyed his delight at all these "new" found items. 

When I left, after so many hugs my hug tank was overflowing, I drove away with a very happy heart.  To have such a lovely friend relationship with this 7 year old is a testament to her parents and their generosity with her and with me.  It is no small thing to allow a person outside your family to love your kids dearly and I take it as a precious privilege.  

It was a fantastic break from regular work and so wonderful to just spend time puttering away with dear ones.  The week since has blown in so many spectacular ways at work that I have, more than once, wondered if there was a market in decorating little girls rooms in pink and gold. 

Alas - I think I only really enjoyed it because it was this particular little girl and truth be told I am not sure putting gold dots on the wall wouldn't wear thin after a while (although Mr P was extremely miffed I wouldn't put them on his wall too...."they are just dots Nicky - eyeroll- how can they just be for girls?  Good question but not one I was ready to do 5 rounds with a 4 year old on:)

Thank you G and L for all YOUR work painting and putting furniture together and installing the draw pulls and most of all for letting me be part of your family.

I love you all. 


Room before and after

Desk before and after

Friday, July 21, 2017

Dear June - I apologise

I know, I know - I had a spat with the craziness that June delivered.  

To be fair - it was A LOT.

But the first two weeks of July...

So June - you crazy old bat - sorry I judged you.  Please allow July 1-15th to join you on the podium of .... whirlwind wackiness.

At this very moment I am home with Spanner.  A rare moment of quiet save for the hum of the dryer.  It's overcast - a rare thing too lately.  I am slowly sipping on my tall, long Americano, much needed after I was at my desk at 6:30am this morning following the early rise of my fisherman. (fishing pun!)

The house is a bit of a mess. 

A week ago today it was spotless and tidy.  

Because I was in full party prep mode. 

For the above mentioned Fisherman's big backyard BBQ bash for his 50th birthday. 

I do love planning a big bash and this one was long in the planning.  

And a magical night it turned out to be.  

My tribe of helpers were incredible.  David bussed home (5 hours each way) to surprise his Dad.  Lindsay introduced us all to her boyfriend Joel who stayed with us over the BIG crazy weekend.  Smart guy to meet all the friends and relatives in one fell swoop - wondering if we will ever see him again though :)

Our friends Fil and Emily did a masterful job of a) distracting Allan with a fishing trip and b) feeding me lunch and helping decorate.

And so the evening started and so many dear friends came in.  

Soon the kitchen was full and folks spilled into the backyard on a perfect summer evening.

I have long wanted to host a long table dinner and this was my chance.  I love how it turned out and the happy chatter, the munching on catered bbq, the clink of glasses and soon the glow of candles as the evening crept in.  

As we fell into bed around 1am Allan and I agreed, again, that we are so blessed to have such a great community around us and to have them gathered was such a joy. 

It was a full weekend in terms of activity but also filled our hearts right up.  Most especially for me having my little family home even for 1 night!

Much of this summer was planned up to this point - July 15th - and now that it has come and gone it marks the end of a very, very busy phase in every sphere of my life, family, parenting, school graduations, work, gardening, university planning and the general busyness (often fun busyness) that the summer months often bring.

And a hectic self-imposed gym schedule of 3-4 times a week.  Loving it but frustrated with how long it is taking me to get back in shape ... but working through the disappointment and trusting results will come.

It has mostly been really wonderful but I find myself a tad weary.  I have some vacation days booked and Allan and I intend to do some of the things we have been meaning to do for ages, hikes, beach days, finding new coffee places, booking a restaurant we have long wanted to try, and catching up with each other and ourselves before the pace ramps up again in late August and our big kids have us running in opposite directions. 

I am ready.