Jeez, it’s been a while (or at least, it feels like forever!) since we’ve spoken, hasn’t it?! Pull up a chair and tell me about your January, and I’ll fill you in on mine through an edition of ‘Taking Stock‘!
Making: WEDDING PLANS (dun, dun, dun, dun!) left, right and centre! Can you believe it?!
Some fool wants to marry me! We’ve set a date! And I’m organising things without hyperventilating! It’s helping, I’ve found, to think of the day as a party with my favourite people, rather than a big, dramatic affair where you’re the focal point of attention (aka, my worst nightmare).
Cooking: Bean Supreme’s ‘Black Bean Beetroot Burgers‘, right this very second.
Drinking: Pepsi Max (surprise, surprise!). I’m not sure if I’ve told you, but I’m a pretty terrible sleeper (it’s probably been at least five years since I’ve slept more than six hours maximum), and when my brain is excited about something (which is almost always!), it’s even worse. I woke up at 4.00AM this morning. 4.00AM! On a SUNDAY! So yes, if anyone needs me, I’ll be over here swilling my caffeine…
Reading: Lena Dunham’s Not That Kind Of Girl.
Wanting: A way to tick off all of my goals for 2018, without robbing a bank (ha). This year, we’d planned to renovate our bathroom, pay off the relatively small amount owing on my student loan, and travel to both The Cook Islands and Argentina. And then some idiot – hi! – decided it would be a grand idea to add “get married” to list, and realistically – as much as I loathe the term “realistically” – they’re just not all going to happen.
Looking: Forward to my first driving lesson of 2018 tomorrow morning. 2018 is the year that I will gain my driver’s license!
Playing: Kaiser Chiefs’ I Predict A Riot.
Deciding: Gosh, all I’m DOING is deciding at the moment! Do we want to hire a DJ for our wedding, or will Spotify suffice? Which photographer should we be contacting? (And considering that I only recently came around to the idea of having a wedding at all, this is all still so strange and foreign to me!)
Wishing: For sunshine. Since putting together my Summer Bucket List, it’s poured every day for a week!
Enjoying: I’ve played Crash Bandicoot: Warped at least every second night this week, and I’m not even REMOTELY ashamed to admit how much I’ve enjoyed it! My (future) father-in-law said to me the other day “I imagine it’s a good stress-reliever, too”, something I hadn’t considered until after he’d mentioned it, but it totally is. It’s fun, it gets me out of my own head, and I can channel any frustrations I have into the game… it’s a surprisingly good time!
Waiting: For Casey to arrive home. I’m itching to go for a beach walk…!
Liking: The fact that we have such an amazing beach – Ohope Beach – a mere ten minute drive away, and that it’s filled with so many free, beautiful objects that I can collect (driftwood, stones, seashells…!) and fashion into wedding decorations.
Wondering: How anyone could think that wood fired pizzas would be anything BUT awesome at a wedding. As a couple, it’s our favourite food, and what we celebrated our engagement with, and yet there’s been a few who have baulked at this catering idea! (It’s my fault: I shouldn’t have brought it up for discussion at all, should I? I should have just run with it!)
Loving: My children. Gag-worthy, I know, but it’s the truth!
Pondering: How we’re going to pull off everything that we’re trying to do in the next 12 months, but feeling confident that somehow, we will…!
Considering: Guest lists. They’re tricky, because you don’t want anyone to feel left out, but you also can’t invite 500 people. My current litmus test is “do I regularly speak to this person, and/or are they still likely to be a part of my life in ten years?”
Watching: Nothing, although I did re-watch Girl Boss last week (and it was brilliant as ever!).
Hoping: That my transition back to employment from maternity leave in 22 days is a smooth one.
Marvelling: At how, wedding-wise, everything seems to be coming together. Even one of the parts I anticipated being the most challenging – getting some of my oldest, closest pals from overseas to agree to travel to New Zealand – has been a breeze! “Okay, WHAT am I going to have to do to put you on a plane?!” I started a conversation with one of my best friends, Chris, yesterday. “Tell me what time to be at the airport,” he replied. “And I’ll be there.” Even my friend Carmen – who is moving from Sydney to Berlin in July – immediately responded “I will cross the other side of the WORLD for this!” Sweet relief!
Needing: More hours in the day.
Smelling: The small Glasshouse ‘Bora Bora’ candle that’s in front of me.
Wearing: A navy and white-striped maxi-dress.
Noticing: That some things which would usually bother me are no longer ratting me at all. Is it because I’m now 30? Is it because I pledged that 2018 would be my ‘Year Of Zero Bullshit’? I’m not sure, but I’m liking it!
Knowing: That I need to remember that failure, or setbacks, are often a sign to alter my approach, rather than give up. An example? I was selling some clothing online, only it WASN’T selling, and I didn’t know why. Instead of dwelling on it, though, I started thinking about what else I could try and do to shift it, so I put each piece on, photographed myself wearing it (sometimes it helps to see a garment on a real person!), and then changed the wording of my listings. And what do you know? They SOLD! All of them! That same day!
Thinking: About how (sort of similar to the above) rejection can be a blessing in disguise: it can inspire you to improve and evolve, it can nudge you in a new direction, it can clear the space for even BETTER things to unfurl…
Admiring: Our neighbours. Last year, when we were renovating half of our house, Kris – who lives two doors down – walked past with his dog one evening, saw that we were carrying out some pretty major work (walls, carpet and cupboards had been ripped out, all of our possessions had been moved into one room… it was quite a sight!), and knocked on the door and asked – out of curiosity – if he could see what we were doing. When he stepped inside and realised the size of the project we’d taken on, he laughed, wished us luck, and headed home… before returning ten minutes later, sleeves rolled up, and announcing “alright, you’ve got me for two hours. What can I do to help?” Except he didn’t stay for just two hours. Kris, a former plasterer (he’s now a professional golfer… how cool is that?!), proceeded to turn up nearly every weeknight for THREE MONTHS, painting, plastering and sanding with Casey until – most nights – 12.00AM. When a tree on our property toppled over on the weekend and was inches away from falling into our power lines, Kris arrived with equipment – even though it was 11.30PM, even though there was a STORM outside! – and helped Casey secure it. And then he arrived with a chainsaw the next day to cut the tree down completely. And then another neighbour – one we hadn’t even met before! – saw what was happening, and told Casey to come over and borrow his rope to make the process easier. Restores your faith in humanity, doesn’t it?!
Sorting: School enrolment forms, passport application forms (I need to apply for one for Brady before we venture to Rarotonga in June)… a lot!
Buying: As few things as possible. I’m on a savings mission!
Getting: A little nervous about returning to work, or more to the point, putting Brady in daycare. Charlie was a year old when she started attending daycare part-time; Brady will be 4.5 months old, and in full-time. It’s difficult to come to terms with sometimes, but as Casey reminds me, “we don’t HAVE to do it. If we try it and realise it isn’t working for us, then we’ll do something else.” This is one of the many reasons why I love Casey; literally nothing is as important to him as the four of us being happy.
Bookmarking: Just about every ocean-themed item I can find, including 2KG of “gummi sharks”. (Yes. Seriously!)
Disliking: How certain individuals assume that their approach – or what’s best for them – is smarter, superior to and generally more correct than anyone else’s. You know, the “oh, I’d NEVER spend ___ on ___!” types? (“Cool,” I sit there thinking, “then don’t!”) Or the “you’re doing WHAT?! Ugh, I couldn’t imagine wanting to…” brigade? Ugh. Some people need to just let others enjoy themselves. If another person’s choice isn’t hurting anyone, or in any way linked to you at all, what on earth does it matter if you don’t agree with it?!
Opening: A flurry of text messages from my sister most days. We’re both planning weddings, so we’re constantly going back and forth with “have you seen this?” “No! Have you thought about ___?”
Giggling: Possibly too much information (sorry), but I just heard Brady fart in his sleep in the room next-door, and I’ve been cackling ever since. Have you ever heard a baby fart?! It’s the funniest sound!
Feeling: Pulled in many directions, but it’s okay. I prefer “BUSY” to “bored”!
Snacking: On dried fruit and nuts, and those ‘Smooshed‘ balls. They’re great!
Coveting: A haircut. Badly. My last one was in March, and my once-a-short-side-fringe now hangs past my chin. It’s gross!
Helping: A 3.5 year-old to understand the world. Charlie’s favourite question is “why?” at the moment, and as maddening as it is to be quizzed 25373873 times a day (“but WHY, Mum? W-h-y?!”), it really is her way of making sense of life.
Hearing: Rain falling. Gah. Not again!
How has your month been so far?
(Image credits: 2.)