Tag Archives | change

2017: ending my year intentionally

new year sparkler

I’ve never been one to set New Year’s resolutions – the reality of me is that I’ll last about 2 weeks before life gets in the way and I think to myself “I’ll keep going with that next week…. there’s always next week.”

because life does get in the way and 2017 has been no different

I had intended doing a blow-by-blow summary of my year, but then this post from Daisy on No Sidebar gave me the direction I needed to finish my year with intention.

1. What makes this year unforgettable?

2017 has been a year of loss.

The loss of dear friends… too many of them my age, which reminds you of your mortality and of the need to live every day as if it is your last.

My Boy’s diagnosis with ankylosing spondylitis…  a tough gig for a teenage boy to deal with, losing control to the pain that has become a daily part of life for him.

The Girl leaving home for the second time… letting one of my little birds fly free and marveling at just how comfortable she is with this change.

2. What did you enjoy this year?

The highlight of the year was definitely our trip to Fiji.  It came at a time when we all needed a break – physically, emotionally and mentally.  Ten days of family, good food, swimming, beach and, books.  Exactly what our hearts and souls needed.

3. What/who is the one thing/person you’re grateful for?

Miss L. who has been my sounding board for all things related to my Boy and ankylosing spondylitis.  Whether to cry about his pain or fist pump about a great day, she’s been there for both of us this year.

4. What’s your biggest win this year?

I pitched a job for myself to the Boss, and am loving my new role as the media manager at the school.  It was time for a job sea-change and I’m glad I had the balls to do it.

5. What did you read/watch/listen to that made the most impact this year?

It’s been a year of learning about minimalism for me.  The sites Becoming Minimalist and No Sidebar being the main ones, plus a host of others that I don’t keep track of, and the book “The gentle art of Swedish death cleaning” by Margareta Magnusson.  I’ve begun going through cupboards and crates and getting rid of things that no longer bring me joy.  It’s a process, and it will continue into 2018, and probably 2019 if I’m honest, but it’s a process I have been enjoying and intend to make a part of my everyday life.

6. What did you worry about most and how did it turn out?

The Boy was diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis this year.  It’s rocked his world, and ours as a family.  The constant pain and fatigue that he’s been experiencing have had him (and me) in tears – literally.  And as a Mum, not being able to take that pain away has been bloody awful… it’s making me tear up as I write.  When all I can do is rub his back and cry right alongside him… it sucks.

But we’re a determined bunch.  Me – I’ve read medical journal articles until my eyes were blurry.  I understand this disease, from an academic perspective at least.  I know about the drugs used to treat, the alternative medicines that will help and how diet and exercise play an integral part in the spinal health of a person with AS.  We’ve found a brilliant GP who has set us on a path to health, and we’re feeling confident that with her guidance we can achieve some semblance of the life that was for my Boy.

From here it’s about educating him about how to manage this disease because we’re both determined that this disease won’t manage him.

7. What was your biggest regret and why?

Regrets?  I always struggle with the concept of regret.  Life is a lesson and if you’re smart, you learn from the mistakes – therefore no regrets.

8. What’s one thing that changed about yourself?

I learned to care more about me, and less about what others think of me.  I’m definitely a zero-fucks-given sort of gal.  In a polite way, of course!

9. What surprised you the most this year?

That I miss my Girl less than I thought I would.  When she moved to the Northern Territory it was hard.  It’s different this time though.  She’s not too far away, and we text and talk every day, so the only thing I’m missing out on is her cuddles.  Which makes them extra special when I get them, so win-win.

10. If you could go back to last January 1, what suggestions would you give your past self?

You are where you need to be. Just take a deep breath.

So that was 2017.  2018 looms.  There are plans.  It’s exciting and nerve-wracking and who knows what it’s going to bring.

but whatever it does, I’ll be ready

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taking stock #013

hello, curve ball

Life has thrown yet another series of them at our family.  Nothing we can’t handle, but it’s put us off-kilter a little.
No blanks in this edition of taking stock.  Instead, I’ve left this page open the entire day and come back to this post multiple times.  No pressure to answer. More time to think through what has been influencing my life of late.

So here’s the lucky #013 of taking stock.  It’s a mixed bag!

Making: condensed milk, lemon and gingernut puddings – a little bit of comfort food for the soul (thanks, Simon, for the recipe!)
Cooking: up a plan for a weekend away with the girls
Drinking: kefir water – still on it and still loving it
ReadingThe Plant Paradox by Steven R. Gundry, MD – how ‘healthy’ food  can actually be harming you
Wanting: to do so much more, but pacing myself – life is a journey, not a destination
Looking: up and reading journal articles on Ankylosing Spondylitis
Playing: Imagine Dragons album Evolve on repeat
Deciding: on a Sunday afternoon what is on the dinner menu for the coming week – makes life so much easier
Wishing: that I lived closer to my brothers and sister…
Enjoying: moments in the sunshine
Waiting: for the results from the Boys MRI
Liking: only working 1 day a week now
Wondering: why it took me so long to make the decision to only work 1 day a week
Loving: my new role as the publicity and promotions manager at school
Pondering: ‘be the change’ – and how it is applicable to me at this point in my life
Considering: getting my nose pierced – something I’ve always wanted to do, but keep chickening out on
WatchingBuffy, the Vampire Slayer – still! The kids are still loving it, and still having a blast bagging it out each episode
Hoping: that all goes well for my Beautiful Girl as she prepares to leave the nest again
Marveling: at how warm our day times temperatures have been lately
Needing: to stop and stretch more
Smelling: immune booster oil – still having it burning, because the Boy can’t manage to shake his cough
Wearing: my new Peruvian alpaca wool knitted jumper – soooooo warm
Following: up on blood tests to see if my iron levels have increased
Noticing: how I feel when I do a yoga session – my mind and body loves it
Knowing: that I will be able to help my Boy on his journey with Ankylosing Spondylitis
Thinking: about getting a medicinal tattoo – anyone knows of a reputable tattoo artist who only uses natural inks?
Feeling: pleased with myself at what I have achieved over the last couple of days
Admiring: the colours of a sunset
Sorting: through all sorts of shit in my house – it’s time to go Minimalist
Buying: as little as possible
Getting: all of my affairs in order, so that if I do drop off the planet, it’s all organized for my family (& no, I’m not about to drop off the planet)
Bookmarking: medical journal articles on Ankylosing Spondylitis – trying to read enough to understand, but not overwhelm me
Disliking: unanswered emails….
Opening: mail… bills… why do they all seem to come at once?
Giggling: do I really giggle?  I don’t think I do!
Snacking: on crystallized ginger
Coveting: nothing – it’s the Minimalist in me coming out
Wishing: that the Boy didn’t have to deal with Ankylosing Spondylitis
Hearing: the whir of my computer fan

In the comments, I’d love to hear:

What has been happening in your life?  And more specifically, do you have any experience with Ankylosing Spondylitis?

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taking stock #008

autumn leaves mean a cool change is coming

the weather is turning and the nights are getting cooler

I find that as the weather changes, I tend to look inwards, and outwards, and evaluate just how things are going in my world.

Priorities are re-assessed.
Energies channelled elsewhere.
Happy moments remembered.
And moments of sadness acknowledged.

and gratitude is given that all is right in my world

Making: jewellery again – after quite a hiatus, my Muse has returned
Cooking: quesadilla’s for lunch – smoked salmon and cream cheese.  Yum!
Drinking: plenty of water
Reading: the third novel of Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children – Library of Souls – by Ransom Riggs.  Highly recommended.
Wanting: more time to everything I want to do
Looking: at the leaves changing colour
Playing: with the dog
Deciding: how to spend money – a holiday or teeth.  Can you guess which one won out!?
Wishing: I could afford to both of the above
Enjoying: Sunday afternoon phone calls with my Beautiful Girl as she continues her adventure in the Territory
Waiting: for school holidays to end
Liking: not having to rush in the mornings – it is school holidays after all
Wondering: when we will see our Girl next
Loving: that my Muse has made a reappearance
Pondering: 
Considering: purchasing a 24-70 lens.  I’ve borrowed a friends’ and despite the weight of it realise that it’s a wonderfully versatile lens
Watching: re-runs of Merlin for the third time!  My Boy and I love that show.
Hoping: I get to go to the Northern Territory in September
Marvelling: at how determined my Beautiful Girl has been in the face of some less-than-ideal circumstances
Needing: the beach.  Every now and again, living on the top of the mountain gets too much and I need sand and ocean
Smelling: dust.  It’s so dry here at the moment, and windy and all I can smell is dust
Wearing: my ugg boots most mornings now – it’s getting cool
Following: …
Noticing: the stunning contrast of yellow leaves against the blue sky
Knowing: that my Beautiful Girl will always only be a phone call or message away
Thinking: about all things business (still…) (and still….)
Feeling: a little bit lost
Admiring: other people’s beautiful photography
Sorting: out a blog post editorial calendar – and hopefully sticking to it…
Buying: evening primrose oil to make my moisturiser
Getting: organised
Bookmarking: or pinning lots of business-related articles
Disliking: people who don’t listen
Opening: the yoghurt covered sultanas
Giggling: …
Snacking: on protein drinks
Coveting: a couple of nights by the beach
Wishing: for a full nights sleep
Helping: …
Hearing: the sound of the little finches who’ve taken up residence in the garden

In the comments, I’d love to hear:

Do you keep a gratitude journal?
Have you ever considered it?

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Tame Your Inbox

checking-your-emails

How often do you check your emails?

I’m guilty of checking my email multiple times a day.

I’m waiting for a reply from someone.
Wondering if anything new has hit the inbox.
But it might be urgent.
I really should be doing something else, but I don’t want to, so I’ll check my email.
I’ve gotten distracted because I was just passing by the computer… and it will only take a moment to check.
Checking.
Checking.

Checking

It’s going to be a difficult habit to break.

But I’m going to try and only check my email twice a day

Once in the morning – I’ve developed a checking-my-email-while-I-drink-my-morning-coffee routine – and once in the afternoons.

I’m also going to close my email once I’ve checked it.

Apparently there are psychological benefits to not checking your emails.

Apparently checking your email stresses you out, and I seriously don’t need any more stress in my life.

So, now is the time to make this change.

Want to join me?

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Taking Stock #002

all-natural-coffee-coconut-body-scrub

smells good enough to eat

Only 3 months has passed since I posted my first ‘Taking Stock’ post.

some things have changed, but some things remain the same

Regardless, it’s good to take stock. To put the world as I see it into perspective.

Here is where life stands at the moment:

Making: coffee coconut body scrub for the Daughter – smells good enough to eat, though I think we’ll need to tweak the quantities
Cooking: recipes from The Whole Pantry and Epicurious
Drinking: more water
Reading: Written in my own Heart’s Blood by Diana Gabaldon
Wanting: a sunshine
Looking: at mirrorless cameras (still)
Playing: with my new iPad mini
Deciding: on nothing significant at the moment
Wishing: for the end of term (again!)
Enjoying: the sunshine
Waiting: for holidays and sleep ins
Liking: having no plans for the upcoming holidays
Wondering: if Husband will make Daughter drive on the freeway when they go to Sydney next week
Loving: playing with textured layers in my photography
Pondering: the direction my jewellery business should take (still…)
Considering: whether to have a glass of wine tonight
Watching: La Horde – and indulging my love of the zombie genre
Hoping: that Year 12 will be a little less stressful than Year 11 was for Daughter
Marvelling: at how some parents simply don’t seem to care about their children’s education
Needing: space
Smelling: the calming scents currently in the oil burner
Wearing: my favourite Threadless t-shirt and slippers
Following: world events and wondering what is happening to humanity
Noticing: how much my Little Man is growing
Knowing: that I can make a difference
Thinking: about what things I want to put in the new Walcha Handmade shop
Feeling: old – a least that is what the body aches and pains are telling me
Admiring: innocence
Sorting: paperwork – there’s always paperwork
Buying: new towels soon
Getting: excited about the new Walcha Handmade shop opening at the end of the month
Bookmarking: ways to display jewellery in a b&m shop
Disliking: people’s fascination with celebrity
Opening: interesting emails of late
Giggling: at the things little kids say
Snacking: on carrots
Coveting: a new camera (same as last time I know… and I still don’t want to spent the money!)
Wishing: the holidays would hurry up
Helping: kids to learn life-skills and loving that I’m able to be a part of this in their lives
Hearing: the sound of birds whistling outside the window

what’s been happening in your world?

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