Monday, May 31, 2010
I feel like I can't just BE and always need to be doing more, more, MORE, so when this popped into my email box, I thought great! And bought it.
Problem is... whenever I start working through the ebook or reading the satisfaction emails, this darn song keeps going through my head.
P.S. It is FREEZING COLD in Johannesburg and I'm loving it. When I went to work it was 9 degrees and when I came home it was 12,5 degrees. LOVELY!!!
D and I call weather like this "Irish weather" LOL
P.P.S. To my US friends, Happy Memorial Day.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
We knew each other from ministry at church and we had two things in common.
We both had part-time businesses and we're both ultra-organised.
Eventually we got to chatting and there were many synergies so we had coffee one day (this was YEARS ago - at least 4) to discuss how we could work together.
And it took off from there.
The friendship, that is.
Now we're the most unlikely of friends because she is Absolutely Gorgeous and was a Miss South Africa finalist in her youth :) and I'm, well...
Not so gorgeous and more into comfort than style LOL
We got along famously in the beginning and I even coached her in her business for a couple of months.
Then we decided to involve the men in our lives.
Strange because I get along famously with her husband (not in a weird way - we are just very, very similar). He's also very funny.
Thing is... they have marriage problems. Big ones.
I firmly believe that no-one knows exactly what goes on in a marriage except God and the couple involved so I'm not judging them in the least.
When the four of us would go out together, they'd snipe at each other to the point where it was uncomfortable and D and I wouldn't know where to look, let alone how to behave.
They're both not shy about saying things in public (or maybe I just have a way of making people feel so comfortable that they'll share anything....?), even about s*x!
At first we thought it was a once-off.
But it happened again and again.
After the last time, last year sometime, on one of the night nanny evenings, D said to me afterwards, "that's it! I don't want to go out with them ever again."
And neither do I.
I don't know if it's because of the marriage issues but it seems like they look for opportunities to hang around other people. We live near each other so collect each other's mail, feed dogs, etc. if the other couple is away or needs some help. If I have to drop off her keys, she'll say, "oh, I'll come collect it" and then the two of them arrive and they visit forever.
I've noticed D just makes up some excuse and he's out of there. I don't blame him one bit - as he says, "she's your friend".
Do you have couple friends where you tried to extend the friendship to all 4 parties and it bombed?
We used to do lots of girl things together - chick flicks, women's days at the church, etc.
She was also starting to be a bit of a flake and would only contact me when there was drama.
I heard something on Dr Phil once about relationships - if you only talk about problems then you have a problem relationship.
I feel it's the same with friendships - if you only talk when there's drama, then it's a friendship about the drama and not much else.
Happy as I am to help someone (I think you get a fair enough idea of me in this blog), I really want a bit more than that in a friendship.
So I remained friendly and I do check on her now and again. And we help each other out in neighbourly things. But God gave me a good talking to some months back - that I'm not her salvation (because I tend to feel responsible for people!), He is.
Now here's the thing:
Sex and the City.
I'd love to go see SATC2 with her as she is the ideal person for this type of thing. In fact, we went to see the first movie together - we speak very openly about sex so it did make sense :)
I don't want things to go off track again with the husbands and the drama and such. Since I've worked hard on the boundaries...
I can't very well say, "I like you. D likes him (he does - they're both very creative types). But we don't like the two of you together" LOL
Do you think I should invite her?
Or should I just leave it and ask someone else to go to the movie with me?
P.S. I don't have a huge number of friends who I can do stuff like this with.
P.P.S. Writing this made me think of so many other friendship-type things I want to write :)
Friday, May 28, 2010
We were debating whether to buy new curtains, duvets, etc. or simply to repaint.
I don't know if I can stand the disorder and chaos so my vote is to buy new curtains and whatnot.
D told me to CALM DOWN as new things usually take me a couple of days to get used to.
We had our lounge repainted in December and at first I hated it.
Then I switched things around and now I love the colour.
So I'm blocking out thoughts of the room for a few days and hopefully the colour will grow on me. I've had to pack all my red handbags away as they clash with the wall (it's a minty-green colour) and were making me twitch.
The joys of being a control freak!
In other news, you'll be pleased to know I am in full Take Action mode.
We decided on a date for the baby dedication and I am doing it Marcia-style.
Very small, plain and simple and absolutely no fuss or bother :)
Have I ever told you I had the plainest wedding on earth?
We got married in our church but literally, D and me, no entourage. My dad walked me down the aisle and then the pastor did her thing and we were married. I feel that's what it's about anyway and I was never one of those "dreaming about her wedding day" sorts of girls.
Back to the details...
- 10 adults and 2 babies (mine)
- lunch catered and cupcakes from Pick and Pay for dessert
- still undecided if I want to do white clothes - practical Marcia can't see the point...although my friend Ilse-with-the-gorgeous-house offered to loan me her daughter's white dress
- my mother-in-law will do the ceremony (she was honoured! it means so much to her that she gets to do this for her grandkids)
- it is literally going to be a 5-minute talk and then she'll pray over them, take a few photos, lunch, tea and cake and that is IT!
- we decided on Wed night that it will be next Sunday - I love short deadlines - less time to stress :)
It's because I am Totally 100% Fine with being different from the crowd (actually I love it) but I don't want the kids to feel "out". It sounds silly even writing that because if someone said this to me I'd say, "for goodness sake, you are their mother; you make the decisions!"
And rightly so!
P.S. What do you say to people when they ask, "how are the kids?" Seriously, I say things like "so big" or "so cute" but really, it's getting stale.
P.P.S. Deanna, I'm not going to lie to you. I can't possibly post pics until the room's looking reasonably okay, so pray for inspiration. Also, am off to buy those sippy cups!
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Before babies, I'd freak out if there were just one other person in my house during the day if I wasn't home.
Yesterday, babies plus Nanny V plus new cleaning lady plus two painters.
In a moment of clarity, after yet again cleaning up after the old maid, I decided, "that's it!" and fired her.
I did it nicely .... "S, I won't be needing you to come to work anymore" as I saw no reason to tell her the true reason (you don't clean properly, can't remember anything I say, etc.) and I paid her one extra day's salary.
I had a glorious sense of freedom plus PANIC.
After a few seconds I calmed myself down, handed my husband our free newspaper to look through for a couple of people who were looking for work and went to gym.
When I got back, he'd circled 7 names.
I phoned all 7, armed with my interview checklist, and prioritised my top 3.
Phoned her back and we arranged a start date, daily rate, etc.
She started last Tuesday.
And it's been okay so far.
Would be better if there weren't all these other things going on all the time.
Like the painting and the fact that our security system's sensors is not working properly so there are technicians all over the place.
I am ZEN with all this chaos.
To test my patience, I'd just arrived home when City Power decided to do some load shedding in my little part of our HUGE suburb. My friend, C, and her mom in two different directions both had power so I drove to C's house to warm the babies' frozen ice-blocks for supper :)
Two hours later I had electricity and all was well.
I cooked for us and two meals for the babies.
But..... my house was a mess as all the bedroom furniture plus clothes plus my handbags were all over the house and in my guest bedroom/ study since my bedroom walls were still wet.
I'm surprised I actually fell asleep in that madness last night.
Earlier today I phoned home to check if the painter had arrived and Nanny V tells me, "oh, we don't have power again".
It took lots of restraint not to swear as this was around their lunch time.
So my babies had ProVita with peanut butter and yoghurt for lunch.
And now V tells me, "they don't like the new food". The Carrot and Cheesy Tomato Risotto I so lovingly prepared for them.
I was THIS close to taking a jar of Purity off the shelves at the store but I was very strong and resisted.
I need to write about the food story another day (this is why I need to write as it happens as it got good and is bad again!).
I am rising to a new level of Zen...
But how's your day going?
P.S. Went to a friend's baby shower yesterday at work and oh! it brought back such memories of the crying and the overwhelm.
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
I bought the domain, http://the123blog.com (123blog was taken and a gazillion extensions) and successfully redirected it and masked something blah blah blah.
How cool is that?
But then, instead of leaving well enough alone, I decided to go into blogger and redirect from there too.
Something happened and I kept getting a message "do I want to redirect?" (um, yes!!! but it wouldn't)
so I went back in and undid it and now my comments are gone.
I'm trying not to freak as I've seen T-bird and Saffy had the same thing going on so please will someone put me out of my misery and tell me
1) how to get my comments back and edited to add - they seem to be back from my side - can you see them??
2) how do you do the blogger redirect?
While we were waiting for food or the bill (can't remember), D took Kendra for her first swing.
At first she loves it and then it gets too wild and she's not sure about this swinging thing anymore.
In any event, her squeals are very cute!
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Monday, May 24, 2010
Oh wait, he didn't want his bottles (BIG red alert as C always has his bottles).
That's why he was so whiny on Saturday... don't you hate when you think it's one thing and it's actually another?
So this time D went to church with Kendra and I stayed at home with Connor.
I must say, it took some powerful persuasian skills as D was nervous to be with one baby without me (in public) but I told him it would be FINE, she is EASY and so on.
(I can't believe Kendra is now easy - if you'd told me this in the early days I would never have believed you!)
When he got back, he said it was like having one baby instead of three!
No pram needed, only a tiny bag of provisions, etc.
We are definitely fans of the one-baby-at-a-time errand/ outing.
Connor, on the other hand, was needy and would not let me out of his sight.
It's lovely for a bit but then... there is food to make, rooms to clean, etc.
Reminded me of being on maternity leave when I was still in pajamas at 12.
Last night he woke twice (11 and 3:30) and was up for about 30 minutes each time.
How quickly we get used to a new normal!
That would have been fine months ago but now we're so used to just handing them a bottle and letting them get on with it that we're quite knackered :)
Of course, this morning he looks perfectly fine - grunting, squealing and making lots of boy noises as he usually does.
How was your weekend?
P.S. I've discovered the only reason I don't like winter in Jhb - dry skin. Jeepers - I feel like an old woman with this wrinkly skin. Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise and it just SEEPS into the skin.
P.P.S. As MandyE said in the comments, if that's the worst thing about my day, then I'm blessed :)
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Well, I love that you can now (I say now, but it's probably a month old if not longer) reply to that email and your answer goes right back on your wall or as a comment without logging in.
I seriously love that!
Now wouldn't it be great if Blogger did the same thing?
I'd be able to respond to comments so much quicker and my email box would be emptied in a jiffy!
P.S. speaking about blogging stuff...
1. Some of you have something weird going on with the comment function on your blogger blogs. That means I can't comment at all (it doesn't show me a "post a comment" link). It will get fixed if you go into your settings and select the FIRST option and I'll then be able to comment :)
2. I will say this - I am nothing if not determined (sometimes) so I'll send the link to another computer and try to post a comment from different places. Sometimes that does work; it just takes forever.
3. Shelby, something even weirder is going on with your comments as I can't ever comment on your blog (have tried from all my computers!) nor can I find an email address to mail you on. (Shelby also has twins and the one boy's name is also Connor).
While I'm thinking blog stuff, is anything weird going on with my blog?
Saturday, May 22, 2010
I went out with one baby.
When I got home from Infertility Support, Connor was whiny and "mum mum mum"-ing so D was only too happy to hand him over.
I cuddled, fed, etc. and put him down for his nap (he wouldn't sleep earlier - D says he was missing me - rubbish!) and then Kendra was awake.
Which is why I don't get the "sleep while the babies sleep" theory.
But I digress.
D was also wiped out so the two boys were sleeping and I decided us two girls should go shopping.
So off we went down the street to Pep to get some slippers, takkies (sneakers) and tops for the babies.
They mess up all their nice stuff with the crawling so I don't see the point of buying more expensive clothes anymore.
By the way, Kendra no longer wears anything light-coloured on the bottom. Only jeans (as dark as possible) and dark colours. No wonder people think she's a boy :)
I didn't bother with a pram. Instead, I took my sling.
The one she hasn't been in for about 6 or 7 months.
At first she sat still, checking all the goings on and then, after about 10 minutes, decided she needed to be FREE.
And so the wriggling commenced.
I quickly finished up my shopping with K half in the sling and half in my arm, with my other arm full of shopping.
Even with my little monkey crawling all over me, it was so, so, SO MUCH EASIER with just one baby.
I think we need to do these one-on-one bonding outings more often.
If you have more than one child, do you split them up and go places with just one?
P.S. The last time I was out alone with Kendra was in October last year for a doctor's appt.
Friday, May 21, 2010
D delivered the GonalF plus an "all the best" card to our wonderful fertility clinic and Eve collected it at her next appointment.
Maybe it was a little strange that I went to visit her in the hospital. She had her baby boys on Wednesday at 38 weeks 4 days (I am in AWE!) at a scheduled Caesar (no drama whatsoever).
I didn't think it was strange since we've emailed a lot and sent text messages back and forth but then again, I am weird, and this year I'm about just doing things and not thinking so much.
(speaking about weird, I just went "Mmmmm" when I had a spoonful of plain, low fat yoghurt - is there anything better?!)
Also I know how much I appreciate visits and I like to make people feel a little bit special.
So off I went and amazingly I didn't get lost. I can get lost very easily even if I've been to a place before.
They let me go into the NICU and a nurse told me to hold the one baby after washing hands, of course.
Oh my word!
Cute, wrinkly, newborn goodness.
They are SO very precious when that small.
I hardly knew what to do or how to hold him (we forget so quickly!) but I pretended and figured it out.
They are both just so gorgeous and yet...
I realised for sure there is no way I want the responsibility of such tiny babies again. No way.
Apparently the absolute craziness of the first 3 months scared me way too much.
How/ when did you know (finally) that you were done?
And these kids weren't even tiny. The one boy, D, at 3.2 kg was double what Kendra weighed! The other one, J, was a very healthy 2.5 kg.
She had 5,7 kg of baby inside her - amazing. I told her she's a rock star :)
And look how good she looks!
The hospital is set in these gorgeous surroundings. When I had my laparoscopy in 2008, the room I was in overlooked this deliciousness. Not-so-little gifts from God.
I leave you with some twin cuteness observed just this morning. V was changing their sheets so she put them both in the other cot. They were quite happy with Kendra laying on Connor with her feet hanging out.
How often do you change your babies' sheets?
We do every week unless they mess on them before that. My friend, Ilse, said she does them daily.
I was horrified - imagine all the laundry! :)
P.S. New trick I'm not too thrilled about - they rip each other's dummies out of the mouth and then suck it themselves! Here in the pic they've just done that. Ugh LOL
Thursday, May 20, 2010
You have to pick 5 photos of yourself that you love and I think say why, and then share 5 things you really like about yourself.
The first time I had professional photos taken - Feb 2008 - it was not really by choice but was on my list for the year as I needed to have my website redone. Well, at the end I was more relaxed and said, "let's take a pic for Facebook" and this is the one. I'm leaning on a gigantic tiger or something... He usually uses this prop for bikini modelling *ahem*. One of my favourite pics ever - was so unplanned and spur-of-the-moment and is still my facebook pic.
Later that year in May (can you see I'd been working on my life list?) we planned a trip to the UK. Ireland is on my life list and this was in Wicklow (the scene of P.S. I love you), just outside of Dublin.
I literally GASPED when I saw the beauty and you all know how I love the cold so I did this very spontaneously too (hey, there's a theme happening) and D snapped this pic. I love the freedom it depicts.
And of course, my long-awaited for pregnancy. I loved being pregnant and I loved loved LOVED that big belly. It also helped that I looked good :)
This one is 27 weeks along!
and then, as I was looking through my pics, I found this BONUS one :) 31 weeks 3 days. About 10 days before the babies were born. Isn't it magnificent?! LOL
Oh, I miss the good hair and skin...
And now 5 things I really like about myself:
- I have a thick skin. I can take a LOT and it rolls off me. I think it's helped me be more resilient.
- I take action. Always. I correct course sometimes but if I think something's a good idea, I don't just sit with the intention, I do something about it.
- I love that I can communicate and talk easily with almost anyone. I really do care very deeply about people and I try and remember things people tell me so they know I really did care.
- I'm passionate. I can and do throw myself into things wholeheartedly. This is something I really want to instill in the kids as I think passion is contagious.
- I really like that I can say no and not feel guilty (hey, I should do a product on this). I think it's such an under-utilised word and is the main source of most people's stress.
and a bonus, I love that I've had gone out with guys across the 4 racial groups in South Africa. Relationships with 3, and went to a ball with the 4th. Adds a bit of edge, doesn't it? LOL
Please share ONE thing you really like about yourself with me. Don't think too hard and don't be shy!
P.S. Cat said that she liked her b**bs - I love that and I LAUGHED!
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
I've spoken before about how I like a minimalistic approach to clothes and so on.
Well, I'm even worse about toys.
Or better. Depends how you feel.
People said to me before the babies were born, "Just wait. Your house will be overrun with toys" and I said, "Hmm, I don't think so".
So I put no toys on the baby shower list.
But we did get one toy for each baby from one of my friends (incidentally, the friend of the girl whose twin baby girl died). I checked the box the other day and it said 12 months + so those will make their appearance on their birthday.
I will confess, I did have to buy a playmat for them and had to go out a couple of times to get stuff like the odd rattle. Oh, and then later we got some bath toys as a late baby gift.
I actually love people meeting the babies in stages - we got gifts for them months and months after they were born. Kind of similar to how we were still getting wedding presents a year after we were married. Cool :)
I guess my approach is this - if you give kids too much stuff, they become overwhelmed (I know I get this way) and don't know what to play with. Also, I feel it hampers their creativity.
Another BIG plus is less clearing up because there's not much to put away!
I know that before they got a bit more mobile, Connor's favourite toy was a plastic box of spare clothes pegs. I had it in my hands and was walking to check on them, happened to shake it and he LOVED the sound.
Kendra's favourite toy is whatever Connor's playing with. And an old red box. The one in this pic.
I dared throw the box away once (thinking it belongs in the bin) and D said to me, "HOW can you throw K's favourite toy away?"
I laughed but then gave it back to her.
My friend, Natalie, said to me a couple of months ago, "D has ONE drawer full of toys and that INCLUDES his little teddies and that’s it. I will NOT be one of those mothers with a house full of children’s things”
I love it!
We have more than a drawer full (see pic above - it's slightly more than that now) but those loose things are all beautifully confined to one small storage box cube, about 30 cm X 30 cm X 30 cm. Actually a few things are "escaping" the confines of the storage cube so I need to declutter it this week.
The playmat is washed and in its plastic holder ready to pass onto whoever wants it - Eve?
I believe in using toys and passing them on. LOL
I used to feel bad when I saw other kids' hordes of stuff thinking maybe I'm depriving them and stunting them developmentally but now? Not at all!
Goodness! I think I may be finding my parenting groove :)
So what's your take on toys? The more the merrier, minimalist or somewhere in between?
P.S. I have since thrown the red box away but shhh, don't tell D!
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
It's because I feel like I'm talking to myself.
I hate hate hate not getting feedback.
Don't know if it's the time difference with all my "followers" or what, but when I talk on Twitter, no-one talks back.
I could get all strategic about it and work out which is the best time that people are on, and make sure that's when I tweet but honestly, that seems far too calculating for what's supposed to be FUN!
I must admit, sometimes Facebook feels the same. It actually drives me crazy when you say something and no-one says anything back.
When that happens, it feels a bit like my life is insignificant and only other people's status updates are Important or Newsworthy.
I know that's not true.
But still, I'm so over the whole popularity contest thing.
We're not in high school after all.
Which is also why I love my blog. This one.
On my other blog people are kind of quiet on the comments too.
So I want to say a BIG thank you to those of you who share with me in the comments and help me not to feel like I'm talking to myself.
Which is your favourite? Blog, Facebook or Twitter? And why?
P.S. I'm also kind of wordy :) so restricting myself to 140 characters is a MISSION!
Well, I know I'm a slacker but honestly last night I was SO exhausted from cooking for us, cooking for the babies, writing my newsletter that I couldn't face anything more.
So here we go.
There were 16 comments, 3 of them were outside US and Canada, so 13 left.
Our friend, Random.org picked number 8 which is...........
Jayme!!! who said
Through the years I've learned what you need and what can wait. I had the crib all set up with the gorgeous bedding for my first... my second used his hand me downs... my third did get some new bedding.
By the time Lili was born, we didn't even bother setting up the crib until she was about 9 or 10 months old- I knew she'd end up in our bed.
For the twins, we bought just one crib and bedding set, I figured when they outgrew sharing we'd get another- and my mom bought the second set for them for Christmas. We still haven't painted, although we finally did buy the paint for the walls recently. They've got an airplane theme, in red and blue for their room.
Congrats, Jayme. The only thing better than winning something myself is giving to others :)
Please send me an email and I'll put you in contact with the guys at CSN.
P.S. His name is also Jamie :)
Monday, May 17, 2010
The world didn't crash.
I also FINISHED MY BOOK. Yes, in one week.
So I will be doing the same thing (more or less) this week as I really want to read more. And I still have those 3 half-read baby books to finish.
We put the babies down for their nap yesterday and I said to D, "let's also go rest" and I promptly jumped onto my bed with my book and a cup of tea.
A small slice of heaven.
After a few minutes, Kendra decided that "sleep is for babies" and she's not a baby so screamed for her daddy.
He brought her to me and we enjoyed some lovely quality time, me reading and Kendra playing with my coaster, hand lotion, anything I could find on my night stand.
She's getting very, very cute. Very easy with the smiles and laughs and there really is nothing sweeter.
Now that was more like what mother's day should have been like!
P.S. Eve (the one who bought my leftover GonalF) is now 38 weeks pregnant with twin boys. I think she's a rock star for making it so far! And for doing this whole deal solo (the babies were conceived with donor sperm)!
P.P.S. I will do the draw later today........ and post the winner!
Saturday, May 15, 2010
Anyway, I'm still working on letting go.
As I said, it's very practical now but I will move onto bigger and more important stuff like feelings, commitments that don't suit me, people that drain me, jobs, etc, etc.
I'm a firm believer in small steps.
So, I've also been trying to declutter my blogs in my google reader.
I started on Thursday with 76 and I'm now down to 60. I should have left number 61 on but I wanted a nice round number :)
To put that in perspective, my comfort number is around 40 - 45. By that I mean I can get through them daily, I can comment on about half of them and I don't feel like I'm just scanning.
Remember everyone doesn't post daily so it's manageable to me if I clear my GR daily.
I'm going to revel in that number for a few days and then there are two I need to add as I pop in regularly; they're just not officially in my GR.
Yes, it was hard to let go of blogs especially since I'm so curious to find out what's going on in other people's lives.
Some were easy - I probably followed after reading one good post and now it's all blah blah blah, but some were difficult as I'm still interested (like all the house and creative blogs I read) but had to make choices.
How many subscriptions are in your Google Reader?
And what's your comfort number?
P.S. One day left to enter the giveaway :)
Friday, May 14, 2010
What do you do when you have crazy bad internet problems and you can barely work on the computer?
Why, you organise your house.
Or at least that's what I do.
The computer has been driving me nuts and I think I'm going to phone Dial-a-Nerd.
Love that name.
My local computer guys said there's nothing wrong with my computer. My anti-virus is working normally but I am still losing emails coming in.
Anyway, back to the organising.
I'm flying through the house stuff on my May list because in addition to the disappearing emails, I also have crazy slow internet.
Again, my ISP says there is nothing wrong with connectivity in my area but there so clearly is!
1. I've organised all the babies' clothes and then some.
Cleared out EVERYTHING that no longer fits. This is the first time I've thought about how "lucky" I am to not be having any more kids because I don't have to store small clothes!
2. I've given 3 bags of clothes to the other twins.
3. D fetched the high chairs.
4. My friend with the twins gave us sleep sacks so I don't have to find someone to make them.
5. I went to gym twice this week. Felt positively virtuous and rewarded myself by eating not one, but TWO carrot cupcakes.
6. I planned out my gifts for the month.
7. Started writing out my items for my life list.
8. And a biggie, I am teaching myself to let go.
This is part of organising my time.
Remember when I wrote the first Motherstyles post, I said one of my biggest struggles is letting go.
We were talking parenting but I recognise it in so many areas of my life and this was one of the issues that I recognised I need to do some self-coaching on.
So first thing to let go was an easy-ish one. My diary (planner).
I have a GORGEOUS deep red diary/ planner but I haven't been using it. The same thing happened last year - I thought it was the maternity leave/ baby thing but no. I forget to look in it half the time and then two weeks pass.
I let go. Even though it cost a bit of money. Even though I'd customised it perfectly. And so on.
On Wed night I had some time to think and I realised I really really really love a week-at-a-glance diary - that's how I plan my life and that's what works best for me.
I had a spare week-at-a-glance diary I got on a sale so I hauled it out and I am so much happier. I planned out the rest of May and it's so EASY doing it like this!
Small steps, people.
What are you working on? Tell me I'm not the only one with issues!
P.S. Don't forget to enter the giveaway.
P.P.S. That is an old pic as I'm too lazy to take a pic and upload it. Keeping it real :)
Thursday, May 13, 2010
What's interview mojo, you ask?
It's when you get offered a job every time you have an interview. LOL
Actually, I just interview really well. I went through years and years where I got offered jobs left, right and centre once I reached interview stage.
I suppose I became complacent in my ability to interview well.
However, I lost it the last couple of years but it seems it's started coming back.
I had a "chat" with an HR person at my company about a position they'd already shortlisted and when I arrived he started out saying they'd had many CVs (resumes) better than mine (at the time I thought, "very rude" especially since it's not the company culture to be so straightforward) and I was therefore not one of those shortlisted and out of the running.
Fair enough. I actually love honesty (!) and have no problem with being told the brutal truth.
As we chatted, suddenly he's "actually, I want you to meet Very Senior Person urgently" so we did.
The interview was squeezed in between two of my important client meetings that I couldn't cancel so was a bit rushed.
I don't think I impressed the Senior Guy that much (he's an accountant/ actuary/ numbers sort of person) but it was good to meet as I always feel all connections are good, just in case something else does come up.
Haven't heard a word since and it's two weeks later now.
I don't even feel like sending an email to check progress or what they thought of me.
I've had informal "chats" to another HR lady here, sent CV through for 3 similar roles to the other one and......... nothing.
The thing is I know I'm good at what I do. But when you keep hearing no, no, NO and no, you start doubting yourself.
And the self-confidence dips.
Maybe I'm not as good anymore? Past my sell-by date?
I'm feeling like it may be a function of being here so long (5 years) and that people have mentally boxed me into a particular type of role and therefore I should just move if I want to progress again.
But move to where???
Yesterday I bought our newspaper. It has a supplement called The Workplace and every week they say "hundreds of great jobs" and other such lies.
I looked through that thing from cover to cover last night and there are only more junior roles or MUCH more senior roles than mine (double the money).
But I do feel better for at least having bought and looked through the paper.
I must remember my motto for the year is "this year I will take chances".
What's your motto for the year and how are you doing with it?
Also, if you're someone who is content at work, please share your tips for staying happy. I seem to be discontent fairly regularly and I'm not an ungrateful person, generally.
Is it my age, the fact that I'm nearly 36 and I should be well-established in my career by now? I'm so obviously not.
I don't want to be that person who has "loads of potential" with none actually fulfilled.
(You know, this work thing is for the birds :))
P.S. Don't forget about the giveaway
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
On our first stop on the way to Clarens, I took Connor into the loos to change his nappy. Yes, he was on the changing mat, but I literally said to him the whole time, "no, boy, don't touch - DIRTY!" Ugh!
And there I decided very quickly that public toilets were not for me. Especially while the babies are squirmy and don't listen.
So we were out sightseeing in Clarens and we made a quick stop at this hotel to change the babies' nappies.
Connor has a thing about lights (not just any boring lights, mind you, but beautiful light fittings like chandeliers) - it's very cute but also weird. I joke that I'm buying him one of those projector things for his birthday (actually that's not a bad idea because he will have HOURS of fun watching stars or whatever on the bedroom ceiling).
Anyway, in this same hotel they had some lovely lights and he literally flipped backwards to look at the lights. I thought I had those pics with me too but they must be on my computer at home. Will post later if I remember.
Does anyone else's kids have strange habits?
P.S. Don't forget about the giveaway
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Veronica then said that it seemed as if everyone was the opposite style to their spouses.
It probably is true that if the wife is an I, then most husbands are an E, and vice versa. I'm sure that's why you were attracted to him/ her???
Now, in the book, Janet Penley says that many times the core (for me, an ESTJ, that would be ST, the middle two letters) is the same as your spouse's. In my case, that's not true as D is INTJ. But we do have the TJ in common.
Basically I think that if two letters are similar there's enough common ground but you also need some differences to spice things up.
But who knows, right?
D and I were never supposed to have a relationship that worked, let alone thrived, according to astrology, and here we are, 15 years later.
What about if you're torn between two letters?
I don't believe you ever sit "on the fence". I think the essence of who you are might become muddied by the circumstances of life and that's when you become unclear whether you're an E or an I, etc.
I'm a "high" ESTJ which means there are no middling scores for me on any of the criteria - I am clear in my preferences and also a little extreme...
If I were sitting with you one-on-one we could really nail it if you were on the fence but a good way to start is to say "if there were absolutely NO expectations from anyone, and I was 100% honest with myself, how would I behave in this situation?"
Now onto today's letter - S vs N. Sensing vs Intuition
Sensing people are most comfortable with information they get from their senses while Intuitive people gather information through their intuition, or sixth sense.
Sensing people are usually very practical and detail-oriented while Intuitive people are more big picture thinkers, imaginative and not very practical.
The sensing mother is most comfortable taking care of her child's practical needs like food, baths, clothes, sleep, etc. Think PRACTICAL.
The intuitive mother will also take care of her child's needs but will find it mundane, routine, tedious, etc. and will probably do the bare minimum to get by. LOL
In the book there's a great example about..........wait for this..........baths!
Sensing mothers bath their kids to ......... get them clean :) while Intuitive mothers bath their kids so they can play and have fun!
Don't you love it?!
And also Sensing mothers are more apt to bath their kids daily while Intuitives do so once a week, when the child is dirty, or when their hair smells.
Isn't that funny?
Quick example from my house - when I bath them, they are scrubbed and are shiny and pink when done. When D baths them, they probably have more fun (judging from all the talking and giggles) but often their faces will still be dirty, at least by my expectations. LOL
Let's talk play time.
The Sensing mother gets the kids to play with real toys but the Intuitive mother encourages games of the imagination, make-believe, creativity, etc.
Again, in our house, D teaches the children how to roar like lions (!) and other such games. I hand them a toy.
Sensing is hands-on, detail-oriented, practical, real.
Intuitive is imaginative, all about possibilities, creativity, dreaming.
Janet Penley says the two different mothers even have different motives for reading the book - S types because they're looking for practical suggestions and N types because they simply like learning :)
So which are you? Is your husband the same again?
If you haven't yet taken the quiz, please do so. You won't regret it.
And definitely buy the book. I get no commission; I just honestly believe this is a fabulous book and I only have time and space to literally scratch the surface.
If you've done the official Myers Briggs test, use that one as your accurate style as they test the same traits over and over again (they have some fancy terms but it's to make sure you're not lying to yourself).
But if you haven't, the Motherstyles quiz is very accurate. Mine tested the same as my Myers Briggs (actually, it always does and I've had to do MBTI at probably every job, probably because I'm so extreme).
P.S. Don't forget about the giveaway
Monday, May 10, 2010
Remember when I told you about our visit with my friends?
And that lovely girl who was pregnant with twins?
Well, have been thinking about her a lot so I keep texting my friend every few days, "how is your friend? has she had the babies yet?"
Twice the answer was "no babies yet but all well".
On Friday night late my phone goes and I go check the message.
"My friend's had the babies today. The little girl died but the boy is okay".
Well, I cried. I'm crying again now as I type this.
I didn't know what to say but I prayed for her (what else can you do????!!!) and her husband.
I can't imagine - being in that crazy state straight after babies, sore from C-section, hormonal and a baby gone.
Poor L - please keep them in your prayers.
P.S. Don't forget to enter the giveaway for the $40 gift voucher
Sunday, May 09, 2010
It hasn't been AT ALL like I imagined it to be.
Partly due to the infertility factor (yes, I probably should get over it already but I'm just so very aware that there are TONS of people all over the world with hearts still empty, longing for a little baby). Also, in church when they prayed for all the "mothers" I remembered how for YEARS I used to get all teary and look away as (it seemed like) everyone got to stand except for me.
Then, I have this wild thing called expectations. Somehow I expect D to read my mind and see what I want. I think I'm spoiled because he actually does read my mind 90% of the time and this time he didn't. I got a mug of tea which was cold when eventually I could drink it because I was also surprised with a very-alert Kendra who was bounding all over our bed. She is an accident waiting to happen (I shouldn't say that but I'm surprised half the time that she is still intact).
And then the third thing. Yesterday I texted some of my friends asking what their plans were for Mother's Day and was it bad that all I wanted was to be left alone so I could sleep and have some alone time.
Well, 3 of the 4 said they wanted the same but couldn't really ask for it.
I told D that we'd do the whole church thing and then after lunch, he should take the kids to his mother's place while fetching the high chairs from my friend so I could have a few hours to myself.
He was fine with that...kind of...but his mother was a bit taken aback when we told her at church. She didn't say anything outright but her face said it all. Like "how weird are you?!!!"
Anyway, I had some time to myself so I read a bit, cooked, cleaned and got stuck into organising our photos.
And best of all, I missed them terribly so was very glad (and recharged) when the 3 of them got home.
Which is exactly the point, isn't it?
Did you have a good day? What did you do?
I have exactly 10 minutes to plan my week (!) - have to plan if I'm going to get through that massive to-do list this month LOL
P.S. I just read Heather's post and that's exactly it - I need to enjoy the moments throughout the year and not pin my hopes on one particular day. You are SOOO clever, Heather.
P.P.S. Don't forget to enter the giveaway for the $40 gift voucher
When I was pregnant, I think one of the biggest things I kept focussing on was the baby cribs. In South Africa, we call them cots.
I was so excited when they arrived and the nice guys assembled it that I remember taking pics with my cell phone and texting all my friends.
Then came the issue of the bedding.
My one friend, Caren, told me that babies don't even use quilts and duvets and that the room is only for us mothers, but I was hell-bent on getting cute neutral stuff for them.
I traipsed up and down the mall looking for suitable bedding with that big belly of mine.
I shudder to think that I spent R300 for ONE baby duvet cover. My word! What was I thinking?
Let's blame it on the hormones.
Interestingly enough, I just got the cots sorted out and then the the babies were born. Literally 24 hours later!
When they were home from NICU, I got what Caren was talking about.
Yes, they had cute cribs but no-one was sleeping in them :)
Now when pregnant women go on and on and on about the baby's cribs, I smile on the inside and think, "you won't even CARE what that crib looks like"
Were you also focussed on the baby's crib?
Speaking of shopping.... the kind folks at CSN stores are sponsoring a giveaway.
You can win a $40 voucher and use it to buy anything at one of their 200 + online stores. The giveaway will be open for exactly one week and I'll draw the winner next Sunday 9th.
All you have to do to enter is:
- leave a comment on this post telling me what colour your baby's/ children's room is.
- for an additional entry, follow my blog and leave a separate comment telling me you follow me.
P.S. Since CSN only ships to the US and Canada, this giveaway is only open to people from those countries. (however, I still want to hear about your bedding obsession :))
Friday, May 07, 2010
A week late ... but better late than never, right?!
I've fallen off the goal-setting wagon a bit over the last month or two and I want to post here so you'll all keep me accountable.
I have been shocking with gym (not going), shocking with eating properly, my pants are tight and it's winter.
All of which is not a very good combination.
So for May, these are some things on my to-do list:
- Go to gym twice every week for the rest of the month
- Get a massage
- Stop eating chocolate (get chocolate fix from Weigh-less hot chocolate)
- Read one book a week (this will mean I have to factor in an hour a night so less computer time)
- Finish two of the three half-read baby books (I can't resist - maybe there's a secret there that's the answer to all my problems????)
- Finish the blogging on Motherstyles
- Work on my issues (seriously, I have tons of stuff I want to self-coach on - I have a list and a folder full of stuff - am thinking a coffee date weekly for an hour with my laptop and my thoughts as a reward for going to gym twice)
- Plan some gifts (some ad-hoc, unexpected gifts that I can surprise people with - the goal 4 a month - 1 down, 3 to go)
- Update and add to my life list. Do you have a life list?
- Have gates painted.
- Have outside walls painted.
- Choose paint colour for our bedroom and my study
- Look for coat rack
- Look for new entrance hall table
- Get gardener to clean out garage!!!
- Evict tenants
(We decided even though we're not selling our house, why should we only pretty it up for strangers to live in it??? We deserve freshly painted walls too!)
- Finish organising their clothes - it is actually organised but I bought some more baskets to keep the drawers neat so need to do final touches.
- Drop off more clothes with the other twins
- Get high chairs (I told a twin friend that I'd buy her 2nd hand ones)
- Decide on the baby dedication and while I'm at it, the baby party. *sigh* (yet another blog post)
- Get someone to make a big sleep sack for Connor (he has almost outgrown his current "one size fits all" one)
Decide what I'm doing with the business. Another blog post.
It seems like a lot but I get more done when there's more to do. Make sense? If I hardly have anything on, I feel quite slothful :)
What's on your list for May?
P.S. The babies are 10 months old today. All I can say is GOSH!
Thursday, May 06, 2010
Thank you, S, for this award and sorry it took me so long to get this out.
I can't even find your post let alone the link but I know you have to give 7 facts and then pass it on.
Oh the list of things to blog.
So let's see if I can find yet another 7 tidbits to shock you with:
- When I get cross, I clean and organise. Somehow I find it therapeutic. My stuff is super-organised at the moment because the maid is driving me nuts. Must fire her but she's kind of sweet and I'm lazy to train another...
- I started appreciating the little moments in life after hearing Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love) on Oprah. I love love LOVE hearing writers speak and use beautiful language (probably because I'm so factual) and the way she described feeling the sun on her face while going to fetch the mail made me think, "yes! I also need to start appreciating those moments" so I did. It helped me focus on the good in my life in the depths of infertility.
- I still get all emotional when I hear about an infertile getting pregnant. This news made my DAY! Seriously. Sabine flew all the way to South Africa to have her IVF (best decision ever).
- I started eating brown bread/ wholewheat when I was 4. Apparently I came home from school and announced to my mother, "the teacher says white bread isn't healthy and I'm not eating it anymore". The stubborn streak was there in full force even back then (my mother actually says when I learned to say "no" I never stopped LOL) and so the whole household had to switch. Strange thing is they waited until I left home (for university) to start buying white bread again. LOL
- It is still one of my dreams to live and work in another country for at least two years. I don't think I'd want to stay (unless life was very, very good - better than here) but I do want the non-tourist experience.
- I hated needlework classes at primary school. We had to take them for 3 years and I remember crying at night because I was SO SLOW at knitting, sewing, etc. and I would much rather be reading! Now, I wish I could sew when I see all the cuteness on the crafty blogs. I don't know why I torture myself browsing things I can't do. Although... S said to me on email the other day that she thinks I'd be good at it. No, am very impatient, but I do remember sewing very straight bags and pencil bags when I was very young (around 13) so maybe there's still something there?
- I have these freaky hands. When it's cold, they drain totally of blood and are WHITE. It looks like I'm dead. Very weird. Next time it happens I will get D to take a pic.
So enough about me.
Please share one thing (anything) with me I may not know about you.
And if you haven't received this award from anybody yet, then you're getting it from me today!
Wednesday, May 05, 2010
So D says to me the other day, "what if Kendra walks before Connor crawls?"
I said, "so what?"
For a change HE is the paranoid one!
There was another incident which I've forgotten but I've been teasing him.
Turns out all that worrying was in vain because today Connor crawled properly for the first time.
I say "properly" because he was doing a backward crawl when we were on holiday last week. (When do you count it as crawling? When they move backward or forward, or what? I am very black and white!)
I didn't quite know what people meant by backward crawling until I saw it in action - very weird but hey, if you want to move backwards, go right ahead.
The only sad thing is that V saw his first proper crawl *sob* and he was tired by the time I got home (very late today as I am on a full-day course at work for 3 days) so he was not having any of my cheerleader moves.
In other news, Kendra can now wave without us prompting her by waving . V's been teaching her all these cute things and yesterday morning when I left for work, she waved properly when I said, "bye Kendra". Too cute!
She's developed some other not-so-cute things too - the screaming. She does NOT want to be restrained at all and screams in frustration if we have to put her in her cot, etc. It is driving D crazy - I just ignore it as I suspect she's a bit like me and will continue if she knows how much it bugs us.
Connor's cute and not-so-cute thing is this: he can say Mama. That's the cute part.
The not-so-cute part is when he calls for me and wants ONLY me (not his dad). Apparently this morning at 2 am he was calling for me. I sleep the sleep of the dead so didn't hear a thing and D had to go see to him. Both boys weren't too happy about that :)
So the course I'm on?
Expert Negotiator! My boss told me I could teach a course like that - ha ha. I am learning SUCH a lot and am LOVING it (I love the politics behind a seemingly straightforward deal). Today I negotiated one of the best deals in a housing purchase scenario (good practice for when it eventually happens) :)
Also there are lovely people on the course with me. Although one girl said, "oh I wish that I'll also have twins" and I said, "seriously, don't wish that. they are hard work" and she got a little scared. Another new mom added, "it's true. I only have one and she's enough work by herself. We've definitely decided we are DONE!" LOL
Tuesday, May 04, 2010
I seriously don't know if all the schlep of packing up half my house, unpacking it and doing 3 loads of laundry is worth taking a holiday.
D says we need to go away for a longer time for me to feel like it's worth it and my boss agrees with him!
Of course it's lovely to get away and see new places, eat new food, buy cute things and take pictures but I was honestly more tired when I got back than if I'd stayed home.
And I'm not one of those people who believes only the smiles in photos - I am very much a realist.
My friend, Kirsten, said to me, "same circus, different tent" - I LOVE IT!
I really should have taken pics of my entrance hall when the car and trailer were unpacked.
Nevertheless, it's over and I've moved on. We're caught up on laundry and my house is in order again.
The babies were exceptional travellers (I was so surprised) except for the last 30 minutes coming back home. They've now also become sympathetic criers which gets old really quick. After the first couple of times, I just laughed at them. D says I'm cruel but it is FUNNY!
Beautiful, quaint little town.
We could have stayed two weeks and still not got through all the lovely cafes and restaurants. If anyone is interested in going, I thoroughly recommend eating at The Artist's Cafe - we had 4 of the 6 meals we ate out there. The kids even knew all the waiters - it was crazy!
this is "roosterbrood" -
I had one with cream cheese and biltong (YUMMY!) and the other with savoury mince
A friend told us that she's been to Clarens a couple of times and not had one bad meal at any of the restaurants. I can totally agree.
I bought TONS of home-made jams, marmalades, and other kitchen yummies. Saffy, I also bought a lovely big jar of curry paste to try out a Thai curry :)
I also bought a bag and some gorgeous creative copper (I love their About page) sugar spoons.
The babies got baby ponchos (do you know what those are?) - I will take pics when they wear them - a mobile and some leather shoes for when they're bigger.
So, good things
- Lovely, warm townhouse (this was one of the highlights after our cold house)
- Well-behaved babies
- Connor's bath times (deserves a separate blog post and pics)
- Kendra exploring
- Babies got to try lots of different food
- TONS of art galleries and curio shops
- No Nanny Viola
- Time too short
- Didn't get to do the zip line (I really must plan better - I wanted to do this last year in Hazyview too but I was pregnant and D said it is CRAZY to risk it - true)
- Not enough down time for me which is why I brought all those books back with me, unread.
If I ever do a holiday again while the babies are small, it has GOT to be in warmer weather so I can take less bags with blankets and warm clothes (South African houses are not made for the cold like the ones in Europe so we dress in plenty of layers).
Also, they need to be done with the bottles. Two bags full of bottles, formula, steriliser = CRAZY. Deanna, I wish we were also done with bottles.
I packed the perfect amount of food for us and the babies - am getting better - usually I bring far too much.
Must lower my expectations of myself about what I can do - I think one book will be PLENTY! This from someone who could easily go through a book a day pre-kids.
What kind of lessons have you learned from travelling with babies/ kids?
P.S. This was going to be a lovely long post and then again, internet connectivity problems.
Am TENSE because while all my prep for my teleseminar is done, my newsletter for tomorrow is not even written. So will have to do that in my lunch break tomorrow because I can't deal with more internet problems now (I think it may be due to the weather?).
I was going to jump straight into bed but I thought I needed the stress relief of blogging, so here I am.
Monday, May 03, 2010
1. Are you superstitious?
No, no, no........ BUT since the babies were born, I've started to get a bit superstitious because I swear the MINUTE I write that something's going well, those babies do an about turn on me and do the exact opposite. Like all the sleep issues.
Just thought of something - I should write the reverse and see if it still works LOL Nope, what if it's a self-fulfilling prophecy?!
2. If you were an animal..what kind would you be?
Hate this type of question because I totally lack imagination. But I suppose a dog... nice cocker spaniel/ labrador type dog.
3. You would never catch me wearing.........?
Crocs, stilettos, thongs. I'm strictly a comfort gal.
4. If someone posts a VLOG..do you watch it?
No, takes way too long to buffer (what's that anyway?) and I lack patience! But if I really, really want to see it, I may buffer while I go make a cup of tea and then come back and watch.
5. Have you ever waxed your girlie/manly parts..or any other part of your body?
No, no, no. Pain + very private person (says she who had 2 IVFs and about a million scans with the wand) = definite no!
6. Are you a spender or a saver?
Mostly a saver although, I do buy handbags and go on the odd shopping trip.
7. If you were starring in a movie..who would you want to play your leading man/woman?
Oh, definitely John Cusack. He is hotness personified!!!
8. Smoker..never smoked..social smoker..or smoked back in the day?
Never smoked. I could never see the point of following the crowd or smelling like a chimney LOL I was a rebel teenager, a rebel against doing the cool things like smoking and drinking. I had big plans for my body (I was a ballet dancer for 13 years) and wasn't going to mess with that.
Let's hope the kids are full of sass like me :)
We're enjoying a beautiful, beautiful, rainy Monday here in Johannesburg with gorgeous grey skies. I would be taking pics like crazy except for all the work I have to do so best I get cracking.
How are you doing???
P.S. I have a list of about 10 things to blog right now - Clarens trip, award from Saffy, how I met my husband, my thoughts on toys, thoughts on friends, favouritism update, food update, sleep update, work update, business update.............. and much more. And people ask me how I think of things to write about!
Sunday, May 02, 2010
What item do you splurge on? Why this item?
This is the question of the week at Multiples and More.
I'm not a shoe gal, not a perfume gal, not that much of a clothes gal, so I guess I'm really not much of a splurger but...
I do love handbags!
They're the only things I justify getting by saying silly things like "but I don't have it in that exact shade of red" LOL
If you're not a handbag person, you just won't get it.
Remember a handbag ALWAYS looks good no matter what your size ;)
And it can jazz up the most boring business outfit.
Although I never buy expensive bags because I like to change them so often.
This green one is my most expensive bag - I paid R900 about 3 or 4 years ago (about $120) and it's genuine leather which is why it's so expensive. The red one above at R400 ($53) is my second most expensive.
See? Not that bad.
So what's your splurge? And are you a handbag person?