Friday, 30 December 2011

Eve Reflections

It is New years Eve at 6.39am. My four cherubs are sleeping, and the palace is unusually quiet. But I like it! I treasure these time when I can steal away a few precious minutes before my royal family wake up! Usually my baby cherub is awake at this hour, but it has been raining heavily last night, and the gentle murmur of rain showering down, has caused everyone to slumber a little more deeply today. Even the Summer butterflies have curled up for a little more sleep and the sky is a light shade of grey; not a brilliant Summer blue, like it has been more recently.

As I reflect on a busy 2011, I am reminded of the things that matter most. The highlight of this year was the arrival of my darling Prince Cherub! How he graces our family with love and laughter! And his big brother Prince, who walked for the first time at the tender age of four. Specialists weren't certain if he would be walking before school age, but he is now, and we rejoiced the day he found his feet! The last four years have been filled with sadness, uncertainty and then wonder, and thankfulness, as he finally reached the milestones of mobility, and although he does not speak, we have discovered a new language that seems to leap from his heart in the way he perceives this world, as it is known to him.

Along life's paths, I have yet again been graced by my closest friends, who have picked me up when times are dark, and I need their light to show me the way. Yesterday a friend picked me up at 8.30am and we were out all day, having relaxing facials, and a neck, shoulder, and back massage, followed by a mini make-over, and a trip to the local boutique movie theatre. We were Queens for the day! At the end of the day when I returned home, I felt great! The aches and pains from my shoulders had lifted, and I realised how much I needed that pampering! I love my busy life, but how easy it is to be constantly picking up toys and doing two or three loads of laundry per day (that's quite a bit for a family of six!), and barely having a moment to sit down to relax! To have a really good heart to heart talk to my friend, without any interruptions, and to sit down for quite a while over a coffee and a chocolate jaffa, was such a treat!

So I, Queen Daisy, have learned that while it feels great to devoid my life and my house of clutter, and to attend to all the needs of my cherubs, no matter how great or small the need; I also need to relax more, pamper myself, and do just one or two things per day to help ME feel like the Daisy Queen I really am! Sometimes it bothers me that I don't feel like I have accomplished much at the end of the day! The day starts with a tidy house, then at the end of the day it looks like a mini tornado has hit! That's the beauty of family; I love a house that looks "lived in", with a million family photos, and toys in every nook and cranny!

Two days ago I made it my one goal, to clean up the clutter from under our bed and under baby cherub's cot! How easily it is to speed-clean a house when you have visitors about to knock at your door, and stuff gets pushed under beds and even better, you get to close your bedroom door and lock it, so guests just won't see the mess! :0) Gone is the clutter, and those "things" that got under our feet, all now are put away, and it feels great to have clear spaces - only my beautiful wedding dress is stored in its big box, under our bed! With four cherubs in our family, we have learned to utilise our spaces to the best we can! We originally had three bedrooms, now we have four, thanks to a huge laundry space which we turned into a very small bedroom for Prince. And the laundry space has been relocated to the back of the kitchen. Living in a smallish house can be done with a busy family, if you can learn to keep only the things you need, want and love. No easy task, but those tips have saved me from tripping up on toys!

What are your goals for 2012? Reflecting on 2011, what springs to mind? For me, 2011 was all about learning who my real friends are; particularly the ones who held my hand through dark times. I was there for my friends too, when they faced hard times. True friendship is all about learning to love, receive, and be a true friend right back! And those friends are there for the good times too; to laugh right along with you!

Happy New Years eve! Here's to a wonderful new year of adventures!

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Eat, Drink, and be Merry!

This year, we celebrated Christmas as a family of SIX! Prince Cherub joined our family in June, gracing our family with his infectious laughter and Cheshire cat grin. It was the best Christmas ever, and Cherub's first encounter with the man in red, sparkly pine cones, and glittering tinsel. Now we all know just how easy it is, when you are in the midst of dreaming up and creating Christmas eats, how those pesky kilos can creep on your unsuspecting bod! Just a taste here, oh, how about we bite that morsel of gingerbread just to see.... no, wait on, just eat the WHOLE thing; surely it won't hurt in the long run! So the 5 kilos I just worked so hard to lose after having a baby, just invited itself right back!

New Years Day 2012 ... we all know the drill! Another year, another set of new year's resolutions that somehow end up on the scrap heap. Well, after three pregnancies and four babies (yes, two are twins!) I have discovered over the years, why so many resolutions fail.

Number 1: We aren't specific enough!

I am a "Melancholic" by nature and am an avid list writer - even noting something on my "To Do" list, just to put a line through it ("done"), brings me satisfaction. If it isn't written down, then the goal doesn't exist. If it is a tidy house devoid of clutter that we want, or to lose that extra 12 kg, then be ceremonial about it and put pen to paper - make it bold, inviting, and above all, positive.

Number 2

How easily we fall prey to the "guilt trap" of "what other people think" and start to believe the things that we should do, rather than the things than we WANT to. Now is the time to set those goals for which you WANT; the things in life that bring you joy. There is no value in a person who thinks he SHOULD become a lawyer, when what he really WANTS to do is become a surgeon! It's time to let yourself dream a little. Rome wasn't built in a day!

Number 3

We aim too high!

As a very busy mother of four children all under the age of seven, I have learned not to aim too high! Each day, I set myself one thing to achieve per day, especially if it is the school holidays and my children are all at home, and are all wanting me at the same time! To accomplish one thing, and to do it well, rather than to huff and puff and get 10 things done in an hour, is what I call being sensible!

Today, for example, I set myself one goal, which was to take down all the Christmas decorations! My husband aka Prince Charming, is on annual leave for a couple of weeks, so he enjoyed re-planting the Christmas Tree in our backyard. The children and I put the decorations away into storage boxes, all labelled and put back into its rightful place, until Christmas 2012! It just means a little less clutter at the end of the day, and now we have some extra space in our living room!

Oh, I love my busy life! I thrive on the adrenaline of racing around, looking after my four sweet cherubs! But what I really love, is a sense of achievement at the end of each day, and a little less clutter! More and more, my children are showing me things I am learning about myself!

Carpe Diem - seize the day! Make every day count!