Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Turning Over a New Leaf

With the dawn of each new year, come new seasons in our lives. My three big children have started back at school and kindergarten after their six week Summer break. We are now back into the predictable routine of going to our places of education, my prince Charming to his workplace, and the baby Cherub takes his morning nap and I have this very welcome slot in my day where I can take the phone off the hook while the baby sleeps..... I take time for myself to relax, instead of scooting around the house at 90 miles per hour, being bogged down by hum-drum housework. I choose what it is I would really like to do. I enjoy reading books or magazines that make me feel good: "Your House and Home" (and "Weight Watchers" because I'm enjoying losing some baby weight now that I have stopped breastfeeding!). Listing my "Favourite Things" reminds me of a song of the exact same title, that Julie Andrews sings. My favourite things are: putting my Zumba DVDs on and having a workout with no interruptions! Making Hokey Pokey and cupcakes for the kids lunchboxes. Weeding the garden and planting cheerful pot plants (a new skill, as I have finally found a little bit of time to potter about in the garden). Booking myself in for sewing lessons (my first lesson is this Sunday afternoon!), as I want to learn how to simply thread a sewing machine and learn to replace zips and mend hems - anywhere is a good start! My mother dropped off her old sewing machine at our house - a good incentive! Four years ago I had three children in nappies (diapers, for my American pals!), and my days were filled with changing babies (twins!!), sterilising bottles, and using a breast pump to keep it all going! A friend once remarked to me, "Princess Daisy, if you can get through the day with everyone being fed, then that is enough!". Forget the weeds, back then it just wasn't an option! Time is precious luxury!

Lately our latest gardening project is purchasing several Swan Plants for our growing caterpillar family! Several weeks ago, I witnessed creation in all its glory - a Monarch butterfly flitting graciously over the neighbour's fence and landing with perfect angelic precision, onto our single Swan Plant. Not long after, I found tiny white eggs floating on the leaves. Almost in no time at all, the eggs hatched, bringing with it a tidal wave of caterpillar babies! Munch, munch, munch.... weeks later, shortly before the last leaves were eaten, I took the children to the local plant nursery and purchased x2 more Swan Plants. Four days later, every last leaf was gone! Back to the plant nursery to buy x2 more Swan Plants. You guessed it, in four days, every last leaf was eaten..... now there are x4 shimmery green chrysalis and three hungry looking caterpillars! Guess where I'm taking the kids this afternoon?! :0) We will buy just ONE Swan Plant today, as I am certain there will be three new chrysalis very soon!

So I'm writing a blog about decluttering and you are probably wondering what butterflies have to do with cleaning up - well, our front garden is a work in progress! For the last six months we have been concreting what used to be a rambling, weedy flower bed, strewn here and there will rambunctious brambles! Attractive pot plants now grace the place where weeds overtook the pansies and snowdrops! The children are learning that gardening can be fun, and much more than dirt piles and boring old weeding!

Soon the bright orange Monarchs will be gracing the skies, flapping their newly formed wings in the Summer breeze... they will flit over the neighbour's fence and they will alight on another Swan Plant and then the Life cycle will begin all over again.

A new year. Turning over a new leaf! And then on we go to the next season of life, wherever it takes us. These are a few of my favourite things!

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