Tuesday 30 October 2012

inner thoughts

A friend we have known for a long time (I actually wrote 'old' but then realised in light of the following maybe it wasn't quite right), works as a producer for Richard Glover on 702 ABC Radio, she wrote this fantastic post on the ABC Blog and then they chatted about it on air. I thought it was brilliant, hilarious and beautiful and couldn't resist sharing here. 

Am I the only one having difficulty reconciling my inner thoughts with the things I know I’m supposed to say to my children, for the sake of their developing self esteem?
We’re told over and over that children’s attitudes around body image and nutrition are shaped by ours. 
The message is that if we want our children to grow up happy and body-confident, we need to model this behaviour. You can’t BE what you can’t SEE, the experts tell us.
So, the stakes are pretty high… and the pressure to get this right is turning me into quite a brilliant actor.
Mum, why are your legs so big? (Charlotte, 9)
She’s right. They really are chunky. I have to stop those 9pm licorice binges…  All those years of ballet made me too muscly. 
‘Aren’t they FANTASTIC!  That’s because I do all that wonderful exercise!  And notice how shapely they are? That’s because mummy did ballet when she was younger. Here, feel how strong the muscles are. I’m so lucky to have strong legs.  Some people don’t even have legs!’
Mum, what are those lines on your face? (Phoebe, 4)
I’m really going to have to stop raising my eyebrows so often.. I wonder if there’s a different way to look surprised.. It might be time to try that expensive cream.
‘Oh, you mean my expression lines, darling?! I think they’re one of the best things about my face! The smartest, wisest women are the ones with the most lines.. See these ones around my eyes? They’re extra special. They show how many times I’ve laughed. I lovethem! I wonder how many laughter lines you’ll get..’
Mum, are you on a diet? (Charlotte, 9)
Sh*t. She’s noticed!
‘Of course not. We don’t do DIETS. I’m just trying to eat healthily to make sure my body gets all the nutrition it needs. It’s good to make sure that our bodies get the right kind of energy so we can do all the things we love to do..’
And it’s my twenty year school reunion Saturday week…  
And ‘the trousers of truth’ don’t fit.. Actually, none of the trousers fit...
And all the coolest clothes at the op shop are too small, because people used to be smaller.. or maybe just the cool people were smaller. Whatever. Nothing fits!
And I’m just two kilos outside my healthy weight range..
And we’re going on a beach holiday at the end of the year and there will be lots of photos… and this might be my last chance to ever look good in a swimming costume again!
‘Besides, diets are silly and diets are dangerous, darling. I’d never go on a diet. I’m on ahealthy eating plan’
Maybe I’ll try those meal replacement shakes.. they’re meant to work really fast.
Mum, why do you wear make up? (Phoebe, 4)
Because without it, I look exhausted. Why does it take me twice as long to look half as good?
Apparently Cate Blanchett uses illuminator.. Maybe I should try that.
‘Oh, it’s just a bit of fun, sweetheart… I just love mucking around with the different colours. It’s a bit like when you play dress ups.. And see my beautiful eyes?  If I draw around them with this pencil, they really stand out..  Some people use this thing called mascara, but you and I already have beautiful long eyelashes so we don’t need it’
I’ll put the mascara on in the car..
Mum, why do you dye your hair? (Charlotte, 9)
Lisa Wilkinson doesn’t dye hers and she’s fifty. This means it’s possible to be a natural brunette until then… So I can stay brunette until I’m fifty.. and then I’ll just slowly start going lighter and lighter until I’m a blonde.. that way the regrowth will be harder to spot. I wonder if I’ll have more fun as a blonde.
‘Oh, I just love the colour of your hair, Charlotte, so I’m trying to make mine the same colour’
Mum… Why are your boobs lying down? (Ben, 7)
My poor, pathetic, deflated breasts. I'm standing up, but you really are lying down, aren’t you? You used to be so perky. Why didn’t I let you out more in my twenties? I’m sorry there aren’t any pictures of us from back then. We should have done a photo shoottogether. You were so great. Remember when we used to pass the pencil test? Now we can’t even pass the pencil case test. Maybe if I just spend the rest of my life walking around with my hands on my head….
‘Take a good look darling.  This is exactly what a 38-year-old woman’s breasts should look like. They’re fantastic. They’re perfect! They fed each of you for fifteen months. That’s 45 months. How many years in 45 months?  That’s right. Nearly four. Aren’t you getting good at maths! After all that hard work feeding you guys, it’s no wonder they’re lying down. They need a rest!’
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The funny thing is, the more I tell my children this stuff, the more I start to believe it.  I guess it’s like gradual, accidental, cognitive behavioural therapy.
And lately I’ve been noticing a change in the internal dialogue.
Actually, these legs are rather toned.
My face is changing.. and I sort of like it.
These breasts really did feed those three children. How incredible.
Maybe they don’t look so bad after all.

Friday 26 October 2012

Sydney snaps

my beautiful mumma, i got to spend some very precious one on one time with her in the city, such a delight just to wander about. I haven't been here since it has become a vegan cafe, so delicious but not as delicious as the company, Robin and Elsie, such a delight. Next stop a quick catch up with Ollie and her beautiful, smiling babe, Lenny, oh my goodness I just wanted to eat him up. Saul at school.
In between all this I had dinner with Ruth, a delightfully nourishing and beautiful time with Tracey, Vince, Jenna and Remy (as always), a quick glimpse of Dom, a fabulous concert and lots and lots of wonderful, heart warming and safe chats with Jen. Finishing up here at this yummy cafe.


A quick little post before we head up the mountain to the Dorrigo Bluegrass Festival, we will be camping the whole weekend, should be loads of fun.

Tuesday 23 October 2012

a very, very, serious affair

Well it happened, after the huge surprise, the official affair was much more low key but still wonderfully fun and special. Along Never Never Creek, Woo and Eno finally tied the knot, got hitched, became a Missus and Mister (well Eno was always a Mister, but you know what I mean), yep they are now legally married.
The day, yet again was gloriously sunny and in our little shady, grassy nook, our small group created a special little wedding party that included children swimming in the river, freshly made bread, more than a few glasses of champagne, lots of easy chats and best of all the witnessing of this celebration of love, these two just glowed and exuded joy.

What about that dress, I hear you yelling through the screen, well you would never believe it BUT the day before the big day, Scott, Ilo and myself headed to Nambucca Heads for some op shopping (it is really great there) and at the second last shop I spied a stunning 70's white dress with beautiful embroidered flowers, I saw it, thought of Woo and handed over $6.00 of my hard earned cash (truly). It was only on our way home that I remembered that Woo and Eno were getting married the next day. I quick smart made my way to Woo's and pulled the dress out of my bag, she looked at me in disbelief, "You got me my wedding dress. You got me my wedding dress", she was lost for any other words. She quickly put it on and beautifully, it fitted perfectly, it looked amazing and she skipped about in a state of delirium and joy. Before this she was admittedly downplaying the wedding after her 'first' one had been so gorgeous and she had decided to just wear the red dress she wore at her party/wedding. But no longer, now she had a dress, a wedding dress even.
Eno took one look at the dress and realised he wanted to step up as well so borrowed a suit from Scott, yeah, they both looked stunningly gorgeous, as you can see.

Sunday 21 October 2012

delicious fabric, hmmmmm

I had so much fun making these menu covers for No. 5's new look (and taste) menu. Ah, to find perfect little bits of fabric and match them with other bits and pieces all for bits of aesthetic awesomeness, pretty great. They were sewn onto recycled plastic A4 display folders, so that they can be washed, in the highly likely event that someones greasy paws may just get a bit too friendly with these little numbers (regardless of all the beautiful claims from all at No. 5 that they will risk life and limb to protect them). They are also beautifully handwritten by Casey and adorned with gorgeous illustrations by Holly, such a beautiful collaboration of local talent.
Oh, yeah, there is also a beautiful blurb by Jason and Steve about why they set up No. 5 and what their vision is, basically it just exudes focus on local, sustainable and our community.

Oh and by the way remember the Pat movie we made for the Local Food Film Festival? Guess what, we won!! How exciting, basically it means Pat gets shown before a feature film at the Bowraville Local food Film Festival, Bellingen Local Food Film Festival and The Coffs Harbour Local Food Film Festival and we get $1000 prize money. We are toying up with where we could put it back into the community or what we could create with it for our town. Needless to say, we are thrilled.

I have just gotten back from Sydney, yes, I was lucky enough to have a couple of days solo as I went down to see Mumford and Sons and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, and then also 'managed' some wonderful moments with some very special friends. Needless to say the concert was so much fun, full of energy, love, dancing and rollicking tunes.

Tuesday 16 October 2012

and then

circus school - yes, at last Poe made it yet despite Poe wanting/begging to go for such a long time when push came to shove it was all too much, too daunting, too new and he refused. So we sat with him and watched and waited and edged closer and closer and then finally he was there, he was smiling, his confidence returned and then with a grin he insisted that we leave. When we returned he was one of the few kids who had their own solo performance as part of the group performance and as soon as it was finished for the day he has was begging to go everyday. Even though this kind of thing happens less and less, I do feel so sad for Poe as he resists big change or things that look challenging, he usually does work through it but unfortunately the grief comes first. Sweet little one, I love your cautiousness but I do wish you just that bit more courage, to take the leap, in the meantime, we will be there.

As a lovely aside that pink fluffy bottom you see belongs to an old friend from the Central Coast, Danielle, she actually runs the circus school up here, it was great surprise connecting with her again after so many years and to see her being involved with something so fantastic. Yes, yes yes, as you are all probably more than aware but I love the circus. I love how amazing role models circus performers are; how accepting they seem to be of everyone, regardless of gender, size, height, personality, there seems to be a space for everyone, differences are embraced. There is no competition, just a focus on looking out for each other and being safe and supportive, all the while stretching, challenging and exercising bodies, yes totally awesome.

An afternoon at the Northbank Community Garden, music, dancing, pizza and sugar cane delights. We will definitely be spending more time here during the warmer months, such a delightful place to be. 

Monday 15 October 2012

old and new

Yes, drool away people, not only was this cake absolutely stunningly decorated but it was also richly decadent and delicious and perfect when accompanied with chai and, wait for it, some beautiful new (ish) friends. Yes, I added an 'ish', that's strange, you might think, but no, we shared this cake and some wonderfully easy and fun moments with no other than the famous Nikki, Pete, Sol and River from that gorgeously inspiring and delicious blog (and life) The Wholefood Mama

Yes, we escaped from the screens of our computers, reached out and broke on through to the other side, where we could, ahem, actually touch each other. Other than touching we could (oh and we did) chat, laugh and watch as our children squealed with delight. We met up just near Mullumbimby, usually Nikki and I live about 15 hours away from each other and then all of a sudden, in an awesome stroke of luck, we were mere minutes away, an opportunity not to be passed up.  To be honest, I was a little nervous upon meeting Nikki, I'm not sure why, my stomach was in knots and I had to take a few deep breathes but I also also excited, after all, I feel like I know her and her family, kind of, and you know what, they did not  disappoint, as soon as we relaxed shared some aforementioned cake and chai, there was lots of smiles and stories exchanged as we started to delve deeper. 

They and their friends that they were staying with, were so lovely, welcoming and fun. I definitely feel closer to this beautiful family after meeting them and I look forward to catching up with them again next time they are up this way (most probably same time next year). It was a kind of strange (in that knowing somebody but never actually meeting them, oh this crazy web land we 'live' in, it still messes with my mind) but such an absolutely wonderful thing to do, to take our online connection into 'real life', I am so honoured that it happened and that it worked out so marvellously. 

After a night in Mullumbimby we drove up the coast to Brisbane to visit Scott's sister, Michelle and her two amazingly awesome children, Jack and Megs. Poe and Ilo adored these two cousins, Jack and Megs gave them so much love and fun energy, in a beautiful teenage way. Poe and Ilo were starry-eyed watching Megs play the violin and Jack singing a beautiful song on the guitar. 


We explored some op shops, the massive ferris wheel and the South Bank beach, despite the windy weather. Two nights were too short, but it was lovely to make the connection and there are now plans for Jack to come down around Christmas and for us to head back again soon, we will miss the ease of being with these special and loving family members and will be counting down until next time. 

And then down the coast to Ocean Shores to stay with our friends/family Kristian, Ree, Dexter and Bowie, such dear friends that they have become family. I have been friends with Kristian since High School and his beautiful wife Ree, since our hey days in Surry Hills. They have recently moved back up to the North Coast after trying Newcastle on for size, it is so wonderful to see how happy they are to be back, amidst adjusting to the new balance in their household, with Ree working full-time and Kristian being the stay at home awesome parent. It was so utterly wonderful enjoying the ease and delight in being in their company. Kristian cooked up a magnificent feast and Dexter and Bowie did a beautiful job of entertaining us and creating a whole lot of fun for Poe and Ilo. 

Four nights away left us sleep deprived but wonderfully nourished from all these special people in our lives who all hold a very dear place in our hearts.

Saturday 13 October 2012

brides, grooms and bluegrass

The night before we hightailed up the coast, The Mid North were asked to play at a 10 year wedding anniversary celebration at Valla Hall. Wonderfully, guests were asked to dress as part of the bridal party, be it brides, grooms, bridesmaids etc. Such a fantastic theme for a party, it was wonderful and totally surreal, I do admit I had more than a few 'Little House on the Prairie' moments, due to the men in suspenders and waistcoats and some women and children in dresses tucked up with ribbons. There was also some seriously awesome Bluegrass barndancing going on.

With mum being in town, I was able to experience this spectacular firsthand, so what else to do but get Jason involved and film it all. Yes, how could we miss such an opportunity, especially when The Mid North have a new song that practically begs for such a filmclip.

holding on

I just finished 'Prodigal Summer' by Barbara Kingsolver, my reading time usually consists of nighttime  moments, stolen, as the rest of the house sleeps and I try desperately to keep my lids from falling. Reading this book brought back so many other moments (that I had forgotten) of utter deliciousness of being so in love with the whole book reading experience. I devoured most of the book, delighting in the stories that were unfolding within it and finding myself thinking about the story whenever I was away but then I realised, all too suddenly, that "oh no" I was nearing the end so I quickly reigned myself in, I changed my reading pace and read as if I was being bathed in it, I would put the book down even when my eyelids were still, relatively, open. And then I finished and the whole story was complete within me, I felt full, yes,  I wished it would go on but I was aware of that feeling, that wonderful feeling of being connected to it, in it's completion. I haven't had such a wonderful book reading experience it quite some time and now, now, I'm not sure where to go now but for now I am savouring this feeling.

Tuesday 9 October 2012

Pat the movie

Here is the finished 'Pat' movie that we made for the Local Food Film Festival, hope you like it, we had so much fun making it.  At the end it was quite rushed due to none of us having much time but Jason did an amazing job at finishing off the editing and getting it submitted in time. Next step is cutting it down for the ABC Open series,  'Day in the Life'.

Saturday 6 October 2012

sweet but far too short

As soon as Poe's party had finished we launched straight into an extreme catch-up/love up session with Jen, Rod, Lily and Saul. We have known this lovely family since Poe was 8 months old, so you can imagine how dear and special they are to us, as with dear close friends, they are like family. It was pretty wonderful watching the children have the kind of fun together that just bubbles over, laughing with pure delight and showing so much love for each other, a special little crew.

However despite all this joy and love, there was a dark cloud looming, due to a poorly thought out schedule they were only with us for two nights, TWO NIGHTS, how crazy is that. Which called for only one thing = a crazy amount of cramming, so what better a place to cram than Never Never Creek, in The Promised Land, (yes, it is really called that and if you ever go there you will understand why) and so that is what we did. We made dams, we spied eels and fish, threw rocks, wobbled on stones and marvelled at all that surrounded us and then the next day we got up and headed back again at 7am (!!) the next morning.

Jen and I also managed two nights of cramming as well, yet again we shrugged off the yawns, the drooping eyelids and instead indulged in chocolate and Frangelico and snuggled on the lounge chatting (and crying and laughing).

Poe and Saul had a particularly delightful time, so beautiful seeing the two of them totally loved up and absolutely relaxed with each other. I think that as both of them have just recently started school and are meeting new friends, friends that in some cases you have to learn how to be friends with, but with each other their friendship is very long and you could just see them relax and treasure that. Old friends do hold special places in your heart. 

We also managed to pop in and celebrate Sidney's 5th Birthday, oh yes there are many celebrations around this time of year.

It was with many tears that we said goodbye, they will be missed, they are missed, oh but they are loved.

I guess, as marvellous as our new friends are, they are still new friends, there are depths that need to be explored, experiences to be had, love to grow, after all it is all just new and we are still all finding our feet. But with old friends there is depth, history, tears, laughter, love, hurt, joy (and in some cases blood, sweat and tears) and the roots are deep, there is a firm grip around the heart. These are precious, these friends.
But I also realised that even those that seem to drift (and it does happen) can and do hold a warm, safe place in my heart.