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in the light of the sun

moments of me and my life by the sea

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life

the space between me and my best self

This morning, when I was bitching talking to my mother-in-law about her son she passed on these words to me –

“You know, Anger is really an expression of your own needs not being met.”

My brain took a step back upon hearing this statement. It went “Huh. That’s interesting. So instead of feeling upset, frustrated and a powerless victim in a situation I need to communicate my needs more clearly in order to prevent the situation from happening again. Hmm. I like it.”

In theory!

But in practise, I am finding prioritising my needs above the needs of others around me a bit tricky these days. And I don’t mean to sound like a martyr, urgh, SO BORING, I am definitely not Mother Teresa. I am just trying to be my best self (thank you Oprah) and I guess my idea of a best self is stoic and tough and effective. I mostly feel emotional, weak and lazy. Would a truly stoic person be whinging about their needs not being met?! I don’t think so.

Pardon my domestic analogy but if my needs were in a washing machine (front loader) they’d be spinning around and going up towards the top of the pile but then because they are so heavy they fall to the bottom again before they make it to the top. In an endless cycle on 30 degrees, intensive wash, sometimes with an extra rinse.

(Incidentally, I do a lot of laundry these days. I actually like doing it. I do several loads a day. It makes me feel like I have accomplished something on those days when you feel like you got everything wrong. And even though the laundry basket is a bottomless pit that once emptied somehow immediately replenishes, and I could feel like a hamster on a wheel, I don’t. I enjoy it. It calms me.)

But I am now beginning to suspect that I am purposely pushing back my needs in order to achieve my stoic best self. You know, in order to be stoic, you need to have pain, in order to have something to suppress! I just gotta work on the suppression part…

Urgh, figuring out this new mother, wife and homemaker deal is doing my head in.

If you managed to stay with me for this long I shall thank you with some cheerier imagery than laundry and needs and anger management advice.

the sweetest hand made with love heart jumper by danish blogger dávadóttir
happy days of the week banners by ES SUPER FUN on flickr
Wolfie and I, smiling for the camera!

 

it’s been a long year

On this day, 1 year ago, I spent the entire day boiling heat packs for my back, making pancakes and sitting in the shower for hours on end. Valentines Day and it’s associated flowers and chocolates and romantic dinners couldn’t have been further from my mind, although I was desperate to see my love, couldn’t wait for him to come home from work so he could help me have this baby.

This baby. Who will be 1 year old tomorrow, at 12.30am to be precise.

birthday boy bunting

What a year it has been. I am only just now coming to terms with my new role, my new life, my new love. And in time I hope find the energy and spare time to share it here with you again. Because I missed you. I missed our chats. I’m sorry I disappeared for so long but I just couldn’t spread myself any further.

But I’m back. New and Improved! Under new management! So stay tuned!

xo sara

"one time I looked at a diamond and it gave me a sunburn"

I have been busy but my camera has not, must remember to recharge that battery! In the meanwhile might I share with you the wonderful MAEVE online magazine? A most lovely online publication indeed.
I’ll be back soon with images of creative pursuits, I promise. I DO!

I spy with my little eye something begining with…..

B!

If you guessed BLOG POST you’d be correct. If you guessed BABY you’d also be correct.
Which brings me to my excellent excuse for my absence in blogland, and life in general, for the past few months. I’m just emerging from the fog of my first ever first trimester. Yes dear friends and readers, (if there is anyone still reading after my unexplained departure), I am pregnant.

Up the duff. Preggers. Bun in the oven. I’m legitimately fat now people.

And if the shock of discovering there was a very unplanned, surprise human growing in my uterus wasn’t enough then the shock of discovering being pregnant isn’t all glowing loveliness, long lunches and nesting by painting a nursery in overalls like on some paint ad, has certainly bowled me over.

The exhaustion. I’ve slept for weeks. I sleep around 12 hours a night and then nap several times a day. I think I sleep more than the cat right now. The endless nausea and aversion to any food smells. The fact that morning sickness lasts all day, and for me, is worse at night. My utter lack of appetite and thanks to some rather nifty hormone changes I’ve been constipated for a good two months now. Honestly, no one EVER mentioned to me before that being pregnant can make you constipated! Word up to the non mums out there – you’ve now been warned!

So while you’ve all been going about your busy, crafty, inspirational lives I’ve been walking around like a zombie, unable to muster an intelligent thought let alone think about picking up my crochet hook, knitting needles, camera or even stringing together a typed sentence. I’ve never felt so utterly devoid of creative impulses in my life and it’s depressing me so much. I have to believe that all of my creative energy has been diverted to the being in my belly, who will in turn grow into a fabulously talented, creative, inspirational human being. (No pressure.)

And I’m trying not to think about how I’ll never have a chance to indulge in my beloved sleep-ins for many years to come, how I’ll have to transform into a responsible parent/housewife who cooks and cleans on a regular, you know, daily, basis, how we’re going to fit a family into our one bedroom apartment, how our sunroom/study/junkroom needs to be emptied and transformed into a nursery, how we’re going to lug a pram up four flights of stairs, how difficult and scarce holidays will be from now on, whether my partner will love our child more than he loves me and how I’m going to pass a baby through my vagina. (No pressure.)

So in order to return some normalacy to my life I’ve decided to return to In the Light of the Sun. Regular sunshine and regular blogging. That’s my plan for bringing back ‘me’. Of course, I can guarantee neither but I can try. And thanks for sticking with me, by the way, it’s much appreciated. (No pressure!)

Evidence I saw the sun today as well as napping with the cat…

decisions, decisions…

I often feel like I’m standing at yet another of life’s crossroads. Or roundabout. Or a confusing LA-esqe multi laned highway turnoff/merge/exit. Sometimes it’s just me standing there, staring blankly, sometimes I’m there with a close friend, my family or my partner.

At these times I often think of the New Jersey turnpike in the film Being John Malkovich and marvel at the crazy portal of life and the strange places it spits you out at. That, and Robert Frost’s poem, The Road Not Taken, because a choice is necessary here, inevitable even, but you can never really know the outcome of your choice until you have lived it. Which can feel a little daunting at times.
Will the next choice I make lead to happiness?

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I–
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Frost is a cheeky bastard of a poet, don’t you think? Is he sighing with happiness or regret? Was the difference good or bad? You could argue, knowing how way leads on to way, we can always make another choice, right? But that choice will then be informed and influenced by the former choices. Snowball effect. Rippling in a pond. Dominos are tumbling down. I’m starting to hyperventilate. And still just standing here, staring blankly.

This handy flow chart gets straight to the point though –

Image by You Might Like This via the delightful Checks and Spots
Some more food for thought via Checks and Spots comes in video form. It was an entry in a competition called u @ 50 and here I am stressing about tomorrow, next week, next month etc but this makes me ponder long term happiness. Ah perspective. Now I’m worrying about not only my future future but that of the entire world. Although, if there’s no world then there’s no me, so the two are kind of mutually exclusive.

It’s a palindrome, so you’ll need to watch the entire 1:45 to understand the full message. And that also means that if you don’t have sound then you’ll have to read each line, then read them backwards in order to see the true meaning!

And on a final note I shall leave you with this to consider. A most excellent piece of street art spotted tonight at the top of my parents street in Bondi, albeit fuzzily captured by my iphone. Apt, I think, considering all that’s been going on in my head right lately.

I love it. I love that it’s quoting the 1998 Spice Girls song Stop.

I’m going to stop, make my happiness decision with a human touch, and be on my merry way. And if life spits me out at the New Jersey turnpike again, well, I’ll just have to dust myself off and crawl back down the crazy portal that is life, right?!

tea break and breaking news

Let’s take a quick break from the 2010 Harvest episodes for a moment shall we? I have some news.
First – a cup of tea and a biscuit.

tea break

mmm anzac biscuits

You’d be correct in guessing that those are still harvest shots. But how hilarious/retro/kitsch is that crocheted owl tea cosy?! My nana made it and EVERYONE hated it and yet it still survived the decades and continues to grace us with its presence at tea time. I’m also glad that Anzacs biscuits have survived the decades since the first batch popped out of the oven. These ones were particularly delicious, THANKS MUM!, and my brother and I ate more than our fair share when we thought no one was looking.

Now for my news. I’m not sure whether it’s good or bad but…my nannying days are numbered. My sister in law has got a spot for my nephew in a daycare centre now, and even though he is 3 months younger than what they’d decided was a better age to cope with daycare, they are worried they won’t be able to get him a spot when the right time comes.

So I won’t be needing my bottomless carpet bag or flying umbrella for much longer. I will however, be needing a new job. bugger! Which is fine and perfectly reasonable for a women of my age and skills. bugger bum poo! I am sure I will find my dream job advertised on Seek, with a ginormous salary to boot, and they’ll probably hire me even before my interview – as this is my new resume/career plan, a la David Shrigley.

glass half full or half empty? cake half burnt or half uncooked?

As you can see I’m a chaotic baker. I promise I didn’t “style” that shot, that’s just how unorganised the science of baking is in my kitchen. Things get messy when I bake. But I love the clutter, the muddle, the bedlam and the scrambles and shambles of a good afternoon of baking. So what if I’ve got icing sugar in my hair, egg smeared on my skirt and if my cardigan doesn’t skim over my curves like Nigella’s. At least I get to lick all the dishes clean and put them straight back in the cupboards when I’m done.

I don’t love when my delicious tasting lemon and almond cake batter burns on the outside and is completely uncooked in the middle…poor Nana, her 82nd birthday cake probably won’t be remembered in her birthday cake hall of fame. And I burnt it last year too, so maybe this is becoming a tradition. And sure, I blame the oven, but who turned it up too high, then down too low to compensate? Oops, I guess that would be me…

So the lesson I learn, time and time again, is eat as much of that delicious lemony butter and sugar and almond meal mixture before you put it in the oven and go and ruin everything, yet again. Got any better baking tips than that?!

Other lessons I am learning this week is persistance and being patient. Thank you for your kind words as I battle with my temper. Never fear, my nephew and I are still talking to each other (well, he babbles, I sing) and spend most of the day cuddling. Plus I figure I am being paid to be patient, so I should try harder for work ethic reasons alone! I did confess to my sister in law that I’d yelled at him and she just hugged me and said – “I’m sorry he pushed you to your limit but it happens to everyone. Don’t feel bad. Feel good because you’re giving me a break 3 days a week!”

So I guess I’ll have a glass (half full) of wine to wash down this delicious cake, put my feet up and consider myself just cussing awesome. Care to join me? Come on, tell me you’re not cussing awesome too?! I know you are!!

Patience and the Imp


Urgh. Lately I have really been putting my imp before my patience. And it just feels so awful.

When I see and hear other people yelling…it all seems so unnecessary and soul destroying. And it really doesn’t matter if you apologise afterwards – it’s too late, you’ve already acted irrationally and you can’t take those words or actions back. And I know it hurts real bad when someone yells at you, so I really shouldn’t be yelling at someone else…

Especially when that someone is a 7 month old baby.

I lost my cool the other day – everything had been a battle, no eating, no drinking, no sleeping all day without a fight. And so when I reached the end of my tether, when I gave up trying to understand what the hell was the problem, I yelled. And unsurprisingly, yelling does not stop a baby from crying. Nor did it make me feel any better afterwards – on the contrary I felt a million times worse.

Why can’t I be more patient? Where can I get more patience from? How do you learn to be patient?

I really don’t want to be a yeller. I don’t want to lash out verbally when I’m feeling pissed off. I don’t want to snap so easily. I don’t want to take my frustrations out on other people, especially those I love. I want to be stronger.

How come I can find patience for inanimate objects: learn a new craft, layer my tea bags in a spiral, fold all my plastic bags in neat and tidy rectangles but when it comes to compassion for other human beings I am so quick to snap?

This is one bad habit I am keen to quit. If you have any wisdom to impart or helpful tips I’d be one grateful girl…

happiness is…

…a warm blanket to snuggle in…
bano collage
…fresh clean sheets to rest your weary body on…

…and sweet, sweet dreams of otters holding hands…
Well come on now, could something so adorable be real?!
That had to be a dream!
That moment at 1:18? My heart explodes with happiness. I’m otterly in love.

And if that didn’t melt your frozen heart I don’t know what will. I’ve decided I do believe in reincarnation – in the hope that my next life will be spent as a hand holding otter who fills their days snoozing and floating in a pool with the one they love the best.
Hope your weekend is filled with snuggles, sweet dreams, hand holding and happiness.

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