Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Snow it is.

Sapporo Snow Festival -Photo Credit - www.funlobby.com

Earlier this month we returned from our holiday in Bangkok.  As one holiday ends another starts to be planned.  I asked Taleisha where she would like to go for our next holiday and she said the snow.  Now I have no idea how I managed to make the next jump but the first destination that came to mind when she said snow, was Japan. 

Not your normal earmarked snow destination but Japan is on my wish list, has been for years, it has this exotic appeal and in the alps it also has snow.  A little bit of everything for everyone.  Upon researching I found this winter snow festival in Sapporo, which I'm sure everyone has known about for years, where they make huge ice and snow sculptures of famous buildings, characters and landmarks, anything really.  I'm certain going to the Snow festival would well and truly tick the snow box for Taleisha.

The best part about planning and researching is that you can dream about going to all the sights, budget doesn't need to come into just yet.  I'm still daydreaming.  I would love to be able to see us making the trek over in February next year in time to experience the festival in Sapporo.  The only limitation will be finances as this trip will be a little longer and a little more expensive than our recent trip to Bangkok. 

Money or no money, doesn't stop the fun of the research, my internet browser has a number of pages open for Japanese sights.  I've downloaded Japanese travel phrase books to the Ipad and my current book of choice is the Lonely Planet Guide to Japan.  I love travel brochures but appears my local travel agent doesn't stock any for Japan and in general there seems to be minimal out there.

What are your must see places or things to do in Japan?

How I hate renting

I know renting has it's positives.  There is the flexibility for one, if something is faulty I just call the agent and they organise someone to fix it, no running around finding workman for me.  However it definitely has it's draw backs and the main reason why I hate it the most are rent inspections and nit picking property managers.

I would like to think that I am a reasonable person and the house is kept in a lived in but good condition.  Let's put in plainly the walls aren't falling down around me, or more pointedly I'm not putting holes in the walls or anything like that.  It's just a run of your mill lived in surburban house.  Nothing out of the ordinary, no Today Tonight material here.

We had a house inspection last week and I did the extra clean that that generally requires.  House looked neat and tidy, as much as one can with two little people running around behind you.  I knew that my property manager would find something to bitch about, there is seriously no pleasing this woman.  But I can tell you right now that I did not expect the page and a half letter from them complaining about this and that.  Some of the things have been that way since we moved in four years ago.  Plus I'm pretty certain I missed the fine print on this whinge but those pools that nearly man and his dog has, the blow up ones, well apparently I need to get the property owners permission first.  News to me.  It pretty much turned my good mood sour.

I've decided from now on in, that rental inspections will now be conducted in my presence.  If there is a problem they can let me know in person.  No more of this rubbish.  I don't need the stress.

I wonder if you can request your property manager be changed?  When we first moved in our property manager was awesome, then she was promoted and was replaced with this winner.  Two years of this has worn extremely thin.  Over it!!!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Taleisha at 7

Taleisha @ 7
Nickname - monkey
Three words that describe you? Swimmer, gymnast, love
If you had one wish it would be - to be a good painter
When you grow up, what would you like to be? A painter
If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go? England & Paris
The thing you do best - Swimming
Best thing you learn about at school - Music
Coolest person in the whole world - Mummy
Best friend- Bobbie & Hayley
Best memory - My holiday to Bangkok
Favourite food - Chocolate, cake, baked beans and potato
Least favourite food - boogers
Favourite thing you like to do - drawing
Favourite sport to play - Swimming
Favourite TV show - Peppa pig
Favourite thing to wear - Dresses
Favourite colour - Purple and blue
Current favourite song - Call me maybe and So What, pink
Book that you are loving right now - Cat in the hat, Dr Seuss
Favourite birthday present - Pink Barbie remote control car
What you did on your birthday - Went to Adventure world with my family and went on the water slides.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

The Big Cull

When it comes to my girls, I will admit I am a hoarder.  I box up all their cute outfits and store them in the cupboard to the point that there is almost no room for their current clothes.  Then there is the reams of art work that have come home from day care, kindy and school and then all those little masterpieces that they have made at home or drawn especially for me.  I really can't say why I've kept onto the clothes, my baby is now 4 and as much as I would never say no to another child, this is definitely not on the horizon anytime soon and it would be my luck the next bundle of joy would be a boy so all those gorgeous little dresses would be of no use anyway.

Today I pulled on my big girl boots and pulled all the boxes and bags out of Mackenzie's wardrobe.  All up their were 9 boxes (the ones the bulk nappies come in) and about 5 or 6 fabric shopping bags full of clothes, shoes and a few other random bits and bots.  Quite a little collection, if I don't say so myself that is.  The entire lot managed to engulf my lounge room floor.

I set out with a brutal mindset and with the plan to cull as much as I could possibly part with.  OK I probably only pulled my big girl boots part of the way up.  I had three piles, one was the keep pile, the second was for my sister and the last was for the op shop.  I can honestly say I was quite proud of myself with today's efforts.  The op shop pile now has two large bin liner bags and two plastic shopping bags full of clothes, plus three nappy bags I had managed to accumulate over the last 7 years.  My sister's pile has one large plus 5 plastic shopping bags full of clothes.  It feels so much lighter looking at those bags of clothes and the empty boxes that will not be going back in the wardrobe.

Amazingly through the process I stumbled across a box of size 4 clothes that had not yet made it into Mackenzie's wardrobe.  It really is a good thing that she is such a wee little thing and is really only starting to go into size 4s now, just a couple of months short of her 5th birthday.  Now I just need to find room for them in her draws. 

Tomorrow I plan on tackling the art boxes.  I'm thinking I'm going to take photos of their artwork and turn the loose pieces into photo books.  Not too sure what I'm going to do with the portfolio/journals they bring home at the end of the year.  May just keep them as is for now and tackle that decision another day, like when the girls are 30.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Happy 7th Birthday Taleisha

Dear Taleisha,

It amazes me that seven years ago I was only just embarking on this wonderful journey called motherhood.  And here we are seven years on and I have an amazingly funny, smart, cheeky, generous and gorgeous seven year old girl who lights up my life everyday.  (Well except for those moments when you are driving me up the wall with your stubbornness :) Can't imagine where you inherited that one from.)

You amaze me at your desire to soak everything in, constantly writing and drawing in your numerous notebooks.  Reading everything you can get your hands on.  Your love for your sister and those tender moments where you play together so peacefully and contently make my heart melt.  Your willingness to try, you may not be the best at what you do but it is a dream to watch you get out there and give it your all and have fun doing it.  You make me so proud every day, watching you grow and blossom is truly the best gift I have ever received.

Happy Birthday my darling girl, dream big baby girl, the world is your playground.


Taleisha's birthday was earlier last week, it is so much fun watching Taleisha open her presents, she is so expressive, she just gets so excited and her OMG faces are a riot. 

We also had the pleasure of making cupcakes for the school class for her birthday, which I usually make from scratch but I had a major case of the lazies and bought a couple  packet mixes.  Start making them after I have put the girls in to bed, get the first batch in the oven and realise there is no icing mix in the boxes.  Damn.  Kind of defeats the purpose of my laziness if I need to make icing.  Put in a mercy dash call to my mum and my sister, whom, bless them, made the trek to the shops for me and grabbed some icing in a can so my laziness could continue unabated.  Cupcakes turned out to be a huge success with her class, they did look mighty good if I don't say so myself.  On the way home from school Taleisha commented that it had been her best birthday ever.   <3 br="">

A little tradition of ours, is that the birthday girl gets to choose what to have or where to go for their birthday for dinner.  Last year was sausages and baked beans, yum yum, this year she did up the request a little bit and we were all treated to a dinner out at Sizzlers where we managed to stuff ourselves silly.  The only time she is able to get away with having plain spaghetti, bread roll and wedges for dinner, talk about carb heavy.

As we had only recently returned from overseas we decided not to have a birthday party for her this year but instead organised for the family to go to Adventure World on the weekend.  It happened to co-incide with the same day as my color run.  It also happened to be the coldest day we had had in forever, considering we have been sweltering in temperatures in the high 30s and the day we go to a water park the weather is in the mid 20s.  Didn't stop us having a ball going up and down the water slides, we were just all a light shade of blue, in my case literally as I had done the color run in the morning lol.

Here are a selection of photos from Taleisha's birthday celebrations.
 OMG it's a pink remote control car
 Enjoying her dinner at Sizzlers, with the token five peas to keep mum happy, not that she ate them.
 Taleisha's birthday cake.
 The girls at Adventure world, ready to get wet.
 For ever my poser, enjoying a ride on the dragon.
 Another pose from my Miss 7.
My new favourite family photo :)

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Happiest 5km on the planet

On Sunday I had the joy of experiencing the happiest 5km on the planet, the Swisse Color Run.  This run definitely lived up to all the hype.  It would have to be the easiest 5km I have run in quite a long time and I'm pretty certain I was smiling the entire way.

If you've never heard of this run before, it involves thousands of people wearing lovely crisp white clothes lining up to then have people spray and throw different coloured paint powders over you as you pass different markers.  By the time you cross the finish line you are a mutlicoloured rainbow from head to toe.  Or in my case a blue smurf that not even the day spent at Adventure world managed to shift.  Required a good deal of soaping to remove the colour.

The 2km mark - the pink zone (the zone my girls picked to watch of course)
 Yippee I finished and OMG look at me, I'm a Rainbow :)
Posing with Color Run Runicorn

I have to put a huge shout out to the Swisse Color Run team for bringing such an awesome event to the West Coast.  It lived up to all it promised and ran so smoothly and what a riot of fun it was.  I will definitely be back next year and will be dragging my mum around the course as well. 

Monday, February 18, 2013

Bangkok Holiday

Love is taking yourself and your two gorgeous girls on your first overseas trip on your own to fast paced Bangkok.  What an amazing experience it was!!!!

The girls and I went to Bangkok at the end of last month and spent a couple of days seeing as much as we could, running around like headless chooks before heading to the slower paced Roi-Et for few days for a good friends wedding ceremony and reception.  Then back to Bangkok for three more days of rapid sight seeing.

We walked lots.  We saw lots.  We ate lots.  We shopped lots.  And we took a million photos.

We were kissed by seals.

We rode on elephants.

We saw temples.

And we patted tigers.

The wedding was gorgeous, I may not have understood a single word of the ceremony or the reception but the LOVE was contagious.

 Big sloppy kisses for us
 Sawasdee McDonalds
 The girls enjoying a tuk tuk ride
 The girls and I on the photo bench at the wedding
The girls and I at the Bridge over the River Kwai
 Brrrrr it's freezing at Snow Town Dreamworld
 The girls and I riding an elephant
 Taleisha hugging a tiger at the tiger temple
The Girls and I at the reclining bubhha

All in all it was an amazing experience.  Looking forward to planning the next one.  We're thinking heading to the snow, maybe Japan.  Planning is of course half the fun.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

My weight loss journey

A year and a half ago I joined weight watchers, I also started a blog in the weight watchers community to document the highs and the lows of my journey.  I have since left weight watchers after achieving all that I believed I could from the program and taking all the skills and life lessons that it taught me.  This post is to acknowledge my experience and to also link my two blogs together, I may one day transfer the blog posts from the weight watchers community onto here, but for now this linked post will have to do.

I love looking at the WW blog, it truly demonstrate how far I have come.

My WW Blog - From Fat Kat to Fit Kat

Coming home to my blog

Dusting off the cob webs and trying to resurrect this blog.  It has been a very long time and I've made some massive changes in my life in the last couple of years.  I'm a new woman and I damn proud of myself. 

Today I am a fit and healthy woman, running half marthons (well I've done it once)and competing in obstacle courses.  A gym junkie and a lover of boxing.  I am also a mum to two girls, now seven and four.  A single mum.  The hardest job on the planet. 

It's taken a lot of hard work to be at the point where I am now, I'm by no means finished, I would call it a work in progress and I think I will always will be.  There is always room for growth in our lives and I plan on doing a lot of growing.