Friday, March 30, 2012

FlogYoBlog Friday: The DPCON12 Edition

Can't blog. Freaking out. Aaaah it's today! It's today! You know what to do, right, link up and all that jazz? Ready, GO! P.S Hope this works, never posted it from my iPad before!
How to FlogYoBlog
  1. Follow Where's My Glow?
  2. Bow down at the alter of Mummy Time; Blog-goddess, all round groovy gal and creator of FYBF
  3. Grab the FYBF button and post it on your sidebar or in the post you're linking up
  4. Link in your favourite/best post from the week (don't just put your homepage URL)
  5. Follow at least 1 linkyer/blogger then be nice and spread the comment love


Thursday, March 29, 2012

Anonymous trolls: Not just for blogs!

There has been much talk on the interwebz of late about trolls. Actually that's a lie, it's not of late, it's always. There is always someone unwilling to put their name to a comment for all sorts of reasons, not just to flame (though that's normally the case). But you're deluded if you think not putting your regular email address on a comment or blocking out your name in a tweet somehow grants you traceless anonymity.

The other day I met up with my Aunty Steffi (not her real name, except for the Aunty part), in the city on her lunch break. She has only just found her way to the world of Facebook and all she knows of blogs is that I have one and it's where I word vomit occasionally. She pulled out a piece of paper and slid it across the table for me to read.

"This was on my desk when I got in to work yesterday" she said, her face defiant.

Click for larger image

"Oh my gawd you have a TROLL!" I screeched. A totally appropriate response given our food court location.

As someone who has been teased for laughing too much and too loudly, seeing this cowardly unsigned letter made my blood boil.

Now this could have been an awful story. I could be telling you how Steffi was so upset by the letter that she now feels uncomfortable going to work. That she has let this cretin win... but that's not the case. Because all of the women in my family are of the kick-arse variety.

"That's terrible, Steffi! What did you do?"

"I stuck it up above the kitchen sink and wrote next to it: 'Can the person who left this on my desk please come and see me so we can discuss this like adults'"

Her colleagues have rallied around her in support and the ongoing "Shhhh you're breathing too loud" jokes that have started since the discovery of the note are made loud enough for whomever printed the note to hear. She won't go down without a fight... and she most definitely will not go quietly.

And just like all things on the internet, all things in an office are traceable. The IT department can, within minutes, find out which computer sent that document to the printer...

So, Steffi's troll, welcome to the 21st Century where there is no such thing as anonymity. Douche.

Have you been bullied at work?

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A week in tweets

The fabulous Emma from Mommy Has A Headache (and one half of Cocktails at Naptime) demanded I take part in let me know about the awesome meme created by Jo of Slummy Single Mummy - a week in tweets - complete with funky badge. I don't do anything these days unless I get a badge... I'm like a misguided Girl Scout or something.


Without further ado, this is what the last seven days would look like if I was restricted to one tweet a day. Can you imagine me only tweeting once a day? Yeah, me neither.
Tuesday:
In Sydney today for the #NortonOne shindig at Café Sydney. This blogging thing rocks my socks… in this case, anti DVT flight socks.

Wednesday:
Bought some Max Brenner pecans to take home for Map Guy… they didn’t make it. What can I say? The bald man has great nuts #DontTellMapGuy

Thursday:
Tricky is unwell and appears to be afraid of snot -cries whenever he wipes his nose. Is this what is meant by the boogie monster? #KillMeNow

Friday:
Sitting at home with wine, cheese, olives and a looming deadline. Boy do I know how to party! #AllWorkAndNoPlayMakesGlowUseLongHashtags

Saturday:
Just been to the BEST vintage/retro/rockabilly inspired wedding! Congratulations @WondersOfAllis! You looked divine #WonderWedding (yes, I gave my friends a wedding hashtag)

Sunday:
This getting up at the crack of dawn on a Sunday can go bite me. Meanwhile I will go bite the buttermilk pancakes, bacon and maple syrup I just made #NOMS

Monday:
Kinda chuffed with my first ever attempt at cake decorating #frangipanis #GlowMakesCakes #FondantOverload 
 

I could put a call to action question here about your week, but really, all I want to know is that you think my cake looks amazeballs

Monday, March 26, 2012

5 things not to say to a parent (and by parent I actually mean me)

The pants are out again! Can I get a woot woot?

When my parenting skills are called in to question I can go from zero to Cranky in 1.39 seconds. A quick glance at the news will show you children who aren't being cared for properly and you're going to tut tut at me based on the fact that there is some dried weetbix spot welded to the side of my kid's face? Priorities, people!

Prepare for rant in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1....

Five things not to say to a parent
(and by a parent I quite obviously mean me)

1. You made your son a toy kitchen? But he's a boy...
Really? You're that narrow minded that you're going to feel awkward when my son pretends to cook? A dude can't enjoy cooking? Are you afraid I'm going to feminize him, is that it? Geez, you're gonna totally flip when I show you his Jemima doll and pink teddy. Take your archaic views and fuck off.

2. Oh you're still breastfeeding? Umm, errr, that's, ummm, great... you're gonna stop soon though, right? I mean, it's not beneficial anymore.
Not beneficial? Tricky's needed medication for a cold ONCE in almost two years. Plus I can comfort him instantly when he's hurt, and manage an extra hour of precious sleep every morning thanks to continuing. Besides that, what's it to you? Pretty sure the decision to wean my child has absolutely nothing to do with you. If I want to feed him until he graduates highschool, I will.

3. You don't let your kid eat chips, yet you eat them in front of him? You're so cruel!
Is it also cruel that I drive a car in front of him and don't allow him to take the wheel? That I cook and bake with sharp knives and a hot oven yet don't let him near them? No. I'm the adult, he's the child, he doesn't have to do everything I do. Therefore your reasoning is bullshit and I'm not listening to you.

4. He doesn't talk much... he's lazy.
Lazy? LAZY? Toddler and lazy do not belong in the same sentence. We have gone from a deformity that has the potential to cause developmental delays to a kid hitting milestones just fine and 'normal'. I can't even begin to tell you how awesome that is. Just because he isn't doing the exact same thing at the exact same time as you/your kid/his dad/his second fucking cousin doesn't mean anything. Kids do things when they're ready.

5. He's very skinny... what are you feeding him?
A range of nutritious, home prepared meals, thanks for insinuating asking. This child is eating us out of house and home before the age of two, I dare not think of how it will be when he is a teenager, but it's likely we'll have to take out a second mortgage. He is a clone of his string bean father, blame his long, lean frame on genetics not the fact that he doesn't get junk food. Does he look healthy? Is he running around constantly? He's fine.

What is the one thing someone can say about you/your parenting that instantly makes your blood boil?

Saturday, March 24, 2012

How Not To Ruin Easter For Your Child

This is a sponsored post - but it's more of a community service announcement
about how NOT to tell your kids about the Easter Bunny. You're welcome.

You know how you have those defining moments in your life that you can recall back in vivid detail like it was yesterday? Well the Easter of 1988 was one of those defining moments for me...

I don't have access to a squiggly fade and airy music, so you'll just have to picture that for yourself while I stare dreamily off in to space as is the norm for any flashback.

Picture a six year old (adorable) Glow waking on Easter morning full of excitement. There was no sluggish yawning and stretching like there is now, it was instantaneous waking and bolting to the lounge room in my truly, truly outrageous Gem jimjams to see if the Easter Bunny had been.

My eyes practically bulged out of my head at the sight of all the chocolate and the giant bites out of the carrot we'd left out for him. HE HAD BEEN!!! HE HAD BEEN!!!

Brightly coloured foil covered eggs in a basket, a chocolate rabbit and... oh my... a note!

I picked it up carefully and examined it the little card. A hand drawn carrot on the front and inside it read:

"Dear Glow,
I love carrots! Yum!
Love The Easter Bunny" 

My face sank, there was a problem... it was my mother's handwriting.

Instantly I became a sobbing mess as it dawned on me that if the Easter Bunny wasn't real, then maybe, just maybe, that fat bloke at Christmas wasn't real either.

I was devastated. Easter was ruined (well for five minutes before I was distracted with the chocolate).

Let my (fluffy bunny cotton) tail tale of woe be a lesson to you. DO NOT write letters from The Easter Bunny yourself if your child is old enough to recognize your writing. Instead, you can get coupons for great Easter bargains like personalized mugs, Easter baskets and, more importantly, personalized letters from the Easter Bunny!

Do not ruin Easter, find online codes here and learn from my mother's mistake.
Nyeerrrr, what's up, Blog?

How did you find out about the Easter Bunny? Or have I just ruined Easter for you with this post?

Friday, March 23, 2012

FlogYoBlog Friday: The Crappy Jingle Edition




How to FlogYoBlog
  1. Follow Where's My Glow?
  2. Bow down at the alter of Mummy Time; Blog-goddess, all round groovy gal and creator of FYBF
  3. Grab the FYBF button and post it on your sidebar or in the post you're linking up
  4. Link in your favourite/best post from the week (don't just put your homepage URL)
  5. Follow at least 1 linkyer/blogger then be nice and spread the comment love



get the InLinkz code

Thursday, March 22, 2012

How to make a kid's kitchen out of cardboard boxes

I'm of the firm belief that kids do not need expensive toys in order to have fun or learn.

The vast majority of Tricky's toys are second hand - they've been passed down from friends, found for a bargain price at an op shop or baby market, or picked up from the side of the road at bulk rubbish collection. Yes, I find my child's toys on the side of the road, call child services.

We do it partly to reduce the amount of new plastic that comes in to our house (and therefore the tonnes of non recyclable plastic shrink wrap packaging and twistie ties that end up in landfill), to keep our costs low on our single income budget and to encourage Tricky's imagination.

So last week, with that in mind, I decided to get my craft on and channel the guys on Play School and get creative with some boxes, some tape and a Sharpie. Just call me Noni Hazelhurst.

 

Grab any boxes you have, stick them together and get drawing - it's that easy. I used some bowls to get the shape of the hotplates, a ruler for the straight lines and a sandwich to distract Tricky while I did it. There's no right or wrong and it doesn't have to be perfect - I've left 'bench space' for him to use but you could draw in a sink. If you do it indoors make sure it's in a well ventilated area or you'll end up with a massive Sharpie induced headache after colouring in the hot plates!

I must say, I'm kinda happy with how it turned out. Actually who am I kidding? I freakin' love it and when people come over now I drag them towards it singing "Come look at the kitchen I made for Tricky!!!"

Kids don't need the most expensive, realistic looking toys with sound effects... how are they ever meant to develop their imaginations if we do it all for them? Plus how many times have you given your child a toy and they've played with it for a few minutes then turned the box it came in into a car, an aeroplane, a cave or a house?

Tricky thinks it rocks and has been cooking for me ever since using some plastic fruit and veg, a chopping board, 'knife' and a little saucepan. Each time he runs to his cardboard kitchen and does the same, then holds up his 'dish' sniffs it and declares "Mmm yum!". I melt every time!

Go away, Mama, I'm cooking you a special dinner
Do you have second hand or home made toys for your kids?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Blueberry and macadamia strudels

You know when you throw a bunch of stuff in to a pot and it turns out amazeballs and you wish you'd measured out all the ingredients? Yeah that.

In my continuing efforts to increase my waist line be a Domestic Goddess, I decided to make strudels. I'm not entirely sure why, perhaps because The Sound of Music had been on the day before and I was going around singing about my favourite things;

"Cream coloured ponies and crisp apple blueberry strudels, door bells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles".

So what follows is how I think my strudels were made.

Blueberry and Macadamia Strudels
Ingredients (makes 4 really huge strudels)
  • 4 sheets of filo pastry
  • 500g blueberries
  • 100g berries that you've mushed the crap out of (I used a bag of mixed berries)
  • Juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 1/2 cups of caster sugar
  • 4 tablespoons of cornflower
  • 50g macadamia nuts chopped finely (save time, use a food processor)
  • 10g melted butter
  • 50g melted chocolate
Method
  • Cut the filo pastry in half, set aside covered with a damp teatowel so that it doesn't dry out
  • Combine the whole berries and the mushed berries in a saucepan with the sugar and lemon juice and stir over a medium heat for five minutes until all the berries are soft but still retaining their shape
  • Turn down the heat and add the cornflower and stir until the sauce thickens
  • Divide the mixture evenly over half of the filo pastry pieces, leaving a margin around the edges. Brush the margin with melted butter and place a half sheet of filo over the top to create a long blueberry pocket. Press the sides down with your fingers and/or a fork
  • Brush the entire top surface with a little melted butter and scatter the chopped macadamias over the top
  • Bake in the oven at 175C for 20-25 minutes or until puffy and golden (careful the nuts don't burn!)
  • Allow to cool for a few minutes then drizzle with melted chocolate (I had milk chocolate but white chocolate would have been heaven!) and if you like serve with a dusting of icing sugar (slightly wanky) or a scoop of vanilla icecream
So so so delicious that I heated one up for breakfast the next morning!

Friday, March 16, 2012

FlogYoBlog Friday: The DrawSomething Edition

Hi Floggers, my name is Glowless and I'm addicted to DrawSomething.

Such is my addiction that I spend waaaay too long creating pictures when I should be doing more important things like faffing around on Twitter or sleeping more than four hours a night.

My addiction sees me currently playing 27 games, with a winning of streak of 120 (thought the counter stops at 99 - YOU BASTARD!) and stooping so low as to take my (dr)awesome DrawSomething shenanigans to the bath tub.



To fuel my addiction, go and start a game with me (username Glowless - I'm so original)...  but first, as always, let's have a bit of a Flog!

How to FlogYoBlog
  1. Follow Where's My Glow?
  2. Bow down at the alter of Mummy Time; Blog-goddess, all round groovy gal and creator of FYBF
  3. Grab the FYBF button and post it on your sidebar or in the post you're linking up
  4. Link in your favourite/best post from the week (don't just put your homepage URL)
  5. Follow at least 1 linkyer/blogger then be nice and spread the comment love


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Has blogging killed the art of conversation?

I was out at the shops the other day doing your usual SAHM things; grabbing some groceries, avoiding those life-sapping little merry-go-rounds and taking a detour past the bottle shop for some of Mama's special cordial, when I bumped in to a friend.

An actual friend, that I met in real life before we became Facebook friends. I know, right! You didn't think they still existed in my world, but they do!

It had been a few months since we'd seen each other so we started chatting to find out what each other was up to.

Glow: "Hey! How are you? How's the new job?"

Friend: "Oh my god hello! It's been so long! Yeah the new job is going really well, I'm really liking it. Haven't figured out how to use the company Twitter account yet, I'll have to pick your brain on that soon."

Glow: "You'll get the hang of it, it's just a lot of talking to yourself, much like parenting, actually. Speaking of which, how is your gorgeous spawn?"

Friend: "He's good! At home with Daddy at the moment so I've escaped. Enough about me, how are YOU?"

Glow: "Oh I'm OK, just got back from a week away in Jurien."

Friend: "I saw! That place looked horrible, I can't believe that they'd let people in with that much filth. I hope you got your money back."

Glow: "Yeah we did. Other than that I'm just working on a conference and doing some paid writing"

Friend: "Oh I saw that, that's brilliant."

Glow: "Right, OK" *looks around* "Ummm."

Friend: "Is this weird? This is weird. I know your whole life."

Glow: "Awkward."

Friend: "I'm not a stalker, promise. Wait, Glow, come back... come back! I promise!!!"

And that is how blogging has killed the art of conversation. I have nothing new to say to my friends when I see them that they haven't already read, so the fine dance, the to-ing and fro-ing with tales and stories is over.

Video killed the radio star. Blogging killed conversation. May they rest in peace.


When people ask how you are, do you answer "You mean you don't you read my blog?"

Monday, March 12, 2012

Grieving

Grief is a strange beast. It sneaks up on you. Sometimes, when you think it has weakened with the passing of the years you turn to find it just as ferocious as ever. Just when it appears that it's grown old and frail like the person you are grieving never could, it catches you unawares and leaves you struggling to breathe and see through a burning sea of tears...

Today marks thirty years since my parents laid to rest their second born daughter, Jo-Anne. She was just shy of 18 months old when she passed away and I still grieve for her fiercely, despite the fact that I don't remember her, having only being a couple of months old when she died. Many a therapist have tried to find out why I have such a strong connection to her, and they have all, after a while, shook their heads and placed me in the too hard basket.

How can you grieve for someone you didn't know? How can it hurt so much and feel like something is missing when you never really knew what it was like to have it in the first place?

I spoke to my dad about her today. Though as a family we never not spoke of her, my Dad and I have spoken more about her in the last two years than all the other times put together and I've learned more about her and who she was as a child as opposed to my previous, childhood thoughts of her just being "the dead sister".

"I've been thinking about Jo-Anne a lot lately, would you mind if I wrote about her?"

"Of course you can, baby, she was your sister. I've been thinking about her a lot lately too... you know it's been thirty years?" he says as his eyes go glossy and he swallows hard.

As my dad has marveled over each of Tricky's milestones, when we're alone there is always an underlying melancholy of "Jo-Anne never did that" (I can only assume that the experience wasn't the same when I was a baby because he was too consumed by his grief to be noticing what I was doing). He tells me, like he has before, that she never learned to walk, never really talked, and only weighed a little bit more than newborn-me when she passed away... but that she had the most beautiful, infectious giggle. 

I break down and sob on his shoulder. He hugs me tight. I'm sure though, that he likes when I ask about her, even though it always ends this way. That he finds comfort in the fact that I still think of her.

My grief has changed over the years from a selfish young girl's want to have another sister to play with, to a mother's empathy and compassion. My grief now is just as much for the loss of my sister as it is an overwhelming heartache for the loss of my parents' daughter and the loss of any chance of a normal life for them.

There are some things that I think you can't fully understand and appreciate about parenting until you become one yourself... and then there are some things, awful things like this, that become so much harder to grasp when you finally have that insider knowledge.

I cannot fathom how hard it must have been for my parents when Jo-Anne went in to heart failure when I was three days old. How difficult it would have been to leave their newborn to focus on their fragile second born and take her overseas for life saving surgery. How earth shattering it was for them to watch her die on the plane ride there and bring her home in a goddamn box in the cargo hold instead of safe in their arms.

My mind cannot cope with the thought of that much pain and suffering.

So tonight, I hug Tricky a little closer and a little longer than usual. I look past the screaming, tantrum filled evening of a child exerting his independence and testing boundaries, and take solace in this amazing gift that is a healthy, happy child, knowing full well that there are some people who would give anything, truly anything, to experience this frustration.
A very rare photo of Jo-Anne, me and Aunty Penny on my
Christening day, a week before Jo-Jo passed away
(cropped to remove people who don't wish to be blogged about)

Friday, March 9, 2012

FlogYoBlog Friday: The FlogYoFeminism Edition

Happy (belated) International Women's Day, Floggers!!

Did you know you're a feminist if you think women
  • Have the right to own land
  • Have the right to vote
  • Have the right to contraception
  • Have the right to equal pay for equal work
  • Have the right to wear whatever they please and not be "asking for it"
  • And many many more things
You don't have to be a man-hating militant lesbian to be a feminist (although there were a few in my class when I studied it at uni - awesome chicks), you just have to care about equality and rights... it shouldn't be the other F word.


Will you be a Feminist Flogger today?

How to FlogYoBlog
  1. Follow Where's My Glow?
  2. Bow down at the alter of Mummy Time; Blog-goddess, all round groovy gal and creator of FYBF
  3. Grab the FYBF button and post it on your sidebar or in the post you're linking up
  4. Link in your favourite/best post from the week (don't just put your homepage URL)
  5. Follow at least 1 linkyer/blogger then be nice and spread the comment love



Thursday, March 8, 2012

Five reasons I don't like the #KONY2012 campaign

If there is one thing I hate, it's ill informed decisions. 

If you haven't heard of the Kony2012 campaign you are either living under a proverbial rock or something has gone wrong with your internet access. Never before have I seen a hashtag, a concept or a video go viral so fast.

But you will not find me supporting the Kony2012 campaign. Shock, horror! No, it doesn't mean I support Kony or condone his actions - on the contrary, I'm pretty sure he is the embodiment of evil and needs to be stopped.

Was the video by Invisible Children compelling? Oh hell yes - I bawled my eyes out hearing the young Ugandan boy, Jacob, saying he thought it would be better to be murdered by this evil man rather than live in a constant state of fear. As soon as I saw it I wanted to do something, to know more, to find out why the hell I hadn't heard of this monster Kony before.

So I did. And I didn't like what I found. The actual Kony2012 campaign by Invisible Children and what it represents? Well it's left rather a bad taste in my mouth...
  1. I have a problem with a dubious company making a shed load of money and only using approximately 30% of it on the issue they're spruiking - the details of which are on the public record since they are registered as a not-for-profit organization.
  2. I'm disappointed that so many people are willing to jump on a bandwagon before finding out more about it, just because everyone else is doing it, they feel like they're "supposed" to or made to feel guilty for not supporting it. I'm not talking about anyone in particular here so you can all calm down and stop thinking I'm bitching about my friends.
  3. I loathe that we live in a culture (and support a culture) where violence is condemned but vigilante violence is celebrated - why is it OK to hurt anyone? How many crimes does it take before someone "deserves" violence against them? Where is that line and who gets to draw it? Does a certain number of hits on your page mean you're right? Does over a million video views mean someone deserves to die?
  4. I have serious questions about people who grab torches and pitchforks, demanding the death of someone for their crimes - fight for justice, the death penalty is a cop out. I cannot celebrate the death of anyone, no matter how horrid they are...  renowned political and ideological leader, Ghandi said "an eye for an eye turns the whole world blind" and it's true
  5. Most of all I'm disappointed that it takes a video with a white guy and a cute little blond kid to get our attention about such atrocities happening in the world.

If you're going to jump on the bandwagon, do it.. but be informed and know what you're doing. If you've already jumped on, it shows that you are a good, kind person who saw suffering and wants to help - you don't deserve to be vilified for supporting it... it's your choice, just as this is my choice not to support it. If we all thought the same thing, the world would be boring.

"Is awareness good? Yes. But these problems are highly complex, not one-dimensional and, frankly, aren’t of the nature that can be solved by postering, film-making and changing your Facebook profile picture, as hard as that is to swallow. Giving your money and public support to Invisible Children so they can spend it on supporting ill-advised violent intervention and movie #12 isn’t helping. Do I have a better answer? No, I don’t, but that doesn’t mean that you should support KONY 2012 just because it’s something. Something isn’t always better than nothing." - Grant Oyston of Visible Children. 

Are you on the Kony2012 bandwagon? Did you look in to it before you jumped on? 

EDIT: I haven't said that Invisible Children are calling for the death penalty, I'm speaking about the whole campaign and therefore those that have jumped on it - search the hashtag on Twitter and you will find thousands of people calling for his death. When this man is caught, depending on where he is tried (his own country, the ICC, a neighbouring country where he is also abducting and killing kids) will depend on whether he gets a life sentence or the death penalty.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The little things

Oh look! It's a non-emo post! Hooray!

I try to see the good in life. I really do.

But when the black cloud of mental illness is hanging low, threatening to not just rain but to unleash a vicious cyclone, it can be hard to see anything but the negative. WAIT! Don't click away, I said this wasn't another fucking emo post and I will keep my word... trust me.

Short of singing "Ac-cent-tchu-ate the positive" and wanting to stab my own eardrums out with a skewer, I try to catch myself in the moment and find something, anything, that is good. Call it mindfulness, call it finding the silver lining, call it clutching at the last fragile straws of sanity. Or call it a telepathic parakeet with a mohawk, I don't care, it's your brain, I won't judge.

Whatever you want to call it, it's about not getting so bogged down in your own head. I fail at it 90% of the time, but the other 10% is great. No, really.

The little things matter sometimes. Some of them will elicit a beaming (gummy) smile, others just a slight turning up of the corners of the mouth. But no matter what, it's catching those moments that make the black seem like it won't last forever.

My most recent little things:
  • Going to the shopping centre and getting a parking spot undercover, and then getting a trolley that has all four wheels willing to travel in the same direction at the same time
  • Finding $20 in a coat pocket from last winter... and the coat still fits
  • Finding paper towels that fit my paper towel holder so that I don't have to rip out the centre and try to stuff it all down again
  • Tricky coming up and giving me a kiss and a hug for no reason
  • Making up a recipe and finding that it just works so well
  • Running in to a friend at the shops I've been thinking about... and actually look nice for once with washed hair and non-stained clothing that I don't feel I have to try and hide behind the fresh produce
  • Checking my bank balance and seeing that there is more money in there than I thought
  • Map Guy bringing home chocolate for me that he was given at a conference, that he has had in his bag all day, not eating, because he thought I'd enjoy it more than him
  • A perfectly timed, witty comeback
  • Getting a funny text from a good friend, late at night, when we're the only two people still awake
  • A simple, cheap and cheerful dinner out at the boat harbour at sunset with my family 

Sometimes, the little things are all you have. So we have to cherish them.

What are your little things?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

5 Things Emo Blogging Has Taught Me

I'm getting kinda bogged down in the emo posts lately... every day I write them, and (almost) every day I relegate it to my drafts folder and flick up a recipe or a pointless vlog to keep the happy happy shiney going.

I choose to fake it til I make it... and will continue to do so until I'm either happy or in a straight jacket. So what have my more emo posts taught me???

1. That Michael Jackson was right when he sung "You are not alone" (I am here with yoooou, though we're far apaaaaaart, you're always in my heaaaaaaart). There is always someone in the same boat as you, experiencing something similar and together you can bitch and moan and not feel so isolated, particularly if you're a SAHM and don't get out much.

2. That when you go totally emo and write all about all the deep, dark, festery secrets inside, your stats will go crazy. Just like rubber neckers passing a car crash, people can't help but have a look... but it's not because they're just masochists (well, some are), it's because people can relate to it and are drawn to it.


3. That when you turn comments off in an effort to not look like you're a comment whore phishing for compliments or reassurance that people will find another way to connect with you. Your twitter feed will explode and you'll get texts and emails pouring in that you want to run away from because you can't handle people being so nice. But then you stop and think how amazing it is that people, some you've never met, care enough to offer support.

4. That whilst writing it out is cathartic, pressing publish is terrifying. You'll wonder if it was the right thing to as you realize that your immediate family, inlaws, friends and old school pals and that PR person you gave your business card to in an effort to get them to notice your blog, now know everything.

5. That it all blows over within a few days and people forget. The next person has their crisis or triumph and the blogosphere moves on to them and takes the (self-inflicted) heat off of you... at which point you'll watch your stats drop back to normal and think "You only love me for my drama, you bastards!"

Do you emo blog? What has it taught you?

Monday, March 5, 2012

He who laughs last

I was teased at school. It never went so far as bullying, just your average garden variety kids being assholes teasing. It was always over the same thing... my lips, my smile and my laugh.

You laugh too loud.

Do you ever stop laughing? 

You laugh too much.

When you smile all I can see are gums.

Your teeth are crooked.

Your lipgloss is uneven... oh wait that's your lips.

Stop pouting so much.

Nothing earth shattering. No real attacks on character or morals, but said often by enough people that I developed a complex about it; started covering my mouth when I laughed; not smiling as much; trying as hard as I could to be quieter lest someone mention my big, gummy, pouty, loudness. I doubt that my efforts would have been noticed because even after going to all that trouble I was still the loud gummy girl. It's just who I am.

Over the years I've managed to 'tone down' my smile a bit. To this day, I religiously go through photos and immediately delete the ones where the ratio of teeth to gum is out of whack - before digital cameras it was tearing up photos and putting them in the bin under the rubbish in the hope that tomatoes would ooze on them so even the garbage man couldn't see them if the bag just so happened to split open. So much effort just in case someone I didn't know saw the photo - I never said I was balanced.

The other day I was out with some new friends and when I laughed one of them said "Wow, that's such a loud laugh". He meant nothing by it, for him it was merely an observation and a statement of fact, a passing comment. But what I heard was "Wow, that's such a loud laugh. YOU ARE BEING INAPPROPRIATE. AGAIN. SHUT UP ALREADY!".

Straight away Pink's sober started playing in my head. For me it's one of those songs that speaks to my soul as if it was written for me. Also I was quite drunk on a wine tour at the time so that plays a big part too.





I felt dejected and I was instantly transported back to school. The same feelings came bubbling up as if it was yesterday.

I am always the loud one at parties. I have a social phobia but instead of being a wallflower I swing to the opposite extreme with the fake it til you make it premise because confidence, even fake confidence, is sexy, right? Right?! So I giggle and I shriek and, after a few drinks, quite often I snort too - that's how you know if I've relaxed enough to start having fun.

So I spoke up.

"I was always teased for my loud laugh at school."

The others were surprised. "But your laugh is so infectious, Glow!" (they actually called me Glow, we met through Twitter) "your whole face is involved in your laugh, you can see how much you're enjoying yourself".

I'd never heard anyone say that about me before. A positive comment on my laugh? The laugh that had just echoed, boomed even, through a high ceilinged room?

I was stunned. To be complimented on something that I've only ever gotten flack for was bizarre... but it felt good. Really good.

After carrying this around with me for about twenty years, this fear of smiling and laughing genuinely lest I be judged, one compliment isn't going to turn it around. But it's a start. I believe in starts. And I'm getting the last laugh.

Were you teased about something at school? Do you still have a complex about it?

Friday, March 2, 2012

FlogYoBlog Friday: The OMG it's March Edition

Floggers, I'm in a panic! I blinked and all of a sudden it is March. MARCH!!!

I swear it was only a week ago that I was ringing in the new year with a game of Yahtzee, cos that's how I roll (the dice), and now it is March and I'm in a tizz.

March means it's only three months until Tricky is two and, more pressingly, less than a month to DPCON12! Squee!

Time to figure out what you want to get out of the conference, where you're staying, who you're roomie is and, of course, what you're wearing.

But before you do any of that, let's have a little Flog.

How to FlogYoBlog
  1. Follow Where's My Glow?
  2. Bow down at the alter of Mummy Time; Blog-goddess, all round groovy gal and creator of FYBF
  3. Grab the FYBF button and post it on your sidebar or in the post you're linking up
  4. Link in your favourite/best post from the week (don't just put your homepage URL)
  5. Follow at least 1 linkyer/blogger then be nice and spread the comment love



P.S. Please go and like this FB page to help support little Eden's family as she waits for a full respiratory reconstruction as a result of her and her twin sister being born at just 23 weeks gestation - there is a week long online auction starting Monday with some awesome items up for grabs!

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