Time flies when you're having fun with a little Punk, let me assure you. It is now August... AUGUST!!! I can hardly believe it but it's true. Just over a month until I turn 28. It's funny you know... I remember a time in my teens when I couldn't even IMAGINE turning 25. 25 sounded ancient and anything more than that just didn't bear thinking about. That was when I was 15 maybe, 16?
Where did I think I would be when I was 27, all the way back then...?! Well, having established that 27 was too old to ever want to be, I'll settle for where I thought I'd be at 25. What and who I thought I would be.
There were a lot of dreams. Dreaming is one of the things I do the very best. Most dreams saw me living in the city, in an apartment. I remember fantasising about driving (small car, hatchback perhaps, red) home to my apartment & getting out & walking up the stairs wearing a business clothes. Don't ask me what sort of job I would have had... somehow I never got to that part. The most important part was to be living in a city. At 16 I lived in a tiny country town which I hated with a passion, nothing seemed more exciting that city life.
And here I am. Recently returned to another country town. Not as small as that one from my teens, but certainly no city. The time for city life and apartment living has come and gone (and I did love it, just as much as I always knew I would), as has the time for living in a shack on the Hawksbury River with an outside bathroom, the time for living in a boarding house on my own in an unknown town, the time for living by the beach with salt in the air, the time for living in a unit amongst hundreds of others with paper-thin walls, the time for living in an old house in the mountains where it occasionally snowed, the time for living on a well heeled street in the suburbs... now is the time for renting a house with an abnormally large backyard, keeping chickens and playing with toys, while saving ever so slowly to buy a house with an abnormally large backyard for keeping chickens in and lots of room for playing with toys.
I can't say I imagined this life... not a 16. Later I definitely would have dreamt of a simpler life... I have a dirty little hippie buried deep inside somewhere, but I was never one of those girls who dreamed of having kids and living happily ever after. I can't honestly say why - whether I thought that 'happily ever after' was an unobtainable myth, or whether I just couldn't imagine meeting a little child that didn't annoy the hell out of me... Definitely I was extraordinarily selfish and self absorbed, I think you'd be hard pressed to find too many teenage girls that aren't, so that could be why. Perhaps even then I realised that to have a child or even a handsome prince, would mean that the story wouldn't be all about me anymore.
It's a cliche to say that I love my life even though I never planned it this way, but cliches are cliches because they occur over and over again in life, and for something to keep happening like that, well, there must be a reason. You just cannot imagine the impact of having a child of your own until you have one. Even when you're expecting a child, when there is no escaping your massive belly, constant heartburn & aching legs, you have no idea. You are still you and for you, albeit much heavier and with more erratic hormones. You don't know even when you are in the throes of labour, the pain (and it is pain, no matter what they say... I tried that calm birth visualisation hoodoo... bah humbug!!) is yours and yours alone.
You know, the moment you hold your baby. You know that from then on, your life is not your own. You know that the tiny person you have clutched to your breast will hold your heart in their hands for the rest of your life. You know that their pain will be your pain and that their joy will be your joy, and you could not be happier about it.
So. This is where I am. Sometimes I miss city life. Sometimes I miss the unfettered life I had before I was a mother. But, the more I take the time to enjoy the little things in the here and now, the more I forget about that time, and I would not, even for a second, give up what I have now to go back. Instead I look towards the future, with a sticky little hand in my own. (Take that 16 year old me! :P)
Right! What have we been up to in those missing months...?!
Hibernating, mostly. It's been so cold here & The Boy got his licence which meant we got a car and walking everywhere was no longer necessary. Unfortunately that has meant that we walk hardly anywhere, that goes for riding the bike too. It's just so cold all the time, and not only that, it looks like it is going to rain almost every second of every day... Sometimes it does & sometimes it doesn't but the problem is you never can tell.
For the most part I don't mind hibernating. Punky seems happy enough with a run around the yard, a bout of drawing, tickle matches & a session of Yo Gabba Gabba, which is just as well as we gave up on the swimming lessons for a term and a half. First lesson again tomorrow - we've already missed 3 this term so I can honestly say I am not entirely looking forward to tomorrow mornings inquisition about where we've been and why we've not been attending. I don't think the truth (I am a lazy slob) will go down too well. Perhaps I should invent a tragic imaginary illness for a tragic imaginary great Aunt or something.
I thought I would post here again because funnily enough, while trying to start an entirely different blog to do with my solely crafty exploits, I revisited this one & enjoyed reading it, the little there is of it to read mind you.
For instance, I'd forgotten all about making the sushi... that wasn't terribly fun but it was an experience & I'm glad I wrote about it.
Another experience I don't want to forget; A couple of days ago Punky and I decided we needed to use up some of the eggs our chookies are so graciously supplying for us, so we emptied the cupboard of anything and everything we could possibly use for baking; flour, sultanas, dates, sugar etc and scoured our op shop rescued old school cookbooks & found a recipe for Date Loaf.
(From a cover-less, yellowed, water damaged, "crispy", copy of The Commonsense Cookery Book, compiled by the Public Schools Cookery Teachers' Association of NSW, reprinted in 1957, with some of the best cooking related advertisements I have ever seen)
- 2 cups flour.
- 1/2 cup sugar.
- 1 cup dates.
- 1 level dessertspoon baking powder.
- 1 egg.
- Small cup milk.
- 2 level tablespoons butter.
- Pinch of Salt.
- Beat butter and sugar to a cream.
- Add well-beaten egg.
- Add milk gradually.
- Add chopped dates.
- Stir in lightly the flour, baking powder and salt sifted.
- Half fill greased tin.
- Bake in a moderate oven 3/4 of an hour.
What we did differently; Well, firstly, nothing was "beaten" more sort of "squished" together by The Little Punk's courageous mixing efforts. The dessertspoon measurement was taken to mean an actual dessertspoon but it was later discovered that it was something like 1/2 a tablespoon... why they wouldn't just write that I don't know... Baking paper instead of greasing the tin and a moderate oven was probably not wholly achieved. By and large however the experience was a good one and we ended up with a delicious, if not terribly photogenic, date loaf.
We also made a half dozen sultana cupcakes but they were even less photogenic & even more yummy... ;)