Monthly Archives: January 2013

School Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s Resolutions…

I don’t make them.

I think I have, in the past but they are futile to me.

 

Instead, I make School Year’s Resolutions.

 

 

If you’ve read my blog, you’ll know that I’m a Teacher.

 

What this means to me is that the holidays, at home with the kids, are a complete write-off.  Nothing gets done, I’m always chasing my tail, I’m stressed, I’m tired and my little retro home becomes a little retro mess.

 

I take my hat off to the mums and dads who stay at home.

It’s bloody Hard WORK.

 

 

I come into my own when school starts.

 

I refine my processes regularly and see each new day as a fresh challenge.  Getting My Man out the door to work, getting the kids off to day care and school, dressed and hopefully fed.  Making myself look normal, fashionable even, so the teenage girls don’t pick on me in class, (seriously – a bad outfit is very distracting).  I’ve got mental checklists in my head, bags to pack, uniforms to iron and lunch boxes to assemble, all before 7.15am

 

School to me, means organisation and I’m one of the small percentage of people who love it.

 

So every year, I make School Year‘s Resolutions.

 

Here they are:

 

Family

 

1.  I will be organised for the next day, from the night before.
2.  I will wake up early.
3.  I will be punctual because mornings are going to be tranquil and methodical.
4.  I will do a grocery shop once a week so I don’t have to buy my lunch.
5.  I will cook once every two day and work out some kind of healthy, easy meal plan.

 

 

Personal

 

6.    I will do two late days at work to catch up, prepare, mark work and do all the things I’m not able to do during the school day.
7.    I will run, as per my pact with Mummy Loves to Run and Very Busy Super Mumma, on Mondays and Fridays, or whenever possible.
8.    I will do some volunteer work in my new community.
9.    I will make and keep all personal arrangements including but not limited to, hair and beauty appointments as well as shopping dates with myself and time with my friends.
10.  I will continue to blog between one and two times a week.

 

 

Anyone who has any involvement with a school will know what a highly structured environment it can be.  There are strict deadlines, start and finish times, bells that tell you when to move, when to eat even…  If you don’t factor yourself into the day, you can become lost in it.

 

So that is how I roll, term after term.

I try…

 

Does the beginning of the school year mark a big change in your routine and mindset?

What are your tricks?

 

Robo X

 

Blogging today with #IBOT over at Essentially Jess.


Privileged

The breeze has finally hit tonight and My Man has invited me to go outside with him to enjoy it.  I will, just not yet.  I feel instead, like writing about and sharing, how privileged I feel in this country, today.

 

Three ideas:

 

One

I posted the other day about the hardships faced by some of us.  How some people can’t afford the bare necessities in life.  It was a sad story and as I said, I hope to never encounter one like it again.

I feel privileged in this country, today because I was free to write about the incident and express how it made me feel.  I shared the story with my blogging community and it was instantly embraced.  People empathised and shared their own views and stories and I learnt that I can make a small difference, somewhere, with a few words.

 

Privileged.

 

 

Two

Ita Buttrose is Australian of the Year – a Woman, a voice, a beacon.

I feel privileged in this country, today because a pioneer, a Woman who has achieved prominence in our society for her robust nature and innovation, has been selected.  What a role model for all Australians!  A national treasure!

 

Privileged again.

 

 

Three

Another blog introduced me to an important initiative – a movement where all Women are invited to wear a hijab for a day.  It’s all about discrimination versus inclusivity, breaking down barriers.

I feel privileged in this country, today because it’s happening, without fear and with support, outreaching strangers.  It wouldn’t be possible in certain other countries.  Some Muslim Women and Girls around the world, do not have the right to use their voice, yet in our democratic country they can be heard and lead and contribute to society, as much as they please.

 

Privileged once more.

 

So before I go out to enjoy this midnight breeze, I have this one hope…

I hope you, like me, you feel absolutely beyond privileged to live in this country, today.  And everyday.

 

Happy Australia Day.

 

Robo X

Linking up with Cooker and a Looker for Australia Day

 


Yesterday, at Westfield

Yesterday, at Westfield, I saw something that I hope to never see again.

 

A woman up ahead caught my attention because I noticed what she was wearing.  It was the kind of thing I wanted to buy for work; a long dress, bright, comfy and most importantly, easy to wear.

 

Her hair was tied back casually and her two gorgeous boys, around 7 and 10, were beside her, both wearing caps, with the cutest of cute rats tails, poking out beneath them.

 

All seemingly fine, all seemingly normal.

 

There were small groups of people however, gathered, whispering quietly and pointing rather discreetly and I could tell all was not right in Westfieldland that day.  I can speak Greek and by sheer coincidence, I overheard the word, έκλεψε, meaning, ‘she stole’.

 

I followed the gaze of the crowd to the Mum in the nice dress.  To her left there was a police officer, escorting her along gently and walking slightly ahead there was another, rubber gloves on, carrying a well-worn handbag and two new colourful backpacks, the tags still dangling off the zippers.

 

My first thought:  What the fuck?

What kind of a country do we live in if a Mum has to shoplift and quite possibly, enlist her kids to do the same?

 

My intuition however, told me I was not looking at a career criminal.  My gut and those tags on the backpacks, spelled that this poor woman has two kids about to return to school and doesn’t have the cash to get them the shit they need.

 

My heart bled.

 

I wanted to run up and plead with the police, ‘Here’s fifty bucks for the bags, just let her off!”

 

Of course I didn’t.  Instead, I left the huddled whispers and turned down the corridor to my car, away from this undeserving Mum, her two deprived kids and their bleak immediate future.

 

I couldn’t stop thinking about her.  She was probably charged with shoplifting and now, would have to come up with money, that she didn’t even have in the first place, to pay for court costs and fines, not to mention the costly and inconceivable humiliation to be endured from her family.

 

And her kids.  All kids deserve to start the year free of anxiety, with fresh stationery, a clean uniform and a bag for all their gear.  A student’s job is to learn at school, not worry about whether Mum or Dad can afford their equipment.

 

As a Teacher, it would be unethical for me to write specifically about some of the situations I have seen.  But I will say this.  There are students who have nothing.  No pens, no lunch, no uniform.  They don’t have rulers, or calculators, so they can’t do Maths.  They don’t bring books, so their reading and comprehension is lacking.  They don’t have the right shoes on, so for their own safety they can’t do Science or TAS (Home Science/Industrial Arts).  They are a little unkempt, so they may be bullied and at times they may bully others.

 

You can spot this kid in a room of 30 students and it is always heart breaking.

 

With another school year on the horizon, I’m going to be more attentive to this plight than ever before.  I’ve already gathered up a big box of spare pens and stationery and I’ll be leaving it on my desk for the year.

 

I take it for granted that I can run over to Westfield and buy whatever my kids need.  Undies, socks, school supplies, a cheap toy as a special treat but I wonder, how many other Mums, like the one I saw, are forced to shoplift basic items, like a backpack for their kids.

 

I’ll be taking my box load of stationery to school on Tuesday.

It would be very cool if you can look around at the things you don’t need and do the same.

 

Robo X

 

Flogging my Blog, #FYBF, over at With Some Grace


How to see the Specialist, quickly

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Some time ago I had a small medical emergency. 

After experiencing ongoing pain, I visited my Doctor who sent me for an ultrasound.  From there, I was given a referral to a Specialist and told to advise the Receptionist that I needed to be seen, stat.

 

By the grace of God, the Receptionist was able to fit me in within the week and thankfully, after I was seen, I was given the all clear.

 

 

My 4 year old has been experiencing hearing problems for some time now.  People put it down to cheekiness, or a lack of concentration but my gut told me it was something more sinister.  I could tell by his demeanour and his reactions and responses, that it was not merely a case of selective hearing.  I visited my GP again who agreed and wrote me a referral to a paediatric ENT Specialist.

 

There was a four month wait for that guy.  Four months!

Apparently, during Summer, Doctor takes a holiday, so there is a halt on non-emergency consultations, leaving an enormous backlog of patients.  

Was this standard?  I had no idea.

My son’s hearing difficulty was starting to impact him more severely, so I knew I didn’t want to wait another four months.

 

 

I started to call around to different clinics and was given a variety of time frames, ranging from two months through to a five month wait!  If I live in Sydney and the wait is this extensive, I could only imagine the anguish that people in remote areas must endure. 

I promised myself that in my next life I would return as a Specialist.

 

 

Again, by the grace of God, and after a dozen conversations with a dozen Receptionists, I found a clinic that could take us during the following week and better still, perform the much needed Grommets procedure, early in 2013.  As Google told me that this Specialist was very reputable and experienced, my GP was more than happy to change his referral to reflect the details of the new Specialist.

 

 

So the reason for this post is to share this tip with you.

If you’re given a very long waiting time to see a Specialist, call around to see if you can find another and then get your referral adjusted.  Chances are there might be one with a shorter list, or a last minute cancellation, who can slot you in.

 

This is a really simple thing to do but something I didn’t think about until I was in this situation.

 

 

Robo X


My Top 5 Media Men

Reblogged for The Lounge Link-up…  Top 5 week.

Have you linked up?  This week over at Musings of the Misguided

 

The Lounge Logo

 

 

After gaining inspiration from Mumabulous’ drool-worthy post about hunks on her screen, Who’s Who, (December 2012), I thought I’d treat you, my lovely Reader, to a slice of Media magic, the guilty indulgence I treat myself to when I um, watch The News.

 

 

If this post was entitled, My Top 5 Banking Men, My Man would be The Shizzle Fo Sho!  But Bankers, on the whole, are unfortunately not as studly as the fine-looking, polished Media Men who grace my television morning and night.

 

 

Media Men  stand in front of burning buildings looking cool, they wear ponchos with a certain air of class and they look GOOD no matter where they are in the world, or what they’re reporting.

 

 

They’re sophisticated, worldly, well-spoken and some, aesthetically, are very pleasing to the senses.

 

Major Eye Candy.

 

Let’s face it, between the wars and the GFC, the news is 99 percent depressing, so we might as well have a hottie as our bearer of bad news.

 

 

So here it is.  My Top 5 Media Men.  Happy Reading!

 

And Thanks again to Mumabulous for her Hot List inspiration!

 

 

5.  David Campbell

 

I wasn’t going to put Davo on the list, being just a TV presenter and all but then again, Mornings does show the news and I’m good at drawing those long bows.  He’s also filled in for Karl on Today a few times so he’s getting a handle on the whole Media thing.

 

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Dave’s a cocky hottie and he’s a triple threat to some degree, singer, dancer, stage actor.  He bounces off Sonia Kruger in the mornings like a rubber ball and is actually pretty pleasant to watch.  Becoming a married family man seems to have relaxed David and he’s come into his own.  Being Barnesy’s son hardly rates a mention these days.

 

A talented all rounder, I’m happy to have him on my TV.

 

 

4.  Peter Stefanovic

 

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Mrs Stefanovic must be one proud Mum.  Three strapping lads, all working in the Media.  Young Peter is one of my favourites.  He has a good strong work ethic and travels from pillar to post, delivering  good news and bad news, to me in my living room.

 

He keeps it together whilst braving blizzards and bombs and he has that Hugh Grantness about him, too; a quick wit and consistently dishevelled.  Pete radiates that Stefanovic charm that many know and love.

 

Not a bad little Correspondent and another Media cutie I can handle on my telly.

 

 

3.  Karl Stefanovic

 

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Karl is a Gold Logie winning spunk rat.  Often found donning the brown trench coat, Disaster Karl, as My Man likes to call him, chases catastrophes, both natural and unnatural, around the globe.  Even though his ‘Cass’ arse’ comments at The Logies were crass  and the article below is just plain weird, he always manages to put a smile on my face.

 

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Karlos has boyish humour and laughs at his own jokes and he always looks so damn tired, it’s redeeming.  He tries on out of context humour with the Dalai Lama and he goes to air pissed as a fart, but he’s a funny bloke and not a bad bit of eye candy for those early mornings.

 

The Channel Nine Golden Boy.

 

 

 2.  Hamish MacDonald

 

His website proudly boasts News Junkie but I think it should say, News Hottie.

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He provides a pleasant surprise whenever does guest spots on The Project and he’s just been pronounced, Media Personality of the Year.

 

As far as I’m concerned, Hamish is the kingpin of the late night news arena.  He has Scottish genes, a dreamy accent from years spent as a roving reporter and he speaks several languages that he picked up whilst travelling through the Middle East.

 

Hamish McDonald is One Fine News Anchor.  I implore Channel Ten, More Hamish please! And earlier too!

 

 

And Robomum’s Top Media Man is…

 

 

Denham Hitchcock

 

Denham is the Channel Nine US reporter who tops my Hot List any day of the week.  He takes politics and tragedies in his stride, a man’s man who looks more like an action hero than a Journo.

 

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Broad shoulders and tanned skin, he looks more like a Greek God than a Media man.  You get me?

 

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Personally, I don’t know why this guy is hidden away overseas.  I think he’d be splendid next to Karl and the girls on Today.  And did I mention s those broad shoulders..?

 

And his name, Denham….

 

So refined.

 

So bring on the next US election I say, so we can see more of this modelesque Media Man.

 

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With my knowledge of Media Men limited to NSW, I’m interested to hear who you think would make the top 5?

Any contenders from interstate?  Anyone I’ve missed?

 

Robo X

 

P.S. Please email me for the image source list.

 


Huggles in Bed: Stocks are Limited!

The temperature finally dropped last night.

After a day of relentless heat, a houseful of kids (other people’s as well as my own) and more moments than one where I noticed my inner thighs rubbing together, (must do something about that), I was physically drained; energy zapped from my body like a dead battery.

 

So at 10.30pm, you can imagine my surprise when I went off to reacquaint myself with my pillow and found a sleep-fighting Mr 4. 

“I can’t sweeep”, he whined.  “Can I sweeep wif yooouu?”

 

I quickly weighed up my odds:  Good night’s sleep versus argument and tears…

 

“Will this be the last time?”  I asked in a cautionary tone.

My answer, an indignant little head nod, purposefully, up and down, like Bobby from The Brady Bunch.

“Go on then!”

 

So, as Mr 4 is the best little cuddler, (huggler), in the St George region, together we slept, immediately and restfully….

 

…Until 3am, when I was awakened by a little cry from the other room. 

I trudged across to check on Little Miss. 

‘You’ll be two in a couple of weeks’, I thought, staring down at her in her cot.

My little baby.

 

 

My Man and I decided long ago, that two kids would be our lot in life. 

We assumed, that by only having two kids, it might be easier to get back on track financially and career wise and it would mean that we wouldn’t have to make any major modifications to our place, cars etc…

What’s that saying? When you assume, you make an ass out of you and me.

 

We feel very blessed with our healthy pigeon pair and at this point, they are a rewarding and manageable duo.   Something tells me that another baby might tip us over the edge into Frazzledom, at least for the first few years…

 

 

I stroked Little Miss’ skin, she was cool.  I was never into intentional co-sleeping with my kids.  ‘Don’t touch the baby while it’s sleeping’ was and still is my mantra but last night, I couldn’t resist. 

After all, she is about to turn two. 

 

I scooped her up from her cot and together we huggled on Mr 4’s big boy bed (a single).  I breathed in that beautiful smell; Avon* baby hair detangler and rubbery dummy.  The best smell on earth.

I stroked her hair as I got kicked in the boob and hugged that portly little torso, while a tuft of fringe was removed from my head.  Co-sleeping has its perils. 

Eventually she settled high on the pillows and I was able to rest the side of my face gently against her plump little thigh.  A perfect, most heavenly pillow.

 

I know from my own experience as a daughter, that huggle time in bed with Mum and Dad has an expiration date, so until that point, I’m going to huggle my butt off at every given opportunity and drink in those incredible smells and experiences of closeness, as deeply as I can.

 

How do you feel about you baby/ies growing older?  When did huggling in bed stop for you?

 

Robomum X

 

* Not a sponsored post, I promise but this detangling spray smells just like green apples and it’s the Freaking Bomb!  So if you find yourself an Avon Lady (or Man), do yourself a favour…


Thanks Blog! Love, Me X

Entering the blogging arena has brought about big changes.  Things appear unaltered on the outside but internally, I’ve relented and I am keeping the promise I made to myself late last year.  I’ve factored Me into the equations of daily life, (most days) and I’ve set aside time, much needed time, just for Me. 

 

 

Miraculously, my kids have started sleeping at a reasonable hour and I am now the proud recipient of between one and three hours nightly, to do as I please.  Of course much of this time involves cleaning, washing and ironing but I’m working on that. 

 

 

Sometimes this time is spent flat out on the lounge, watching mind-numbing TV, recovering from the exhaustion of being Mum but I’m working on that too.

 

 

As a full time teacher, class preparation is often completed in my own time but I’ve relaxed my approach to lesson planning and I’m viewing it with fresh perspective; my old passion.  So I’m working on that as well.

 

 

And sometimes, during these new found hours of freedom, I blog.

 

 

Blogging has brought peace.  It has reignited my thirst for reading and personal learning and it has awakened my appetite for writing and sharing.

 

 

I have not blogged as much as I could have over the last three months.  I thought I would be unstoppable, with words pouring out of my head at an alarming rate. 

It hasn’t happened. 

 

 

Instead, I’ve spent a great deal of time reading and leaving lots of blogging love. I’ve discovered #IBOT and #FYBF and other amazing forums, bursting with so many remarkable people and their stories.  A procrastinator from way back, when I sit down to write, I often find that I’m unable to take my eyes of my screen; I’m completely immersed in someone else’s story.

 

 

Blogging is a special new hobby.  It provides freedom, serenity and appreciation for all that I have and all the things I can do.  I’m grateful for the menialities and banalities of each day and incredibly pleased that I can write about these events, reflect on some of the little aspects that make up my existence and share them with you.

 

 

So, Thanks Blog! Love, Me X

 

 

Happy New Year to you!

I hope it brings lots of Freedom, Serenity and Appreciation…

And of course lots of Blog Words and Love.

 

Linking up with #IBOT today, even though it’s Wednesday…