settled (in a fashion)

Wow! What a month it’s been.

As briefly mentioned in a previous post, we have moved in to our new place. I like to call it Legolandia. Let me describe the neighbourhood for you…

Double garage. Double garage. Double garage. Double garage…

It’s a bit soul destroying really.

Thankfully, while the view out the front is as I’ve just described, the view out the back glass doors is this.

Which redeems the place somewhat.

We have moved and unpacked (pretty much) everything. The house is huge, and we haven’t got much furniture* so the house echoes. The already noisey sprog noise is amplified, so I’m keen to get some quilted wall hangings on the walls to deaden the sound a bit – which is an achievable goal** now that I have a dedicated sewing/art room (squee!).

My sewing room isn’t properly set up yet, unfortunately it’s not been able to be a priority yet since I had some assignments to do and the more practical areas of the house to set up. Now all of that is done, and so I can get on to sorting out my fabric stash and setting up my machine. For all these excuses, since the rest of the house was unpacked and my assignments handed in I have lacked the motivation to set my room up, some days I could probaby find snippets of time to do little bits here and there which would all add up to a functional and productive space in no time, but I haven’t really felt very driven to take those opportunities.

Being in this house has been a bit of a challenge for me, particularly as it hits me that we’re staying in Albany for another year (well, 11 months now, but who’s counting huh?). It’s not beautiful. Not to me. It feels like I’m visiting someone else, it doesn’t feel like my home. I’m fully aware this is such a wanky, middle class thing to whinge about… but indulge me, please?

The yard is bare. Builder’s sand, dead lawn and some very sick looking lavender bushes. That’s certainly saying something… when do you ever see sick looking lavender bushes? Lavender is so hardy!

I’m working on it though… My pot plants all together on the back patio make that part of the yard look beautiful, and at the weekend I transplanted a heap of gotu kola into the bare space between the path and retaining wall down the side of the house. At the top of the same retaining wall I planted some native violet. I chose them because they both survive well in low light situations and that area only gets direct sunlight for around 1-2 hours per day. Soon they’ll both begin spreading to fill that space and add beauty to the view from the sprogget’s playroom. Planting the gotu kola there means I can harvest it more frequently than I have been able to harvest it from a pot since there’ll simply be more of it to harvest, and it won’t be able to spread too far since the growing space is contained by retaining wall and pavers. Out the front on a steep hill where there has been some pretty bad erosion caused by foot traffic killing the grass I also planted some rosemary (a prostrate variety that spreads to 2m and a bushy variety), with some pennyroyal (spreading) and yarrow (spreading). I want to stabilise that hill before Winter brings heavy rains that will wash all that sand down to our front door.

Indoors it is not beautiful either. The fittings are cheap and the workmanship is poor. I suppose it’s really to be expected when you build a huge house for very little money but it still irritates me that the carpenters didn’t hang the doors straight, the plasterers left gaps in the cornices and the electricians put the light switches in illogical places because it would use less wiring and therefore be cheaper. The floor is cheap vinyl, printed to look like wood. It’s torn and heavily marked in some areas, making it look even more tacky than it would have the day it was laid! Places like this seem so soul less to me. Still, as with the yard we are working on it…

We are doing what we can to make this soul less space a little more ours. To fill it with a bit of our soul.  There are some picture hooks on some of the walls, and so we print some of Bean’s photos to hang. There is a large jarrah dresser in the living area that came with the house, it has become home to my dipensary. Tinctures, dried herbs, essential oils, carrier oils, clays, ointments, creams, pure plant incense… I think it is beautiful, and it is convenient too since we use items from my dispensary every day.

I am trying to love this place as our “for now” home, and trying to think of it as more than simply a stage to wait out until a better life comes along. Some days that’s easy, and some days it’s terribly hard.

Today has been a nice day, we had rain overnight which cleared to bring us a sunny, warm day that was perfect for playing at the park which we did twice. There was more laughing than crying today, more co-operation than argument, and lots of love. The love is always there though, even on the days we all cry and argue…

We’re doing our best, I’m doing my best, to enjoy right now and to be very grateful for what we do have,  and right now that is a home that is much larger and more comfortable than the shed. Being rid of the shed is something I am particularly grateful for!

 

 

*Our mattress got mouldy at the shed so Sprout is the only person in our family who actually has a bed and mattress at the moment, the rest of us sleep on the floor!

**Provided the owner agrees to let us put some hooks up.

posted by wildecrafted in garden,home,journal and have No Comments

happy international women’s day

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moving (again!)

Squee! We’re moving from the shed into a house this weekend! We just found out today…

This will be the eleventh time Bean and I have moved since we got together just over 5 years ago. We’re kinda moving ninjas after all those moves.

This time we’re moving alone, with the exception of a friend helping to get the fridge and washing machine onto the trailer at the shed end due to the awkward and uneven nature of the terrain here. The friend in question is quite a bit bigger and stronger than I am, so we’ve requested his assistance for the two largest, most awkward items.

I’m so excited to be moving. The house isn’t in Denmark, where I wanted to move to when we first left Perth for the south coast 10 months ago, but it’s another stepping stone and I feel comfortable with the decision to sign a 12 month lease here in Albany. TWELVE MONTH LEASE IN ALBANY! Eeep. Did I really say I was comfortable with that?

Well, yes. Yes I did.

The house we’re moving to is not at all our style. It’s a lego-land house with a big double garage right out the front. It’s new and has four bedrooms and two bathrooms. We would never buy a house like it, not in a million years, but it is simply perfect for us to rent right now.

It’s 1.3km from the hospital construction site that Bean is working at, and will be working at for the next year at the very least so he can ride his bike to work and come home for lunch every day. It’s new and therefore requires no maintenance from us, meaning we can spend our spare time pursuing our passions rather than maintaining someone else’s house. The garden is simply empty beds and parched lawn so we know that they’ll be in better condition when we leave than they are now, no matter what. It has a double garage which means the kombis will finally be parked under cover when we’re home after 10 months of being parked out in the rain which has made them so much rustier than they were when we moved here. The garage and the close proximity to Liam’s work also mean that we can take them off the road one at a time and do some serious restoration work on them which we have been hanging out to do for so, so long now. The four bedrooms mean that Sprout can have her own bedroom, which she has been saying she would like ever since the novelty of first moving in to the shed wore off, about a month into it! It means we’ll have room for family and friends to stay if they want to visit us, which we haven’t been able to offer since moving into the shed. The best bit though (for me)… It also means I can have a studio. My own space to sew, to study, to do art journaling. Oh I am so, so excited about that bit.

We did consider moving to Denmark. We put a lot of thought into it because I really, really wanted it. We decided though that for now, with Bean about to begin doing a couple of hours overtime every day and with the debt that we have to service, the commute from and back to Denmark five days a week is just too much. That’s an extra 10 hours a week that Bean would be away from us while traveling to and from work and it’s 500km per week worth of petrol and wear on Van Halen as well. We have chosen our need to spend more time together as a family and to spend more money on debt repayments over our strong desire to move to Denmark.

We know we’ll get there one day and this move, this job that Bean is doing, it’s all just a stepping stone. We’ve got some loose ends to tie up and this is part of that. For now, we feel confident this is going to be a very good move.

I’ll see you on the other side of it all…

posted by wildecrafted in home and have Comments (9)

being heard

As I wrote in my last post, this week I formally withdrew from my naturopathy course. In response to my withdrawal the head of the college in Perth called me to discuss my reasons. She listened to my complaints about doing units I don’t believe in, and about the miscommunication that meant I did 3 units last semester that I was eligible for recognition of prior learning on – a total waste of money, time and energy.

She also listened to me tell her I didn’t want to be a naturopath, that I’d orginally asked to do a herbal medicine (including aromatherapy) and nutritional medicine double degree, but had been convinced to go for naturopathy which covers both herbal medicine and nutritional medicine in much less detail than the specialised degrees with the addition of a couple of units of homoeopathy and the use of homoeopathy in other units. She then offered to take a look at my previous academic records and reassess my eligibility for recognition of prior learning against the course framework for the Bachelors of Health Science in Western Herbal Medicine and Nutritional Medicine. My previous recognition of prior learning assessment had been against the naturopathy framework.

The head of the college is visiting my campus in a couple of weeks where she’ll sit down with me and listen to what I want, see how we can make it work, and whether I want to make it work.

At the very least I’d like to further my Advanced Diploma of Western Herbal Medicine to become a Bachelor of Health Science (Western Herbal Medicine) with some further study, because the reality is that the natural therapies industry is changing and pretty soon an Advanced Diploma may not be enough, the standard is changing to be a degree. Down the track it’d be nice to have the degree to fall back on, should the need arise.

I still doubt I’d pursue a career as a clinic based natural therapist, but that’s just one of several ways to use a natural therapies qualification professionally, though I am interested in writing articles for industry journals and perhaps furthering my training that little bit more to enable me to lecture at natural therapy colleges or supervise student clinics in future.

Anyhow, continuing my studies is back on the table, provided it can be arranged that I can pursue the nutritional and herbal streams while leaving behind the homoeopathy. Time to get negotiating. I’m so glad I got a second opinion on the whole thing, instead of believing that naturopathy is the only option for me…

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unschool monday – withdrawal

It’s been a few weeks now since Lauren has put an end to the Unschool Monday meme she hosted at Owlet, but I’m going to write one last Unschool Monday post simply because I’ve got something to say about unschooling and it happens to be Monday!

Seven months ago I wrote about my decision to return to formal study. I planned to “upgrade” my herbal medicine qualification to a naturopathy qualification and it was only going to take me around 12-18 months. I’ve recently decided to withdraw from the course and I made that official today.

There are so many reasons, but it all really comes down to the rather simple fact that I don’t really want to be a naturopath. I’m heading in a different direction and so I’m happy with the herbal medicine qualification I currently have. Currently I’m able to help my family and my friends with the knowledge I’ve already gained from 10 years of formal and informal study and that’s really all I want out of natural medicine so there’s little point in continuing just to finish the naturopathy degree.

The primary difference between the qualification I have and the qualification I was working toward is homoeopathy. I don’t want to practice homoeopathy. I’m very skeptical of homoeopathy and it just doesn’t have a place in my life. I’ve tried to include it, but my passionate belief lies with herbs and nutritional therapies.

The last 7 months haven’t been wasted though, it’s been great to revisit this study because I’d be forever wondering if I should return to it had I not given it another go. Now I am certain I don’t want to work as a natural therapist in a clinic situation and I’m really excited to close the book on that chapter of my life and move forward to the next adventure.

posted by wildecrafted in education and have Comments (5)

camping disasters – an epic – part two

Continued on from here.

It was about 1.30pm when Bean left. Given that we had no mobile phone reception that far out of town I didn’t bother getting my phone out of the car when he left and I don’t wear a watch these days so I wasn’t able to keep track of time. I knew it’d take him about 45 minutes to get back into town and then at least half an hour to get a car trailer organised, another 45 minutes back out to the car and yet another 45 minutes back out the camp site, so I wasn’t expecting him back for a while anyway, no point clock watching.

A while later the sprogs were getting cold after swimming for so long and they were asking for food so I took them back to the camp site with the intention of cooking an early dinner. At the camp site I was met with several food related problems…

The ice in the esky had melted already and the food was begining to get warm.

The esky had become a temporary ant’s nest (I thought eskies were well sealed too!?).

The frypan, bowls, plates, mugs and cutlery were all still unwashed from the previous night’s and that morning’s meals, and to top it all off the dishwashing detergent was in the kombi on the side of the highway several kilometres away!

By this stage the overtired, disappointed sprogs were complaining loudly about their empty tummies so I gave them a banana each. The camp site was in the belting sun, no shade at all, so we hid out in the hot tent and ate bananas until the whole 2kgs of bananas that we’d brought with us were gone. Dinner could wait until Bean got back with the dishwashing liquid and some ice for the esky. Until then, the esky would stay closed to conserve whatever chill was left in the water that half filled it.

Sprout asked me when her bed would be made up, and I told her it couldn’t happen until her Dad got back with the air mattress pump and the bedding.

Moe asked me for more food.

I asked a passerby what the time was. Twenty to six.

Wow. I had expected that Bean would be back by then. I had asked him if he thought it’d be best if we all went, just in case he needed some help, or something came up and he couldn’t let me know about it. He didn’t think it was fair to expect the sprogs to sit in the for hours all over again, not after the previous 24 hours. I had to agree, and hope that things went smoothly for him.

At twenty to six I began to curse him. Why was he not back yet? Why was I having to fend for myself at a camp site with two cranky, hungry kids and some vital camping stuff missing from the equation?

After eating some nuts the sprogs and I went for a walk. We asked someone at a neighbouring camp site what the time was. It was 6.30pm. The man asked me if I was ok and it was then that the dam broke and a floor of tears poured forth.

No, I most certainly was not ok. My partner left 5 hours ago to deal with our broken down car, it shouldn’t take so long, he wouldn’t leave us for that long without bedding at the very least. He would have been eager to get back to us. I was very worried something had happened and I had no way of contacting him. The men and woman at my neighbouring camp site were very kind, and well set up. They assured me that sometimes things like moving cars take longer than we anticipate and they lent me their satellite phone to call Bean, but the call went straight through to message bank. He was probably out of range. It’d be ok, but oh how it felt like it wouldn’t be. I was so worried about him. My camp site neighbours called their adult daughter who lived in town and asked her to go around to our house and see if he was there, or if the kombi had made it back at the very least, then to call the police and see if there had been any accidents reported.

Finally, just after 7pm, Bean pulled into our camp site in his parent’s car. I felt so relieved, and so furious. I thanked my neighbours and went and cried and swore at Bean.

We got the air beds inflated and begged some dishwashing liquid from another neighbouring camp site. Washed up what we could, salvaged what we could from the ant infested esky, filled it with a new bag of ice that Bean had grabbed in town and put it inside the tent, safe from further ant attacks. For dinner we had more sausages and some hashbrowns. By this stage I had given up feeling stressed about the complete lack of nutrient value in the dinners we’d provided our children for two nights in a row. We warmed up some water for face, hand and feet washing then got the sprogs into bed at around 9.30pm.

Bean and I then sat down to drink a mug of hot chocolate each and take a breather and catch up on the incredibly stressful afternoons we’d both had. I cried. Oh how I cried. This is not what camping is supposed to be like! I love camping. I’m supposed to be having a nice time. I thought you were dead. I want to go home. Please can we give up now and go home tomorrow morning… Oh how miserable I was.

The tent flapped in the wind all night long, and coupled with the mosquitos that had made it into our tent, made for a sleepless night for me.

At 5am Sprout woke up crying. She was hungry and really wanted food.

Bean tried to keep her quiet but she woke Moe anyway. After much coaxing and some cursing they were both asleep again and we got another hour of sleep before the day had to begin.

Bean took Sprout and Moe to the water’s edge for some fishing while I stayed at the camp and did some journalling. They were back soon after, having given up because stress levels were already high and Bean had become sick of explaining to Sprout that fishing wasn’t as simple as casting out and reeling back in immediately to find a fish fillet at the end of the line!

Bean agreed with me that it was time to go home. Only, by that time I wanted to try to salvage the weekend. Our helpful neighbours had left and they had a much better camp site than ours, with a path right down the hill to the water’s edge and some shade too. We decided to move our camp once more, but just 100 metres this time, not 20kms! Down came the tent, and back up again.

The ice in our crappy esky had melted again so we needed to head back to the general store for more. We went for a quick swim, had a snack and all hopped in the car, hoping that the sproggets would sleep on the way there. Thankfully the sprogs slept, which was about the only useful thing to come out of that drive. The general store was out of ice. The closest place to get more was a further 25km away, turning a 40km round trip into a 70km round trip.

It was then that I proposed we admit defeat. That we go back to the camp and have some avocado and tinned tuna sandwiches for lunch, sacrifice the food in the esky to the warm-esky Gods and spend the afternoon by the water’s edge until the day cooled down a bit when we could then pack up our camp (yet again) and go home. Bean agreed. It was definitely time to give up.

Back at the camp we had our lunch, paddled for a while in the shallow, clear water of the beautiful Waychinicup inlet and then began our final pack up. We packed some, then we swam some, then we packed some more. We had the car packed and ready to go by 3pm so we went down to the water for one last swim before bidding good riddance to that particular camping adventure.

This camping trip cost us a lot financially. A couple of tanks full of fuel, with all the running about. A whole lot of good food wasted. Money spent rather unnecessarily on camping equipment that wasn’t quite right but was just a bit of a compromise because we needed something like it to go camping with and we wanted to go camping NOW. It’s put us in a pretty terrible position for the week ahead with several hundred dollars worth of unexpected costs and an unknown amount of damage done to my kombi. We don’t know if we can get away with simply having the carbies cleaned and/or replaced or whether she’ll need a full engine rebuild. Obviously we’ll begin with rebuilding the carbies and see how she goes.

Still, we’ve learned a lot and won’t make this disaster our last camping trip.

In future we’ll make sure we’re well set up with camping gear relevant to where we’re camping and what we want out of our camping experience. We’ll most definitely never take the word of other people who tell us that a camp site is “great”, and we’ll choose to camp only at sites we’ve seen for ourselves before we arrive with a car load of camping gear and heads full of expectations of a fabulously relaxing weekend. We live close enough to heaps of gorgeous places that we can make day trips to scope out the suitability of camp sites for future trips. We’ll also never take my poor kombi on a gravel road again, and we’ll never rely on duct tape to keep the air filter on either! I have to say, I’m rather fond of the idea of owning a satellite phone too. That would be very useful given that so many of these places don’t have mobile reception.

As far as the kombi goes, this is probably the nudge I needed to learn about the engine. I know enough about kombi bodies, but up until now I’ve shied away from learning about the mechanics, figuring that I’d learn when the time to pull the kombi off the road and restore her came*. May as well start with a carbie rebuild eh?

Photos from the nice parts of our weekend to follow in (yet) another post.

 

*The time to take my kombi off the road for restoration is getting very close by the way… Van Halen (Bean’s kombi) is probably a couple of months worth of weekend body work away from a respray and new interior then it’ll be Brigit’s turn.

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camping disasters – an epic – part one

This week Bean had Thursday and Friday off work so we decided to make the most of the four day weekend and go camping.  I should be sleeping in a tent again tonight yet here I am, at home, Saturday night recovering from the trauma of our prematurely aborted camping adventure.We really shouldn’t have even let it go on as long as we did, in hindsight the wisest move would have been to give up the first night.

It was truly awful. I don’t know if we could have had a more terrible time if we’d been trying!

I had been so looking forward to camping. I love camping.

We spent all of Thursday morning preparing our camping gear (most of it borrowed from Bean’s parents, some of it we already owned and the rest of it bought new) and packing the kombi before we set off around 2pm. On recommendation from Bean’s workmate we first went to Cape Riche, arriving at around 3.30pm.

Cape Riche is 18km down a corrugated gravel road, not the greatest of fun to drive down, so I’d hoped it would be great. Obviously hoping was futile because it was horrid. Black dirt everywhere, no shade, certainly no privacy and already completely full of Commodores, Falcons and four wheel drives emblazoned with Australian flags in celebration of Australia Day, a day we don’t recognise as being cause for celebration. Definitely not our scene. So, it was back down the 18km of gravel with a bump, bump, bump…

We stopped in at a general store in Wellstead and asked for advice on where to camp. We were told to try Boat Harbour 7km up the (sealed) highway and then 17km down another gravel road. A horrendously corrugated gravel road.

At Boat Harbour there was more black dirt, softer than at Cape Riche, and the poor kombi got bogged when Bean tried to turn around. Some generous folks towed us out and we discussed whether we’d stay there. Black dirt, deep water all together too close to the camp sites and very little privacy didn’t particular inspire either myself or Bean so we agreed not to camp there either. The people who pulled us out suggested another camp site but I was beginning to feel rather sceptical about taking other people’s word when they told us a camp site was “great”. It would appear that some people have differing opinions of what equates to a “great” camp site. Who’d have thought? People have different tastes! 

Back down that horrible gravel track, narrowly missing a collision with two rogue sheep, and we talked about whether we’d try somewhere else or just go home. Remembering Waychinicup, a camp site some friends had said was their favourite, we looked it up using the GPS on Bean’s phone. Brilliant! It was between home and where we were, with a short detour down yet another gravel road, so we thought we may as well check it out on the off chance it was awesome. When we got to Waychinicup and had a quick look around we realised it was indeed very nice, and also very full.

Disappointed, we drove away arguing about our next move. I was ready to go home and admit defeat, vowing never to attempt camping east of Albany again. I mean, why would I? With beautiful Denmark and Walpole lying west of Albany. Tall trees, nearby beaches, rivers… why would I choose scrubby coastal bush surrounded by brown paddocks and tree farms?!

Anyway, Bean wanted to check out the camp site suggested to us by the generous towing folks at Boat Harbour. They’d suggested Betty’s Beach, which was on the way home from Waychinicup.

Down another gravel road, we reached a point where we could turn left for Norman’s Beach or continue slightly right for Betty’s Beach. Norman’s beach was closer and by this stage it was getting late and we were a bit sick of gravel roads so we chose to turn left. Arriving at the camp site we noted some more black dirt (do we detect a theme here?), although it was in the shade so not hot under foot, and suitably private camping spots on the banks of a very shallow river.Feeling relieved that we’d at least found somewhere to pitch a tent for the night we decided to stay at least one night.

When we opened the tail gate of the kombi (one of the few doors with a brand new seal) we discovered that everything was covered in a thick layer of fine red dust from all the gravel roads. We brushed or shook off as much of the red dust as much as we could and hastily set up camp, racing against the setting sun and the ever increasing whines of tired, hungry children who’d been stuck in car seats for the past 4 hours! We hoped desperately to have food, shelter and bedding sorted before the fractious whinging became full blown meltdowns.

They coped so well really, stuck in the car with uncertainty hanging over their heads… Would we camp out? Would we go home and disappoint everyone? I was at the point of full blown meltdown and I am neither a 4 year old or a 2 year old.

Hope as we might, meltdowns did start before we had the camp properly set up so we settled for the quick dinner option of sausages with tomato sauce. No, vegetables not included. Eeep, the (rather dominant) health freak part of me wasn’t too impressed.

We then heated some river water to wash the sprogs who had managed to get themselves covered in bubble mixture and black dirt in the short time since we’d been there. We finally tucked the sprogs, and ourselves, in bed at about 10pm. What a horribly stressful afternoon!

One brilliant thing I can say about that camp site is that despite being right on the river’s edge we didn’t notice a single mosquito, very unlike our home which is just riddled with mosquitos. What a blessing! Moe reacts quite badly to mosquito bites, worse than the rest of us, so it was lovely to be outdoors of an evening and have no irritating mozzie bites to deal with.

That night Moe slept 8 hours straight. A real blessing, and a first. His longest unbroken sleep before that would have been around 6 hours. I’m still amazed that he slept so soundly on the air mattress next to me as I tossed and turned all night long, making it move a lot. At 6am he woke and the first word to escape his lips was,

“BEACH!”

We’d been telling him for days that we’d go camping at the beach and so there he was at 6am, desperate to go to the beach.

We got out our box of “just because we’re camping” cardboard flakes breakfast cereal and had a quick breakfast before grabbing the fishing gear and heading to the beach.

We’d been lulled to sleep the night before by the rhythmic crashing of the waves on the shore so we knew there’d be waves, but we were certainly not prepared for just how rough it was. It was totally unsuitable for sprogget swimming.

The river mouth provided no better swimming option either, being too hard for the sprogs to get down to.

The sprogs both cried in disappointment at how far they’d walked up a steep sand dune to get to a beach that was all together too dangerous for them so we decided to go for a day trip to Waychinicup. If we couldn’t camp there we could at least spend a nice morning there before coming back to our own camp site for lunch and a siesta.

We piled into the kombi and headed back up one gravel track and onto another, arriving at Waychinicup at 8.30am. On arrival we learned that a couple who had camped there the night before were leaving so we asked them if they’d mind us pitching our (older, smaller) spare tent at their site to claim it while we went back to our camp site at Norman’s Beach to pack up and relocate. They were very obliging so we got to it.

The swim could wait! We were going to camp there and spend three glorious days by those calm waters. It was time to get moving!

Back down the gravel track and onto the highway, and the kombi backfired somewhere along the highway. The kombi doesn’t normally backfire, and I joked that it was her way of vocalising her distaste for all the gravel roads we’d taken her down over the last 24 hours. I joked too soon…

A short way down the highway she conked out good and proper, and there was no starting her again. She really had been protesting about the gravel roads, or more to the point, the amount of red dust she’d sucked in to her engine…

My poor, faithful, reliable kombi. Oh my dear. I wanted to cry for my sweet car, that I love just a little more than a person probably should love a 41 year old hunk of metal.

After not too long a man pulled over to see if we needed help. We had condluded there’d be no fixing the kombi on the side of the road and he offered us a lift to the general store a few kilometres down the road. I declined, not wanting to take the sprogs in a car with no children’s seats. I suggested Bean go and I stay at the kombi with the sprogs. The man then told me it’d be getting unbearably hot on the side of that highway, with no chance of breeze. He’d just retired after 40 years as a cop and felt confident he could talk his way out of a fine on the off chance a police car was on the highway in the next 5kms. Not caring about a fine, but about the safety of my children I realised that the chances of having a car accident were slimmer than the chances of heat stroke from being stuck in the car for the next couple of hours (at least!) that it would take to get help 50km out of town. We decided to risk it, and strapped the sprogs in with regular seat belts.

When we got to the general store we bought ice creams and used a pay phone to call for help. To join road side assistance was going to cost more money than we had to spare and we couldn’t get through to Bean’s parents so Bean decided to hitch a ride into town to sort out some help. I stayed with the sprogs at the general store, sitting in the shade of some trees outside singing songs and making little people out of sticks, honkey nuts and dried leaves, for just over two hours until Bean came back with one of his parent’s cars.

Bean’s parents had loaned the car for the weekend so we finally moved our camp from Norman’s Beach to Waychinicup. At Waychinicup we ate a banana each then set up the tent and left it at that. The air mattresses were still deflated and the bedding left in the car. We took the sprogs for a swim at about 12.30pm then Bean left us at the water’s edge to drive back into town to get a trailer to tow the kombi home.

To be continued…

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rearranging

As a teenager I began regularly rearranging my bedroom. I didn’t thoroughly clean it often, I was an untidy little grot, but when I did I usually rearranged it too. Every couple of months I’d give my room a proper Spring clean and shift the furniture around. My bed went in the middle of the room, against different walls, next to a desk, opposite a desk… I moved things around often to try and make the best use of the space, to make it an appealing and inviting space for me to spend my time in. Once I left home I started cleaning things more often and I also continued my rearranging, but having a whole house to play with I was able to do it with more than just a bed and desk.

Now, in the shed, I’ve been rearranging again.

Last week’s rearranging is the third incarnation of the “loungeroom” and “dining room”. Inverted commas there because really, the whole shed is about the size of your average Australian loungeroom and we’ve squeezed a kitchen, bathroom, loungeroom, dining room and effectively two bedrooms into that space!

Anyhow, last Wednesday was a hard day. I woke feeling worried about finances, worried that my car would run out of petrol on the way to or from the park, worried that Bean’s pay hadn’t hit his account yet but the direct debits had been taken out which had put the balance into negative. It felt (irrationally) as if this relatively short period of financial hardship would never end. Even though we know it will, it’s already begun to with Bean’s apprenticeship ending and his new job beginning. This recent blip is just a hangover from the apprenticeship, a bump in the road due to transitioning from one employer with a set pay day to another employer with a different pay day. This too, shall pass…

Wednesday morning I tripped over the pedestal fan on my way from the bedroom to the kitchen and decided that enough was enough. I needed to move things around again, to see if I could arrange things to give us a bit more floor space where we need it most.

The couch and the coffee table swapped spots, and it’s given us a good couple of square metres of floor space for playing where there was just a little walk way before. As soon as we’re able we’ll put the coffee table in storage with the few other bits of furniture we own that don’t live in the shed with us and we’ll put a proper (small!) dining table in it’s place. That’ll give us a few more options, a space to craft, eat and study. It’ll also get the children’s chairs out of here, those damned chairs take up a lot of space for such little bits of furniture!

posted by wildecrafted in journal and have Comments (6)

your body is not wrong…

This singlet is fabulous! I’d love to wear one at the gym I’ve just joined. Being that it’s a gym the join up was pretty centred around how “great” and “gorgeous” I look – probably because I fit into the narrow range of socially acceptable body sizes and I was wearing long pants so my hairy legs weren’t on show! No matter how much I stressed that I didn’t want to exercise to lose weight or tone up I was still reassured that I looked great. Argh! I have a strong body that needs to be cared for, but the exercise is for my mind more than my body anyway.

Click on the image for source.

I think a trip to the art store for screen printing supplies is in order…

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what’s that gymbo?

This morning I joined a gym.

I’ve used gyms sporadically in the past. I had a gym membership when I first stopped doing tae kwon do and playing hockey a few years before I had Sprout, but I was never really motivated to go, I was young and single so I had plenty of opportunity to get moving. The reality of a gym membership then wasn’t as awesome as the idea had been. Really, I think I just wanted a bum like Britney Spears had at the time. That was before I learned about photoshop!

When Sprout was a little toddler I joined a pool with a gym. My sister was a member too, and we’d put Sprout and her slightly older cousin in the creche together until Sprout got used it to. It was great. I loved the chance to get my heart rate up, to do some aerobic exercise, and even more than that I loved being able to do it without Sprout attached to me. I loved the “me time” it offered.

Now that Moe is older, and has had experience at a creche while I did art journaling classes last year, I’m ready to join a gym again.

I had tried walking with the sprogs in the pram, but they don’t like being stuck in there and the weather here is so unpredictable I don’t know whether it’ll be raining all week or not. Walking doesn’t get my heart rate up either, which is what I need. I want aerobic exercise to vent some frustration and anger. Parenting in isolation is tough business and I tend to be quick to anger when I get no respite so I like to have an avenue that provides venting opportunities and “me time”. The gym fits the bill perfectly.

I visited yesterday and made an appointment to sign up today. Then last night I called a friend who has a membership at the same gym to ask her opinion of it. She actually didn’t want her membership anymore, since she can’t find time to get along to it, and so I had hers transferred to my name. Fabulous. It’s an older membership so it’s a cheaper membership than they offer now and it expires this May, so I’ll not be locked in to a 12 month membership. We don’t plan to stay here for 12 months, we’re hoping to move to Denmark mid year, so it’d be foolish to have a gym membership in a town 50km away from home. This way I can go along until we move, then let it go. Great!

I have an (un)fitness appraisal this Thursday morning, and I’ll get stuck into it after that. Oh I’m so looking forward to it!

I’ve never done group fitness classes before, I’ve just used machines and circuits. Anyone want to recommend a particular class? I figure I’ll do one or two classes a week and use the machines other times.

I won’t be too ambitious, but given how close it is to my home, I’m aiming for 3-4 sessions of 30-60 minutes each week. I’ll keep y’all posted.

posted by wildecrafted in journal and have Comments (4)