8isgr8

Welcome To The Fun House

I Am Mother Hear Me Roar! 😁

We had KFC for dinner tonight. Yes, I know, it’s junk food, it’s unhealthy, my children even gleefully call it the Kids Fattening Centre and yes, I later on felt guilty about feeding it to them.

I was beating myself up about how I had spent money unnecessarily ($29.95), how I should have been more organised, planned my day better. I was fretting about wrecking our health, not sticking to the weekly menu plan….. and then the penny dropped….. This was ONE meal out of seven! I never once in my self flagelation considered all the other six dinners that I had lovingly planned, prepared and served. And these meals weren’t just dinners out of a jar. They were all cooked from scratch also on days, much like today, which were also crazy busy.

Meals like Butter chicken, beef stroganoff, lubia (a lamb based Lebanese inspired dish), shepherds pie and more… You get the picture?

How is it that it is so easy for us to focus on the things we didn’t do and never once even consider patting ourselves on the back for all the amazing things we HAVE done.

I think it is time we all stop and take stock. In the grand scheme of things does it really matter that we had KFC on a day that, amongst other things, I was up at dawn to get my older children to their part time job on time, in the city after lunch for an excursion with the younger three, then back in time to drop my son to his football training?

No. I don’t think so.

So tonight I am celebrating that I am quietly, humbly, a MOTHER!

A mother who can do

Every thing some days,

Most things most days,

Some things every day

BUT

Not every thing, every day!

Oh and by the way, that chicken was quite tasty too! 😜

Amen!

With much love from my home to yours,

Jacqueline xx

How Do You Cope? 6 KIDS!!

“I don’t know how you do it. I can’t even handle two”

I hear this a lot. When Simon and I set out to have a family we knew we wanted four children. That was one of the things that brought us together. When we got to four, five was definitely planned and then six became the icing on the cake.

I can’t claim that they are all angels. Each and every one of our children test us. Thankfully, not all at the same time.

So how do I do it? My husband is away nine months of the year and I homeschool. The buck pretty much stops here. I am the CEO, CFO, GM, president, chauffeur, housekeeper, nurse, physician, drill sergeant… Bottom line is, I am a mother. One thing I am not, and never can or will be is their father. That is a role solely reserved for their dad.

Yes, my faith helps me a lot. I could not do anything without His divine grace and mercy but all those times when I am put to the test I am also supremely human. I do the best I can and sometimes the best I can manage on the day is to be angry, grumpy and unreasonable. On other days my best is getting all the schoolwork done, the house spotless and a couple of gourmet, chef inspired meals on the table served with a smile.

My point is I am not perfect. No one is. I have bad days just like everyone else. I try not to beat myself up about it. I apologise, I get up, I move on,  I keep going forward. I try to learn from my mistakes. That’s how I do it.

My family is my safe haven. They see the best and the worst of me but at the end of day we are a family and on those days when I feel like giving up and walking out (and I have had a few of those) I remind myself that our children are human too. They have their bad days and their very good days too, just like me.

At the end of the day our main goal is to show our children that perhaps one of the most valuable things we could teach them is that we are all human trying to do our best and tomorrow is a new day and we can all try again. In our family, we do second chances.

Peace everyone!❤

10 Things I Want My Daughter to Know About Working Out

So simply put – many of the reasons I swim, cycle run and other stuff!!) I hope you enjoy and are as inspired a I was by this blog!

Have a Super Sunday!!

Jacqueline

wellfesto

Mid-way through a recent group exercise class, the teacher lost me.  She didn’t lose me because of some complicated step sequence or insanely long set of burpees; I mentally checked out because of a few words she kept saying over and over.  “Come on!  Get that body ready for your winter beach vacation!  Think about how you want to look at those holiday parties!  PICTURE HOW YOU’LL LOOK IN THAT DRESS!

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Its The Simple Things

This weekend just gone was one of the best we have had this year. We drove to York on the Friday afternoon – about an 100km from Perth. The local priest, Fr. Stephen invited Simon and I to stay in the presbytery with him while the children pitched a tent in the backyard. The next morning Simon and the kids waved me off and went to explore quaint, historic York as I rode back to Perth with the 98.5 Sonshine FM Morning Cafe _ Ride for Hope on their last day of an epic 500km ride from Albany.

It was a beautifully scenic ride. I have truly missed my bicycle and that feeling of freedom while I am riding.

Simon and I then ended the day at a Marriage Encounter Love Circle meeting.

The next morning we were up bright and early again for the children’s first Little Nippers session on the beach. Over 2 hours of surf and beach skills later it was home for a quick shower and change then off again to a late Oktoberfest party with a young German family we met through mutual friends.

Full on but immensely satisfying.

This last weekend has really driven home to me how its the simple thing that make for some of the most amazing memories and rewarding experiences. We spent hardly any money but the children haven’t stopped talking about the great time they had. The smiles on the children’s faces over the weekend were priceless. The company of good friends sharing cultures, conversations, food and drink is immeasurable.

Marriage Isn’t For You

Seth Adam Smith

Having been married only a year and a half, I’ve recently come to the conclusion that marriage isn’t for me.

Now before you start making assumptions, keep reading.

I met my wife in high school when we were 15 years old. We were friends for ten years until…until we decided no longer wanted to be just friends.🙂 I strongly recommend that best friends fall in love. Good times will be had by all.

Nevertheless, falling in love with my best friend did not prevent me from having certain fears and anxieties about getting married. The nearer Kim and I approached the decision to marry, the more I was filled with a paralyzing fear. Was I ready? Was I making the right choice? Was Kim the right person to marry? Would she make me happy?

Then, one fateful night, I shared these thoughts and concerns with my dad.

Perhaps each…

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Food is my Medicine?

I’ve been battling hypertension (persistent high blood pressure) since I conceived and gave birth to my sixth child. There is no real reason that the doctors can give me as to why. They look at me… under 40, fit, active, trim, healthy, good diet – And just tell, “Sorry, its chronic – here are some tablets. Good bye. Good luck” … I have been on medication for almost 5 years now and I don’t like it. I just can not accept or believe that there isn’t some kind of underlying problem that I can somehow target and fix.

In the last few years I’ve been experimenting with different foods and I have discovered that beetroot, celery and carrot have a very positive impact on my blood pressure. Yesterday I accidentally discovered something else – Shitake mushrooms. I had a whole bowlful yesterday and today everything has been reading normal. (And yes, I have accidentally, on purpose, forgotten to take my daily tablet. Over 24 hours since my last dose.)

To me the solution is simple – food CAN help control and fix so many health issues – why don’t the medical and science professions take a closer look at this link instead of continuing to band aid situations with ever increasing doses of drugs?

I am not in any way advocating that everyone with blood pressure issues throw out their medication and start eating bowlfuls of mushrooms, beetroot, celery and carrot but why not try adding these to your diet on a more regular basis? It certainly can’t hurt!

Yours in Health

Jacqueline xx

 

The Secret To My Success!

Ok so I have been slack again. Life has a way of getting in the way for some reason… I guess that kinda happens with six kids… They all got sick… we were away… and the excuses keep coming!

Here is the clincher – If someone else said the same thing to me, my advice to them would be simple, write up a schedule or a timetable and stick to it!!

Don’t we all just want to find that extra hour in every day? I have found that several things help me get through my day productively and efficiently and the first of these things is a schedule. I have a plan for every hour or two and I try as hard as I can to stick to it. The bonus is, if I get through what I hope to achieve in that hour or two I have extra time just for me – to read a book or play some Facebook game!!😛 You See, FOUND! An extra 15 minutes!! It is very rewarding! And on the rare occasion I don’t meet my deadline, it is not a big deal, tomorrow is another beautiful day.

The reason this works for me is that when I am on a schedule, I focus on what I have to do rather than running around in circles trying to do six things all at once.

I have to qualify, I am not a nazi with my timetable, there have been times when everything gets tossed out the window for a day to explore the great outdoors. Throw in the kids and homeschooling and some days can be very challenging but on the whole, most days, it works extremely well.

You will be amazed how much time you suddenly have when you get some focus into your life!

I think I will schedule “lists” into my next post!

Good night everyone!

Jacqueline xx

I’m on the Top of the World

Happy on my bike

What is it about completing a challenge that gives you that ‘Top of the World’ feeling? Even a baby challenge?

Sunday just gone saw me racing in my one and only Triathlon this season. The Nissan-BRW corporate. I did not do much preparation or training except for a couple of swims, a few short runs and my normal weekend cycling. The fact that it was a short Tri, only 400m swim, 10km bike ride and 4km run is my excuse for my pre-race complacency. So although I am only 90% happy with my splits, my times were not unexpected BUT the bonus is I have this warm, buzzy, glowing, feeling that has been around since Sunday.

To be perfectly honest, I thought I did amazing in the swim. To put it into perspective, 12 months ago I was close to tears, panicking before the swim and hyperventilating for the most part of it. This year I actually enjoyed myself. I was calm and in control and in ‘the zone’. I nailed the bike leg, average speed 30km/h! Yeah Baby!! But I was very confident I would. And then the run… I was hurting for the first km, I just could not get rid of that stitch. This really disappointed me on the course but when I finished and looked at the split, 25 minutes for 4 km… that is not far off my normal, cruising run speed…. so I am suspecting that once I pushed through the pain I got stronger towards the end and powered home!

I’m just a legend!!😉

Now the key is to somehow bottle this buzz and release it next year when the Triathlon season opens up here again. I can’t wait! And this time I WILL be training!! Bring it ON!!

Lets Get REAL!

The trigger for this post was a question asked over a coffee one day after a cycle – “Who would you rather have as a role model? The fresh faced 19 year old pro athlete, (who works damn bloody hard to be the best) or a lady, maybe in her 30s, has children, a husband, job and a mortgage and who may not be a pro athlete but still competes in her chosen sport and does reasonably well?” Overwhelmingly, the people I ask that same question to, tell me, the latter… So am I missing something here or are the advertising companies completely missing a huge marketing opportunity?

For example, I LOVE Revlon, especially their ColorStay range. I have tried other colour fast make up but Revlon is the only make up that does does what it says and goes the distance. I put it on and it stays on until I take it off. I also LOVE to swim, cycle and run and as vain as it makes me look, I do, on occasion, wear make up while I train and race and yes, I might be hot and sweaty but the ColorStay still looks fantastic even after a hard session…

I’m not saying I want to be the next Revlon poster girl, but surely it would not be that hard to find a REAL lady with a REAL life to help sell their product? Seriously, as much as we all want to look like that  hot, young thing on that ad after we buy whatever she is being paid to tout, we all know deep down we aren’t going to become a super model or famous actress when if we do buy it and use it. Sorry to kill your hope there.

But, maybe, just MAYBE,  if the girl next door told you that it works? It REALLY works! Wouldn’t you be more tempted to buy it?

And maybe to make it more REAL I should aim to be the next Revlon poster girl! So here goes, I’m swimming in the river tomorrow…an hour of drills… I’ll let you know how my lipstick holds up!! Photos and all!! Stay tuned!

Good Bye Jess!

I went to the funeral of a friend the other day. She was only in her 20s. Young and vibrant  with two young children. I cannot say she was a close friend. More an acquaintance, but her death affected me profoundly. She was one of those people who seem to have the ability to transcend social conventions and was happy in her own skin. She was quirky and creative and a free spirit. In many ways I envied her incredible lightness of being.

I’ve found myself wondering over the last couple of weeks since I found out about her passing, was I a good enough friend to her? I knew she was separated from her partner and I wondered if could have helped her more? I know I cannot be everything to everyone and I am not responsible for the choices she made but I can learn from this experience.

Thanks Jess for showing me that it is OK to be who I am. Thanks for teaching my girls to knit all those wonderful amazing scarves. Thanks for making me stop and look at the people around me and consider, am I being a good enough friend or can I be a better friend?

I truly hope that on the times we met, we were a source of light and happiness in your life. Rest in Peace my friend

 

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