The Monday Snapshot; Boombah

Molly had a huge weekend. Better social life than me!

Two parties this weekend meant a huge sugar overload. So much so that she didn’t eat anything on Sunday after becoming ill on Saturday. Lesson learned,  when your child doesn’t eat a load of sugar the come down from ingesting too much is not a nice picture.

Anyway, I am posting a particularly non-glamorous video of Molly and I reading in her bed on Friday night. She has this awesome book that some amazing friends gave her for her first birthday. Molly W_aterson & the Cheeky Monkey. You can purchase from an online shop called tinyme.com.au where they do personalised kids products. In this case a book all about her! At 3 she is now old enough to enjoy it. She kept losing it over “Fatty Boombah”. Of course, when you try and capture on film it is never as funny but her laugh, man it gets me every time!

adoption

This theme has been weighing heavily on my mind of late.

We are done with fertility treatments, but no matter how much we try to say we are done at one we know that this is not true. More specifically it isn’t necessarily true for me. It is something I need to work through, it will take time and I don’t know if it is something you can ever fully reconcile yourself to. The fact that your family making journey is over before you want it to be finished.

I posted this a few months ago and I meant every word. I am done with IVF, drugs, needles, doctors, surgeries, ultrasounds and vitamins. I feel a sense of relief that I don’t need to schedule my life around these anymore. Yet I still grieve and long for another child. I just know that I can’t have one that is biologically mine. Jes asked the question had I considered adoption and it struck a chord in me. It got me thinking.

The thing is, I have consider adoption. Probably not so much Chippie, but yes I have. Before we fell pregnant with Molly I rang the domestic adoption agency and spoke with them and to be honest I didn’t feel very heartened. For a start, we needed to completely give up fertility treatments. Something I wasn’t ready to do back then. There was also the sobering reality that in our state there is an average of 20 adoptions per year. Twenty. It isn’t very much is it. There was a concept called permanent care but it wasn’t sold very well to me. The fear that the child could be returned to it’s parents, that they wouldn’t take your last name. It wasn’t something that I wanted to consider.

Adoption in this country is vastly different to other places. It is one roadblock after another.

After Jes asked the question I made the call again. However I was not in the right place. I couldn’t even talk to the lady without crying. She phoned me at work and I asked if she could call me back on a Thursday or Friday when I was at home. She called but I was in the car with my aunt and I didn’t take the call. They never called back and I left it. I clearly wasn’t ready.

The other day there was a news article that sparked a conversation between Chippie and I. I broached the concept of adoption and said that it was a field we hadn’t looked at but before we completely close the door on family building, perhaps we should investigate before dismissing it entirely. Surprisingly he agreed. He hasn’t been particularly for it but with Molly getting older we are both mourning the loss of the baby years. It just went too quickly, was over too soon.

I made the call again and when they returned my call this time I was in a better place. For a start, it has been six months since we did IVF and apparently Molly is at the right age. She went through a long list of caveats. There needs to be a two year age gap. You need to take 12 months off work. It is all open adoption, a concept I completely support. You have had to have at least 6 months off fertility treatments. I asked to be put down for the information nights, there are a lot of unanswered questions for us and I need to be in a room where I can listen and ask questions. Snap, this is when all of those reasons why people don’t adopt in this country came out. There was a three month wait list for adoption and the first available session for a permanent care session was in February. Already you can’t even move forward for a few months. I felt a little flat and I thought to myself here we go again. I just want to move forward with information and it is already too hard.

Then, completely unrelated there was an article in our newspaper talking about the adoption process in this country that deflated me that little bit more. I have attached the full article here.

While the number of children growing up in care is increasing, the number of children adopted in Australia is at an all-time low. With a 76 per cent decline over the past 25 years, there were only 317 children adopted in Australia in 2013-14.

That is 317 across a country with a population of 22 million. You can bet there are a lot children that need a home and care but there is no access to them. Further, we are a very NON religious country compared to that of the USA, therefore if a person becomes pregnant these days and doesn’t want the baby then they will have an abortion. Simple as that. That is a whole other issue in itself. There isn’t a need or a desire to go through with the pregnancy only to give it up. I understand that. I’ve been there. In fact, at times it is presented as the only option.

The research shows that people perceive the Australian adoption process as negative, with overly restrictive barriers and a process that is designed to make people fail. Of the more than 1000 Australians surveyed, 17 per cent had looked into adopting a child, but 87 per cent had pulled out.

This is so true. Already in my tiny, minuscule entry into this world I have found it to be difficult. There is one avenue for domestic adoption and already it takes months for an information session. Let alone the entire process.

But one significant factor that is contributing to the decline in adoptions, and is not well understood, is how the system itself is broken and is effectively working against the best interests of children.

There are 100’s if not 1000’s of people out there that would make amazing wonderful parents. There are thousands, thousands of children out there who are currently living with abusive, absentee parents that do need somewhere to live. That deserve to be happy and healthy and given all the opportunities that my biological child could. But more than that could provide me with an amazing chance to be the best that I could be. That will make my life so much MORE and show me things that I couldn’t see in other ways. Our system is so tied up in red tape and bureaucracy and indecision that those that exist in the system are powerless to do anything. And there is always the belief the child’s best place is with it’s birth mother. We all know though that the ability to bear a child or create a child doesn’t make you a parent. That’s just biology. Parenting, being a MUM is so much more than that.

This is where I am at the moment, why I have been focusing on fluffy happy posts because this, all of this brings out the EMOTIONS that I can’t deal with all the time. Infertility showed me the blackest part of my soul. It destroyed me in ways that I have only just begun to recover from. Having Molly, that fixed me for a short time but venturing back into the world of IVF, it really knocked me down. With this new chance, I felt a glimmer of hope and it has already flicked back out. If we are successful, if we do move forward, if it does work for me I could be nearly 40. Molly will be nearly 6. I don’t know if I have the energy anymore for more failure, heartbreak and disappointment. I don’t expect it to be easy yet I want it to be realistic. I also feel Molly is too young at this stage for me to consider fostering. I need to get her through her developmental years. I don’t want to upset our status quo with instability. I want her to have a brother or sister for life. I want to be a mother for life. Chippie deserves to be a parent again. Am I strong enough and brave enough to do this all again, albeit through a different medium.

Before you even ask about surrogacy and donor eggs. Yes. I have thought about it but that is going to be a post for another time. Another month.

I am very very new and fresh to this idea. I don’t even know if we are going to move forward. I don’t even know what we are going to feel in a few months. This may not be our destiny. It may not be our path. I could change my whole perspective on everything.

To be honest, writing about what I wore is so much more freeing.

What Chon Wore: Weekend

so.over.winter

I am bored of wearing the same thing.Although the hint of spring on the weekend certainly helped it still wasn’t warm enough to break out the shorts, skirts and dresses. I don’t really own a lot of winter dresses as it is too hard to wear them at work during the cold season and on weekends these days it is a lot more low key. Remember, this series is about real, ordinary clothes I wear, that other bloggies can relate to! As nice as it would be most of us don’t have a budget or the willingness to have a huge credit card debt! I also realise that the brands I wear are domestic but they pretty much copy whatever the rest of the world is doing and generally one season behind! I would love to see what my other bloggie girls are wearing for inspiration as well. I love all the stitch fix posts you do!

Saturday

Today was Chippie’s birthday. I decided to glam it up a little bit (no photo but kewl flat lay, ok not so cool).  He had a dose of man flu but soldiered on. We went to dance class, had coffee and cake, bought a new car, watched his team smash my team by 91pts (I didn’t watch, it was horrendous) and went out for an early dinner. Finished off watching Fury on DVD. It was a really lovely day, even though he was a bit miserable. He also said to me, you look really nice today. I have to say, he always makes me feel good about myself. Even when I am a few kilos overweight.
 I wore;

  • Skinny jeans H&M.
  • Indigo blouse Cue. I really like Cue, especially in my old corporate life they had really unique flair but for day to day and my life now I very rarely buy. It can also be a bit expensive.
  • Nude wedges Nine West. These shoes were purchased in an all fire hurry three years ago in Brisbane. We had a wedding. I needed shoes. And Chippie was in the wedding and the groom had said that the suit he had would be fine. Except it was so not. They all had black, he had on a dark blackish brown. Plus it was a few seasons old and so out of date. I sprinted down to the city centre and purchased his on site. Thankfully I know my man. I grabbed these for me as well. They are horribly trashed now and I could probably do with upgrading them this year. Very comfy. And sexy I believe.
  • Black bag Witchery. Does everything I wear need to have a story? Probably not but I like a good back story. I got this as a Christmas present years ago and I always remember, his old car engine blew up on his way to get it.

Sunday

We went to the 4X4 camping and fishing show. I know, a few people would be going “what, are you for real” but I love camping and it was actually fun. Chippie wanted to check out gear for his new car, he is terribly excited. We ended up visiting Chippie’s sister who lived a few minutes away so the kids could play before heading home. A busy but fun weekend.


I wore;

  • Jeggings Country Road still freaking comfy
  • Gold woolen sweater Sussan – a homage to spring
  • Shoes Target think this is the last season I can wear these #trashed

The Monday Snapshot; Dancing Queen

Molly has had some serious ear infections this year. There is still fluid behind her ears and her hearing has been impacted (short term, not serious but needs management) therefore we had to give up swimming lessons. I am so upset because she was doing brilliantly and with summer around the corner* I had really wanted her to be swimming independently. No parental pressure….

My sister said to me “get her to dancing lessons! She will look so cute in a ballet outfit” and my sister is right. She looks damn cute in a dancing outfit. Even when she insisted on wearing her gumboots with her dancing outfit because that’s how she rolls.

Week one, we weren’t that clear on what everyone was wearing and Molly was nervous and not sure if she wanted to go. It was called dance play. I thought it was just hanging out and because I didn’t want to pressure her and I let her wear what she felt comfortable in. I like to call outfit 1 URBAN HIP HOP.  Dance class, well it didn’t go great. All the other girls were in what I like call PRETTY PRINCESS BALLERINA and Molly stood out. I don’t mind being an individual but perhaps not that much for the first lesson. My good friend was horrified, she used to be a dancer so she bought Molly a cute outfit.

Week two, well we didn’t go. She didn’t want to and I wasn’t in the mood to push it as we had a busy weekend planned.

Week three, we went. Outfit was looking sweet (even with boots – not pictured) and we got there about 5 minutes late. The first time we were early and everyone was late. This attempt, was what I like to call #fail. She flat out refused to dance. Got shy and I don’t know if it was because it was on a Saturday morning but there were heaps of mums and dads there and they were all watching and Molly just said, no I don’t want to. I tried. I sat with her. It didn’t happen. We left early, went had coffee and cake and she says to me, “I’ll try again next week”. Not sure. Think dancing isn’t for us. Maybe little kickers. I will say though, the kid is bloody cute.

*sorry my northern hemisphere friends,  this weekend was a hint of spring which means warmer weather is coming our way. #sorrynotsorry

Shoe storage solution

Hands up neat freaks! I know you are out there!

Here’s the thing. My closet was annoying me. I had a shoe rack for my shoes but I had nothing for Chippie’s shoes. Which meant they were on the floor and messing up my normally organised space and with men’s shoes way bigger than females (duh) and just chunkier all around, they were in my face. I was always tripping over them and silently (not so silently) fuming at the mess.

Enter the cheapest solution ever.

For the incredibly expensive price of $8.50 I got myself one of these bad boys from K Mart.

It attaches to the wardrobe rail with some velcro it takes up hardly any space and all of my flats, ballet shoes, sandals and flip flops fit neatly into the slots and as they are all light shoes there is no pressure on the rail.

This allows the rest of Ryan’s shoes and my boots to fit on the Tjusig Shoe Rack from Ikea.

TJUSIG Shoe rack IKEA

All of my fancy and sparkly high heels and old work heels that I can’t part with (a black pointy toe stiletto will never, ever go out of fashion) are stored on top of the wardrobe in the Skubb shoe boxes (also Ikea). It keeps them clean of dust and it is see through so you can see what you have stored there.

SKUBB Shoe box IKEA You can look through the mesh to see what shoes are inside the box.

I can’t explain how happy it is to see this space neat. I walk through my wardrobe about 15 times a day to get to the ensuite or from folding washing and putting clothes away, so for me personally it is high traffic area. As a well established type A, OCD, control personality who needs order in her life – lets just say it makes me smile.

Now if I could just get Chippie to search neatly for his t-shirts, instead of pulling them out all over the place and put his clothes in the dirty clothes basket instead of lying next to it – Chon would be a happy gal indeed.


  

What Chon Wore: Birthday Parties & Work

There are so many things I want to write about. So.many.things. I like to write Monday’s which is my craziest busiest day of the week, and it is hard to properly write. So maybe I might just write a few posts this week. Or maybe I should do this at home not on my break at work!

I haven’t done a fashion post in ages. I liked doing them because it made me think about what I was wearing! Then I got sick and slack and lazy. Decided to get back to it. A few reasons why, which is a topic I want to write about!

Birthday party!  Not the greatest shot because, yes we have established I suck at photos.  Also, really Chon? You include part of the table leg as looking like part of your leg therefore that means you look like you have fat thighs. Idiot!

Oh and here is a flat lay I did on instagram when I was feeling all super creative and cool as well. Look at me go. 

I wore;

  • My new black Country Road jeggings. Why, oh why have I never bought these before. Holy shit they are amazing. Look like a skinny jean, feel like a pair of leggings. So comfortable and don’t resemble yoga pants! Get a size down from your normal size as CR tend to stock in a size bigger than your normal size.
  • Grey spot jumper. Myer. Everytime I wear this I feel a bit younger and cooler, yet in keeping with my 50 shades of black (yo, I’m looking at you SRB)
  • Ballet flats Kmart you can’t see them but they are cute
  • Country Road fold over tote. Yes, I used my spend and save on me! This bag is super roomy and a stylish.

Working mama


I have had this picture in my phone for a month and I have pretty much worn the same thing today! I am sure I haven’t posted this?

I wore;

  • Asos black pleated midi skirt. Two seasons old. Compliments every time I wear so definitely a keeper.
  • Country Road striped top. Purchasedso I could get over the line with a spend and save but great for work. Quite thick and warm.
  • Joanne Webster suede ankle boots. Can’t see them (sorry!) purchased them about five years ago and they have totally not gone out of style. Well, I think. Really great purchase! Wait on, just took a picture on my phone :) Nice ankles. Sheesh. 

I had a great weekend. Lots of fun. I hope you did too!

The Bucket List

Chippie and I made a pact with IVF6.3. If it wasn’t going to work we were going to go somewhere that had been on our travel bucket list. It varies for both of us but it includes (among other things)

  • watch the Belgium Spring Classic bike races
  • snowboarding in Japan
  • visit New York
  • 6 months travelling around Australia

However, Chippie is the type to say it without following through, I mean he might do it but when it comes to travel he isn’t as fussed as me. He would be just as happy to spend 6 days camping on the river and will be content and happy. Not me, I needed something to focus on and with the epic final failure behind me I decided to take matters into my own hands.

The issue is, I now work only three days a week and I pay child care so my salary has effectively been cut in half. Plus we built a new house and bought an investment property which took all of our savings. It is great that we have good equity for our future and a base to make future investments from but I don’t actually have a lot of “cash” in the savings account.  Add to that another 18 months of unsuccessful fertility treatments, the well was very dry. I was racking my brains on where I could save money, as nearly every cent is allocated to something and I do like to get pretty things for myself (a.k.a. house stuff, clothes and occasional go out and have a nice time) I don’t want to just save and not have fun. After all, why bother working.  I wanted to go on a trip.

I downloaded six months worth of our every day bank account into excel and categorized it to the different areas to determine where our usual money was going. This may surprise you but we don’t have a budget. I make sure all bills are deducted via direct debit and have a general idea of what else I need for the week and everything else is put into savings.

It was so interesting seeing what we had spent our money on. Primarily, where most of it was going. It was going to Chippies lunch. I dread telling people how much he was spending and I usually sugar coat it, but it was between $40-50 per day. Plus weekends where we might get take away once a week. The other thing was food shopping. We would do one shop but then end up going 2-3 extra times per week. Usually to get fresh fruit and vegetables. However you would end up buying other stuff that you didn’t really need.

We have had this ongoing discussion for years that he needs to make his own lunch and he told me I would need to do it and I would tell him to bite me. He doesn’t waste money on cigarettes, gambling, nights out and buys a dozen beers a week. All up, he doesn’t waste money and when we were DINK’s the money he was spending on lunch was pretty easily absorbed. However when I am earning significantly less than I used to it was starting to hurt.

I decided if I wanted to achieve something on my bucket list then changes needed to be made so at the end of January I started making Chippie’s lunch. I do it 4x a week and let him have one day that he gets to buy it. We have got into quite a rhythm with it and now he might spend $10 on a coffee and a coke (if I haven’t got any in the fridge) maybe a sneaky dim sim on the way home and I have saved $4500 since the start of the year. That’s a bloody lot of money.

The other thing was I moved to an online fruit and vegetable delivery option. I pay $37 a week for a couples box and there is so much in there that we only go to the shops once a week now. I think I save per week about $50 by not “popping” into the shops and I always have something I can rustle up. I also transferred my shopping to A.ldi’s for the basics and save a significant amount.

This making lunch business was going to the bucket list fund.

Yesterday I paid the deposit for our trip to Japan in January to go snowboarding!

7 nights in Niseko plus 3 nights in Tokoyo for Chippie, Molly and I.

I am super excited.

I needed something to focus on and strive towards since baby making via fertility treatments was off the table. There was a little piece of me that thought, gosh the money I am spending would have paid for another round but you know what we were so over paying money for dud chances that it was a fleeting thought that was put quickly to the back of our mind.

And Molly is coming too. We prepared a business case for Daddy to get him across the line.


I think I am going to continue fleshing out our family bucket list now and focus on the great things coming up rather than what I have left behind which, is easier said than done, but I have to start somewhere. Bring on January and lots of fresh powder!

Say Hello in Japanese Step 1 Version 2.jpg

Parenting reminder

It is safe to say I am not a helicopter parent. I have moments – I don’t like her playing out the front of our house simply because dickheads roar past on a tiny street and I worry about her being knocked over but I don’t hover and I don’t worry about her constantly. It has been assisted by the fact she isn’t a bugger when it comes to climbing on things or drawing on things she isn’t allowed to and she definitely isn’t a runner, meaning she doesn’t see every opportunity as a chance to escape for the hills. Molly is by no means cautious she can be a little dare devil (case in point – bike riding down the hill!) but she is cautious in that she doesn’t actively look for danger!

Therefore we can be a little bit lax around the house. None of my cupboards are child locked and even though I have the bad stuff (bleach etc) well out of harms way other stuff is readily accessible. I don’t have covers on electrical points, or the TV is fully secured because I have never had to worry about that stuff. She doesn’t touch the TV and apart from flicking the power points on and off has never bothered to put things in them. I also have all my things around because she doesn’t touch them or break them.

Even the swimming pool is interesting. Yes, we are cautious there and it is fully secured but right from the start we let her wander freely around it thinking to ourselves that the less chance of it being FORBIDDEN meant she wouldn’t be interested in jumping in it,  if the awful opportunity came to play in it without us there. She knows the rules so she has no interest in swimming without her jacket or without us. It works well.

Until yesterday.

Yesterday was cold and wet so Chippie decided to cross a few items off the things to do list. Little things like door stops for the powder room and bathroom and the latches on Molly’s cupboards. Molly, likes to think she is a builder like Daddy and Daddy likes to let her help (which I love) so she helped drill – yes she held the drill and assisted with the door stop in the powder room.

She thought she was awesome.

Then Chippie went into her room and she carried the drill.

Can you see where I am going with this. Drill’s don’t actually have a child lock. Because you know, who lets their kid play with an electric drill.

However, the other drill was on the kitchen bench (don’t even ask he has about 6 drills and nail guns, goodness about 5)

I was in the study and he was in her room with Molly. Molly left her bedroom.

The next thing I heard was a bump and then a huge wail.

I knew it wasn’t a fake cry and I bolted out of the study. Just above her eyebrow was an indention from the drill. She nearly took out her eye. She pulled it off the bench to “help” and tripped and fell. I can’t believe it. I felt ill all day thinking of all the what ifs. What if she fell and then pulled the trigger and she drilled her face, what if the drill piece drilled out her eye. What if. FUCK.

We quickly re established the boundaries that she could only use the drill with Daddy but she could play with her tools.

I think she was more scared than hurt and my heart was beating a million miles a minute.

It made me realise that I don’t need to be a helicopter parent but sometimes we do need to be a little bit smarter.

Gosh. Ugh, feeling ill again.

Anyway, she is ok. Just a little bruise to remind me, us that we have to be a little bit more vigilant. I thought I would pass this reminder on to other parents that are a wee bit more casual to remind you to think things through sometimes!

winter

I am sick.

I have had the flu and now I am just battling a bad cold.

I am fed up and grumpy and COLD.

Fucking artic vortex. Where is the bloody el nino when you need it sending us out of season warm blasts of sunshine.

And don’t be all – you don’t get winter I will show you winter – because I will trade you up a 45 degree summer day with northerly winds complete with bushfire warnings, tiger snakes coming into your back yard searching for water and SHARKS in the water and tell you that, you guys don’t get a summer, I get a summer.

I want a holiday. I need something to look forward to. Please don’t kindly remind me that the summer holiday I have booked is to go to Japan snowboarding. Bloody hell what the f was I thinking.

I am sick of coughing and wetting my pants because it is such a deep down cough that I can’t hold onto my pelvic floor.

I mean, I have natural killer cells that have suppressed my ability to have a baby and now I give up on baby making they all but disappear on me and just leave me fucking old eggs. YOU BASTARDS. Come back and get rid of this cold.

gahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

In other news, Molly turned 3. I always wanted a summer baby and instead I was blessed with a middle of the winter one. Awesome she may be, apart from nearly fracturing my cheek bone last night with a misplaced head bang, a summer one would have been just the ticket.

Other ways that people upstairs just like to mess with me.

But seriously, she’s three. That deserves a whole post in itself.

And I also took some photos of me in more clothes and realised that I have a problem. A black and white problem.

I will be back. Once I stop hacking up my chest and wetting my pants. I don’t care which one finishes first as long as one does soon.

ooooh I can see the sun. See, glass half full.