featured

Dear Imogen, on your first birthday…

Posted on

(Well, a week and a half later.)

Dear Imogen,

I can’t believe you are one. My baby, my last baby.

You are a shining light in all of our lives. We just adore you, and whilst I find it so hard to believe that anyone could love you as much as your Mummy and Daddy do, when I see the way Oliver looks at you I know that you make his heart skip a beat too.

He wants to marry you. He wants to spend every day for the rest of his life with you. And I know why. You are perfection.

My one wish is that you both adore each other as much as you do now for the rest of your life. You are his best friend, and he is yours.

You are graceful, there is something about you that is SO elegant. You move, you crawl, you have taken a few steps but you don’t yet walk. You crawl so fast, and you like the security of it. You could walk tomorrow or you could wait a month. And you climb, boy do you climb. But not blindly, you calculate… you push your stall up the couch/bed/wall, and up you go.

You talk, you sing, you yell. Your first sound was Mama, but your first proper word was Panda. You don’t say Mama any more, your vocabulary includes: Panda, Dadda, Oliver (Obaba), Babcia, Hello (Hebo), and Ta.

You love playing the Ta game. You pass it and say Ta, and we pass it back. You could play for hours. You also enjoy pointing at yourself in the mirror, chasing Oliver around the house using your walker, poking your tongue out, anything to do with water and smacking Ollie (mostly on the butt).

You love animals, food, milk and us. You’re not overly interested in your toys… unless of course Oliver is playing with them. You are cautious with new people, and take a long time to warm up. You are so cuddly with us, and clingy when you’re tired. But around other people you are very chill.

You’ve had a tricky relationship with sleep, but then your schedule has been all over the shop. Now that we are home, you actually love sleep and I actually get some. It’s fantastic!

I never realised how much we needed you before you came into our lives. But we did. All of us. It’s been the most amazing year with you my Imdog, I just love watching the little girl you are becoming.

Thank you for choosing us. You are everything we never knew we needed and I couldn’t imagine our lives without you.

Happy first birthday baby girl.

 

Advertisements

In short(s)

Posted on

Today I wore shorts for the first time since my daughter was born. In fact, it was probably the first time in about 2 years. And guess what, the world is still standing!! 

I used to think that I couldn’t wear shorts if I was a gram over 75kg. Why? Because, society, that’s why. 

But then I had my second child, tipped the scales at 120kg and worked my absolutely bum off (literally) to get my health back. I’ve lost 30kg and I feel 100x better. Look, I’m not saying I’m at my peak. 

What I am saying, is I wore shorts today. And it felt flipping good! 


In short: wearing shorts > what anyone thinks! 

Navy boy

Posted on Updated on

James and I met the weekend before he joined the Navy. I didn’t know his name for an entire week and he was saved in my phone as Navy Boy. To me, he has always come with the Navy. And yeah, okay I knew what I was getting into but funnily enough I actually fell in love with him- not his job.

Crazy, right?

cjj

I haven’t exactly kept my feelings about being a Navy wife a secret. Coming second to your husbands job is one thing, but seeing your child(ren) be constantly let down by the most reliable guy on the earth because of his job- now that is honest heartbreak.

After Oliver’s minor breakdown throughout our big separation  (12 months due to posting and me deciding I had had enough and had to move home) we knew James’ days as a serving member of the RAN were numbered. And thus, just under 12 months ago, he submitted his discharged and began applying for the police force.

This was moving along really nicely, when he decided to try his hand at securing an I.T job. And before we knew it, he had one (of course he did, he is amazing and an absolute asset to anyone who gets the pleasure of working with him).

Just two weeks ago, James’ discharge from the Navy came through. And in true Navy style it came through just hours before his last shift ended and only three days before he started his new role, but I digress.

So, after almost 9 years as a defence family- we are now 2 weeks into civilian life. And honestly, it’s not that different. I mean, for the last 18months we have been blessed with a land posting, which surely has helped with the transition.

But it’s the little things, like enrolling O into Primary School (good timing) and knowing he will be able to complete his school years there. And finding the perfect daycare for Im and knowing she won’t have to switch in a years time. Even finding the time to register the dog in Victoria- because we know we are here forever now. We can plan holidays, because you know- no crash postings. Oh and weekends, not duties so we can actually be sure James will be home.

So yeah, it’s not that different. But at the same time, it just feel so different.

gorggorg2

I mean, if you could imagine living life on a fault line- that’s kind of what our life has been like for the last 9 years. It’s been amazing, we’ve both had fantastic opportunities and BOY have we met some fantastic people. But you never really know when it’s going to all come crashing down. And you literally get no say in it, I mean you can build a stronger house but when that tremor comes, my gosh can it really shake you up.

I know there are going to be days harder than others in this transition. I mean, it was our whole life for 9 long years. But there will never be a day harder than ANZAC day 2015, James was deployed but came back to march in Canberra. O was so excited to have his Daddy back. When James joined the march down ANZAC parade, the look of fear washed over O’s face. He ran up to many men in their uniforms looking for his Dad. We finally found him in the parade and O ran up to him. I had to try and hold my 3 year old son back from his Dad whilst he was screaming, kicking, crying. He just wanted his Dad. He was terrified as he wasn’t confident that he would come home that night. The look on James’ face as he marched was just as heart breaking. People around us stared, some were annoyed- I explained to some the situation, but I gave up caring what people thought long before that. Fortunately our au pair was nearby and she helped to calm my heartbroken little boy, whilst James completed his march. And that was his life for 12 months, never knowing when his Daddy was coming or going.

It’s not easy being a defence family. We all made huge sacrifices, obviously James made huge sacrifices but the person who really missed out the most was our little O. It really shaped every fibre of his being for a long time, and it has taken almost two years for him to shake it off. It’s such a relief that he NEVER has to go through it again, and that Im will never know the stress that her big bro went through.

Being a navy wife has been an absolute privilege, not because of the Navy but because of James. I would do it all in a heartbeat to be with him. But I am glad to no longer but married to the Navy, and the best bit- I still get my James!

Keeping up with the Joyces

Posted on Updated on

Okay, so straight up I’m going to tell you something shocking.

I’ve never actually watched Keeping Up with the Kardashians. I know, shocking right? But they have still taught me a thing or two.

kuwtj

And not just how to rock a killer lip liner.

About a year ago I had dinner with a few of my besties and one of them asked me what my pit and my peak was.

Huh?

Your high and your low point from the day… It’s from the Kardashian’s they explained.

Oh. Wow!

I was not prepared. I can’t even remember what I answered. But I do remember reflecting on my day and breaking it down into good bits and bad bits. And feeling pretty good about it.

Fast forward to now, and every night at the table Oliver, James, Myself and even Imogen (as narrated by Oliver) talk about our best bit and our worst bit of the day.

It’s wonderful hearing Oliver break down what he thought was good, and what he thought was utterly horrible. And being able to explain some of the bad things, why they were bad and how he might be able to tackle them next time.

It’s even more interesting seeing him interpret Imogen’s day. I’m almost willing to wager a week’s salary that her bowel movements will be mentioned at least three times a week if not daily.

And the engagement when we tell him our highs and lows. Let me tell you, it’s rare to be able to get little boys to listen. But he does listen. And we chat. And we’re engaged.

It’s become my favourite time of the day. So thank you Kimmy K, you have made my day significantly better!

Guess who’s back?

Posted on

*Spoilers*, it’s me.

img_0007

So I took a bit of an unexpected hiatus from blogging. Shit got a little bit real around here. My daughter stopped sleeping, my husbands discharge from the Defence Force was (is) looming and then a close family member had a serious health scare. So it’s been a very busy few months.

But I’m still here. Anxiety ridden as fuck, but here.

My anxiety got so bad, I literally didn’t want to leave the house—and didn’t for days at a time. My cheeks literally hurt from clenching my jaw so much. I considering upping my medication, but decided to ride it out with the support of my husband and family.

And it’s getting better. It’s still here, that pesky little demon, but it’s not all consuming.

So yeah, one could say it’s been a really crappy few months. But actually, it hasn’t been. I’m anxious, but I’m happy. I’m so happy.

Oliver turned five. He’s the funniest kid you’ve ever met, with a heart of solid gold. Having this year off with him has meant so much to me. I feel like I’ve really gotten to know him again, I mean I’ve always known him, but I REALLY know him. I wouldn’t trade this time with him for the world.

Imogen is now 9 months. She crawls, she eats, she coos, she eats, she sleeps and did I mention she eats. She.loves.food! I’m still mix feeding her and she is such a force. She is gently and shy, but also powerful and tough. She is perfection.

And James and I are happy. Anxiety does put a strain on things, and that’s not easy on any relationship. But he is my rock, and I like to think I am his. I honestly couldn’t dream of doing this thing called life with anyone else.

We’ve made some big decisions over the past few months, and we have lots of changes coming our way. Being a Defence family goes hand in hand with change. But this should be the last big change in a long time. And I can’t wait!!

So yup, I’m back to blogging.

Five things I wish I did before becoming a mum

Posted on Updated on

I was 23 when I had Oliver. These days, that’s really young. I know this because every man and his dog tells me so.

If I could go back, I’d do it all again. My kids are the best thing that have ever happened to me.

Mum

But if I could find a magic time machine, there are a few things I might go back and do before I had them!

1. Travel more. I did a big Euro trip when I was 19. I’ve also been to New Zealand, Thailand and seen a reasonable amount of Australia. But there is so much more I could have seen. I wish I sank every dollar I had pre-kids into travel. Alas, this year we have decided to start travelling WITH the kids (one overseas holiday a year) so wish us luck!

2. Learn to cook. At 22 I pretty much lived off dumplings, mi gorang and (of course) pizza on cheaper Tuesdays. These days, my cooking skills are to appease the four year old- which means I can cook a mean chicken nugget. I am getting there, but by 27 years of age I feel like I shouldn’t have to google “what is simmer?” ( a real thing that happened).

3. More date nights. We used to go out with our friends a lot. And we used to stay in together a lot. But I wish we’d just gone out the two of us more. I wish we took a few more spontaneous trips away. Luckily, we’re only in our mid twenties- so we have a bit of time for dating once the kids *sob* grow up.

4. Buy a house. Mortgage repayments we can do- but getting that deposit together whilst keeping a happy lifestyle with the kids (oh and paying rent) is almost impossible. We’re young and our time will come- but I’d love to be able to paint a wall!!

5. Sleep like a baby. Because lord knows my kids sure don’t! I regret every morning I ever woke up before 9AM and every nap I ever passed up prior to having kids. I wish there was a sleep bank where you could make deposits pre-children and make withdrawals once they come along. Why aren’t we funding that?!?

What about you, anything you wish you’d prior to being a parent? Or perhaps you’re waiting for something before you procreate?

I start today… (well yesterday)

Posted on Updated on

The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second best time is today.

Version 2

I planted my first tree 8 years ago. You see I have been overweight my entire life, and when I was 19 years old I tipped the scale at 95kg. I wasn’t overly happy, I had a miserable job, and I was in a crappy relationship ect. ect.

Then I became single, and just started doing stuff. Seriously, I got my arse up off the couch, and I started eating better. Within the space of about 4 months I lost 25kg and I felt fantastic.

It wasn’t a difficult journey, it was just a case of being active and changing my lifestyle.

But old habits die hard.

When I got pregnant with Oliver I was back up around the 80kg mark. I then gained 26kg in the pregnancy. From the day he was born, I planted my second tree and worked my arse off and within a few months I was back down to 80kg.

When he turned 1 I decided I wanted to be even fitter, so I went on a shake diet/ popped a few diet pills and within 2 months I was back down to 70kg.

It was a slightly more difficult journey than the first time, but it still wasn’t too difficult.

But here’s the thing with ‘fad’ diets. They don’t last. I know, surprise surprise. So 12 months later I found myself at about 80kg and I thought I was fat again.

Boy, I wish I could be that fat again.

About 12 months ago I found out I was pregnant with Imogen, and I swore I was going to be super healthy and gain minimum weight this pregnancy. I had already gained some weight due to lifestyle changes and I certainly didn’t feel my healthiest. So I was sitting around 85kg.

But those damn old habits.

I am ashamed to say that this pregnancy I gained around 40kg. Yup, FORTY! And there is no excuse, it was due to shitty lifestyle choices. Crap food and minimal exercise.

I really have no impulse control.

Since Imogen was born, I have lost 15kg. If you’re good at maths you can work out where that puts me, if not I’m going to keep you guessing. I am just not willing to write my weight down just yet.

The funny things is, at this weight, it’s not even about looking good. I am way past that point. I just have no energy, doing anything is literally an effort. For the first time in my life I am genuinely concerned about my health.

And the worst thing about all of this is that I can’t keep up with my son anymore, and I have always wanted to be the type of Mum that got involved with my kids. I don’t want them to miss out on having that version of me because of some shitty lifestyle choices. Pizza is good, but it’s certainly isn’t that good.

Anyway, I’m not going to beat myself up. I am where I am. I know exactly how I got here. And I am the only person who can fix it.

And I’m going to.

Yesterday, I planted my third tree. I started a ten week challenge, to kick start my journey to a healthier me. I am not going to fall for any more fads, I’m not going to skip anymore meals. I am going to learn how to be healthy, sure I am going to have to work a little harder initially to kick this weight, but the goal is to teach myself to sustain a healthy lifestyle.

So here are my goals by the end of the challenge:

  • To see double digits on the scale
  • To fit into my wedding rings again
  • To be able to run 5km
  • To fit into my Gorman Hot Night Dress

You can follow my journey on the new weight loss section of the patch.

I’d say wish me luck, but what I really need is energy. So, wish me energy!