Monday, March 31, 2014

I must confess - March tales

This week for I Must Confess, I am being prompted to link to a post from March 2013,

There is the one where I talk about getting fit after a looonngg absence from the gym ... turns out I did exactly the same thing in December, staying power is not my strong suit.

There is the one where I confess I have gone back to the Dr for help with depression (again!!!) and am hoping for sunnier skies. Since then the skies have been sunnier, cloudier, storming, shining, snowing, hailing and glorious. I don't think the black dog of depression is ever going to move out of my yard but I do think I've got it on a short chain (for now)

There is the post about DPCON13, a conference for Australian Bloggers, mostly from the parent realm and how I LOVED the conference last year... Last week I went to the DPCON14 conference on a cruise ship (OH MY!) and it was magnificent. Once again, the tribe has spoken, I belong.

There was a post about my very naughty raggy Cavoodle who is like a little Houdini. When he gets out the front door, he runs like he will never run again. He still does it. It is less amusing now.

So the post I am sharing is my 20th Anniversary Post. I love it, for all the things it says about us and me. Twenty One Years Last week, still here.


20 Years

Once upon a time there was a little boy

and a little girl.

They grew up in different cities, in very different families.

She was (mostly) a good girl who came home on time, who got good grades and who had only had one boyfriend.

He was a bit naughty, left home at 16 and had plenty of girlfriends :-)

And then they met.

After three weeks of dating the boy told the girl he was going to marry her.
She laughed.

18 months later......

Just babies were we, me at 20 and he just 21.

What a spunk! A very tall spunk!

She's still (mostly) a good girl
He's still a bit naughty.

20 years.
Happy Anniversary Babe. 
I love you

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Cocktail Dresses for Cruising

If I tell a mum at school that I write a blog, usually the reaction is a polite but blank smile.

Trying to explain to non-bloggers (or non-blog readers) what the point of a blog is, is nearly impossible.
Mostly because in my case there is no actual point. I don't review products, I don't have a sponsor, I don't make any money and usually I don't have anything profound to share.
I just like to write.
And over-share.
And off-load.

I can't explain why I like it, why this has become my hobby. It is no more significant than if I spent my time knitting or perfecting the art of cake pop making (NOT gonna happen). Yes, its probably a bit of time wasting nonsense and yet, so is just about anything we do outside the confines of our working hours.

In 2 weeks I'm heading off to a blogging conference, this year aboard the awesome Carnival Spirit Cruise Ship. I've been to the last two Digital Parents Conferences and loved meeting other bloggers. They get me, (or if they didn't, they did a great job pretending to understand me!)

I have a room-mate matched up, I have my plane tickets booked. Hubby and kids are well warned and prepared. In the wee small hours I briefly considered booking in for spray tan and some botox but I decided that a weekend cruise probably didn't warrant that degree of vanity.

So yesterday I tweeted one of the organisers to get an idea of the plans for the first evening - how we would all find each other aboard this enormous ship.
She wrote back with details and asked if I had my Cocktail dress ready.

I chuckled, then realised she was serious. A cocktail dress! Not an item that is essential in the wardrobe of a night shift nurse with 4 kids in hometown Wangarattta. I can't say there are a great number of Cocktail dress worthy events on my calendar.

I'm not even sure I know what makes a dress a 'Cocktail dress'. Are there Cocktail dress rules?
I am worried now that I will commit a Cocktail Dress faux pas, and of course be completely unaware.

Fortunately, I turned to the endless wisdom of google, which gave me not only the definition of a cocktail dress ( including the variations of hemline length and acceptable standard of dress by accompanying males) , but google also offered examples.

Now I know what I'm looking for, I'm off to shop... where do you think I will find one of these ?

Linking Up With Jess For I Blog On Tuesdays

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Oh Happy Day

Every parent wants their child to have the ability to support themselves. I'll be honest, there were times where I secretly doubted that was possible for our boy. 

Times in the muddy swamp land of school days with undiagnosed Aspergers syndrome, when I just despaired. 
When he couldn't even remember two sequenced instructions and follow through ( not even on the first one!)
When his Grade 6 teacher told us he was never going to amount to anything..(yes he actually said it, in front of J-man)
When he was so sad and negative about himself I didn't even know if he would be here by the end of his cruel teen years.
When he got left behind, so far behind in basic reading and writing that in the end teachers told me he was really just coming to school to learn social skills.

Amazingly, and yet not so surprisingly, J-man has laughed off all of that.
He learned to read and write when he was good and ready. 
He found a small but loyal group of friends at school and decided that he was just fine the way he was, and everyone else could just get over it.
He figured out the value of remembering instruction very quickly in Army Cadets when not remembering earned you a bawling out and extra duties.

He rolled with the punches dealt by the Australian Unemployment system which is a deceptive and unsupportive mess. He put his resume out there over and over, applied for countless jobs, shook hands, nodded his head and put on a brave face with every knock back. For 18 months he has tried and tried and tried again.

This week we had exciting news.
Jumping up and down in the kitchen with my mother, squealing and crying kind of news.

J-man has been offered ( and has accepted ) a four year apprenticeship in Carpentry and Joinery.
A local builder gave him a 4 week trial and was happy enough with what J-man did to offer to take him on.

We are so grateful that this opportunity is here, that J-man was able to focus and shine. The builder loves that he has got to work early every single day, and works til stumps. He loves J-mans attention to detail, that he likes to work on a task until it is perfect ( hello Aspergers!) and that J-man is eager to learn. He likes him. 

We are already seeing changes in J. He walks a little taller, he has more self confidence when talking with his mates about plans for the future. He's concerned about the aesthetic street appeal of our house and is considering replacing the old window frames in the lounge room.

He's going to be okay. 

Oh Happy Day!

Thankful Thursday with APL