Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Employee of the Month

As we close the door on November
I need to acknowledge an outstanding performance around these parts.
In recent weeks, one family member has been a real standout.
He has worked himself into a frenzy, contributed wholeheartedly to projects,
been on the tools constantly and cracked the whip when necessary.

Magoo - my gorgeous little site manager - I commend you.

Let the games begin!

Handy and domesticated.
A rare find.
Your bonus shall be paid in sun dried tomatoes and olives,
as requested beautiful boy.

Shar :-)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

52 Week Project : Week 11

For this week's project, I challenged myself to consider how I view myself.

Unfortunately, this is the result.

those bad boys were not meant to make it back into the new bathroom.
(The scales, not the ugly pj shorts!)

I made a deal with myself.
Out with the old, in with the new.
Bathroom and head space.
I reneged on my part of the bargain (with myself) - and there they are.
And there I am - on top of them. day.

I may have overcome a destructive relationship with food,
but this love/hate relationship with the enemy scales
is not as easy to kick to the curb.

Apparently, I need to know what I weigh.
That part I still haven't quite figured out.

So I can love or hate on myself accordingly,
I guess.

Wrong answer, I know.
But as my Daddy always said to me
"Shar, for a smart girl, you do some very stupid things." day.

Linking with beautiful My Mummy Daze and the 52 Week Project.
Pop over and check out some healthier (self) images.
The 52 Week Project
Shar :-)

Bragitty Brag Brag

The ensuite of horrors is no more.
Now it's more like the ensuite of hotness.

Hubby informs me that the technical building-project-management term for our reno result is s#?t hot - but I'll go with gorgeous, clean, simple, clean, functional, clean...
Did I mention clean?

So, I finally have the guts to reveal just how horrific the old bathroom was.

I don't know where to start -
with the dirty, impossible-to-redeem mould ridden grout, the ugly, cracked shower screen, the corroded sink drain, the rotting, chipped tiles, the shuddering, rattling pipes, the damp that was seeping into the next room or the festy drains???
Spoiled for choice, really.

Here are a few before and after pics to demonstrate the horror to hotness transformation.

Four weeks from start to finish.
A combination of professionals and mostly DIY enthusiasm and persistence.
When at first the s-bend does not fit, saw and saw and saw again...
You may call me silicone Shar - and it's got nothing to do with my cleavage, unfortunately.




It would be remiss of me not to include some of Hubby's 'babies' here.
He's one proud Papa. And rightly so.


This new bathroom does lack character at the moment.
(And the still-waiting-on-it shower shelf - did you notice?)

I'm pretty sure Hubby's character is ingrained in every surface and fitting that he sweat and swore over though.

And 'no mould' beats 'character' any day of the week right now anyway.

Shar :-)

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Point + Shoot : The Good Wife

After playing the mean wife so convincingly on Saturday
(and sharing my marital faux pas with the whole wide world)
I thought I'd better redeem myself on Sunday.

I thought I should show Hubby that I can actually be there
when he needs some support, encouragement or a push.
(Pun intended.)

 Magoo and I ventured down to the coastal finish of a 17km paddling event
that Hubby was racing in.
 I couldn't run the risk of having him locking himself in a bathroom
so far from home, really, could I?

It was quite the stretch -
heading down to my old stomping ground of Cottesloe Beach.
The ugliness of it all was just a cross I had to bear.
From the sky, to the sand, to the bronzed bodies
- my eyes were assaulted at every turn.
But I soldiered on.
'Cause I'm a good wife like that.
I didn't laugh (out loud) once.
Not even when Magoo had a massive meltdown at Hubby post-race in front of his mates because he "neeeeeded some food wif butter on it, Daddy."
Butter wouldn't melt.
Well, not some food with butter on it, anyway!

Hope you had a beautiful weekend.
Were you a martyr too?

I'm double dipping in linkys today.
Point + Shoot-ing with Lou @ Sunny + Scout
Wonderful Weekend-ing with Sonia @ Life, Love and Hiccups.

Shar :-)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Please help me x

This may well have been a 'you-had-to-be-there' moment,
but I was there - and I'm sharing.
Sorry Hubby.

Scene 1 :
Saturday midday.
An angelic Magoo slumbers in his bed.
A hardworking Hubby is working on the finishing touches to the ensuite reno. The task at hand is fitting and hanging the new door.
A selfish wife has clocked out for 30 minutes -  riding her exercise bike and talking to a friend on the mobile.

The Hubby is going in and out from the garage to the ensuite, sizing the door.
A bit of banging and bit of shuffling, a bit of grunting.
The wife, she's just cycling and nattering without a care in the world.
Gee, she's got good hair - this wife.

Scene 2 :
The wife finishes riding but continues chatting on the mobile.
Every now and then she can hear a second call coming in -  but chooses to ignore it, keep gasbagging and potter around putting dishes away and tidying up.
Finally, she has a look at the screen to see who has been calling and texting repeatedly for the past few minutes.
The selfish wife sees the hardworking Hubby's number and assumes he's being a clown.
Assumes he's trying to (not so) subtly tell her to get off the phone.
The wife, still on the phone, walks to the ensuite to flip her Hubby the bird or make kissing gestures while patting her posterior.

Meanwhile :
Poor hardworking Hubby has sized the ensuite door beautifully.
It fits the cavity absolutely perfectly - to the millimetre.
So perfectly it cannot be removed.
Without a handle or any space on any of the door's edges - the door cannot be opened.
Hubby is effectively stuck inside the ensuite, his exit blocked by his perfect fit of a door.

Not wanting to wake the angel Magoo, Hubby calls out to his wife and bangs softly to get her attention. With no success. She can be heard laughing and rambling around the house.
Luckily, Hubby has his mobile in his pocket, so he calls his wife. He texts his wife. He calls his wife again. He texts again. Minutes pass.
Scene 4 :
The selfish wife arrives at the ensuite to find the entrance blocked and hear a rather frustrated Hubby on the other side instructing her to push the door in.
The wife proceeds to fall around laughing and describe her Hubby's predicament to her friend on the line.
Oh, then she pushes the door in and releases that Hubby character.

Based on a true story.

Shar :-)

Friday, November 25, 2011

Grateful For... Ladies in Leadership

Leadership qualities...
Leadership potential...
Effective leadership...
Commitment to leadership...

These have all been 'buzz' words for me in recent weeks as I prepare my students for their school captaincy nominations and elections.

Make no mistake.
It's serious business, this ten year old political arena.

It has been an interesting process for me to be involved in after so long with my babies in the early years.
A time to reflect on my own suitability as a leader (or to the contrary) and to be amused at how my burning leadership aspirations dissipated around the time contraception ceased to exist in my world!!
It has provided a springboard to appreciate the leaders I am privileged enough to follow and collaborate with in my roles at work
(the 'mostly paid in monetary value' variety of work, that is).

Earlier this year I was deeply saddened, and almost distressed, to bid a retirement farewell to my boss. He had been a brilliant mentor and friend of mine for the past six years. He is an amazing individual and educator who has left a huge mark on me professionally and personally.

But with the winds of change came two strong, warm and beautiful women, whose direction and guidance I have loved working under this semester. Both of these women have been exceptional leaders. confidantes, colleagues and role models. They've supported me through some tough decision making, helped me navigate complicated too-serious-for-this-poor-child issues and offered valuable insight when I've needed another perspective. They've been generous with feedback, acknowledgment and encouragement. They've asked personal and engaging questions - and genuinely cared to hear the answers. They've also accommodated (and possibly even nurtured!) my tendency to be a tad sooky and become a tad too attached to my students or their families.

This week I'm grateful for leadership that transcends 'being the bossy boss boss' and embodies so much more. Leaders that don't just inspire you to follow, but to forge a new path with them.

Linking up with Maxabella Loves' Grateful For... 
Pop over to enjoy some weekend gratitude.
I'll lead the way, shall I?!

Shar :-)

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Lovely Julie from Mama of 2 Boys has passed me the baton in the
'5 Things You'd Notice About Me' relay.

So, five things you might notice if you met me...

1. I put myself down a lot.
(As in my immediate first five thoughts for this list were flaws.)
I know it's annoying and pathetic. When I grow up, I don't wanna do it no more. K?

2. I interrupt. All. the. time.
I know it's annoying and pathetic. When I grow up, I don't wanna do it no more. K?

3. I am colour coordinated (I would hope).
I'm a stickler for matchy matchyness and having my shoes/earrings/undies coordinate with my outfit. Nothing I wear is 'thrown on' without a thought. Even if I say it is.
I know it's annoying and pathetic. But I like it. K?

4. I have interesting or memorable or something hair.
People tend to comment on my hair. A lot. Of course, I can't take a compliment so I mutter stupid things about what's wrong with it or that my hairdresser is a flippin miracle worker. (Which she is.)
That second bit is annoying and pathetic. When I grow up, I'll just say "thanks".

5. I have to do something with my hands at all times.
Usually, I don't actually know what to do with them, so I do silly things like make a little mound out of the crumbs I've dropped on the table while I'm talking/listening. So then my guest does the same and then I worry that she thinks I'm all OCD about the crumbs on the table, but really I just needed something to do with my hands. You still with me here? This is the single reason that I drink too much at functions/ weddings / parties/ dinners/ interviews... Honest.
I know it's annoying and pathetic... yada yada yada.

So there.
I've run my leg.
Time to pass the baton on.
Here it comes...
Peggy @ cake crumbs and beach sand
Michelle @ Farmer's Wifey
Teresa @ Amelie In Wonderland
Naomi @ Under The Yardarm
Alex @ Woah Mumma

Shar :-)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

52 Week Project : Wk 10

Why hellloooo glamourpuss!!

No, I'm not channeling alien life forms -  
just maintaining the do, you know?

This week's self portrait was snatched in a self conscious instant -
for fear of my beloved hairdresser catching me in the act.

Foil is definitely my colour.
It really brings out my metallic side, donchya think?!

I always have difficulty staying awake at the hairdresser.
The conversation is terrific, really.
But I struggle to keep my eyes open
(you know that lecture theatre, head slowly falling down then snapping back up with a start thing,
then looking around to see if anyone witnessed your micro nap)
after the first hour.
(Yes. I'm there for hours.)

I think it's the combination of the heady (chemical based) smells, the soothing music, having my hair played with and the fact that I do not usually sit down for extended periods
- unless it's on the exercise bike.

Oh my goodness - another brainwave.
Copyrighting this one - hairdressing while you exercise.
Could it be any more efficient?
I don't know why someone hasn't thought of this sooner.

Actually, yes I do.

Linking up with the beautiful My Mummy Daze and her inspiring 52 Week Project
The 52 Week Project

Shar :-)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

I Wish, I Wish...

I have been tagged by the gorgeous Sonia from Life, Love and Hiccups  
to share my Christmas wish list.
Now, really, no. 1 on my list should be a home like Sonia's.
After a post in which Sonia gave us a 'virtual tour' of her home, I was a smidgen (if a smidgen is a ton) greener in complexion.
But, in truth, I really haven't been that good this year.
And my en suite is nearly, almost, just about, any-day-now 'Sonia's home worthy'.

So, I'm happy here and don't really wish for a lot.

Ok, the one thing my heart really desires can't be purchased (not legally in Australia anyway) so I've got some stocking fillers here instead...

  • I would love me a marathon bracelet charm to commemorate my 42km achievement this year (and to brag shamelessly when asked about it - or even when not asked about it).

  • I guess I be needing myself a Pandora type charm bracelet then too - or the charm becomes pretty defunct. (Ahem, Hubby the catalogue is in your top drawer.)

  • Then 'cause I don't wanna look like it's all about me (even though it may well be) I'll have to have a charm or five symbolising my beautiful family and other passions, right? (I'm not sure if chocolate, lists, gorgeous children, overcooking food or overthinking are bona fide charms  - but they should be.)

  • Perfume
  • iTunes
  • books
  • anything from the hands of Magoo
  • anything from Lorna Jane
  • anything from Typo
  • anything from Peter Alexander
  • anything quirky from any home wares store
  • or anything resembling a pedicure
       -would never fail to please this chook on any day of the year.

There you go.
I did pretty well for someone who doesn't wish for a lot, hey??!!

Now I'll play tag.
I'm tagging you...
Lou @ Sunny + Scout
Julie @ Mama of 2 Boys
Jennie @ Posie Patchwork - the blog
Loz @ Ninja Tales
Karla @ Ironmum Karla

What's on your list this year?
Have you been naughty or nice?!
Shar :-)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Point + Shoot : Magoo Musings

Hi gools and boise,
Magoo he-yar.

Howz oor weekend?
Mine's a good wun.

I heped Mummy and Daddy do lots of jobs and soon dere is noo bafroom.
I pwayed in the sun and do paintings.
I do safety week for simming. I'm a good fwoater.
Me and Mummy make smooofy with all de fwoot ball.
Raaar! I a tiger!!
My gools a bufwhy.

Magoo :-)

Magoo is point + shooting with Lou (or his fwend Sunnyboooma)
at Sunny + Scout today.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Grateful For... Reclaimed Head Space

Reports are a-go!
My school reports are done and dusted (bar the final preview and print) for another semester.
As Magoo would say "iz dun, Mum".

Despite the fact that they consume me, I love writing reports.
I'm a teacher nerd.
 And proud of it.

When I'm in report mode I think in reporting language.
I phrase responses in that 'teacher tone' and then have to filter them to sound half normal.

I spend a lot of time invested in 'getting it right' and pore over results, tables and data.
I tip tap away every night and curse the programmers who make the system so user-hostile.
I think very carefully about how my comments will appear to parents and try (oh-so-hard-sometimes) to put a positive spin on some harsh realities.

I love how there is so much genuine progress to report at this time of year and how close I've become to so many of the fabulous kids I'm writing about.

For all my other countless inadequacies, I write a mean report.
If I may say so myself.
(As in relatively well written, not nasty mean.)

That said, the afternoon that I finished my reports (or thought I had. Damn you edits.) I paid a stack of bills, tidied the study, made a decent meal - from scratch you hear, ordered our Christmas cards, made a bunch of lists and started my Christmas shopping.
I reclaimed some much needed head space - 'cause there ain't that much to go around here!

I've pretty much been able to focus on  Master Magoo and reports  - and not much else - in recent weeks.

As much fun as being in front a computer programme with a razzle dazzle name (intended to trick us into thinking that spending many nights and weekends in it's company is an exciting prospect) is, I feel freeeeee today.

Free to get into the festive spirit and get geared up for the bulging calender that sits before me.
Free to start cracking the whip on this renovation business.
Free to get into the great outdoors and do some damage gardening.
Free to actually watch something on Hubby's new girlfriend television.
Free to find that party frock to carry me through the next month or so.

Happy weekend!

Linking with Maxabella Loves Grateful For...

Shar :-)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Pause. Please.

Like so many other Mummies, I dream of turning the remote on my child.

Not just for the occasions when the mute function would be greatly appreciated, but for the opportunity to pause this fast-paced, action packed 'Magoo Magic' blockbuster in it's tracks.
There are so so many days, and moments in days,
when I wish I could just pause.
Suspend us in time right there cracking up at a clever little Magoo-made joke, cuddling with small, sweet fingers stroking my face or singing and dancing on the trampoline.

But I know from the experiences of friends that this parenting gig,
it just keeps getting better.
(Friends with teenagers excepted, in this instance!)

That every age has it's delights and "oh, this is the best" qualities.
(Again, from all accounts - teenagers excluded.)

I'm pretty sure every month in Magoo's first year was "the best age".
Then, of course being one was magical.
Two was hilarious.
Three is absolutely captivating me...
When every week outshines the last and every month is even lovelier than the one before, how can I focus only on the last temper tantrum or messy spill?
Of course, there have always been people along the way, standing at the sidelines throwing in their two cents worth with "oh wait for teething. Teething's awful" or "just you wait for those terrible twos" or "toilet training is death by feaces" or "they've driven me to drink and back".
(Once more, I feel the parents of teenagers may have a valid point though.)

My experience so far, has been that each phase, with it's challenges, brings it's awesomeness in even greater quantities.

Right now, I'm just overwhelmed by how quick this little Magoo man is growing and the fact that beautiful days like these
will be fleeting in the big picture.
So for now, I just want to press pause.
Stop at this moment in time when my little boy is climbing, splashing, stumbling, scrambling - but all the while looking back and grinning from ear to ear at his "fwend", his Mummy.
(And truth be told - call in sick to work tomorrow, so I can play.)
Even if the "best" is yet to come, this is pretty damn blissful.
I'm in awe of the stories that this little mind can weave, the incredible imagination, the sensitivity and the detailed observations that escape even my eagle eye.

The tall tales of (make believe, I hope) midnight antics from bedtime buddies in the night told with such earnest have me in stitches every morning.
The dramatics and performances are so innocently over the top and show pony
- that I wish I could catch just a little bit of that abandonment and self confidence for myself.

What a load of Magoo mush spilling out here today.

Don't worry, I do know he's not especially wondrous or extraordinary.
That the sun doesn't actually shine just for him.
The camera just makes it look that way sometimes.
I feel that all kids this age are just amazing and brilliant.
But this one's mine, you see. I made him.

What is your 'favourite stage'?

Shar :-)

BTW Hubby - this 'pause' refers only to Magoo's current loveliness.
I do not want to pause our bathroom mid renovation or any other project currently underway.