Here are some fun stories and thoughts about what’s been happening in our lives this past month. Enjoy!
I SOLD MY CAR FOR A CRAYFISH!!
Yes, true story! This month saw the replacement of my “had lots of adventures in, but the end is near/here” car, with a newer vehicle within a week of needing it!
While the kids and I were away down south on holidays the car’s transmission burnt out. That meant I couldn’t drive it at more than 20km a hour. Not fun in a busy holiday town where everyone seems in a rush to go and enjoy themselves! Definitely not possible to drive it the 3 hours home.
After finding out it would cost me a lot of money to have it repaired, I decided to leave the car at the local wreckers. Only, on a Friday afternoon in a country town, the wreckers was closed.
Thankfully a local resident was interested to taking the car and repairing it himself and I was interested in giving it to him! I was also willing to accept his offer of a local crayfish in appreciation for letting go of my old, not going anywhere car.
Oh how did we get home? Thankfully a good friend was willing to have myself, 3 kids and all our holiday gear in their car to travel back to Perth.
And oh yes the week before my laptop died AND the gas hot water system. Talk about having a financially challenging month!
Responding To The Challenge
I am not loving the stress and challenge of going on holidays and coming back without a vehicle. But I do appreciate all the little ways we were looked after during that situation. From friends who helped when the car broke down to being able to get back to Perth.
I was also thankful for having someone at that exact moment to transfer ownership of the car to rather than leave it on the side of the road, no plates and the keys in it.
After coming home, I had a car available that I could use for a week and I was able to find a replacement vehicle very quickly.
Also, the kids and I still really enjoyed our holiday! I have decided that it’s much better to go through challenges when you are staying in a beautiful place.
I also deliberately chose to not be overly worried about the situation and that was helpful for the kids. Especially my daughter!
A friend shared with me how my daughter was telling them about how we would cope ok without a car. She was matter of fact, saying “We can walk to school, we can get the food shopping delivered etc.”
Her way of calmly adjusting to what had happened! So far we haven’t walked to school yet because we have been going in the new car!! Hoot! Hoot!
SMARTER, FASTER, BETTER
He basically uses some powerful real life examples to share key insights into productivity. The content was thought provoking and really interesting.
For example; describing research that shows how healthy it is for people living in aged care to continue to make choices for themselves. How the furniture in their room is arranged or whether they will eat what is served to them. Even these inconsequential choices will help them live longer and be healthier.
Making choices for ourselves, even unimportant ones, is very healthy!! That helps me look at my new kids in a new light when they are exerting their independence over something trivial.
To choose is to be human! Is there such a thing as too much choice? Well that’s another discussion.
One of the most powerful stories used in the book illustrates the productivity principle of building mental models. It describes the successful landing of a severely damaged aircraft. A QANTAS plane! And then the story of an Air France aircraft that crashed.
One plane full of people survived because the pilot could picture what a successful landing would look under extreme circumstances. Another plane full of people perished because the pilots did not have the mental models they needed to recognise what was wrong and make the necessary corrections. Talk about the consequences of decisions!!
For me personally, what does good parenting look like? What does it feel like to relate calmly and in control with my kids? How do I imagine them responding? Practicing good mental models prepares me for the real situation and helps me to respond rather than react.
Well worth reading!! Especially if like me, you enjoy non fiction which combines powerful real life stories with research findings!
DECLUTTERING THE HOUSE
At the beginning of the month I decided to skip the kids’ two weeks of swimming lessons for more time at home. They did one swimming lesson which helped me realise that we all needed days without anything scheduled.
Also as author Emily Freeman shares in her book, Simple Tuesday, indoor swimming pools are not a comfortable place to be. And summer indoor swimming pools? Stinkin’ hot, large amounts of chlorine, noisy and just enough room to jiggle your body in the water next to someone else to try and cool off.
Update: We have now found a small outdoor pool that the kids have swimming lessons at every summer. It’s quiet, less people, and surrounded by trees and grass, and even a few friendly cockatoos.
What did we do instead?
Lots of free play. I also spent some of the time decluttering all our clothes, books and papers using the Konmari method!
I was excited about how much stuff I was able to discard or pass on. Three large plastic boxes of clothes, put aside for the kids to grow into, got reduced to a few bulky winter jackets.
Making that progress towards my goal for a clean, calm and beautiful home felt good too!
NEW YUMBOX LUNCH BOXES!!
I loved the new Yumbox school lunch boxes I got for the kids.
I also loved running my first ever giveaway on this blog!! Two Yumbox lunch boxes plus some other cool stuff were given away to one lucky reader. That giveaway is now closed. But it was so much fun I am looking forward to having another giveaway sometime soon!!
But for now, I am making an effort to put more variety into my kids’ school lunches and try out some new recipes for lunch box treats.