Monday, July 13, 2015

The one about 'how time flies'...

How do I update you on the last few months?....

We have been sick - more sick than we have been in years!
We have been busy. 
We have been happy. 
We have been stressed. 
I have caught up with beautiful old friends.
We have had some fantastically fun and successful play dates - wahooo!
I have baked.
I have read books.
We had our five year wedding anniversary and went out for dinner. Something we haven't done since our 4 year anniversary :)
Dom has had tremors for which we had an EEG - never a dull moment on the spectrum!
I have been taking lots of photos for instagram - I am on it a lot, if you want to follow me.
I made my first Acai bowl - thanks to my buddy Piera.
I have perfected porridge.
I have developed an addiction to chia pudding.
I also purchased some beautiful bedlinen from Oh Mabel - so gorgeous. 
I have reevaluated and thought long and hard about ways I can incorporate 'me time' and creativity back into my life. Thanks to Pip, I think am onto something...
And yoga. I am going to start yoga.
I taught myself to crochet - quite the achievement. This is something I have been wanting to do for ages.
I have cleaned frantically.
Long story, but my goodness I am efficient when I am high on steroids!
We have decluttered - majorly. A thoroughly enjoyable process.
In short, if we don't love it or use it, it has been donated. Sarah, you would be proud!
We nearly sold our house.
Property developers have hit town, but we missed out on a great opportunity because we have greedy, stupid,* insert any really offensive swear word here* neighbours. 
In short, we are surrounded by clowns.... I have always freakin hated clowns.

So, we have now resigned ourselves to the fact that we are staying in our little shanty, at least for the next few years, albeit surrounded by apartments. It's going to be tough, but no doubt like everything else, we will get through it. We love our little 'perfectly imperfect home,' but remain disillusioned at how quickly Brisbane City Council are willing to consider knocking down beautiful old Queenslanders, all for the sake of progress. The beautiful houses that make our city as special as it is.

So, to distract myself and eager to embark on a minor decorating project, my imagination has been running wild with ideas to introduce indoor plants to our home. We live in the perfect house for indoor plants and over the next few months, I am determined to build up collection, creating a really special space for us to enjoy. 
Of course I have turned to my friends at Pinterest for inspiration :)

home inspiration

Dreamy apartment in Brussels!

LOVE - Flowering Spring bulbs Via A Pair & a Spair! Such a cute use of the diptyque candles.

indoor plants

Image Via: Amber Interiors featuring the Tigris Hanging Garden Pots #Anthropologie

I am loving the idea of growing bulbs in old jars... how lovely is that!
How have you been? What's news with you?

Saturday, April 4, 2015

The one about the pear..

Grocery shopping has been an extraordinarily difficult task for us for a while now. Yes, yes, yes we do online shopping, but when your child consumes yoghurt and strawberries in epic proportions, one needs to go to the shops most days. 

Until Dom was identified as having Autism, we had no idea from a sensory processing point of view, how stressful going to the shops was for him. I should however clarify, we were acutely aware of how stressful shopping with Dominic was for us! :)

You see when you have Autism, your senses are heightened to ridiculous levels.
Sensory overload = meltdown, or at best socially undesirable behaviour.

When you and I go to the shops, the glaring fluorescent lights don't bother us too much, nor does the tragic music pumping down isle 2, people talking and laughing, the colour of all the fruits and vegetables, sound of airconditioners, beeping of scanners, hum of refrigerator's, temperature down the frozen food isle - are you getting my drift? All these things and so much more, we can regulate and pretty much 'tune out to'.
When I shop, the noise of music and temperature of the frozen food isle, doesn't cause me enormous distress and make me feel like my head is going to explode! The same can't be said for my little friend, and other people on the spectrum. So with our new found understanding of Autism, I have been determined to create positive feelings and rituals (that's self talk people) when going to the shops - and I am pleased to report, we have come a LONG way - well, on most days.

Our shopping ritual goes something like this. We discuss in much detail prior to leaving the car, the importance of Dom holding my hand AT ALL TIMES. Dom will then take off like a crazed lunatic (once we are in the shops thanks very much) straight to Valentino's to 'high five' the coffee shop owner's, Dom and Rita. Dom loves them and they make a huge fuss of him - 'Ciao bello'. I usually then grab a coffee so as to prevent me from loosing the plot - or tearing my hair out - one of the two. 
We then run past two ATM's ( we have reduced this number significantly - two is good!), where Dominic is allowed to press numbers on the proviso that he doesn't bellow out my PIN number (this has happened!). We then watch the escalators, marveling at modern day technology all before we finally get into a trolley and actually attempt to grocery shop. Of course by this stage, I have received the obligatory smile from a stranger and a comment like, 'You got a live one there'. 

Starting off in the fruit and vegetable section, I casually show Dom different fruits and vegetables - encouraging him to touch, taste and smell the different produce. I am a miracle mum after all - calm and poised in the face of chaos and unpredictable behaviour from my child - always providing my child educational opportunities. That's just the way we roll (ha!!!). Dom on the other hand is usually too busy yelling out the numbers flashing on the board in the deli section, 'Look mum it's 67. Pop is number 67!'. 
On this particular day, I had passed Dom a large, hard, green pear. I encouraged him to touch it. He screwed up his face as he gingerly clasped it in his little paws, staring blankly at me as if to say, 'Lady, you have finally lost the plot. What is it I am meant to do with this thing? It was then that I turned my head but for a millisecond, just in time to see him javelin throw the pear across the fruit and vegetable section of Coles. 
It soared in slow motion, glistening in the bright light, heading directly for an immaculately dressed woman. 
I gasped in horror, just in time to see the young women narrowly miss having a pear bopp her between the eyes. I received the predictable stares and shaking of the head from an elderly couple (why are they always so critical?), but thankfully the girl who nearly lost her life to the pear (and my child), just laughed. 
I turned to Dom hissing quietly, 'That is unacceptable behaviour mister'. The girl then smiled at me and said, 'You have to admit, that was pretty funny'. I apologised profusely. 
As we took off I couldn't help but giggle. Dom of course was oblivious to the near miss saying, 'Mummy angry. Oh no. Mummy not happy. Dominic get some yoghurt? I give you a kiss'. 
He is so lucky he is outrageously, deliciously cute.

A wise friend reminded me recently of the importance of humour. Some days we find ourselves in the most outrageously stressful situations. On this day however, I chose to laugh. 
Dominic and I carried on with our shopping. Dom sucked back on his yoghurt (I bloody hate those things) without a care in the world, I purchased the new 'Inside Out' to read well, who knows when :).
This my friends is progress, and it felt good.

crate of pears

Monday, January 12, 2015

A New Year ..

We are but a few weeks into 2015 and I am already in a 'tizz' - how is it that Christmas and New Year have come and gone?
We had our first calm and happy Christmas with Dom. 
We carefully orchestrated the day so as to not overwhelm him like we have done years prior. There was controlled enthusiasm on receiving gifts, not the squealing and shrieks of excitement from yours truly, but gentle smiles and encouragement. I have to say, it worked a treat. We had an 'emergency vehicle' themed Christmas, where Dom received two ambulances that both flash blue lights furiously and make the most horrible noise, much to our distress but Dominic's enjoyment. 
We played happily with beautiful cousins, and enjoyed yummy food. It was perfect.
Last Christmas I cried out of despair that my little boy was so unhappy and distressed. He screamed hysterically as his cousins played happily in their pool - 'I don't know what's wrong with him?'... 
I think I must have repeated that over and over again that day. 
This year with the diagnosis of Autism, although our hearts were broken, we now understand Dominic so much more, and he is clearly thriving as a result. My little family has come out of 2014 stronger, wiser and more resilient than ever. We have a long road ahead of us, but we have come out of 2014 feeling happy, loved, determined and so supported.

We have spent the past couple of weekends chilling out. Incorporating early intervention here and there, watching trains (of course), listening to music, talking about numbers and our favourite episodes of 'Thomas the tank engine' - enjoying each others company.

I have a few New Years goals - not resolutions so much, but goals.
Since Dom's diagnosis, I feel as though our little family has stopped taking risks. We keep Dom strapped in his pram in public, in fear of him having a meltdown or running off to the nearest ATM to press numbers furiously. Any peep that he has made at the shops we have felt stressed out about, despite the fact that other children of the same age are all screaming and demanding at the shops too. Yet somehow, we feel as though everyone is looking at us! Silly, I know. So, I declare 2015 about taking risks and being brave. 
We are going to go on short holidays. We are going to the park and to have more play dates - with what time I am not sure, but the intention is absolutely there. And we are going to walk! We are out of the pram people with our heads held high ;) As you can imagine my list is a mile long, but you get my drift.

On the weekend for the first time ever, Dominic and I walked to my parents house. They live 10 minutes away, 25 minutes if you stop to look at the ducks on the brook and talk to the dogs at the dog park.
Dom was running ahead of me and kept turning around and smiling - a truly contented and beautiful little smile. At one point he was strolling next to me and he looked up and said, 'Dominic happy, Mum'.
I could have cried... ok, I did get teary. 

This year with my lovely little blog, I am not committing to any writing schedule. If I can get a post up every week, I am doing well. In the meantime, I am 'all over' instagram like a crazy woman, so you can always find us there. 

Hope you are all well, lovely friends.