Looking back over 2011 and forward to 2012

January 17, 2012

The spouse at Grill'd, Eagle St Pier, some time in late 2011
The spouse at the burger joint Grill’d in Brisbane City. They do good burgers.
Rocket to the Moon necklace by Rare Indeed
The awesome Rocket to the Moon necklace by Rare Indeed given to me by my good friend Lucy. It should go nicely with my Black Milk purple galaxy leggings and my Black Milk Moonwalker swimsuit (not to mention my Atlantis jacket).
Black Milk Purple Galaxy legging at Brisbane Botanical GardensBlack Milk Moonwalker swimsuit
The playground was closed
I often meet up with friends with kids and sometimes we go to South Bank. One day the playground was closed off for refurbishment. I love this pic of my kid on the left and my friend’s kid on the right, watching the playground (and workmen) through the fence. Read the rest of this entry »

Another post about exercising, studying and my toddler (I am interested in other things, honest)

August 2, 2011

This morning as I sat in the waiting room at the dentist I read an interview with personal trainer Michelle Bridges from the latest (Australian) Women’s Weekly. One of her training tips was to create an exercise habit, as motivation will come and go, and you’ll always be able to come up with excuses for not exercising. I thought about how I’ve lost my exercise habit that I’d worked really hard on creating (started when the toddler was five months old and lost somewhere around 15 months – which was about three months ago). I know that “I’m really too tired to get up early and go running because my weeks of broken sleep from a frequently breastfeeding toddler is exhausting me” is not a bad excuse as excuses go but she’s sleeping much better lately (I’m attempting to night ween at the moment, and as most of her feeding is at night anyway, I’ve realised that it’s probably going to mean weening completely) so I should really start to work on creating that exercise habit again. So, this afternoon I went for a big run – trying to cover one of my routes I used to run regularly back when I was running three times a week. I was pretty happy with my performance. I used to covere the seven and a half kilometres in 50 minutes but today, even with a lot of walking breaks, I did it in 57 minutes.

The other habit I need to get back into is uni work – after finishing the full-time semester I’m having trouble getting motivated again. I just need to start doing it regularly and then hopefully the motivation will return. I’m a bit worried I don’t have enough to show my supervisor this Friday when I go to meet her. I checked my uni emails yesterday for the first time in a week or two and there was an email from her from a week ago – yikes – and many emails telling me about overdue library books. So many overdue library books in fact that I couldn’t renew any of them. Tomorrow, I have to take 23 books back to the library! Mental note: check your uni email a couple of times a week!

The toddler has just learnt to say her name, often followed by “That’s me” which is very cute. She also loves to look at me and say “Mummy” or look at her daddy and say “Daddy”. I love replying with “Yes, I’m your mummy.” And we hug and she beams at me and I feel such bliss. She’s been able to say Mama/Mummy for a while but it’s amazing how now she’s realising I’m a person, and she’s a person, and Daddy is a person, and there are other people. She’s saying a lot more these days (and a LOT that we don’t understand) and has just learnt to say NO which is cute but sometimes frustrating. I love how she is replying with an emphatic no to a lot of requests/questions these days even though she often doesn’t mean it. For example, at dinner tonight:
Me: Do you want some eggs for dinner?
Toddler: No!
I scramble some eggs and give them to her and she happily eats them.
Me: Do you want some cheese?
Toddler: No!
I hand her cheese. She takes it and eats it.

She does often say no and mean it though! Trying to change her nappy this morning and dress her for childcare was not easy. But we got there in the end.

Parks and the beach

July 24, 2011

Wow, I’m only managing to blog once a month at the moment. Well, it’s a start I guess. Also, I’m only managing to run once a week at the moment. Gotta increase that if I want to actually improve. The Gold Coast half-marathon was on the first week of July and I was a bit sad to have missed it (completing it had been a goal for this year) but all my illness in the months leading up to it and being busy with full-time study really got in the way. There are a couple of 10km runs coming up in Brisbane in the next month or so and I think I should aim for one of them. I did do ok with my semester results which got me thinking that maybe, just maybe, if I manage to do a kick-arse thesis, I could be capable of getting first-class honours. But that does mean I should probably be reading Foucault’s History of Sexuality, Part One: An Introduction, right now instead of blogging! Maybe I could have one of those careers in academia after all.
Playing in a dragon egg at New Farm Park, Brisbane
My spouse and toddler playing in a dragon egg at New Farm Park. Read the rest of this entry »

A visit to the park

June 20, 2011

Now that I have a toddler who loves to walk around exploring the world, I have to make an effort to get out more. I used to in my old hood but since moving in January I have turned into a real homebody, having lots of days where we don’t leave the house! Anyway, I’ve started making an effort to go to one of the nearby parks on days when we don’t have any other plans. This morning the toddler had a great time picking up bark chips, going on a swing, going down a slide, watching a man pruning a tree, watching a man rinse paint out of a paintbrush, circling around a tree (a few times), and looking at colourful tiles in a concrete path!
St Lucia Playground

We spent some time crawling along the path while the toddler pointed at tiles and I said the colour they were. “That one’s blue. That one’s yellow. That one’s black. That one’s orange. That’s a white tile. That one has a picture of a butterfly on it. That’s a blue tile. et cetera… ” The park is so fun.

St Lucia Playground

Semester is nearly over.

June 16, 2011

The semester is nearly over – only one piece of assessment left – and it’s been incredibly hard (studying fulltime with a toddler! Who knew?). I keep telling myself that at least I’ve got a year to write the thesis now (unlike all the full-time people who have four months!). I’ve loved sinking my teeth into various academic theories, particularly feminist scholarship on pornography (it’s so gloriously contentious), and I’ve even decided to start up feminist blogging again so I can write about my thesis and other stuff.

Unfortunately my running has really fallen by the wayside these last 2-3 months as I, my partner and the toddler have all been sick on-and-off, and that, combined with the late nights trying to finish assessment, has meant I wasn’t getting up early to go running. All that preparation I had been doing for the Gold Coast Half-marathon came to a halt and I’m pretty much going to have to start up my running from the beginning again once the semester is over. At least now I know that with hard work and persistence I CAN run 10km, and I’m sure I could make it to 21.1km (the distance of a half marathon!).

Sickness, walking, study, etc

April 2, 2011

Ok, things aren’t  really as bad as I made out in my last post! I think I let my stress get in the way. Last Sunday I caught up with my friend Mon and her friend Esther, and we were all without our babies which was a wonderful break. and I recently went out on a Friday night to catch up with a friend who was in town – my first night out since the bubba was born. And on Friday just gone I saw a fellow mum and her bub in the morning and another one in the afternoon. So two playdates for my bubba and two grown-up dates for me. I also had an hour-long massage too which was lovely. This week has been quite full-on: Paul had probably the worst gastro bug I’ve ever encountered (he vomited and diarrhead all Sunday night and then again Monday for a second night) so he was pretty wiped out (he lost 5 kilos in 2 days). I had two presentations to give at uni which probably went better than I had expected. I have quite a bit of assessment coming up so I really need to be organised to get it done. Actually, if I get it all done, in only nine weeks I will have completed a semester of fulltime study (with a baby). I can totally do this, right? Also, the bubba’s been a little sick and not sleeping great, and feeding a lot at night, so the sleep-deprivation combined with my own staying up late to finish assessment means no running happened all week! I haven’t been for a run since last Sunday and it’s now Saturday night. I’m not even sure if I’ll go tomorrow either because I have a sore throat and am probably coming down with something. So last Sunday I ran for 1 hour 20 minutes and tomorrow I’m supposed to run for 1 hour 40 minutes. If I do go, it’s not going to be that long.

Exciting news is that the bubba is walking, so maybe I should be calling her the toddler now. It was a long slow process for her (she’s fourteen months now). She was a pretty good climber and crawler so I don’t think there was a huge incentive for her to walk. She started taking steps ages ago and the number she took at a time has slowly increased and last week she was probably walking 8/10/12 steps at a time before falling over and now this week she seems to be walking full time (most of the time, anyway). It’s so very cute. She’s talking heaps too. She’s been saying Mum, Dad, boob and up for months now and she’ll occasionally repeat a word, never to say it again (banana, water, umbrella, dress) but lately she’s copying words and sounds a lot more and she’s babbling heaps which we just love. She wakes up and starts talking in the mornings, she talks away when she’s sitting in the carseat (much nicer than when she used to just scream in the carseat), she babbles when she’s playing, when she’s having meals. I think we’re going to have quite the little talker (just like both her parents!).

Even though Paul and I have often missed living in London, I have so many friends here with babies, it was definitely the right thing to do to come back here to have ours! And I have a few friends about to have more babies. One of them sent me the link to this article: Four Lies Sleep Trainers Tell You (and one Truth they don’t). I think it’s a really good article. People can be really judgemental about having your baby in your bed with you and about why you won’t just let them cry themselves to sleep to stop them waking for night feeds, etc.

I’d better be off to bed soon but I wanted to mention a couple of albums I would really like. I’m not a big follower of music and I can listen to the same music over and over again for ages but I really want Talk About Body by Men, and Patrick Wolf’s latest album Lupercalia (and the one before that too).

Check out The City by Patrick Wolf, and Credit Card Babie$, Who Am I To Feel So Free and  Off Our Backs by Men. We saw Men play in London (after dancing to a DJ set by JD Samson). It. Was. Awesome!

All I’m doing is studying and running (oh, and looking after the baby)

March 28, 2011

I’ve had four weeks of classes and I’m feeling stressed/worried/out of my depth with the workload (especially as the bubba has missed quite a bit of childcare from being ill). I discovered on Friday that a number of other people in my classes (who incidentally don’t have a baby) are also crazily stressed with the workload. I’m loving being a Cultural Studies Honours student but really am not getting as much reading done as I would like, especially on my thesis (I have so much reading for the coursework). For my thesis I do get to look at stuff like this and this, but I should be spending more time on stuff like this.  I have to give two presentations this week, which I’m a bit worried about, and as soon as they’re done, I have essays to start. I knew this semester would be tough. I just have to find a way to get the work done.

So on top of the study I’m also training for the Gold Coast Half Marathon in July. And what a time commitment that is. Last weekend I did my first race, the Twilight Running Festival 10km run. It was pretty awesome. I wanted to do it in 1 hour 10 minutes. I did it in 1 hour 2 minutes 23 seconds. I was really chuffed. Paul wanted to go in it too but he’d had a head cold and a sore ankle so he was pretty bummed to miss it. It was quite a change to be surrounded by 1500 runners when I normally run by myself. It certainly helped me run much faster than normal. Paul and I joined a gym a couple of months ago and I have hardly been going but I’ve finally done the two free personal training sessions we got when we joined so I’ll now have a program that’s been made especially for me – I said I wanted to work on my strength and I want it to help my running. I think it will be good. I’d much rather be out pounding the pavement than in a gym doing weights but I think this program will be good, even though I only plan to do it once a week.