I like to move it, move it – Couch to 5km session 7

Hubs and I were both up before Peanut this morning. I’d laid out my gym stuff last night, packed my clothes for work and got everything ready bar my breakfast and vitamins before Mum and I went to the cinema (more later). Hubs was up dressed and getting his breakfast sorted when the cat appeared with something in the dining room.

You know what’s worse than finding a skink in your house? Finding a skink chomped in half in your house, that was yesterday’s pleasure. Today was a geckos turn to be played with. I held Chief Brody, gave some kitchen roll to Hubs, he picked up the gecko and took it out on to the deck. Peanut appeared with awesome bed head, little wisps all over the place, he toddled out on to the deck too to have a look and said ‘I’m outside. With outside toys!’, he then brought a concrete mixer into the kitchen, flung it to the floor and shouted ‘Shhh! Upsidaisy!’ sorry Mum if we woke you up rescuing the latest reptile and with the wee man.

Going to the gym this morning was much quieter than on my last visit earlier this week. I’m going to get to go tomorrow morning as well as Hubs has the day off work, he and The Granny are going to take Peanut down to his uncle’s for a sleepover. We three are going to the cricket in the evening. Balcony passes outside the Long Room at the MCG – good work my man! We’ll then have a lie-in *faint* we’ll all probably head to the gym again, have breakfast before heading down to collect the wee man again to have lunch and spend the afternoon with my brother and sister in law, not sure how many children are down with them. As it might not be their weekend to have the older two, but we’ll see.

While I know I’ll run tomorrow morning, I can’t swim as the pool is being fixed, but I’ll be able to get a swim in on Saturday as the work should be completed by then. I’m enjoying listening to my podcasts, plodding away, my knees felt better today too, and I managed the three minute burst ok both times. I’ve got an osteo appointment tomorrow, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that everything is ok, my back certainly feels pretty good and my neck has been more stable too. I must admit, I probably could have gone last week for an adjustment, but eked it out till this week. I won’t be doing that again!

Last night was great fun. Mum and I had ratatouille and rice for dinner, then headed off to the cinema, stopping to get fuel and ice creams on the way. Oh and two cans of pre-mixed G&Ts, we’re all class I can tell you. Ever got chatted up in a petrol station? Well, until last night, neither had I. Given that my hair is at the stage called ‘mop’, I’d not blow dried it yesterday and had been running my fingers through it all day, it was sticking up in all directions. I was in a pair of jeans that are ‘cosy’, wearing a scrabby t-shirt, and still got flirted with, maybe there is hope after all.

The film was fabulous, Emma Thompson was really good at being pernickety, proud, cautious and downright obstinate. Tom Hanks was also on good form, even changing how he spoke, pulling the sides of his mouth in to a tight line. Walt Disney was reportedly larger than life, so there’s not many people who could have portrayed him and got all the nuances of his character across. He was used to getting his own way, but with the rights of the books being dangled on a string in front of him, the frustration shone through, but at the same time knowing he couldn’t push back too hard or he’d lose it completely. People who worked with him also like that Tom Hanks picked up on the cough he used to do before Disney entered a room, so you knew he was coming.

Some critics and correspondents to Wittertainment have found the back story a bit too much, but you need to see where the characters came from – not just Mary Poppins, but PL Travers too. Taking her fathers’ name, creating a nom de plume, while trying to protect the memory and image of her father had an impact across PL Travers’ whole life, and explains her reticence to allow other people to ‘interfere with her’. Her being this larger than life woman, sweeping in on the East wind, restoring calm where there was chaos. Childhood doesn’t stay where it happened a lot of the time. Instances in anyone’s childhood are like ripples across a pond. They don’t even need to be bad things to have an impact, how many of you have been rooted to the spot by a smell, song or a fleeting glance of something out the corner of your eye?

Watching the young family crumble through alcohol abuse, at the same time as watching PL Travers’ resolve crumble and understanding that no matter what happens, she needs the money, so she has to let Mary Poppins go. Watching her realise this and seeing the relationship with her driver change are all foils for the prickles that surround an enigmatic, difficult woman. It could have easily been a schmaltzy film, but it isn’t. You come out singing the songs that the Sherman brothers wrote; wanting to watch Mary Poppins again, knowing how hard it was fought for makes the classic all the sweeter; you also come out thinking that yes Walt Disney got his way and upheld the promise to his daughters, but also that PL Travers got her way too. She never let anyone touch Mary Poppins again for the screen and stipulated that no-one involved with the film could touch the stage musical, effectively writing out the Sherman brothers the process.

And if you think it’s all too much, over the credits at the end, there is a tape of the development sessions, they do not exaggerate how difficult, how awful it must have been to have worked with this irascible woman. That you still like her at the end of the film all is testament to how good Emma Thompson is, you could have easily ended up wanting to smack her, instead you understand how hard it was for her too.

Running vs. scones?

Scones won out, I’m sorry to say. Last night getting the wee man down was a struggle, so the night slipped away from us. I had every intention of going to the gym this morning, as I knew I’d feel better for it. But when I also went to bed really early at 8:30 as I was worn out, without the scones being made, I knew I wasn’t getting there today. I will go tomorrow morning, as I have no baking commitments and I’ll also be that further on with the secret women’s business, so I’ll have more energy too. Having said that, everyone is quiet, so it looks like I’m not the only one feeling a bit lethargic at work.

Today is wet and humid. There isn’t much rain on the radar, the cloud seems to be touching the floor, so we’re wading through it all, little droplets clinging to our hair and clothes. It’s one of those days where you wish you had another setting between intermittent and one on your windscreen wipers. Peanut went to nursery in sandals as it’s going to brighten up this afternoon, but walking him in through the mizzle this morning I got a couple of odd looks from other parents.

Because it’s still fairly warm, having the oven on this morning in the kitchen heated the house up quickly. The scones have come out really well again though. I roasted the pumpkin on Monday when I did our roastie, I nearly had enough for two batches, but not quite. I can’t make the dough in the Thermomix as it’s too sticky and dense. When it’s baked they’re lovely and light as the pumpkin both provides a lot of the moisture and holds everything together; but it is mashed pumpkin, it gives your arms a good workout.

Halfway through the baking, Mum came out her bedroom and released a moth from the bathroom that Chief Brody had brought in overnight. I am not joking when I tell you it was huge, the wing span was as big as my hand. I opened the door to the deck, propped the screen door open with a handy box of toy cars and trucks and took a broom inside. I said “I’ll try not to scream” and bravely nudged the moth with the brush end. It of course flew straight at me, I ducked it headed over to anther wall, I nudged it again and it flew straight out the door. Much to the cat’s disgust. I was dancing round with joy that I’d got the bluddy thing out the house, but the cat sulked downstairs to try and find it or another one to bring in.

Tonight Mum and I are going to see Saving Mr Banks at the cinema. It’ll be the first film we’ve seen together since The Full Monty. But before we leave, I’m getting everything ready for the morning, so I can get to the gym!

I like to move it, move it – Couch to 5km session 6

After the walk round Healesville on Saturday, in flip-flops/thongs* (*delete as language barrier requires), my knees were a bit creaky going up and down the stairs when we got back. On the run sections the next day, my knees were sore again. I felt strong while running, but a tad tender, but I womanfully carried on, pushed on through and felt better for it at the end. The gym was crazy busy, as was the swimming pool, it being baking hot and all, I guess people were escaping to the gym to do their exercise.

Next session, to be had tomorrow morning, has repeated three whole minutes of running to look forward to. I’m hoping I am going to be strong again, and not creaky. My bag is already packed, I just need to work out what to wear. It’s not going to be as hot as it has been today, but I’m still in the throes of my hormones having effect on me, today I’m in my ‘fat pants’ – every woman has them. They hide a multitude of sins, and in my case due to the tailoring, help restrain the poor bloated belly. I’ve just had a crunchie, for medicinal purposes. If I could have a lie-down, a shot of vodka, a minion massaging my back and 12 hours straight sleep – I’d be one happy woman.

I know chocolate isn’t the answer to my problems, I just need to ride it out, as tomorrow will be a better day, with a bit of luck I’ll have stopped retaining water so can wear something more be-fitting for the weather.

On long weekends

I’m not sure there is anything more satisfying when Sunday night rolls around, and you know you have Monday off work too. While I could get very easily get used to having a three day weekend, that they’re not something that happens very often, makes them all the more special. Like the very limited opportunity I get to set an alarm, then switch it off, roll over and go back to sleep – which is what I used to do on a day off BC (before child). With the toddling alarm clock, we don’t need to set one at all really.

We had lots planned this weekend, so yesterday really was all the sweeter. Saturday was a lovely day, not too hot, perfect for walking round Healesville Sanctuary. We were spoilt really, we got there early enough to miss the crowds and the hotter part of the afternoon, but what made the day spectacular was not one, but two displays by the Lyre Bird. We’ve only ever seen his feathers running across the path in the distance, I’m trying to get the videos up onto YouTube, when I’ve managed it, I’ll add the link into here.

We saw a Tasmanian Devil awake. Which is an event in itself, normally you only get to see a small bundle of black fur and that’s it, and only that if they’ve fallen asleep in eyeshot too. One koala was also awake, an echidna was waddling around, the parrots stood still enough to see their beautiful colours and the emus stood so close to their fences you could touch them, if you were stupid enough to do that. I will upload some photos to Tumblr later today for you and put the link in, maybe that would work for the video too? (muses).

While we go to the sanctuary a lot, something must have been aligned correctly as Hubs and I have never seen so many animals out and about. Peanut had a whale of a time, Mum had a great time too. We went a bit of a peculiar route round, but no matter. Sitting down for a cup of coffee, we split some cakes and brought a sausage roll for Peanut. He solemnly proclaimed it to not be yummy, but delicious.

After the sanctuary visit, we took Mum to De Bortoli winery for a picnic. We sat on a hill, looking down into a vineyard and ate our cold chicken, pate, cheeses and enjoyed a bottle of red. It was really busy, so Mum and Hubs didn’t get to do the wine tasting, but I’ve got the 5 February off work to do a wine tour with her.

Sunday we headed over to my cousins house for a visit, celebrating Australia day with vegemite sandwiches, sausages, party pies, pavlova and chocolate cake. We chatted away for ages, Peanut behaved pretty well, and only got a bit cranky when he started to get tired. He loved the food, loved seeing everyone again and chatted away happily to us all.

Monday we went swimming, Peanut is throwing himself into the pools with abandon, the beach levels he loves as he flings himself down, kicks his legs and floats across the water. It’s gorgeous to watch how independent he is in the pools, I followed him around for an hour, standing under the jets when I was getting chilly. Mum had a swim, Hubs went to the gym, we came home, had showers and I headed up to the gym for my run. I’d put the last of the beef that we’d brought from the butcher for Christmas in to roast slowly. Fear not, it had been frozen! Dinner took a little longer to cook than planned, I should have put the meat in before we went swimming really, but it was worth waiting for. I found a gluten free Yorkshire pudding recipe too, and nearly cried when I had a mouthful of meat, horseradish, gravy and Yorkshire pudding. I hadn’t realised how much I’d missed them!

So that’s it, three days condensed for you into a nut shell. I can’t tell you though how much this weekend has meant to mum and I. These weeks with her are going to be some of Peanut’s earliest memories – it’s awesome. In the true sense of the word.

I like to move it, move it – Couch to 5km session 5

Yesterday I headed up to the gym. After not finding time (bad Maddie) over the weekend and having a headache all day on Monday, this was my first visit in a week. Starting to walk while I did the traditional head-phone detangle, I upped my incline from 1-2%. Not much difference, but I’ve got to get used to running on hills somehow.

After the five minute warm-up walk, I began running and thought ‘Oh’ I was a bit stiff and clunky in my movements. But by the time I got to the last, (sixth), ninety second run, I was flying and felt great.

I say flying, as I’m still running very slowly compared to some of the other people pounding away next to me. I keep re-reading the ‘RUN SLOWLY’ bit of the instructions, people obviously get carried away and exhaust themselves, never to run again. And it is tempting when you’re feeling strong and going well. When I collected my card in exchange for my locker key, the receptionist looked at me, when I got to the car, I realised why. I was pink in the cheeks, but I didn’t look like I’d been on a treadmill for half an hour! When it was the heatwave, I was dripping with sweat, but I think the core training I spent my teenage years doing is again holding me in good stead. I pick up fitness very quickly, so I’m grateful for the years I spent swimming.

I signed up for my first road race this week, the Run4Kids 5km run in April. Hubs and Hanno are going in for the 15km version, I inadvertently booked my spot in the wrong section though as I didn’t see ‘If you’re running with a pram book here’ until too late and once you’re in, you’re in. I just need to line up with different coloured bibs to the one I’ll be wearing, it isn’t too much of a problem. I then found another four road races through the year, two in May, one in July and one in November. Hubs and I are going to discuss what ones to enter, I don’t think I’ll do both of the May ones, but we’ll work it out. One of my goals for this year is to be running 10-15km with ease by the end of the year, so the City2Sea in November at 14km is definitely a good one to aim for.

My detox pack arrived yesterday, having looked again at the diary – I’ve pushed the start back to Monday 10 February when Mum leaves. We’re booking the wine tour for the final week she’s here, and while I’m meeting a friend for afternoon tea in the middle of it, I can eat round the detox for one day, but I can’t blow it off with wine tasting in the middle of it.

Mum and Hubs conspired together on a present, I was given a huge box of stationery from Kikki-K, along with a Dream Journal and a My Dream Life Box. They’re not ‘dreams’ as in me being married to Boy George and trying to escape out a hotel and being stuck in rooms, or even Colin Firth serving me coffee (that was a nice one). But dreams of where I want to go to. As I walked back to the office today, the grass had been mown, cutting up the fallen gum tree leaves in the process, the whole area at the front of the office smelt of eucalyptus, the sun was shining but it’s not too hot – all was well in my little world. I’m not sure where my dreams will take me, I don’t want to dream too big – but big enough. I’ll work through the box first and see where that takes me. I might keep the Journal for family dreams and goals. We’ll see.

So far, my word for the year, ‘Fit’ is still standing me in good stead. I know mum is here, so that might skew things a little – but I’m honestly happier than I have been in a while, and have been consistently since before Christmas. Huzzah.

Ten on Tuesday – Breakfast food edition

Carole has asked for our favourite breakfast foods, this is easily my favourite meal of the day:

1. Eggs Benedict – number one favourite option, but you would not believe the amount of times I can’t have it ‘out’ because they’ve made the Hollandaise sauce with flour. It doesn’t have flour in the recipe, it’s egg yolks, vinegar or lemon juice and elbow grease.

2. Scrambled eggs and smoked salmon.

3. Eggs and toast, with salt on the eggs and butter on the toast.

4. Omelette, my husband makes lovely omelettes.

5. Moving away from eggs, I love fresh fruit and yoghurt.

6. CADA – Coconut, Apple, Dates and Almonds (I use mixed un-salted nuts though) all whizzed together in the Thermomix. I’m going to try it with a pear as I’m not very good with apples at the minute, will report back.

7. Toast and marmalade, with strong black coffee.

8. Freedom gluten free cornflakes and muesli, with soy milk and yoghurt.

9. Smashed avocado and feta on toast. Sometimes with an egg, sometimes not, sometimes with bacon, sometimes not.

10. Mushrooms in any shape or form, on toast, on the side, I love mushrooms.

That was the easiest Ten on Tuesday I’ve done in a while, thank you Carole for the suggestion. I love my food, and always struggle to choose breakfast when I’m out and about. Pancakes are also a firm favourite, but I need to make them as we’ve had a few ‘issues’ with cross-contamination when I’ve had the gluten free option out and about. I’ve just had a bowl full of number 8, and am off to make a cup of green tea. Have a good day.