Of course my birthday yesterday had to be the hottest day in the history of mankind! I grew up in steamy Queensland, and I can tell you right now I never felt heat like yesterday before. The major worry  when you live in the middle of a forest is bushfire. Our home borders thick bush and in the event of a fire, we would not have much of a chance. Luckily we have the lake. To “go jump in the lake,” is literally a survival mantra around here!

In the event of an out of control fire, our plan is to make it to the local race track, a big open area with shelter and water. This is a great plan providing trees haven’t fallen over our road, or fire preventing us from driving out. I must admit the idea of sitting around in the middle of the lake in our trusty dingy in 40+ heat sounds like a pretty tough survival plan, but hey, we won’t burn out there in the middle of all that water!

It was so hot yesterday that I couldn’t get my nicotine patch to stick, there wasn’t a dry patch of skin for it to adhere to! I persevered and it slid it up and down my arm until eventually I gave up and threw it out. I am happy to report that I didn’t need it that day and sat through visits with smoking friends without a worry. I feel like something has flipped in my brain. My health is finally more important than my addiction. Halleluiah! What a great 45th birthday present!!

We all went out to dinner, to my favorite restaurant last night. Magoo and Pete, (my step-dad of 30yrs), Fitty and I, 3 and the nut, 5 and the lovely one, 6,7 and 8. Unfortunately Fitty’s older kids live away for work, and were not able to join us. It was a great night, considering our area is inundated with tourists each Christmas break, and the restaurant made several mistakes and were kind of hopeless really. Fitty was pretty mad when they forgot our entrees and started delivering our mains, we ended up with a 10% discount! I was just so happy to be out in public for the first time in months!

I ended up having a piece of steak and salad. It was enjoyable, but I wasn’t really into it. I forgot how much effort chewing meat was! Woke up about 3am with stomach pain and nausea? I don’t know why, but I figure my stomach has become used to the very natural basic food I’m eating. I have started losing weight again, down to 61kg, and this could be a worry if it keeps up. I have been put in touch with someone who may help me to balance my nutrition and stabilize the weight loss.

7 and 8’s mum has banned them from technology again! She is sick of the lack of activity and actual “childhood experiences”, they are missing out on. I have been banging on about this as well. We often have 3 young people sitting around with their faces attached to some screen or another, totally zoning out on life. They think it’s hysterical when I tell them that as a child I would wander around hitting a stone with a stick, ‘caveman golf’.  This means whenever we use the computer, one or both hang over our shoulder, getting their fix. They look as though their world has ended. 7 is having a particularly rough time, at 12, her whole world revolves around her friends, and she really doesn’t think she can live without Facebook and other social media. It’s ridiculous, but we try to look at it from her point of view. It is a bit sudden.

At her age I was still playing with Barbie dolls and running around the back yard. I wasn’t yet obsessed with being just like my friends, and I was happy to play and be imaginative with my time. I feel sorry for our kids, they really haven’t a chance with all this technology. 6 will get a rude shock today as well as he has far too much freedom, having his own computer and PS3 downstairs in his bedroom, he is often playing when we think he is sleeping. Fitty has decided to just turn off the internet at 10pm each night. That should fix him….

I absolutely must make a special mention of 4 today. She made my 45th birthday one that I will never forget in the most beautiful way.

As a step-mother, you don’t often get a lot of “credit” (for want of a better word), you do all you can for these kids, love them and help them, work for them, cry for them,  and yet the leading stars in their lives are obviously mum and dad. Not so for my 4. She made me a beautiful card, and wrote the most amazing message of thanks and love I have ever received from any of the children.

4 you are a star my love. I will never forget the way you made me feel yesterday. I love you with all my heart and I am so proud to be involved in your life. Thank you.

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