Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Avoiding "too hard"

Today was one of those days that just never got started. I slept in, and the hour or two of work I was planning to do ended up stretching out to 2:30pm. I'd told the kids I would take them to DFO to buy shoes (not one of them had sneakers that both fit and were still in one piece) and then we'd go up to the Blue Mountains, with no particular intent. They were Unimpressed when I revised the plan down to shopping plus a visit to Bicentennial Park. Really Unimpressed.

So I figured, what the hell, we'd go anyway, and have dinner in the mountains. Crash was out drinking at work, so it was just me and the kids, reducing the inertia somewhat.

Shoe shopping was relatively painless and successful - 3 pairs of shoes: Skechers for Charlie @ $33, Rivers for Ben & Elissa @ $7 & $10 respectively. Given that Ben's had to be black (for school uniform reasons) I was chuffed.

We got to Wentworth Falls just after 5pm, just as it started raining. But such a ridiculous expedition wasn't going to be affected by some rain, and we wandered the grueling 300m up the footpath to the lookout. Wentworth Falls looks like this, at the moment.

Wentworth Falls

And proof that I didn't pull this out of "Standard Library of Blue Mountains Photos", the kids were really there with me.


Ben really wanted to go proper bushwalking. If you look closely at the photo, you can see he was wearing thongs (flip flops for non-Australians), Elissa & Charlie were both wearing sandals, and you can see Elissa was clearly dressed for the bush. So we took a short detour along a track, and then walked along a more dodgy track for 5 minutes or so, and then turned around. By the time we got back Elissa had been bitten by nasty little black bugs and Ben had discovered exactly why one doesn't go bushwalking in thongs, but they're all keen to come back another time, in more appropriate attire, and no-one fell off a cliff. 

Ben was still dictating terms, and was calling for fish & chips for dinner. I was happy enough with the suggestion, but spotted a Chinese restaurant before I saw the Take-away, and conned them into spring rolls instead. While we watched the rain bucket out of the sky, I reminded them of my superiority - Ben's fish & chips in the park may not have been a rollicking success. Food was good, kids were so nicely behaved that an elderly man came over to congratulate them on their efforts on his way out and I barely had an anxious moment. We came out of the restaurant into cloud, literally. The kids were predictably impressed by the idea that they were in the middle of a cloud and we came home a happy bunch. 

It's a fairly big shift for me to decide that this kind of thing isn't just "too hard". Part of it is Elissa growing up - a year ago this afternoon really would have been implausible. But part of it, probably a bigger part, is that I never really came out of pregnancy malaise after Elissa. Everything has felt like a chore for a long time. I'm not pregnant anymore, I have no reason to put so much into the too hard basket and I need to remember that life's more fun when I don't.


  1. Ooh, I had no idea all 3 of yours were still so wee! I thought Ben at least must be around Tom's age, minimum.

    And your last paragraph really resonates with me, as I'm feeling my horizons just beginning to expand again (slowly, ever so slowly, with our style of parenting being what it is) as the Tyrant nears 3, and becomes more confident, socially and physically. Forced OS trips kind of helped in the confidence stakes, mind you.

    (We, too, have to make a trek out west once this foot's a bit more reliable. Family keep poking me to provide visitation with the Tyrant whilst he's still extra cute. But how fun, to go on adventures with your Smalls, just because! ;)

  2. Ben's a year younger than Tom. Charlie starts school in 3 weeks - yay!

    Every 6 months is a vast improvement on the last when they're this little. That growing independence is a wonderful, wonderful thing.

    Hope the foot sorts itself out soon, it seems you've suffered long enough!