On The Move…

Hello gorgeous folks,

Changes are afoot here at This Is Beck

You see, I have finally taken a leap into the unknown, and moved my little blog out into the big wide world of self-hosted.

Yep, that’s right, I now own my own site and everything on it.

All future blog posts from me will be coming to you from thisisbeck.net 

New look, new logo, new content.

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I’m in the process of moving everything over to the new site and updating all the links and everything to go to the new site. So do me a favour, head on over to thisisbeck.net, click on the subscribe button to have my newest posts delivered straight to your inbox.

Look forward to seeing you all over there xoxox

 

 

 

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Tiptoe through the Tulips in Silvan

Yesterday I took the kiddies to check out the Kids Week fun at Tesselaar Tulip Festival.

Let me just say, visiting a flower farm is not normally my idea of an exciting day out so it was an unexpected surprise that I enjoyed this one so much.

They’ve got all these awesome kids things happening over the school holidays, and best of all, it’s free for kids under 16 to get in! (Adults are $22, conc. $18)

Squishy trying out some Dutch style

Squishy trying out some Dutch style

There was shows running on the stage practically all day with lots of singing and dancing, a Despicable Me 2 show starring 2 dancing minions and an awesome and educational animal show from the Reptile man, and then we checked out their stall afterward and got to meet and pat some cool lizards and I got to hang out with this guy…I can’t remember what kind of python the guy said it was, but it was just gorgeous!

 

Hanging out with my scaly new friend

Hanging out with my scaly new friend

 

The face painting was amazing. Yes, the line was HUGE and we waited nearly an hour, but it was also right at the busiest time of the day, but they were only charging $10 a kid and the ladies were doing a really wonderful job, every single kid I saw looked amazing – lots of frozen themed ones, princesses, dogs, cats, super heroes, lions everything.

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Squishy wouldn't sit still long enough to get his face painted, so the lovely lady did this rainbow spider on his arm. He loved it!

Squishy wouldn’t sit still long enough to get his face painted, so the lady did this adorable rainbow spider on his arm. He loved it!

My "frozen" princess

My “frozen” princess

And now a smiling one :)

And now a smiling one 🙂

 

Squishy's spider, he was showing it off all day!

Squishy’s spider, he was showing it off all day!

The fairy garden was just adorable, and we even stumbled across a fairy taking a nap in a tree!

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Who’s that up there having a sleep?

The mobile animal farm was a huge hit with the kids, they loved meeting the gorgeous baby cow, lambs, bunnys, guinea pigs, geese, chickens, ducks, a goat kid and a cheeky little piglet.

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Getting cuddly with the lambs

Getting cuddly with the lambs

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Oink Oink

Alpacas

Alpacas

And lets not forget the reason for the festival… The tulips!

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They were gorgeous, I had no idea there were so many wonderful varieties and colours of tulips, it was like walking through a rainbow!

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We’ll definitely be heading back again next year.IMG_0314

 

 

 

 

* This is not a sponsored post, just a review of a place I visited.  If you would like me to review something for you, sponsored for otherwise, please contact me via email at contact.thisisbeck@gmail.com  *

I wasn’t ok.

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If you were anywhere on social media last week you probably would have seen a bunch of posts urging you to ask someone you know “R U ok?”.

I think it’s a wonderful idea, anything that encourages people to open up and to know it’s ok to ask for help when they are struggling is a great thing. Those of you that follow my Facebook page or twitter might have noticed the lack of posts or memes from me on RUok day. (or maybe not, with Facebook limiting peoples reach and news feeds, it’s not hard to lose track.)

And the truth is, this is a cause I wholeheartedly support but I felt I was in no position to ask anybody else R U OK?

Because I, most definitely, was not ok.

This last year or so has had it’s fair share of ups and downs and I think I’ve been handling them fairly well for the most part, but this last week something went wrong. I don’t know if it’s this seemingly never-ending Melbourne winter getting to me, the two and a half month bout of bronchitis that just won’t bugger off, or my gorgeous “threenager” who is testing lots of boundaries these days (not to mention testing my patience and sanity on a daily basis too.) but somehow my juggling act fell apart and I landed in a big heap.

I’ve since picked myself up and dusted myself off. I’m not completely back to my regular snarky self yet, but I’m getting there.

If you know what depression feels like, then you have my wholehearted sympathy. I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy. A friend told me “Depression is such a sneaky bitch”. She was so right. You think you’re doing ok, you think you’re holding it together and then all of a sudden, BAM there she is, the bitch is back. And there’s really nothing you can do except wait till she gets bored tormenting you and leaves you to pick yourself up and start over.

If you don’t know what it’s like, I really envy you.

It’s so hard to explain, because everyone’s experience is a little bit different.

For me, it starts out just a tiny little negative thought or feeling the kind that you can normally brush away or ignore, except that this one won’t go away and it’s just rolling around in my head kind of like a tumbleweed blowing down the street in an old cowboy movie. As it’s rolling around it picks up speed and gets bigger and bigger until that little puff of wind blowing the tumbleweed turns into a tornado. It gets bigger and bigger, sucking everything else in until it blots out the sky and my entire mind is this chaotic, dark, swirling mess going a million miles an hour and it feels like my head is going to explode. And just like a tornado, there’s nothing you can do. You bunker down and wait out the storm and hope there’s not too much damage afterward. After a while you start to notice that you can hear other noises through the howling of the wind, that the sky is getting a little bit lighter, the clouds are starting to lift, the fear is loosening it’s grip on your chest, it’s a little bit easier to breathe, you start to look around and see that everything is still where it should be, the storm is finally over and you survived it. This time. And you pray it’s going to be the last time, but you know it won’t. That fucking black dog will be back and there’s nothing you can do about it, you just keep going because there’s nothing else you can do, you just keep going and taking it one day at a time, and if it when it comes back (because it always comes back) I will keep trying and keep going until one day I will beat this fucking thing.

imagesI will.

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** note **    I wrote this last week. I am feeling a lot better now. Not 100%, but a hell of a lot better than I was this time last week. I almost wasn’t going to publish this post, because I don’t want to worry anyone and I don’t want your sympathy, but this is my blog and my blog is like therapy for me. This is my place to share whatever I feel I need to share, good, bad, funny, whatever. But everything I chose to share with you, I share honestly and from the heart, so I felt that if I didn’t publish this, then I’m not being honest, not with myself or with you guys and I need to do that.

Also, I have checked in with my GP and discussed my medications and what’s going on and he’s ordered a bunch of blood tests just to double check there’s nothing more sinister going on.

If you are struggling, please, make sure you reach out and get help.  If you need it, there are some wonderful people at Beyond Blue, The Black Dog Institute and Lifeline that are trained to deal with these sorts of things and are there to help you and know that I am sending a heap of good vibes your way xoxo

 

Finding Inspiration

What inspires you?

How do you keep motivated?

I’m pretty easily distracted by anything sparkly, pretty, interesting, loud…ummm, shoes, wait – what?

I wanted to fix my workspace to motivate me to be more creative but also more organised, in my daily life, as well as my blogging.

Anyone who stops by my Facebook or Pinterest pages will notice I have a fondness for lovely inspirational quotes, but they don’t really do much there do they? We click like, maybe a share, then we forget all about it till the next time someone we know posts another quote.

I often scribble a few of my favourites on the inside cover of my diary, but I wanted something more visible and something I can change around when I get bored, so this week I did this: 

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A few photos, some washi tape and some Project Life cards to “pretty up” the little corner where I try to get the most work done.

I had a *quick* look through my Pinterest boards for the quotes that seemed the most appropriate to me right now, and wrote them on some pretty cards, and I can change the cards over to new ones whenever I get sick of them.  

This is what I came up with:

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And this gorgeous frame I picked up from Ishka (for only $10, bargain!) was just begging for a spot on my desk, so I wrote our family “rules” and our all our initials on a piece of coloured paper. Simple, but I think it’s really cute.

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All in all, half an hour spent tidying and decorating, has transformed my corner of the desk, from a sea of junk that did nothing to inspire me, to a place that I actually enjoy sitting down every morning with my cup of tea, checking my diary and emails. 

What tips and tricks do you use to keep motivated?

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Why I Write – ( my first blog hop)

Hi there, a few weeks ago, I got tagged by the fabulous Lisa, at Cut My Milk, to join in a blog-hop and write a post about my writing process.

My response was “hell yes!” Quickly followed by “what writing process?

I got started and then life happened, and now it’s been lurking, unfinished, on my to-do list for a couple of weeks. I don’t know why I’ve been putting it off but the Squishy is asleep and Princess is doing something that involves barbie dolls, sticky tape and the cat – yeah I’m kinda scared to go look. Anyway, that means I should have at least half and hour to sit down and finish writing this thing, so here goes.

 

What am I working on?

Trying not to lose the children under the mountain of (clean) washing that threatens to overtake most of our living area.

Trying to build a house. (well, actually feeding, picking up after and trying to help Husband so he can build a house)

Trying to remember where I left my sanity (it’s probably under that pile of washing too)

Oh, you meant what am I working on writing? Yeah, um, not much.

How does my writing differ from others in my genre?

I’m not entirely sure what genre my blog fits into.

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This Is Beck is 2 parts Mummy Blog, 3 parts Personal Diary mixed a cup of with craft and cooking, a dollop of house building D.I.Y. Stir well and throw in a handful of assorted animals and family members for extra crunch. Cook over a high heat with plenty of wine. Season well with anxiety and PND and serve with a side of humour and honesty.

Why do I write what I do?

Because I can’t not write. It’s just that now I let everyone see it.

Ever since I first learnt to hold a pen, I have filled countless notebooks and journals with all sorts of random thoughts. It seems to be the way my brain works best, I can think clearer when I let the words out onto paper, things seem to make more sense that way. My blog is just an extension of the diaries I have always kept. I love that people actually read what I write, but I would still be writing this, even if nobody ever read it. I write the way I talk, honestly, straight from the heart and with plenty of emotion.

How does your writing process work?

Haha! That’s a good one, makes it sound like I’m a real writer or something.

Short answer? It doesn’t.

Usually I get an idea for a post I want to write. I go looking for something to write it down on, find that my notebook isn’t where I left it, go looking for it, find it hiding somewhere amongst all the toys (only after I’ve had to put them all away) Grab a cup of tea, sit down to write a post, one of the kids will inevitably poop, I’ll deal with that, reheat my tea, sit down again and have no idea  what I was going to write about. So, umm, what were we talking about?

It’s one of my goals for this year to try to get some kind of schedule happening and at least get something up on the blog semi-regularly. I’ll keep working toward that, but hey, we’re only 8 months into the year…I wouldn’t want to rush it 😉

Ok, so the next part of this blog hop thingie is to tag a few of my favourite bloggers to join in too. Although, since this thing has been up and running for a while, most of my faves have already done it so I’m only going to chose one, the gorgeous Vicki from Knocked Up and Abroad.

And I’ll link back to a few of my favourite posts from earlier in the hop. M’kay?

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Vicki and one of the little Vicklets

 

 Knocked Up and Abroad was conceived when Vicki backpacked around Europe where she visited 7 countries, over 7 weeks, whilst 7 months pregnant. Now she tackles a more suburban existence muddling through motherhood but still seeking out adventure with 2 Vicklets in tow.

 

 

 

 

 

This hop thing started over at Always Josefa, so stop by there to check out the other posts, and here are links to a couple of my faves Cooker and a Looker, Home Life SimplifiedThe Mother load.

As always, thanks so much for stopping by, feel free to let me know any of your fave blogs in the comments section.

Big Hugs

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3 year old tantrums and a book review

 

My 3 and a 1/2 year old is bright, funny, creative and very strong willed and independent.

I love and want to nurture these traits, but it can be difficult.

Especially when she just Does. Not. Want. To…{eat, get dressed, go to bed, stop hitting her brother… etc.}  and far too often ends up in with everyone yelling and crying. I’ve tried time outs, taking away toys, bribery, even smacking.

None of these feels right to me.

In search of some parenting tips, I paid a visit to my local library.

I grabbed 4 books that looked promising;

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Planning With Kids (Nicole Avery), Attached at the Heart (Barbara Nicholson and Lysa Parker), The Mummy Coach (Lorraine Thomas), and Buddhism for Mothers of Young Children – Becoming a Mindful Parent (Sarah Napthali)

This is what I thought of them:

Planning With Kids.

I didn’t even realise till about 1/4 way through, that I am already a follower of this lovely lady’s blog and FB page!

I really liked this book, lots of really useful, practical suggestions about getting organised to help avoid melt-downs and tantrums. I took lot of notes of ideas to try out, including getting meal times under control, setting yourself 15min “jobs” to do, looking for solutions instead of blaming, setting goals, finding ways to deal with morning and evening “peak-hour” to avoid tantrums.

(I think one of the reasons I liked this was that she seems like a normal real mum, you know, the kind that yells and loses her shit sometimes just like the rest of us. I get a bit suspicious of parenting advice from anyone who seems too perfect. )

{I’ll pop the link to the FB page here >>     https://www.facebook.com/PlanningWithKids?ref=ts&fref=ts

Attached at the Heart.

An interesting read about attachment parenting. I wouldn’t say that I’m completely won over by this style of parenting, but there are a lot of elements to it that I strongly agree with too. I would say this book would probably be more use to someone with a younger baby and looking for some gentler ideas to try, but I still found it interesting and informative. A good read for anyone who wants to know more about the concept of attachment parenting, and they back up their ideas with a lot of research.

The Mummy Coach.

I really did not like this one, in fact certain parts of it really pissed me off. (If it wasn’t a library book,  I probably would have chucked it out a window!)

I found a lot of the “advice” to be quite patronising, for example: “Believe in yourself!” “Visualise a calming colour and count to ten” (when your child is having a tantrum) “Draw a love-heart and write your child’s name inside it and stick it on the fridge” (????) “Make sure you get plenty of me-time, book yourself massage”

I’m sorry, but this chick is living in fairy-land. I can find all the airy-fairy, affirming quotes I could possibly ever need on Pinterest, visualising a calming colour is definitely not going to help me when Scout is having a tantrum and pushes her brother over, splitting his lip on the floor and I have two, hysterically screaming little banshees to deal with. Vodka and a time out, maybe, but visualising? Not so much. And if I had the time to have “me-time” and get a massage… then I wouldn’t be stressed enough to be consulting your book for advice now, would I?

Ok, rant over.

Buddhism for Mothers of  Young Children.

I’ve noticed a heap of blogs and parenting sites lately talking about mindful parenting, so I was curious to find out a bit more about it. I really enjoyed this book, in fact I immediately jumped on Amazon to order this book and her previous one, Buddhism for Mothers. I found so many ideas that resonated really strongly with me, I’ve covered the book in a confetti of post-it notes of things I want to come back to read again. The main theme that comes through really strongly for me is wanting to really “be present” for my babies, right now, and that means having to let go of my worrying about the past and the future and just take each moment as it comes and do the best I can.

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So, there you go, my little book review.

If there’s any books you’d like to suggest for me to check out, parenting or otherwise, let me know in the comments section here or on the FB page.

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A word to live by…

A few gorgeous bloggers I follow have set themselves a “word” for the year.

I think this is an awesome idea, but I had to think about it for a while to settle on what I want to focus on.

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There are so many things I need to let go of in my life and this is going to be the year to do it.

Let go… of expectations.

Let go… of the past.

Let go… of stress.

Let go… of clutter.

Let go… of self-doubt.

Let go… of anxiety.

Let go… of anything I no longer need around me.

Let go.. of anything that holds me back.

Let go… and be true to myself.

Let go… and follow my heart.

Let go… and enjoy the ride.

Let go… and embrace life.

Let go… and live in the moment.

Let go… and be happy.

 

As I work on letting go in different areas of my life, I’ll keep you updated on how it’s going.

Feel free to leave a comment about what you’d like to let go of this year, or if you have any tips for me 🙂

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