Tag Archive | about me

I’m BA-ACK!!!

Hi everyone!

I just wanted to write a quick note to say that I am still around….apologies for not writing much but life has been hectic with work, a couple of birthdays, and Cameron recently had his CF annual review, with a check up for Eva…both of which are some of future topics that will hopefully come out soon!

A big welcome to all the new followers that have signed up from the advertisement in the recent Great Southern Disability Services newsletter. It was awesome to see the link to my blog there (and I hope you enjoyed my witty little post “Expectations of the Modern Mum”…there are many more like that!)
A few of you also signed up from the recent rafflecopter. Hope you won something and keep an eye out for the upcoming one launching soon!

So while I am still getting my act together, have a look around at some of the older blog posts. Or if you are bored, or want some new recipes, check out my other blog (which I have unfortunately also been neglecting lately) www.athomewithbella.wordpress.com

Chat soon everyone!!
Bella 🙂

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More about me…

I have been struggling to think of topics to write about, but came across this questionnaire called the “ABC’s of ME” on Love, Laughter and Lipstick’s blog page. A family member who reads my blog said I should write more about myself, thought that I would also give this a go.

A – Available or Married?

Very much married. It will be our second wedding anniversary in a couple of weeks, but we will have been together for ten years this October.

B – Book?

I love romances. Give me a Mills and Boon and it will be finished in a couple of hours. My favourite author is Julie Garwood, she does both historical romances and modern-day crime romances.
I also like series such as Hunger Games, House of Night, Vampire Academy etc (oh, and you should all  give the Divergent trilogy a try before it gets made into a movie!)

C – Cake or Pie?

Cake- but it is a hard choice between a triple chocolate cake, or a chocolate honeycomb cheesecake.

mmmm....cheesecake!!!

mmmm….cheesecake!!!

D – Drink of Choice

Coffee. I have pure caffeine running through my veins some days!! Oh, and wine….of course!!! 😉

E – Essential Item?

I can not leave home without my purse, phone and (obviously) keys. I will have an anxiety attack if I lose just one of these three!

F – Favorite Color?

Deep emerald green

G – Game to Play or Watch?

I really enjoy Crash Bandicoot games on our Xbox (I am currently playing “Mind over Mutant”) “Scene It?” is also pretty good too.

H – Hometown?

Albany, Western Australia

I – Indulgence?

Clothes-and probably more often than I should!

J – Job?

Domestic slave to four kids! I also help out hubby with his cleaning business occasionally.

K – Kids?

Yes. It may be time to introduce the kids on my blog. Aaron is almost 8yrs, Eva is 6.5yrs, Ethan is 5.5yrs and Cameron is almost 4yrs.
Aaron and Eva are the two that have Global Development Delay, and Cameron has cystic fibrosis. Ethan is my little sanity-saver!

Ethan (left), Eva (back), Cameron (front) and Aaron (left)

Ethan (left), Eva (back), Cameron (front) and Aaron (right)

L – Life is incomplete without?

My family

M – Music group or singer?

Both. It’s hard to pick my favourite of each, but I really like Nickleback, and my kids and I love all of Bruno Mars’ songs (although, I am addicted to Guy Sebastian at the moment too!)

N – Number of siblings?

Three younger half brothers

O – Oranges or Apples?

Strawberries actually….but probably oranges, I prefer soft and juicy fruits over crunchy.

P – Phobias / Fears?

I’m scared of the dark, there always has to be a little bit of light on, especially when I am home alone at night. I’m also scared of deep water. My biggest fear would have to be being trapped inside something under water (like a car, or boat cabin) You will never ever catch me in a shark cage (not that I am that scared of sharks…but I don’t really want to be anywhere near one! Just being in the cage though would be enough to just about have me screaming!) I don’t even want to go on a cruise ship in case it goes down and we can’t see land (ok, I know even if we could still see land, we would still be miles from shore, but I would die trying my hardest to get there, instead of not seeing land and wondering if you were even swimming in the right direction!)

Q – Favorite Quote?

“Life is not about how many breaths you take, but how many moments take your breath away”

R – Reason to smile?

My family (even though they are also the reason for my early grey hairs!)

S – Season?

I prefer the cooler weather because it is easier to warm yourself up than it is to cool yourself down. Autumn is probably my favourite as it’s not too cold. The leaves are a  pretty colour then too.

T – Tattoos?

No, but I do have a small design in mind. I’m using it as a reward for my weight loss (when I eventually get there)

The logo is the design I want for a tattoo, then I am thinking the words "Just breathe" underneath it.

The logo is the design I want for a tattoo, then I am thinking the words “Just breathe” written underneath it.

U – Unknown fact about me?

I cant wink! If I try, I look like I’m having some sort of facial spasm!

V – Vegetable you love?

Technically, tomato is a fruit…so probably…gherkins at the moment

W – Worst habit?

My husband could probably rattle off a few, but I hate hanging out washing. I don’t mind putting it in the machine and pushing a button, and I don’t mind folding it….it is the crucial step in the middle that I tend to put off. Too many times loads have had to be rewashed because they have been sitting in the machine too long.

X – X rays you have had?

Mostly on my lungs for quite a few chest infections. About 9yrs ago I got my thumb stuck in the car door and turned it into a painful “S” shape…luckily I have fat thumbs, so the bones weren’t effected. Pretty sure I have had one on my ankle before from a netball injury too.

Y – your favorite food?

I am addicted to Panzanella at the moment. I posted up the recipe a while ago. Since then, I have added crumbled feta cheese, avocado cubes and finely chopped spinach leaves to it, and I am eating by the tub full!

Z – Zodiac?

I am a Libran

Let us know what your “ABC’s” are, publish the link in the comments below so that we can all get to know you too!

Bella 🙂

The winner is…ME!!!

I can be fairly egotistical. When it comes to my blog, I am so proud of it that I can help but brag about it. Just recently, thanks to some good friends spreading the word about this site, the amount of daily views has skyrocketed, as has the amount of fans on my Facebook fan page. I have been given heaps of ideas for blog topics. Thank you to all!

But I am writing this post because I have something new to brag about…I have been given the Kreative Blogger award!! The very lovely, A Morning Grouch, sent the award over (don’t be fooled by the name!)

It’s a great feeling knowing that people are enjoying my little rants and mindless dribble!

Now, there are stipulations in behind accepting the award. I have to reveal seven things about myself, and pass the award on to ten other bloggers. So here we go:

Revelation 1: I am scared of the dark and the ocean. Both fears started when I was about 15 years old. The fear of darkness started when I thought that someone was walking up the side of our house, and standing outside my bedroom window for about six months. I used to hear leaves crunching up the side passage, stop outside my window, and the walk back after about half an hour. I never had the guts to peer out, but was so scared I started sleeping with a screwdriver ready to stab anyone who came through the window!

 The fear of the ocean started around the same time, but have no explanation as to why. I used to love swimming at the beach. All of a sudden, if I couldn’t see the bottom, I would panic and not go any further. My husband thinks I’m weird that I never want to go on a cruise ship because of my fear of the ocean.

Revelation 2: I have Irritable Bowel Syndrome. It hurts like all buggery!! An IBS attack is more painful than labour (and I have had four of those…two of them had no pain relief!) Pork triggers that attacks for me. I would give anything to be able to eat  roast pork, or sweet and sour pork…but its not worth the pain!

Revelation 3: I’m a massive Joss Whedon fan. I love all his shows, obsessive really. Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel, Dollhouse, Firefly….love ’em!

Revelation 4:  I’m a huge fan of historical romances. Julie Garwood is my favourite author, you should definitely check her out. “Ransom” is by far her best book, it was the first one I ever read. She also does modern-day thriller/romances.

Revelation 5: I completely, 100%, believe in ghosts.

Revelation 6: I was heavily involved in netball. I played, I coached, I umpired. I was better at the latter two. I did all three at a regional level regularly. As a player, I was average. I used to play up to five times a week, as a defence player. Wing Defence was my best position. The teams I coached always did pretty well. I was also picked to go to a state umpiring camp once. I was the youngest person there, at the age of thirteen. I miss netball. I stopped getting involved due to work commitments, then kids came along. Now, pregnancy messed up my Achilles heel that I probably wont be able to play again.

Revelation 7: I am ashamed to say I was insanely obsessed with Twilight. I honestly don’t know what came over me. Usually, hype turns me off a movie or book. I have never become so obsessed with anything in my life. It was all I talked about for months, I could not put the books down and I scoured the internet for any goss I could get. I’m am now proud to say I have been completely rehabilitated. I still enjoy the books and movies, but I can now shut the book, turn the tv off….and forget about it!

OK, on to my recommendations for the award. You definitely need to check out the following blogs:

Random Ramblings of a Stay at Home Mum

Canadian CF Mom

Whatsaysyou

Rantings of a loon

Alissa Anderton

A Morning Grouch (yes, I’m sending an award back!)

Mommy Confessions

Mommy Ramblings

These aren’t really blogs, but you should check them out anyway:

Funtastic Early Childhood Ideas

Learning for Life

Again, thanks for taking an interest in my crazy life!

Bella 🙂

When I’m gone

What kind of funeral would you like to have? What would your final wishes be?

This is a conversation (albeit, a morbid one!) that I have had with friends and family a few times. I know exactly what I want, and since I am going to be stating it in a public place such as  this,my family have no reason not to understand my wishes should I die an early death.

I don’t want an outrageously expensive funeral. I have never been one for extravagance. I want the songs “Some Sweet Day” by Mariah Carey and Boys II Men, and “You’ll Never Walk Alone” from one of my favourite movies, Carousel.

Since Im not an overly religious person, I don’t want the service to be held in a church. The service hall at the local cemetery will suffice.

Big fat "NO" to my funeral procession please!

I don’t want a funeral procession (ok, my immediate family can follow the coffin) because I absolutely hate how much it slows down traffic to our area of town (we live near the local cemetery and there is only one entrance in to our suburb…right across the road from the cemetery entrance)

Ok, it may seem disrespectful of me saying that, but is it such bad thing that I don’t want a heap of cars creating a traffic jam on my behalf? I have seen some drivers do some  pretty outrageous things to avoid processions, I don’t want to put my friends and family at risk of those idiots.

 

 

Reason #3- make sure I'm dead!!

I want the cheapest coffin you can buy. I don’t care if it’s a cardboard box! I want to be burnt to a crisp anyway, so what is the point of buying an expensive coffin that I am never going to see? I want to be cremated. DO NOT bury me! This is for many reasons:

1) I don’t want bugs eating at me as I decompose

2) I don’t want to be exhumed after 100+ years to make room for new bodies. I doubt that this practise is used here, but you never know. When I’m gone, I want to stay in peace!

3) Cremate me to make sure I’m dead!

4) My family then wont have the worry about a headstone. How big? What to write? I don’t care, I don’t want one!

5) Lastly, and most importantly, I would like my ashes to be scattered. I would rather my family to visit a place that is special to me rather than a depressing cemetery.

 

I would prefer everyone not to wear black, but that can be up to them. I want bright, happy colours!

PART-AAAAAAAAAAAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Afterwards, for a wake, I want there to be one heck of a party! I wants lots of laughing. I want my friends and family to share good stories. I want my cousins to talk about how I own the rank of “Cubby Queen”. I want my friends to laugh over how I had insatiable passion for climbing trees after a few too many drinks. I want my husband to think about our happiest days, such as our wedding day or the birth of our children (and he can forget the bits where I tried to bite him during  my labours….sorry about that!!) I want my kids to remember about cooking with me, dress ups, the tickles…

 

I want everyone to get roaring drunk! (Well…everyone of drinking age…of course!) I want them to play the drinking games I used to (and still do when in the right environment) such as “Three Man” or “Drunken Scene It”, or if they are feeling adventurous “Have, Have Not” (ouch…that game is lethal!)

Afterwards, I want my immediate family to do a pilgrimage together to scatter my ashes, just like Orlando Bloom’s character did in the move Elizabethtown. I want to be scattered everywhere. A part of me thrown from the lookout tower where my husband proposed, the park where we married, just outside the hospital where my kids were born, some in the sea at Middleton Beach (a local beach….because I always had so much fun there) and then, if possible, I want to be thrown off a mountain top somewhere in Scotland. As long as I can remember, I have had an obsession with that country. I don’t know why, as I have never been there, and don’t really have any family there, but it has always felt like….home, like I belong there. Then anywhere else my family thinks acceptable.

All in all, like most people, I want my death to be of celebration, not despair! I want my death to have the party of the century! Of course, I want to die an old lady…so I’m hoping that by then, I will have given people much more things to laugh over at my wake!

If my family members reading this don’t comply to my wishes…. I WILL COME BACK AND HAUNT YOU!!!

Watch out!!

What are your final wishes?

Bella 🙂

Career paths

While struggling to think of something to blog about, I turned to some friends for topic ideas, in which I was advised to write about myself for a change, since I tend to write mostly about my children.

So I thought I would share how I am trained in, and used to work as an aged carer.

I knew back in Year 10 (when I was 15…for those not in Australia) that this was the career path I wanted to go down. Initially, I was going to use the Aged Care course as extra credit to get into nursing, but once working in the field, it’s where I wanted to stay. So at Career Day, my year went on an excursion to our local TAFE school (Technical And Further Education), so we could look at the education classes available, meet with lecturers, possibly sit in on a class… if you were lucky. While there, I found all I needed to get into the class was Year 10 English, and Year 10 Maths. It was not required for me to finish highschool, but any subjects I did in my final two years of highschool would be extra credit to get in to the classes. I was advised to do Human Biology, and anything else I was able to get my hands on which may benefit the course.

Do not pass go...do not collect $200...

I failed Human Biology in Year 11. Not just failed…epically failed…so bad that my teacher advised me not to bother continuing it in Year 12. (The teacher and I had issues…which is a big part of the reason why I failed so badly) But look at me now, I could probably rattle off more information now about the digestive and respiratory system than that certain teacher!! (Though I would still suck at every other body system!)

But despite that, I still wanted to work in Aged Care. I did voluntary work with disabled citizens through contacts who knew my passion. I helped with disabled horse-riding (while not knowing a thing about horses) and disabled water aerobics (so much fun!!)

I did extremely well in the course. I think it helped that I was fresh out of highschool, and still in “study mode”, unlike many of my course class mates, who were coming back to the school scene after 20+ years.

During my course, it was compulsory for all of us to do work experience for two weeks. The facility I worked at gave me a permanent position straight away. I was stoked! It was the facility I had been wanting to work at ever since I made the career path decision. It was an aged care hostel that housed about 120 residents. About 20 were in locked wards (Dementia wards) and it was in those wards that I flourished.

Working with Dementia and Alzheimer’s can be extremely tolling, but I LOVED it! Some of the things some of the incoherent residents came out with could have me laughing till my sides hurt. Then there were also the “abusive” residents who could have fear settling into the pit of your stomach. I remember one woman had to be transferred to a different facility because she was constantly punching staff members (to the point of needing medical attention at times)

After about nine months of working as a carer, I was approached to casually fulfill the position as physiotherapy assistant (which eventually lead to a permanent position). This is where I found my true calling. I would work one-on-one with residents with their personal exercises set by a visiting physiotherapist, tape knees/ankles, give foot spas and hold an exercise class three times a week. I loved creating programs and was filled with pride when my efforts were shown in the residents improvement. My biggest success story was one woman, who, when she arrived at the facility, could barely walk a few metres assisted. In the space of a few months, I had improved her mobility to the point of being able to walk around the entire three-storey facility on her own!

Unfortunately, I found myself having to leave due to stress. At the age of 19 years, I was very close to a breakdown. Despite loving the actual work, I absolutely detested the politics behind it. I was trying to cram eight hours of work into three hours a day. I was frustrated that I couldn’t spend enough time with individual residents. After coming home in tears one day, my husband (then fiance) said he could get me a job working with him as a cleaner. So that day, I handed in my notice. Little did I know, I was a month pregnant with my eldest child, which may explain some of the emotional moodiness!

Looking back, I realise I probably wasnt quite mature enough for the position. I had issues with death at the time (completely the wrong field to be working in when you have that!) and struggled to maintain a certain amount of distance from the residents. Every death chewed me up inside. I needed more life experience to deal with the emotional toll of the position.

I miss working as a physio aid. Doing daily physio for my son’s cystic fibrosis has renewed my interest in the field again. One day, when my kids are older, I am going to get more training in physiotherapy and get back into it. Right now, the hours required of an aged care physiotherapy assistant aren’t suitable to my family life.

Is being a physio for CF on the cards???

Who knows, maybe one day I will get training to be a physiotherapist for cystic fibrosis!!

So there you have it, a little information about me!

Bella 🙂

Breast vs. Bottle debate

Wow can this topic can be a heated one! After reading a funny blog on this debate, I thought I would share my side on it.

I decided, before my first was born, that I would bottle feed my babies. I have absolutely nothing against breast-feeding mothers, but this was a personal choice. While being bottle fed, my children were still getting breast milk which I was expressing.

You are always told breast is best, and I wanted my children to have the benefits of breast milk. But I wanted to keep an eye on my supply. Apparently it took medical professionals a few months to realise that I wasnt getting enough out of my mother’s milk. I remember being told this when I was younger, so I always had this worry that I too would be like this. A part of me is glad that I did this, because I had an incredibly low supply (which got slightly better with each child, but was still always poor). My eldest son was never able to have a full feed of breast milk. Within a couple of weeks, I caved and turned to formula. It hit me hard. I was devastated. I felt like I couldn’t provide for my son. I now realise that breast-feeding nazis ,*ahem*, protagonists, put such a social stigma on new mothers, that I felt like a failure for being physically unable to produce milk. I tried everything under the sun to help boost supply, to no avail.

But once we turned to formula, my were children settled for longer, grew normally and didn’t suffer any ill health. The one time that each of my boys were hospitalised with bronchiolitus…guess what! They were still drinking breast milk!

Now, I hate this crap “benefits” excuse that breast-feeding helps you bond with your child. Sure it does, but it didn’t stop me from bonding with my children. It also didn’t stop them bonding with their father! I wasnt obligated to get up in the middle of the night for every feed. I could nudge my partner in the direction of the bedroom door when I was too exhausted to move. It also helped with the bonding with grandparents, who were great babysitters when I had to work (oh yes…Im one of those terrible working mothers too!)

Sure, breast-feeding means there are less dishes…but what is an extra couple of minutes at the sink? I sure as hell didn’t spend hours there! But what about those breast-feeding mums who have to express to relieve themselves? Do they have less dishes? Not really.

I have to say, I also enjoyed being able to have the occasional glass of wine, or not having to worry about what any medications may pass through the milk to my child, or being able to eat what I enjoyed without having to worry about upset tummies.

While in town, I didn’t have to stop what I was doing to sit somewhere to attach to my child, or worry about embarrassing other shoppers by possible boob exposure. I could pop a bottle in and continue to push around the trolley or pram. Day time hours can be precious to get things done!

Also, breast-feeding can hurt! Yes…I at least tried it. I was one of the lucky ones, it came easily and I felt no pain (unlike other mums) but mastitis, cracked nipples, thrush…eek!

Breast feeding saves money. Yeah, probably. But I constantly felt starving while expressing my breast milk. Any money saved on formula probably went towards the food I ate! I have to admit, that was one thing I missed when my cystic fibrosis son ended up on a special prescribed formula for his weight…it was only costing us $5.30 a month. So when he no longer needed to be on this formula, I was disappointed when it became $15 a week.

It may seem that I am attacking breast-feeding mothers, but please don’t take it this way! It is the female body’s natural function. Like I mentioned before, it was a personal choice for me. Most bottle feeding mothers having nothing against breast-feeding mothers. It’s just a pity that so many breast-feeding mothers can’t be as accepting. It really angers me to see people jump up and down about bottle feeding parents. Why put them down? The babies certainly aren’t suffering! I hate hearing about how formula should be prescribed. Why take the choice away from parents?

Promoting breastfeeding as being best is fine, but having a go at mothers who bottle feed is not.

 

Bella 🙂

 

 

15 movies to make you cry

My husband is away for the next four weeks, so I am busy stockpiling our movie supply to keep me occupied, mostly at night when kids have gone to bed.

I was in the mood for drama today, and watched Life as a House (starring Hayden Christensen and Kevin Kline) and of course, by the end, the eyes were glistening with tears. It had me thinking what other movies had me shedding tears. So here is my list….feel free to add your own.

**Warning, if you havent seen all of these movies, there are some spoilers written**

The Notebook– This movie had me weeping like a baby! I don’t think I have ever cried so much over a movie. It has an absolutely touching ending. I don’t know of anyone who wasnt moved by it!

I gave this movie to my mum for Christmas a few years back. A couple of weeks later, I get a phone call from her, sobbing her eyes out. Once she could talk, I had to laugh when she said “Thank you for the DVD!! It was a beautiful movie!”

Braveheart- Anyone you knows me, knows that I am obsessed with Scotland (though, I’m not really sure why) so it comes as no surprise that this is one of my favourite movies.

No matter how many times I see it, I choke up when Murron is killed and I cry when William is executed.

 

Neverending Story- When Altreyu is begging for his horse to move….my god!! Bawl factor!!

Then you are just about fist-pumping along with Sebastian by the end!

 

 

The Green Mile- I couldn’t believe that this was a Stephen King story. I now have the books and love them. It has a great storyline and the end chokes me up every time! I watched this movie with my grandparents, and I could see my Nanna getting a little emotional too.

Tom Hanks is one of my favourite actors!

 

Armageddon- When she is saying goodbye to her father, or rather, when he was saying goodbye to all of them…..*sob*

 

 

 

The Color Purple- My sister-in-law recommended this movie to me when we were talking about emotional movies years ago. I was heavily pregnant at the time and already having mood swings. The story takes you on a rollercoaster of emotion. Great movie!

 

 

Walk to Remember- the wedding scene…don’t know of many people who have watched this movie who havent been affected.

 

 

 

Pearl Harbour- I saw this at the cinemas with my History class in highschool fo ran assignment (even though the teacher didn’t do his research on the movie before organising the excursion and admitted that it really didn’t have much to do with what we were studying…its was more of a love story) But all you could hear was stifled sobs at the end.

 

Looking for Alibrandi- Again, I saw this at the cinemas and we were studying the book in English class, but you could feel the tension and sadness in the cinema with John Barton’s death/funeral (except for the bit when there is a bird’s-eye view of the coffin and a confused voice pipes up from the dark “What’s that?” causing everyone to giggle!)

 

Forrest Gump- Oh my! There are too many scenes in there that made me bawl to mention them all. It’s one of my husband’s favourite movies.

Again…Tom Hanks!!

 

 

I am Sam- Dakota Fanning is an amazing actress. Who could believe that much talent laid in a seven-year old? Absolutely beautiful storyline!

 

 

My Girl- Childhood death is always an emotional subject. All the actors in this movie did a brilliant job of bringing everyone to tears!

 

 

 

Patch Adams– You don’t see Robin Williams cry very often, but I was sobbing along with him over the death of Carin.

None of these are in particular order, though The Notebook was definitely the strongest emotional state I have ever been in! But I love each and every one of these movies. There are probably many more I can add to the list, but these are the ones that most stick in my mind.

What other movies can you add?

Bella 🙂