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Project life

Kids, Motherhood

Mother’s Day…a wrap..

13th May 2013

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And so my 7th Mother’s Day is over.  It is days like Mother’s day that make me hold my head a little higher, and I try not to suck in my gut as much!  I have stretch marks – paintings my kids did when they were in my tummy (so I tell them), I have laugh lines, and I have skin that has stretched so unbelievably far with growth from pregnancy.  But you know what?  On Mother’s Day, or on any day, to my four children I am the ‘prettiest and bestest Mummy ever’.  In my kids eyes, I am the fixer of just about anything, consoler of little scrapes, ouchies and a fair referee in a fight/s.  I am apparently, the best at ‘cuddlering’ that you can be.  I have four unique, bright, quirky, and full of spunk kids.  The triplets certainly stamp their mark on just about everything, and with four kids, I am always going to be outnumbered!

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The other night, while Jason was away on a conference, Brendan and Emma refused to go to sleep.  It was well after 830pm.  I had smacked their bums, done all the usual ‘go to sleep’ pep talks and even sung lullabies.  Caitlyn was passed out cold – she is usually the first to give in to sleep.  On this occasion Brendan and Emma were playing chasies and just refusing sleep.  Jason is normally the big sleep enforcer, its like sending in the big guns when Daddy goes in – there is never a peep afterwards.  So, night three of no enforcer, and they have really worked out that they can pull just about anything and not get the big stern voice of Dad’s!  So, for those of you familiar with Hi 5 – there is one song “Amazing” with the opening lyrics of “Wow, what a surprise, you opened up my eyes, you really are amazing”.  This is one of Emma’s favourite shows right now.  Anyway, I smacked her bum (nappied bum for all your shocked readers who think smacking a kid is ‘bad’) and she sings, with a smile and no hesitation –

“Wow what a surprise, you smacka my bum, and it really isn’t amazing, Emma has won first prize as she really is amazing”.  I walked out, trying not to laugh, and lose it at the door.  Then hear this little sing song voice – “I can hear you laughing mummy”.  How is this not hysterical!!!

Moments like this make me realise just how quirky, cool and ever changing motherhood is.  One year ago Emma would not have had the ability to string that together.  Imagine what she will be doing in another years time?  I often wonder what all my kids will ‘be’ when they grow up.  As long as they are happy I tell them, I don’t care.  I want the world and more for my four – as I am sure all Mums do!  Hayden is dead keen on being a palaeontologist through the week and a vet, a police officer and an RSPCA carer on the weekends.  Any one of those would be fine 🙂

Caitlyn is currently a Princess, and whilst I am sure this will never be formalised, she will always be a Princess!  She is the kid that will have ‘people’ doing her stuff.  A serious delegator and negotiator!

Brendan – well this kid is the dark horse.  Gangly, fast and not as dumb as he makes out.  He will be sporty no doubt, but not sure what else he will do!

Emma – she is the kid that will come home from school and you will ask what happened today at school – her response will be along the lines of ‘ah the clouds, they are pretty’ she is an artist.  An ethereal, free spirit who finds humour in so many things and is in tune with all that goes on around her.

So, back to Mother’s day – These cards (on 4 x 6 Project Life Cardstock!!) reduced me to tears –

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And Hayden made a few little things also that he was so proud of (and rightly so!!!)  Loved the Mother’s Day Stall at his school – here were my gifts –

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Handmade by Hayden 🙂  My Mother’s Day Rose 🙂

From the trio I had these absolutely gorgeous keepsakes and not surprisingly they are in birth order 🙂  Caitlyn has the biggest feet (smallest born, heaviest and tallest now!!)

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Then came Jason.  Fresh from a visit to Melbourne and unsupervised he completely spoiled me!  I got a lovely new watch, a scarf that Jason tells me “is all the trend this year” (guy knows more about fashion than I do!!) and this –

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A genuine Louis Vuitton purse.  I am under strict orders to use it and NOT put it away for ‘good’ or special occasions.  I am very nervous about this, and have a million mothers guilt thoughts, but I guess you only live once right?  I have transferred my wallet over, and am using it.  It is classic.  It is likely to be more than I can even begin to imagine, but he had a pretty strong argument.  I love my kids like there is no tomorrow.  I work my butt off to ensure they have all they need and want (though they are not spoiled rotten), and I don’t do much for myself at all.  So, use it I will.  I think it may take a few months to shed the guilt though….

The day ended with dinner at the Bronco’s Leagues Club –

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It is a true representation of my kids – it is so hard to get a ‘good’ photo (unless of course we go to Kate @ Baby Boo Studios).  But I would not change it for the world.

Motherhood is a double edged sword sometimes.  Some days I feel like the worst mother in the world as I am so tired, cranky and just over being outnumbered by conspiring kids….and other days (which is most) so incredibly overwhelmed at the little beings we have created and just how amazing they are.  Some days, it is just so darn good to kiss them goodnight and think about what I can now get done without little interruptions (but then feel guilty for thinking that)!

I would not change it for the world, but I wish that as mothers and even as parents, we could refrain from judging others.

I do not judge anyone’s parenting.  Every family has their own unique make up.  Ours is constant, busy, and yep, we both work.  I try to instil respect, kindness, courage and dignity in all my kids.  That and faith in each other and our family.  Truth, honesty and trust are also big.  My skills as a mother are drawn from many sources.  My mother, my friends and some other big influences in my life – my oldest friends mum’s.  Mrs C, Mrs P, Mrs A – you are all amazing!  I also teach my children consequences.  Not everything is something that you can simply press ctrl alt del on.  Life is a lesson, but not a dodgy science one – a fun, vibrant and lovely journey!  So take stock of what you have, mother or not, and enjoy this crazy ride that is life!

Happy EVERY day!

Craft

Life, Paper, Scrapbook – Blog Hoppy!

10th May 2013

PLWEEK

Life, Paper, Scrapbook is an Australian online publication featuring all things crafty and packed with inspiration and visual delights!  Issue one, Autumn 2013, can be found here, and just quietly you can see one of my project life pages on page 91!  Today a very exciting blog hop is happening – I am lucky enough to be a part of this blog hop and am lucky last 🙂

This week has been dedicated to Project Life – an amazing memory keeping system that is about recording and documenting your life – simply.  I am a PL newbie – starting this year, and I am LOVING it.  I find that I am recording the seemingly inane or minor things that occur – and trust me, these are going to be the big things in ten years.  Little nuances that my children say or do, alterations to the house, day to day routine – it is all recorded.  And I love that.  I love that it is something I can literally allocate an hour for and do justice to the Moloney week.  Much of our week is mayhem – but it looks even better in an album, and also makes me realise how fast time goes when those really horrible days do occur (two kilos of flour on the floor, overtired 2 and 3/4 triplets, 3 litres of milk in the drawer…).  My PL is honest, raw, and at times brutal, but it is aimed for my family and I.  I document a great deal – by hand, as I have not gotten around to digital.  I think I still love the smell, touch and array of paper!  I am using the Amber kit from Becky Higgins, as well as some Polka Dot Creative Mini Kits, Studio Calico PL Kits (have received two!) Amy Tangerine embellishments and Give a Girl a ….. stamp sets; and some bits and pieces of Seafoam & Clementine (both Becky Higgins).

Amber Core Kit

Amber Core Kit

I started out very humbly and still think my pages are very simple.  But that is the point.  My title page was straight out of the suggested card placement for the Amber Core Kit!

2013 Title Page - Moloney Mayhem!

2013 Title Page – Moloney Mayhem!

I then completed an “about” page – what I wanted to achieve this year in PL and a picture of each of us at that time.

"About Page"

“About Page”

I included the 4 x 6 information card that comes with the Core Kit – as I thought, for me, it was so basic and really needed to be there.  Meeting with the amazing Amy Tan earlier this month, I was amazed when she looked through my PL album, but also that she took a photo of my page using the Becky Higgins 4 x 6 card – yep, my album photographed by Amy Tan!!

Amy Tan :)

Amy Tan 🙂

Every week I still love flicking back through the weeks and looking at them again.  Importantly, my kids love looking through their multiple ‘stories’ and visits to the museum or somewhere fun, and Hayden, especially now that his reading is becoming so proficient, loves reading my ‘stories’.  My husband is also a bit of a fan 🙂  So, for project life week here are a few of my favourite pages so far this year 🙂

Little angels when they are asleep :)

Little angels when they are asleep 🙂

Brendan's First Hair Cut

Brendan’s First Hair Cut

An insert on my special big boy Hayden - just about where he is 'at'.

An insert on my special big boy Hayden – just about where he is ‘at’.

This is an insert – it is about Hayden – my eldest, and is about where he is ‘at’.  He has a tough gig being big brother to triplet siblings and does it so very well.  I am always incredibly proud of his patience, tolerance and absolute love for his siblings, no matter how disruptive they can be!  The back page shows a picture of Hayden at the same age the trio are now –

The back of Hayden's insert

The back of Hayden’s insert

All about family!

All about family!

Small details...

Small details…

I love this page :)

I love this page 🙂

Week Seventeen :)

Week Seventeen 🙂

Week 17

Week 17

So I know this might be an overload of photos, but I have tried to restrict them!  Some weeks some saddening or frustrating things have happened – I have journalled those in bi-fold cards so they are tucked away for ‘our’ eyes only.  That is what is so wonderful about project life, and I am keeping it ‘real’.  I am busy, and have a handful of kids, so trying to record all that we do is so important.  In a blink of an eye my kids will be double digits and not saying the cute little words or calling me Mummy anymore.  Some weeks I feel the focus is on one child more than another – but this is ok with me – as they all do different things, and all have different attributes.  Hayden has a little more packed into his days other than Dora, painting, triplet trashing (a technical term for destruction by three at once – against any object!!) or toilet training so often does score a few more stories.  Work factors in as well – good or bad, as it is a very real component of everyday life.

I run my weeks Monday – Sunday, so my first week included December 2012.  I aim to print my photos out every Monday afternoon at Big W whilst doing the groceries post school run.  I then try to complete the week Tuesday night.  Lately, it has been getting later in the week as it has been hectic, but I am keeping up.  Which is the aim.  I have minimal embellishments – I stamp and use stickers & washi tape.  I am trying to use the Huey’s mists, but it usually ends up looking like my 2 year old did it..  Here is an example!

First attempt at a mist...

First attempt at a mist…

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I hope you have enjoyed the pages and I hope even more so that you enjoy project life!  If you are a fence sitter – do it – you won’t regret it!  Keep it simple, and stick to the motto – “cultivate a good life and record it”.  Another incredibly cool person (Amy Tan) said to me the other week – “your kids won’t care what colour you used, or if it matches, they will just care that you documented it”.  So on that note – hope you enjoyed the blog hop.  And thank you for your visit 🙂

The other fabulous blogs in the ‘hop’ are –

Kellie Winnell

Kylie Bellar

Amanda Watkins

Bernadette Miller

Ali Moloney (you are here!)

There is also a giveaway on Life Paper Scrapbook’s website, thanks to Craft House – upload a PL page to the side bar to be in it 🙂  It is a mini kit – they are just gorgeous!  To enter, head on over to Life Paper Scrapbook 🙂

Happy Happy Friday!

Ali

Craft

Project Life – A Catch Up

8th April 2013

This year I began Project Life.  An amazingly easy concept of memory keeping.  It has become part of my weekly routine, and I am loving the process!  I have kept up to date so far, and plan on keeping up to date!  I have also thought about so many of the events that we have been through and how they can be easily put into a PL album!  I have the photos sitting in boxes waiting for ‘something’ to be done with them – so PL will be it!

I have also, for the first time ever, been published in a magazine!  My PL layout was accepted and I was and am stoked!  It is a very cool Aussie Magazine called Life Paper Scrapbook.  I am on page 91 if you are interested 🙂

So, here is the last few weeks layouts –

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Jase was looking through this year’s album the other day and was genuinely impressed – with what we do, and how quickly we forget things!  It is really refreshing to see his take on PL, even his comment about forgetting when the kids said this or that…or we went here…

Need to finish week 13 – but am hanging out for my SC kit!!
Thanks for looking 🙂

Kids, Work Life Balance

Return of the routine…..

8th February 2013

Week two of the term is done and dusted – leaving just seven left in this term! Crazy!! The school routine has well and truly returned to the Moloney Household – and its a good thing! The first few days were hard on the trio as they had really gotten used to having Hayden around all the time! But now, there is the priceless delight and sheer joy visible on their faces when they see Hayden at school pick up.

There is such a big difference from Prep to Grade One! We no longer have to collect Hayden from class – they all file out in an orderly fashion and Hayden even looks more ‘grown up’. It’s moments like that that really take my breath away – I’m amazed at how wonderfully unique and special Hayden is and how he has grown and matured already!

so, to keep up with my Project Life here is week five – a big week – (as usual I hear you say!) starting with floods and storms –

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I am still loving the end result of each weeks completed layout – I get a great sense of achievement!

this week I was lucky enough to be featured on another blog by a very talented lady – Jodie Allen. Her page is here (and her store is also amazing!!). The little spiel on my layout is here.

i kinda feel like a rock star having my page on a super creative and super talented lady’s blog!! Thanks Jodie!

The other ‘famous’ news this week – the triplets made the paper with the Guide Dog puppies. Our copy was completely saturated so Quest are sending us copies – here is a rather bad shot of it that was proudly on display at the kids day care centre!

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So that’s about our week!!!

Craft, Kids

It’s February ….. Already!

3rd February 2013

January 2013 has been and gone – and already I feel as though this year is flying!

i have so far (proudly!) been keeping up to date with Project Life. I absolutely loving it and am finding it a lovely way to factor in some ‘me time’ every week. My routine for the now is – weeks run Monday – Sunday, I print the photos at Big W Monday afternoons whilst doing groceries and get creating Monday nights 🙂 I look forward to it every week and find myself sorting pictures Monday and wondering how many I can squeeze in!  There are so many talented people who are also completing Project Life so there is never s shortage of inspiration!  My Blog list is rapidly growing – and Kellie Winnell has a creative post where you can see what so many others are up too!

 

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So here is week four – Moloney style!!

 

 

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Week five will feature the more severe flood photos (thankfully, other than uprooted trees and debris flung into one of our cars) we were all safe. 

I love the picture of the girls little bums! Caitlin doesn’t often sleep like this – Emma does! I also love that no matter where we place their beds they almost always end up together. These photos probably, if not for project life, would not be documented any other way!

 

This week saw the boys heading out on our boat for the first time. 5 whiting was the haul – which Hayden ate for dinner very proudly! He was so tired from his early wake up call that he fell asleep on the way back to the boat ramp!

 

All these little moments made up our week – the biggest event of last week was Jason’s birthday.  We had a lovely family day including New Farm Park playtime (love that place!) and dinner at Hog’s Breath (and I’m not selling Jase’s birthday short – I blogged in real time about it!)

Some other highlights – 

 

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Back to school! I lost count how many books I covered – and have a blister on my thumb from the >2000 stamps required on all this brown paper!!!

But that’s in week five – so stay tuned 🙂