4 things 2017 taught me

In the usual vein of reflection, anticipation, inspiration and of course celebration, I decided to do a short write up on what lessons the past year served to me.

1. I most certainly CANNOT blog for a living.😄

I never wanted my blog to be a money making venture hence the reason I never looked into securing ad space and by extension never felt the pressure to create content simply to fulfill that purpose. I never write just for writing’s sake, I write when I’m inspired. Interesting moments happen in my life, sometimes mom related, sometimes not.  Of course the flip of that would be that there are no demands on me to write hence the weeks and sometimes months apart from post to post. It’s not that I don’t have anything to write, my draft box is full both on WordPress and in my brain and if needs be sometimes I post snippets on Facebook. I just need to prioritize my time better and add a specific blog time to my weekly schedule if needs be. This is definitely a 2018 improvement step.🤓

2. Half the fun of parenting is figuring out how to navigate children who are vastly different.

Now that Boyo is fully coming into his own at the ripe old age of 18 months, it is interesting to watch him learn and develop, perhaps even more so than my first two gremlinz. He likes to touch stuff, fixes, probes and prods,  focused with the fingertips and laser sharp with his observation as though he must know why things work.  This is opposed to my Mam’zelle who loves singing, dancing, creating things, drawing, has a vivid imagination and telling me what works in clothes and makeup. Son-son is the one into books and facts, information, likes to be the first to know and the first to spread knowledge. Now what happens when these three worlds  collide? That’s the fun (and sometimes admittedly frustrating)  part. 🙃

3. Keep the eyes on the prize

When I look back on 2017 I don’t think I accomplished anything that I had ‘planned’ at the beginning of the year. As a matter of fact it was one wompity womp after the next. Now my go-to motto is to hope for the best and expect the worst but with one deflating disappointment after the next,  it was a struggle to remain positive in spite of it all. However here I am, alive on the 31st probably because I have to  try again, maybe use a different formula and see things in a different light so what is due to me finds no difficulty in finding me.🙏

4. Let selfishness reign….your money….your time….

Reward thyself! You bloody well deserve it dammit! 2017 was the year of getting my makeup stash in an acceptable order and I spent my coins to make sure that I got stuff that EYE wanted (thus dubbing 2018 the year of ah-not-buying-no-more-makeup-unless-absolutely-necessary-but-ah-sure-it-go-be-something-else-taking-my-dollars).🙈 As it relates to my time, I’ve done a pretty decent job of ensuring that my ‘me’ hour or so is carved out of my schedule. I most DEFINITELY could have put in more gym time especially this Christmas was savage on the belly 😩 and as mentioned before, more blogging time. But this remains a staple for me and I encourage all other mothers to do the same. Don’t wonder when you will get time to exercise or write or take a drink or breathe. Find it in your day. I am going to try to maintain my very early morning workouts, my stolen moments eating desserts in my car and my colouring books in my office. 😆

So here’s to 2018! I’m not one to make resolutions, I am only striving to be a better version of myself day after day. I hope you are too! See you on the flip!

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Blessings

TMIDM

Resilience…

Some time ago I had to deal with a 16 year old student who seemed to be ‘tripping off’. He was walking around with a bandanna tied around his head shouting ‘why me boy?’, crying and ranting to himself. We finally got him sequestered in my office and attempted to get to the bottom of his outburst. To cut a 3hr story short, he couldn’t bear to see the ‘happiness’ of his classmates while he had to deal with a mother who neglected him, a father who ridiculed him, a brother who beat and accused him of stealing and forced him to leave home and a present life of hardship which forces him to choose between earning money to survive and going to school.

For a moment I didn’t know what to say, all I could do was listen because how does one extol the importance of attending school and getting a solid education when there is no support for the child to do so? (Maslow is perpetually on my mind). This is particularly in a rural area where education is secondary to making earnings and helping to support the family. The evidence of this is found by MANY parents of errant children saying to me: “Miss, ah go pull (he/she) outta school yuh know! Is bes’ (he/she) come and work garden with me because ah wasting money sending (he/she) to school’. It’s money over school not school as a means to earn money.

I’m not a psychologist neither a guidance counsellor but as a teacher, in the absence of same, sometimes the situation calls to wear the hat. To my mind, faced with what seemed like an impossible situation I thought to let him know that he need to keep resilient because the reality is that the world is not a magical place with fairy godmothers and rivers flowing with chocolate despite what tv and friends say. I told him that when you’re in a boat in the middle of a storm, you will never tell yourself to jump into the water, you would go to the bottom of the boat and hunker down. So sometimes when life is raining down on you and you can’t see your way, you have to hold on , be your strongest and wait for the storm to pass.

I don’t coddle my gremlinz but i’m not a Tiger Mother either. I think that’s it’s important to teach your children resilience, let them understand that life can be difficult and unfair with the possibility of becoming even more so. My gremlinz’ ‘problems’ and accompanying emotions are usually met with a straight face and the word: And?.  After this is the thrashing out, reasoning, advising and comforting or scolding if necessary. Yes it is totally human to react with despair, but it is even more human to choose to either be swallowed by the sea or to keep climbing on that surfboard.

Bless up

TMIDM

 

JABLUM

It’s Friday! Time to imbibe!

I’m certain if someone did some qualitative research on drinking on particular days of the week, Friday would be up for honourable mention. A Friday destress would enlist one of the three J’s for me (Jose’ Cuervo, Johnnie Walker <Double Black> or Jack Daniels) or perhaps all three in a notable drink that my husband loves called ‘The Three Wise Men’. However, on this Friday I am home, just finished cleaning, enjoying the rest of my vacay with the gremlinz so I’m heralding the fourth J, JABLUM.

Some time ago I visited Jamaica for a dear friend’s wedding, one of the best mini-vacations thus far. On the way back to Trinidad while waiting to depart I was reminiscing on the crazy fun few days I had and it hit me that the entire Norman Manley International smelled like coffee! Anyone who has departed this Jamaican airport can attest to this, there is a coffee place everywhere! So now anytime I smell coffee, my brain takes me back to my crazy fun Jamaican holiday. I think it’s an associative thing.

On her visit back to Trinidad my friend was mandated to return with Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee (JABLUM) which is one of the many blends that waft through the airport space. So now with my precious French Press I have my own tools to brew my own potion.

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This is only when the I’m-oh-so-relaxed-me-time mood hits whether it be mornings, after lunch, afternoon tea, evenings, but definitely not every day.  This Friday deserves it though.

Bless up

TMIDM

Back in the Saddle

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So my at home fitness plan isn’t going as well as expected. 😦 It wasn’t totally my fault but I admit I was derailed by laziness and end-of the month eating shenanigans which included outings, a wedding reception and my own wedding anniversary which brought its own version of calories, carbs and fat in the form of a guiltless,well-deserved Italian dinner. My mom was measuring me the other day to sew some work clothes and I (secretly) balked when she wrote down the sizings. Not to mention  pair of pants that I haven’t worn in a while left me doing the skinny jeans wiggle to get into. I didn’t need much encouraging to realize that I needed to kick myself into high gear and (finally) haul ass to the gym.

I hate the gym. I hate the grunting and people pretending not to scope you out but who secretly throw glances your way.  I hate the fight down for machines. I hate the clanking of weights by the men and I hate the post-workout selfies by the women. IT BLASTED ANNOYING!!!…….but I started back. One evening last week, I gave in to desperation and thankfully I wasn’t going to train that day because I was severely startled by the SHEER AMOUNT of people there that afternoon. Why de hell it had so much people (women) there was beyond me but I figure it has something to do with the fact that Carnival bands launch already and clearly this year’s theme across the board is “Hail to the V”:

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And well of course……

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(Photos courtesy Trinidad and Tobago Carnival Costume Photos. For these and more check the page on Facebook here.)

I am sitting out Carnival next year.

So I’m back in the saddle for my own personal fitness and in order to avoid the sycophants, I’m going to the gym in the morning from as early as 5 a.m., a feat never done before but I’ve accomplished three days of rising and getting there by that hour and I’m damn proud of myself. Additionally I don’t feel the pressure in the day to train in between seeing about the gremlinz. The only thing is that when I start back work in September for the new school term, I may have to go even earlier. I have help though. The following video wakes me up every morning. I grabbed the audio and set it as my alarm so I’m roused from sleep by one of the most motivational get-it-done-now exercise speeches I’ve ever heard in my life.  Take a look:

I think at some point my husband will get annoyed hearing this every morning but doesn’t it make you feel like instantly bursting a sweat? I’m getting it done man!

Bless up

TMIDM

Just Dance!

I learn so much on the internet eh. Were it not for Facebook I would have never known that today was the International Day of Dance and boyyyy, the amount of people post about it, I think I have to spring clean this rock I’ve clearly been living under.
Dancing is something I’ve always loved, being formally drilled in ballet and modern when I was younger and informally in a lime, in a fete, in my car in traffic, in the kitchen cooking, wherever. Only recently I decided to jump back into dancing in a kinda semi-formal way because you know what? Why not? But more on that in a later post 😀

I’m sharing my all time favourite choreography. Not my favourite song by MJ but definitely my favourite dance track. When I was younger and saw this my first reaction was whyyyyyyyyyyyy am I not in this video??? Particularly from minute 6:14! And I may be one of few, but i prefer this to the classic Thriller sequence not that I don’t love that too. To this day Rememeber the Time is my favourite dance vid with Sean Paul’s Gimme de Light running second. Because face it, after Gimme de Light, dancehall did a 180 and it was level row yuh boat, thunderclap and pon de river in the club.

So take a moment to find your favourite dance track, put it on repeat and just dance!

Happy International Day of Dance!

Bless up

TMIDM

RESURRECTION

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This is an early greeting to wish each and every one of you a very happy and holy Easter holiday! No matter your religion or faith, spend some time with friends and/or family and also take the time to dress back and think about what truly makes you feel alive and resurrected. I spent the day with my mom today who was in a baking frenzy of sorts. She is a kitchen person…me? Not so much…..I like it but I don’t loooove it…

I was helping her paint finishing touches on a huge cake and icing other cakes as well. That was a niche I rediscovered, the patience to sit and do small “projects”, things or activities that command but don’t demand my attention or too much of a long while: small paintings or colouring with Mam’zelle, crossword puzzles, making a small garden, doodling and stippling, using that Duolingo language app (it’s awesome!), idly browsing Pinterest for travel locales that I dream about….you will be surprised how these simple joys can impact positively on your soul and as they say, take time to do what makes your soul happy! So try to resurrect yourself despite whatever turns your life is taking since as I heard recently, you have to go through your Good Friday to get to your Easter Sunday!

Bless up

TMIDM

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HAPPY EASTER!