The next photo collage instalment for Fat Mum Slim’s Photo a Day.
Linking up with Twinkle in the Eye for Wordless Wednesday.
I used reverse psychology on myself today when taking the kids to see Santa. Not sure if reverse psychology actually works if you know you are doing it to yourself, but I figured I’d give it a red hot go.
You see, it seems that every year I take kid(s) to see Santa, dressed to the nines, in their “special” Christmas outfit (mouth vomit) and inevitably they crack the shits after having to wait in the queue and being badgered by their mother (that would be me) making sure they don’t get dirty for that “special” Christmas photo. All that being said, I won’t force the issue. If they’re not into it, then we leave (note 2010 is missing from the above photo. Scout started crying at about T minus 100 metres so I figured it wouldn’t be worth it). Last year, we took Inky and Scout both, but Inky looked terrified, so Scout went solo. I have been guilty in past years of being a bit antsy on the Christmas photo trip, though – the queuing, the child herding, the expectation. Part of me wonders why I bother, but I look back at the photos of me and my brother as kids, every year, sitting on Santa’s lap (or, like my brother – red and puffy-eyed in generally the same area as Santa) with fondness. It’s a festive work in progress and memories/photos I’m really grateful to have.
But this year I dressed the girls down. I let Inky use her white shirt as a mop as she went to artistic work on the Myer floor. I let her swap her shoes around so they were on the wrong feet (a battle I know I will almost certainly lose). I let Scout wear a Size 4 top with sleeves too short and “cool” hair (note use of quotation marks). I knew that if I let go of the preconceived notion that they had to look immaculate, they’d probably be champing at the bit to have a piece of Santa and his animatronic reindeer. It worked. Inky wasn’t having a bar of Santa’s lap, but held his gloved hand (creepy) and managed about as forced a smile as anyone could muster. We were waiting in the queue for ages (seriously, Santa could have had a chatting competition with Scout and even she would have left battered and bruised), but geez, those girls were patient. Well behaved. Big morning, though – I found this waiting for me 5 minutes after I put the TV on:
Inky passed out, with Scout gently stroking her hair. And that’s a better moment than anything Myer, or my ingrained control freak could ever have captured.
Linking up with Essentially Jess for I blog on Tuesdays
I’m a “Survivor” addict. I love the show. I love the strategy, the characters (loving to hate and hating to love), I love the comfortable place that is JPro’s Southern drawl and unflagging rhetoric. But I know if I were ever a contestant on “Survivor”, I would, with disappointing certainty, be the first person (or even worse, the second) to be voted out. Guaranteed.
People get on Twitter to connect, but I’ve seen it happen where people end up feeling radically disconnected instead. Twitter is the social media equivalent of “Survivor” – an intriguing microcosm of society where one is thrust into a random “tribe” of followers, a tribe you ostensibly “belong” to and seek to make alliances within, but the politics within the tribe can sometimes be tricky:
Twitter IS a Social Game and one I enjoy a lot of the time. Most of us want to engage with other like minded dudes. In real time. We like to discuss the spunk merit of redheads. We like to vent about the shitty day we are having. We like to get people excited about our philanthropic causes. We like to talk about touching our panties when watching “Homeland” (you know, the important stuff). We can filter the people who see our feeds to an extent, but there are tribe politics, that much is undeniable. I don’t know how people who follow thousands of people keep up. So many tribes, so much information. A Brain Fry waiting to happen.
Tribal Council on crack.
Are you ready for a trip down Amnesia Lane?
Remember, I did warn you.
1. Pillowslips on the bedpost. My favourite part of the year was waking up on Christmas morning to a throbbing pillow case on the bedpost (get your minds out of the gutter, please). We didn’t even have a special pillowcase, whatever was clean on the night (and mum is a Virgo so there were lots).
2. Construction Christmas books. They were cardboard, you poked figurines and houses out and constructed them so that you had your very own Christmas 3D scene. Every year, my brother and I would alternate between the snow-drenched European street scene and the nativity scene. I’ve been looking for them for years but they just don’t sell them anymore. Not even The Google knows about them. I type in searches and it gives me the white screen of WTF.
3. The smell of a freshly opened Barbie. Like the smell of a new car but with boobs and hemmed vaginas. I don’t know why Barbie dolls smell different now – as far as I’m aware they’re still made of the same stuff (i.e. a whole lot of cheap Asian plastic). In fact, it was any plastic toy fresh from the wrapper (the Bionic Woman of 1979 springs to mind) that smelt to me like Christmas. Even more than live pine trees and shandies by the lake.
4. Eating Butter. Another in the “Don’t try this at home” annals, I tried this at home every single Christmas of my childhood. You see, my family were of the Meadow Lea and powdered milk variety throughout the year, but every December, we would have real butter and real milk. I would steal to the fridge and sneak chunks of butter, with fresh milk chasers. It was heaven in a cow udder.
5. Bing Crosby’s Christmas Album. It was released in 1955, before I was an itch in the itch in my daddy’s pants, but this is seminal stuff. My parents had this on repeat on the record player all Christmas Day. It should send shivers of terror down my spine just thinking about it, but it doesn’t. It is very comforting. Like knowing I never have to listen to Alan Jones’ voice on radio again.
6. The annual Pine Tree reconnaisance mission. About a week before Christmas, dad would take my brother and I to the pine forest near Dora Creek and cut down a clandestine pine tree. I can’t bring myself to cut down a live tree these days, but that’s right, dendrocide is something I miss from my childhood.
7. Window Advent Calendars. We never had chocolate advent calendars as a kid. We had the ones that you put on the window – they had a tissue-paper back, and when you opened each window, a different picture would shine through. It was all about the picture. It was probably just as well we had non-chocolate calendars, given the amount of butter I consumed.
8. Watching the Santa Tracker on local TV. The precursor to NORAD, it was seriously analog – every ad break on NBN3, a basic world map filled the TV screen and little sleigh “blips” indicated where Santa was in the world. Excitement, wot.
9. Silken thread ornaments. Oh ho ho, that does make me sound very posh does it not biatches? These were balls that were covered in really fine silk thread and are now classified as “vintage”. When I was a kid I just liked to stroke the sh*t out of those balls. It was very calming. Trust me on this.
10. Being home. All our family lived in Newcastle, so Christmas Day was unfailingly spent with aunts, uncles and cousins. Now we’re Christmas nomads. Since Scout was born, we’ve spent Christmas in Adelaide, Newcastle, Mount Gambier and Melbourne. I don’t mind the travel, but don’t like feeling like a Christmas Orphan when we’re actually home. With family fragmented all over the country, it is a hard pill to swallow. Which is why I like to dissolve it in a retro Pimms. Don’t mind me, will you?
What do you most miss about the Christmas’s you had as a kid?
Very happy to have “From where you live” featured as one of the Photo a Day Fab Four. Clearly, that Fatmumslim (not Fat Muslim, I think we’ve already established that) has taste.
Now, I stumbled onto this little number last season and I honestly can’t say how it’s any different to your standard cosmo. But do you care? Neither do I. Bring it.
30ml Cointreau, triple sec OR for a festive treat, Stone’s Ginger Wine. Everyone’s favourite bogan drink.
30ml Cranberry Juice
20ml Lime Juice
Shake all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with some ice. Pour into cocktail glass and garnish with Lime peel, ginger stem or float the top with fresh cranberries (a tough ask in this sundrenched Christmas town)!
I am letting go. This year’s Christmas tree was brought to us by Scout’s “Disco Tree” concept, little bunches of disco ball ornaments concentrated in only one part of the tree. I like an aesthetically balanced tree and started to “educate” her about the mathematical concept of “balance” before I thought, F*ck it, this is joy. OCD to Joy.
Linking up with My Little Drummer Boys for Wordless Wednesday. Well, I had the best intentions of a Wordless Wednesday, but I opened up my keyboard pie-hole and just couldn’t stop. Happens to me all the time.
Just in time for the stupid season, here are some easy (and often cheap) ways to sass up an ordinary glass of sparkling wine:
What is your favourite ingredient to add to sparkling wine?
November Photo a Day is DONE. Like George Hamilton on a Winter’s Day. Loved it. December Photo a Day list is here, if you want to join. Let the shutterbuggery begin!