Day 12 | Photo Challenge

The chances of maintaining a 14 day photo challenge are nil! October is a very busy month for me and I have a bunch of personal and work related stuff going on so it’s no use kidding myself I can keep this up, I am even backdating this posts! So I’m just going to go random lol.

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I’m not wonder woman this month but I’m working on it! I have currently over committed myself (again) so I’m playing a bit of cat and mouse in order stay on top of things. One big project is over at the end of the month (phew), and things will settle back into their normal schedule again.

In the meantime it’s plenty of wine, lots of Nickelback & Fleetwood Mac, and hard work!

Day 11 | Connecting With Nature

I’d like to be more of an outdoor person, because once I make the effort to get outside I mostly enjoy it, but it takes a lot of will power to move off the couch, even when I wasn’t addicted to the screen I spent a lot of my time curled up with a book.

I do love spending time in the sun, especially if I have some old rock classics playing on the stereo.

However, my one connection with nature that feeds my soul is the ocean and I am so lucky to live just five minutes drive from the beach, I can head down there almost any time I like to do a bit of mind, body, and spirit restoration.

The warm sand in my toes, the waves crashing, and ever changing view makes it a great place to escape to.

Day 10 | Worthiness Wednesday

I knew I would struggle with this when I saw it come up last week, however I chose another topic to write about last week so managed to avoid #WW until now.

The dictionary.com definition of worthy is

wor·thy

[wur-thee]  adjective, wor·thi·er, wor·thi·est, noun, plural wor·thies.

adjective

1. having adequate or great merit, character, or value: a worthy successor.
2. of commendable excellence or merit; deserving: a book worthy of praise; a person worthy to lead.

Self-worth is in part how we treat ourselves. When we are in self-care mode we eat healthily, get plenty of sleep, keep stress levels down, and participate in things that make us happy. When we are in self-destruct mode we tend to drink too much alcohol, eat poorly, don’t get enough rest, and have increased stress levels.

In fact in times of high stress we should take the best care of ourselves because our minds, bodies, and spirits need all the help they can get to pass through the stressful period and come out the other side in a much better mental and physical position. However, it’s this very period in our lives where the self-destruct part of our personality tends to take over and exacerbates the problem.

I intend to at least take some steps to do some ‘self care’ over the next few months as our family goes through a period of very stressful situations. If I’m not looking after myself, I’m not looking after anyone else either.

Day Eight | Modified Magpie

Right so I’m not strictly sure how this works so I have modified to how I think it’s meant to be. A stack of books has been chosen and then a page number (thanks @shazndolly) and now I am going to choose a word from each page and see what turns up. I’ll try not to make it too ‘forced’ and let the words come to me.

So here goes!

Method

Decorative

Start

One

Tank

Pinot Gris

Well, well, well, check out that. Given that two of the books were about wine that theme can be seen.

I think next time I would just use one book and choose a sentence and see what comes up given that the page that had Method on it actually was from the spells book and I learnt that traditionally in England newly weds consumed mead (honey) for a month after their wedding to make them sexually potent hence the word ‘honeymoon’ – go figure!

Day Six – X Factor Boot Camp

So X Factor Boot Camp was this week, and I must say it’s so fantastic that we are seeing the episodes in the same week as the US, meaning there’s minimal chance of spoilers. Unfortunately that means there’s no chance of spoilers  for when I occasionally want to see who was ‘kicked off’.

At this stage I’m trying not to have favourites until the final 24 are announced but I have to say that both Jillian and Vino are probably already on my fav’s list. With Jillian I just love her back story and how much passion she sings with, like each word is the release of the pain she has been through in her life. Vino is an interesting character – his singing is raw and emotional and his vulnerability is touching, but he will need to keep his temper in check and start believing in himself or he will self destruct.

I am also glad they let several of the younger contestants go, particularly Jordan Foley who sung ‘Tomorrow’ for her audition – she should never have gone through and it was patently obvious on day one of Boot Camp where she couldn’t hold a tune. Also heartbreaking for those who let their nerves get the better of them and sung off key, forgot the words, or simply got out played but I’m a great believer that things happen for a reason and it just wasn’t right for them.

So far I think the show has been really good – the judges are firm but fair, and the crew seem to be so caring given the huge volumes of people auditioning and no doubt ‘huge’ personalities and ego’s they have to deal with as well as a couple of medical emergencies. Actually really impressed.

Of course there are always a couple of baddies to mix it up, and on my hit list is Tara Simon – I think I dislike her because her ego is bigger than her talent, she tries too hard. I also dislike Paige and I’m not quite sure why, maybe because she’s been paired up against Cece and although her ego is also inflated, I do feel she has the talent and will simply work her ass off to win.

So I just have to wait another 5 days until the Judges Home episodes and then we can get down to the real nitty gritty – the Live Shows!

Can’t wait!

Day Four – Driving Safely

When I took my son for his before-school checks just prior to him turning 5, I remember the health professional that took us through the series of tests and did the weighing and measuring mentioned to me that children should remain in either a car seat or a booster seat until they are 148cm high, and although they weren’t trying to make children who were no longer in seats go back to being in them they we encouraging parents to keep their children in them until they reached that height. Given that I am a mere 158cms tall, I was a little embarrassed that I was only 10cms taller than this  – so anyway I have merrily been putting my son in a booster seat for a little under two years (he was still in a car seat until he was five and a half), thinking that the 148cm requirement was law.

It wasn’t until today that the news indicated that they were thinking of changing the law that I discovered that in fact height has nothing to do with the requirement of a child being in an approved child restraint but is in fact based on their age.

This is what the current law says:

Requirements for child restraints

Children aged under five must be secured in an approved child restraint when travelling in cars or vans.

  • Children aged between five and seven must use a child restraint if available. If not available, they must use a safety belt. If a safety belt is not available they must travel in the back seat.
  • Children aged between eight and 14 must use safety belts if available. If not available, they must travel in the back seat.
  • People aged over 14 must wear safety belts where they are available.

International best practice recommends the use of an appropriate child restraint (or booster seat) until your child reaches 148 centimetres tall or is 11 years old.

Whilst the decision about changing the law to require children up to 7 to be in an approved child restraint has not yet been made, one of the reasons they are choosing again to set this requirement as an age rather than a height is because ‘apparently’ it’s easier to police an age – which I find rather confusing. A parent or caregiver could easily misrepresent a child’s age if they were pulled over but it’s very hard to fake their height! Surely they can incorporate both – a child must be at least X age or reaches 148cms in height. Surely the safety of our children should come before anything else including something being ‘easier’!

So until that is decided I shall continue to transport my son in his booster seat until a) the law is changed to something more sensible, or b) he discovers he actually doesn’t ‘have’ to be in it, or c) he reaches 148cms tall.

In the meantime, I guess I better tell my mum that it’s not ‘illegal’ to transport my son without the booster (as was my belief), but that it does make him much safer, and I guess I will still continue to get strange looks from the other parents when I ensure my son has a booster in their car, but at the end of the day I want my child to travel as safely as possible because I could not live with myself if I did not take all steps to ensure this.

Day Three – The Colemans

It’s two years since the Countdown family, The Colemans, hit our screens in New Zealand and over the past couple of years we’ve seen their storyline develop as the family have grown through the rebranding of Woolworths and the modernisation of the Countdown brand.

I have mostly either been neutral or liked most of the ads in the series until the most recent one where Dad, Rob, tells his wife Nikki that he’s been made redundant and is going to sell off some of his ‘boy toys’ to help the family out, and Nikki advises that he doesn’t need to do that because they can take Joshie out of daycare and she’ll shop smarter.

This ad just doesn’t sit well with me –

Firstly, and this is just being picky, but surely the family are already shopping smarter? They are a family of five – I don’t know many ‘average’ Kiwi families (and that’s who these characters are based on) who would not be shopping smarter each and every day. They promote the purchase of Countdown’s ‘Home Brand’ items as part of their campaign.

Secondly, I know they are meant to be everyday Kiwi’s but in the current economic climate where most families are struggling, some are facing redundancy – like ‘Rob’ – and most of us are doing it tough, do we really need to be reminded about this from a ‘supermarket’ ad.

In my opinion, unless it’s a ‘public service’ type advertisement I actually want to be taken away from the realities of life, not reminded of them! I can see where the storyline is going to go and whilst I appreciate that they are trying to sympathise with families who may be facing the same situations, for some reason it comes off as slightly patronising.

So, that’s day three, a little ‘opinion’ piece.

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