Sunday Funday

Sunday Funday

Do you have a list of things you would like to do on the
weekends or places you would like to see, and find that, like us, weekends get
filled up doing all the little things we don’t do during the week and that list
of fabulous fun things never gets done?  I
love weekends, because it is time that we get to spend together, which is even
more precious now our son is at school. 
But I’ve felt for a while now that we tend to do the same thing every
weekend.  And I was a little bit
bored.  There are so many things that we
say to each other we’d like to do, and we somehow were never making the time to
do them.
So, a little while ago, I suggested to my little family that
we should do Sunday Fun Day!  We would write down all the ideas we have of
places we want to go or things we want to do on a Sunday, put them in a jar,
and each week, pick one out and do it! 
Easy!  We used our trip to the
coast recently to come up with ideas, and we made sure that everyone was able
to contribute.  There are some things in
there that not all four of us would have chosen, but we agreed in the interests
of fairness we would give every suggestion a try.  The suggestions needed to be achievable in a
day, and locations needed to be within an easy drive of Canberra. 
We draw out the coming Sunday’s activity sometime during the
week so we can prepare if needed (e.g. a day trip to the beach would need us to
pack beach toys, towels, sun cream etc. the night before so we can leave early
in the morning), or if it is a weather dependent activity, we can choose
something else if the forecast looks grim. 
Last week we had drawn out a visit to the Arboretum but as we were having breakfast, we had a call from our son’s best friend (our Goddaughter) inviting us to the zoo.  We were all excited, and because the zoo is also in our Sunday Fun Day jar, we decided we would do it.  What a great way to kick off the new tradition than with close friends (who are our special chosen family anyway). 
Best friends 

I love being stuck in between these two!
We have loved going to the zoo since our son was
little.  He has always really enjoyed it,
so we are members and go often.  Recently
there have been a lot of upgrades and it is a really lovely place to wander
around.  We have been a few times since
our daughter was born, but Sunday was the first time that she noticed and got
excited about the animals.  She
particularly loved the fish in the aquarium, and made lots of animal noises as
we meandered around looking at the different animals. 
It was really relaxing to spend the day with our beautiful
friends.  These friends mean the world to
me.  We have been through a lot together
in the time we’ve known each other and they have a special place in my
heart.  It was so good to be able to
watch not only the kids happy faces, but also to see my Soul sister and her
husband relaxed and enjoying the day. 
Soul Sisters

If our first Sunday Fun Day was anything to go by, I can
already tell that this is a great way for our family to feel creative, calm and
connected.  I can’t wait to find out what
this Sunday’s activity will be!
What do you think of the Sunday Fun Day idea?  What ideas would you put in your Sunday Fun
Day jar?  Comment below (I am pretty sure
the comments should FINALLY work properly now!) or on the Creative Calm
Connected Facebook page. 
Until next time,

E xx
I’m back!

I’m back!


Refreshed, Reconnected, Relaxed, re-energised,
re-focused.  Ready for the rest of the

I have just come back from a week away and that’s how I
feel. Once again, I am convinced that I have my Core Desired Feelings right (if you want to read my post about Core Desired feelings go here). Our holiday had all the elements there – time for being creative, plenty of connecting with those i love, and lots and lots of calm.  The combination of those three things make me feel how I want to feel every day.  When I get all those elements together, I am at my best.  Have you thought about what your Core Desired Feelings might be?  Honestly, since I’ve worked it out, I feel like it is much easier to live the kind of life you want to live.  To be honest, nothing much has really changed in my life, but the focus of my life has.  And I like it!  
We took the kids and my Mum and Dad to Merimbula for the week, and had a beautiful
time together.  I didn’t feel rushed, but
we did plenty of fun things.  I really
enjoyed spending our time together.  The
kids were pretty well behaved, and the weather was great. It was so much warmer
than home, and even though it was a bit windy some days, it was really nice to
get a break from all the rain we’ve been having.
I love the special bond that my children have with my
parents, and it was so special for them to have Grandma and Poppy on holidays
with them.  We are lucky to have my
parents living so close by.  The whole
reason for our trip was to take Mum and Dad away to thank them for all they do
for us.  They look after the kids for us
so that I can do my Pilates shifts.  But
more than that.  They are only ever a
phone call away if we need them and love spending time with our babies.  They are supportive, offer us all unconditional
love and we all love spending time with them. 
I also love the way they love and accept my husband as their own. 
It was also special to take them away because my Dad has had
a couple of years where he couldn’t travel. 
Before he got sick, Mum and Dad used to travel around this beautiful
country on their motorbike, seeing lots of different places and having
adventures together.  But that silly
little “piece of meat” (as our son used to say) put a pause on that for a
while.  Now though, Dad is almost fully recovered
and has the all clear, so it was wonderful to see him excited to go somewhere
different again. 
At the beginning of our week away, everyone nominated some
things they would like to do/see while we were away.  We worked our way through the list and made
some beautiful memories together.  Here’s
some photos I took of us:
My Dad took this photo

And here’s some of my more creative pics:
It is amazing how just a change of location can reset
you.  I found that without the demands on
our time that exist at home, I was able to be more calm and present.  It was nice to slow down a little and prepare
for the last school term of the year.  Wouldn’t
it be great if we could maintain that feeling of holiday calm for a lot longer
when we return home?  I am going to try
really hard to hang onto it this term – we are going to be busy, but with some
special things to look forward to between now and Christmas.  I’m glad that we have those things to look
forward to; I think they help lessen the blow of the post-holiday return to
I have come home determined to make the most of this fresh
start, feel ready to make some positive life changes in terms of healthy
habits, and am excited about what the rest of the year has in store. 
Until next time, 

E xx
The magic happens when you listen

The magic happens when you listen

Yesterday was a near perfect day for me.  Our little family headed off to the beach for
a day trip. We often make these trips now, because it isn’t that far to go and
we always have a good time.  A trip to
the ocean seems to rejuvenate us all, calm us and help us spend some really
happy time together without being at home worrying about what we “should” be
doing instead. 
I was thinking about why yesterday was so magical for
me.  The weather wasn’t perfect (until
late afternoon), we left later than we wanted to, but none of that could get to
me yesterday.  I think that what made it
perfect was that it was a truly creative,
calm, connected
day.  We were all
relaxed and happy (calm!).  There was a
really nice connection between us all, we all seemed so present, so in the
moment, not consumed by anything else (connected!).  And we got to do lots of favourite things
(morning tea at our favourite café, lunch at the beach, spending a lazy
afternoon on the sand).  My husband and I
even had a little time where each of us could take some photos (creative!).
It really was an example of how, when we do the work, listen
to what our hearts want, name it, and then do it, your heart and soul really have
the opportunity to come alive.  I kept
thinking yesterday to myself and the universe “more of this please”.   And I hope there are plenty more days like it
to come. 
Here are some photos I took yesterday.  I hope you all have a calm and happy day.
E xx

What do I know for sure?

What do I know for sure?

This photo was taken by my husband on our honeymoon in the Cook Islands 
I am in the middle of doing the Reconnect Program with Amy
Taylor-Kabbaz (which I can highly recommend, it’s my second time doing it),
which is designed for Mum’s to reconnect with who they really are and to live a
more happy, mindful life.  This week’s
focus is trust.  One of our exercises is
to ask ourselves what do I know for sure?
So, what do I know for sure? 
Love ✿⊱╮: I know for sure that I love my children with a passion that I never knew possible. I know for sure that my husband loves me. I know for sure that I have wonderful parents who love and support me in all that I do.
I know for sure that I am worthy of loving and being
I love the idea of keeping a gratitude journal, however I
know for sure that I am crap at keeping a journal! Despite this, I know for
sure that I am grateful every day for being alive and for all my blessings.
I know for sure that the first cup of tea of the day always
tastes the best.
I know for sure that seeing a beautiful sunset always calms
I know for sure that I will always choose spending time with
a friend over doing housework!
I know for sure that Pilates is a true exercise in
mindfulness for me.
I know for sure that I should always trust my
instincts.  They have never been wrong
I know for sure that I get my energy from being around
I know for sure that to be the best mother, wife, friend,
daughter, employee I need to do things for myself and occasionally have some me
time.  I also know for sure that I don’t need
to feel guilty about this. 
I know for sure that I can point my fingers and do the twist
just as well as the Wiggles can!
I know for sure that I believe in love, and in the power
that love has to change the world. 
I could keep going forever! 
But I can’t right now.  I need to
have dinner so that I can go and spend some much needed time with beautiful
friends tonight.  So how bout you take
over?  What do you know for sure?  What can you trust in with your whole
heart?  Comment below or on Facebook at
Creative Calm Connected. 

E xx

Podcasts I love.

Image result for headphones cartoon image
I am a relative newbie to the world of podcasts, only having
recently discovered and started listening to them.  My first was recommended by a friend from
work and I thoroughly enjoyed listening to the case of Adnan Sayed in “Serial“.  Since my son started primary school this year,
and I also have a one year old daughter, I find myself in the car a LOT,
driving here there and everywhere taking us to all of our activities!  The Serial podcast changed my car trips from
time I felt was being wasted, into special treat as I followed the story
Since deciding this year that my themes for life are to be
more creative, calm and connected, I
have been searching for more podcasts to listen to that interest and excite me
and somehow connect back to those themes. 
The most obvious one for me to start with was “Happy Mama with Amy”.  Amy Taylor-Kabbaz is the
amazing and inspiring woman who blogs at Happy Mama, the author of Happy Mama; the guide to feeling yourself again, and genius behind the Reconnect Program which I did earlier this
year (and am doing for the second time now!). 
I love Amy’s work because she is so real about motherhood.  She is not afraid to discuss the challenges
of being a Mama, and ways that as mothers we can reconnect back to who we are
and what we need.  Once a fortnight Amy
interviews a guest and they discuss issues around being a happy mama, and on
the other week Amy quietly provides her own thoughts and wisdom on a topic
relevant to her audience. There is yet to be an episode where I didn’t get some
little gem from, so if you are a Mum, maybe you might like to give it a go!
Another favourite of mine is “Happier with Gretchen Rubin
and Elizabeth Craft.   I am a big fan of Gretchen Rubin’s books The Happiness Project and Better than Before. In Happier, Rubin
and her sister discuss simple changes and ideas for how to make your life
happier.  I love the interaction between
the sisters, and their ideas are great. 
What should I read next” with Anne Bogel is a podcast I both
love and hate!  I love it because each
week Anne does some literary matchmaking with a guest.  They discuss three books the guest loves, one
book they hate and what the guest is currently reading.  Anne recommends three reads based on their
discussion.  I love this podcast because
the format allows you to discover some books that you may also like to read
next.  I hate this podcast because I have
added so many books to my “to be read” list that I think I need a second, third
and fourth job to finance the purchase of them!!
Rob Bell’s “the Robcast” is a podcast that I’m relatively
new to but the few I’ve listened to so far have surprised me.  I heard Bell’s name come up a lot within a
short time from a number of different sources, and I thought the universe might
be directing me to him for some reason. 
Initially I was a bit turned off when I discovered he is a pastor;
however, he discusses issues in a way that doesn’t feel overly preachy or
churchy.  In my desire to connect with
something bigger than myself, I feel like there might be a few gems in Rob’s
podcasts that might raise some questions that I might like to consider.  What I love about him is that he encourages
people not to continue with what doesn’t serve them well – especially in the
religious context.  This one is probably
not for everyone, but one I’m exploring anyway. 
And last but not least, I have been listening to a podcast
with Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Eat Pray Love) called “Magic Lessons”.  It is an extension of her book Big Magic which encourages readers to
challenge our curiosity, tackle what we most love and face down what we must
fear.  This book is eagerly staring up at
me from my desk, waiting for me to read it. 
Each episode, Gilbert has a creative guest on the show that is somehow
blocked, or experiencing some type of creative challenge and provides
suggestions on how they might break through that block to move forward with
their creative life.   
So what podcasts do you love and why?  I am always on the hunt for new ones to
listen to and would really love if you would share some of your favourites with
me.  You can contact me on Facebook
(search Creative Calm Connected) or leave a comment at the bottom of this post.
Until next time,
E xx