Taking Stock – it’s time

I was going to write a pithy, modern re-imagination of the “Virginia, Is there a Santa letter” today. It was going to be all kinds of funny and appeal to my eldest. Eight years old and beginning to doubt Santa. Wise enough to realise that an out and out statement of disbelief may result in less presents. Just as he is on the cusp of losing the magic, his three year old brother is discovering it. But I’m not going to write that post today.

Instead, I am going to do something I often avoid in this space. Share what is actually going on with me. The thoughts swirling around as they swirl, rather than one idea pinned and examined. So I’ll write a long over-due taking stock post. That cutest of blog ideas by the cutest of bloggers – Pip Lincolne. (Who is doing a very cool e-course in the new year as an extension of the whole taking stock idea). 

Making: A sixties shift dress is sitting in my lap, very nearly made. The pattern is a vintage one and I have to had to make a few alterations as I go. Miraculously, they have all worked and I am setting sleeves between writing this post.

Cooking: Not a lot, but I’m on salads for Christmas. Hit me up with any great ideas.

Drinking: Too much bubbles. Oh but it’s so much fun at this time of year.

Reading: I just finished Chasing The Light, based on the true stories of the first women to ever set foot on Antarctica. It’s a wonderful, atmospheric book and shows how far women have come and how little has actually changed.

Wanting: Not much right now. Although I’d like all end of year business to be wrapped up neatly before the 23rd, with a clear slate into the new year.

Looking: At my boys as they sleep and it fills my heart.

Playing: On the beach very soon.

Listening: To the Trolls soundtrack and dancing around with the kids. Such happy songs.

Deciding: Which charity to send some money to help those in Aleppo. It seems very far away and I’m still a little confused as to all the facts. There are myriad of ways to help it seems, but I want to make sure that the money that is flowing in (and there is a lot of it) goes where it’s needed most. I think Doctors without Borders.

Wishing: That wars didn’t occur at all.

Enjoying: The quiet in my house before everyone gets up and the chaos begins.

Waiting: For the chaos to begin.

Liking: Not making lunches and the endless summer days.

Not Liking: Feeling all the mummy guilt about screen baby-sitters when I still have to work.

Wondering: How next year will pan out – there is a lot of exciting change on the horizon for everyone in our family.

Loving: The gentle summer days and the chance to hang out with my boys. Also that our neighbours have entrusted us with pool sitting duties.

Pondering: Cheap things. I was in Kmart recently and able to buy some very cute things for party decorations at very cheap prices. I had a budget, and if I’d sourced from anywhere else I wouldn’t have been able to create what I wanted. But as I strode past the cheap clothes into the cheap homewares, I noticed a number of items which looked heart-breakingly similar to things I had seen on Etsy. I felt a deep sadness. Where does all this eventually end up? How do independent artists compete? How do Kmart do it so cheaply? Is there an end to this empty consumerism? I pondered as I took my purchases to the self check-out and felt heavy with hypocrisy.

Watching: Very little since Westworld ended and all my theories were confirmed. Cannot wait until the next season (2018 apparently). My thoughts are that all worlds are contained within an island or even possibly another planet, accessible only by plane/rocket. The trains connect the worlds and some hosts can move between worlds, as Maeve is, but no hosts can fly in or out.

Wearing: Lots of hats and dresses that I have recently made. The sewing bug has bit hard after a long absence.

Sorting: Myself out for 2017. The to do list is a little overwhelming to be honest.

Feeling: Hopeful but not pinning unrealistic dreams on 2017. Last year at this time everyone seemed to be announcing 2016 as their best year to come and laying very high expectations at the feet of a baby new year. I have noticed that there is a less of that this year. The end of 2016 seemed so heavy with things difficult to understand. I am going into 2017 with a sense of peace but also apprehension about what is occurring in our world and closer to home. The Australian economy is shaky and running at two speeds, gaps between difference seem to be widening and there seems to a sad move away from tolerance rather than toward it. Who knows what will happen in the USA next year. Perhaps all that doubt has tempered everyone’s excitement about the new year. I’ll be circumspect and hug those closest to me a little tighter.

What’s going on in your head and your life?


Linking up with Kylie Purtell – Capturing Life and IBOT 

34 thoughts on “Taking Stock – it’s time

  1. Renee Wilson says:

    Similar things are going on in my head, Robyna 🙂 I’m putting in some extra hours when I can to try to get everything tied up by Friday as well. Fingers crossed. I can’t wait to see your vintage style dress. It sounds super cute. I’ve very much enjoyed following your blog this year. I hope to see more of you in the new year xx
    Renee Wilson recently posted…2016 – it’s a wrap!My Profile

    • Robyna says:

      Currently taking a break from the wrapping up and ignoring the fight brewing between my boys as they play cricket outside. But there is still much more wrapping up to do.

  2. Sammie @ The Annoyed Thyroid says:

    I keep thinking about Christmas in Sydney and the people of Aleppo – I can’t quite get my head around it. 2016 certainly packed it’s punches, both nationally and internationally but personally, it totally delivered and for that at least I am grateful.

    I love everything you write, but I especially loved this personal post. I must have been living under a rock because I only found your blog this year, but I’m jolly pleased I did. Looking forward to seeing your sewing projects come to fruition – I will sew vicariously through you. Wishing you happy holidays and a sparkling 2017 full of joy! Here’s to bubbles, not troubles!
    Sammie @ The Annoyed Thyroid recently posted…101 Things in 1001 Days – It’s a Wrap!My Profile

    • Robyna says:

      It’s such a terrible tragedy, but it appears to at least being given some coverage now. Wishing you the best Christmas and an even better 2017.

  3. deb dane says:

    That book sounds great. Will look for it.

    Salad for Christmas- we used to bring the salad to Christmas with friends every year- Jamie Oliver has a salad perfect for oz- greens + fresh nectarine slices + fresh mozzarella. Cannot remember the dressing but if you google I bet you will find this salad (it is from his naked chef books).
    deb dane recently posted…Permission granted – be yourself!My Profile

  4. Nicole @ The Builder's Wife says:

    I have always wanted to be able to sew, even though I am not sure I could find the time to do so. I am also with you, working hard trying to get all our work sorted prior to the 23rd. Fingers crossed, I am looking forward to some down time with the family. Happy Christmas Robyna xx

  5. Vanessa says:

    I couldn’t even tell you what’s going on in my head. A wise friend told me it takes about 3 months to find a new normal after doing postgrad, so I’m trying to not put pressure on myself for that long.
    I’ve had a lot of almost subconscious ponderings lately but they haven’t lead me to any real conclusions or ideas about my goals going forward. I think they need to marinate some more.
    Vanessa recently posted…Procrastination ToolsMy Profile

    • Robyna says:

      I can imagine! I still have nightmares about signing up for a course and then forgetting about it and facing an exam where I know nothing. Tis the season for marination!

  6. Denyse says:

    I am still thinking about Pip’s course and I have immense respect for her knowledge and creativity. I too did a taking stock in the latter half of the year and I have one planned for the end of Feb. It makes you think. Every year we start off with high hopes and I know I did in 2016 and then quite a few things that I had no control over impacted me like being wounded. I have needed to take more time to process those and then to recover myself. Not easy. I too ponder Kmart and wonder how. I buy very little these days as we are on a limited retirement income and are saving what we can to buy our future house. Have a great festive season. Denyse
    Denyse recently posted…Educated As a Blogger. 366/339.My Profile

    • Robyna says:

      She is such a beautiful soul, Pip. I am also thinking about joining in. Take the time you need for you, beautiful lady. Perhaps this end of year is more about rest, reflection and restoration.

  7. Jodi Gibson says:

    Yes, 2016 was an interesting year and I’m sensing the same. People are a little hesitant, a little despondent even. Let’s hope that just means 2017 is going to be even better than we expect. Merry Christmas.
    Jodi Gibson recently posted…The Best of 2016My Profile

  8. Kylie Purtell says:

    I am totally with you on the last point. I was so pumped heading in to 2016, not realising that life without Tafe was going to be so hard for me. I can say though that after this year, I am quietly optimistic that, at least personally, 2017 will be a better year for me. I am in a much more positive frame of mind, and excited about some of the things I have planned. At the same time I’m also really nervous about my big girl starting big school next year, and feeling incredibly emo about it. I feel like I’ve wasted so much of this last time together before she starts school and wishing I could have it back and make it better for her, but I can’t. So I’m trying to look forward with hope & positivity and hopefully that will set the tone for 2017.

    Have a fabulous Christmas, and thanks for being part of IBOT. See you next year!
    Kylie Purtell recently posted…The future of IBOT {A new era} | IBOTMy Profile

    • Robyna says:

      I think we always regret that time that we don’t spend with our kids – but to be honest, I think it breaks our hearts more than it damages our kids in any way. It’s something I struggle with every time I do something for myself that doesn’t involve the boys. That question about whether it’s the best use of my time when I could spend it with them. I think it’s quite a modern parenting guilt – I don’t think my mum or grandmother ever thought that way. Best of luck with next year and thank you for being the host of iBOT.

  9. Karin @ Calm to Conniption says:

    Oh Robyna, my head is a million miles away at the moment. Having so much trouble to ground myself at the moment. I’m looking forward to closing my laptop and just sitting with the family for Christmas and to greet the new year. I don’t want to put any pressure on 2017, just be nice. What I though next year would bring a month ago is far different to what I hope 2017 will bring now. xx
    Karin @ Calm to Conniption recently posted…The Home Ground AdvantageMy Profile

  10. Maxabella says:

    Answer: independent artists can’t compete. Kmart steals so many design ideas from them and then makes them in bulk for a pittance because they have no ethics. That cheap, plastic smell we smell when we walk into Kmart is what the blood, sweat and tears of all the people that giant conglomerate stepped on to make more and more money for its investors. Sorry… it just really rankles me. 🙂 On a brighter note, cheers to “gentle summer days”. I can’t wait to get my fix! x
    Maxabella recently posted…How I unspoiled my kidsMy Profile

    • Robyna says:

      It is heart breaking for creative types. I see it all the time – they create something new and cool for $60, then someone on IG sees and copies for $40, then someone outsources it to Alibaba and sells it for $20 and then Kmart comes along and reduces the original idea to $5. Even if they can somehow make it ethically for that amount due to economies of scale (which I still doubt), the original artist is still completely screwed.

  11. Janet Camilleri aka Middle Aged Mama says:

    I’m impressed with your sewing efforts! I’m an amateur at best – took some sleeves off a drop waist dress on the weekend, and pretty proud of myself for that. And you asked for salad ideas – this one is my all time favourite: http://www.middleagedmama.com.au/brown-rice-salad-recipe/.

    Merry Christmas!
    Janet Camilleri aka Middle Aged Mama recently posted…Charity Christmas Hampers: what it’s like to be on the receiving endMy Profile

  12. Shan@FortyUp says:

    Hi Robyna, loved reading this post! 2016 was a year of self discovery for me, that sounds wankerish but it’s true!!! I’m with you on Aleppo, so heartbreaking, so many questions….. Change of subject, I loved meeting you this year, albeit briefly!! I love what you do & I love to meet women who inspire & encourage me! All the best for 2017 xx Shan
    Shan@FortyUp recently posted…10 Perfect Christmas Day Dresses with Pattern!My Profile

  13. Elisa @ With Grace & Eve says:

    Oh I love your taking stock! I need to do this. Your sewing sounds fab. My poor sewing machine has sat untouched for a couple years now…! Here’s to gentle summer days! That’s my one and only plan for the next month. So grateful I can skip out on work for a bit to lap up time with my girls. Off to check out Pip’s course – thank you xx Look forward to reading more here in 2017 xx

  14. Jo @ You had us at hello says:

    I too have been looking forward to spending time with my boys over the Christmas break but after today…I’m ready to go back to work. They’ve been making a mess and arguing over Lego all freakin day 🙁 Hoping a good sleep will sort them out!!! LOL!! It was a funny old year for sure. Wishing you a happy new year Robyna – cheers to happy surprises and good health xx #teamIBOT
    Jo @ You had us at hello recently posted…AAA Winners & Christmas HolidaysMy Profile

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