List Update… A little bit of Spring

Doing the list updates like this have been very helpful… and like the weather we have been getting in Melbourne… Spring seems to be here in tiny little bursts between full on Summer and Winter… and waiting until the end of Spring seems like too long to wait… so here is the List update for the first part of Spring…. Oh but before we get into that you may have noticed in the Winter update that I included my daily photos for each month… this year rather than putting them all in one blog like I have done in previous years I thought it would actually be better to include it in these… so I have been back and added it to Summer and Autumn too and here you will get to see my photos from September and October.


I love Spring… I love it’s brightness, it’s hope, the birds, the flowers and it’s unpredictability… it’s probably the only change I actually enjoy… Spring just feels good… to start Spring off we crossed 5 things off the list in September…

We were able to harvest some veggies from our veggie patch (no. 51, completed 14/09) and while our carrots were a little unconventional in appearance they were delicious. We have also been working on making sure that our house has been deliberately filled with lovely things (no. 47 completed: 22/09)… so much so that we have reorganised the house, swapping the play area and the TV areas around. With the new set up our TV is tucked up on top of the piano out of the way, leaving the stereo and a much more open space in our living area which also crosses no. 92 off the list (completed: 22/09). Isaac and Dave have also been picking flowers for the house which it not only adorable, it’s nice for the house… and just this week our roses have started coming in so there are lots more flowers to come.

September also brought us the school holidays where Dave and I got to brunch together one morning while Isaac was at childcare (no. 67 completed: 25/09) at this super cute homestead in Rowville and with Isaac we returned to science works crossing off no. 10 finally using the museum enough to justify the cost of our memberships (completed: 26/09). I love taking Isaac to the museum, especially science works and this trip was no different, we saw the Lego exhibition and Isaac loved building up the walls with Duplo.


October has been a BIG listing month I took a break from social media (no. 55 which you can read about here, completed: 27/10) and after running the half marathon (which was no. 11 on the list and you can read about that here) I had a bit more time up my sleeves and being October a small amount of panic about the volume of tasks that are still left to be completed on the list… so I’ve been doing a lot, getting stuff done and as a result it’s been a good listing month with another 7 things off the list…

Being back on the bookclub train I finally finished my 7th book for the year (no. 25 completed: 06/10)… I have really enjoyed reading some more… here’s the first 7 books I read… hopefully I can still fit a few more in before the end of the year:

  • The Library Book, Susan Orlean
  • The Clockmaker’s Daughter, Kate Morton
  • Rivers of London, Ben Aaronovitch
  • Fight Like a Girl,
  • The Last House Guest, Megan Miranda
  • Whisper Network, Chandler Baker
  • Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, Gail Honeyman

Just like in the mass media, the climate, the world and all the problems we are going to face unless we make some changes have been on my mind this year… well more than just this year, but it seems to be more and more as time goes on. Over the last couple of years we have been consistently making little changes, last year we finally got a compost bin, we recycled some old VHS taps and CDs and got more deliberate about creating less waste… this year we have continued all of these changes but there is always more to do right… so one of the things we have started doing this year is living without tea bags at home. I love tea and I have lots of loose leaf tea at home, but because tea bags are so convenient I never used any of it, unless I felt like being a bit fancy… I thought I was doing the right thing too because I was even composting my tea bags… but I learnt that not all tea bags are compostable and in my tea of choice the tea bags still contain plastic… so rather than just start throwing them out I decided that it was time to swap to loose leaf. It took a little while to adjust, but I feel like we have adapted… it takes a little more time, it’s a tiny bit more fiddly, but the tea is still delicious, no. 90 is off the list and there is no longer accidentally plastic in my compost bin (completed: 17/10).

Dave and I also got to hang out with one of our best buds Brad and we played phase 10 for the first time in years… just because it was on the list, and it was just like it was years and years ago, the competition was fierce and Dave was cheating, but that was no. 75 (completed 19/10).

To round out the month of October, Isaac and I went on a brunch date (no. 66, completed: 31/10) and it was excellent… I really like these little dates we have… he is such a sweet little dude and his love for baby chinos is real! At our little date he got to try dippy eggs for the first time… he loved them…. there may still be hope for number 93 on the list… so watch this space.

Oh and… as I mentioned in the Autumn update, there is a large Star Trek hole in my life… my brother recommended that I try and fill it with Doctor Who and so I added no. 34 to the list (completed: 26/10)… look I’m not in love with it yet… and maybe I just need to give it more time, but I am 5 episodes in and it’s just not the same…

Ok so now we are in November… two months to go and a heck of a lot of items still on the list…

List Update Part 3… The Winter Edition

Ok, so this is where things usually slow down a little… but I feel like having ‘cross two things off every month’ on the list itself, as really helped keep it in the forefront of my mind… so unlike most years this winter we have continued to power through the list…


In June we were able to cross 3 things off the list. With a long weekend and the school holidays starting in June we got the perfect opportunity to cross some things off the list. We had our weekend away down at the beach house (no. 6 completed 10/06) as well as a few extra days down there at the end of the month. During our second trip I finally got of my bike for the first time in years which meant we could cross no. 82, Go on a Family Bike ride off the list (completed 27/06). For Christmas last year Isaac was given a fancy bike seat which we finally got to use, and it was super cute. He loves being on the bike with Dave. I have a love hate relationship with cycling. It’s something that I wish I was good at, because I loved riding as a child, but as an adult… not so much… I have tried different seats and different set ups and part of me is convinced that it’s my bike… but that sounds like an excuse. All I know is when we rode around Rottnest Island a few weeks later my experience was much much better, the riding bit was fun… the sore butt for days after not so much, but I rode without too much hassle… so it must be my bike right?

Oh and I finally got another haircut (no. 70 completed 18/06) and it was good… the cut the colour, it was nice to have fresh hair… I should book in another hair cut.


July was about baking and home life… I attempted to cook some banana bread with Isaac for Dave’s birthday as a fun toddler activity…. he did not enjoy sharing the bananas with the cake mix… so it was not as successful as I had hoped but the banana bread turned out pretty good despite the addition of tears (no. 95 completed 18/07). I also baked some meringues (no. 28 completed 31/07) for Isaac’s 2nd birthday party and they were delicious… I LOVE meringues… and I am not sure why I don’t make them more often…. they are always a good choice.

Isaac and I watched frozen together, his first full Disney movie… not our first attempt, but the first one he actually sat through… it’s amazing what being allowed to stay up because you have been refusing to sleep and your parents have finally given in can do… well buddy this was more of a win win than you will ever know. Not only did it cross no. 1 off the list, but it I also loved it (completed 13/07).

The last things I crossed off list this month was no. 13 let things heal. I am a picker which means I don’t leave things alone and they take a long time to heal… if I just left things alone they would be gone in days… but no… I make them stay… but not this year… I have been letting things heal… (completed 14/07)

In total we crossed another 4 things off the list… its been a good listing year so far.


We finished our winter listing efforts strongly with another 4 things crossed of the list. Just in time for Isaac’s birthday party I crossed no. 52 off the list updating some of the pictures on our photo wall (completed 01/08). The photo wall has been such a fun was to help Isaac learn about our big blended family nand it’s a nice and constant reminder of our support network, both near and far.

Also for Isaac’s birthday party I purchased a new jumper, and it was bright green… not a colour I would usually wear. Being a Melbournian, my colours of choice are dark at best and mostly black… so bright green felt outrageous at the time, but it fit the dinosaur theme and it turns out I love it… this combined with my new fun earring collection… I’m no longer wearing just coloured earrings, but rotating through a supply of fun Australian bird earrings… the bird thing is getting serious… well and truly crosses no. 39 ‘buy an item of clothing that you really love but isn’t like anything you would usually wear’ off the list (completed 02/08). I am not sure if I am just morphing into my dad and express his love of bright colours in bright earrings, or if I am just getting more comfortable with who I am and what I look like and caring less about others opinions… but I am really enjoying expressing a little more of my personality in what I wear… it’s fun and even if no one else likes them, it brings me joy each time I remember, or catch a glimpse of what I am wearing… it’s a much nicer way to live than constantly pulling and primping and worrying about things.

August was also a month of trying new things… well kind of… I am sure I have tried more than 3 different restaurants this year, but I remembered it was on my list in August, which just so happened to coincide with a dinner with besties, so I took the opportunity to cross no 38 try 3 new restaurants off (completed 09/08). We also visited our third new playground this month so no. 42 was also crossed off the list (completed 17/08). Playground hunting has become a fun past time this year, Isaac loves being outside and he loves the park, so finding a good park is always a win… Of the ones we tried for the list two of the parks were brand new and only recently opened which made it even more exciting for all of us.

So there you go… that was winter… not a bad effort really for the colder months… 11 things crossed off the list… there is still a lot left though, so spring could be huge!

Unplugged for the Week

The week before week I turned off my social media accounts, just for the week… no posting and no scrolling just for 7 days… and to be honest when I popped it on the list at no.55, I thought it would be a breeze…. And then when I made the decision that now was the time, it suddenly felt much more challenging, but I was not expecting it to be as challenging as it has been. So to pass the time and to put some words to my feelings I decided to start writing this blog on day two… and because I love any excuse to do them, I thought I could format it as a captains log to help me through… all because day one was much harder than I expected.

Captains Log – Day 1

Date: Sunday 20.10.19
Today’s forecast: Partly cloudy. Maximum of 16
Sunrise: 6:29am Sunset: 7:42pm

Fun fact about my life that I have never noticed… checking social media is one of the first things I do in the morning… before I get out of bed, before I have breakfast… before I do anything else… but not this morning… I did check my TimeHop because even though that’s linked to my social media platforms it’s just my life… so I don’t think it counts… Not checking it actually threw my morning off… and I very quickly started to realise how much I pick up my phone and habitually check my social media accounts… it’s a lot! In fact thanks to my screen time app I can tell you I picked up my phone 157 times… and while I didn’t open my social media (because I had deleted the apps) I can assure that I went to… maybe 100 of those times. I am not sure why the need to check it is so strong… I don’t post that much, but I do love to scroll… even as I went to bed tonight I felt the need to almost check 1 more time… let’s hope it’s just withdrawal and that it will get easier.

Captains Log – Day 2

Date: Monday 21.10.19
Today’s forecast: Warmer with decreasing clouds. Maximum of 22
Sunrise: 6:28am Sunset: 7:43pm

I am 100% sure that no one has even noticed my absence on Social media… because that’s they way it works right… you get so consumed by what is there, you rarely notice what is missing… and I know that in reality I am probably missing nothing, other than getting jealous of the highlight reels of everyone else’s lives… but I just want to know… I really really want to know… but I have stayed strong… I have not checked… I can get through this… I can break this habit… I can be in control

Captains Log – Day 3

Date: Tuesday 22.10.19
Today’s forecast: Increasing sunshine. Maximum of 20
Sunrise: 6:26am Sunset: 7:44pm

Good news, this morning I thought about social media, but didn’t try to open it before I remembered, this is what they call progress… in fact I got through most of the day without too much hassle… I was reminded that I missed some things when I got to school and someone told me about something they had posted and then again at lunch when I was told I had been invited to an event… but I wasn’t super phased by it, in fact it wasn’t until I got home that I started to miss it again… I took some photos that I probably would have posted, some new material for my highlight reel:

  • I hit a new mum milestone, I carried Isaac’s trike down to child care so he could ride it home… it was a LONG walk home, but it was a fun milestone moment that I usually would have posted.
  • We used our new oven for the first time and cooked and epic roast dinner… definitely post worthy and the one that made me think the most…
  • I finished writing a blog and it was ready to post… but I didn’t want to post it and not see what happened…

I realised that for a lot of this the validation that I get from comments and likes probably means more to me than I realised. Before this week, I think I had considered myself immune to this for some reason… I just thought I was that in to it… I mean I have no current plans of social media domination, but… it turns out I am just as vulnerable to needing to be liked online as the next person… I think this is going to be good for me… even if it just makes me more aware.

I also can’t decided if strava counts as social media… I have still been using it because it isn’t something that pops into my mind when I think about social media… but it is social and you do get ‘kudos’ for exercising from those who follow you… it’s not quite the same, but it’s probably not far off… but I am not ready to forego my exercise stats.

Captains Log – Day 4

Date: Wednesday 23.10.19
Today’s forecast: Sunny. Maximum of 27
Sunrise: 6:25am Sunset: 7:45pm

Ok… just as a side note… you may already know this, but I have learnt that each day the sunrise just gets earlier by a minute… and two at maximum and the sunset gets later by the same… I mean it makes sense… but I had just never noticed it before…

Captains Log – Day 5

Date: Thursday 24.10.19
Today’s forecast: Sunny. Maximum of 34
Sunrise: 6:24am Sunset: 7:46pm

There are photos of Isaac and I on Facebook… we went to a party… I know they are there but I can’t see them… I have to wait… I can wait… but I know they are there.

Captains Log – Day 7

Date: Saturday 26.10.19
Today’s forecast: Windy with showers. Maximum of 16
Sunrise: 6:21am Sunset: 7:48pm

Good news, I’ve almost made it, the end of my 7 days is in sight… and the even better news is that the last few days have come and gone without too much longing… so much so that I didn’t even bother to write a log to distract myself.

To be honest though I am not sure if it got easier because I was learning to live without it or because I had made it half way so I knew I wouldn’t have to wait much longer.

Doing this just for my list has been good for me. I’ve always envied those who live social media free, I think in many ways it’s quite liberating. I have started to pick my phone up less… but only a little… and I would like to think I have been a bit more present in my own life… I have however missed a few things, nothing life and death, but there have been events and messages that I have missed… I have also felt less connected… I think being able to see people’s lives in little snapshots gives you a false sense of community and insight. You feel like you know how someone is going and what is happening in their lives without having to actually communicate with them… which is wonderful for lazy friendships, but not so great if that’s what you’ve been relying on… it’s made me realise that I need to reach out and not just like things on Facebook… and that while, if I’m really honest, my bad social habits will probably return as soon I a re-download the apps… I am hoping that I might be a little bit more aware of what I am actually using it for… and if my connections are more than just 0’s and 1s.

This has been a much greater challenge than I anticipated, but I am glad I have done it… now I just have to work out what to do with my new insight so that it’s helpful and not a waste.