Sunday, May 22, 2011

Committing.

For obvious reasons I've been thinking about life and death a lot over the past few weeks. More specifically, I've been thinking a lot about the decisions and plans people make when they think they are going to die, or when they get a second chance at life. Plans to jump out of planes, to travel to far away places and to follow dreams and loves.

It's got me thinking about how I want to live my life and that I don't want to wait for something catastrophic to happen before I realise my dreams and live my life to the fullest.

So what do I really want to do?

I really want to go on this caravan adventure we've been planning. I really want to commit to going. To get excited and make plans and let go of the guilt and fear that's holding me back.

Yep, I feel guilty.

Why do we deserve to take off on a four to six month holiday?

We're just coming out of the worst organic farming season we've experienced since we've been here. We've only been doing the Daylesford Organics thing for 10 years. People wait their entire working lives to take such a trip. And we're leaving the farmer boys behind to work on our property while we go on holidays...

And I'm scared.

How am I ever going to get this house organised and clean enough to leave it to another family? What if our itinerary is too ambitious? What if my children drive me crazy? What if I run out of yarn? What if someone gets a cough or snores and I never get to sleep? What if it rains and rains and we are stuck in the caravan for days? What if something bad happens at home? What if Indi and Jazzy fall too far behind at school and have troubles next year...

Ok, now I've written it all down I'm leaving it here and moving on. From now on I'm going to be enthusiastic and excited. Tomorrow I'll write a to-do list and over the next 40ish days I'm going to work through it.

I am really going to try not going to coast through my life any more and I certainly don't want to wait until something bad happens to live my life to the fullest.

I know for sure that if I were to write a list here of all the positives of our travel plans, I could fill four blog posts.

So let the adventures begin!

Have a fabulous week y'all.

PS. The top two pics are of the vintage sheet pillow case I made my Dad. I'm about to retire to the couch to crochet the edge of Farmer Bren's which is the same.
The third pic is of our heart shaped Melbourne afternoon waiting for our la'heart'tes and h'eart' chocolates with my folks in the city this afternoon.

47 comments:

  1. Love the pillowcases so much.. and the imagery they represent in the photos re stepping out bravely and leaving 'safe' behind for a while (ie bright florals on white background..)
    Love your Dad's oval shaped hand heart!!

    Very cool..

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  2. What beautiful pictures, great to see your dad up and about, love that pillow case too. They are all valid concerns, but it's a once in a life time chance that your family will remember always...go for it and I'm sure your farm will be in good hands! X

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  3. Why shouldn't you desrve it? You & your family are so lucky to have this opprtunity! Grab it with both hands & don't worry about a thing! Yeah, your kids will probably drive youcrazy some days - but they'd do that at home too, your girls could stil fall behind staying put! Something bad/bad-ish can always happen, but good & great things can happen too! Think of all the memories you will be creating as a family. Yo'e lucky - go & enjoy! xx

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  4. I have been thinking of you and your family and haven't been able to express them here. I think that those concerns would be normal for any business owner and mother and you should have them. It doesn't mean the fear of them should stop you from fulfilling your dreams. 6 months is no time at all. How quick has the fist 6 months of this year gone! Savour every moment of it!

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  5. Go for it Kate! You totally deserve an adventure and you will all love it. I'm with you 100% on not waiting until life is threatened before we live it to its fullest. Live it now.
    That's actually one of the many, many reasons I love visiting here - you always ARE living so fully, and deeply. Can't wait to see your cutest-ever caravan on the road and hear about all of the magical adventures you'll have.
    Big hugs to you and your family, you've had an intense couple of weeks.
    xoxo

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  6. That pillowcase is exquisite!
    Gosh, I can imagine all the thoughts running through your head... and I can relate (I worry, and feel guilty about, much smaller things a lot of the time) - but for what it's worth, I think it's not about "deserving" this time (though I think you do!), but about knowing that this is the right time for you... that having an adventure is the best learning experience I can think of... and that even if / when you do encounter challenges along the way, you will find a creative way to address them.
    Wishing you all the best as you work through your to-do list...
    xo

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  7. As you know I am totally in love with your pillowcases - beautiful.
    Love the photo with your family ... so very very sweet.

    I am really looking forward to reading all of your upcoming posts full of excitement about your caravan holiday - you may feel a little funny about it all but I have no doubt that it will be such a wonderful, fun, learning, full of laughter and tears experience that you will wonder why you ever doubted going!!

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  8. What do you mean only? "only" for 10 years! Guilt: I think when we try to work out the philosophy behind deserving and undeserving it is never black and white. You could go on this holiday. You could not go. Which would you regret more?

    Ps your mum always looks really good!!

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  9. I wasnt going to write this but i will: I am watching two friends die of cancer now, it is heart breaking in so mzny ways, two women, two mothers. it is obvious to all of us that the most important thing you can do in your life is be nice. Be kind. To family and friends. To love and to give. You do all of those things Kate , you did before your dad got sick and you always will. Xxxxxxx

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  10. Its this bit, the before bit - thats scary. The doing will not be though, it'll be such an adventure. Just get through this bit of the natural worrying about all the seemingly little things that could happen. They probably won't!XXX

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  11. So many great comments. Is that your Dad up and about? If so, that's a good enough reason to see that you should just 'do'. Don't feel guilty. Just 'live' because that's what makes a wonderful life. There's nothing worse than regretting what you didn't do when you had the chance.

    I'd start wheeling out the van, man! And maybe you'll inspire the rest of us to do what we all dream about, but for which we make excuses not to do.

    Glad to see your Dad.

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  12. Good for you. Don't be scared - it's just a trip! Really! And you do deserve it. It's the perfect time for you all to go on one.

    And if you are ever up Canberra way you are always welcome to pop in for a cuppa!

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  13. Lovely to see your dad out and about with you all :)

    My dear Kate, you know that there are only 2 answers to all those questions and concerns...

    the first is: "make sure that you go through a major town every now and then and you will never run out of yarn".

    The second is: "yeah,...and so what?" You know after the past few weeks that life is precious and even if every one of those things happen, your life will go on, your family will be together and you will come out the other side. You might be wet and grumpy, your house sitters might have to clean the loo that you forgot to clean the day you left and you may have to help the kids with extra homework when you get back but pffft! You can cope with all of it and it will be great.

    So sit back and get excited, woman!

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  14. Just go for it...my dear hubby went on a similar caravan trip when he was young with his family and it was the best time of his life. His mum home schooled them amongst beaches, forests and he learnt so much. She didnt really follow a guide or anything just taught them "life" she says.

    I envy you your trip and hope to do something similar with my little boy when he's a bit bigger.

    PS They went back to school and were ahead of their class.

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  15. Pretty sure if you spoke to anyone who has done this, business, farm, children & all of the responsibilities you have, said it was the best thing they ever did!! I love it, brilliant idea. I can only imagine teachers encouraging it, the experience you'll children have & like you, on the verge of 3 teenage girls, it will bring you closer than ever & create so many wonderful memories to draw on when they feel you/ the world is against them. Do it!! Love Posie

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  16. You all deserve to go and enjoy exploring together, to spend lots of fun times together and have the time of your lives together. Life is there to be enjoyed, don't feel guilty.

    Your pillowcases are just beautiful, I love the colours and the blue edging. I really want one for myself now:)

    Have a fantastic week. xo

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  17. grab the opportunity girlie and have an awesome time with your farmer boy and three gorgeous girlies! Do you deserve it? probably not more than anyone else, but be brave and embrace it. The opportunity is there, go for it. It will be an adventure you will always remember for the rest of your lives and if it cost the older two just a little longer at school, at the end of it all, it will be an experience that has enhanced not hindered their lives. I can't delude you and tell you there are yarn shops everywhere..... but there is always online and you have enough friends in blogland to feed your needs!!! Just promise to post enroute.....

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  18. ahh, Kate. I have so much to say, love to chat over a l'heart'e, one day and natter! I hope that now you've committed it will all sit well in your heart. It is a radical luxury, but it's possible because of choices you have made, and do make. Re: the guilt- other people make different choices and so don't get to do this, still others don't get a choice- but that doesn't mean you shouldn't. You choose your people, and I salute that. It's a brave trip and I am sure it will go down in family folklore. Our friends did a similar thing when their 3 boys were a little bit older and it was the best thing for them. It will take a bit of working out the together/ space thing (well, it would if I were going!), but 'it's all good'...I wish you guys such love and goodness!

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  19. Hi, Just wanted to add that my parents took myself and both my sisters out of school and we travelled through most of Australia. It was a huge thing to take leave from work and let someone move into our house, mind our dog and just take off. My Dad kept a travel journal and it is amazing to see how quickly we all adjusted. We were 7, 5 and 4 years old. I was 5 and I remember most of it. It was the most magic time of my childhood and we all still have family slide nights to re-live that magical time. I now have a 4 year old and we did a practice run for 6 weeks last year when she was 3. She still talks about it and it changed us in ways I cant articulate. I did wait for a life threatening illness to have the courage to take off with my daughter and now I cant wait to do it again....we are off again in october. So, now youve articulated your fear....let it go, let it flow and enjoy floating on that stream as a family and witnessing the amazingness it will bring ..FOR SURE! Go well, Lisa

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  20. Firstly, I just found your site...so I've just read through quite a few of your past posts....your dad is so wonderful...what a dear human being...the picture of him is just the best..my dad had a terrible stroke when he was only 65...he was left with very little speech..no use of his right hand and many other difficulties....he lived for 17years....his hard work and our help gave him back a new and different life...my point here is for the rest of his life..in his few words he said to us and to everyone..." Don't wait !!!! Do it now!!!". Something might happen that leaves you with no choice as it did him...go on the trip!!! it will be the adventure of your life and you will never forget it!!!!

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  21. You deserve the holiday Kate, of course you do. I'm glad you've dumped that guilt - we all owe it to ourselves to live life fully, don't we? (Thanks for the reminder). Great to see your dad out on the town.

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  22. Sounds like fun and living your life to me, happy planning! Don't save anything for a special occasion, being alive is the special occasion. x x

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  23. Beautiful pics Kate, love the pillowcases!
    Wow, 40 days until your big adventure, I am so excited for you.
    Fear and doubt it totally normal, so don't beat yourself up. Now you've made the decision to roll with it, just enjoy it as it comes. You'll probably find all the things you were anxious over, will never eventuate :o)

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  24. dear kate, i'm short cause typing with the cat on my lap is a pain.but yes, yes, yes! dont wait!!!

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  25. Your pillows are just so beautiful!
    And from the short time I have been reading your blog it appears you have a great outlook on life.

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  26. I say go for it! Nothing ventured nothing gained as they say. You will never know unless you go. I am sure everything will work out fine and if anything does go wrong its all part of the experience. You will look back on it one day and laugh.

    Oh and I love your pillowcase!

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  27. Aww Kate- the unknown is always a bit scarey! You've identified them and now you can celebrate when each one DOESN'T happen (because you are prepared) and your trip will be even sweeter! Lovely pillow cases! Yes, don't wait until something catastrophic happens to follow your dreams. Happy planning (BTW, I am sure you can refill the yarn stash enroute should the unspeakable happens!) xxx

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  28. Kate there are many wonderful adventures that await you and your family and memories that you will hold for a lifetime.
    I would do a trip like this is a heartbeat given half the chance :)
    xx

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  29. Life traumas always make me think of those things too Kate. I guess it makes us realise to live our lives to the fullest everyday so that is what your doing by going on your caravan trip. I am sure your family will have lots of memories which you will treasure for the rest of your lives. Your last photo is lovely and your dad is looking very well!

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  30. Well quite frankly I can't think of anyone who "deserves" a holiday more! seriously.
    but you know I can totally relate to all the "what ifs" and worrys that are going through your mind, I would be exactly the same, and am exactly the same to my own things. because well you know we are quite similar on this issue.
    I love and am inspired by your own new commitment to think postive and to the fullest.
    and sure there will be unexpected bumps and trials along the way, but there will also be amazing, exciting, unplanned times along the way
    xo

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  31. As everyone else has basically said - take the opportunity while it's there! Six months is not long and even if something does go wrong, you really won't be that far away. Yes, Australia is a big country but you can always turn around and come home if you must. Better to have to cut things short than to not go at all out of fear of 'what if ...'. And once you're on the road, the what ifs will fade away anyway. As for the girls' schooling, there's a very good chance that they'll be just fine, in fact probably better than fine. We went to Fraser Island for six weeks when I was in Grade 2 and mum made sure I did an hour or two of work most days to stay on top of things. Among other things, my reading level went up more in that 6 weeks than it had in the 6 months+ of school I'd had already that year!

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  32. I'm really handy when things go awol, so all you have to do is take me along. simple. problem solved I say.

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  33. What if... it all works out just fine :) I'm living in a house of what iffers at the moment too.

    (just adding my wording verification is 'flistin' ooh that sounds like I'm feeling today, I'm just flistin along. See I can use it in a sentence so it's a real word.)

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  34. Kate that pillow case just brings a smile to my face! So glad your dad is on the road to recovery. I know committing to anything, let alone an extended holiday is scary - but that my friend is life and you can only live it once :) enjoy the ride.

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  35. You´re so brave!!! I wish you the best of luck on your journey....both the caravan one and also your inner spiritual journey:)

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  36. Love the pillow case too. Your girls will learn so much more on their trip than they probably would in the class room in that time. Who knows, may all go soooo well, you could be away for 2 years!

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  37. I think it sound like a great idea, but I also get why you worry.

    when I was 3 and 5 we each time, lived for a year in Thailand because of my dads work. The whole family moved there in those periods.

    And it was definitely not a loss, but quite a lot of gain. Good memories with the family, both my brother and I had no problem keeping up with school (my mother taught us a bit every day), huge experience, and self development. I believe i am bigger for it today.

    I too am experimenting with the whole committing to life, and actually enjoy it:)

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  38. Sometimes the hardest thing is just saying it. Well, at least it is for me. I think your fears are absolutely valid. And you are definitely worthy of your dreams. I am so excited for you all. I am sure it will be far more spectacular than you could ever even imagine.

    I'm so glad to see your Dad looking well xx

    PS Don't worry about the snoring. Seriously. We have a one room holiday house. My brothers and father could all snore for Australia. It sucks the first few nights and then you kind of get used to it. Strange.

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  39. I was not going to comment, but decided to throw this your way.
    A few other "what ifs" - what if the opportunity never comes up again; what if your family miss out on the absolutely wonderful experiences of seeing Australia and its varied lot of people; what if you have the most perfect weather for each days activities; what if you miss the BIG family togetherness adventure
    Don't overthink it, just plan it!!!

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  40. You seem to have a handle on it all now Kate. Good for you. and you know, I know all this stuff too, but find it all way too hard most of the time to follow through in the end, and just hope that I'll find my way there too, as I know you will!
    what if none of those "what ifs" happen? then you'll have missed out totally! go for it definitely!!!!

    as I haven't been around much lately I've just tracked back a bit on your posts to catch up a little and by the time I got to the end of your post about when you picked your dad up from the hospital, my eyes were dribbling. :) you are a very warm-hearted being doing only the best she can, and doing that so well. you do humble me. xoxo

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  41. Oh, Kate, just go! I promise, it will be beyond anything you can imagine. Okay?
    xx
    w

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  42. Beautiful post! Your trip will be so, so worth it. xx

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  43. My friends went around Australia for 8 months with their 11 and 13year olds and set the kids research to do prior to each area they went to. For example, if they were looking at platypus in Tassie, they wrote a little about platypus' and took photos and did their school work that way. Be brave, be strong and in the words of Nike 'just do it'. if we had to wait until we thought we deserved something, it would be way too late for anything. Have fun. It will all work out. promise. Also, it is a great way to teach your children to try new things and not be held back by fear.....

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  44. Great to see your dad with the family and love the hearts:)
    The pillow cases look great - please tell me you will have one too?
    Have to get some more plans off of you - (how far nother you want to go etc) think that we might be on the road at a similar time.
    Take it easy - have a plan and if you dont get as far dont stress - the main thing is to enjoy and spend time as a family.

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  45. Oooh I am getting excited for you....it will be such a fantastic memory making expedition. You have to enjoy the journey of getting there too though.

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  46. Lovely pillowcases! great to see your dad up and about with the family!

    Try and relax about the big trip, enjoy each moment of it and I doubt the girls will get behind on school as this is a great big adventure for them. We had 8 weeks off when I was in grade 5 as dad had a big job in Longreach - it was the best time for us kids and though it was shorter than what you are embarking on, we didnt fall behind at school. We learnt a lotof things on our trip!

    Oh and if you run out of wool, Im sure there are plenty of us crafty types on the road tha can come to your rescue ;)

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Thanks so much for stopping by...

I do read every single comment you leave and appreciate it very much, but I should let you know that I can be a wee bit on the useless side when replying to comments, that's just me, everyday life sometimes gets in the way....so I'll apologise now, just in case.

Kate XX

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