Saturday, 8 January 2011

Can I Play?

Enjoying the beach at Apollo Bay on a morning walk with the mighty Lisa earlier today. Beaches powerfully trigger the memory I reckon.

We walked on the water's edge past some energetic boys on their boogie boards and through an eternal game of cricket... beach chair for a wicket, unfolded and wedged into the sand... dad with the bat generously hitting up catches - two girls go for it and let it fall between them. Much laughter... not just the players but other families watching... Lisa and your blogger walking past. Another ball and another skied stroke... this time to the off side away from the water... mum gets under it and catches it, only to over-act a clumsy dropping of the ball. Dad survives. More laughter!

There is simple, sheer enjoyment of fun being made and shared with those around.

This blogger is transported back thirty plus years to a beach connected to this coast line a thousand miles away at Port Macquarie, NSW. Bill, the little ten year old stands sheepishly near a game so similar to this one watching the dads organise the various beach cricketers in their charge.

Tentatively I recall (with my dad's encouragement) moving up to the dad in charge.

"Can I play?"

"Of course you can mate... what's your name?"


"You're batting next Bill!"

This morning I remembered how good that welcome felt... thirty three years ago.

Feel free to share your summer memories in the space below.

Bill Jennings

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

What's Occurrin'?

Michael Grose has posted a set of 25 tips for parents whilst we're in New Years Resolution mode. Tip #9 stood out... the internal monologue went "Yep, Tick, We're getting better at that... Love that tip".

Don't be a family that's always on the go!

Really like this challenge. Fully conceded that families can be in all sorts of stress around this time of the year, and we are not perfect by any stretch, but here's what's happened in the Jennings household over the last week...

My son Jack got a grouse pressie which enabled us to bring to life, one of my daughter's favourite phrases... Just Chillin'. Jack received the full DVD set of all three Gavin & Stacey series (and the Christmas special).

So what have we done in the last week or so? Settled in and watched the lot... as a family. Just chillin' on the couches in the lounge room... as a family. Laughing, talking about what will happen next... as a family. Loving the characters... if you know Nessa (above), the hilarious best mate of Stacey, she's got a catchphrase that has entered the family lexicon, What's Occurrin'? This has now become my standard SMS/e-mail greeting to my daughter in recent days. It is actually making her laugh! There's a scoop... teenage girl laughs at her dad's (repeated) joke! How much value can we put on a bit of collective downtime?

So, hoping this post finds you in a bit of a chilled mode. And if you could be bothered, feel free to write back telling us all what's occurin'?

Bill Jennings

PS - due to the 'chillin' that's been occurrin' in the household... those 'Honourable Mentions' from amongst the 3.5 (approx) Billion Fellas on the planet are being extended through this month and into February. If you are on holidays (in the Southern Hemisphere)- enjoy!