Jump in for a chat and a March update

Welcome!

Feel free to grab a drink, take a seat and join me for a virtual cuppa.

When jumping into a new month feels like jumping into a whole new world

The world has changed so much in just a month, hasn’t it?

In the beginning of the pandemic, I panicked because I had read too many dystopian/apocalyptic books and they had influenced my thinking of what lay ahead, as well as the fact I didn’t know how to grow tomatoes – what the???

I actually sent my sister this message on our road trip home from Queensland to NSW – just days after we left, the borders between the states were closed.

I feel like I’ve read too many futuristic books as I get the feeling we’re fleeing the virus before the borders are shut or everyone is placed in lockdown! Will the highway be littered with broken down cars?? Otherwise I just have an overactive imagination.

My sister’s response: I think you’ve read WAY TOO many dystopian books!

I think I was struggling with the reality and am happy to say that now I’m back home I’m feeling a lot calmer.

Some of the lovely things that have come out of this weird time is we now know who the real heroes are. Just as the many volunteers fighting the bushfires here in January were seen as heroes, keeping us safe, now it’s doctors, nurses, teachers, checkout operators, grocery shop workers, drivers delivering supplies, artists, writers, performers, scientists and the list goes on…I can’t help but note that some of these people aren’t paid nearly as much as sportspeople…

Everyday I like to check in with actor Sam Neill on Instagram, just to hear him say in his deeply melodious tones, how are you? Listen to him here and tell me your day isn’t better for hearing this:

How are you?

Sam Neill – Hello how are you?

Jump – WOTY

As you may know, I have chosen Jump as my WOTY (Word of the Year), so most of my monthly updates will contain the word jump somewhere! And I also try to show a jump pic for the month that was!

You can read more about my reasons and ideas for 2020 in my post Jumping into the New Year.

My March Jumping for Joy moment

Jumping on the rail trail
Jumping on the newly opened rail trail

Jumping in with the Family

During March we were lucky to see many of our family before coming home and social distancing came into effect. It’s hard to know when we will see everyone again.

We saw my daughter, son-in-law and their new baby; my mother; my nephew and some of his family; my sister-in-law; my daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter in Canberra; and my mother-in-law. Now we get to see everyone via a screen but it’s better than nothing! I’m glad we managed to see everyone during the month and we made some lovely memories in the process.

My daughters, two in Australia and one in England, have decided to have regular scheduled video chats at a time that suits us all. It’s lovely to have the girls ‘together’ with their babies all on the one screen – it makes my heart sing!

Blog jumping

I’ve had a huge month blogging, celebrating 8 years of my blog, guesting over at Sue’s blog and writing a few more guest post that are coming out shortly.

I actually met up with Sue again in early March while in Brisbane and it was fabulous to catch up, we talked non-stop for hours!

In these troubled times writing about and recording our thoughts can be a way for us to stay mentally healthy. This proved to be the case when I wrote a poem about feeling like I was living in a cocoon. The words were swirling around in my head when I woke up one morning so I let them out and I felt much better for it!

Jumping at home – what’s been happening?

Jumping into the winter woolies as the weather started turning a bit cooler in late March.

Jumping into my sunroom to enjoy the autumn colours in the garden.

Jumping into new ways of connecting with family and friends – zoom, Facetime, phone calls, messaging, screen time is on the rise so my phone tells me!

Jumping into daily exercise sessions with my mother, my sister and other random family members via zoom.

Jumping into regular Saturday morning coffee catchups with friends via zoom meetings. #stayathome

Jumping into social distancing at home!

Jumping back in time – on a recent video chat my mother and sister told me that my hair looked similar to how it did in a family photo back when I was 16. I went and dug the photo out and here’s the comparison. What do you think? These two photos are taken 44 years apart so obviously there are some changes going on!

Debbie photos 44 years apart
Debbie photos 44 years apart

It’s official by the way, I’m officially growing my hair now after having hairdressers shut for the next little while. Goodness knows how this will all end! Are you in a similar position?

Jumping to distractions

Reading – I have read A LOT of books during the month! Many of them have been easy, fast paced and pure escapism!

Watching – Feel good shows like Anne with an E on Netflix – I call it comfort watching. Nothing too thought provoking or scary like too much news!

Making – Cooking cakes, muffins, hearty meals – more for comfort than because I need food!

Listening – to music and the odd podcast! I’ve learnt how to play Spotify through my TV sound system and it makes the whole house come alive.

Doing – Staying at home.

Jumping on the rail trail

Rail trail enthusiast
Rail trail enthusiast – me playing my part on the opening video!

The Mathematician and I have been part of a team of volunteers working for many years, some have been involved for 18 years, to bring to fruition the Tumbarumba to Rosewood Rail Trail. The recent months have seen a small group working on the official opening and then with COVID-19 all our huge celebrations had to be changed. So within a few hectic days we worked hard with professionals and put together the very first ‘virtual opening’ of a rail trail – maybe the first of its type in the world. I was one of those in the opening video!

Wow, with the opening now done, it’s a huge load off my mind, and I can use that time riding the amazing rail trail!

Jumping to rejection

A few months ago, after my granddaughter was born in England at 25 weeks gestation, I wrote her a story, Dottie and the Wombat. I shared it here on my blog and in a recent post 12 things to do before turning 60, I mentioned I’d like to have it published. To that end I sent it off to three different agencies, after researching my choices. During March I received my first ever rejection letter (email), and you know what, I wasn’t that heartbroken. I’d done my best and given it a try. There are still 2 more chances of it getting picked up but even if it doesn’t I’m happy with my efforts.

So, how was your March?

Let me know how you are coping with the pandemic in your neck of the woods.

I know it happened in April but…I was asked to be part of a series on Sue’s blog, Travel Tales of Life about how COVID-19 is impacting life in Tumbarumba – in the first post in the series Sue has guests from Thailand, Spain, Mexico and Tumbarumba! I was thrilled to share news of our little town amongst those bigger places 🙂

Let’s hope April is a better month around the world. Take care and stay well everyone. Thanks for the cuppa and the chat 🙂

Deb xx

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Jump in for a chat and a February update

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Bio: Debbie is an award winning blogger and lives in a small town in NSW Australia. Married for 40 years, with three grown up daughters, Debbie and her husband are avid travellers, cyclists and adventurers. Described by others as a ‘hummingbird on speed’ this active mother and grandmother has also received a bravery award from the Queen.

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28 Replies to “Jump in for a chat and a March update”

  1. Deb I love it! All of it! Your share brightened my day and I’m already the type that stays pretty up and level. Your share of the Instagram fellow was a bonus. Lol

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Deb, I’m so glad we were able to meet up in Brisbane before the isolation restrictions came into force. It was meant to be! Your WOTY always makes me feel upbeat and wanting to JUMP up and down myself LOL:) I know that March, April and possibly May will be difficult but at least we have technology to stay in touch with family and friends. Thanks for sharing at #MLSTL, Deb xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes indeed, where would we be without technology at the moment Sue?? I am loving the contact with my family and friends. The next few months may be hard but I’ll try to keep jumping around! Thanks for sharing and for your kind words. xx

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  3. Going to try to repost your comment about writing, because I will never remember it all: “This proved to be the case when I wrote a poem about feeling like I was living in a cocoon. The words were swirling around in my head when I woke up one morning so I let them out and I felt much better for it!” I don’t know how to make italics of this or underline anything, but I loved your description about words swirling around in your head…and letting them out…” such a wonderful description of part of the process of writing. I keep a notepad by my bed, but mostly use it for the list of things I need to do. I recently wrote a couple of paragraphs that I loved for a story I had in process. Thought they were on my laptop but they are gone with the wind. Letting those swirling words out is a good thing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Michele! I’m glad you can relate to words swirling around and letting them out! It’s a great idea to have a notebook next to the bed, I haven’t done that in a long time but I can see the benefits! Take care x

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  4. Just the name ‘rejection letter’ makes me sad!! I appreciate your good outlook. You wrote the book for your darling grand and it wasn’t necessarily your intention to become a famous children’s author. Who knows, maybe one of the other publishers with whom you’ve shared will realize what a jewel your wombat story is.

    Looks like March was a month of jumping in and out of all kinds of things. Congratulations on the opening of the rail trail you have worked so long and hard on. Maybe in the spring, you can have a grand reopening day celebration.

    You look so very much the same now as you did as a teen. You are very spunky and spirited, it seems, now and then. Your smile lights up your face. I am sure you have always had a world of friends.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Leslie, you always make me smile with your comments, thank you so much. Yes we are planning a grand opening of the rail trail in spring hoping all this virus is over by then!
      That’s a lovely thing to say about my photos – I was called ‘spunky’ back then so it made me smile to hear it again. I do love to smile and think of it as one of my best features and I’m definitely smiling now :). Thank you my friend xx

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  5. Lovely post Deb. I always enjoy hearing what you’re up to. I’ve been reading a lot too this month, more than usual. I have to admit I hadn’t known of Sam Neil’s page until now. He’s amazing and I’m now following him. Congrats on the opening of the Tumba rail trail. When this crazy time eventually passes we’ll have to get up that way again. Take care my friend. Hope you and the family are all well. xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Miriam and I’m pleased to introduce you to Sam Neill on Insta!! The rail trail is a boon for us locals at the moment as we can get out and exercise to our hearts content! I look forward to you coming up for a visit after all this is over 🙂 Take care xx

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi Deb – I laughed at your young self hair do – mine will be looking like 17 yr old me’s hair before I get to a hairdresser again – back to long and straight! Next is to do my own dye job (looks like foils will be a distant memory!)
    You still seem to have had a lot happening despite the lockdown and you are definitely finding plenty to fill your time. I’m finding my life isn’t all that different to what it was (except for WA being divided into zones we’re not allowed to cross, so no meet-ups with the kids or grandgirls in the foreseeable future).
    All in all, I think we have it pretty easy in comparison to those who are chronically sick, poor, or depressed and anxious. I’m grateful every day that retirement has given me a head start in “how to entertain yourself 101” and I’m content chilling out at home with an occasional exciting excursion to the shops to get groceries! On that note, have you seen the FB group for people who are dressing up in costumes to put their bins out? I love the fun and ingenuity that helps conquer bleak times.
    Thanks for linking up with us at MLSTL and I’ve shared on my SM 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Leanne, yes a lot has been going on despite the pandemic happening around us. We are doing the right thing and keeping our distance in all that we do. I agree it is different for many others and I feel everyone who has lost work, family members and are suffering in any way at all. Anxiety levels are high in many people and from time to time I also get a bit overwhelmed.

      Thanks for the comment about my photos, I’m sure it was kind laughter.

      Yes I just saw tonight the taking out the bin groups, so funny! Unfortunately we live too far out of town for a bin collection so I can’t join in! Technology is definitely our friend at the moment. Stay well and thanks for sharing.

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  7. Hello Deb! It’s always nice to hear what you’ve been up to. It’s amazing how similar you look to the 16-year-old Debbie, especially the haircut! How lovely that you are having a regular family video meet-up. Thank goodness for internet! One of my daughters and her family came over on Sunday, and we sat in folding chairs in the yard, six feet apart, and just talked. It was wonderful! Again, congratulations on the opening of the rail trail. Take care and stay safe! #MLSTL

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thanks Christie for your lovely comment, especially about my comparison photos! I am so thankful for the internet and the connections we can make with friends and family. Your family ‘get-together’ sounds like many that are happening here, where possible. I can imagine how good it felt. Thanks for your congrats for the opening of our rail trail, it’s been a huge amount of effort by lots of people and it is getting used by many locals until visitors can come here.

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  8. Deb, Glad to hear you had some lovely family time before the lock down and accomplished a lot in March. Congrats on the opening of the rail trail! I’m sure after the pandemic is over, a lot of people will use it. I read and left a comment on Sue’s TToL blog yesterday I think. Thanks for sharing your experience with the other three bloggers in that post. #MLSTL

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Natalie, the rail trail will be very popular after the pandemic is over. Locals are enjoying it already. I saw your comment on Sue’s blog and appreciate the joining of our worlds this way.

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  9. Aaaah rejection, I know it well…it pretty much just means “not for us” but it’s still tough. Sam Neil makes my day – as does the dude who’s climbing his household stairs to Everest. Congratulations on the rail trail.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Lovely update on how you continue to Jump! I too am reading “escape books” – love that term. And making/eating some comfort foods. And learning how to zoom. They’ve already said in our state that we’re in Shelter in Place (our local term for lock-down) till May 1. So I’m trying to figure out new routines since most of my usual to-do things are gone.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Enjoyed jumping into your blog, always cheerful and raises a smile. I saw Sam Neil singing on FB – I think it was a Radiohead song (!) so I started following him. Big fan of his.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I love the word “jump” for your word of the year. How original! I think we are all getting used to the “new normal”. Being at home seems like it will never end, just go on forever.

    Keep on “jumping” on the rail trail as long as you can. At least we can get outside to get some exercise! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Lovely thoughts and reflections! That’s true about our reading lives invading our real life concerns and fears! For me, I thought about all the WW11 stories and people standing in line for a scrap of bread and being cold! Being confined to home with all our utilities, WiFi, and delivery services isn’t too bad after all! I baked a cake today….doing my part to gain the predicted covid 19 lbs! 😂 Cheers to the real heros on the front lines! We have some in our family. 2 doctors, 1 nurse, and 2 psychologists (1 at the prison).Take care!

    Liked by 1 person

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