Thursday, September 30, 2010

I don't like my jumper....

I decided to knit a vest for Goofy. She doesn't like jumpers so I thought if I made a pink one with no sleeves I would have more chance of her wearing it and of keeping her chest warm.

This was her response to the finished product...

'I don't like my jumper!'

After a impressive tantrum she did keep it on and later in the day told Mardi (her grandmother) with an element of pride in her voice that Mummy had made her a special jumper. In the midst of her cries of not liking her jumper she must have heard me try and explain that I had made the vest just for her.

As a child I remember by mother making me most of my clothes and as I got to upper primary all I wanted was clothes like everyone else. Then as I got older and had to buy my own clothes I once again enlisted Mum's help to make costumes for 21st's or skirts for weddings etc.

I now appreciate all the effort Mum went to dress us and how accommodating she was when I came home asking for a blue skirt and then one would materialise. I think I took it for granted that she would just make things for me on demand and often would ask for alterations on the things she had made rather than properly thanking her for making it in the first place.

I may not have been screaming 'i don't like this jumper' but I might have appeared just an ungrateful.

Hopefully she heard me talk about her with pride in my voice.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Today is a chocolate day...

There are some days were I have a need for chocolate. I need it to so I can take my next step. Today is one of those days. We have no blocks of dark chocolate (milk chocolate does not cut it). I am eating cooking chocolate.

JollyJumper is still waking through the night and last night she spent the majority of the night in one of our arms. I am so tired of waking up tired.

There could be so many reasons as to why she is waking that it is hard to know where to start. She has two teeth poking through her bottom gum, she is on antibiotics for a chest infection, she seems to have a bit of separation anxiety at the moment, she has just got in the habit of waking at regular times (9pm, 2am, 5am), she is hungry (she eats a lot during the day, including protein) she is too cold, she is too hot or simply she can so she does.

Daylight saving starts this weekend and we are about to go camping (sorry, in advance fellow campers, I will attempt to keep her as quiet as possible!) so in my mind I will try some new things next week. MiniMe and Goofy both figured out how to sleep through the night by themselves by 4 months so I am not sure what, if anything, I should be doing differently.

I feel so foggy that there could be a simple solution right in front of me but I just wouldn't be able to see it. Any words from the wise?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Cookies just out of the oven, hmmm, warm peanut butter cookies.
These were the simplest recipe.

1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 cup peanut butter

Bake for 10 minutes.

Looking at the ingredients you can see that they are a 'very somtimes' food but they sure do taste great and took under 15 minutes to be ready to eat. And eat I did!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Early morning thoughts...

In the early hours of this morning as JollyJumper decided she would like my company I sat on the rocking chair pondering life's big mysteries. What makes a babies bowels decide that 3am is a good time to defaecate?

JollyJumper only pooed once a week for the first 3 months of her life (great when you are using cloth nappies but not so great when there are days of discomfort beforehand). She has got better but first thought is not to check her nappy for any surprises if she is unhappy.

This lead me to start thinking about Goofy's new toileting habit - to take all her clothes off. I can understand when she is wearing a dress that this can be difficult to hold while doing the business but it is not just the dress that comes off - she has to be completely nude.

I was telling this to a friend who informed me that she used to work with a guy who had the same habit. Yes, he has to be nude to poo! So at work if he needed to 'dropped the kids off' he took off his whole suit. Can you imagine?!?!

Oh where the mind does wander in the quiet of the morning. Here's hoping that JollyJumper spares me any more such wanders and decides to sleep till the sun is up!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Today I am thankful...

This week I have many things to be thankful for...

  • U2's new business that opened its doors today
  • Goofy got a spot at MiniMe's old preschool for next year
  • MiniMe got an award at school for being 'brilliant this week' (not quite sure how you qualify for it). 
  • the organ I found on the side of the road (i have often joked that the only way out girls will go to a private school is if they get the organ scholarship to the local private girls school - how many people know how to play the organ these days? Surely there can not be too much competition. I feel we are slightly ahead in my plan now that we own an organ that sort of works!)
  • the offer of a research job at my old university (even if it isn't practical to take it at this point in my life it was nice to be offered)
  • going out to dinner with friends tonight
  • the warm weather which lifts everyones mood
  • a free weekend to do with as we please
  • the word benign and that the oncologist used it today to describe my breast!

Thursday, September 23, 2010


Grief is a strange companion. It comes and goes as it pleases, sometimes is holds on strong and other times it just gives you a gentle nudge, just enough so that you know it is there.

I have been feeling the nudge lately. I have a few friends who have close relatives battling with the last stages of cancer. It has been bringing up a lot of memories.

As I have mentioned, my mother died from leukemia about 4 years ago. She was diagnosed shortly after Christmas. I am always thankful that we got to have that Christmas, MiniMe's first, as a family. We went away to a beach altogether as a family, oblivious to what the next 7 months would bring. I remember Mum and I going shopping on boxing day and Mum having to sit down a lot and bring very tired. I remember being a bit frustrated but now I marvel that she was able to keep going as long as she did.

It was an aggressive leukemia and Mum was in hospital a lot. She never wanted to give up, right up until the end she was trying new treatments and praying that she might be cured. We all held onto that hope and so it seemed like she died very quickly in the end. She got pneumonia and died within a few days. They were very hard but very special days. I feel blessed that we got to have some last words together, as a family and alone with each other.

I miss my Mum a lot. Time does heal but the scar remains.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Daddy Days

Last week I went away with some friends to the mountains for one night. I took JollyJumper with me and left the elder two girls at home with U2.

They had a great time. They went exploring in the bush, went out for dinner and slept in a two man tent set up in their room over night. Things I would never think to do and not all in one day! And this is fantastic - I love that they all had such a great time! I never stress about leaving the girls with U2 which I am thankful for.

The other ladies who went had similar stories. The dads and kids had had a great time doing lots of fun things (expect one dad who unfortunately got stuck with one child vomiting and one child with diarrhea!).

It got me thinking. Because I am at home with the girls all week I don't often think to go and do special fun things. They more or less tag along with me as I do my errands or amuse themselves at home while I tidy/clean/wash/blog. This is one downside of living at 'work' - you cant just pack up and leave the mess at the end of the day, it surrounds you 24/7.

So I have decided I need to have 'daddy days'. Days were I forget about all the things I should be doing and go and do something fun and different with the girls by themselves.

Now I just need to think of some fun things.....

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Photographing Fairies

Another thing I would learn to do if I had more time is take better photos. I have always loved taking photos and capturing memories and would love to be able to take professional looking photos.

I have taken a couple of courses but none really helped me like I wanted them too. I think my main problem is how to accommodate light (I prefer photos were I don't have to use a flash). And reading the manual of my digital SLR would probably also help but I am not a great manual reader!

Anyway, the other day the girls were playing dress ups and having a great time on the trampoline so I took my camera out and tried to capture the moment.

Crazy Goofy!
Showing off their wings
Sharing a joke

MiniMe pretending to sleep on Goofy shoulder.

Chosen pose for photograph

Monday, September 20, 2010

Pink dress

MiniMe and Goofy both love to wear dresses. I fought against it with MiniMe and many a morning were spent fighting over what she would wear. In my mind pants keep you warmer in winter and dresses were for 'going out'.

I have embraced the dress with Goofy and we are all happier.

However it means that we are a little short on having a dress for every day of the week. I decided to put my sewing machine to use and made the pink dress that Goofy is wearing in the above photo.

There are a few things about it I am not happy with but I don't think a galloping horse would notice (see earlier post)!

I have only recently to the sewing bug in the past few years. It helps me feel a little closer to my Mum who use to be a great seamstress. She made all our clothes growing up (until I complained too much about wanting clothes with 'sportsgirl' on them like everyone else) and clothes for my dolls (she use to make and sell cabbage patch clothes for unlce petes toys). She made the dresses for my bridesmaids. She could have made my wedding dress and she slightly regretted she didn't.

She had just started a smocking course when she was diagnosed with leukemia so she could make smoked dresses. I often think how she would have gone to town making clothes for three granddaughters. But then I probably wouldn't have learnt to sew as I would have just put in my orders with her!

At the moment I am on the hunt for any free sewing patterns on the net? Anyone had any good finds?

Thursday, September 16, 2010

A laugh...

My father in law occasionally forwards me jokes or things he think I will find interesting. This is one that came the other day and it made me chuckle.

As I am posting this Goofy is incessantly yelling at the top of her lungs, "Mummy, Mummy!" from outside. I have been to investigate and she needed to tell me every so urgently that the BBQ wok had not been put away. I guess I can be thankful it was not the above!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

My bag...

Yesterday morning I had the great idea of cleaning out my bag. This is what was inside.


I really like my bag and it not just because Brangelina use to have the same one!

I like it for a couple of reasons.

1. It fits a lot of stuff - as demonstrated above! Plus is has a lot of compartments and secret places to organise things - possibly too many things.
2. It was present to myself for not having an epidural with Goofy - a well done me present! It was a little pricey but I figure I had saved money by not using the drugs so treated myself. (No such present after the other two labours!)

You may be pleased to know that not as much went into the bag as what came out. After 5 and a half years you would think that I would have figured out what how to carry around only the necessities so that i don't end up walking with a lean in my later years!

At a bare minimum I need wallet, keys, phone to walk out the door. For a trip to the shops the list then lengthens to include nappies, wipes, chuck rag (JollyJumper is still chucking up a storm), bib, snacks, baby toy. This is just my minimum though, there is always a lot more but are they essential?

What are the essentials in your daily bag?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

I'm hungry...

"I'm hungry" would have to be the most used sentence in our house.

I am after some assistance. How much food should preschoolers be eating? Am I feeding my children enough or could they be as starving as they make out? How do I fill these bottomless tanks?

The girls have 2 weetbix for breakfast, fruit for morning tea, a sandwich for lunch (in the lunchbox also goes a small amount of cheese/fruit/dried fruit), a banana smoothie and something else for afternoon tea and then dinner. That is at a minimum but generally they will have a few other bits and pieces like apples or carrots.

Yesterday MiniMe was hungry soon after breakfast and I managed to distract her and then she didn't ask for anything till lunchtime - we even missed morning tea! Which leads me to think that they are boredom eaters. Which doesn't surprise me as I am the same. If my mind is empty then I will think of eating and generally eating something sweet. The girls definitely have my sweet tooth too!

Goofy seems to be a grazer as by the time we get to dinner she is suddenly not hungry and that starts a whole other story.....

Monday, September 13, 2010

Business Trip

I'm a mom traveling with my kids. For me, this is not a vacation. It's a business trip. - Claire (Modern Family)

Claire is right. Going on holidays with children is just doing the same thing somewhere else, somewhere less convenient because you don't have all your normal stuff!

We are planning on going on a camping trip soon, the first since JollyJumper has been around, and already I am feeling daunted by the idea of packing. I am really looking forward to being there, all set up, but the process for getting there fills me with dread.

I am not a great packer. I tend to take too much because I figure you never know when you are going to need something. This philosophy started after I went from the Whitsundays to New Zealand and forgot to pack any warm clothes. I still have my fleece I had to buy in the hotel lounge to get warm!

So where to start with packing and when to start packing!? What is essential for a camping trip with 3 small children?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Burnt Orange

It was a beautiful Saturday morning. The first real spring start to a weekend. I donned a dress and went childless to Burnt Orange in Mosman to have breakfast with girlfriends.

I am in love. It has a great outlook, great food and a great shop to potter in.

While I ate my buttermilk pancakes with double smoked bacon and maple syrup and sipped my mango and orange smoothie I watched a parade of colourful yachts sail by the sparkling blue water. I also got to catch up with some of my favourite people.

The shops have the kind of stuff I love. It reminded me of some of the little shops I loved in countryside France when we once visited. Unfortunately I did not love the prices! Although that may have been a good thing so that I didn't leave with bags and bags of goodies. It did give me a few good ideas for future craft projects though.

I bought the top two mugs as gifts for friends.

The only downside of the morning was that it was over too quickly! It is also a shame that it quite a drive from my home but that too has the benefit of making it special when I do get to go back. And I definitely will be going back!!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Dancing in the rain....

Today I was literally dancing in the rain! My cousin was playing in his school's pipe band at their garden day so I decided to brave it with all three girls. Just as we got out of the car the first drops began to fall.

MiniMe and Goofy had wisely packed their raincoats. I on the other hand had forgot to check the car umbrella status which had somehow gone from 3 to none. I strapped JollyJumper in the ergo carrier and off we went, hopefully that it was a passing sprinkle.
I felt for the stall owners who were having to cover their beautiful wares as they rain got heavier. Particularly the lady selling soaps - who wants to buy a wet soap even if they are shaped like cute cupcakes?!

The rain didn't perturb any of my little party. There were still lots of pretty things to look at and we all pointed out the things we liked. The gardens were also amazing. We also met up with my aunt and it was great to wander around with her. I was so impressed at how well the girls behaved and it gave me a little glimpse of shopping expeditions in the future to look forward to.

The rain did clear and it became a beautiful sunny day. I might have felt differently had the rain continued but I actually enjoyed being outside with my lovely ladies today doing something a little different on a Friday morning. I was dancing on the inside.

Thursday, September 9, 2010


If I could choose a gene not to pass down to my girls it would be the anxiety gene. I am a born worrier. Luckily U2 is not. 50/50 odds.

My propensity to worry about things is the main reason I decided against a career in medicine. I could too easily envisage myself lying in bed worrying that I had missed a terminal condition.

I have got better over the years.

But I still have my moments and today it one of those moments. I had my annual breast ultrasound and I now have to have a cyst investigated further with a specialist. My doctor said that it is most likely fine but until they have done further tests I just have to wait for that confirmation. I don't like waiting, it gives me time to worry.

My mother died of leukemia four years ago and my aunt had breast cancer (thankfully she is fine now). I feel like I am waiting for my turn to come. Seems silly when I see that thought written down. But the older I get the more people I know that are affected by some form of cancer. Was is always this way and as a child I was just blissfully oblivious or is just popping its ugly head up more these days?

A friend once told me that she allowed herself 10 minutes at the end of the day to 'worry'. Then she had to stop, pray and then leave those thoughts alone until the next day.

My 10 minutes is up. See you tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

A few of my favourite things...

The dog has been biting, the bees have been stinging and I have been feeling sad so I think I need to remember some of my favourite things.

Leftover brownies, JollyJumper big gummy smile as I feed her, Goofy's pride in her new found ability to play the computer, MiniMe wanting to help in the kitchen by washing up, U2 being excited as his new business comes together, the sun coming onto the deck this morning, the promise that spring has arrived, generous friends who provide meals, in-laws that I would choose, mail that is not bills, getting something you have wanted on sale, clean floors, a good book, being able to make someone's day better, a cup of tea in the quiet, a breakfast date with girlfriends to look forward to, packed to the rafters, my friends, my family

Now I don't feel so sad.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Galloping horse test...

Recently I started knitting a vest for Goofy in an attempt to try and get some warm clothes on her. As I am still a novice I made a mistake and went in search of a youtube clip to help me discover how to undo what I had done. I came across the term, galloping horse test and I am a fan.

Essentially it is that if you make a mistake when knitting if you couldn't see it on the finished garment if you were riding by on a galloping horse then dont do anything about it!!

I have got back into knitting lately as it gives me something to do while I am watching TV at night. I am not sure why I feel the need to be productive all the time but I do enjoy sitting down and watching a ball of wool become something else. I like being able to finish something and have something to show for my efforts.

Unlike a pile of washing that once done will just be back again another day or picking up toys that will find their way back to the floor again! If I left the washing and the toy tidying undone they would accumulate to such an extent that a galloping horse would definitely notice them. I guess that means I do have to do something about them!!

Monday, September 6, 2010

A new battle...

Gray hair. Not happy Jan. They have multiplied seemingly overnight. A week of no TV for the kidlets and look what happens!

I have recently noticed the odd gray hair here and there but I was not ready for the sight that greeted me this morning as I look a closer look at my hair line. They look like they are planning a full scale assault. I feel very unprepared to go into battle with my latest foe. I thought I had years before I would face this battle.

I haven't had a strategy meeting yet to discuss my defence options.

Do I just let them take over as they will? Do I take them out one by one? Do I launch a chemical attack and smother them? This then leads to the question - with what?  

My first defence - TV is on now!

(an aside - the girls did end up cleaning up with some strong encouragement from U2 on Friday night!)

Friday, September 3, 2010

Tidying up...

Mondays MiniMe is at home and we generally have a home day. The girls have a great time playing together. This week I suggested in the morning that as they play they put away the game/toy they were playing with before they got another one out. They hate tidying up so I pleasantly suggested that this would make things easier for them.

I left them to play in the toy room downstairs.

They covered the floor. I think they had just got every container and tipped it out on the floor. They definitely did not heed my earlier suggestion.

They then wanted to watch their afternoon TV shows. I replied that they could watch TV once the room downstairs was tidy.

It is Friday and the TV has not been turned on.

I am not sure who is suffering more.


Thursday, September 2, 2010

Have I found my style guide?

MiniMe and Goofy have started being very determined to choose their own clothes (but I have to help them put them on!).

Three days a week MiniMe has a school uniform to wear and for that I am very thankful. Goofy on the other hand wants to wear dresses no matter what the weather and preferable with no shoes or jumpers. I am very excited that spring has arrived and I dont have to battle to get layers on.

As I have already pointed out I am not style guru. Last night MiniMe wanted to wear all black (early goth?!) of a navy long t-shirt with navy stockings and a black woollen dress over the top with her black school shoes. We had an argument for awhile as in my head it was going to look terrible but in the end I decided it wasnt a battle worth fighting so off we went. When my mother in law saw her and she commented on how nice MiniMe looked and how well it all went together!

This raised many questions in my mind. At what age do I let them wear whatever they want (as long as it suits the season)? Should I just let go and let them develop their own style? Am I really that bad at judging what looks good? Should I be getting dress tips from them!?!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Style or lack thereof...

Everyone has their own sense of style. You will most likely find me in a pair of flat shoes, jeans and high neck t-shirt and a loose fitting jumper and maybe a scarf.

I don't feel like I have chosen this particular look but that is has come about for practicality. If I wear any type of heel I get a back ache, I have young children so pants are more practical, I have a bad scar on my upper chest so I wear high neck tops to cover it, I have young children so feel the need to cover my post baby tummy and be able to breastfeed easily. The scarf keeps me warm and makes me feel like I've made a tad of an effort to look nice!

I feel like I could do better but I am a bit lost at where to begin. I am also a but sort on funds to revamp the whole wardrobe so I tend to buy bits here and there, especially on sales. But maybe I need to be more strategic in my purchases.

I feel a bit lost in the whole fashion world and feel like I need a someone to take my hand and guide me through. Especillay as I look into the future with three teenage girls who may ask me for guidance! Where do I find such a guide?