Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Getting my tile on...

It all began when JJ dropped one of my friends grandma's favourite plate - 'Moasic!' I said and so a new project was started. We have been getting together over the last few weeks and being taught how to get our tiles on.

I found this table on Gumtree and then purchased some plates from an op-shop and then therapeuticly smashed them!!

Now at least when JJ breaks our bowls, mugs etc I have a use for them!!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Shhhh...I am having a DC

When I was in the midst of exhaustion from having a newborn I would sometimes treat myself to a Diet Coke. Whenever I did this MIL would arrive unexpectantly and I would feel I needed to explain my choice of beverage. She has long told me the evils of DC and plain old regular coke so I felt like a naughty kid being caught.

And I do agree that it isn't great for me. I have had other people tell me that I am killing myself with ever sip. And Mum drank it for years and years so many there is some truth in it or maybe there isn't. So I think moderation is the key, link most food. I enjoy and feel a better about not having 8 tablespoons of sugar.

The one 24 pack has lasted me two and a half years so as you can see it is not a regular habit. But this week I decided to buy another pack just in case the urge for a DC hit came again. I was going to MIL's after the shopping and had a sudden anxiety about being caught with the illegal substance in the boot so I hid it in a blue supermarket freezer bag until I could get my stash home and hid it in the cellar.

But has made me think I should have a more educated opinion about my beloved DC. But were should I start? Any DC lovers or haters out there that can guide me on my quest?

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Poo wee bommy

So we find ourselves in the midst of toilet training once again and once again I feel at a complete lost and an incompetent mother. I ever thankful that this is the last time we will undertake this task and that I have the knowledge that JJ will not be defecating her pants at 18 years of age, she will learn. Slowly but surely. But for now our world seems to revolve around poos, wees and bommys (JJ's word for her bottom).

We are at the stage that she knows how to go and when she needs to, she just chooses not to if it doesn't suit her. She is not phased by wet pants...or worse.

I am wishing we had waited till the summer till she was closer to three but she did so well for the first few weeks that I thought we were home and hosed. Now I am home and using the hose on her!

I even sent in for the Huggies pull up toilet training guide in desperation. I got a bit bamboozled by the chart they sent so didn't get too much further with it. It is in my reading pile. Any other suggestions for struggling toilet trainers and their mothers?

Monday, August 6, 2012

Friday, July 27, 2012


On our walk home from the bus stop today....

Goofy: I wish I could live in the same house as Cousin S.
Me: And why is that Goofy?
Goofy: Because I like her. I would give her a hug everyday. I would give her a kiss everyday.

Monday, July 23, 2012

7 years....

This time seven years ago I was holding my mother's hand and telling her all the plans I had for the future. What my future children would be called. That they would know who she was even though she would not physically be there. That I would miss her. A few hours later my brother would walk into her hospital to join my father and I by her bedside and she would take her last breath.

The grief has dulled. I still miss her but it is now my 'normal'. It no longer feels as alien not to see her.

Today is a good reminder to be thankful for the hope of heaven. That one day we will all be together as a family again. That she will meet all her grandchildren and there will be much rejoicing.


Friday, June 15, 2012


This morning Goofy was not happy with me. She wanted porridge from the small packet and I said to wait until we knew if Daddy was having porridge. She opened it anyway. She was having this porridge.

No Porridge then Goofy.

And the tears did flow. The wailing began.

You can go to your room to make that noise if you  like.

She was quiet and sidled up to U2, opinion shopping and ignoring me in the process.

Still no porridge, and so it began again.

Eventually she gave up and was quiet. She calming came to me and asked politely if she could have porridge.

What to do? Stick to my guns about the no porridge to teach that you don't get what you want by acting like a pork chop or teach that if you use your manners and act calmly you get a much better response and maybe even what you were after.

I went for the latter, partly as I didn't want world war three again and because I think she had learnt something. So porridge was made.

Then I hear ....

Mummy, I don't want any more porridge.

I turn and look at her, Pardon? She looks genuinely cranky.

Then a smile cracks.

Because I have eaten it all.

Ah, Goofy, you make me laugh and cry!!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Made it Monday .... bread

A friend taught me how to make a part sourdough bread a few weeks ago so the waft of fresh bread has been a regular scent in our house.

Warm bread straight out of the oven with butter and golden syrup on a rainy Queen's birthday. Yumo.

What are you up to this rainy long weekend?

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

School project ... the MiniMe express

First of all I am very excited to have figured out how to get photos back on my blog!! Yipee!

MiniMe was given a project for this term to fit in with their topic of how toys are made, it was to make a boat. Definitely seemed to require parent help and from most of the Mums at school, a project for Dad to help with. This is what MiniMe and U2 came up with - the MiniMe express. Complete with propeller propulsion! A few weeks later we saw the same design of boat for sale in a toy shop for $10 - maybe they should go into business!?!

To fit in with the topic, our friend who designs toys came in to talk to Jessica's grade about the toys he has made, Sleep monkeys. Check them out! They now have a homework project to invent a new toy and let him know about it and he will give them a commission for the idea!! Got a good idea I can pass on?!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Exciting sales this week...

During various stages of our girls baby years we have used cloth nappies.

Part if my thinking for going cloth was that we saved money in not buying lots of disposable nappies (i used both, not totally hard core!), good for the environment and one day I could sell them and make it an even cheaper proposition.

Then I discovered you couldn't sell them on ebay so I thought I would just be donating them, but even that proved difficult as most of my friends are getting past the baby years now.

Then I found Gumtree and

I have $110 extra in my pocket this week from selling various nappies!! Very happy.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

No TV for a week...

When the TV is on our girls are like their father watching the rugby - they are in the zone, the rest of the world disappears, you can have whole conversations that are not remembered.

Last weekend, when telling MiniMe for the 100th time to put her Netta uniform on and nothing was happening I declared that the following week would be one without TV. JJ was allowed to watch when they were at school (for my sanity) but other than that it was gone.

I thought we would have screams, fights but they have accepted their lot for the week.

We have had a couple of friends for plays in the afternoon which has helped distract but last night at the in-laws for dinner the TV went on so we could have dinner in peace. I thought the girls would be hooked back in but they happily went downstairs and played with their cousins.

And today, Goofy is home and has only requested the TV once but now is very involved in a make believe game with JJ. They have a house in the toy room, they are going on picnics and other excursions around the house.

They are happy.

I am contemplating making TV a permanent exclusion from our weekdays. They (and I) have managed fine without it.

Is can only be good for them right?

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Beyond Green Beyond Clean...

As noted yesterday JJ has left the unpleasant smell of vomit lingering at our friend's house.

Yesterday I was at a friends whose house smelt of Pine Tarsal - the chimney had been cleared but something went wrong and the good dining room got covered with ash instead!

This is when I was reminded about a product called Beyond Green Beyond Clean.

It eats mould and odours and is all environmentally friendly as it uses an enzyme to eat the yucky stuff!

Might need to take some round and try it out on the vomit infested dining room table!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

How you know you have a good friend...

You know you have a good friend when over the years your children have urinated on their floors, pooed on their carpet and projectile vomited over their dining room table and they have helped clean it up.

And invited you back again.

Cheers to you MultipleMum!

Monday, May 28, 2012


I thought the curse of morning tea would get me today. It would appear that whoever is on the roster to do morning tea at playgroup inevitable can not come themselves, just drop off their goodies, as themselves or a child is sick.

However, after a rocky late afternoon/evening with JJ yesterday she woke up bouncing around, happy as Larry! So we made it and broke the curse.

It is a new playgroup that I have started going to this year and it has been really lovely. I don't know if it is just having one child to keep an eye on or if it is that fact that is it my last playgroup jaunt, or the small area which means I can see her from every corner of the room, or the lovely morning sun that warms one particular corner, or the lovely people, or the good kids craft or the fun that JJ has that has me happily coming back each week. But whatever the reason, I look forward to our Monday mornings.

What do you do on a Monday morning?

ps - sorry still cant get photos working - had a great one of JJ and her cousin with their monkey mask craft on today!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

I gave myself a small pat on the back this week.

We have not had rain for weeks. I have been washing almost every day to make use of the sunshine. The memory of the month of rain still lurking in the recesses of my mind so I keep up to date in case it returned.

It did. With a mighty downpour.

Well done me, I thought. I got my last load of washing off the line before the rain came.

I went past the washing line the day after the rain cleared. What did I discover under the line?

A full washing basket of 'dry' laundry.


Friday, May 25, 2012

A little kick...

This term I am taking JJ for some swimming lessons. I went in the water and did lessons for MiniMe when she was quite young so I thought I would not deprive my youngest daughter (too late for Goofy she missed out!). It is some nice time for the two of us to hang out and have eye contact, focus just on having fun with her.

There is a long period of floating on her back at the beginning of each class. JJ does it for a bit and then has had enough. She wants to kick kick, she is a water baby.

This week the teacher had a quiet but stern word with the mothers in the class. From her pink bracered mouth she told us that we were in charge and they might not want to stay on their backs but we have to keep turning them over until they get the idea that it isnt worth fighting, they might as well just float.

It was the little kick I needed to remember that I am the parent and I make the decisions in our relationship. Just because she screams for nouk (milk), for example, does not mean that she gets it. If I persist and stay firm then she will come round, in time.

So it took our young swimming teacher to make me realise that there is going to be some screaming and unhappiness in our house but in the battle of the wills, I will win!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Blogger question...

You may have noticed that I have not been putting photos up. Blogger closes down each time I try and put one in - any suggestions on how to remedy this?

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

This week...

It is my mothers birthday this week. We have had a family dinner to celebrate what would have been her 59th birthday. My brother said grace and thanked God for the life that she had. Normally that is something I can pray too. But not this week.

This week I want the life she could have had. I want her to be here with me, with my girls. I want to be thankful for her here in the present, not thankful for the short period we had in the past. This week I am angry and sad that another we have another birthday and mothers day without her. That we all miss out on the bounty of her gifts.

The past seven years have taught me that this is a phase that will pass, the grief will change its shape again.

But right now, I want my Mum.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Musical mind?

My Dad gives us money to buy the girls birthday presents. He isn't a shopper so he prefer we get something they will like. As MiniMe has got older we have put the money towards lessons. One year was dance, another drama and this year Dad requested the money be put towards music lessons.

As we have a piano at home (thanks to my dad passing on our old one when he downsized) and I use to learn piano it made sense that she started with piano. 

We have had one lesson. When I was telling this to Dad he asked how you go about fostering a love of music in your children. He feels like he failed with us. Practicing was always a battle and we did it out of obligation not enjoyment.

Do some children just have that passion or is it something you can create?

I noticed that if I sat with MiniMe to practice this week the - 'I cant do' attitude stoped. We have had numerous conversations about how it will take lots of practice to get good, you only get out of it what you put in etc...

So as we begin on this musical, what tips can you give me? Please?!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Today I will not feel guilty...

I have been feeling a lot of guilt over how much TV the girls have been watching. JJ in particular has become quite at addict of the 'tee-tee', as she calls it. And it is easier to put it on then listen to her scream and scream and scream.... She also likes to view a little TV as she does her business on the potty so to encourage her to sit there the TV has been on to keep her company. (As an aside, I am not really sure if I am toilet training her but she is getting it at home so now sure where to go from here, I loathe toilet training.)
If it is on the other two girls will be glued to it too.
A bunch of square eyes in this house.
I had resolved that we would cut the viewing down. Come up with a plan to make it only a certain amount of time a day at designated times.
But then the virus struck us and today I have succumbed and I am feeling awful. It is also my birthday so today I will not feel guilty about the fact we will sit in front of the box most of the day. If only the girls were old enough to watch some of my recorded shows with me - ABC kids is not quite what I feel like.
But I do want to figure out how to have the TV as an occasional friend - what do you do to manage TV viewing times?

Monday, March 26, 2012

Seven years on...

A lot of good things come out of having children. One of the great blessings we received when MiniiMe was born was being putting into contact with some great people. In particular my mother's group. We meet pretty much every Wednesday for three years and then on and off over the last four years. Some more than others.

On Saturday we got together to celebrate the children reaching their 7th birthdays and to have some family photos done.

There was something in the air. Everyone was happy to be there, there was joy, there was a lot of love.

The seven year olds all lay together with their heads touching as they had for a photo when they were only a few months old. It was a special moment. We had got through some tough parenting together, shared our children's childhood and hopefully will share their futures. The community bonds were strong.

I am very thankful for these beautiful ladies.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Raising Girls...

Steve Biddulph was giving a talk not far from where I live this week so I went along to hear what he had to say about raising girls. Having three of them I thought it might be helpful!!

A lot of what he said related to children in general but there was a bit about the sexulisation of girls which was a bit more specific. My take home points were;

  • Life is a lot different for our children compared to the world we and our parents grew up in. The issues I was facing at 16 my daughters will face at 12 so they will not have the mental capacity to fully understand them.
  • For most of our world's history people lived in small communities surrounded by people who knew them and loved them so they had lots of adults affirming them and who they could relate to. Aunts and uncles are really important relationships for our children so that they have another adult they can talk to. It is important to give our nieces and nephews time as well, to listen when they talk to us.
  • Children are dependant on us as toddlers but as they enter teenage years they enter that dependent stage again - if you minus 12 from their age as a teenager that is age you are dealing with. So having a 14 year old is like having a two year old again!
  • Girls face a lot of messages from the media telling them that their looks are the most important thing, that they will never look good enough, that sex is to be exchanged for love and power and that it is ok to have sex with people you dont know or dont even like.
  • Children learn from the people around them, we are always modeling behaviour to them. If you are constantly talking about your weight then they will pick up on the idea that they should not feel good about how they look.
  • A reminder to talk to your children about how they feel about things.
That is a very brief summary but it was a good reminder about the little sponges that are around me and taking the opportunity to talk to them when these issues come up.

As it turns out, last night I was reading MiniMe Matilda and there was a part where the mother was saying that looks were all that mattered for girls so that they could find a husband (rather than reading books and learning). I asked MiniMe what she thought of this and she said that books were more important then looks and that it was a weird this for the mother to think.

Steve Biddulph would have been proud! I smiled, at least we are doing some things right as parents!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Terrible Twos...

JJ seems to have an awareness that she is about to turn two and I am finding it very difficult. She is in that difficult stage where she knows what she wants and will persist until she gets it. Sometimes she can tell me what she wants, sometimes she can't and is frustrated by her lack of communication. I am frustrated.

Some days she can make my cheeks hurts because she makes me smile so much. The last two days she has made my head hurt with her screaming.

The terrible twos have snuck up on me and I am not prepared. I know it is a phase and it will pass but I feel like I need some words of wisdom to help me prepare and forge through with some level of sanity.

Wisdom anyone? Please?!

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Petrol experience...

I filled the car up with petrol last night. I was feeling good that I had found a good time to fill up. No children in the car, running on time to my aqua class, found a 8c per L voucher that expired that day, all going well.

Until I handed the voucher over.

The attendant looked at me. 'This is not a coles station.'

I realise that in my calm state I have mistakenly gone to the wrong petrol station. They are side by side and I pulled into the wrong one.

I politely express my frustration at myself and the waste of my voucher.

The attendant replies. 'Yes, 8c off would have been better.'


Monday, February 27, 2012

Made it monday .... bread

More than 10 years ago I was given a bread maker. I went on holidays and learnt about choc chip bread and loved it (my waist did not, still trying to recover from that trip!!). So my parents gave me a bread maker to indulge my taste buds (although not help the waist line!!).

As with all new gadgets the excitement wore off and every now and again the bread maker comes out for a spell but then it sits idle in the cupboard taking up a lot of pantry space. Over the last year - since the pizza maker entered out lives - it has been mainly used for making home made pizza dough which is fantasitc.

Last week though I ventured back into loaves. I have made a pumpkin/cumin bread and a sun-dried tomato bread. There is something so nice about the smell, taste and texture of fresh bread. I am really enjoying it (and hoping I will have more self control so that my waist will too this time!).

Today I am going to try raison bread for the children's afternoon tea. Do you have any good bread maker recipes to share?

Friday, February 17, 2012

'No junk mail'

Last week I did a letterbox drop inviting people to our church's opening celebration. It was nice to get out and enjoy the evening outdoors in a brief pause of the rain.

We were given instructions not to put notes in the letterboxes that asked for no junk mail. So I became very aware of the number of boxes that did not wish to receive unaddressed mail.

I soon learnt that on steep driveways it was best to first peer up for the little rectangular message so that I did not use my calves in vain. And was most disappointed when I got up there and found that some had been obscured from view (community announcement - please make your letterbox signs clear for the poor people doing the walk around!)

I appreciate now the junk mail we do get, the people who make the effort to walk up and down our very short but steep street to deliver their bits of information. I appreciate them delivering it but still don't read it. Most of it ends up going from the letterbox to the recycling bin outside straight away. It avoids the temptation to find something I need to go and get.

So I had thought I should put my own 'No junk mail' sign up but now I feel for those people who come down out street as if they have come down they must go back up and I don't want them climbing up the hill feeling their trip was in vain. Let them feel that mine was the letterbox that made all the difference, I am the one that will make many purchases from their catalogue. Maybe instead I should have a sign - 'Thank you for the junk mail'.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

476 things...

Today the 'buy nothing new for a year' officially ended and I am right into my new challenge for 2012. Getting rid of 2012 things in 2012.

The tally for January is 476 unneeded, unnecessary things have been shown the door!

The main contributor to the tally were the kids toy kitchen - we had 90 excess plastic cooking utensils!! The other biggies were the bathroom drawers and the garage/workshop which have both had an overhaul.

I think it will get harder as the year progresses but I am fighting my hoarding gene with all my strength at the moment and it is paying off!

Monday, January 30, 2012

I hit the wall .....

Quite literally I hit the wall last week. I was in a rush to get to the uniform shop and it was bucketing down with rain and I reversed around a car into the corner of a brick wall. The wall came out the winner, my car a definite loser. New bumper and back panel will be in order.

It tipped me over the edge, the tears flowed. Weeks of full on parenting and anxiety about the coming school year all compounded and the reserves were not there to deal with another thing on the plate. Another thing that seemed to highlight my failures.

This morning did not go well. Goofy was very sad (clutching onto me for dear life, wailing sad) about started at her new preschool and MiniMe didn't get into the same class as her two 'besties'.

SIL and I had organised a toddler swap and it couldn't have come at a better time. She had JJ today and I will have her toddler on Wednesday. A bit of time out and chance to have my own head space and decide when I did what I needed to do was such a blessing.

So today I am feeling very grateful for lovely friends.

What are you grateful for today?

Monday, January 23, 2012

A monumental weekend...

This weekend looked like nothing spectacular on paper and probably if you had asked me this morning how it had been I would have given the standard reply, 'Good, and yours?'. But the more I have considered that 48hrs that separated Friday through to today I have realised is was a monumental weekend.

Is started in a fairly usual way. U2 went for a bike ride and I stayed at home and did some general tidying up. I walked past the stairs that leads to the toy room/laundr /garage/junk room and glanced at JJ confidently walking down. The gate that has blocked the stairs to prevent MiniMe, Goofy and JJ from falling down in their toddler years had been left open, as I realised is its general state now. There will be no more toddlers to follow after JJ so the gate can now be retire. So I took it down. It is so strange to walk through this wide opening and not have to navigate the wide steel door. We have moved on. The baby years are getting further behind us.

We had a lovely dinner with one of the families from MiniMe's school. The girls all played very quietly and calming with their friends all evening (until we left and then they had a crazy high-pitched scream around the front yard!). There was a little glimpse of what socialising in the future might be like - civilised!

The baptism cake

Sunday we went to our new church again (not sure when it will stop being 'the new church') and I met a couple of really nice mums which is making me feel better about our change. We all hit it off and there was a hint at what the future might be like when these relationships develop.

On Sunday evening my two lovely nieces were baptised down at the beach, one of which we are godparents for. It was beautiful down there and special making the promises to help encourage her in her faith as the water lapped at our feet. They both hold a very special place in my heart, I love being their aunt.

YTT returned!! I loved Young Talent Time as a child. It was my favourite show, I would wait impatiently for it each week. And now I get to share it with my girls. I watched part of it today with MiniMe and two of her friends and it made me smile to hear them talk about who their favourite member was just like I use to.

So on the surface I did some tidying up, went to dinner, church and the beach and then watched TV this weekend but it really was quite a special weekend.

What were you doing this weekend?

Friday, January 20, 2012

So i have been giving my challenges for 2012 a bit of thought and was sharing my thoughts with a wise friend who has helped in giving them legs.

The first is that I want to remove the piles from our house. I am a pile maker. I tidy one room by removing all objects that do not belong there and putting them in a pile in the room that they should go. The piles grow and grow as it takes me forever to get to the room to actually put them away. So I am going to put things away straight away and to help this I am going to reduce the number of things that need to be put away!

So I am going to join the bandwagon of getting rid of 2012 things in 2012!

In the last two weeks I think I would have sent at least 125 items out the door. To friends, to our new church creche, to the local charity shop and to the bin.

About 20 soft toys, 50 items for the 'dont-know-what-to-do-with-it-or-or-what-it-belongs-to' boxes (yes boxes, plural!), 20 items of clothes, 5 bags and 30 toys have all  been nudged along, encouraged to leave the place they have unnecessarily inhabited for so long.

I have printed off the declutter calender and am ready to go. I will need to catch up on the weeks I missed but I am up for the challenge. I have even printed off a second copy of the calender in the hope I will find a friend to join me in my quest! I am always better when I do things with someone else.

What are you thoughts on 2012 in 2012? Would you consider joining me?

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Here it is...

2011 ended with break neck speed for our household. With the first year of kindergarten coming to an end, the preschool chapter ending for Goofy, JJ cheekily running amuck, Christmas festivities and a three week adventure to South Africa to pack and plan for it was all systems go, go, go. 2012 seemed something far in the distance.

But here it is.

I have given thought to what the year holds for the youngest members of our family. MiniMe enters the first grade and I pray that she has her buddies with her. There were some really lovely girls she made friends with who had equally lovely mothers. Friendships I would like to develop for all of us. Goofy is going a prep program at a local school - not quite preschool but not quite school. She will love the 'school work' but I am anxious for her socially. She is a quieter child and has a special friendship with her cousin who was at preschool with her but is not able to go to prep. I pray she settles into her new environment. JJ is about to about to turn two - need I say more! Pray for us! U2 will be powering on with his business, checking how much the stock market is up or down on his iPhone, helping steer our new church, riding his bike, continuing to be a good husband and father but what will I be doing? What do I want to be doing?

The buy nothing new challenge for 2011 was a great one. I learnt alot about how and why I shop, what you can reuse, recycle, what you can save in both money and time and how to be more crafty. (Officially we were meant to end February 1 but to be honest I think we ended when we stepped on the plane.) So I am looking for a new challenge.

What are you doing to make 2012 different to 2011?