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Mummy Developments

Muddling through the newborn weeks...

Last Build Date: Wed, 01 Oct 2014 07:00:31 +0000


is it really March already, almost April!?!?

Wed, 28 Mar 2012 09:49:00 +0000

New bedroom!, a photo by Crit Chicken on Flickr.Failing at this blogging deal, but trying to catch up 7 months worth. I finally uploaded some pics to Flickr. You oughta check them out... It might give some idea what we've been up to. Facebook has taken over my life, but I'll try to get a longer post up soon.OK. so I've just been to a parent/teacher interview at D's school, so I'll start with him. After a tricky year, where it took him most of the year to settle in, he decided that maybe his new school wasn't so bad after all, at least no worse than his old one. He liked his teacher and had made some good new friends, without losing contact with some of his old besties. Win win! This year, there was a change of school again, kind of. His new school follows a kind of US style thing with Junior School (years 3-5) being on a separate campus from Middle School (6-8) (Early Childhood is split between the two campuses, and Senior School is on the same campus as Junior). Fortunately though, he's moving with all his mates, so it's really not a drama. Much less than last year. He's in a class with two of his good friends from last year, and while his core teacher isn't that inspiring, he's got electives this year, so he's exposed to a broad range of teachers. His favourite elective seems to be Theatre and Performance (aka 'Drama') which is great. It's something I've been trying to encourage him to do for years, as I had a feeling that drama might somehow fill a niche for him - he's always been what I call a shy extrovert. He loves to be the class clown, but then doesn't know what to do with the attention once it's on him. His teacher said that that behaviour was a problem at the start of the year, but seems to have diminished. Partly, perhaps because she discouraged it, but I'm hoping it's because he also has an outlet for it. Other new things for him..not much - he's determined not to play any sport, but is keen on trying fencing. This plan had to be put on hold, as he broke his arm at the end of the summer holidays. Stacked his mate's scooter at low speed, but that was enough for a greenstick fracture. He was actually quite pleased with accomplishing one of the rites of passage I think, and I was pleased it was so non-traumatic. He's had the cast off for about 3 weeks now, but it was one of those fabulous fibreglass ones that you can shower and swim in, so it wasn't any trouble at all really.Erik is pootling along being 3. He settled into childcare quite well, once he got 2 permanent days a week. They're talking about moving him into the pre-school room after Easter, although his birthday isn't until June, as he's getting bored, and is the oldest in his current room (the curse of an early June birthday, when the school year cut-off is the end of April, so he's not due to start formal pre-school until the beginning of next year!) He's really keen to start reading, he's asking about letters and what sounds words start with.. he can recognise his name and 3 or 4 letters other than E. We moved him into his own room at the beginning of the year, and he took to it pretty well. We still get occasional visits in the night, but it's manageable, and his bed is big enough that there's room for me in it with him if I have to. He's also really getting the hang of using the toilet (finally!!) and is pleased with himself there. Swimming lessons started 2 weeks ago and he loves it. We'd always meant to take him when he was tiny, but time got away from us, and now at almost 4, we're doing it. Another new skill is that we've borrowed a balance bike from a friend, and he's taken to that fast too. Scary!Having spent last year losing weight, I've decided to spend this year getting fit. I've joined a gym, and I'm loving Zumba classes, and a boxing workshop. I've also been running voluntarily for the first time in my life, which is totally unexpected, but kind of fun really. Subscribe in a reader[...]

Game Changer

Sat, 13 Aug 2011 11:31:00 +0000

I started writing a reply to the comment in the last post, and realised that it really needed to be a post all on its own.

I said that the first haircut is a real game changer. On the surface what I meant was that, especially with boys, it's that moment when they go from being your mostly genderless baby to being a real little boy. For Erik it seems that it's more than just that.

So the haircut was Friday. On Thursday we went to visit a daycare centre that we might use for occasional care, or on a more regular basis, as my boss wants me back at work a day a week. Erik liked the look of it (as did we). The room leader is a man, and seems reasonably clued it, he managed to keep order on a rainy day, which is impressive. Erik doesn't seem alarmed that if he goes to daycare, I won't be there with him every time, so I'm going to take him along again next week for a bit more orientation and see hwo he goes with me out of the room for a while. One of the main things that they like to have happening in the 3-4 year old room is relatively imdependant toileting, or in Pull-Ups at a minimum. E has been a bit slow on this front, but will use the toilet very occasionally, and only if he's already undressed. So today we bought some Pull-Ups, and he was keen to try one on. The boy ones come with Buzz and Woody printed on the front, and you get an incentive sticker chart. I pointed out that the idea was that they're different to a nappy, easy to get on and off, and that if he needed to do a wee, he ought to tell me, and we'd get him to the toilet. He did tell me, several times, and got it together each time. Then he announced that he was going to do a #2 on the toilet. So he did. Awesome! I've known for about a year that he was ready for it (he's been announcing his plans for about that long) but he hadn't made the decision to actually do it. Either it's the discussions around it at the daycare centre (and my explanations, and showing him the toilets - inculding having a quick sit on one), or possibly just the incentive of the Buzz/Woody Pull-Ups but he seems to be in the "I'm a big boy" zone, and wouldn't let me put a regular nappy on at bedtime.

Also this week, he seems to've decided that he doesn't have an afternoon nap anymore. I tried to persuade him one day, but he said "I'm not having a sleep today" and he didn't.

Now just to clear some space and get him in the big bed, in his own room. Woot!


Fri, 12 Aug 2011 12:47:00 +0000

IMGP1988, a photo by Crit Chicken on Flickr.

Today was the day. Here's a before shot. He loved it, D also had a trim, and went first, though E was keen to go first. The lovely hairdresser (who has always cut D's hair) commented on how relaxed he was.

And here's an after pic...


With another one for good luck...


In the first pic, he's got his bag on, ready to go to the hairdresser. Yesterday we visited an occasional care centre, as my boss wants me back at work one day a week for a while, and the beloved is going away in the middle of it, so won't be able to be the childcarer then. E thought the centre was pretty good, and today was all fired up to go 'to school'. In his bag was Ow, and a teddy, his scarf, hat and gloves, and his water bottle. Because of when his birthday is, preschool isn't until 2013, which is a long time away. I think we'll have to get him into some kind of pre-preschool...

Bitten by the bug

Sun, 17 Jul 2011 12:18:00 +0000

IMG_0131, a photo by Crit Chicken on Flickr.

There's been an ice-rink set up in the middle of the downtown area here for a few weeks (and it's here all month!) I took the boys one morning a couple of weeks ago. The beloved, despite having his own skates, is a bit big for skating, so the actual ice action was left up to me. This was fine except for the fact that the last time I went skating (some time in 2005) I fell so hard on my arse that I thought I'd actually fractured my tailbone. In short, I was terrified, and spent most of the time clinging to the edge. D'Arcy, on the other hand was more confident and did pretty well, while Erik was on double runners so was pretty stable. The ice itself at this place was not too easy to skate on, and it's a very small space, but the boys had a great time and begged to be taken again. We did go again a few days later, and I did much better, as did D'Arcy, though Erik fell on his face right at the end so that spoiled it a bit for him. Meanwhile D'Arcy went off to his dad's, and pestered him to take him skating. We'd already decided not to go back to the outdoor rink, but to go to the indoor one. The beloved had sorted out his skate issues, having found some to fit. So yesterday D's dad took him to the indoor rink, and today we did. D'Arcy has really got the hang of it, still not very controlled, and he's doscovered it goes better if you go faster, so he's a bit of a loose cannon at times, but prety good now. I've improved enough that I did a couple of circuits of the rink without having to hold the side, and Erik was on single blades and actualy spent some time on his feet being pulled along by me. I think I'm hooked. I'm already pricing skates for the beloved to look into when he takes his mum home in September, as the hired ones I used today were seriously uncomfortable, and we know that double runners for E are really cheap, and will last him for a while. D is probably stuck with the hired ones for now as his feet have a lot of growing still to do, and there isn't much of a market for used ice skates here ;-) Though as we arrived at the rink today, he suggested "so, when the rugby season is over, you don't mind if I quit and take up hockey?"

Sport pt 2

Sun, 19 Jun 2011 06:56:00 +0000

There's a small post-script to the last entry on sport. Yesterday was D's rugby game. The opposition were from a country town about an hour away. They were also on the top of the ladder. They turned up with not enough players, so in order for them not to forfeit, some of our boys played on their team. I'm not sure if they were drafted, or if the coach took volunteers, but D'Arcy was one of the ones to play for them. His attitude to it was a bit odd, in that he said afterwards that he tried to sabotage them. I don't think much that he could do would influence the result, as he's really still pretty clueless about the game. In the end, his school team won, but not by a great margin, and the boys who played for the other team got a 'courage award'. So we'll see if that has any effect on how he feels about the game in general. I couldn't stay to watch, as E had a birthday party to attend, and the beloved had to stay home and supervise the electricity company put our power underground (and drive over our garden tap with the cherry-picker, as it turned out, but they fixed it by the time we got home from the party).

And now, the beloved has gone to the US for 2 weeks for some work, but he's bringing his mother back for another visit. She hasn't beebn for a while, as funds were too tight last year to get her over, so it'll be good for her to see the boys again!


Sat, 18 Jun 2011 03:25:00 +0000

D'Arcy decided to play rugby at his new school for the winter. It was a pretty interesting decision on his part I thought. He's not really built for rugby, being not very tall and under 30 kilos. He'd played basketball for a few years with a local club, and convinced a friend to join with him, but last season he got quite jaded with it, complaining that the other boys "never pass me the ball". So he decided to give that up, and spurred on by eagerness by his new peer group at school, and the fact that his teacher is also arugby player, he wanted to give it a go. Of course now, about half way through the season he's over it. "The other boys never pass me the ball, and some of the others have METAL STUDS". Part of me wants him to man up and deal with it, and the other part wants me to get him away from such physical danger (especially after hearing some of the stuff that's been in the media recently about football players of all codes, and long-term brain damage). I've ended up saying to him that he should stick it out for this season and then we'll reassess. He doesn't want to go back to basketball, but I think playing some kind of sport is useful, both for the physical aspect, but also the social. I'm hoping that it will help him forge bonds with his new peers, but maybe I'm wrong. The other thing, I guess, is that at his old school he was in the chess club. My dad is a keen chess player, and encouraged him to learn, and then join the club. At the end of his time at the old school, he'd had enough "I always lose" and it's true that he'd gone from being on the top of the ladder to close to the bottom. I'm not quite sure how or why that had happened, possibly not enough one-one-one tuition, but whatever the reason, he didn't want to join the chess club at the new school "because they meet at recess time, and I already do library duty that day at lunch, and I'd basically have no free time"... I don't know, am I being unreasonably pushy in wanting him to do club things?


Sat, 11 Jun 2011 05:57:00 +0000

IMG_0065, a photo by Crit Chicken on Flickr.Oh dear, poor neglected blog. It's been a busy time since March, mainly dogged by sickness as it turns out, and it's not over yet. Erik and I went to a great folk festival over Easter, and D'Arcy came for a few days when he wasn't sick or bored. He's been variously sick (and bored) ever since - mostly with colds and other URTIs, enough that he's had two and a half weeks off school in the last month. He was finally well enough yesterday that we got him the first round of his vaccination. He got 4 shots - 2 in each arm, and of course he was a legend. Didn't flinch at all. His arms are pretty sore today - especially the one that got the tetanus shot. In all he got: Meningicoccal; tetanus/diphtheria; measles/mumps/rubella; and polio. Next round in a month is more MMR and Polio, and maybe chicken pox, though I'm not all that keen on that one. My arm swelled up mightily when I got it 18 months ago, and E threw up after his (he's not normally a spewy child, and had had no reactions to any other vaccines)Having had two weeks off school D was surprisingly keen to get back yesterday after his shots, even though the nurse suggested the day off. His class were giving presentations on a piece of homework that he'd been really keen to do, even though he was sick the week before. Their task, in line with their current unit for study, was to make a replica house/dwelling from the Victorian goldfields of the 1850s. D'Arcy had made a tent-frame, and I helped him use my hand-crank sewing machine to make the cover for it, and he also made a tiny pair of trousers for the miner to wear, that were stored in a little chest he'd made out of cardboard. He's really been enjoying this unit, which is not jsut about gold, but money in general. They've been doing a role play thing where they are miners looking for gold, and they get play money that they can spend to increase their chances (buying a shovel or a bucket, or a gold pan) or lose by being robbed - another teacher was a bushranger a few weeks ago and robbed all the kids, they thought it was great, and made "wanted" posters. They also seem to do quite a lot of sharing of resources, which is nice. D'Arcy often says when I pick him up that he gave his shovel to a friend who didn't have one, or that someone gave him five pounds. His presentation went really well, the mark the kids get is assigned by the teacher, but he takes into account what the kids reckon, so D got a much needed confidence boost from that.It was Erik's birthday last week, and between the sickness (him, me, and D) and the international travel (the beloved went to Singapore for a few days for a conference) we decided to ignore it until today. Erik woke up in the night with a fever and a lovely cough, so we had to downgrade our celebrations from a party with friends and family to a party with family and one friend who wasn't too worried about getting sick. The boys had a nice time together, and D'Arcy was very helpful making fairy bread and blowing up balloons. The mother of the friend had wonderfully volunteered to make a cake for me to ice. My oven is notoriously dodgy, as are my cake making skills at the moment, for reasons I don't quite understand. She produced a lovey even flat butter cake for me to cut and ice as I needed. And I did need. Erik is currently obsessed with a couple of things, one of which is the Aardman movies, espeically The Curse of the Were-Rabbit so he was very keen to have a "big monster rabbit cake". I think I did OK with the icing job. I'm not known for my artistic skills so i was at least pleased that it was recognisable as the "big monster rabbit". Erik was very keen to eat the eyes, but I managed to persuade him to eat a hand instead. It was a yummy cake, and Erik even at some of it, instead of just licking off the icing as toddlers are wont to do.The beloved had bought him a "Real Buzz (Light[...]

Sat, 05 Mar 2011 06:39:00 +0000

So, summer has been and gone, such as it was, though you won't hear me complaining about the lack of heat. It was a very mild one, and very wet! We've had to continue to mow the lawn regularly, and the tomatoes took ages to ripen, though once they did they were pretty good. We're right in the zuch glut, and the beloved has been away, so they've got away from me rather. When he's here, we grill them on the BBQ, which I reckon is the best way to do them, if you're not going to put them under the griller with cheese on them. We've had a couple of enormous one where I didn't check them for two days (it was raining) and when I looked again they'd taken over the garden!

D is settling into his new school. It's taking a while, but I think it will be OK - he seems to be making friends fairly well. Today was the school fair, and it was really nice to see how many kids said "hi D'Arcy" as they saw him. he spent most of the day hanging out with one boy in particular, although he's not one I've heard of already. The school is a lot more disciplined than his old one (public/private dichotomy). He's already worried about getting a detention for anything from forgetting his hat to failing to do his homework to rudeness and insubordination. It does seem to be helping his 'responsibility' issues. He's been notoriously bad at giving a shit in general - losing clothes, forgetting to pick up homework, failing to do homework, apalling handwriting...Last week when he came here from his dad's he'd actually started his homework (that he got two days earlier) and was up-to-date with most of it! It still looked like he'd scrumpled it into a little ball and taken it in the bath, but it was done! He's also been losing teeth at a great rate (2 in two weeks, one of which was a molar) but still believes (kind of) in the tooth fairy. he was very disppointed when "she forgot to come" for the second one. She remembered the next night though.
He's having a break from basketball for the winter season, in favour of rugby (which he's never played before). We'll see. He's not really built for contact sports, but he's keen to give it a go, fuelled largely I think by his new peer group and his respect for his teacher, who coaches the under 10 boys (so not D) and talks it up, it would seem. This 'respect for his teacher' thing is a good development. He didn't think much of his teachers at the old school, and one of them (who he had twice) actively disliked him. I suspect his dad and step-mum were fairly openly critical of them and that rubbed off on D too.

Erik is going well. He likes going to drop off and pick up D, we usually play on the play equiment for a while, as we wait for the traffic to calm down beofre we head home in the mornings, or get a hot chocolate at the school cafe (yes, the school has its own cafe!).


Sat, 15 Jan 2011 11:50:00 +0000

My friend on facebook informs me that this is Austracantha minax and google supports that suggestion. S/he ws hanging from the washing line where it's badly bent towards the ground courtesy of young Mr D.

Lots going on. The whooping cough is subsiding. E still has a spectacular cough, though it's not as chesty as D's. E's nasal swab came back negative, but we gave him anti-biotics just in case, as he had a cough. The beloved's came back positive, and so he also had anti-biotics and then got on a plane to Paris for a conference in Toulouse. No cough from him though. My tests were all negative, so I got a booster shot that gave me a sore arm and I slept funny on it, which made my shoulder and neck seize up like nobody's business. Then it was Christmas. Erik had a good time, D'Arcy was reasonably grumpy, but managed to snap out of it by the afternoon, when we went to my mum's house for a late lunch.

It's been raining and our water restrictions have been relaxed, so I've finally managed to plant some vegetables. I've put in tomatoes, basil, zucchinis and chillies, the asparagus has come back, along with some feral potatoes, and I put in a few strawberries too. So far the only thing that's going is the basil. There hasn't been enough sun or heat for the tomatoes to ripen. There is a lot of fruit on them, but it's all green still. I'm hoping today and tomorrows hot and sunny weather will remind them what they're supposed to be up to. We've had one zuch so far, which was excelllent, and I'm looking forward to the glut.

But now it's bed time. Tired.


Fri, 10 Dec 2010 02:15:00 +0000


It's been raining. A lot. Lots of small towns around have been flooded. This dam is usually completely closed with the river side being a deep gully with a few puddles in it. Not any more. There are, as you can see five (5) flap gates that can be opened, and yesterday when I took this the fourth one was just being closed. I think that all five were open at some stage. We took the boys for a look a couple of times, and the little carpark at the dam was massively overcrowded each time. The beloved has the view that people want to see it through some kind of small-town mentality, but I think there's something more than that going on. For one, it's a bit like why you might go to look at a waterfall, there's something fascinating about that much water pouring over a cliff. For another, it was kind of like a giant game of Pooh Sticks. There is a lot of debris on the dam side, whole trees that have washed down the streams and creeks that feed in, and they're now washing over the dam downriver. Not just the children, but adults who were watching were also shouting with excitement when the biggest trunks and clumps of wreckage slipped over the top.

If you go here, you can see a pic I took in March of the same dam. Today's post's pic was taken from the railing where E and the beloved are standing.

It's stopped raining for now, and is supposed to stay clear for a few days, so I have washing on the line at last.

In other news, yes, it is whooping cough. We don't know if any of the rest of us have it. We've all had the nasal swabs and we're waiting for the results. E has a cough, and the beloved is going to France for a week on Sunday for work (he's currently on antibiotics). D'Arcy is now almost finished his course, and is no longer contagious, so I sent him hacking off to school today as Friday is usually a pretty slack day, and it's his last chess class for the year (or in fact for ever, with that teacher, due to the change of schools next year) so we thought it might be good to go. Next week is the last week, so it'll be pretty relaxed, and with luck he'll get to do more hanging out than usual. He's also supposed to get his school report back today. His cough isn't too bad, he hasn't spewed from it so far, though he'll probably set me up as a bad parent by doing it at school today.

Gah. (a moan)

Fri, 03 Dec 2010 08:54:00 +0000


I'm so totally in a funk. So many things right now it's all a bit much. D'Arcy has been coughing for a few days (a week?) and his teacher has been nagging me (via him) to go to the doctor. We did today, and of course they suspect whooping cough. He was an absolute champ when the pathology collector did the nasal swab, which meant that she got a good sample and maybe the result will be reliable. Of course this has sent me into a tailspin. Regular readers (are there any of you?) will know that D'Arcy's dad didn't want (amusing sidenote, I just repeatedly typed "wank" then, except that he does) to vaccinate him, and essentially bullied me into agreeing with that. So I am giving myself a hard time about that. E, on the other hand is fully vaccinated so he will have some protection I guess. Culture should be ready in a few days they reckon, so we'll know for sure then. If it's positive, then we all need preventative doses of anti-biotics. Bleh.

The other thing that is bothering me is that D's dad put his name down at a private (co-ed) school a couple of years ago. No consultation with me, of course, and I didn't really stand up to that either. I made it clear that I wasn't happy with it, but that's as far as it went. His name stayed on the list. It seemed for a while that it wasn't something I needed to worry about, but while we were in Hobart, I got a phone call from the ex, saying that he'd been offered a place for next year 2011. When we got home, we finally arranged to do the tour of the school, and actually it was pretty impressive. I've been trying to think about where D might go for high school. This looked like a good option, but the offer was for next year...I decided in the end that it would be okay for him to go there, but of course he's really unhappy about the move. He doesn't want to leave his mates for the last two years of primary school, which I can understand, I guess. Still, I feel like the bad one again. And now he'll miss at least a few days of school next week until we know the whooping cough status, and he's had a course of anti-biotics....


Wed, 20 Oct 2010 21:45:00 +0000

Beloved had a conference in Hobart last week, so E and I tagged along. (D'Arcy had school and four airfares is a scary thing these days).We met up with a friend at Salamanca Square, where the children played in the fountain, despite it being pretty bloody cold.One of the fun things about going on holiday seems to be playing in the new environment, you don't need much to have fun, so E and I spent a lot of time wandering in Salamanca. We found an excellent park and playground just behind the square which was over-run with not one, but two school groups when we arrived. Fortunately they buggered off after about half an hour and so we had it to ourselves with a couple of other families. Erik had some good plays with a much older girl and her younger sister.More fun was to be had in the hotel room. Friday was very rainy, and so we spent quite most of the day inside. It was my uncle's birthday while we were there (he lives up the Derwent), and we met up with him. I'd bought a kilo of smoked salmon at the Tassal shop for $11 (!) so we sat down to enjoy it with him. It turns out salmon is a favourite of Erik's too!When we'd finished with Hobart we headed down to the Tasman Peninsula for a couple of days. It was lovely, but the weather was foul, really cold and wet. We stayed in a good, but very kitch cottage that was filled with ladybird stuff. Erik loved it. "Go Ladybug house?" he'd say every time we were on our way home. Our intention was to go to Port Arthur, via the Tasmanian Devil Conservation Park.We had a fab time at the devil park. I'd never seen live devils before, and they are an excellent animal. Unfortunately they're under great threat from a very aggressive, contagious cancer (Devil Facial Tumour Disease) that is spread by biting each other (which they do a lot). I'll let you google it for yourselves, but the photos are really depressing. The disease has killed about 80-90% of the population since it emerged 15 years ago, and of the remining 20%, 50% are infected, and the death rate is 100%. So not much hope for the devil at this point unless the small number of uninfected devils are resistant and can be a new breeding population. As well as devils the park has quolls (which are super cute, and related to devils), kangaroos, wallabies and pademelons . Also a number of birds that have been either rescued or surrendered as pets, so the park runs a show with them, and some of them you can get quite close to. Kermit the frogmouth, for example. He was hit by a car (as they often are) and his wing was broken and couldn't be repaired enough for him to fly. So he spends his days on this stick, which the staff lodge high up in a tree and get him down for the show. He's pretty happy, and it's better than being dead.After the devil park we headed off for Port Arthur, but of course Erik fell asleep in the car, so we drove around for a while. When he woke up again, we went back to PA, but by that time it was quite late, and given the size of the site, the lateness of the hour, and the extremity of the entry charge, we elected not to go in. A bit disappointing, but a sensible decision all up. Beloved and E wouldn't've enjoyed all the walking enough to justify it. So we got back in the car and headed up the peninsula, stopping at the lookout for the tessellated pavement , which was pretty interesting, but not all that visible because the tide was coming in. We had a nice short walk along the path to it though, which was just what Erik needed.Next day we headed back to the devil park (it was really good fun, and Erik loved watching the devils and quolls being fed. If I get my act together I'll put some video of them up). and from then on to Richmond where we stayed in an old farmhouse. We didn't have a lot of time there, but they h[...]

Meeting Andy Griffiths

Mon, 04 Oct 2010 11:06:00 +0000

We found out, the day before it was happening, that Andy Griffiths would be at a signing. On the other side of town. By the time we got there (about 10 minutes before it was due to start) the queue reached all the way around the escalator stairwell. I'm not sure how all these other people knew it was happening. I didn't think that many people read the local paper, but they must. The bookshop staff were very nice, an advance guard came around with post-it notes to write the child's name on to make the whole thing go faster, and then another woman came around with a basket of lollipops, but still an hour is a long time in a queue with a 2 year old on your back. D'Arcy is nervous enough that he didn't want me to leave him in the queue and go off and do anything interesting, so I had to hang around while he read his new books. I've been trying to interest him in the ideas of Lenore Skenazy who is in Aus right now, but he won't have a bar of it. *Sigh*

Another conversation

Sat, 02 Oct 2010 22:49:00 +0000

Scene: Mummy at the table, Erik somewhere else, rattling toys.

Mummy: Hey Wes, where are you? Are you on the cat tree again?
Erik: No. I not on the cat tree. (pause) I hiding. On the cat tree.

Early Morning Conversation

Fri, 01 Oct 2010 23:28:00 +0000

Scene: Bedroom. Mummy on one side of a double bed, Erik rolled all the way to the other side and kind of hanging off the edge. Dog on the floor between the bed and the door.

Car pulls up outside and doors slam.

Dog: Ro-ro-ro-ro
Mummy: Shut up Larry, it's the neighbours.
Erik (rolls over): Hi Mum!
Mummy: Hi Wes.
Erik (sits up): I am checking something out right over there.
Mummy: I know, you were falling off.
Erik: I not find any bagel chips.
Mummy: No. You wouldn't. We're in bed.
Dog: woof
Erik: Larry woofing, tiny bit.
Mummy: Yes, he's a dog.


I'm not a morning person.

Actually, no.

Sat, 17 Jul 2010 05:04:00 +0000

Not chinchin fox after all. Which means we don't know what it is. I'm now thinking some kind of insect bites (but what?) and have washed/vacuumed all his bedding and snuggly toys (sorry Ow) to see if that fixes it. The doctor suggested scabies, but it's not really typical of that either. Sigh...

Daddy came home a week ago, and E is loving having him back, but it's sometimes a case of "No! No Daddy. Mummy up!" which is a bit hard on them both.

I took D to see Toy Story 3 on Wednesday, which we both loved. D keeps wannting to tell the beloved all his favourite bits, but I've talked him out of it, on the grounds that we will probably buy it on DVD and I don't want all the best jokes spoiled.

D has been (and got us) hooked on Masterchef over the last couple of months, even E likes it "Massachef on?", and we were sad to see some of our favourite chefs eliminated recently. I always think there could be a lot more cooking and a lot fewer ads though. I've taken to turning the volume down during them, as D has a tendency to want to sing along or recite them, and it drives me beserk, being prone to earworms as I am! I'm also trying to make him see that the ads are not vital, and are in fact an interruption, though they do provide an opportunity to get up and go to the toilet, or make a cup of tea, or change the toddler's nappy, or have a chat with your companions and bring them up to speed on the bits of the show they've missed.

School holidays are now finished, so back to school next week. D is simultaneously excited and annoyed. He doesn't like school, but the school term means that basketball training, and games, resume.

A Pox on't

Sat, 03 Jul 2010 04:59:00 +0000

Yes, we have the "chinchin fox", or at least that's what we assume is going on. Spots that come out sequentially over a number of days, following a couple of days of being slightly snotty. The doctor couldn't think of anything else it could be either so there you go. He's perfectly happy though - wasn't actually sick, and is a bit grumpy about being itchy, but other than that quite normal. We've been avoiding going out unnecessarily, but we do that anyway in the middle of winter. The doc thought it was such a mild dose because he's been immunised for it (it's on the govt schedule here at 18 months) as have I since our last scare when there was an epidemic at D'Arcy's school. He didn't get it then, so I'm wondering if it'll happen this time. Of course it's now jsut school holidays and the incubation period is up to 21 days, so he might get it when it's time to go back to school. He'd like that! As long as he doesn't miss camp, which he's been looking forward to this year. He had such a great time last year, and his sleeping-on-his-own is pretty much cemented here now.

Erik had a birthday (#2, I know, I can't believe it either) and we had a small party for his friends here. I made a cake (from a packet) and it was actually quite yummy. I needed to go out a few days later and buy a mixer though as it was just too hard without one!


Erik is sitting on my knee and saying "bwow candin den" when he sees the pic of the cake.


Wed, 21 Apr 2010 09:35:00 +0000

We had a family holiday. First ever really. My sister lives up near Tweed Heads (right on the NSW/Qld border) so we went to visit her. It was Erik's first plane trip, which he quite enjoyed, especially when the space waitress offered him an apple.We went to the shop at Tropical Fruit World, where you can buy all kinds of exciting things without having to pay the exorbitant entry fee to the orchard, and played on their playground for a while.We ate dragonfruit frozen yoghurt,bought Rollinia, which is related to custard apple and really yummy with some lime juice,and dragonfruit.But rollinia was Erik's fave.We went to Dreamworldas you do, when you have kids. It was exhausting for me, as I carried E most of the time, and there was lots of standing around. One of the standout rides was the log-ride, which was very splashy, but a lot of fun. Erik's other favourite was the Wiggles World section of the park.The beach was a popular place with all the boys.All up, a success. Would do it again. Subscribe in a reader[...]


Tue, 06 Apr 2010 11:47:00 +0000

Not a fabulous title for a blog post, but as we've been at the National Folk Festival for the weekend, kind of appropriate. Actually, mainly appropriate because "stabby" is the closest Erik can get to saying "festival" which is quite cute. We had a good time, though I got really tired, wrangling E by myself for 4 days. We arrived on Thursday, with D'Arcy who announce on arrival that he was feeling sick. He lasted about half an hour before he needed to be taken home, whereupon he went to bed, only to reawaken 2 hours later with a raging fever. I managed to get his dad to take him for a few days, which left me and Erik free to go and play.

Erik's highlight was the Icarus Performance Troupe who were three roving street performers dressed as giant kangaroos on stilts with springs in them. "roo? jump. roo? talk. roo? big." are some of his conversational gems. He talked about them all day on Friday, including when he woke up in the night! By Sunday, D was better enough to join us. His highlight was playing with Ampersand Duck's son Bumblebee, and getting weed on by another street performers dog accomplice. Erik also loved playing with B and has a name for him now. "B, chase!" and "boys" (meaning D and B)...


I had a lot of fun, despite it being exhausting, and caught up with lots of friends.

In other news, Erik has been feeding his cat, Ow, at mealtimes...


This meal was pasta and I think Ow enjoyed it quite a lot!


Mon, 08 Mar 2010 06:55:00 +0000

It has been raining a lot here lately, which is weird, as we're officially still in drought, but the last couple of weeks have seen some excellent precipitation. Erik now says "rainy" which means both "rainy" and "raining" which is quite a lot of fun.

A couple of times lately they've opened up the spillway on the dam, and today we went to check it out.


I've also been thinking about black&white photography a bit lately, having signed up for a photo challenge with some friends. I've received a roll of film and a shot list. I take the pics and send the film back to the woman organising it. She'll develop it and post the resulting photos online. This isn't one of them (obviously) but I'm starting to think in terms of what makes a good b&w shot, so that's a good thing I think...


Lots more pics from the dam on Flickr if you want to see them.


Fri, 26 Feb 2010 03:48:00 +0000

Erik made a dog out of some toast he was eating at lunch time...sorry it's a bit long, and ends with a tantrum (it was bed time) but he's chatting away about all kinds of things here, for those that are interested. I'm hoping Anne shows this to the Joyces...

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Because I am a bad mother,

Fri, 12 Feb 2010 22:40:00 +0000

I called D'Arcy on his posturing and bravado. We were having laksa for dinner, which he usually declines to eat in favour of spring rolls. Last night he said he'd like some laksa, which I provided, and he was tucking into it happily (it's not really very hot) and somehow the dinner table conversation turned to some Mexican Hot Sauce that the beloved had brought back from the US last trip.I mentioned that the one on the left is so hot as to be almost inedible (and even the beloved sweats mightily when he eats it, which makes me laugh) and its primary ingredient (as you'd hope) is habaneros. D'Arcy's response to this was "let me try some, I can handle it. Bring it on!" I tried to dissuade him from this, but he was all keen by then. I put a tiny smear on a tiny coffee spoon and said "don't put it all in your mouth at once" but of course he didn't listen, and shoved the spoon in his gob. Now, those of you who are familiar with the habanero pepper will remember that the first moment you put it in your mouth, you think "hey this isn't so bad. Huh, hottest chillis known, bite me!" and then it does. Quite hard in fact. D'Arcy didn't eat anywhere near as much as the kid in this link, so his response wasn't quite so graphic, but still he was unhappy. Half a glass of milk (which he never drinks) fixed it pretty well, but he didn't finish his laksa. The beloved points out that it was very hard not to laugh at him, but we managed with only a bit of "I told you so".This is towards the end of the holidays, playing in the tent inside seemed to be the fun thing to do one week. D's hair was really long here. He's been desperate to grow it long, so one of the things he got for Christmas was some bandannas to keep it out of his eyes. His dad and stepmum have been keen for him to get it cut "neatly" (despite the ironic fact that his dad had long hair when I first met him) and dragged him to the hairdresser. Fortunately the hairdresser is on his side, and gave him the barest trim. It was great.More tent action. Sometimes Kovu was in there too.One of the T-shirts we dyed, this was an ABA one that was a fundraiser for one of the local groups, but of course the shirt was white. Silly colour for a baby, but we fixed that.School has begun. D's new teacher is lovely, which makes a change from last year, where he and his teacher didn't see eye to eye on a lot of things really. He still doesn't like school though, and says frequently that "it's boring". I've tried pointing out to him that "boring" is a mindset, but he's not receptive to that idea at all.His knee has finally healed up, with a nice scar to show for it, that he won't let me take a pic of, sadly. He's also very much opposed to wearing shorts, as he thinks people (especially kindies) stare at his knee. I'm not sure if he actually thinks that, or he's just saying it... Subscribe in a reader[...]

Holiday activities.

Thu, 14 Jan 2010 23:53:00 +0000

D'Arcy got a tie-dye kit for his birthday some years ago which he's been keen to use. I finally managed to get some plain shirts for him to dye...


Here are the results. It's not the immersion type, rather that you fill bottles with dye and squirt it on after you've tied. We weren't quite careful enough to get all the folded bits coloured, so might have another go at the very sparse white one. Just need to get more soda ash from the craft shop. There's dye left over and they claim it'll last two weeks. The kit was made by Jacquard and came with everything you need, except shirts. It's pretty good really and I'd recommend it as a birthday gift for someone in that 7-13 age range. Boys or girls.
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Liveblogging the pesto X

Thu, 14 Jan 2010 01:28:00 +0000




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Liveblogging the pesto IX

Thu, 14 Jan 2010 01:21:00 +0000


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