Thursday, 27 January 2011

The Cute Stuff that LQ does.

Turn your volume up loud for this one.  LQ was showing us how much she enjoyed eating Daddy's chips.

While we were all dying over the weekend (mostly me), we played a lot of Wii.  LQ showing off her skills.

Thursday, 20 January 2011

Running Away

I googled "How do I run away from my child?" today.

It turns out Google isn't so helpful with this question.  Not one person even had a thought that the parent and not the child might be the one looking to run away.  Pages upon pages of helpful websites telling me what to do if my child runs away, if I'm having problems with a run away child or if I suspect my child will run away shortly.

Do you think LQ suspects I want to run away from her?  I'll check my Google history to make sure.

Stupid Google.  Now I'm stuck at home with a kid that's been sick for three weeks and it's all YOUR fault.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Flash Flooding and Prayers

I am not sure if you, my readers (who are in different countries), are aware of the devastation that has hit my Australian home state of Queensland.  In what has only been explained as a freak of nature, my home town of Toowomba was hit by a flash flood that was described as the beginning of an inland tsunami.  Toowoomba is a city nestled on the edge of the Great Dividing Range that was my home for just over 10 years of my life.   There was no way for the water to go but down off the mountain, and so an 8 metre (24 foot) wall of water rushed down the mountain devastating the low lying towns below it and further on.  Toowoomba is surrounded by many farming communities and as such the flood as ruined not only homes, but livelihoods. From what I have read 80% of the state of Queensland (a sizable state) has now been declared as being in a state of emergency.  The capital city, Brisbane, has been put on flood watch and the inner city has been essentially closed down because of the close-by river (Brisbane River) breaking its banks.

I ask you that you keep all these people who are so closely affected by this disaster in your prayers and if you can do more, I am including a link that will lead you to a website that you can donate to the flood relief appeal.

I feel so helpless sitting here in the states watching video and seeing pictures of places that I know by heart completely washed away.  To my family and friends, stay safe and know I am keeping you in my thoughts and prayers.  I love you all.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Big Girl

LQ turns four in just over three months. And I think I am finally starting to grow up. I've started putting my big girl panties on a few more times a week and it makes me feel good.

There is such a feeling of empowerment that I have been getting that I wanted to share with you. But now as I sit down to write about it, it seems too hard to describe. It mostly feels like I am finally becoming the big girl that I have always dreamed of being. The kind of big girl that just sucks it up and gets things done.

I still hate doing housework, but now it gets done earlier in the day. And if it doesn't get done, I move on and tend not to call myself useless. I have recognised my weaknesses as a mother and am moving on. Sometimes a girl just needs to accept that her personality isn't the kind that will ever get over-excited about spending an entire day playing with children. I have also recognised my strengths as a mother. More often than not I forgo an afternoon nap to do something useful.

All this means nothing really. Just that I have been feeling good about myself lately... and I wanted to share it.

Of course there is always the PMS exception.

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Man Room Extended - extra photos

I guess the movie wasn't such a good idea.  My family seems to be having issues pressing play.... so I thought I would take my lazy bottom out to the back room and take some pictures of it.  I love my family, by the way.




All of the stuff on the shelving is from Dal's life up to now.  He plays the drums, wants to be Indiana Jones (see plush Mickey), loves film, etc.  I guess the fake plant is just there for aesthetics. 


The storeroom.... still has a bunch of junk in it.  The lower white frame has a rubbing of Jimmy Hendrix's gravestone that I found among Dal's stuff.

Saturday, 8 January 2011

The Man Room

Mid November my brain spewed forth a brilliant gift idea for Dal. This has NEVER happened to me. I am usually scrambling for a Dal gift idea at the last minute and it never seems as creative as the gifts that he comes up with for me. I know it isn't supposed to be a competition, but every-single-one-of-you that has a partner knows that it IS a competition. A competition to see who is the idiot in the relationship... the one who is oblivious to how much we "really" are going to spend on the other.

Throughout the beginning of December Dal and I went back and forth about whether we could afford to give each other presents this year. It's not like we are destitute, but there are certainly other more important things we could have been spending our money on. My brilliant idea was to take our plain, holey and dirty detached room and single-handedly turn it into the man cave we were "one day" going to do. So as we went back and forth about gifts and time went on, I started to panic a little. Finally we decided that yes we could afford Christmas.

Two weeks until Christmas. I walk out to the back room and discover a lovely person in the past had painted OVER wallpaper*. That was the easy part. Other hiccups included the large holes in the walls that had been filled in by a person oblivious to the fact that there was painted over wallpaper, hence forever STICKING the wallpaper around the hole to the drywall. Electric outlets had been left on during the last painting, so the outlets were not only screwed to the wall, but also permanently stuck there by paint. I managed to crack two when I pried them off with a screwdriver. No great loss.

So, I got stuck into it. I spent LQ's nap times spraying small amounts on exposed parts of the wallpaper and then picking small strands of wallpaper off. I soon realised that at the rate I was going, I wouldn't get the room finished until the following Christmas. I enlisted the help of my sisters-in-law. Both looking after LQ for a few days while I really got stuck into the grimeyness of that room. One of those blessed sisters even helped with the wallpaper peeling. I got sick the following day, but dragged my sorry butt out to that room, determined to finish on time. I got discouraged but carried on. And three days before Christmas, I finished.





This was an old rusty lamp without a shade that I reused in the room (see below - I spray painted it white)


Now before you say that it is too feminine.... Dal's favourite colour is purple. So there's only so much you can do with purple without it looking feminine! The pillows will probably be delegated to another room soon and the chair that is in there isn't actually the chair that we will be using in there. The correct chair is a nice deep manly red leather rocker/recliner that we got for $50 off craigslist (hooray for craigslist!!). I got all but one of those picture frames for free. The shelving I found in the storage room that I just painted white. The tv we already had. So all in all it was a pretty inexpensive project. If anything, it makes me happy that I created something like that. Now I've just got to convince LQ that it really ISN'T normal to have toasted cheese sandwiches and lollies for dinner every night.

As an aside (because I feel like i haven't written enough words on this post), once I was finished I didn't quite know what to do with myself. I had thrown myself in to that room and then I had nothing. So I gave myself a few sewing projects to finish before Christmas (3 days, remember) - create a Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland inspired dress for my 2 year old niece, finish quiet book pages for my nephew, sew a small ribbon tag cube for other nephew and sew some candy bags.

* Just so you know why painting over wallpaper is BAD, BAD, BAD!!!! Wallpaper should be easy to peel off. A special solution is sprayed or wiped over the wallpaper and because of the porous nature of the wallpaper it sucks that solution right up and then you can grab big sheets of the stuff and pull it right off. IF you paint over wallpaper, then you screw up that porous part of the wallpaper and poor schlepps like me come along and have to score the painted wallpaper and pick the shreds of wallpaper off with their fingernails or if you aren't as poor as me a fun scraper tool. I googled "removing painted over wallpaper" and all I got was that there is a special place in heaven for people who have the job of removing painted over wallpaper. It wasn't really helpful.

Friday, 7 January 2011

An oldie but a goodie

I've seen it before, but I was reading it again this morning and had a good chuckle. I am certain that if I read it once every year, different things will make me laugh maniacally and then burst into tears.

Lesson 10 seems to ring true right now. I really like the goats in the supermarket suggestion. I had two goats (best friend cousins) with me at the post office yesterday. One of them decided to get around by sliding on her belly the whole way. The other goat thought it best if she licked all the glossy surfaces she could find. Yep. It made me extremely happy that the line was almost out the door.

11 Step Program for those thinking of having kids...

Lesson 1

1. Go to the grocery store.

2. Arrange to have your salary paid directly to their head office.

3. Go home.

4. Pick up the paper.

5. Read it for the last time.

Lesson 2

Before you finally go ahead and have children, find a couple who already are parents and berate them about their...

1. Methods of discipline.

2. Lack of patience.

3. Appallingly low tolerance levels.

4. Allowing their children to run wild.

5. Suggest ways in which they might improve their child's breastfeeding, sleep habits, toilet training, table manners, and overall behavior.

Enjoy it because it will be the last time in your life you will have all the answers.

Lesson 3

A really good way to discover how the nights might feel...

1. Get home from work and immediately begin walking around the living room from 5PM to 10PM carrying a wet bag weighing approximately 8-12 pounds, with a radio turned to static (or some other obnoxious sound) playing loudly. (Eat cold food with one hand for dinner)

2. At 10PM, put the bag gently down, set the alarm for midnight, and go to sleep.

3. Get up at 12 and walk around the living room again, with the bag, until 1AM.

4. Set the alarm for 3AM.

5. As you can't get back to sleep, get up at 2AM and make a drink and watch an infomercial.

6. Go to bed at 2:45AM.

7. Get up at 3AM when the alarm goes off.

8. Sing songs quietly in the dark until 4AM.

9. Get up. Make breakfast. Get ready for work and go to work (work hard and be productive)

Repeat steps 1-9 each night. Keep this up for 3-5 years. Look cheerful and together.

Lesson 4

Can you stand the mess children make? T o find out...

1. Smear peanut butter onto the sofa and jam onto the curtains.

2. Hide a piece of raw chicken behind the stereo and leave it there all summer.

3. Stick your fingers in the flower bed.

4. Then rub them on the clean walls.

5. Take your favorite book, photo album, etc. Wreck it.

6. Spill milk on your new pillows. Cover the stains with crayons. How does that look?

Lesson 5

Dressing small children is not as easy as it seems.

1. Buy an octopus and a small bag made out of loose mesh.

2. Attempt to put the octopus into the bag so that none of the arms hang out.

Time allowed for this - all morning.

Lesson 6

Forget the BMW and buy a mini-van. And don't think that you can leave it out in the driveway spotless and shining. Family cars don't look like that.

1. Buy a chocolate ice cream cone and put it in the glove compartment.

Leave it there.

2. Get a dime. Stick it in the CD player.

3. Take a family size package of chocolate cookies. Mash them into the back seat. Sprinkle cheerios all over the floor, then smash them with your foot.

4. Run a garden rake along both sides of the car.

Lesson 7

Go to the local grocery store. Take with you the closest thing you can find to a pre-school child. (A full-grown goat is an excellent choice). If you intend to have more than one child, then definitely take more than one goat. Buy your week's groceries without letting the goats out of your sight. Pay for everything the goat eats or destroys. Until you can easily accomplish this, do not even contemplate having children.

Lesson 8

1. Hollow out a melon.

2. Make a small hole in the side.

3. Suspend it from the ceiling and swing it from side to side.

4. Now get a bowl of soggy Cheerios and attempt to spoon them into the swaying melon by pretending to be an airplane.

5. Continue until half the Cheerios are gone.

6. Tip half into your lap. The other half, just throw up in the air.

You are now ready to feed a nine- month-old baby.

Lesson 9

Learn the names of every character from Sesame Street , Barney, Disney, the Teletubbies, and Pokemon. Watch nothing else on TV but PBS, the Disney channel or Noggin for at least five years. (I know, you're thinking What's 'Noggin'?) Exactly the point.

Lesson 10

Make a recording of Fran Drescher saying 'mommy' repeatedly. (Important: no more than a four second delay between each 'mommy'; occasional crescendo to the level of a supersonic jet is required). Play this tape in your car everywhere you go for the next four years. You are now ready to take a long trip with a toddler.

Lesson 11

Start talking to an adult of your choice. Have someone else continually tug on your skirt hem, shirt- sleeve, or elbow while playing the 'mommy' tape made from Lesson 10 above. You are now ready to have a conversation with an adult while there is a child in the room.

Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Christmas Happened (Again)

The Christmas Tree (my first live one)

Christmas Tree

the cookie decorating (and making) with Aunt Becca



The many phone calls between cousins


The "Man Room" Renovation (more on that later)


The entertainment while the Man Room was being renovated


The Christmas Eve Nativity


The Christmas Eve "Talent" (Australian Jingle Bells)


The Christmas Eve sugar overload


Christmas Morning


The Dinosaur themed Christmas presents


The Gift Opening


The "Alice Dress" that I made



The Motherload