Wednesday, March 30, 2011
French doors wide open
We perch ourselves in the sunniest spot
Taking in the Autumn sun
TV off, no computer screen catching my attention
No book or magazine or newspaper before my eyes
Nothing but you and me
I give you my undivided attention
No older sister or brother
poking their noses in.
Just you on your lonesome
Like a first born, I marvel at you
Your inquisitiveness, your movements,
How wonderful and fearfully created you are.
How blessed I am, I wonder in amazement
Dishes forgotten, washing left untouched,
Floors left dusty.
Captivated by you instead
All because on this sunny Autumn day
I chose to give you my undivided attention instead.
Whoop whoop...the chicken pox are clearing. Thanks for the love and concern on this post. Bubbas been a real trooper...and we are slowly coming out of quarantine... xx
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
"See you 6 months for a set of xrays" he says. Not flippin likely! Who knows how much that'll cost!
Monday, March 28, 2011
I found this funny
For Coffee Drinkers: You know you are addicted to coffee if ...
You grind your coffee beans in your mouth.
You sleep with your eyes open.
You have to watch videos in fast-forward.
The only time you're standing still is during an earthquake.
You can take a picture of yourself from ten feet away without using the timer.
You've worn out your third pair of tennis shoes this week.
Your eyes stay open when you sneeze.
You chew on other people's fingernails.
The nurse needs a scientific calculator to take your pulse.
You're so jittery that people use your hands to blend their margaritas.
You can type sixty words per minute with your feet.
You can jump-start your car without cables.
You don't sweat, you percolate.
You walk twenty miles on your treadmill before you realize it's not plugged in.
You forget to unwrap candy bars before eating them.
You've built a miniature city out of little plastic stirrers.
People get dizzy just watching you.
Instant coffee takes too long.
You channel surf faster without a remote.
You have a picture of your coffee mug on your coffee mug.
You can outlast the Energizer bunny.
You short out motion detectors.
You don't even wait for the water to boil anymore.
Your nervous twitch registers on the Richter scale.
You help your dog chase its tail.
You soak your dentures in coffee overnight.
Your first-aid kit contains two pints of coffee with an I.V. hookup.
You ski uphill.
You get a speeding ticket even when you're parked.
You answer the door before people knock.
You haven't blinked since the last lunar eclipse.
So who wants a coffee?
Friday, March 25, 2011
Thursday, March 24, 2011
After years of wondering what after school activity to start for we have settled on Gymnastics. When I was growing up there was one choice...netball. I lived in a small town with not much to do. My parents didn't need to take me anywhere, I could rock up to the local courts and practice with my team mates. I started from the age of 7 and continued till 14. After then I was involved in other things.
Fast forward a couple of decades and the list of after school options is endless. Dance (ballet, modern, tap...), cheerleading, sports, athletics, girl guides....
In the end I went with gymnastics because:
a) both kids could get into the same class/session
b) it was something athletic to help build coordination and motor skills.
c) They show a good amount of agility after years jumping on our trampoline
d) It was fairly cheap as far as fees go
After the first lesson they absolutely loved it. They keep bouncing up and down on the mat just because its bouncy. Meanwhile I try and keep Zak-Zak occupied for an hour.
After reading a lot of literature and blogs about not over scheduling your family, I have decided that we will just have one activity/sport for the week...for now. With three kids, work and other commitments I hope I can try and make a good balance for us all.
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
The back yard is pretty steep and the lawn mower is an old hand me down, but once I got going I got a pretty good sweat on. It was a great work out alright! I didn't quite do as well as hubby, but it was a start.
Some how this year for me has become a year of "I can" as opposed to living the last 29 years of "Meh... I cant be bothered or I can't and I won'ts". There is something about finding a challenge, taking it on and conquering it that makes you feel alive and invigorated. We should always be conquering life's little and large challenges. Moving forward... growing...evolving....changing. I really don't want to be stagnant and lifeless for the next 29 years of my life.
The bible has a cool verse that basically says we should always be growing in character. There's always more in life that we can improve and overcome.
2 Peter 1:5-9 (New Century Version)Bring on the next challenge!
Have you been stoked with yourself lately because you overcame a challenge or tried something new?
Monday, March 21, 2011
From this site I learned the other things they are learning are:
- Learning about Numbers through Play
- Social development
- Shapes and Colors
- Ideas and Creativity
- learning by doing, also referred to as hands-on learning or learning by making things
- Getting a feel for [a grasp on, literally] the qualities of the materials at hand
- learning about the powers of progressive refinement (trial-error), and of starting over (doing-undoing)
- patience, determination and self-esteem
And here I was thinking it was just a nice way to get some peace and quiet!
Are your kids into lego?
Friday, March 18, 2011
So thankful for this week:
Watching Hubster (AKA Lesmond J) getting all trim and fit like. He has also been incredibly supportive of my effort to get fit for my Triwoman event. I think Yay for us! Its great to be fit and sets a great example to the kids.
Almost making it to the top...and watching the years worth of progress and over coming fear to get this far.
Thursday, March 17, 2011
Rocky Road Slice.
I'm sure I've said this before but if I wasn't a nurse I would probably be a food technologist or working in a test kitchen. I love experimenting in the kitchen. I hate the restriction of following a recipe. I get this from my mum, she never followed recipe books, choosing to make it up as she went along instead. It can work out good and sometimes not so much.
Today I wanted some rocky road. Not just a rocky road but some sort of slice, I googled it for some ideas then went for it and this delicious slice turned out. I have had some for lunch and afternoon tea (naughty me!). This is the recipe that I "tested".
100g butter, melted
1 cup flour
1 cup cocoa puffs (you could use rice bubbles)
1/4 cup cocoa
1/2 cup castor sugar
Combine together, press into lined square cake tin. Bake for 15-20 minutes on 180 Celsius until crisp on top.
1 cup chocolate chips or better chocolate if you like
1 cup chopped marshmallows (I used some Marshmallow Easter eggs)
1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts
1/4 cup coconut
Melt chocolate and butter over a double boiler or in microwave, then add marshmallows and nuts.
Spread evenly over the base making sure a good scattering of marshmallow bits all over. Sprinkle over coconut. Allow to cool on bench then pop into fridge until firm.
Cut into squares.
Try not to eat all at once.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
I have a Dotty Wot and Spotty Wot at home sick from school and morning kindy with chicken pox. Ready for it I stopped in at the supermarket for a good supply of ice blocks. I also stocked up on some activities from the stationary store. An assortment of paints, brushes, new felts, scrapbooks and foam shapes for gluing. Along with some learning books, I armed myself for home schooling for the week. Boy what a challenge on my patience this week has been. I have a renewed admiration for anyone who can manage to teach children for longer than 1 hour. Only 15 minutes into it, master almost-5 states I'm hungry!... But you just ate!... I'm still hungry! I try and get something done with miss 7, times tables, story writing, art...In the end we all stop frustrated with one another and out they go to play outside for a while. What ever the secret is to teaching children I don't have it! I am really looking forward to Monday!
And I'll stick to helping out with after school homework.
Monday, March 14, 2011
I have a confession... I have been guilty of Mummy judging this week. I don't know why we do it. A simple coffee with other mums starts out all innocent and nice and then out come the comments..."Her kids aren't sleeping through the night?!"...."I saw a mum give a baby some coke!"..."She still breastfeeds her 4 year old!"...
We all HATE being in the receiving end of mummy judging and we all want to do some face punching when someone questions our parenting choices, but we readily talk about others behind their backs.
I have to admit after three kids my judgments of other mums is on a rapid decline. I no longer hold on to the ideologies I once had when I was pre-children or even after the firstborn. My first born didn't have her first lollipop until she was two, of course the second born was no where near that old. Because after three children you realise you cant sweat the small stuff. You realise well into this parenting lark that its survival mode. Its a tough job...they wear you down to an emotionally spent wreck, you get 8 hours to sleep it off (uninterrupted if you are lucky!) and then you start the day again. You do the best you can with the time that you have.
I have decided that kids are a resilient bunch. They can make it through childhood with the most limited of resources. Kids in third world countries are making into adulthood everyday. I know of kids from the early 70's who survived drinking straight cows milk from birth, because they hadn't invented formula yet. And if cows milk wasn't tolerated the second choice was tinned evaporated milk! They seemed to make it to adulthood. This makes me feel that my parenting choices ("Shall I buy fresh salmon for healthy brain development for tea tonight?") on the grand scale of things is not so bad. Of course all children need to have all the essentials of a safe, loving environment with boundaries and nourishment!
Bottle or breast, to immunize or not to, attachment parenting or detachment parenting, disposable nappies or cloth; and that's just in the first few months of the kids life! All very important choices that each parent must decide on their own for their own reasons. So I have a challenge...for you and for me...how about we stop judging each other. We all do the same difficult job...some of us just do it differently.
Thursday, March 10, 2011
They do a range of coffees and drinks and also ice creams and hand made chocolate. But the one thing I go there for the a thing called "Fudge flavourama" And mix of fudge and vanilla ice cream whipped together in a cup or waffle cone. Heavenly! Add my favourite coffee blend and you have my favourite spot in Whangarei. Next time you hit Whangarei, be sure to stop in to this little place.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
My awesome Pastor blessed us with a half sack of apples from his very bountiful orchard. So I gathered together a couple of workers and we set up a little production line. One peeling, one cutting and one grating in the food processor. One of the "workers" tried to see how long he could make his peel.
I'm looking forward to frying myself up a pork chop just so I can use my yummy sauce.
The recipe is pretty much: Grate your apples, put them in a pot with some water, a bit of white wine vinegar, some chopped onion (red and brown) and garlic, some dark cane sugar, spoonfuls of all spice and paprika. Cook on a moderate heat for a couple of hours until all cooked up. Then use a hand blender to make into a smooth sauce.
Serve with Pork.
Monday, March 7, 2011
- "the tired and apathetic feeling experienced by persons returning to work on a Monday after the weekend"
Finding a bombsite that needs cleaning because of the effects of 5 messy bodies all being around on the weekend. I hate housework. Sometimes I think hubby got a real "dud" when it comes to my cleaning skills. Dusting, ironing, laundry... blergh. Theres no way when I was a little girl did I want to grow up and be a maid. But someone has to do it...am I right? Whinge, whinge.
I put bubba to bed for a nap and cranked up my new CD and danced my way through my housework. (Loving this song).
Soon my attitude changed. Thankfulness replaced my unthankfulness. Joy replaced my weariness. The creative juices have started to flow, and I have officially got over my Monday-itis.
Does anyone else get a bad case of Monday-itis?
Friday, March 4, 2011
I've just returned from a morning at my local Mums group. I always leave encouraged and inspired for another week ahead of the relentlessly tiresome job of mothering. But it hasn't always been this way. When I first became a mummy 7 years ago, breaking in to the coffee group scene was tricky! At the time I didn't have any friends who were pregnant with me. I was in paid employment before but had decided to take the full year off maternity leave thereby leaving the workplace social interaction. With most of my friends unmarried, childfree and carefree it meant I had to find some other mums for company. Enter the big wide world of mums groups. So after 7 years experience of mums/coffee groups I thought I might give a New Mums Guide to fitting in at Coffee groups.
1) Try and find one person you know and go to a group together. At least you will both be in the same boat and can hang together while you make new friends.
2) Smile and be friendly. I know it sounds obvious, but go with the intention of making new friends. No one is likely to approach you if you have "do not disturb" written all over your face. And like wise don't be afraid to approach someone new. You already have one thing in common, you are all mums! Things like "how old is your little one?" or "Whats her name?" are always good starts to conversation.
3) Practice the art of empathy. If a mum says to you "Man! I have been up 3 times last night with little Jonny" Instead of saying "What! he doesn't sleep through the night yet?!" Something more along the lines of "Wow that must be so tough for you". At the end of the day we all just want to be listened to.
4)Try not to think of them as "clicky" groups. It is hard when you go to a group that feels "clicky". Understand that people have already established relationships before the day you arrive. So it is natural for them to talk to each other like they already know each other, because they do. Its just a natural social interaction. Just try and find one person from the group, establish a friendship with them first and they might fill you in on everyone else so you can fit in a bit more next time.
5) Its not a competition. Sometimes you come across other mums who feel the need to use their children as a props to their ego. Children shouldn't be used for this! You are always going to find someone elses child crawled early, walked early, slept through the night early. Each child grows and develops at their own pace. If you come across someone like this who wants you to know there little Jonny is the bee knees, just nod and smile.
6) Try and find something else in common with each other, other than your kids. Crafts, work projects, where you are from, what brand of coffee you like....anything! Our lives are not all kids and neither should our conversation be. Its easier to connect with someone when you have at least one other thing in common.
7) If at first you don't succeed try again. If coffee groups don't work for you try a preschool activity like Mainly music or swimming lessons. This way you are doing an activity together and can have coffee later to continue the conversation. If you find it hard to fit in at one group or it really isn't working for you try a new one.
Being a new mother can be isolating enough without staying home all day and watching daytime TV. So get out there and use this opportunity to make new friends. It will enrich your life and and your child's life too!
Thursday, March 3, 2011
I remember hearing about her story on TV a few years ago so I knew who she was when Hubster brought us the book from the library. She is a NZ woman whose eldest two children have Cystic Fibrosis, an incurable chronic disease, which takes their little lives usually before the age of thirty. The story is about how she goes from depressed mother of four and overweight to two time iron woman in two years! An Ironman is the longest endurance sport in the world, a 3.8KM swim, a 180km bike ride and a marathon run (42.2km). Even elite athletes find it hard to finish this grueling event. All the while raising awareness and funds for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.
This book is a no holds barred story about how she got to the Hawaii Ironman. At times her honesty astounds me. She certainly doesn't hold back what she thought of her ex-husband...I wonder if he was offended? She gives her account of what it was like spending a brief time in a Psychiatric facility, an experience she was very ashamed of. I also learned so much about CF and what that means to the kids who have it and their families who live with it too.
Does this story inspire me to do an ironman? Heck no! I better finish my triwoman event first! But it did inspire me to think no matter what the circumstances of your life, you can push yourself to the limits by as she puts it " one rung at a time on the ladder to success". A super inspiring story that is sure to encourage you to do all that you can with the life that you have.