Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Goodbye July...


This was the view out of my kitchen window at about twenty to six tonight... It got me thinking that it was the last Sunset of this July month for 2007 and that it was a calender month that many of my friends will not be sorry to see the end of. The saying goes, "Red sky at night, sailor's delight..." which means that when the Sun casts a gorgeous red Sunset, like this one, it is heralding the coming of a gorgeous Sunny day the next day... Let's hope this bodes well for the month of August!!!

For me, the coming of August is a wonderful thing! Bryn turns two at the middle of the month, and towards the end of the month we should be hearing the wonderful news of the arrival of baby Juniper!!!

As well as this, August is the last month of Winter, and so it just HAS to get warmer, and the days will get longer and brighter, and with that I'm expecting that warm Spring breeze, scented with Jasmine that will lighten everyone's heart!!!

So, Goodbye July, and a warm welcome to August!

Monday, July 30, 2007

Today's To Do List...

  • Clean kitchen
  • General tidy up
  • Dry clothes that are in washing machine
  • Fill in Sports clinic form
  • Check homework for this week
  • Sort readings into folders
  • Get cheque for sports clinic
  • Mail form and cheque

  • If the weather clears up this afternoon, then walk down to boys school with Trojan and pick them up. (Weather didn't clear up until 3pm, by which time I was already on the bus up to the school...)
Have also

  • Swept floors
  • Organized for old fridge removal
  • Folded Bryn's clothing from the linen basket and put them away

Sunday, July 29, 2007

The Simpsons Movie...

Took the boys to see The Simpsons Movie today. This was Bryn's first ever movie experience, and so, of course, he managed to fall asleep in the ergo, on the tram, on the way down to the cinema. He woke about 1/2 way through the movie and Dave was holding him at the time and his eyes were apparently like plates! Then he spotted me, and want to sit on my lap, where he sat back and very placidly watch the rest of the movie!!! Erik's first movie was Thunderbirds Are Go! (the old movie, before the Thunderbirds revival movie), Luey's was Nemo (also by Pixar like today's movie)...

Anyway, he seemed to like it...

When the movie finished a bunch of kids went and stood right up in front of the screen so the lettering went over their bodies - they would have been aged 8-12, believe it or not... Erik and Luey, of course, had to be part of that action, and it freaked Bryn out to see the lettering roll over their bodies, he kept calling out, "Luey stuck! Erik stuck!" he obviously thought they were trapped by the lettering, LOL...

So, was the movie good, I here you asking. Well, WE lauged (Dave and I) throughout the entire movie, so it couldn't have been that bad... But you have to ask yourself, as Homer did, who would PAY for something you can see for free at home!

All said and done though, it was a GREAT first movie for Bryn!

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Iambic Monometer

So, at some point I have to actually START my studies. I've been reading about poetry in the past couple of days, trying to get some basics understanding of the terms and so forth. For the first weekly exercise (which we submit monthly for assessment), I have to write a poem, any style, any length on the subject of poetry... Now having read all the exercises I know I have to do this very exercise at the end of this unit, to so the lecturer (and I) can compare the two poems and hopefully see a progression...

So, I chose to write in Iambic (walking meter, Duh-dum) monometer, so one Iamb per line... This is what I've come up with...

I'm tense
I write
I think
This stinks
Two beats
Some Rhyme
Might work
This time
Challenged
All new
Yearning
Must learn
To write
With style
A verse
A theme
It seems
Too hard
No Bard
Am I
Poems
I like
To read
To hear
Not write
I fear
That gene
I lack
It seems


So, there you go, my first ever attempt at "real" poetry... Please remember the adage - if you have nothing nice to say, shut the hell up! I'm far too sensitive at this point for constructive criticism...

Friday, July 27, 2007

Adelaide Trip Part II

More from the trip... Now, my parents don't actually live in Adelaide, but rather, in the Barossa - a really beautiful part of Australia packed with vineyards and small touristy town jam packed with antiques and handcrafted items for sale...

Here is Bryn have his morning Cheerios...

Then out into the unfinished garden on a gorgeous day! My parents have just finished building their house and are now in full swing doing the garden. While we were there the front drive was being paved, and by now the back has probably been fully paved as well. I'm planning a trip back there in January with all three boys and by then the backyard should be fully landscaped...

It was also divinely warm while we were there, on the Saturday it was 20 degree, which explains the overexposure of my shots - the lighting in SA is quite different to that in Melbourne, the sky is wider and bluer and the sun shines with white hot light!

Firm friends chasing each other around the stacks of bricks...

Fetch Jacob, Fetch!

Mud, mud, glorious mud, nothing quite like it for cooling the blood...

Pro Hart, eat your heart out! (one of mum's students is Pro Harts granddaughter, just out of interest)...

Walkin' the dog, on the newly paved drive!

Some local neighbourhood boys playing in my parents paving sand - there are oodles of kids on the street, next door has three aged 12 and 8 years, and 2 months, then two houses up there are 5 kids aged 9 down to 3 years (including twins), and there are more kids down the road on the other side. The kids seemed to hang out in the street all day together, can't wait to bring the boys over in January for a play!

Bryn "gardening"...

Kicking a drink bottle around the driveway with "Dad Dad"...

Bryn's confidence with Jacob blossomed over the 5 day stay, by day three he was more than happy to let Jacob lick his hand...

At a local gardening centre. Now, not being much of green thumb myself, I was not completely convinced I'd enjoy high tea at the gardening centre, but it was a lot of fun actually. The owner have a quirky sense of humour which is reflected both in their tea pots and in the other items they sell at the centre...

Bryn loved being served tea (very milky tea) from the Giraffe teapot...

Isn't she gorgeous?!!! I want to start drinking tea and collecting tea pots now, hahaha!

S-Dad's "funny" sense of humour, LOL...

I thought this was a rather beautiful statue, situation right near the front door... Pricey though!

Oh, I want one of these! Wonder if it's too macabre for the kids??? They come in black too, but I like the red, so thematic!!!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Adelaide Trip Part I

ARGH! I took too many pics on my trip to Adelaide!!! I've promisd *a couple of* people I would post some pics, and that's fine, I LOVE posting my photos (only being a tiny bit narcissistic here), but gawd it boring chosing pics, and shrinking them and then waiting for them to load up here etc...

I've been so run off my feet with one thing or another this week too, so haven't had spare energy to blog.

But here are a few from the 100s I took. These are from the first day, and therefore are all but the last one taken at Mum's work - my new Uni - a gorgeous place for taking photos. Of course the subject of each photo is invariably Bryn (because he's just so adorable to me!)...

My grubby faced boy!

Hiding Hi-5 angel (he thought the flower the angel is holding was the Hi-5 handprint, so kept calling it Hi-5, LOL) in one of Amma's (his grandma) books...

Putting the springy legged sheep and the Hi-5 angel in his home-made "bus" (aka storage tray of some description)...

Soccer!

This photo is mainly about capturing the building in the background, LOL...

Oops, fallen but not hurt...

The *other* kind of dribbling... Can I just say, of all my kids, Bryn is best co-ordinate for his age! And he LOVES balls and has been kicking them since he could pull himself up on furniture! Can't think where he got the co-ordination from, certainly not Dave or I...

"Dwawing"

Irresistable!

Climbing the stair to Amma's office... We went up and down those stairs dozens of times over the visit, he LOVED them... He's very stair deprived in Melbourne...

Picking "oranges" - not sure what fruit this was, some sort of miniature citrus...

Afternoon tea with Amma in the refectory...

Cheeky buggar!

Oh looking, windows MY height, how MARVELLOUS!

This is Bryn that night playing with his new friend Jacob - these two got on like a house on fire - both rabbid ball chasers!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Regimentation...

Well, I was going to come in here and post Part I of the trip to Adelaide photos... Unfortunately, photobucket is down for maintenance, so that'll have to wait...

But luckily I have other stuff to blog that doesn't require photos...

I'm now all enrolled in my Masters and was supposed to start study on Monday, of course, on Monday, I was in Adelaide, so not much studying was happening. That's ok though because as it turned out two of the lecturers didn't have all their notes ready for distribution! So, the Semester has been put back one week...

I spent last night devising a timeline of assignments (as they have to be mailed in, and so I need to have them ready a couple of days BEFORE the due date). It's going to be full on, and that is with me only doing three of the units for the first half of the Semester. I was advised to start the fourth unit at the beginning of next term, which I thought was because the head of the department was concerned that I might have taken on too much, but it turns out it was because the co-lecturer in that unit hadnt done ANY prep. yet, so NONE of the students can start till next term... It is some sort of internal politics things, but geez, it's unprofessional and annoying to me because it means that in order to start my major project in February, I'll be working through January to get ready...

Again, luckily, I pretty much know what to do for that unit, so I can work ahead - it really pays to have internal contacts, that's all I can say!!!

So, I came back from Adelaide to a house that was a complete disaster zone and I realized, I really just cannot study in a hovel! So, I spent a couple of hours cleaning and tidying... The unfortunately reality is that in order to maintain a good study atmosphere, I'm going to have to stay on top of the housework as well...

Hence the title of this blog. I've decided that in order to study successfully, I need to a) have a timetable to follow, b) keep on top of the housework. I also need to get my weight under control, I've put on a lot of weight this Winter and now my size 16 pants are getting tight, which is rather frightening, consider that in May I was wearing size 12!!! Anyway, in order to achieve all this, I've decided I need to really be quite organized. Basically, I need a regiment to follow.

So, for the next 17 weeks, that's what I'll be doing, following a strict routine!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Do I even have the right to...

Ok, more pics of Bryn sleeping, yeah, maybe I'm obsessed, or maybe I'm just thrilled with how he happily sleeps all evening on the couch, instead of waking several times because he's cold...

Last night when we transferred him to the bed, he got very angry (at the cold) and yelled for about 10 minutes inconsolably, then finally fell asleep, about 30 minutes into his sleeping a bubble of giggle popped up out of this mouth, it was SOOOO cute, made me giggle too. 10 minutes later another bubble popped out - I think he must have been dreaming about playing witht he boys, because it was the same giggle he giggles when he's got Luey chasing him around the dining room table...

Anyway, to the title of this post... Today Erik lost a great toy that his best friend from school gave him for his birthday just two days ago. Erik had wanted to take it out of the house to show off, and I had warned him he might lose it (he is prone to losing stuff when out - yet another thing he's inherited from me, eek!)... But he really wanted to take it, and in the spirit of giving him more responsibility as he gets older, I agreed he could.

So, he lost the toy. He didn't seem overly upset, but I was...

I've been thinking about this tonight. Why was I so upset? Well, basically it comes down to wanting to make a good impression on his new friend and his friend's mum who had gone to the trouble of finding this excellent interactive toy for Erik, that encouraged him to read etc...

I'm now afraid that on Monday, either Erik or I are going to have to admit he's already lost the toy, and I'm afraid Erik's friend, or his mum are then going to think we don't value their friendship. *I* value Erik's friend's friendship and the effort this child's mother has put into fostering the friendship between these boys a lot!!! Before this friendship, Erik really didn't have a good friend he could call his own. This friendship has really helped Erik blossom socially!

I worry that Erik will do something to "stuff up" his new friendship, but do I even have the right to take on that concern??? Is it my place to play intermediary between Erik and his friends? To sheperd Erik's behaviour with regard to his friends and make sure he does and says the things *I* think are good and helpful?

I mean, I'm not exactly a "friendship poster girl"! Erik has more natural ability in making and maintaining friendships than I did at his age.

I suspect I'm transferring too many of my own friendship issues onto him...

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

"L" is for Learner...

Don't you just love piccies of sleeping bubbas? Here is the littlest man of the house fast asleep on the couch, because after many weeks of wakings we've decided he is just too cold in the bedroom by himself before we come to bed - it's only about 4 degrees in there...

Kate F, if you're reading this, that brown stain abover Bryn's head is the nearly 5 year old stain from the time Erik and Luey decided pouring treacle on our, then, brand new couch was a superb idea... We washed a lot of the treacle out but it always managed to seep back up and out of the sponge in the couch, so the couch has long needed a proper dry clean - we're waiting till all our kids are past the "condiments on furniture" age...


So, today marks the end of an era in Dave's and mine relationship... Namely the era of me NAGGING him to get his Ls so he can start taking lessons to FINALLY get a lisence. 10 long years of hounding and nagging, and whinging and bitching... My GODS but it better not take him 10 years to get his Ps!!! Very proud of him though! He got 88% on the test, he reckons he flubbed 4 questions maybe. First attempt too... Anyway, had to mark the day...

Monday, July 09, 2007

Bryn's Bird Boy Buggary Begins...

You can recongise a Bird boy by the charming way he bats his long lashes at you on a bus or a train, smiling coyly, but never dropping his gaze.

You can recognise him by the glint in his eye as he plans and then executes his dasterdly deeds, mostly aimed at amusing himself, but if they amuse others then bonus points are awarded on the ledger...

You can recognise him by his angelic face, that butter wouldn't melt expression on his gorgeous face, that lulls you into a deeply disturbing sense of security that you seem to be endlessly kicking yourself for letting yourself be tricked into.

Ah, yes, Bird Boy Buggary is legendary!

Bryn has recently made it clear that he is well and truly a Bird boy! He has honed his button pushing skills with his brothers and had Erik in tears the other day because he refuses to stop trying to hug Erik while Erik was desperately trying to create his latest drawing masterpiece.

Bryn also has Luey's number and can entice Luey into a game of round the dining table chasies at any hour of the day or night.

Unfortunatey, while Luey quite enjoys have yet another silly buggar to play with, he hasn't figured out where Bryn's off button is, and so often finds himself dealing with more Bird boy energy than even he can handle...

In true Bird boy fashion, today Bryn got his hands on the margine tub (AGAIN, he does this regularly), and had already painted the coffee table and the floor with enjoy marg to create an indoor slip and slide!

All this right under my nose! I was sitting at the dining table, just a metre away. Bryn stelth was amazing, I could have sworn he was still playing in his corner with his bus... Even as he slipped and slid across the floor, I was oblivious!

I finally looked up from my Word file, and saw that characteristic fertive glance out the corner of my eye and my stomach SANK... Once Bryn realised the game was up, he just giggled like a mad man, and slid back and forth over his greasy spot on the floor with spectacular balance (he didn't get that from me or from Dave, that's for sure!)...

Between swearing under my breath and trying very hard not to just burst out laughing, I managed a few pics before cleaning him up with the trusty bum wipes!

Ah, yes, and so it begins...

Sunday, July 08, 2007

"Pearport"

After all the deep emoting, I thought I'd post something a little lighter in tone.

Bryn's been showing us some new things lately... The other day I spent most of the afternoon playing various board games with Erik and Luey; Spellbound, Ludo and Crazy Ludo... All the games involved throwing a dice and counting places to move "forward" on the board... To our great entertainment, Bryn kept nabbing the dice , rolling it, and counting "One, two, three, one, two, three!" I'm pretty sure he was just mimicking, but he totally understood what we were doing, and moved all our pieces appropriately on the board, funny little man!

The other story is from today. I was feeding him this afternoon, as you do on a lazy Sunday afternoon, and I said to him, "Oh, we're going to visit Amma and Grandpa Lester the week after next! We're going in an airplane, won't that be fun!" He came off the boob and exclaimed, "Airpane, Pearport!" This was the first time I mentioned us going to the airport in the next 10 days - we've flown together a few times, but last time he had just turned 1... Dave told me he got "Pearport" from his Thomas DVD (which he hasn't watched in three weeks since I got jack of him constantly requesting DVDs), where there is a story about building an airport on Sodor Island... Great memory, though, huh? Now I'm actually quite excited about taking him to the airport for his own sake, so he can put himself in the setting!

So, I think I'm suffering from existential angst...

I joked the other day that when Bryn throws tantrums Dave doesn't consider them tantrums but claims Bryn is merely writhing in existential angst... LOL, well, after last night's post, and the crisis I was feeling over the ability to choose to do my best to follow an ideology, something I've done countless times in the past decade or more, but then feeling the weight of the responsibiity of the choices I make, as well as a sense of meaninglessness about those choices in the scheme of things, I'm now thinking that I'm basically just curling up inside my own existential angst...

Which shits me really because I don't consider myself to be that way inclined. I'm usually quite happy to just expect my best of myself with whatever resources I have at hand.

I'm thinking this has to be some sort of hormonal imbalance again.

Of course, I'm constantly struggling with my hormones, because basically I'm a hormonal mess much of the time. I have periods of being and feeling on top of things. I know what will create balance within me, an yet I don't seem to be able to hold onto that balance, and when I'm out of balance I struggle to have enough strength to wrench myself back into balance.

Outside influences tend to help. If I have something external to focus on, to climb toward, an ideal, then I tend to be able to uncurl myself enough to be able to make use of my arms and legs to move forward, if you know what I mean.

Only thing is, this reaching for an ideal mentally and emotionally exhausting work, and when the rewards are fresh and new and shiny, lke having more energy, or feeling in control, it's all good, but those feelings never last because, well, life is not a straight, smooth, sealed road, is it...

When things move to a lower ebb, even only a slightly lower ebb, I find myself suddenly plummeting into this place where I question everything, and criticise my own worth because I'm not living the ideal in every area of my life, and then I give up, and become angry and rebellious, and then I feel childish and pathetic and useless, like I feel right now...

I'm not even sure ideals are that great. Ideals guarantee failure because it is impossible to EVER reach and maintain an ideal. Being human, we constanty screw up. Ideally, LOL, we'd just say, well, near enough is good enough, but that's just another ideal, isn't it? Near enough doesn't FEEL good enough to me at all.

And then there is the whole element of people who like to talk about their journey towards the ideal. They have every right to do that, and on good days, these people are bloody inspiring! Other days though, it completely FEELS like they're aim is to rub the rest of our collective noses in how lacking in concern and consciousness we are! I'm SURE that is that is not the intention, but there you go, another HUMAN foible. Ideally, I would be able to see only the positive in someone else talking about their own ideals and their journey towards attaining the ideal, but these people's shining light casts shadows all around me... Shadows created by me getting iin the way of the shining light that is the ideal, me getting in the way of myself basking int he shining light of the ideal, LOL...

I laugh, not because I think it's funny, but because I feel embarrassed about my inability to be happy with my best efforts. For others it seems to be enough to just be trying to do their best on any given day. For me, that is never enough. I feel very much that not being able to reach and maintain the ideal makes even trying an insult. I know that's not rational...

And now I'm too tired to keep this thought process going...

Ideology

I'm all but ready to ditch ideology altogether.

It's all too hard... There are just too many ways to be "getting it wrong"... Too many ways I need to try to be "bettering myself". It's exhausting, I tell you! There is no way I can ever be good enough, conscientious enough...

I read about people boycotting everyting; companies who develop vaccines, companies to develop formula, companies who use toxic plastics, companies who dabble in slave labour, child labour, unethical business practices.

People don't consume products made in china, products containing chemicals, products that aren't organic.

Consuming anything new is bad, I totally agree! It's adding to all the overconsumption around us, the endless landfill, depletion of natural resources, the erradication of 100 of natural species of plants and animals around the world every year.

Then there are all the words we shouldn't use, all the words that oppress women (wimmin), and minorities (because women are actually a majority, but treated like a minority apparently, and no I'm not being sarcastic or flippant)...

There are all the food substances that are bad for us, caffeine, sugar, dairy, meat, wheat and other carbs, anything cooked actually.

Any animal products including leather, wool and honey.

I want to do it all, I've tried to all of this stuff at one time or another, and now I'm just overwhelmed and want to run and hide, and cease to exist as the vile creature that I, the human being have become in my self-absorbed state at the beginning of the 21st century.

But if I give up on ideology, then surely I will be everything I detest... If I manage to achieve all these ideals I'll quite literally cease to exist as there will be nothing I can eat, and I will have to jump in the ocean and suck up a lung full of salt water in order to stop polluting the planet and stop contributing to the demise of everything I consume.

Ack! What's the point of this post anyway...

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Ok, excuse me while I whinge...

ARGH! Why? Why is it that I always get to be the nag and the bitch???

It's school holidays, and I'm more determined than at Easter to stay on top of it and not have the kids getting too bored, so actually pull my finger out and interact with them, rather than bury myself in my computer. Partly, this is also for Bryn's benefit because he gets so out of rhythmn anyway with them home, but if they're "bored" they want to put on the tv or mess with him and that upsets him more.

This plan was based around the idea that I would be relieved of sole entertainment responsibility on Mondays and Wednesday and I could get out of the house with Bryn and get a break for both of us, but wouldn't you know it THIS week had to be the week Dave gets extra work at work.

On Monday he says to me, "You remember I told you last week I have to go into work today?"

Well, no, I didn't remember that. He assured me he told me, but seriously I'm sure I would have remembered if he had. After a dispute about who said what and when, he said he could probably access the database and his email from home and work from home that day, and so he could! Unfortunately Betty wanted to go over stuff with him in person, so he couldn't actually do any work...

So, then he tells me he had to work yesterday, well that was ok, because a) he promised to give me a day of today, and b) I was taking the boys to playgroup yesterday anyway...

So, last night I tell him my plans to go out today, and he has a cow, because apparently I was supposed to be watching Erik and Bryn while he and Luey went out to buy Erik's birthday presents... Well, hmmmm, Erik knows what he's getting, so he could just go along, and how is me staying home with them both about me having any time off, and well, if he didn't want to take them he could have organised to go THERE yesterday and to work today...

So, then he loses his cool, and yells at me for nagging him to get more work because we're broke, and now he's getting more work and I'm complaining. Wel, this is realy very true, can't argue with that, EXCEPT I've been nagging him for over 6 months! And he decides THIS WEEK is the week to get more work, the week I need could use some extra support. And well if he'd gotten more work SIX MONTHS AGO, I would have had enough money to enrol these boys in holiday activities a couple of times a week for these two weeks, giving me some time off while entertaining them and give Bryn a break too...

Why does it just feel like he's using work as an excuse to get away from the boys now that they're home all the time for these two weeks?

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Just a few incidentals

Here´s Squidgy boy getting into some noodles. We were a bit mean, actually, usually we break the noodles up into small bits, but so much was ending up on the floor that on this occassion we didn´t and so he had to struggle along sucking up one or two at a time, check out the concentration!!!

Here´s the boy playing his electronic organ... Easier to turn it on with my toe than bend down to turn it on...

Whoo hoo!

Dig that beat!

And then today the legally blind woman in this house assaulted her sons´self respect be inflicting yet another homemade hair cut on eat of them. At least they´ve got a week and a half for it to grow out a little before school starts again...

My but they do have gorgeous head shapes don´t you think?

Teenagers and the failing parent...