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Showing posts from August, 2011

Tattoo Tuesday (yes, on Wednesday, what of it?): Eternal Gratitude...

Linking up with Tattoomummy for Tattoo Tuesday!



What : a symbol I created myself from a stylised gratitude symbol (the circle) and two stylised eternity symbols on either side. It represent 'Eternal Gratitude', to me.

Where : inside right forearm.

Why : I'd decided to have a tattoo done for each of my boys representing my relationship with them, and what the mean in my life. The first three boys were easy, but Ari's was harder. Partly because he was only just truned two and I didn't feel I knew him as well as the other boys yet. I decided to get him an interim tattoo, but something that would remind me how lucky I was to have had four wonderful boys, especially him because he was the one I hadn't told my husband we had to have from the start (I'd dreamt of the other three early in our relationship and told my husband we just HAD to have those three, but then I realised there was a four waiting to be born - a bonus child - one I'd never mentioned before)…

Wordless Wednesday - Some Days...

Some days the cookie tin peers into me as I peer into it - and laughs...


Linking up with My Little Drummer Boys for Wordless Wednesday, Toronto Teacher Mom and Faith Hope & a whole lotta Love.

10 Things Tuesday - 10 ways to procrastinate productively!

10 ways to procrastinate productively...

- read this list!

- watch a movie you love; what you're actually doing is 'vetting contents for my children for future reference/preparing myself to give an interesting response to the question 'What did you think of [insert title of movie here]?'

- go window shopping (this can be done in person or online); also known as 'research for that mad Christmas rush' - January is NOT too early!

- put on you favourite music and dance like mad; now you're taking care of your health!

- browse the fridge for leftovers; this is called 'clearing out the fridge'

- play bejewlled/angry birds/words with friends; now you're exercising your strategic thinking muscles, hand-eye coordination and neurological response times.

- get on Twitter and Facebook; social networking is a legimate career enhancement strategy, and if you have children you're also being a good parent by staying abreast of technolgy and finding the dan…

Remembering Ari...

Dear Ari

It's almost three years since you were born, and yet it feels like it has been so much longer. You were a greatly fought for and planned for fourth child. I'm not ashamed or shy to say you were my last chance at a girl, and I went all out to try and make that happen. I'm not ashamed of that because you were always going to be you, no matter what I thought I needed or wanted at the time, and in your way, you had the last laugh, as you always do!

I was going to name you Soley Dis (pronounced sole-A deese), and call you Disa (rhymes with Lisa). You were going to be my blonde haired, blue eyed girl - just like the painting of your Amma from when she was four. Although you're a boy, with light brown hair and green eyes now, you absolutely do look like your Amma in that painting!

I went on a special diet, and took a special powdered supplement, and so did your dad. That poor man has been through a lot with me and my demands, and I think in a way, this is why you are…

Don't be afraid of getting it wrong!

I'm the kind of person who often feels defeated before I begin something because I know it'll never be as good as I want it to be. The end product never really matches the picture I had in my mind before I started. I guess, I'm a bit of a perfectionist.

I love an empty page, a fresh start, a new day, a new house, a new course. I love beginnings. Beginnings are full of possibilities. At the beginning of something, it can be great - in fact, for me, at the beginning of something it's always going to be perfect!

And then I misspell a word and have to scribble over it and replace it, or rub it out (I LOVE computers, because my mistakes can be deleted before anyone gets to see the end product and the end product can look more perfect than the process ever was!).

I hate getting things wrong. I hate looking daft.

Maybe this is because I'm a firstborn and firstborns are notorious for taking themselves more seriously than their younger siblings. After all we're the ones…

Preparing to apply to do a PhD...

I'm linking this post up with 'I'm grateful for...' at Maxabella Loves.

Since the end of last year, when I finally finished my Master's Thesis, I've been thinking about and planning for applying to do a PhD in Creative Writing.

The Master's thesis consisted of a 40 000 word creative piece - in my case a Youth Adult novel - and a 10 000 word exegesis (which is something like an essay about the whys and hows of writing the novel including a review of similar pieces of work currently on the market). The PhD I'd like to do at Deakin University is a bit like the Master's degree, except the creative piece will be about 80 000 words (another YA novel) and the exegesis will be about 20 000 words. So, double the word length for everything.

You'd think, having done a research Masters before, and gaining a Distinction at the end of it, I'd feel fairly confident applying to do the next step, the PhD.

Nothing could be further from the truth! I have no id…

Microsoft for Mac Giveaway Draw!

Yay! Thank you so much to everyone who participated! I had my little helpers draw the winner and filmed it for you all - I tried to delete my voice over but for some reason my morning voicing still managed to make a gravelly appearance, my apologies to anyone who experiences bleeding from the ears...




Congratulations Quixote!!! I will be in contact via your blog to grab your postal details!

Things I Know About Numbers...

Joining in with Things I Know at Yay for Home!

Things I Know About Numbers...
Numbers get such a bad rap by people who don't understand them, or even fear them - it's like numerophobia, or something. I love numbers, and not because I'm particularly good with them, not at all, I have average to poor maths skills, but I really do like numbers.
People often say numbers don't MEAN anything, but these people also like to bandied about the term 'quantity versus quality', which to me, just shows they don't get the beauty of numbers.
One of the reasons I love numbers is that they are all about relationships! Each number is, itself, a static phenomenon. One is always one, under no circumstance does one ever become eight or five. Anywhere around the world throughout time, you can say 'one' and people know exactly what one is.
I love words, but the meaning of words change all the time 'gay' in 1911 didn't mean the same thing as it did in 1961, or what i…

Thankful Thursday: The unexpected edition.

Linking up to Thankful Thursday at Kate Says Stuff.
This week I'm thankful for stuff I never expected to be thankful for:
~ having to get up at 6.30 in the morning to get my children ready for their day.
~ having to be organised the night before so their clothes are laid out and the kitchen is clean and tidy and ready to serve breakfast in.
~ having to walk the boys to school and walk to pick them up afterwards.
~ having to prepare dinner in the middle of the day so I only need to throw it together just before dinner time when we're all tired.
~ being the only person on call when the school nurse calls on Friday for me to pick up my six year old with a gash to his eyelid and again on Monday when it's my 12 year old's turn with a gash on his chin.
~ needing to be in bed by 11pm so I can get up in the morning despite being a nightowl by nature.
~ having to be the one who runs all the daily errands with my toddler in tow.
~ I'm thankful that my husband was made redundant 2.5 y…

Wordless Wednesday: "Son, that's a raw potato..."

Linking up with Trish at My Little Drummer Boys...


10 Ways To Get What You Want!

I always tend to get what I want (and if I can't get it, I tend to change what I want - you know, like how I decided I wanted to be a writer instead of a brain surgeon after I discovered that you kind of need to be able to see beyond the end of your nose to do surgery...).

Seriously though, yeah, I do get everything I want, eventually. I have a knack for it. Sometimes though, I forget how lucky I am with this, and sometimes I forget that I don't always get everything I want straight away, which - for the most impatient person in the world - can be hard to live with... Or maybe it's just hard for other people to live with me while I'm working on getting what I want.

I'm a bit of a believer in Law of Attraction. In fact, I believed in Law of Attraction before some clever marketing person coined the term. However, I think sometimes the concept of Law of Attraction is oversimplified and turned into some sort of wishing well of good luck. I so often hear people say tha…

The Bird Boys...

Linking up to the Cherish Your Cherubs Project over at Seven Cherubs! This weeks activity is to RECORD your cherubs. I'm so grateful for this opportunity to take a bit of a snapshot of the boys right now - I literally dragged them outside ten minutes ago to take some quick pics just for this project - that is something I don't do very often because life is so busy!

I talk about the boys a fair bit, so on this occasion I'm going to use the suggested topics because they are on things I often don't cover - and because then I'm sure to cover the same stuff for each child!

So, here's what I'll cover in this week's activity:


1. What are your cherubs interests?
2. What do they like?
3. What do they dislike?
4. What is their favourite food?
5. What is their favourite game to play?
6. What is their favourite saying?
7. What song do they love the most?
8. What is their favourite television show?
9. What is their favourite book?
10. Who is their favourite friend?

E…

Gates and setting boundaries for children...

Yesterday I mentioned that our front gate was broken...


Today it was fixed...


In many ways the new gate isn't as nice as the old one; it doesn't quite match the fence, not only because it's new and fence obviously isn't, but also because it has blunt pickets instead of arched pickets. It is very practical and not at all whimsical like the old fence. The latch is shiny and new, though I was happy to see the handyman used the old hinges, I liked those hinges, they had history. I like history.

The gate doesn't need to be pretty, it's most important function is create a safe boundary for our yard. Since we've moved to this house, our toddler, Ari, has escaped on no less than three occasions. The first time he escaped, he managed to toddle the length of our block (we live at one end) all the way to the major road at the other end of our street. Luckily, observant neighbours noticed him and collected him before he attempted to cross the busy four lane road!

On an…

Thank you Bill and Claudine... The story of a house.

We're renters. One day we hope to be buyers or even owners, but for now we rent. The house we're currently renting is relatively small for 6 people, but it's on a huge block of land - well, huge for suburban living, and certainly huge if you consider how much more high-density living there is in Australia these days. We live on a corner block with a really big back yard, and a decent sized front yard. The front yard is enclosed - I'm using that term loosely because, as I write this the front gate is broken and doesn't close properly - by a metre high white picket fence. The back yard is enclosed by a much taller paling fence. Nothing modern, or snazzy, or heavy duty - just practical.

We're fairly certain the previous owners were in this house for a long while, if they didn't build it themselves. It's a weatherboard house dating back to around the 1940s. There is a good chance the previous owners actually did build it, they certainly modified it themselve…

My best friend isn't 12...

Lately I've been watching 'World's Strictest Parents' which is pretty much a show where teens who seem to be vying for the World Championship title of 'Most Dislikable Adolescent' are removed from their comfort zone for a week or two and placed with a 'strict' (otherwise known as sensible) family for a week. In this situation, the teens buck and kick like mules for a number of days while their temporary foster parents patiently reinforce their stated rules (which is relatively easy for these 'strict' parents because a) they are impervious to emotional manipulation due to lack of bonding and b) they know the brat-at-hand will be off their hands in a couple of weeks anyway), until eventually the teens inevitably buckle under and come to their senses.

At this point in the show the broken teen is handed a letter from mum and/or dad exclaiming their concern and hopes for their wayward child - and this is where I always find myself gritting my teeth.…

Beware the 'professional opinion'...

So, I was referred to this article today, and setting aside that I quite like what Lenore Skenazy has to say about teaching children real life skills through measured freedom, I was just blown away by the hyperbole in the article. The writer refers to - as an example of her professional experience in this area, I think - how she often counsels the victims of violent crime and in doing so, the reader is supposed to be reassured about her experience in this area.

The issue I take with this is that her vast experience counselling the victims of violent crime actually makes her less able to have a balanced view of the true level of risk out in the real world.

We see this over sensitisation of professionals all the time - it also happens with lay people exposed as well - they are frequently exposed to 'worst case scenarios' and it begins to colour their view of the world. They allow themselves to believe their experience is far more common that it actually is, their experience beco…

Thankful Thursday...

Joining Kate at Kates Says Stuff for Thankful Thursday!

Today I'm thankful for:

The living hot water bottle I get to crawl into bed with on these cold winter nights! That would be our 2.75 year old, of course. One of the benefits of co-sleeping is that he's already been in bed for several hours by the time we get there. He's all snuggly and warm and usually reaches over for sleepy cuddles when we come to bed. On these cold Melbourne winter nights, it's so nice to have his warm little feet on the small of my back!

Friends who call when they sense I'm in a funk and make me laugh and totally get over the fact that I'm almost 40, have several degrees, but no job and no award winning novel - actually, not even a published novel. Having friends like these means I can refocus on all the things I do have and how I'm steadily focused on reaching my goal of being a published novelist - one day!

Supportive blogging people! I've been overwhelmed this week with the sup…

{Almost} Wordless Wednesday: Buddha Boy Turned Six Yesterday!

Joining Trish at My Little Drummer Boys...

This boy smiled just twenty minutes after he was born - really. He is always easy to love - really!
Thank you for six smiley years, Buddha! Love from Mum, Dad, Erik, Luey and Ari xxx

10 ways to be like The Doctor...

If you're wondering who The Doctor is, then we've obviously never met before...

The Doctor is my family's current obsession. Some families bond over their religion. Some families bond over footy. We bond over a fascination with all things Gallifreyan, most particularly new series Gallifreyan. The phrases 'Timey-wimey, spacey-wacey' and 'Spoilers!' are a code even our 2.75 year old understands. While other children are seeing Horcruxes everywhere and dueling with wands, our boys engage in games of 'sonic screwdrivers at ten paces'.

We love nutting out the myriad of possibilities in the plot; who is dreaming; who is the girl in the spacesuit; under what circumstances did The Doctor tell River his name? We have theories, all sorts of theories, even the 6 year old has his own theories...

So, here's a list of ten ways to be like The Doctor:

Dress sharply and believe in your style - bow ties, Fez' and Stetsons are all cool because The Doctor beli…

Poor man's macro photography... Not for the faint hearted!

The other day on Facebook a friend uploaded some stunning macro photos she'd taken using the method described here. I'm not going to link to her photos because a) I don't have her permission and b) they're so totally awesome compared to my pathetic attempts that I'd be embarrassed to have them compared!

This method worked surprisingly well! I used my old Canon 350D with my 50mm 1.8 lens. I have NO IDEA what f-stop I was on or which shutter speed I was using (I need to brush up on the hows of my camera again because my sieve-like brain doesn't want to retain any information that doesn't refer to Doctor Who or blogging at the moment), but I still managed to get results I'm relatively happy with - you know, for a first go and considering I have not depth of field perception myself...

Here's the best of what I got, and many of these photos are still blurry, but it's a start!














'You talk too much to be an introvert!' and other misunderstandings.

I'm an introvert.

People who don't understand the psychological terms used by Jung, and who have met me in person will be chuckling into their electronic screens right now.

I find that almost any time I tell people I'm an introvert, someone will have that reaction because introversion is so often associated with shyness and timidness. Say the word introvert and people tend to think of drab wall flowers who don't make eye contact and mumble their words.

One look at me will tell you I'm bright, bold and loud!

I do suffer from agoraphobia, which means I have threshold syndrome; I find it extremely hard to leave the house unassisted (psychologically). This is probably mostly related to having relatively low vision, but is also just a fear of taking up space and being a nuisance to other people if I have no specific errand to fulfil. Why I don't feel I have as much right as anyone else to just be out there is still a mystery to me - even after many hours of professi…

Giveaway: Because I love youse all!

ATTENTION: I have been a bad, bad girl! In my enthusiasm to give back to my awesome readers for all their support, I forgot to read the fine print! Therefore, I've needed to change the conditions of the competition, so as not to land in some deep do-do. Those of you who have already entered, don't worry! It's all good, your entries are valid as is! As compensation for my idiocy, I've now reduced the number of followers required, so the lucky winner can start using their new mouse and Office software sooner!

As I've written a fair bit about, I've been having a lot of luck lately. Things just seem to be going my way - at least when it comes to winning things. Recently, I won Office for Mac: Home and Business package, through Nuffnang. The thing is, I'd just bought a Mac, and with it came a copy of Office for Mac: Home and Student package including a free wireless mouse. The iMac also came with a wireless mouse, so I decided I would give the Home and Student aw…

Thankful Thursday...

Joining in with Thankful Thursday at Kate Says Stuff!

I have quite a lot to be thankful for at the moment, and here is just some of it!

My kids!

I don't usually make a special mention of being thankful for my kids because, you know, I always am, but lately I've been especially thankful that I have healthy children and that I have them at all! I have seen a lot of families of late who have lost the opportunity to get to know their babies better and watch them grow up and develop into the amazing individuals they absolutely would have been. I have also known a few families who got to have their babies for a while, but then experienced devastating news that their child was battling an illness that would eventually and inevitably take their lives prematurely. That these things even happen crushes my soul and the only thing that mends it is having my children to hold and love and cherish and although I always love my children, I'm more appreciative of the truly astounding gift it…

10 Realities of Living with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder...

PLEASE forgive me for I have sinned and this is my third blog post in one day... I was sent a reminder by a friend who is hanging for me to post this - so this is for her (but you can read it, too)...


10 realities of living with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

1) Needing constant stimulation and variety and feeling restless and bored with things once you've absorbed everything inspiring to you from them - which you usually do in a compressed amount of time because of your tendency to obsess over things!

2) Having four streams of thoughts at the same time - all the time! Right now, for me it's: writing this; singing 5 Little Kittens along with whats-his-name on Playschool; wondering when the Grumpy Old Man will get that Bryn's mouth doesn't have an 'off' setting, and stop whinging about the constant chatter; and realising I didn't call mum today, as I promised - d'oh!

3) Sitting down to write a blogpost at 9am, hearing the toddler getting into s…