m i a o w


Category: Family (Page 2 of 9)

Some Humber love

After the morning of tree planting, I was collected by SWWNBB and we headed down to my dad’s place for some WWOOFING. I say that, but it was they who did the WWOOFING – I happily spent my time giving my Humber some long overdue attention. Sort of some SCOTTMA* (while I am in abbreviation mode).

SWWNBB and MWB created an excellent planter box. (I have, obviously cropped SWWNBB from this picture, despite the fact that she/he was unrecognisable and wearing my coat.) There are some roses in there and lots of little box hedges.

Planter Box

I had paternal assistance in clearing out the great variety of parts and crud that have accumulated in my car, which is now the Lone Functioning Humber. Had I been smarter I would have been taking photos of parts and naming them so I actually know what the hell they are.

Spare badges

There were myriad bits of trim, heating hoses…and even more that I have forgotten the names of. We have a genetic family predisposition to being unable to throw things out, so there was a fair bit of relocation as opposed to disposal.

Sad unwashed

I washed the neglecto-mobile and gave it a cut and polish. The donor-Humber is still in residence (but probably not for much longer) so I pilfered the back seat – which reeks like the urine of 1000 caffeinated mice – but remains in fairly good nick, as it was preserved under a manktastic wool cover that I had to cut off to see what kind of condition it was in.

Cut and polished.

*Slack Car Owner Tries To Make Amends

It gets a grip…

So lovely Claire asked us over for a playdate and included in that a tour of the Hastings Fire Station – with which she is intimately aquainted. I did not realise right away that the day marked the beginning of SMALL DB’S WINTER DOWNTURN. But here is the photographic proof of what was ready to transpire…

The Smalls got a tour of the local fire station yesterday thanks to @ninevah - they had a ball - but you can tell who got a fever before the day was out. #cfa #2yo #5yo  #hastings #sundaymorning

Suffice to say, that when we got home early that afternoon, she lay perfectly still perfectly still on the couch for three hours. With a fever. This continued for many days. Meanwhile, her cousin – who lives so far away that the thought of driving to see him physically hurts – got struck down by the same thing. Gah. Spent the next week swinging between cosseting and clinging to my sanity…

Small DB? She is THREE!

Small DB turned three on Friday. THREE!!! I could trot out the disbelieving descriptions but we’ve heard them all before. Suffice to say – I no longer have a two-year-old *sob* Both she and Small Z have turned three in this house. Strange for us!! Small Z turned three here a year after we had moved in.

There was a party to celebrate Small DB’s milestone. I had lists of things coming out of my ears – lists of Small guests, their siblings, their parents. A ‘little’ party with about four guests aged two and three immediately morphs out to include older and younger siblings and parents.

It was great 🙂 I was keen for Small DB to have a really lovely party, firstly just because OF COURSE! But secondly because her last birthday was so pivotal for her – she talked about it every day for months and months afterward. Being the second kid, not so much is just completely all about her – but that was.

She began her day with these:

Daisy-Belle's chosen birthday breakfast. Peaches bottled by MWB.

Peaches bottled by MWB – she had been eyeing them off for a year…

Let me just record the menu for posterity (and in doing so, empty it from my brain). It was quite fortuitous that I was a bit behind with the catering. Small DB and I had made hommus the day before – the little ones were getting hungry, so I put out heaps of carrot and cucumber for them to dip in, as well as fruit ‘porcipines’ – oranges with sticks in them with strawberries, pineapple chunks and watermelon balls on the end – my mum churned these out like a party machine. (As well as having made tissue paper pom-poms with the Smalls the previous day – thanks mum!)

MACHINE! I haven’t mentioned the main thing!! As a member of the local toy library committee (my one official community committment) I get one free use of a mini jumping castle each year. Oh my goodness. M made friends with it immediately and it was a total hit! I don’t see much point in structured games for two and three year olds – they were much happier to bounce…and bounce…and bounce… And the older kids were equally thrilled.

Milly, Polly, Daisy and Kena

Whoops. Back to food. I’ll just list it. Raspberry orange jellies, allergy-free chocolate crackles, oven baked potato chips, sausages, colourful brown rice salad, chickpea and cucumber salad, gluten free brownies and of course – birthday cupcakes with strawberry cream cheese icing. And that paragraph basically sums up my brain last week.

Small DB spent the day being somewhat overwhelmed by the whole thing. She didn’t melt down, but her eyes were bigger than usual and she was a little bit edgy at times. She was super-happy to she her favourite Lucinda Rae 🙂

Daisy Belle and Lucinda's Rae :: Love

…and to have some reading time with the Nana…

Reading with the Nana

Everyone filtered away close to three o’clock – but our old neighbours who had journeyed from Kinglake stayed and we convinced them to sleep the night in the caravan – so we had an awesome opportunity to catch up, and also avoided that post-party slump.

Sweet Small DB is becoming a delicious, hilarious feisty three-year-old. I can hardly believe it. And if there’s anything that should encourage me to post more often it is this – because the past three years have snapped by so fast, I want records, RECORDS damnit! Records that help me hold on to and remember all the things that will otherwise swirl by… Happy Birthday Born-in-a-Car Baby – you’re the icing on our family cupcake.


Happy Christmas – 2013

Christmas Eve. All felt oddly sublime. Even on Christmas Eve EVE everyone I saw was chilled out, like they knew a lovely day was going to happen. Small Brother had arrived (somewhat belatedly after 'some difficulty with my flights' – meaning, he missed his plane) and my Smalls were fizzing with excitement about Santa coming. Small DB was only 27 months old last year, this time – a bold and wonderful three year old – she was totally into the whole thing, egged on by her sister…

A completely different vibe abounded. And not just domestically – everywhere seemed quite calm and joyous. Maybe people were looking to have a lovely time together after the trials of the past year. Just a theory. M and I stayed up doing a rapathon:

“Yo yo, a ribbon or a bow?
Tape it right down and tweak it just so. YO!
Bling it and sing it and tinsel up tight
From dude with the 'tude and the beard – Tonight!”

…sorry, sorry – a WRAPATHON. The one that starts with me telling M to get out all the presents I'd hidden in the laundry basket (because who besides me every looks in there? Exactly.) and continues with him verbally ejaculating about HOW MUCH STUFF I had got the Smalls, and how ALL THEY NEEDED was a bit of string, an orange and a new pair of socks. OK. He didn't quite say that, but he almost did. Nevertheless, he wrapped most of it.

I duly cranked out a potato salad and a brown rice salad to take along to the house of the mother in the morning and we went to bed. The night, of course, was not uncomplicated. Demands for food at 4am from the smallest, who had gone to sleep in the car at 6.30pm. Retrospectively I realised that I fed her toasted mouldy bread with jam on it in the dark, but she appears to have survived.

Cookies were left for Santa. A carrot for the reindeer. Glitter mixed with oats were spread by Small Z on the front lawn as a main course after the carrot. And once we had fallen back to sleep at about 5.30am, we didn't wake for another three hours. The Smalls pawed through their stockings with cries of delight – there were mangoes, passionfruit, paints, rubber stamps, hankies, walnuts…

Out under the tree they really got stuck in. They had recieved gorgeous puzzles each, an interesting game, books – and I had bought Small DB a delectable pair of organic cotton PJs (on sale and muled over here by Small Brother). She opened them, took one look at their lustrous colours, and shrieked, “CLOTHES AREN'T PRESENTS!!” and moved on to the next thing as something inside me whimpered. Look at these pyjamas – LOOK AT THEM…


The whimper became internal sobs of despair (OK, I jest, but still….) when they opened presents from our neighbours – the ones we only really converse with at Christmas, and found two plastic little baby dolls, each with its own plastic pram and cradle. AAAAAAAAAAAARGH! All my organic cotton and wooden jigsaw interestingness was NOTHING in the face of this. Small Z was so beside herself that she ran next door in her pyjama's to thank them from the bottom of her poor deprived heart…

The drive to the Home of the Mother was fine. I had been warned via text that she had actually drawn up the seating arrangement. There would be no choose-your-own-adventure seating plan, goddamnit. I chose to overlook this, because for the most part the whole day was entirely laid back. Christmas lunch was buffet style, my mother resisted her inner Salad Nazi and SWWNBB's sort of father-in-law busted out some tunes on his accordian – there was dancing and pudding and cheer 🙂

I have neglected to mention the sublime weather. Thus we went over the road in the late afternoon and finished it all off with a swim. Small Brother and I idled away another hour there together while everyone else returned to the house and dealt with my offspring. It was good to do a bit of catching up – he was only here for six days.

Hope everyone had a similarly happy Christmas. This was the best in recent memory. Payoff for a difficult year. 10/10!


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