Saturday, October 8, 2016

what can you spot in the bush?

 On the drive, he spotted lots of cows, horses, sheep, tractors, farms, windmills, mountains, creeks, a horse statue, a clock statue and a man statue. While there, he spotted animal tracks (cow, calf, kangaroo, wild dog, human) and different animal poos. With all the talk about animal poo it became apparent that our friends didn't know about the little mole book ("The Story of the Little Mole who knew it was None of His Business") - luckily we had our little book (we have a couple of copies - the sound edition is hilarious) in the car. We even had our stuffed toy Little Mole along for the trip. 
He also spotted our friends' drawing table as soon as we arrived and settled in for much of the day.


 She saw horses wearing blankets, funny mountains, lots of cows on hills and is also sure she spotted a giraffe statue in Boonah. She spotted the little paddle pool as soon as we arrived. She spotted flowers and cow poo on our bush stroll and wanted to know the name of each animal that had made footprints. Actual given name, not just animal type. She managed a total of 3 hours in the car without nappies or crankiness. And she let me convince her to adapt her initial outfit of choice for our day in the bush. 

Our good friend invited us out for a day trip to their bush 'shed' about half an hour past Boonah. It was the most delightful day! We met other friends in Boonah at the Story Tree Cafe (spent an hour or so playing there - such a lovely place to stop) then drove in convoy out to the shed. Lots of dirt roads to make the corollacoaster feel tough, lots of shade, serenity, cups of tea and views to make me feel like I had a good getaway, and lots of fun for kiddies. 

Thursday, September 22, 2016


Having fun trying some of the experiments in his "My Body" science book. This was about touch/feeling and was pretty fun! I hid different objects in the hanging socks, and he (and she, of course) had to feel them and guess what was inside. They then enjoyed putting a selection of objects in there for Daddy to guess when he got home. 
(The bib is not related to the experiment - he put her bib on when we were cooking, instead of getting his apron.)

She's experimenting with potties and undies this week. Potty going well (although, like her brother, it turns out she's a camel and can go 4 hours without needing the pot, which means a lot less opportunities for learning each day); undies are exclusively head-wear at the moment. 


We have beautiful new sparkly stone benches in our beautiful new sparkly kitchen and wanted to see what foods to be careful of (staining). We salvaged an off-cut from the skip bin and put tea, coffee, wine, port, turmeric, food colouring, curry powder, avocado, blackberry, vanilla essence and permanent marker on - left it all there for over a week. When I wiped it with a damp cloth, all but the permanent marker (and possibly a tiny bit of turmeric yellow - depending on the light) came off pretty easily. So, phew, we don't have to be too careful.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

collecting leaves


  Obsession is the appropriate word here. He'll clutch his handful of beautiful leaf-treasures (with his one useful hand) for the duration of an outing (for multiple outings each day), chasing down coveted additions on the footpath with a sense of urgency, faster than he'd ordinarily prefer to move. They are all unique, beautiful and appreciated.

Before leaves, it was rocks.

Of course, she wants to do whatever he's doing.

When each outing finishes, I become the appointed custodian of the leaf-treasures and currently have them stored in bags, pockets, pram, car and multiple make-shift treasure chests in and outside the house. I'm not sure what happens next.

Sunday, August 21, 2016


Lately, when he writes/draws letters, stories, recipes, activity pages, survival kits, etc., he also folds elaborate envelopes to house them. He can even fold with just his one usable arm!

After 'helping' me hang/remove/fold countless loads of laundry, she has moved slightly  closer to the point of actual helpfulness. It is now (finally) not a completely ridiculous idea to do the folding with her company/help. Yippee!

Went to see Ben Folds play with 'Y Music' at QPAC on Thursday night. I love being part of an audience singing 3 part harmonies!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

self-expression through the arts

(transcription below)



Transcription of Poem 
(He wrote the whole thing himself, while quietly sipping a babyccino at a cafe the morning after his hospital experience.)

The Hospital Poem
If you are sick and you are ick you go to the hospital,
The hospital, the hospital, oh yes you do.
Ohhh, yes you do, do do do, oh yes you do.

Hospitals are really good because they help us get better and also there is a Child Hospital and that Child Hospital helps childs.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

house-sitting and share-housing

House-Sitting (for a month) means...

...playing with someone else's toys...

...exploring someone else's yard...

...sleeping in someone else's cot..:

...messing up someone else's table...

...feeling comfortable doing our normal activities in someone else's space...
...frequent visits to the op shop around the corner (here they are modeling their beads - the day's purchase)...

...using some someone else's space for my projects...

Share-housing (for a couple of weeks) means...

...having a big brother and sister and lots of shared meals (this was a 'chip-nic' in the park)... 

...dress-ups and trampolines and performances...

...after-school pick-ups... 

...having live-in babysitters - so we could head to our place, once the kids were in bed, and get a couple of hours' painting done each night...

Monday, July 11, 2016

drawing subjects

Current (and enduring) favourite subjects: giraffes, under the sea, dinosaurs, birds. The giraffe pictured is sick, with purple snot pouring out of her nose and pooling at her feet... So lovely!

She's been loving drawing for quite a while, but has recently become much more deliberate about what she creates (usually flowers). Here's a chalkboard that she drew on at playgroup this week. I did 3 of the flower heads, at her request, but the rest was her. She spent AGES doing the many, many stems (in a rainbow of colours) and tried very hard to make some flowers on top.

A friend and I decided we could be brave enough (together) to go along to a drawing meet-up in the CBD on the weekend - it just sounded too interesting to miss. It started in a cafe/bar where we could order food/drink while sketching a yoga instructor in lots of different poses. She then taught us some good stretches/poses for artists before we moved out into an alley to sketch some longer poses in a different setting. 

B reported that, while I was at yoga/drawing, he and Little He spent a delightful rest time drawing together on the sunny veranda. Little He developed his regular repertoire while B drew a map of data points (or something similarly clever/confusing) for the new lounge room. 

woolly winter

He helped me make the first fence heart when we arrived to set up, then became a penguin collecting icicles on snow mountains with his new friend.

When she wasn't busy/happy eating everyone else's food she spent time crafting with her friends (big and small). Despite being a bit sick she partied on well after the planned finishing time!

We organised Woolly Winter, a "school holidays event for all generations" which was held at our Community Garden on Thursday.

The lead up involved chatting with crafty neighbours, a letter-box drop and op-shopping for wool. I also spent a lot of energy (wasted, incidentally) trying to organise a coffee van to stop by. After 9 rejections I was out of options. NINE! 

The day involved rugging up warmly, delightful company, garden exploring and beautiful woolly work! More than 60 people came along and learnt to knit, made pom poms and finger-knitting lengths and decorated the fence (some in neat hearts and some with a more abstract flair). The lollypop lady from our local school crossing (who lives in a retirement unit near the garden) gave me a big bag of knitted squares to use. Another local crafter and I started combining these squares and other goodies (from her mum's 30-year collection of knitted samples) to clothe the tall, bare tree trunks. This will be an ongoing project! As I don't have a picture of that yet, the above shows the garden gate boasting happy new hearts made on the day.

Friday, July 1, 2016

demolition (blogging catch-up)


Preparation for demolition
As soon as we were given a tentative/vague start date, we started packing up half of the house into boxes, piled high in the spare room, and packing up the contents of the laundry and much of the yard. He helped his Daddy remove the pavers and, by having long daytime naps, She gave me a couple of hours each day to sort/pack inside.

Drawing on the walls destined for demolition
In preparation for the interior demolition, we've been drawing on walls. It's been consuming much of our play time for the past month, and visitors are heartily encouraged to contribute.


Demolition in the yard
 Endless entertainment: machines, bobcats, cement mixers, mud, rubble, skip bins, jackhammers. Kids watch from their special viewing platform (the kitchen sink) in the mornings and pop around the back to check it out in the evenings.


Escaping demolition noise
Having nap times at a friend's place for the week (to escape the NOISE) means that we get to pretend we have a cat, the gorgeous Billy. Little He happily spent a couple of hours each day doing puzzles/reading/craft with a furry black shadow for company. Little She arrived at their place each day, bursting with an abundance of enthusiastic affection to share with Billy before hopping into her 'special bed at Billy's place'. 

Demolishing a lump
It had been on my neck for 25 years, but, this year, a doctor finally wanted to cut it out. The stitches came out after 4 weeks and it's healing nicely. Just wish it had happened a couple of decades ago when it was still tiny!