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Archive for the ‘family life’ Category

Well somehow over a week slipped by and I didn’t even realise it!

I have been way too busy living life instead of blogging, and working really hard on a little project which I will hopefully be ready to share next week.

Anyway, I had said I would try and catch up photographing the things I’ve been making.

This is a little cardigan I made for Alice, in perfect timing because the temperature has certainly been dropping on these lovely Autumn afternoons. And by dropping I mean it’s been getting down below 17 degrees, which for us Queenslanders means it’s positively Arctic šŸ™‚

And this is Alice pulling her best ‘I’m cold’ face.

The pattern is the ‘in threes‘ cardigan which I found on ravelry. I used a wool & silk blend yarn which my mum found on clearance at the craft store for only $3 a ball. Gotta love a cardigan for under $10! The buttons I bought ages ago from the wool shack, who have a beautiful selection of buttons. They are coconut buttons with detailed carved designs which I unfortunately didn’t capture very well in my photos. I love the tweedy look of this yarn. Perfect for hiding all the food and stuff that always ends up making it’s home on a baby’s clothing.

So baby’s warm, I’m happy.

In other news, today we went to the Capalaba regional park for the first time. I don’t know why we have never been there before when we live so close, I guess we just didn’t know how awesome it is!

Feeding the ducks, always a hit.

Giant metal drums that make a big loud bang.

Alice loved hitting this enormous xylophone.

Then we watched from the sidelines. Estelle was busy running around in crazy circles.

Way too much excitement… the slide? The swing? The rope ladder? All of them at once?

So much fun! And a great way to end the weekend, hanging out together at the park.

We will definately be back.

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Two moments I will share with you:

A while ago, maybe a couple of months, it was after lunch and I was in a bad mood. It had been a long week in the house, lots of rain which meant not much outside play time and I was feeling cramped and suffocated within these walls. It was no one’s fault, Alice was sleeping, Estelle busy playing in her room. I was hanging clothes inside the house on the airer hoping to finally get some wet laundry dried. For the last 20 mins, Estelle had been running back and forth between the kitchen and her bedroom, I could hear her digging through the jumble in the tupperware drawer but didn’t pay any attention to it. My nerves were on edge, I felt snappy and dark and impatient. I decided I’d had enough, get me out this house and to the shops! Anywhere!

Alice woke up and I quickly got her changed, grabbed a nappy bag and called out, “come on Estelle, let’s get in the car”. I waited. And waited. A hot angry monster started stirring inside my belly. “Come on! I’m waiting!”. She called out to me, “I’m nearly ready mum”. I stood there for another minute letting the flames of anger spark up, take light and engulf me. I don’t know why I was so cranky, I just was. It felt good to be cranky, so I was.

Estelle emerges from her bedroom, a beautiful smile from ear to ear, slowly and ever so carefully balancing in her arms our Tupperware ice block set. She had gone through the drawer and found the tray, every container, stick and lid and put them all together. She says, “Mummy I make us dessert”. She made her way to the fridge, opened the door and put it on the shelf.

My heart melted. I thought, who do I think I am? What was so important that I couldn’t check to see what she was doing first? Why am I behaving so horribly?

If someone was yelling at me down the hallway the way I had, I certainly wouldn’t come out with a smile on my face!

……………………………………….

We were leaving soon for playgroup, Estelle was dressed and ready, I was busy dressing the baby and packing up all our stuff to take.

I gave her the countdown, ” 5 minutes until we leave, darling”.

I raced around tidying the house, packing the morning tea, and all those other things that must be done.

“Let’s brush your teeth now please”, waiting….no answer. I could hear her chattering away in her room.

I went in to her room, “Come now please!”

She burst into tears, “I don’t want to go, leave me home!”

I sat down and softened myself. I tried to understand what she would be feeling.

Here she is, sitting in her room with all her dolls lined up in a row and the basket of dolls clothes emptied. She is carefully sorting through it, matching the outfits and dressing her babies.

I asked her which doll she would like to bring with us and what she would like them to wear. She chose her girl Jessie and the ballerina dress. We had a hug and talked about the fun things we would do at playgroup and what friends she was looking forward to seeing. She got up with Jessie in her arms and went into the bathroom. I followed her, feeling grateful that I was able to meet her need in that moment. I got it right for once!

Sometimes I find the huge emotions of a three year old exhausting. It’s hard to keep up. I read this blog the other night and it reminded me of something, that tantrums and outbursts are outward expressions of inner confusion. I knew this, but needed reminding.

What is 5 minutes to a three year old? Why would I tell Estelle we’re leaving in 5 minutes and expect her to come when I tell her to? She has no comprehension of time like this.

What could be so important that I can’t go in and see what she’s doing first? She is completely absorbed in her world of play, every game is so real. How can I pull her from this world without first meeting her there?

I am so grateful for, and always amazed at the unlimited forgiveness from a child. And also hopeful that I can be open and willing to change my attitude when I need to.

No persons work is more important than anothers. Whether it be making imaginary iceblocks or performing brain surgery.

Both just as real and just as meaningful to the people involved.

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After the last pair of legwarmers I made for Alice turned out far too big, I cast another pair of tiny baby sized ones. I actually made them a few weeks ago but I have been really slack at taking pics of the things I’ve been making so I’m catching up now! She has been wearing them heaps, they’re perfect for keeping chubby little legs warm whilst crawling on the cold wood floor in the morning. Good for just hanging out in too.

It would seem that Alice shares the same passion for guinea pigs as Estelle. Lucky little pigs.

Some more afternoon fun…

I guess life is pretty good when you have warm knees.Ā  Whats even better is using up all those little wooly leftovers from other projects.

Everybody’s happy!

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Picnic at the bay,

gardening,

goodies on Sunday morning,

and of course a mama-made gift.

New friends.

Chocolate for breakfast?

Sorry Alice, you’ll have to stick to the duck I made for you…

I am loving this hair right now.

Morning tea with family, feeding the pet lizard.

Alice isn’t one to miss out the action.

“Estelle did you give Alice chocolate?” “No, I didn’t… she took it from the bowl herself!”

Tea party.

A daring escape.

Yep, love that hair… and these feathers.

A few days to relax together, just what this family needed.

Hope your Easter weekend was just as fun as ours was!

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This week we have been…

baking yummy treats,

and eating them…

Sliding around on the dishwasher door,

wondering ‘what is that stuff falling from the sky?’, and then sitting in it.

Spotting rainbows,

playing hospitals every day with the new doctors set.

Taking advantage of a sunny afternoon and enjoying a backyard picnic.

(making cheeseburgers, apparently)

(success! hand made it into the avocado at last!)

Having lunch with Grandmama,

she even got tucked in and read a story!

And me, well I’ve been thinking that I should be listening to my body more. Letting myself get so run down has led to a painful glandular infection .

In my mind is the upcoming easter celebration. It is the season of renewal and new birth. I have been thinking about what this can mean for me right now.

I think I will find renewal through learning to be kind to myself. Right now I feel as though I don’t have a lot left in my reserves to give out.

Admittedly there has been a lot going on in the last few weeks, now it’s time to let some fresh air back into my stale feeling soul.

I feel like I’ve lost my mojo as a mum (my mumjo?) . It’s hard to give when you have nothing left.

But everyday is a fresh start. A chance to pick myself up and harness the day instead letting it run right past me. Even if it is just something small like remembering to take my vitamins or making sure I give myself half an hour of knitting time while the baby is asleep, I’m hoping each little investment will quickly add up to someĀ  motivation! I just put this reminder on the wall for me to see in the morning.

(please excuse the dodgy late night photo)

What about you?Ā  What does this easter mean to you?

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Death is hard to comprehend. We all know what death is. With the last breath the spirit leaves the body, the body left behind nothing but an empty vessel.

But on a day to day level, it’s so hard to imagine never seeing someone again.

Never again will I sit at the table with Ernie and have a cuppa, go into the garden with him to admire the roses he was so proud of, listen to him tell my nanna she was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen (he loved to make her blush in front of everyone).

Ernie came into our lives nearly five years ago. My nanna started talking about this man who she had become friends with. He had been taking her out to lunch and coming to her place for dinner. We started lovingly teasing her about this new toy boy (she was 82, he was 80) who was taking her away from us! If one thing is true, it’s that love knows no age. Their friendship blossomed and soon they were like a pair of love struck teenagers. After both being widowed for over 30 years, they had each found their soul mate. Ernie being an old fashioned gentleman decided it would never do to live together without being married first, so he proposed and she accepted. At their wedding there was not a dry eye to be found. Nanna walked down the aisle to the music playing, “I finally found someone, someone to share my life”. Such a special day.

These two love birds spent every moment with each other. I will never forget this day when Luke and I went to visit, we had been there the week before helping Ernie move his things into the unit and had set up the lounge room for them. Ernie told us he didn’t like the way we set it, he wanted his recliner to be closer to Nan’s so he could hold her hand while they watched TV! Ernie had a great sense of humour and loved to tell a story. He settled into our family as though he had been there all along. It made us all so happy to see Nanna so content, fulfilled and to have someone to share life with.

Ernie had never been sick in his life, so it was a great surprise to us all when 5 months ago he was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer. His quick decline was so difficult to witness and difficult for him to understand. He spent the last few months of his life in hospital and I will never forget walking into the room with Nan and seeing big, lonely tears rolling down his cheeks the moment he laid eyes on her. He missed her so much. And she missed him. She would sit next to him on the bed and wrap her arms around him and he would say, “I still think you’re the loveliest woman in the world”.

It feels so unfair, they are still newly weds! I have so much sadness for my nan, saying goodbye to her precious companion. But she is the one with a smile despite the tears, telling us that she is so grateful to have had his love and to have made the last years of his life the best ones. I hope that I one day have even a portion of her courage and amazing attitude.

Today we said our final goodbye’s.

It’s not about the quantity of life but the quality.Ā  Quality of life is measured in memories, not years.

Remember to make the everyday things special.

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Morning present time,

Family over for morning tea,

Some yummy food to share,

Chocolate cake with berries, as requested,

Testing out her new things,

Baby sister loves them too,

Daddy gets ‘doctored’,

Three trips around the sun.

 

After a hectic week, awash with worry and sadness, it was refreshing to come together with our family and celebrateĀ  this girl’s life.

This week we were reminded that life is short and gone in an instant.

But in saying goodbye to a loved one, it reminded me that it is so important to have special times spent together to store away as little treasures in our memory banks.

Family celebrating together, playing together, eating together and sometimes crying together.

These are the memories I will treasure.

 

 

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