June 27, 2013


Here it is, an invitation to le premier anniversaire d'Hugo!  First things first, while this did involve me bossing my husband around in the traditional manner while he sat in front of his iMac, this is pretty much a rip of something I saw on t'internet.  Do I care?  Not really.  I'm a working mum to three preschoolers (is there such a thing as a non-working mum?) with limited time and I know what I like.  So, I saw something I liked and we bastardised it enough to make it feel like ours.  Is that alright?  Probably not, but what we do have is a rather nice little two pager (and the second page was all our doing) inviting way more people than we'll be able to cope with to the auspicious occasion that will be the first birthday of our littlest hobo, born on that very French of days, Bastille Day.

Points to note:
 - No gifts:  It seems unfair for little Hugo who doesn't have much of his own, but seriously, he doesn't need or want for a thing.  He is surrounded by toys and clothes and love.  Far better that our guests each give a few bucks to charity instead.
 - It's gonna be red, white, blue, guests are expected to adorn one or all of those colours.  Berets optional.
 - There will be champagne.  Normally I don't condone drinking (ahem) at a kid's party.  Well, it's not so much that I don't condone it, but it's more that it's really not necessary (it's a kid's party!)  but no champagne at a Bastille Day party?  Don't be nuts.  And by champagne I probably mean slightly-better-than-average Australian sparkling wine.
 - The invitation features the same bunting I used on the first birthday invitations of Ollie and Max.  This makes me very happy.
 - Hugo is going to be one.  ONE.

year 8

This is me and my husband, starting our eighth year of marriage.  Undoubtedly the last five have been a test of our resilience and ability to juggle more than we thought we could handle, but it's also been a very positive journey so far, and one which I cannot complain about.  With good health (the value of which can't be underestimated), a happy home and enough challenges to provide us with balance, I feel very blessed to be writing these words today.

Happy anniversary, Will, I love you and our children beyond measure.

June 26, 2013


Ollie:  I'm lovely, mum, because I keep making you things

Ollie: I'm giving myself a headache, everything in my brain is all jumbled up, my thinking wires have snapped!

Ollie:  Mum, in my head there are LOTS of BIG love hearts, all for you.

Ollie: (after I'd been cross with him) Dad, I'm so sad, all the love hearts in my head for mum are disappearing.

Me:  How many do you need?
Ollie:  Four
Me:  How many do you have?
Ollie: Three
Me:  So, how many more do you need?
Ollie: One... I'm like a calculator!

Max:  Ollie's going to consplode our house! (he meant 'explode')

Max: (finishing off his first ever packet of Pez candies) I've eaten all my pheasants!

Max:  I'm Buzz Limeyear!

Max:  I actually like bumatoes now! (he means tomatoes) (I hope)

June 21, 2013

this phase

About a week ago, I breastfed my littlest boy for the last time.  I didn't realise it at the time, but I've known it was coming.  I went back to work, expressing lasted a little while, but mainly, the breastfeeds have been restricted to night feeds and the occasional morning feed; so, it was only a matter of time before it'd be hard to sustain the one or two feeds a day he was getting.

I have mixed feelings about it all because I know that if breastfeeding had been that important to me, I would have found a way to continue.  But without listing the reasons it came to an end, one of the feelings I want to remember is how sad I am that it's over.  I'm sad I don't get to give Hugo that connection any more, the cuddliness in the middle of the night, the ability to soothe him almost immediately.  But more than that, I'm sad that this phase of my life is over.  Save for a few months between Max and Hugo, I've been pregnant and/or breastfeeding for the last five years or so.  I'm lucky that I loved it.  I loved being pregnant, carrying my sons, feeling them grow and move and I loved breastfeeding each of my sons for nearly a whole year.  There were times I didn't feel so great about it but more often than not, I felt I was doing the best I could, and that felt amazing.  So, it's a tough thing to admit that phase of our lives is over, we have no intention of adding any more babies to our family (though there is talk of chicks and kittens).  Now, we look onwards, forwards, away from this phase of having these exquisite little babies in our lives, the ones that feel so soft and little, that know so little but learn so much and so quickly, the ones that show their emotions as clearly as can be on those faces that smile, laugh, cry, burp, these babies that you hold almost every moment they're awake, looking forward to the days they'll be more independent but knowing full well those days will make you write soppy words about how sad you are that they're growing up.

Much as I wish I had known Hugo was breastfeeding for the last time, I suppose really, it's a good thing I didn't. It's a good thing it came and went and now it's time to move on.  There are other ways we continue to try our best, and lord knows we fail a LOT, but we keep trying, keep chipping away, trying our damnedest to help shape these little boys into the best that they can be.  But for now, this phase, it's over.  Time to move on.

June 6, 2013

june already

It's become my thing to muse over the passing of time.  I think it means I'm officially grown up, because it's all grown ups ever did when I was a kid (that and spend ages standing on front doorsteps saying goodbye to their grown up friends when we were leaving their houses).  I've said it before, but the passing of time is never as apparent as when you have children in your life, and the days fly by, then the weeks, and the weekends even quicker.  So here we are.  June.  I can now say 'next month, Hugo will be ONE'. How's that!

Last month, as well as starting a new knitting project (because there's nothing like having thirty half finished craft projects on the go) we were invited for an interview at a very lovely local school for next year's prep enrolments.  Ollie will start school in January and blah blah about how quickly that's come around (actually I'm not sure it has, it seems like the time is right for him to be starting school... maybe I just can't really remember life before babies but it feels like it was a LONG time ago).  We didn't really have a hope of being offered a place.  It's a Catholic school, we aren't Catholic, we didn't even claim to be Christian on our application forms, and were quite blunt about our beliefs (or lack thereof) during our interview.  But we were honest about why we thought this particular school would be great for Ollie (because religion aside, it is a fantastic little school), and we must have put forth a pretty good case because this week we found out he's been offered a place.  Our son, who isn't baptised, or part of any parish, who's parents don't ring any bells or contribute financially or otherwise to a church or nunnery or whatever else there might be, our son got offered a place.

Hooray!  That's great!  But actually, while it's not a bad problem to have, now we don't know whether he should go there or to our local state school, another perfectly good school (sans nuns), one that we are actually very happy for our boys to attend, one we understand to have one of the best reputations in the state.  We were so sure we'd miss out on the Catholic school, we'd stopped thinking about it and we were just fine with our back up plan.  Pleased even.  But now... what to do?

There are pros and cons to each.  The small, intimate teaching environment of the Catholic school, the other children and parents we know there, the awesome teachers, the feel of the place, then there's the academically brilliant state-run school, a secular education, a much bigger school and wider range of facilities, both are local, both are great, both could be wonderful for our boys but... how to choose?  It seems like such a big decision.  The school we choose will be their place for the next 5-6 years, it feels so crucial that we get it right.  And I don't even want to think about what might happen if we get it wrong.

So, we have two weeks to accept the place we've been offered.  It's good to have a deadline, but two weeks seems like a very short amount of time (refer opening paragraph) to make a decision so important.  Especially when it feels like all our decision making energy is spent for this year.  But like I said, it's not a bad situation to be in.  It's just that you and I and anyone that knows us knows we are not the world's best decision makers.  Not that we make bad decisions, just the process involved is... well, involved, and not always painless and maybe one of these days I'll just go with the flow and everything will be just fine.  HAH!

PS I finished the scarf, a peacock blue merino seed stitch scarf.  Yes, it was easy, but even so it felt great to be knitting again after my grandmother taught me when I was about 7.  It's such a vivid memory of my childhood, although I don't think I've knitted since then.  Almost every knit and purl reminded me of her, and even casting on made me emotional, and I'm pretty pleased to say I had the whole thing wrapped up in less than a week.  Felt great actually, and made me think about how maybe I'll be a grannie one day too, and I'll teach my grandchildren cool things.  That'll be nice.
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