March 2010 Archives

Home sweet home

Dear Diary

Well it has been a while since our last conjugal visit I see. I could use the excuse that I lost you in a box somewhere as yet unpacked, and largely it was your misfortune that I found the box with gin in it before I found you...but as you well know eDiary, that would be a load of hogwash. Perhaps I should just stick to the better late than never line and have done with it. I'm here aren't I?

A lot has happened in the last couple of months. Well one big thing...we moved house, hopefully for the last time. We left that crappy piece of Yeronga real-estate with its dripping taps and baked on grime and moved to our brand new house in Highgate Hill. Which is possibly slightly unfair to Yeronga as a whole. The area is lovely with its many parks and proximity to cafes...but yet again we seemed to have struck the landlords who have such a resistance to spending money to fix anything they make certain members of my family look like spendthrifts of the worst order. Them crazy Scots genetics! But never mind, it was only ever for a year and here we are, no longer there.

First BBQ in the new house

So a new house, with working plumbing and a garage connected to the house, an ensuite and a BBQ courtyard. I love it and find it stressful in equal measure. I'm not sure why...the pressure of keeping something looking new might have something to do with it along with the wish to have everything the way we want it. Renting you don't trouble yourself with dreams of feature wall colours or landscaping projects because there's no point. But when you own, and the only thing holding back your dreams is your lack of time or money or your sobriety level...it all becomes a bit more unsettling. It's taken me at least a month just to settle down and stop worrying. I was lying awake at night having anxious thoughts of blinds and curtains. Stressful little mind wanderings about garden paths and paving stones. It was horrible. And then we went away for a long weekend to North Stradbroke Island for a mate's wedding...I hadn't even realised I was stressed until I lay down on the couch...no cell phone coverage, no TV worth watching, nothing to do except hang out with friends, watch the kids turn a bathroom into a bubbly lake, have a few wines and breathe the sea air. I chilled out and it's been much better ever since.

Straddie spa bath

So here you are Diary, to hear the latest stories of me and mine. Going to people's weddings is always interesting. This time slightly more so because Finn (aged 4.5) wanted to know all about it...what getting married was and what a wedding was. His Dad explained to him that when two people loved each other really much and wanted to spend lots of time together they got married. And then he had to reel off a list of people who were married....like Oma and Opa, Grandma and Grandad, Kev and Liz, Collene and Phil, Ally and Bob and soon (then) Jane and Wilko! We waited for the inevitable question about his own Mum and Dad but it never came....wipe sweat off brow over that one! Hmm tricky. I can only surmise that his Dad would have said something along the lines that he was still waiting for someone who dressed a bit more like an airline stewardess and breathily uttered the lines "Another cognac, Dr Dinger?"

We always discuss the weddings we've been to, and wonder how ours would go should we ever attempt it...but it's never quite right. This latest wedding was lovely with its small number of guests, wonderful food and beautiful setting overlooking the sea...but there was still that pesky photographer with his direction of poses...a nightmare for someone as wary of the limelight as I. And then there's family issues...I would offend my family (that's you Dad) by not inviting 80% of them, and Marcel would confuse his family by getting married at all. After three kids and 10 years I can almost hear the big collective WHY? So I shall continue on my free and easy "single" ways for a while yet....dancing along my shelf, gin in hand, laughing at poo jokes with my very happy and beloved bastard children.

So our new house....it has a backyard with terraces and not much else. There are a couple of mounds of soil/rotting leaf matter put there thoughtfully by the builders which I never realised until now would be like the bestest thing ever to play in, nest in, scratch in...that is if you're a brush turkey. If we were in NZ that turkey would've made a lovely soup sometime on the second day. But here...beautiful Aussie native that he is...we're not allowed to touch him, move him or harass him.

I have done a wee bit of harassing I must admit, sometimes a few rocks have even accidentally left my hand at high speed heading towards him but it doesn't make much difference. Like most Aussies, he thrives on abuse. The other day Finn took it into his own head to deal to the turkey:

F: "Mum, there's that bloody turkey. I'm going to throw some rocks at that bloody turkey. That bloody turkey."
Rock throwing. Somewhat inaccurate.
F: "Mum can you throw some rocks at the bloody turkey please?"
M: "Finn please don't talk that way."
F: " What?! I said please!"

Holly has been loving the new house. Due to mountains of rain when we moved in, it was surrounded by mud and gravel and has easily reachable taps for the world's shortest 2.5 year old. Within a day of arriving here, both Finn and Holly realised they could reach all necessary opening and closing, on and off devices necessary for mischief...devices largely well out of their reach in an old Queenslander. They played in the mud until they looked like minstrels, trooped through the house discarding soaking clothes as they went and turned on the shower. You could follow the trail of muddy footprints along the hallway carpet, muddy handprints up the stairway walls and find them chuffed to bits in the shower...the door wide open, mud and water and steam all combining to turn the white bathroom into something quite a lot less so. They were having a lot of fun.

Happy as a pig

Holly has had a few regression problems with her toileting. She was pretty much fully dry when we moved here and has since gone back to weeing on the carpet, couches, where-ever she happens to be. She has been very resistant to going to the toilet when asked, and no amount of chocolate or other bribery seems to make any difference. Her Dad had a bit of a talk to her yesterday which seemed to resonate somewhat...she came up to me and told me she was going to go wees in the toilet, and that I would be so happy and proud of her. And whatever he said seemed to do the trick as yesterday and today she trotted off happily to do her business with no accidents. There were lots of hugs and kisses and "I'm so proud of you"s. I asked him later what he'd said to her thinking he might have come up with some genius gentle-reasoning psychological parenting speech. Apparently it was just that, he'd threatened that Mum would put all her undies in the rubbish and put her back in nappies. Back to the old good Dad bad Mum routine....never fails!

Holly channelling Posh Spice

Holly has even today improved on her previous toileting by cleaning up after herself. Upon pooing she is happy to jump down and grab the toilet brush to scrub up any mess she may have left on the bowl. Unfortunately she didn't think of flushing the toilet first...leaving a toilet brush rather more covered in poo than it might otherwise have been and a toilet bowl that looked as if the household has severe dysentery. Still I can't complain. Hugs and kisses and "I'm so proud of you"s.

Tas had his first birthday in the new house on the 6th of March. It was very poorly planned, to the extent that we weren't going to do anything at all, since his Dad was overseas and the house looked like something half organised...the sort of state that might be reached when someone starts unpacking boxes until they find the gin and then stops. But Grandma thought that something ought to be done for the other children (them who like birthday cakes, opening presents and blowing out candles) so she baked a cake and I decorated it and thankfully we have some nice friends who bothered to buy Tas some presents as no-one in his family did! I apologise in advance, third child for all other future uncaring and thoughtless events you will undoubtedly suffer...your mother is a stinky poo-bum.

Tasman turns one

So here we are. In our new house, thinking of such things as insect screens, irrigation plans and a front fence. Must put that washing line up, phone the pest guy, phone the lighting shop and chase up the handrail guy. Might think about some suitable "hide all hand-print" wall colour for the stairwell. To buy: a coffee table, some bar stools and bench seat cushions, a bigger bed and some new towels...but not until we have some cash.

Maybe I'll just forget about it all and go for another long weekend on Straddie. Anyone want to house sit?

Tasman channelling his maternal Grandad