About Me

Perth, WA, Australia
Hi friends. To those I have met in person and the many I haven't - welcome to our nest. Thanks so much for stopping by. I am a mama of six baby birds and wife to one papa bird. Our nest is an intricately woven home, crafted over time, through the highs and lows of life, and many in-betweens. We are soon to leave our Australian nest to re-locate to our second home, the UK. This is our story, of our new life in a new country, the trials and tribulations, bidding goodbye to precious friends and embracing new. I know at times, our wings will be flapping so hard to keep us moving forward that we will tire, however, a little perseverence will bring effortless gliding amongst a soft breeze, and even stronger wings for the journey ahead. Welcome to our flight......

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Family Outing

Yesterday we went on a family outing to the local park. Six children, the dog, OBH and I. One teen on roller blades with the dog pulling her, one pre-teen on roller blades, number 3 child on a bike and fresh off his trainers, number 4 on her scooter and babies in the stroller.

We must have looked a sight - eight of us rambling along the side-walk. It wasn't much fun for me as my protective instincts were in over-drive. Every car that came by was a potential death-trap for my brood. What if one of my precious souls lost control and careened out onto the road and were flattened into the gravel? What if they fell and broke their arm or leg? What if? What if?

I ended up walking on the road and not the path in order to look in front and behind of me for any approaching vehicles, and also to avoid the various shapes and sizes of wheels that kept nipping my heels. I didn't have a lovely and joyful smile on my face. More of a stressed 'are we having fun yet' look and a nasty snarl at every passing pedestrian that dare come by my brood. Sad really.

Finally we got to the park and there they were - the rumbling, black clouds of doom, inching ever so close to us by the minute. Snacks were a bit pathetic as the pantry was sparse, so the OBH packed cereal bites and water. Hmmm yum! The kids were less than enthusiastic about that, however as they were starving, of course, they tolerated the cardboard shaped pieces infused with dried fruit and choked them down with lovely de-chlorinated tap water.

Before we knew it the clouds of doom were upon us, so we legged it home, telling the kids to pedal, cycle, roller-blade as fast as they could. Amongst shrieks of 'it's going to get us', 'the end is nigh', we made it home to safety and warmth, just as sheets of rain wrapped around us.

Our teen summed it all up by saying 'You know, we don't get out much for family outings, and this one was pretty quick, but we had better make the most of it cos you don't know if it will ever happen again'.

Never a truer word spoken!

Thursday, 19 August 2010

The Daily Grind

The life of a wife and housewife (yes, I finally admit, that is indeed what I am) can be so monotonous and boring! Same thing, day in day out. All the caring for others and the cleaning and picking up after everybody, over and over again, blah, blah, blah. It is enough to beat the best and strongest of us into total submission and make us (well, me, some days) feel as though we have just blended into the beige walls of our 4 by 2.
This morning, for instance, my OBH (other better half - but not this morning!), asked me whether I would care to take my empty mug into the kitchen. This was just as I was getting out of bed - eyes only been open for a few minutes. His words were, 'I know you don't normally do it, but just today, do you think you could pick up your own cup?' Hah! Bad, bad, way to wake up!
Watch out life partner!
My response, was not to serenely smile as the vintage housewives of past would. Actually they would have been up at dawn's break and greeted their loved ones with baked goodness, all the while looking resplendent in their waisted fitting frocks and heels with perfectly groomed hair and cherry red lips. Not me! This morning, in my daggy old tee shirt and hair looking like a bird's nest, I was as far from my vintage pre-decessors as can be.
My response was something like this, 'Soooooo, you think I don't pick up after myself huh? Maybe that is because I am too busy picking up after seven other people in the house who seem to have 'dropsy syndrome', and then I have the privilege of feeding everyone copious times a day, oh, and home schooling number two child, and then, when I am really dead on my feet, I get to run 6kms just so I can have 30 mins to myself to clear my head!'
It wasn't pretty.
OBH snuck out the door to work and hasn't been heard from since.
However, some wise and sage advice came from afar, who pointed out that this particular 'slump' I was in was neither beneficial nor productive and that I should be grateful for my lot in life and look at the positives of my day. Easier to give advice than take it, I say!

Smelly Boys

My boys are getting smelly. I have two (six and nine years) and have noticed of late that their bedroom has a distinctive whiffy odour, quite pungent in the morning, particularly after a whole night of excreting 'boy air'!
It is not just the stale clothes, shoved in toy boxes or even the crusty old undies under the bed. It is more just the changing smell of two boys (one in particular) who is growing up and smelling older. Maybe it is pre-teen sweat glands firing into action and running out of his every pore or it could just be general gasses from last nights' dinner. Whatever it is, I know that soon I will need to open their bedroom door armed with protective head gear and a can of Glen 20 to sweeten the air. It might help also if the window was opened from time to time and probably help enormously, if I washed their sheets more than once every few months (seriously - but that's a secret!).
Now girls, on the other hand, always smell sweet and lovely. It is as if they are surrounded by hues of lavender and rose, washed in passion fruit and kiwi extracts with a slight hint of sugar and musk. Ok, bit over the top, but honestly the girls' bedrooms do not smell like the boys. However, the exception is the twin babies and their morning poo ritual which they manage to ceremoniously dump in their already urine soaked nappies just before they wish to arise for the day and greet the family.
I do have to state however, that my boys smell absolutely divine after they have showered, gelled their hair and used their dad's aftershave. To be able to bury my nose into their necks and have a good sniff of their loveliness is a treat and I dare say, not to be enjoyed much longer before it is out out of bounds for my sensitive sniffer!

Monday, 16 August 2010

Downward Dog

Our number five and six babies are becoming little people of their own, with distinct personalities and quirky, unique behaviour.

Twin number two, as she will forever be known, has just started a very interesting exercise routine which she can't seem to not do. We call it 'the dead dog' but I think the correct phrase is actually coined from Yoga (not something I practice) being the 'downward dog' position. Either way, number two spends most of her time with her bottom in the air, legs straight as a pin and her head balanced on the ground. Her core muscles must be in top condition and we are anticipating the six pack to emerge on her tight little tummy any day. Sometimes this pose is conducted with hands flat on the floor. Other times it is no hands and just a cheeky little smile can be seen from between her legs.

Today I put her down in her cot for a nap and an hour later (yes bad Mummy - a whole hour later), I checked on her. There she was, having a whale of a time, bottom in the air, looking like she was about to pass out from all the blood rushing into her head. Number one bub was also awake, watching the circus show, with an amused look on her face, probably wondering when the intermission was going to be (ie time for sleep!)

Speaking of twin number one, she is the complete opposite, not only in looks but also in size. Whilst number two has the strongest legs I have ever known in a baby, number one, cannot weight bear - at all! She has just mastered sitting up but due to her generous girth, often finds herself laying on the floor, not in 'the dead dog' position, but face-planted onto the tiles and unable to move her lovely fat cheeks which invariably end up squished onto the floor.

I am constantly amazed at how different two babies, who shared womb space for nine months and were born 4 minutes apart, can be. How can one be loud and demanding (two!) and the other so very quiet and gentle (one!)? One have a cry like a bird and one a roar like a lion? One who is more than happy to be patient and wait for ones turn and the other who will not wait for a second?

These two babies I venture to say, must be the most loved and cherished cherubs on the planet, with their siblings lavishing them with affection, smothering their little faces with kisses and causing the odd bump to their heads with over-exuberant hugs.

I am just looking forward to the time when number one masters a circus act of her own. You never know, I might walk into the nursery one day to find a trapeze act being performed, with number one as the seat and number two upside down, flying through the air!

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Constant Interruptions ..

I live in the 'House of Constant Interruptions'. Minute by minute, hour by hour, my days are filled with starts and fits and unfinished business. The most awful part is when I actually manage to do something, uninterrupted for 5 whole minutes, and the panic sets in. How much longer will this blissful peace last? My heart starts racing and my hands work double-time just so I can actually complete something, anything! When will the task at hand be shattered by a little one calling out 'Muuuuummmmmmyyyyyyy!!!!!!!!!, can you, will you, he did, she did, they did, the dog did a poo, the baby spewed!'. But ..... I have varying tactics in place when this scenario appears:

One - ignore the wailing, whining, crying, shouting etc etc etc, and leg-it to the nearest exit. In most cases this will be the wardrobe, pantry or the shower. Crouch into a ball, rock slowly and hum quietly and try to imagine myself somewhere else.
This invariably fails and nobody even questions why Mummy would be meditating in the shower with her clothes on and her eyes closed. Little ones just exclaim 'There you are!' 'Will you wipe my bottom?'

Two - This one I use a lot. I pretend I cannot hear. I am deaf and mute to little ones' voices. This can stretch my task at hand for another 3 minutes tops but does mean that I have to try and switch off from repeated requests. Usually the voices start from another room and when no response is given, the repeat button is switched on. Something like this: Mummy, Mummy, Mummy, Mummy, Mummy, Mummy, Muuuuuummmmmmyyyyyy, can you hear me????? Mummy, what's wrong? Why aren't you opening your mouth? Mummy speak? Mummy, Mummy, Mummy etc etc etc. Quite effective if you are good at environmental displacement.

Third - is the mumble response. Partially here, partially there. More of a grunt than anything else. Quite unattractive, but teenagers (I hear) are genius' at it. I can keep working but just throw in the odd inflection and noise every now and then, if a long story is being told or someone needs to get something off their chest. Again, quite effective, but not good manners to teach your children.

And Lastly, there is the appropriate response, which of course, all good and perfect mothers do all of the time. They immediately stop what they are doing at the sound of 'cherubs call', get down on their level, smile serenely, make eye contact, speak calmly and with love and grace, enquire of their needs.

Gotta go ... I am practicing the last one!

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Other Species ...

In case you haven't noticed, men and women are very different species!

In our house we have six females (yes six, including the dog, of course), and three male species. The differences between us are astounding.
Here is a rough picture.

Firstly, the boys:
Toilet flushing is a waste of time. Save it all up till the end of the day and just give it one big flush. What's the problem with that?
Hand washing after toileting is debatable. Takes up too much time. Again, save it for the end of the day and have one big wash.
The rightful home for used undies and socks is the floor, along with shoes, hats, toys and dirty plates. Far too much effort and responsibility to remember (every day!) to put them in the laundry for the maid (me!)
A few days of not brushing teeth is fine. A good clean every now and then gets rid of the green slime and as long as the trips to the dentist are regular, what is the problem?
Needing nourishment constantly is perfectly natural. Who made the rules that we should only eat three times a day? More like 30, with liquid supplements in between!
Sleeping is boring and the night is far too long and a perfect waste of 'playing time'.

And my other better half (hmmm, I will be kind ....)
Gets distracted by anything on the telly, even when it is turned off.
Physically and genetically unable to multi-task. It is not a case of not being willing, he is unable (bless!!) Exceptions are sitting on the toilet and reading a mag or having a mouth full of food and keeping an eye on the telly.
Has short term goals (very short, ie, minute by minute) but is not quite able to meet them due to the fact that I (!!!!!) am a constant distraction and he can't stay focused on the task. Now that's a good one!
Absolutely cannot put away the laundry. Again, would love to be able to do it, but is just unable, due to the confusion factor of all the different articles of clothing. Not to mention, the copious amounts of socks and jocks. Sorry, but just not his thing...
Anything technical that needs attention, ie, pc, stereo, tv, i-pod, Wii, Nintendo, etc, etc, takes precedence over anything else in the house, including feeding children and clearing up. He wishes it were different, but it is just the way it is
And lastly, (because really I could go on for quite some time) there is the' leftover food from dinner scenario'. Any remaining morsels from dinner must sit on the bench for at least 3 hours before placed in the fridge. Notwithstanding the fact that it takes less than 30 seconds to Gladwrap and open the fridge door, they MUST stay out for this amount of time.

And now to the girlie's of the household...
Well that's easy. We are the complete opposite of all of the above, always correct, positively witty and charming and perfect in all we do and accomplish. We have superb organisational skills, excellent time-management, clever, intuitive and forward-thinking. Some would say, the 'rock' of the family. It's a tough call but somebody has to do it:)