Friday, April 30, 2010

Just Another Friday

Today I had a crazy busy afternoon.

I'm still trying to recover.

He's a little rundown.

12.45pm
Having fed, changed, chased, cleaned up after, giggled with and cuddled Charlie, I got him into the car for a run into the city.

Just to get some army gear for Kaiden. I had only a few hours left till he left for camp and we needed some essentials desperately.

1.30pm
After hitting every red light and being surrounded by idiotic drivers, I then spent 20 frazzled minutes stuck at road works, so I felt blessed to find a parking spot just across the road from the Army Surplus store.

1.35pm
Having had the BEST sales assistant help me find all I needed in a whirlwind 5 mins I find myself walking hand in hand with Charlie down the busy street. We stop to stare and point and ooh and aah over every bus, truck, car and person that passes us by.

2.00pm
Decide to take a different route home to avoid said road works, only to find that I really don't know where on earth I'm going. The only good thing was, that guided by the sun I knew I was at least heading in the right direction.

2.10pm
Eventually make my way to roads that I actually know. Relief is a great feeling. Unfortunately having Charlie scream from the back seat that he wants his shoes and socks off NOW tempers my elation. Manage to reach back and yank them off one handed whilst keeping the car on the road.

2.11pm
Charlie screams louder than ever as I obviously misunderstood his previous screamed demands, and wasn't supposed to take his socks off, only his shoes. Realisation dawned as I was about to take off the second of his socks. Apparently to a toddler being left with one Elmo sock on and the other off is the worst thing in the world, and he wasn't shy in letting me know.

After some quick thinking I started singing the rhyme "Diddle Diddle Dumpling My Son John..." and the screams immediately ceased.

Thank goodness.

Unfortunately I then had to sing that same song over and over for the next 10 minutes.

2.30pm
Finally arrive home, rather more stressed than when I left.

No matter. Shake it off and just get on with things.

Gave Charlie a quick snack and nappy change and we were out the door and back in the car again.

3.00pm
Picked Corey up from school and raced him to martial arts class, while he changed clothes in the car. Made him perform a rolling exit and parachute roll out the car door as we passed the dojo (kidding but not too far from the truth).

3.25pm
Hurried back to pick Kaiden up from his school before he started to worry where I was and walk off to his Grandy's house.

Luckily Kaiden was waiting patiently for me and was more than pleased with the army 'supplies' I had picked up for him.

2 army singlets and a shirt
8 heavy duty tent pegs that shouldn't get bent out of shape this time
30 metres of hoochie cord (a hoochie is the tent thing they make out of a ground sheet and sleep under for two nights in the cold - brrr)
1 fabuous best thing ever : the latest and greatest brand new army torch with different colour lenses (red for secret night time operations)

4.00pm
Get back to the dojo in time to see the end of Corey's class, Charlie keeps trying to run in and join the class but contents himself doing star jumps and running up and down the side for a while before taking off out the front to run circles around and around a drain happily for 10 minutes straight.

4.45pm
Battle peak hour traffic all the way home and take twice as long to get there. Realise that we have one hour exactly to get Kaiden fed, dressed and ready to go off and play boy soldier for the weekend.

5.45pm
Back into the car and miraculously manage to pull it off and get Kaiden to the departure point on time and hopefully with everything he needs to survive the weekend.

6.00pm
Back home again (this time for the rest of the evening) and time to get Charlie organised for a bath and bed.

7.00pm
Something else to be greatful for - Charlie went straight of to sleep without a whimper, which means I could start dinner.

7.30pm
My hard working husband arrives home just as I'm serving dinner so we manage to sit down together and compare notes on our day.

Not sure who won the "I Had a Stressful Day" competition.

But it was close.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Kung Fu Fighting

So. Martial arts.

Yes, I'm referring to this post from 2 weeks ago.

I like to keep you guys in suspense.

Either that, or it's taken me this long to get my head around this decision.

So, martial arts.

I have now attended (and survived) 4 lessons. And boy is it hard. My poor unfit, chocolate loving body didn't know what hit it. After the first session I could hardly drive home my arms were shaking so much.

But the fact that I love it makes the pain worthwhile. And there's been a lot of pain.

At some point over the last two weeks every muscle in my body has had it's turn at aching. But it's a good sort of ache, knowing that I am actually moving and using my body and hopefully getting fit.

The moves are coming back to me quite easily, but after 7 years, it's the fitness side that's taking a while.

I'm having to do girlie push ups on my knees, not like when I was the super fit Kung Fu Master (ahem!) and I could do 100 push ups on my knuckles.

On the concrete floor.

At least that gives me something to aim for.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

At 20 months.

Charlie turned 20 months old just the other day.

Everyday he blows me away with how much he is learning.

Each day he learns new words and will practice them out at every opportunity.

His chosen word of today is : Streetlight.

I'm not sure why. I don't ask questions.

Yesterday it was : Windscreen. Go figure?


Charlie has a drawer that's full of educational toys and books. We play and learn with these things together most days.

Between 18 mths to 2 years, children have the most synapses firing in their brains than at any other time. The rate they learn at this age is amazing. So I'm taking this time to expose him to as many things as possible.

And he just soaks it up like a little learning sponge.

He seems to love it, and is always asking for more (both verbally and in sign language).

At 20 months these are the letters of the alphabet that he knows.

We're currently working on the remaining 6.

He can count objects up to 6 unaided.

And does so quite frequently.

Just the other day, he walked around the entire perimeter of the park, counting the fence posts as he went. He would count to 6, and then we would help him the rest of the way up to 10.

Then he would begin again at 1.

Over and over.

Then just to up the ante, Del taught him 1 - 10 in German.

No problem.

We were now counting fence posts in German.

He loves this rainbow learning card. He stares at it for ages and sings little bits of the song "I Can Sing A Rainbow".

It's just adorable.



This kid amazes me each and every day.

I love him to bits.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

For the Sake of Posterity

This weekend my in-laws have come to visit.

I love it when they come to visit.

I'm one of the lucky ones who actually gets on well with her mother-in-law.

We all raced around this morning and tidied up the house ready for their arrival. I love it when my home is tidy and clean.

It makes me happy.

So whilst my house is looking nice I took the opportunity to take a few photos. For the sake of posterity. I love looking at photos of my past homes, it brings back all the wonderful memories.

Especially the home I was in when my big boys were born. I remember coming home from the hospital with Kaiden only a few days old, it was Spring, the sky was blue, the sun was shining and the flowers were blooming in my garden. And all was right with the world.

I love those memories.

That's why I wanted to take photos of this home, to one day be able to reconnect with the sweet memories of Charlie's babyhood.

Also, I thought there may be a slight chance that someone out there in internet-land would like to see where I live.

I think perhaps I'm a little bit nosy as I love seeing blogs that give a peek into their homes ocassionally. I think it adds another dimension to their stories.

So here goes :

Let's start with the kitchen. It seems to be where I spend most of my time. I love that it's large and bright.

What I don't love is the green bench tops.

This is the living area off the kitchen. Charlie spends most of his day playing here. His toys are kept in the wooden cabinet. He loves having his own little toy cupboard, and happily puts his toys away when he's finished.

A closer look of the same area. It's a very comfy couch. Not that I get time to sit on it as much as I'd like.

A peek through the french doors into our sunny tv room. This room is heaven in winter as it gets the sun all day long. But in summer, oh my, it turns into a sauna if the blinds aren't down.

The view of the other part of our tv room. Note the tv program on at the time. That would be Kaiden, my car obsessed son watching tv then.

The dining room which is off the kitchen/living room area. A very grown up dining room, which I'm always slightly nervous having the children eat in.

And myself, if I'm truthful.

I just love the chinese dragon wall relief, that Del brought home as a surprise not too long ago. It was just perfect for this area.


And finally, our front living area, that looks over our front garden. The main front door to our home, is on the other side of the wall behind this couch.

This room is decorated a lot more modern than the others, hanging on the wall is a selection of aboriginal tribal weapons that Del bought when he first arrived in this country.

The other side of this room. Note the target artwork on the wall. Our little tribute to the mod era.

I love my home and hope we are here for many happy years to come.

I have something to say.

Hello. My name is Leiani and I'm a bad mother.


My mugshot for the Bad Mothers Hall of Fame


Well, sometimes I'm a great mother.

But now is not one of those times.

Right now I'm a bad mother. With a capital B.

I think I've just ruined my middles son's chances for greatness in this life. And I feel terrible.

I don't know what's happened to me lately, I seem to be dropping the ball, so to speak. A recent example is my inability to tell time.

Of course I'm great at planning to be organised and recently professed to be the Organisation Queen.

But as the saying goes 'pride comes before the fall'. And in this case it's true, as I'm having a bit of a problem following through on all my grand organisation plans lately.

Corey is due to start high school in January and his chosen school was asking for applications to be submitted for their Academic Extension program. It's basically identifying all the smarty pants students and putting them into specialised classes where they will be challenged a bit more.

And my boy definitely fits the smart pants criteria, I'm proud to say. His favourite subject is Maths, and Corey can often be found helping his brother Kaiden with his maths homework.

FOR FUN.

Oh, and Kaiden is 3 grades ahead of Corey.

Corey also reads at a high level and is already in PEAC (Primary Extension and Challenge - basically the primary school version of the high school program).

So back to my failings as a mother.

I picked up the application from the school along with the application for the Specialist Soccer program (Corey is not only exceptionally brainy but is also a talented soccer player) , I gave the forms a quick once over looking at the submission date and then put them away in the paper work drawer in my kitchen to fill in later.

That was the fatal mistake.

I left them there, thinking I had ages to complete them, and I didn't write the dates on my calendar or in my diary as I should have.

I think you can guess what's coming.

I took the forms out this morning to fill them in, thinking 'oh I have another few weeks to get them in, I'm so organised and wonderful getting it done now etc etc'.

I looked at the submission date on the Soccer application - 21 May.

No problem.

I looked at the submission date on the Academic application - 1 April.

Oh, sh*t. (I don't often swear but this was warranted I believe)

I may have just messed up my son's future. He needs to be challenged in school. He needs to have this extra work, it will open up so many windows of opportunity he might otherwise not get. OMG what have I done?

All I can do is phone the school on Tuesday (Monday is a public holiday here) and beg them to accept a late application.

My dilemma is, do I tell them the truth? That I'm a disorganised mother and didn't look at the date properly.

Or do I make up a little white lie, and say that we only just got the forms, or only just decided that this is the school he wanted or some other plausible reason why we are late submitting the forms?

Please help me plan what to do.

And I promise I'll try to follow the plan properly this time.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Close Encounters

Not all that long ago, Charlie and I escaped the house to go play in the sunshine at the park over the road from our house.

Nothing unusual in that.

In fact, getting some fresh air and taking the dog for a walk are great excuses to procrastinate further regarding the looming deadline on the million, give or take a few, client's Statement of Advice that I need to prepare for work.

This particular day, Charlie and I headed over to the little grove of trees, to watch the leaves sway in the wind, and a spontaneous game of hide and seek / peek-a-boo around the trees ensued.

Fortunately for me, Charlie's incessant giggling gave away his hiding place every time.

As I went to peek around a tree to where he was hiding, I realised the giggling had stopped.

Hmmm, was he getting better at the game?

No, he was busy pointing at something on the side of the tree. Thinking it was a leaf or something I moved around to have a look to find him not just pointing at the tree, he was actually touching something.

And it wasn't the tree.

It was the most ginormous spider I had ever seen!

It was THIS big. * holds arms out wide*

My heart stopped beating. I couldn't breathe.

Had my defenseless baby been attacked by this evil creature?

Thank goodness that it actually seemed a very placid (although huge) spider, happily buried into the bark of the tree, quietly waiting for it's next meal to pass by.

Luckily I don't think small boys were on his menu that day.

After checking all of Charlies fingers for fang marks, I ascertained that he was fine. Thank goodness.

The same couldn't be said of my nerves though.

Who knew hide and seek was so fraught with danger?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

School Days

Yesterday was the first day back at school for my big boys after the Easter break. Some of us were looking forward to this more than others.

No need to name names.

But here's a clue : three letters, starts with M, ends with M, and has a vowel in the middle.

M_m.

Hmmm..... any guesses?

Anyway, this nameless person had a herself a good day, pottering around the house, and even managing to complete a large amount of 'work' work (paid work as opposed to housework or any other one of the million types of work *she* does).

Then glancing at the clock realised that she better get her butt into gear and go pick up two big boys from school.

Upon arriving at the parking lot, this nameless person was rather puzzled to find it empty. Not one car in the small space that is usually dangerously crammed with harried mothers in mini-vans, all vying for the one last spot.

Momentary feelings of displacement were experienced.

As in what's going on here? Was a memo overlooked stating that finish time has changed?

Then the slowly a thought dawned. LOOK AT YOUR WATCH.

Oh.

Umm, yeah.

2 'o' clock.

Sheepishly, this nameless person turned the car (not a mini-van) around and slowly drove back home, thankful that there was no-one in that empty car park to witness her arriving to pick up her child AN HOUR EARLY.

Better than an hour late, I guess.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Brotherly Love



I just love the relationship between Kaiden and Charlie.

Kaiden dotes on his little brother, and is like a second Daddy to him.

Seeing the gentle, caring side of a teenage boy is one of the most wonderful things in the world.

And Charlie just adores his Kaiden in return.

It enough to make a mother's heart melt.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Through the Window.

Hal-wo!


Mummy just finished cleaning these windows.


Mmmmm, they taste all clean and lemon-y.


Life can be soooooo boring around here. A boy has to make his own fun.


Oh wow! I can leave kissy marks all over this.



You don't think Mummy will know I've been here do you?

Saturday, April 17, 2010

What a Bad Blogger Am I

I've been a very bad blogger this week. I've not had a minute to spare lately.

The following two words should explain everything :

SCHOOL HOLIDAYS.

To recap we have........

Played toys at home.


Played dress ups.


Had friends come for a sleep over. How much sleep was actually had, could be debated.


Had a (pretend) ride on Daddy's scooter.


Played toys some more.


Turned into a TV zombie.


Tried on Daddy's shoes for size.


Had to put up with the incessant noise of the vacuum cleaner whilst trying to watch favourite shows on the computer.


And attempted to make friends with the local wildlife.


A busy week in all.

Upon compiling these photos, I realise that I sadly lack captured moments of my two big boys.

Usually due to the fact they're rarely around.

I'll try to pin them both down soon. Convince them to come home and let me take photos of them.

Perhaps I can lure them in with food.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Today I did something stupid.

Oh, yes I did.

Crazy. Downright daft. I'm sure I wasn't in my right mind at the time.

You see, many many years ago (almost 7 yrs I think), when I was fit, and much much younger, I not only rock climbed every week, I was also doing martial arts training twice a week.

I was super fit and loved it.

And I want that feeling back again. To live in a body working at peak performance, to feel strong and healthy. Oh, how I want that back.

And that's how I arrived at my stupid decision.

I signed up for martial arts training again.

I think I may regret this.

You see I overlooked three little things :

1. I'm not as young as I was then.

2. I've had a third baby since then.

3. I'm terribly unfit.

But the lure of being fit and strong again was just too much.

I'll let you know how it went as soon as the first class is over.

Provided my arm muscles co-operate and allow me to drive home. And then let me use my fingers to type.

Sorry, on second thought you may have to wait a day or two after the event for that update.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Autumn

Now that summer has drawn to a close and autumn is gently making itself known, the change of seasons has opened a whole new world of discoveries to Charlie.

Of course he doesn't remember this time last year so it's all new to him. At least I'm pretty sure he doesn't remember, but the kid does have the memory of an elephant so nothing would surprise me.

The evenings are getting cooler so we are taking our evening walk a bit earlier, and by the time he's had dinner and his bath, it's starting to get dark.


(Totally unrelated to the story but exceptionally cute photo)

And Charlie is fascinated by the dark. He runs from room to room to see which ones are dark and which have lights on. He's not scared thank goodness, just curious.

The dark brings a whole new perspective to the familiar things and places.

We must also look out the window into the dark, and look for the stars and the moon.

Then all is right with the world.

I love seeing the world through such innocent eyes.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

I'm beginning to sound......

..... like a broken record.

"Charlie, don't do that".

"No Charlie".

"Charlie, mummy said No".

"No Charlie".

"No".

"No, no, no, no, no ...".

Yep, I definitely sound like a broken record.

I wonder if all those savvy, technologically adept kids of today would even understand that saying?

"What's a record mum?"

I guess that instead I could say something like :

"I sound like a corrupted MP3 file downloaded with errors onto an iPod Touch".

But would just sound stupid. Right?

Oh, and by the way, if you didn't manage to read between the lines : Charlie has hit the Terrible Two's. (a few months earlier than expected. He's advanced like that).

I thank you for your condolences.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Aftermath

I've eaten so much chocolate over the last few days, that I feel ill. And guilty.

But that won't stop me from consuming more and more until it's all gone.

Charlie has prickles stuck in his poor little baby feet, that look to be getting infected and seem to be bothering him greatly. He thinks a great new game is to pull off the tea tree coated band-aids I put on him and throw them in the bin when I'm not looking.

And now I've run out of band-aids.

Corey is suffering from multiple minor injuries. (currently a shoulder and foot injury). Nothing new there. He'll be fine.

He always is.

Kaiden, well he seems to be the only one in good shape physically. Touch wood. Though he is feeling a bit down as a planned trip to the movies with friends didn't eventuate.

That's a big deal when your 14.

And Del is still feeling the on again, off again effects of the cold-that-never-ends. But he soldiers on. Even managing to work a 10 hour day today.

He's a tough one, is my beloved.

Not the most exciting post I know. I'll try to find something more funny, cute or exciting for next time.

Or even all of the above if you're lucky.

I'll even try to get photos.

Completely un-staged of course.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter Sunday....... in Pictures

The Easter Bunny's been!!!!


A close up of Charlie's surprise. The Easter Bunny left him a little chocolate bunny, a book and a couple of little toys.

The big boys received a large egg and a dvd each.


Kaiden was pleased with the Holden easter egg he got.

The Easter Bunny obviously knows my son's liking for cars. (BTW check out the muscles!! My boy is turning into a man!)


Don't let the face fool you, Corey was happy with his soccer ball egg really.

Except for the fact that the packaging stated it was 50g less than Kaiden's.

How dare the Easter Bunny leave him a smaller egg than his brother's.


Charlie doesn't remember last Easter so this was all new to him.

But it took him less than 5 seconds to figure out what to do with his chocolate bunny.

Rip the paper off and.....

...straight in the mouth.


The Easter Bunny really did come.


Charlie had great fun following the footprints and pointing each one out to us.


All morning all we heard from Charlie was "Bummy, bummy, bummy".

Which is how I will forever think of the Easter Bunny from now on.


We then had an Easter egg hunt, which Charlie loved. Easily hidden eggs for Charlie and some a little more tricky for the older two.

Even big boys love an Easter egg hunt.

But I must say they found the eggs easier than I thought they would, so next year I'll have to get a lot more sneaky with hiding places.

Back of the fridge, behind the lettuce maybe?


Charlie enjoyed the extra chocolate the Easter egg hunt gave him.


He was zooming around the house on a sugar high for hours after that.

Maybe next year we should skip the chocolate.

Great in theory but that means I'd miss out on chocolate too.

Not such a great idea after all.