Tag Archives: kids

Attempting the impossible as a Mum… AKA why we don’t get sick.


I woke up this morning and thought “Last day of term… I’ll do the grocery shopping and then maybe take Toby out for lunch before a blitz clean and the kids come rolling home.” Then I moved and realised my plans were a bit ambitious.  My eyes were puffy, my throat felt all clogged and when I sat up it was like my nose turned on a tap.  And it wasn’t a polite little drip… drip… drip either.  Oh, no, it was on full blast.  By the time I’d thrown some clothes on and walked about eight steps from my bedroom I knew it was going to end badly and messily.  Fortunately I was right outside the toilet and I have good aim.

My next thought was I’d do breakfasts and lunchboxes and once the big two were out the door I could lie down and whimper in peace.  I forgot to take into account the fact that I have a very rambunctious three year old and me lying down is simply an invitation for him to jump on me.  A lot.  While screeching.  Loudly.

I gave it up as a bad job and we went and got the groceries – including holiday treats which have to be hidden so the eight year old doesn’t find them and polish them off in one go! – and came home to have lunch and try this resting gig again.  It didn’t happen.  Even lying on the couch with a blanket over me and ABC Kids on to entertain him didn’t help… he kept stripping the blanket off me and laughing at my reaction.  He definitely needs to work on his bedside manner!

So, the eight year old has just rolled in and they’ve both been presented with a plate of snacks (the oldest is being dropped off at dancing, she’ll be home at dinnertime) and I think I’m going to try again.  Surely the food will hold them for at least ten minutes?  Wish me luck!

PS  On the bright side, it looks like a fairly temporary thing and not the dreaded “G” that I dare not even utter… and it’s now, not next week.  Next week I have fun stuff planned that I don’t want to miss!!!



Shhhh!!!  Quiet now, don’t tell anyone… but I’m heading back.  Yep, back to blogging.  I know, I know… yes, totally aware how long it’s been.

It’s been far too long, I’ll admit it.  I got caught up in puppy love and kid stuff and dealing with holidays and then felt bad I hadn’t been blogging, even though I know I enjoy writing.  Then just as I was getting myself sorted life threw up a few massive roadblocks.  Life hasn’t been particularly kind to my friends and I over the past few months but we are all at the plodding along stage and we’re also saying out loud to each other that life is short and you should do things that make you happy.  Blogging makes me happy.

So, just quietly, I’m back.  Well, I’m coming back.  This is the first step… and I know I have a lot to catch up on.  But, yeah, my inner Pollyanna really is as strong as ever – and rather well exercised this year – so watch this space.


I went AWOL… and here’s some puppy spam



Well, hi there!  I’m just casually checking you out… you smell great.  Is it your perfume or have you been eating something?  I’m the reason that my hu-mum has been busy and hasn’t posted anything on her blog… naughty hu-mum!  Still, I’m so cute she just can’t resist and she’s been busy trying to teach me lots and lots of things.  Some of them I find easier than others.  Sitting so I get my dinner?  Sure, I can do that.  Politely waking her so I can go outside when I need to overnight… we’re working on it.  Anyway, I’ll hand you back to the hu-mum and she can tell you what I’ve been up to since I arrived.

Love and puppy kisses,

Willoughby xx

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Willoughby loves being outside, playing wiht the leaves and any toys the kids have left lying around.  Here he is, working on killing a lizard.  Fortunately for the lizard it’s just made of rubber.  Unfortunately for the lizard he chewed its feet off.  Fortunately for Willoughby I didn’t discover this until the feet… reappeared.


Life is tiring and he takes lots of naps.  The kids like to interrupt him, uh, play with him a lot and so he doesn’t get as much rest as he’d like.  He was snoozing so well here that you could just see it.  Well, if you have the Little Moments app, of course.  😉


Exploring the yard again!  We’re working on him coming and then sitting at the sound of his name.  Beagles are really intelligent dogs but they’re ruled by their nose and he will follow a scent above all else.  That’s why he won’t leave the property without his leash.


Playing with the kids, there’s a lot of that happening.  Master2 still doesn’t quite grasp the concept of “gentle with the puppy” and likes to check that his tail and ears are still attached.  So far they are!  He’s a very forgiving dog, too.  Well, either that or a glutton for punishment as he keeps going back for more!


Just casually looking cute here.  It seems to come naturally!

Willoughby_myinnerpollyanna_melbourne cup fascinator

I didn’t do anything for Melbourne Cup this year, but I did take this picture when Willoughby looks like a racing beagle fascinator.  Okay, it’s the angle, but he does love to race around the yard.


Hard to resist taking pics of the puppy asleep.  I love how wrinkly his mouth gets and he just loves lying in the sun.


We have toothpaste addicts in this house and here is poor Willoughby after wandering into the bathroom and getting fingerpainted with toothpaste.  It is a nice heart shape though… and he smelled minty fresh!

Willoughby_myinnerpollyanna_play school_sesame street_baby jake_LG TV

Catching up on the latest episode of Baby Jake on ABC2, the kids channel.  He was a bit annoyed he’d missed Play School (although after seeing what he does with his toys I think Big Ted and Little Ted are secretly glad he missed them!) but he did get to enjoy Sesame Street.


I love The Very Hungry Caterpillar and here’s Willoughby curled up with a toy one.  Well, that and Giggleosaurus.  So far he’s sharing toys nicely with the kids but he’s rather loathe to let them touch the caterpillar!


As if it’s not bad enough that I’m constantly whipping my phone out to take photos, here he is politely sititng through a photoshoot with MissNearlyNine.


And here we are, ready for another day’s adventure.  Turns out he’s not a fan of selfies on the phone and so we got a bit of a Blue Steel look here.





Ohhh… the countdown is getting closer to an end now.  I don’t know about you but I know that I’m getting really ever so slightly excited.  Okay, seriously excited but I know it will drive everyone nuts so I’m trying to contain myself.  How am I doing so far?  *lol*

Today it’s my favourite three kids books.  They’re books I’ve read over and over and over again and then, just for something different, I’ve read them again.  So, here we go!


1.  The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.  Such a simple story and gorgeous pictures.  I love how it teaches kids the days of the week, good food choices versus not so good food choices, the best thing to do when you’ve overeaten and that everyone has the capacity for change.  I’ve always loved TVHC and may have gone a little bit overboard when Master2 came along as Target had brought out a range of TVHC merchandise.  If it had the caterpillar on it then I probably bought it.


2.  Where is the Green Sheep?  Such a gorgeous book by Mem Fox and Judy Horacek with a great rhythm to it as it teaches about opposites and the value of perseverance… they do find that green sheep in the end, after all!  I’m yet to meet a toddler that doesn’t enjoy this book.


3.  Green Eggs and Ham by the fabulous Dr Seuss.  Another great book with rhythm that induces laughter by about the third page.  I have thought about dying some eggs green and serving them with ham but just can’t bring myself to do it.  I’d need a Sam-I-Am for that, I think.

Three days to go.

Image of 3 by real-techguy.com and bookcovers from booktopia.com.au




I’m still humming Christmas Carols but instead of “Fiiiiive goooolden rings” it’s “Fiiiive birthday cakes!” for you all.  Today I’m stepping back in time and remembering amazing cakes that my parents created for me.  Well, us.  My brother and I.  Actually, he only gets one cake (but what a cake!) and our childhood next door neighbour gets one, the rest are mine.  It’s funny, as an adult I’m not a huge cake person and even as a child I absolutely loved the attention to detail and care that went into our cakes but I would far rather staring at them dreamily for ages than actually eating them.  Partly because who wants to see a work of art cut up, but also because I’m not a huge cake person.  Although if it was my Nanny’s sultana cake… oh, that was amazing!

Come take a trip down memory lane…


1.  Ahhh… this was the epitome of every girl’s dream when I was growing up.  The Castle Cake.  The amount of work that goes into this had to be seen to be believed.  The turrets are ice cream cones on top of a square sponge cake and then extra (smaller) squares and then the cones.  See the flags at the top?  They are liquourice allsorts pulled to pieces ever so carefully – I’m pretty sure that my Mum ate the licorice parts.  She’s still a fiend for black jellybeans to this day… Mr7 rivals her for them!

Oh, and notice the brickwork on the cake?  Not only do you stack everything and pull liquorice allsorts to pieces but you also have to sit there with a steady hand and a matchbox to do the brickwork – I remember watching my Dad do part of that and marvelling at it as he went about the job of decorating it.  I can’t remember where the candles were placed on it, but I remember watching as the cake was brought towards me at the table and the excitement I felt.


2.  The clown cake from the friendly folk section of the cookbook.  Funny, I know people who would run screaming at the thought of this cake because they hate clowns so much.  But who can resist the little collar/bowtie rolled in 100s and 1000s?  How about the ice cream wafer eyes?  Or, my favourite, the lollipops with the curved sticks for the smile.  I had this for, I think, my fifth birthday… I remember we went to dinner at Cobb & Co for it and the cake was there and other people joined in singing Happy Birthday… I was equally embarrassed and thrilled.


3.  I loved this duck!  It wasn’t for me though, it was made for our neighbours birthday, I think it might have been her 21st.  We were exceptionally lucky with our neighbours and they were amazing – both the girls babysat us, we all put a pool (one of those semi inground, metal edged ones) in during a thunderstorm and if you stood just right you could feel a footprint or two in the base.  We were in New Zealand and we’d pool our crackers for cracker night and have an absolute blast (no pun intended) as we enjoyed it all together.  Heaps of BBQs and fun moments with the Theodores were had… and our family doing a cake for them wasn’t totally weird, they’d seen our birthday cakes after all!  The thing I remember most about this (apart from being slightly annoyed we had to use plain potato chips for the mouth, I would have preferred chicken!) was the skewer going through the carved body to hold the head on and then wondering how much of the icing in the bowl would be needed and how much my brother and I would get to eat!


4.  Ohhhh… the swimming pool cake.  This was for my eighth birthday.  I only remember that because there was mention that they had tried to make it but couldn’t stop it from collapsing and so I was having the number eight with red and pink pinstriping and cool cars on it.  I tried to be a good sport but I was so not a car girl and I was (probably not so) secretly disappointed.  Then the swimming pool cake appeared!  I think I heard there were three attempts to make this one and they had to go really shallow with the carving out for the jelly, otherwise the jelly would split the cake.  I don’t know, I just remember being thrilled!


5. The train cake.  Oh, the train cake!  My brother got this one and I think it was for his first birthday – don’t quote me on that, I would only have been four.  I know there was a comment about not realising how big it would be and that we would be eating cake for weeks.  We probably were… but such amazing looking cake!  I know there are photos around somewhere (of all the cakes, not just this one) and I could pretty much place money on the fact that they would have looked similar.


And, here it is, the inspiration for all those cakes.  The original Women’s Weekly Children’s Birthday Cake Book.  The best part of anticipating your party was when you were handed the book and told to have a look and see what you might like.  I was lucky enough just after the birth of my oldest child to be given a copy of this book.  Not just any copy but the copy my Mum had that we had used during our childhood. Yes, the staples have come a bit loose in the middle but it’s still great fun to flick through it and remember childhood cakes, parties and friends.

Five days to go.

All photos taken by me from the pages of the cake book.  Apologies for the fact they’re not fab, I was too busy flipping the pages in excitement.  🙂

Back to school!



My poor neglected blog… it’s been languishing here for a couple of days while we finished off the school holidays and then I sent the kids back to school and still didn’t get in here.  Sorry about that, MIP.

So, where were we?  Wow, what a lot of w’s!  *lol*  That’s right, I’d made one of my favourite salads and we went and spent a few hours with friends and had a fantastic time.  They’re on a nice little bit of land with space for the kids to race around and have fun without bothering anyone.  Miss8 had fun with their piano and the other kids, Mr7 had a blast on their tree swing and just randomly exploring and Master2 was shadowed by a dog everywhere he went – smart dog knew he would be a good sharer.  Just as well Domino (the dog!) seems immune to chocolate as there was a fair bit of sharing a cupcake or three between Master2 and the dog.

We did a final round of visiting people and running errands on the public holiday on Monday and managed to avoid getting stuck in any public holiday/end of school holiday traffic which is a small miracle in itself.  It was great catching up with people and chatting about what they’ve been doing recently, term time is pretty packed with kids and their activities so we made the most of the rare treat.

Then yesterday it was time to pack all the lunchboxes again (six between three children, slightly ridiculous in itself!) and send them all off to school (or kindy!) and try not to grin too hard as I said goodbye.  I think I managed it but wouldn’t like to put it in writing.  Oh, wait…

And now for the fun job of getting caught up on everything.  I’ve got work deadlines all over the place, school meetings, a massive to do list and a really fun volunteer thing I’m doing at the moment that has got me humming Christmas music with not a stray piece of tinsel in sight.  It’s a lot of “head down, get it done” stuff for the next week or so, I think.  And then next Friday I get to really enjoy myself with the Good Food and Wine Show which I’m looking forward to.

May your day be merry and bright…

Ouch, that hurt. Part two.


I am a fully fledged glutton for punishment.  You’d have thought that after my experience on Tuesday that I wouldn’t go near my local Aldi again… just in case I ran into more people like the ones who upset me so much.  But I did.  Well, I had to.  You see, in an effort to keep it together for the boys and also for myself I completely forgot a couple of essential items when I was in there on Tuesday.

There’s something about Aldi nappies.  They’re awesome and they’re so incredibly cheap.  Master2 is still in nappies (so is Mr7 but he’s outgrown the Aldi ones) and I was running pretty low.  I decided I couldn’t let people upset me enough to change what I would normally do so I slapped on a smile and took the boys back there so we could get the nappies.

My husband had suggested that if I saw those “people” again I should take a photo of them in an effort to name and shame them – or at least shame them.  I had to tell him that in my sheer rage that they would speak to my child in the way they did I couldn’t describe them at all except to say one was male, one was female and that was if they were even human.  I knew one had two children with them and the other had three but that was it, and I only remember the head count because I was trying hard not to let the kids hear too much as I tore strips off their parents/carers.

So there we were, walking into Aldi yesterday afternoon.  It was a warm day and Mr7 was vocal about his relief at Aldi’s air conditioning – he let out a joyful screech and a laugh and jumped up and down a couple of times.  We had only taken about four steps in when I saw this trolley whirl around, a woman grab her bag and hiss at her children “Quickly, we have to go… NOW.” One of the children replied “Mummy, isn’t that the lady that told you off yesterday?” There was no reply that I heard as she slunk out of the store, taking care to keep her back to me so I couldn’t see her face.

I have to admit it, I called her a coward.  Okay, an f’ing coward… out loud… and I used the full f word.  It wasn’t loud enough to disturb other shoppers but I’m pretty sure she heard me.  And that’s okay, she was meant to.

See, the thing is she meant my child to hear the things she said to him and she meant to say the things she said to me but she didn’t expect to get called on it.  And she did.  There is no time or place in society for such things to be said to innocent children.  He was obviously melting down, screeching and sobbing in distress and trying to throw himself on the ground.  All she had to do was either continue to walk past me (and possibly think “Thank goodness it isn’t me”) or perhaps give the universal smile and nod of acknowledgement.  Instead she added more distress to the situation by demanding our attention and saying what she did.

So if she’s going to abandon her shopping part way through (and I checked, there wasn’t any refrigerated or frozen stuff in there or I would have alerted the staff) and slink out of the store like a whipped puppy then I’m not going to feel sorry for her.  My response obviously made an impact if just seeing me 24 hours later can cause a reaction like that.  I’m actually quite happy about it, it means that perhaps my words are having an effect on her.  I know my words were cutting… but maybe they’re cutting the poisonous part of her that thinks the way she did and clearing the abcess from her soul.  Or maybe she’s just ashamed.  I’m okay with either of those because what she did was not okay.