Sunday, May 30, 2010

Eurovision 2010

What's not to love about Eurovision?

Big hairstyles, weird costumes, out there special effects, overuse of the wind machine. A bit of piano accordion. And what happened to that Swedish girl's guitar in last night's semi final? She was playing it, then there was a cut to a crowd shot and when she came guitar. Did she drop it through a cleverly hidden trapdoor in the stage?

I love too how there is always somebody in the crowd with an inflatable kangaroo at these events.

Back to the final...I've avoided the earlier news bulletins that said who won so I'm still hooked.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

And a follow up from the previous entry...

Rosie has just rolled across the room to a plastic sword that was lying on the floor (not put away...who would have thought??) and is waving it around.

Having a girl after two boys means that...

People ask you if it's "different" having a girl.

My answer is "not yet." It's just like having a baby rather than a "boy" or a "girl" right now. She's happy to play with whatever I give her, which at the moment is a car with different shapes in it, a musical bus and a tractor.

I guess that will change in future, but for now I'll enjoy the fact that she's happy with the boys' old stuff.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Things I don't get #1

The number of school-aged children spotted with their parents in shopping centres during school hours.

The kids don't look sick or otherwise incapacitated. If they have something that means they're too sick/infectious to go to school then how are they well enough to go shopping or to sit drinking milkshakes in a coffee shop while Mum has a coffee with her friend? Or is the parent taking advantage of having the day off work to mind their sick child to catch up on some shopping and socialising? Or do parents just give their kids a day off school for the heck of it (I thought that's what weekends were for)?

I don't get it, but then when I was at school I needed to be pretty much bedridden to have the day off sick. Too sick to move between the bedroom and the bathroom is the criterion I use to decide if my kids stay home or go to school.

Times must have changed.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Making bread

I've discovered the fun of making my own bread this year after some earlier failed attempts. Some things I've discovered:
  • Buying the more expensive bread flour makes a big difference.
  • Keep everything warm, have the oven on low heat while the dough rises, use a warm bowl and warm hands for kneading. The yeast doesn't work if it's too hot or cold.
  • Kneading is very therapeutic.
  • Kids enjoy punching down the dough after it's risen.
  • The end product tastes much better than the equivalent from the supermarket.
The other night at Bible study, we were discussing the verse in Philippians 2 about God being at work in us as we work out our salvation. Our leader (an ex-chef) drew an analogy between kneading and shaping bread and the work God does in us as we become more like Christ in the way we live. It was good to reflect on that while I kneaded bread dough today and listened to the kids practising their public speaking efforts. Unfortunately I did end up grumbling and complaining a little bit...the product of having listened to the same talks so many times...which wasn't very Christ-like.

But the bread turned out really well and it was really yummy with the creamy cauliflower and bacon soup that Chris made for dinner.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Aidan's birthday cake

Made by Chris. Very convenient that Kit Kat make a family size white chocolate block, it was perfect for making the keys.
Aidan has been learning to play the piano keyboard at school, hence the keyboard cake (his request, we were expecting to have to come up with something much more complicated).
Meanwhile, on the real keyboard, he has just started learning his first song that uses two hands together: When the Saints Go Marching In. There could be worse tunes to have to listen to over and over again, although we are only two days into it. I had had more than enough of Ode to Joy and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.

Blog neglect

Is currently being experienced here. I have hundreds of things waiting in my head to be blogged about but no spare time. And the space bar on our laptop is not working very well which severely hinders typing speed...

Thursday, May 13, 2010

This is pretty cool

Who needs instruments when you have iphones??

Happy Birthday Aidan

8 years old today!

We gave him this cool game for a present.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Shamelessly stealing videos from other blogs

Because I don't have time to find something myself...thanks Simone and Nathan. It's funny.

We survived... camp for another year. It gets bigger and better each time. This year the talks were from Ezekiel and related to living in the Holy Spirit. New songs were learned, only one scary piano playing moment where the sheet music fell off the keyboard music stand and I was left playing nothing at the end of one song. Fortunately the singers covered my embarrassment.

Liam only fell over once (not witnessed by me). He said to me later "I hurt my forehead Mummy." I'm glad I didn't see him do it. Rosie slept very well on Saturday night (we weren't quite brave enough to stay for both nights this year, we thought it best not to arrive on Friday night when all the kids are just going crazy). We only really saw Aidan at meal times. I hope he wasn't getting up to anything too disturbing the rest of the time. I learned how to play Balderdash. Chris had a cold so he caught up on some sleep but did surface for long enough to talk to some of the people who were at camp for the first time this year.

It was a good weekend and so encouraging to see how our church is continuing to grow. We are so thankful to God to be a small part of it all.

I spent yesterday up to my eyeballs in loads of washing and grocery shopping. Liam only went to school for part of the day yesterday but he went back for a full day today. We go back to Brisbane on Thursday to see the doctors at the hospital. We have also been busy supervising speech-writing for the public speaking competition at school. Aidan's talk is about the beach, Liam's is about lighthouses.

Oh, and we are also planning Aidan's birthday party at tenpin bowling this weekend, not as hard as having a party at home but effort is still needed nonetheless.

I feel as if this is going to be a week where we will be more than satisfied if we just keep our heads above the blog might be a bit quiet this week.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Bad Science

Just for something that is not Liam-related, I have just finished reading this book. I don't know that it's everybody's cup of tea but I really enjoyed it.

The author also runs a website dedicated to exposing shonky therapies and research. I think there are some fairly dubious interventions used in the occupational therapy profession that should be on there, but since there are so many other weird therapies out there in the world he might never get to insignificant little OT techniques. Maybe I should tackle the challenge myself, I have often wanted to but not sure I can word it diplomatically enough into a paper that's suitable for publication.

My thoughts are that it is definitely a good book to read if you have never given your kids fish oil capsules to improve their behaviour and concentration but wondered if you should have (edited to add...your typically developing kids, not those who may have ADHD). And if you needed any convincing that there is no link between the MMR vaccine and autism, this book explains it very well.

All good

Liam is home safely and tucked up in bed asleep. He is on plenty of antibiotics and painkilling medication and his eye looks as swollen as when it was first hurt (apparently he sneezed as he was waking up from the anaesthetic, probably not good when you've just had facial reconstructive surgery...) but other than that he seems back to his normal self. Eating well, talking well, we are going to find it hard keeping him quiet for the next few days I think.

Thank you God for keeping him safe through it all. Now we have to wait to see if the double vision disappears...

After a good night's sleep...

...everything seems much better.

They are on their way home from hospital now and I have organised to have a friend over for coffee. The world already feels like a happier place.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

What more could a day throw at me?

Lecture to 55 Uni students successfully completed. Only a few yawns in the audience but to be fair to them, I was the second half of a two hour session that began at 8am. Quite an early start for Uni students I would assume.

Early this afternoon, Liam had his surgery in Brisbane (Chris, his brother and my Mum were there). It seems to have gone okay but they said the fracture was pretty big so it needed a big plate to fix it up (which will dissolve eventually). He will be home tomorrow if everything keeps going well. The latest update is that he is sitting up in bed eating jelly and icecream with a big smile on his face so that sounds promising. I always thought that jelly and icecream in hospital after an operation was a myth, but apparently not.

I arrive at school to pick up Aidan to receive the bad news from his teacher that he spent some time in the principal's office today for encouraging another kid in his class to say swear words. That I was less than impressed would be an understatement given that I was still waiting to get the call to say that Liam was out of theatre safely. Unfortunately I tend to be a fairly reactive parent which meant the afternoon didn't improve greatly from there as far as Aidan and I were concerned. I guess he feels like not enough attention is coming his way right now and he happily agreed with that when I asked him if that was why he did it...but now I worry that maybe I have just offered him a convenient excuse??

Yesterday I read and commented on this post in Simone's blog. A "happy, simple worry-free life"?? If only...

Well, I think Rosie had a simple worry-free day today actually. She coped really well with being looked after by someone other than Chris or me (the first time we'd attempted this) and she has slept really well during the day today which meant I could deal with the other stuff.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Lecture is written, and only one photo in the powerpoint presentation is playing up. A pretty good result really, given there are so many photos in it. Babysitting organised for tomorrow morning, so everything is ready to go there...

Operation is confirmed for tomorrow afternoon. Liam is in bed asleep now. He is being very calm and brave about it all at the moment (the joys of being only five I guess). I prayed with him and with Aidan before they went to bed.

Trying to stay calm is difficult. Please help me, God.

Off to watch some Survivor to take my mind off things. With Boston Rob's departure a few weeks ago, Sandra is now my favourite to win.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

No time for blogging...

Busy busy busy writing this lecture for the Uni students. Done now, I think. I'm a perfectionist so I'm sure I will see lots more possibilities for improvement but good enough to run with as it is I think.

I have a photo of Rosie's cool new/recycled furniture that I want to post but haven't had time to get it off the camera yet.

We had a surprise birthday party for Chris' Mum yesterday at Bribie Island, great fun, lots of happy snaps taken but as with the furniture photo they still need to come off the camera.

Being busy is good in some ways, haven't had much time to sit and think about Liam's operation on Wednesday. Chris is going to Brisbane with him, I am staying home with the other two and keeping things (relatively) normal here.

And in a totally unrelated item of news, I saw an icon from my childhood this afternoon as we were driving to Fingal Beach to take some photos in the last of the afternoon light...a Soft Serve/Mr Whippy van! It was even playing Greensleeves!