Wednesday, August 31, 2011

This morning

...I couldn't quite face going to Bible study and watching people eat large slabs of cake and drinking big mugs of coffee. Had a bit of a pity party at home by myself and ate one boring muesli bar and drank lime juice flavoured water.

So instead I listened to some talks from the 2007 women's Equip conference. Embarrassed to admit that I have had the CDs for a couple of years now and this was the first time I'd listened to them.

Now I wish I'd listened to them earlier. They were excellent. One was by Di Warren on "The Uncompromised Life" and the other one by Ainsley Poulos on gossip. Based on the book of James.

There are a couple of other free talks available on the website for download (not the ones I listened to, the free ones are more recent ones). Highly recommended listening.

Endocrinologist appointment booked....

....for the middle of tomorrow morning. This is the only day that I am working this week. Just what I was thinking would probably happen. And of course he is "away all next week" and I am being squeezed in. So I then needed to rearrange several appointments of my own.

When I called our administration officer at work to let her know, I wasn't filled with confidence. I asked if she could check my diary to see when someone could be rescheduled (having only three more weeks left at work means options are limited) and she seemed to come back to the phone with a diary from a couple of years ago. At least I had an idea of what I was doing and one of the kids I was seeing tomorrow was seeing the Paediatrician before he saw me, so they are turning up anyway and hopefully won't be too peeved if I cancel.

Praying that all goes smoothly both for me and at the office....and that I won't have to do injections too many times each day.

Wednesday Muppets

When low on blogging material (particularly words), where else to go but YouTube for some inspiration?

Mid week Muppets....and strangely in tune with the way I am feeling right now!?

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

YouTube pick-me-up

I think the video of this song is very strange, especially those weird little blue and yellow hats they are wearing. Probably reflects the excesses of the late 80s and early 90s era.

I wish I could show you the original version by the Village People but YouTube have embedded it so I can't post it here (if you do check it out over there, enjoy the great microphone stand work by the singers...).

Another word I don't know

Q: What does callow mean?

A: Lacking adult maturity and experience; immature.

Thank goodness for google. I think it's time we upgraded from the kiddie dictionaries and bought ourselves an adult version. Without one I'm feeling....well...callow?

Insulin, here I come


The diabetes educator took one look at my little book of high numbers and told me I'd be hearing from the endocrinologist's rooms in the next few days about an appointment. My levels during the day aren't too bad but the ones first thing in the morning are the killers.

But the baby seems to be the right size (not too oversized) and blood pressure is good. So I'll try to be happy with that.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Words on the spelling list that I hadn't heard before

So Aidan is learning about fifty thousand spelling words for the regional final of the primary school spelling bee. Well, that might be a slight exaggeration. Maybe I should say it feels like fifty thousand words, but I know it is over one thousand words.

Mostly the repetitive practice is incredibly boring. But you get the occasional word that is a little bit interesting. I had to look up a couple of them in the online dictionary because I didn't know what they meant. This is pretty unusual. I read. A lot. I always thought my vocabulary was pretty good.

But I was stumped by ocarina (an ancient flute-like wind instrument that is shaped like an egg, apparently) and perentie (the largest Australian native goanna).

There you go. I've learned something.

He also has a cool list of words that relate to "religion and ethics." There are a few in the higher levels on that list that I think I might also need to investigate further for their meanings. "Evangelist" is at Level 5.

The whole concept of the Premier's Spelling Bee seems weird to me, to be honest. A little bit too American for my liking. It's great that my kids can spell. But putting them up on a stage and doing it in front of other people? Not really my scene. And I hate being there watching the kids do it. It's incredibly nerve racking waiting for them to say each letter.

Thursday, August 25, 2011


Jenny recommended this one on her blog. An interesting perspective on parenting (and music practice) from a parent with a Chinese cultural background.

So far I'm really enjoying it. But as a previous researcher of parenting experiences, I do like books about people's experiences of parenting. So maybe I'm a little bit biased.

Embarrassing confession

I'm listening to some Pet Shop Boys on YouTube. (To reward myself for updating my CV).

Not sure if I'm brave enough to post any of the videos...

Just letting people know....

...that I have turned on comments moderation for my blog.

I had a few too many spammers visiting.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Today at Bible study....

...we finished Christianity Explored. I missed a couple of sessions that were pretty important in the overall framework of the Sin and the Cross, for example. So today's wrapping-up session was very helpful.

And the best thing that happened was that we had a lady at our table who became a Christian today after we'd finished the course. I was sitting at the other end of the table and a couple of the other ladies sitting beside her prayed with her and she accepted Christ.

So exciting. Will be praying for Karen as she comes to know Jesus even better in the future.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Book week costumes....

The parade is tomorrow morning at 9am. Even though we got a note home last week about it, this fact has only dawned on us tonight.

Not good. Although Aidan has already said he wants to go as Ordinary Boy...white T-shirt and black pants. That's easy.

Liam is a bit harder. All week he has said he wants to go as King Arthur. Since we are well-equipped with knight costumes that was going to be possible with a night before throw together. Now he has decided he wants to go as Obi wan Kenobi from Star Wars. Not as easy. And we are not at all keen to let the light sabre (or any kind of plastic weapon-like toy) go to school with him. And we think that since Star Wars was a movie before it was a book, he should go as a character that started out in a book.

So we are back trying to convince him to go back to the King Arthur plan (minus Excalibur). We're telling him he can take the empty sword sheath and tell people that he's pretending to be in a story where his sword breaks and he needs a new one.

Hopefully that will work. I'm not going to get too stressed about it. The weather here this week has been atrocious and I seriously doubt that an outside book week parade will be happening. Maybe it will be an inside the school hall event but either way it's okay by me. I can't be there because I'm going to Bible Study so I won't be standing around feeling embarrassed as I look at the fancy costumes made by parents who are far more creative in coming up with ideas and far more able to put costumes together than I am.

Bad news for the day

My blood sugars aren't going too well. 7.5 after breakfast this morning. Normal level is below 6.5. And my fasting sugars, that I take when I first wake up in the morning and that I can't control by altering my diet, are staying well above the normal level.

If this doesn't improve, I will be adding an endocrinologist to the list of appointments I need to go to in the next few weeks. And maybe some insulin injections as well.

I feel sad. This is probably the point at which my last pregnancy started to go pear-shaped as well, although I didn't realise at the time since I had my gestational diabetes test later in the pregnancy last time around. I wish my body could just do things the right way so I don't have to feel anxious about things going wrong again.

And I know it's not the right way to feel as a Christian, but I also feel frustrated that other women can have pregnancies that aren't complicated. I wish I could lose these bitter feelings, I know it's wrong to have them, but today I'm struggling a bit with them.

Sadly, I probably can't even go and have a coffee/morning tea with a friend to have a good cry about it. Seeing grossly oversized muffins and cakes (>2 carbohydrate serves so off the agenda for the time being) and large mugs of coffee aren't going to cheer me up.

Please pray (as I need to myself) that I can accept what's happening and not stress too much. Stressing about it won't help and it probably will make things worse.

From the mixed news front, Aidan won his grade section of the spelling bee this morning. Great to see him do such a good job of getting the words correct, but now we have to learn a whole bunch of different words for the regional final in three weeks' time. Not so excited about that part of it.


I followed a link on a website I regularly visit to find out a bit more about pinterest . I know a few people who use it and think it's pretty cool.

I didn't have time to look around too much but I did find this a little bit funny.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Quote of the day on the Craig Thomson saga's like watching a train wreck. I can't avert my eyes or ears from what's happening.

Today Anthony Albanese has come to his defence in parliament. This quote from The Australian online:

"Labor frontbencher Anthony Albanese today threw his support behind Mr Thomson, saying he "absolutely" believed the Member for Dobell's denial of wrong-doing.

"I have the view in life that when someone tells you something you believe them," Mr Albanese said today."

Probably in the same way some believed Julia Gillard when she said there would be no carbon tax under a government she led.

Ads you'll never see again #6

Yes indeed. The fine print is a little difficult to read here, so I'll just quote the justification for starting cola earlier: "Laboratory tests over the last few years have proven that babies who start drinking soda during that early formative period have a much higher chance of gaining acceptance and "fitting in" during those awkward preteen and teen years. So do yourself a favour. Do your child a favour. Start them on a strict regimen of sodas and other sugary carbonated beverages right now, for a lifetime of guaranteed happiness."

I'd love to know the research design they used for those laboratory tests.

Movie night: Gnomeo and Juliet

On Saturday night we had a picnic dinner in front of the TV and watched a family movie on DVD together, Gnomeo and Juliet. Harmless enjoyable entertainment. Lots of Elton John music (he's the executive producer) so that's a warning if you're not a fan of his stuff.

We were explaining to the kids that it's loosely based on Shakespeare's play called Romeo and Juliet and how there were some similarities (for example, that the two families were at war with eachother, that there was a love story etc etc).

Liam, our little history buff, was full of questions the next day, as he tends to be once he's had a chance to think about things. First, he asked what country Shakespeare was from. That was pretty straightforward. Then he asked how they acted out the scenes in the play where the gardens were getting destroyed by oversized lawnmowers and crazed garden gnomes.

So then we had to explain that the original play wasn't actually about garden gnomes at all.

Six year olds are pretty funny sometimes. We had a little chuckle to ourselves after he asked that one.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Political commentary

I have been following the Craig Thomson story as it's unfolded this week. Mainly out of curiosity on whether or not he will bring down the Gillard government. They're digging in to defend him while he's denying everything. According to today's newspapers, he has Labor advisors in his ear 24 hours a day so he doesn't cave in to all the media pressure and resign.

I'm pretty skeptical on whether he's telling the truth. And more than a little annoyed that if he is in fact lying, my husband's Health Service union fees may have partly contributed to the funds that were then used for some very unethical behaviour.

So I found this clip from Meet the Press quite amusing. Barnaby Joyce is well known for his outspokenness and regardless of whether I agree or disagree with his politics, I think he has a fantastic metaphorical turn of phrase sometimes.

No metaphors here though. Just telling it like it is.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Yesterday at work...

...I was assessing a little girl, 3 years old. It was the first time I'd met her. She came along with both her parents.

She was developmentally delayed. Her attention span was pretty short. I had to work hard to keep her interested in the test activities rather than all the toys that were on the shelves nearby (I was working in another office yesterday, if it had been my regular treatment space I would have hidden all the extra bits and pieces to reduce the distraction factor). She kept getting up and wandering around. After a little wander around, parents (and I) kept trying to get her to sit back down. It all kept on being very hard work. By the end of it, I felt exhausted.

This is pretty typical of the work I do. Kids that are easy to get through a full assessment at three years of age are the exception in the place I work. We see a lot of kids with complex presentations and difficult social backgrounds, and we work together as a team to come up with diagnoses and therapy plans for them.

What wasn't so typical was that the Dad of this kid called me "Kaz." More than once I heard him tell the kid to "listen to Kaz." A little bit overfamiliar, considering I'd only just met him.

And that I really really hate it when people call me "Kaz."

So there you go, now you all know how to irritate me. No secrets here.

I don't think he was intentionally being rude though, just a bit socially clueless (and possibly with a few learning difficulties himself). When he met another member from our team, Robyn, he called her "Robbie" several times during the consultation. I called her when I'd finished and we had a little giggle about it.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Nick Cave song to mourn the loss of cherry ripe slice

Some more Nick Cave as I grieve the loss of cherry ripe slice and many other sweet high GI food choices. Just allow me to wallow in self pity for a few the lyrics say "I won't be weeping long" (and I do realise that this is a relatively "first world" complaint....).

Just as an aside, in the scenes on this video where they are rowing the boat, does it look to anyone else like they are rowing through a sea of garbage bags??

Re-entering the world of finger-pricking and low GI diets

Bad news. I have gestational diabetes...again. I didn't have it with my first two pregnancies but did have it last time when I was pregnant with Rosie. I'm putting it down to my advanced age. Almost forty and it feels like my body is starting to shut up shop already.

So it's back to three times daily finger pricks to check my blood sugars and eating low GI foods to try to avoid having to have insulin. Last time it seemed to take ages for them to get back to me with my test results so by the time I knew I had GD I was only on the diet for a couple of weeks before Rosie made her early arrival. This time they called me within 24 hours of having the test. Much better service. And so now I am officially a "high-risk" pregnancy. I have to see the doctors each time I go to the antenatal clinic now. And I am off to visit the diabetes educator and dietitian on Monday.

Even worse news is that last night I made a cherry ripe slice. The one with the biscuit base, cherry coconut condensed milk filling and chocolate icing on top. Probably a no-no on a low GI diet but I think I might eat some of it anyway. Kind of like the last meal for a condemned man...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Book to put on the "must read" list

I haven't read it yet. Although I was just looking at a copy of it on ebay where there were 12 bids and the price was already up to $20.50.

It's getting plenty of positive reviews online and elsewhere. And I am curious to find out more about Bear's Christian faith. I guess he'd need plenty of faith to get himself out of some of the survival situations he finds himself in.

I've been watching a few of Bear's earlier Man vs Wild episodes on DVD lately. And in my online searching just now I discovered he is also the UK's Chief Boy Scout. How appropriate.

Off to see if the local library has a copy that I can reserve.

Monday, August 15, 2011


Meeting going on upstairs. If I go up there to heat up some late dinner it will mean walking through their discussions. But I do need to eat before 10pm since I am then supposed to fast until my 2 hour glucose tolerance test tomorrow morning. So I hope they'll stop talking soon.

I've just typed the minutes from the meeting I just came home from. No other pressing work to do. Everything else I want to do (books, mail, TV etc) is upstairs.

No great words of wisdom here to share with the blog world. But during the 2 hours of sitting in the waiting room tomorrow, I'm sure I can come up with something. Chris can look after Rosie for the first 45 minutes of waiting. After that I think it will be chaos trying to keep a toddler in the confined space of the pathology waiting area.

Housework avoidance

Our church Committee of Management is having a meeting tonight. At our house.

The reason it is at our house is because I am going out to another committee meeting at Rosie's child care centre.

Usually I can get myself into a cleaning and tidying frenzy before people come to our house so that it looks at least semi-presentable. I used to do it every week when we had a Bible Study group here. In those days I would even manage to bake something to eat for supper.

Today I just can't be bothered. Lately it seems like the mess returns within a few minutes of it being cleaned up.

But I am going to have to get into gear. I am about to go and do the school pick-up. Then I will have forty-five minutes before the boys have to go to swimming to sort the cleaning out (while simultaneously practising spelling words with the kids for the school spelling bee this week). And I might just squeeze in making an Anzac slice between swimming and going out to my meeting.

And I forgot to say that our assistant minister is coming over to dinner (his wife is away at the moment). But at least dinner is covered. Chris made some meatballs in tomato sauce last night so we just have to cook up the fettucine and it is sorted.

Sigh. Sometimes life just feels too busy. There's always another job waiting after you've successfully accomplished one thing.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

In the mood for some Nick Cave

While I'm on a YouTube roll, I love this song. This version has some fantastic vibraphone work in the instrumental section.

Sunday evening's amusement....

Yep. She really does love those sponges.

I'm trying to work out whether this is serious or not....

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Census form...could it really be true?

I'm the form filler-in at our house. It's one of those jobs I enjoy doing. Something about seeing all the boxes neatly marked makes me happy.

Except last night when we were trying to sort out the amount of time each of us had spent doing domestic activities in the last week. When we worked it out properly, Chris had done more hours than me. His tally came in at 30 hours plus (on top of the 40 hours of paid work that he does).

My figure came in at less than that when I thought about it and added it up, although probably still in the 16 to 29 hour category. But it seemed embarrassing to admit that I had done less than him, since my paid work last week was only 16 hours. So I ticked the over 30 hours box too.

Although considering he was cleaning the kitchen and washing the dishes while I was sitting there filling in the form, maybe he's right about doing more than me....

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Annoying gift

The lady at the express checkout in Coles this morning gave Rosie one of those big red hands. Because I am unable to say no to a free gift (however useless it is), we took it.

At least she was only momentarily interested in it. And it was a good way to teach her the concept of pointing down rather than up.

The guys on The Gruen Transfer had an even larger one of these on their show last week. I should be grateful that we didn't get the jumbo sized version.

Distressing discovery

I have just found out (by checking our junk mail folder on email) that we are over $600 behind on paying our After School Care fees. I thought we had a direct debit set up for this so I was filing the invoices in a separate folder on email. Apparently we didn't have direct debit set up and because I was filing the invoices, the person who normally pays the bills didn't see them. So I guess the fault lies on both sides here.

I am so embarrassed about this. I hate it when bills get paid even a day or two later than they should be. I get really anxious thinking that others think we are freeloading and this then spirals into other unrealistic thinking. Like if this had continued unnoticed, would the kids have been kicked out?

Grr to junk mail folders that are too efficient at chucking important emails into them. Lucky I checked.

Okay, time for some deep calm breaths. We know about it now. I have called the person who normally pays the bills and had a little meltdown so he is now onto it and getting the payment sorted out. The kids haven't been kicked out yet (and they only have another seven more weeks before I pull them out anyway when my maternity leave starts).

Sometimes I feel like I'm losing track of all the things I need to keep track of. This is one of the things that scares me about having another child. If I'm struggling to keep everything in my head now, how much harder is it going to be when there's another child demanding a new compartment in my brain?

Monday, August 8, 2011

Rosie turns 2

Where have those two years gone? It seems like just yesterday that we were getting ready to welcome Rosie into the world.... about six weeks earlier than we expected to be. We didn't have much organised so it was lucky she had those few weeks of growing time in the nursery so we could get our act together.

Something we got used to hearing from everybody was how tiny Rosie is. She's still not a big girl but it did make her easier to carry around when she was little. She spent a lot of time during the first year in a sling. We only used the pram once and she didn't like it very much so it was back to sleeping in the sling as we found our way into some kind of routine around the boys' school and other activities. I felt sad when she got too big to be in it anymore.

This year we have loved seeing Miss Rosie learn new words ("shoes" was the first word she said) and grow into a little girl from a baby. She loves to read books, especially "big people" books without any pictures in them. It's funny to listen to her babbling to herself as she turns the pages. She's developing her own special personality. She's happy to talk and wrestle with Daddy and the boys at home but when we are out and about she prefers to let everyone think that she is very shy. She likes to watch before joining in something new, she checks out everything very carefully, and she notices little changes in her world, a bit like her Mummy does.

Later this year Rosie will become a big sister, something we didn't think would happen. She was going to be our baby but God had another plan for our family. It's lovely seeing Rosie point to the baby in my tummy and smile....past experience suggests that this might not continue once the baby comes out, so I'll enjoy it while it lasts.

Happy birthday, Rosie. Photos of the cake Daddy is making for tonight will be on here soon.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Thinking about Book Chat: God's sovereignty vs our responsibility

I mentioned in an earlier post that our Book Chat book this term is J.I.Packer's Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God. The date for the get together is only a couple of weeks away so I am starting to think of some ideas to get discussion going. Unfortunately I haven't found many discussion questions for Christian books online, so generally I've had to try and come up with ideas/questions myself.

I was having a look at Meredith's blog earlier this evening and found this great post which relates to our responsibility in relation to God's sovereignty. It looks beyond just evangelising to consider our own responsibilities more broadly. This might be an interesting topic to explore a bit more, I think.

I'm really looking forward to the discussion. I missed the last one because I was sick. Our numbers haven't been huge but I think the ladies who have participated are enjoying it. And I've been challenged to make sure I finish reading the Christian books that I start, which is a good thing.

Praying that God will bless our discussion and grow our little group of readers as time goes on.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Where oh where have my comments gone?

Why aren't they showing up in the "recent comments" area? (Hoping that posting this might make them magically reappear...)

Maybe it's just me...

....but I do find it a little amusing that Kate, the Christian contestant on this year's Masterchef, won through to the finale this evening by making the best gingerbread house.

Perhaps she's been to a few of those gingerbread house evenings that churches like to put on for the ladies at Christmas time so she's had a few practice runs.

I'm not at all keen on the gingerbread house thing here. I did make one once (at one of those church evenings leading up to Christmas). But it sat uneaten for a very long time. I couldn't cope with the volume of icing and lollies on it.

I have to say I didn't have much faith that Kate would win Masterchef. I thought she was a bit too much like Julie, who won the first series. But hey, I'll jump on the bandwagon now. Go Kate! (And I do like the way she always says "Oh, my goodness" rather than "Oh, my God"...)

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Happy birthday Gayle

It was my sister's birthday last weekend. I haven't caught up with her for a while so we had a good chat on the phone on Monday night.

I asked her what she got for her birthday. The above photo gives you a clue. Yes, she bought herself a couple of silky bantam chooks for a present. The cute fluffy ones that look like they have no eyes.

I'm still waiting on a photo of the new arrivals. When it turns up, I'll post it on here to replace the Google version. Apparently my niece (15 years old and wanting a future career in the vet field somewhere) is keen to breed them. If she's successful, she'll sell the little ones back to the guy that they bought the big ones from.

Chickens are not a new hobby for their family. They live on a large block of land so they have an enormous chicken house and lots of chooks running around. At every family function, we have a bag to collect leftover food scraps for them. Not very elegant, I know, but it reduces the waste. There's always a debate about whether left over chicken meat scraps can go in there (I think the answer to that is no....and my position is that it doesn't seem right for them to be eating up their fellow birds anyway).

I wish we lived closer to them so we could share in the abundant egg supply when they are all on the lay.

I'll keep you posted on how the breeding goes. Not sure how easy it all is, but it will be an interesting conversation to have with my niece next time I see them.