Thursday, November 27, 2008

Sheer Madness
I have been planning my outfit for darling husband's work Christmas party, an event of massive proportions that I spend the whole year anticipating. Yesterday I went out to find shoes, and brought home these little neck breakers. I am not a regular wearer of high heeled shoes. In fact, I've only started wearing shoes during the day this year, and then only because the doctor made me. Sneakers are the order of the day at the moment, while I wait for a pretty good case of heel spurs (plantar fashy-something complicated) to heal. But these shoes were so tempting, higher that anything I have ever worn before. With my sore feet, dancing was never on the cards for this party, but at least now I'll feel pretty after months of sneakers.

I struggled to find a dress I liked. I searched the stores, then moved on to try and find a pattern I liked. Every pattern I chose was out of stock, so I gave up and went home. Then I remembered my favourite very simple, very forgiving black dress. It's a bit casual, so I have made this stretchy bolero (New Look 6559) to go over the top, and tizzed it up a bit with the bead fringe. That bead fringe is a pain to sew on!

So tomorrow we ship the kids off to Grandma and Pop's place, and head into the city for a night of wine and fine dining at the Mariott, followed by a fancy motel room and room service breakfast.

Thanks Grandma and Pop!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Serious Weather
Brisbane has been in the line of fire for some serious weather this week. Sunday night saw a storm front with devastating winds. Some suburbs suffered considerable damage. Homes and sadly lives were lost. Then last night (Wednesday) another storm front moved through, bringing flash flooding and more loss. Our little hobbit hole, tucked snugly in its hollow, was spared the worst of the storms. In fact we blissfully slept last night, unaware of all the strife in other parts of the city.
Tonight a third front swept through, and although much more brief, it was a big excitement for our kids, as we received hail, and plenty of it. These photos were taken after the storm. I was thrilled by them, having never taken good storm photos before.

Christopher and I stood outside with the tripod, in ankle deep ice water, to get these shots.

It turns out that our yard is the local drainage, and the water is pouring through around the house.

We were supposed to be at the final choir rehearsal of the year, but the storm was looming, and, suspecting that it would be a doozy, I elected to stay home. I am glad I did. It was scary enough at home, let alone being out in a car. I will call the choir organisers tomorrow to see if we can have Christoper's exam results, which would have been distributed tonight, mailed to us. I doubt many kids showed up at all.

We won't know the full extent of the damage until tomorrow morning, but the glass in the car held up, we still have a roof, and the rest we can cope with. I doubt there will be many tomatoes left on the vines, though.

Counting down until Christmas

Only five weeks left until Christmas, three until school finishes for the year! Where's my paper bag *gasping frantically*? Ahh, that's better! As much as I love the slower pace of school holidays, it seems we lose half our summer to Christmas preparation and celebration. I have finished the stitching part of two of the four teacher's gifts this year. I am ahead of the game, compared to previous years! The top one is a design by Little by Little Design Co., found in the 2007 Just Cross Stitch Ornament Issue. This is for the first male teacher our family has had. Mr Brown teaches kindergarten, and is one of the most wonderful, caring teachers I have ever known.

And this design, by Mosey and Me in the JCS 2003 Ornie issue, is for his teaching assistant.

Keep an eye out for plenty more Christmas projects between now and December 25th. I have way more plans than hours in the day.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Kindy Art Show

In the lead up to the end of the school year, Joshua's kindergarten has organised an Art Show. We were just blown away by the effort that the teachers and children put into this exhibition. I have never seen the artwork of a collection of four and five year olds look so great. They experimented with media, colour and many different styles. The above blurry photo is of stitching buttons onto hessian.

This installation was created from twisted rainbow coloured wire.

I was hugely impressed by the pastel still life fruit. The kids were encouraged to look at shapes, light and colour, and there were some very impressive results!

And here is the proud artist, showing us one of his works. I am really looking forward to these creations coming home!
Anyone googling Ashton Street kindergarten needs to know that this place is fabulous. The effort the teachers put into every child is above and beyond what we'd hoped for. Love, love, love this kindy, and I am going to miss it so much next year.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Five Friendly Frogs

We had the birthday barbeque yesterday. After some nervous speculation regarding the weather, and a rainy preceding night, the day dawned overcast and cool. No rain fell, but the cloud cover kept temperatures pleasant, so we had no complaints.
I have two gorgeous men celebrating birthdays in my house, five days apart, so we had to have two cakes. It was a very enjoyable celebration. The kids (cousins and friends) got along so well together that we barely had to do anything except keep a ready supply of food on hand. No party games were organised (though the packet of balloons turned into an impromptu water fight), yet ten children played for five hours with barely a disagreement and not a murmur of boredom.

It's on days like yesterday that we realise, in spite of the many moments of worry, we are raising good kids, our friends and us, and we can be proud.

Friday, November 07, 2008

I am not a fan of hot days. When other people are racing out to enjoy the summer sunshine, I am busy lining my airconditioned cave and hibernating for the summer. I was not designed for summer. I wonder how I ever made it through a childhood of tropical homes and sometimes not even a ceiling fan. I have very clear memories of these places, and yet I don't remember too many really hot days. Must have been too busy playing.
Anyway, this is our backyard, lining up for summer. We have a friarbird nest in one of our trees, which is providing much entertainment. I had to comfort the kids during a wet day, saying that the baby birds would be fine with their mother acting as an umbrella.

Delicious refrigerator biscuits, a very old recipe from a very old cook book. Most of the main courses are not so useful now, with the different ingredients we have now, but the biscuit and cakes chapters are fabulous.

The swing set had reached the end of its usefulness as a swing set, but the frame is still good, so I got a hammock to use instead. A very popular decision.

Now all we need is the holidays! Only five weeks to go!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

From this wrinkly little bundle...

To this gorgeous little boy.
Five years pass far too quickly.

Happy birthday, my darling little Joshua. I hope you enjoy these!

Saturday, November 01, 2008

You may have noticed that sometimes I go missing for a while. It's nothing bad, just a need to occasionally retreat into my shell.
It's been a strange week, with Brett away for a couple of days, multiple minor injuries and a run in with another car. Well, the other car ran into me. It was nothing serious, I stopped to give way before turning and the car behind me did not. It's ruined our rear bumper and I am not game to open the back door, because it's pretty bent and I doubt it would close again. No one was even a little bit injured, Samara says that she now understands why I am so fussy about them wearing seatbelts properly. Insurance will cover all our costs, so all's well that ends well. Of course, this happened while Brett was out of town, so it was a sleepless night until he returned the following evening.
Oh, and the photo was of a 'bunch' of flowers, roots and all, presented to me by Joshua. He's a dear, but I can't afford to get too attached to my garden :)