Monday, 24 February 2014

DIY Neverland Party

Mission accomplished, Lala had a wonderful time at her Neverland themed 3rd birthday party, and hopefully all the other fairies and pirates did too.

I love throwing a little kids party and I am particularly proud of this one, because between my creative Hubby and I we pretty much did it all ourselves.  I made costumes for the whole family, he drew maps and built and painted signs, we cut and hung leaves to create pixie hollow, we even transformed the girls play tent into teepee.  Then of course there was the Tinkerbell cake that was the inspiration for the whole party, it was actually much easier than I imagined and can go down as one of the easier cakes I have done.  I think all the kids enjoyed themselves, we had a quick treasure hunt were they run around our backyard searching for little pouches filled with pirate booty (chocolate coins), and we had fun watching them play fairies and pirates.  One thing I did learn and was that 3 year old are in no way ready to play pass the parcel, but did expect that might have been the case, you live and learn!

So here is a look at what the day was like for us.

Click here to read about the tinker bell cake.

Let's talk wonder weeks

Arrhhh I knew it, I knew it, we are in a wonder week…or as this one should be called a wonder month + a week!!!

What the hell is a wonder week??? A wonder week is the nice name they have given to describe a  major developmental leap that temporally turns you beautiful sweet baby into a demon child.  Normal characteristics and clues that a wonder has hit are as followed

  •  Crying
  •  Not sleeping
  •  Needing to carried all the freaking time! 
  • Scared of EVERYTHING, especially if it involves going to sleep.
  • Separation anxiety  
Wonder weeks aren't all bad news though, it is pretty cool getting to see the new tricks that your bubba can do because of this huge leap.

So Miss Deedee has been driving me crazy the past 4 days and nights not wanting to sleep, this leads to her screaming for hours, mum and dad frustrated and almost in tears, well mum anyway.  This afternoon after 2 hours of screaming and cuddling, it occurred to me that this might be a wonder week, I got my iPad out and checked the app (yes there is an app for everything these days), and yep, Deedees little smiling face on the wonder week calendar was sitting exactly 4 days into a 'storming period' that last 5 weeks!!

As frustrating as this time can be, especially as it means she is once again waking through the night, it is easier to get through knowing that there is a reason behind it all.  Although after reading about what this leap will bring I'm not to sure I'm looking forward to the  'starts nagging to get her way' and 'starts to be "aggressive"'….sounds like the tantrums and barnies with her big sister are about to really hit!!

Oh joy!

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Low FODMAP update- three weeks in.

It has been not quite four weeks since I embarked on this boring and bland diet to help my tummy issues.  Things had been going well, so well that in fact in this past week I started to relax a little with the diet, I had a little something I shouldn't here, and a little something there, being careful not to over do it though.  Unfortunately it seem I did over do it! Two days ago I started feeling a little uncomfortable and having a few pangs of pain, yesterday was much the same, stupid me didn't really pay to much attention, maybe I'm still in the frame of mind that this feeling is my 'normal'.  Last night got worse with lots of pain, bloating and a few unpleasant trips to the loo.  After not much sleep last night Husbandito got the girls up this morning and let me sleep in till 10:30! I can't even remember the last time I was in bed that late, it was exactly what I needed.
I still have a sore belly today but I know the worst is over now and I can jump back on the low FODMAP diet knowing that it has actually made quite a difference for me.  This is bitter sweet, I'm so glad I have found something that helps, but feeling a little dishearten that I may never be able to eat and drink whatever I want, whenever I want again....boooooo

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Second star to the right and straight on till Lala's Birthday

After months and months of me saying that the girls were not going to have parties this year we are currently in the throughs of putting together Lala's 3rd birthday party.
Yes I'm a sucker!

She had been asking me to make her a Tinkerbell cake for her birthday for a good 6 months, which was no problem at all, I LOVE baking and creating special cakes for birthdays, but about a month ago her asking for a Tinkerbell cake turned into her telling us that Daddy was coming to her party as Peter Pan, and she will be Tinkerbell.  That soon turned into her 'needing' her friend to come dressed up as lost boys, pirates and fairies.  Like I said I am a sucker and lets face it I heart planning little parties, so we have found ourselves putting together a small and crafty 'Neverland Party'.

I have spent the past couple of weeks sewing costumes and cutting out paper leafs to make a Neverland jungle, yesterday we took it the next level and made a direction sign post for Never Neverland.
Im not going to lie here, my husband can need quite a bit of nagging, like a lot of men, to get motivated to do things that don't have anything to do with his computer, but I tell you what, when he actually gets started on a project he does do an amazing job!

I have been talking about doing a sign post for a few weeks, and causally showing him photos from Pinterest, all the while thinking that I will have to do it myself and just get him to do some of the painting part that I know he is better at.  In the afternoon I had a Red cross meeting to head to and had asked him to go to the hardware store and get some garden steaks so I can get started.  Well by the time I got home the project was in full swing, a huge pole had been bought, stabilised and oiled!!  He had planks of wood cut up and was outlining what he was going to write and paint on them!!  I was very impressed, I even got to paper mache some cute little flowers and a starfish which was fun as I haven't done anything like that since year 8!  By 9pm we had one amazing looking sign post….but you will have to wait until after the party to see the finished product!

We wake today to Lala being a fully fledged three year old! Today was her day, she got to choose anything she wanted for brekkie, so she had a peanut butter sandwich (which is actually her favourite lunch), she got to choose whatever she wanted for lunch, so had an omelette, her chosen activity for the day was watching 'UP' on my iPad in her favourite party dress, and for dinner she asked to go to our favourite local restaurant.  I could not be prouder of her! Now we can really get the party started this weekend!
 Happy Birthday baby girl. X  

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Yoga update - Week Two

We are still loving yoga here, today we actually went out an bought the girls their own yoga mat from Big W so they stop trying to steal mine when they feel they want to join in!

With the drama of bush fires last week I missed a few days practise, but have definitely made it up the past two days by starting Power Yoga.  Seeing as I had only been doing a post natal program and it was becoming too easy I got myself a new dvd, I didn't realise there were different types of yoga, forgive me and remember I'm still very new to it all, so when I bought Power Yoga.  I didn't really know what to expect, well lets just say that it is bloody hard and a real work out.

The first go at it I only made it through the first 20 mins out of the hour program! The next day was better and I managed 40 mins, I'm hoping tomorrow I will be able to do the whole hour.  I am starting to really feel a difference with myself both physically and mentally, starting to feel stronger.

My body is sore today but my spirit is feeling fab!

Getting back to normal

After the craziness of the past week, we are now getting our day to day life back to normal.
Well kind of.  We are quite a crafty family so a big part of our weekly routine includes drawing, painting and gluing things together.

While setting up our early morning paint session, Lala told me that she really wanted to paint some of the firefighters helicopters that we had been talking about and seen over the past few days.  Little kids are so switched on, no better therapy than some painting to help her move on and get over the stress the fires had caused.  I drew a few outlines of helicopters and while she painted them we had chats about how fires can be very scary but we were all safe now, because of the good firefighters and the helicopters that hold all the water.

After a trip to the park and a good play with mum and dad I think we have our happy girl back!

craft therapy

Play therapy

Friday, 14 February 2014

"I was scared of the fires mum" Lala 3.

We are having a very stressful few days, and it seems to still be going.

We started our Sunday morning on the 9th of Feb hanging out in our backyard having a pool party.  A pool party at our place consists of the girls sitting in their little mermaid shell pool eating watermelon and listing to Katy Perry.  After about an hour husbandito suggested that we head down to the local outdoor pools, so we all could have a cool off, I made us sandwiches packed our drink bottles and towels and off we went.  By the time we got down there and into the pool it had become extremely windy, so it was now HOT and windy, and we all know that is not a great combination when you live in a small dry rural town.  All of a sudden I got a feeling, it was the same feeling I had had on black saturday 5 years ago, I checked my CFA app and there it was, the first of 2 massive fires that would threaten to impacted our small town over the next 5 days.  At that stage this fire was dangerous, but not so big to cause too much alarm, it was over 20 kilometres away from us and there were already 23 fire truck at the site.  Still we decided it was best to get home and double check we had everything in our fire ready bag.  Driving up the main road our local CFA trucks had started to line the street, ready to head off and help out, this was about an hour after the first alert, within the next hour the next town over was is dire danger, and our little town was now basically surround with fires all about 10 to 20 kilometre away.  I mean every possible way out of the town was been blocked off because of the fires, we were still 'safe' at this stage, but we were pretty much trapped, no way we could get to our safety houses.  Things were happening extremely fast, we were now placed on the 'watch and act' alert which is really when you need to decided if you want to leave of stay, we had bags packed, but no where to go, so we started setting the house up for fire plan B, every bucket, shell pool and watering can was filled with water so we could defend off ember attacks if it got to that.  We closed the house off, moved gas bottles, and basically sat and listened to 774 abc to stay informed.  Then we got an out, we could safely make it to my Aunties place, but if we wanted to go we needed to go now. Of course this happened right in the middle of cooking dinner, so I started packing the car up and making phone calls while husbandito fed the girls, because we were well set up to stay, husbandito decided that he was going to stay while i took the girls away for the night.  A lot of people didn't understand why we did this, but it really came down to us believing that the only posing danger that night would be ember attacks, and we would feel better have him here with our neighbours being able to help stop any spot fires in our court.  Honestly if we didn't have children I too would have stayed, I really just wanted the girls out of there.

The following day we had the advice that it was safe to come back to town.  So we went about our day, as you may have noticed from above husbandito was and is still on R&R and holidays through all this, so we headed out to our fav local cafe for coffees and baby chinos, then we decided that seeing as everything had calmed down we might head down to the big smoke for a few hours.  This is something I wish we didn't do, it just ended up causing us all extra stress.  Pretty much as soon as we arrived I received an alert that our town was once again on watch and act, with in minutes my mum was on the phone too, we decided that we would finish eating our lunch then head home, we were at the car when my mum called again with news that the main way into the town had once again been blocked off and maybe we shouldn't go back at all.  Nope, we needed to get back there to get my dog and our valuables bag, which I had only just taken out of the car.  It was the longest drive home in history, it was the first time I really let my stress take over and it was the first time that Lala (3) became upset about what was going on.  Only 2 minutes out of the town we heard on the radio that the town had been put into lock down and no one could get in or out, this was totally false and made me mad that someone had called in to say something like that that hadn't been confirmed.  We pulled up, leaped out of the car, leaving the girls strapped in the back, and ran inside, I closed all the blinds, grabbed our packed bags and Bessie the dog, Husbandito grabbed his stuff, litres of water and our phone charges, which we really needed as both of our phones had died on the drive home due to all the alerts coming in from the CFA app.  We got out of town fine, headed to the relief centre, only to be there an hour and be told it was safe to head home, great, off home again it is then.  We were home for all of 30 mins when the next alert came through, I was expecting it to be a down grade as we were just sent home, but no, it was an up grade, and it said the words I just didn't want to see….'too late to leave, shelter indoors'.  Nooooooo this wasn't part of our fire plan at all. Then the power went out.

I spent the next few hours sitting at my front door watching helicopters water bomb parallel to our house only about 4 kilometres away.  I sat there in disbelieve that we were stuck in the town while there was an out of control fire being water bombed just over there.  We got through the night with little sleep, knowing we were entering another full on day, at least this time, we would not be heading out and about.  The day here was all about helicopters, big helicopters flying directly over our backyard and landing on the little athes oval to refuel, I had never seen beasts so big so close.  This was actually really good for Lala who was starting to get quite scared of the fires, she was hearing too much of our talking and was feeling too much of our stress, so it was really great for her to be able to wave to the pilots and yell out thank-you.  By afternoon our dot of a town had become the major staging area for the surrounding fires, hundreds of firefighters, not just from our local CFA's but from all over Victoria, from NSW and SA, more fire trucks than I could count and about 15 helicopters had all arrived to help fight.  Evening come and we all headed off to a community meeting to keep everyone informed about what was happening, and what to expect in the coming days.  Now we all know that at most of these things there is alway one village idiot, you know that one person that comes to the meeting all ready revved up and ready to yell and whinge about things.  Well the one village idiot choose to start ranting and yelling about the red cross, the one organisation that me and my family have strong ties with, I am a red cross member in the fundraising side of things as is my mum, but mum is also in the emergency service side of things.  Luckily for this ignorant out of towner (we know he was from the next town over, because he yelled it out a few times, not to sure why) he was only standing about a meter in front of me, so I got to put him in his place in front of a hell of a lot of people, saving him from yelling out more incorrect information, and making even more of a fool of himself, he spent the rest of the meeting with his head down. I guess on top of my quick tongue and he realised yelling at a concerned mother holding her one year wasn't a good look.

Finally yesterday late afternoon, we were told that the fires nearby had been contained and we were no longer under threat, hallelujah!!! So today although we are still living in a smoke haze we have been able to relax for the first time in 6 days, I actually got sleep last night too.

I started this post still in the mist of it all, and it has taken me a few days to get it all out.  What an emotional, and exhausting week we have had, as have many of the families in this affected area. I don't know what we would do with the amazing CFA, they are truly angels, selfless angels! THANKYOU, you guys have saved so many houses, towns, animals and most importantly lives over this past week.

Saturday, 1 February 2014

Yoga update

I am pleased to report that so far operation yoga is going well. Over the past week I have put in place a routine of doing yoga one day and Pilates the next,  I have made sure that I am taking 30 minutes a day for myself to get it done, yes at times I have a toddler sitting on my head, or a preschool trying her best to also do downward facing dog next to me, but I am for those 30 minutes letting go of trying to control what it going on around me.  So the yoga / Pilates is probably being good for my soul not just my body.

I am also very happy with my yoga purchases I made earlier in the week, a new mat has made my life cushier literally and I don't know why I had never bought proper sports crop tops before, so much support, and so comfortable on you back, no clips digging into you when laying down.  Another bonus of the crop top for me is that I can clearly see my stomach muscle separation and this serves me with a great source of motivation to keep it up!

Feeling relaxed and stronger already!

Lala's first Ballet Class

Ballet bag packed and ready to go
Here I am sitting in a small concreted room as proud as punch, my baby girl, who isn't such a baby anymore has just gone in to do her first ever kinder dance class.  The small concreted room I'm sitting waiting in is such a familiar and homely place to me, it is the change rooms of the ballet school I danced with for just about 18 years.   Well before I had ever considered being ready to have babies I had dreamed about sending my children off to Shirlene's School of Classical Ballet, now it is actually happening I can't quite believe it. The smell of mothballs still lingers in the air here and the sound of the piano is the same too, part of me feels like I have stepped back in time and I should be getting ready to take a class myself.  I can not wait to hear if she enjoyed it…….

Waiting to go and 'play ballet'

Well the verdict is in, Lala LOVES ballet, the very first thing she said to me was 'oh great day at ballet mum'.  The whole drive home, which is a good 40 minutes, she chatted to me about what she had learnt, about how is liked Miss Jones her teacher, how she got a lolly and it was a blue one and how she is more than happy to go back again next week.  I feel so incredible proud of her, she had no tears at leaving me, and had a great time 'playing ballet' with the other kids.  I feel extremely blessed to be able to give her something I feel is so special, the gift of having the opportunity to learn an amazing art form.  And finally it feels great to be able to show her a little glimpse of my life while I grew up, something I hopefully will get to share with her for a while to come.