Saturday, April 30, 2011

Birthday Boy

No2 Boy was 11 yesterday.  He has been reminding us of it's immanence for about 11 months, so we were sure to remember!  You will recall that I treked almost all the way to Sydney to get the right size shorts for his tennis ensemble, there is dedication for you! 

I also had to head out to the shops when everyone had gone to bed on Thursday as the shopping centre I trailed to had no Ninjago Lego sets to be found. 

Thankfully my local Westfield had a great variety, in 4 different stores!  If only they'd had the shorts...

Due to the weather we missed our Skype call from Grandma and Grandpa as I had decreed that no one would be cycling or walking/busing to school in torrential rain and took them all in the car.  I'm not quite as mean as I sometimes like to make out!  Proceedings later in the day were also a little rushed as I was very keen to have everyone in bed before the Royal Wedding!  If it wasn't for having to be at Football by 8am they could have stayed up to watch, but I was proved right when No3 Boy scored 4 goals, one incredible one, curved in from the line, and No2 Boy also scored.  He's not a Striker, but a Central Mid-Fielder.  I don't really know what that means, but apparently you run around a lot.   Husband has just headed off to his match and I'm sure will be feeling the need to keep at least one goal ahead of the boys! 

We had a disastrous dinner out, I refused to pay for the boys' meals as they were so awful, but got back and had some Birthday Cake.  After the Big Red Car last month, I had lots of red icing left over so No2  Boy was told to think of something red.  He chose a Pokeball, I have no idea what that is/does, but it was nice and simple - Good Boy!

So the Boys are now building Lego, using their new Pokemon cheat book (again, I have no idea)  with their Pokemon DS games, the 2 wee ones are working on Smallest Boy's Alphabet - he scares me - and I'm going to do a little bit of hooky.  My first batch of scarves and cowls went to MakeSpace today and I'm feeling like I have just sent my babies away!

Oh, and I LOVED watching The Wedding!  I really enjoyed hearing Huw Edwards and getting all the BBC coverage via ABC, Husband left the room in disgust so I was able to get all choked up without any embarrassment!   I wish them all the very best in their married life.

Enjoy your weekend, whatever you might be doing!  x

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

End of Hols

We've made it! 

Smallest Boy went back to Pre-School today and the others all go back to school tomorrow,  for all of 2 days.  Ah well, better than nothing!  Everyone who needed one has had a haircut, bags are ready and rolls are rising, ready to go in the oven,  for packed lunches in the morning.   I may need a packed lunch myself as it looks like I might be going on a wee journey, half way to Sydney, out of love and devotion for No 2 Boy who will have his 11th birthday on Friday.  Needless to say, the one thing he wanted is not available in his size in either of our local Rebel Sports stores, so off I will trot to track them down. 

For the sake of Grandma, and any one else who might be interested, I thought I'd add a few more pics of our holidays.

Boys in trees...

Boys creating...

(For those of you that don't know, these are "Angry Birds" from the game of the same name.  I foolishly downloaded this onto my phone to amuse them and now have to fight to get it back!)

Boys photo-bombing...

Boys out having special one-to-one time with Mum...

Getting soaked at the beach...

And, last but not least, some more woolly creations for the winter!

So, I'd better get these rolls in the oven, grab a quick cuppa and squeeze in a wee bit more hooky before bed-time.  I'm hoping to have a bit of a Tah-Dah soon...

Thanks for popping by!

Friday, April 22, 2011

First week of holidays

I had originally intended to post this at the weekend, begining "We have survived the first week of the holidays without incident!"  Clearly I was wishing an incident upon us as Dog disappeared while we were all in the garden and doing jobs.  He had found a hole in the side gate and had taken himself for a walk.  Husband and No3 Boy went in hot pursuit, only for Dog to think this was a great game, and go heading into bush land.  We spent 8 hours looking for him, gave up the opportunity for dinner out with friends, rang the RSPCA numerous times, all in driving, torrential rain.  It rained all night as hard as I've heard it in the 2 years we've been here.  Children were sobbing and I was torn between feeling sorry for him and being furious!  Thankfully we had a phone call at 8.30am on Sunday to say that he was safe and sound and at the RSPCA, having been there since probably about an hour after he left!!  He was very glad to see us, but I doubt very much if he has learnt his lesson.  We, incidentally, learnt that he is actually a year older than we had thought, and is a Red Setter/Golden Retriever Cross, not Labrador as we had assumed. 

ANYWAY!!  Back to my original post...  Other than Dog, we had survived the first week of the holidays without incident, and now nearly all of the second week!  This is not always the case and the first week is often when all the bickering and nonsense goes on until everyone has agreed on their position in the heap.   We've not done much but the weather has been great so we've got out and walked the Dog, we've baked,

still loving the freshly baked bread and rolls

 played at the beach,

done some den building,
a fair amount of Hama/Perler beads,

seen some friends, played some football, been to tennis camp and still had music lessons.  The rain at the weekend was torrential so the DS's were out and there was begging for screens. 

Am I the only Screen Nazi out there?  I can't stand the way children (or men for that matter) behave when screens are on, so during the week they are banned, except for the occasional bribe for the Big 2.  No DS's, no TV, no Wii from Monday until Friday afternoon.  Computers are allowed only for homework purposes.  During the holidays there has been a screen ban until 5pm.  When I was their age I would go out and play on my bike or read, imaginative play.  No 2 Boy and his Best Friend in Scotland were always the best at this.  When they played together you could easily forget they were there as they just got on and built stuff together.  As they got older they would head off on their bikes or play in the woods next to N's house.  Even now, he is the one who has the best fun with his friends and can spend hours creating things. 

And now we are back round at the weekend again.  Husband has voluntarily said he will take some time off, so I'm looking forward to a long weekend of family time (no football or tennis matches), maybe a bit of exploring and spending time with friends. 

I'll leave you with a pic of my latest Crochet-ing.  These scarves are fabulously easy and proving very popular. 

I hope you all have a very peaceful and Blessed Easter weekend.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


When we first got here we did a lot of exploring, but due to Football, Church, Birthday Parties, Tennis Comps etc, we haven't done any for a while.  This morning there was a bit of Hama bead action going on but we figured if we left by 12.30pm, we could drive until we were hungry and see how far we got! 

We got as far as Buladelah.  What a cute place!  We had our picnic of sandwiches (from our beautiful bread), Red Rock Deli (pardon the advertising, but they ARE the best) chips, eggs and fruit, put together by our Master Picnic Maker with help from his Minions.  The Kids then had a great time at the play area, all noted how "Un-Derilised" it was.  Apparently this is a cross between Derelict and Vandalised. 

It was quite hard to get them dragged away!

We eventually bribed them with the beach and headed back towards Hawks Nest and Tea Gardens.  We got there with plenty of time before the sun disappeared, and headed into the water. 

The footprints were Smallest being a Kangaroo.

When the sun did start to go, everyone got out and dressed then it was time for the Traditional Family Races!

Can you tell that they enjoyed themselves?  I loved that when I uploaded the pics, I noticed that the Life Guards had been watching them race!  They spent a good 15 mins doing all kinds of races before I declared time.

As it's now holidays, there was no rush to get home and everyone to bed, but thankfully they've gone now!  Time for a cuppa and some mindless tv - if I can keep my eyes open...

Hope your Weekend has been Relaxing/Exciting/Fun/Gorgeous!

Thursday, April 7, 2011


I baked bread, from scratch, for the first time today! 

I know, I'm nearly 40 and it's actually disgraceful but I have done it!  And I'll do it again.  I've been cutting back on the rubbish we have in the house slowly but surely.  We no longer have cereal bars/shop bought lunch snacks, I've been trying to bake my own muffins, flapjacks or failing that pikelets (Scotch Pancakes).  I've always made our main meals from scratch but hadn't really thought about breakfast and lunches.  The kids have been having eggs for breakfast occasionally, and sometimes smoothies.  They know I'm 'mean' as they aren't allowed all the sugary breakfast cereals and tend to stick with Weetbix, but when I saw Sue's recipe for her Granola I had to give it a try.  I did last night and it got the thumbs up from my people this morning - result! 

Bread here is super expensive and with growing boys in the house they can eat their way through a loaf when they get home from school.   Sue posted yesterday about how easy baking your own bread is, how much cheaper and how much healthier than all the extra ingredients added to our supermarket loaves.  I had nothing better planned today and thought it was an experiment worth trying.

I followed Sue's recipe - 4 ingredients, bit of kneading, done!  While it was proving I got some other jobs done and managed another Pear and Raspberry loaf.  I seem to have pretty large pans and while Sue get's 4 loaves, I could probably have done 2 large ones, one white and one wholemeal. 

The kids could smell the bread as they came home and, as predicted, ate their way though most of the first loaf!  Thankfully there is enough left over for sandwiches tomorrow, with a piece of (nut-free this time - oops!) Pear and Raspberry Loaf for recess, and some fruit.

Now all we need are some chickens in the garden for eggs and a cow for milk!

Monday, April 4, 2011


My Sporty Duo are home this afternoon with ribbons from their Cross-Country Carnival!  No2 Boy came 6th in the 11's, and No3 Boy came 3rd in the 8/9's and will go through to Zone. 

No2 Boy is eating a Raspberry and Pear muffin.  I needed to use up some pears so googled for a recipe.  I came up with this one, then went back to check for another one, just in case.  I came across this blog which made me laugh as the writer had done the same as me and come up with the same recipe!  Turns out she lives not too far from here either, originating also from the UK!  Small world, eh?

I enjoyed mine with my usual Green Tea in my lovely, new, Fairly Traded mug.

Thought you might like to see what "Working at Home" looks like...

...apparently he gets loads done until Smallest Boy gets home from Pre-School!  Quote of the Day from Smallest is "I had a good day today, I didn't cry, I was happy, happy, HAPPY!"

Me too!

Busy, busy, busy!

As the title suggests, we have been pretty busy over the weekend!  There has been a large amount of sport and socialising and I even managed to squeeze in a very brief whip around the wonderful Olive Tree market as all the stall holders were packing up!

Friday evening No2 Boy does his tennis comps.  He was ridiculously late home (I drop off, friend's Mum brings home) and when he did finally arrive, he announced that it had been presentation night!!  He and his pal had won their doubles comp again and I wasn't there to record it for posterity! This pic from their last win will have to do instead.

Saturday mornings will now be dominated by Football until August.  No3 boy played first and scored his first goal of the season (obviously I had put my camera away by that point.).  They played a team that were mostly girls so they started off quite gently until a few of them had been knocked off their feet.  No3 Boy was knocked over/shoulder barged 4 times!  They went for it after that and played really well.

I love how the tongue is out with concentration!

Then on to No2 Boy's match.  We lost count of how many goals his team scored, needless to say, they look like they're going to do well this season!

You can click on the photo to enlrage it if you need more detail!

Husband then had his match, but we dropped him and raced to the Olive Tree market to get a present for Miss M's friend's 7th birthday.  We headed straight for Sharlene of Pip Kids.  She is a star, always has something perfect and is more than happy to do something special to order.  She saved the day!  We also bumped into Di of Sketch & Jones and put in an order for some local tea towels.  Such fabulously talented people!

Next was home to bake a Retirement cake for Husband's right-hand man, then to my friend Pippa's Phoenix Champagne and Cards event - it would have been rude not to!

As soon as Husband got back we were straight out for dinner and birthday cake.  By the time we got home, I still had a cake to decorate so was very glad of the extra hour!

Yesterday we then had a house/gardenful of Husband's colleagues so we all had to be on our best behaviour!  I do like having lots of people around but I also like when everyone goes home and the children go to bed.  A nice evening of 'Bones' and crochet for me while Husband snored on the other sofa.

Hope your weekend was wondeful!