Sunday, September 14, 2014

37/52

ace - stands to playebe - plays monopolyode - and his shadow mae - lost her first tooth

a portrait of my children, once a week in 2014

ace – stands to play, you can manage a smile even when you’ve been feeling poorly – blasted cough and cutting teeth. They’ve kept you and I awake a lot this week.

ebe – loving your first game of monopoly. You’re getting so much better at playing board games and your understanding of money is developing too. This weekend you’ve been doing odd jobs all around the house for pocket money.

ode – shadow play? You’ve an unnerving fascination with spitting out water at the moment. Actually you’re fascinating with testing all kinds of boundaries and social norms. I guess that makes you a pretty typical three year old.

mae – you lost your first tooth at the check out of Woolworths today. Your brothers (the younger one your current hairdresser of choice) and I gave you a wild round of applause which attracted a few strange looks from those around. You were so super chuffed and mega brave. I on the other hand felt like I might burst into tears, you’re losing your last baby fragments.

         

  Joining in with Jodi.

Monday, September 8, 2014

drinking apple tea

virtù - drinking apple tea

Windy and gusty here in Perth today. The perfect day for sipping sweet apple tea. It continues to be chaotic in these parts. I’m start to think that that is just the way life will be from here on. So much juggling to be done. The more I practice the better I get. Lost my creative mojo there for a bit, particularly last week. Felt flat. Didn’t even want to lift up my knitting. Still haven’t got it totally back, but I have faith that the desire to be making will come back, soon even.

Sometimes I can’t seem to see the forest for the trees. All those trees can be overwhelming at times. I was reminded of great wisdom recently, “a jug is filled drip by drip”. I’ve adopted it as my mantra for the time being. I know that term four is always hectic with end of year bits and bobs, but term three turns out to be action packed too. Ms M. received a merit certificate at the school assembly, then there was book week, then Ms. M performed in her first school assembly (which was so brilliant – bravo!), Wednesday night the school hosts a learning journey where the parents are invited into the classrooms for an hour, the next day E. is getting a merit certificate at the school assembly (but I don’t think he knows), the week after he has his performance (some sort of dance routine to Happy) … oh my!

There have been assignments that need doing and homework and homework and homework…

I would say that I was looking forward to the school holidays … but I booked the two older kids into swimming lessons everyday for the full two weeks!

My mind seems to be forever racing with thoughts of one kind or another – I’m forever distracted.

Ah. Putting my feet up for small moments to quietly sip sweet apple tea. Bliss. Be. In. The. Moment.

                   

                              

…now back to racing.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

36/52

mae - her first sports carnivalace - keeps his eye on the streetebe - in the shower ode - mr cool

a portrait of my children, once a week in 2014

    

mae – your first sports carnival this week, in the words of your father “our children move like treacle”, even so you had a good time and seemed to take it all in

ace – everyday your life becomes more and more vertical, this week you did some pretty impressive cruising around the lounge room furniture. Ne need to rush by dear boy, there is plenty of time.

ebe – boy you love your showers and baths. Always have. Looks like you’ve inherited your parents “last minute” gene – having to put in a late night and frantic morning in order to submit your school assignment on time.

ode – super smooth, you can smile your way out of anything

 

Joining in with Jodi.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

dinO

virtù - a kiss for dinovirtù - a hug and a kiss for dino virtù - ode and his dino

I do like to make my babes at least one gift for their birthday. For his recent third birthday I made O a dinosaur. He is loving all things dinosaur very much at the moment. He was very thrilled with it, smothering it with many kisses. Bless.

This is my first knitted softie. Previously I have sewed and crocheted soft toys but not yet knitted one. It was my first experience of knitting short rows too.  I so enjoyed making this for my sweet boy.

virtù - emrboidered label virtù - dino for Ode 

Everybody roar!
Like a dinosaur!
Do the Dinosaur Roar!

   

Ravelled.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

just a minute … in august

August! Oh my! So busy. Time has just flown by. Wooosh.

virtù - a web in the garden

Listening… to O singing “Happy Birthday” to himself in the weeks leading up to his birthday. Super cute.

star wars

Watching…  the original Star Wars trilogy with E., Searching For Sugar Man which was such an amazing story, and seasons 1 & 2 of Orange is the New Black.

virtù - ace helps his dada

Knitting… a dino for an awesome three year old and still working on a cardi for me.

Crocheting… teddy bears, well teaching other people how to crochet teddy bears anyway.

virtù - book week costumes

Sewing… costumes for book week, a cape and a Brobee t-shirt for O’s birthday.

Celebrating… O’s 3rd birthday.

virtù - playing shop

So was August busy for you too?

35/52

ace - watches the goings onode - reaching for the starsmae - uber coolebe - kicking the footy

a portrait of my children, once a week in 2014

      

ace – watching on as always. You’re super cute, even with that scratch and scab on your nose. Yesterday you had your first blood nose – turns out your father and I still differ on the definition of supervision.

ode – reaching for the stars, you are so full of mischief.

mae – you are just so uber cool baby girl.

ebe – kicking the footy, you can do anything you put your mind to. There is a new maturity about you over the past couple of weeks, I enjoy spending time with you so much. Loved cuddling up on the couch watching Star Wars with you.

     

  

Joining in with Jodi.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

an almost girly lunch

Yesterday I picked M. up from school early. I wanted to take her out for some a girly lunch, well it was almost girly.  Her older brother remained at school and her younger brother was at day care but her baby brother tagged along. To compensate for his presence I wore a skirt and she wore a dress that I’d made for her earlier in the year.

virtù - frocking up for lunch

The reason for the lunch? Well unfortunately all the crap that she experienced at school last term has resumed. My poor darling girl has been coming home in tears and spent a good part of last weekend sobbing on her Dada’s shoulder.

My heart is breaking for her and I just wanted to give her respite from the intense experience. Some special time.

It is sometimes difficult to get a clear picture of exactly what is going on at school. Questions come to mind as to whether or not she is exaggerating or perhaps misinterpreted things. Last week though two other parents approached me to let me know that something was going on. One parent had been told by her daughter that M. was being ostracised and the other was a parent helper for another class and witnessed M. being shunned at lunch time. Devastating.

The most confusing aspect of the situation is that the apparent ring leader also happens to be our neighbour. A neighbour who knocks on our door to play almost every afternoon. I’ve never witnessed any untoward play between the two girls, but E. says that’s because its different when I’m around.

After much consideration on Monday of this week I sent her mother a long text message letting her know that the issues had resurfaced (I had wanted to catch up with her husband before school but got caught chatting about the situation with a parent of one of the other girls involved).  Last term after the classroom teacher had pulled her aside she’d exclaimed that she’d wished I told her, blah blah. At that time I explained that I had not discussed it with her because I had not actually witnessed anything. The  teacher discussed it with her because the teacher had observed the behaviour first hand. In my thinking at that time it was therefore a school issue.

Now however I feel like I have to protect M. more. Coming home from school after a tough day to then play with the person who’d left you out is confusing for her. Dave and I can see that M. is overly keen to please our neighbour and we’ve also noticed that she is very anxious when we say ‘no’ to play of an afternoon (because you know there are things like dinner to make and baby brothers to bath and cleaning up bedrooms and so on and so on…) We just don’t have a good feeling about it, especially since during the school day she won’t let M. play with her or her friends and she actively encourages other children not to sit next M. on the mat.

So in my text message I asked that she keep her daughter at home of an afternoon until the issues at school are resolved. I explained that I wanted to provide a safe place for M. after difficult days at school.  The next morning at school drop off I approached her to chat about it and she said that she’d discussed it with her daughter but she denied knowing anything of it. What more could she do? she asked.

I don’t know.

I don’t know.

I don’t know.

The whole situation is heartbreaking, confusing and awkward. Dave and I wonder what we could do to help M. fit in. We’ve asked our neighbour and M’s teacher if there is anything in particular she is doing that alienates the other children. No answers.

We’ve questioned ourselves about the advice that we give her. On this past weekend we’d counselled her to consider whether or not she’d wanted people who treated her meanly to be her friends. We suggested to her that if people didn’t like her just the way she is then they’re not going to make good friends.

Then her classroom teacher advised me that this week M. wasn’t making an effort with the children in the class (who had had another class discussion about inclusion). M had told her teacher that she didn’t want friends. So that night Dave and I re-wrote our advice to her and suggested that if people were making an effort with her she should meet them halfway.

virtù - love my girl

We’ve got no idea what we’re doing here. We’re feeling totally ill-equipped as parents.

M. soldiers on though. She becomes more and more resilient and our family, especially her older brother, has closed ranks around her. I know that her Grandpa has penned some words of love and encouragement to her too which will soon be delivered by our postie.

Meanwhile there are glaring looks from our neighbour’s mother. Looks that suggest we’ve made the entire thing up. Looks that suggest that she perhaps feels like she is the victim in all this. Or maybe that’s not it all? Perhaps I’m just misreading it and the looks are of tired confusion the very same that I wear on my face.

girl time

On a brighter note. Lunch was lovely. We sat by the water, had a stroll, laughed as we watched our baby Ace chase seagulls (crawling!) and she had a giant chocolate ice cream. (Technically speaking it was a ‘small’ ice cream – serving sizes these days are ridiculous – I had wanted to get one too but the small was just too large for me … but that is a rant for another day)

Oh … and details about the dress – because I never did blog about it at the beginning of the year. The fabric, picked up from Spotty, has the most darling May Gibb’s gumnut babies print. The pattern is the very same that I used for her 5th birthday frock sans the sleeves. It’s from Ottobre 3/2011 from memory.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

my little superherO

virtù - up and up and away

It has become a bit of a tradition for me to sew superhero capes for my kiddos. Over the past couple of months I had noticed that O. was wearing his older brother and sister’s capes more and more as part of his play. Time for the boy to have one of his own. A special Mama made birthday gift for the most super three year old in my life right now.

virtù - it's super Ovirtù - super O flying

He loves it. So so so happy. He is my little superhero. To sew the cape I used the pattern that I drafted from an Enid Gilchrist pattern book when I made E’s cape back in 2010 and once again I used Cam’s superhero headband tutorial.

virtù - my little superherO

So much fun to be had on a sunny Sunday afternoon running up and down the verge as his Dada mows the lawn. There was a bit of impressive letterbox jumping too! A sweet childhood moment for sure. Watching him run and up and down the lawn over and over again my heart swelled with pride and joy.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

three, it really is a special number

The not so little O. turned three this weekend. This is the third time I have thrown a party for a three year old. It is such an honour to do so. For the first time the child really understands what a birthday party is all about. There is excitement, planning and anticipation. O has been singing Happy Birthday to himself for a couple of weeks now. He stood tall and proud with a smile from ear to ear as he handed out his invitations. He knew exactly what he wanted, balloons, lollies, party hats and a Brobee cake.

virtù - making his cake and watching the flour snowvirtù - brobee cakevirtù - birthday boyvirtù - birthday boy and his much wanted party hatvirtù - party foodvirtù - singing happy birthdayvirtù - party bags

It was an excellent day. We were up before the sunrise opening presents at O’s slow and ordered pace, much to his brother and sister’s frustration. The morning was spent playing with toys, decorating the cake and making last minute party preparations before heading to the park to meet up with a small group of friends.

We had an egg and spoon race and pass the parcel and played on the swings and all the playground equipment.

The weather was so fine. Absolute perfection. The park was alive with activity. So many BBQs and children playing informal games of footy, so many sounds of glee from the playground. A wonderful buzz.

A happy happy birthday indeed.virtù - egg and spoon race

34/52

ode - a pirateebe - turning into Yodamae - Cat in the Hatace - trying out his brothers dummy

a portrait of my children, once a week in 2014

         

ode – dressed as a pirate in your sister’s tricorne hat you won a prize at our local library’s story time as part of its book week celebrations. You were well chuffed.

ebe – your father helped apply green body paint transforming you into Yoda for book week celebrations at school. You looked fantastic. I was so surprised when I picked you up from school to see that you had worn your costume all day.

mae – you love Cat in the Hat. You can recite the entire text and you pack away like a champ. You tell me that you wouldn’t tell me if the Cat in the Hat came to our place to play – but I think you eventually would, you’d be so excited that you wouldn’t be able to keep that to yourself for long.

ace – oh the irony! My only child to not take a dummy when sleeping you are so much harder to settle… and yet you seize any opportunity to seize your brother’s dummy for a chew during the waking ours (but still reject any that are offered to you!)

   

Joining in with Jodi.

33/52

ace - getting off his kneesebe - piloting a rocket shipode - learning about his worldmae - wiping away the tears

a portrait of my children, once a week in 2014

   

ace – I watch you watching your siblings move about, it is so clear that you want to walk. Soon my love soon, but don’t rush. You’re getting closer, crawling around the garden on feet and hands,  no longer on your knees.

ebe – what an amazing imagination you have. You’ve always been so creative and with ease can inhabit an entirely new reality. Here you are piloting a rocket ship. Judging by your expression perhaps your in strife?

ode – sometimes it can be hard to find some space in this house to explore the world on your own, without your older sibling hovering, telling you what to do and taking over. Here you are hiding behind the couch with  a map of the world. You were undiscovered for almost an hour.

mae – my dear girl you are so tough.  Your feelings run so deep and hover so close to the surface. I will always be there for you to wipe away the tears, to hug you and love you.

        

         

Playing along with Jodi.

Friday, August 22, 2014

this moment

virtù - this moment - making O's birthday cake

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week.  A simple, special, extraordinary moment.     A moment I want to pause, savour and remember.

                      

Playing along with soule mama.

Friday, August 15, 2014

32/52

ebe - smile lights up my worldmae - mmmmmode - doctor strangelove ace - oh my sweet angel

a portrait of my children, once a week in 2014

        

ebe – laughing as you play with your siblings after school. I’m never really sure what mood you’ll be in when you come home. You sure do suffer from hangry sometimes. You’re at your best when your happy – aren’t we all?

mae – we took an adventure on the train and then in a taxi. You loved it. Me too. You enable me to see everyday experiences through a new lens. You make things fresh.

ode – you’re loving playing with the doctors kits these days. You can be so caring (but not always!)

ace – my sweet angel. You’re taking it all in, observing the world and enjoying a milk arrowroot as you do.

 

                     

Joining in with Jodi

(late this week… because –…well I’ve just been enjoying life offline!)