Thursday, April 30, 2015

absent in april

I’ve not been around these parts this month.

Life has been full. Overflowing full. A bit overwhelming, a bit turbulent, a bit exciting, a bit scary.

April has had a bit of everything.

virtù - turning fortyI turned forty.

virtù - still swimming There was still lots of swimming… 

virtù - incredible experience swimming with whale sharksincluding with whale sharks.

 virtù - easter egg hunting Looking for Easter eggs.

virtù - catching up with friendsCatching up with friends.

virtù - anzac dayThinking about what ANZAC means to me. 

virtù - family outings And taking loads and loads of family outings and day trips.

We also rolled the dice and put our house on the market.

Full on.

Wonder what May has in store?

Friday, March 27, 2015

packing away a creative space

virtù - packing awayvirtù - a quilt for ace

Progress for getting our place ready for sale is very very slow. Life has a habit of throwing unexpected twists and turns our way. This week though I packed away my sewing things, including an eye-spy quilt that I have been working on for Ace.

When I first took up sewing I would set the machine up on the dining room table, but after I really started getting into it I took up residence in the grey room. Ace’s arrival saw me evicted from that space and so I took over the lounge room. Soon I was kicked out of there too, and so moved on to our bedroom. Now most of my materials, bits and bobs are packed away in storage. I still have my old machine tucked away in the cupboard in case of an emergency but I don’t really expect to be doing any sewing any time soon.

I do so hope there will be an opportunity to finish the quilt before Ace’s second birthday at the end of September. Fingers crossed.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

closure, an adventure in tying up loose ends

virtù - all aboard

Yesterday I took my youngest boy to Rottnest Island for the day. The last time he was there, in utero, I thought I’d lost him. I had left the island totally guttered and utterly bereft. With summer weather coming to an end it seemed like the right time to go back, get some closure and re-establish a happier relationship with my much loved island.

virtù - sleepingvirtù - finally awake - in his PJs on the beachvirtù - smiley

The boy feel asleep pretty much as soon as we arrived on the island. Not known for his good sleeping it was rather ironic that he slept for what seemed like an eternity. The island certainly suited him – he had an unheard of second nap in the afternoon. These sleepy moments afforded me some much needed reflection time, processing what had been such a traumatic event on the island. The tumultuous  pregnancy that followed, looking after three children, working full time and suffering from both pleurisy and pneumonia finished with a hideously dramatic birth. Wowzas.

virtù - sandcastle makingvirtù - eat sand Mama

Yet here we were, together on Rottnest Island, two years since we’d last been there on the most glorious of glorious sun shiny days. The golden sun shining brightly in a clear blue sky. It had been a gloomy cold and overcast day when we’d left last time. We’d come full circle. We’d turned it around. We’d weathered the storm. There was so much to be thankful for, and the feeling of being blessed overwhelmed my heart and on more than a few times I spontaneous burst into tears, tears of pure joy.

virtù - quokkavirtù - meeting a quokkavirtù - ace loves seagulls

This little smiley boy is so gorgeous. Such an affectionate little soul, so many hugs and so many kisses. Such a cutie saying hello the quokkas, he’s a big fan of seagulls too. We walked, we talked, we made sandcastles and we swam.

There was even some time for some crochet too while staring out at the horizon.

virtù - crochetvirtù  - a wonderful day     

A perfect day.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

funday sunday

The hard slog to try and get this house ready for sale or rent has resumed. Life with four children makes progress slow, a sick babe bought all “extras” to the daily routine to a grinding halt. In an effort to get some momentum back today I played single mum getting the children out of the house while Dave stayed put and tried to get things done. This is a bit of a regular gig now, I’ve taken the children up to Moore River, Penguin Island and numerous other little outings. We have loads and loads of fun. I miss Dave though, and look forward to the day when there are fewer jobs to do so that we can all just hangout as a family.

Today started with a trip to the movies. We saw Home. It was okay I suppose. Certainly didn’t blow me away, but its post-colonialist themes kept my mind engaged. We had originally aimed to catch the 10:30am session – but found that the freeway had been closed for an event and found ourselves stuck in a Sunday morning traffic jam. We were at the cinema in time for the 10:50am session but there were only seats in the front row remaining (this particular cinema does seat allocation) so we decided to wait an hour and a half for the next session. Who knew going to the movies on a Sunday morning was so popular?

virtù  - hanging out at bettys cafe

We walked around some shops for a bit and then hung out in a cafe sharing hot chips. Nothing fancy but we had a good time.

After the flick E. had to get fitted out for his soccer kit which was an interesting experience in its own right. We’re not really soccer people in this house, but most of E.’s friends at school play so he wanted to too. No worries there at all – except that we have absolutely no idea what we’re doing and understand very little about the culture surrounding soccer or the lingo. He’s excited. His uniform is bright orange! Not his best colour, but hey he couldn’t care less.

virtù - brothers eating pizzavirtù - playing in the sandpitvirtù - me and my little ones - photo taken by ebe

My crew and I headed down to Fremantle after that to get ourselves some dinner. The stars aligned for us, well me anyway, and we got ourselves a table next to the brilliant sandpit at Little Creatures. We were set for a glorious end to Sunday – sandpit play and a sunset. Life doesn’t get much better (…except if Dave had been with us and I could have had a G&T instead of a softie!).

virtù - on the dock at

After dinner there was some play in the local park and a ride on the Fremantle Skyride, aka ferris wheel.  Little old man Ode was super chuffed and excited. His older brother was pretty keen too. My dear girl was a bit worried, but relaxed after a while and our littlest Ace – well he was mesmerised, perplexed and enthralled.

virtù - on the skyride virtù - fremantle skyride

We arrived home much later than we had planned (especially on a school night), but we’d had such a lovely dovely day!

Friday, March 13, 2015

a fishy hat

ace's fishy hatSome actual sewing. A hat for the smallest boy. The pieces had been cut out for months. The sewing took no more than a couple of hours that were full of interruptions from the wee folk. I’ve made so many of these hats now that I don’t even refer to the pattern instructions, which I might add if you’re interested in making a hat are fantastic. The first hat that I made Ace has been lost. Gone. Vanished. An improbable feat considering that he doesn’t much like wearing hats. This new hat isn’t getting much wear either – but from a mothering perspective I do like to have it in hand as I follow him on his explorations, ready just to try again and then scoop it up as it is torn off and tossed aside.

at swanbourne beach in his fishy hat

The smaller children and I have spent the last two days exploring the zoo. I don’t tend to go to the zoo over the summer months – too hot and I’d much rather be mixing it with water – so this was Ace’s first visit as a walker. He loved it. Walked and walked and walked. Makes for slow progress but lots of discoveries. Bless this little man. Recently very ill with foot hand and mouth virus he still isn’t 100% recovered but his stamina is that of a marathon runner’s.

Every animal we saw he waved hello and good-bye to. Super sweet. He was particularly thrilled with the tigers and the lemurs. He loved sitting on all the statues too. Each time we passed one he gestured that I put him on it. Makes for uber cute photos!!!

ace on a tortoise

No hat though!

Along the hairline of his forehead is row of sweet freckles. I lather the kid in sunscreen and just wait for the day when we can enter a true negotiation on the topic of hat wearing – you know the one, “no hat, no play”.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

sculpture by the sea

birthday boy

It’s Dave’s birthday.

sculpture by the seasculpture by the sea 2sculpture by the sea 3sculpture by the sea 4sculpture by the sea 5

Ace and I baked a cake, packed a picnic, picked up the kids from school and day care and then collected the birthday boy from work before heading to the beach to celebrate.

ode - beach loverswimmers at sculpture by the seamae - beach runner

What a fabulous way to spend the afternoon and evening. The beach was heaving. So many people. Such a great vibe. The sun was shining and the water was warm. The art was engaging, so hard to choose a favourite.

fish and chips for dinnerace

dinner at sunset

A sunset dinner of fish and chips was enjoyed before singing a rousing rendition of happy birthday with a cake ablaze with candles and sparklers. Joyous times indeed.

birthday cake

Then there was some night swimming before heading home for ice cream. Good times indeedy.

fun times at sculpture by the seaace - awww cute moan from crowd 

We all love you so much Dave. Happy Birthday.

Monday, March 9, 2015

the tardy giraffe

the tardy giraffe

This giraffe is very tardy. He is  a belated first birthday gift for sweet Ace. Only just finished today,  he has eventually come in existence before Ace is eighteen months. In the giraffe’s defence if his cute little owner was keener on sleeping he’d have made it to the first birthday celebrations.

Oh well. No one’s perfect. Better to rock up late than not at all right?
                 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

penguin island

the ferry to penguin island ferry goersmother and baby dolphinthe male sea lions on the beachpenguins not well - a poorly ace

The children and I ventured to Penguin Island today. We had a great adventure. We caught a ferry to the island, surprisingly the children were overly keen to canvas every worst case scenario possible for what was a five minute journey across the straight (at the right time of day you can walk to the island on a sandbar!) Arriving on the island we transferred to a glass bottom boat and explored the bay. We were fortunate enough to see a mother dolphin and her baby. The pair frolicked near our boat for ages. It was such a thrill. E was utterly absorbed and mesmerised, O. too was fascinated but kept referring to them as sharks. Meanwhile M. is perhaps not the nature loving type, showing much more interest in the stash of rice crackers in the beach bag and it would seem that Ace does not like boats! Still, in his defence he was very ill with foot hand and mouth virus. Once off the boat he welcomed the many distractions the island had to offer.

sandcastle makingthe sandcastlefun on the beachode on the boardwalk

In the morning M. had made us all vegemite rolls which we savoured before heading beach side for some sandcastle making and splashing around. The weather was glorious. The waters clear and turquoise. Lots of interesting seaweeds and grasses. So much fun was had. Sitting back on the sand watching everyone have such a fabulous time fills me up. These are the best moments. Summer loving in autumn indeedy.

mae loving the binocularschecking out the wild life - so many birdsP3083754my mob on penguin island

We didn’t get to explore the entire island, Ace was happily ensconced in the stroller. It didn’t bother me, Dave and I had kayaked to the island ten years earlier. At that time we had explored the island extensively, we’d also gone snorkelling and had the most marvellous encounter with a sea lion. It was playing with us. We’d dive under the water and do a summersault and it would do the same, then we’d come to the surface for breath and repeat over and over. It was mind blowing.

Today, solo with four children, our explorations were not quite as extensive but they were certainly satisfying. We didn’t get to see any wild penguins, but we were convinced we could hear them under the board walk. We certainly saw lots and lots of other bird species. See the world through my children’s eyes is such a gift. They show me things that I would otherwise not even notice, and they can get enthused by the smallest of discoveries. Bless them.

  

three out of four of my babes on penguin island