Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Easter 2011

This Easter I took the girls to their Grandma and Grandpa's house. Hubby has been working away since the 14th and fortunately he was able to meet us there for the weekend. 

Here are some highlights:

Good Friday

This was only the second long trip since Emily started toilet training, so I put a nappy on her just in case. I was going to try and do the 2 1/2 hour trip in one go, only stopping if Jessica was hungry (I had fed her right before we left) or Emily asked to go to the toilet.

Source: Ozroads

We got almost all the way there and Emily said she needed to do a wee! I contemplated whether to just keep going and let her use the nappy, but thought I wouldn't like it if someone made me pee my pants when I asked to go to the toilet! So I stopped on a side road and got her out of the car. Then I realised I had no idea how to get her to squat without peeing all over her pants (a mistake hubby would make the next day!) So here I am trying to hold her up by her knees with her back leaning against my legs, praying she doesn't pee on ME! It was a great success, and something to boast to Grandma when we got there (a whole 7 km's later), Emily's first wee on the side of the road! Ha!

Easter Saturday

We all went to Wyangala Dam for a picnic. I can't believe how many people go there camping on this weekend! We managed to find a little area (after driving around for what felt like hours) and had a lovely bbq lunch. A relaxing time was had by all.

Easter Sunday

Sunday morning Emily woke at Stupid o'clock (5.30am!) and came into our room, not even spotting the Easter basket at the end of her bed! I convinced her to go back to sleep for an hour or so, and at 7am she came back again. I knew she'd found the basket because she had a ring of chocolate around her mouth! The basket was for the Easter egg hunt I had planned for her. I had put in it a couple of little eggs and a digital camera. Once I got up and got dressed I snuck outside and hid 12 plastic eggs filled with mini chocolate eggs around Grandmas garden (an excellent garden for an Easter egg hunt), leading up the steps to the verandah where there was a fantastic Easter hamper (which I won from Babybuds) waiting for her!

 "I found one!"

She wouldn't get dressed or even let me brush her hair before 
rushing out to find what the Easter Bunny hid for her!

Easter Monday/ANZAC Day

Home again, home again jigitty jig! Now time to unpack and do all the washing from the weekend. I hate this part of travelling!

Source: Ozroads

It was really great getting away from home for Easter, I was starting to feel like the walls were closing in on me. I never realised it would be so hard to look after the girls on my own. Kudos to the single parents out there! Hubby's family is just wonderful, his Mum is a great cook and kept us well fed! They love seeing the girls and didn't mind keeping Emily occupied while I got a sleep in. Got to love Grandmas!

I'm a Versatile Blogger!

On Friday I discovered that I had been awarded 'The Versatile Blogger Award' by Meltdowns, Chaos and Aspergers! Thank you Simone!

The origins of this award are murky at best, but think of it as a kind of bloggers chain letter. I take it as a compliment that someone chose ME to give it to!

As part of accepting this award, I have to reveal seven things about myself (eek!) So, here I go.....
  1. I once auditioned for Australian Idol.
  2. I was born on a Friday (so were Emily and Jessica)
  3. I'm left handed.
  4. I've never been a bridesmaid.
  5. I hate housework (haha who doesn't!)
  6. My favourite number is 33.
  7. I love food! Typical Taurean!
The second part of this award, is paying it forward to 15 (eek! again) newly discovered blogs (by me anyway). I'm passing this award on to....

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Tales of Donk and deception

When Emily was a baby my cousin gave her a little Eeyore soft toy with a teether attached. The ribbon that held the teether on was frayed at one end so I cut the teether off. This toy, which forever will be known as "Donk", became her comfort object.

Donk was the only thing that Emily would take to bed. I had tried other toys and blankies, but it was only Donk that she loved. Hubby being the forward thinker (read worrier) that he is, pondered how long this toy would last (or worse, what would happen should he be lost). So I set out on a journey to find another one the same to have stashed away for that worst case scenario (loss, perishing, or spontaneous combustion).

Fast forward two and a half years or so. Donk has aged reasonably well, and over the years Emily developed a (very cute) habit of rubbing her nose with one of his ears while stroking the inside of the other.  He's survived more than a few washes and had a couple of stitch ups, although he is getting a little lumpy in the middle. So far the search for his twin has been fruitless. We do have a growing collection of 'similar but not the same' Donks that just didn't cut the mustard with Emily. They are now all living in a corner of her bedroom, destined to never be drooled upon.

In November 2010 we decided that it was time for Emily to give up her dummy (pacifier). So I took it from her one morning and all was good and well. Until bed time. It was the most painful hour of my life (after labour), I gave in and gave it back! Then one morning, a couple of weeks later she came and told me that she'd thrown her dummy in the bin, it was broken. It was the last one in the house and I wasn't looking forward to bed that night. She asked for it and had a bit of a cry when I reminded her SHE threw out, but after that was fine. We haven't heard a peep about it since.

Donk wasn't so lucky! After the dummy was gone, she started to chew on poor old Donk's ear. Just one. She still stroked the other one. Well, this fast forwarded the perishing of this beloved. We wondered how many more washes he could pull through.

Then the most awesome thing happened (yes, I'm easily excited!) I was up late one night on Facebook, looking through some buy, swap, sell pages when I found it. The EXACT same Eeyore!! I was so excited that I woke hubby up when I went to bed to tell him!

Ok, so I know what you're thinking, three years later, she'll never accept this new toy as a replacement. Believe me I was thinking the same thing, trying to figure out how to make the swap. For a few days before we got the new donk we were talking to Emily about washing Donk and how Mummy was going to fix his ear and make him all better. The day he arrived we had it all planned. We'd convinced Emily that Donk needed a bath. So we got her to put him in the washing machine. Then hubby took her off to distract her play with her. I took the 'new' donk and cut off the teether, trimmed up his mane a little and popped him in the wash too.

When the cycle finished I went in and took out the old, battered but loved toy. Hubby brought Emily in to the laundry to get the 'new and improved' Donk out of the machine. She took him out and gave him the once over, looking really hard at his ears. It was really cute watching her inspect him. Then she said, with a look of puzzlement, "his ear needs to be longer." Well, hubby and I could barely hide our giggles. She'd chewed his ear so much that it had stretched out, not that you'd have noticed as it was always scrunched up in her mouth. Yuk! The new Donk passed inspection and off she trotted with him!

So we've stashed the old faithful Donk away, and Emily is happy as Larry with the clean little buddy she has now. And one thing I've noticed so far, she hasn't once put his ear in her mouth!

Do I feel bad that we've lied/tricked/deceived our three year old daughter? I don't see it that way. I like to think of it as a bit of magic. Something old is new again in the eyes of a child. If we can get another three years out of this one I'll be a happy Mumma. It's so cute to see her cuddled up to him.

Now, what to buy Jessica for her comfort object?

Best Australian Blogs 2011 Competition

I know things are still relatively new here with LLP being 'born' in October 2010, still a baby really, but nevermind, because I thought I'd do myself the honour of nominating this lil' blog in the Best Australian Blogs 2011 Competition.

Why not? Can't hurt, right? Might even get some new readers. Yay! I love new readers!

I would LOVE if YOU could take the time to VOTE FOR ME!
(Click on this image to go through to the voting page.)
People's Choice Award
Come on people get to it!

Seriously, I'd be happy with just one vote that's not mine! There are so many awesome blogs out there in the lifestyle category, that I probably have a snowball's chance in hell of winning but you gotta be in it to win it right? 

You love me don't you? 

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Who am I?

So tonight I'm sitting here, both princesses are in bed and hubby is away working. A lot of time for contemplation for me. I've realised a couple of things in the last few 'single parent' days.

Since I got married and had children, I've unintentionally (of course) sacrificed a few of the things I really used to love doing before I met my husband. I'm not talking about the usual single life stuff, I mean the personal, who I am things. I think the first thing I 'lost' was writing. Poems and stories. I have a book somewhere filled with poetry that I have written, and I'm sure somewhere on my old desktop pc there is a folder of word docs that are my creative attempts at, well, creative writing!

Another thing is music, I LOVE music! But I just never get to listen to it anymore. Not MY music anyway, Gary Allan, Lady Antebellum, Tim McGraw, just to name a few. I Love country music!

There was nothing that could beat cleaning the house with the stereo blaring the latest favourite, or driving in the car with the tunes cranked! Ah, these days I'm lucky to have iTunes open on the laptop to listen to a couple of favourites while I'm washing up. And in the car I'm not lucky at all. It's Justine Clarke, or nothing mum! Until she goes to sleep, and then it's usually too late anyway!

It's not all bad though, this mummy life has given me a few new hobby loves that I probably wouldn't have if I didn't have kids. Like sewing! Once I get an idea, pattern or tutorial in my head there's no stopping me! I'll be up till the am finishing this or that. Like my latest work-in-progress:

I started out with a plan to make a liner for Jessica's capsule (BabyLove Snap'n'Go) but when I saw these gorgeous prints I had to push myself that little bit further! Although I am at a stand still at the moment, I need more fabric, and I haven't quite worked out how I'm going to finish the back and get around the stabilising bar.

I guess I just have to get used to the few moments I get to listen to a song quietly (like now) while my princesses sleep. In the end I guess none of that stuff really matters. I am still who I was back then, I've just evolved. I have a wonderful family and I love being a mum, and nothing can ever change that.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Patience, you ain't no virtue of mine.

For a while I've been thinking about starting up my own little business, more of a hobby really. Nothing fancy, just want to start out selling handmade baby products like bibs and burp cloths. I'm constantly looking at fabric shops and drooling over the endless possibilities. I have a notebook that is slowly being filled with all the ideas I have of things to make.

I've decided (albeit reluctantly) to wait until we have moved and settled in before getting into production, just so I don't have too many things going on at once. Let me tell you, it's killing me! I just want to buy every pretty design I see and sit down in front of my sewing machine for days on end, but alas, my princesses need me. Also this house, unfortunately, won't be packing itself.