Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Abracadabra...watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat!

Attempting to crochet something other than a granny square last week proved to be much
more frustrating than restful....even more so when Miss 5 caught a glimpse of the iPad and saw an array of wonderful creations that can be made by skilled crocheters.  Sadly I do not fall into this category of skilled crocheter and so her request for a bunny like the ones in the picture below to be made before she went to bed was not met with the response that she desired!!

These bunnies are absolutely adorable and I would love to be able to make one...or two...or three...but I have never followed a crochet pattern before and it was like reading another language!

I appeased miss 5 with the news that I would make her a different bunny rabbit and that we would go and buy some wool the next day.  Of course the minute that miss 5 woke up she asked if we were going to buy the wool so I knew that there was no getting out of it.

I decided that my strengths lay in knitting...well that is as long as the pattern did not require much much more than the very basics!  Way too long was spent on ravelry and google looking at pictures and patterns.  

Finally I came across a life-saving blog....Jo So and Sew...and she had a tutorial for a bunny made from a knitted square....surely even I could make that...couldn't I??

So wool was purchased, stitches were cast on and the knitting began.

Sadly for miss 5 I am not a fast knitter so my bunny took two evenings to complete.

Once the square was finished it was just a case of following the steps outlined on the blog...

Then I sewed on some eyes and a cute little nose....and a tail...

and abracadabra...watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat...

Voila!  Cute even if I do say so myself!

This is probably one of the only knitting projects that I have actually completed in the last few years!!  Now I have requests for more bunnies from each of the girls...so watch this space, they are breeding already...

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

An Attempted Sleep-in.......

With three of the girls still sick today I only had two to get off to school this morning. Somewhere during the process it occurred to me that if I could get them out the door quietly enough there would be a chance for me to crawl back into bed.... eeek that would be heaven!!!
When miss 5 woke at 6am I thought this plan was doomed...but thankfully it was still dark enough for her to promptly fall asleep again.

The morning was filled with whispers, sshh-ing and tippy-toeing.  As the minutes ticked down until it was time for the girls to leave my excitement grew as the other three were still sound asleep.

Out the door the girls went and still dressed in my pj's I watched them walk to the bus stop together.

Woo-hoo time to sneak back into bed....!!  I came back inside and as I turned to close the front door the next door neigbours lawn mowing man pulled up and swiftly started whipper snippering, lawn mowing and leaf blowing.

Undeterred I climbed back into bed....covered my head with the doona and tried to block out the noise.  Thankfully they only have the front lawn to mow and it wasn't too long before they were done and silence returned.  

As I was just about to doze off Kikah, our mischievous kitten, decided to ricochet her bouncy ball off every surface in the house...from chairs to walls to cupboards....it jingled all over the house and she raced around after it. Thankfully her game came to an end when the ball was lost under the lounge....and I won't be telling anyone where it is when they look for it!!

Silence once again returned and I dozed off.  This time I was woken by a beeping sound....a few reminders of what the day held before my plans changed with sick children.  I found the phone and turned it to silent!

After another snooze I was woken up by miss 5 asking if it was a school day....she was saddened to find out that she was staying home today to rest.

So my cheeky mid week sleep in may have involved less actual sleep than I had anticipated but it sure was good to be able to lie in bed and wake up feeling a bit more rested than usual.  Counting down to the school holidays now!!!!

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

18th birthday gift ideas...

Recently my niece turned 18...my gosh the years go so fast!!

Every time I have been to the shops I have had a little look around for a gift but always end up leaving empty handed.  I want the gift to be something special to mark the big 18th ...something that jumps out at me....

Even though 18 marks the legal drinking age and possible nightclub visits and crazy antics I would prefer my gift to be something special that she can display in her room or something that perhaps inspires travel or further study etc...

So with a bunch of sick girls at home I decided to go to my favourite place to shop...online !!

Take a look at what I found...

I really love this bird cage candle holder that I found...and it is only $20.  It is so sweet and would match her bedroom decor...  I would love one of these too!!

Candle Holder - Bird Cage

I liked the idea of this ticket stub diary, especially as she is now likely to attend more concerts and the like...  It would be a laugh to look back on some of the concerts that I attended years ago and read what I had written about them.  Only $16.89 and free delivery!!

Ticket Stub Diary cover

This pendant might inspire a desire to travel and see the world.... There is such a great range to choose from too!  This one is priced at $45.90.

I thought these picture book frames were an interesting idea (I was going to say a 'novel' idea but we can live without that pun hey!!).  My niece has always been an avid reader so she could use these to display a few of her favourite books as art work in her bedroom. These are selling for $29.95.


Having just started uni I thought she might find a satchel handy for carrying all of those lecture notes and text books around.  I particularly liked this one for $99...looks very stylish...

KOKO Suede Satchel

So many great gifts and all found from the comfort of home !!  Now all I have to do is choose which one to buy....  Help me out here....which one would you choose?

Friday, 14 March 2014

Not for the faint-hearted....

Afternoon school pick ups are not for the faint-hearted.  Best pop a few panadol before you come along for the ride. Here goes.....

I pick up the younger two girls from primary school, by the time we have walked to the car the high school bus drops the older 3 off and they join us at the car.   

Sometimes we are luck enough to actually all be seated and have the doors closed before it starts...today we weren't that lucky....

Miss 5..."I don't like these shorts, they hurt..."

Me..."Well we'll be home in 2 minutes so just hop in your seat and we'll drive home"

(all spoken at once) 
Miss 5..."They're hurting me"  
Miss 14....."Can I go to Japan?"

Me...."Well take them off then.  What on earth are you talking about?"

(all spoken at once)
Miss 5...."I don't want to take them off"  
Miss 14..."There's an exchange program"  
Miss 13...."I'd like to go to Italy one day"

Me..."Well just hop in your seat then.  Tell me about it later.  Thanks for sharing that."

(all spoken at once...with increasing volume) 
Miss 16..."Oh my throat hurts so bad.  Can I go the doctor?.  And that is so not fair if she gets to go to Japan again, she just went last year and I never get to go anywhere"  
Miss 9...."It was really hot today.  It is hot in the car.  Can't we go home?"  
Miss 5..."I don't want to wear these pants (as she finally takes them off)"  

Me...."Right now hop in your car seat.  I am not going to the doctors right now.  Yes it is hot in the car so let's go home"

(now with added crying and whinging) 
Miss 5...."I don't want to sit in my seat without pants" 


(all spoken at once...with increasing volume and some tears) 
Miss 5..."I want to wear pants"
Miss 14...."I have an email about the trip to Japan from my teacher
Miss 13..."I think I'd really like Italy.  Oh but I can't speak any Italian.  But I like pizza"

(with much less patience than 10 minutes ago)
Me..."Well I don't have any other pants that you can wear...so you'll just have to sit in your seat til we get home.  I'll read the email later.  Yes I like pizza too"

(all spoken at once, tears, screaming and a bit of leg kicking thrown in)
Miss 5...."I waaaannt toooo weeeaaar paaants......"
Miss 9...."I've got a headache.  Can everyone be quiet I've got a headache"
Miss 14..."So what if I've already been to Japan, I can still tell mum about it"
Miss 16...."OMG I have so much homework to do can we just go home.  And my throat hurts soooo much and I can't breathe and it is still not fair she has already been to Japan.  I wanted to do the exchange program but I wasn't allowed to and then I was going to go to Vietnam but the new principal is not doing that anymore so it is so not fair.  And my throat hurts.
Miss 13..."Mum at school today...."

Me...I don't have any other pants so get your school pants back on we would have been home by now.  Yes surprisingly I have a headache too.  I am not even talking about Japan I just want to go home.  If your throat hurts so much it might be best not to talk. Perhaps now is not the best time to tell me what you did at school today............

Some 10 minutes later miss 5 conceded defeat and put her shorts back on, finally I was able to put her seatbelt on and everyone else was told in no uncertain terms not to speak the rest of the way home!!!!!!!!!!!  So we finally arrived home some 30 minutes after the end of the school day when in actual fact we live a 2 minute drive away!

Sadly this is not a one-off....most afternoons seem to hold some sort of unexpected joy that tests my patience beyond belief!  Hope you enjoyed coming along for the ride!!!!

Thursday, 13 March 2014

The lesson for today....

This morning, like most other school mornings, was the usual rush, rush, rush....'hurry up and finish your cereal'....'have you brushed your teeth yet'....'we'll be late if you don't get dressed now'.....

Despite my nagging miss 5 continued to fluff around.....at one stage she was emptying her money box onto her bed.....heavens knows we don't have time for a cash flow analysis in the mornings so I hurried her along....but for a few more minutes she continued to sort her money...

With a few more reminders of the time and our need to hurry up we finally made it out the door with not much time to spare.

Once in the car and backing out the driveway miss 5 piped up that she had forgotten something in the house.  With time not on our side I admit to being less than happy with this news and told her that wherever it was would have to remain forgotten.  I knew she had her lunch and her library book...it was not like she needs anything else.  

Driving along she insisted that she needed her money that was on her bed.  I still could not fathom why she would need money.  The only thing she needs money for at school is ice block day and that is tomorrow (at least I'm pretty sure it's tomorrow).  

I was getting more than a little annoyed when we arrived at school and she insisted that she needed a gold coin.  With only minutes til the bell was to ring I was rummaging around in the centre console of the car lucky to find a sticky old $2 coin which I handed to miss 5 in the hope that this would get her moving to the school grounds.

Well it was then that miss 5 decided to divulge that the money was for the poor people who have no money....she was going to put it in the Project Compassion box in her classroom.  

Well that was my lesson for the day....compassion.  It would serve me well in future to take a moment to actually see what is going on in the mornings rather than rushing everyone through the motions.

Monday, 10 March 2014

5 Years Ago Today...

Five years ago today we woke up in this house for the first time....

We had had to move out of where we were renting when we were thrown into the deep end of some pretty serious financial problems as a consequence of a company we did work for filing bankruptcy and owing us a lot of money.

Hubby and I packed up our old house with financial stress hanging over our heads.  And with our five girs, the youngest only 4 months old at the time, we moved into my parents home which was vacant at the time as my mum had passed away some 8 months earlier and my dad was in a nursing home.

We didn't really want to be here but at the same time we were appreciative of the fact that thanks to my siblings we had somewhere to be.

This was not my family home where I grew up but rather where my parents had downsized to some 10 years earlier as they grew older.  Being generous you can call it a 3 bedroom house with a lounge/dining room, kitchen, laundry, one bathroom/toilet and a single garage.  Very small...but better than nothing!

Whilst the move was only some 30 kilometres west of where we had been living it added over an hour each way to hubby's work day.  Stress levels were high to say the least.  Bills were overdue, the phone rang daily with people wanting payments we owed them.

Just over a month after moving in here my dad passed away.

Not knowing what we were doing or where we were headed we tried to keep the girls in their same school and preschool til we had a chance to sort ourselves out.  We weren't sure what was going to happen with the house as it would have to be sold within a certain timeframe etc...

Miraculoulsy we were able to buy the house....primarily because one fifth of it was mine as a result of the inheritance...so we only had to buy four fifths....if that makes sense! 

Now we were able to move the girls to the local primary school and preschool as we were all over the traveling and we could see that we wouldn't be moving anywhere else in the foreseeable future.

So five years on we have managed to work off all of the debt that we had as a result of the bankruptcy.

Finances are tight and expenses always seem to outweigh income.  We are truly outgrowing the house, especially the one bathroom/toilet part!  And the traveling to and from work really wrecks hubby by the end of his six day week.

There have been positives that we can take from the last 5 years...like the fact that the girls enjoy a good op shop and that they can see that you have to be sensible with money.

I would love to be able to somehow contribute financially to the household over the next few years to ease the pressure off hubby...but at this stage I have no idea how I am going to do that...but I'll keep thinking!

Not too sure what the future holds or where we will end up...but we'll keep moving forward one day at a time.