Friday, January 29, 2010

No internet.

Hi, Stuart here. I just wanted to let you wonderful blog people out in blog land know that Saminda and I are without internet for the time being. Yes Saminda is going quite crazy without it but with some calm reassurance from me and a nightly dose of valium she is coping :)
She will be back on as soon as possible. And I will try to check emails from work whenever I can.

Enjoy life!

Stuart (on behalf of Saminda)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

New Mercies

"Because of the Lord's great love, we are not consumed,
for His compassions never fail.

They are new every morning;
Great is His faithfulness". Lamentations 3:22-23


Roses, straight from the garden. So many colours! Such a sweet, sweet scent.

Such mercy. Such gifts. Such love. For us.

Blessings for a great week my friends!

He loves you and His mercies are indeed new every morning.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Painting and Ice Play

"I love this Mama, SO much!!"

Freezing tiny plastic toys in containers of water creates a very fun ice game on a hot day!

My princess, hard at work.

Apron on, ready to paint!

Painting with a Cockatoo feather we found in the garden.

My baby artist taking a bottle break :)


A good Friday! And now enjoying the weekend, very very much. :) Husband home, work getting done in the garden, friends coming for afternoon tea today, time to read my book, colour-in with Saraya, and brace myself for starting the new school year on Monday!!

A Pretty Posy.....

...... for a pretty girl.

For whom?

For Chloe!! Happy 9th Birthday Chloe, we love you very much! xo

Friday, January 22, 2010


Thank you Mummy McTavish for informing me that blogger no longer uploads personal videos!

Here is the youtube link for Elijah's little video if you're interested. :)

Tonight is "date night" with Stuart, so I won't be uploading photos until the weekend. Have a great Friday everyone!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Not Working

Well, I can't get the video to reload properly. Frustrating, but that's the way it is. :)

I have some lovely photos to upload tomorrow night (I no longer use the computer during the day, generally speaking - more about this in another post!). We've had a full day today... markets, newsagency, book library, and a birthday celebration for a special friend this afternoon. Stuart is flat-out at work, getting geared up for the children starting up again next week. One more day until the weekend. Can't wait. :)

Hope everyone's having a great week. xoxo

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Elijah Playing Peekaboo!

UPDATED : Can anyone tell me if the video is working? It doesn't appear to be here which is frustrating.

This is what tends to happen over the holidays when Stuart is around and the kids want to do something fun with him. Stu loves video editing. We have a collection of little videos now which will be a great record of the children's childhoods. I might put a few of them up to show you! This one he made with Elijah, last week. Elijah was astounded by the "special effects". :)



I am so blessed to have such lovely friends! Thank you all so much for your kind and encouraging words after my last post. :) The week certainly has gone UP and it's good to remember on hard days that things will always get better! xo

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

So Blessed.

Yesterday was one of those days. You know the ones I'm talking about. It wasn't pretty. Everyone seemed to have gotten up on the wrong side of the bed. There were squabbles, and tears, and nobody seemed to be very happy being with anybody else - and yet here we were, stuck together, and unhappy.

It was miserable. I felt hopeless, unmotivated, and the worst Mama in the world. By evening when I was outside hiding in the garden, planting out lettuces, Saraya tiptoed out when she was supposed to be in bed with a note for me which read "Dear Mama, I love you sooooooooo much. You are the best Mama in the world. From Saraya xoxoxo". Of course, this made me feel worse. I was a bad Mama, not the best Mama!! :( And I seem to recall writing those notes to my Mum - from memory it was often after a disagreement or when I was generally feeling unsettled. I cuddled my girl close and sent her off to bed, and sat in the garden in the dusky light..... and prayed. For forgiveness. For help. For good sleep, and for a better day tomorrow.

And.... today was better! I find generally that after a really bad day comes a really good one. Lots of prayer, and good conscious attitude going on. :) Yesterday was hard right from the start. Stuart went back to work - and I wasn't expecting him to. I thought he went back tomorrow! So suddenly I had lost 2 whole days with him - and I was really sad about that.

I once heard a saying that sums me up so honestly it's almost funny. "Our expectations lead to our depression". Hmmmm. If I had known Stu's holidays were over, I would have been fine. I would have been mentally prepared. But alas, I wasn't! And my incorrect expectations (of cups of tea, and conversation, and gardening, and treehouse-building....) indeed led to my depression. :) Mix that with 3 tired children who were all out of sorts, on one of the HOTTEST days we've had so far this summer - and well, what were our chances really?!?

Anyway, as I was saying, today was wonderful! Truly, a really good day. Here are some snippets.

Play-dough play

Mum gave Saraya a wonderful craft book for Christmas, along with some great materials. Today for craft we made Plate Gardens.

Saraya's flower garden with the washing on the line

Elijah's snow scene - with the traffic pile-up!

The children had so much fun doing these! I love how unique they both are. :)

Yesterday the children and I finished reading Wizard of Oz. It has been our chapter book for the past few months. Not a book I'd necessarily recommend, but one which interested us after Stu and Saraya took part in a production of the musical last year. It was very interesting to read the original! So today we began our new read-

We have read it before, but Elijah was only a baby so it's due for a re-read. Chapter 1 was enjoyed by all - I love this book! For my own reading it's Sense and Sensibility this month, my first time reading it and I love it to bits. :) Love the movie too.

William napped with his legs up on the cot bumper (okay, truthfully this photo was taken on the weekend but he did it again today!)....
and washed a baby doll in the bath tub.

As I mentioned, today was HOT!! So I had 3 happy babes playing with ice....

........ and water, outside!!! So much fun.

Elijah coloured in, and made patterns on the fridge with magnets.

And Saraya made a gorgeous little paper girl! Love the handbag. :)

Typically, Saraya and I watch Little Women as part of our lead-up to Christmas - movie night Mama-daughter style. :) Last year we simply ran out of nights to watch it, and decided to watch it today instead! We're very 'into' Louisa May Alcott's novels right now anyway. So we watched half together at rest time this afternoon (Elijah too! he enjoyed it), and Saraya and I finished it off tonight. Man I love that film! And the books too of course. :) I always feel so inspired to be more like Marmee - she always knows what to say, her children all adore her, and she just has this special way of making their home a precious haven for her family. *Sigh*. :)

After dinner tonight we decided to take a walk down our road before putting the children to bed. I am excited to share that the dear (fellow homeschooling!) friends of ours who lived across the road from us when we lived in town have now purchased a block of land just down the road from us!! They are planning to start building this year, perhaps living in a shed home whilst doing so. SO happy!!! We decided to walk down to visit their land today. It is beautiful. I am so looking forward to having them as neighbours again. And the 10 minute walk to their place will be a pleasure.

The view down our road from the driveway

Pyjama and sneaker-clad children :)

Will, riding high :)

On our way back down the driveway, watering our sunflower seedlings as we walked! I seem to permanently have Will in one arm and the watering can in the other, lately.

The sunset. Not happening until after 7pm at this time of year, but still, beautiful.

So tonight, I feel blessed.

For a God who ultimately hears me and answers "yes" to a plea for a better day! For my home, my family, my friends, my garden, wonderful books and films and all things which inspire.

So Blessed.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Pepper Place, a box, a craft cupboard and a kangaroo

Tonight, I'm going to give a little plug to my friend Kelly. Kelly is clever. She sews (this automatically makes her clever in my books). She homeschools. She has 5 children - little children. She gardens. She lives on a big block of land, in a little house, and she has her own business. Pepper Place. If you have a child or children in nappies, you must visit her website!

This year I have started doing all sorts of things to try to 'green up' our lifestyle. This has always been my aim, but somewhere along the lines I had started to make lots of compromises and we're trying to get back on track as a family. One of the ways I am helping our environment and our finances is to go back to using cloth nappies. I still had lots of terry toweling squares left from Saraya's infancy, and pins etc. but no covers. I have always found the PVC covers annoying - they don't last long and they tend to leak. When Will was born we actually purchased some prefolds and covers but they were tiny, and he grew fast!!! So. I started looking around and remembered Kelly sewed nappies and covers. Long story short, I ordered two covers, and I LOVE them.

Will loves them too!!

They are soft and snuggly and fit perfectly. So many plastic studs means they really are 'one size fits all'. Which, for chubby 19 month old William is saying something. :) There are lots of different fabrics, colours and styles to choose from, for girls and boys.

I just ordered two more, and will basically operate with about 20 nappy squares and 4 covers. If I wash nappies every 3 days, this will work well. 1 cover seems to last well for a full day. So happy!

This morning Stu went for a haircut, and took Elijah along for one as well. Saraya had lots of fun playing with William - she seemed to enjoy having him all to herself.

They played in a cardboard box.

Which Elijah decided to join in with when he got home.

And then decided to paint!

It later became a train for the two big kids but unfortunately that game ended in a squabble before I was able to take any photos. :(

This corner used to have our Christmas tree in it, until a few days ago when I took it all down.

It looked bare. And I needed a place to store all our art and craft materials - it wasn't working housing them in the children's bedroom wardrobe! And we had an old white cupboard in the shed. So put those 3 facts together, and voila!

A Craft Cupboard.

Thank you Stu!! I know it was right at the back of the shed (of course) and a pain to get out.

It's sitting by our big timber table and will be so handy once school starts up again.

There was even a hook on the side which is perfect for all the children's smocks and aprons.

It's funny ......... this house is so new and kind-of pristine looking ..... which is nice .... but adding this cupboard today has suddenly made it look and feel like the home of a homeschooling family. :) We both commented on it, and it's made us happy!

We're settling in and making this place our own, and it's a great feeling.

Stuart went out and bought this dark timber filing cabinet last week too. It fits right next to our family filing cabinet, but will just be used for homeschooling storage/filing etc.


William decided not to nap today, so he was tired and clingy right through the afternoon. Dinner was tricky as he was nodding off whilst eating! :( After I got some food into him the two of us went for a walk outside while Stu settled the other children to sleep. I love watching the sun set. It's nice going outside at that time of day with Will - it's becoming part of our routine actually. I like to stall his bedtime a little as he tends to sleep better and longer if her doesn't go to bed too early. 7:30-8pm seems to suit him at the moment. Tonight we put the chickens to bed, and walked up to the mailbox, and watched all the birds flying across the sky. He wanted to talk about everything.

We heard something in the bush across the road which got him really excited, and I told him it may have been a kangaroo. This produced very animated conversation from him, and he wanted to tell Stu all about it when we got back up to the house.

Here he has just finished saying "hop, hop, hop, rooooo"!

Stu has a few guys over tonight and they're playing a very blokey game of Risk. :) I've enjoyed some computer time, all to myself. :) I'm heading to bed now to read and sleep. So tired. I think my back has almost recovered from all the hoeing I did the other day - maybe I'll get the second half of the vegetable patch done tomorrow. I hope so.

Goodnight friends - oh, and go visit Kelly's site if you're interested in fabric nappies or covers!


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