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The Family Bandwagon

Our family is spread out across the country and across the world, and what better way to keep in touch than a collaborative digital journal?

Friday, 26 May 2017

Legoland Adventures! Also teeth!

Hey, we actually did something this week!

So yeah, Ossie has an issue with a couple of his teeth (molar hypomin), where the enamel is soft and chalky and breaks down easily. This means his tooth is super sensitive, and unfortunately won't hold a filling, so eventually it'll need to come out. The Bendigo dentist we went to referred us to a specialist in Essendon. That specialist then referred us to an orthodontist in Bendigo (to get x-rays), and then we had to return to the specialist in Essendon, which we did last Friday.

The good(?) news is that his wisdom teeth are forming, so hopefully he should eventually be able to get the main problem tooth removed. In the meantime the dentist put a quick seal on the tooth to hopefully stop the pain, although obviously the seal wont stay in long term as the tooth continues to degrade. She's told us to give her a call in 6 months or so or if the seal needs work.

Because we were in Melbourne anyway we decided to make a weekend of it, and stayed at a little hotel in North Melbourne. By "little" I mean "one room with three beds, a fridge and a cupboard, and then a bathroom" little. Friday night we walked to the Queen Vic markets and from there caught the free tram into the city for an early dinner. It was nice to have a bit of time to walk around, even if we did spend most of it looking for a place where the kids would actually eat something ;)

Saturday morning we headed out to Chadstone Shopping Centre with the hope of getting into Legoland. It's possible to book ahead of time, but we had a voucher to get the kids in free, and couldn't book. Given every day seemed booked out until at least the afternoon we thought it very likely we wouldn't get in at all. Turning up at 10am, though, the guy said it was all booked out but we could go in anyway :D

You've probably seen Chez's FB photos. Suffice to say it was actually really fun! Pricey ($32 per person, even kids if you don't have the voucher) but we spent 4 hours there pretty easily. They had a couple of rides, some activities and a little cinema playing 15 minute 3d movies (4d, since they also had fans, sprinklers and a smoke machine they went off throughout).

They also had a room full of lego versions of iconic Melbourne buildings, some life-sized Lego Friends people.. yeah, lots to see and do. Getting there early meant there were no lines for any of it really, although around midday it started to get really busy. I would definitely recommend it, although like I said unless you have that voucher (from Coles maybe?) it is an expensive outing.

That evening everyone was pretty buggered so we headed to a local burger joint for dinner, about 5 minutes from our hotel.

Sunday we had a bit of a wander around Highpoint (and probably spent the least amount of money at Daiso to date) and then headed home and had dinner with Cheryl's siblings. They're continuing the Sunday dinner tradition even without Edith and Landon, and taking turns to host it.

It was really nice to have a holiday, and it will be our last for a long time (even though I worked long days to make up for missing Friday, there's been a few too many public holidays and missed work days this year, plus dentists aren't cheap) so we made the most of it.

Sunday, 30 April 2017

Sydneysiders: Keeping Ourselves Busy

(Two in a row! Go team Sydney!!)

It's been a couple of weeks since our last post. Jules is back at school, giving Dee the space to ramp up her job search -- with a twist, as she's looking to move into agile project management (i.e. scrum master, product owner, etc.). Not something she's (yet!) done, but seems like a good move (she'll be good at it) and will be something she can enjoy -- just as long as we can convince someone to take a chance! (She may invest in a scrum master course and certification, since recruiters at least will be looking for that.) Wish her luck!

We start week 4 of I Quit Sugar today, with a smaller than usual cook-up: I made some faux rice (cauliflower and broccoli) while Dee has made some delicious pesto (below). Thai prawn curry tonight, but this afternoon we're saying goodbye to our friends the (other) Masons -- they've sold their Annandale house and are off for a good long (12 months?) caravaning holiday. I probably don't need to tell you I'm jealous...
As mentioned on Hangouts, we're considering moving (e.g. to Concord) for considerably cheaper rent, a backyard (!!) and a slightly longer commute. It's truly bizarre how much rent varies from suburb to suburb, but considering Sydney has the second most unaffordable housing in the world it's nice to know we can save some money -- while still keeping Jules in the school he loves.

I'm keeping myself busy, too:

I'm training for the half-marathon in September (and have actually bought the entry!!). Gym and/or running most days and I'm finally seeing some muscle definition and fat minimisation (if not weight loss -- scales may not lie, but I'm 100kg (+5kg) and skinnier than I've been in ages. Must be all muscle?). As a reminder, a half-marathon is about 21km, and I'm currently running about 4km without a break ... so I've still got a way to go. (Hopefully more fat loss will help, too.)
Work isn't too busy, but I'll be finishing up on the project in a couple of weeks AND I'm a "founder" of another business -- a marketing friend had an idea (hush hush) and I'm coding up an Android app and backend for a demo which he can use to try to get seed capital. He's in London at the moment, but may come back to Sydney so we can work on it together. (I'm also going to launch my distinguished: clothing and accessories store tonight -- it's all about the hustle!)

But clearly I STILL don't have enough to do because I've also started writing a book on "full stack" engineering -- a little philosophy, a little technology and pointers to everything from Javascript to NoSQL to machine learning and AI ... oh, and to that end I've started a Machine Learning course this month (from Stanford, on Coursera). All in all, I can probably benefit from a slightly longer commute, just to get through my six-hours a week of course work!

Sunday, 16 April 2017

Pääsiäinen 2017 Sydneyssä

A quick update from those of us north (but not too far north) of the Murray.

It's been a busy, er, four months? (When was the last time I updated here??) As you may have read, Dee's contract has ended so she's now looking for work — and considering how to move her career back into the startup scene (anybody need a scrum master?). Not bad timing as these things go, since Jules has had his first week of school holidays now; the local after-school-care does run a holiday programme, but we're saving our pennies until we need it again. I think Dee has enjoyed spending this time with him, as much as he makes it difficult to concentrate on one thing for any length of time, but I'm sure she'll be happy to get back to work too.

We had a trip to Taronga Western Plains zoo, too, which was fun (and a good way to relax after the inevitable stress of finishing up a contract). We stayed in Orange on the way there and back (do they speak mandarine in Orange, I wonder?), dropping Lucy off at her favourite kennel along the way. A long drive, but worth it to see how excited J was when we finally arrived.

And this weekend has been Easter! We've cooked, planted, ridden ponies and partied with some bikers — and we still have another whole day to recover!

Monday, 6 March 2017

French-Roberts Madhouse

So I decided since mum has been super busy working I'll just post about what I know has been happening for all of us.

Where do I begin, heaps has happened since Christmas, Jared has moved out into his own place (not that you would know from everything left at mums...like a bed for me but Jarrad's dad said he'll pick it up for us this week) He seems to like it, had the family over for his birthday 2 weeks ago and last weekend he had a joint party with a friend for their birthdays. Jared is still working heaps, but they gave him a week off which he enjoyed (I think).

Trin and Daria started grades 6 & 3 this year, and Trin is even on the Junior School Council for the first semester, they change it every semester to give everyone a chance to be a part of it. They're doing well so far and I don't have to walk Daria in anymore so drop off is faster, which works well if mum starts at 9.

Mum has been busy working 4 or 5 days a week, the centre has had a few different directors but they now have a permanent one, hopefully meaning mum's hours will be a bit more consistent and 3 days a week. This week mum is on close 3 days, working 4 days, which just means I feed everyone and mum eats when she gets home. I've been going with mum in the mornings so I can have the car to do the school run and then pick mum up when she finishes.

Jarrad and I have now met the owners of the house we're renting, they seemed nice and just as annoyed at the builder for not having fixed the roof...the agent is following that all up. We were told our mystery tree is apples but it is actually nashi fruit, so I'm slowly picking it but up to the stage of I need to borrow a ladder. We're one step closer to getting Jarrad some help with his knees, he has an appointment today to get a referral to do physio as well as still waiting to hear from the hospital but I don't expect that to be soon. We've also applied to do mediation with his mum, with the hope that things will be better for Jarrad not being in the middle of this and things can be civil, but its now up to her to get back to the mediator so we will see what happens.

Last weekend we went to Ballarat for White Night and stayed with Tamara, Ray and the boys. Adam and his partner and their kids came with us for the walk into see what was happening and our giant group got split up because it was so busy. It was really cool though, some of the buildings had images projected onto them and some of them told stories through movies. They had a giant White Night Messenger whose face changed (it was a bit creepy)

Sunday, 26 February 2017

And 7 months rolls around

This week was the half-term holidays, so none of our regular classes and meet-ups were on. I say this like we have heaps of things to keep us busy but we're not out every day - baby sign language on Tuesday, swimming on Wednesday, Messy Play every second Friday, and Water Babies swimming (with Bruce) on Saturdays. I think I need to find more to do as Millicent grows more and more inquisitive. 

Learning about animals
We changed signing classes a few weeks ago - in the old class you just had to pick it up as you went along, the new one is much more structured - learn new signs for two weeks and then revisit them in the third. They also include some baby sensory (bubbles, story time, scarves etc) and play time/mum chat time (they provide a cuppa and bikkies!). Definitely a better fit for me (and Millicent - she watches everything so intently!). She hasn't done any signs yet, and her "milk" sign from when we were in Aus of just an open mouth has disappeared - now if she's hungry she bites something then cries.. Tho it can be hard to tell if that's teething or hunger! 

Hold on, hold on - life saving skills
She enjoys swimming more these days, lots of smiles on Saturday. Not so many on Wednesday but the pool is colder and the timing isn't great - it's around nap time. (Not that she has proper naps or anything, but she does usually have some kind of sleep between 11 am and noon).

Not-so-messy packaging
We've only been to two Messy Play sessions (we missed this week, more on that in a bit) but it's kinda fun. Tubs of baby-safe things on the floor for the little ones to play in. First week there was water in one, crunchy cereals in another, and a third had plastic balls and some instant pudding. We take a change of clothes and a towel (and plenty of wipes)! It's great because she gets to try stuff and I don't have to clean it up (other than off her and myself). So far she's been a bit reserved but three are a lot of other (and bigger) kids so there's lots to watch.

Anyway, it was good that nothing was on this week because Millie has her first cold. Not a stuffy-nose kind of cold like earlier in the month.. This is a cough-so-much-you-vomit kind of cold. It's awful - my little girl coughing when there's nothing I can do to help. And the first (and second) vomit was something I didn't need to experience yet! Luckily she wasn't bothered by it - it was just a laundry problem. She seems to be past the worst of the cold now, just in time for Bruce to get one - let's hope it isn't a different strain! 

More firsts for Millicent, she got her first tooth this month - bottom front right - and yesterday I felt a second one coming through (top right). I can't show you because every time I try to look she either sticks her tongue out or closes her mouth. Cheeky girl!

She's also started rolling. Only one way so far, and she still gets grumpy if you put her on her front too much but I did manage to get a video. Such a cutie. No sign of other moving or crawling yet.

That's enough of a update for now. As always, I'll try to write more regularly but I'm not promising. Anyone else got an update? 

Sunday, 9 October 2016

Truscott Tellings

We had an awesome school holidays. The middle of the holidays we were house/pet sitting for Pat & Bree while they were on holiday, and did lots of shopping while we were there. We spent the first Friday of the holidays at Kryal Castle, I know I loved it...we packed a picnic for lunch and that meant we could spend all day there and do everything they had on. Jarrad was about the only person hurrahing the Black Knight in the jousting. 

Saturday we caught the train to Melbourne to go to the Jurassic World exhibition. That was awesome too but I liked the Dinosaurs Alive we saw in Adelaide slightly more, probably because it wasn't as crowded. Again we packed a picnic lunch because it was so much easier and bought tea at Spencer St Station. We went to Minotaur while we were there and caught up with Cheryl before heading back to Ballarat.

  As something extra to do on our quiet days we played some D&D, Jarrad's been teaching the girls and I how to play for the last 12ish months and we're tracking down the dude who kidnapped santa and cleaned out an entire theives guild in the process. It was forcast snow in some areas of Ballarat while we were there so our couple of cold and wet days we stayed in and watched Downtown no laughing challenges.
That was about all we got up to in the holidays, mum worked a couple of days and Jared's still working heaps and enjoying it (or at least he's enjoying the money lol)

Jarrad and I have renewed our lease (yay!!) so I was thinking while everyone was here of having a bbq/picnic lunch for mine and mum's birthday :)

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Mum on Clive's computer

Almost two weeks since Mum had key hole surgery for carpal tunnel. She is doing well but I still need to stay here to help with dressing and undressing. Today we visited the eye surgeon because her eyes were watery. He will do a small op to enlarge the tear duct on 11th  October. We see the hand surgeon on 6th October  to hear when he will do her other hand. I think I'd prefer we wait until next January to let the right hand fully heal since I will need to be here for another month after that is done.
Mum goes to Denise's for the weekends so I have that time at home.and dancing. I can leave Mum for a few hours in the evening or afternoon now as she can manage to get a cuppa when she wants.
We are looking forward to visits from Dayna, Bruce and Millicent and Glenn, Dee and Jules in December.

Monday, 26 September 2016

Docklands Distraction

On Friday we packed up the kids and headed to Melbourne. I've been wanting/needing a bit of a break for a while now and it seemed like a good weekend to do it, while the kids were on holiday and there wasn't Iaido on Saturday.

We drove to Harbourtown in Docklands for lunch and a bit of a shop (and yes, possibly some churros), and then checked into our apartment. We'd booked a 2 bedroom 2 bathroom place, but they gave us 3 bedrooms which was nice. The whole place was pretty fancy, and as I'm sure you've seen on Facebook had a really nice harbour view. Cheryl took some photos of the rooms so I'll get her to post them up in the comments.

We had an early dinner on the esplanade, and a bit of a wander around. It was so nice to have a short walk from our apartment to good restaurants and the like. We did make the mistake of letting the kids have icecream - they're a bit like mogwai, except for sugar after about 2pm.

Saturday we hopped on the free tram (all trams are free in the CBD now!) to the Queen Vic Markets. I've been wanting to get a new leather jacket to replace the not-actually-leather one of Dad's that I have so I bought one, and the kids also spent some of their birthday money. Nobody had slept well the night before (I took a bed near Ossie who woke up at 2 thinking it was morning, and Cheryl shared the biggest bed with Lil who proceeded to kick her all night) so we headed back to the room, and then I went into the city to buy some comics like a proper grown up.

Everything is so close when you stay in the city, so I was done and back by about 2pm :) We headed to a bakery for afternoon tea, and then Cheryl went to the factory outlet place at Spencer St while the kids and I had a bit more of a walk around the harbour/climb on the weird red bald dude statues and then back to the room to rest up.

Another early dinner and really early night for everyone.

Sunday we dropped off the keys and headed to Highpoint, which was only about 15 minutes away. Continuing my trend of being an adult I bought some toys from a collectables place that was closing down, we had lunch, and then came home to Bendigo. Lil had reached her limit at that point so it wasn't worth sticking around any longer. Of course we did go to Daiso, because no trip to Melbourne is complete without going to Daiso.

So that was our trip. Some nice restaurants, a bit of shopping, but for me the best part was turning off my computer on Thursday night and not having to turn it on until we got back home again. That and the churros.

This weekend (weather permitting) we're planning on heading towards Daylesford to see a couple of the waterfalls and have a picnic. Apparently after the deluge we've had in the last few weeks they're particularly nice. No other birthday plans, but maybe we'll go out for lunch or dinner or something.

Lynwood life

sooky girl - still cute
Millicent is two months old now! Can you believe it? I can't.

She had her first lot of shots this week, as well as it being her second Wonder Week and she's had (she has) a bit of a cold. All of this together = unsettled, sooky and clingy baby! Daddy still doesn't cut it when she's really upset.. which means B feels helpless and I'm exhausted. Hopefully she'll be feeling better next week.

Last time I mentioned that we were going to stay in Swansea for the British Science Festival. You may have seen photos on FB - Millicent was a very good girl and coped with lectures, socials, and two days in a busy museum without too much fuss. Granted I fed her at the start of lectures and she'd sleep through the rest. And on Sunday we were on the couch in the museum's cafe for two hours (feeding & sleeping). It was a really tiring week for all of us but we managed without too much drama. 

B's chemistry fun fair
Milk for Millicent, bugs for d
Trying to stay positive like a proton

Just after the Festival, I had a day trip to London to renew my passport. That was an even bigger challenge because we didn't have the museum cafe to relax in! I think I was more exhausted than Millicent at the end of the day! Thankfully I don't have to do it again for another 10 years - of the 9 hours I was away from home, I was in the Australian High Commission less than 10 minutes! Just long enough to give Millicent a short feed - yes, I was feeding my baby during my "interview" and the only question asked was whether or not I actually had coloured tips or was it just a bad photo (my hair was tied up on the day, so it wasn't obvious).

Thankfully, there wasn't too much on for the rest of the week. As we've mentioned on the Hangout, last weekend was Cardiff's tribute to Roald Dahl with the 'City of the Unexpected'. We didn't partake in the Saturday shenanigans (there were loads of 'events' in the city but also loads of people!) but we went into Bute Park on the Sunday. We saw Fantastic Mr Fox, caught by the farmers (we heard that he got away later); James' peach; a long table with people in the serving dishes (not sure what that's from); the BFG's chair; and loads of people! :-)
The Animal wall - with extras
Don't have too much fun..
Mr Fox - caught by the farmers!

We continue with massage class - she let me massage her back this week.. usually she won't let me take part at all! 

Bruce was in the pool for Millicent's third swimming lesson. Once again, she was falling asleep! There's a video here to give you an idea of what she gets up to in the lesson.

John and Gwen are visiting this weekend - it's their 40th anniversary today. We all went out for lunch at The Clink yesterday. Yes, it's in the gaol and yes, it's the inmates who cook, clean and wait on diners. Food was delicious - I had fig and falafel bruschetta, pumpkin gnocchi & a giant piece of coffee & walnut cake! Yum! Bruce had smoked haddock, rabbit with black pudding and a chorizo fritter, and then white chocolate panacotta. He also really enjoyed the food.

Millicent slept well last night (yay) and had a good morning playing on her mat & in her bouncy chair. I hope this continues for the rest of the week (but I won't hold my breath).
As always, I'll add some photos (and added to Millicent's album here)

B & his tiny pirate
Happy girl

Who else has news? Any news will do!!

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Lil's test results (all good!)

Just a quick update to let you all know that Lil's test results all came back good :)
She had had the two EEG's and two ultrasounds (abdominal and lower lumbar). We still don't know what caused the initial seizure, but her EEG was normal.
We'll still keep a close eye on her, especially when she's exhausted, but hopefully it was a one and only episode :)

Monday, 12 September 2016

Kris Kringle for 2016

Not sure who started this idea but I spoke to Aunty Denise today. We agree that just my family organise this among themselves. The Hamilton's always do Christmas this way with Rob's family.
I think that giving a family present to Hamilton's, Chatham's  and Flanagan's from all of you could work as long as they know the plan, so they can plan their gifts to you similarly. You could decide just to give to each of the children ( there will be an extra Chatham by then.)When sorted, let Aunty Denise, Josie and Chris  know what the gift plan is.
Consider is Jared an adult. If so is Riley?
Nana wants to continue her money gifts to all so leave her out of that.I also prefer to give each of my family groups money so they can get what they want.
Please let me know what you decide.

Family photo shoot

As we've been discussing in Hangouts, we thought it might be nice to get photos done while everyone is here in Bendigo. Joel Bramley http://www.joelbramley.com/ has done two photoshoots for us previously, and he's both patient and reasonably priced, as well as being quite talented so we've asked if he's available to do it.

We chatted to Mum, and suggest the date of Sunday 18th December, from 10:30 - 11:30.

If this date doesn't work for anyone, let us know, but we're somewhat limited in weekends with everybody here.

Right now we're thinking of using Canterbury Park, Eaglehawk, and then returning to Mum's place for lunch. That also opens us up to Lakes Neangar and Tom Thumb too, if we want some variety in background.

The photo shoot costs $160 for the hour. Joel then goes away, edits the photos and gives us a bunch of high res digital files that we can print ourselves. The suggestion is that each family group puts in $32, and then everybody organises their own printing. These are the groups:

Nana, Mum & Clive
Lisa, Carolynn, Jarrad, Jared, Trin & Daria
Dayna, Bruce & Millicent
Glenn, Dee & Jules
Damien, Cheryl, Oscar & Lily

Regarding outfits, it's generally good to wear plainer (unpatterned, solid colour) clothes. If we want the photos to look particularly awesome we can think about a colour range or temperature that everybody works around, but otherwise just avoiding complex patterns will be a big help.

It's also worth considering what photos we'd like, because over the course of the hour it's easy to forget. For example as well as a couple of whole group photos I would suggest we make sure we get at least one photo of each family group, one of all the kids with Mum, all the kids with Nana, and I'd like one of we four siblings. Anyone else have any requests? I know it can be hard to get nice couple photos, so that might be something to add as well. All the ladies and all the gents together? Anyone want a nice headshot of themself?

If we have a list to work to we can try to get Millicent's photos done first as well.

One last thing - for those of us with camera shy kids, I'd recommend talking to them about it and making sure they understand that we want to get a few really nice photos. We did that with Os and Lil and it made them more patient and more willing to pose, wheras they tend to run away from the candid shots.

Here's a couple of photos to help think about colour. For the first lot we went with blues with Lil as a highlight (since there weren't many of us), for the second lot there was more variety with greys, blues, browns and blacks (with Edith and Charlotte as highlights).

Friday, 9 September 2016

Millicent's first swimming lesson

We're just on the way home from Millicent's first time in a swimming pool. ;-) As you can see, Bruce took her for her first lesson. She cried, she slept (almost) and she got dunked - once accidentally by Bruce (oops) and once on purpose by the instructor (an underwater "swim"). More photos here.

She's zonked now.. but we'll see whether or not that means she'll sleep well tonight. To be honest, she has been asleep a lot today - wonder if that means she's going through a growth spurt.. 

(Awake at 12:30am for first night feed)

We discovered "wonder weeks" recently - anyone else heard of them? They're essentially mental growth spurts and happen fairly predictably in the first couple of years. Bub gets ratty for up to a week whilst the "mental leap" occurs then has new skills (or a new perspective). 

We think Millicent has just gone through the Week 5 leap - they're calculated by due date so she's a week out...  After being a fairly good baby (some crying, lots of sleeping - except 4am-6am, loads of spitting up - usually down my cleavage), she had a couple of days where I struggled to put her down at all! If she wasn't being cuddled, she'd cry! And for at least a day, the cuddling had to be with me - Bruce wasn't enough! So tiring!

On the up side, yesterday she seemed much more alert! She was watching everything and everyone! It was good timing because we met up with my team from work and went to Sci Comm drinks at the British Science Festival. It was a change that she wasn't just sleeping or eating! :-)

Anyway, tomorrow we're having a "short break" - we're staying in Swansea for two nights so it's easier for Bruce to work the weekend. We're using this as a trial run for travelling with baby.. will we remember everything? (It isn't that far if we forget something important). We're planning another "trip with baby" around Halloween - popping across to Romania with Vicki and Steven (yet to be confirmed). Millicent's (British) passport turned up today - it's so cute! - so we can now take her abroad. Well, once I get MY passport renewed. :-) 

So we're slowly getting ready for our trip home. I'm excited to see everyone! And it's a bonus that it's for Xmas. Any requests for British stuff? Let me know asap because everything takes a bit longer these days. ;-)

And here's some more photos..

Sunday, 4 September 2016

Mum's new computer

Not sure why I made the decision I did. I'd planned on needing at least 8gb Ram and a 1 Tb hard drive. When the Centre Com salesman said these HP Pro's are great and so quick, I should have said, I'll check them out, Instead I said I'l take it. So no DVD drive and only 4Mb of RAM. It can be upgraded at a cost. It has a SSD drive that my computer guru has explained is a very large usb drive. He will put Family Tree Maker on it for me and my very old 2003 Office that has publisher and doesn't require more paying to use.
Certainly initially very fast since it rewrites on a new spot rather than deleting and rewriting.
Need to get a CD drive that will plug into the USB. Disappointed in myself.

Simon has now gone on holidays so when he returns he'll come back to see where I've got to. Need to work out how to get emails on the new computer.

Other than that, I'm modelling again next Tuesday so went to Castlemaine to check out clothes on Thursday, Five of us to model are all mature age, but I am feeling fat. Clothes are from Marion and me. I seem to think the new clothes are very old fashioned. Maybe that reveals my age?Three outfits each for the five of us.

Last Tuesday I took mum to see a specialist about her hands. Decided she needs a carpal tunnel release so it is surgical (hopefully keyhole and will happen on 15th September for her right hand. When it is recovered he'll do the left. Right is less damaged than left. I'll stay with her for Thursday and Friday night at least and we will probably need someone there for the week. At the surgery is info on Cool Sculpting where they freeze unwanted fat cells. Sounds too good to be true but I'll check on the price next time I'm there. (Just what I need, Non surgical tummy tuck)

On a lighter note, the Spinners are redisplaying the winning entry from the Wool Show at a Snugglepot and Cuddlepie live show next Thursday. Members will be spinning before the midday show and eight are attending the 2pm show.(including me). Will get more info next Wednesday. Last Wednesday Clive and I went to Swan Hill for his brother in law's memorial service( Jim was 88 and had lived a very full life.)

On Saturday Clive and I went to Melbourne to have lunch with his daughters. we caught up with one granddaughter but the other was working. Busy girls with part time jobs and boyfriends while dealing with Uni . Chloe has just been offered a research assistant job at the Uni she's attending. She is doing Psychology.

Good to catch up and Clive received some lovely Father's Day gifts from both of the girls. We were back in Bendigo in time for dinner and to get to the Spring Gully dance on Saturday night, Night off tonight.

I continue to remove weeds from the garden especially the very healthy stinging nettles. Much more to do but I thought I'd put wraps on my nails tomorrow so the garden will have to wait.Also a friend is calling for help with Facebook. I need to show her how to limit your audience to family or friends and to get rid of posts you don't want to see.

Great to know Dayna, Bruce and Millicent will be coming for Christmas. Plenty of time for me to make room and declutter a bit. Also need to be very organised for Christmas here..

Look forward to more posts. I see Damien had a successful Iiado seminar this weekend. FB is very handy.

Wednesday, 31 August 2016

Lily's Party Time

As mentioned on Facebook, Lil had a bit of a four day Birthday Extravaganza. Cheryl's posted some photos on Facebook, so head over there to check them out.

Saturday we had family over for afternoon tea - scones with jam and cream, plus bonus savoury scones from Mum, followed by tiny birthday cupcakes.

Sunday was a party at the Fun Factory. Originally we had planned to combine both events into a party at home, but the uncertainty of the weather combined with the presence of stinging nettles through the yard convinced us otherwise. Once I saw 9 little girls running around screaming I was confident we had made the right choice.

It was great to have someone else organise the food, location and entertainment and pretty much just have to turn up. The 90 minutes went by really quickly, but both kids were exhausted and happy.. and I think if it had been a little longer we might have seen tears.

Monday was Lil's actual birthday of course, so for the third day in a row she got presents, this time from us (and Max). Because of the excitement of Sunday, and Kinder being the following day, we kept things fairly quiet and calm. She played with all her new toys, did some bubble blowing outside, and got a special package in the mail from Auntie Rach.

We went to Jojoes for dinner, which was Lily's choice and booked in her name :)

Finally Tuesday was Kinder day, and Lil took in boxes of smarties to give to all the kids. A nice ending to her birthday funtime, giving out presents instead of receiving them.

This Saturday looks to be equally busy, although this time for me and Cheryl more than the kids. I've got the Iaido seminar with Shihan Takeo all day. Lis is helping with water, which is awesome. Cheryl, meanwhile, will bring Os to the seminar when it starts (I've got to be there an hour or so earlier to set up), then go home and order pizzas for lunch (Anne, one of the other students' Mums, has offered to pick them up) and then take Lil to a party, and then pick Ossie up after lunch. So relaxing ;)