Tuesday, 24 April 2012

The straw that broke the camel's back- but didn't

Thursday was not a great day - it was jam packed with meetings the whole day after we had our first dreadful night of (no) sleep with the boys in ages and after working up to almost 12 the evening. In between I scrambled to answer mails and keep up to date and to say I was exhausted by the end of the day was no lie. So I pick up a very happy Princess and we have a great chat to the boys' school. As I get out of the car my phone rings - a work issue which I chat through up the driveway to the boys' school gate. As I open the gate my lovely new beads snap on the handle and splatter over the patio with excited little toddlers running after them. Sigh! No way of getting them all in paving and grass as some roll over the edge and a few steps down. I end the call and look up to the white notice board at the entrance which read "Career day tomorrow. Please dress up and show us what you want to be some day" I kid you not, I could possibly slap the teacher (ok I did not say that! And it was not their teacher - she would have known better ) when I asked her about the late notice and how am I suppose to get something and she replied - "Well just make something". ARE YOU KIDDING! AS SOON AS THE KIDS SLEEP I AM SLEEPING. It was just that last bit to just break my spirit.

I hate it when the schools give you short notice - really it does not consider working parents at all (I wrote about it before. The boys' school in general give us a term program which I make sure to add to our year planner so that I am well aware of everything before hand. But something went wrong and they did not hand them out until yesterday. So Friday was really sprung upon us. But the Princess (bless her little heart) immediately had the creative juices flowing suggesting a fireman for Mr L (it is his current obsession after all) with his gumboots and a play phone for a walkie talkie. Then she suggested a cowboy (nope not a "real" job) and Spiderman (nope, not real either) - she was rushing through the dress up options we have. I suggested a builder (they have little hard hats, we have drills etc and plans) but no, C did not want to be a builder (or an architect). Then as we turned the corner to our house she had it ! A chef! I though about our little apron, but what else? She remembered that we got the left over chef's hats from their party and exactly where I stored it and we got one of their cowboy bandanas. He has balck trousers with white stripes and black and red sneekers.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Just some chatting

So how have you all been? If I have not read your newest post (which is a distinct possibility as I am way way behind on my reader) I hope all is well. On my side, a lot has been going on.

I had a solo weekend with the kids with Hunter being in the bush and the kids were really so easy. I was rather amazed. We had a little picnic at Ouma's on Saturday which the kids loved. I will post some pictures later this week.

On Saturday me and one of the other bookclub ladies made a private blog for our bookclub in order to reference the available books, share our recipes - believe me a lot of delicious food gets served at book club, and to share the photos we take from time to time.I do hope that the ladies will get with the (electronic) program and join in.

We baked another batch of Hayley's condensed milk cookies - that recipe is a total winner. Just a pity I can not stop eating them.

I am so busy at work, but I guess in the economic climate I really can not complain. A lot of architect have the opposite problem at the moment.

The Princess was at her very first "evening" party on Saturday - she was invited by friend K's brother (9) to his party, as his sisters' one friend to be her company for the evening. They did some target shooting with bow and arrow and she actually hit it once, they braaied boerewors and made "stokbrood" (dough around a stick that you grill on the fire) and did a lantern stalk which the two little girls won! I hear not without the help of the party organizer but so be it - they were so proud of themselves. She had huge huge fun and only came home at 9:30. Needless to say she had a looong Sunday nap.

I have finished reading "The Leopard" by Jo Nesbo (all 740 pages) and I think I have a new "to read" crime writer. If you enjoyed the Stieg Larsson books or is a Deon Meyer fan I can highly recommend this book. The girl hosting bookclub next month has bought the two books preceding this one. So lots of reading joy in stall for me.

And I have just had a call from friend E to join her for lunch, so until next time - hope your day is great. And that your weekend was too.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

The evolution of a cot

My kids had the most beautiful cots (cribs if you want) that my FIL made for us - we got one when I was pregnant with the Princess and used it for a few months as a bench at the end of our bed (with no  sides) after she moved to her big girl bed. Unfortunately I took no pictures of it at the time. My FIL designed the sledge cots to be utilised for that or as a kiddies couch after their use as baby beds. When we found out that no 2 was actually no 2 and 3 he sent us a twin cot. I feel that they were a huge and beautiful gift made by their grandfather for them and that I can not sell or give them away and no one in the rest of the family wanted them for their new babies. So we decided to re use them as intended, for kiddies couches. But I have one of those ugly plastic kiddy tables in my living area....And then I saw this picture on Marcia's blog which provided just enough inspiration.
 Well, suffice to say that we did something with it that my FIL never thought about - and he loves the idea. Because it is a sledge cot and has the uprights and a bottom rail we had to adapt a bit and made an over sized top with slots to go over the sides and painted it in blackboard paint so that they could actually comfortably sit with their legs under the top. So in pictures, I present the evolution of our cots.
Our special double crib

Two separate cots later

The one that is still a kiddies couch

The brand new desk/cot  I use the plastic party tubs to put all the stationery in and a paper tray for the scrap office paper that we use to draw on (earth friendly and all that) and a sturdy shoe box, still to be decorated for stencils etc. I also have some colouring books close at hand in the one corner.
Joining in today with a very Wordful Wednesday and a Way back Wednesday
and Parenting by Dummies for Wordful Wednesday
and Twinfatuation for Way back Wednesday.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

When the school rings

On Friday afternoon just as I was busy doing a blogpost about our little project during my lunch time( see tomorrow) , my phone rang, showing that number, you know the one that immediately charges your heart beat to 150 bpm with no exercise involved. The boy's school number. I just knew.

It turns out that Mr L had somehow managed to cut his forehead open and it was rather deep - deep enough to go to the doctor. So I quickly rang our GP and confirmed they could help us, then picked him up at school and went straight to the doctor. My, was he a brave boy - no crying, just a whimper or two as it was cleaned and fixed with strips. It turned out to be small but rather deep. So he got a nice plaster over to match his brother's ( see yesterday's photos) who fell at school on Tuesday right in front of me as I picked them up. When we picked up C later he showed us at the Wendy house where he hurt himself on a nail sticking out a bit. The school had it fixed first thing this morning.

So, matching twin war wounds.

BTW - Our server has been a tad cumbersome this morning -this whole post with photos was done with the Blogger app on the ipad

Monday, 16 April 2012

I just wish we could have talked a bit more.

Apart from that, and the tiiiight space at Bambanani our little informal bloggers meet-up on Saturday was great. I loved that I could pick up Blackhuff and could have a chat on our way there and back. Meeting Louisa was great , but I would have loved to talk a bit more to her. I really feel we just did not have enough time. It was also great to see Marcia and D again - and yes, some more talking would have been great. What was great was that the kids were all very happily occupied by the great play space and truly the Princess and Blackhuff's little girl were almost never at the table. They played their little hearts out. My boys briefly stopped by for milkshakes and a very small bite to eat. As always, the tale in pictures:

Love this one - looking at the pictures taken just now.

Marcia , D and the kids. They are seriously cute.

I love this shot of Louisa and Nicola. One can feel the bond there.

Serious playing at the 3 story high climbing structure. I think the two big girls hardly left it

Have to do this soon again ladies!

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Firefighter Fred goes to school

The Boys are doing Letterland at school and the whole first term we have been made aware of who the Letterland visitor of the week was - be it Annie Apple or Harry Hatman or Sippy snake.Although Mr L is still behind on his development, he recognizes every letter they have done - Mr C of course, runs the whole alphabet for you. But visuals are clearly his "thing".  But it is just the first week of school and the mommy of the house is nowhere near school, never mind Letterland mode.
So this morning Mr L had a tiny freak out at home - he insisted on showing his Firefighter hat to his teacher. We were running late for his OT appointment so I agreed that he could show it to his OT, which he did, but still insisted it had to go to school. Now the school has a very strict policy against toys at school, for many good reasons. So I agreed that he could show it to his teacher but that it would go back to the car with mommy. He very reluctantly agreed. When we got to school he ran to her and gave her his hat, and she exclaimed "Well done L! The only one in the whole class to remember!" It turns out she asked them to bring Firefighter gear from home if they had as Firefighter Fred is visiting this week from Letterland. Although he did not have all the correct  words to express to me why he insisted, I am super proud that he remembered and had the confidence to stand by his knowledge - especially seeing that they are two of the youngest kids in their class and he is behind his age.

Every parent of a special needs or developmental delayed child  knows how much we treasure these special moments. They give us hope, infinite hope. Which is my word for the year, if you do not know yet.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Easter 2012

We did exactly what I said we would do in my last post.We went to church (and the kids did so well considering there was no family church), we saw family and friends (and socialized way more that we , thought we would), ate a whole lot of very tasty food and all the rest.

It started on Thursday night when Hunter grilled the most divine steak for the two of us.On Friday we went to church, had brunch with my mom , a bit of an afternoon rest and made paper mosaic crosses. Hunter's cousin and his family came over for our Catholic tradition of fish on Good Friday. He made snoek on the fire, with roosterkoeke and home made bread. It was a beautiful day. Just nice and relaxing.
Mr C's cross
On Saturday the Princess was invited to play at a friend and when I dropped her off for her play date we got invited for a braai the evening, which turned into our latest evening out with the kids ever (we left for home at about 1:30). It was great to make some new friends with the parents of her friends. I just loved the evening - relaxing and casual. During the day we treated the boys to ice cream at the Spur - it was great to spend a bit of time just me, Hunter and the boys. And we had a great nap. We should really spend more one on one time with each of the kids.

On Sunday we went to church and as Saturday was so busy and we never got around to make baskets, we quickly made some easy ones with old washing powder tubs and eater paper I printed out in the office during the week.

The bunny was hence delayed in his delivery (we notified him as such on Facebook on the Princess' request - according to her everybody is on Facebook including the Easter bunny) and he only came ofter nap time, but then the hunt was on. He was rather clever in hiding eggs.

The hunt was on! The Princess even found an egg shaped pebble (by chance)

 She divided the eggs and I was totally surprised when they each gave dad and egg out of their baskets and ate only one items before playing through the rest of the afternoon.

At 5 our friend S and the kids came (his wife I is on a tour of Europe with her mom) and Hunter made the most stunning venison burger patties - we had a very relaxing evening together and E slept over.

Monday morning saw belated Easter egg decorating with this cute set I bought at Woolworths for R22 - a total bargain - has colouring tablets, stickers and stencils with edible ink markers. It was huge fun and we all had an egg for breakfast.

 The rest of the day was spent playing and playing and when L decided to take a nap (he has a rather crappy cold) the others left to drop off E and have a swim (their pool is heated and still at a very nice 29 degrees C). So when he woke up the two of us baked Hayley's Brilliant Condensed Milk cookies with our Big Blue handmade cookie stamp! A winner recipe.(Here in my granny's Joko tea tin - an heirloom I love)
It was truly a great weekend. So how was yours? (Unless I have read it all on your blog)

A very Wordful Wednesday joining:
and Parenting by Dummies for Wordful Wednesday

Thursday, 5 April 2012

It's the day before Easter, and can not help thinking back.

Last Easter we were here:

I can almost smell the sea, the happiness and the feeling of freedom from the day to day life we lead. Wish I was there right now. The Easter bunny even delivered there:

This year we are staying home - the last two years were spent in the laid back wonder of the Natal South Coast. Although I am happy about our decision to be at home (I really do not envy the traffic down) the reality is that with a child in "real school" our holidays are a bit less flexible and we simply did not have the opportunity this year. Although I am looking forward to the winter holidays when I will see San Lameer again.

However, we will be spending the weekend making Easter baskets, painting eggs and seeing family and friends. And going to church. Because no matter what Easter is about for you and your family, we celebrate the day that Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice for us, and more important, that He rose on the 3rd day to give us eternal life.

May your Easter be a blessed one.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

April is autism awareness month

Today is World Autism Awareness day.

Although I do not have a child with autism, I am aware of some of the difficulties that children and adults with autism and their parents face. Mr L share some characteristics with autistic kids and some days, it's a struggle.All autistic kids and adults also have Sensory Processing Disorder (or known as Sensory Integration Disorder in South Africa) to some extend or another- what our Mr L has and my, does it throw our world around. Although we have made huge progress it is something that might hamper him for life, or at least throw him a challenge to deal with for life. I am extremely positive about his progress and future, but am painfully aware that only dealing with this is just a fraction of what a child with autism deals with. If you want to read more about the relationship between the two, I found this article very helpful.

So today, I want to reach out to those with autism. I want to share two posts in particular of two of my friends in the blog world with autistic sons - Julia and Debi. I believe that by reading their thoughts about their sons will bring the message through much more than just statistics.

Monday, 2 April 2012

All of a sudden it's Autumn.

Like at the drop of the proverbial hat, or leave in this case. Or make it rain. On Thursday night the rain started and by Friday it was already considerably colder. By yesterday,  on April the 1st it felt distinctly like Autumn. Colder - seldom that we have such a sudden turn to the colder seasons. And I do love summer so much!
Yesterday in the park
We had a very relaxing and quiet weekend with friends over for chicken curry and rugby on Saturday night and yesterday having an "inside day" with DVD's etc with the kids as Mr C had an early morning visit to the doctor with a step throat.By late afternoon it was mayhem in the house - truly the cabin fever ran high and we went for a little fresh air in the play park.

We started on our crib revamp project on Saturday (I promise to show you all when it's done but Marcia have an idea what we are doing) and after an hour's wait (I promise - actually 65 minutes) in the "cut queue"  in Builders warehouse I thought I was going off my rocker but the kids were brilliant through the wait on the promise of Mac Donalds Happy Meals. My phone helped as did two notepads and pens but I was incredibly tankful to the kind man in front of me who offered to let us go before him in the queue as we had only one piece of board to cut and he had a whole project. Or maybe he was getting as stressed as I was with the kids all over the cart etc. But we hit a tiny glitch - I measured the height on one and then decided to use the other without realizing that the heights were not the same. So I need to get new "stud or bolts or whatevers so we can adjust the other one. I am so looking forward to complete this - I need it for my "get something done" gratification.

For the rest, I finished a lovely book "The Music Room" by William Fiennes. A great read about a rather different childhood and a loving memorial of his epileptic brother's life. A must read if you like biographies. And started with a rather unusual read for me - but more about that later.

So it's with a rather sad heart that I am saying goodbye to summer with some pictures from last Saturday that was a glorious summer day. My MIL and I took the kids to Zita Park (including friend K) I just love how much the boys have grown into loving the water and pools this summer. We had a lovely afternopon slightly marred by a bee attack after we got ice creams (C had one sting on his thumb and L two on his face - luckily neither of them are allergic).

So, what was your weekend like? Feeling the change of seasons?