Sunday, 27 September 2009

Action shots

Before Kate and Gaz and Lily left we met up with them in Wagga in the botanical gardens. The trains were running and the zoo (as always) was fragrant. Jack and Lily had a play in the playground followed by a train ride. I got myself into position for photos as they emerged from a tunnel but somehow my photographic expectations exceeded my skills.

Waddle Giggle Gargle Paddle Poodle

Up till now I've had a pretty good relationship with Magpies. They have a bad reputation and I know some people are terrified of them but I never had a reason to be. Garn was a magpie lover. She'd stand at the back door and warble and they'd come swooping in to get some scraps.
I had magpies on my wedding invitations. The reason was twofold. The wedding was held at a local restaurant called Magpies Nest and magpies mate for life. I found out later that they do until the male gets skittled by a car then another male will turn up within 48 hours.
Last year a pair moved in here and over the summer I put out water for them and admonished Jack and the dog for chasing them. And then they started swooping us. That's gratitude. I know they swoop because they are nesting and want to protect the nest but it's very unnerving having one flap over your head.
And at first it was just a part of the front yard that was a no go zone. Then it was the whole front yard and then the back yard too.
While they didn't actually connect with my head, I found it annoying. I contemplated the ice cream container hat with eyes. S obligingly finished off the ice cream but the tubs were the wrong shape to fit on my head. I tried making a magpie scaring head band. Jack actually laughed when he saw it. So did the magpie. I wore a huge jester style hat with jingly bells but no luck. My lowest point was when the magpie swooped and I ducked down Tippi Hedren style, behind my 18 month old niece and Diane. Certainly not my finest hour.
Then I thought about Pamela Allen's book Waddle Giggle Gargle about a magpie that swoops Johnathon and his grandparents. They have to walk past the tree so they decide to make magpie scarers to keep the Magpie away. So the next time the magpie approached I clapped my hands above my head. He flew back up to the tree. He still kept a close eye on me and I swear he was sharpening his beak, but at least he wasn't hovering over my head.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009


Jack has taken to wearing my old birthday tiara. I (and a select few) used to wear it at work on our birthdays, even in meetings. Our CEO always seemed puzzled by its presence, but nothing was ever said. It was a fairly unusual workplace.
Jack's been wearing it a lot this week and also likes to make other people wear it (he gets that from me). I was trying to take photos of him wearing it but he was on S's back, who was doing push ups so I got mixed you think I should become a professional photographer?


Up until recently the weather has been like this.
Lots of fogs this past winter, not so many frosts.

And even though this morning is a little chilly (actually maybe that's just this room) the days have been lovely and sunny. Not so good for crops, but lovely for us. All the spring flowers are making an appearance. Our 'lawn' (hahaha) is dotted with grape hyacinths (aptly named don't you think?)
and these hyacinths have popped up near the front door. They never fail to remind me of Garn, who was such an avid gardener and lover of flowers. Our apricot and plum trees are covered in blossoms and the wisteria is budding. It reminds me that yet again I have run out of time to prune them.

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more face painting

On Sunday Jack asked me to paint his face again. First he wanted to be a tiger, then a duck (how do I do that?) and then a tiger so that was what I went with. Then he did my face (and neck and ears) and S too. I think he even tried to paint his nostrils. I'll say one thing, he's very thorough.
We had Diane, Noel, Andrew, Kate, Gaz and Lily over for dinner and kept our faces on. They probably thought we were bonkers. Doesn't S look thrilled?

Saturday, 12 September 2009

More 'cuz' time

Lily came over for a play this week and Jack showed her around and hospitably handed out bananas. He seemed frustrated that she didn't quite have the hang of the Thomas 'thing' and tried to set her straight but no dice.

When handed an engine she would pop it into a drawer (Lily likes things to be tidy) much to Jack's frustration. After an indoor play and some book reading (Jack went for Thomas (surprise!)

and Lily went for Brendon Fevola's new book on footy)

we headed outside for more play, this time with the swing, slide and truck.Jack also showed Lily the trampoline. She wasn't sure at first but eventually came to see the funny side of Jack leaping alongside her and bouncing vigorously till she rolled over.

Thursday, 10 September 2009


Jack's cousin Lily (and her parents Kate and Gaz) are visiting from the land of banana benders and johburgers. Jack's been excited about her visit since we told him and helpfully carried a little bike out to the car so we could take it to the farm saying,"Bike for lily."
I also popped into the toy library and picked up a few things for her to play with (wasn't I clever to choose a doll that matched her outfit?).After a longish drive from Dubbo, they arrived and Jack did his best to be a congenial host, showing Lily his favourite Thomas book, checking Lily was okay on the bike and making sure that she too had an ice cream when he got one.They seemed to hit it off but I'm sure they wondered why there were so many flashes going off. Not that damn paparazzi again.

Father's Day

We had quite an enjoyable Father's day here. Thanks to playgroup, we had a card and a present to present to S and then we decamped to Ajanta at Coolamon yet again for Hot Chocolate and Cake where we were joined by Noel. We sidestepped the toxic Nana and her clan and baggsed the long cushiony couches with a big trunk/table which turned out to be perfect for a) holding our cakes and bevvies and b) driving trains up and down and up and down get the picture.
At playgroup last Friday our father's day craft was a cardboard tie which the kids decorated and then elastic was attached so Dad could wear it. Jack decided however that his was a whale and once it was turned on its side I could definitely see where he was coming from. S could too.

We also got S a great book called My Dad is a Wrestler (by Matt Zurbo and Dean Gorissen)

and and enormous block of chocolate which seems to have mysteriously disappeared.