Tuesday, 18 December 2012

The world's longest umbilical cord?

I remember thinking that I just couldn't love another baby the way I loved Nugget. I fretted about this during my pregnancy with Doo Dah. I needn't have worried, of course. When baby two comes your heart just swells to accommodate. He was so easy to like.

He had perfectly styled caramel colored hair at birth, as though he had popped out to the salon in readiness. His eyes were huge (and a little poppy I must admit) and, right from the get-go, inquisitive. Social. He looked around and took it all in.

His birth had been traumatic. He tried his best, but he couldn't get out the traditional way, so he was lifted out through the sun roof.

He had the longest umbilical cord ever seen by any of the team in the operating suite. It was the source of many 'OMG's from the various staff, leading his mother to wonder WHAT was so bloody big? WHAT had they never seen anything like?

And then there was the bruised scone. A product of his energetic attempt to push through a birth canal that wasn't shaped the right wAy for babies' heads. He spent some time in a bili bed, and a night in Special Care with the stadium lighting helping him fight the jaundice he had developed. He looked so cute in his 'sunnies'. We had a trip to the hospital on Xmas day to finalize his treatment. Not my only Xmas spent at a hospital.

He was our smallest baby at 3.2kg, and the most adorable thing going in a singlet and nappy. He was an adventurous eater from the beginning. A great sleeper after the first year, apart from a small snoring habit. He sees the world differently from others and he makes it a far better place to be in. I can't believe I doubted I could love him. Now I doubt I could love anything more. Happy Birthday to my favourite six year old boy.

Was your child's umbilical cord a record breaker too? What do you think it means to have a 1m long umbilical cord?

Saturday, 8 December 2012

A lovely Christmas crafternoon

The kids have all been vomiting this week. It is deja vu from the last school holidays. Too much fun to have in one day week!

So instead of taking Maxabella and co on their very first family camping trip over at Little Eco Footprints new farm, the kids and I had a lovely crafternoon.

We whipped up our teacher gift for Doo Dah's kindy teacher
Astute readers will note these are the 12 Golden words

And the story starter stones for Nugget's Year 2 teacher
These are story starters using folktale openings

And, of course, our little Christmas favours for all the kids in the boys' classes
I got the printables for these from here

I feel great that we turned a positively awful day into a positive one.

How do you turn your frown upside down?

Thursday, 6 December 2012

10 more reasons why plastic surgery is not for the weak

Image from here
1. 10 days after you have your surgery*, you will return to the hospital to have your stitches taken out. It won't hurt because you no longer have sensation in your stomach area.
2. At four weeks you will return for a check up to be told that 'most people' are back at work by now and 'most people' are back exercising. What is wrong with you?
3. At six weeks post-op you will still wear an abdominal band to support your stomach muscles because they are still non-existent.
4. And you still have to wonder every time you laugh hysterically or cough if you will 'pop a stitch'.
5. You will walk with a stoop well past the four week mark.
6. You will need to consider buying shares in a pilates studio.
7. Your children will freak out when they see your stomach. You look like a magic trick gone wrong with a slash from hip to hip.
8. You will freak out when you see your stomach. Apart from the identity crisis with your new belly button, you really do look like a magic trick gone wrong with that scar.
9. You will no longer know what to say when people discover you have four children and tell you how good you look.
10. Your flat stomach will only highlight your ample thighs.

* I had surgery to correct my massive hernia caused by twin pregnancy six weeks ago.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

This one time, at band camp...

Image from here
Nugget (7) has been selected to play the trombone in the school training band next year. He is stoked. It is seriously the only time in the last three years that he burst out his news as soon as I picked him up from school.

I rate the opportunity he is getting through the school. There is nothing more fabulous than learning an instrument and gaining a love of music. It is an interest you can nurture for life.

I played the trumpet for a few years in high school and was in the town band. Mum says I am the only person she has ever seen who can talk and play the trumpet at the same time. Clearly, if Nugget takes the band by storm, his talent can be traced back to me. If not, ditto.

I don't know much about trombones. Only that the guy who played the trombone in the band I was in was the object of my desires for some time. Somehow he made all that blowing and spittle look hot.

The trombone is probably not the most versatile instrument for a child to learn (a bit like learning Swedish or Afrikaans as a second language rather than Mandarin or Spanish for example) but it features prominently in Jazz and ska music so there is hope for his musical tastes. The trombone is kind of cool though, don't you think? In a daggy sort of way.

I try to picture Nugget trudging his gigantic trombone over to school each day. I think it will be bigger than he is to start with. One thing is for sure. It will be an adventure. And it will be loud.

Do you play a musical instrument? If so, what do you play and when did you learn?

Monday, 3 December 2012

Home made slip 'n' slide

Images stolen from my friend's Facebook page. Thanks GG. 
We were away with friends in the Blue Mountains at the weekend. 10 adults and 11 children. We hired a house and spent some quality time together. It was wonderful.

On Saturday as the temperature rose well into the 30s for the second day running, we collectively wished the rental had a pool, but alas it did not. We rigged up a slip 'n' slide using some plastic sheets, tent pegs,* some eco-friendly detergent and a garden sprinkler. The perfect hill slope came with the house.

Remember the slip 'n' slide? It was the best Summer fun! My sisters and I used to spend hours throwing ourselves down ours in the early 80s. I remember the awesome feeling of sliding along on my tum or my bum. Not a care in the world. The heat of the Summer forgotten.

The kids played for ages and begged for a repeat the next day. The Dads, who couldn't help but join in the fun, managed only one turn each. Each commenting on forgetting how bloody painful it is to belly flop onto a piece of plastic.

Mother nature blocked the kids' slip 'n' slide plans the next day as the temperature dropped and a hail storm came for a thunderous visit. This created another opportunity for exciting outdoor play as the kids tried to catch hail in their hats and on their tongues.

Our weekends away with this group of precious friends have taken a new turn since we all became parents. As I sat down, looking at the scrumptious meal we created together to celebrate a belated Thanksgiving**, I realised we all have a lot to be thankful for. The eleven beautiful little people that sat around the table with us only enhance our friendships and the memories we make together. 

The weekend will always be about the home made slip 'n' slide for me. The joy it created for the children who used it and for the parents who put it together.

Did you slip 'n' slide as a kid?

Not a great idea in hindsight. Doo Dah has a cracker of bruise on his thigh following a run-in with said pegs.
** One of my friends is from the US and has put on a Thanksgiving spread for us more times that not in the years she has lived here.
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