Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Such a big kid now.

We did it, Otto had his first day of Kindy yesterday, and after a morning of running around getting everyone ready, we arrived, early.  I imagine I am the same as any other mother, there is an intense amount of pride and love mixed with a tinge of sadness at how fast these days are flying by.

Han and I set ourselves a goal when we first started planning a family.  We wanted me to be able to stay at home with them full time until 3 years old, we have given up many luxuries, a lot of sleep, and time out to ensure that we give him the best start in life.  The feeling of achievement is immense, there were times when we were both tempted to put him in care one day a week so that I didn't have to work at night, or at least have a break during the week, but, at the end of this time together I can look back and see that it was such a gift.  For three years and four months this little boy has been by my side, as an infant, a crawler, early walker, talking, asking why and feeling the love and security of always having me there.

Today I saw a confident, happy and secure boy run off to be with his new friends, waving and blowing me a kiss as an afterthought, happy in the knowledge that after quiet time I will be there, Hugo on my hip waving madly at him through the gate ready to take him to our home.  It hasn't been a perfect three and a bit years, there are plenty of things that I got wrong, or wish I had addressed differently, but it is our story together.  Now he gets to go and make his own story.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Our right.

I don't often engage in conflict, it isn't my nature.  I expect respect for myself from others and in return I respect other peoples life choices.

This week in Australia you would have been under a rock to have missed the news that then became public fodder for debate.  As I see it, there is no debate, I know no breastfeeding mother that shows her breasts for the thrill of public nakedness.  We are all feeding our children, to the best of our ability, when they want it, how they want it, discreetly as possible.

I breastfed Hugo whilst in public this week and for the first time instead of smiling positively at people who looked in our direction I wondered what they thought of us, it was disheartening that my first instinct was not a positive reaction, that they might be offended of my son's right to milk, of my legal right to supply that to him no matter the situation.

Whether we are keeping it "classy" or not is of no ones business, in a high traffic area or not, it is also no ones business.  I understand that 'Kochie' was making his own opinions known as he is entitled, however the long reaching effect of that is being felt by breast feeding mothers everywhere who are trying their best in all sorts of circumstances to offer the best for their children.

In simple terms, these are my breasts, with milk for my children, they are not of your concern.

Hugo and I taken with my iphone.

Saturday, January 26, 2013


As I sit here writing with the wind whipping the hard rain against the window I am so grateful to be inside and warm with no risk of flooding. My thoughts and wishes are with those that are not to be so lucky this weekend.

Hugo:  He just won't let me take a photo of his new two teeth.

Otto:  Looking into a turtle that lights up, a big week for my amazing first born as he heads to Kinder for the first time.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Thursday, January 24, 2013

So, we bought a house.......

Han and I have been house hunting for a while now, and on Saturday we bit the bullet and put an offer in on a house.

It isn't our dream house and certainly isn't our forever home but we are really looking forward to sprucing it up a bit.  It was from a deceased estate and the couple that died were also the original owners.  We have lived a fairly nomadic lifestyle and I can't imagine moving into a house as a newly married couple and then never leaving!  (In the space of time that Han and I have been married we have lived in 7 different houses and 3 countries.)  Hopefully before we get the keys I will be able to talk to the family and ask for photos from when it was first built which is probably around 1948.

Exciting times in this household!  We are currently in the excited phase where all we can do is dream about the improvements and renovations we would like to do, without the actual hassle of living through them with two young children and organising tradespeople.

It certainly was a great way to begin 2013.

I can't decide which should go first, the carpet over the hardwood floors or the gorgeous wood on the walls?!?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

To the rescue.......

Like most boys his age Otto is addicted to Fireman Sam, Thomas was short lived and we haven't moved onto superhero's just yet.  I heard about an interactive display at the Ipswich art gallery and decided an adventure day was long overdue and we should check it out.

It was an absolute success, as with most of these things they can be a bit too old for Otto, but he still manages to find a lot of joy in the simpler exhibits.  Otto dressed up as a fireman and rescue worker, flew a rescue helicopter and rode a jet ski, scaled walls, put out fires and crawled through a house on fire.  I loved watching him explore all the areas, as he grows older it is interesting to watch how he interacts with other children and within such a chaotic environment.

Next weeks big adventure is starting Kindy.  For the first time he will be away from me, we are both ready now, the excitement from both of us for this next stage is palpable, I can't wait to hear what he does with his friends during the day!  Soon I will write about our crazy week last week, it needs to be written down somewhere.

I couldn't help but include Hugo in the fun, who could resist a fire fighter baby?  Not me anyway.

Sunday, January 20, 2013


This week has been without a doubt one of the most challenging, overwhelming and exhausting weeks of my life.  The best part of this project is that it allows me to find the good in the week, the moments that had me smiling and bursting with joy.

Later I will write about exactly what this week has done to me, but for now, the sunshine.

Otto:  Bouncing, bouncing, bouncing.  I have been trying for weeks to capture the movement and joy that he finds in doing this, I will have to keep trying.

Hugo:  He is moving so much now that at different points during the day I loose him!  He quietly shuffles off to a distant corner while I spin around trying to lay my eyes on him.

Linking up with Jodi at Che and Fidel

Wednesday, January 16, 2013


Yesterday we went up to the hospital to see Han and then got to bring him home again.  It felt wonderful to walk out those doors all together again, Otto was ecstatic that Daddy was finally coming home.  Since then we have relaxed and tried to keep home as restful as possible with two little boys.

It was amazing to have so many people offer help and best wishes for us while we were going through this, we are a very lucky family.  We are a long way from having the answers that we need, many tests and doctor visits are in our future, but for right now, we are concentrating on being together, healthy and happy.

Sunday, January 13, 2013


Hugo: A moment of contemplation while staring out the window.

Otto:  Still and looking at the camera, a rarity these days.

Our day today was punctuated with trips up to the hospital to visit Han.  He is still unwell, requiring medication to keep him comfortable, blood tests and still no food.  Hopefully tomorrow will bring more promise.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

What a week.

I am sitting here, glass of wine perspiring in the oppressive heat that has been Brisbane over the last few days, looking back on what can really only be described as a terrible week.

Tuesday saw me never move far from my bed, a terrible but mild bout of mastitis brought on by a particularly hard headed three year old had me reeling, and feeling so much for the amazing women that have this condition early on while breastfeeding a newborn and managing engorgement.  Words can't describe the full body assault that I felt.  Thankfully plenty of fluids and rest saw me through as well as some lovely help from my family and friends.

It was then Han's turn to feel unwell, culminating in a trip to our local hospital (where I was working at the time) with my mother in law and children in tow.  He is currently awake and watching the river go past kilometeres away from his family while we worry and wish we were all under the same roof.  There will be tests, prodding, and probably a lot more pain and drugs before we have a clear path forward, and a few more nights apart yet, hopefully, at the end we will have an answer.

At least, as tomorrow dawns a new day, it will bring new posibilities, and hopefully promising blood results.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Life is tough.

Otto and Hugo have a typical brother relationship from what I can tell.  Hugo appears to love and idolise his big brother, and Otto tolerates him now that he is mobile and able to reach his toys.  Being an eldest child myself I remember well the nuisance that is your younger sibling at times, but also the fierce protection you give them from the outside world.

Now as a parent I have a new perspective, it hurts my heart when I hear Otto tell Hugo that he doesn't love him anymore now that he has touched a train or piece of Duplo, I know there is worse to come, that it is partly my responsibility to foster and nurture their relationship and I am completely out of my depth.

My sister and I were raised to respect each other and love one another, but due to many circumstances within my family it was a case of do as I say not as I do, and I want to make sure that I exemplify the morals and standards I would like my children to adopt.  Thankfully, after many years of struggling to understand each other, my sister and I enjoy a happy and secure relationship as well as a closeness that we both enjoy.

I am thankful each day that I have my sister by my side and would love for my boys to also have someone who they can rely on, who understands the crazy, fun and strange parts of their family like no one else.  Who can communicate with a raised eyebrow and wry smile that they understand your pain when you get stuck talking to 'that uncle' or the aunt who always has too much wine.

I am not sure where to even start ensuring that they have the best chance for that kind of relationship, for now I just try to make sure that they see love, compassion and understanding from the adults in their life, so that later in their years, they can walk this bumpy path together.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

In the sun.

Boxing day saw us packing up the car and heading south, ready to join some of my family in a beach shack nestled amongst the heavy mango trees, their branches dripping with almost ripe fruit.  Nothing speaks of summer more then the smell of sunscreen, the crunch of sand and the smell of mangoes.

After indulging in an afternoon nap we rushed down to the local river while the tide was slowly coming in to pump for yabbies, in the hope of a fishing trip the following day.  While the yabbies were few and far between, the fun we had in that river for a few hours filled my soul to the brim.  A sleeping baby on my chest and the delighted shouts of a happy boy who was excited to watch for yabbies, mud crabs or just frolick in the water that was the perfect height for him, meant a smile was never far from my face.

While we didn't get many yabbies, the simple memories we made in that river will last me a lifetime.  

Sunday, January 6, 2013


This year I am joining Jodi over at che and fidel and documenting a picture of my children every week of the year.  I am so excited to see what this year brings our family and the inevitable growth, joy and happiness that children bring.

2013 we are pumped and ready for you.

Otto: Testing out his new bike.
Hugo: Itchy nose.