Friday, December 30, 2011

The most wonderful time of the year...

I hope everyone has enjoyed their Christmas and is having a great festive season.  This is the time that we all love to be with our friends and family don't we?  This is the time that I really miss my friends and family.  But it's also the time that I love creating memories and new traditions with my own family - my husband and my children.  It's the most wonderful time of the year.

I've been meaning to get here for a while, definitely before Christmas.  However, things have got a little on top of me and December saw me being in the most unfestive of moods, and some would say I was parked up on Struggle Street.  Let's just say that I am now happy and super grateful that Johnny is off work for the next couple of weeks.

So, this was our home at about 7:30am on Christmas morning....

 Ever the Poser....

Loving her new dolly (which is SO NOT ugly Ned!)...

Only interested in the choccies...

I'm sending everyone my love over this time.  I hope for everyone to be safe, well and truly happy.

We are seeing the New Year in with my beautiful siblings-in-law, and a glass of the Champagne regions finest.  What are your plans??

Big love to you all


Saturday, December 10, 2011

Yeah, Stuff....

I've been a bit puzzled of late with the behaviour coming from Little Red.  Since we've returned from New Zealand I've had an extremely demanding, frustrated, whingy, screaming 4 year old on my hands.  Her behaviour has become unmanageable at times and we have even reverted back to tantrums lasting longer than 30 minutes.  I've put some of this down to being away, settling back into our routines and on top of that being sick.  She has always been sensitive to change and takes time to settle into things, but it can't all be that.  Can it?

I mentioned here about her demanding I change the way I had hung the advent calendar.  I wasn't joking.  At times she has has screamed, demanding I do things the way she sees things in her head.  Unfortunately, at times I have no idea how she see things, what she wants me to say, how she wants me to walk etc, and a full on meltdown has ensued.  Her sleep had been affected too.  Waking earlier and not going to sleep until later.  It has become exhausting, not to mention disheartening.

The last couple of days have been a bit better. We have still had the occassional incident, but I've also noticed a greater deal of comprehension that she has developed.  I remember her going through a very similar stage this time 2 years ago.  She regressed in her behaviours, sleeping, toilet training, eating, and then all of sudden it was back to where it had been, along with a whole lot of new developments.

Is this normal developmental behaviour?  I have not noticed this with the Little Viking so much.  But perhaps this is just because she is so much more sensitive to change that she cannot cope with all of what she is learning and developing at one time, and once things are more familiar, more natural to her, she becomes more at ease.  Hmm, I'm typing as i think here, but that seems to make sense.

Has anyone else had similar situations?   Is this typical of a 4 year old?  Any suggestions?  Am I doing something wrong?  Can I do more to help her, to help me?  She really is an excellent kid, but sometimes with some not so excellent behaviour.

Anyway, a bit more of what else has been happening.....

We've got our Christmas tree, but have still only half decorated it.  Underestimated size and quanitity of decorations required.

Ruby and I were getting handy while the other littles napped yesterday.  She painted up some kraft paper we could use for Christmas wrapping paper and I tried to make some decorations.

It's been raining a plenty and weirdly the highest part of our block is the boggiest.  Unfortunately, this is where our fruit trees have been planted and we have lost a few.  The bare rooted nectarine and peach Johnny bought and planted at the end of winter have not budded at all (dead?).  The cherry tree leaves have wilted and are now drying out (dead?).  One of the feijoas leaves are starting to fall off (dead?).  Any ideas?

We also have cherry slug eating the leaves on our plum trees.  I've read that throwing coffee over them can get rid of them, so we've done that over the past couple of days.  We'll see what happens.  Any suggestions?

Johnny's been digging holes for our deck, and has found just how close we are to a natural spring.  Less than a metre close.

We went to a family fun day today and just missed out on getting the kids faces painted.  So we had to do that when we got home.  Little Red painted mine and the Vikings.  I did Little Reds, while she told me what colours I had to use and when.  She wanted a flower, I tried to do one.  She was not impressed, yelled at me, kicked her legs about and wanted me to "DO IT AGAIN!".  Huuuuhhhhh..........

Check. Out. My. Nose!  And yeah, I know, my flower did suck.

Sorry, bit of a boring post.  Hope you're all having a good weekend. 
Happy Days

Friday, December 2, 2011

DIY Advent Calendar

This is the first year that we'll be in our own home for Christmas, and I'm a little bit excited about the Christmas decorating.  Previous years we've not had the space for any kind of tree or many decorations, and the Little's haven't been so aware.  But this year is a special one.  Our family is complete, we're in our own home and I've been planning away.  I'm not going to have it all done by this weekend (or the next for that matter), but bit by bit, we'll be dressing up the home.

The first part is complete.  Our own home made advent calendar.   I was inspired by one I saw in Real Living Magazine which used little buckets.  The likelihood of me finding something similar to the buckets in a local store, and in the quantity I needed was slim, so I kept my mind open to other suitable options.

A packet of cupcake cases were the answer.  I added some twine as handles (Little Red was able to help with this part), roped through a festive looking silver trim, penned on some numbers, and voila - a very festive advent calendar garland. 

I haven't filled the cases. I'll do that on a daily basis and the Little's will be able to check them each night after dinner.  Then we can also use the checking of the calendar as a bribe gentle persuasion to eat their dinner.  I'll be starting small too - we don't want to set up any big expectations.  We'll have the usual sweet treats but it won't be limited to that.  Some nights will include bubbles, hairclips, small toys, stickers etc.  I was meant to complete this yesterday during the day, but best laid plans seldom end up as intended around here, especially when the Little's are sick.  So I finished it off last night and they saw it this morning.  Tonight they will get to empty two cases.

I asked Little Red if she liked it this morning when she saw it.  She said she did.  Not surprisingly, she added that she didn't like the fact that it was hanging down and rather it should be straight across.  Surprisingly however, she didn't demand I change it.

Super easy, compliments our decor, cost effective and reusable for years to come.  Perfect!


Yeah, i know my white balance is out in these photo's.  Can't figure out that one.