Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year!!

Fixit is home safe and sound. He saw the fire-fighting helicopters filling up with water which he said was amazing.

He says not to, but I always worry when he goes away on a motorbike ride. I'm glad he's home for New Year's Eve.

The boys are on their way to bed, after their little sparkly treat.

I've started my second glass of wine, after which I will whip up dinner for Fixit and myself.

Neither of us will last til midnight!!

These are some things I hope for in 2007 (in no particular order) :
I hope the drought breaks. I hope to get more creative with my dancing once more. I hope for my boys to keep growing safe and well and delightful. I hope to read more books. And I hope for world peace, an end to human rights' abuse and for people everywhere to be kind to each other and to treat each other as they would like to be treated.

And ... I hope 2007 is a good year for everyone. Thanks for reading, thanks for blogging, thanks for being part of our life. See you next year.

*drinks more wine*


Saturday, December 30, 2006


I've had one week of holidays. Pretty much all I've done (apart from the Christmas hoo-ha) is be a full-time mother and domestic ... I want to say goddess but it's just not true, let's say drudge instead. I appreciate the so-called rest (from work, I git no rest from mothering) and the sleeping-in (as much as you can with 2 young 'uns who don't go past 7.30am) and its nice not to be locked in the routine of school runs etc, but... have to say ... little bit bored.

The least the rest of you could do is blog a bit more to save me from my boredom.




I credit my Mum who is staying with us this week. She also gets any credit for extra-nice flavour.

Fixit is off getting in touch with his masculine side by riding the motorcycle with his mates through the bushfire zones in Victoria, he's away all weekend. Not because he wants to smell the smoke or anything, it's just that that area is full of his favourite routes for fun-filled riding adventure. Mum is at my cousin's wedding.

And I need to get off the computer and do the bedtime routine with the boys. Yikes, is that the time?


Think it's a night in with some wine and the lovely Hugh Laurie for me.

Edited to say: That would be Hugh Laurie OBE.

He can Order my Empire any time he likes.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Our Christmas

Some things were organised on time for Christmas. Like posting of interstate presents. Some of which were made by me. Can you see the little buttons on my niece's shirt? And you thought I couldn't sew ...

Although had I been a little more organised I'm sure I could have paid a lot less postage. But the main thing is they arrived in time.

We didn't quite get time to sit down and write a beautiful letter to Santa, detailing our heart's desire for Christmas. Not like last year. Last year, Climber fell in love with the kindergarten 'take-home for a week' soft toy, a large hand-puppet lamb called Leopold. Then at the Kinder Christmas party, he received a mini finger-puppet lamb, which of course he called Leopold. So despite maternal promptings that he might like to ask Santa for a light sabre sword (or life savers as we call them here) he insisted that what he really wanted was a bed for Leopold. If you write a beautiful letter and mail it in time, Australia Post makes sure it gets delivered to the North Pole and also that you receive Santa's reply.

Which means that you could get what you ask for. Santa and the elves handmade this, on Christmas Eve I believe.

Anyway, this year letter-writing fell by the wayside until Christmas Eve so we decided to just post a letter on the boys' bedroom door and hope that Santa read it on his way through. And we agreed we should just let Santa choose something suitable.

Which you will be pleased to hear he did.

Other things not organised: Well, not all my friends got Christmas cards this year. I'm sorry. And only parts of the house were cleaned, so now the place looks like a bombsite, but I'm sure it will be pretty much in shape before my mum arrives to stay. *crosses fingers*

Anyway, we had a fun, family day. The kids are the perfect age for Christmas.

Some favourite moments:

  • The boys, under strict instructions from us, coming into our bed on Christmas morning to show us what Santa brought. Climber lugged both stockings in, one slung over each shoulder like a miniature Santa-in-pyjamas, because Cherub found his too heavy to carry.
  • The delighted smile on Climber's face when his present from us (not from Santa) turned out to be a Lego Star Wars destroyer ship, complete with mini Dark Thader Darth Vader.
  • The excited exclamation WOW!!! Lookit I dot from Cherub when he opened his present from us, a Duplo James from Thomas & Friends.
  • And when he saw the other present, a Thomas mobile phone, his utter joy could only be expressed by a high-pitched squeal of excitement.
  • The boys sitting in the back of our car, en route to Grandma and Pa's, singing along to the iPod Six white boomers, snow white boomers where Boomers was pronounced with the "oo" from book, not "oo" from soon.


On Boxing Day, I tried to watch my new dvd from Fixit, but the boys were too noisy. So I christened the nice new electric frypan from my father with a batch of pancakes.

Now I just need to clean up. Hope everyone had a great Christmas too. And aren't you glad it comes but once a year?

Oh and ps. The Cherub is toilet-trained! Yay!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

A Christmas Card

We hope you all have a safe and happy Christmas.

love from Stomper Girl, Mr Fixit, the Climber and the Cherub


Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Where did that baby go?

Today is Climber's last day of his first year at school. He's no longer a little Prep kid.

Next year he will be in Grade 1K. For the second year running, he will have a male teacher - our school appears to have more than its fair share of male teachers. It's great for the Climber's grade, anyway, because the boys outnumber the girls 2 to 1. I like the mix of kids he has in his new class (those that I know). They've shuffled the existing 3 prep classes into different groupings. His latest girlfriend, Angelina, is in his class - cuddle? My biggest beef is that a large proportion of the parents I got really friendly with will no longer be in my class. It's not fair.

I think a little year in review is in order.

When Climber started school I cried. Like a great big sook. Look at me.

Not only was Fixit comforting me as I tried to hold back tears but so did another parent, our new teacher and the School Principal.

Although Climber is one of the youngest in the class, he was ready for school. He's a nice kid, sociable, articulate, mature, and I cried not because I feared for him (though of course I did a bit) but because I had to let him go. He's my baby, my first-born, and sending him off to let others shape him was hard on that first day. And then, not hard after that, because he goes to a lovely school, he had a fantastic teacher, and like I said, he was ready.

This is us arriving at the school on the first morning.

This is Climber with Tim in the class on the first day. Totally at home, ready to settle in.

We'd sent Tim a letter in the holidays.

When we arrived in the classroom, it was displayed on the whiteboard and Tim read it out to the class and Climber felt so proud.

When I picked him up at home-time, he ran straight to the monkey bars.

I asked how his first day went. Well I didn't learn to read, he said. But I did lose my drink-bottle.

However, in the course of this year, he did learn to read. Which is just the best thing. Fixit and I got so much enjoyment from watching him progress through the levels. At first he found it hard work. He has perfectionist tendencies, so if he fears he'll get it wrong he's hesitant to try. But Tim saw this and guided him through it. And suddenly one day the penny dropped and instead of labouring through each word, he was reading! What an amazing, beautiful process it was.

And he learned so much else of course. Turns out he's very good at maths. And he maintained his passion for art. Sometimes he just talks a bit of Italian at home, just 'cos he likes it. He made friends, we had play-dates, he learned new tricks on the monkey-bars. He went in a concert which made this stage mother just about want to burst with pride. There was Pyjama day. He lost his first tooth.

We had a great year.

And now here he is at the end of his first year of school.

With Tim at the end-of-year party in the park...

... where we gave Tim another letter.

Of course he played on the monkey bars on his last day, with some of his friends.

And if you could see me as I write this you would see I'm crying again!! You've come a long way, baby.

Monday, December 18, 2006

The Four Things Meme

4 jobs I have had...
1. Tap-dancing Go-Go dancer at a truly terrible Comedy Festival show.
2. Cast member of Stomp , a truly fantastic show at a previous comedy festival.
3. Tap-dancing Spice Girl (Sporty) at a 13YO girl's Bat Mitzvah.
4. Assistant Manager to a quite well-known Australian band.

Which all sounds quite glam but jobs 1-3 were all very short gigs, so actually I've spent far more time waitressing, scooping icecream and being generally very handy in an office. As well as teaching tap-dance.

4 movies I could watch over and over
1. Peter's Friends (First developed insanely big crush on Hugh Laurie in this)
2. Love Actually
3. Top Hat (Fred & Ginger)
4. Chicago

4 places I have lived apart from where I live now
1. In utero
2. Canberra
3. Wollongong
4. New York (well, sort of. My mother's husband had a posting so she was living there for 6 months and I got to stay in their apartment for 2 weeks)

4 tv shows I love
1. Black Books
2. House (still with the Hugh Laurie crush)
3. Black Adder (oop! there he is again!)
4. New Tricks

Hard to stop at four!! What about the Goodies, Spicks and Specks, Red Dwarf, Doctor Who (new series and Tom Baker/Leila episodes from the old), Absolutely Fabulous, A Bit of Fry and Laurie, Absolute Power, Bleak House and a million others I've loved and can't bring to mind now.

4 places I have been for a vacation
1. Sri Lanka (with my ex)
2. Rottnest Island (with the band. Yeah)
3. New York/Europe (Twice. Once with my Mum and once with my ex)
4. Barwon Heads (my children's sole beach experience)

4 Websites I visit Daily
1. Bloglines
2. Go Fug Yourself
3. My bank account to check we're not overdrawn.
4. Mine, to see if I've got any comments. (Not that I'm sad, pathetic or needy in any way.)

4 Favourite foods
1. Goat's cheese on roasted capsicums with a side of pesto, as made by my Uncle.
2. Sticky date pudding with toffee sauce
3. Roast anything with all the veg, and gravy (but not gravy made by me. I suck at making gravy)
4. Chocolate - with a nice hot cuppa

4 places I would rather be
1. London, high society in the 1920's. I could have been a flapper..
2. An artist's studio somewhere in Italy, during the Renaissance.
3. A jazz bar in the US, when jazz was hot, and people tap-danced all the time.
4. In a fabulous beach-house, living off a huge windfall with my lovely family.

I'm supposed to tag 4 other people to do this meme now, but I'm too shy to name people. Well not not shy exactly, maybe paranoid is a better word ... because what if I tagged someone and they didn't wanna? You know, 'cos they NEVER do memes. Or because they've done this one ages ago. (Although. I was really flattered to get my first tag, thankyou Joanne!)

So if you like doing memes and you haven't done this one, sign up and tell me you did. But no pressure.

Friday, December 15, 2006

The joy of shopping

Em did a meme a while ago called how much of a stereotype are you? Which looked too hard for me to do. Especially since I already know that I'm pretty girly. I don't like dealing with mice or spiders, I prefer to let Fixit do the mowing of lawns and putting out of rubbish, I like wearing frocks and hair accessories, I can plait, I find car-chases in the movies a dead bore and I love costume dramas.

However, despite these girly attributes I am sadly lacking in the area of shopping. Christmas is a hard time of year because I am forced repeatedly into shopping malls where parents are beating or berating their screaming children and I always pick the wrong queue at the check-out and the background music drives me nuts. And when you need just one specific thing, like for example a size 2 plain white t-shirt, you can never find it so you are forced to walk round in circles at Best and Less because there must be one there somewhere. Even when you leave the mall, there is still the feral carpark to negotiate - miles to walk with aching arms, a raging headache, and a vagued-out expression to wherever the #### you left the car.

These days the so-called January sales start.on.Boxing.Day. And I know there are great bargains and that anyone with a grain of sense would take advantage of them.

But I don't care. You can't make me go back in there!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Musings from a Crowded Mind

Bushfire sun. Melbourne sky 8am Wednesday 13th December 2006.


It is my firmly held belief that all aspiring agents at Real Estate School are missing a crucial subject in their curriculum; to wit, proper usage of the English Language. I admit that I might be unable to spot a split infinitive at 50 paces like some bloggers. Notwithstanding, my fascination for real estate boards has given me plenty of material in support of my belief. Here is the latest one bothering me.

I keep wondering whether to give them the benefit of the doubt. Maybe this IS the place one needs if one has slapped a demmed blaggart across the face with one's glove, issued one's challenge and made the all important decision between swords or pistols? Who knows? But I suspect this has more to do with upstairs and downstairs toilets...

Lots of blogs are featuring their lovely Christmas trees. I thought I'd display our scrappy and chaotic one. Notice the lovely handmade star on the floor next to the tree? Yeah. That should be on top. The boys are a bit fascinated by the candy canes, and a few decorations have hit the floor as they hide and seek them. My excellent eye for detail meant that I only noticed that 3 days after I took the picture...

I have a thing for the smell of real pine-needles at Christmas time. The downside to the heavenly Christmas-sy aroma is of course the cleaning up of the dropped pine needles in January. As the original I-hate-to-housekeep girl, I'm not sure why this doesn't bother me too much. Possibly I live in hope that Fixit will deal with it? (Fingers crossed!) Last year I'm pretty sure Nell took care of it for me, but she was living with us then, I surely couldn't expect that again this year ...

I've included a close-up shot to display the handmade decoration I won from Kirsty, just for knowing the name of Suzy Quatro's character in Happy Days. (Leather Tuscadero, sister of Pinky)

On Saturday night I will be performing with 4 tap-dance students (including Nell! Go Nell!) at the Darebin Council's Carols by Candlelight . This is what I'm wearing. Yes, yes, with a shirt underneath and some Yuletide accoutrements. Wonder if this is what all the other tap troupes will be wearing this time next year?
(Don't mind me, just my little bitchy private in-joke.)

The boys will be having a sleepover with Grandma and Pa (and they are very excited!) Fixit's got his work Christmas party. So I hope the photos and video footage work out so I can show the performance to my family later. And also obviously that we are really good and steal the whole show.

Last Saturday it was waaaaay too hot to cook, so we ordered in, and as a special treat, we ordered in Japanese. Yum. You'd think. But we won't be using that so-called restaurant again. Everything was slightly under par but this was the last straw. Check out the Yakitori Chicken. They've used Birds Eye (or equivalent) frozen veg, the bastards.

How did it taste, you ask? Well, I'd prefer a meal from a food court to this.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Everyone's A Winner, Baby

So I was a winner. And my prize was a lovely handmade Christmas decoration from the lovely Kirsty. Which arrived yesterday, cleverly disguised as a Christmas card. Can't wait to put it on the tree.

Just waiting for Fixit to come home from work so he can rush out and buy the tree for us. He might be coming home with a new car. Well. I say new. I mean he might be buying his mate's old Commodore station-wagon, which is unregistered and in need of work. As long as it's air-conditioned. Our first family car. Currently we get around in my cute little white Corolla which I love. I'm having pangs actually. I know in my head that we need a bigger car because those little boys grow every time you take your eyes off them. But still. No more squeezing into little parking spots. And I'll have to relearn the whole reverse-parking thing with a big ole wagon. Plus its a bloody V8. With gas, I hasten to add. But I'm a bit scared of the grunt potential of a V8.

I bought some things for adorning fabrics recently; crayons, textas and glitter paint. Because I decided Cherub needs a shirt that says "long-haired BOY" to stop confusion when we're out and about. Then I did a present for a little girls birthday party tomorrow. And a request for the Climber.

So here's my handiwork. Don't look too closely, the crayon stuff is a tad smudged.

And here's my glamorous model, the Climber. Who was extremely difficult to photograph because he'd been eating a blue lollypop and had blue teeth.

While we're modelling, the boys here give you "Wild" and "Shaggy"

But then came the haircut.
(At his request. I liked the shaggy look.)

So now we have "wild" and "neat & cool for summer".

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

You know it's nearly Christmas when..

I think it must be time to take these down. Cards (displayed magnificently on the high-tech double string card hanger) from Fixit and Cherub's birthdays which were a couple of months ago now. *ahem*. See the vehicular theme on Fixit's line?

Because these arrived yesterday.

Both from aunts. One of mine, one of Fixit's. At first I thought Fixit's aunt had forgotten to sign hers. She did this once, sent a totally blank birthday card to Fixit. But she was moving house and feeling poorly, so we understood. When I opened this one I thought this is ridiculous how hard is it to write love from Aunt X and co?

But actually she's had them printed up specially and the printed message says that bit.

Which just goes to show that I never read the printed bit in a card. (see My Float? Not a Details Girl at all)

I just skip straight to the hand-written and hopefully heartfelt message. Luckily I double-checked.

Here's one for you. A new invention. Its called a Nell-icopter.

On Sunday Nell and I drove for an hour to catch the end-of-year Dance School show at Glittery Tapping Wonderland. The Principal, The Original and Glamorous Miss Lou Lou, is a friend of mine and was also my first tap teacher. (We are the same age because I was an adult learner. Which should give hope to any of you still hankering for a tap career of some description.)

Anyway, she is a truly creative and wonderfully (self-admitted) kooky person and I leave you with pictures from some of the crazy dance routines in the show, and a warning:

THESE ARE ADULTS DRESSED UP LIKE THAT. But if you'd been to the show you wouldn't think that was strange.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Minor Annoyances

More from the Ill-fated Cooking Chronicles. Wednesday night is my night for making a bit of an effort, cooking wise. I teach Monday, Tuesday and Thursdays, and Fixit generally has beer night on Fridays so Wednesday is the night where theoretically we could sit down, enjoy the meal with a glass of wine and no rush.

This Wednesday's menu plan was based on some rather fine looking steaks, (possibly New York fillet? but lacking a real cook's eye for detail, I can't be sure of that) to be served with raw carrot matchsticks, oven-roasted potatoes with garlic and rosemary and a red wine and mustard jus.

It's all going quite well. Like I say, I do try with my cooking. But Fixit is much later than usual. So what with the boys' bedtime looming, I leave it all sitting on the benchtop ready to serve when the kids are down.

Anyway. There I am reading Climber the Secret Garden when Fixit finally gets home. So he assumes that I've eaten and as the boys are in control, he goes off to look at the dinner situation. There's a few pots and pans scattered everywhere, so as the chief dish-doer in the household he rinses and stacks a few of these. Bam, good-bye red wine jus, down the sink. When he sees 2 steaks sitting there he doesn't click that I'm still unfed. He assumes there's a spare for his lunch tomorrow, so he packs it away in a lunch container with some of the potatoes. Then he cuts into his steak and finds it too rare for his liking so he sloshes a liberal amount of oil back in the frying pan and and re-cooks, achieving a medium-rare interior but a greasy, slightly burnt exterior. And then proceeds to knock off all the carrot matchsticks. I of course ruin my steak the same way when I return to the scene of the crimes.

But at least I had a glass of wine.


Yesterday the Climber's school was closed for industrial action. I considered doing the "Fill the 'G" - I love a protest rally as much as the next person - but I didn't fancy being in a large venue full of stairs and Jimmy Barnes with 2 little 'uns. Call me crazy.

We had a great time at Scienceworks instead, it is a fantastic museum; very hands-on and lots of fun activities.


On our way there, we passed a car where I noticed a youngish looking mum talking and cooing and adoring her baby in the back seat. Isn't that nice I thought. I used to do that when I had only one child.

A bit further on, I am stopped at the red light. I glance in the rear view mirror and realise its the same mother approaching us, and she is still so busy cooing backwards at her baby that she is going to run up the arse of me. I just have time to get my foot off the brake when biff!!

We jump out to inspect the damage. Letting go the brake has minimised the impact. I am just thinking of something soothing and nice to say, like aren't kids distracting? because I wasn't angry, although I was a little bit jumpy, when we noticed a scrape of her paint on my bumper so I leaned closer to look, as did she. Which resulted in her head-butting me. Which hurt. So instead of saying something soothing and nice as intended, what actually came out of my mouth was:

Oh, fucking hell!

So this poor chick thinks I'm being aggro now, and says I didn't mean to do that you know which of course I knew and I say I'm sorry I'm jumpy you've just hit my car and now you've head-butted me.

I was thoroughly unnerved by the whole thing and the lights had changed so I said I wasn't going to pursue anything because there was no damage and I jumped in and drove off.

And so did she, but I know that she would have had to pull over again almost immediately because she's got a lovely delicious baby in the back and all she was doing was loving it and it all went horribly wrong because of the grumpy bitch in the white car, and she would have felt guilty and unnerved and jumpy and wronged and she would have burst into tears.

So I feel good about myself.