Archive by Author
Saturday, 28 March 2015

Not Much Happens Around Here

We are diving through flyover land. Not much happens around here. Highways, rest stops, bad food, and two bit towns that help join the dots from point A to point B. Van Horn's claim to fame is its middle ground between Big Bend National Park and Guadalupe Mountains National Park. Nothing more.

 

Baby boy o tiny on bed

Tiny tot

 
RV overtaking

We are actually overtaking someone!

 

English hubby cleaning windscreen

Pit stop and windscreen clean

 

Briefcases for sale at the flying j

The last remaining stash of briefcases in the western world, at the Flying J

 

Subway lunch

English hubby talked me into a tuna melt

 

Butterfly toy in RV

Have butterfly will travel

 
RV park in van horn

Smack bang in the middle of nowhere special

 

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Friday, 27 March 2015

Fat Dash

One supermarket shop, two fast food stops, four hours drive time, 240 more miles under our belt we made it from Medina to Fort Stockton. Due west along the gun barrel of Texas. We experimented with a new approach – driving two hours, breaking for an early dinner and bath time for Baby Boy O, and then back in the hot seat for another two hours. It sort of worked, with sporadic cries as the little one was woken from slumber by bumpy roads and the loud clattering of dishes and stuff in our RV. The experiment continues.

 

Baby boy o standing on a trike

Checking out the trike

 

Rover worked with Harley and stoller

Which ride would you prefer?

 

Medina hills

Drive through the hills

 

Long john silvers

Long John Silvers, surprisingly delicious fish and chips and good service too

 
Baby boy o in car shopping cart

Beep beep, move out the way!

 

Baby boy o in cart in supermarket

Stocking up at H.E.B.

 

Mummy and baby boy o under big sombrero

Hola sombrero

 

Baby boy o standing in RV

Half time break. Letting him stretch out

 

English hubby standing outside rover

English hubby piecing Rover back together

 

Mummy and baby boy o playing tickle games

Tickle games

 

Pizza Hut skinny pizza

Our second serving of fat fast food today. Pizza Hut's skinny pizza with an asterisk stating it is not a low calorie food!

 

Pizza Hut booth

Notice how wide the booths are?! Pizza Hut patron size

 

Roadside bathing

Post dinner roadside bath, all ready for bed and the final leg of the drive

 

Driving into the sunset

Driving into the sunset

 

Fire sunset

Sky's on fire

 
Driving to fort Stockton at night

Hello Fort Stockton

 

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Thursday, 19 March 2015

Daily Pics: Rhythm

It’s hard to believe that we’ve only been back in Rover for 10 days. England, Singapore, Indonesia, Australia and Hong Kong now seem so very long ago. It’s nice to have now found our own rhythm, a balance as best we can between work, play, family and ‘me’ time. Our clocks seem to have synced. It makes me happy to have a routine, a plan. Perhaps it is the illusion of order and control. I recognize it will change in the most unpredictable ways, but I’ll take it nonetheless.

 

Baby sleeping on four pillows

Four square

 

Stonewall Texas neighborhood

A walk around the neighborhood

 

Lambs in a field

Where’s Mary?

 

Cranky crying baby

Someone woke up very cranky

 

Baby standing on dad sitting in rocking chair

Handover time as per the new schedule

 

Baby trying to crawl

Trying to teach him how to crawl. He’s not happy at all!

 

Man sitting infront of laptop in RV

Still so much to do and so little time

 

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Wednesday, 18 March 2015

Daily Pics: Me and My Boy

We’re camping out at Peach Country RV Park for the rest of the week. English Hubby gets to make sales calls and I get to hang out with my cheeky little boy. His personality grows stronger every single day and there are many giggles and laughs, but also grumps and tantrums. He came off his straight through the night sleeping schedule a few days back, mainly because of teething. We had to take some action to help him learn to get back in that sleep groove. Baby Boy O has mastered the art of standing. All good except he gets frustrated because he can’t do much else like move, sit or balance. He’s quickly entering toddlerhood and I’m busily reading books and searching for tips and YouTube videos to smooth the transitions. All that being said he is great company. I think we’ll keep him!

 

Baby playing piano

A couple of renditions of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in C major

 

Baby holding onto chair and trying to walk

Practicing the art of walking

 

Baby in the stroller on the side of the road

Taking a long walk down to the Pendernales River

 

Baby lying on mat in activity center

Taking an afternoon nap after all that play

 

Man fixing the sink in the RV

Maintenance

 

Plumbers putty

Putty in my hands

 

Man cooking on bbq outside RV

Date night BBQ dinner al fresco

 

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Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Daily Pics: St Patrick’s Day Pot Luck

We are the youngest RVing family here. If you added up my age, English Hubby’s and Baby Boy O’s we would be getting more in the vicinity of our fellow campers. There’s a lovely simplicity that I see around me. At the same time getting old can be tough when you add to the mix Alan’s dementia, Betty’s limp and Linda’s failing eyesight, but there seems to be an acceptance that time moves and we move with it. No sweating the small stuff, focusing on the here and now. Today there was great excitement surrounding the St Paddy’s day pot luck dinner. Naturally we couldn’t miss the social even of the week, so I whipped up a simple stir fry for dinner at 5pm. 

 

Family breakfast outdoors

Family breakfast outdoors

 

Baby at ladies knitting circle

Joining the ladies knitting circle

 

Baby on activity mat

Playtime fun!

 

St Patrick's day potluck food

Steering well clear of the unidentifiable green stuff

 

St Patrick's day dinner

Loving the corned beef

 

Baby sitting on lady's lap wearing green

Going green

 

Baby at st Patrick's day dinner

Center of attention

 

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Saturday, 14 March 2015

Daily Pics: Infinite Change

Today is Pi day 3.14.15…and so on, infinitely, random and changing. It is written that the beauty of Pi is that it puts infinity within reach. Therefore today it seems fitting that we commit to make an infinitely wise change. We all have that mental list – eat better, sleep more, do more exercise, moisturize, drink more water, meditate more and so on.  Some day we will run out of time to take that journey of change. So today English Hubby and I have started reading the Zen Habits book, Mastering the Art of Change, and are committing to just one change as we work through the chapters in this book. That one thing is to get more exercise. There. It’s out there in the big wide world. 

 

Morning fog

Sometimes you need to get through the fog to get some clarity

 

Dad holding baby in supermarket

We had grand ambitions to refuel, hike and explore. Shopping as always took longer than anticipated

 

Baby sitting on supermarket scales

Weighing in

 

Lunch from whole foods

Thank goodness for Whole Foods

 

Fridge packed with food

Won’t be going hungry anytime soon

 

RV being refused with gas

Refueling, literally

 

Two iPads on dining table

After dinner commitment to change

 

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Friday, 13 March 2015

Daily Pics: Puppy Dog Tales

A restful day at the campsite. Some work, some admin and lots of playing with the little one. The sun finally arrived so we went for a few walks by the river and along the trails. Baby Boy O is now keenly aware of fuzzy four legged friends. Every time he sees one its a “woohf whoohf” greeting. 

 

Man making green juice in RV

Morning green juice made by English Hubby’s fair hands

 

Cricket the dog

Woohf woohf Cricket

 

Rvs parked in campground

Coming back from a morning stroll to the river

 

Baby asleep in RV

Down time

 

Baby with look of concentration on his face

Pure concentration

 

Trees and grass with blue sky and sunshine

Finally the sun comes out to play, after four foggy rainy days

 

Cute baby wearing baseball cap

Friday afternoon family walk

 

Man and baby walking with deer on trail

Dear spotting

 

Puppy dog book

Puppy dog tales

 

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Thursday, 12 March 2015

Daily Pics: Up and About (Sort Of)

Yesterday I casually wrote “can’t wait to see what happens tomorrow” and Baby Boy O delivers. This morning he hoisted himself up from sitting to standing position, using the strategically positioned car seat as balance bars. If that wasn’t enough, this afternoon he took his first independent steps! Holding onto the couch for dear life, legs shakey and a mix of pure fear and excitement. Small steps for him, big steps for all of us. 

 

Baby standing against car seat

Hoisting himself up with all his might

 

Man and baby eating lunch on picnic table

Family lunch outside, sharing it with a few wasps

 

Baby in bunk bed playing with toys

A few moments of quiet play, in between Pterodactyl like cries

 

Baby standing

Big steps for a small boy 

 

Boomerang meat pie

An Aussie boomerang meat pie. Close enough, and tasty. 

 

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Thursday, 12 March 2015

Daily Pics: Hunger Games

Baby Boy O has been eating up a storm. He can’t seem to get enough of food and milk, and his all time favorite, watermelon. Definitely another growth spurt on the way, adding to the mental leaps he’s already making. Everyday is a new day and learning just continues exponentially. I feel so fortunate to be able to be witness to these events – things we as adults take for granted day in day out – but from a little ones point of view, it is a huge leap to take one foot step after another and hold himself still, to sift out then eject an unsavory food item from a mouthful of food, to open and close a box and take out blocks from a container, to play games with his mummy and understand the idea of taking turns and rolling in fits of laughter at each other. My baby played quietly and even looked after me today as I recouped in bed. His sweet chubby fingers gently wrapped around mine as I napped. I can’t wait to see what happens tomorrow.

 

Baby on tummy looking out

Sweet Baby Boy O looking at birdies by the Colorado River

 

Baby eating home made jook

Food glorious food

 

Dad and baby in carrier asleep

Daddy took him out for a walk to the activity center and along the trails

 

Colorado River Texas

After lunch walk to the river with mummy

 

Baby hair

His natural little coif

 

Baby standing on play equipment

Standing up and holding on like a big boy 

 

Baby sitting on slide

Having fun at the playgrounds and playing games with mummy

 

Pork roast dinner

Delicious roast dinner after an afternoon of play, cuddles and naps. Life is so very good

 

Map of the USA

Netflix date night in, and trip planning

 

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Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Daily Pics: Mamamama

Baby Boy O has a lot to say. Today he did the talking for us both. He loves jumping into conversation, chattering away to Mike our fellow RVer. He made friends with Linda the next door camper too. Best of all those seemingly random syllables may actually mean something. Mamamamama appears to stand for mummy. His first official word. It’s close enough. I’ll take it!

 

Baby playing on RV floor with dad at computer

Playtime is becoming quite serious

 

Two men and baby taking outside of RV

Chatting with Mike, the first person online in 1946 when his dad and brother pegged him up with the rest of the laundry 

 

Baby reaching out to man

Sharing a moment with Mike who has many stories to tell

 

Bridge over the Colorado River in Columbus Texas

Bridge over troubled waters

 

Sign for Thousand trails Colorado River Texas

Home for the next few nights. Hot dogs in the activity center tonight, ice cream social tomorrow

 

RV parked by the Colorado River

Landing a coveted spot by the river

 

Demand for rent notice

Sorting things out

 

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Monday, 9 March 2015

Daily Pics: The New Normal

We are settling into a new normal. Baby Boy O wakes us, he feeds, we play. Breakfast, clean up, admin, pack and go. We shop for essentials or gas or something, we lunch and we drive further. He cries, laughs, moans, smiles and more. We reach our destination where I unpack the inside whilst occupying the little one and English Hubby hooks up the RV outside. A little more play, perhaps a book. Then bath, another feed, and put to bed. Then dinner, dishes and we try to catch up on all the things we feel we should have done during the day in transit. Even without a ‘real job’ our time is cram filled with living.

 

Dad and baby playing with blocks in bed

Morning playtime

 

Baby napping

Nap time

 

 

Looking out the window of the RV

Drive time through fog in Galveston

 

Baby eating cantaloupe

Lunch time snack

 

Baby in car seat

Afternoon giggles

 

Computer screen

Grown up stuff


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Saturday, 7 March 2015

Daily Pics: Flying High

We have been completely spoilt with kindness. That bridge of friendship spanning Singapore, New York, Houston and now Galveston began with a conversation at a bus stop. Invited into their family’s home, flying kites on the beach, drinking margaritas over a Tex Mex two plate dinner feast. Sharing experiences and excitement of times to come. It makes me smile and remember how fortunate we are, every moment, every day. 

 

Smiling lady holding baby boy

What a great way to wake up, smiling.

 

View of beach from condo

And with a view 

 

Painting of monkey painting a monkey

Monkey business

 

Two men and baby assembling kite

Baby Boy O’s first lesson in aeronautics

 

Man and baby flying a kite on the beach

Up in the air

 

Dad and baby in carrier flying a kite

Higher higher daddy!

 

Three adults flying kites on the beach

Big kids

 

Bird plane and traditional kite flying

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No! It’s a rainbow kite!

 

Man concentrating on flying a kite

The concentration

 

Man flying kite on beach

Handyman Dan commanding the skies

 

Galveston beach

Not quite beach weather but nice to on the beach

 

Tex mex restaurant in Galveston

We’re in Texas. There’s got to be good Tex Mex here

 

Woman man and baby posing for photo

Waiting for dinner 

 

Chip and salsa

Only regret is not taking a photo of English Hubby’s two plate original dinner

 

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Friday, 6 March 2015

Daily Pics: Yellow Balloon Day

Getting settled back into the RV bit by bit. It’s nice to rediscover our tiny house on wheels and not having to live out of a suitcase. Baby Boy O’s shoe rack of clothes is unpacked, toys put away, English Hubby spent the morning rearranging the storage to make room for a stroller too. We now move from two vehicles to one. Rental returned after a circuitous drive around Houston airport courtesy of Google Maps. We are now traveling as a family in Rover, heading down to Galveston to meet Finland Gal and Handyman Dan. Running late of course. 

 

Baby stuff in RV

The great unpack

 

White car parked next to RV with lake in background

Farewell rental

 

Baby in shopping cart with yellow helium balloon

A very happy baby thanks to the lovely lady at Krogers

 

Baby and mum with yellow balloon in supermarket

Balloon games in the frozen aisle

 

Sunset over the port

From Houston to Galveston, a sunset with love 

 

Baby and lady playing with yellow balloon

All you need is a balloon and a Finnish Gal

 

Man with birthday cake and six candles

Only six years old!

 

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Thursday, 5 March 2015

Daily Pics: Home On Wheels

Winter caught up with us with a good sprinkling of snow in Dallas. We planned to take off at 9 but ended up leaving by about 10am. So is life with a little one who now refuses to be put down to play alone. Packing takes twice as long! We sludged our way to Conroe to pick up Rover. Luckily he was tucked away safe and sound with everything in good working order. A few quick pit stops to dewinterize, settle storage and restock on supplies, then onto our spot for the night. It’s good to be home.

 

View of snow from hotel room

Dallas in white

 

Baby sitting on be playing with buckets

Still practicing with the buckets

 

Dad and son eating breakfast

Like father like son

 

Snow on windscreen

Heading 196 miles south!

 

Highway driving

A balmy 37 degree Fahrenheit 

 

RV storage unit

Hello Rover

 

Baby sitting in drivers seat crying

But I don’t want to drive it mummy!

 

Inside of class c motor home

Flat battery but everything else in good nick

 

RV on the road

On the road again!

 

Man and baby in supermarket

Restocking with goodies

 

RV at lake Conroe

Parking up for the night

 

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Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Daily Pics: Dream Sheet

We put it out there today. Dream sheet shared. Our wish list is out there in the universe and the wheels are a-turning. Where it lands is something that will be revealed to us in good time. It has been a bumpy road to get to this point. Lots of late nights, excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint slides, what ifs and what not. Today good team work shone through, a important and different type of partnership. Tonight we celebrate with In-and-out burgers and a bag of popcorn.

 

Baby and babysitter playing with toy buckets

Teaching the little one how to stack buckets

 

Man with umbrella

Walking through the rain

 

Offices

The pitch

 

Baby on bed with buckets stacked up

Playing bucket games with mummy

 

Popcorn

A grease spoon milestone celebration

 

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Tuesday, 3 March 2015

Daily Pics: SitterCity

Thank goodness for SitterCity. We managed to find a great babysitter to meet us at our hotel in Irving. Baby Boy O loved the attention from someone new. Martha was great, nevertheless leaving my baby with a near complete stranger is a harrowing experience. We had a number of trial runs today – baby sitter and late night pitch perfect rehearsals – and now we have more peace of mind for tomorrow. Que sera sera. 

 

Babysitter holding baby

Striking gold with Martha

 

Babysitter changing baby in hotel room

Nice to have another pair of hands

 

Baby in stroller

Loving all the attention

 

Baby wearing a supercool tshirt

The t-shirt says it all

 

Baby playing in hotel room

Calm before the bedtime storm. Sometimes you have to shut the hotel door and rehearse in the hallway

 

Yesterday’s post: The Final Flying Leg

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Monday, 2 March 2015

Daily Pics: The Final Flying Leg

It’s been a very long day, starting in LA and ending in Dallas. Another snafu with American Airlines neglecting to inform us that they had changed our 11.10 flight to 09.30. Our patience tested in one long line after another – baggage check, rebooking and then security. Having spent over five hours in LAX Terminal 4 I can now safely say that it ranks as one of the worst airports in the world. Nevertheless we made the best of our closing leg of travel, grabbing lunch, finding a little nook to rest and even sneaking in a floor nap. Baby Boy O held up as well as a teething baby in transit can. It’s near midnight in our hotel room and he has finally melted down. This marks the official close of our round the world in 91 days chapter. I’ve enjoyed every moment of it and looking forward to being reunited with Rover, soon.

 

Baby sitting on carpet with sign that says week 46

A great way to start the day in LA

 

Boy holding home made book

Pirate Coopy with his swashbuckling tales

 

Baby and little girl reading yellow book

Princess Lila recounting stories of dragons

 

Man and baby with heart shaped balloon

A lot of love in the air

 

Waiting in line at lax

Line after line

 

Baby boy o sitting on top of luggage

Bag surfer

 

Floor napping at lax

Making the most of the situation

 

Mum carrying napping baby on plane

It’s been a long long day

 

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Thursday, 26 February 2015

Daily Pics: What A Difference A Day Makes

Hong Kong has really turned on the glitz. The sun is shining, the mist has cleared and the sky is blue. It is a completely different city of concrete angels. We went from sea to sky on the Big Bus. Stanley for lunch and Sky 100 in the afternoon to view Hong Kong from the heavens. Then back to basics with dinner at ABC Kitchen. So very grateful for good health, good friends, good weather. 

 

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Daily Pics: Big Bus Small Dumplings

It’s so much fun playing tourist in Hong Kong. Although I’d lived here for the best part of a couple of years, there were many parts of Hong Kong that were left untouched. Taking the hop on hop off Big Bus is a superb way to see (what we could through the mmist) the new and old of this incredible city. We rode on the open air top deck and feasted on the sights and tastes of Hong Kong island and Kowloon. Baby Boy O qualities for the best baby in the world award. He rolled with his oldies, out all day, sneaking in two on-the-go naps and being a charm magnet. 

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Daily Pics: Hello Hong Kong

It’s been almost 10 years since we’ve visited Hong Kong and it all feels familiar and new at the same time. I remember the buildings and the lights, the smells and the sound. I’ve forgotten the grime and the dirt, the inability of people to walk in a straight trajectory and the desire of pedestrians to find space where none exists. This was my home many moons ago, and where I met some of my favorite people in the whole entire world. We are staying with one of them right now and it still feels as if time has not missed a beat. 

 

Hong Kong by day

Wonderfully familiar territory…

 

Three people and baby in group elevator selfie

…with tiny elevators

 

Buildings in central HK

Not sure if low visibility is caused by fog, smog or a combo of both

 

Escalator through mid levels

A trip down memory lane…or more precisely a ride up escalator alley

 

Mum and baby cheering on escalator on HK

Onward and upward

 

Man lifting stroller down stairs

One hell of a job to maneuver the beast

 

Man lying on couch and baby standing nearby

All this banking, sightseeing and exploring is hard work

 

Baby sitting in a pillow fort

A more secure pillow fort

 

Woman in yellow cardigan making dinner

Making dinner with groceries from Aeon

 

fridge stuffed with haloumi

Only Donna Deal would buy 8kgs of haloumi and 200 bottles of wine

 

Hong Kong causeway bay view by night

Hong Kong by night

 

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Thursday, 19 February 2015

Daily Pics: Gong Hey Fatt Choi

Chinese New Year takes on a different meaning with a little one. So much more fuss is made and to see well worn events through the eyes of a little one is just magical. Spending it with family is so very special, more than words can ever describe. The lunar new year is always a turning of the page. New luck and fortune, a new chapter. Change will come and may we have the courage and compassion to accept things as they are.

 

Baby with red plum mess all over his high chair

A prosperous red start to the new year

 

Mum grandma and baby in a chinese outfit

Our little china doll

 

Baby in Chinese outfit with grandparents in red

Thanks for the ang pow Gong Gong and Poh Poh

 

Baby in Chinese outfit with ang POWs

Happy year of the goat!

 

Mum and baby in Chinese outfit

My heart melts 

 

Family photo in front garden

Everyone say cheese!

 

Sisters with ang pow

Show me the money says Squee

 

Car parked at an angle

Special parking

 

Red money tree

Let it rain down under the money tree

 

Feeding baby under grey shawl

Under cover moment

 

Dragon dance drums

Finally the drums start to roll

 

Grandpa carrying baby with love

Not scared at all as Gong Gong keeps his hand on his heart

 

Dragon dance

Loving the dragon dance

 

Baby starring

Completely captivated

 

Dragon dance troupe

Walking the halls, meeting and greeting

 

Aunt feeding baby

Delicious dim sum lunch at Lucky Chan

 

Melbourne in sunshine

Perfect Melbourne sunshine day

 

Chinese red lanterns strung across trees

Celebration

 

Great aunt with baby and dad

Chance meeting

 

Shadow of a couple on a pier

Off for a walk

 

Man by river with city in background

Exploring the Yarra

 

Path along the docklands

And a quick shop at the Docklands

 

Family at home

Home is where the family is

 

Vegetarian dinner

Delicious dinner whipped up by dad

 

Super mum and greatest dad mugs

So very true

 

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Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Daily Pics: The Local

Hanging out locally and at The Local. Morning hungry hippo breakfast down Main Street, followed by a walk by the beach back home. Then another day of photo scanning and digitizing of memories. A seemingly endless Sisyphusean project. Bath time and bed time sneaks up and the little one is put to bed and grandparents are on babysitting duty. We sneak off to drinks and dinner at The Local with the sisters plus two. Another great day in Melbourne. 

 

Men and woman eating breakfast

Breakfast on Main Street

 

Shark mural

Shark attack

 

Baby and grandma playing the piano

Light entertainment

 

Old photos and scanner

Then back to work

 

Grandma reading to baby

Some of the helpers are slacking off! 

 

Beer wisdom

The truth…

 

Shelves with beer

…on tap

 

Man and woman smiling

One sister…

 

Two couples having a beer outdoors

Two sisters…

 

Six tubs of ice cream

…six tubs of ice cream. Sounds fair!

 

Yesterday’s post: Photos

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Monday, 9 February 2015

Daily Pics: Photos

The generational gap is best exemplified by preferences for photos. I like them digital where there is no need to categorize them, put them in photo albums, or worry that may disappear in a flood or fire. They are there at your fingertips (cloud access willing) and digital photos are even capable of telling you where they were taken. Crazy Daisy falls in the other camp. Mum likes the feel of a photo, the flip of the page, the ability to show them to her friends in a nicely laid out book. So we’ve spent the better part of the day sequencing and sorting baby photos and putting them into albums. I have to admit there is something nice and satisfying about the end product, a book that pages through Baby Boy O’s first few months. 

 

Batch coffee shop

So very Melbourne. Best coffee culture in the world

 

Mum smooching baby

Smooches with…

 

Baby in space cadet onesie

…my little space cadet

 

Two women walking down driveway

Off she goes to audit the shops with her carer

 

Mum sorting photos at dining table

Sorting photos

 

Grandma with photo of crying baby

Such precious moments captured

 

Grandma holding baby in stripped tank top

But nothing is a good as the real thing!

 

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Friday, 6 February 2015

Daily Pics: Walk Down Memory Lane

I remember summer days like these where we would feel slow and lethargic. As a kid the days would feel so very long and the sun shone so very hot. The breeze offers no relief. The ding of the bell announcing recess was over was a welcome sound just to escape the outdoors. That smell of grass and sunshine and baking dirt. Now, given we are all grown up, we jump in the car and escape to Southland to get out of the heat.

 

Baby in high chair surrounded by grandparents

Who are these crazy people?!

 

Baby resting on grandpas shoulder

It’s so hot I’m melting

 

Woman eating Hokkien me

Lunch at Southland

 

Baby eating hot cross buns

Baby Boy O is in on the action with a fistful of hot cross buns

 

Two women and baby in Southland

Only last week Stinky and I were wondering what happened to Sarah and Michelle. The universe has a funny way of bringing people together

 

Man sliding

Evening walk with my honey

 

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Monday, 2 February 2015

Daily Pics: Laksa Night

Our days are packed with so many activities that by night’s end we are exhausted. It’s a lovely feeling, days so full of things I want to do, people to see and places to be. Poor English Hubby has been working at home whilst Baby Boy O and I scoot all over town. Today we took our first Melbourne train ride together, off to Richmond to meet Cookes for lunch. Aunty Cycle Janice and Uncle Nurse Kev came over for laksa dinner and chats on Darwinism at its best. Add a couple of bags of chips, Vietnamese sweeties, fresh cut mango and a tub of salted caramel ice cream and tummies are way full before bed. 

 

Baby with papaya and surprise look on face

What?! No more food?

 

Baby at mordialloc train station

Introducing Baby Boy O to Melbourne public transportation

 

Baby and mum looking out train window

Someone loves looking out the window

 

Football art in Richmond

Richmond

 

Baby held by man crying

Don’t you know I’m famous?

 

Poached than fried egg

Had to try this place because it had Rambo in its name

 

Grandma reading baby A Bumbelbee book

Loving the present from Poh Poh

 

Grandma feeding baby

Loving the doughy sweetness of a bao more!

 

Baby playing with buckets held by Aunty

Cuddles with Cycle Janice

 

Baby playing buckets on table

Build it up just to tear it down

 

Baby playing with red packets

More to add to the baby bank account. Thank you!

 

Auntie feeding baby a nectarine

Pre bath time feeding frenzy continues

 

Woman with tub of ice cream

What are the rest of you having?

 

Sisters sitting at dining table

Sisters (junior)

 

Mum with her sister

Sisters (senior)

 

Yesterday’s post: Building

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Daily Pics: Building

Reno Charlie and Opera Cat have been renovating their place for years. Seeing it come together is beautiful. A happy place, full of life and light. Just like their lovely family. Building takes years. Gardens take time to grow, then taste so very sweet. We look forward to the dinner party with the long rustic table that stretches from the deck, through the window and into the garden. Cheers. 

 

Pot of congee

Made with love – 5am and Gong Gong is in the kitchen

 

Grandpa and baby watching the rain

Watching the world go by through a curtain of rain

 

Grandpa feeding baby

Loving every spoonful

 

Baby skyping with grandparents

Baby Boy O skyping with all the grandparents

 

Driving over the west gate bridge

Over the West Gate Bridge

 

Lego pincer on the nose

Lego nose job

 

Boy with present

Where there’s a will there’s a way

 

Baby sitting on woman's lap

Playing pick up toys with Opera Cat

 

Dad cutting up a plum cake with boys looking on

What can you do with a plum?

 

Boys playing with building blocks

Master builders

 

Boy holding basil and tomato dish

Youngest foodie on the block

 

Baby and dad

Like peas in a pod

 

Man watching final of Australian open

Big game in play

 

Yesterday’s post: 

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Daily Pics: Tonight We Are Enemies

Much sporting excitement tonight with Murray playing Krygios in the quarter finals of the Australian Open. Crazy Daisy is worth her weight in gold, especially when she turned to English Hubby and declares, “tonight are enemies”! Unfortunately there are no remaining Aussies in the competition, and mum has also lost her lover boy, Federer, so the field is wide open for her vocal support. 

 

Grandpa pushing stroller along street

Off to see the ducks (part 2)

 

Father and son in carrier infront of Main Street cafe

Brunch at Main Street with my boys

 

Baby with cap and bib

Noshing on roast beef and vegetable purée with Turkish bread

 

Beach on a cloudy day

Off to the beach

 

Man and laughing baby on the beach

For a wind swept walk…

 

Family selfie on mordialloc beach

…and family selfie

 

Man and baby on beach with segues in the background

Chasing seagulls

 

Baby with food all over

C’mon gimme a hug!

 

Man in car holding bags of chips

Pre game dash for munchies

 

Murray v Krygios tennis match on tv

England v Australia

Yesterday’s post:

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Daily Pics: Relativity

In a blink of an eye 20 years flies by. Cousins grow up, new families are created, and conversations move from Barbies and Lego to house prices, grandsons and worldly travels. They say it’s always about journey, but when you’re on that path every day it is hard to notice the gradual change. Then all of a sudden over afternoon tea the passing of time becomes evident and more memories are made.

 

Grandma lying on play mat with baby

The look of pure joy

 

Baby with bug toy

Love bug

 

Family at table having afternoon tea

Catching up over a cosmopolitan afternoon tea

 

Aunty carrying baby holding plastic duck

Playing duck with Grand Aunty S

 

Baby rolling on play mat

This is how we roll

 

Baby and uncle looking at cuckoo clock

Captivated by the cuckoo

 

Extended family

Theory of relativity…Energy = Memories and Cousins Squared

 

Yesterday’s post:

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Thursday, 15 January 2015

Daily Pics: Muffins And Cupcakes

I’m reminded of why Melbourne is known to have ‘four seasons in one day’. It has threatened to rain since the morning, with intermittent sprinklings under an ominous looking sky. Nevertheless we pushed on and managed to fit in a walk to the local coffee shop this morning, muffins and coffee on a park bench, lunch and cupcakes at Soniana’s place, zoo dancing, the case of a missing trailer, and a walk to the park to play. It has been a wonderful day with wonderful friends. This is what make it feel like home. 

 

Grandma walking with stroller

Braving the weather

 

Cookie jars and New Years resolution

One cappuccino with two sugars and a decaf soy latte please

 

Mum and me eating muffins

Muffin break

 

Baby in stroller smiling

Baby Boy O gets his little super puff snacks

 

Aunty and baby

Coffee break and cuddle with Smelly

 

Woman making cupcakes with kids looking on

Making butterfly cupcakes from scratch

 

Girl asking for cupcake

I want…

 

Tray of cupcakes

…CUPCAKE!

 

Man reading book

English Hubby doing some light reading and seeing the error of his ways

 

Little girl cutting cucumber

Making lunch, with olives too!

 

Baby with kiddies

Loving the attention

 

People walking to the park

Off to the park

 

Three best friends

The most amazing women in the world, reunited

 

Two boys and two girls

Cheeky bunnies – one hard head, one dibber dobber, one five year old going on fifteen and one smiley olive eating princess

 

Four kids jumping

This picture says it all

 

Best friend holding my baby

Soniana always knew this day would come

 

Chicken parmigiana

Capping off a perfect day with dinner at The Local with Scoobes and Fatty Patty

 

Yesterday’s post: 

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Saturday, 3 January 2015

Daily Pics: Bali R&R

Enjoying some much needed R&R at our lovely villa. So very glad we chose to stay here. Thank you to all our Facebook friends who gave us advice on whether an open swimming pool would be a hazard for an eight month old baby. The wonders of technology, allowing us to crowdsource an answer. 

 

Happy baby

Hello sunshine

 

Napping baby

Nap time now

 

Man selling sweet potato

Sweet potato for my sweet boy

 

Woman crossing street in Bali

Bringing home the goodies

 

Mangosteen and rambutan

More snacks

 

Baby napping with book

More napping

 

Man getting hot stone massage on table

Hot stone rub down

 

Man and baby in pool

And a delicious dip

 

Man having dinner

Followed by a yummy (dark) dinner at the Bvlgari Resort

 

Baby and mum at dinner

With my fabulous boys

 

Yesterday’s post: Love And Marriage

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Friday, 2 January 2015

Daily Pics: Love And Marriage

I have known my Dear Kinder Friend since I was three. It has been a connection that spans continents, schools, companies and the passing of time. He played the song that I walked down the aisle to, and today I feel so blessed to share another milestone with him. His marriage to his soul mate. To my Dear Kinder Friend and his Missus, may the stars in the heavens shine upon you and happiness touch every day. 

 

Baby in stripped outfit sitting on a couch

Just chillin’

 

Swimming pool in villa

Enjoying the villa

 

Babysitter carrying baby

Hello Babysitter Jawick

 

Dad carrying baby and babysitter walking

Off to breakfast

 

Man eating breakfast with babysitter carrying baby

So nice to have an extra pair of hands (thx for the recommendation Party Marty)

 

Local kids

Greeted by devilish smiles

 

Baby carried by babysitter

So happy to be carried

 

Cows in paddock

Just over the back fence

 

Baby swinging on legs of lady

Playing with Gong Gong’s girlfriend

 

Baby and mum playing with water in pots

Learning about hydrology

 

Baby holding two pots in swimming pool with dad and friend

Mastering the two handed maneuver

 

Four people and baby in the pool

Pool time pre wedding fun

 

Baby in carrier looking at mans necklace

Checking out Uncle Nik’s man jewelry

 

Baby and dad with friends

Waiting for the bus

 

Beautiful family in Bali

The dress fits!…just

 

Bali traffic

Enroute in traffic

 

Entrance with wedding sign

Finally made it

 

Baby reaching for dad's drink

Daddy please…

 

Baby with grimace on face

Hmmm!

 

Wedding dinner table setting

Last minute prep

 

Man at alter waiting for his bride

The longest wait

 

Bride and groom standing at the altar

For his perfect soulmate

 

Wedding party tent

Lighting up the night

 

Suckling roast pig

Local delicacies

 

Two merry people

A few drinks down the line

 

Wedding favors with message

Wedding favors…

 

Wedding favors with message

…with sagely advice

 

Baby sitting on woman

Second wind for the party boy

 

Mum and baby at wedding

About to turn into late night pumpkins

 

Yesterday’s post: Bali High

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Thursday, 1 January 2015

Daily Pics: Bali High

Bali was never on my list of places to go. Growing up in Australia, Bali was where the lager louts and bogans went for their corn roll braid holidays. Sort of like what the trashy Ibiza party crowd is to the English. But as I’ve learned over the last year to never say never. We are here for my Dear Kinder Friend’s wedding and I’m loving being in the heat and mess and smell of Indonesia. Having crowd sourced the decision to stay in a gorgeous villa with a private pool, we find ourselves amongst old friends. Over 25 years and still recognizable. Connections renewed, it is now time to play. 

 

View of green fields

A view from the top

 

Baby in stroller outside villa

Heading off to explore

 

Man pushing stroller down lane in Bali

Loving the sights and smells

 

Busy road with motorcycles

And sounds and the craziness

 

Killer Mexican food in Bali

May be a killer in more ways than one

 

Bali fried chicken stand

What would Kentucky think?   

 

Nasi goreng breakfast

Traditional breakfast with an old family friend

 

Man in supermarket in Bali

Love checking out the local supermarket

 

London biscuits

You never know what you will find

 

Small side road to villa in Bali

Not surprising we got lost finding the villa last night

 

Baby and dad in red tops

Going for the mini me camouflage look

 

Man carrying baby in car seat

Meeting up at Finns Bar

 

Finns bar beach front

A long way down for a cocktail on the beach

 

Vernacular to Finns bar

Thank goodness for the mechanical intervention

 

Me and husband

Quick selfie plus one

 

Storm approaching beach

Perfectly timed around the torrential storm

 

Crab on beach

Maybe the crab ran off with English Hubby’s fitbit

 

Big hugs

Big hugs from a Starr

 

Bonfire on the beach

Not your average night in Bali

 

Yesterday’s post: Last Day Of An Amazing Year

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Daily Pics: Last Day Of An Amazing Year

It’s been one of the best years of my life. Our little cherub arrived, we have each other, our health and the freedom to roam. I wake each morning feeling incredibly fortunate, blessed with more than I could ever ask for. Part wondering what we have done to be deserving and every ounce grateful. My artist friend Deb selects a word each year. Following in her footsteps my word for 2015 is “balance”. Being in equilibrium, at that continually changing point where things are harmonious, where the moment matters and is effortless in a positive way. Bring on 2015. 

 

Items laid out all over bed

We’ve managed to accumulate more stuff. Packing fast after a late wake up

 

Instructions on how to find the cricket network

Dearest Banana knows English Hubby well! Thank you my dear friend xx

 

Dad giving son medicine

Off to Sydney Bec’s for a quick drink and tips on navigating Bali immigration. Poor little Cousin curly Kiwi Frog lapping up his Panadol

 

Two couples with babies

Old and new friends, and can’t wait to meet the soon to arrive little one

 

Baby holding baby seatbelt

Off to Bali. Safety first!

 

Baby with infant life raft

Do I really need this mummy?!

 

Baby in airplane bassinet

Our happy little traveler 

 

Immigration arrival hall in Bali

Lines aren’t too bad

 

Taxi in Bali

Getting ripped off by the taxi driver – 275,000 rupees or bust

 

Lights of Denpasar

Fireworks over the horizon. Just don’t hold them.

 

Man swimming in pool

Starting the new year with a swim in our pool. Thank you for an amazing year, and looking forward to 2015 with open arms

 

Yesterday’s post: A Walk Down Memory Lane

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Daily Pics: A Walk Down Memory Lane

English Hubby and I first met in Singapore over 12 years ago, when I gate crashed a leaving do he had organized for a team member of his. My Dear Kinder Friend had invited me, and coincidently it is to his wedding that we will be traveling to in Bali, in a few days’ time. Talk about things coming full circle. 

Now we revisit Singapore married and all grown up with a baby in tow, for a sticky walk down memory lane. So many days and nights we had both spent on this tiny island city. Working for various clients, getting up to mischief late into the night and early into the morning. Back then Singapore was a little backwater, starting to make its way onto the international scene. Now it feels like it’s all grown up too. 

 

Three boys names on the fridge

Leaving his mark on Banana’s fridge

 

Baby playing with new toys

Cool new toys!

 

Entrance to the raffles hotel

So very excited to get going and see some of the old hang outs. Looking forward to Hainese Chicken Rice at the bakery

 

Baby asleep in car seat

Not as excited as mummy

 

Toast box eatery

Turns out the chicken rice place is not open until lunch time, so we follow another recommendation

 

nasi goreng, kaya toast, half boiled eggs, sweet tea and milo

Traditional street food breakfast – nasi goreng, kaya toast, half boiled eggs, sweet tea and milo

 

Baby eating kaya toast

Baby Boy O is really loving it

 

Half boiled eggs

Can’t get enough!

 

Man and baby walking across street in Singapore

Off to explore our old hang outs

 

Baby in stroller infront of white church

Everything has changed. From bars to restaurants. From single to married plus baby!

 

Baby smiling

Finally awake from his jet lagged sleep

 

Baby change facilities at raffles plaza

Loving the baby change facilities at Raffles Plaza Shopping Mall

 

Clothes shop in Singapore

Indulging in a bit of shopping

 

Singapore arts center

Touristing around the arts center durian

 

Rainbow ribbons art instillation

Getting creative

 

Shenton way fiancial district buildings

Many months spent working in the financial district and Shenton Way 

 

Signs in Singapore

Landmarks

 

Fullerton quay hotel lobby

Found our way to the beautiful Fullerton Quay hotel

 

White string holding balloons

Anyone dare to pull the white string?

 

Man and woman in Singapore

Old fashioned selfie

 

Man eating sushi

Picnic lunch with throbbing techno music

 

Baby eating papaya

Getting some tropical papaya action

 

Solar sunshade

Environmentally conscious Singapore

 

Buildings along marina bay sands

All new (to us) Marina Bay Sands

 

women with selfie sticks

Seriously, what’s with these selfie sticks?!

 

Baby held over trash can

Oh no! Recycling gone too far

 

Walking through row of palm trees

Walking, walking, walking

 

Singapore bridge and Ferris wheel

Over the bridge and far away

 

Singapore lotus building

Admiring the lotus position

 

Marina bay hotel

Ship ahoy!

 

Singapore flyer

High flyer

 

Painting on wall

Creativity on the walls

 

Baby on dad's shoulders

Rest break, enjoying the Singaporean version of Glee Club

 

Front of taxi cab

Learning about GrabTaxi, Comfot, Hailo and Uber

 

Baby looking at great aunt

Surprise!

 

Baby cuddling great aunt

Instant cuddles

 

Baby receiving red packet from great aunt

Thank you for my ang pow Khoo Poh and Uncle

 

Hainese chicken rice

Two things off the check list – Hainese chicken rice and satay

 

Dinner with family in Singapore

So heartwarming to see Cousin “Charles” and his family

 

Baby with cousins in Singapore

Baby Boy O surrounded by lovely ladies

 

Baby with great uncle

Little cuddle with Uncle SK

 

Baby holding rattle cuddling great aunt

More cuddles with Khoo Poh

 

Farewell family hugs

See you all soon…maybe in Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, America…?

 

Pulling farewell faces

Hope the wind doesn’t change Miss C3

 

Yesterday’s post: Made It To Singapore…Finally

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Monday, 29 December 2014

Daily Pics: Made It To Singapore…Finally

It was a long long flight from Doha to Singapore. The cunning plan was to keep Baby Boy O awake on this leg so he will fall asleep when we reach our destination – a pre-emptive jetlag manoever. Naturally he had other plans of his own and we know who’s boss on that front! Nevertheless we made it to Singapore. The missing Air Asia flight puts things in perspective. Even though we were five hours late, we arrived safe and sound. So very ready for some shut eye if only we could find the right apartment! 

Changi airport 2am

Not the 9.30pm arrival we had expected!

 

Man carrying lots of luggage

Now, was it 235 or 237? Block A or B?

 

Baby playing with toys in Singapore

After a half decent nap, Baby Boy O was ready to hit the toy box

 

Man walking by big green plants

I’ve missed Asia with its giant tropical plants and monsoon rains

 

Baby in car seat in Singapore taxi

Taxi over to east coast

 

Blonde woman and baby

Sydney Becs with jetlagged and grumpy Baby Boy O

 

Baby on cream couch

Still waking up…slowly

 

Two naked babies

Much happier when we went native with Cousin Curly Kiwi Frog

 

Chili crab dinner in plastic containers

Post massage take out dinner with the French famiile

 

Yesterday’s post: 

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Sunday, 28 December 2014

Daily Pics: Delayed in Doha

I’ve heard of Sleepless in Seattle, but never thought I’d be delayed in Doha! Thank goodness for middle eastern hospitality. Doha International was an oasis, compared to American airports. Nice clean family change rooms, places to comfortably rest, service with a smile, people who know what their doing. I think they should base the next reality TV season of Survivor in JFK. That is enough to make contestants cry. 

 

Changing baby diaper in Doha airport

Diaper change time

 

Women's quiet room in Doha

Those men are just so loud, here’s a place to escape

 

Family area in Doha airport

Talk about awesome

 

Posing in front of a giant yellow teddy bear at Doha airport

Exploring the terminal. Not everyday you see a giant yellow teddy bear

 

Baby playing with orange strap

Doing quite well given its about 2am London time

 

Departure board in Doha

You’ve got to be sh*tting me. Now a 4.5 hour delay?!

 

Sitting in the quiet room at Doha airport

Off to have a nap in the quiet room

 

Man with baby dining in Marche

Lunch / dinner / whatever at Marche. Not sure that time it is, nor do I want to know

 

Mum carrying baby wrapped in blue blanket

With my superstar traveller

 

Cabin of plane

And finally we are on board…Singapore here we come!

 

Yesterday’s post: Farewell a England, For Now

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Daily Pics: Farewell England, For Now

All good things must come to an end…for now. We leave England today, bound for Singapore, with a stopover in Doha. Having spent a month in Sevenoaks and with all the Christmas merriment we have managed to accumulate more stuff than we bargained for. Packing is a major game of creative Tetris. 

 

Man fixing computer

Last minute help desk 

 

Baby lying in suitcase

Another round of packing…

 

Baby in box

…what do we do with things that don’t fit?

 

Grandpa reading nursery rhymes to baby

Yah Yah entertaining Baby Boy O with nursery rhymes

 

Turkey pie

Nothing goes to waste…yummy!

 

Grandma holding baby on floor

Loading up on the cuddles. Everyone’s sad.

 

Baby sitting on aunts knee

See you soon Aunty Ems. Come visit us in NYC

 

Tossing baby to grandpa

Pass the baby. Yah Yah’s turn

 

Christmas tree at LHR

Finally through security at LHR

 

Baby and dad in airplane bulkhead row

Thank you Qatar Airways for the bulkhead row

 

Baby in airplane seat clapping hands

So how did you enjoy your trip to England?…

 

Yesterday’s post: Christmas Toys

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Friday, 26 December 2014

Daily Pics: Christmas Toys

Boxing Day should be called unpacking day. Taking all our new toys out of their wrapping fand setting them up, like Mah Mah’s new iPhone and printers. English Hubby played 24 hour help desk, fixing and configuring almost every piece of electronic equipment in a 20 meter radius. Eco Jo dropped off the last delivery of Crimbo presents from Great Aunt Quilter and Great Uncle Golfer who were unfortunate casualties of the winter lurgies. It feels like it has been an entire month of Christmas. How wonderful!

 

Son helping mum set up iPhone

1-800-iPhone help desk

 

Christmas presents

Such thoughtful Christmas presents for Baby Boy O. A 50 year old turtle came home to roost

 

Aunt holding baby

Cuddles with Eco Jo

 

Baby posting with toy keys

Keys to the kingdom. The only piece of electronic kit daddy didn’t need to set up!

 

Yesterday’s post: Baby’s First Christmas

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Thursday, 25 December 2014

Daily Pics: Baby’s First Christmas

What a day! So many lovely thoughtful gifts, and best of all surrounded by our loved ones. Aunty Ems played post lady. Mah Mah whipped up an amazing turkey roast with full trimmings, and also an extra white cake for us. Yah Yah put Santa to shame as he dished out an endless stream of presents. The singing penguin came out of hibernation. We have been thoroughly spoilt rotten!

 

Woman delivering Christmas cards

Post lady Ems delivering Christmas cards first thing in the morning

 

Kissing puffin Christmas ornament

This year’s new Christmas ornament from Project Puffin in Maine

 

Christmas morning family photo in bed

Christmas morning in bed

 

Grandma holding Christmas stocking for baby

Baby’s first Christmas. Mah mah has made it sooo special.

 

Wrapping paper and gifts all over the bed

Opening our stockings. Keeping the kids entertained. What great fun!

 

Skyping with mum and dad

Merry Christmas Australia!

 

Mum taking orders for breakfast

Taking orders for breakfast

 

Fried full breakfast

Fry up please!

 

Baby in high chair with bib

Where’s my food?!

 

Christmas tree with lots of presents

Present time!

 

Baby with crazy singing penguin

The crazy singing penguin makes an appearance

 

Family with baby

I want my presents now!

 

Baby and grandma with book

Thank you for my Sophie the Giraffe book Mah Mah. I love it!

 

Baby tasting the strap of the back pack

These presents are tasty!

 

Grandpa giving baby a present

More for me?! Thank you Yah Yah!

 

Fox's party rings

Thanks babe, just what I wanted!

 

Man holding Christmas present

Can’t do this in Jill’s mum’s car

 

Platter full of snacks

Someone take these snacks away from me!

 

Baby asleep

Opening presents, such hard work!

 

Christmas turkey

Lunch time. Yummo.

 

Baby wearing Christmas cracker hat

Do I really have to wear this mummy?

 

Christmas roast plate

Delicious!

 

Baby naked with teething necklace

Half time change of clothes

 

The queen on tv

Tradition continues

 

Baby and grandpa wearing Christmas crack hat

Christmas cuddles

 

Yesterday’s post: Christmas Eve Date Night

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Daily Pics: Christmas Eve Date Night

Lots of last minute preparation for Christmas including a much needed hair cut. I’m in two minds about Christmas. I love the tradition and being with family. I grimace at the consumerism which is why we’ve tried to edge toward more thoughtful gifts. In a perfect hippy dippy world we would make our gifts – crafts, poetry, letters, paintings – gifts that convey meaning and take thought and time to create. Gifts that arrive in slow motion, not over night shipped. I may not have fully gotten to that place this year, but the intent and mindful desire is there. Happy Christmas Eve. 

 

Christmas decorations in baby room

Mah Mah went to town!

 

Baby and grandma in kitchen

Morning chunder and cuddles

 

Waitrose checkout

Another trip to Waitrose

 

Baby with purple spoon

Loving the spicy tomato soup for lunch

 

Lunch leftovers

Last of the leftovers from the family gathering

 

Dinner at loch fyne

Chatty date night. What is your word for next year? Opportunity. Balance.

 

Skyping for Christmas

Wishing Australia a Merry Christmas

 

Santa door tag

He’s the best baby boy in the whole world. We love you more than words can describe

 

Yesterday’s post:

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Daily Pics: Photo Shoot

Photos are a way to freeze time, capturing just one moment. In an instant that moment passes and we have all changed in some minuscule way, but changed nonetheless. I love photos not because they freeze time, but because they are a reminder of a moment past. The visual stimulus can evoke strong memories, feelings, smells, thoughts, hopes, fears, ideas and more. That’s what they are. Memories. Colored by our current mood and circumstances. The stories of our lives we re-intepret in different ways with each re-reading. At the end of the day you can never really relive the same moment, which is what makes the “now” so precious. For in the time it takes to say cheese, it is gone, never to be again. 

 

Photographer with lights in living room

Lights, camera, action!

 

Man and woman on couch posing for photographs

Say cheese!

 

Man waving arms and woman taking photos

Things we do to make a baby smile

 

Family on couch with girl playing with baby

Over to City Boy Chris’ place for a curry

 

Kids and baby on sofa playing video games

Toys, toys…

 

Red Ferrari

…and more toys

 

Yesterday’s post: Sevenoaks Day

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Monday, 22 December 2014

Daily Pics: Sevenoaks Day

We are nearing the end of our stay in England and it feels like I haven’t even scratched the surface on all the things I had wanted to accomplish. So much for getting to the gym three times a week, putting together the yearly Shutterfly albums in my spare time (…what spare time?..), sending out personal Christmas cards (sorry everyone) and the list goes on and on. I always thought that being on sabbatical from work meant lots of time on my hands, but I’ve come to the conclusion that we fill time with the trivial to the sublime, and somehow it just expands like putty to take up any spare space. English Hubby keeps reminding me not to be too harsh a critic. I am working – as a mum – just not being paid it in the traditional sense, but rather in hugs and kisses. 

 

Baby in stroller at the gym

Attempting a gym session, but childcare is closed for the holidays

 

Baby sitting in white chair

So we go for a walk around town and stop at Marks and Spencer’s for a jam and cream scone instead

 

Pastries at a local market stall

Pastie and pork pie for lunch

 

Strolling through Sevenoaks lanes

Enjoying a stroll home

 

Wrapped Christmas present with tag

Time for Christmas present wrapping

 

Baby with woman at restaurant

Then off to Cote for dinner with friends

 

Baby playing with boy

Cuddles and spoons with Escargot Harry

 

Yesterday’s post: Family Tree

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Daily Pics: Family Tree

We had an early Christmas get together with the English Side of the family tree. Mah Mah has gone full out to make this a special day with goodies and treats galore for everyone. The only downside is that lurgies have reduced our numbers by four, and they are dearly missed. As usual with these events eyes are bigger than tummies, there’s always someone who falls asleep on the couch (!) and we managed to squeeze in a stroll to Knole to try to alleviate the guilt of that extra handful of cheese balls, half a dozen mini sausage rolls and one too many chocolate crackles. Eat. Drink. Be merry.

 

Man and baby in snowman outfit

Preparing the prize pony

 

Getting out the china

Getting out the china

 

Baby in snowman outfit

Rocking the snowman outfit 

 

Two ladies

Calm before the storm, Sunday best

 

Table laid out

Laying the table for lunch

 

Snacks in bowls

Putting out the snacks

 

Woman in kitchen cooking

Whirlwind of activity 

 

Roast beef being carved

Sunday roast with the most

 

People seated at dinner table

Digging in

 

Baby in high chair eating roast lunch

Getting in on the action

 

Boy and baby staring at each other

Sideshow Sam declared he doesn’t like babies…I’m not sure that’s entirely true

 

Profiteroles

Pudding madness

 

Boy with foam packaging and baby looking on

Family fun and uncontrollable giggles

 

Mum and son making faces

Waiting for the wind to change

 

Baby opening early Christmas present

Early Christmas present

 

Baby inside play tent

Awesome play tent…

 

Two adults trying to fold up play tent

…but how the hell does it fold up again?!

 

Boys playing on couch

Sugar high kicking in

 

Boys watching YouTube

YouTube fest and cups of tea

 

Woman cooking sausage rolls

Sausage roll heaven

 

Snacks laid out on the red table cloth

You won’t go hungry in this house!

 

Wedgie

The day would not be complete without a Christmas wedgie

 

Yesterday’s post: Prize Pony Continued

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Daily Pics: Prize Pony Continued

The prize pony tour continues, this time around the M25 where we catch up with English Hubby’s old friends. Fueled by jam and scones, and lots of chocolate biscuits, it is a veritable tour de force of people, places and brand new faces over the last couple of days. No rest for the wicked especially with the whole extended family descending tomorrow.  

 

Man and baby with laptop

Sneaking in a spot of work

 

Baby and grandpa sleeping

So very demanding

 

Baby being swung by daddy

Getting into the swing of things

 

Signs on the M25

Ring around the M25

 

Lunch and tea with friends

Lunching with Teacher A and Nurse C

 

Empty jam cream and scones

A spot of tea, jam, clotted cream and scones 

 

Baby on lap with dogs

Visiting Musical Hannah’s with four legged friends

 

Baby in beanbag looking very surprised

This is what it would be like to have sisters…

 

Baby surrounded by toys sitting in bean bag

…yep, just another play toy!

 

Yesterday’s post: Prize Pony

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Friday, 19 December 2014

Daily Pics: Prize Pony

Our little prize pony did so very well today. He had a lovely time meeting cousins not sure how many times removed, being the center of attention and so thoroughly spoilt with hugs and kisses. His personality is starting to emerge and giggles with it too. How much joy a little one brings. It’s lovely to know we were all once like that, and so very loved. 

 

Baby and man playing with toy octopus

You had me at pirate octopus with crinkly legs

 

Baby and man looking at a Christmas tree

So much to explore with Contract Malcolm

 

Baby being cuddled by man and woman

Loving his cuddles

 

Baby in daddy's arms

Daddy had to tear him away!

 

Chandelier in the hall

Photos under the Christmas tree in the hall

 

Pizza on a plate

Lunch and Christmas shopping in town

 

Ladies at Dartford road office

Aunty Ems turn to show off her nephew at Dartford Road

 

Yesterday’s post: Big Heart

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Thursday, 18 December 2014

Daily Pics: Big Heart

The four of us grew up in the same household, yet our personalities and characteristics are so very different. With time management, organization, neatness and planning we are all at opposite ends of the spectrum. But underneath it all our values are similar. It may not always appear that way, as we each have different methods of communication, but it is comforting to know that we share memories, history and in things that cannot be defined by words. Thank for for reminding me Schoosching. 

 

Baby eating smokes salmon

Expensive taste

 

Baby eating purple bath duck

He likes duck too

 

Dad and baby on sofa

Daddy’s little boy

 

Packet of Kleenex tissues

Had enough of the sniffles. Thank you Mah Mah for these lovely soft tissues

 

Woman with robin Christmas cake

Who can resist?

 

Gingerbread man with his head broken off

Off with his head

 

Cupcake with Christmas tree frosting

How do you eat your cupcake?

 

Milk heart chocolates

Big hearts all round 

 

Sisters hugging farewell

So wonderful to be with my beautiful sister. See you soon

 

Yesterday’s post: A Hunka Hunka Burning Love

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Daily Pics: A Hunka Hunka Burning Love

Aunty Schoosching is getting the full Baby Boy O experience. Nothing spared. Morning food fest, baby Elvis dancing antics, story time at the library, afternoon grumps, bath time and bed time. I may need to check her bags before she leaves to ensure she hasn’t packed him up and stolen him. 

 

Baby in Elvis outfit

Who’s adorable?

 

Baby wearing baby outfit

Says it all!

 

Dancing Elvis baby

Tutti Frutti oh Rudy

 

Aunty and baby at story time

Such excitement! Or is that a yawn?

 

Baby looking at boxes of books

What a little bookworm

 

Baby sleeping in the stroller

Too much excitement

 

Fried calamari

Wagamama lunch

 

Baby feeding Aunty an oragami star

Feeding Aunty Schoosching an oragami star 

 

Baby and Aunty in bath

Having a good scrub down

 

Aunty getting baby ready for bed

Getting ready for bed time. Good night sweet Elvis

 

Yesterday’s post: 1000 Kisses Under the Mistletoe

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Daily Pics: 1000 Kisses Under the Mistletoe

Feeling completely zonked after a big day out in London with Baby Boy O and Schoosching. We ate our way through Borough Market and even participated in an attempt to break the world record for kissing under the mistletoe. We walked along the Thames in a historical join-the-dots, passing the site of the Globe Theatre, Millenium Bridge, St Paul’s Cathedral, seeing Tower Bridge, the OXO Tower, London Eye, Big Ben in the distance, Trafalgar Square and more. London was buzzing with energy. Such a wonderful day out with my kissable son and lovely sister, then came home to another delicious dinner and carol singers at the front door. Magic moments.  

 

Grandparents and baby looking at Christmas decorations

Morning surprise – tree all trimmed and decorations up

 

Baby grabbing at Christmas decoration

It didn’t take long!

 

Woman giving baby food at breakfast

Breakfast yum

 

Mum and baby with train tickets stuck to forehead

First train ride into London

 

The shard

The Shard at London Bridge tube station

 

Aunty carrying baby

Suiting up and getting warm

 

Camera crews at Borough market

Got to Borough Market just in time for a world record attempt

 

Looking up at Borough Market

Look up!

 

Mistletoe

Mistletoe

 

Mum kissing baby under mistletoe

Smooches for Baby Boy O

 

Man making Thai coconut pancakes

Worked up an appetite

 

Aunty and baby waiting for pad Thai

Smells so good, tastes even better

 

Steak pie and sweet potato fries

Next course, of course!

 

Hot chocolate in a cup with a heart

Getting out of the cold for a hot chocolate break 

 

Barrels of cheese

Stinky cheese shop

 

Fresh produce at borough market

One of the most beautiful fresh produce markets in the world

 

Boxes of red and green apples

Temptation 

 

Burger stand at borough market

Feast for the senses, spoilt for choice – Wangus for when you are hangry

 

Homemade fudge

Yummy, Yah Yah’s favorite

 

Sisters at borough market

Going crazy with #BoroughMarket1000 

 

Aunty and baby walking streets of London

Making our way across London in search of an Apple store

 

London street art

Street art

 

St Paul's Cathedral

The path to religion

 

Looking over the Thames at Tower Bridge

Crown jewels in the distance

 

London tube map

iPhone nearly out of juice. Using old school navigation

 

View of oxo tower from the Thames

Walking along the Thames

 

Walking along the Thames

Aunty Schoosching taking Baby Boy O for a dusk stroll

 

London eye and sphinx

An eye for a Sphinx

 

Trafalgar Square and double decker busses

Trafalgar Square and double decker busses. How picture perfect!

 

Apple pie

Welcomed home with a lovely hot meal and apple pie

 

Watching Christmas carolers

Finishing off the night with a musical ensemble by Christmas carolers

 

Yesterday’s post:

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Monday, 15 December 2014

Daily Pics: Visitor From Berlin

Last year Schoosching and Scoobes came to New York to Christmas with their very pregnant sister. This year we have the pleasure of seeing Schoosching in England for some very special Aunty bonding time. Family bonds flex and bend, but they can never be broken. Seeing my sister in her own skin, with her nephew, is just so beautiful. A precious gift. 

 

Baby in high chair eating watermelon

Building up his energy for a very special visitor

 

Aunty and baby meeting at the gym

Quick session at the gym where we bump into another Aunty!

 

Sevenoaks church

A walk through town to give the little one a nap

 

Woman with cupcakes

Spoilt for choice over lunch 

 

Baby and Aunty saying hello

He finally wakes to say hello to Aunty Schoosching 

 

Woman and baby with wooden spoon in mouth

Sharing a wooden spoon moment

 

Baby lying on woman sitting on couch

Who’s this person who looks like my mummy?

 

Woman carrying cute baby

Off for an afternoon walk into town

 

Baby standing in supermarket

Having fun in Tescos

 

Baby on checkout conveyor belt

Price check on aisle nine


Husband with beer

Grandparents babysitting whilst we chow down on curry

 

Man with beer

With Ruff Fred

 

Sister with beer

And Schoosching

 

Curry dishes on table

Superb meal at The Spice Club

 

Yesterday’s post: It’s Starting To Feel A Lot Like Christmas

Tomorrow’s post:

 

 

 

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Daily Pics: It’s Starting To Feel A Bit Like Christmas

I read on a Facebook post a great piece of advice – before you speak ask yourself: Is it kind? Is it true? Is it necessary? A good little reminder when you’re sleep deprived with a crying baby at three in the morning. After a slow start to the day, we managed to swing into gear and slide into that familiar ‘lead up to Christmas’ feeling. Another lovely roast lunch, followed by hot footing back to Sevenoaks for carols. Made it by the skin of our teeth, and Baby Boy O didn’t fail to impress as the prize pony of the night. 

 

Baby with water bottle

Slow start to the day

 

Baby eating apple

Lunch time munchies

 

Toy lamb on bar

Is this wrong given our delicious lamb roast last night?

 

Two glasses of red wine

Don’t mind if I do…it’s past noon

 

Drawing by Isabelle

Thank you Sweet Isabelle

 

Letter from Isabelle

From a secret admirer 

 

Roast beef lunch

A rare roast. Feeling so very thankful

 

Man and daughters

Doctor Dorling and girls doing a brilliant (and coincidental) Despicable Me impersonation

 

Despicable me

Look familiar? Minus the minions 

 

Double decker busses on Oxford street

Google map’s directions

 

Christmas decorations on bond street

Through the busy streets of London

 

London streets

At prime shopping time 

 

Nelson's column

Touring all the historical sights

 

Tower of London

By car…

 

Man driving in car

…as we hot foot it back to Sevenoaks

 

Hall with chairs for Christmas carols

Making it back in the nick of time for Christmas carols

 

Baby touching mayors necklace

Touching Mayoral bling

 

Baby listening to Christmas carols

Joining in with the sing-a-long

 

Baby playing with a wooden spoon

Playing his favorite instrument

 

Baby carried by dad at Christmas carols

Being a little social butterfly 

 

Baby in Christmas outfit

Who’s excited about Christmas?!

 

Yesterday’s post: London Friends

Tomorrow’s post: