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Archive for the ‘Fun times’ Category

It seems I start so many of these posts with, “It’s been a while…” But, I’m going to do it again. Because it has. Been a while.

Here are some pics of what’s been happening.

Tiernan got an award at school (and a buzz cut after trimming his own hair with scissors!):


My garden grew:


Neave turned 4:


Face paint fun:


Spider Girl:


More Birthday Cake:


Tom’s parents stayed for 2 weeks, so we did lots of fun stuff, including a picnic at Redcliff:




We cafe’d


And visited Australia Zoo:









The adults enjoyed morning tea at Mt Coot-tha one fine day:


Then, after Nanny and Poppy said their goodbyes and flew back home to Sydney, the rest of us sent to Suncorp Stadium for the A-League Grand Final:




Last of all, Molly learned to ride her bike! And Tiernan wrote her this sweet note:




Posted on: January 1, 2014

This post is going to be my ‘happy moments’ post for 2014. Pic, going to keep adding to it throughout the year, kind of like adding scraps of paper to a jar but in a more virtual way. So here goes:

1st January – the five of us went and saw ‘Walking With Dinosaurs, the Movie’, and had an enjoyable time together. The kids are about to have a go on their new slip n slide in the backyard now that we are home.

2nd January – today we went Geocaching! (An explanation of what this actually is will happen in another post, soon). But suffice to say, we had a great day exploring some new places in our local area, and the kids even came home with some goodies. A really cool way to spend time outdoors!

5th January – went rowing in a single scull for the first time in 6 months. It was very nice to be out on the Nepean again with my sister. Loved it!

6th January – took a ‘proactive’ approach to antsy kids this afternoon by getting them out to the park (with quite some effort). But once there, had a good time and even summoned the energy to be a ‘tickling octopus’. The kids were really well behaved this evening, so the effort paid off!

9th January – had a lovely Indian dinner out with three fabulous friends. Chatting and catching up made me realise how much I’ve missed them, and how lucky I am that we are still great buddies after all these years.

28th January – first day of school 2014, went off without a hitch (except for some first day tears from Molly, who started Prep). Most impressive was our punctuality, and my calm throughout the arduous task of getting everyone ready in the morning! So proud of both my big school kids, I hope they both have an awesome year.

4th February – shared some bonding time with Tiernan this afternoon when he offered to help me cook dinner. He was helpful, enthusiastic and patient while we made salmon pasta bake, listening attentively and learning some new skills. This really made my day.

8th February – went out for dinner, drinks and dancing with my new group of Brissie friends, to celebrate my birthday. Had the best time out in about forever! Maybe I’ve finally learnt to party at the age of 30? The night had the perfect amount of friends, drinks and crazy dance moves (from me, who doesn’t dance). Completely awesome and I will remember it forever. The only thing that could have made it better would have been the presence of about five wonderful people that I miss from Sydney… but I will get to catch up with those guys before too long anyway 🙂

10th February – turned 30!

2nd March – regatta at Coomera with Toowong Rowing Club. First sprint races in about 10 months. There’s nothing like working hard towards something and then going out and doing yourself proud. Our first race could have gone better, but that’s how it goes. Our quad felt amazing though and we came second. Very proud of all of us. I love rowing!

9th March – went bike riding on some trails with a friend and had an awesome time. It was my first time on the bike in over 6 months, and also first time doing any kind of off-road riding. My poor little hybrid might need some modifications to cope with any harder trails, but it held up ok. Can’t wait to do it again soon.

17th March – sshh, don’t tell the kids but Tom and I sneaked off to the Gold Coast to spend the day at DreamWorld! Rides and slides galore, with no crowds or queues. Had the best time!

21st March – Tiernan got his first ever award at assembly. Very proud of him, he’s been working hard and trying to concentrate more. Beautiful boy.

16th April – Neave’s 4th birthday. Had a non-party at the park (read extra long play date with friends, who brought plates of food to share because they’re awesome). Was a really nice, relaxing day and Neave had a blast.

22nd April – Molly learnt to ride on two wheels! It was very special having Tom’s parents here to see it too. They are staying with us for two weeks – big, happy family.

26th April – found out my sister Kate has been selected to row for Australia for the World Championships in Amsterdam. So excited for her – she has worked very, very hard.

30th April – watched Kate on TV promoting a campaign for the NSW Guide Dogs. So proud.

1st May – quietly celebrated our 13th Anniversary. 13 years of being a couple, good grief!

4th May – took our tribe to see the A League Grand Final, Wanderers v Roar. We had a great time and the kids did pretty well, maybe even had fun (well, Tiernan did!) It was unfortunate the Wanderers didn’t get up, but maybe next year. The best part was the massive support for the Wanderers – made me proud to come from Western Sydney!

9th May – finally, finally, got my registration number for teaching in Queensland. After nagging several people for the last two months, I am now almost ready to start teaching again. I have been volunteering in the meantime, and look forward to getting into the classroom with some renewed energy and plenty of inspiration.




Summer fun with their young at heart Nanny!


Posted on: December 19, 2013

We have finally made it to the park today after three days stuck at home with a very sick Tiernan. He’s still sick, but he’s well enough to start annoying everyone in his own special way again. Molly, too has been beside herself with stir-craziness. So we are spreading our germs at the park instead of sharing amongst ourselves at home.


The best thing about being here, besides the sunshine, is Molly’s laugh. She has been angry with the world and angry with me a lot lately. Surly and rude. I’m enjoying this moment, listening to her wonderful belly laugh, having a fantastic time with some park friends.


What do you do when you’re at the soccer and your team is losing?

You take your top off and attempt to distract the opposition, of course!


And when it all gets a bit too boring, just dance.




Yesterday we decided to do something brave. We decided to take our three reluctant walkers on a 2-hour walk through the local rainforest. We lured them in with promises of creeks, bridges and waterfalls. Then we crossed our fingers and prayed that there actually would be some.

Our walk began at the Maiala picnic ground, up in beautiful Mt Glorious, just 30 minutes’ drive from us. It was our first time up there and we enjoyed the winding drive through the dense bush, although Tiernan said he felt sick by the end because we were so high up. (About 500m, not that high but it is quite steep in places).

With only one navigational error (on my part) we made it to the picnic ground, which Molly immediately declared she hated. A bit harsh, perhaps. It was a grassy hill with toilets, BBQ areas, benches and plenty of good climbing trees. However, after a visit to the toilets, with their water-saving, foot-pump action flushing mechanisms, and a quick tree-climb, all of the kids’ moods seemed to lift considerably, and they were ready to go.


There’s something to be said for rainforests. They make me happy. The stillness, the bird sounds, the rustle of leaves high up in the canopy, the muffled sound your footsteps make as you walk through. The fresh air.


The walk was nice and easy, with only gentle slopes, occasional stairs and a well-maintained path. Some parts were slippery with trickling water.



We saw lots of really huge gum trees, dispersed throughout the forest. They were so tall you could barely see the tops. Just magnificent. Although, the fallen ones were even more impressive, with the giant circle of their exposed roots towering above us, and their massive, straight trunks stretching across the path. Walking past, we got the sense that perhaps we wouldn’t want to be so close in strong winds. I bet the sound if them crashing to the ground would be quite spectacular, though.


Along the way, we stopped a few times for water, fruit breaks, leech-removal and hat-retrieval. On one such stop, Tom spied a small marsupial (we think a pademelon), just off the track, having a snack. It was very tiny and very sweet. Too shy for photos, though.

Before we knew it we had wound our way to the end if the walking track, with nary a complaint, or request to be carried, from the kids. And to our relief, we saw bridges, a creek (or lake as Neave called it), and a tiny, trickle-y waterfall… I’m sure it’s more impressive after decent rainfall.


Down in the creek below the viewing platform, we saw a little water dragon basking in the sun. I also overheard a man telling his daughter that he used to follow the creek all the way to the bottom as a kid. That must have been before they put the boardwalk in the bottom section, and closed it off.

Feeling refreshed after taking in the sights and sounds of the little waterfall, we began the trek back to the top. The return journey did feature some complaining, much carrying of Neave and more rest breaks, but really, they handled it quite well.


We all agreed we’d earned a nice lunch afterwards, so we stopped in at the Elm Haus Cafe.

It was there I discovered I had a tick on my neck. It was fairly quickly removed without leaving me too traumatised, only a little bit jumpy at the slightest touch. The discovery of a second tick on Molly’s car seat as we left promoted us to perform a public full-body search of the entire family. But hey, it’s Australia, I’m sure we’ve all been there, done that, right?


We took the scenic route home, past Lake Wivenhoe. It was nice to see what is beyond the Brisbane border, something I’ve been wanting to find out for a while now. And even better, all three kids slept most of the way home.

We’re settling in, here in Queensland We’re busy catching all the Queensland bugs going round. All of us have sniffles, but the kids are particularly blocked up. We’ve had some amusing conversations as a result, such as this one at the dinner table tonight.

Tiernan: “I got wet sand thrown at me today.”

Me: “At school?”

Tiernan: “No it’s not!”

Molly: “It’s not cool, Mum!”

Me: “I didn’t say it was cool, I said ‘at school.'”

Tiernan: “Yes at school.”

Me: “Well, that’s not cool.”

Tiernan: “Snot pool?”

Molly: (Laughing) “Snot pool!”

Me: “Oh, I give up!”

By the way, the wet sand thing was a game, apparently. Tiernan gave as good as he got, and then they all got in trouble… Well, that’s his version of events anyway.