Sunday, October 30, 2011

Our hearts are with them...

Terrible news this morning with the death of three Australian soldiers and wounding of seven more at the hands of an Afghan National Soldier.

My thoughts and prayers are with the families and those that have been severely wounded.

Its the news no military spouse, parent, sibling or child ever wants to get.  The possibility that is best not thought about.  

Days like today we are reminded that our service men and women are the true heroes not the movie stars, music performers and sports people the media tries to label as such.  I have not seen a single member of the latter category put their lives on the line for their country.

God bless our Diggers.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Sunday Links: King James and the Quakers

We celebrated 400 years of the King James version of the bible at church this morning.  Many of the congregation had brought in their family bibles for the occasion.  Our rector read us the preface of the original: plenty of buttering up the King to ensure its publication and, a reminder of what a difference it would make for men to hear it in their own language "But how shall men meditate in that, which they cannot understand? How shall they understand that which is kept close in an unknown tongue?"

You can read it in full here.

Another fun discovery this week was Quaker Cottage - the blog of a traditional Quaker wife, mother and homemaker.  My Mum's parents were both raised as Quakers (my great-grandfather went to Ackworth School) but had left the church by the time she was born.  I am enjoying learning more about my heritage.

Friday, October 21, 2011

{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real} - Baby Edition:)

I am a day late getting on board Like Mother, Like Daughter's weekly catch-up but we had a few minor domestic disasters yesterday afternoon which held me up:)


 I love pink and grey galahs.  They are pretty ubiquitous around here but this is the first time one has actually visited our bird feeder.


I am so happy I can finally share our baby news!  We had the 12 week scan on Saturday and all looks well.  It has been killing me keeping it a secret for the last 8 weeks:)

Another April baby, which means another baby we have to change obstetricians for mid-term because of postings.  Thankfully I have a supportive blogging community and another Australian Army Wife blogger - Posie Patchwork - was able to clue me in on my choice of Darwin obstetricians.
That would be a capital city with only three private obstetricians!  When I rang the obstetrician Posie (aka Jennie) had recommended his April quota was full.  But, thankfully his receptionist was lovely and when I explained my army wife situation and that our current obstetrician had scanned (at 9 weeks) and put the due date at April 30, she negotiated with the obstetrician - while I frantically offered prayers up heavenward - and he agreed to take me on.  

The relief!  

Relief which was somewhat tempered when we got the fee schedule and found out his fees were three times what it cost us to have Ginger here - but you can not a price on quality pregnancy and delivery care!  And, anyway I think that his fees reflect supply and demand for medical care in the Northern Territory - a growing population with few doctors willing to brave the working conditions.


Ginger dragged the dog's bed out last week.  

Apparently it makes a pretty comfy seat.


Ah, morning sickness my old friend.

It explains my lack of posting the last 2 months.

It also explains the state of little Ashwin's (see update below*) quilt! 

I started the quilt six weeks ago when we learned he would be very early; it is still in pieces!  I went and bought a little outfit this week and posted it off. If my morning sickness with Ginger is guide I have another four weeks of this. So, Ashwin may be waiting some time for his quilt.  

On the upside I have not been anywhere near as non-functioning sick as I was with Ginger.  I just don't have the energy or inclination to do any more than I have to.  But, at least the house is tidy if not actually clean and I have  been capable of preparing some meals.:)

We just won't talk about the preparations for moving out in six weeks time;)

My own meals have been dominated by this goodie - Vegemite.  Manufactured in Australia since 1923, it is a yeast extract product. 

You really have to grow up with it to like it, but Australians generally love it.  It is salty as anything but, importantly, it is the world's richest known source of vitamin B and vitamin B is known to aid in controlling morning sickness. 

*An update with regards Ashwin.  The hospital he is in practices Kangaroo Care - as Leila has posted on before - so my cousin got to give him a Kangaroo cuddle on the second day after he was born.  And, on Sunday (4 days after he was born) she was able to breastfeed him for the first time (he still had his sucking reflex), and then he slept on her chest for 2 hours.  What great news!

Friday, October 14, 2011

A to Z of me

I saw this over on BLD in Montana and I thought it would be fun to give it a go.

A=Age; 27

B=Bed size; Queen.  We bought a new bed in Melbourne but it has really come time to replace the mattress - which bought off a family friend when we got married.  A spring has sprung so to speak, so there is some competition over who has what side of the mattress. I seem to get it more often than not, as DH asserts he is considerably heavier than I so it digs into him more:)

C=Chore that you hate; vacuuming.  Absurd, I know, but it always takes me so long. 

D=Dogs; Two, small fluffy things.

E=Essential start to you day; a shower and clean hair!  I am a little obsessive about the latter.

F= Favourite colour; Apple green 

G=Gold or silver; Gold

H= Height; 168cm or 5 ft 6 in.

I=- Instruments you play; Piano and Euphonium; though since I haven't played the latter since I left school my competency is questionable.

J=Job title; Stay-at-home Mum.

K-Kids; one.

L=Live; Toowoomba, but very shortly that will be Darwin.

M=Mother's name; hmm, not really my information to share.

N=Nickname; None.  My mum and dad utilised their combined (at the time) 40 odd years of teaching to come with a name that does not lend itself to being shortened.  My mum always calls me Possum Magic (after the Mem Fox story) though.

O=Overnight hospital stays; one as a baby for plastic surgery after I cut my face open falling out of my parents bed (the plastic surgeon was one of my Dad's former students - Perth is a small place) and I had a few nights when Ginger was born.

P=Pet peeves; people making social arrangements (or discussing events that have occurred) in front of people they have no intention of inviting.

Q=Quotes from a film;  goodness, I am not much of a film buff - but "Tell him his dreaming" from The Castle makes me laugh.

R=Right or left handed; Right.

S= Siblings; Only child.

T=Time you wake up; usually 6:15  - that is when Ginger stirs because DH turns on the shower.  DH has usually been up for an hour or so getting some study done.

U=Underwear; Really?  Lets find another 'U' word - university.  I am very glad I went even if I am not using my knowledge at the moment.

V=Vegetable I hate:  eggplant.  I can tolerate it in Moussaka but nothing else.

W=What makes you run late; hmm, running 5 minutes early and thinking I can just squeeze in one more job before I go.

X=Xrays you've had; ankle (age 4), dental, pregnancy scans - I can't really think.  Oh, I had one done on my foot when I fractured a bone at ballet.

Y=Yummy food that you make; lemon cake and molasses cookies.  They are definitely favourites around here.

Z=Zoo animals;
I love the orangutans.  Ginger has never been to the zoo so we are planning a trip to Singapore Zoo when we go up to visit my in-laws in December.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real}

Joining Like Mother, Like Daughter as usual on a Thursday.

Just one photo this week as a tribute to a very special little boy....

This little boy arrived last night.  He is a beautiful miracle.


We are so happy that my cousin made it to 33 weeks as it has been a day by day proposition since 26 weeks; and we have all been so worried.    At that stage they learnt that the condition that caused the loss of their last baby was likely to also affect this little boy.  In the weeks since, the Doctors have been walking a tightrope between giving little A enough time in-utero and getting him out before the blood flow in the cord dropped too low.


Nothing particularly funny in this situation - but DH did ask if that was a hat on little A's head!  No, dear its a tube:)


He will be in NICU for a while but all the signs at the moment are positive.

To us, little A's safe arrival is clear evidence of the power of prayer.

Reading Labels on Jam Tins: Lessons from life in Depression Australia

I have just finished Reading Labels on Jam Tins, a social history by Bill Bunbury on life in Western Australia (my home state) in the early part of the 20th century.  

I found the section on the Great Depression particularly interesting in light of the current worldwide economic condition.

A sustenance camp, Harvey early 1930s

It is generally conceded that the Great Depression hit Australia harder than most countries, and perhaps Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia were more affected than most States in the Commonwealth.  Certainly, Australia's unemployment rate during the period was second only to Germany.  Western Australia suffered from a lack of economic diversity - farming was the mainstay of the West Australian economy and many were forced off their farms when wheat and wool prices collapsed.

 "The Depression etched itself on the faces, habits and minds of those who endured it; the cautious, thrifty behaviour of this generation often a source of amusement to the next one. 'Don't throw that away, son, you never know when it might come in handy.'

Their homes and garden sheds overflow with 'come in handies'.  These squirrel habits and a reluctance to be in any kind of debt are the abiding signs of the survivors, the marks of those who absorbed the painful lessons of the 1930s".

~Bill Bunbury, p. 152

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Just one of those days...

Yesterday was just one of those days where plans that should execute quickly and easily go awry.

I went to have a blood test taken at our local collection agency and the nurse was unable to get any blood out.  After three goes she sent me into town to the central clinic.  There the lovely American nurse (with a great southern accent) had a good look at my veins - tightened the tourniquet, got me squeezing the foam ball (which, incidentally, left Ginger in total nuclear meltdown because any ball belongs to her!) and started to extract.  She got two of the vials filled before the vein collapsed.  A very determined lady, she started flicking me to get the blood to flow again (I am familiar with this  - the anesthetist had the same problem when I was delivering Ginger).  We got all the necessary vials filled but I am left with a rather sore, bruised arm.

The nurse's conclusion was that I have 'delicate' veins for which the suction of the needle is too strong and they collapse.  I told her that in future I will just come straight to her and avoid the middleman:)  She responded that "that is what they all say".  So, I wonder just how many people have trouble with these outlying clinics.

Then I got home and realised that in my distraction of trying to console Ginger about the ball  I had told the Nurse my weight from when I delivered Ginger not my current weight.  Goodness knows why but this thought occurred to me about 10 minutes before the clinic shut.  So, I duly but rather sheepishly rang up hoping to get the lovely Amanda again but, no, I got the lab scientist whose tone very clearly indicated that he thought I must be a lunatic to have overestimated my weight by 10 kilograms (about 20 pounds).

Ah, it is days like that which remind me just how fallible I am:)

Thursday, October 6, 2011

{Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real}

Gosh, it is a month since I last posted.  I have neglected this little ol' blog!

Joining Like Mother Like Daughter for {pretty, happy, funny, real}.

Last week DH had a week off work so we went away on our first family holiday since June of last year.

Which, incidentally, does not count because taking a 2 month old to England to visit relatives is certainly not a holiday for the mother:)

We had three nights on the world heritage listed Fraser Island staying at the Kingfisher Bay Resort.

All I can say, is we timed it very well as the day after we left there was a fire on the island and half the resort had to be evacuated!

The island and resort are certainly very pretty.

We approached the island by ferry and the resort was hidden away in the trees.

Our room was probably the only one in the resort that didn't overlook the water - but we were happy with our view of the trees.


Ginger had her first visit to the beach - we are in that small percentage of Australians that don't live within a cooee of the beach.

Once she got over being uncomfortable with walking on the sand she had a great time.

I love those darling sturdy toddler legs.

"Honestly Teddy, you just have to taste this sand!"

The second day we were on the island was really overcast.  

We were supposed to go on a whale watching cruise which was included with our package but had to pull out because there was a severe wind warning and we were advised against taking young children out.

So, DH suggested we walked to Lake McKenzie instead.

The brochure we picked up from the hotel desk said it was a 5 1/2 to 6 hour round trip for a moderate to fit person. 

DH said that they always overestimate these things and it "absolutely will not take us that long" because they won't really have measured a really fit person.

Well, you guessed it ladies, it did take a long time.

5 and 1/2 hours of a long time!

And we took shortcuts on the return leg by walking on four wheel drive tracks.

On the plus side we did see the stunning freshwater Lake McKenzie.  

And, were able to refresh our feet in it for a whole 10 minutes before starting the homeward bound leg because it was already 12 pm and we only had muesli (granola) bars with us, and the hotel restaurants closed at 2pm:)

Ginger was sorely unimpressed by the whole proceedings.

In fact, she did this for a good portion of the walk until her Daddy forgot he was carrying his daughter and not an army pack and jolted her awake while readjusting the weight.


Ginger sleeps with a lot of plush toys at the moment.

So, they all had to come to Fraser Island with us.

Sometimes, it is even hard for her to get her arms around them all!

When she tries to pick one up, she loses the others.

Got them all at last!