School’s back and so am I!

It’s Friday as I write this, and I’m taking these last couple of hours before I pick the kids up from school to finally write a blog post! My three girls have been back at school since Monday, although the youngest who started in Prep this year, has Wednesdays off for the first month. I’ve had a lovely easy week, slowly getting back into a regular routine and running errands unaccompanied, which makes life so much easier (hello Spotlight, so nice to spend 2hrs hanging out in your fabric department yesterday, all by myself). We are not big on after school activities here, and the one thing the girls will be doing (all at the same time, on the same night, at the same place, my favourite type of activity) doesn’t start back til next week, so combined with no homework for the first week, it’s also been a nice easy week for the girls to transition back to school. We have a no technology rule Monday to Thursday during school terms, so they have been coming home and spending time outside with the animals or reading or drawing. They watched plenty of tv during the school holidays, so it’s good for them to have a bit of a detox (they may not agree, but I’m the mum and I know best 😉 ).

 

We have two lovely dogs called Poncho (on left) and Pebbles (on right) (and my eldest daughter in the middle) and they love the kids. They are big dogs, and quite lazy, now that they are past puppy stage (they were extremely destructive puppies due to their size and strength, so glad we are past that stage). They are just over 1 yr old now and pretty well behaved most of the time.

 

We also have 5 chickens that free range in the backyard during the day, and get locked up at night to protect them from the foxes. We have had four of them for over a year now, and while they aren’t scared of the kids, they aren’t overly friendly. They just like to be left alone to get on with their chicken business. Just before Christmas, we got given a chook that my Uncle had found wandering around his neighbourhood (he did try and find her owner first before giving her to us). She is a gorgeous chook, very friendly and loves human attention. We’ve called her Sweetheart, because that’s what she is, a real sweetheart. The kids can carry her around the backyard, and she will coming running up to you when you go outside. She’s also an excellent egg layer, so she has been a great addition to the family. She is getting along fairly well with the other chooks now, although we still sleep her separately as the other chickens stop laying if she is in their cage overnight. At first, she kept very separate from the other chooks and you were quite likely to find her hanging out in the dog kennel with the dogs (it took the dogs about a week to get used to having a new chook, they are fine with the other chickens who were here before them) which was very cute.

 

We also have two cats and four guinepigs, so there is plenty to keep the kids occupied. Although animals can be a lot of work, and it’s hard when you want to go on holidays and need to find someone to look after them all, I really do think having pets is great for kids, and I enjoy their company during the day, too.

 

We had just over seven weeks of school holidays this year. We were at home for a lot of it, but we did manage a few short trips away. We snuck in two nights at Wilson’s Prom just before Christmas. This place is always stunning, no matter the weather. It was quite cold when we were there, but that didn’t stop the kids swimming in the river. There was also lots of bike riding, animal spotting and drawing in the sand with sticks. I do find the packing/unpacking from camping a lot of work, but it is worth it (at least that’s what I keep telling myself when I’m on my 6th load of washing)

enjoying the river
bike riding on the beach
Whale Rock

“I believe I can fly…”

“smile and pretend to be happy, even though the wind just blew sand in our eyes..”

 

We had a lovely Christmas with family, lots of good food and our giant Christmas Tree (over 3m high)

my favourite knitted nativity scene, which I bought from a patient back in the days when I worked in hospital pharmacy.

 

Just before the end of the holidays, we found house sitters who could look after the pets for five days, so we headed up to my father-in-laws place near Bright, Victoria. He has a beautiful home with a river running through the backyard, where the kids can swim and raft.

 

We took the kids on a hike to Mt Feathertop while we were there. It was a great experience, although if we did it again I would be a bit better prepared. This is usually quite a long hike but my husband knows a 4-WD track that takes you within 5.5km of the summit. Even with that, it was still a big hike for us, as it was quite hilly, on a track that was very overgrown til you cleared the tree line, and with little biting ants that attacked us each time we tried to stop and rest, and of course we had forgotten to bring any insect repellent. Thank goodness when we finally reached the spot to set up our tent there were only normal non biting ants around, or we may have had to turn around and hike straight back down.

So excited to be off on our hike…
hubby carried the bulk of our supplies
a bit of bush bashing
finally out of the thick bush
beautiful wildflowers
great spot to camp
making our way to the summit, another 1/2hr further up from our camp
made it to the top!
a bit weary at the end of our hike and glad to be back at the car.

 

I also did find some time to start some sewing. I picked up this fabric that in the store, under artificial light, looked exactly the same as the khaki colour in my palette, but once I got it home into natural light, I could see it was very different.

the fabric is clearly brown, not khaki, but in the shop it looked the same as the top colour from my palette

 

Because it is still a cool brown, it looks ok on me, and ties in quite nicely with my dark brown roots showing 😉 (hairdresser next week! Stretched my appointment out so I could wait til kids were back at school, so heaps of regrowth. Need foils asap!) I picked a princess line dress, which I had never done before. This meant LOTS of pieces to cut out, which is the part I dislike most. I ended up with an aching hand for days after all that cutting. I was also frustrated because when I finally sewed the bodice together, it was way too big. I triple checked my measurements with the back of the pattern, and went with the size 16, which sounds big, but I have made the mistake before of letting vanity pick my size, not measurements, and ended up with something too small. I was so disheartened, I put it down and haven’t picked it up since, so adjusting the fit will be on my list of things to do over the next few weeks.

getting all the pieces cut out

 

The other big thing to happen was that I signed up to do the Colour Image Consultant Course through Celebrate Beauty, the same company I had my own analysis done through. I love colour and I love teaching people, so the though of getting to spend time showing people how to use their best colours fills me with excitement. I’ll write a lot more about that in my next post, and update you with some of the purchases I made over the holidays for my capsule wardrobe. Now I had better run and pick up the kids! xx Christy

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