Monday, 16 June 2014

What's that yellow thing in the sky?


It's been a while since I've done one of these pictastic posts.  In fact, it's been a while since I've done any posts at all.  Rest assured that all is well, and I'm still as much a wine and chocolate addict as ever.  

So.  We just had a beautiful weekend.  It's the first weekend this year where the temperature on both Saturday AND Sunday has been above 15 degrees and sunny.  As people here are so proud of telling me "You don't live in Newfoundland because of the weather".  Nope, you most definitely do not.

Anyway.  Dan is in Mexico for a 2 week holiday (I KNOW!!!! - I'm still wondering how he got me to agree to that), which means that while the weeks fly by with trying to juggle work and home, the weekends can sometimes draaaaaaaaaaaaaaag on.

This weekend was no exception.  It seemed to go on forever.  But that was definitely a good thing.

We spent pretty much the whole weekend outside.  First we did some planting.  Well... I did the planting, and Kalani did the watering.

He got a little wet!

We went to find some icebergs ...

 ... took selfies with icebergs in the background.  Erm.... oops!

Discovered what's inside a cannon (a lot of darkness and some candy wrappers, in case you were wondering)...

 ... and climbed mountains.

It was even warm enough to eat dinner outside... both nights *gasp* (Polar bear had already eaten).

On Sunday evening I sat on the deck with my wine, as Kalani used his hockey stick to rip the bark off some tree trunks (seriously), and I had a introspective moment when I realised... I'm content.  I don't know if that's better or worse than being outright happy about everything (and realistically that's never going to happen to me - I like having something to complain about too much).  For me however, it feels perfect.  Content with everything just the way it is...

... apart from Dan being away

... and the flipping weather again - rain all week?  noooooo ....

... and the .... (just kidding).

Until next time poppets.  Take the good times when they come.

Friday, 11 April 2014

Those Pesky Green Nosed Canadians

I was on the toilet the other day, and Kalani was sitting on the other side of the door telling me a story (he still doesn't want to be left by himself).

His story was about some good injra (ninja) turtles who were being attacked by a whole host of baddies.  Firstly they were attacked by an Iron Man (no idea where this came from), then some monsters, and then finally ... the Canadians.

The what?

*sounding mysterious*
The Canadians.  They had green noses and were very very bad.

Canadians?  With green noses?

Yeees - the green nosed Canadians came, and they were scary, but the injra turtles went 'hiya, hiya' and they beat up the bad mean Canadians.

*in fits of laughter*
Good stuff Kalani.  I've heard about those Canadians, and you're right, the green nosed ones are very very bad.  I'm glad the injra turtles saved the day.

I can't wait until he discovers that HE is a Canadian, though at least he doesn't have a green nose! :)

Saturday, 5 April 2014

How To Traumatise Your Child

For Kalani's birthday I brought him (what I thought was) a great book.  Richard Scarry's Best Nursery Tales Ever.

"Great choice" I thought, "Kalani doesn't really know any of the classic nursery stories, this book will cover all of them in one swoop. I'm an awesome parent *smug smug smug*".

So we started to read the stories.

Goldilocks and the 3 Bears  
No problem.

The 3 Little Pigs  
Erm - slight problem.  The big bad wolf is EATING the pigs.  That's a little bit scary.

Little Red Riding Hood
Bigger problem.  The big bad wolf eats the grandmother.  But not to worry.  The woodcutter kills the wolf by CUTTING HIM OPEN (!!!), and, happy times, the grandmother is fine and jumps out of the massacred wolf carcass.

What?  What?  What?

There's a lot of eating people and cutting up animals while they're alive and generally gruesome goings on.

Anyway, Kalani didn't seem to affected.... or so I thought.

Then, about 3 weeks ago, he started to follow me around everywhere.  If I went to the bathroom, he had to come too.  If we were downstairs and I had to run upstairs to fetch something, he had to come with me.  He now won't even go to the bathroom by himself.  


Well, not really.  We asked him what was wrong, and it turns out that he's afraid that the Big Bad Wolf is going to come and eat him.

Oops.  Not such an awesome parent after all.  I've turned my child from an independent small human, into a quivering, frightened limpet.

So, we've had to start adopting some Anti-Wolf strategies in the house.
  1. Both cats have been sent to 'Defend The House Against Wolves' School.
  2. Kalani has just been given a 'Wolf-Defense-Cape' (aka. bath towel) by a friend.
  3. Dan is going to put out some Wolf Traps around the house, just in case the BBW gets past the Cat & Towel defense team.
But Kalani is still very afraid, and I think it might just be one of those things that hopefully passes with time.  Otherwise we'll have to move house! 

So what's the moral of this story?  Just when you think you've got this parenting lark nailed, you screw it up.  

Yours Truly

Sunday, 30 March 2014

Why you should be more careful when you choose books from the library

I'm not quite sure how Kalani started to learn about Thor, Odin and Valhalla.

Actually, that's a lie.  I do.  It was Dan!

Anyway, Kalani and Dan have been having conversations about Thor and Odin, and how they live in Valhalla.  Kalani is fascinated by the concept of Valhalla and beings that can control weather and can fly and are all mighty.  Up until now we haven't exposed him to any type of religion at all - not on purpose, we're just not particularly religous ourselves, so the topic hasn't come up before.

So one morning I was dropping Kalani off at daycare, and he was asking how he could get to Valhalla.  I told him that only the Gods were allowed into Valhalla, at which point he started to get stroppy and tell me that he wanted to be one of the Gods too.  I realised that our conversation was being overheard by another parent dropping off his son.  He thought that we believed in the Norse Gods (I'm not even sure if that's a religion!), and obviously I don't care what other people think about what I believe in, but it was obviously time to expand Kalani's religious references to include a few more ideas.

The opportunity came quite by chance.

Yesterday, Kalani and I went to the library.  This is always a fairly quick exercise.  In, Drop off old books, Select 3-4 books that look like they're suitable (I generally look at picture quality only!), Leave.  One of the books that Kalani selected was (I thought) about a Giant and looked like an innocent enough book - good pictures, not too many words on each page!.

When we got home I read it to him and the innocent giant book actually turned out to be about St. Patrick chasing all the snakes, elves and giants out of Ireland and heaven.  This prompted a big discussion last night.  We started off talking about the concept of heaven, and how you could get there.  I told K that Jazzy was in heaven, running around, chasing squirrels and cosying up in front of the fire.  Kalani thought that if you can be 'fixed' (i.e. made better) in heaven, then you should be able to come back to Earth - so where is Jazzy if he's been fixed enough to run around in heaven?  He started to get a little upset at this stage because Jazzy wouldn't be coming back to us.

Then he asked why Jazzy went to heaven in the first place.  I explained that Jazzy was old and sick, and normally when people/animals get very old, they die.

Oh. My. Goodness.

Floods of tears.  Lots of sobbing - heart wrenching sobs.

"So, when I get old, I'm going to die?"

"Well yes sweetheart, but that's a long long way away."

"But I'm old. I'm 4. Am I going to die soon?"

"No, no, no.  You have your whole life to live my love"

"But I'm going to die when I'm older?"

*look at ceiling and mouth "HELP!!"* 
"Let's have a cuddle.  It's okay.  Everything is okay"
*repeat until Kalani cries himself to sleep*

Eeeeek ...

So after posting on FB it turns out that this is not so unusual, and I should have just lied about the heaven/death experience.  It's a hard topic for an adult to understand, let alone a small child.  

Thankfully he hasn't mentioned anything today, and I think my game plan going forward will be to deflect questions and offer lots of cuddles instead.

Needless to say, next time we visit the library I'll be a little more selective about what books Kalani chooses! 

Happy Sunday...

Saturday, 1 February 2014

My Nightmarish Day (aka "My new New Years Resolution")

This year I made a New Years Resolution. It was to Take part in a triathalon. I know. I'm actually laughing out loud while I'm typing this because that is so definitely NOT going to happen. Obviously I was quite drunk when this particular resolution was made.

Well, no worries. I've never been particularly into making resolutions anyway.

Until today.

Today I volunteered as a mentor at a technology event here in St. John's (as a total aside, if you're a laaady in Canada and you're interested in any kind of code writing - even as simple as creating/editing a blog - then check out - they're pretty awesome).  

Anyway, the whole event was very laid back. My role was to help out some of the participants with some basic code writing. I met some new people, learnt a few new techie things and was given a gift of chocolate for being a mentor. It was super chilled out.  

But then... IT happened. I had to get up, in front of the whole room and ....

Talk About Myself

*cue dramatic music here*

I walked up to the front of the room, and stood there. I wasn't on my own, there were another 5 or 6 mentors up there as well, but the way I felt I could have been naked in front of a million people. I had to lean back on the table behind me so that I didn't fall over and then take deep breaths to stop myself from simultaneously throwing up and fainting. When it was my turn to speak, I blurted out a few things (I can't quite remember what I said, but I think some of it was totally made up), went bright red and then made a stupid face at the room while visibly shaking.

Crazy right?

Or maybe not.  

Some people are scared of spiders, other people the dark, some people are even scared of buttons (weirdo's). Being scared of public speaking is not that uncommon, and while it's not as ridiculous as wanting to hide from the buttons on the front of your shirt, it's still inconvenient and embarrassing.

So now I have a new resolution. To be able to stand up in front of a group of people and speak about anything as calmly and confidently as if I was speaking to myself in front of the mirror (which I never do - never never never *cough*). I'm going to seek out and attend some 'How to speak in public without wetting your knickers' courses and I'm going to stop living in fear.

I also have a back up resolution in case this one dies the same fate as the swimming/riding/running fantasy. I will "Become a Better Person". The great thing about this resolution is that you never specify exactly WHO you'll become a better person than. Of course it's implied that you'll better yourself, but at a pinch you can always say that you thought that you had to be a better person than a thief.

Easy peasy.

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

A Slightly Belated Xmas Letter

Sooooo.  It's been a while hasn't it?  How are you doing?  Do you have time for a catch up?  Great - grab a glass of wine/mug of coffee, and let's chat.

I've been keeping up with your life - mostly over Facebook. I see you've moved house/moved countries/got married/had a baby/been on holidays/lost a loved one, and I feel like I've been there with you for a lot of that. Kind of one sided I know, but I have been thinking of you.

To even things up, here's what's been going on with us....

We've been living more of the 'same old, same old', but I think we all do that, don't we?  Sometimes it's all about survival.  Keeping (mostly) sane and just putting one foot in front of the other... until it's the weekend.  Though that brings a different kind of crazy - a domestic whirlwind of groceries and laundry and birthday parties and cleaning (well... maybe not cleaning, but you get the picture).

We're generally pretty good, and even though we've had some sh1tty stuff happen recently, I keep in mind that...
 1) it's all relative - lots of people go through much much much worse than we do; and
 2) life is short - move on.

Don't misunderstand, we had lots of great times last year as well. We had a great summer. The weather was lovely, we had lots of bbq's, drank lots of wine, spent as much time outside as possible.

Kalani and I went back to Australia in August for a quick visit. It was mostly to give my family some moral support as they go through some tough times, but we had fun too. Then in December, all 3 of us went back to Australia for a month. It was great to have so much time off, though, if I'm being honest, it was a little too hot at times. (I never thought I'd say that!).

Lots of good things are happening with our families too - new babies, new pregnancies, new jobs and prospects, clean bills of health. We're lucky.

And that's it really. Not uber exciting I know, but I'd like to start writing here again, and I didn't feel like I could just burst into it without some kind of 'I'm still alive' post!

Thanks for the chat. See you soon.