Tuesday, January 31, 2012


A couple of weeks ago the kids each put together their own "Ant Paradise", "Ant World" or "Ant Planet" which ever they called it on the day. They have been finding ants in the backyard and making a little home for them. The little home (aka, a toy bathtub for Sienna and an old wok for James) has a few rocks in it with some sticks on top connecting the rocks then filled with water. I think the ants are drowning rather than escaping however it has been a great little outdoor adventure for them both.

Sienna likes to pick up the ants but they keep biting her. At breakfast yesterday she told me she got bitten again and showed me a lump on her finger to which I replied "why are you picking them up if you know they are going to bite you" her reply was "it's okay mum, it's fine, don't worry about it". The mind boggles....keep picking up the ants, and you keep getting bitten...ummmm.

Despite the ant bites she is really enjoying this and James has replaced a few of his ants from time to time. I love these old fashioned outdoor games that they make up themselves. This is truly what being a kid is all about (did I tell you I can't stand the mention of the x-box). James plays for an hour on Friday's but if I let him he would play 24/7. I love it when Sienna encourages him outside in her dirt, rock and creature activities as he got right into this with her.

I will have to take a photo of Jame's Ant Paradise tomorrow.

Saturday, January 28, 2012


With all the wet weather around we were expecting Australia Day to be pretty rainy however it fined up and was very humid and muggy on the day. We had the family around for a lunch time BBQ and of course took a few Australia Day mug shots of the kids.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


Most of Queensland and other southern states are going to have 8 days of rain. In the last 24 hours a massive amount of rain has fallen in Brisbane and our backyard was flooded this morning. We've had lots of rain before where the grass is soaking wet and a small amount of water sits on the top of the grass but today (Day 1 of 8) the backyard was like a "swamp" (James' words). He referred to it as the swamp because all we can hear is extremely loud croaking frogs...OMG seriously it is noisy, consistent and as far as I can tell there is more than one frog out there. James couldn't get to sleep because it was so loud.

When the kids came home from school they couldn't wait to play around in the water with their togs on and get wet. They were standing on the outside edge of trampoline and jumping into the water which when everything is wet is extremely dangerous so mummy spoilt their fun so they opted for a water fight after that. They had early warm baths and into their pj's after I took a couple of photos of their activity.

Today was our first day back at school and due to the rain our 15 min drive to school took 50 mins so instead of being early we were extremely late. The weather was to blame but it was not what I had envisaged this morning after we headed off to school. Sienna was so excited she was fully dressed at 6am complete with socks and shoes. James was also looking forward to going back to school to see his friends as well. They both had a great 1st day and tomorrow we look forward to more rain.....hoping my yard will be able to take all of this rain.

Monday, January 23, 2012


I had planned on doing a few pictures of Sienna on this wonderful rustic log however she gave me 2 minutes which was enough time for one picture and then I had to resort to taking self timer shots of me on the log...as you can see I had no idea if I would actually get in the pic as I wasn't about to lie on the wet sand to look through the viewfinder. These shots are kinda fun at the same time.

Saturday, January 21, 2012


We have just come back from a wonderful, funny, adventurous camping trip to Moreton Island with our friends. It rained so much that after one night we had to seek alternative accommodation because by morning everything was wet and the forecast was for another 5 days of the same. Here's a few pictures of the trip.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Beware of the Frog

The other day we found a frog (dirty old brown cane toad to be exact) crouched down a hole in our backyard that our totem tennis pole normally goes into. James put his hand in the hole thinking it was a stone and then screamed and realized it was a toad (for the purposes of this story the toad will be referred to as "the frog"). Anyway, after the scream I made him go and wash his hands straight away and Sienna was crying because she was scared of it. I did not want to get it out of this hole myself as we were in the middle of something else so I grabbed a spare brick and covered up the hole so he would stay put and I would worry about it at another time.

Fast forward to 6am the next morning and Sienna comes into my room saying that the frog had escaped. I asked her how on earth it could escape when their was a brick over the hole. She said James took the brick off to have a look and it jumped out of the hole and they both ran inside screaming and closed the door. Late on when I came out to breakfast the kids said we've made a sign Mum so we remember the frog is outside and they stuck it to the door. I saw it and it made me laugh, but now I have a dirty old brown cane toad on the lose in the backyard.

When the kids wanted to go out to play in the backyard I convinced them that the frog would hop away and we basically forgot about him for 2 days until this afternoon when I heard screaming and 2 kids running inside the house...the frog, he's outside. I won't bore you with the intricate details of how this frog (aka yukky cane toad) came to be now be no longer breathing however, it did involve one brave mummy, a spade, a big bucket and a garden hose. After I had taken care of the toad problem the kids yelled out something like "mummy you are a hero" or words to that effect which made me smile....their mummy had come to their rescue yet again. I certainly did not need that in my life this afternoon but as the ordeal was now over Sienna walked inside and ripped down the sign. Kids have a really funny way at looking at things and that's the end of my frog/dirty old cane toad story for today. Credit for the signage I believe goes to James (8 years old) for the hand writing and Sienna for the picture of the frog (5 years old).

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


A couple of days ago I came across a blog called Home Life Simplified. It's right up my alley and just what I need for 2012. Deb has 52 weeks of challenges relating to organizing and simplifying your life. This type of thing is not new to me as I love 'to do' lists, setting goals, household organizing etc. however it's nice to get your life sorted week by week when others are focused on the same topic and sharing their experiences as well.

Very similar to Ali Edwards "Week in the Life" and "December Daily" even though I don't know anyone doing these projects or will ever meet them I know that others are doing the same project, sharing their results and it keeps you inspired and motivated so it's easy to stay focused and keep up with the project.

Deb is an American, married to a Brit, living in Australia and you can read all about her over here.

At the beginning of every new year there are usually New Years Resolutions or goals because sometimes you want to say goodbye to a difficult years and just want to forget it. Deb talks about gratitude and reflecting on things that did go right in 2011 which is a positive way to move forward while reflecting on the past. I liked this idea, given 2011 had lots of challenging times for us so once I thought about it I wrote a number of things down that did go right in 2011 and did not reflect on the things that went wrong as that list could have quite easily gone on forever.

Starting off the year in this way, doing weekly challenges will give me motivation, keep me focused and whilst I love organizing and am an organized person I feel like I'm all over the place so I'm excited about this "Home Life Simplified" project in 2012.

Some people are starting up blogs to share their experiences however I am just writing in a journal for myself. So if you are looking at getting your life and home organized this year check out her blog and get on board and start getting your life organized.

Sunday, January 8, 2012


At the end of 2010 I bought two Project Life kits by Becky Higgins and attempted in 2011 to keep up with it. I got through the first month of January which I had a lot of "flood" photos of Brisbane and then was in the middle of selling a house, buying a house, moving, settling in etc. and things got left behind.

Every week when Ali Edwards would post her weekly Project Life update I was inspired to get back on track but it all seems a little daunting catching up considering how busy I was packing and unpacking and sorting etc. Around August I got stuck into it again, had some photos printed and was determined to fill in the gaps. The book is probably more than half way completed and I do want to get back to it however, now its 2012 and I'm starting fresh and have decided that each Sunday is my day to get my photos for the previous week printed, do my journalling and then I'll be right for 2012.

I found my main problem was trying to only pick 7 photos to go in for the week. Also I found that as the photos are stored by date order on my computer, once they were printed I needed to go back to the computer again and find each photo and write down what dates things occurred. I was working in the lounge room with all my supplies and then having to go into the study to find the dates etc. so it wasn't very efficient. I'm hoping this year if I work on a week at a time it won't take much time and things will still be fresh in my mind.

I also found a website which was via a link on Becky Higgins blog about "Oh Life". It's a on-line storage/reminder to jot down things that occurred on that day. Sort of like an on-line diary by date order. I signed up and it sends an email to you around 8pm at night (you can specify what time) and you just reply to the email and then it's linked back to your notes. I just type a dot point list of things we did for the day. ie. went to the beach, watched a DVD, James said something funny today, it was ...... etc. Had fried rice for dinner. That way nothing is forgotten and I can include things or exclude things but it's all documented there. Sienna said something cute the other day when I took a photo of both of them and normally I might think I'll remember it, or grab a scrap piece of paper, write it down, scribble the date and then put it down. It might not make it to the supplies box and when tidying up I might end up throwing it out. This way everything is there and you can go back to any date.

Even working on the previous week you can forget things that are said when you come to journal them so I'm already liking this tool. Of course you can always do a word document yourself or write things in a notebook however a lady posted on Becky Higgins blog that she swears this has been the only way she has managed to keep up with everything for Project Life.

I've done my own title page this year based on mostly Ali Edwards brushes and stamps and Cathy Zieske's family name title, just changed mine to a 6x4 to fit into the pocket.

It's week 1 of 52 weeks in 2012 and I'm excited I've completed my first week. I just love when photos get off the computer and are around in real life photo albums. I love photo books but there's nothing better than holding or seeing real photos.

As for 2011 I have a couple of months of photos printed so just need to put them in date order and perhaps work on a week of 2011 on Sunday as well to catch up.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Christmas Gifts

My Aunty came over on Boxing Day and brought some yummy treats with her that she had made. My favourite one was the "Edible Name Tags" for the kids made with shortbread biscuits. I admire her skills because I have had 2 recent fails with similar sorts of dough. The kids were thrilled with them all and she impressed the adults too. A lot of love and attention to detail went into these gifts. She also makes a beautiful shortbread star Christmas Tree each year which we finished off today in fact. Yummmmmm

Friday, January 6, 2012


We have been playing UNO in the afternoons this week and Sienna is now old enough to understand most of how the game is played. After a number of games with the 3 of us Sienna decided to go and play with the dirt and water (as she loves to do) so James and I were left to play each other. After several rounds of UNO, Sienna decided to gather some grass cuttings (pulled out with her bare hands) and once we declared a winner she proceeded to throw the cut grass up into the air over the table like confetti. It was quite funny and we let her do it at the end of each game as long as she picked up the grass and put it back in her little spade to do it the next time. Kids can be funny can't they! LOVE EM.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

December Daily

Here's another page from my December Daily that I am working on. Thought I would find out a little bit about where the Candy Cane came from and journalled that.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year 2012

Today is the first day of 2012 and no doubt there will be challenges in our life this year as well however, when it's all said and done, James and Sienna is what's life is all about. Today we went to the park to have a little picnic lunch to celebrate the 1st January, 2012.

Christmas was great and I took lots of photos which I have been putting together for my December Daily and will post some of those shortly. My album arrived from the states but I'm still waiting on the kit so for now I need to finish selecting the photos and get them printed to make a start on putting the book together. I'm so happy I have done this project again this year and will be continuing with it each December. How is your December Daily going?