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Showing posts from April, 2011

We got our act together!

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Parenting pride.

Middle child actually got a decent birthday present.  We have succeeded.

She's been wanting her own desk for about two years.  It's been on every birthday/Christmas list.

And we managed to pull it off even though her birthday was two days after the long weekend and we tend to think of these things the day before a child's birthday.  Ok - when I say 'we' it was actually Rowan because I've been at work.

He dragged them all out to Ikea which was very brave of him.  One time we lost a child who climbed into a bedside locker.  That same visit I discovered that another child had given her hair a bit of a 'cut'.  I remember - because we were in one of the lounge rooms - some kind of torture set-up for parents of small children to remind them of the pre-children days of civilised lamps, coffee tables with magazines on them and CD racks with actual intact CD's in them (all the way down to the floor).

However, I digress.  Rowan, with his t…

Complex parenting strategy

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Hours of holiday fun - a friend, a bucket of water, a sponge and a pile of plastic food that needed 'cleaning'

Have a baby ... and let the running commentary on your life begin

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Last week there was a big fuss over Jackie O, a Sydney radio DJ, feeding her 3 month old baby crossing the street.  It was the comments by Pru Goward, the former sex discrimination commissioner and current families minister for NSW, that caused the most problems.  Pru Goward's comments implied that Jackie O was being a negligent mother by feeding her baby like this - and it was related to her going back to work when her baby was 2 months old.  You can read the whole article here.

I'm not a great fan of the whole going back to work when your baby is tiny (I don't think it's great for the baby, but I think it terribly hard for the mum), but in Jackie O's case her husband is home full-time and she doesn't work a full day - just the morning shift (just, I say, after being up during the night with a small baby - wow!).

However, what it did make me think of was the time that I answered the front door while breastfeeding my number 3 child.  I must been in such a craz…

Fostering kids

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I've been thinking a bit about fostering children over the past few years and then there was an interview on the radio last week with foster carers, followed by an article in Saturday's paper on fostering.  It's kind of got me thinking a bit more about all of this (the article in the paper had aspects that were quite distressing from my position as a parent - hard to not feel that there must be something I can do to help).

Earlier this year I was chatting to a friend who asked me "Should we all be adopting or fostering?  What do you think about all this?  I think there's a blog post in this topic Jenny!"  So here I am - prompted by these two coincidences.  We also have good friends who in the last stages of an overseas adoption (which is very exciting to share with them).

Personally I think fostering is something we should all at least stop and consider.  Especially if we're in a stable relationship, functional family, educated, financially secure.  I…

stay-at-home school holiday ideas

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So school holidays for me mean - kids read as many books as they like at the breakfast table, kids empty out the recycling bin looking for craft materials, ride their bikes at the park, watch too much TV, no rushing to music lessons/training/school (ahh bliss), eat constantly and fight quite a lot (isn't that all part of their social development or something like that?!).

However, some people are much more creative than me so I'm sharing a link to a post that gives a marvellous list of ideas to get your creative juices flowing.  (This is a great blog by the way - lots of ideas about books and literacy - really worth following if you're interested in kids and reading).

http://trevorcairney.blogspot.com/2011/04/15-simple-stay-at-home-holiday.html

Happy holidays!

If she can write a book about snails and get published ...

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A few weeks ago I said that I was looking for an aspect of my life that I could write about to help me publish a book.
Well, I have new inspiration.  After reading about this book in the paper yesterday I think I can do it.  This lady has written a book about snails after spending a year bed-ridden with a chronic illness.  All she could cope with, was watching a snail from her bed.  In her slowness as a sick person, she could appreciate the slow lifestyle and movements of the snail.

Snails?  Wow!  Surely there must be something I can work with if she's writing about snails.  
ps - I'm sure it must be fantastic writing if it has got published - I don't want to take anything away from her work - but it did make me think ...

First time mum of a high schooler

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So we've managed to survive our first term of high school - phew!

I have to say that having a child start high school is less stressful than when he started kindergarten.  Could also be that the poor child is the eldest of five so I'm not too fussed by the lack of communication from the school to the parents (which I know lots of parents find hard).

I've also decided that it's time for him to step up and take a lot more responsibility with his homework and projects.  In many ways knowing less is good.  I can't rescue him because I actually don't know much about what's going on.  When he doesn't study for a test - well, he's certainly feeling the consequences of that (except for the time he fudged his way through a history test and got full marks - all thanks to those "Horrible History" books!).

The thing that is a bit painful is his last minuteness - sudden remembering of homework due the next day at 8:30pm.  We've been pretty tough …

Why I love tweens

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Tweens are kids between the ages of 9-13.  I almost have three children in this age group.

Why do I like this age?

They aren't teenagers yet and desperate to get away from their parents and family.  They aren't grumpy and moody all the time.

But they aren't toddlers and can do so much for themselves.  They can get themselves dressed.  They can get food for themselves. They can take themselves to the toilet.  You don't have to watch what they're up to every 5 seconds.  You can have a conversation with them about something that is real.  They can pack their own bag to go away.  They can make a salad when you're desperate for help at dinner time.  You can laugh about things together.  You can talk about things you're interested in together.  They are funny and entertaining.

So when I went to a conference for work on tweens I was disappointed at how negative other children's librarians were about this age group.  They'd like them to all be good at read…

How many children should I have?

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Well, let me tell you.  Or maybe not.  But I've been asked this question fairly frequently - I assume because we've made that decision a few times over.

People always told me that I'd know when we'd finished having kids.  I didn't.  I loved babies and I couldn't see any good reasons to not have more children other than our ability to cope.  So here we are - 5 kids later!

Why have we not had more?  I got tired, I got old, I didn't want a bigger gap between our oldest and youngest, we couldn't see how we could fit another bed into our house, the first year of my youngest child's life was quite dark and scary for me and I was happy to not return to feeling like that again.

But I have been thinking a bit about what to think through when deciding whether or not you should grow your family.

- What's your personality like?  I realised that I'm a bit of an introvert so having lots of kids at home all the time, has meant that I don't have lots …