Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Poop

I have two university degrees. I'm not bragging here, just stating facts.
 
I was, in fact, in the early stages of a masters degree when I decided to postpone my studies in order to nurture the miracle of new life growing in my womb. (Doesn't that sound much more glamorous than 22 weeks of constant puking forced me to quit?)

 

In spite of my diverse educational and professional achievements, I seem to have spent the last nine years discussing poo. 

And not even in a good way! Yes, there is a good way - In the zoological and palaeontological world faeces can be a significant finding and provide important information. So, in my world, that sort o' shit's fascinating! See what I did there?
 

But no, my days have been spent stressing over frequency, consistency, colour, content, the need to, the urgent need to, and the continual cleaning up of said faecal matter. And none of that's even mine!
 

Now, I know that this is part and parcel of motherhood and that once I'm out of the trenches of early mothering and get to rediscover the long lost part of me that is capable of meaningful conversation and critical thinking I know these days will be a distant and, I'm told, fond memory. 

I guess I just never realised that poop would take up SO much of my time.
 

Needless to say, it was with great delight that I saw on social media recently that one of my former students was reminiscing about a song I had taught her - let's just go with - 'several' years ago. 

My faecally-centred brain was overjoyed to realise that I had actually achieved something important in my previous professional life. (Which often feels like a  completely separate life to the incredible, earth-shatteringly glorious achievement of creating life and attempting raising the best possible human beings I can. Goes without saying.)
 

It made me think that even if my only professional achievement is teaching one student the lyrics of one song - concerning the structure of Deoxyribonucleic Acid, no less - then I have achieved something pretty incredible. 

So, thank you, Juliet, not only for remembering our silly little jingle, but for sharing it and making this Mum's day week month year heck, let's just go with decade!

Are you a Stay at Home Mum? What did you do in your previous life?

Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Ten for Tuesday

I haven't been snapping many pics this week - mainly due to sleep deprivation and sick kids - but I've managed to scrounge up ten for 2015's first Ten for Tuesday...

1. I've been watching The Block which makes me want to faff about with decor. | 2. Photo a day always has me faffing about - this week with my beauty secrets. | 3. Boys are still in the grip of soccer fever. New goals make for outside play every day. | 4. We put him in a big 'bed' and he rarely sleeps in it - couldn't resist snapping this pic when he'd made himself a nest at the foot of the bed! | 5. He made muffins. When I asked what flavour he said "Choc-et, Cin-mon Sugar, Meat, Cheese, Sush(i) and Booby (blueberry)" 
6. Lack of night sleeping means day time naps and sweet baby curls. | 7. Sickness and/or lack of night sleep means naps in the car at school pick up time. | 8. I found my Easter present in Coles the other day! | 9. Re-threading my drift hanger with a very 'helpful' kitty! | 10. We do this puzzle at least once a day.   
How's your week been?

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

A Third Birthday Dinosaur Adventure

Long ago.
Long long long long long ago...
Before there were people...
Before there were roads...
Before cats... or bats... or dogs... or ducks...
Before planes... or bikes... or cars... or trucks...
There were... Dinosaurs

And we think dinosaurs are utterly fascinating and make for the most amazing birthday parties! Here's Rohan's 3rd birthday adventure...
I saw invites similiar to these online but they were way too expensive so I made them myself and was just thrilled with how they turned out.
No party at our house is complete without balloons on the mailbox.
Liam drew some dinosaur footprints up the driveway for his little brother's party which made me so happy because Michael did the same thing for Liam's dinosaur party
We had a yummy afternoon tea...
Pterydactyl wings...
Dinosaur nuggets...
Dinosaur eggs...
and some munchies for the Herbivores...
My obsession with mini milk bottles and stripey paper straws may never end...
We had a lovely little post-Christmas gathering of family and friends.
The dessert table was a big hit.
Jurassic jellies...
Grape kebabs...
Watermelon spikes, footprint cookies and fossil cookies (you can order special cutters to make these but I did these free-hand using the basic cutters I already had. They're a bit wobbly but you get the idea!)
The yummy, easy, dinosaur dig cake...

He'd been practicing for the singing of "Happy Birthday" for months!
This kid is just the sweetest little man. He delights us and brings so much joy everyday.

He's pretty proud of knowing how to (almost) make "free"...
If you'd like more details on the Dinosaur themed activities we had at the party check out this post here

Note to self: Butter cookies should be wrapped before placing in absorbent paper bags...
Our 'Thank you for coming' take home bags were full of fun and delicious goodies...
A pretty simple party but also simply fun.

Happy birthday, Cuddly Bear xx

Monday, 16 February 2015

Easy Montessori - Early Maths Activity

Montessori can be easy.

Here's a simple activity to introduce early mathematical concepts. Best to use this one when your child is showing an interest in numbers.

One 'big' bowl, a few smaller bowls and some different coloured objects (I've used beads). A tray will help make it portable and show that it's a set of items.

The concept starts simple - Sort the different colours.We've started with only four different colours.

Then we introduce counting - 'How many of each colour?' Lay them out in lines. Keep the 'beads' the same number - and a small number - to start.

Then we can build complexity - Increase the number of 'beads' to count as your child's knowlege increases. Have a varying number of 'beads', lay them out in lines to compare them and ask 'Which colour has the most?'

We've had lots of fun with this one lately.

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Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Viva Bris Vegas!

There's something quite lovely about going 'home'. Although, life goes on even when you're not there to see it and it felt like we spent most of our trip saying "Gee, that's new!" There are so many new buildings that the skyline is not quite as we remember it.

Brisbane welcomed us back with open arms and we spent most of our time catching up with as many family and friends as possible.

Hubby and I got to enjoy a night off too! We stayed in a hotel at Southbank - this was the view from our room...
After a few drinks by the pool and an incredible dinner at a restaurant on the river, we went to see The Lion King at the Lyric Theatre - which was just fantastic!
Next morning, Grandma and Grandad brought the kids into town and we visited the museum, the brave ones (not me) rode the wheel...

Then we walked along the river into Southbank Parklands...
Getting a nice family photo is ridiculously hard with all these monkeys...
We had lots of fun at the beach and aqua play area too...
We also got a bit of time to enjoy a weekend at the sunshine coast with family and to tick off a few of our 'Must Dos'- including swimming at a beach without crocs...



and visiting Montville and Maleny and eating lots of yummy things like locally produced cheeses. This place is even more mystical and magical when it's shrouded in cloud.
We even got to show the kids where we got married. And that incredible view.
Quite a bit of shopping happened to! Myer? Ikea? Yes, please!

Missing 'home' more than ever after this trip.

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Montessori Inspired Dinosaur Unit

We had a dinosaur themed playroom set up for at least two months last year. When I look back at the photos I've taken it's seems like it's really just dinosaur figurines and the odd puzzle but Rohan loved it so much and got rather annoyed when I packed them away to set up our Food Theme.

So, when it came time to plan his dinosaur birthday party I just knew that - after the success of last year's party - setting up the playroom with themed activities would work a treat.

I added a bit more festivity with the dinosaur mural and trees that I still had from Liam's dinosaur party
Rohan's absolute favourite activity is matching dinosaurs to their cards...
The cards above are great for playing Memory/Match games too because they come in pairs. The cards below I printed and laminated to match our (ever growing) collection.

He also enjoys doing some open-ended imaginative play with figurines, rocks, plants and a volcano...
Our inflatable T-Rex friend came out to play.
He very much enjoyed having dinosaur stories read to him...
I paired dinosaur puzzles with some shape puzzles in the sensory area.
These are getting a little too easy now... Playdough has been Rohan's daily play item of choice for the last couple of months. For a dinosaur unit, I set our playdough up with dinosaur cookie cutters and figurines to make fossil footprints. It was a big hit at the birthday party too... 

This activity required matching the animals to just their names, which was suitable for the older kids.
Other more complex activities included wind-up dinosaur assembly...
And wooden model construction...
The Button Board worked well with the shape theme as a Practical Life task too.
It worked out well that I chose to run this unit last year when the museum had a special Dinosaurs Alive! display happening too. Enjoying the activities there enhanced our unit too...
In truth, I think I enjoy dinosaurs just as much as the kids!

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