Saturday, June 28, 2014

happy birthday jen

today was my best friend jen's birthday. jen and i have known each other since primary school, been best friends since high school and know each other like the back of our hands. (side note, i have always thought it was so random that people say that - do people really know the backs of their hands that well?? i am fairly certain i couldn't describe mine to someone...) she is the friend that i laugh with, cry with, laugh until i cry with... the girl that knows all my secrets and who i share all my inappropriate jokes in every situation with. she is the best of all best friends, and i am so glad she's mine.

mat, her husband, called us and asked us to come up to the farm for the day and have a bbq... there was no mention of a fire, but being that the invite came from mat, it's winter and we were going to the farm, i should have assumed... cause there was one. of course.

maddie of course thought it was christmas and her birthday all at once as she ran about the place unsupervised (really, there's not much she could do to hurt herself) looking at everything and chatting to everyone. she even came into the sheep paddock and had a look at them, but definitely wasn't game enough to pat them, even though mummy was. she was safely perched behind my leg, hanging on for dear life. we also looked at the emu, who was up the back of the paddock, so she felt safe enough to point him out me and yell things to him. funny kid.

and of course, we had to have a go on uncle mat's ride on esky. she loves that thing and would ride it all day if we would let her. mat has to keep turning it off and shooing her away when she got too close. she certainly loved mummy being brave enough to take her for a spin though.

and our little boy was more than happy to chill with dad and be comfortable and warm in his puffy vest, sleeping on and off for most of the day. i love how happy to warm makes the kids. it's a lovely reminder of my childhood and the time i got to spend running about, playing in the dirt and generally making mischief. i am so glad that my best friend and parents live in lovely clackline and have given my children the opportunity to do the same. 

Thursday, June 26, 2014

melinda's bday ❤️

today was my friend melinda's bday and her lovely husband aitu invited us all to come for birthday dinner. i decided to do something fun and broke out the kenwood to make a purple velvet cake! i have made something similar in the past for one of the missionaries that served in our ward, (which you can see here along with the recipe) but decided that i'd try it in purple this time around. 

it looked awesome and tasted pretty good... i'll keep the recipe ready for the next birthday!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

4 months old

baby joseph is 4 months old! so it's time for an update... 

after seeing the osteopath a few times, he is feeding beautifully and is practically a different child. so sweet and smiley, with the exception of the "witching hour" (as i like to call it - i am sure all mums are familiar with this - between 4-6pm, when they are getting tired and ready for their feed and bath before bed) he makes all kinds of noises, gooing and gahhing and gurgling when you speak to him, almost as if he is trying to speak back... i'm sure, basing my suspicions on miss madeline, it won't be long.

he had his 4 month appointment on friday for his needles and i had the nurses weigh him, he's clocking in at a hefty 8.3kg - and i whipped out the tape measure when we got home for his baby book - he's 65cm long now. wowsers. i've just broken out the 00 size clothing for him, including an "all blacks" onesie that friends of ours bought madeline as a gift for her first birthday! (bit of a size difference!)

he is sleeping all night (yay for this mama!!) and has also started to grab at things that you hold by him, or pass to him. such a smart boy! his cheeky smile (and that simple, that i have no doubt will break hearts when he gets older) and amazing... you can't take your eyes off him when he is smiling - and he gets mad if you do! he follows everyone's every move around the room... ensuring you don't leave him alone, cause if you do - he will call out and start whingeing until you come back. 

he still has bright blue eyes, much to everyones delight - they are amazing. i am 100% pleased to report that he looks like his mama. especially those eyes. he is growing well (maybe a little too well... haha) and getting cuter by the day! we love our baby boy and are so glad he's here with us.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

bastille concert

last night my best friend jennifer and i had a little treat... we got to see bastille live in concert at perth's challenge stadium. doug bought two tickets for me for christmas, but actually doesn't like them at all, so i was told that the tickets were for me and a friend (who he had already called and asked for me ahead of time). six months had passed, the band had actually arrived in perth... and woooo off we went!

i got to hear bastille's album a year ago when i was in melbourne for a wedding and a friend was kind enough to drive me and madeline from place to place whilst blasting it in his car. i loved it from the get go and was so excited to go to their concert...

when we arrived, the pre-show entertainment "foxes" had just started and oh were they incredible! their singer wrote the song "right here" which is on the rudimental album "home" and also features on the single "clarity" by zedd. she had an amazing voice and kept us more than happy during the wait for bastille. i will definitely be looking for her album, she was amazing! she even rocked out a mashup version of pharells happy mixed with massive attacks teardrop. so cool.

i was thrilled when they opened with my favourite song from their album "bad blood" with heaps of red lighting. awesome... their set was so good. they all do pretty much everything, each of the bad members were switching from singing, to guitar, to keyboards, to hitting a drum of some description... and they certainly were just as just on key live as they are on their album, which to me is always a good sign. they are certainly very talented.

doug bought us some awesome seats, in the front row of available seating, a few sections down, to one side of the stage. at one stage though, the lead singer came into the crowd with his mic and was wading (for want of a better explanation) through the crowd whilst singing. super cool. they finished and left the stage to much screaming from the crowd seeing as they hadn't even done pompeii (the song they are most well known for) but came back after we kept yelling to sing it with great gusto and the assistance of foxes and alice in wonderland, the girl that dj-ed between the two bands.

such an awesome night and i am so glad i went... what an awesome husband i have! 

Sunday, June 15, 2014

your dream job

i saw this on facebook earlier this week and realised in one of those moments of revelation, that i would have to do just that. create my dream job. there are so many things i love, and i am working hard to ensure that one day i am happy doing something i love, but one thing is for sure, it's not something that is already out there.

i have a dream... of being able to have a job where i can help others to make things beautiful. using beautiful things, old things, things that were maybe used for something completely different... once upon a time. mum and i have a love for vintage, reclaimed, repurposed, upcycled, handmade and all of the likes. it has been in discussion between the two of us, that one day we would love to have a shop together, showcasing all the above... as well as being on hand to style parties, events, even the little everyday things - just in general being able to make things beautiful.

i am researching, pinning, finding inspiration... and hoping to yet make this dream a reality. mum is so talented, with such vision and is someone i know i could spend all that time with, and not be tired of her. watch this space - because although my dream job does not exist... i fully intend to create it.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

joseph's baby quilt

today this amazing quilt unexpectedly arrived in the mail and i nearly cried. mum has made all of her grandchildren a quilt, including a gorgeous one with stars for madeline, which you can see here - and now this! 

as you all know from my blogging, mum and dad are currently serving a mission for the church we belong to: the church of jesus christ of latter-day saints, and they are teaching at the church college there. mum is in the home economics department and completely in her element cooking and sewing all day, so obviously had plenty of time and motivation to make this masterpiece.

all of the rainbow pieces around the outside are cut from the bright coloured lava lava cloths that the samoans wear, (mum has had miles of that fabric around her over the past 13 months...) then quilted fish swimming in a sea of turtles, and a hand embroided starfish (conveniently my favourite) in the bottom corner. it is so, so lovely and i feel so blessed to have such a talented mother, who loves her grandchildren so very much. i can hardly wait to put it in his room!

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

emma kate has a high tea!

today the youngest of my nieces miss emma kate turned 6 and had a high tea with her friends from school to celebrate. her lovely mum donna let me help (squeeee, i was in my element...) so i rocked up with my babes and decorated away with my eldest niece laura, (who was conveniently chucking a sickie haha) until em got home from school. i think we did a pretty good job...

us three girls made some treats (and cut up and arranged some sneaky purchases of donnas) to make this spread, which the kids and mums who stayed absolutely loved!

 the little milk bottles were a hit as always, and the kids loved the paper straws... (i am up in the air about paper straws... they look great, but definitely are kind of gross after being in liquid after half a hour or so, you need to make sure you have more than enough on hand to replace them every so often)

drinks station :)

emma had a lovely time, but i must admit i had my concerns about bring her not-even-three-year-old-cousin along to the party that she was having with all her friends, just in case madeline cramped her style a little. but... i was pleasantly surprised to keep hearing emma call, "maddie! maddie! come with me maddie!" and looking out for her all afternoon. what a sweetheart.

laura had also made some flowers from crepe paper for the chair backs which were so adorable. what a good big sister! i am totally keeping her skills in mind next time i want something.

the kids played a few games including musical bobs and statues and pass the parcel (always the favourite... side note, i wonder if kids still try to hang on to the parcel for that little bit longer so they can unwrap the next layer? i know for sure people did when i was a kid... haha) made me realise how much fun being a kid was and how excited i am for my kids to have parties too! can hardly wait for maddies, which isn't that long away now!

and just for good measure, i'd like to leave you with this absolutely scrumptious photo of joseph in the pram that donna's grandfather made for her. laura came cruising into the kitchen with him sitting in it, laughing her head off and i couldn't help but join in. classic. he looks very manly. haha.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

kate's bday

today maddie and i went to kate's birthday party. kate is a friend of madeline's from her nursery class at church. she had such a good time playing with her friends there and was beyond excited at the fact that kate's lovely mum natasha had organised some games with a peppa pig theme... 

we played peppa pig bingo and pin the nose on peppa and george. super cute and so well done... the bingo game was amazing, natasha had taken some pictures from the internet and made cards with six pictures on each (keep it simple for the little ones, great idea...) then shuffled a stack of cards that were the large pictures from the game cards. she'd then show each one and the children simply placed a block over their picture if it matched. because the game was so simple and the kids recognised all the characters it went very smoothly and they all loved it! keeping that in mind for future reference.

after cake (purple sponge... kate's favourite colour) the kids all played with playdough at a long table in the backyard. so much fun. zoe (one of my senior primary girls) helped madeline build this awesome frog. she was stoked and so excited to show it off to me when i came outside.

thanks for a great day kate!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

zoo trip

(our epic family selfie at the end of the day... you know we are cool, just admit it.)

we went to the zoo on tuesday!!!!! maddie was gifted a family pass for her birthday last year from one of the girls i work with, who is ultra generous and such a sweet heart... so now that it's not ghastly perth summer and i'm not extremely pregnant, we decided to make a day of it. i haven't been to the perth zoo since i was in school and i was thrilled to see how fun it was and how family friendly all of the exhibits are.

(hanging with the gorillas inside the front entrance)

joseph decided he wanted a feed when we had been inside the zoo for exactly three minutes... just long enough to buy a map (side note for next time, the perth zoo has a free app available from the appstore with all the same information available...) so we spent the next 30 mins hanging out in the mothers room while maddie and doug checked out the penguins and their feeding time. oh the joys of a breastfeeding mother. haha.

(doug and maddie with the lions sign... as doug is a mad brisbane lions: afl supporter he couldn't resist)

maddie looked as though she had won the lottery, as she ran ahead of us to each enclosure, asking a million questions and pointing at everything on the map... i wanna go here, i wanna see thisssss. she is so funny, and was determined to see everything and get there as fast as her little legs would take her.

joseph spent pretty much the entire day like this. all through the animals, all through lunch - with a brief time laterin which he woke up and grizzled, then promptly went back to sleep. what a dream child. thank goodness for the cozy bugaboo cocoon. i was actually petrified that he wasn't going to sleep that night but thankfully he did okay.

i am so in love with this picture even though doug rolled his eyes hard at me when he realised what i had done. in australia it is well known that people with red hair are affectionately (and sometimes not so affectionately) called rangas, which is short for orangutan. so of course i could not resist snapping this shot of my two rangas watching a real ranga. so many jokes, so little time...

i also of course had to get this one... you can barely even see the tiger in the background, he was being a little antisocial and kept hiding from us - but for good measure... "to the tiger in the zoo - madeline just said pooh pooh." of course i couldn't get her to even say it at the time, but as soon as we were away at another enclosure the dag starts saying poopooo poopoooooo at the top of her voice. two year olds certainly do what they want, not what their parents want.

i loved the australian animal area, including this fabulous huge numbat carved out of wood, seeing as the real ones didn't want to come out and play... i always picture my dad at times like that cracking jokes about the animals... i am sure he would say that the zoo has an empty enclosure and charge people cause we wouldn't know any better and then laughing to himself. nothing like a good dad joke hey!

i was also a little disappointed, as i really wanted the tasmanian devil to look like it does in the warner brothers cartoons and be whizzing around in a whirlwind... if only. they are incredibly cute, although doug assures me that they are not in any way friendly.

random things like this make me happy - i wonder how long it has been there...? it's by the elephant enclosure and looks soooo old, almost like something out of one of the temples in thailand - like in tomb raider? it's gorgeous though!

and there were these cages, which although they are a wonderful memory and look amazing from a historic point of view were so sad. they are the original cages from back in the day when animals were simply kept. not loved and cared for, more something to have and show off. it is wonderful to know how cared for the animals are now - and these cages create a good comparison for the public to understand the difference.

the saddest part of my day however was the fact that the vintage carousel was not working. i seriously almost cried! i have photos of me on it as a child with my mum and i was hoping to be able to do the same with madeline. it is so old that it is heritage listed (i read up about it here before we went) and so cute. the only good thing about it being out of order was that i was able to take some beautiful pictures of it without anyone around it, but i was still pretty shattered. but... on the bright side - i guess we will have to make another trip to the zoo to have a ride!! :) was such a fun day - can't wait to go again!

Monday, June 2, 2014

jonas's blessing

this amazing baby was given a name and a blessing yesterday by my big brother aaron. jonas stanley as you may recall was born in april, to aaron and his beautiful wife katja. he is truly blessed to have them as parents, what a lucky child! (and extremely genetically blessed haha!) he'll be taught well and so, so loved. 

it also made me feel warm and fuzzy inside to see him rocking the little tie onesie that i made for him and sent to england. what a cutie! plus it made me feel like i was a part of it which made me even happier.

aaron is the cutest dad, i can see how happy he is to have been blessed with a son to love - and i could not possibly be any happier for him. x