Sunday, December 27, 2009

Pippit's first Christmas

I woke up early Christmas day and couldn't get back to sleep so I got up and left Big V and little G snoogled up together and went out to the lounge to organise everything to take round to Aunty J's for lunch. It wasn't long before Pippit awoke and so I came back to bed to feed and cuddle her up on her first Christmas morning. Not that she will mark it as any different from any other morning for a couple more years! But still, I'll record it for posterity anyway :)

waking up and having family cuddles

unwrapping a present from Aunty Pose

 and giving it a big cuddle! Thanks Posie!

Totally enamored with her new spinning top

  watching it spin, not really sure what to make of it...

making sure Dad knows how to unwrap his pressies.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Pretty water lily

Walked into the uni today to hand in some stuff as I have finished up work for the year and noticed a water lily growing in the reflection pond. I wish my water lily would sprout a flower. It lives in a water pot in my bbq area. I get lots of leaves but so far no flower. Perhaps it needs more room...

I haven't been posting (or reading for that matter) any blogs of late. Things just seem so hectic leading up towards Christmas. Maybe especially so this year as it will be Pippy's first Christmas and I feel that I'd like it to be a good one for her. I am aware that she probably will not even remember it but I will. And it will be my first as a mother and our first as a new family so even more reasons for celebration. I finally put up the tree the other night with Big V, it looks great and when Pippy saw it in the morning she was really thrilled and wouldn't stop smiling. That alone makes it totally worth it :)

Now that the tree bit is done I feel like the rest is icing, and the next two days will be fun because I'm making the desserts for Christmas day: raspberry sorbet, rocky road ice cream, chocolate mousse, plum pudding and brandy custard, yum! (all I want for Christmas is a diabetes check!)

I will clean your windows for FREE!

A terrible fuzzy photo, I know but I was laughing too hard to take a steady one :D

I have a tomato... Beware!

I will make sauce outta you.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

nike, nike, nike

Because I have to learn to 'just do it'! 

Recently I've had a dose of 'can't be bothered' attitude and it's been annoying me no end. One voice in my head (belongs to a couch potato, I'm sure) looks at whatever task needs doing and like an unruly child stamps an imaginary foot and just says 'don't wanna!'  and so I end up procrastinating and wallowing and generally looking around for something else to do and so said tasks remain festering in whatever pile I haven't sorted. Bleh.

Well not today!  I had an awesomely productive day where many a chore and errand were done and ahhhhh! the satisfied feeling afterwards was great. Far, far better than the almost catholic like guilt I'd been feeling over being such a lazy slob. I just hope this Tony Robbins like attitude lasts, cos with Christmas round the corner I need all the help I can get!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

it's only rain...

Some days I get annoyed that I can't go outside because the weather is so bad but today I am loving the rain. We are all inside in the cosy warmth with the sound of the rain pattering steadily on the windows. The plants all look extra green and my cup of tea is lovely and hot in my hands as I peruse my latest book.

Dymocks had a 20% off night last Thursday and I had a gift card ripe for the spending to get some wonderful new papery treats! My friend Bec from Things to make and do had recently shown me her copy of a cool book called Meet me at Mike's by Pip Lincolne.

I had drooled over this book in the bookshops but it was always reluctantly put back on the shelf, mentally filed away on a 'one day' list for when my wallet was feeling a bit healthier. Yay for gift cards!  The book is full of great crafty projects, perfect for rainy days (and avoiding the housework!) I haven't decided which project to do first yet. Maybe the yoga pants. Maybe the shoes. They're both so cute :)

Saturday, November 28, 2009


It's three twenty six in the morning. It was two fifty seven when I decided to get up because you can't trick yourself into thinking you're asleep with fake snores. This is ridiculous! I have a eleven month old baby who sleeps through the night while I do not. 

Just lately, in the last few weeks I just wake up around one thirty - two in the AM and I'm just totally awake. No, strike that, my body is awake and wanting to go dancing and my brain is begging to be turned off.  I've tried so many things to try and get the old Z's a'happening but to no avail so now I'm trying a new one - getting up. Well, getting up and making a hot drink of chamomile and peppermint tea courtesy of Celestial Seasonings. Let's hope it works. I never really liked chamomile tea but I love peppermint and so far the taste of the latter is overwhelming the former.  It's not too bad.

While I wait for the tea to do it's job I've been doodling and browsing blogs, two things that I love doing but haven't had much time for this last year having become a new Mama.  I just recently bought a new fine black felt tip pen. I love these pens for drawing. They make the best doodles :)

This was something I was thinking about in bed before I got up. 'A' is for awesome, is what was going through my head. No idea why. And no idea why I pictured it in a bird's nest. I also had images of the bird being made out of a hole punch with material behind it... so that's why it is round. My friend was recently given some scrap love from fabric designer Saffron Craig (oooh, so jealous!) Anyway, not one to be stingy, she shared her scrap love with me, Yay!  I think the scrap works really well as a birds body!

Zorro was one lucky bugger. He could create Z's whenever he needed :(

As I'm typing this I think I can feel the tea working. Please, please, please be working! One of the most annoying things about waking in the middle of the night is that when, inevitably, I do get tired enough to go back to sleep it's something like five o'clock so I have to get up a few hours later and then spend the day walking round like a zombie and being less than charming to hang out with. I mean, no one chooses to hang out with a zombie do they! Who wants someone gnawing at an errant limb, or worse cracking your skull and having a chew at your brain whilst pretending to be that fat Indian man from the Temple of Doom delighting in chilled monkey brains. I know I certainly don't!

I guess I should try going to sleep now. There's the Handmade market on tomorrow today to look forward to. Goodnight!

Friday, November 27, 2009

I heart giveaways!

I love browsing crafty blogs and coming across giveaways, it's the same feeling I used to get when I was young hunting for fossils, gems or shells. Mini treasures ripe for the picking! And just to prove I'm no greedy grumpling here's a few links to some treats and goodies :)

Here's a giveaway from Pretty Ditty where you can win a yard of fabric from her store PhatFabric.

This one from The Rikrak Studio is huge with many, MANY lovely things up from grabs and you can enter in many different ways to up your chances of winning.

Flea Market Fancy Freaks is having a giveaway where you can win one of 5 different prizes.

And finally, close to home, one of my most favouritest people in all the world is having a giveaway of some of her lovely hand made creations: cute piggy wigs from Notions!

 Good luck!

Monday, November 23, 2009

∆ My Collection(s) - My Place and Yours ∆

I haven't been playing along with Meet Me at Mikes meme lately, I've just been too disorganised. This weeks theme is My Collection suggested by Theme Queen Kate from Foxs Lane, pretty much the perfect theme for me, I collect so many things! 

My Mother often calls me a hoarder and God knows I drive Big V up the wall with my incessant need to keep every little thing, "Why do you always collect so much junk?" and I think it is these negative connotations of collecting that has recently led me to want to de-clutter and cull some of my surroundings.  This, I know, is not a bad thing. Sometimes things are junky and don't need to be kept, I just find it so hard to let go! 

To me, a lot of my bits and bobs are like mental post it notes. Little tags that evoke memories by association, and I love that association. I have boxes filled with memory tags that I love to get out from the top shelf of the cupboard and sift through, reminiscing as I go.  Some of the more junk-y things I collect and store are movie ticket stubs, pretty beer tops, funky coasters from travels, nicely printed paper bags, old postcards... I keep thinking if I put them all in one great scrap book that they'll be organised and less bothersome to those others in the household! 

I  also collect boxes, buttons, fabric, books, coloured pencils, beautiful cards, old keys, things with bugs or bees, funny Buddhas, lovely coloured cottons, tiny birds, good luck kittys and so many other knick knacks...

But it's not like it can just be any old bottle top or any old Buddha, bird or bug. Quite a few times when friends have been aware of a 'current' collecting fad they think they're on a winner for a present idea and sadly it's just not always the case. I'm not saying I don't appreciate their thoughtfulness, it's completely lovely, it's just that collecting can be so personal. Just because I love tiny birds does not mean that every time I see a thing with a bird in it, I want it. It has to speak to me in just the right way. Crazy? Maybe, but that's just the way it is :)

One of my latest collections is the letter 'V' (did I miss my calling working for Sesame Street?) I had previously blogged about it for the first of Meet Me at Mike's meme's 'On the Shelf' and since then I have found a few more V's that have taken my fancy.

The two wooden V's I think I'll paint and I have a very cute small shadow box which I'll put the little brass v in, it'll be a perfect fit! My favourite one at the moment is the orange card V. It has pictures on the back of 'V' things. I love both sides so much I think I'll have to buy another and frame them side by side, which will work well as I am planning yet another collection of wall art! Can anyone say lost cause?

One small comfort is that I know I'm not alone. In this months Inside Out magazine there was an article written by Sibella Court where she mentions that her " ...maternal Grandmother was labelled a hoarder; it was always said with disdain. So I call myself a keeper of collections - or a bowerbird. I, too, get fixated on things" This makes me feel much better about my stash of treasures :)

Friday, November 13, 2009

Pippit's first day at the beach

Today was such fantastic weather, the sort that just demands that you go to the beach... so we did! Rosie, Pippy and I all bundled up in the car and drove down to seven mile beach for a walk and a paddle.  I haven't been to seven mile in such a long time I'd forgotten what a nice beach it actually is.

Rosie managed to save a little fishy that was stranded by the tide. I didn't get a great photo of it as we were obviously rushing to get him back in the water... he kinda looks like a mini jaws!
I collected a bunch of chinese fingernail shells (not sure of their real name but that's what I've always called them), talk about a witchy poo!


and Rosie found me the most beautiful shell, the photo doesn't do the colour justice at all. It's the most amazing coral pink, I've never seen a shell coloured like it - love it :)

Little Pippit absolutely loved the water, not afraid one little jot! (that's my girl!) I think she would play in water all day if she was allowed.  I used to spend nearly all day, every day at the beach when I was younger.  A friend and I used to take her doughnut ring, chuck our towels in the middle and each hold a side as we walked down about a block to the beach.  We'd paddle out till we couldn't touch the bottom and freak ourselves out and then paddle back in again.  We would've only been about nine or ten, I can't believe our parents were cool with us going off by ourselves like that!  I guess they were just different times.


Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Sent this scan from a book called Mamatoto to a friend who is over their due date for birth in the hopes that it will make them laugh so hard and bring on labour.

I wonder if it'll work :)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

guru swarmy bugger the rest of you I'm alright thanks jack G

For some reason I have that phrase on the brain, no idea why. It hasn't been on the radio for years, can't even remember if it was TTT or Triple J! Another sign of the recent bout of scattiness I've had lately I'm sure.  I need to do a MASSIVE Spring clean in my house and perhaps my brain is doing the same.  After all, do I really need random quotes spoken in a fake Indian accent floating around in my head? No, I don't think so!

I came to realise whilst watching Big V sneeze for the tenth time in a row the other day and thinking how lucky I was that I don't get hay fever the way he does, that while I may not sneeze, cough or get ragingly itchy eyes I DO GET SCATTY!  I suddenly lose all ability to focus and organise my days leading to many things being left undone. Great big piles of washing, mail on every surface of the kitchen table, half started projects and their paraphernalia lying around everywhere - I'm like that funny bag lady from the Labyrinth that collects everything on her back.  I need to buy a pair of footy boots just to give myself a good swift kick up the backside!

Maybe Big V is the lucky one.  I mean, he can take an antihistamine for his affliction but what can I take? What remedy is there for an unorganised clutter bug?

Friday, October 23, 2009


Big V has taken some holidays and so I have been super remiss about blogging everyday.  I believe if the three strikes rule applies then I am now well and truly out :( In my defense I have been thinking about blogging and did take some photos to blog about so I haven't been completely tardy.

On the Wednesday I took Little G to the pool for her swimming lesson but the great thing was that Big V was able to come too so we were able to take a bit of video and a few pics of the event. We did ask if it was okay to take pics at the pool because we didn't want other people to think that Big V was some kind of dirty pervert taking pictures of little kids. The lifeguards said it would be fine as long as the shots were only of us and no one else. 

G was having so much fun splashing that she wouldn't look at the camera. She loves the pool and really makes an effort at kicking and paddling. The lady who takes the class said she wants G in her swim squad as she's such a natural at it. She kicks on her tummy and on her back, apparently that is awesome for her age. (Insert proud beaming Mama here)

Another milestone for Bubbit is that she has started clapping and waving, very rewarding for us as parents and of course we think she is the smartest baby in the universe for being able to do so! She is also well on the way to crawling forward now but every time she tries to she gets very frustrated at not moving very fast, it's more like crawl-cry-crawl-pause-cry-crawl. As you can see in the pic, sometimes it's just all too much! She does eventually get to where ever she's headed, oh but the effort ;D

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

My (dusty) shelf

I am joining in yet another blog-a-long. Inspired by Bec (cos she is so inspirational!) This one is called My Place & Yours created by Meet me at Mikes. This weeks theme is 'On the Shelf' so despite all the dust and clutter I have picked out a small snapshot of one of my shelves to share.

When I got married a few years ago I had a bit of an inner debate as to whether I should take my husbands last name or not.  I had been a 'Bennetto' for so long that could I really be anything else? All sorts of weird issues raised their heads during this inner turmoil not the least of them being the fact that my middle name rhymes with his last name - how very 'Julia Goolia'! (remember the wedding singer?)

In the end I decided that I would become a 'Valentine' and have never looked back.  So now I like to collect 'V's as a sort of celebration of my new name.  The V's in the picture are for our little family: Big V, Little G and me. 

Can't wait to add another V to the collection!

Monday, October 19, 2009


Because we all need jeans that don't bind your legs...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Homage to salmon and apples

Today Big V, Rosie, Pippit and I all ventured down south to pay our respects to the produce of the Huon. The Apple and Salmon Race Day Carnival to be exact.  I don't want to be negative about it but it was not what I expected. I think the use of the word 'carnival' conjured up a rather more grandiose image than what was actually there but despite my over active imagination we all had a good day out and it was held by the local Rotary so all for a good cause.

I would have loved to be a judge for the apple pies and toffee apple contest.  What a job.  It's sad though that the pies are only really destined to have a scoop taken out and then just be left on a table for all to look and not touch. Pies are for eating people! 

And more so the toffee apples! Despite the fact that they are really toothaches on a stick it's just a waste to have one bite and then just leave it be - oh you mock me toffee apple! Sitting in your glass vase teasing me with your red shiny goodness!

I sampled no salmon but did have a lucaston apple juice (best apple juice ever) and an apple cake, mmm, delish! We did enter the Salmon and Apple race too but could only afford to bet on an apple as they were only $3 whereas a salmon was $50.  

Initially we wondered how on earth you could have a salmon and apple race. I mean, apples certainly would bob along merrily down the river but wouldn't the salmon just swim away? 

All was revealed upon reaching the race tent where we were greeted by tubs of plastic fishies. Ah, much more compliant racers! 
Sadly not as tasty as Rosie discovered.  Sushi you are not, fishy 99!