Sunday, July 27, 2008

Sun. I need you.

Pin-up by Vargas

It's not a dodgy thyroid.

It's not diabetes.
It's not early menopause.

It's a frickin' vitamin D deficiency!
Blood tests confirm I don't get out enough.

'Slip. Slop. Slap.' was drummed into my skull at the local Life Saving Club as a kid and I remember the ads playing every summer. Since the campaign was released in 1981 the incidences of the two most common skin cancers have dropped but the incidences of the more deadly melanoma have actually increased. The jury is still out on wether low serum levels of vitamin D are linked to the susceptibility and proliferation of melanoma cells. 

So I'm going to take my chances nakedly, 10 mins, 6 x per week. Doctor's orders. The rest of the time I will stay 'sun smart'.

Saving my sanity

Three visits to the doctor. 
Three grumpy people. 
Short tempers and lots of grrrrr...

Time to get out with friends and what better place than Ceres to wind it back a notch?

Mud, cubbies, sausage rolls, porridge with maple syrup and a bloody good whinge. 

Phew! Feeling more normal. Feeling earthy. Feeling sane.

Thank-you trees, gardens, chickens, a very cool mum and her beautiful babes. See you all very soon.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Park life. Two year anniversary

Today we visited The Fitzroy Gardens in honour of my Aunty.

Here are the boys walking through the 'pond', which has been drained due to the drought.

The conservatory has a very tropical vibe going on.

This was the first time the boys ever saw a plane sky-writing.
Message from above?

The Tudor Village is a miniature town in the centre of the gardens. We thought it was hysterical that the inhabitants of the village were hiding in their houses from the GIGANTIC pigeons coo-ing and strutting through the streets.

I remember being taken to The Gardens by my Aunty to see the Tudor Village and the Fairy Tree. My Aunty was someone who made life magical for children. She spoke of fairies and goblins and drew you into her make believe world. Her garden had many secret fairy statues and houses. She told me only those with pure hearts could see the messages left by the fairies in the garden.

She valued imagination greatly. At her house we had tea in 'Princess Cups' (Pink Johnson's Ware) and slept in the 'Princess Bedroom'. Before going to bed she would tell us all about the Sandman who would come to sprinkle sleepy-dust in our eyes each night so we would have good dreams. Instead of saying 'Goodbye' when we left, we said 'Ooh-la-la' in our frenchy-est accents, we'd still be yelling it out the windows of Mum's veedub as we turned the corner at the end of her street.

She passed through the veil in her sleep two years ago, after spending the day with her new twin baby Grandchildren. My heart breaks at the loss for these wee'uns of a Magical (Fairy) Grandmother who will never take them to the end of the garden in their slippers to look for fairy-circles on the lawn or doors in the folds of a tree-trunk.

I think of her whenever I talk about fairies or ghosts or smell the perfume White Linen.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Tagged by Skeleton Woman.

Six things I liked today...

My morning coffee.
Every morning, tick-tock at 8 o'clock a latte finds it's way into my sleepy hands. Today I got to drink it before it was cold.

My wedding ring.
Even though I keep forgetting to wear it, I love this ring. I first saw it made in sterling silver at Ditto Day in Fitzroy. It was meant to be, each stamp signifies something personal and special to mat and I. The bull: Mat is a Taurean. The hand: The first initial in each of our names spell out the word P.A.L.M. and the horse shoe is for Luck in Love. I adore it's gently undulating edges. We had our rings made in white gold by the talented jeweller Ali Alexander, wonderful Melbourne designer.

Such hardy beauty.

Listening to the
I like listening to radio 4. So much better than Australian radio. (Far, far too many ads.) There are so many fantastic programs, today I listened to a radio-play of an Agatha Christie's 'Poirot'.

I got organised.Today I put some photos that were floating around in ice-cream containers into albums. I like looking back and feeling nostalgic. These ones were pics of the early days of our relationship up until the birth of the boys.

Kids doing kid stuff.It's never boring in this house as we've built up quite a stash of dress-ups. Who needs telly?

I tag 'The Ruth Spoon'. I would read anything this gal wrote, including her shopping list.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Vested Interests.

Anyone who knows me well knows I love a little Vintage Vest Action. For the English readers here I'm not referring to an old man's undergarment. When I met Mat I had to learn 'English-English'. Vest = Singlet, Duvet = Doona and what I fancy is the waistcoat.

The waistcoat is said to have been invented by King Charles the 2nd in 1666, in the interest of teaching the nobility thrift. There is a wealth of information available on the history of the waistcoat and most of it relates to the influences of royalty and aristocracy filtering down to the wardrobe of the common man.

The vests I love are far removed from such noble influences. Knitted or woven, the vests I adore are soft, worn and made from natural fabrics or yarn. Wool. Cord. Velvet. Denim. Suede. Patched. Embroidered. Hand-made or hand-me-down. 

These are best when it comes to vests!

Some vests I probably wouldn't wear: 

My big gay bear pal's leather number.

kevlar vest.

A string vest.
What the very hell is going on here?

A tapestry vest. 
90s Mom chic at it's finest...

An acid wash vest.
Ooh! Ahh! (barf)

A cartoon print, satin-look vest.

The latter 3 exist in high numbers at most op-shops. For the love of God! Burn them!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Swiss Miss gets first aid.

I adopted my Grandma's sewing machine. She has been living at my house for about 2 years and in the interest of feng shui forces I am finally getting her repaired. NO more popping sounds. NO more smelly smoke. It turns out her capacitor had gone and in 2 weeks I shall have her back. Good as new.

After all her faithful years of service she deserves a little love. I learnt to sew on this machine. She's like a member of the family.

When I studied clothing production we used industrial machines and I started to look down my nose at domestics, but she is so sturdy and you can't pop an industrial under the table while you have tea. come home Bettina. I've got lots of jobs for you.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

First Flashback Fever.

First Bubbacinos.

First train ride with Aunty Sian.

First mango.

First chocolate eggs at Easter.

First big boy Lego.

First big boy bike.

First Splices.

So many 'firsts' and many more to come. 

Friday, July 4, 2008

Aunty Lolly.

When I was young my favourite person in the world was my Aunty Noeleen. She used to come and visit on her bike with the basket on the front and seemed to dig my crazy imagination. 

She would always knock on the door and say 'Avon calling' in a posh voice and after we let her in she would encourage me to rummage through her bag to find some treat or other. More often than not, a pack of lolly 'fags' or a BoPeep jar from Darrell Lea.

She used to tell me our front garden had pixies living in it and our back garden had fairies at the back in the ivy. She gave me Enid Blyton books for Birthdays and Christmas and used to do crazy stuff like singing into a carrot with a tea cosy on her head.

Bubble has a cackle just like Noeleen but he couldn't pronounce her name, it always came out as 'Lolly' which she thought was the greatest and therefore adopted the moniker. Ace!

Front and Centred.

With a lovely purging case of gastro to clean out the cobwebs, the week from hell is dead and buried. I wiped every surface with tea tree oil, got some sleep and knitted to distract myself.

I finished the back of the vest. So there. The back is behind us.

Now for the front. This is the first time I've tried something this tricky. I like the rhythm of it. It takes more concentration than rib but I like the 'not thinking' aspect. I've been thinking waaaaay too much. Worrying.

So needles in hand, a knitting pattern (with a graph!), a stack of half read books, a child who is happily going off to kinda and three garbage bags for the charity shop I'm ready to let go of what was behind me and face the front.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

This has been a pretty dodgy week as far as weeks go.


For a few weeks I had noticed a change in Bubble. The nights before kinda he had trouble sleeping and did not want to go in the morning. Getting him dressed was turning in to a game of stealth and cunning. It was time for a chat...

He eventually told me he was afraid to go to kinda because a boy was always hurting him and it sounded like it had been going on for some time. The hairs on my neck were bristling like a she-wolf as I took the boys to kinda. I told one of the staff what Bubble had reported and she told me she would watch the situation and have a talk to Bubble. We also made an appointment to chat with the coordinator.


On friday we took Bubble to the Naturopath. We talked about bullying and stress as an asthma trigger. She remembered that on the night of the big asthma attack Mat had taken him in to see her and while they were chatting Bubble told her a boy had stood on his stomach and that it was still hurting. She had checked him over at the time but in all the hubbub Mat had forgotten to tell me about it. It turned out that the boy who stood on his tummy was the one doing the bullying.

On the Weekend

We talked to the boys about everyone feeling safe and saying 'Stop' and 'No, I don't like that' to bullies. We played a game on some toy phones. It's amazing how easily children can talk about their problems when they are role-playing. The game was a phone number you could call to tell the other person something that had upset you. I learned a lot about kinda and also that my 'angry voice' is too loud and scary. Yikes.


We had the meeting at kinda to discuss our worries and the strategies that they had put in place for dealing with the issue. The boy had apologised and they had been given a special responsibility to share, caring for the indoor plants. We felt much better.


We had to hunt down a friend and ask for a loan to be re-payed. Yuck.