Chanbe’s birthday party

We headed down to Townsville last weekend for Chance’s 3rd birthday party and had such a great time. We had a bit of a “pirate party” theme happening and Hubs really got into the dressing up, courtesy of op-shop bargain hunting by me, and pirate Chanbe looked pretty cute too.

Here’s the cake I made – I was really happy with how it turned out!

And Chanbe was pretty happy too…
Aaaaargh matey. T’was a great daaaaaay!

And they said it couldn’t be done!

And by “they” I mean the voices inside my head…

Oh man those photos make me cringe. Especially the shot of the kitchen. We were (I was) still pretty relaxed and confident at this stage. I’m not sure how, but it felt pretty damn good. 
And then…

I spent a solid 8 hours cleaning this house top to bottom, inside and out. I really hope the real estate agents are impressed, or at the very least, satisfied, because I was. Especially since I did it all with a very sore foot that turned out to be due to a stress fracture I sustained a month ago. I just didn’t get around to going to the doctor until it was all finished. In return for my hard work, I got to buy a new pair of (red) shoes! It was worth it.
Another empty house. Another move. Another change. Another adventure. 
Wanna come?

What’s going on?

Even though we don’t leave Townsville (moving to Ingham for 10 weeks for Hubs’ last placement as an intern) til Friday the 8th of November, the removalists are coming on Monday to put everything into storage, and we are moving in with our friends Haz, Maz, Jaz and Az (Haz and Maz are good friends of ours – Maz and Hubs are interns together – and Jaz and Az are their boys who are the same age as Chanbe and Quindy.) Got it? Confused?? Yeah, me too 🙂

But we are getting there! And my stress levels are surprisingly low, hence me feeling like I can spare 10 minutes to write a blog post! There’s still a lot to do, but I’m 100% sure it can be done in time for the moving van to arrive Monday morning. And the great thing is, Mum is still around looking after the kids, and Hubs has had most of this week off. He also has 3 days off next week so we can get the house ready for new renters to (hopefully) move in asap.

Quindy has been somewhat out of sorts (probably teething…)
But she’s still been providing us with lots of smiles and chats.

My poor little Chanbe. We keep selling the furniture while he’s in bed or out with Gran. He woke up the other morning and said to Hubs 
“Ummm Dadda, where’s the couch?” 
But he really is such a trooper, and not to provide TMI but the toilet training is going SO WELL. Woo!!!
There’s also been a fair bit of this:

Granted, not the best timing, but Hubs and Haz have been doing some serious male bonding over the kombi. And it makes Hubs happy, so whatareyougonnado?
Don’t you just LOVE the matchy-matchy jumpsuit and kombi!!

Oh, and there was also this:

 We all came into contact with a caterpillar cocoon that was in our friend’s pram. It was pretty nasty!

The kids were a bit upset initially, but even though the rash hang around all week, it didn’t seem to bother them at all (as you can see)!
 I still have a slight rash (this was taken last Sunday, after the incident on Saturday night) and it gets itchy when I get sweaty, but it’s getting better. We had NO idea what it was to start with, but then we found the cocoon. We’ll be checking from now on I think!

So yes, as well as moving, there have been the usual amount of goings-on. But like I said, my stress levels are way down on this time last year! Hubs and I took full advantage of Mum being here and went out for a delicious Japanese dinner last night. Just our luck. We’re about to leave town when we find an awesome place to eat! Can’t believe we’re already packing this house up. Where did the year go?

Oh well. On to the next adventure!!

A picnic for 2

A couple of months ago, Hubs and I were given a bottle of Moet Champagne, and have since been looking for/trying to make an opportunity to share it in celebration of Hubs finishing his PhD. The time came on Friday night when Hubs and set off for a picnic on the banks of the Ross River. Mum is staying with us at the moment, so we headed off around 5:30pm and wished Mum all the best.

We found a lovely clearing about 10-15min bike ride from our house and set ourselves up.

We got there just in time to watch the very pretty sunset.
And I made sure I had packed real glasses, because real Champagne needs real glasses.

The view of Annandale across the river, and Mt Stuart to the right.

Hubs’ answer to “give me something special!”

I was getting worried that we had gotten there too late and that we were about to run out of sunlight. I looked in the other direction to find a full moon!!! 
(A bit hard to see here if you don’t know where you’re looking but it’s there!)

We had such a lovely time chatting and eating yummy things. And the Moet? Little bubbles of absolute bliss.

Chanbe’s car trip

There’s a fair bit of road works going on a few kms from our house, and although it would be quicker to avoid it, I’d also miss out on this each morning:

(Re: the “smiley face” he’s referring to: There’s a temporary speed sign that says 40 and has a speed camera on it. If you’re going 40km/h or under, it gives you a big smiley face.)

(The size and quality are better if you click on the “YouTube” icon on the bottom right, and view it via YouTube.)

And of course, if I’d kept filming for another 5 seconds, you would have also been treated to a big “BOBCAT!! Bobcat Mama!!!”

I love the delight the Chanbe finds in a boring old trip in the car. It’s definitely a highlight of my day 🙂

#036 – Go to the Harvey Ranges with Mum

This is part of my challenge to complete 101 things in 1001 days. 
See my full list here, and the inspiration behind the 101 things in 1001 days challenge here.

While Mum was visiting, we headed up to the Harvey Ranges Heritage Tea Rooms to check out their High Tea. Unfortunately we needed to give a week’s notice for High Tea, so instead we just ordered off the menu. We’ll try for a High Tea somewhere else sometime!

There were quite a few people there for a mid-week, non-school holidays time of year, (not that you can tell from the photos!) and it gave the place extra atmosphere. It had a really lovely feel to it, with an old, rustic house, and seating among lovely shady trees.

It was a really nice place to spend some quality mother/daughter/granddaughter time, and just from the look and feel of the place, I was already saying I’d love to bring Hubs and Chanbe here sometime, as well as out-of-town guests.

We ordered some scones and a focaccia to share, and of course a couple of coffees, and waited in the beautiful surrounds.

The food and drinks arrived, and this is where things started to go a bit downhill. The coffee was so incredibly weak, it was like they put only a trickle of espresso in, so I went back and asked for an extra shot. Even with that, it was barely passable as “coffee” instead of “slightly coffee flavoured milk”.

The focaccia was certainly forgettable, as was the dressing-soaked salad on the side. And the scones. The scones weren’t sconny at all. They were like slabs of cake-like-stuff that just tasted like nothing much at all. And they were ridiculously huge. Not dainty or light and fluffy or special at all.

So I’m not sure I’ll be heading back anytime soon, which is such a shame. Obviously we still had a lovely time, but that was more about the place and the company, and not much to do with the food and drink.
This place has SO MUCH potential, but there’s just no heart. Maybe that’s why this sign was up.

I feel like they’ve already sold the place – like they’re just killing time and don’t have to try hard or impress anyone. My imagination went straight to “Hubs and I would be so great at running a place like this!” I could make (awesome) scones in the morning, make (delicious) coffees all day, and bake (yummy) treats in the evenings. That would be so cool. Maybe one day…

When your toddler gives you lemons

It was one of those days. Chanbe and I just weren’t on the same page. There were tantrums (his) and tears (mine), negotiations and bribes. Finally, when the weather cleared up a bit, we took it outside. Quinn was asleep, so he had me all to himself. It was the best idea I’d had all day.

I brought some soothing supplies:

And had a lovely view of my lovely son showing me some “big jumps” off the rocks in our backyard.

Once I had painted my toenails, Chanbe wanted in on the girly time as well.
“It’s very pretty” said Chanbe.

“Don’t tell Dadda” said I.

Then it was time for some “big kicks”. The sun was shining, and finally we had made some sweet sweet lemonade.

My happy little vegemite

This is my little girl. “She’s very happy” as Chanbe would say. He says it all the time, because my little Quinn is happy a lot. She hardly ever cries – usually only when she’s really hungry, is about to vomit, or if Chanbe donks her on the head with one of his Matchbox cars. Even then, it’s gotta be a pretty big donk.

She goes to bed happy and puts herself to sleep sucking her thumb.

She wakes up happy, talking to herself and playing with the blanket.

She loves her big brother, and he was the first person to make her laugh, just yesterday. It was the most lovely sound in the world. Her face lights up when Chanbe is playing with her, and she smiles when he gives her a big cuddle and a big kiss, which is often.

She smiles when she sees her Dadda’s face when he comes home from work, and grabs onto those dreads as tight as she can. That makes Dadda smile. A lot.

And all day long, she smiles at her Mama. My heart just bursts a thousand times a day and I feel like the luckiest gal in the world.

Mothers Day

Yesterday was Mothers Day here in Australia. Hubs had to work so I have booked in my sleep in and breakfast for his next day off which is this Thursday. Our friends are up visiting so we had a day of touristy stuff planned. Chanbe must have known it was a special day, as he slept in til 7am! Woo! He came into our bed for cuddles and gave me my presents and lovely card. I was given a pamper voucher for 5 visits which I’m very excited about, and a bike!! Well, a picture of a bike. Hubs bought me a fully restored Moulton commuter bike off ebay and I can’t wait to see it! It still has to make its way to us, so I will get another surprise soon!

Myself, the kids and our friends and their 16 month old little girl took off around 9am to see Castle Hill (we drove up), and the Strand. It was an absolutely beautiful day!

Us at the top of Castle Hill:

We had a walk around and took in the gorgeous views, and then headed down to the Strand for a walk and fish and chips for lunch. I then took the kids home for a sleep that never happened, and then we all headed to Riverway for a swim in the afternoon. It was Quinn’s first swim!

We came home and fed the kids, then I cooked up some parmas for us all. After dinner, I was getting some food ready for our trip to Magnetic Island today, when we heard Chanbe crying. Hubs went in to settle in, and then I heard Chanbe calling me so I went in as well. There was spew all over his bed 🙁 Hubs took him in the shower while I cleaned things up, and for the next 4 hours, he spewed every half hour or so. The poor little guy. We were up a few more times during the night, and he has been unwell today so we decided not to go out.

I was so worried my friend’s little girl would be sick as well, and she was fine up until they started driving to the ferry. She has only been sick once, so I’m hoping that will be it for her, and that none of us (especially Quinn) get it.

So that was my mothers day. And I wouldn’t change it for anything 🙂