Saturday 28th February

I actually slept in till 6:30am.
That was nearly an 8 hour sleep last night.
A record for me these days.
I so needed it.
I gave Caspian a run around outside and then his breakfast.
Checked in on Azzan several times but he was sound asleep.
So I eventually headed to the shower, leaving the door ajar for the puppy.
Grief! It’s like having a baby in the house all over again!
He was so funny.
At one point I looked down to see his wee tongue poking under the shower door licking up water 🙂
Azzan finally arrived out in the kitchen just before 9am.
He was so pleased with himself that he had woken without my assistance.
He got my bike, helmet & lock out for me while I gathered up my things and gave last minute instructions.
He was happily cooking breakfast for himself when I left at 9:15am.
Nathan came down a bit later on and picked figs for me and then took Azzan to Phillipa’s and Caspian was looked after by him & Mira.

It was a gorgeous morning, I really enjoyed the bike ride.
It wasn’t really long enough though but I didn’t have time to dally so just took the shortest route to the Women’s Centre.
It was my first training day at SASH today.
There was just a small group of us, 5 plus two tutors.
We began at 9:30am and had a very interesting, informative day.
They warn you that in this type of work you may get triggered at times, today was just the beginning of the training but in amongst the basics there were things discussed which were causing stomach churning triggers within me already.
I know it is going to be hard as we move on but I am praying that I can deal with my own issues privately & appropriately and be able to help others in need.
We finished around 3:30pm.
It was so hot.
I biked back home, got in the mail and washing and then drove up to get Caspian.
He was happy to see me and sat on the front seat quite happily while I drove to pick up Azzan.
Phillipa had all of her g’kids there so Azzan had been having fun helping to entertain them.
We chatted for a few minutes and then headed back home.
Debated on the way what to have for dinner.
Azzan really wanted eggs on toast with salad.
He picked the last of the fresh lettuce from the garden and I made salads.
I suggested he might like chips instead of bread as I had eaten too much bread today – food was supplied and it was very bread based which doesn’t sit well with me.
He was off down the street in a flash 🙂
I poached some lovely farm eggs that Marah had given us.
Azzan cuddled up to me on my bed with our yummy dinners and watched a couple of episodes of Bad Education.
He was a happy lad.
Then I dozed for a wee while before getting up with a second wind.
Decided to have a go at putting up some of the shade cloth I had bought yesterday.
Azzan helped me lay it out and measure it.
I used the deck gaps as cutting guides and then I staple gunned it to the fence between us and the neighbours.
The boundary fence is pretty basic – just horizontal trellis which is not terribly private, so with the shade cloth it makes it less see through.
I plan to plant the garden out soon along there which will give more privacy too.
I got two sections stapled up and the third one half done, it got too dark to see properly so Ive left it till tomorrow.
I was pretty darned proud of our efforts tonight 🙂

When I came inside Azzan was cleaning out the fridge and shucking corn and getting veggies ready for tomorrow nights dinner.
I collapsed on the sofa in the dark and rested for a few minutes then made some fruit salad and muesli for dessert and came to bed.
Time for sleep now.
Am really trying to get the lights out much earlier.

Friday 27th February

Shoshannah was up getting things done when I hit the shower.
I took Caspian outside for his morning constitutional.
Mahalia was up at 7:30am all bright eyed and bushy tailed, she headed off for a bike ride.
Azzan wasn’t so pleased to see the morning as he had not settled till quite late last night.
I popped down to the vets with Caspian and got a collar and flea treatment at 8am.
Shanni headed off to her carpentry class just before 9am, forgot her bike lock so Mahalia whizzed up the road with it.
Ian arrived to have a look at the curtain rail in Mahalia’s room that fell off the wall a week or so back.
I was pretty annoyed at yet one more thing to have to fix etc.
But the upshot is that the track that was used was very inferior and not at all strong enough to support the weight of curtains.
He also commented that the curtains in her room are just the black out backing fabric, not  the real curtains per see!
So much for the ‘very expensive’ curtains I was told these were!
Anyway, he had a measure up and showed me what would be preferable and called me back later with a quote.
It’s more than I had hoped but at least it will be a way better job than what was there and it should last for years.
Luke arrived with some stuff he had brought out from Pot Ligar for us.
He chatted for a while and then went off to do some jobs.
I had a few things on my mind that I needed/wanted to get done.
I had told the kids that I wanted maths & english done and the beans & corn processed this morning.
I needed to get out of the house.
I spent most of the morning in tears or fighting tears.
Too much stress and worry and not enough sleep.
So around 10:30am I tried to leave, it took a while.
I found a couple of courier parcels on the mailbox.
One of them was my shoes that I ordered from Australia not even 7 days ago. certainly came through on prompt delivery – thanks Fiona for putting me on to them 🙂
I had ordered them with slight trepidation as I usually cannot find shoes to fit easily.
However these were absolutely perfect.
I was thrilled with them.
There was a suggestion on another website that you order a size smaller than usual which is what I had done as that was the largest size they stock and it was right!
They are Hot Chocolate made in Venezuela and they certainly brightened my morning 🙂
I put them on and this time made it out of the gate.
Azzan wanted to go to the library so he biked off there for an hour.
I left Mahalia doing her maths and babysitting the puppy.
I drove on out to Bunnings and had a look at all the shade cloth.
Had a good talk with a lady there and ended up bringing three rolls home to try.
Then called into Grey Power to restart my membership.
Tim & I used to belong a while ago, it was strange joining as a single :-/
I called into Melrose House to see if there were any ladies still at the coffee morning, and met Gay & Susan leaving. with Paddington Bear.
So we drove back to my house and they popped in to visit for a few minutes.
Mahalia gave Susan a guided tour.
Paddington Bear introduced himself to Caspian, they got along fine.
We absolutely cracked up when Caspian got a hold of his lead and began pulling him along.
Poor Paddington wasn’t too sure what to make of this wee bossy boots!
He got tugged about for a few minutes and then went and took refuge by his mother.
Susan took him off home and then I chatted with Gay for a while longer before she walked home.
I made myself a wrap for lunch and then went and had a lie down on my bed.
The tears were pouring by this time.
Feeling incredibly overwhelmed.
Nathan & Mira arrived.
Nathan had made croissants and brought me some.
They made very good comfort food – thanks Nathan xxx
I had Mira’s birthday present  – a wee bit late, but she loved it so I was pleased 🙂
Nathan & I talked about what I needed done tomorrow and then they left as he is working tonight.
Luke arrived.
Mahalia & Azzan wanted to go swimming so I said if they finished the veggies and cleaned up the house and Mahalia had all her tramping things loaded into the car then they could leave.
Shoshannah arrived home and got her things finalised.
She made some humus and then we drove into the city.
She got a new eftpos card sorted at the bank, lost hers the other day, then we stopped at Kathmandu to pick up a head torch.
The ladies there were fussing all over Caspian, they want us to bring him back anytime we like 🙂
Then the kids called to say they were finished swimming and were on their way into the city.
We parked at Tank and I got some drinks while we waited for them.
Then it was off to Richmond.
I had been wanting to get on the road before 4:30pm to try and beat the traffic, we just made it and had a reasonable drive until we got nearly there.
The traffic was already beginning to bank up for the last km before the lights.
We sidetracked to PetMart to get a lead for Caspian.
Then to Sasha’s.
She had just gotten home from work and was nearly ready.
Cat was there too with Nico who was very exuberant and bouncing all over the place.
Caspian wasn’t too sure about her bombastic behaviour.
It didn’t take long to transfer all the gear and then we left them to it.
They are all heading up to Mt Arthur for the weekend on a girls tramp.
Azzan & I drove home via Chilandos.
He ran in and got some take out meals and we came home to et them.
Caspian was glad to get out of the car and run around.
I lay on the sofa and watched some episodes of Twenty Twelve but kept on falling asleep so gave up.
Hung out a load of washing and did a quick tidy up then fell into bed by 8:30pm.
Its not quite 10pm and I am about to turn off the lights now so am hoping that I will get a good nights sleep.

Thursday 26th February

Such a busy day today.
This wee tyke can hop off the deck straight into the pool and then cannot get out.
It really is very funny.
We have now moved & emptied the pool.
I got the kids up before 8am in the hopes they would get themselves moving into the day a bit quicker.
Mahalia went off to work at Nelson Beauty for a few hours.
Don arrived at 9:30am.
It was a much cooler morning today, I had all the doors open but had to shut them after a while as the chill moved into the house.
Seb came and we three sat and had a good talk over some issues.
After Don left, Phoebe arrived with Sapphie after their shopping expedition.
Sapphie entertains the passersby with her waves and calling ‘bye’ 🙂
Azzan did some maths.
Then he began making clam chowder and getting some food ready for his lunch.
It was all a bit stressful as the day wore on as I couldn’t give him my full attention as there was so much happening and so many people coming and going.
I have so much going on that my head is about to explode with all the decisions I have to make and the things I have to do.
It is all just way to hard.

Anson pulled in soon after and loaded up all the garden prunings.
He took them away for me which was a great help.
Seb & Phoebe headed off on their weeks holiday in Golden Bay.
Then Nathan arrived to help with a few jobs.
He began by picking the figs.
The birds are beginning to show a liking for them so I am trying to at least pick the ones we can reach.
The birds can have the ones at the very top!
Estelle popped in briefly to check out my bike for comfort etc.
Its good to see her up and about and looking so much better.
Graham came to build Shanni’s bed base.
I was glad Nathan was there to help him.
They thought they were going to be clever and manoeuvre it into there room with the end on but no way.
So they had to unscrew it and then assemble in the bedroom.
Once it was installed Nathan headed off.
Graham had a look at some other projects I have in mind and helped me to sort out what I need to do.
Then he left to head home.
Azzan biked off to his counselling session.
The guy has moved closer to us so it is easier for him to get to.
He managed to find the place okay and commented to me later that it was much better than the first session 🙂
I’m pleased he has now got someone outside the family to talk to.
It’s been pretty hard for him to adjust to everything in the past 2 years.

I was getting tireder and more over the day as every hour passed today.
Mahalia popped in after work and then headed off to meet Azzan at Kip McGrath.
Shoshannah had a late kayaking class again so took a late bus into town.
I met her and the kids at New World and trailed around the supermarket with them as they got the food needed for their tramp this weekend.
Finally they were all finished and we were able to head home.
Azzan & Mahalia biked back.
Mahalia got in the washing and Azzan cleaned up the dishes.
Shoshannah got the food all sorted into meal ration bags and then she and Halia got their gear all spread out in the lounge.
I completed making the chowder.
It had clams, tuna, potatoes, carrots and green beans in a coconut cream sauce.
I scattered browned sesame & pumpkin seeds over it.
I had bought fresh Ciabatta buns to eat with it.
It was so delicious.
We were all so tired and hungry that there was not one drop left over and they all declared it to be a great dinner 🙂
Shanni was tired and getting stressed about organising everything so I suggested she go to bed and deal with it all tomorrow.
I was beyond tired, was feeling really frazzled and just wanting to go to bed.
Azzan pushed my buttons and I lost the plot.
But we did have a big hug and made up so all was not lost.
He & Halia went for a bike ride and I went to bed.
I needed space from the world!

Wednesday 25th February

I was up early and ready to receive Eden when Marah dropped her off just before 9am.
Marah had some appointments so we were babysitting.
Eden was really good all morning.
There was lots of puppy loving going on.
Then when she spilled her porridge Mahalia asked her to clean it up.
She did a good job but Caspian wanted to help 🙂
She decided that Nonna’s porridge was much more interesting so I am glad I made a large pot full today.
Mahalia took these – ‘smile Eden’
She helped me did out the week on the drive while Mahalia did some school work.
The peg bucket creates a lot of amusement and occupies Eden for hours.
At 12:30pm I left her with Mahalia and I walked into the city centre.
Chatted with Christine on the phone while I walked.
Nice to talk with her and catch up on news.
Met Marah after her scan.
So wish I had gone in with her as she was buzzing about how clear the scans were.
You can see another little Eden developing 🙂
We decided to go to Morrison St Cafe for lunch as we were both quite hungry.
It was good to sit and chat childlessly.
Decided to do a cafe crawl and have dessert elsewhere.
We walked over tho The Bakers and enjoyed mocha’s with eclairs.
So delicious and just what the Dr ordered….
well, maybe not, but they were darned good anyway 😉
We walked across to the pharmacy to get some things and Marah found these cute orange sock holder-on things for babies – she had to model them on No2 🙂
We headed back to the house and found Phoebe & Seb there along with Azzan and Sapphire.
Sapphie was enjoying a splash around in the pool.
Azzan had really enjoyed his time at the bay.
He had been helping Anson with stock work and mustering and also helped Phoebe clean the Lodge so he was quite weary but very happy.
He was having a big cook up when we arrived back and was thrilled to have some meat which Seb had given him to put in the freezer.
He is growing so much at present and it is taking a lot to fill him up so I am grateful for all contributions..

We went out to say goodbye to Eden & Marah.
Sapphie was doing her sailor lookout wave.

While I was in the kitchen I spotted three young folk (late teens/early 20’s) walking by, they stopped by our grapevine and reached in over the fence and were helping themselves to not just a few grapes but breaking off large bunches of them.
I had been watching them over the past days, waiting for them to be properly ripe so I could harvest them.
I went out to the gate and asked what they were doing stealing our grapes.
The two females took off up the road clutching several large bunches when they saw me coming.
But the guy with them, just very cheekily sauntered off, looking back at me saying ‘Sorry Luv, but you should plant your veggies in the backyard next time.’!!!!!!!
Couldn’t believe the cheek of them!

I shot out to Richmond to pick up Shoshannah at 4:30pm.
She had a late Outdoor Ed class so didn’t have time to catch the bus into town and be at work on time.
I whizzed her back and got her there with just minutes to spare.
She is learning to roll a kayak and because it is really hard for her she is trying to get to all the extra classes before and after normal school hours.
The kids and I decided to go for a bike ride as it was a gorgeous evening.
Turned off the dinner and took off on our trusty steeds.
We took the longer route into the city centre and Azzan & I stopped off at Cafe Affair for a drink.
Desserts looked pretty tasty so we opted for them too.
We really shouldn’t have as they were rather sweet and very rich.
Not at all what we are used to so were feeling somewhat uncomfortable afterwards.
As we rode back along the riverbank we caught sight of the setting sun and stopped on the Halifax walkover bridge to enjoy it.
It was so beautiful.
We rode on further and when we crossed the Collingwood St bridge it was so magnificent I had to stop and take another billion photos.
I won’t bore you with them all.
One is enough to see how amazing it was.
The kids kept going and I didn’t see where they went so I rode home.
The sky from my backyard was glorious.
The kids weren’t back so I let Caspian out to play for a while.
Azzan finally called me, he was a bit lost and had misplaced Mahalia.
She arrived a few minutes later so I sent her back to look for Azzan.
She he arrived back.
So by the time she got home it was all a tad stressful!
But they both were home so all was well.
We had a bit of a debrief about it and made a few ground rules about evening bike rides.
We had a quick dinner and I got the kids off to bed by 9:30pm.
Then I drove down to pick up Shoshannah from work.
I wanted to walk as it was a lovely evening but Mahalia wouldn’t hear of me walking after dark on my own 😉

Tuesday 24th February

Shanni didn’t have to get to school until mid morning so she was able to have a relaxing start to her day.
I stayed in my dressing gown till she had gone so she caught me outside picking ripe figs!
The tree is laden but they all ripen very randomly.
I’m going to have to ‘fig’ure out what to do with them all now 🙂

Caspian was in a very playful mood.
He is so funny, his favourite game is to zip into Shanni’s room when he finds the door open and grab a piece of her underwear and run like crazy with it.
I woke Mahalia before 8am in the hopes she might have time to get herself ready for the day before lunch time.
So I was pretty annoyed when she was still not dressed when Shanni left for school at 10am.
I had been awake since 6am and had been busy doing stuff even though I was still in my dressing gown so I ended up shooting through the shower before her.
I got stuck into some things I had been wanting to get done.
Anson arrived with his chainsaw and after a chat he cut a few branches off the trees at the back of the section for me.
Then he was off to do town chores and I carried on in the yard.
I raked away all the debris by the front gate which has been annoying me intensely for a while.
Then I tackled the creeping vine which was entangling the neighbours fence.
Also started raking some of the dirt to try and get it more evenly spread but it got too hot and I disturbed an ant nest so ended up getting the poison and dealing to it.
By this time it was way after 12:30pm so I got changed out of my work gear and into a town dress.
Mahalia was in her room doing Maths.
I left her to finish her work, deal with the puppy, have lunch and get herself off to her appointments.
I didn’t have time to walk into town due to the time I took in the garden so I drove in and stopped to get a Tank smoothie and then bought a ticket to the movies.
Found a carpark and ran back to catch the beginning of the show.
I had been wanting to see ‘Mr Turner’ for some time and it was on its last couple of days.
Tuesdays are cheaper viewing, and it was the only day I could take the time.
Plus I was so in need of time for just me so I took it!
It was a very intriguing movie, enlightening of the latter Georgian times.
Dorothy Atkinson played Hannah, Mr Turner’s servant who served him faithfully for 40 years.
She was probably the most memorable & fascinating character.
Turner himself was played by Timothy Spall, as a person he irritated the pants off me, but Spall played him exceptional well.
The cinematography was wonderful.
Well worth taking 2.5 hours out of my day to soak it all in.

Afterwards I popped across the road to the NCC and registered the puppy.
Then back home to play with him and get the washing in.
Jolly birds had dropped messes on my sheets so back into the machine they went with to soak in some stain remover.
The Mahalia arrived back and stayed put to play with Caspian while I went up to the Sprig & Fern with Gay.
We chilled out on the deck with a drink and a platter of humus, olives and rye bread.
It was really rather a lovely way to end the afternoon.
On our way home we chatted with my next door neighour Nin who is growing and selling veggies at her gate.
Mahalia had filled up on nuts so wasn’t hungry anymore so we decided to go for a bike ride.
It was such a lovely evening, too nice to stay indoors.
She pumped up my tyres as I hadn’t ridden my bike since we were out in Bronte last year.
Then we were off down the street.
It was so much fun cruising along after her.
I need way more practise though, I am not terribly confident and am rather tightened of falling off.
We cruised along the cycle trail near the Myazu Gardens and then stopped into visit Dave & Paula.
Rachel and her girls were having dinner there so we caught up with them too which was lovely.
Then back on the bikes and along to Milton St Takeaways to get a scoop of chips to add to dinner.
I poached some eggs in our new poaching thingees while Mahalia rolled around out on the lawn with Caspian.
He was loving his time with her.
We watched ‘Singing in the Rain‘ while eating dinner.
Then around 10pm after I had dozed my way through a lot of it Mahalia helped me to move some furniture and make my bed.

Monday 23rd February

I was up early so took Shoshannah for a driving lesson on her way to the bus.
We had time to drive a bit further before the bus.
After she left I stopped in at Benge & Co to pick up some veggies & fruit and then whizzed into Fresh Choice to get bread.
Home to see if Mahalia was motivating.
She wasn’t.
I had brought a couple of croissants so filled them for us both for breakfast – rather nice change.

Pat got the wash house all finished today.
I’m so rapt with it.
It is lovely and clean and white and has plenty of shelving.
Much more utilitarian than it was before.
I headed off to my morning counselling appointment.
I have been feeling really tired, and very flat over the past days so it was good to talk about stuff.

When I got back home Mahalia and I headed into town for lunch.
We ate at Chilandos as I had some vouchers.
They were lovely and so pleased to see us as it is a while since we were in there.
They always ask after Azzan 🙂
Then we drove out to Richmond and picked up Shoshannah.
It was a drizzly day so she was pleased I had come.
I wanted to go look at some landscaping supply places so the girls sat in the car while I went in to a couple and had a look see.
They seemed to both be too tired to do anything so we headed back home.

Mahalia went off for a bike ride later in the afternoon.
The girls cooked dinner.
It was very tasty.
I just sat and tried to get some stuff done.
Problem is when I try and do business things when I am tired I always botch things up.
Pointless waste of time :-/

I should never have gone out the gate today.
One of those days when I just should’ve stayed in bed.
It is actually much harder to stay in bed in town.
That is one thing I miss about being at home.
Just having time to stop when I need to.

Sunday 22nd February

I woke at 5am and managed to get back to sleep.
But at 7am a little person was awake and zooming about so I got up to spend some time with Marah & Eden.
Caspian enjoyed playing outside with Eden.
She tipped out all the pegs, picked them all up again and got annoyed with Nonna taking photos of her 😉
They eventually headed off home.
By this time it was raining quite heavily which was great.
We so need the rain at present.

Alan popped in for a visit, it’s been a while since we caught up so it was nice to see him.
Shanni wanted to go shopping so I let her drive.
It was a new experience for her to drive in the rain, one more thing to think about!
She did well.
We shopped at Kathmandu and then I suggested she could drive up to get Katherine.
The drive up the hill was a challenge for her but she was fine, just came to a very close halt, bumper to bumper with their car when she put her foot not he accelerator instead of the brake.
That made me squeal!!
Thankfully there was no damage, just a lesson learnt 🙂
Katherine hopped in with us and Shanni drove back into the city centre.
I took the wheel and the girls went off to have some time together.

Mahalia a had a bath while we were out and took Caspian into the bathroom with her cuz she thought he would get into less trouble there but he found the toilet paper and this is what greeted me when I returned home!
His favourite place to hang out 🙂

Seb came in for a visit before heading back down the bay.
He and Nathan had been to an all day stag party yesterday.
I was supposed to be going to a friends garden party but was quite relieved when they called to say it was postponed due to the rain.
I just chilled for the rest of the day.