Monday, December 28, 2009

A week and a day into the Paris Experiment

and we are surviving rather well - mostly.

I have written a post - 3 or 4 versions of a post - but there seems there is much to do between gazing upon the beautiful young thing and admiring how well her big sister is handling the additional responsibility and love - the computer gets occasionally dusted and bills did get paid yesterday, lots and lots of loads of washing are done - but otherwise there is this vacuum where time disappears and the harsh light of reality doesn't directly affect, rather is refracted. (huge thanks to Bush Babe for this - and other - amazing photos)

It has been wet here in Paradise since Christmas day, therefore most of our time seems to be confined to the house.

During the brief spell of sunshine on Saturday, we did have a half-hour in the back yard with 'Salina and Paris. My ex-MIL, Baka, once gave me some very sage advice, and that was to get the baby out into nature late afternoon, as it helped save you from Sundowners/Gin Hour and the baby slept better.

On Saturday night, we were lulled into a false sense of security as she only woke twice during the night and thought we had struck baby gold!!!

You can see where that leads, can't you... We forgot the Baka lesson (due to intermittent showers throughout Sunday) so Sunday night was pretty fraught, up and down many times - however, last night took the cake with constant attachment to the boob as she was working something through her system and needed the "dummy"...

I need Seattle mail to get here quickly, as I won a contest over at Bossy's where I am going to get some of Seattle's best, apparently. I will need that coffee when it gets here (although if the rain eases and we are up, we may walk across to my new best friend at the beach).

Thank you all for your input on the blogname for our little girl - I love Debby's logic, and so the nod goes to "Paris" for all of the great reasons mentioned...

Debby said...

...Blog name suggestion: Paris. You've been referring to the little beauty as a parasitic life form for so long. 'Parasite' is not a good blog name. 'Paris' is better. Copenhagen kind of long. As for myself, I will call her perfect.
11:29 PM, December 23, 2009

We saw the pediatrician today (those 5 words are actually hugely loaded, with a saga about weather, walking about ill-planned hospitals, administration and lack thereof, our luck in a healthy baby and communication abilities) about "clicky hips" so are double nappying for the next few weeks until another appointment where they will check if she is improved (and there is an addendum to the saga here about more of the same - sigh, it makes you wonder about hospital culture sometimes - something that grows on petri dishes, no doubt).

There are some rules I vaguely remember from last time around (besides Baka's, there is only plan 1 thing a day, a successful day means getting to the other end sane, set the bar low) but I want to know what the best TIP you received or created when dealing with a newborn...

About to go an act on another oft-given tip - nap while the baby naps!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Welcome to the world

Now - what is your blog name going to be?

Sunday, December 20, 2009


According to, the definition of induce:
  /ɪnˈdus, -ˈdyus/
–verb (used with object), -duced, -duc⋅ing.
  1. to lead or move by persuasion or influence, as to some action or state of mind: to induce a person to buy a raffle ticket.
  2. to bring about, produce, or cause: That medicine will induce sleep.
  3. Physics. to produce (an electric current) by induction.
  4. Logic. to assert or establish (a proposition about a class of phenomena) on the basis of observations on a number of particular facts.
  5. Genetics. to increase expression of (a gene) by inactivating a negative control system or activating a positive control system; derepress.
  6. Biochemistry. to stimulate the synthesis of (a protein, esp. an enzyme) by increasing gene transcription.

1325–75; ME < L indūcere to lead or bring in, introduce, equiv. to in- in- 2 + dūcere to lead; cf. adduce, deduce, reduce

Related forms:
in⋅duc⋅i⋅ble, adjective

1. actuate, prompt, incite, urge, spur. See persuade.

1. dissuade.

Anyhow, we're going to to one of those to bring the unborn into the world sometime between now and Christmas - we are hoping for closer to the now part of that statement and as far from the Christmas part as possible, but it appears that what I want and what I get aren't always in synch these days.

So anyway - see you all on the other side of that "bump".

Friday, December 18, 2009

Tick tick tick...

  • Sleep in? Tick (5.15 folks - yay)
  • Breakfast? Tick
  • Swim in the ocean? Tick
  • Coffee while V surfed? Tick
  • Spoke to all female members of immediate family? Tick
  • Vacuumed? Tick
  • Lunch? Tick
  • Made nectarine upside-down cake? Tick
  • Ate some? Tick (mmmmmmm)
  • Tried to nap? Tick
  • Fail? Tick
  • Cut out bassinette sheets? Tick
  • Blogged? Tick

To do:
  • Sew bassinette sheets
  • Have afternoon tea with brother and his family
  • Write Christmas cards
  • Wash windows
  • Have a baby

Wonder if the list will be completed today?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

From Paradise's most pregnant woman...

This is starting to mess with my mind.

We were discussing the philosphy of it on the way in to town today. I was a little blue this morning, having a lovely mental beat up about what I have done, should have done, could have done, should be doing, etc, etc - about this baby transitioning from unborn status.

On top of that is the tick-tick-tick of worries that maybe this baby wants to stay put for a reason - and please, never go into an overly pregnant woman's worry sector because it is a dark and horrible place.

V is scoring an A+ on sensitive guy at the moment, and after an hour or so forbearance took me out of the house for a drive to collect the booty from the raffle.

I came back in a better frame of mind (and a few bargains from a few op shops - cheap therapy) - still haven't silenced those insideous little voices, but at least they are back in some context.

Anyhow - you didn't get full-term photos because - well, because you didn't - so here is one

and here are 41week 2day photos...

Can hardly tell I am pregnant, can you?

Oh - that...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Another Gorgeous Day in Paradise

There are a few partygoers in my previous post comments section - who would have thought Copenhagen discussions would end in a carouse?

Anyhow, no baby here still - in fact, the latest is if we don't have a baby by the 21st, we will have a baby by the 21st!

Had a lovely swim in the ocean this morning, got my cup of coffee (and it was GOOD) while V surfed, met with my dad in town while he and we were doing our various chores, ticked off EVERYTHING on our list (do you know what that means? All the Christmas shopping is now DONE) and got home in time to contemplate a nap (yeah, right) and get the phone call to say we have won a charity raffle - a laundry basket full of Christmas goodies.

Life is good.

I do hope everyone else is having a blessed Wednesday.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Amongst things that don't bring on labour

Debby - you may go straight to the comments section and talk about Copenhagen. I really don't think it is in your best interests to read this one. It involves a word starting with the letter S and is something you really don't want to read about.

Today, Nana (my mother), who has been with us for a week to look after 'Salina should I have the unborn whilst school was still in, packed up and took 'Salina out to Granite Glen. She will return when the baby is born.

This means tonight is the first - and possibly the last - child-free evening for some weeks.

You know what this means?


V and I were in the kitchen, preparing for our feast.

I had cubed and salted eggplant and chopped many vegetables. V was doing the same with pork.

From the corner of my eye, I saw Eddie go past. I automatically checked his bowl and added some dried.

Some 5 minutes later, our early chores in the kitchen completed, we moved into the living room.

Suddenly V turned around and told me to get out of the house!!

What he had seen and I had not was Eddie was playing in the living room with his latest toy - obviously all the craze at the moment - a baby brown snake...#

While there may have been a nanosecond of two of indecision about me leaving my mate in the path of danger and endorsing a policy contrary to my feminist leanings*, common sense prevailed and continuation of species was ensured. I fled downstairs and out to the front of the house, so I could remotely monitor the battle between freaked out husband, snake and cat.

I could hear V. There was the occasional utterance of a colour phrase or two regarding the stupidity of ginger cats, placement and awkwardness of furniture and piles of "stuff" in the living room and advice to the reptile.

Then there was a long silence.

"Honey" I piteously wabled, mentally working out what I should do in regards to all number of catostrophic possibilites.

A pregnant pause.

"Honey" a little bit louder.

Finally I hear a drawer and the reassuring snap-snap of the tongs - long-handled tongs, I would have surmised based on the tonal quality fear-factor inherent in the situation.

V came to the window and explained the situation and momentarily bemoaned the lack of following through an earlier idea of actually acquiring the local snake-catchers' numbers, all the while checking over his left shoulder for the baby brown to stir from behind a large desk.

Mid-sentence, he swivelled and was gone from view.

Eddie appeared around the side of the house, cool as a cucumber. He came and rubbed against my legs like it was perfectly normal for the two of us to be sharing the front yard of an early evening.

A strange hissing sound came from the house. I contemplated whether snakes really did hiss as per the cartoons - all snakes in my history have not, but that is not conclusive proof.

Then again came the hissing, and it was definitely not of the herpetic variety. A strange smell accompanied the sound.

Then there was banging, then there was banging and hissing, then there was banging and hissing and snap-snapping.

Eddie completely ignores this and attempts to lay a whole heap of love on me.

A finale then silence.

Emerging on the balcony was a victorious V, tongs aloft with the snake. As he came downstairs and across to where the snake was disposed of, Eddie attempted to walk off as if there was nothing at all concerning in this scenario.

I grabbed the felonious feline and carried him upstairs, ready to rouse as soon as I had him safely locked within.

I quickly cooked up the base ingredients of the curry and then added the magic Hot Singapore Curry Sauce and covered the curry to cook through.

Dinner was delicious, the cat is completely freaked out, for some reason imagining the snake is still in the house.

# It was not the same type or types previously seen.

* I saw a tea-towel in a dollar shop today. It would have been worth a blog and may be in the future, but the short version is it was branded "Feminist Tea-Towel" and wasn't. V got the full version of the vent...

Oh - and the hissing - Fast Knockdown apparently is an inspirational choice for snake-bamboozling.

Breaking News!

No, not baby related.

We went to the beach this morning - and they have opened a cafe there!! For all the time I have been here, the buzz has been "if only there was coffee available" because honestly, the little beach nearest here is gorgeous and requires very little to take it to the level of perfection - but good coffee might just be that straw.

This means that AFTER the unborn arrives, I will be able to walk over there with 'Salina and the thenborn and 'Salina can swim and I can sip on the foreshore and supervise.


Sunday, December 13, 2009

3am Sunday in Paradise

Is still pretty beautiful in a completely still and not a hint of breeze sort of way.

Take it from me.

Friday, December 11, 2009


You know, up until a week ago, I was completely unphased by this whole "you are going to have a baby" thing. It was going to happen, I was zen.

Then (a) people suddenly felt they had to ask ALL THE TIME when I was due, whether I was over it etc, etc (b) I had an appointment on due date and they said the ominous "you see the doctors next week if you haven't gone to see the next plan" and (c) I really thought something was happening - and then it wasn't...

That made me all antsy and want it to happen, and want it to happen RIGHT NOW - and lord, if b1tchy and grouchy was a precursor to labour, then we would be talking babies and not lack thereof.

It all came to a head this morning, and I had a little meltdown with V. Its amazing what a good cry will do. We are back to zen - I think it is the best approach.

I hate it when people get to me... Especially when they really don't mean to be getting to me at all, just being polite.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Still in one piece

Yes, here, still "intact".

My new deadline is 4.15 this afternoon - that gives me a chance to see 'Salina after school, V to finish work YET STILL gives me an out to not go to the school concert.

Yes, I want to see my daughter perform.

However, performing a routine where they all wear black, have one glove on and to a song and performer that I really never could "get" - I start to quibble.

Watch 9 performances of varying age groups to the same performer who, frankly, doesn't have a great deal of differential in the material on offer? Teetering on the "do I have to whine".

All of the above and present a speech in my official role as head honcho of P and C?

Well, if they are of the calibre of speeches I have been pondering for the last hour or so, I am sure the 150 odd families who can be bothered to attend a school concert but cannot be bothered to be interested in anything to do with the P and C except whinge about what they don't do would wish for me to be anywhere but also.

It appears I may be getting grumpy.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Not into overtime - yet

Got a shock yesterday, finding out TODAY is actually the due date for the unborn. I had been working on the premise that I still had a day - or two - up my sleeve.

Not that it makes a huge difference - it is not here, but it is a day closer.

Having got my head around the fact that there WILL BE a baby here, I am okay with that set of facts.

In fact, I think it would be cool if it decided to start around 11.45 this morning - that would kybosh any further P&C official activities for the year yet allow me to rush through all those Christmas gifts that I have not yet bought (which is approximately the total amount of Christmas gifts I have to get this year less 2).

However, if baby comes through on that order, I am scared for my future. I would not know what to do with such a compliant child!!

If not, I have until next Tuesday to talk sternly - otherwise the doctors are threatening to do the talking for me, and I really don't want that.

So anyway, you will be kept updated.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Bathing - the adventure of a 39 week 2 day pregnant woman on a Friday night.

There was nothing on the tv, and after a harsh morning cleaning (the tuckshop) and the overwhelming (olfactory) urge to bathe, a decision that the black hole in entertainment between 'Salina's bedtime and Outrageous Fortune coming back onto Free-to-Air television in Australia (to see what that may mean to me, I have a thing for Outrageous) (oh, and if I were in Auckland I would definitely do this) would be best filled by running the tub and submerging.

So the bath was filled (yoga positioning required. Lean forward and gently toward the taps, hoping desparately that the centre of gravity would remain in the legs section of the torso and not suddenly tip into the leaning bit - gravity truly sucks sometimes), using the occasional dabble of the right foot for temperature control. There is a conscious thought process on the advisability of adjusting the temperature too finely, as the above step of balance is to be taken seriously with every nudge of the taps.

Getting in to the bath is itself convoluted and requiring several steps.

First, ensure that you are far enough from the plug end to allow room for the eventual placement of legs after lowering - this also means not so close to the slopey (sp?) end of the bath that the tailbone may impact above the bend.

Once correct positioning has been reached, attempt a squat - as you pass the point where your knees may get close to collapse, take the weight off one leg and try to extend it forward WHILE balancing on the other and extending your arms to catch the side of the bath. Continue the downward trajectory until such time as gravity takes over and you plummet.

The "getting into the bath" stage should take place when the water level is not going to be too adversely affected by the Archimedes principle under pressure.

Once in the bath, you are able to use your right foot to adjust the water temperature and turn off the water once the plumb line has been reached. This is a good thing, as there is a very non-pregnant chance in Hades that you would be able to reach down to your ankles and adjust manually.

Now the bath has been run and horizontalish as been achieved, soaking, reading and wallowing may be contemplated. Ignore the water temperature, as once the water is off there is no factor that can be influenced in that matter until removal of body from the bath. Therefore it is adviseable to stay in the water until 7 minutes before unbearable to take full advantage of all the effort that has led to this point.

Once upon a non-pregnant time, the deadline used to be 2 minutes to allow for 2 minutes ablutions before arising, effortlessly and Venus-like, from the waters.

At 39 weeks 2 days pregnant, washing is not the mindless activity that thence it was. You will need all of the 4.5 minutes you allocate for this task just to attempt to reach all frontiers with soap - rinsing is somewhat easier, as you can throw water in the general direction.

With the last 2.5 minutes, exit strategies must be used.

First, sit up.

(ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha)

Please use whatever handholds the bath offers to achieve this - there is no pride available in this step.

Next, cross legs - again with the yoga, I know, but it is a step that is required when your ankles have no flex left and you have to get to vertical somehow.

Now, grasping the end of the bath, try to twist your legs around to one side of your body, hopefully ending up with both of them facing the same way and in correct order. You may need to rock a bit to achieve this, as momentum can be your friend but can also get you stuck if your timing is off.

With both legs to the side (left is my preference) you then need to attempt to raise your torso enough to get said legs to a position approximating beneath you.

Now, lean forward to place your palms on the bottom of the bath and raise yourself onto all-fours. Move through whatever tortures are required to get to Downward Dog and, using the sides of the bath, bathroom fittings and whatever furnishings within reach until vertical is achieved.


Thursday, December 03, 2009

Still here...

So here is the 39 week picture...

The bump probably didn't appreciate the steam burn I gave it last night (note to self - time and motion strategies must be employed in the kitchen with proper workplace health and safety regulations... or don't try to hold a vege steamer under one arm against the bump when bending down to get some tongs out of drawer).

I was at the school most of the day yesterday (and the day before) - my hips have started to mention that it might not be the best idea to stand up for most of it.

After today and tomorrow, that is IT for the volunteering at the school. I am meant to be at the official graduation of the Year 7 class on Tuesday and the Concert is on Wednesday where I am meant to do a speech, but that is surely incentive enough to contemplate having the baby earlier than the end of term! Lesson for young players - find a post to hide behind when you go to P&C AGM meetings...

Late last week, 'Salina got to go to the disco at school. It was meant to be crazy hair day, but she has been blessed with a mother who completely forgot the "can I have some pipecleaners for my hair" request within seconds and so had to go the putting curlers in her hair.

I don't think it turned out too bad in the end - although she has been blessed with genetically straight hair that will fall into dead straight within minutes of being curled, so I don't know how "crazy" it was!!

V had a shocker yesterday - he didn't go to work as concrete was being poured on site, so he decided to be Mr Handyman. Its not a natural role for him, but he is stoic about undertaking such when he sets his mind to it (and has done all of the research and has the right tools).

First he decided to do the yard - snakes are turning up a bit too regularly in the cat's playtime regime. He and the whippersnipper had 10 minutes of joy together - and then the whippersnipper decided that a main part would just fall off.

So he then decided to concentrate on the plumbing. He had to dig down to the water mains, as the council apparently feel that 20cm of mud is ideal for covering such things. The second tap he went to fix the washers on decided that rather than unscrew where the screw bit was, it would far rather snap at the connection to the post - and do so right through the tap, indicating the tap was actually weaker than the screws holding it on (and indeed weaker than the thread)...

After a trip into town for another whippersnipper, new fittings and advice from the plumbing shop, he returned, fixed that and moved onto the upstairs taps. The kitchen washers are apparently very safe - behind the tiles and a good few inches behind the wall. There were 10 minutes there where I had to cover my ears.

He turned the water back on and all worked wonderfully well - except for the new fitting on the busted tap, which blew off immediately - and every time he tried for the next hour.

Luckily it eventually worked AND the new whippersnipper did enough jungle clearing out the back for him to be able to feel that some of his efforts weren't for nought.

'Salina and he did the Christmas tree last night (I have a "not until December" rule imposed in this house and I AM the Christmas dictator) and balance was restored in the universe.

And finally, Eddie has done nothing untoward since the last snake - probably because someone left him this comfy laundry basket to sleep in.

Of course, it is now alternately bucketing down and threatening to bucket down here which may kybosh swimming at school and therefore impact on the smooth running of our Pizza Day for the kids (we were going to have it so well organised, with only 1/2 the school there at a time... Wet day rules = ratty kids...) Rain also means that V won't be working today, so I might gently nudge the vacuum cleaner into his line of sight.

Baby is far better off in utero for another day or so (if it listens to its mother). We have organised for 'Salina (well, 'Salina and her friend have organised) a sleepover on Saturday night and then Mum is here from Sunday, so as long as I get my Christmas shopping squared away we are almost organised to have another child!!!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Do you DO mornings?

Most mornings, I wake up and I am AWAKE!! There are exceptions, but on the whole it is the approach I take to the day.

Be assured, it was not always so and I can do a fair imitation of the morning grumps.

(In fact, there are living witnesses - mostly related to me - who can attest just how real that imitation can be)

My father is a great believer in mornings. "Best part of the day" he bellows. He is no defender of the freedom of sleep-ins, and probably wouldn't know what to do if one were enforced upon him.

He always had a few strategies to get company for breakfast.

My bedroom was first off the hall on the route from his (and mum's) room to the kitchen. He had learned over the years to do his level best not to disturb Mum's rest (too much) and so would thoughtfully wait until he was outside my door before exploding into the HARRUMPHS, sneezes and coughs that cleared his airways.

I was not a big voter for his "best part of the day" bill when woken by such methods.

On occasion, it would be a requirement that we surface and face that day on Dad's timetable, and he would take delight in rousing his children from sleep.

There was no gentle pass into the world of wakefulness on offer. Instead he would come in singing "Oh what a beautiful morning" at top pitch - or "Good morning, good morning".

I KNOW there is nothing worse than a hearty morning person greeting a non-morning person with gusto and cheer.

If that did not work, he would get a damp (as in the pretty blooming wet end of the damp spectrum) cloth from the bathroom and bring it in to "assist" you in "washing your face" - because apparently a cold wash to get the sleepy dust out of your eyes wakes you up.

And yet he lives.

Over the last 20 years I have discovered my own morning rituals. Ones that DON'T involve singing or wet washers, luckily. Ones that HOPEFULLY are slightly respectful of those who like to slumber.

For some years, I was a workaholic. This entailed spending more time at my workplace than where I paid rent. To do this AND maintain my social life, hours were lopped off the morning rituals and I managed to develop first name relationships with several cab-drivers.

Then I moved on to temping (so as not to fully embrace my addiction) and often would have many miles to drive to start work at various places. Temping is a much more rewarding experience if you smile and are in a decent mood - it can be a bit of a minefield which workplace you enter, but then again, apparently hiring a temp can be a minefield in itself!!

When I had 'Salina, one of my sanity-savers was bundling her up in a sling and taking her for walks - long walks that often covered her wake-up at sunrise until about 8, when she would breakfast and have her first nap of the day. If P was at work, it eradicated the loneliness - and if P wasn't, it eradicated his bear-headedness at being woken by such chirpers.

As she grew into a toddler and I into a single mother, those moments in the morning that I could grab for myself again worked for my mental health. Even 10 minutes and a cup of tea can make the difference between dealing with a toddler and HAVING TO DEAL with a toddler.

V leaves for work between 5.30 and 7 most mornings. He is fairly good in the mornings - so long as he can follow his own rituals, which I can respect. 'Salina tends to rise early as well (of her own volition - I don't think I have ever employed the wet washer method) and so often - such as this morning - she has done all of her morning chores by 6.30am.

I have found that I tend to waken early without any prompting (I do occasionally dream of sleep-ins, but they are like lotto wins for me). It is a rare morning when 'Salina or V beat me to the punch.

Those few moments when I organise my day, drink my tea and have the world to myself - precious.

I used to fight it - now...

I have found that when I wake early, I can be quite moanful of the fact that it is so darned early - OR I can choose to get up and seize the day.

And do you know what?

The latter strategy does actually set me up for a much better day than the former.

What works for you?