Admissions of a housewife [it's windy today]

It's a little pet peeve of mine when clothes fly off a washing line and get dirty on the ground and I end up having to put them in the washing machine again having already washed them once.

...which is why you could easily see a jumper pegged up with five washing pegs here. Underwear, three. Dishcloths, two.

The Man thinks it's nuts.

I disagree. Washing clothes twice is nuts.

Oh, where did my legs go

Ever wondered what happens when your children bite off legs of a plastic zebra?

A pygmy zebra, that's what.

A superb piece of entertainment

Okay, this post is going to start like some bad novel from American Mid-West, but...

When I was a kid, I grew up watching cartoons like Винни-Пух (Winnie the Pooh in Russian). You know, the hand-drawn kind.

Whereas The Kid - my kid - is growing up watching stuff like this:

And it's, like, wow. The part where the planes are extinguishing a forest fire to the tune of AC/DC's "Thunderstruck" is, like, hands-down the best piece of animation I have ever seen.

I couldn't find the exact clip I am talking about, but if you fast forward to 2:05 and watch from there onwards, isn't it, like, AH-MAY-ZING!?!

Amazing. Truly, truly amazing.


Lately we've been: playing row, row, row the boat on the sofa...

...pointing towards the kitchen cupboard when hungry...

...visiting grandma and playing music...

...feeding the fish...

...watching toddlers who insist on climbing up and down the stairs, and then up and down again, and again, and again...

...enjoying the views of Gebbies Pass which was our home for over two years...

...cuddling with daddy...

And to finish this off: we have a fireguard which now that we don't have a log burner any more, acts as a clothes-drying-rack-guard instead.

Except, when a certain toddler finds her way inside, it becomes a baby prison.


PS. About 60% of my photos now feature Duplo blocks. The messier, the more.

The ingenious ways of cheeky preschoolers

This is what happens when a child steals a hat from another child and tries to sneak it out of the car underneath his own hat.

Red one's his, blue one isn't.

Good try, mister, but I'm not that gullible. Yet.

Here we go again

A gentle beep is to let me know that the thermometer has finished reading my son's temperature.

39.4 C.

By now it's like a standardized procedure in this house. Is it round six that we're doing this winter? Seven? Something like that. We've pretty much gone straight since... April: one virus, get better, another virus, get better, a third virus, get better.

This week we're on round seven I think, or six.

If I didn't have a friend whose children are doing the exact same thing, I would wonder if I am doing something wrong that they're doing such back to back illnesses this year, but every time I bring that up our preschool teacher reminds me that it is a notoriously hard winter this year and the viruses are hitting our preschool hard, and the primary school, too, where many of the children's siblings go.

It's... spectacular, actually, to have him down again, because every time he's ill I think that's the end of it - but it's not.

Today I had a brief chat with our neighbor over the fence. She said, "Well, let's hope that's the end of it then!" to which I replied, "I wouldn't hold your breath if I were you."

We laughed, both of us. She knows what I mean. Both of our children have been... let's call it, working hard on building and testing out their immune system and its response this winter, and so by now we're used to canceling playdates because either mine are ill, or hers, and it's, like... yeah.


The gross reality of having a dog

For several months I've been puzzled why occasionally there appear to be water splatters on our toilet's walls. I thought, maybe it's the toilet flushing? Water somehow shooting over the edge and onto the wall? Or maybe it's The Kid getting hold of the toilet brush and swinging it around?

But no - yesterday I discovered that it's actually The Dog.

She's been getting into the toilet through the laundry and drinking out of the toilet bowl, in process splattering water onto walls.

Where it gets really gross though is that yesterday when I discovered her drinking habits there was also someone's lonely piece of poop still floating around in the toilet and I was, like, man, you'll be lucky to give any doggie kisses to anyone else in this house whilst I'm around because, dude, this is just so wrong on so many levels that I'm not even sure where to start with this...


Also, as we were walking The Dog in our local wetland reserve today, another dog and its owner appeared. The other owner and I had a quick chat that we were both happy to let the dogs loose, and then our dogs got to run around and play and as they got muddy when they were drinking water from pooled-in grass areas we were, like, oh well, dogs get muddy, so what.

Except: then The Dog apparently got so hot that she plain laid down in mud and if that wasn't enough, then started rolling around in it.

And then ran back to us and proceeded to shake it all off. On us.

I still haven't let her back in the house today. I was hoping she would dry out and stink a little less, but for the moment she's dry but haven't stopped stinking yet so I may need to hose her down with a gardening hose later.


A safe place to play

If you ever wonder why The Kid can often be found playing on top of our bed, then it is because it is big and high and out of The Girlie's reach.

Meaning: Duplo blocks don't get torn apart. Books don't get ripped.

You can just see the Destructo-monster's head peeking out from behind the bed.

Random thoughts on a Monday

Without going into too much detail of why I know this - I've recently discovered another peculiar New Zealand building practice which was common in the post-WW2 era of building lots and lots and lots of houses, quickly.

And it is: throwing all the building cr*p on the ground (mostly broken roof tiles, but also bits of wood and rubbish), and then just laying the floorboards over it all.

Basically: if you happen to live in a 50's-70's house and approach an insulation company to get the underfloor insulated, it is very likely that the quote is going to include the work of several people first crawling under the house and sweeping up all the roof tiles (which are notoriously sharp).

Awesome. It somehow had never occurred to me that there was an era where houses had roofs built first (so that all the broken tiles could be chucked down) and then floors laid after, to cover the mess. That it... made sense to people do it that way.

But on the other hand: I should probably stop the smug gloating. In a hundred years' time there will be people who will look at my generation and say, "Wow, it had never occurred to me that there was an era where people drove petrol-powered cars everywhere, insisted on living in big homes with strips of lawn all around and buried otherwise recyclable items in giant landfills. That it made sense to them, to do it that way."


I find it so infuriatingly unfair that I am going to die one day! Because... there is so much I am going to miss, so much discovery I am not going to witness.

I want to see when people start travelling to other planets - maybe even other solar systems? I want to see the technology that will be used to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. I want to know how gene sequencing will become commonplace in everyday medical practice. I want to... there's so much I want to know and experience, and I am so angry that some of the stuff I am not going to be around for!

So unfair...


Speaking of future technologies: has it ever occurred to you that we, as a humankind, are on the verge of creating computers that will be capable of creating other computers? That, basically, we'll soon (probably) create stuff that will be capable of creating other stuff, or themselves?



And speaking of humankind: do you also find it fascinating to think that out of all the species on the planet, humans somehow happened to develop to a point where we started making cars? Building cathedrals? Building space shuttles?

Because technically we are just... animals.


I should probably mention that when doing dishes and preparing dinner, I had PBS's documentary about the Columbia space shuttle disaster playing in the background and... it's so fascinating, the whole idea that humans are able to build stuff like that.

Or the whole Apollo 13 saga, with its couple of plastic bags, some duct-tape and a spaceship that upon re-entering Earth's atmosphere used less electricity than my toaster.

It just blows my mind that humans can come up with stuff like that.

That's one way to put it...

When I turned on the radio today, at first I thought I may have missed the right station because instead of semi-reasonable talk which Radio NZ National is known for, what I heard instead was this:


I still have no idea why they played that clip on-air, but my am I glad they did because, dude, this guy is hilarious!

And unfortunately a lot of what he says is true, too...


Our therapist calls these pre-writing skills.

He may not be very good at colouring in yet, but, man!, he loves doing it.

The time when The Girlie is asleep is the time for building stuff that doesn't get destroyed straight away.

On Owen Wilson

There's nothing to tickle self-confidence quite like knowing that I had just woken up from a dream where Owen Wilson was attracted to me and I had to politely explain to him that I am already married to a wonderful guy I really like and love, but that thank you - Owen Wilson - and I am very flattered by his approaches.

Yeah, there's someone's sub-conscious talking right there. Mine - apparently - has Owen Wilson in it.

Not again...

Right... So: this is, what?, sixth time my children have had a heavy cold this winter? Was it a fourth round of antibiotics a doctor wanted to put The Girlie on? Have I been at the medical centre with my children, on average, every two weeks this winter?


This winter feels like it's been not colds between healthy periods, but brief healthy periods between colds.

And by the way, I am not a hypochondriac, even if I am known by my name at the medical centre now, and so are my children.

"We are going to the doctors'," I told The Kid yesterday afternoon as The Girlie was doing her best impression at screaming her head off, and The Kid promptly answered with, "Huh? Dottos? Yeeeeeeeeeah!"

That's right: my kid goes, Yeeeeeeeah!, when I tell him that we are going to the medical centre. He is well familiar with the children's playground there, and he knows where toys are kept at doctors' offices, and he even knows to look for that special one-eyed alien toy at the pharmacist's toybox.


I want sleep.

Snapshots of our lives here

A lot can fit into a weekend, or a week.

More snow.

These two checking us out from the inside, eating crackers

More hugs on the sofa, and more exhausted naps.

More artwork a la The Kid.

More Duplos layered across the living room.

More games on the floor.

More row, row, row the boat, gently down the stream songs.

More walks around the neighborhood, and on the fields.

Talking of walks: on our recent trip to our local park I balanced our camera onto a rock, set a timer and attempted to get a photo with all of us in it.

It didn't work straight away. Thing is: The Dog can get a little, how do I put it now... excitable when there is another dog nearby, and when I had already set the timer it turned out that there was, indeed, another dog and its owner approaching us in the park.

So I got an array of photos of The Man trying to keep The Dog under control and me laughing at it instead.

And then we tried again.

Ahh - that's better.

Life. Life is happening :)