Friday, January 29, 2010

shaving cream fun/ fixin the 'tude'

Jumeirahs creation: "mummy if she was a queen"

Went to bed that night ( the one after the slumpy day) totally down and teary after my 'massive amount of things to do/no time to do it all/ mum-and-kid time jipped' session. Wallowed in that for a bit ( its therapeutic a little bit) and then decided to fix it. I needed an attitude check, a plan, and a refocus.

The first thing I did?? Fixed Jareds crab shorts.

I made these for him ages ago (see here) and he loved them. Unfortunately, due to my crap sewing and inability to reinforce stitching, the rotten things split along the seam, giving him a handy "bladder release" hole. Which really wasnt the greatest look. And so I put them on the to-do pile. And everyday (well almost) he has asked me for them. And i Told him " Soon buddy, as soon as I finish.......". But today, I fixed them, all ready for him to wear. And when he got up in the morning and there they were, he did a jig and cried " my cab shorts, my cab shorts, thankyou mummy thankyou!!" and so began a much better day :)

Two major things I did differently this morning were things that unfortunately I do every morning... one is to turn on the tv ( its a bad automatic thing to check weather/ news etc but quickly gets changed to ABC kids) and the other is to turn on the computer. The computer I turn on and quickly check my emails, facebook, and two blogs whilst I am getting breakfasts sorted ( yes I am a queen multitasker).I check it through the day... 5 minutes here or there... when I can. But I realised that maybe that was taking me away for longer than I really was aware of.
This morning I turned neither on. The day started around 7.30am.It was quieter, but all three were happily playing. We had breakfast all together and planned the day. I cleaned up the kitchen whilst they played outside.No one even asked for the tv. By the time it was all done, I was outside with them at 9am. Somehow I gained an hour, as normally I start to play at around 10am.

All those little house duties is also another massive thing that takes up most of everyday.... cleaning up after breakfast, sweeping the floor, cleaning up from craft, doing the washing, hanging it out, cleaning from lunch blah blah blah and on it goes aalllll daaaay loooooong.
Today I decided that I was only going to do it at certain times and devote more time actually sitting and doing things with them. The outside play gave me enough time to clean the kitchen and sweep the floor. Without checking my computer periodically, I was able to keep moving and do it and get it over with.

And so I took a messy activity outside today :) Seeing as it was Jumeirahs last day at home till the holidays ( and weekends obviously) I wanted to do something fun.
So I sprayed some shaving cream on the table, and added a bit of colouring. Jared immediately went away, but I had the Aqua doodle out so he went and painted there, and was quickly joined by Amahli.
Jumeirah can over and said " Im not doing that". I asked her to just try it as I sat and watched. ONe finger went in..... two fingers... half a hand... and suddenly she began to sweep across the cream with great gusto.

Amahli came over to see what she was doing... again one finger... the she too was completely engrossed ( and covered completely) in shaving cream. And so two delighted little girls had a wonderful time in this nice smelling activity, Jumeirah drawing pictures, Amahli painting herself.

Jared comes over and stands beside me. " Ok Mum I try it". I quietly do my own little jig and set him up in a clean spot with a very small amount of shaving cream. He used two fingers and did a few lines in it, ventured a tiny bit further and used both hands and then he was done :)

Not much, but its MASSIVE for him so I was stoked.

Completely covered in shaving cream mess, I filled up Amahlis pool to put her in to wash her off. She was joined by Jared and the two of them had a ball. Jared discovered he can blow bubbles with a funnel on the water and thought this was a great trick.

And so whilst two kids dried off in the sun by racing around nude, I vacummed the floor and hung the washing out. Somehow, by the time I was done, they were ready to come in for lunch.

And this afternoon, whilst two happy, tired babes slept, my big girl and me made things from Beados and chatted about nothing and everything, quietly bonding and soaking up every last moment before life changes completely for both of us.

It was a day to realise that these days are flowing along all too fast. And the days that arent great, more often than not, just need me to take a step back and get some perspective and remember whats important.

Today was a good day :)
massive storm last night blew up my internet connection... luckily my helpful ( ish) telstra man talked me through 35 minutes and Im back!! will blog tonight :)

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

syringe painting/libary bag

Best Sisters

Gosh its hit again BIG TIME... slumpsville, with a dash of why bother and a load of mother guilt.

Yesterday was Australia Day here and so daddy had the day off. By the end of the day I had totally convinced myself that it was Saturday which meant I had 4 days before school starts, a whole week before Jareds birthday ( for whom I have made nothing for as yet) and another week to keep plodding on with my secret, time consuming birthday project for someone else.... only to wake up at 4am this morning and realise it was Wednesday. So now I am totally flat and really dont know how I am going to get anything finished in time....grrrr. And to top it off, I am bashing myself up for not putting in enough effort with my almost school girl today as she only has two days left at home with me. Cripes its baaaaaddd....

Anyway, today was a crazy running around day to get Jumeirahs uniform. Not even going to go into that frustrating story but its done and she looks great :)

And so we come to the task of labelling EVERYTHING. Its crazy how much stuff she has to take but I am going to make sure all of it comes home everyday. And so we picked out paint and I began to label my little heart out. As this was a bit tricky to do, I set her up with her own paint and some syringes so she could have a go at trying to paint by sqeezing paint out of the syringe, in a similar fashion to my labelling.

Pretty funny to watch really, as paint in a syringe (when squeezed fast) sounds like a rather giggle inducing bodily sound ( a fart). And so while she merrily "fart painted" I tried to write in a straight line.

Jumeirah decided after a few pages of paintings that she didnt like the end result and so she changed the painting to butterfly painting. Still sqeezing the paint from the syringes, but then folding to create these beautiful butterflies.

I also decided to make her a library bag (school ones cost a fortune!!) from some cute fabric she picked out last week.
I cut two pieces of the fabric, as well a long strip to make the handle. I cut quilt batting to go between the layers of fabric to make it more durable and more comfortable to carry with books in it. ( the size of the batting is equal to the size of a piece of the fabric when its doubled over. ( I totally cant explain this properly tonight but if you want proper measurements let me know :) )

I inserted the batting between each of the pieces of fabric and sewed around all the edges. Then pinned both pieces together and sewed the two sides and across the bottom. I then attached the handle on each side, turned to bad right side out and its done!!

And she loves it :) And for the first time in my sewing history, I didnt stuff it up the first time!!

Monday, January 25, 2010

best ever playdough recipe

One of Gods awesome paintings

The request for Playdough started early this morning... something I was pleased about as I didnt really have much energy with the ridiculous heat. I also want to keep things simple and relaxed over the next few days as Jumeirah starts school on Friday ! Ack!

And so we started to make it. Now I have been making playdough for about 15 years, for probably about 10 of those years I made it 5 days a week ( it does get a bit manky with lots of kids using it, runny noses sneezed on it, taste testing then spitting it out... its safer to make a new batch in preschools). I love the stuff and the things you can do with it. I have always used the recipe on the back of the cream of tartar tin. Its a great, easy recipe that never fails...until today. I have never in my life made such a mess and stuffed up such a simple batch of this wonderful stuff. It was horrible.

Crumbly, shockingly puce colour, texture was gritty... it was bad to the point of Jumeirah saying to Jared in secret " lets get the real stuff out of the cupboard". REAL STUFF?!?! You've got to be joking. Now I know the "real stuff" feels lovely and smooth but it comes in a jar smaller than baby food and contains about half the amount of playdough. But seeing as mine was a disaster I let them attempt to play with it. Jared got about half way through making hair and realised he didnt have enough of it to finish and its also to stiff to push through for little fingers.

Jumeirah squeezed it in her hands and said " Um.. its too small to make anything but an ant and I dont want to make that." And so all of us decided to try again at making some new playdough.

This time, I used boiling water and mixed the oil, salt and cream of tartar together, thinking that maybe I should have dissolved the salt first. Then instead of whacking the heat as high as it will go and stirring the crap out of it so it doesnt burn, I left it on a lower setting and stirred with love and care :) Surely now it will work....

And its AWESOME. Smooth, silky, easy to manipulate and put through the squeezers. I find myself once again in love with this simple but very therapeutic lump of gunk.

And so happily, all of us with our now huge lumps of dough, create and explore to our hearts content.

Jumeirah creates a bowl of spagetti

Jared makes me a cake

And I make a rose :)

This afternoon we headed out the back for another cheap but just as entertaining in our household.

Bubbles. If I blew bubbles with these kids everyday for the rest of their lives, it still wouldnt be enough. All three become totally mesmerized and then run around like crazy, squealy lunatics popping them. And the bonus for me? I can do it sitting down :) Or better still, get daddy to do it so I can sit and watch the clouds........

Friday, January 22, 2010


No mum I didnt eat the paint brush. Im totally innocent.

Crazy dress ups and dancing ruled in our house today.. Interesting costumes were paraded, hips were wiggled, giggles rang all day.. one of those crazy but fun days. Jumeirah was chief costume designer and came up with some truly stunning ( yes I was totally stunned by a few of them) masterpieces for herself and her happy models.

When dancing and energy were exhausted, I got out the cotton bus for some simple dot painting. Both the girls loved it, Jumeirah more the painting side, Amahli more the tasting side ( luckily its food colouring).

Jumeirah asked me what she could paint. I asked her to paint something she thought I would like to be, thinking she would paint a doctor, or a chef, or even a florist...
But she painted this beautiful mermaid.

And today, thats exactly what I would like to be :)

Tonight I stumbled across an amazing art.. its called Scherenschnitte. Yes, its a cross between a sneeze and a swear word, but WOW, is it impressive.

Check out this website on Scherenschnitte. Basically, its paper cutting, but the amount of detail is just amazing. And so I thought i would have a go :)
The website above has lots designs you can print out yourself so I thought I would just do a simple one. After 40 minutes, my back was beyond breaking but I had completed ( ok its average but it still looks good) my first Scherenschnitte. Ok so its also my last as I totally dont have the skill to do this fine work but it was fun and now I have a cute gift for a friend (once I frame it).

Go check it out and go Scherenschitte yourself :)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


Brothers and sisters are as close as hands and feet. ~Vietnamese Proverb

Nothing much doing today... well nothing overly craftily creative :) All three were happy in their own worlds and spaces today, sometimes together, sometimes on their own. I am always hesitant to change the mood of a day like this and so I went with it, going where I was needed, having my own time and space to watch and listen and take sneaky photos :)

Found these two, quietly reading together. Just one of those moments I will remind them of in years to come :)

We did play a stack of hide and seek as well, chasings, and this afternoon I found that everyone had turned into superheroes! Jumeirah decided that the tablecloth in the cafe was looking lonely and decided to turn it into a cape. Jared was very quick to want one too and the two of them were zooming around the yard, leaping tall plants in single bounds, rescuing a stuck daddy from a treacherous mud pit...

Such a fun bunch I have, dont youy love Jareds head accessory?? Jumeirah raced to find one too cos it made the costume "perfect!".

Wont be here tomorrow as its my birthday :)

Will save you some cake....maybe :)