Sunday, December 27, 2009

wacky warehouse

There is this place in Adelaide that is awesome. It's a place where parents can finish conversations, have a cup of coffee (and drink it while it's still hot), and wear the kids out so they sleep peacefully for hours afterwards.

It's called Wacky Warehouse. And although there are many around Melbourne too, I barely get a chance to go to them! But everytime I visit Wacky Warehouse in Adelaide, everyone has a great time.

My step-sister's youngest son Lucas and my Madison are only 6 months apart. And now they're getting to know each other which means more talk time for us!

I love Wacky Warehouse, and I'm not afraid to say it!

mum's 60th

This year, both my parents turned 60. Apart from the shock that they are really getting older, I was fortunate to be able to celebrate with both of them at the separate occasions.

Earlier in the year was my father's, and in September was my mother's. She was in bliss to see her newest grandson and spend some time with her immediate family.

My step sister is one amazing woman who makes the most amazing cupcake/chocolate/dessert delights, and she created quite the masterpiece bouquet of cupcakes for mum's birthday. To top it off, she arranged my two brothers (who both live in the U.S.A.) to write a letter to her sharing her special qualities and what she means to them. So, there were tears! My step-sister is one thoughtful and amazing person!

Time with family is time well spent.

Above: Mum with her amazing bouquet of cupcakes; Mum & Me; my step-sister Karen with her son Joshua; me & Noah; Mum, my step-dad Roger and the boys.

a little renovating

This year has been full of renovations... but not necessarily the house we live in. But we did treat our house to a little central heating, and recently some carpet for the bedrooms.

Some may wonder why we would cover beautifully polished Baltic floorboards, but alas, Melbourne is much too cold for them. At least in the bedrooms anyway. Each morning I slip into a pair of ugg boots before hitting the floor for fear of feet cramp. Ouch.

And as you can see, my darling hubby thought he'd paint the master bedroom before the carpet was put in. Nothing like a little last minute panic beforehand!

So, here is a little before and after. I don't know about you, but I love seeing the end result on film/digital. Although I miss all that timber, there is a warmth to this carpet (and that beautiful rich bergundy) that can't be replaced.

Monday, September 14, 2009


My husband is pretty clever. He's open-minded, and thinks outside the square. I call it his special gift. It was one of my biggest attractions to him. And during our 10 years together, I've been continually amazed at his ability to think through absolutely all options to make a well-thought-out decision. It never ceases to amaze me.

That, and his ability to prioritise really, really well. One of the many things he manages to do very cleverly is juggle his work/life balance. His day job takes him travelling everywhere - and I admit, when he does it, he does it well.

When we lived in outback Western Australia for 4 years, he barely travelled. But on the rare occasion when he did need to, he always made sure his work trips involved a legitimate way to have me come along, and it was timed around a weekend where we could have a little break. Living pretty much miles from anywhere, this was a real treat. And the closest getaway was about 6 hours away by car. So, if we needed to buy essentials for work, we always went together and had a mini-break while we were at it.

Then we lived in Papua New Guinea. And although taking trips by plane was very, very expensive, there were some chances for me to see some gorgeous places - all in the name of work. And when I couldn't come, Hubby always made sure (mostly) that he was home by the weekend. And anyone who has a partner who travels, knows the weekends can be the loneliest.

My husband's latest family/work juggle happened last week. In a nutshell, Hubby was asked earlier this year to play music at a big function in Brisbane. But because he knew I would have a new baby, and it wasn't his core business, he felt he could better use the time in the office and being nearby for me.

That suited us well, until last week when an opening came up again for a guitarist. But this time there was a carrot: we were invited too.

So, off the whole family went to Queensland for my husband's work trip. And even though he worked every morning, and afternoon until the evening, we booked a place where I could relax, and where we could spend a couple of hours on a few of the days together as a family.

So, one day we had a picnic in the playground; a paddle on the bay; a swim in the pool; a run on the beach; chips and gravy by the ocean.

It was a juggle to coordinate children's sleep times with hubby's work times. But it was the stolen moments together that made it all so special.

And the benefit for me? A change of location, warmer weather, a place where I could just chill with my beautiful boys, a chance to catch up with some old friends, the boys saw their dad every day, and we were together as a family every night.

A win-win situation for everyone really...

Wednesday, September 02, 2009


Now the days are getting warmer, we've started to head outside once more to enjoy our backyard.

As well as catching up on some necessary gardening, I've been re-acquainting myself with my digital camera as well as fiddling with the manual settings. It's been good to have a play.

Madison has enjoyed the outdoors so much, he has asked every day since if we can go outside (and we do). He just loves helping Daddy in the garden, riding on his scooter and playing in the dirt.

It's so wonderful to be taking photos again, enjoying the outdoors, and lazying around.

How do you spend the warmer days of spring?

Tuesday, September 01, 2009


To celebrate my Darling Husband's significant birthday, we celebrated by doing something for the kids.

Well, the big kids in us anyway.

It was a delightfully chilly day to spend in the Dandenongs on Puffing Billy.

Here are a few of the moments captured...

Friday, August 28, 2009


that my baby went from this... this... a matter of moments (well, it felt like moments). The reality is that it's been 3 months. Seriously, how dare the time go so fast.

This week, Noah has been chewing everything in sight, and dribbling what seems like bucket loads of saliva. And then I realised, he's teething.



And there is evidence: two sharp little teeth sitting just under his gums. It's not fair. My newborn has teeth.

Now I know I shouldn't be using my breasts as teething rings, but before it twigged (yes, I'm a little slow on the uptake), I just thought he was going through a growth spurt. But isn't teeth a little early? He was just born.

I won't regret the past 13 weeks. I've spent lots of time just looking at this lovely creation, cuddling him, kissing him, and holding him long after he needs to be held. I've let the houseword go, and just watched... the feeding, the sleeping, the staring, the wonderment.

His discoveries are once again new through my eyes. I love to see what he's seeing. And what he must think.

He's been an angel. So calm, so serious. So good. When babies are this easy, I can see where the addiction starts to having another, and another...

Perhaps if I don't go to bed, I won't wake up one day to find him older.

Saturday, June 20, 2009


It's amazing... I wasn't sure how I was going to juggle the two little men in my life. And, like most mothers, I was feeling guilty about all the time I would have to divide between the both of them.

Of course, I've quickly worked out that I spend time with Madison while Noah is sleeping, and spend most of my early morning hours with Noah. Aaah, the life!

But I am so in love with my boys, my heart aches (in a good way). They are so beautiful. I'm even in love with my big man (he's been cooking dinner every night since I came home from hospital - among many other things).

Madison just loves his little brother. Whenever he sees him, he says: "Who's that?" Of course he knows the answer, and so then he says: "It's Baby Noah!" Too cute. And then there are the endless cuddles and kisses that land on Baby Noah from his big brother. Madison has also gotten use to telling every one that it's his baby brother. He's so proud.

The first week was the hardest adjustment for Madison. Having to share Mummy with another person (how awful). But now, he realises it's not too bad, and mostly Mummy is there for him. She just needs to feed Noah a lot. But there's room on Mummy's lap to cuddle two little boys at the same time.

As for Noah, he is a dream come true. So perfect in every way. Even his little tummy is good for Mummy. He burps and settles really well. Last night he even gave Mummy six hours uninterrupted sleep.

In fact, when he sleeps that long, I miss him already...

I am in newborn baby bliss.

PS. More amazing photos from the incredibly gifted Felicity Thomson. You can see more of her beautiful pictures of us here.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009


The baby has come.

And he is just perfect. Noah Stephen is his name.

A little on the heavy side, but I didn't have to push him out. Born emergency caesarian section on Saturday, 23 May. Length: 52cm, Weight: 4.1kg, Head: 38cm

Life is a little foggy right now, but I am in new baby bliss. I can't stop looking at the miracle creation in my hands.

God is so good.

Sunday, May 03, 2009


A beautiful friend wanted to organise a baby shower for me. But feeling like I had two in my first pregnancy made me feel a bit greedy having another one.

So we compromised. It was a 'no baby shower' Baby Shower. You know: fuss free, game free and present free (but there were some naughty friends who couldn't resist a present or two).

I guess you could say that it was non-traditional. Held at a chocolate cafe called Koko Black (delish!) we sat around in a circle and talked about babies, birth and other stuff that girls, when put together discuss on the odd occasion.

Now that the day is over, I am reflecting about friends. And how blessed I am to have so many wonderful ones. I know that I could go to any of these friends with any problem and they would be there to help, to support, to make me laugh. Even be there for a should to cry on.

There's a saying that goes something like this: if you live life and have just one good friend, then you are blessed. I confess, I don't know the word that means more than blessed. Because that's how I feel today.

Above: Daniella (the baby shower host) & I comparing bellies (she at 34 weeks, me at 37 weeks); and my beautiful friends.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

the twinnies' birthday

You probably don't know this, but my dad is a twin. And not only that, he just turned 60 this week. So, just 36 weeks into my pregnancy (!) I flew to Hobart to spend time with my dad, his family and his twin sister Di, who also flew in (from Adelaide) to join in on the celebrations.

My visit was meant to be a surprise, with my step-mum scheming a few weeks back. But the surprise was short-lived as Dad found out soon after the tickets were booked (naught, naughty - he shouldn't have been reading messages on my step-mum's phone). Nonetheless, it happened (well, it almost didn't after a short emergency at Tiger Airways - let's just say that I was a little close to my due date for their comfort!).

Apart from the fact that my step-mum is an amazing cook (among other things - her latest thing is renovating), our time in Tassie was gastronomic. Oh, and fun too!

Dinner at an Italian restaurant for the twinnies on Thursday night, and Pavlova at home for dessert, Friday included eggs for breakfast, apple & cinnamon pancakes for lunch and then sweet chilli salmon for dinner... yum!

My big tummy looks like I'm going to have a baby, but I think there might be some reserves from this weekend!

Seriously though, apart from being waited on hand and foot (Maria does not let me do ANYTHING), spending time chilling with family, was hearing just some highlights of their 60 years. The best bit: absolutely no regrets.

Above: Di, my step-mum Maria; Dad; Me, Madison and my beautiful sister Daisy; Di, Dad & The Pav; Saying goodbye at Hobart airport.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

baby bump

It's been a while since I shared with you pictures of my baby bump, and now I have the perfect ones to show you, complete with my beautiful Madison.

I was privileged to be asked by the very talented Felicity Thomson if I could model for her. She was updating her website, and needed some maternity shots. I gladly accepted. And aren't the photos just beautiful?

Above: Me at 33 weeks. And to compare... Below: Me at 32 weeks (last time).

Sunday, April 19, 2009

ready for baby?

It's been a week of normality(?) now that the renovating has mostly finished.

New tenants have moved in, rent has gone up, and it's really only another day or two of working on the investment properties before everything is finished (for a while anyway). There is relief to know that we are at the end of renovations and not at the beginning. I think I could actually cry if I had to do that much work again being this pregnant! (Did I mention I have 4 weeks to go?)

I'm not sure if it's just me, but I think it takes about a week to settle back at home. You know, unpack the bags, do ALL the washing and unpack the trailer of tools and mattresses, not to mention clean the house that has been pretty much vacant except for the spiders and our odd sleepover. It's like camping with all the EXTRA bits. I think there we even unpacked some spare pickets to tease us for the fence that we desperately need at our house.

But the inspiration for today's blog is the comment made by a friend assuming because of my anally retentive nature, that I was all ready for the baby.

Confession: I haven't been. That is, until just very, very recently.

I guess with all the busyness of renovating there hasn't been much time to think about the baby actually coming. Plus there's been a part of me that hasn't cared too much. Why? I guess I'll just be unorganised again 6 weeks the other side of childbirth so who cares? And the other part (obviously the more organised side) that's freaking out about not having absolutely everything ready right this minute.

The organised side won. And this week is evidence of that.

On Thursday I bought a newborn grobag and a bunch of Avent plastic containers and grobag baby wrap, Friday I bought newborn nappies in bulk, some wraps and cradle sheets (after a very, very thorough clean of the house - no corner was left unturned) and today. Well, that's something else.

There have been lots of little jobs outstanding for some time now (backdating Christmas) and today I found the hammer, drill and screwdrivers (all still in the boot of the car) and did every single job (except one - I really need DH for that one). Then I finished painting the wardrobe in Madison's room (it's been at this stage also since before Christmas). I cleaned off the paint on EVERY hinge in the house (the wardrobes that we finished before Christmas), then cleaned the new wardrobe. And without trying to give away what we're having, I culled and went through all of Madison's baby clothes.

Then I did something very exciting.

I put up the cradle. Yes! It was so exciting that even Madison said the baby was kicking in his stomach (did I mention that he has a baby too?). He was quite the excited little boy.

So, apart from the baby's and my hospital bags, I'm ready for this baby.

Saturday, April 11, 2009


While we were working on the last extension, a tenant from another property gave notice and so we decided some work ought to be done on that one too.

It's a beautiful property, my husband's first home. His girls were born there, and it was his chance at a real self-sufficient hippy life. So it has lots of sentimental value. And did I mention it's a beautiful property? It's an old miner's sandstone cottage, built in the 1850's, ruined and rebuilt in the early 80's (by my hubby). Three acres of farmland in a quiet pocket on a tourist track. The road is actually the old coach road to Melbourne from the gold mines in Castlemaine.

The picket fence was getting quite derelict and so we decided on a whim that, hey, we could whip up another in just a few days. Plus other minor repairs like fixing a very rusty water tank, some glass panels and some other odds and ends.

We did it all, and I think the fence particularly is gorgeous. It's amazing what a new fence can do to make a place look great again.

Above: The fence pulled down, the fence beforehand, and after.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

excitement building

I just had to share how excited I am to be having another baby.

With only ten weeks to go, I am aware that my days are numbered where I get to feel kicks and movement inside of me. This personal, wonderful thing that only we share between us.

And before I know it I will be looking at my new baby in wonder and amazement.

Things I can't wait to do:

1. Smell my baby (why do they smell so good?)
2. Touch that soft, velvety baby skin
3. Look at that perfect face and study every curve and bend, neck, fingers, toes
4. Feed my baby (oh, SO beautiful)
4. Kiss my baby all over

But mostly, I just can't wait to meet him/her.

I just can't wait.

Above: Definitely the best moment in my life - meeting Madison Edward Piez for the first time (25 May 2006).

Tuesday, March 17, 2009


I am like any mother, and think my children are gorgeous (of course).

But just this week at playgroup a friend was looking at Madison and said, "He is just SO good looking. Like Hollywood Good Looking."

At first I thought, oh dear - pretentious and self loving. Luckily she reclarified that he was JUST that good looking. The compliment has just made my week.

Even though you won't see me pushing him to be a child star, I am still like any other mother...