Tuesday, October 30, 2007

It was twenty years ago today.....

Well, it started 20 years ago yesterday, actually! On the afternoon of our fourth wedding anniversary, my body went into labour for the very first time, in what we dearly hoped would be a VBAC delivery of our second child.

Unfortunately Kaitlyn must have been sleeping during all those childbirth classes, so she presented posterior and 24 hours of unsuccessful contractions ensured before we all called it quits and agreed to have another caesarean. I had my trial of labour and trial it was! A sticking hot 36 degree day, a burst hot water tank in the roof drowned a cupboard full of linen and precious photos and that was before breakfast! My contractions were of the lazy type: they stopped when I did, so I spend HOURS walking the corridors of the hospital!

Anyway, 30 mins before Halloween began (!) our little lady was born by elective caesarean. And now she is 20 years old!!!!!!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Blowin' in the wind

Well, this year's Pram Stroll was not as pleasant a day as previous events. The weather was against us. The day dawned an hour early, due to the start of daylight savings and by the time the event got started, the blustery north wind was doing it's best to remove all the marquees from the site!
With constant eye irritation from the dirt and debris being swept off the dry ground, it was a battle to keep everything in place: and the battle was lost for our poor feed and change tent! It was all hands on deck to stop the whole lifting and blowing into the middle of Albert Park Lake!
Meanwhile, our stand at the information tent was threatened by the billowing wall of the marquee, so we decided to cut our losses and repack all the stuff into my car, which we finished just before a few hardy souls drifted back after the stroll around the lake. Whipped by the wind and damp from the lashing waves, they were all a little worse for wear and didn't mind at all that their base camp was decidly tattered!
I am starting to think every feed and change I do will involve hanging onto poles and walls for dear life!

Posted by Picasa

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Being a Mother VIP Breakfast

Wedensday saw Karen P and I off bright and early to a fundraising breakfast held by http://www.beingamother.com/ and what a great morning it was!

Guest speakers were Tanya Costello (yes, Peter's better half!); Jennifer Graham, the woman behind the successful Crabapple Cupcakes story and Vicki Gazis, Ambassador for the Leukaemia Foundation…sharing their experiences of motherhood.

We had a lovely meal and each recieved a goody bag AND a cupcake packaged up in a noodle box: very girly!

Jennifer was especially inspirational, although Tanya did show there is at least one sensible person in the Costello household (nothing to do with politics, I just think Peter is a bit of a drip!)

I bought a copy of Jennifer's Cupcakes book and got her to sign it for Kaitlyn: meant for her birthday next week, but I gave it to her as soon as I got home!

The cake I ate all by myself :)

Monday, October 22, 2007

Pregnancy, Babies & Children's Expo

What can I say? We just had the most wonderful three days at the Pregnancy, Babies and Children’s Expo!

For three solid days, with barely a lull, expectant and new parents queued to find out about ABA and breastfeeding support. We gave away almost 2000 showbags (we had enough and even brought some home!) as well as selling 35 subscriptions – yes, 35 (I think this is a new record!). We sold and promoted the calendar (will check figures tomorrow) we sold a couple of hundred raffle tickets for our wonderful hamper (winner thrilled!) rasing funds to spend on resources for our BERKs and counselled hundreds of grateful mums. And we told so many people about the BECS – including some who had already attended and others already booked in!

We also heard repeatedly how awesome our volunteers are, how fantastic our helpline is and how wonderful it is to be a group member. Essence is popular, the website brilliant, forum a life saver ….. BFN is terrific, booklets great ….

Special thanks to all my wonderful volunteers ….. Bronwen; Peta; Jen; Louise (twice); Ann (Twice); Jennifer; Maria; Lisa-Marie; Caroline; Jacinta (twice); Vanessa; Julie; Margaret and the girls from MD, including our own counsellors Sam and Susan (Happy 40th birthday!).

Karen and Julie’s shifts – both unable to come due to family dramas – were covered on Sunday afternoon by Jacinta, Ann and Louise. Each happily did a second shift and saved my sanity!

Never underestimate the value of events such as this: so many people told us they had joined at a previous expo. We are highly valued by so much of the community, yet still so many had no idea we existed. Thank you to all those who edit their regional handouts – they are a godsend at such times. Thankyou Bronwen’s showbag coordinating team. Thankyou to all those people who will be on the roster shifts, teach the BEC, hire the pump, run the meeting and deliver all the services we promised.

And we get to do it all again next Sunday at various pram strolls around the state! If you want to join the fun, give me a call or send an email. Melbourne’s baby boom continues and this is likely to be the biggest pram stroll ever!

Posted by Picasa
With a little time to fill in the City Of Melbourne, I took some photos for this week's Photo Friday theme: City

This is my final choice for submission at www.photofriday.com
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

October - blink and you'll miss it!

It’s October, so every week is chock-a-block with getting ready for events on the weekends or recovering from them!

I thought I would tell you what we did at the Pets Day Out on Sunday. We go to this every year (it is where the kids met their snake-handler) and Silky loves it. It is her idea of heaven: rows of stalls which are most likely to have doggy treats to give her, buckets of water to taste every few metres, lots of other dogs …. And lots of dog people to make a fuss and pat her! Perfect!

I really didn’t think she would be there this year, after her recent bad health. That really knocked her for six and she is still getting back to the new normal. But Sunday saw her happy to go. Now, a few weeks ago at the show, we spoke with a pet photographer who we see each year at the day out and she mentioned she was doing a special promo this year, with a free on the spot sitting and a 5x7 print for $25, with the money going to a fund for animals. I decided to book her in. Silky has been difficult to photograph right from the start – her pure black colour made it hard to get definition and her inability to sit more than a metre from the photographer didn’t make it easy! After 15 years as a key family member, I decided that it would be nice to capture her professionally.

So the super model rolled up for her moment in the spotlight and loved every minute of it! Of course, she soon had the photographer and everyone else cooing and giving her treats and took to being centre of the universe quite well. I was not so thrilled when the photographer suggested I get in shot and took a series of photos of the two of us :0 But – through the wonders of the modern world – the digi photos were downloaded to her laptop and we got to view them straight away! Of course, I ordered more than just the one, but I had fully intended to buy a few. We ended up with two head shots of the super model and two photos of she and I together.

This probably means I have descended to “one of those people” who have fur children! I have already decided the breed of my next dog will be a King Charles like Amanda has (I have been checking them out everywhere!) so that will be better suited to lap-dog status! But we don’t talk about the future, we just focus on the present.

Now madly preparing for the PBC Expo this weekend and the pram stroll the following Sunday. And must remember Kaitlyn is 20 on the 30th!!!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Kerry Greenwood

I have an ongoing love affair with Melbourne author, Kerry Greenwood.

I believed there to be no more wonderful a book character than her Phryne Fisher .... until she introduced baker Corina Chapman! Now Phyrne is my favourite 1920's character and Corina my favourite contemporary character.

Right now, I am immersed in the newest Corina Chapman book: Trick or Treat. I love that these books are set in my City and the local icons and geography are known to me. We might be the World's Most Livable City, but Corina shows us just how great it is.

Earthly delights is Corina's bakery, located just off Flinders lane.

And you must learn out all about the most glamourous flapper, Phryne Fisher

In The Garden

Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Posted by Picasa

In the Garden

I had a garden day again today. Yesterday afternoon I did a Bunnings run and came home with everything I needed to jump straight in this morning.

I have potted up our summer salads: two small tomato varieties in hanging pots again, as they did so well last year. Several lettuce varieties, spinach, beautiful basil and – for the first time – eggplant, capsicum and snow peas! I got tiny eggplant and capsicum, little mini fruits and these are in pots like all the rest. The snow peas I have put in the garden bed, with a frame to climb. I realised I should have bought a Lebanese cucumber and done it the same, so will add that to the list.

But eating from my garden is only a small pleasure. The big one is living in my garden in the warmer months (but not so much the very hottest!). So a spring clean of my paved courtyard was in order. With a new broom (to sweep clean) and lots of music to motivate me, I took to the red bricks and got rid of the winter litter of leaves, dirt and crap. Yes, real crap – sigh: the joy of a big dog! But all done now.

An audit saw three roses I planted last year did not survive my winter neglect. It is so hard with the water restrictions and our poor soil, with so many tree roots stealing water. Rather than replace the roses, I admitted defeat and filled the spaces with lavender, which does grow well in these conditions. I still have plenty of roses but not the heart to nurture new ones. The drought must end/ease eventually!

Medicine time – wetting agent for the hydrophobic soil, seasol to make everyone feel better, slow release fertiliser and 20kg of pea straw mulch. All I need to do is remember to turn on the dripper system at 8pm (Sunday is the only day our house can water) and give it all a good soak. The it was time to sit back and smell the perfume from the roses, lilac and lavender with a cuppa and a new book. It’s a hard life!

I didn’t take any photos of my work, as the light was gone before I finished, so that will wait til morning. But I did play with some close ups on my camera and captured some treasures.
Garden Photos

Friday, October 5, 2007

This weeks challenge is: wholesome. Bit tricky, so here is a sandwich Kaitlyn made me for lunch one day when I was playing with my camera! www.photofriday.com
Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Posted by Picasa

Posted by Picasa
These are the photos taken by a Sydney newspaper of Melissa and her friend when they were volunteers at the Lord Of The Rings exhibition in 2005

Posted by Picasa

Monday, October 1, 2007

Cinderella goes to the ball

Posted by Picasa

Cinderella goes to the ball!

Melissa all dressed up to go to her work Ball!

My lady's chatelaine!
Posted by Picasa