life as pen knows it

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activities for kids – too many too easily

i am so conscious of not having too many scheduled activities for my children. my son already attends school 5 days a week, my daughter attends kindy 2 days a week.

and then the activites crept in. my son goes to karate on monday evenings, and is doing the AFL auskick program after school on thursdays. my daughter goes to dancing on wednesday afternoons.

it doesn’t sound that much does it? but it has had a HUGE impact. it means that wednesdays and thursdays we don’t get home until close to 5pm. we used to eat dinner at about 5.30. not anymore. karate was 4.30-5.30, and now it’s 5.30-7pm.   my kids are regularly in bed by 7pm!

and that’s not mentioning any of the parent’s activities – work, study, gym, yoga, cycling, running a business from home, maintaining the house and garden, friends and family, some social life (that’s the small bit) that has to fit in somewhere. no wonder the adults are at the desk/stove/sink until late into the evening. anyone else clean the bathroom at 10pm?!

so i think we’re already at our maximum. how do people do it with more children and more activities? i remember the wise words of a friend with 5 chidren – one activity per child. i think i need to write it on the bathroom mirror.


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new graduate

he’s graduated, the newest MBA in town.

it’s been a fast and furious ride over the last 13 months, lots of coffee, lots of outings to the park to give him the space to study, and now a fair dollop of uncertainty until a new career is launched.

now it’s my turn to take over the study space and finish my last few subjects. i’m loving my work experience in the school library. it’s also giving me a tiny insight into what’s it like to be a mother working outside the home. those days are run with military precision, and there’s lots of getting in and out of the car; dropping the children at kindy and school, making 3 lunches, remembering hats and water bottles. the enjoyable part of these days for me is talking with adults (about books mostly which i love), a bit of solitude here and there, and listening to my choice of music in the car when i’m by myself! it helps me appreciate the slower paced days at home with picnic morning teas, reading books on the bed after lunch, and preparing meals with the children. Actually, i like both sorts of days, and i guess that’s the key to a balanced life.

it’s good to know what i’m aiming for 🙂


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new horizons

it’s not a new photo, just a reminder of what i need to keep my eyes on – the blue skies and new horizons.
yesterday we lost our family income when the man-o-the-house was made redundant. with 5 weeks of intense study left to complete his MBA he’s hardly in a position to job hunt – but he’s doing it anyway. well done him, keeping all those plates in the air and smiling all the while.
so we’re stayin’ in, drinkin’ more lattes at home, beachin’ and looking to those blue skies.


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oh to be in italy in the summer

oh that’s right, my lovely husband is, he’s in milan and apparently the weather is beautiful and hot, and there’s so many pizza cafes, coffees and galleries to choose from that he’s just not sure what to do next. groan.
whereas i’m at home on a cold saturday night with nothing on tele, no dvds to watch, no choccy. i should have planned this a bit better i think……………


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photo-less posts

mmm my 5yr old son needs some more practice i think, we have a LOT of headless photos.

speaking of photos and posts, i’ll be doing some posting without any photos. dull but true. my camera is elsewhere for a few weeks. but i’ll try digging out some ones from pre-blogging days for a diversion.

i’ve been back to IKEA, once you go that’s it, you’re hooked. personally i’m hooked on the fabrics. i just can’t choose. but finally i did choose. i am re-upholstering (ie new foam and pillow-slip style covers) a chair which was my husband’s grandfathers. it has sat happily in our living room with a turkish throw over it for many years. but i saw some gorgeous fabric and just had to do it. and i’m covering some large lounge cushions in a different fabric. but you’ll have to wait for the piccies i’m afraid.

not that i should be spending my evenings sewing. i have enrolled into my next 2 TAFE subjects and should be reading, typing, reading, researching. i have been spending wednesdays in a school library and will do so until the end of the year. this is a requirement of my library and information systems course and it’s great. my colleagues are very helpful and i have been enjoying being surrounded by books all day. my favourite environment.


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what was i thinking?

my tafe folder arrived last week and sat ominously on the corner of the desk, fungus’s uni stuff taking up the rest of the, well, whole room actually. and the kids were sick and demanding, and we were already having a busy week and an even busier weekend coming.

why did i think that a light bit of study to keep my brain active and a new career path meandering out before me would possibly be a sane decision!!!

breathe breathe breathe

ok, then i read and re-read and re-read my tafe assignment, emailed back and forth with my tutor a few times, begged for my access password, frantically reserved textbooks from the tafe library that everyone else had already borrowed (and diligently read probably) and then went aaaaaaaaaahhhh i get it now.


so it’s fine. today was the day from dream planet family. the day i always thought i’d be living. the children played quietly and imaginatively with each other with barely a squabble, i whipped thru the house with an enjo dusting tool, pegged out the washing, made a(nother) coffee, and sat down with my tafe folder and did a few hours work, drafting up my first assignment (1 of 9 due december). and all by 11.30am. so it can be done after all. and next year mr H will be at prep and miss S at kindy 2 days a week.

and the jacaranda “popped” with flowers last wednesday. this tree overhangs our driveway and is the only jacaranda in our part of the street. it’s the reason i wanted to buy this house 8yrs ago, well part of the reason anyway. and the air was warm coming in the windows all day. spring, i love it.