Saturday, 30 August 2008

Part Two of our long drive home...

Part One

So when I last left our tale we were all in the car and ready to head off home! It was around 9:30am when we left.

We decided to take the 'scenic' route home which is about an hour longer then the HWY route. But we had plenty of time and thought it would be nice. Famous last words!

We drove for about an hour before our first stop to get some bottles of water. Hubby bought ones that had different coloured lids *sigh* you know what that means. Fights over who gets what colour. Soon after the rain came down quite heavy. Yes, the rain is great and we need the water, but it also meant we would not be able to get everyone out the car to see the 'scenery' lol

Not to worry we'd just slow down and try an look out the window!

Driving for about another hour and a bit and bubs wakes for a feed. Hubby pulls over on the side were there is gravel and some grass. He rolls back to be further away from the road. Bubs has a stop/start feed for about half an hour. Stop/start feeds usually happen around 5-6 months when bubs start to get interested in their surroundings during a feed. Most times it goes like this, from the babies viewpoint...

Suck Suck, mm I love breast milk, suck suck, mmmm Oooh what was that over there? (bubs drops off) I thought I heard something (back on feeding again) suck suck mmmm I might just pinch mummy to see her do that squeal thing she does he he (bubs drops off) ooh hello daddy, giggle, daddy is so funny (back on) suck suck (drops off) daddy still there, hello smile at me, giggle ha ha (back on) mmm suck suck mmmmm (drops off) did I miss something then?

You get the picture. We check the time and realise we should get back on the road. I put bubs back in her seat and just as I open my door to hop back in down comes a shower of hail.

Hubby starts the engine, in gear and off..... hmmm and off.........hmmmm shit.

'Don't tell me.." "yup" "Are you frigging kidding me??" "We're stuck" "Fuck" (last part said with gust, but quietly ;) )

Hubby tries every manoeuvre he can to get us out. However we are in a front wheel drive people mover with 7 people in it and luggage. We are not moving anywhere. Oooh is that rain again?

Hubby decides he should get it and I drive so maybe he can push as I drive and get us out.

We do this for too long. Wheels spinning car revving, the kids starting to drive me batty with their "Ar we going to be stuck here all night?" "Will we have to sleep in the car?" "Should we call roadside assistance?"

During this process quite a number of cars go by. Hmph. Hubby, who used to have a 4WD and go 4WDing pulls out all his tricks, but none work. Again people mover and not to mention the rain.

Then a man pulls over in a little white car and offers to help hubby push. He shall hence forth be known as Man A.

Hubby and Man A try to a while with me moving the wheels in different directions, rolling back a bit first then revving the engine.

Still nothing. Hubby jokes we need a FWD with a winch. We decide to try a couple more times. As we do I am looking at the cars turning the bend ahead of us. A Troopie!!! (Big ass 4WD) I try not to be too obvious looking as it drives past..... brake lights, slowing down, YAY!!!!!! He (Man B) stops, does a u-turn and pulls up in front of our car. 4WDs all have a tow bar at the back. He jumps out and says "This looks like fun" in his German accent. We are all smiling as Man B grabs a snatch strap from his car. We will NOT be camping here tonight!

He then bends down under our car to try and hook the strap. He can't quite get it. So Man B tries. He has to kneel down to reach under the car. Remember the rain? yup, quite muddy.

He hooks it on. Hubby is in the drivers seat now and I am on the sidelines silently cheering and hoping. Man B starts driving forward very slowly as the slack of the snatch strap tightens. When it is taught he revs a bit more and starts going forward, pulling our car out of the muddy grass and on to the gravel.
When we are out Man B jumps out and I step closer to our car. One of the kids yells "Are we out?" Hubby says yes and then the children all clap and cheer. Man B laughs at the cheering squad and gives a little bow.

Man B and Man A head back to their vehicles after lots of thank you's from us all.
We hop back in the car and off we go.....again.

More children's music, more whinging, sooking, laughing, playing eye spy despite only being able to see trees and the sky and children who need to eat every half hour. Oh what fun the driving can be with a handful of children.

After driving an hour or so we see a car pulled over on the road. Hubby says it's Man A. So we pull over in front of him, making sure to stay on the gravel this time!
Man A has run out of petrol. He thought he would make it to the next town, only 10 minutes away but he didn't.
Hubby tells him we would be more than happy to get him some petrol in a jerry can. How often do you get the chance to help someone who just helped you on the road?! So off we go again heading towards the next town.
Hubby gets a jerry can and fills it up. Then off we go heading back to Man A. We pull over, again, me reminding Hubby to make sure we are in the gravel, which he appreciates greatly with a wry smile. Hand over the petrol, laugh about the situation and on the road we go!!

Are you still with me?
Everyone is hungry so we stop at the next town so everyone can go to the toilet and we can eat and get some more bottles to drink.
Off we go, and this time we want to try and keep going all the way to what was meant to be our only stop at a friends place to pick up a little table and chairs for the kids.

We drive for about 45 minutes until we hear the kids start sooking about something. I turn around to see the 2 year old vomiting in his lap. Actually, in his lap would have been great, he spread his legs so it all went on his car seat. Greeeeeat!
So we try to find a spot to pull over, but it's all grass along the road. Finally a dirt road comes up so we turn down.
The next 20 minutes Hubby and I play team clean up on the car and 2 year old, in the rain.
With fresh clothes and everything cleaned up we pull onto the road again.

We manage to then drive all the way to my friends house, not without missing the turn off from the Highway first though. We get the table and chairs in the car and head off home.
We realise the time and figure we will have to stop at the supermarket first to get the few things we will need for the little party for our daughters birthday.

Do you remember what time we left? 9:30 and the length of time the trip should take if only stopping for half an hour? 5 and a half hours.
We pull in at the supermarket near our house at 5pm!!
Hubby runs in and grabs a few things, including birthday ice cream cake!
As soon as we get home it is a mad rush to get everything cleaned up (AKA shove it all in the main bedroom, lol) bubs has some booby and a nappy change and we collapse in the loungeroom. Guests to arrive within an hour, enough time for Hubby to doze off and the kids to run around like wild banshees, getting the energy out of their system!

We got to bed that night around midnight exhausted. It was a great weekend though. Full of fun, excitement, adventure and lots of laughs. Hubby and I figure we may as well see the fun side of life when it takes on a life of its own like that, it certainly makes things interesting.
Yes, we are planning another trip to the same place this summer, and looking forward to it!!

Thursday, 28 August 2008

A day in photos

Cause all the cool kids are doing it! *ahem* Hazz ;)

Daddy thought it was funny to blow air on my face and make me squint. I still look gorgeous.

Spring is on the way. Celebrating by making 'Daisy' Chains with Dandelions

One for the bubba too!

I may be jinxing it by saying it out loud but I feel Spring is here! Such lovely days we have been having. I hope it continues.

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

7 months

My baby girl is 7 months old today. Yes, time for a cliche, time is flying by at rapid speed!
Oh my dear wee bubba girl. I find you challenging, but in a relaxed way. Your eldest brother was very much like you, but back then I did not have as much patience or understanding.

He cried a lot, fed a lot and tired me out a lot! Here you are with him, listening to some tunes.
Your second, third and fourth siblings were quite chilled little beings. Happy to sit and watch me cook, hang out washing, or sit with me as I typed on the computer.

Not you.

While there are times when you don't mind sitting in the rocker for a few minutes or being entertained by others, you want your mamma, and ALL the time dammit! Being baby number 5 I have lots more patience and understanding for your needs. I know that time will fly by and how you are now will too soon be forgotten or a distant memory, so I try to cherish your ways.

You love to be held, facing me, so you can stand on the top of my thighs and bop up and down, doing your little leg exercises, as you throw your body around, reach out the side, try to fall back and arch your back. This both drives me crazy and makes me laugh. What trust you have in me as you move about, knowing I will keep holding you not matter how hard and painful it is on my arms.

Your eldest brother loves to hold you still. Although you are getting heavier and this is proving to be harder on his gangly arms. He is still the only one, after me, to hear you when you wake up and he will go running to my room to great you with "Oh hello my girl, did you have a nice sleep?"

7 months later and the novelty has not worn off!

You smile and laugh a lot. I love it. Your 2 bottom teeth standing out as you smile.

At dinner time you will sit in the rocker on the table and smile at us. Now that you are more mobile you move around and try to grab at everything within reach, and this you remind us off every night as you try to swat and grab the plates.

I am not sure if I can say you are still exclusively breastfed as you have had a munch on paper, cardboard and a suck on bread your sister shared with you that was quickly intervened by eldest brother.

You are going through a growth spurt at the moment and have been waking in the night time for a feed, several times. I am not complaining as you sleep through almost every night. But I am hoping we can go back to sleeping through again real soon, when you are ready, m'kay?

It really does feel like only few days or a week ago we met face to face in the birth pool in our loungeroom. Born gently surrounded your family.
What do we 'do' when homeschooling? Make funny hats of course!!

Thank you for choosing our little family. Yes I will say it to you, as I have with each baby, I find it hard to remember the time before you were born, it's as though you have always been here.

Happy 7 months my sweet, energetic, constantly moving baby, who for now is happiest in mamma's arms.

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

Conversations today...

Mummy "Who else wants a sandwich?"
Eldest Son " Oooh me, me!"
Mummy "OK" makes sandwich, hands to son who then says
"You can eat now too"
Well, thank you! Glad to be of service to you all first!

Eldest Son "How about we keep this house for kids to play in and we buy another house for us to play in"
Mummy "Sure, go grab the money off the tree in the backyard for me"

Me in the kitchen, kids in the loungeroom
Son "What's that noise?"
Me "Nothing"
Son "What are you eating?"
Me "Nothing"
Son walking closer to me "You are eating" snif, snif "It's chocolate!, Can I have some?"
Me "I have nothing!"
All kids "Can we have chocolate?"
Me "It's all gone, he he"
(Yes I am a big meanie for not sharing. So little pleasures are just for me, I'll grab anything when I can)

Part one of our weekend away is here, scroll down :)

Monday, 18 August 2008

Co sleeping siblings

When hubby and I came home from the hospital (I just got a shiver saying that, lol) with our first babe we had a cot next to the bed in our little room.
He fed for an hour, every 3 hours for the first few weeks. This meant I would get about an hour and a half sleep every 3 hours. The hospital, the Maternal nurse, family and friends all gave us their bits of advice with sleeping. Bubs need to be in the cot swaddled and patted off to sleep if they are 'unsettled' This was a nightmare. Bubs would get upset, I was sleep deprived and upset and of course hubby would come home and be upset as we were upset!

I kept doing it as 'that's what you are supposed to do' we struggled through until he started to sleep through every night, for about 6-7 hours at around 2 months.

Before our next babe was born we had already decided I would do what my heart wanted to do and felt was right by me and our new babe.

I would fed him in our bed and most times we would fall asleep together. We still had the cot and I would put him in there for naps and sometimes overnight too.

Fast forward 3 more children and we are getting more sleep and our family is much happier!

I feel sad that no one mentioned having our first babe in bed with us, and also sad that I didn't listen to my heart and just do what I and our babe clearly (now in hindsight) wanted and needed.

While other people can be great with helping and offering advice, as parents we need to be strong and do what is best for our baby and ourselves. We are the ones caring for our babe 24/7, we are the ones up at all hours, feeding, holding close, changing and the myriad of other things we try to do in the day and night.

Babies have been inside our bodies for 9 loud months. When they are born they still need to be close to us, to our chest, warm and safe, with breast milk ready whenever they need.

Co sleeping in our family changes every night. It might be hubby, myself and bub, or our 2 year old snuggled with Daddy as well, and on the odd occasion I will wake in the morning to find our 4 year old sleeping cross ways at the bottom of the bed :)

Here are a few pics of our happy, co sleeping family.

In this I was next to bubby, and Dadda was next to our blondie 2 year old. We end up like this most nights, I love it.

Not sure what hubby will say about he last pic, but, meh, it is a beautiful picture and it's going in! I love his hand on our week old bubby. Even Dadda's and partners are in tune with babies and children when co sleeping.

Thursday, 14 August 2008

The looooong drive home

Part One

Friday night I sat on the computer, knowing I had to pack for our weekend away. A lovely friend of mine was having a blessingway. If it were just Hubby and I the trip would take approx 4 hours. Add in 4 children and a baby who loves her booby feeds and you are adding about an hour or so.

The suitcase was on the table, mocking me as I tried to ignore it. I think it was about 1am when I couldn't put it off any longer so I gathered the clothes and packed them all.
I also wrapped the presents for my daughter who was turning 4 this day.

In the morning we did the tradition of sneaking in the birthday child's room and waking them up. This proved a bit harder with our daughter as she could not be woken up, even with lights on and us tapping her, then pulling the doona off her, then rocking her a little. Finally I said loudly we have presents! Up she jumped with a big smile.

From this moment on everything was about her and her birthday. You have to do everything as the birthday child wishes. For her, this is not different to every other day of the year.

We managed to get away withing 20 minutes of our estimated 'go' time. A record for us.
We stopped 4 or was it 5 times? Toilet, petrol, toilet, booby feed, drinks, toilet etc

Here is the birthday girl with her new headphones. (Note how clean the windows are behind her? I remember being told off for doing that when I was younger, and couldn't understand, lol The swirls looked great to me.... back then!)

On the way there were tears, laughter, squealing, jumping around on the seats, whining, and at one point I thought my head truly would explode if I heard "How much longer" one more time. Some people laugh and think those sayings only happen in the movies. No, they happen, every 6 minutes in our car.

Hubby had packed his Ipod in the car and at one point motioned for me to get it from the glovebox. I laughed and said "No way buddy, we are suffering together"

On and on we drove. Listening to CD's of children's songs. Oh yay! What sucks about them is they are all about a minute long at most. So they repeat pretty quickly. At first you don't mind so much, then slowly it starts to get painful, then you turn it off only to have the children yell out to put it back on in a really nice polite way (sarcasm)

The 2 year olds turn of the headphones!

So it goes back on and the cycle continues. I am still, 5 days later singing "I'm going places in my new shoe laces, winning lots of races in my new show laces" out loud.

When we arrived the children did the mandatory running around the cabin, opening cupboards, doors, jumping on the beds. I remember doing the same thing when I was little. Running in the room trying to beat the others to pick the 'good' bed, lol

We brought in the suitcases and bags and headed off to my friends house.

Bubs and I stayed and the other dad's and munchkins went to a very cool park nearby. I was hoping at the least they would not a) get sand all over them, hence in my car and b) get wet

I had a lovely time blessing the way with friends, eating yummy food and talking birth and babies.

A couple of hours later the others came back. Yes, BOTH happened. Sand and water. They did a good job too. My son who was wet did it properly, by falling in the water. I know I was only told half the story and he no doubt was coerced closer to the water by his father.

We said our goodbyes and went back to the cabin and ordered Pizza. And wedges. For me. Mmmmm wedges.

After Pizza we sang Happy Birthday to our now big 4 year old and had very, very sweet ready made cake from the supermarket. With glow in the dark candles!

When cake like that you know the children were not going to bed any time soon! So we watched some TV, and wound down a bit. Finally some of the troops started to get tired, yet the children were still wired, lol

Hubby fell asleep on the fold out, ever-so-comfy (not) sofa with bubs. I left them and got the others in bed, and back in bed, then back in bed again, several times and about an hour later after playing musical beds the older 3 were finally asleep. Leaving the 2 year old and Mummy awake. The stamina he has is amazing! Not wanting to go to sleep, as he may miss something exciting.

Somehow we all managed to sleep soundly for about 5 hours. Then slowly, one by one we were all up, dressed and eating breakfast. We were doing great for time and things were looking great to home in the early afternoon. I was looking forward to a Nana nap in my own bed before cleaning up and unpacking for the second Birthday cake with friends and family.

One, two, three, four, five, all in, let's go!! Hang on, mummy needs to go to the toilet, again. Hey, I've had 5 children, averaging 10 and a half pounds, give me a break!
OK, NOW we are on the road. Home here we come......

Stay Tuned for Part two!

Friday, 8 August 2008

When life gets busy and you...realise it's friday again!

Wow, how fast is the time going? It is for me at least. I am sooo excited about so many things! Selling our house, moving to a new house, homeschooling now being much smoother, children learning and growing like weeds, our baby getting another tooth Sunday just gone and laughing and smiling at everyone, ahh I could go on.

This weekend we will be in the car for a total of 10 hours! I can feel my eye twitching as I type. I can hear the fights already, someone will no doubt breathe on someone else, or look out someone else's window, or hold their finger an inch away from another's nose and say "But I'm not touching you"
It's all about the memories though isn't it?! Huz mentioned some new game/tv/dvd electronic thing the kids can watch while we drive. I'm sure he could see my eyes glazing over. "And miss out on all that memory making?" I said "To me it is screaming, fighting, squealing, whining, sooking, no doubt crying and clothes being taken off 5 minutes down the road" He replied

But that is all part of the fun of long trips in the car!!!!

This next part will have two people at least laughing. I am still yet to pack. It is nearly 11:30. Huz and the 2 year old are both asleep and snoring on the chair together. The dadda and his mini me! Our 2 year old is so much like his daddy is is both cute and annoying at the same time. He can drive me bananas, but then look at me with his bog blue eyes and say "wha?" as he shrugs one shoulder, and I can't help but laugh.

We are hoping to see Whales when we are away. I wasn't going to tell them about the whales, just in case we didn't see any, as that would cause tantrums for sure on the way home. But I figure if it wasn't the whales they will find something else to complain and cry about. More than likely because someone is an inch over 'their' side of the seat.

Wish us luck!

Friday, 1 August 2008

It's not a loungeroom...

...It's a fortress for Luke and Leia Skywalker and their crew!! Didn't you know that??!
The last 2 days the children have made the loungeroom unrecognisable. I am torn between being impressed at their imagination, creativity and laughter, and my eye twitching as the cushions are pulled off, chairs are arranged, blankets are pulled out from everywhere for the roof and I know I will be left to clean it all.
Throw in a teething baby who has two teeth growing higher from her sore gums and a two year old who decided the washing place was a great place to pee!! Oh, and we all have runny noses! yay.
I am looking forward to some retail therapy tonight. If you are out shopping tonight and hear what sound like a herd of children, it's more than likely us!