Monday, August 31, 2009

Happy 3rd Birthday Kalyani!

Hit's artistic balloon version of the Rao family. We did actually sit down and enjoy a yummy birthday breakfast of pancakes, fruit and chocolate cake. Then she had some friends over to play with in the morning. For dinner Kalyani's choice - chips.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Early Sunday Morning

I decided to start the day abit earlier today. Here's hoping that it will help Shaan sleep longer than his 3 hours at a time during the night. So instead of cuddles and going back to sleep in Mum and Dad's bed this ended up happening.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Tools for the job

With all the challenges of parenting at the moment I have been doing a few things to try and make life at home a bit more simple. Hence I signed up with our local toy library this past week. Something I have been meaning to do for ages.

This was the first thing Kalyani chose to borrow- a vanity table that plays nursery rhymes. Not sure what that says about her. She's interested in flashy toys?

6 weeks old- this little boy is getting bigger.

I also bought this wrap from Hug-a-Bub. Have used it a couple of times already and it is really comfortable and great for being able to do stuff with Kalyani while still carrying Shaan.

Shaan was not impressed with having to pose for photos as you can see. He was tired by then and just wanted to have a feed and go to bed.

Got these gorgeous one size fits all MCNs in the post this week. I have been using Kalyani's cloth nappies but with all the wet weather we have been having they are not getting dry quick enough. Yep- that's when a dryer would come in handy. But also nice to have something new for Shaan as pretty much everything is being passed on from Kalyani.

The cute model.

This week's freezer meal- chicken curry. Yes there is chicken in there somewhere but also put in lots of potato and carrot. I am loving having meals in the freezer. I don't have to cook every day, I reckon I spend less on food because I am cooking in bulk and there's less dishes on the nights I am re-heating a dish. I don't know why I didn't do this before when I was working. It makes things a lot easier.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

What is success?

The following taken from "Simple Secrets from a Beautiful Home" by Emilie Barnes spoke to me today.  

"Even if chaos and clutter in your home and life are wearing you down, the solution is not a whirlwind effort to "get organised"...  We humans weren't made to "get organised".  We were made to live as God's children, worshipping Him and delighting in Him.  As we open our hearts and attitudes to God, putting Him first in our lives and looking to Him for guidance, He will show us little ways to organise the chaos and lead a more peaceful, ordered existence.  And it doesn't have to happen all at once."

Hurrah!!  I like that, that all of us regardless of how naturally organised we are will be drawn towards having order in our lives as we pursue God.  

Lately I feel like God's been speaking to me about what I view as being successful at home.  Yes it is right to pray and trust God for success in what I do (Psalm 118:26).  Yet I am learning that having an ordered and tidy house, efficiency in all that I do etc is not to be the end goal.  That's not what success is.  Above all else God is relational and He calls me to live relationally not focused and driven by tasks.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Great cake idea!

Hmm- big bag of white powder. Actually Kalyani is showing off the chocolate cake mix we made up today at MOPS. Yep our craft activity for MOPS today was making up a bulk dry mix for chocolate cake to keep on hand in the cupboard. I think this is such a great idea. Very quick and easy to make and it even makes a large enough cake to freeze some for later.

The recipe for it is:

3 cups plain flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon bicarb soda
then add 2 cups water, 3/4 cup oil and 2 tablespoons vinegar when ready to cook.
Mix all ingredients until just combined. Cook at 180C for about 30-40 minutes.

5 1/2 weeks old and I can't get over how big this little man is getting. He's into 00 already especially with the more bulky cloth nappies on. He's looking quite different to Kalyani.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

'Tis the season...

for birthdays and parties! A very happy birthday to Craigh for today. Happy 1st birthday to Holly and Happy Birthday to Josiah. Loved how our gorgeous friend Delia organised the party food for her son's 3rd birthday party. I thought it was fairly healthy and yet still appealing to kids. Lots of fruit, homemade muffins and chicken nuggets etc. The kids got water to drink. Yeh- someone else that thinks that we don't have to give them lots of sweet drinks. In their party bags she had homemade biscuits instead of pre-bought lollies. Love the idea! I'm told that the biscuits, muffins etc were really simple to make. They all used 4 ingredients or less. Well done Delia!

All the food colouring was in the cake :) which Josiah's Dad made. I tried to convince Hit that he could take on the cake making and decorating job for Kalyani's birthday. But he wasn't convinced.

Shaan having a cuddle with Dad before going home.

These photos below are to prove to myself that we did have some sunshine if only for a short time yesterday. What a welcome not to have the rain for a day! I actually got some washing dry.

Have been having some challenges in parenting this girl. So I have been trying out some ideas from a Terrific Toddler book about having a flexible routine for the days that we are home together. Me making more decisions during the day and giving Kalyani a lot less choices. So far it has reduced the amount of misbehaviour and times when I would losing my temper with her. But I am finding it more tiring to put into practice. Hopefully things will continue to improve because I so want to enjoy the time I have with her and not be wanting to be back at work so much. Plus I believe my role is to teach and train our kids and I do feel a sense of failure when I am constantly battling with her.

My silverbeet enjoying the sunshine as well. Still growing amongst all the grass popping up. The plan is to re-do the no dig garden in the coming month and plant some heirloom vegie seeds ordered from the Digger's Club.

My freezer meal I cooked today is sausage and bean stew. My version of it since I couldn't find a recipe I had all the ingredients for.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

This morning...

I cooked this, this morning - Irish stew. Some for dinner and the rest to freeze. Smells yum! This little man was very restless so I wheeled his bassinette into the kitchen where he had a sleep while I was working.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Just the two of us

I get to stay home with this adorable boy who is 4 weeks old tomorrow.

Hit has taken Kalyani to the local skate park to have a go on her scooter. Today we also did our first outing to our church service since Shaan was born. All went well except next time I need to remember to bring a rug to wrap him in and his dummy because he was abit hard to settle to sleep. The amount of things you have to carry around with babies. Oh and not to sit right at the front because the worship music is so loud. It was good being back even with the interruptions of feeding and settling Shaan.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Hmm- not what you expect...

I reckon that sums up my life at the moment. I had planned to do my list of home jobs this morning while Shaan was having a 2 hour morning sleep. Kalyani is in family daycare today. He slept for a hour and I am now typing this while feeding him. How I like being able to get EVERYTHING crossed of my to do list and having it done that day and having the house tidy and organised by the end of the day. Umm- most days are not like that at the moment. So my sense of whether I am being successful or failing is abit askew.

But saying that I managed to cook up a batch of chilli con carne to have for dinner and to freeze a few portions. I am trying to cook more meals in bulk and then hopefully have to cook less often. So far having a meal to heat up at the end of the day has been really helpful because from 4pm onwards everything gets crazy.

Prelude: Shaan is back to sleep- the washing is all hang out, the beds made and I have a friend coming over for a visit. Life is back to normal! :)

Well we ventured out for the first time this week to MOPS. Love being able to talk with other adults and it was actually really good because they focused on activities you can do with your kids. Something that is relevant to me because I have been finding Kalyani has been getting a bit bored at home and doing MANY things she shouldn't be. So yeh I really do need to have some structure during our day and some new activities to do with her. She has been our challenge at the moment with misbehaving and now this week coming into our bed at a way inappropriate hour and crying to sleep with us. First time ever she has done this. So needing grace to have patience with her and keep my communication positive especially when I am tired and frustrated with her behaviour. I wasn't too positive yesterday... I know there is lots of adjusting for her with a new baby but sure hoping this stage doesn't last long.

Hit made a yummy creamy mushroom and chicken pasta dish on the weekend. Here's Kalyani trying out his cooking and concluding it is very nice. Well done Dad!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Busy or Dizzy?

Shaan at 2 weeks with his big sister Kalyani.

Have been meaning to do an update for the last week or so. But I'm struggling to keep up with everyday stuff at the moment. Hit went back to work last week and we have all been missing him heaps. Mostly finding the lack of sleep challenging especially when most days its amazing if I get more than a 30 min nap during the day. The encouragement is that it gets easier and hopefully I will get more sleep in the weeks to come.