Saturday, January 28, 2012

Epic Post Needed...

I am SO far behind on this blog thing it really is not funny! Somehow, between Facebook, G+ , and mostly Flickr, life does get documented, but not so much in words these days.

Where to begin...

October 24th ~ our household became a 2-teen house. Taz turned 13 (and got a haircut a couple of days after this shot!)

228/365 ~ Taz Turns Teen!

His world still pretty much centres around drumming ~ it is his passion and his dream! And he is PRETTY good!

November 27th ~ Another Birthday...


Lilo is now doing pretty well in school. Her reading is improving weekly, in accuracy and fluency. She is still quite well behind her 'peers' for literacy I'd say, but I know she will close the gap over time and I am not worried. She is a happy, well balanced, intelligent, creative child; who would happily spend all her days drawing and colouring and living in a make believe world! Who knows ~ maybe she will write a book someday! Strange as it may seem, I think she is the one of my children MOST likely to do so. She tells me she gets herself to sleep at night by making up stories in her head!

She's been working on 'Explode the Code' online for a few months now and I do think that's help her confidence tremendously, but because it was free (with lots of trial codes we are now up to almost 6 months free) I signed all the youngest 5 up for reading eggs/express. Lilo does 2 days of ETC and 2 days of Reading eggs and together they are working beautifully ;D BUT she often chooses to do extra on the RE site ~ because there is simply more to do & it is loads more fun!!

December 21st   ~ birthday number 3 ~ Baby turned 1!

267/365 ~ Happy Birthday!
We did smash cake and bubbly water play for his 'party' fun. He was hesitant about both, but soon got into the cake! The bubbles never quite worked.

Since his birthday he has begun to babble more meaningfully and make clearer non-verbal communication too. He also took off on his pins this last week and has practised it to mastery. He doesn't crawl hardly at all now, and is not even very tottery. That seems to be the theme with my children ~ wait until they can and then do it really well!

Pleased with me!
Oh ~ and he has also mastered ascending and descending the stairs! We keep the stair-gate on though ~ just so we can contain him safely on one floor!

And he started to refuse being 'fed' so now he makes a hideous mess, but feeds himself...


Other STUFF...

On the day before Christmas Eve, my eldest little girl became a 'woman'. We've thought it was around the corner for quite a while, but it doesn't seem fair to start at only 10 (11 in Feb). That said, she is almost as tall as me ~ there's only a fraction in it,  and her feet are already bigger than mine! She is turning into one beautiful young lady ~ one half woman the other half girl ~ she is very much that just now :D


Stitch got a 'big boy' haircut ~ he was looking a mess in his mop I'm afraid!



We've done some interesting Art so far this year, looking at Op art, in the style of Bridget Riley

My creation
(L-R, T-B: Mine, Bugs, Minnie, Lilo, DD, Bugs being coloured.)

And surrealism in the style of Rene Magritte.

My creation
(L-R, T-B: Mine (XXX), Lilo (8), TP (10), Minnie (11), Taz (13) & Bugs - not quite finished (14) )

We had some fun with geomag...

DD's Geomag #5
This was almost entirely DD's (6) own creation ~ I just helped him stabilise it a little ~ he did EVERYTHING else alone. It took him about 2 hours!

....and Stitch did his very first 'real' drawing ~ it's just not something he really has tried up til' now.
Shame it wasn't on paper and could have been kept ;(

231/365 ~ First Pictures

Stitch has been keen to learn to read and as such has also moved on a LOT from this (taken in November)

233/365 & 45/52 ~ Playing with Words

...and is now reading really well ~ map 5 on Reading Eggs for those 'in the know' and reading almost everything he attempts :D No pushing from me at all ~ it's all been his own doing. 2 maps in 2 weeks ~ and he's doing the worksheets too!

We had a snow day...

262/365 ~ White Winter Wonderland

But it did only last a day and a bit, so we made the most of it and just had fun that day!

We might be getting some more this week..!

I've done two paid photo-shoots now, plus a semi-informal one for the toddlers Christmas party at church.  I am selling the pictures to the mums like the schools do, with proper envelopes and all. I have done some commission work for my B-I-L and have some more lined up for a friend of mine who wants some images to help promote the re-branding of their business. I have also been asked to shoot for the wedding of someone at church. I am praying about that one though ~ it's not something I ever envisaged doing, Weddings are a LOT of hard work, but they do pay well ;) So things are beginning to take off ~ which is nice :D

And that's us really. I can't promise when the next update will be, but I'll TRY not to leave it so long.

Let me just leave you with a little more baby cuteness, mostly from just last night (click to see them bigger)...

Monday, January 09, 2012

Ignoring the Fact...

...that I haven't blogged since October! Maybe another catch-up post is in the pipe-line, but meanwhile, here's tonight's thoughts, which nearly went on G+ /Facebook, but got a bit long for that!

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

That's it then...Christmas is over for another year. The beautiful tree is stripped bare & gone, soon to become fire wood - when it will leave us with it's lovely pine-wood scent in the air, just to remember it by :( The decorations are down and the toys have found homes. I fear there may be tears in the morning ~ we all really LOVED having a real tree this year - it was such a treat :D.

Before the Great Unwrap

269/365 ~ 35mm Bell

Not only that, but the holidays are over too, and it's back to 'school' tomorrow. Am I ready? Well, the marking is done (all except one boy's History, which I will just have to do tomorrow evening now), but all the same probably not! I still feel like I left my tail somewhere back in mid-December!

In some ways I look forward to getting back into routine, but another part of me loves it when the children play games together, and make sketches together, and do silly stuff that there just isn't usually too much time for.

The big boys have been getting on better than they have in I don't know how long ~ even choosing to spend time 'playing' together with Knex today - involving seeing how spectacular a mess they could make of each other's creations when they smash-crashed them into each other in mid-air - and making mini-clips of it all!

The girls have spent endless hours since Christmas day playing extremely detailed (and very messy) games with their ever-growing collection of Sylvanian families. The school was this year's addition to the mix.

We have my Nan staying with us while she waits for sheltered housing, and DD has delighted in enlisting her to play endless games with him: from Uno, to Top-Trumps, to Othello ~ she's most often willing and more often free than I am :D

Lunchtimes have been extended by the addtion of this in the kitchen,

Little Chef's Place to be

...meaning that now we have waiters and chefs serving us real, and pretend, lunches and the whole affair is double in length-of-time, but so much more fun!

I am grateful to have had this month ~ it's been a LOT of fun. But I know that sooner or later the fun will run out of it all and then the melt down will happen, so back to learning it is. Although, I say that, also knowing full-well that this month there has been plenty of learning taking place amongst the fun ~ just learning of a different kind :D

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I'll do my best to blog again in a few days ~ and fill in the gaping hole between October and now!

But ~ to everyone listening ~ Happy New Year! May 2012 be your year of happiness & fulfilment of dreams ~ home grown and God given!