Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Mayana’s Week…

Some people (read: my mother) have been at me for another Mayana photo update. So here goes!

 IMGP3176  Mayana meets a tiny baby frog. Still in the stage between tadpole and froggy. She was a little unsure.

IMGP3181Mayana with Nana & Topsy. Content.


Mayana loves hanging out and ‘helping’ at the shed. She grabs Pop’s builder’s pencil, and runs around like a mad chook, measuring and marking like crazy. She takes it very seriously, and it keeps her occupied for aaaaages.


IMGP3201 Mayana has discovered that she looks hilarious with an orange bag on her head. She puts it on, runs over to the hallway mirror and laughs herself silly at her own reflection. It’s so cute!

IMGP3370 Mayana has adopted Pop’s chair. Not sure he’s too happy about it but we think it’s adorable.

IMGP3216  Enjoying the outdoor church service at Boondooma homestead on the weekend. We got lots of comments about what a good girl she was.

IMGP3312 Mayana’s first taste of damper! She was super impressed, and totally scoffed it down.

IMGP3330  I made Mayana playdough over the weekend. She quite enjoyed squishing it between her fingers, and had a couple of tastes.


IMGP3164 Totally stealing Pop’s chair. He was relegated to the footstool. Sorry Pop.

IMGP3381Mayana has a great love of corn, and she is mastering the art of eating it from the cob.


IMGP3393“Okay Mama, enough photos now!”

more rings than keys…

This week’s theme over at Hello Owl’s my place and yours is: What’s on your keyring?

Well this is mine:

IMGP3421As you can see, I have more rings than keys! I have a key for my garage door, a key for my parent’s front door, and six (!!!) keyrings. Even I don’t know how it ended up to be that many! The Minnie Mouse was a present from my friend Penny from Disney Land in Las Vagas. The star is from my heart sister a few years ago. Then of course my Aldi trolley token. My USQ keyring. A bottle opener that used to be on the car keyring- I’m actually not sure why it’s on mine now. And my newest acquisition, my awesome shoe keyring. Pete bought it for me the day before my birthday. ‘Cos I liked it and he’s good like that! It’s cute huh?

Now, show me your keyring!!

Monday, 26 April 2010

24 by 24

Well now that I’ve been 23 for a month, I thought I might put together one of these lists that seem to quite the done thing on so many blogs these days.

24 things that I’d like to have done over the next 12 (nearly 11) months of my life… by my 24th birthday. That’s if I can come up with that many. Here goes… (in no particular order, just in order they pop into my head)

  1. Finish Uni.
  2. Graduate with/maintain my GPA of higher than 6.
  3. Make the most of my prac experiences.
  4. Get myself an awesome job.
  5. Organise something really special for our 5th wedding anniversary.
  6. Keep making gorgeous things to sell at my madeit shop. See how far I can grow my ‘business’.
  7. Learn how to knit.
  8. Make a crochet throw rug.
  9. Make a crochet ‘granny square’ blanket.
  10. Do swimming lessons with Mayana.
  11. Get fitter… lose some weight.
  12. Make more time to spend with my husband… to pray and read the Bible together more, and just have general ‘us’ time.
  13. Take time out every day to just play with my daughter.
  14. Keep on top of Mayana’s 365 Journal (remind me to blog about that some time!).
  15. Sew Mayana’s flower-girl dress for my sister’s wedding (yes Bethanie, I’ve decided to make it!).
  16. Read at least 5 books of the Bible.
  17. Learn more about photography and editing photos.
  18. Learn more about Blooms Taxonomy and how to apply it to my teaching.
  19. Try some new and exciting recipes.
  20. Have monthly date nights with my husband – even if it’s just a picnic on the lounge-room floor.
  21. Buy an akubra hat. Because secretly I want to look like/be a McLeod’s Daughter.
  22. Run a giveaway on my blog.
  23. Properly be a part of the music team at church.
  24. Write another song.

There. I did it. Actually wasn’t as hard as I thought it was. Soon you’ll find this list over in my sidebar somewhere, where I’ll cross off items as I complete them. Wish me luck! And why not have a go at creating your own list?

Thursday, 22 April 2010

Thought you might like…

I’ve had a lot of questions about the pattern I used for Mayana’s modern cloth nappies.

I’m pleased to say that I have special permission from the pattern designer herself, the lovely Kim, to share its link.

So if you pop on over to THIS PAGE you will find the link to the best free modern-cloth-nappy pattern on the interwebs!

Just so you know, I order my cloth-nappy-making materials either from Tiny Toosh or Green Beans Australia (both online stores). You should know in advance that you won’t be able to buy these materials at Spotlight or Lincraft or any other run-of-the-mill haberdashery store.

So why not give it a go, and save yourself HEAPS of money!

It’s a fantastic pattern, I can’t plug it enough. It’s sooooooo easy to follow, and Kim has even included a photographic step-by-step tutorial.

Have fun!

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

A Mayana Fix

Because I know I’ve been slack with photos of our Berry since we’ve been away…

IMGP2909 IMGP2890 IMGP2894Mayana discovered the joys of running under a sprinkler!

IMGP2948 Mayana and her buddy Topsy! They’re best buddies and can’t get enough of each other. Mayana no longer calls all dogs Jack. They are now, “Doggie”, but she can also say Topsy and Sam, which are two of Nana and Pop’s dogs. She’s still not sure about the Jeda, their third dog. Topsy is by far her favourite though.

IMGP2953 BUBBLES! Definitely one of Mayana’s top five favourite things ever. Quite often we hear her sleepily mumbling, ‘Bubbles’, as she wakes up, and it’s the first thing she asks for when we get her up.

IMGP3051 Mayana got to meet her new cousin (my cousin’s daughter) Keira Isabel last week. Can you believe she’s only six weeks old!? She weighs in at less than two kg’s lighter than our 15 months old Mayana-Berry!

IMGP3064 Mayana and Nana make the daily treck down to the shed to see what Pop’s been up to.

IMGP3087 She’s really enjoying her time with Nanna.

IMGP3097 Our clever little bean is no longer merely a destroyer of towers… no, she can now build them too!! Her record so far is six blocks high… and she gives herself a big clap after each successful stack.

IMGP3147 Sometimes the spaghetti just tastes too good to waste time using a spoon!

IMGP3158 For some reason Mayana thinks Nana and Pop’s shower is the place to be. Any chance she gets she sneaks in and just sits there.

IMGP3160 She is getting cheekier by the day. This photo really captures her personality. She had just completely emptied her cupboard of cloths, and climbed up the three lower shelves to sit up inside it. I must say I was quite shocked to find her there! She was incredibly proud of herself.

You might notice that she is getting bigger! We are definitely noticing a big difference in her height, and yesterday we weighed her (with clothes, wet nappy and shoes on) and she was just on 8kgs. I’d guess the clothes, nappy & shoes would be worth 100-200g, but even so, whatever Nana’s been feeding her seems to be working!

She’s been a very good girl while Mama & Papa are at school, and not creating too much mischief for her Great-Nana. She especially enjoyed having Keira here for the week and being able to visit “bubba” each day. She’s also spent some time at Great Aunt Nelly’s video shop, ‘helping out’.

We had a mini-drama on our first weekend here. She started running this crazy temp, and cried and cried, wouldn’t eat, just was not herself at all. It was Saturday night, and when she wouldn’t even calm down in the bath I knew there was something wrong. I followed my gut and took her up to the hospital. She turned out to have quite a bad urinary tract infection. Poor little bunny. After a 10-day course of antibiotics, she’s doing much better. We have to make an appointment for an ultrasound next week just to check everything out. Of course out here, that means a 1.5 hour drive to the nearest town-with-an-ultrasound-machine. So wish us luck with that!

Hope you enjoyed your well-overdue Mayana fix!!

Thursday, 15 April 2010

The Project

Just for a complete segue from craft, babies and teaching; I thought I’d share with you my Pop’s very exciting newest project.

He’s always doing something… be it building kitchens, creating amazing gardens, selling cars, inventing hydroponic gardening systems, rescuing battery-hens and raising them to be champion free-range layers… he’s always got some little scheme up his sleeve.

At the moment it’s a project on a bigger scale than usual. My grandparents have purchased the town’s old cordial factory. For the past decade or so (probably more!) it has been sitting out there, empty and dilapidated. Until, for whatever reason, it caught my Pop’s eye and imagination. So at the moment, he is in the process of a long-term project (fluctuating between 2-4 years in duration, depending on Pop’s mood) which will eventually see the factory become a liveable dwelling. A very unique, one-of-a-kind house!

So far, he has replaced the exterior corrugated iron with colourbond, and the roof is in the process of being repainted. One end of the shed, which is destined to be the loungeroom, has new interior colourbond walls.

It has such potential, and I’m looking forward to seeing what comes from it all. The plans change daily (it wouldn’t be Pop otherwise) but the work is well underway, and I’m looking forward to seeing what comes of it all!

So here are some recent progress pics. I don’t have any ‘before’ pics unfortunately, but I’m sure my Nanna has taken some, so I’ll see what I can do.

Here’s the ‘so far’ pics….

IMGP3000The front… painting still in progress

IMGP2967 The back of the shed. LOTS of tanks on this property! These ones will be removed to make way for a big back deck. There is a MASSIVE tank under the slab of the smaller shed that’s on the property which will more than suffice for residential use.

IMGP2977This is the only room that has been started. It will be the loungeroom. On the weekend, Pete, some of my cousins and a neighbour will help Pop install the ceiling.

IMGP2981This is the main part of the interior. It will become kitchen, dining and living space. It’s huge. Really. They’re going for the wide-open-spaces feel.

IMGP2989This will all be stripped and will become two bedrooms and a bathroom. I personally think that they could use some of the main space and make another bedroom, (especially considering the numbers that need rooms when family visit!) but that’s just me.

IMGP2990   This is a really awesome cabinet that my Nana picked up for $50 at a garage sale. I love it and wish it was mine!


This is a little room that was built on to the main building. It was supposed to be Nana’s sewing room but apparently Pop’s going to tear it down now. It does look very tacked on, I must admit.

IMGP3007  The gorgeous view! One of the best things about it.

IMGP3065From the front today. The roof has had its first coat, and Pop’s added the red trim. I thought it looked great before, but the red just really sets it off I think. By the way, the white railings is something the council put in a few years ago because some drunken fool came out of their car and rolled their ankle in the ditch when they couldn’t find the footpath. Makes a nice little entryway, no?

IMGP3061  The front window… And yes, Pop has already started his garden out the front there.

IMGP3062The front door. There is actually a door of course and I should have closed it for this shot but forgot, sorry! The glass louvers are originals which Pop kept from when he replaced the front window. He has a budget of $100,000 for this project – and that’s including what he spent buying the shed. For this reason he’s trying to ‘upcycle’ as much of the old material as possible. I think that will add to the charm of the place.

So there you go… Hopefully I’ll be able to add a few more updates in the weeks that we are here! To be honest though, we are all really hoping that Pop does as he promised and takes it easy and lets it be a long-term project. Slow and steady, and all that.

Hope your day has been wonderful!

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

I’m soooo tired!

Hi all!

Thought I’d check in.

That’s how I’m feeling right now. So, so tired.

Prac is going well. Very well really. I already know all the kid’s names, and I’ve already done a good amount of teaching. And you know, I’m doing okay!

The class I have can be a bit challenging – but then every class has its challenges. There are a handful of kids that you have to be on top of at least 90% of the time, otherwise they become very disruptive, and that is really quite draining. But we’re getting there, and it will be good for me to hone my behaviour management skills. Anyone got any good ideas???

From next week I will probably start taking 100% teaching responsibility, and the thought is partly terrifying but mostly exhilarating and exciting. I’m actually looking forward to the process of planning and implementing what I will teach over the next 3.5 weeks.

Anyway people, I’m off to bed… at 8pm, like a grandma. Except that grandma is still in there playing her computer and much more wide awake than I.

‘Night all!

Sunday, 11 April 2010

And so it begins…

The next four-and-a-half weeks are going to be full-on I’m thinking. Prac starts tomorrow. I can’t believe how quickly it’s come up!

I have a year 3/4 class. It was initially supposed to be year 7, but the teacher has gone on some kind of leave so I got switched. It should be interesting, I’ve never taught below year four so it will likely be a challenge, but one I’m definitely going to give my best shot!

I haven’t done prac for about a year and a half, so I’m feeling a bit rusty and a bit nervous, but hoping that it will all kick in and come back to me pretty naturally. I know I’m good at teaching, I just have to find my mojo again.

We are all settled in at my Nana and Pop’s. Mayana is already being spoiled rotten, and I can tell she’s going to have a fun month here!

So if I’m sporadic over the next few weeks, please forgive me! I’ll do my best…

another new ‘do

I had my hair done yesterday. I can’t actually remember for sure the last time that I went, but I think it was before Perth.

It’s the first time in about six years that I haven’t gone to my wonderful Mel at Salon Unique. I felt a bit like a traitor, but I just really couldn’t get back to the Coast this time.

So instead, I went to a lovely lady named Shannon who has a little salon in the town where my grandparents live… where we start prac tomorrow (eeeek!! More on that later).

I went a little darker than I usually would, but with these really awesome briiiiiiight red (like the same colour as my glasses) foils in through the bottom. I love them! I also got a fringe cut back in, because I was looking through some old photos of when I used to have one and decided I like it and wanted it back.

I am quite happy with it all really – and she was the same price as my wonderful Mel, so it’s all good.

Anyway… here’s the new me:



You likey??

Easterfest: Sunday

The last day…. so very sad!

We started off this day a little differently than usual… by going out for breakfast. Fourteen of us headed out to the Engine Room Cafe (owned by friends from our church) for breakfast and to celebrate my birthday. It’s our new favourite cafe, and their food and coffee, and everything about them is beyond lovely. If you came to visit us, that’s where we’d take you.

We very much enjoyed the time of fellowship and talking and laughing and memory-making, and it was Aunty Joce & Uncle Pete’s 29th wedding anniversary also, so a bit of a double celebration. Unfortunately my very clever husband brought our camera with him, but forgot that he had left its batteries in the charger at home, so I have no photos of this happy event.

Then back off to the park, for our last day of Easterfest.

Mum and Aunty Joce settled into the Epicentre tent, where they were having a Jazz and Blues showcase that lasted nearly all day. And that’s where they stayed all day. The rest of us flitted between there and the various other stages, trying to soak in as much music and discover as many new favourites as possible.

I think one of my highlights of the day music-wise was Sydney-based band Garage Hymnal. We only went to see them because my sister and I had seen their album in the Superstore (The Easterfest music store), and its cover was intriguing. Yes, we often do judge a book by its cover but luckily it usually works out for us. Garage Hymnal were fantastic and we did end up buying their CD. Amazing passion, beautiful lyrics and very impressive arrangements. You should check them out.

We also stopped by the Bella tent (a special space just for girls – and don’t worry, the boys had one too!) to attend a forum with Melinda Tankard Reist. She is passionate about stopping the sexual exploitation of women and girls, and had a lot of great things to share. Our generation of girls definitely need people like her out there, and that’s for sure.

We also did our official shopping trip at the Superstore. I bought albums by Sanctus Real and Planet of the Stereos, and my hubby bought a Grace Note album. The rest of the family also bought various other albums, all of which mysteriously ended up on each other’s i-pods and i-rivers the next day.

Late afternoon saw us trekking back to mainstage. No big concert tonight, as Sunday night at Mainstage is traditionally home to the Combined Church Service. The unity shown by churches in Toowoomba has always inspired me, and the success of Easterfest is indeed a testament to it.

As always, the church service, which is free and open to all the public, was packed out. Luckily some committed members of our group has taken up all our folding chairs and secured us a spot quite early on.

Sunday night was by far the coolest night of the festival, and we all rugged up and settled in ready for the service to begin.

How cute is Mayana’s warm outfit??! Here she is with Tante Lexi, in her new fluffy coat from Kami, and winter hat made by me, of course!IMGP2659

Mayana was lucky to have both sets of grandparents at Easterfest this year, as Pete’s parents and their best friend joined us at the festival for the first time. IMGP2632 IMGP2647As I said, the church service was packed -  it always is. And as always they did a fantastic job. A team of musos from various churches around the city made up the band, including –for the first time- a rather large combined choir. My mum’s cousin Brendon Walmsley was up their doing guitar and backing vocals also. A message was shared by a local teacher, and the service concluded with a stirring rendition of ‘How Great Thou Art’ – which has become a traditional ending to the service over the last five years or so. IMGP2670 IMGP2662

There was no way we were going home early on the last night of Easterfest – we were there for the long haul, regardless of weather Mayana slept or not! She was still wide awake after the service. Pete went to put our chairs back in the car, and Mum, Aunty Joce, Mayana and I went and bought ourselves Devine Donuts (if you ever come across these you HAVE to have one – they really do live up to their name) and settled in to the Chai Circle stage to listen to some easy-listening acoustic bands.

Then we headed back to the Epicentre to catch Simeon – another band I make sure to check out every year.

By this time we were all becoming a little overtired and somewhat silly. This is a normal course of events for Sunday night at Easterfest. But we were still determined to stay put until the final show.

IMGP2732 IMGP2688 IMGP2717 IMGP2729 Somewhere around here Mayana *FINALLY* crashed. And then she was out of it for good and stayed asleep until nearly 8am the next morning!

IMGP2718Some of us popped over to watch the first few songs of the Planet of the Stereos, then raced back for the traditional Last Hurrah of Easterfest: The Fancy Pants Ball, with our favourite jazz band, Scat. Each year they have a different theme for their suits – they’ve done white suits (painted with house-paint by the way), newspaper suits, wrapping paper suits and police-tape suits. This year, they each were painted a different colour. And not just the suits this time – they were way more committed and even they were painted!


As always, it was a fantastic show, and the best way to send out Easterfest 2010 with a bang!

So there you have it people: the weekend that is the highlight of my year. I can’t believe it’s over again for a whole year! I guess that’s the good thing though… there’s always another one to look forward to. And next year, we most likely will not be living in Toowoomba, and will be back to looking for accommodation again. A whole new adventure awaits.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my little reviews and thanks for indulging me in a little trip down last weekend’s memory lane.


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