Archive | December, 2010

Smells like Christmas

25 Dec

I was going to blog about this

Some of Aaron’s relatives came over for Christmas breakfast and presents this morning.  I was going to blog about eating waffles with stewed strawberries, real maple syrup, and ice cream, plus cheesy eggs and bacon and cinnamon rolls for breakfast, opening a million presents, and not actually cooking the turkey I bought because it was 33 degrees (91.4 F) and we really didn’t want the oven on all day in that heat, but then something happened.  Something so funny that I had to blog about it instead.  Something I had to change someones name for in order to be given permission to actually blog about it.  I’m just going to refer to the relative in this story as “Alex” because without changing the spelling, Alex can be a girls, or a boys name.  Plus, the person in this story doesn’t want to be named due to possible death by embarrassment.

“I think Hannah’s nappy bucket needs changing.”  Alex said to Grandma.  I put Hannah’s dirty nappies in a small, sealed, garbage bag lined bucket, changing it when it gets full (which is pretty much every day, as I said, it’s small).  “It’s really smelly.”

Grandma opened the poo bucket, tied the garbage bag shut, and took it to the bin outside.  She re-lined the bucket and put the lid back on.

“It still smells, we really need to find out what that smell is.”  Alex said, as he/she sniffed around the house.

I went in Hannah’s room.  No smell in there.  I could definitely smell something in the hall area.  “It smells like sewerage or something.”  I said to Grandma.

Grandma went outside, sniffing as she walked.  “There’s nothing out here.”

She went out the back, fearing that maybe, just maybe, the pipes were leaking and  poo was coming up through the ground.  “Nothing out here.”

“Hannah, time to brush your teeth.”

“No!”  No is her favorite answer to everything.

“Too bad, come on.”  I picked her up and headed to the bathroom.

As we neared the door, the smell assaulted our nostrils.  “Grandma, I found the source of the smell!”  Aaron checked the toilet to see if someone had left a nasty surprise by accident.  Nothing there, only the smell.

“Who’s been in the bathroom?”  Grandma asked.  “Never mind, that’s not important, it doesn’t matter, it just matters that we found the smell.”  It was lingering.  Too bad the fan doesn’t work.

“But I smelled something before I used the bathroom.”  Alex said

“Yeah, but you’ve been farting all day.”  I told him/her.

“No I haven’t.”

“Um…yes you have, we heard you.  Plus, Grandma said the smell was really strong in your room, she just felt bad and didn’t want to tell you.”

“Oh.  Oh yeah, I did too.  Oh, sorry, I guess it was me.”

Maybe it was all the chocolate, cheese, cookies, cinnamon rolls, and eggs.  Whatever it was, it was bad.

 

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Hannah looks for lizards

24 Dec

One day, not that long ago, Hannah and I were playing in her playroom when I spotted something out of the corner of my eye.  In a moment of terror, I thought I saw a giant, and I mean GIANT, cockroach.  Phew, on second look, this was no cockroach, but some kind of lizard.  It was terrified by my intrusion into it’s life and ran under the couch.  I grabbed a flashlight to find it, hoping to usher it towards the back door, to lizard freedom.

Hannah was very interested in what Mommy was doing.  She too wanted to look for the lizard.  I gave her the flashlight.  “Where’s the lizard?”  I asked her.  She got on her belly used the flashlight and looked under the couch.

Eventually, after about an hour of lizard hunting, the lizard made a break for it, managing to somehow defy the laws of physics and squeeze itself under the closed backdoor.

For weeks afterward, Hannah would ask for the flashlight (“Light?”) get on the ground and check under the couch.  We haven’t seen it since.

Braving the crazy Christmas shoppers

23 Dec

Why is it that at Christmas time, everyone seems to forget how to drive?  Or maybe it’s just that those people who don’t usually get out and about haul themselves out of bed to go in search of the perfect Christmas present/Christmas food supplies.  You know the ones, they have their licences, but they pretty much suck at driving because they hardly ever do it.  Either way, people are crazy.  Crazy I tell you.

There are lines to get in parking lots.  Then once I get there, I can’t actually go anywhere because the cars going the other way don’t get that the aisles between parking rows are actually 2 way streets.  They seem to think it’s perfectly ok to drive right down the middle of the lane/aisle/road/street/whatever you call it in a parking lot.  I finally get to the end of the aisle, ready to turn left and go to the next aisle when another stupid car with an equally obnoxious driver decides that it would be awesome to turn down the aisle I am about to exit, but instead of turning into the left lane as they should in this country, they decide to cut the corner and turn into my lane.  The cars in front of obnoxious car are still waiting in the aisle as traffic is appalling, so now no one can turn left, or even move because obnoxious car is blocking the whole lane.

All the crazies come out at Christmas time

There are no car parks anywhere, I’ve driven all over the over crowded parking lot full of useless drivers and didn’t find a single one.  I decide to high-tail it out of there as I didn’t want to go to that particular shop in the first place.  I only did to make YaYa happy.  I started turning left, to the final stretch of pavement that led to freedom.  But then one of those I-shouldn’t-actually-have-my-drivers-licence people going the other direction decided that he would move forward at the same time.  No worries right?  A 2-way road in a parking lot can accommodate cars travelling in both directions.  It can, but not when Christmas drivers are out.  This particular annoying man felt that he should take up his lane, and half of mine as well, because, well, let’s face it, driving in his own lane only is just a silly idea.

I couldn’t finish turning, so now I am blocking all traffic going the other way.  Fine, I’ll just wait until annoying man moves forward, (and hopefully, gets back in his own lane as he does so), then I’ll continue turning.  Annoying man rolled down the window on his hotted up blue Holden and glared at me.  GLARED at me.  Like it was my fault he can’t figure out how to stay in his own lane.  Wanker.

Slow down!

20 Dec

Our WRX goes from 0-60 KPH in 5 point something seconds (or something like that…).  This is very handy when going on a rather short, uphill on-ramp to the motorway.  The light went green and I hit the gas.  What’s the point of having a fast car if I don’t use it?

“Ok, you’ve proved your point. SLOW DOWN!”  YaYa told me, rather shakily.

“Um….I’m not even up to speed yet.  I’m only going 90, the speed limit is 110.  It’s a lot harder to merge if you’re going 20k’s under the speed limit.”

YaYa: “Oh.”  YaYa is apparently not used to fast cars.

P.S. There is no excuse for not getting up to speed on on-ramps that are down hill, yet most people try to merge at like 40k under the speed limit.  Seriously people, that is DANGEROUS.  Just the other day, I was cruising down the motorway, going the speed limit when someone tried to merge way, way under speed.  He (or she, couldn’t tell) pulled right out in front of me, despite travelling along at snail pace,  forcing me to quickly change lanes (or slam on my brakes if there was someone in the next lane.  Luckily there wasn’t).  It’s dangerous, Speed up people!

The towel apocalypse

18 Dec

Aaron’s mum  (YaYa as she is now known when Hannah is present.  Hannah has a lot of grandparents, so we have to differentiate somehow) is coming tomorrow to visit for Christmas.  Sounds exciting right?  Well, it is, until Grandma turns into a shaking little ball of stressed out craziness.  Grandma has this overwhelming urge to make everything perfect for anyone and everyone who comes to visit.  She has this need to feed people until they almost explode.  I suppose that comes from being married to a greek for so many years.  Or maybe that’s just Grandma.  I’m not too sure.  She made “salmon” patties and some eggplant and tomato thing just so YaYa can “open the fridge and have a snack whenever she wants.”  It’s like  she is expecting the queen to come and grace our presence while tasting Grandma’s abundance of food. Stress is oozing out of Grandma, in the form of yelling and short-temperedness.  You can feel the stress from about 10 feet away.

Before we moved in with Grandma, we stopped telling her we were coming for a visit and started just showing up instead.  If we let Grandma know we were coming first, she’d spend all day cleaning and then greet us with a roast chicken, roast potatoes, sweet potatoes, bread rolls, pasta salad, regular salad, gravy, boiled vegetables, and of course, pavlova for desert.  We don’t care if the house is dusty, some dishes are in the sink, and mess is on the floor.  We’re family.  We just want to have a nice time together.  Same goes for when YaYa visits.

Grandma keeps bags and bags of “bedclothes” (as she calls them, aka sheets etc.) in the top of the linen press (linen closet) just for when YaYa comes to visit.  Aaron climbed up the ladder to reach them, pulling out bag after bag of, well, I’m not sure really.

“What’s in this bag Grandma?”  Aaron asked.

“Towels.  Good ones, brand new ones.”  Grandma said.

“So why don’t you use them?”

“I already have plenty of towels.”

“Umm…So why don’t we give them away to the needy?”

“Don’t be ridiculous, I’ll need them sometime.”

“What if I have to go in a home?  I’ll need to bring my own linen and towels!”  Oh Grandma….

(Laughing) “Grandma!” Aaron exclaimed.

 

Some of the bags at the top of the linen press

“But I’m poor, and I have enough towels to last me the rest of my life!”  She was starting to get really cranky now.  It’s like she thinks there will be a towel apocalypse and she must keep every towel she comes in contact with or else she will be wet and cold and may not survive.

 

“You’re not poor anymore Grandma, we’re here!”

“You never know what can happen, you never know what things you’ll need.  If you keep something long enough, you’ll find a use for it.”  Sigh. This is a prime reason for Grandma’s hoarding.

We didn’t persuade Grandma into getting rid of anything in the linen press,

Bring it on, we're ready

even though she has an entire shelf full of towels, another full of sheets, and of course, the top section full of plastic bags which are full of new all of the above.  Aaron, Hannah and I have one half of one shelf.  Total.  Bring on the towel apocalypse, we’re ready.

 

What do you want for lunch?

11 Dec

Me: “What do you want for lunch Sweet Pea?”

Hannah: “Bubba.”

Me: “Ok, you stay here with Daddy and I’ll go make you a bubba for lunch.”

Did she eat it?  Nope.  Not a bite.  Ok, that’s not true, she took a bite of the carrot, pretended to gag and then wanted to get down.  Humph.

I’ll have what she’s having

9 Dec

I don’t usually post 2 days in a row (because a] I can’t be bothered, and b] I figure if I can’t be bothered writing 2 days in a row, surely you guys can’t be bothered reading 2 days in a row), but I just had to document this.  This little lunch-time feat knocked my mis-matched socks off.  Ok, not really, but only because it’s currently too hot to wear socks!

Today, I made a nice little plate of cheese, grapes, strawberry (yeah, only one, there was only one good one), and an apple cinnamon muffin (with added wheat germ for protein) for Hannah’s lunch.  Did she want to eat it?  Not a chance.  It’s so hard to get her to eat anything.  She doesn’t like egg (even if it’s just part of french toast, along with cinnamon and vanilla.  Delicious.), meat, fish, sandwiches, pretty much anything apart from fruit and some vegetables really.  Oh, and bars of course, she LOVES those darn Heinz Little Kids breakfast bars.

She didn’t want to eat her lunch at all.  Instead, she tore it into tiny little bits and scattered it around the table.  She did not, however, throw it on the floor.  She knows she gets time out for throwing food on the floor.  When the entire meal resembled the dry ingredients of a cake mix, she proclaimed “DONE!” and wanted to get down.

Fine then, down she went.  I don’t yell at her to eat more food, or try to force her, or scold her, or tell her she’s naughty. I don’t think that is very helpful, and would eventually result in an unhealthy relationship with food.  Plus, she can learn that there are consequences of not eating.  I.E. she will be hungry.

So I put her down, and then she wanted to sit in the normal chair (rather than her high chair) next to me (because I was still eating my lunch).  She grabbed a pen and started drawing a lovely little picture which kind of resembled a fur ball or a dust bunny.  She looked at my lunch.  She looked at me.  Now back at my lunch.  Now back at me….

“Do you want some of Mommy’s lunch?”

“Mmmmm.” That means yes in Hannah speak.  I’m sorry to report, she got that from me.  I didn’t even realise I say mmm for yes.  Until she started doing it of course.  Oh well, I’ll work on that.

I gave her a bite.  She spit it out.  But then she wanted another bite.  Kids are so weird.

She stuck her chubby little baby arms out toward me and wiggled her little fingers. “Mom” (fine, Mum, she says Mum, much to my dismay) she said, willing me to pick her up.

I picked her up and put her in my lap, where she sat and started eating my lunch with her hands, grabbing it and shoveling it into her mouth.  She can use a spoon or spork, it’s just so much better to use hands.

She didn’t like her arrangement of grapes, cheese, strawberry, and muffin.  So you know what she ate instead?  Tandoori chicken curry with rice.  I don’t think I’ll ever possibly be able to guess which foods she will like, and which she will not.

Tandoori Chicken Curry (photo courtesy of Woolworths)

The day I accidentally ate lamb

8 Dec

Let me just start by saying that I don’t eat lamb.  I don’t eat beef.  I don’t eat a lot of different meats.  Not because I think it’s wrong, just because I think they taste disgusting, and after all this time of not eating them, the very thought gives me the heeby jeebies.  Maybe it’s because red meat has (or seems to in my mind) a lot more blood in it, and blood makes me very squeamish (which is why I gave up wanting to be a veterinarian).  One time, The Jess was in our kitchen (we used to live together.  Twice), and decided it would be an awesome idea to cut an english muffin open while it was frozen.  Not on a cutting board, mind you, but in her hand.  I’m sure you can see where I’m going with this.  Blood was pouring out of her hand, dripping everywhere.  My arms started flapping (that happens when I’m excited, grossed out, or freaking out) like I was trying to fly off, out of there as fast as possible. “What do we do, what do we do?!”  I screamed.  “Argh!  I can see the meat!!!!!”  So yeah, that is the relationship between me and blood.

Meat and I go way back too.  Once when I was, I don’t know, maybe 3 or 4, my parents wanted me to eat some beef.  I was such a fussy eater.  They said I couldn’t leave my seat until I ate it.  Hours passed, I wasn’t budging.  Dad must have been at work.  Mom had to go and take care of the horses, so there I sat.  Until I got an idea.  I knew she’d check the toilet, the garbages, all the usual little hidey holes, so I wrapped my disgusting beef up in a napkin and hid it under the china cabinet.  And, I was allowed to leave my chair.  But what about the smell, you ask.  Yeah, it smelled pretty bad, but it was decided  (ahem, after I suggested it) that an animal must have crawled under the mobile home and died again.  That had happened before, so it wasn’t too far-fetched.

 

“I’m so hungry!”  I said to Aaron.  We’d been waiting for dinner at the 40th birthday party we were attending (what, we have a 40 year old friend?  We must be getting old) for quite a while.  Some of the important guests were rather late and the food couldn’t be started without them.  My tummy was grumbling at me, willing me to go and get some of the delicious smelling indian butter chicken.

“Dinner is served.”  That announcement pleased my stomach.  I got in line for the serve yourself feast.

This is butter chicken

“Butter Chicken.”  The little folded sign in front of the bain marie read.  I took a ladle full, grabbed some accompaniments and went back to my chair.

“Mmmm, this looks delicious!”  I told Aaron, right before I put a big bite in my mouth.  I started chewing.  This doesn’t taste like butter chicken….  This is a bit spicy.  Butter chicken isn’t spicy. I cut open a piece of meat.  Hard to tell, but this could be chicken.  Part of the thigh or something.

“Which one of those is butter chicken?”  I asked Aaron.  He had opted to try both the chicken and the lamb.

“This one,” he said, pointing his fork to the one that didn’t resemble what was on my plate at all.

Oh…my…gosh… I just at LAMB! “Boo, this is LAMB!”

Yep, the signs were the wrong way around.  After I freaked out, the signs were corrected.  I ran to the bathroom to scrub every tiny molecule of disgusting lamb from my mouth.  No, I didn’t, that was a lie.  Funny thing is, it wasn’t even the meat that tipped me off, it was the spice.  The lamb sign said spicy, the chicken one did not.

Rotund man in fake beard and bright red suit: SCARY!

2 Dec

Last years Santa photo

I’m not quite sure what the obsession with Santa photos is.  Heck, I’m a mom myself, and I don’t even know.  I do know that I definitely, 100%, want to get Hannah’s photo taken with Santa.  She got one last year (although that one didn’t go so well…), I’ll want her to get one next year, and probably even the year after that.  I’m not quite sure at what age a parent no longer feels this burning desire to make their child sit on a strange, fake bearded, bright red suit wearing, rotund man’s lap, but I guess sooner or later I will get there.  Or Hannah will protest so strongly and eloquently that I will have no choice.

I bought Hannah a nice new greenish sundress dress (so it would compliment Santa’s suit of course), put her fine bubba hair in pigtails, and washed all the gunk off her face.  I don’t know how she manages to have so many collections of gunk of her face, but she does.  I don’t call her cheeky monkey for nothing.

As we approached the queue (ahem, line for those of you who are not Australians), Hannah clung to me a little tighter.  She knew something was up, something not the norm.  She watched other kids sit on Santa’s lap, jolly smiles on their faces, squeals of delight emerging from their lips.  She clung tighter.  She watched as Santa gave them antler headbands to wear, a gift of thanks for getting their photos taken on the strange man’s lap.  Her legs wrapped around me.  I probably could have let go of her and she wouldn’t have fallen.

Our turn came and we entered Santa’s little roped off area.  We approached Santa.  Santa looked at Hannah, and gave her a

Santa photo with Me and The Jess

jolly smile, his fake beard and mustache hiding most of his mouth.  Hannah doesn’t cry a whole lot, but at that moment, she screamed bloody murder.  Her whole body was shaking.  My poor little bubba was TERRIFED of Santa claus.  She didn’t even want to look at him.

“Why don’t you sit on his lap too, and she can sit on your lap.”  The assistant suggested.  Um…ok.

“This is awkard.”  Yeah, I actually said that to the fake, strange Santa Claus man.  He gave no reply.  I’m pretty sure he had no come back for that one.

We were still far too close to Santa for Hannah’s comfort and she wouldn’t settle down in the slightest.   Not even with Auntie Jess making silly faces at her.  They snapped one photo and that was it.  I wasn’t going to traumatise my poor little monkey any further.

There was no way I was going to spend money on that horrid photo-  me, sitting awkwardly on Santa’s lap, Hannah trying desperately to escape the whole situation.  It was not a pretty sight.

Santa photo with me and Aaron

We went upstairs to Myer to have a go with their Santa.  Maybe she would be more comfortable in a quieter setting, something that isn’t right in the middle of a large shopping centre.  She still didn’t like Santa.  This one though, didn’t make her immediately burst into tears on sight.  She wouldn’t sit in his lap.  I guess I can’t really blame her.  I can’t say I enjoy sitting in random peoples laps either.  And lets face it, facial hair is scary regardless.

We did manage to get a photo of The Jess, Hannah and me on Santa’s chair, with Santa cheekily peeking out from behind the chair, not at all in sight of the terrified Hannah.  I thought it would be a bit strange just getting that photo, and not one with Aaron in it, so Aaron, Hannah and I came back the next day.  She was still scared of Santa, but we managed to get a photo.  She even gave Santa a high five at the end.  High five: Ok.  Sitting on lap: totally not ok.  Fair enough. Maybe next year she will sit on the fake bearded, red sporting, fat strangers lap.  I can only hope.

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