Friday, November 30, 2007

Some videos

Lucy chatting to Ella

Ella and Charlotte on their very first plane trip

Sisters in love

I just took these last night in the bath here at home.
Lucy 5 months and glorious1

Sydney Part II

All packed and ready to go. We cheated this time and Raff caught a taxi with all the luggage to our new accommodation. Ella and I walked, pushing Charlotte in the pram and Lucy strapped on my front in the Ergo. Oh the room! After sharing one little room for the best part of the week, to have separate bedrooms and a kitchen and a bathroom!

We were on the 14th floor with a gorgeous view across Sydney. We settled in and awaited mum and dads arrival. They were a bit delayed as there was a pretty fierce electrical storm, so they were not allowed to alight from the plane.

The next morning we climbed the Harbour Bridge. I was extremely nervous, but to be honest it was nowhere near as scary as I thought it might be and we really enjoyed it. I was more nervous leaving Lucy with mum and dad for the longest time of her life so far! She was fine. I was fine. That evening Raff and I went to meet some of my online friends - “the people from inside my computer” as Ella says. It was a blast, a quick hour zoomed in to 5, and we rocked up home at 11pm.

Bright and early the next morning, mum and dad went and climbed the bridge and Raff went off to a full day conference. The girls and I just hung out until mum and dad finished and we wandered down to Sydney city to check out all the Christmas displays. We visited the Magic Cave and had a look at the Nutcracker window display @ David Jones.

Saturday I had organised for a photographer friend Cupcakes Photography to take photos of my family in Hyde Park. Unfortunately the day dawned wet and cold, so we only managed a few in the park. The rest were taken in our (thankfully well-lit) apartment. After that was done with we went to have a coffee and work out what to do with the afternoon. Mum and dad ended up taking the girls to Glebe and Jubilee Park (apparently where Pearlie the Park Fairy lives) Raff and I and Lucy wandered around trying to work out what we were hungry for. After eating out for every lunch and dinner for the last 9 or so days we were a bit over food really. Finally I decided that a nice platter of antipasto stuff to be picked at would hit the spot. We were just about to give up looking at around 2pm when we found a Greek restaurant. Mmm, haloumi, fetta, anchovies, olives, calamari - the 5 food groups!

For the gazillionth time we were told how content and beautiful Lucy was. Baby wearing is very very cool. In theory Lucy should be our cleverest, most sociable, most securely attached, most physically agile child, as she has spent a huge percentage of her little life in the sling and now the Ergo (big plug to Babes in arms, who had my new Ergo on my doorstep all the way from Tasmania 20 hours after I ordered it online, and a huge thanks to my friend Rhiannon for lending us hers for the trip!)

That evening we sat in and watched the election results. We have a new Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd. All very exciting after 11 years of John Howard. I look forward to sitting back and observing how it all pans out. I am lucky enough to have some great communication with some very intelligent and politically savvy women that can decipher all the info that is out there in this regard.

Sunday we visited Taronga Zoo. What a lovely place! I dread to think how many km’s we walked that day, but it was really worth it (Credit to Ella here – the owner of the draggiest feet in Gawler, really pulled her socks up in Sydney and walked everywhere – begging for the pram, the Ergo, anything intermittently, but overall putting in a sterling effort) We caught a train, then a ferry, then the skyrail in to the zoo. What a magnificent entry! There was plenty to see.

Our accommodation had a rooftop pool, so the wonderful men took the girls up for a final swim and spa. We packed up and were ready to go. The final of Australian Idol was on that night. Never watched the show in my life, but it was pretty exciting to hear fireworks in stereo! We dashed up to the roof top to see if we could see the. Waiting, waiting for the lift, me in my bright orange Crocs, pink PJ bottoms with bumble bees on and a white tshirt declaring me a Breastfeeding Goddess. Imagine the shades of red my face turned when that lift door opened, filled to the brim with people (men!). And bugger it all, we got up on the roof to hear the very last firework and saw none.

Oooh, I must make mention of the bats in Sydney. Every night on sunset thousands and thousands of bats fly across the city. It was a very very freaky sight, and one that I am very glad that I was behind glass to witness. Bats sit up next to huntsmen spiders and mice on my fear-o-meter.

A lovely plane trip and then we were home, planning our next trip or two. It looks like Melbourne in March-ish and Brisbane later in the year. Can’t wait!!

Our Lucy

View from the 14th floor


Elephant girls @ Taronga

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Sydney Photos

Photo taken by Ella

Our gorgeous Lucy in her new stroller

Bridge by night

Picnic with a view

Lovely place for a swim

Our room for 6 days!

Lovely time for Lucy, surrounded by her sisters 24/7

Charlotte at Manly

Chubby sleeping baby

Sydney Part 1 - Kirribilli

As written 6 days into our stay, hunched over a laptop in the dark, while everyone else slept

On the plane Ella was quite nervous and overexcited. Charlotte had been on the plane for about 20 minutes and she then asked ‘When we going on the plane?’ I learnt the hard way that airplanes have very small change tables!

2 hectic train rides later and we find ourselves ‘a short walk’ from our accommodation. I didn’t time it, but I am guessing that it was maybe 20 minutes. All well and good normally, but me with an exhausted grumpy feral 2 year old on my back, pushing a baby gradually working herself up to a dull roar, holding hands with a foot dragging 5 year old plus a husband carrying a large back pack on his front, a larger backpack on his back and tugging a suitcase behind him. Thank goodness for the lovely lady who was happy for all five of us to hop in her car for a ride. In the end she ended up taking our luggage along to our accommodation for us.

Kirribilli is gorgeous. Hilly and picturesque and right next door to John Howard (former Prime Minister!!)! From our street we can see the bridge and the Opera House. It never fails to take my breath away. Ella on the other hand - ‘Mum, stop showing me the bridge. It’s the same every time’

The first afternoon saw us wandering around our immediate vicinity to purchase some drinking water and laundry powder. Then back to our room – all five of us in a room the size of our bedroom a home :) The first night was interesting to say the least, but this being night 6, we are in a bit more of a groove and Lucy is learning to sleep through a bit of noise and the girls are learning to keep themselves to a dull roar.

On our first full day here we negotiated the ferry system and searched for a playground. That was all Charlotte wanted to do with her day. As it turns out, the playground we were recommended was right beside a pretty stretch of beach (Watsons Bay), so an impromptu strip down saw the kid’s mood lift measurably.

On our way home through Circular Quay we happened upon a street performance. He wasn’t the greatest we had ever seen, but it was keeping the kids happy and everyone had a chance to rest and snack before the next leg. As it happens Ella was picked to assist him in the show. He asked the crowd to cheer if they thought her helping was worth $10, of course the crowd roared so she ended up with $10 for handing him a sword made from a balloon that he proceeded to shove down his throat.
Ella was excited to put the $10 back in his hat at the end of the performance. She hasn’t stopped talking about it yet.

Saturday we visited the Sydney Aquarium. This chewed up quite a few hours. It is a great set up and I highly recommend a visit. The rest of the day was spent wandering around Darling Harbour. We are living on holiday time, so are quite often shocked when we see the real time. All of a sudden we saw it was six o’clock, so we meandered back to the ferry which arrived at Circular Quay with enough time for us to just miss our connection out to Kirribilli. So we dragged 3 very hungry tired filthy wet children in to the closest food place, gobbled it down in 20 minutes so we could make the next ferry. We got to see the harbour by night, but were horribly under dressed for the sudden drop in temperature and the sharp increase in the wind factor.

Time for a quieter day – no ferries today. A short walk takes us under the bridge and almost to Luna Park. A huge swimming pool awaits us and kills most of the afternoon. All that is left for us to do is find an ice-cream shop and head home for a much needed nap. All except Ella who has spent the majority of the trip with her head inside her Where’ Wally? book.

Our first night saw me out on our balcony trying to get Lucy to sleep in the Ergo. I was staring at something moving in the tree positive that I was going to see a possum, but nope – it was a bat! So every day and night has been punctuated with various bat stories as told by Charlotte.

Raff had an all day conference on Monday, so we stuck close to home. We visited a playground and had a $58 lunch out! Sandwiches and milkshakes ...

Today we visited Manly beach. What a gorgeous beach, and really packed on a Tuesday, too. Not sure that I would have liked to be there on a hot weekend! The water was a glorious colour, though rather cold. The sand perfect for sandcastle making. Lots of beautiful bodies as far as the eye could see. I managed to get the top of my feet sunburnt even though it was pretty cool on the beach. Lucy had her first sea water dip, but she really wasn’t that fond of it – a bit too cold for her.

Tomorrow sees us moving to a different accommodation. I have enjoyed our stay here, everyone has been friendly, the food has been great and the kids have made themselves at home.

Watson's Bay

Lucy's first time in a swing

We were rather familiar with the expressions on the kids faces over the course of the first few days!

Ella as part of a street performance

Sydney Aquarium

Listening to a conch shell at Aquarium

Friday, November 02, 2007

So sweet

This morning while packing Ella's recess, I tucked a little note in her lunchbox that said 'I love you, Ella'. When she got home from school, she was so excited about it and thanked me, and said that it made her feel good. I had picked her up from Rachel's on the way home from a day shopping, so it was a bit hectic when we wlaked in the door. Everyone was starving, Lucy was desperate for a feed, I had to change a load of washing over, so that Lucy would have a dry nappy to wear to bed, the phone was ringing, I needed to get the stuff out the car etc. So I was saying all this as I was trying to meet everyones needs at the same time. Then I said "and I need a cup of tea" Ella says "I'll make you a cup of tea", so she set about filling the kettle, turning it on, got a mug out, put a teabag in it (and a straw!) and got the milk out the fridge. I went over and poured the hot water in, and went off to do something else, came back to this ... Too sweet! It has rained a bit this week, and the kids are absolutely thrilled by it. This evening was a bit lazy, so the kids went out and played in the rain. They had an absolute ball and came in covered in mud :) I am going to try and upload the video of them ...