Sunday, August 30, 2009

Fun day

We had a variety of activities lined up for the afternoon…a rubbish dump photo walk firstly – we took Josh with us, and the boys had a marvelous time picking through the rubbish. Aaron, the magpie, would have brought it all home if we had let him. As it was, he came home with a locked padlock (no key), a golf ball and the head of a golf club. Directly after the dump we went to the Scouts Fun Day in town. The boys had a whale of a time on the jumping castle, running about with the other children and perusing the side shows. Nick and I left the boys there and went to Pam and Geoff’s to chill, and I fetched the boys an hour later so we could have Tea together. Why it’s called tea when it’s actually supper still eludes me – we didn’t even have a cup of tea, but the supper was delicious. Aaron helped Maddy make a pear crumble while Caleb stayed far away from the possibility of getting the butter and flour mixture on his hands – it’s just not his thing! And then finally, church.

Up close...

Ed has kindly lent me his 105mm macro lens for a week…I have been keen to test-drive a macro. While Nick was out at Tammy during the afternoon and the boys were riding bikes outside, I played. Behold our courtyard, as seen reflected in Joshua’s eye…

Friday, August 28, 2009

On the farm and St Helena Morris

Last day of school holidays today…I was in the Market once again to sell jewellery during the morning. In the afternoon we accompanied Nick on a pastoral visit to Bluehill – quite a far drive, and then an extensive hike up the grassy driveway, dodging cowpats and other leavings on the way. Had a lovely visit with Harold and Enid who have not been able to attend service much since Enid was laid low by a heifer during calving. We took a slow drive home, stopping at Thompson’s Wood for a quick walk through said wood. The boys opted to stay in the car as they were already tired from running around at the farm. Nick and I came across this curious structure tucked away in the greenery – may possibly have been used as a look-out point way back when? Picked a few wild strawberries on the way home too...
In the evening we attended a League of Friends “Evening of Music and Dance” which featured authentic traditional British Morris dancing – I have never seen or heard of this form of dance but it was most enjoyable. Dancers wear bells and ribbons, and wave handkerchiefs, hop over old clay pipes, bash sticks together and so on. The Ladies’ Orchestra (featuring three men) provided the music, and the Palm Villa choir sang a selection of Gilbert and Sullivan pieces. Caleb found one of the bells on the floor, so bold as brass in the middle of the performance (granted, it was a very informal evening), he addressed the leader to try return it…Simon quickly spun a yarn, forming a brand-new ancient tradition that any found bells must be kept under the pillow, and the finder will one day become a Morris dancer. Of course Caleb was not reeled in, but did bring the bell home…and put it on his dresser!

Turns my stomach

Nick had a breather between sermon prep and going out for bible study, so he joined Maddy and Geoff for a swim at Ruperts (swimming in winter?). The water was cold enough for 20 minutes to be sufficient! I had some things to do in town so Nick got a lift with Geoff, and the boys and I fetched him a little later. When we arrived Nick came over, camera in hand, with a big grin – “look what we saw”, he said, obviously very proud of whatever it was he had captured. He thought the photos were fabulous; real life stuff. I thought they were disgusting. The objectionable images were of fish stomachs being turned inside out to empty them before they get cooked up as a tasty meal. I hauled out the overlocker again this morning to make a blouse. Nick had a shirt which I had apparently incorrectly shortened – i was unwearable as far as he was concerned, so I asked if I could use the material. It had been sitting around for ages, and today seemed like a good day for tackling it. I’ve also cut out a skirt from material I bought on sale (turns out I had an identical unused piece of it in the manse, which gave me enough to use a great pattern).

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Eating and walking

Today felt like a public holiday – great to finally DO something during these school holidays! Pam, Geoff and Maddy came over for lunchtime pizza (we each made a pizza), followed by a walk up Flagstaff. We accumulated an extra two children – Joshua and Charlotte came along for the walk which was super – made it far more interesting for the original three! We started the walk around 2.30 and were back at our place by 5 for a cup of tea and slice of cake, left over from bible study last night. It was a very relaxed afternoon, aside from the physically tiring walk.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Aaron's 15 minutes

Yesterday evening I had an e-mail from Kyle in the States who had made an amazing and startling discovery when his sister-in-law received her Sonlight catalogue…Aaron is featured on the back cover!! Yip, for any Sonlighters on the blogroll, that's my boy. We are still waiting for ours in the post – that will be one catalogue we won’t be binning! I debated surprising him when it arrives but couldn’t keep it in…he was most excited to know that he is now famous. Sort of. I dedicated the day to beading – haven’t felt much like doing it of late as sales have been bad, but after many expressions of interest this last Friday I feel more strongly inclined to pick it up again, especially with Christmas approaching.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Death by jelly

The kitchen hormones came upon me today as I felt the urge to defrost the freezer and at last I got rid of the blob of mouldy, frozen broccoli at the back of the fridge. While I was busy in the kitchen I had a load of washing going (actually I did two loads today – glorious sunshine all day) and I suppose that for two sick boys on indoor play restrictions it’s inevitable that watching the washing machine becomes a form of entertainment. The boys encouraged the towels and pants to keep going, sympathised with their shirts which must surely be getting dizzy, and even sang to the assortment of swirling underwear. I spent the better part of the morning in the kitchen, moving on to the stove once the fridge was clean and happy. Directly after lunch I did the grocery shopping with Aaron in tow who helped me carry bags to the car. I made a bowl of jelly in the afternoon at Aaron’s request; later I found two Lego men face down in the partially set mass. Honestly, one never knows what’s going to happen next when there are two boys living in the house. At least they had the stomachs to remove the stiffened rat from the courtyard this morning and even gave it a proper burial. I thought I had removed the rat yesterday (gripping it by its tail with a peg), but the cats must love us very much to have brought the same present twice.

I forgot to mention yesterday that our evening service was excellent. Nick’s message from Acts could be used as a stand-alone about ‘what is your purpose’ – Paul was clear about his purpose in life and did not mind facing death for it. It was extremely challenging, especially as I have been considering of late what my purpose is…I have the strong feeling that I need to be doing more with my time but don’t yet know what.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

CCC visit

The Baptist Church has started a new community outreach initiative with monthly services at the Community Care Centre, the old age home. Today was our first attempt, with several of the residents attending. Our primary means of outreach is through music and visitation, and to this end we played and sang hymns for half an hour before talking with the ladies and gentlemen who had joined us in the Blue Lounge. I have heard tell that this newly built complex is very fancy but I was not anticipating just how marvelous it actually is - Nick and I thought it would make a smashing wedding venue!!

And okay, here's the dress for those who have enquired after it!

10 green bottles, lying in the dump

It’s been a relaxed Saturday as per the usual, but quite enjoyable. Good News Club this morning (there's more going on in this photo than Nick and the soccer ball)......then a quick look at the shoe sale at Warren’s (50% off all size 3 and 4 ladies’ shoes…pity I didn’t find anything suitable, other than the same shoes I had already bought at full price some time ago!!). Nick was only due at Tammy at 4 this afternoon and Pam didn’t come today, so we had a few hours to kill…we left the boys watching a DVD and drove to the rubbish dump to take pictures. We should have been going as a group tomorrow but we are going to the old people’s centre instead, so have rescheduled for next Sunday. Thought it would be fun to go today just by ourselves, which it was. Got home around 3, looked at the photos and deleted most of them (they were rubbish). For the rest of the afternoon I sewed while Nick was out, and finished the dress before packing away everything and vacuuming – the house looks presentable again.

Since broadcasting earlier in the month that we were watching House, I would like to go on record saying that this is not a series I would recommend. While the first two seasons were primarily based on solving medical mysteries, seasons 3 and 4 saw the writers delving deeper into the characters, with a disturbing emphasis on Dr House’s blatant atheism accompanied by a dialogue allowing all manner of blasphemy and incorrect or negative religious critique.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

So so and sew sew

After last Friday’s dismal attempts at selling jewellery, I wasn’t expecting better results this morning, but I was back in the Market nonetheless by 10 am surrounded by necklaces and earrings. By 10.45 my tin had not welcomed any new money. However, I’m pleased to report that it picked up after that and I had a satisfactory morning. During the afternoon I hauled out my overlocker and sewing machine to sew a simple dress I cut out last night – haven’t sewn in ages; it was fun to tackle this small project.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Forward we go

Following on after yesterday’s great start, I carried on with some sorting and tossing here at the Piccolo house. While I was going through clothing, I tasked the boys with rebuilding some of their Lego cars and things. The purpose in this was sneakily twofold – one, to make some headway with their myriad toys which will need some serious time and effort to whittle down, and two, to simply keep them occupied. They put together all of two cars and then took themselves off to play with said cars, leaving a trail of Lego bits and instruction booklets scattered across the bed.
During the afternoon we went for a drive to Printech to set in motion the printing of artwork for Nick’s second album. He has completed all the songs and mastered his CD, and we have done the artwork for the sleeve…this is a sneak preview.
On the way home we came across this curious scene. At first it appeared that the bus had crashed, but when Nick got out to see if he could help, he got the full story – the bus driver simply did not take the corner widely enough to clear the other side, and once he had gone as far as he could go, he was stuck – the bus is not equipped with reverse!! A quick tow sorted the problem out. Also from the manse yesterday I brought our cellphone. We have three SIM cards (none of which work here). I charged the battery and the boys have taken to playing games on it, or simply listening to the ring tones. Cellphones…such a novelty.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

My winter boys

Yesterday the boys were under a sort of house arrest because of their colds, but today they were allowed out again – not before we told them to dress warmly. I didn’t expect Aaron to prepare for the polar regions with a beanie over his already padded jacket hood, but he certainly took the message to heart. The boys and I spent the morning at the manse – I needed to pick up a modem cable (our laptop’s power adapter gave in yesterday morning so we were computerless for 24 hours – scary stuff – we are now borrowing a spare from Pam), and whilst there I made a start on clearing out the manse. After much discussion and debate, it doesn’t seem likely that we will move back in after all – the repairs are nearly complete, but there is a lot of the church’s furniture being stored there. It would make better practical sense to stay where we are and rather get it ready for our successors. So, now I must get my head around moving our last belongings out…one would think that if I haven’t needed a thing in a year that I can toss it altogether, but there things like books being stored there that we don’t have space for here. I was ruthless though and am pleased to say that in my ‘craft room’ alone, I filled up two black bags of stuff to throw away. Other things I have brought back here to Piccolo, and I have left some mystery items that may be of interest to the house’s next occupants!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


The runny nose which I was hoping was just visiting yesterday settled itself comfortably into a full-blown cold overnight. It moved in with a fever, headache, joint pains and its own set of towels. The boys have picked it up too. Caleb thought to scare off any neighbours who might wish to stray over to our house with this warning note:

Watch out for those 'runy noses' and 'throt enfektons'.