Thursday, September 24, 2009

Out of the mouth of Audrey

Audrey has taken a real interest in shapes lately, pointing out things like the fact that pedestrian crossings are made up of rectangles etc. But I had to laugh the other day when she told me she had circles in her hair. She meant her curls!

We went shopping today and I asked Audrey if she could think of anything else we needed to add to the shopping list. She thought for a moment and told me "toast and crumpets".

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Jo comes to visit

Last weekend, our good friend Jo came from Adelaide to visit us, or should I say she came to visit the children! And boy, did they enjoy it - especially Eli who loved having an extra set of hands to hold and cuddle him - he was in 7th heaven. Auntie Jojo also proved to be a great distraction in the car - Audrey had someone to chat to and Eli had some to gurgle at. Sure beats whinging and screaming!

On Saturday, Jo came with us to watch Audrey at her swimming lesson (big smiles from Audrey - she loves an audience!) and then we went on to Floriade. We had beautiful weather and walking around the blooms it seemed that we were well and truly into Spring. We had a lovely picnic amongst the flowers before taking the kids home for a sleep....or so we thought. It seemed that neither Audrey nor Eli wanted to sleep while Jo was here. I guess they were both just too excited or worried they'd miss out on something.

On Sunday, we spent the morning mooching around the Old Bus Depot Markets. All too soon, it was time to take Jo to the airport for her flight home.

It was lovely catching up and we hope that it won't be too long before we see each other again.

The Jojo-Eli mutual admiration society

Friday, September 18, 2009


The four of us went along to a showing of 'Plop' at the Canberra Theatre today. We weren't familiar with the children's book, which we learnt is about chocolate cake loving rabbits and a big bear but it didn't really matter as the play/show was more of an interpretation rather than an accurate retelling of the story.

The small theatre was packed with toddlers who sat on the floor around the stage. Everyone (including the adults) were captivated by the three performers and the very clever device in the ceiling of the theatre which could send apples down a shoot into a pool of water - Plop!!

Audrey was so engrossed she sat agog (with a dribble trail leading from her open mouth). Being only 4.5 months old Eli was perhaps a tadge young and cried at a couple of loud bits, and didn't really get the craziness of it all like his older sister. Nevertheless is was a 35 minute show filled with fun and excitement, and we weren't a bit scared by the terrible plop!

testing out the pool after the show

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Starting Solids

Eli has had his first taste of solids, sampling some sweet potato today. We decided to start him on solids as for the last few weeks he has been eyeing off Audrey's food and making grabs for her plate and spoons etc. As you can see from the photos, he's very keen to hold his own spoon. I can see many messy meals ahead of us. Watch out Audrey, here comes the competition!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Poachers Pantry

There's a nice restaurant just out side of Canberra called The Poachers Pantry. We hadn't been before, but one of Amy's friends (Rachael) celebrated her birthday there today, so the four of us enjoyed a scrummy lunch. Audrey enjoyed running around the garden in the sunshine, while Amy and I served as a tag-team, variously eating, jigging Eli and chasing around after Audrey.

Here's a couple of pics of our beautiful girl. I've really no idea how I managed to 'fluke' the picture of her on the bench - it must have been the 2 seconds that she actually sat still!

Yarralumla Homemade Markets

On Saturday we went to the Yarralumla Homemade Markets at the old Yarralumla wool-shed.

We travelled there straight from Audrey's morning swimming lesson and although we reached the markets only 10 minutes after they had opened we found that most of Canberra had already beaten us to it. The place was swamped with cars and shoppers.

The markets were blessed with fine and sunny weather and people seemed to have come out of hibernation and sent cash registers ringing all around us. Fortunately we hadn't taken very much money with us so we were prevented from buying much, so instead mooched round and then ate (very nice) organic ice cream on the grass.

The pics aren't from Yarralumla but show Audrey and Eli enjoying the spring sun in our garden.

Give us today...

Here's a nice loaf of bread I made today.yum!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

And that is the problem....

with having a bossy older sister who owns a spare fairy princess outfit...

Monday, September 7, 2009

Central Coast Mariners v Perth Glory

Australian football (aka soccer) takes place between a league of 11 clubs in the 'A' League. Unfortunately as it's a relatively new competition there is no space for a Canberra team and despite efforts to get a bid off the ground there's no sign of it happening any time soon. Canberra is a rugby town and that's pretty much it.

Last week the town played host to a franchised A League game in the form of Central Coast Mariners (a Sydney team) v Perth Glory. It was a bit of one-paced afair and the Mariners who showed more attacking spirit throughout the game, rightly ended the night as 2-1 winners.

The match wasn't won until the 89th minute when the Perth goalkeeper misjudged a long ball which bounced high over his head (I didn't think the Canberra turf could be so bouncey!). The ball fell to a Mariners substitute who passed to the busy Matt Simon to score.

The match was notable(!) in that it attracted 5,139 spectators (the lowest for an A League fixture this season) and it was the crowd numbers as much as the game on view, that probably condemns Canberra to a few more years without football. The FFA (Football Federation Australia) had earlier said that they would look unfavourably on an attendance below 5,000. In the end another 139 packed into the quarter full ground.

It was a fairly warm night, but despite this the dullness of the game meant that my mind wandered back to chilly Wolves away games in Blighty. Suddenly those distant nights spent huddled on in a rainy Fratton Park, Craven Cottage or Elm park terrace with the rain lashing my face, having handed over most of my week's salary as admission, didn't seem so bad.

If you want to read a match report then click here

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Van's Wedding

The four of us took a trip to Sydney this weekend for our friend Van's wedding. Sydney is the nearest big city to Canberra and is (on a good day) probably around 3 or 4 hours drive. With two small children on board though things tend to take a fair bit longer. Amy and I shared the driving and Audrey and Eli shared the crying. Eli screaming most of the way there, and Audrey crying for a lot of the journey home.

Nevertheless we all had a lovely time once we reached our destination. We were lucky to be staying in Manly (near both wedding and reception) (thanks Hayley) and Audrey really loved Manly beach. What was most noticeable was the change in temperature once we left the ACT - Sydney and NSW generally was at least 6 or 7 degrees warmer, so our carefully packed jumpers and jackets became quickly redundant.

Van's wedding was lovely, the reception at a splendid golf course and the food first class. Both Audrey and Eli came to the reception, but flaked out a bit half way through the evening and so Amy took them home, leaving me to the (very funny) speeches and two desserts (yum!)

We had a nice catch up with Tim and Hayley and their two great kids Alex and Ted and we were all sad to leave to return home on Sunday afternoon.

Enjoying the sun on Manly beach

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Australian Wildlife Encounters No.5

My bike (well ok, actually it's Amy's) got a puncture yesterday. In the tyre was what is affectionately known as a cathead or devil's thorn. It was probably the biggest and most ferocious thorn I've ever seen in my life. Apparently it's not a native. This one is blamed on the South Africans. The inner tube cost $17.