Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Update on Amy

I had a biopsy today and as a result have a very sore right bottom cheek. Audrey insisted on inspecting the damage when I got home and was suitably impressed that I had a bandaid on my bottom! I probably won't get the results until early next week so, unfortunately, more waiting. Will let everyone know as soon as we have anything confirmed.

Friday, November 19, 2010

The thing you never want to hear...

Usually this blog is filled with happy stories about our family but around 2:30pm today I received some news that has rocked our happy little boat. I’ve been told that I have cancer…I’m still waiting for the full diagnosis but have been told it’s either lymphoma or myeloma. No matter, they both sound awful.

I think I’m still in shock but have burst into tears a few times. I look at my two beautiful children and my lovely husband and am determined to beat this thing but I know it will be a long journey; one that will (in the Dr’s words) “turn our lives upside down”.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

National Museum of Australia Open Day

The National Museum of Australia held an open day of their store yesterday. It was the first time in over 10 years that they had opened the store in Mitchell and the four of us went along. The store contained items that aren't on display or are undergoing renovation.

We were amazed by the throngs of people heading to the out of the way part of Canberra but managed to find a park in a nearby street.

There was loads of things on display from an old ABC Outside Broadcast van, to old computers, carriages, motor bikes and a pink caravan!

Because of the Black Country connection my personal favourite was the Bean 14 racing car which took part in a record breaking dash between Darwin and Melbourne in 1926 and the first overland drive between London and Melbourne in 1927.

I found an original picture of the car here (when it was manufactured in Dudley)
compared to how it now looks in situ in Canberra in 2010..
Highlight of the day (by far) for the children were the original Play School windows. They weren't really displayed as such (just highlighted on the second shelf of a warehouse). Nevertheless we had to go back 3 times to look at them! Here's some more pictures

The 1948 Daimler landaulette six of which were built specifically for King George VI's tour of Australia (which was cancelled!)
Amy, Eli and Audrey by the ABC OB van

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Audrey and Eli at their friend's party

It was Audrey's friend Will's 3rd birthday party last weekend. It was a really nice morning in the garden marred only by the rain which chased us all home at the end of the party.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Audrey meets a worm

I watched a presentation recently online from a guy called Neil Pasricha. He writes a blog (which he’s turned into a top selling book) called 1000 Awesome Things. There’s a link to the blog from this site. If you’ve never seen it then have a look. It’s a really good site and despite my initial reservations he turned out to be Canadian not American.

One of a number of things he talked about in the presentation was how amazing it must be to see the world for the first time as if through the eyes of a 3 year old – he encourages people to embrace their inner 3 year old, and remember that they once saw or experienced things for the first time too.

It struck a chord with me. Last weekend Audrey and I played with a worm which the two of us had found under a weed. She wasn’t squeamish as it twisted in her hand. She didn’t care that she didn’t really know what it was. She knew (somehow!) and told me that; ‘Worms don’t have bones’ and I thought that it’s so easy to get caught up with the hustle and bustle of life without necessarily taking time to embrace your inner 3 year old. It was a lovely moment.

Here’s a picture of her as a butterfly. Even though I used proper face-paint it hadn’t all washed off her face by morning...

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

There's a bear in there, and a chair as well...

Play School is great!

In 1988 (after over 20 years) the BBC took a decision to scrap the programme. I'm not sure why they reached the decision, I guess it's pretty old fashioned in format and the more trendy CBBC that in part replaced it may (or may not) be more in keeping with today's generation of pre-schoolers.

In Australia however the show is still going strong. It's kept the format of Jemima, Big Ted, Little Ted and Humpty (the big four) and there's a host of presenters and songs.

As with the show I remember as a child, a lot of the things they do is based around home-made things (wooden spoons, plastic bottles, cardboard boxes etc) and sometimes you get the feeling they've thrown things together five minutes before the show goes to air, but to be honest it all adds to the charm of the programme.

On Sunday Play School came to Canberra. The ABC tour the show around the country and take the big four to the masses. Sunday's show featured guest presenters Teo and Abi. The two of them energetically danced and sang their way through 50 minutes of songs taking the packed hall of kids with them on an adventure to Humpty's picnic.

Audrey and Eli were enthralled. It was a really well put together show and the presenters hung around after the show to meet the awe-struck kids. As is the way with these things the merchandise table at the back took us for $30 for a Big Ted and $20 for a couple of Play School plates. Personally I'm sure any yellow teddy would have sufficied but even at 3 Audrey is wise enough to know the difference. Big Ted is now toy no.1, probably until next week sometime when something else catches her eye and both Audrey and Eli have taken to sweeping their food off the plates to see the picture of Jemima et al underneath. Still, it's a small price to pay for a good morning's entertainment!

Here's some pics.

Teo and Jemima look out into the audience

Audrey and Eli look back agog - expressions they maintained for 30 minutes or so

Teo and Abi meet Eli and Audrey.