30 June 2008

Movin' keep on movin'

Well we are now safely ensconced in our new “big tall house” as my son calls it, probably because there are stairs in it. E-chan has been OK with it so far – involving him in the move and the clean up of the old place seems to have helped him to understand what is happening. The removalists (apparently that isn’t a word but I keep using it anyway) came 2 hours late on Tuesday (over a week ago now), and they didn’t finish up until 7pm. They weren’t bad, and they talked almost their own language – referring to “peaks” and “rises” when describing to each other where a certain piece of furniture would fit in the truck. I bet their 3D puzzle-solving skills are superior.

As if moving isn’t enough – E-chan went and caught a timely cough and runny nose. Now we could really do with a few beers and a good night sleep, and some time to just wander around our new neck of the woods and lie down and rest in our new house. Oh, and for our new couches to arrive.

- more space!
- Winter sun through the bedroom windows (our old place had NO direct winter sun and full summer evening sun)
- Finding those miscellaneous things that go missing (including things last seen in E-chan’s chubby little hands), under and behind things.
- Getting rid of stuff you don’t need/wear
- E-chan handling the stairs like a champ, and even though we haven’t installed the safety gate yet, he waits for me to accompany him up or down when I ask him to
- A friendlier block of apartments and Units, with more owner occupiers who care about stuff that goes on/doesn’t work, and say “hello”

I’d cry, but I just don’t have the time:
- Leaving our home of 5 ½ years – oh the memories! From our DINKy days to pregnancy, having a newborn and now toddler.
- Having our poor sick child stumble about our old digs as we frantically tried to clean up on Wednesday (why oh why didn’t we get a cleaner in?? I think we just ran out of time to arrange one…)
- Being vomited on for the second time in as many weeks (luckily the carpet cleaner guy was due an hour later)
- Sitting in fold up chairs in lieu of lounges in the living room (all this and Dr Who is back on telly again)
- Not being able to remember which thing went into which box
- Unexpected things that don’t work or need fixing
- And now it is OUR RESPONSIBILITY to get it fixed (actually – move that comment to the Highlights section… no more relying on real estate agents to get maintenance done!)
- 5 day delay on phone connection and still waiting on internet. Felt really cut off!

Much of the stuff we use daily is unpacked, and now we are down to the stuff we don’t use as often, that you have to think harder when deciding where to give it a home. I suspect that some stuff is never going to make it out of boxes. I mean really - why do I keep this sample moisturiser or hand cream even though I know it doesn’t suit my skin? Am I EVER going to wear that slightly discoloured shirt again? Some stuff I probably should have put in the Vinnies bin, but just ran out of time to try them on and I packed it anyway. (And who says Vinnies wants it anyway?!)

And now we have to use our own 3D puzzle solving skills to do the last bit of furniture configuration in the lounge room and in the bedrooms. And buy a step ladder so we can put some things away high up in the “big tall” cupboards in our bedrooms…

21 June 2008

Secret boy's club!

E-chan is supposed to be going to sleep around now. However, C-chan is still in his bedroom with him, and I can hear lots of giggling!

I wonder what's going on in there....

20 June 2008

Got a bit of a shock yesterday. I saw one of E-chan’s little friends and his Mum and big brother – they live on the same street and go to same Child care centre. C-chan and I noticed we hadn’t seen their father around for a while, and thought he might have gone away for work or maybe they’d separated. Anyway, thought I should mention it just so I didn’t seem to be an uncaring neighbour and to see if they needed a hand. No one wants to be a busybody, but I also don’t want to be one of those people who notice something is wrong but pretend everything is normal.

Anyway, the mother said her husband had passed away a few months ago. This was not the answer I was expecting. She was OK with me asking and would rather it be out in the open. She said they are all right, which I assume means they are dealing with the grief, doing OK financially and have enough support around them. It was a real jolt to imagine what it would be like to be a single mother of 2 with the youngest less than 2 years old. But then, single parents have raised children on their own before, and it will happen again in the future. All through the conversation, 20-month-old was beaming at me and E-chan most charmingly, oblivious to the conversation that we adults were having. The father had been a pretty cool, friendly fellow, with no obvious signs of illness when I saw him last, which couldn't have been long before his death.

I gave C-chan a big hug when he got home last night.

Oil, energy decline - all that sort of stuff

Further to Seagreen’s interesting post on Monday 16 June 2008 and link to permaculture dude’s energy descent/climate change scenarios….

Does anyone else get the feeling the general view on oil availability is shifting? Many have been saying that we will run out of oil, but the message has been dismissed as alarmist, quashed, or ignored. Suddenly the past 6 months, all of the issues some of us have been concerned about for years (suburbs with no adequate public transport, building houses on prime market garden land on the fringes of the city, reliance on the motor car, lack of rail infrastructure, etc etc) are gradually becoming regularly discussed in mainstream media and by politicians, without counterpoints from the oil industry saying "we have plenty of oil there is nothing to worry about".

Last night there was an interesting interview on the 7:30 Report (ABC) with Richard Heinberg.
http://www.abc.net.au/7.30/content/2007/s2280200.htm (hopefully transcript is posted, but you might have to just click on the podcast on the RHS of the screen and watch it). Basically, he says get used to petrol costing what it does now, a lot of restructuring of industry, and expenditure on non-car/truck transport infrastructure.
http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/business/items/200806/s2280264.htm Also on Lateline Business last night, Virgin Blue chief discussing the implications for the airline industry.

Definitely time to invest in a bike.

Whirlwind of a month!

Things have progressed with the home purchase - there has been lots to do of course, including making sure all the finances were ready to go for 3.30pm TODAY when we settle (eeek! had a few hiccups, but we got there in the end), and making sure the utilities and moving logistics are all in place. It's funny - an acquaintance said "don't you feel more grown up now you're buying a home?". My answer would have to be a firm "no, not really". Finances are only one part of life, of course - a tool. Owning a house gives you some sort of stability in where you will live if that's important to you, so long as you aren't over-stretched on your mortgage (which we aren't). Wanting to stay in the same area has only become important to us in the past year or so, but we have also rented in the same area in a few different places since 2000. It's only now that the rents are going crazy that we decided to think about buying seriously.

E-chan is sensing something is up, of course. We've told him we are moving, and he's seen the new place a few times plus photos, and the boxes with stuff in them are gradually accumulating in the house. But I'm not sure how much of the concept of moving house he understands. And to add to this, we decided recently on an impromptu and short trip to Canberra to see Turner-to-Monet, catch up with friends, and pick up my folks who visited there on the way up to see us. First night in our lovely friend's house, E-chan wakes up at 11:00, cries loudly, and when I picked him up to hug and pat his back, he vomited all over me, himself, and the carpet! The Horreur! Shower, full outfit change, buckets of soapy water, screaming and washing machines running in the middle of the cold Canberra night! E-chan was Mr Popular in the morning. Luckily, our hosts (said they) didn't hear the screaming marathon as we were up the other end of the house. The rest of the trip was fine - lovely company, sunny days (with chilly nights), interesting art exhibition (but strangely cluttered - they could have put in half the number of paintings). The picture is of E-chan running around the reconciliation walk.

E-chan was spoilt for attention when we got back to Sydney. Along with Grandma and Grandad, his Uncle and Nanna came over for his 2nd birthday celebrations (this was the family party - we'll have a party in our new place in a month or so). He got some really cool presents, including a play tea set and some bits for his train set. I think family withdrawal symptoms set in the day after everyone left, and we had a repeat middle of night screaming session the following night.

On top of all this, I've had two days off with with gastro - I usually kick these things within 24 hours, but this went for 4 days. They were days when I am usually at work, so at least E-chan could go to day-care. I was absolutely exhausted, and my feet ached!

But ech! We're there now! I'm excited about moving this weekend! We haven't moved house in 5 1/2 years, which is amazing! Am so looking forward to having more space....

12 June 2008


You'll never guess who I just saw on Playschool!!

Alex Papps!

Henderson Kids bad boy spunk, now co-hosting Playschool! (I might add that Justine Clark is now also a regular on Playschool, has her own album and DVD which most kiddies love, and is also touring with gigs at the Enmore!! The songs are durn catchy, I must say...)

What is the world coming to?