Friday, September 30, 2011

Duke of Edinburgh Silver Award

My Mr16 has been striving to achieve the Duke of Edinburgh's award now for almost 3 full years.  He completed his Bronze award in year 9/10, his silver in year 10/11 and now is going for his gold award.

I have had mixed feelings about this award over the years.  It was always just another thing to have to do and fit in to his schedule which is already pretty full between his school work and his part time job.  I know this award is regarded highly when it comes to job seeking as it shows responsibility etc etc, but seriously,,,,,at times it can be a hard slog.  They have to do a certain amount of hours of "community service" type activity, learning a new skill, a physical activity and then also do a camp where they are the "team leader" and organise everything.  Last night though when he had his presentation night I was so proud of what he had achieved.  Apparently many kids start this award but not so many finish it.  As for achieving gold which is what he is going for at the moment, only about 20 kids make it to the end each year.  Last night was a school presentation night, we have the State Award presentation night at the end of October.  If he completes the Gold award it will be presented at Government House which will be a pretty special night for him, I saw his eyes light up when he found out that.

Mr16 has always struggled with school but he keeps on trying.  He has never been a straight A student but he has done well considering how hard he finds it all.  He is the sort of kid that just takes everything in his stride and always tries his best, what more could a mother ask for.

I love you mate and am so proud of the young man you are becoming!

Here is a photo of my boy having just received his Silver certificate.  The lady on the left is from the Department of Youth, she is one of the main co-ordinators of the Duke of Ed Award and the guy on the right is the Manager of Twelve25 where they have held all their weekly first aid classes etc.

And here is a picture of all the kids that received either their Bronze awards or their Silver Awards from the school this year.  Only Mr16 and one of the girls received their Silver Awards, all the rest are Bronze.  The lady on the far left is the School Principle and the guy second from the right is the teacher that goes above and beyond his job description to ensure that these kids can succeed  in the Award.  The kids that do the award are chosen by this teacher.  He chooses some who are causing trouble at school to give them something else to focus on and give their confidence a boost and then he chooses others for their keen sense of community and sense of responsibility, that just need to have more self confidence,,,,,my son fits into the latter group (thankfully lol).

They are all going on camp in two weeks time for 4 days out to Iron Knob.  They went there last year as well.  They all came back pretty grotty but they had a good time.  I only hope the weather is kind to them and doesn't get too hot.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Soccer Season is over again.......for a whole 3 weeks!!

My Mr14 plays soccer for a Federation Team....the Enfield City Falcons.  He has played with them for the past 2 seasons.  I have to admit that the Club doesn't thrill me in many of the things it does but he likes his team and his coach so I just grin and bear it.  He has played soccer since the age of 5 (well except for 1 year where he decided he would give AFL Football a go, but then he decided to return to soccer).  Over the last 10 years he has played for 4 different clubs, 5 if you count the football.  He loves the game and I am all for him continuing on, at this point I am just hoping the fees don't go up again for next year.  Last year the fees went up by $150 for the season,,,,,,to me that is a massive jump and I definitely won't be happy if they rise that much again this year.

They had presentation day yesterday, each of the kids getting their trophy for the year.

We were informed that try outs for next season commence on October 16!  There are 3 weeks of try outs so that requires us to be at the oval at 9.30am on Sunday mornings for 3 weeks......tryouts take approximately 2 hours each time.  Following tryouts there will be 3 beach sessions, being held - 1 in November, 1 in December and 1 in January before the season training officially starts in the first week of February.  Honestly it just feels like soccer season never ends.  We also got told that next year games for the Under 15s will start at 8.30am on Sunday morning, meaning we have to be at the oval at 7.45am!!!  I am already feeling a sense of dread for the games held down South where it takes us at least an hour to get there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Next year I also have Mr11 and Mr9 considering starting up soccer.  Previously they haven't wanted to but this year they are both thinking they would like to play.  I will be putting them into a local club that is a little closer and much, much cheaper!  That will mean 6 training sessions during the week and 3 games each weekend as well as Mr11's Karate lessons on Wednesday night.

Mr14 is currently looking for a part time job so that will also be more running around as well as Mr16's part time job.  Mr16 doesn't play sport anymore choosing to concentrate on school and his part time job at KFC.

Mr11 and Mr9 are also both going to be doing swimming lessons over summer.

  I feel that Miss12 should be doing some sport but after us getting her into soccer about 3 years ago, her mum pulled her out saying it was too rough (yes I know, this is what we deal with on a constant basis), so the girl does nothing.  There is no point in us getting her involved in something when we aren't the ones that have to take he majority of the time.  I am not going to waste my time and effort (not to mention money) on getting her in to something only to have her pulled out again by her mum, whether it be for the excuse of "she might get hurt" or "we don't have time" (this comes from a family that only have one parent working and that is on a very part time basis mind you!)

I can see my slow cooker getting used ALOT over the soccer season next year lol.
The joys of sports for kids!!!!

The junior teams of the club....5 in total

Friday, September 23, 2011

Finding the Joy in Being a SAHM

Sometimes I think we Stay At Home Mums forget just how important our "job" is.  Some days I think I should be out in the workforce providing a constant source of income.  Other days I love my job just the way it is.  Yes more money would be nice but how much would I have to sacrifice for it?

My Hubby goes away for work sporadically throughout the year.  Often he gets only 24 hours notice of a 2-3 day trip.  This is fine, I hate it, but it is fine since I stay at home.  If I was working it would be a totally different story.  There would be childcare that would have to be arranged out of the blue.  My kids school Out of Hours School Care group is usually pretty full as it is and often don't have places available for extras.  I don't know that the extra stress placed on the kids and I would be worth that little bit extra money a week.  I think if I worked I would have to find a job that was just in school hours.

Then I think of how much I do around here and if I worked alot of it just wouldn't get done.  I know many women balance the two but I'm at the stage where I'd like to explore new things.  I want to learn to be more self sufficient and hence save money rather than have to spend a large portion of my income just so that I can work.  If I worked there would be transport to and from said work to consider (I would need a new car as our old Tarago is on its last legs and only gets used for the school run and shop run).  I would need new clothes.  Then of course there would be probably child care for the younger two boys and the older two would become "Latchkey Kids".  Then we have school holidays where we also have Hubby's two kids.  There would then be vacation care for 4 of them and my stepson with Autism would require special care (he has previously been "thrown out" of vacation care that his Mum has had him in, due to his high needs and behaviours).  Of course, with me working there would be less baking done and also probably more take away or preprepared meals entering the house and the expense associated with it.  When I sit back and add all that up, would working really, honestly, be worth it????

Staying home enables me to keep my house clean (well kinda lol).  It enables me to plant and care for seeds which will hopefully produce food for us.  It enables me to bake treats for the kid's lunchboxes without having to resort to shop bought cakes/biscuits which are full of preservatives etc.  It enables me to cook from scratch, cooking most of our meals at home.  It enables me to prepare the kid's lunchboxes each day, saving money on school lunches.  Naturally my wardrobe is pretty daggy to say the least, but when I am cleaning and gardening and baking throughout the day, who needs to be dressed up fancy lol.

Yes life can get mundane and boring but you know what?  I really don't think I would have it any other way.  I am starting to get a new appreciation for my house.  I have ideas that will turn it into our home.  They will take time to save up for but I know that eventually we will get there.  If we move in a year or two, then we move but in the mean time we will work towards making this house look the way we would like it to.

Money is tight, yes, but when I add it all up, I don't think that me working will change it by much, by the time you add up all the extra expenses working would bring.  The kids are only kids for such a short time and I don't want to miss it.  I feel like my eldest has gone from toddler to teenager in a blink of an eye and when I sit back and think, I can't remember where all those years went.  I feel like since my Ex and I split up, there has been so much happening and life has been so busy that I forgot to sit back and enjoy my kids.  I hate that more than anything. 

Starting today, I want to ensure that I live in the moment more often and just relax and let the little things slide.  Life is to be enjoyed and our kids are precious.  I will get stuck into seriously decluttering and either donating to charity or selling online the things we no longer want/use/need.  This can bring a little extra money into the house, it may be small amounts but they all add up.  This is what blogging and reading all those wonderful blogs out there has taught me.  Reading blogs has given me new skills, a new mindset and  most of all inspiration to achieve so many things I had never really thought possible.

So I want to say a big thank you to all the wonderful bloggers whose blogs I read daily, the ones that I read weekly and just all you wonderful bloggers in general.  I may spend way too much time exploring Blog Land lol, but it is time that I think is totally worth it.

Image from

Thursday, September 22, 2011

School Zoo Trip

Yesterday my Mr9 had a school excursion to the Zoo.  I had volunteered to tag along as a parent helper.  The teachers had decided this time that since they had ample parent helpers (for a change) that they would split each of their 3 classes into groups of 4 children and allocate 1 parent/teacher per group.  My group contained my son and 3 other young boys.  Somehow though, my group joined with another group and I ended up spending 90% of my time dealing with 8 boys - boys that became very boisterous together (4 of them did anyway) and another parent, a dad who is way too laid back for his own good.  The dad is the father of one of my son's best friends.  He has his hands full at home but quite honestly he has no control over his kids and was very out of his depth yesterday as he just didn't control these kids.  It made for a very long day!  I seemed to spend most of my time trying to get a few of them to move along and get off the gardens, get off fences etc etc etc.  We didn't end up getting to see everything but I think the kids were happy nonetheless.  My son said he had a good day but wished that we had just been on our own with our group.
School excursions, lol you just gotta love them!  One of the other mums said my thoughts exactly, she said to me...."I always wonder why I put myself in these situations and keep telling myself never again,,,,,,but there is always a next time"  lol and that is so true.  I know that next time an excursion crops up, I will again volunteer, later to wonder what I was thinking!!!

Here are some pictures of our day, Mr9 took his camera too so this is a mix of his and mine.

Mr9 enjoying his juice

Don't you just love Pandas!!!

The group I had to keep contained lol,,,amazingly none of them ended up in a cage!!

As we were getting ready to leave we noticed Funi the panda high up in a tree

I adore Orangutans!!!
Mr9 loved the Meerkats

...and the giraffes

How the heck did he manage to get such a good picture of the panda on his little 2MP camera??? lol

I think I may have a future "nature photographer" on my hands lol

He took this one for me because I always say how the kids like to just bury their heads in the sand and pretend its not bed time lol He said I know its not sand but he still buried his head!!

This sea lion was just so cute

the Pygmy Hippo

and part of his class at the end of the day (the teacher wanted a group shot lol)  Mr9 wasn't happy that he couldn't fit everyone in,,,,,but I think the teacher is planning on printing a photo for everyone so I'm sure he will be happy when he sees it.

Monday, September 19, 2011

I just can't believe my luck lately.......grrr

After spending a couple of hours in the garden yesterday, planting out a few seedlings and potting up some more seeds, I came home to a disaster zone after walking the kids to school this morning.  First of all I stopped out the front to check on our pumpkins and sunflowers we planted yesterday.  I was horrified to find 2 out of the 6 pumpkins that we planted had been eaten by bugs :(, one is totally destroyed, the second is about half way gone.  That was enough to deflate me but then I actually walked into the house and looked out the back door.  I just about cried on the spot. 

 Our little greenhouse which hubby had lovingly tied securely (or so we thought) up on two of our benches had blown over in the wind.    Now it is a little windy today but nothing in comparison to some of the winds we have had over the last month or two since the shadehouse had been set up, but this time it got blown over.  I am just totally devastated. 

All my seeds that I had spent time labelling, and planting out and watering for the last week or two and some that I had only planted yesterday are now laying in a mount of dirt at the bottom (or should I say top) of the shadehouse :-(!!!

Hubby had tied it up on to our benches because our older dog likes to go around the yard peeing on anything that stays still for more than 30 seconds and I really didn't want to have to put the zipper up and down with his pee all over it,,,,,yuck!

Right now I am considering my options.  They are:

1.     To scoop the soil out of the shadehouse and place it in the veggie garden and sort of see what happens;


2.     Just shovel all the soil back into the 30 or so containers and replant more seeds in it, relabelling as I go.

I swear my luck just has to get better eventually!!!  Right now it just seems to be one thing after another with kids getting sick, school issues, Hubby's work and now garden issues grrrrrrrrrrr

Friday, September 16, 2011

Oh Happy Days,,,,,it's impossible not to smile watching this :)

I love Whoopie and I think the movies "Sister Act 1 & 2" are classics.  I'm looking forward to the weekend and plan to just chill out and do very little housework (that's the plan at least lol).  Tomorrow we are going for a bike ride with the boys along our favourite Little Para River trail.

Have a great weekend everyone

Thursday, September 15, 2011

I'm trying to be grateful......really I am!

The last couple of weeks have been pretty full on with sick kids, Hubby's work, my Stepson's Autism tantrums, my stepdaughter's moodiness and my own kid's homework/school hassles.  I am trying to be grateful for the small things but right now it's a little tough.  The above photos are of the basket of ironing that is waiting for me and my folding which I did this morning.  This bed you see pictured here is my stepson's.  The room is our old loungeroom.
Earlier this year we decided that our large family room was only really being used by my stepson and no one else really used it for much.  So we moved out of the smaller front lounge and into the family room.  Yes the extra space is nice but now our old lounge is rendered a vacant lot for the majority of the time because my stepson is the only one that uses it.  Now as you will see we have a strip of vinyl which runs from the front door though to a door which is barricaded off by his bed.  The horrible dirty looking concrete floor used to have carpet on it,,,,,,that is until Stepson moved into the room and proceeded to use it as a toilet :( (the joys of having an autistic child that sadly isn't toilet trained and after 8 years of attempts being made I am beginning to lose hope of it ever happening :(  I could go on about the amount of gross behaviours that this child exhibits but I think if I did, I would find my friendly followers would all fly the coop lol).  If I took another photo of the room I would show you the curtains, or what is left of them that Stepson has also destroyed.  The remnants  now sit at varying lengths along my nice big front window.

Right now I quite honestly don't know what to do about the whole room situation.  I hate having a room that looks like a war zone when he is here and this barren wasteland when he isn't.  I hate that he can't simply share a room with one of the boys, but sadly that would be a recipe for disaster and we would find that the boy's things would be destroyed very fast, not only that we have to barricade him into his room at night or he will be literally destroying the house, raiding the fridge and every light and piece of electronic equipment would be on.  When he is here keys have to be hidden and the house has to be locked up like a prison or he will go walk about.

Some days I find it hard to be grateful and today is one of them.
I guess one thing I am grateful for is the fact that he doesn't live here full time like he used to.  The stress one child can place on a family is immense.  His mother doesn't seem to bothered but the state of their  house I believe is totally atrocious, I simply can't live like that.  At Mum's house he is apparently left pretty much to do what he wants, there isn't much supervision.  We have heard from my Step Daughter that he got into the little kid's chocolates from easter and ate the lot in one sitting.  He destroyed her Nintendo DS.  They simply replaced it for her.  We can't do that and I believe that Autistic or not he has to be taught to fit in somehow.  Days like this I sit here and think about what the future holds for him and I guess for us too.  What happens when he is a teenager and bigger and stronger (he is very tall for his age as it is).  What happens when he finishes school, what future does he have.  

In his eyes, I am the Wicked Witch of the East.  When his Dad leaves the room he runs from me, not wanting to be near me.  If I go near him or into "his" room he screams, and I mean blood curdling screams that you would quite honestly think he was being belted within an inch of his life.  I quite honestly expect to have the police knock on my door one day during school holidays, when I have to care for him up to 10 hours a day by myself.  I am sure that the neighbours must think I am abusing him.  Out of those 10 hours he can sometimes scream for at least half of them.  School holidays can be very short on fun sometimes for our house.  The other kids spend way too much time on Xbox or Wii or generally in front of the TV as I simply can't go out when I have him.  My boys really look forward to the half of the school holidays when we don't have the stepkids here.  I hate that, it shouldn't be like that :(

OK enough of my ranting, I will go and do this basket of ironing, so at least the clothes can all be put away and the room looks a little less like a chinese laundromat.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Days of No Time and nothing Achieved

Not much to say today.  Today has been a day of rush, rush, rush and very little actually achived, don't you just hate that!!!!

Okay enough moaning about it, I gotta go make toasted sandwiches for the gang and then get 2 boys off to soccer and one off to Karate, another off to his dad's for the night and Mr9 will just have to tag along and keep me company lol.

In the meantime I am trying to be more about living in the moment and enjoying the little things,,,,,although I am finding it very hard to do lately :-(

Tomorrow is a new day right?????

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Seeds planted, blossoms opening, spring is here

This weekend saw me plant up about another 25 or so little pots with seeds.  I had more to get planted but I ran out of small pots.  I made the decision to stick with using some small little plastic pots that I have here rather than using those little cardboard style seedling punnet things.  I found the cardboard dried out way to fast.  I had also been using egg cartons but similarly, they dried out too fast and I found I had no success in them.  I have previously used both with success but I don't know what is wrong lately they just aren't working for me.  The weather was a bit unseasonably warm though so that may have had something to do with it.

I have quite a lot of little seedlings which I am hoping will grow for me after my last "seed planting day" I had a few weeks ago.  This seems to be my problem time usually.  I find I can get seeds to shoot but it is getting the little seedling big enough to plant out into the ground that I seem to struggle with.  A lot of them seem to just stop growing, they never get their true leaves coming through.  Pumpkins and cucumbers and the more robust looking seedlings seem to be okay but things like tomato, lettuce, rocket etc I have problems with.

I have a nice assortment of sunflower seeds which I planted which are growing well and I look forward to planting them out this weekend.  I can't wait to see those sunny faces :-)

Today I have my Mr9 home with me again, for the second day this week.  He has a bit of a cold but it seems to turn into a croupy like cough at night time and last night he began vomiting up quite a bit of phlegm so we are off to the docs a little later just to check he is okay.  After Mr11 having pneumonia the other week I don't want to chance it.

This year has been a bad one for sickness in this house.  My boys have always had a great record of not missing days at school.  All of them for their entire school lives have only missed maybe 2-3 days at the maximum each school year.  This year Mr16 has only had about 1 day off I think so he is doing well but the younger 3 boys sheesh!  Mr14 had to have a week off earlier in the year with a stomach bug.  Mr11 has had a few days here and there due to severe colds and of course he missed a full week with his pneumonia.  Mr9 has now had probably about 8 days off for the year.  It is so weird how this year has seen them all alot sicker than usual.  I'm still trying to work out what has changed.  I know that each fortnight when we have my stepkids, Miss12 is notorious for getting colds.  Every time she comes, she seems to have a cold, every time she leaves she has so kindly shared her germs throughout the house.  I swear I am at the point of telling her mum that if she isn't well she needs to keep her, but I know that I will be talking to a brick wall.  I think this would have to be one of the most frustrating parts of being a blended family, the sickness that seems to flow so easily.  The boys seem to get a cold from their school environment, then they end up getting another cold right on top of it from the other kid's school environment.  Step families could well be the greatest germ transporters known to man lol.

Monday, September 12, 2011

I got nominated and now I want to share the love.....

I got nominated for....... The Versatile Blogger.  :-)

Thank you so much to Melissa Jane at for nominating me for this award. I feel very honoured and quite honestly you just made my day....THANK YOU Melissa Jane!!

Now, to accept one of these awards there are certain rules you have to follow;

1) thank the blogger who awarded you and link back to them (see above!)
2) share 7 interesting facts about yourself
3) pass the award on to 15 newly discovered blogs

So here are 7 facts about me that I don't usually just come out and tell people, particularly in blogland where we can be choosy in what we share lol

1.I have lived a very normal life and have never been in trouble with the law.

2.I am terrified, I mean knee shakingly terrified of heights, although I love flying in planes.

3.I am terrified of deep water.  I will only ever be found in water I can stand up in, although I love going on large boats/ships.

4.I used to be a Marching Girl when I was a kid/teenager.  I was a member of the Kiwi Marching Girl Club.

5.I would have loved to have had a baby with my Hubby, kinda a Yours, Mine and Ours baby.  We have the "Yours and Mine" just not the Ours :-(

6.I am a hopeless housekeeper and I always cringe when we have unexpected visitors.

7.I like to do things in order.  We have dvds waiting to be watched, I like to work my way through from the top of the pile, books to read, same thing, recipes to be made, work through them 1 by 1 (hence my cooking blog to work through all my recipes) .  Not sure if I am just an orderly type of person or whether I have a kind of OCD thing happening lol.

and now that I have shared my faults and phobias with you lol, you just have to take a look at these blogs which are regular reads of mine.  These are in no particular order, but are all favourites and my daily "must check for updates" blogs.  Congratulations guys you have been nominated for The Versatile Blogger Award;

Now as you can see going by these blogs, I love blogs about family life, gardening, crafting and green living and of course travelling around this great country of ours.  There are a couple here that I haven't been able to work out how to follow with my blog as yet so I just have them bookmarked.   While there are a couple in here that I discovered a while ago, it has been more recently that I have been following them on a regular basis so I will say they are newly discovered to me :-)

Friday, September 9, 2011

Thank goodness the weekend is almost here....

This week, although nothing out of the ordinary really, has left me feeling really drained.  It has felt very long and drawn out for some reason.

My Mr11 has been particularly challenging the last couple of weeks and I think I need to spend a bit of one on one time with him this weekend and try to get to the bottom of his anger that he is carrying with him. 

Mr16 has assignments that need to be finished up in the next week or two that he just doesn't seem bothered about but I know just how much work is left to do on them. 

Mr14 is too laid back for his own good and has a very minimal amount of homework for someone in Year 9, I am hoping that he is right and his report card doesn't show otherwise in 3 weeks time. 

Mr9 is starting to panic about VIP day next week.  VIP day is a day when parents/grandparents etc come for the morning to watch each class do a small performance and then we do a craft with the kids, followed by morning tea then we leave.  Mr9 is notorious at getting worked up when he has to do anything in front of anyone and I can see him starting to stress about it already.  For some reason he hates it when I come to watch even more.  I hate this as since he is the youngest I want to see all these things as he is the last one in line for me to be able to enjoy at this level.

We also have Miss12 and Mr11 this weekend, this will be the second weekend in a row and feeling like I am right now, I know that this will be a challenge for me.  I hope Miss12 leaves her attitude at the door and Mr11 decides to cut me some slack for the weekend (a girl can dream can't she??? lol)

Tonight I am taking Mr14 to soccer training by myself, which will give me 1.5 hours of "me time" which I am looking forward to.  I will just sit in the car with my thermos of coffee and either my crochet or a book and just chill out for a bit.  Hubby can stay home with the rest of the Gang and cook dinner lol.  (Keep your fingers crossed that soccer training doesn't get cancelled for me lol, it is pouring down at the moment!!)

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.  I will leave you with some music.....Snow Patrol's Chasing cars.

This song always makes me grateful for my kids when I am feeling down about them.  It was a song that a dear friend of mine played at his daughters funeral.  She was just 14 years old when she died.  Tragedies like that remind you to hold your children close and every time I hear this song it makes me realise just how lucky I am to have my Gang.  RIP Mandy and keep watching over your Dad okay!!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Personal Research Project.....What The ****??????

My eldest, my sweet and gentle Mr16 is in Year 11 this year.  He is doing well and while doing his Year 11 studies he is also studying Certificate 1 in Hospitality with the view possibly, potentially, maybe (this is his mindset right now lol) of becoming a Chef, or a Bar  Tender with the latter being his preference right now.

Now school has never been his strong point.  Studying for him is hard but he doesn't complain much and just does what he needs to do.  This year they have thrown something extra at the kids.  They have to do a Personal Research Project.  This was a new thing to be introduced to Australian schools just last year.  This project can be of their choosing, topic wise,,,,or so they said.  Supposedly it is meant to be about the career path they were choosing.  Well I don't think many of the kids have chosen any question relating to their career paths, namely because most of the kids don't really seem to know what they want to do, my son included.

My boy decided after much tossing and turning to do a project relating to Peak Oil and what will happen when Peak Oil arrives.  Well okay, we had a topic.  He told the teachers and they said he had to formulate that topic into a question.  We came up with "How will the Peak Oil crisis affect family's day to day lives?".  Now I thought this was pretty good but nope it was too broad.  After much deliberation and changing his question around the teachers decided that the ideal question would be "How will Peak Oil affect our local council area?".  He told me and I just about freaked, I mean really!  He needs to narrow it down to that much of a specific area????????  For crying out loud, they want him to go to the library and put a questionnaire there for people to fill out.  They want the kids to go out of their comfort zone for this project.  They want them to have to go into the community and get people's opinions and thoughts and beliefs.

Now I did Year 12 at school, and never did I have to do anything so ridiculous.  This project is aimed at expanding their abilities for their future.  I just don't see it.  There are kids doing their projects on Hitler, Music Groups,,,,,,,please tell me how they will be "advanced" by doing this??????

They want him to study how this will affect our local council and to find information relating to it.  Well I thought I would give the council a call and see if there was any information available at all or if there was someone within the council that he would be able to have a chat to........hmmm I got met with blankness and questions of "What is Peak Oil all about?".

He is disheartened to say the least.  He has no idea how to approach this project and what makes it worse is that the teachers don't really have a clue either.

I am considering changing things around for him and throwing in a bit of guess work and doing things solely online (which is a no no) but I believe we can fake it to make it look like they were real opinions from locals lol.  Sheesh I seriously have to put my thinking cap on, for how best to help him with this one.

Like the poor kids these days don't already have enough on their plates, this is just another thing to have to think about and stress about for them.  I believe for most of the kids, this is a project that will just be a total waste of time and get them no where.

Grrrr I am so frustrated with the whole education system right now.  This problem is just the tip of the iceberg in our house at the moment, I could go on for days!!!!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Royal Adelaide Show here again already!

Well it is that time of year again.  One that seems to come around so fast, but not fast enough for the kids of course lol.  Each year we go.  We take my 4 boys one year and the following year we take my step son and step daughter.  Their other parents take them on the other years.  This year was my boy's turn to go with their Dad.  He only ended up taking the youngest two as Mr14 went with his friends and Mr16 was planning on going with friends but sadly they all had to work at their various part time jobs and so decided it was just too hard to plan and now none of them are going (I actually feel a little sad for him, being the only one not to go and he had been really looking forward to going with his friends, but I guess that's life, think of the money he saved!).

We took Mr11 and Miss12 on Saturday.  A day when the forecast temperature was due to hit 27 degrees!  I don't recall ever in my life going to the Show on such a warm day.  Warm it was, sideshow alley with the crowds of people was very hot.  It was quite nice though to be able to sit at night to watch the fireworks and not be freezing to death though lol.  It was forecast to rain and it held off all day until about 7.30 when there was the first shower.  It wasn't overly heavy but it had quite a bit of wind with it, thankfully it only lasted about 5-10 minutes which was enough to see many people run for cover but we sat it out, not wanting to lose our place that we were sitting.  There was another shower about half an hour later bit it wasn't as long or heavy as the first so overall it was a lovely day.

Taking Mr11 to the show is always a challenge.  His Autism means that he has massive meltdowns if he doesn't have his music player with him.  We made sure to pack extra batteries as we were going to be at the show from about 10.30am right through to approximately 10pm (yes I know we are crazy lol, but I figure the amount you pay we are going to see everything it has to offer!!!  besides it is my tradition type thing, we have our set route through the showgrounds which has been well set out since I was a kid lol).

For Mr11 we take his wheelchair,,,,now this child can walk perfectly fine but for any lengthy walks it is just easier to contain him to a wheelchair as he hates to walk and will just drop to the ground and scream if pressured to keep walking.  He can make family outings absolute hell if he chooses to (and he chooses to, just about every time we leave the house), so to help ease the stress we have found a wheelchair to be the answer.  So often I hate putting him in the wheelchair as it find it looks like we are "faking it" when he is perfectly able to get up and down and walk over the the sideshows etc but for our sanity and harmony for the other kids, this is what we have to do.  At least in a wheelchair we don't have to have hold of him all the time as we need to if he is walking.  When walking, if we let go of him, he disappears so fast it is unbelievable and a place like the Show is just not the place to have him disappear on us.  So please if you ever see anyone that can get in and out of a wheelchair with ease and it appears that they are using it just for a sympathy vote or simply because they can't be bothered walking, always consider the fact that there may be an underlying reason why they are in that wheelchair.  Until you spend a few minutes in Mr11's company you wouldn't know he was any different than the other kids,,,,a few minutes in you realise that he cannot talk (other than grunts, garble or screaming) and he basically cannot care for himself at all, there is no self sufficiency happening with the boy unless it involves a dvd player, tv and music on a computer or MP3 player).

Here are some photos we took at the show....

This was one of the Clydesdale horses, isn't he beautiful, I have always loved these horses,,,I think his name was Jacob.  I fell in love with is eyes, they were so big and just gorgeous.

Miss 12 will just love me for putting this picture on the blog lol, she is the cow :-)

Miss12 with her light up bunny ears.  She was so determined that she had to have a light up thing, she desperately wanted the darn ears.  She wore them for a whole 5 minutes,,,,I kid you not,,,,was I impressed, nope!  I had listened to her all day long going on about the darn things, I gave in and got them for her and 5 minutes was all it took for the novelty to wear off, she is darn lucky they only cost $3.50 I tell you!!!!

Mr11 wearing Miss12's Willy Wonka Hat (yes it was another must have that got worn by her for 5 whole minutes,,,lucky Mr11 liked it and it helped keep the rain off his head after we lost his hood off his jacket lol).

Overall we had a good day, way too much money got spent but I guess that is just  part of the Show and there isn't too much you can really do to avoid that part of it.  Although I love taking the kids, Hubby and I cannot wait until we can go just once by ourselves and really get to look at the things we want to look at without having children whining about wanting to go to the rides lol.  I got dragged on 3 rides with Miss12.  Hubby can't go on most of the rides because of his back injury he had last year, so I am the one that gets dragged on.  Miss12 is a bit of a daredevil and wanted me to go on a few with her, many of which I outright refused.  I ended up on 3 that was more than enough for me lol, and believe me I had to space those ones out!!  I went on the Breakdance, the Ferris Wheel and the hmmm, can't remember the name but years ago it was called the Matterhorn.  I don't do things that are high and fast due to my fear of heights (yes I know the Ferris Wheel is about as high as they come but for some stupid reason I can deal with that).  I just have a huge fear that those stupid little bolts that connect these rides together will break and we will be launched metres into the air, I cringe just thinking about it lol.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Today in my garden.....

we have seeds sprouting

Peacharine trees blossoming (well at least Narla isn't blurry lol)

Plum tree blossoming

Orange blossoms a plenty

and look who I found still tucked up in bed!!!!  It's Smudge, still fast asleep after Mr9 tucked her up snug and sound this morning before he went to school, lazy darn cat lol.