21 March 2014


When Alex was younger she had one word for iPad, apple, or anything round:  aaaaaap'n

Hannah now has a similar word:  poo

Poo can mean poo/wees/my nappy is gross, pull, push, or pompom (poopoo). 

16 December 2013

Quotable Alex

Here are some Alex quotes that I've made a note of over the last couple of years.  

At Beds R Us:
*points* "Arse Ducken!!"

(Translation: Arse = orange. R is for rooster, roosters are chickens, chickens are birds but they are not ducks, so they are duckens.)

She's having trouble getting up off the toilet:
Alex:  "Oh no!  I'm stuck!"
Ree:  *laughs*
Alex:  "It's NOT funny."
Ree:  *laughs harder*
Alex:  "Help please Mum.  Thaaaank yyoouuuu Mum.  You're welcome, Mum."

"Mum, your chest is very too big."

Walking along the street on our way home from the shops, she has her mouth open...
"I'm drinking the winds!"

*starting to stand up on toilet steps after going wees*
Ree: "Oh, are you finished?"
Alex: "No, Alex is just getting high..."

Ree:  "Alex, do you want to go toilet?"
Alex:  "No go toilet!"  *fake crying*
Ree:  "But after you've gone toilet you can choose some clothes to wear. Do you want to choose some clothes?"
Alex:  "No choose clothes, just crying..."
Ree:  "Oh dear. But you need to go toilet when you wake up in the morning. Everybody does!"
Alex:  "Like some cheese...make Alex feel better."  *sniffle*

Nev:  "Alex is going to go to sleep soon in Alex's bed."
Alex:  "No.  Alex sleep on Dad's pillow...And Dad on Mum's pillow."
Nev:  "What about Mum?  Where's she going to sleep?"
Alex:  "....Mum can sleep.....OUTSIDE!"

"Mum, GET IN THE KITCHEN!" *points*

Alex:  "Mum, you're crappy."
Ree:  "What?!"
Alex:  "No, just grumpy!"

"Dad has whiskers, and Zari, and Basil, and Patch, and Uncle Scott!"  (Patchins is her Aunty's cat)

While driving through Masterton, we see Queen Alexandra Street and mention it to Alex.  "Ohhh, I like that Queen Alexandra street.  I can wear my crown, and princess shoes, and faery wings, and my dress and my wand!  And I'll be Queen Alexandra!  Ohhh yes."

31 October 2013

Mini Us - v2.0

Tonight I realised that Hannah's about the same age Alex was when I made the original post... So I thought I'd do an update.

Nev at 18 months:

Ree at 17 months:

Hannah at 16 months (yes, blue lollipop drool is the best I could do):

And here's Alex at 16 months:

I'm sure you all have opinions, so do share them!  But don't be mean about my kids, or I'll hunt you down.  Rawr.

...I'm so tired.

11 January 2013

Toilet Humour

I was in the kitchen tidying the bench.  Hannah had been asleep for about 45 minutes and I'd promised Alex that we'd go to the park when Hannah woke up.

Alex wandered in to make sure I wasn't slacking, and I noticed a smell wafting after her.  "Oh, do we need to change your nappy and put yucky poop in the toilet?" I asked.  We'd been doing this together (as opposed to me disposing of the mess by myself) for a week or two in an effort to get her interested in toilet training and it was working.

She nodded, said "Yucky poop in the toilet!!" and trotted off into the lounge while I finished up what I was doing. 


Loud crying.

I race around to the bathroom to see Alex on the floor holding her foot.  She climbed onto my lap for pain relieving cuddles.  I looked over her shoulder to see why she fell.  Water.  Water everywhere.  Up the walls.  On the floor.  All over Alex.  And now all over me. 

There was a sopping wet cloth nappy on the floor too. 

Hannah is now screaming from her cot, having been rudley awoken by Alex's crying.

Did I say bathroom?  I meant toilet.  We were all covered in toilet water. 

My good helpful girl had nabbed the nappy I was using as a change mat and was dunking it in the toilet in what I assume was an effort to put (imaginary) yucky poop in the toilet.


To the tune of Hannah's cries (getting more and more desperate the longer I ignore her) I turn the shower on, strip Alex off, pull the toilet door shut and throw her into the shower with a couple of cups.  Then I remove my own toilet-watered clothes and wash my arms, find more clothes for myself (crawling, mind you, in an effort to avoid being seen through the windows), get dressed and go and rescue Hannah from the cot of doom.  Not only had I ignored her for so long, she'd rolled onto her tummy and was so worked up she had apparently forgotten how to roll back onto her back.

I sent Nev a photo message.

"Esplain?" ...so I do.  "Oh.  Oh.  That's not good.  Kind of funny.  From this far away.  ...OK now very funny."


Hannah and I supervised Alex's shower, but I didn't want Hannah concussing herself on the hard floor while I got Alex out so I popped her in the lounge with an assortment of toys to keep her happy before going back to get Alex.  Hannah promptly started crying from the lounge, which is not surprising given her recent trend of hating everyone that isn't mum.  I finally convinced Alex to get out of the shower and marched her into the lounge to dry off and get dressed. 

I'm met with Hannah head down, bum up, a favourite toy just out of reach, and crying louder now because she knows I'm in the room and haven't immediately leapt to her aid.  So I let Alex go and rescued Hannah.  Alex promptly dropped towel and ran away into the kitchen.  "Argh, come back, your feet are wet!  You'll fall over again!"

Luckily she didn't!

She just weed on the floor instead.  While standing.  Wee all down her legs.  Sighing, I picked her back up and ran her back into the bathroom, turned the shower back on and threw her back in.  Hannah started crying again because by now it is clearly evident that I hate her.

Paper towels applied to the puddle, I gathered up the damp towel and raced back to the bathroom to grab Alex.  Again.  Just as she's opening the shower door to get out.  Doors clashed because our bathroom is teeny tiny, Alex slipped, more tears.  I scooped Alex back up, assuming she had been sufficiently rinsed, and brought her back to the lounge.  Again.  More tears from both girls as I try to dress Alex (wanted to "sit up on the couch!!!") and calm Hannah down (staaaaarviiinnnngggg ohgod).

Alex cleaned, dried and dressed, I went and properly cleaned up the kitchen puddle, then fed Hannah.

So we didn't make it to the park after all.  And I still haven't reopened the toilet door.  Hope Nev doesn't need to go loo once he gets home.

25 November 2012

Six Months Old!

Hannah is six months old today!  Time has gone even quicker this time around and I really can't believe half a year has zoomed past. 

Hannah has found her voice and makes the sweetest little sounds.  She rolled over (back to tummy) for the first time at 4 months, spends a lot of time wiggling around the lounge, and love love loves the Jolly Jumper.  She's getting better at sitting up by herself, but I can see her concentrating on getting mobile rather than becoming an expert sitter like big sister was.  She has decided bananas are quite delicious.

She's also just finished up the last of her iron (medicine).  After all those times I had to give it to her while she was crying at me, she now grabs the syringe and sucks the medicine right out of it - sometimes complaining when it's all gone!  

A few hours old...

One month (still slightly yellow)...

Two months...

Three months...

Four months...

Five months...

Six months!

09 October 2012

Whose stupid idea was it to go overseas with a baby?

No red eye, neutral expression, no shadows, mouth closed, no reflections on face, background plain and light but not white, with child straight on and looking at the camera.  Passport photos suck at the best of times.  Now, let's try that with a 4.5 month old baby:

27 September 2012

My Exciting Life

I realised today that there are many things that make me happy.  Not the obvious ones like my kids' smiles, Nev cooking me dinner, or buying myself a nice new pair of shoes (when the hell did I last buy shoes???).  No, I'm talking about things that really shouldn't be so exciting...

Doing housework without any assistance.  Vacuuming without Alex following me around turning the vacuum down to low, or hanging out the washing without her destroying all the pot plants by the washing line.  "I am alone.  I can do the dishes!  Yay!" is NOT a normal thought process.  What's wrong with me??

Popping into the supermarket, taking only my wallet and phone with me.  I'd say just wallet, but I need the phone in case the tiniest human decides she's OMG STARVING while I'm half way around the store.  Anyway.  Nobody in the trolley singing Elmo's song at the top of her lungs (as adorable as that can be).  Nobody in the carrier meaning I have to do squats every time I need something from the bottom shelf.  Just me and the groceries.  Aww yeah.  

Only dealing with two pooey nappies per day.  Again, nobody wakes up in the morning and thinks "gosh, I hope I get to change only two shitty nappies today" but that thought has crossed my mind.  This is of course not to be confused with hoping for no shitty nappies today, because that just means tomorrow is going to be a world of poo.  Stinky stinky poo.  Everywhere.

Five hours of uninterrupted sleep.  This one isn't so relevant anymore as I have magical babies that sleep through the night from seven weeks of age.  Pre-kid (PK?) I'd feel half dead if I'd only had five hours of sleep before work, but the first time the tiny humans sleep for five hours straight is amazing.  I've never felt so refreshed in my life!

Good weather.  "Silly Ree, it's normal to be happy about good weather!" you might say.  You'd be right.  But I don't get excited about good weather because I'll be able to take a nice relaxing walk along the waterfront on my lunch break.  Oh no.  I get excited about good weather because I can do extra washing.  And it will all be dry by evening.  Super duper bonus points if I get to hang it by myself.  

And finally, finishing a blog post in one sitting.  This one took me a week.  

26 August 2012

Spot Birthday Party

Little Miss Alex is quite fond of Eric Hill's Spot books (she has 16 of them at last count, two of which are mine from when I was little..!).  One of her favourites is Spot Bakes a Cake and she always says "wow!" when the cake is revealed, so a plan was hatched to make her birthday party Spot themed. Here's a wee look-see at what we did.

First, the invitations.  I downloaded some Spot placemats from this website, and through the magic of Photoshop, drew an Alex into the picture and added the party details (duh).

For the envelopes I got some coloured A4 paper and used these instructions to fold them up.  I also printed off some return address labels with Spot on them.

I drew four pages from Spot's Birthday Party, painted them all pretty-like and stuck them to the wall at toddler height along with the accompanying text from the story:

Alex and Spot checking them out
 Nev bought 10 helium balloons in bright colours (just like Spot's balloons at his party), and brought them home with him on the train.  What a good Dad!

We cleared out the lounge and set up a ball pit (do you have any idea how much mess a bunch of kids with 300 balls can make??) and colouring table with some of Alex's favourite characters and stickers.

The table had a table cloth just like Spot, dog bone shaped bowls for the chips and little metal dog bowls full of Pebbles and Jelly Beans.  There were dog bone shaped biscuits and because Elmo is her best friend at the moment, we had to make Elmo cupcakes too.

Ready and waiting with Elmo and Spot
 And then there was the cake.  Just a round chocolate cake, with pebbles stuck around the side, blobs of yellow icing with jaffas on top, sherbert rope things (Spot used icing in the book, but I wasn't about to pipe icing that thick all over the cake!), and four of the dog bone biscuits dipped in white chocolate.

Nev's Mum pointed out that Spot baked the cake for his dad, and it's Nev's birthday next Saturday so I might have to repeat the process with an Alex assistant.  We'll see...!

Other neat things I found online and copied were fruit (melons, pineapple) cut with cookie cutters into stars/hearts and cheerios cut so they look like octopuses when cooked.  And This is where I found the candles and paper plates etc.

07 July 2012

Well, that was an interesting six weeks!

Warning:  Wall of text ahead!

Just before Alex was born, blood tests showed that I had anti-C and anti-e antibodies in my blood. Nothing had happened to cause me to develop antibodies - no transfusions, no procedures during pregnancy (ECV, amnio etc) and no trauma to my belly during pregnancy.  Awesome.  Breech baby, low amniotic fluid and random appeared-for-no-reason antibodies.  When Alex arrived (via the sunroof) they took extra bloods from her because of the antibodies but she stayed nice and pink and we came home after 3 days.  

When I was pregnant with Hannah I had to have monthly blood tests to monitor the antibody levels.  These levels spiked in April, to a level just below "oh shit" but high enough to warrant me visiting the High Risk team once a week, along with weekly scans to make sure baby wasn't anaemic and blood tests to monitor antibody levels.  Luckily levels stabilised, and baby was fine.  I had the choice of being induced or another c-section.  I chose the latter.   

Miss Hannah arrived on Friday, 25th May.  3.52kg, 51cm long, and pink... for about a day.  They took some of her cord blood to test, and she had heel pricks done every few hours to monitor her bilirubin levels.  Over the weekend she tracked just under the level required for treatment, so after her Monday morning test they decided 12-hourly would be sufficient and told me we'd probably be allowed to go home on Tuesday morning.  But then her Monday evening blood test showed that levels had spiked and I was told I had to finish her feed then take her down to neonates.

Once we arrived they took more bloods from her, stuck a tube into her stomach via her nose, put heart, oxygen and respiration monitors on her, and an IV line into the back of her teeny tiny hand.  She was put in an incubator with 3 blue light lamps over her and a biliblanket under her.  I was told to express milk 4-hourly, and was welcome to come and see her when I dropped the milk off.  Um.  Right.  Argh!  The only positive thing about her being rushed to neonates was that they moved me into my own room and offered me ear plugs in case the sound of other babies crying might upset me..!

This is the graph they used to track her levels.  There are a few dots just under the treatment line, then three for Monday where she went from OK (just), to lights required to blood transfusion required (400) in seven or so hours.  Luckily the lights brought her levels down enough over Monday night for the transfusion to be avoided.

(Click to make bigger...if you want)
On Tuesday and Wednesday I was allowed to breast feed her (with expressed milk top-ups afterwards).  She was only allowed out from under the lamps for 30 minutes, and had to have her biliblanket wrapped around her.  But I got to feed and cuddle (as best you can with wires all over the place) and she got to have her sunnies off and stare at me for a bit.  They also "let" me change her nappy after each feed.  Thanks guys!

On Wednesday they started turning down and then removing lamps, and by lunch time on Thursday she even had her bill blanket turned off... and I was kicked out of postnatal.  I had to move into one of the parent rooms at NICU with no notice, and nothing to eat (yay for Wishbone downstairs).  Hannah came to my room that evening, and I had to call them after every feed to report on whether she woke herself up or not, how long she fed, her temperature and her "output".  Her haemoglobin levels were low due to all the red blood cells her body had been killing so I was told we'd probably be in for another couple of days.

But on Friday a miracle happened:  we were allowed to go home!  I had strict instructions to make sure she fed regularly etc and to rush back to hospital if she became lethargic and/or wouldn't eat.  They called Masterton Hospital and my midwife and filled them in.  I left with six copies of her discharge notes and graphs to distribute.   

Over the next couple of weeks we had blood tests twice weekly, then weekly, and her bilirubin levels continued to drop nicely.  Unfortunately her haemoglobin levels also dropped so we were given a prescription for folic acid.  Tuesday two weeks ago she hit a low of 76 (normal should be 110-150 ish according to Dr Google) and transfusion was mentioned again.  Feck.  We were given a prescription for iron to go with the folic acid and our local pharmacy now knows us by name.

The following week her haemoglobin was back up to 81, so we avoided a transfusion (again!).  Her next appointment with the paediatrician is Wednesday, and depending on the results of the blood tests that day, we may be allowed to go a whole month before having more.  I really hope she doesn't develop some kind of foot phobia from all these blood tests though.  She kicks like mad and grizzles if anyone even goes near her feet.  Makes putting socks on her a bit tricky.

Hannah's still pale, and it's more obvious as she loses her yellow-ness.  Throughout all of this she's never acted jaundiced, even when her levels went through the roof.  This was possibly helped by my epic milk production (the paediatrician was well impressed, and now I know why Alex packed on the weight so quickly, heh).  She's doing all the things she should now too -  vocalising, tracking us with her eyes, smiling and demanding milk and cuddles all damn evening long.  Hopefully we can now get on with enjoying her instead of worrying about her constantly.  I'd hate to have been doing this as a paranoid first time mum, and seeing as the antibody issue is meant to get worse with each pregnancy, I definitely don't plan on doing this again.


24 June 2012

Shaving Foam Paint

For some reason, my mother has made a pinterest page thingy full of Kids' Stuff.  And on it there are various bath paint recipes.  

We don't actually have a bath at the new house, so bath crayons and paints tend to just run down the wall as they get splashed by the shower.  Through trial and error we've concluded that the best recipe is shaving foam + food colouring. 

Picture stolen from pinterest
It's thick enough that unless you point the water directly at it it stays on the shower walls quite nicely.  It's also thick enough that you can paint yourself pretty colours if you want.  And it's gloopy enough that you can pick up lots on the brush and then splash pretty colours all over your parents and the bath mat (don't forget to insist that the shower door stays open)...

Nice hand placement, Alex!
On the down side the bathroom stinks of shaving foam after Alex has had her shower, and she's now started painting with anything she can find.  Last night she painted the dining table with her curry sauce.