31 October 2011

Halloween 2011: Toddler Torture

Alex and I had nowhere to go this halloween, but that didn't stop me dressing her up purely for my own amusement.

Materials required:
  • Yellow socks
  • Black tights
  • Black hoody
  • Flesh coloured felt
  • Two black pipe cleaners
  • Polystyrene ball
  • Vivid
  • Red fabric
  • Cloth nappy and pin
  • Needle and thread


1.  Cut felt into a circle, sew onto front of hoody.
2.  Fold pipe cleaners in half and twist all four pieces together.  Poke folded end into ball (glue on if it won't stay in) and draw a pupil on the ball with the vivid.  Sew pipe cleaners to top of hood.
3.  Pin toddler to the ground to measure how long her cape needs to be.   Cut semi-circle for neck, fold over edges and hem.
4.  Grab toddler and dress her.  Chase toddler when she power-crawls away before you have the cloth nappy on her properly.  This will make the cloth nappy fall off, and her sad once recaptured.  

5.  Distract toddler with videos so she'll sit still instead of crawling towards the camera, then get in her way while you set up the shot.  This will frustrate her.

6.  Sing along to music videos.  This will amuse her.

And there you have it.  One smiling 14 month old dressed as Nibbler.  Unfortunately her legs failed to work tonight (hover-baby) so there are no photos of standing Nibbler.

27 October 2011

Mysterious Adventures of Special Cat

The cats were outside in the courtyard this morning while the builders were busy working on the deck.  The builders each have a large dog - dobe cross and a ridgeback cross.  Both are lovely dogs and just hang out in the car port, occasionally wandering down to see what the builders are up to.  Zari is a bit wary of them, so was busy being brave outside then being a chicken and coming back inside.  Basil was very brave.  Or oblivious.  Probably oblivious.  Either way, he wasn't fussed.  So not fussed in fact that he jumped* the fence and went walkies.  He usually comes back pretty quickly, so I wasn't too concerned.

Midday rolled around, still no Basil.

It got to 2pm and Zari started getting antsy.  I assumed all the building and dog activity had stopped him from coming home, but he'd reappear after they left for the day.

5pm, the builders were gone and I started to worry that the numpty would get himself squashed in rush hour traffic.  Zari continued pacing.

Dinner time came and went (7pm, or 6:00 ...or 5:30 depending on when Basil decides he's staaaarrving and commences nagging).  Still no Basil.  I went outside and very loudly opened a tin of tuna, very loudly dished it up into his food bowl - not forgetting to loudly scrape out every last drop of sauce from the tin.  Zari chowed down.  

We left the food out there, hoping the smell of tuna would waft down the street and entice him home.  Instead we enticed a blackbird.  I did not know blackbirds liked tuna.

That's a bit of tuna on the ground in front of her.
At 7:45 I decided to go for a walk before it got dark and see if he was hiding somewhere down the road.  Nev assures me cats don't get lost, but I wouldn't have put it past Basil.  I was half way down the hill when I got a text saying he'd arrived home.  

The smell hit me as soon as I entered the room.  God it was awful.  So very foul.  He was still puffing 5 minutes after arriving home (haha fatty) and his paw pads were a bit raw looking.  Otherwise no obvious sore points, but I couldn't stand being near him for too long...!  

Do you know what happens to cats that smell like a swamp? 

Now he smells like porridge.  

Whatever he got up to today on his smelly swamp adventure, he's too busy recovering to nag for dinner.  Zari's just glad she doesn't smell like porridge too.

*  Awkwardly climbed/scrambled/heaved his way over

12 October 2011

Goodbye Rotten Deck!

We managed to get the price of the house lowered because this deck was in such a shocking state when we bought the place.  Three years ago.  

Then one of Nev's friends decided to marry an Irish girl (in the South of France) so how could we NOT put the deck replacement plans on hold to go on holiday to their wedding?

The next year we went to Japan.  $800 return!  Japan is awesome.  We didn't need much convincing at that price.  

Come to Japan and get mugged by map-eating deer.
Then there was a tiny human on the way so we had to buy a car big enough to fit a car seat in the back seat.  

But now the day has finally come.  This death trap is being replaced with a deck big enough to actually put a table and chairs on and use (without fear of plummeting to your death) this summer.

That upright looks sound.

Basil can't wait to be closer to the birds in that tree.
Stay tuned.  Right now we just have some giant holes in the ground, but I'm told they are going to "dismantle" the existing deck tomorrow.  I suspect they'll just need to threaten it with a hammer and everything will fall down.

03 October 2011

Wellington Zoo

We went to the zoo this weekend, so I thought I'd share the better photos from the afternoon.  We left it a bit late in the day so didn't see every animal, but Miss Alex enjoyed pointing at ALL the things.  Especially if they were monkeys, lemurs or chimps.  We decided not to photograph the chimps as the one closest to us had his finger up his bum the entire time we were there.

"Da" means this, that, look, Zari, Basil, thanks, here you go etc.  Alex was not implying that her father is a spider monkey.

"Do you like the monkeys?"..."dudn dudn"

It is important that you pay attention to the signs around the zoo. 

These little guys came right up to the glass and moved quickly - the perfect combination for baby excitement.

We saw some other animals too...

Giraffe photobomb.
FINE.  You can have a close-up.

Normally Nev won't let me near the gift shop, but since we had an Alex with us I was allowed in.  We were not surprised when she chose a white-handed gibbon toy over the cute white tiger or red panda toys I was eyeing up.