Four Starters……

I made a point of teaching the twins the four starters…

Hello, Goodbye, Please and Thank You.

This has made them quite chatty especially Miss who now says hello to anyone and everyone. She also expects them to tell her their name and she hers, then she will generally spill forth what happens to be on her mind at the moment.  Like the other day when she told a lady at the park that her son was fat. Oh dear,,,,,,,we had to have a conversation in the car as soon as possible after the event about why that was so wrong.  I am so hoping she understood my explanation.  I tried to keep it as simple as possible.  I also was grateful for the car being close by so I could hide.

I remember as a child telling a friends mother her house was dirty and getting into so much trouble. Master quite often informs me about mess;  in the library, in shops, at others houses and the list goes on.  I have taken to referring to their room in the morning as a midden (Scottish for mess), hoping that if they repeat this nobody will pay much attention.

Anyway, I have decided that we should all use hello, goodbye, please and thank you more often.

So this week I am saying:

Hello to the lovely new hardware and lawn in our back garden

Goodbye to my beautiful rosemary that could not be saved in the garden renovation

Please do not offer unsolicited parenting tips until you take a look in your own backyard first

Thank You to the lady at Number 23 (number changed) two streets over who overheard Miss’s request for an emergency bathroom stop and let us use hers.  Given we were ten minutes walk from home and the tree wasn’t looking like a good option, I am very thankful.

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Spring is here!

Spring is always a beautiful time in Sydney.  Usually the humidity hasn’t kicked in yet and the temperatures vary from about 21c to 32c. But best of all are the gorgeous spring flowers. There are plenty of Jacarandas starting to flower and Star Jasmine but one of the most showiest at the moment is the bottlebrush.  Actually it is a Callistemon and a genus of shrubs in the Myrtacaeae family.  It is widely found in Australia but you can find it all over the world.  I remember we had one in our garden in New Zealand and it was truly divine. It was nothing like the brilliant flowers that are out at the moment though. I feel that they are even better this year and I wonder if it was all the rain we had at the beginning of spring and now the sunshine that is making these truly deep reds.

I planted a little one about six years ago and even it is doing better than ever this year.  If anyone is interested it is a miniature called Callistemon – Little John and it is very cute.  Look  – it’s the Callistemon TWINS!

Callistemon Little John

Callistemon Little John

At Some Point in Time…

Greetings

Well, September flew by and I didn’t post but I’m back.  September saw me battling migraines, a blown out thyroid and a stomach ulcer caused by the migraine drugs…….arggghhhhh……it has been hideous but I think I see light at the end of the tunnel.

This week we started our garden renovation which probably should be called a “garden demolition”.  I knew it was a big job but boy it really looks like a bomb went off in the back yard.

But I digress.  I really wanted to talk about a comment that I heard recently.  It went a little like this.

“At some point in time triplets and a toddler must be no harder than having four under the age of ten”.

You have to read this a few times to understand what exactly is being said.

For example at some point in time three babies and a two year old is no worse than a 2, 4, 6 and 8 year old.

Now at exactly what time might this happen.  I have spent nearly a month thinking about this off and on and I can’t quite fathom exactly when this might occur.

If you have four singletons you can hand down clothes, toys, prams, beds, cots, bikes, and scooters.  With triplets you need three of everything at the same time. There is surely bickering with four singletons but they are at different development stages so you might be able to reason with at least one of them.  What about going to the bike park with triplets and trying to teach all three to ride at the same time.  Golly, it is hard enough with twins.  What about when they get older and want to learn to drive (all at once)…..

And what about three teenagers and their hormonal anomalies (at the same time).  And the parties that they will want to go to.

These are just a few things I can think of.  But I still cannot fathom at what point would it be no worse than having four under ten.

I would love to hear your views on this, especially if you are parents of triplets or higher order multiples.  Please correct me if I am missing something here.

Soon after  this comment I was presented with the following, “it is so hard going to the supermarket with two of different ages”.  Goodness me.  I had never heard anyone say that, especially not to a twin parent anyway.  What do people think it is like taking two preschoolers the same age to the supermarket.  Please…give me strength.

Enough gripes for a Thursday I think.  Back to convincing the Workaholic that underground sprinklers are necessary for the new lawn and that we do not need the world’s biggest ugliest spotlight so he can see the BBQ properly!

Impending Father’s Day (or was that imploding)

This week I was at the mall and saw advertisments for the upcoming Father’s Day.  Whatever is next I thought.  As I emerged from the escalator I swung to the left and straight into the David Jones Christmas Shop.  That is what is next.

But back to Father’s Day.

Last night I thought I had better broach the subject of gifts with the Workaholic.

Our conversation went like this.

Me:
What would you like for Father’s Day?

Him:
A golf weekend in Tasmania

Me:
Do you still want a new TV and Apple Box for your study?

Him:
A golf weekend in Tasmania

Me:
If you don’t decide you might get soap on a rope and a tie from Bunnings (DIY store which is Masters favourite place to shop)

Him:
A golf weekend in Tasmania

Me:
Oh, are we all going too?

Him:
Beep, beep, beep, the less said the better

Happy shopping for the man/father/partner/husband in your life

Arghhhhh…….said the pirate

It is an awful day in Sydney today, lots of rain and blowing a gale.  What better way to forget about the weather than to upload gorgeous photos of one of our favourite parks (on a beautiful day).

Here is our local pirate park down at D’Albora Marina at Spit Bridge.

Again pictures tell a thousand words.  There is plenty of parking (paid if you are not a rate payer), toilets, rubbish bin and coffee across the road if you feel like a bit of a jaunt (easier to pick it up on your way to the park).  It is fully fenced with a mixture of sand, rubber soft fall and mulch, and has shade from some lovely old trees.  The ship acts as a climbing frame and has a bridge and a slide.  There is a saucer swing (see below) and also a set of traditional swings. It does catch the breeze though being close to the water but that is totally ok on a hot Sydney day.

Enjoy!

 

What a view!

What a view!

Climbing frame, slide and games within the pirate ship

Climbing frame, slide and games within the pirate ship

twinnies-at-pirate-park-swing1.jpg

Playground Frenzy

We have been really busy lately with our visits to new play grounds.  This week I am fortunate to have my parents visiting from New Zealand and so outside of day care hours, they have been entertaining the twins.

So, no new playgrounds this week.  But not to worry as I visit so many I usually have a stash of photos and notes stored up.

The one we found last week is divine.  It is a little community garden with a playground attached.

Corbett Playground and Manly Vale Community Garden

It is just so cute.  I think the photos will tell the tale for itself.  There is also a scooter track around the perimeter of the fully fenced playground.  There is a mixture of mulch and rubber soft fall (so nobody gets that dirty).   The only downside is that there are no toilets or rubbish bins.  My two explored the community garden as well, pointing out all the vegetables and fruits that they knew.  We even had some of them in our own garden at home.

If you are reading this Mothers Group it is well worth a visit.  Plenty of seating for us ladies and shade too.  There is on street parking outside the park but we had to walk about 150 meters as it was filling up.

The River and Boat

The River and Boat

Community Garden Corbett

Spinning Flowers

Spinning Flowers

Seesaw Corbett

Older Kids Climbing Frame

Older Kids Climbing Frame

Climbing House Corbett 2
Slides Corbett

 

A Hidden Gem

Prior Avenue Playground

Here’s another one we visited last week.  This is such a cute park.  It also has an large grass area the size of a tennis court to kick balls and run around on.  Beware of bare feet though as there are lots of bindis (prickles).  In one spot you can see the remains of the old tennis court which seems to have formed hopscotch stones.  It is not fenced but is in a very quiet cul-de-sac with plenty of parking.  There are no toilets but plenty of local bushes. There is a castle with a drawbridge complete with local dragon and a set of swings.  My two didn’t want to leave they were so busy playing Knights and Princesses. Truly a local secret.

Tennis Court Remains

 

 

Resident Dragon

 

Castle

Hopscotch Stones

Hopscotch Stones

Swings

Baranbali Playground

Oh my…here is a beauty.  Baranbali Playground at the corner of Baranbali and Fromelles, Seaforth.

We went on Tuesday and the weather was divine and everybody seemed happy with this new park.  They also loved looking around the community garden next door and watching a local empty her food scraps into the giant compost bins.  The people of Seaforth should be very proud of this beautiful playground and their gorgeous garden.

The only downside is there are no toilets, however there are plenty of bushes outside the playground for this purpose.  The Workaholic probably won’t be keen to assist with these stops given he avoids all bushes on the golf course, (something to do with his innate fear of Australia’s native sliders).

Mothers Group – lets go tomorrow as the morning is going to be lovely.  Pick up your coffee on the way though and bring food as there are two gorgeous picnic tables.  Oh and Miss will be there and we all know how she loves to eat!!!

Swings

Swings

Seesaw and Twister

Seesaw and Twister

Climbing Frame

Rocking Motorbike

Rocking Motorbike

Seating

Seating

Climbing Baranbali

Thursday’s Twin Twitter

I have been so AWOL………………….Sorry about that.  Holidays, illness in children and myself and a bit of writers block.  Heaven forbid I don’t write that much anyway (how did I get a block).

Sometimes it is just ONE OF THOSE DAYS, where you see things you wouldn’t normally and you question your abilities.

It started with my neighbour witnessing the garbage men dumping blue bins (paper recycling) in with red bins (general waste).  We watched him move down the back lane and he must have felt two pairs of beady eyes staring at him because all of a sudden he started just emptying red bins.  He was none too impressed at having been caught because he threw another neighbours red bin into their fence (the fence is ok but the bin was upside down with the lid broken).  There are two things that I can conclude from this.

  1. They contract for both red and blue bin pickups and to save time they empty some blue bins in with the red ones.
  2. That the separation of paper and cardboard from our general waste is indeed a waste of time and instead of being recycled ends up in land fill.

I am still deciding whether I will ring council and find out which is the right conclusion.

Earlier this morning I was at the toy shop searching for a plane puzzle for Master.  A lady with her four year old stopped to select a 300 piece puzzle for the child.  I suggested he must be very good at puzzles.  She said that he is and it means that he will be good at mathematics like her husband and that she is in charge of the craft side of things.  This left me thinking what am I in charge of in our house. Most days I manage to feed, clothe and entertain the twins and fall into bed at night shattered.

Given that the preschool teacher just advised us that jigsaws help children to learn how to space their words when learning  to write, I was a bit confused.  While I was at the counter paying the little boy announced that the puzzle he had was for 9 year olds but that it was easy for him.  In my head I could hear my Master twin saying, “smarty pants” in his squeaky little voice and I chuckled.  Not only could this child do 300 piece jigsaws at the age of four but he could read as well!

Did this make me fear that my children were not advanced enough?  Probably, but no more than the people who look down their noses if you let your children watch television or let them eat food outside of mealtimes.  I really can’t keep up and if we were supposed to be perfect at childcare it would have been included in our college educations.  That then provokes the question that if it were, would it be an “arts” or “science” subject.  There certainly is some science to raising children where we can replicate scenarios and expect the same outcomes but generally I think it would be situated in the “arts”.  Now given that the “arts” were not really my thing I am going to forgive myself that my three year old twins only do jigsaws of 48 pieces and certainly cannot write their names.

Quite often I find myself talking to the dog.  George is a great listener.  He moves his head around as if he is really listening and woofs if I crack a joke.  Today I found myself chatting to another member of our household, our friendly spider, Henry the Huntsman.  I haven’t seen him for a while.  But as the weather has been a bit colder he must have come back inside to keep warm.  So my conversation went a little like this.  “Whoa…….there’s a huntsman in the house”, as I climbed the stairs and spied him in a crook of the downstairs ceiling. “How are you Henry?  I haven’t seen you for ages.  I guess it is getting a bit cold outside.  Can you please try not to go in the twins room this winter and I will leave you where you are.  Lucky you are not at my friends house where at this point she would have been screaming, “Spider”, and you would have been sprayed with half a can of fly spray.  Have a nice day and I promise not to squeal every time I climb the stairs today and see you in the corner”.

It certainly has been ONE OF THOSE DAYS.

 

 

Dear Mr Jones…part two…

David Jones Department Store
Market Street
Sydney NSW 2000

Dear Mr Jones

You may remember me.  I am the lady with the terrible twins that jumped all over your beds about two months ago. If you do not remember you are lucky, if you do, then you will probably want to reach for your Valium about now.

I am not sure how getting a new bed installed became so difficult.  But I think it has something to do with your store management and processes.

We organised through your bedding department to have the bed and surround delivered yesterday.  The drivers were to call at 6.30am with an ETA.  We were up early and had taken the old bed down, no mean feat with two three year olds wanting to help.  The call never came and when my husband contacted your office at midday he was told they forgot to put the bed on the truck. They would arrange delivery on Saturday, today. Hmm,,,I thought. I was already to book into the Four Seasons for the night when my husband rang to say he would put the old bed back up for one night. Darn, not happy Jan.

I rang your bedding department and very nicely let them know what an inconvenience it was that the bed had not been delivered. They advised me they understood but it wasn’t their fault as they had sent the request for delivery to the truck company and what else could they do.

I wanted to say this:

Take responsibility for the mistake, give me a $500 gift card, and ensure that the bed is delivered with the utmost care to our house.

Instead I was too nice and agreed that these things do sometimes happen and accepted their “unsure” offer of a new mattress protector.

The bed arrived this morning along with two very jovial men who tramped mud all through my house. When my husband pointed out the large black marks on the mattress they declared it happened at the factory and do not clean them as they will only smudge and look worse. They suggested we contact the manufacturer and get them out to clean it.  Really?

Now, had I not had to clean dog poo off two pairs of shoes and the entire garage floor this morning I might have been a little more forgiving. But I am furious. If they had come Friday as they were told to then the cleaner would have cleaned up their mess after them, the twins would not have been outside stepping in dog poo, the dog would have been walked and wouldn’t have felt the need to poo on the lawn, the workaholic would have got to play golf, and I would have had the bedroom sorted before the weekend.

I know this is hard for you to grasp but I am well and truly p….d off.  I want my $500 gift card next week and you can s…k your mattress protector somewhere else.  By the way the mattress protector never arrived so that is why I know I can say this without causing you any physical harm.

Please take note.  You as the retail store are responsible for your supplier, the mode of delivery and the final feelings of your customer.  I know that the bed was purchased in a sale but your sign did not say that it would be damaged upon arrival.  Please ensure that you fully disclose all the possible outcomes so that the buyer is aware of what they may be purchasing.

Take another note.  You have 14 days to rectify the situation, to my satisfaction, or I will bring my entire Mothers Group and our entourage to your bedding department for a play date.

Third note.  Make the $500 voucher from your competitor across the road so I can see if their service is any better.

Last note.  As I sit here procuring this letter I cannot believe how incredibly comfortable this new bed is.  Thank you.

Yours sincerely

Timeless Mama

New Bed at Last

New Bed at Last