Yes, apparently when the recipe says two eggs and you have only one it does matter!
I'm so excited!
For those of you who think I live an exotic lifestyle here in Australia, look away now.
I mean it. Shut this page down, go away, have a cuppa and imagine me running down some golden beach in a red skimpy one piece, laughing with the bronzed life guards before wrapping a gorgeous sarong around my trim waist and slipping my expensive designer shades down over my sexy eyes and revving away down the road in my soft top Porsche...
You're still here? I guess you realise I am who I am. Sitting here blogging when my kitchen is a trashed mess from breakfast, the floors need washing and the ironing mountain is registering as a landmass on Google Earth.
Do you want to know why I'm so excited? You do? Oh you are darlings!
From this moment onwards I'm getting organised. I'm going to take control of this messy house. I'm going to write lists, plan menus, schedule and delegate and live a perfect life. And it all started with this mornings delivery. May I present to you my new fridge!
Ta Da!!! It is only cheap but it's been bought for the garage. It is going to organise me in my quest for stress-free mealtimes. I will buy one big shop each week. No running back in and out of Woolies every couple of days for just a couple of things. I will plan my meals and prepare food every Monday when I am off work and will store it in my spacious clean and currently empty fridge in the garage. My fruit bowl will no longer get soggy and soft. I will have tons of room to keep all the spare veggies and spare fruit No more apples falling out on the kitchen floor every time I open the packed normal kitchen fridge to get the milk.
I'm just going have one more little peep inside before I go collect the kids from school.
Someone else must have other ideas...
Where are you MR B..............! I'm going to wring your neck....
The new bedroom is complete. We went from hills and fluffy clouds in the sky to watermelons and flowers. It all started with a lovely set of bed linen we found at a local outlet store.
P.S. She moved back in tonight so she can wake up in it tomorrow morning on her birthday.
Today is ANZAC day here in Australia. A day to remember the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps who fought to keep our countries free, particularly during World War I.
All around the country people march through their local towns wearing sprigs of Rosemary and give pride of place to the elderly soldiers that wear their medals and the medals of their fathers and grandfathers with pride.
As I touched them I felt goose-bumps. These little pieces of fading ribbon and polished metal represented lives lost, blood shed, real sacrifices made by real men. Sons, husbands, fathers. I asked him could I take a photo of the jacket to show my children, to show my friends here. He stood tall and smiled. He said he wanted people to remember, to remember those lost, to remember those who gave so much so that I could have freedom. He was happy for me to share this image...
Rhiannon was involved in an outdoor celebration of the Stations of the Cross in our church grounds in the lead up to Easter. Her school was depicting the Third Station where Jesus is brought before the Sanhedrin and has his clothing removed.
Rhiannon was chosen to be Jesus and was wearing the orange robes which were velcro closed down the seams for easy "tearing" off. She was worried that it wouldn't work because on each of the practise sessions the velcro then stuck to her clothing underneath. When they did it for real during the actual ceremony it went perfectly and she and her friends were very proud.
When Rhiannon was a baby we were still living in the UK. This is the nursery that I painted for her. Hills and sky and wooden cut out flowers...
Fast forward a couple of years and we had built our new house. Rhiannon was given the choice of how to decorate her room and she was still adamant that it was to be exactly the same as the old one. We painted and repositioned the flowers and the sunshine and her wish was granted...
How was the camping, you asked?
You sniggered and you giggled.
Yes, those of you that live here in Australia heard the news reports that this weekend had the highest April rainfall on record in the last ten years.
Yes, you delighted in telling me!
Yes, those of you who rarely ring for a "no reason chat" found time to pick up the phone to ask how we were!
So here we go. The Gina version of the Big Campout.
It rained, and rained, and rained. We got soaked, We cursed. We laughed. We drank. The end.
What? You want more? You want the miserable details? Where to start?
Friday 5pm. It was dry and the sun was shining in a blue sky. We pulled into the camp site to see clusters of immaculately put up tents and lots of familiar friends holding bottles of beer high with grins on their faces. Hurry up! Get the tent up! Get a beer into ya! And so we tried. Within ten minutes we had the inner tent unrolled and laid flat on the ground, corners pegged in and ready for the poles. That's when the rain started. It poured and poured and poured down absolutely saturating us and the inside of the tent. We stood under the BBQ shelters watching the puddles merge where we were hoping to sleep. Cue the cursing. Fast forward an hour. There had been a lull in the rain. It had eased to a gentle pitter patter and the tent was up. Beer was in hand and the kids were gone off with their friends. Cue laughing "Ho Ho How-we-will-laugh-at-this-in-the-future through gritted teeth!) Cue drinking.
Friday night it rained and after consuming a delightful selection of bubbles, red wine and Baileys we fell into our damp beds and snored through the gentle hum of rain and tarpaulins flapping in the wind. Saturday started early, 4.30am if I recall, and passed in a cycle of rain, clear, rain, clear, wet kids cycling and scooting around and around the camp-site having a whale of a time. Gareth got a magnificent black eye falling from the top of the playground. Sophie scared everyone by performing a spectacular crash off her scooter that required lots of cleaning and bandaging by a very well equipped resident nurse, lots of chocolate and hugs. We escaped home for an hour to swap sodden clothing for dry, we ate take-away fish and chips in the shelter of our kitchen and were grateful for the temporary solidness of the walls and ceiling sheltering us from the elements. We returned to the camp-site to start what was to be the big finale of weather dramatics. If only we had known maybe we would have stayed home!?
We returned to camp with full bellies. Put kids to bed in dry clothes with torches and books, had a glass of red and a wee nippy sweetie of Talisker from Byron's hip flask. Looked at the watches and called it a night.
Not much sleep was had that night because the biggest storm rolled in, reaching its crescendo at about 2am. There was driving rain and wind that hit the tent like a freight train. How the tents sprung back up after each time they were flattened to the ground is beyond me. I must admit for all the jokes now there was a part of that night that was scary. I couldn't hear my kids in their tent that was side by side with ours. I felt vulnerable and eventually braved the downpour in my pj's to run into them and check. 2 were sleeping like babies but Sian was sitting bolt upright looking a little terrified. I promised her $10 if either tent fell down and made sure she had a mobile under her pillow so we could ring each other and I went back out into the dark to find many of our friends also standing out in their pj's holding tent poles down and repositioning flapping tarps and hammering in extra pegs. One tent had flooded when the tarp above it had released a downpour of collected water straight into the doorway. Wet kids stood looking pale and green around the gills while parents rearranged soggy sleeping arrangements in the dark. The following hours passed in a haze but all I know is that we slept fitfully and woke to clear blue skies on Sunday morning and not a sign that the previous night had happened. If it were not for the cups of tea steaming in cupped hands as we recapped the nights events I would have sworn I'd imagined it.
And so ended the second time the Baynham's have camped in Oz.
Will there be a third I wonder...?!
My sister lives in Dublin. For her 30th birthday last year I bought her a Pandora bracelet and Murano glass bead. This year I thought she might like another bead to add to it.
I caught her at a crazy time, 5 minutes before she was leaving the house for a flight. Did I mention she hadn't finished packing? I pushed her for ideas on what type or colour of bead she might like. I threw questions at her. Glass? Silver? Dangly bits? She answered in brief single words. No. Yes. No way! I found out she is not a fan of hearts. This was a new one for me. Not a fan of dangly bits either. Simple. Simple. Simple.
And then she reminded me about the last bead she bought me.
The one that represented the fact that the sun, moon and stars shone out of my arse and then she hung up the phone!
I went shopping to my local Jewellers. I told the woman all the above stipulations. And then I told her what I wanted. Unfortunately they didn't have quite what I was looking for so I decided to try to make my own. This is the result....
We are camping.
This is the rain radar...
This week it is school holidays. Our plans so far included repainting Rhiannons bedroom on monday (just the base coat so far)
Minding a friends 6 year old girl on Tuesday so my kids can be looked after by her mum later in the week while I am working.
And today was a free rugby coaching day at Newcastle university.
The big finale on Friday will be our family camping trip. We have our brand new $49 six man tent from Aldi. Weather forecast is for a few showers. I hope the tent is waterproof!