Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Can't Live Without

I can't live freezer.
I have got in the habit of cooking chilli and spag bog in bulk and then freezing, thus giving us a simple easy to serve meal for some of those nights when you need it easy.
All we have to do is take out of the freezer when going to work and when we come home, it is defrosted. Then we cook rice or pasta to go with it.
Easy and within 20mins dinner is ready.

My freezer also gives me the ability to buy in bulk when I see a great deal.
Chicken is the main deal I love.
Currently it is selling at about $18.99 / kg, I remember fondly when it was always $9.99/kg.
So the other day I happened to come across some chicken on special at the supermarket.

I worked out that it was just under $9.99/kg, so I grabbed 4 lots.

Each packet will do 2 meals in our house, so for the grand total of $40 I have meat for 8 meals.
Thank heavens for my wonderful freezer to store it all in.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Hit for 6

I am sick.
Now don't panic, nothing terminal just your typical winter stuff that goes around when you least want it.

But I wouldn't mind, I gladly accept my share of it, if it actually eventuated to something.
The sore throat started last Wednesday, the general feeling like crap and no energy started late Friday and now the doctor has put me off work for 2 days, seems the tightness in my chest and the lack of energy are not condusive to work. Funny I could have told you that without paying any money.
If the cold was going to come out...then I wish it would, at least I know it will pass. But the light head and the tightness are driving me nuts!

I feel ok, but then after trying to do something for too long I realise that all I want to do is sit down and rest, must admit the doc got that part right.
He said that I probably feel good when I am at home because I get to sit when I want, eat what I want when I want and rest if I feel like it, whereas at work (in my dept especially) it is busy and continuous and there is no stopping. I can't ask the patients to not 'get sick' on me whilst in our dept, unfortunately it doesn't work that way.

However, I have noticed today that I have 'dropsie' yes you read that right, in general terms it means I keep dropping everything, my reactions are not quite up to par.
In the OR we often talk about dropsie, the day you are for ever dropping the instruments!
So that is me today. I dropped the car key whilst at the doctors, I dropped my handbag whilst in the supermarket carpark, I dropped pegs whilst hanging out the few pieces of laundry that had been in the tub for 2 days! Sure it hasn't ended yet.

And to add to it all, the sun suddenly disappeared and down came some rain, so the washing just stayed on the line because I didn't have the energy to rush and grab it all in.

Don't you just love being sick?

Sunday, May 08, 2011


Until now, we have always been able to get away from Saturday sports, we knew that one day our day would come. However, the boys have been happy doing Judo, which just so happens to be a very nice indoor sport!

Sadly that time has now ended and we have been entered into Saturday morning sports, although we were happily welcomed with blazing sunshine and nice warm temperatures for our first morning on the sidelines!

Ben has discovered soccer and wanted to play this year, so play he is.....
This weekend saw the teams first game of the season

Someone had to play goalie for the 1st half, sadly he never saw the ball! Due to the score!

He had a blast and his team even won their first match 3-0.
Well done little ones, look forward to watching you next week.

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all the wonderful mums out in cyber space. You are all awesome and I hope you have had an awesome day like me.

To think I got woken at 8am with some wonderful presents. I must say Alex has great taste in choosing presents. He goes into a shop and once he decides on something there is no changing his mind, maybe that is the stubborn side of him showing through again!

My ring holder from Alex

Alex (6) then decided that mummy wasn't allowed a morning in bed alone, so went and found a movie he wanted to watch and he happily sat in bed with me and watched it, well he watched it and I listened whilst doing some knitting. He also attempted to do some knitting, but has only mastered putting the needle into the stitch not wrapping the wool round to create a new one. So everynow and then he would look at mine and ask why his wasn't like mine? I had to inform him that he needed to keep his stitches actually on the needle for it to do anything!

The rest of the day has been a total rest fest. Steve has done some work in the garden and the boys and I have played Wii all day.
Well I played Wii and they helped me and suddenly it was 4 hours later and time to sort dinner.
I can't quite believe we, as a family, have had such an awesome relaxing day together. Ok, so I haven't been feeling so great for several days now so a day of rest has been just what I needed.
The boys had decided also that because it was mum's special day then they needed to hug and kiss me at every possible moment. It has been so great.

I actually had 3 little quotes sent to me throughout the day and thought I would share them both with you guys tonight.

"I have carried a baby within my body.. I have slept with a baby on my chest.. I have nurtured a baby with my breasts..I have been puked, peed, and pooped on and spent sleepless nights in a rocking chair.. but I wouldn't have it any other way. My body is not magazine perfect, but when I look in the mirror, I see a mom and there is no greater honour.. "

"Motherhood's the toughest 24 hour lifetime job. No pay, no days off, no qualifications or training given and most often unappreciated and yet resignation is impossible! So send this to anyone who's a terrific mum and let her know she's absolutely wonderful"

"Before I was a Mom, I never tripped over toys or forgot words to a lullaby.
I didn't worry whether or not my plants were poisonous. I never thought about immunizations.

Before I was a Mom, I had never been puked on. Pooped on. Chewed on. Peed on.
I had complete control of my mind and my thoughts. I slept all night.

Before I was a Mom, I never held down a screaming child so doctors could do tests. Or give shots.
I never looked into teary eyes and cried. I never got gloriously happy over a simple grin.
I never sat up late hours at night watching a baby sleep.

Before I was a Mom, I never held a sleeping baby just because I didn't want to put her down.
I never felt my heart break into a million pieces when I couldn't stop the hurt.
I never knew that something so small could affect my life so much.
I never knew that I could love someone so much. I never knew I would love being a Mom.

Before I was a Mom, I didn't know the feeling of having my heart outside my body..
I didn't know how special it could feel to feed a hungry baby.
I didn't know that bond between a mother and her child.
I didn't know that something so small could make me feel so important and happy.

Before I was a Mom, I had never gotten up in the middle of the night every 10 minutes to make sure all was okay.
I had never known the warmth, the joy, the love, the heartache, the wonderment or the satisfaction of being a Mom.
I didn't know I was capable of feeling so much, before I was a Mom"

Happy Mother's Day

Friday, May 06, 2011


After announcing how happy I was to have passed my first essay, I got the feeling that some of the people reading my blog thought I was training to be a nurse.

So to clarify this, I thought I would just let you know what I am doing.

I am already a nurse, have been for 16 years. Although I trained in England and came away with a nursing qualification that was only at Diploma level. Doesn't actually make any difference to nursing as to whether you have a diploma or a degree, but nowadays when you train you do come away with a degree if you pass the whole course.
However I am bored with nursing, it doesn't hold my interest anymore. Don't get me wrong, I love helping people, I love being able to be there to support them and to educate & help them. I haven't given up nursing I just know that this is not what I want to be doing for the next 25 years of my working career. I want to try something else. Ok there are no guarentees that the something else I choose to do will fit, but then the same could be said for the career choice I made at 17 years of age!

Unfortunately when investigating other options it became very clear early on that any other profession would involve getting a degree. Sadly this would mean having to train in something else for up to 3 years fulltime to obtain a new qualification. We don't have the resources etc needed for me to become a student fulltime for 3 yrs. So we had to look at other options, like how could I train in something else in a shorter amount of time?

Answer..........have a degree and do a 1 yr fulltime course in my chosen profession.
Problem........don't have a degree!
Solution.........get a degree.

After investigating it made sense to get a degree in nursing as it is only 4 papers and I can do them parttime. Thus I can continue to work, which works well for our family.
So for the next 2 years I am doing 1 paper every 6 months. Sounds really small amount but it is 2 essays to be completed in the 4 month period of the sememster. Sounds easy but you throw in 4 days of work, boys activites, family living and suddenly the time available to study with is not actually very much per week.
I know it will be slow, but it is the best way to do it for this family. We can justify me being a student fulltime for 1yr but not 3yrs.

So I have another essay due in in 12 days time and then I will have completed paper 1. In July I will start paper 2. Next year I will complete papers 3 & 4.
Hopefully in January 2013 I will commence a 1 yr course in my chosen profession.
In the beginning of 2014 I will be newly qualified and either working back in nursing because I can't find a job or starting on a new path in my life.
I do wish things were different and I could do 2 papers a sememster because then I would have the degree by the end of this year and start training next year, but sometimes life doesn't allow you to do exactly what you want when you want, so you make the best of what you do have.

For us, this is the best we can do at present, so I am not saying no to it and running with it happily.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Loving Your Family but Needing More?

Once the boys came along, then I have not worked full time since. I mean, we never had the boys so that someone else could look after them for us, we wanted them and we were prepared to put in the hard slog. We were happy to have them in care but not fulltime.
I went back to work when Ben was 7 months old, only 2 days a week, but it did both of us good. It gave me interaction with adults and made me have to use my brain again and it gave Ben time to interact with other people and create great people skills.
When Alex came along 21 months later, well I took time off from work and when he was 7 months old I went back to work. This time however I went 3 days a week.
I have kept 3 days a week right up until I started the current job I am in, 18 months ago I decided that with Ben now at school and Alex 4 yrs old, then I could manage 4 days a week, which is kind of what the job was asking anyway.
It has sort of worked, even though the boys are out of the house from 7.30am until 5pm on the days that I work. However, getting a student home helper for the boys 2 afternoons a week has made things way easier.

Life however, is still very rushed, lots happening and loads to do. Work is not a breeze, it is not time away to interact anymore, it is work, it is hard and somedays I come home more tired than when I left in the morning, wondering how I am going to get everything done in the evening, still go to bed at a decent time and still manage to wake up the next morning. I also want to try and get things done in the evenings as well so everything does not get left until the weekend therefore encroaching on family time.
With doing my current study then I am using the one day a week that I am not at work as my study day. I take the boys to school, then spend the day studying, then pick the boys up at 3. It works, although I do love the quietness when I don't have any study to do and I can just dawdle along for the day having some me time.

Because out of everything that we do as a family, craving me time, is still there big time, and I know from a lot of the blogs I have read that I am not alone on this either.
People are always trying to help others understand how to fit in quality "me time"
Whilst surfing the blogs the other night I came across this post on this blog, she talked about time to ourselves and shared a link to a post she had found.

I love the idea, I think this could so work, even if you shared it around so that it wasn't every week but maybe it was taken in turns. Making say Wednesday the night off and then 1 week it was mum's turn and the next dad's, then back to mum etc.
Although I think I may crave this more than Steve does, but currently he is out twice a week at Judo, now I know this is an organised activity and there is sweat, blood and tears involved, but maybe that is enough for him?
I do have the PTA Meetings, but these are once every 6-8 weeks, so not regular.

However, being able to disappear for a couple of hours and just hang would be wonderful. I know the main library downtown is open until 8.30pm, would be so cool to just sit there and read, or watch the world go by.

What would you do?

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Result Time

As many of you know, I am studying to get my Nursing Degree.
Well I succeeded in managing to get my first essay in last month. Huge achievement for me seeing as last year I got all twisted with the course so pulled out of it half way through.
So a big achievement just getting my essay in this year and an even bigger achievement in that I managed to pass it with 79%.
Yep, a whopping 79%, makes me believe even more that maybe I will manage to get this degree after all.
Don't you just love getting a boast to your ego everynow and then like this?

More Teeth

My little caring soul of a big boy has finally had more teeth fall out over Easter.
You may remember in August last year that he had his first tooth fall out and he was not ready to surrender it to the Tooth Fairy. Well that tooth never made it to the fairy until October, when another tooth fell out and then he was happy to give them both over for the grand sum of $4.

Finally 6 months later he has had another 2 fall out......

When the first fell, he happily told us that the fairy would bring him $2 for it, however because he had a very wobbly 2nd tooth he decided to wait until that fell out before giving his teeth away. He did not have to wait very long, like 3 days. He even once again informed us that he would be getting $4 from the tooth fairy.
Well he will be getting $4 when he decides to give over his teeth, once again!
For now they are sitting in his little pot that Grandma gave him, on his bedside table waiting until he is either ready to give them over or when he remembers, because it has now been a week and I secretly think he has forgotten!

Tuesday, May 03, 2011


I have managed to achieve 3 more of my 100 challenges over the last few weeks, which when you put it that way is not very many at all.

The first I achieved was challenge #31 - walk on the beach in the dark and take your shoes off and paddle in the water.
Whilst at the caravan for Easter I dragged the whole family down to the beach one evening at 7.30pm. They all thought I was crazy but they had fun. The boys were a little aprehensive when we first got there as we made them turn out their torches. But this allowed them to look around and see the lights from the boats out at sea. After a while they were happy without their torch. Although they were not too sure about the water, so we sadly did not take our shoes off and have a paddle, but I am accepting that I have achieved this challenge as the boys actually enjoyed this mission and even learnt things from it. They thought it was weird that everything was louder at that time of night when there was no other nioses around. they enjoyed walking on the beach and finding things. They enjoyed being able to see the stars in the clear night sky.

I also managed to achieve challenge #88 - have a family meal by candlelight.
The boys wondered what I was doing when I started setting the table with tablecloth and candles.
However when it came to dinnertime, they were the ones who wanted to turn off every light in the house!

The 3rd challenge I have managed to achieve is #59 - read a magazine that you normally wouldn't read.
This one has been hard to achieve. Not that I read loads of magazines just that I couldn't come across anything that didn't interest me that I wouldn't be happy to casually peruse through at any time. Now I probably could have managed this with any magazing really because I do not have a regular one that I would normally read, so anything classes as "not normally read".
So I ended up reading 'The New Zealand Classic Car Magazine'. Although secretly coming from a family where my dad and brother were into motorsport, this is as the challenge says not one I normally read, but I had no problem reading it as motorsport is something I have grown up with and actually enjoy, so an easy read for me, but not my normal read!

Another Birthday and Family Fun

Take one crazy family ......... hum, think that would have to be my one!
Take another birthday, which we seem to have lots of in this family.
Mix it all together with ...........a duck race!

Yes you read right...a duck race.
And what follows is a mad series of pictures depicting our fun filled afternoon in the sun throwing plastic ducks down a small stream leading into a lake!

The birthday cake

decoration of the ducks was desired

some people have wonderful ideas, but will it help them win the race....?

Some ducks were spoilt with flowers

others were prepared for a long ride with supplies

luckily none of them sank!

however some did manage to find the bushes

so out went the cavalry

No duck got left to float away on the lake!

And at the end we all celebrated with gorgeous cake
It was a wonderful family fun filled afternoon, with lots of laughs and crazyness. Apparently there is talk of an annual event, so watch this space for next years adventures.

Monday, May 02, 2011


I have several posts written and waiting to be opened up to the big world over the next few days, but I just had to write this little bit.

I am a very stubborn independant person, have been for many years. If I want something, then I do not just sit around and wait for it to happen, I get on and do it myself. Fraid I have been very independant for many years too. I am not really sure how Steve ever puts up with me?
Ok, so he is a very stubborn person as well and so I am not at all surprised that at least one of our kids has turned out stubborn too.

Ben is very laid back, goes with the flow and nothing fazes him. Yes he gets all panicky when there is change involved but he seems to skim by and manages to miss the bad stuff.
Alex on the other hand, well he is as stubborn as they come, in fact even worse!

When he finds out what is for dinner, if he decides it is something that he doesn't want / like / fancy then you have no chance whatsoever of getting him to eat it.
He will actually sit there, at the table, and watch everyone else eating dinner. He will sit there with tears in his eyes telling you he didn't want this because he didn't like it / want it / fancy it.
And the thing about it is even though we tell him there is nothing else to eat, no snacks, no cereal before bedtime, nothing at all. He will still sit there and not eat one little thing, nada, nought, zero, zilch.
He will then leave the table when we all leave the table and he will carry on with his evening and then go to bed, without having eating.

And that is it, he stands his ground and doesn't budge. He will just sit there staring at you with a tight lip determined not to eat one little thing!
If he manages this at 6 who knows what he will be like when he gets bigger!

How Many Does it Take??

A couple of weeks ago it was Grandma's birthday.
We invited her over for dinner and a cake was made for her.
As it was also the last weekend before my first essay was due in, I removed myself from the cake making business and left it down to the other 3 members of the family.

It seems it takes all of them to make a cake, even a packet one at that!

I did however decorate the cake when it was complete.

Royal Wedding

This is one event that can not just pass by without people commenting on it.
Me, being British, even though I live in New Zealand, was glued to the tv for the whole of Friday night here. We even let the boys stay up for the whole thing, well at least until they fell asleep on their own accord.
Alex sadly only made it until 8.30pm so there by missing the main event (but we recorded a highlight show the next day for Alex to watch because he got very upset that he had missed the wedding. He actually wanted to know if there was going to be a 2nd one as he had missed the 1st!), Ben however managed until 10.30pm and only missed the kissing on the balcony.
But to me it was a wonderful time to explain the British Monarchy to them and be able to show the people and explain who they all were. Ben thought this was great fun and got to know who was who.

Was it OTT at all - never, it was done with great respect and tradition. I loved the fact there was hardly any flowers around, thus showing that they had not spent excess $$ on stuff that was not necessary.

The groom - he looked very dashing. He managed to smirk several times when being watched, even though he tried so hard to keep a straight face throughout just like he has been taught over the last 30 years. He also tried very hard to not turn round and watch Kate when she was walking up the aisle, however he did have a sneak peek just before she got up to him. I love the fact he turned and whispered to her that she was looking beautiful.

The Bride - she was beautiful. She out did what everyone was thinking and went with a dress that was so plain and traditional. I was so pleased. I hoped that she would prove all wrong and not go with something very wild, hippy and modern. I think she may have proved to people that she will mix in with the royal family so very well. The Grace Kelly style wedding dress was a wonderful shape and style. I also loved the head piece with the old tiara and the way the veil hung over the back of her head in an old style as well.
She walked up the aisle with such poise and style, I honestly thought her father was going to cry. It was obvious that she has taken everything on board that they have taught her over the last 6 months but has still managed to keep it real, lets hope they do not try to knock all that out of her over the years to come.

The Bridesmaids - were so cute. Again their dresses were plain and simple and I loved it.

The Service - was perfect. They sang all the hymns I love, the prayers were perfect without going over the top, the reading was short enough and so was the sermon. However I was sad that he didn't have a ring. It would have been so nice to see him wear a ring as well. I also hope that they had a sneaky kiss in that back room after signing the register and before they came back out to face everyone.

The Balcony - we all hoped this would be a fun and joyous occassion and it was. It was fun to watch the little bridesmaids so taken with the planes that flew over. To see Kate's face when she first stepped out of the door and realise just how many people were down below watching them. Also the fact William kept talking to her and that he asked her if she was ready for the kiss.

And she was and they kissed twice, much to the crowds pleasure.
I also love the fact that they have not gone on honeymoon........because he has to go back to work. How down to earth is that. He tries so hard to be allowed to be normal for as long as possible and he is, even though they had a public holiday for the actually day of the wedding, this weekend is in fact a public holiday weekend in England anyway, so they all gained a 4 day weekend. So nice to see he has to go back to work and so therefore will honeymoon later in the year. So many people I know have done that nowadays.

I hope you enjoyed watching the parts you managed to watch. I think it was a perfect occassion and showed England in a wonderful light. I also think it did the Royal family good to have a simple, perfect yet tradition plain event that ran so smoothly and was not OTT