Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Well 2011 is almost upon us and the festive season is in full swing. Here in Australia we are experiencing devastating floods and ferocious bush fires - such extremes of nature. And although it seems trite I find myself thinking back over the past year. There have been highlights and lowlights and lots in between.
The boys enjoyed their first year of school and by all accounts it was a huge success. They surprised me though, because Harrison was the one with the glowing report. Seems he IS able to stop talking when he tries and he has worked hard on concentrating in class and is a kind classmate. Mitchell is a social butterfly (no surprises there) and needs to work on his organisational abilities, but he is reading extremely well and enjoys maths. We have been blessed with wonderful teachers and great SSOs who have made this past year such a special time. Lets hope 2011 is just as successful.
Jackson has been a joy - he is a happy boy and loves cuddles and food (but not necessarily in that order). He isn't walking yet... but will be soon. He is loving having the big boys at home and falls into an exhausted sleep at 7pm, usually only stirring the next morning. He has started playgroup which has been a lot of fun. He is growing like a weed! Now in size 1 and threatening to burst out of some of his cute clothes. He goes swimming once a week and loves the water. It is hard to believe he is only 15 months old as it seems like he has been part of our family forever.
Kev is still at Air Movements and doing reserve work in Aviation Medicine. He works with a great bunch and we had two Xmas parties to enjoy. He is still an avid gamer, but family commitments don't allow as much time for him to enjoy his hobby - nevertheless he seems to sneak in the odd game purchase here and there (grin). He is due to go away to the USA for 6 weeks mid year if it all works out - was initially hoping we would come too, but that has had to be shelved as we look for a new home.
I am busy with the three boys and looking after our home. Life is never dull, but it IS tiring. Now and then I think this "job" would be far easier if I was 20 years younger! I try to do a bit of scrapbooking, but haven't got the motivation at present. I have a lovely group of friends in SA and with a bit more organisation and planning (on my part) I hope to see them a bit more often. I have managed to get away for one weekend this year with some friends which was lovely... must do that more often.
YES! We are STILL househunting! It is not nearly as much fun as you would imagine. After all three little boys do not want to be dragged around looking at houses. Mitch said yesterday "Mum when are you buying us a house"... to which the only response could be "when Daddy lets me" (grin). We are finding it hard to agree on a place to live, mainly I think because I am keen for a fairly new home or a well renovated old home and Kev is more set on the suburb he wants to live in. Nevertheless we will persist (groan).
The big news in our extended family is the imminent arrival of our beautiful niece - due in approx 6 weeks. Can't wait to have an excuse to peruse the pink aisle at the local shops. Hoping that she doesn't make an early arrival and behaves for her Mum & Dad and big brother Liam.
Apart from that we have just returned from seeing Kev's parents in Queensland. Yes, apparently Queensland is beautiful one day and perfect the next... but NOT when we decide to visit and the region experiences the worst floods in 140 years!!! We spent most of the week inside, venturing out for the occasional swim or to brave the shops, but we had fun. Thankfully the boys received a Nintendo DS each for Xmas and so were happily occupied for many hours. They also loved seeing their Nana and Grandpa. We were joined on the adventure by my Dad and our dear friend Pat. To say it was an interesting time was an understatement. Up until the morning of our departure we were unsure if we would be able to get through to the airport (a 5 hour drive south), but we managed to get there and with plenty of time. Now the post holiday washing and cleaning begins... oh joy.
Well I must get back to the chores - wishing you all the best for the festive season and hoping the New Year will be a time of blessings.
Monday, December 6, 2010
Monday, November 22, 2010
This is a quick update as I have a load of things to do whilst Master Jackson sleeps. Jack is now 14 months old and is crusing the furniture, babbling away and loving nearly every food group. He is a good sleeper - usually one long nap a day and then off to bed by 7pm and awake at 6.30am. He adores his big brothers and loves to destroy their lego creations.
Mitch is doing well at school. He is reading well and is still charming nearly everyone he meets. He has lots of friends and has enjoyed a few classmates' birthday parties in the past few months. He loves drawing and invariably brings home 10 drawings which all must be put on the fridge.
Harry is also enjoying school. He finds reading a bit harder, but is doing well with Maths and Spelling. He has been slower to make friends, but has some strong friendships with some boys in his class and has been to lots of parties. He is still computer obsessed and longs for the day when a Nintendo DS will be finally a reality.
Kev is still working at Air Movements as well as doing Reserve work. He has packed up most of his games in the hope that we may find a house to move into (6 long moths and still looking). He is due to head OS next year with work.
I have just returned from a lovely girls' weekend away and it is back to the grind (grin).
So that's about it in our little neck of the woods. Hope this finds our friends and family well.
AND hope to be back soon :-)
Sunday, October 3, 2010
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Apart from that we are preparing for Jack's first birthday. He is such a happy baby and adores his brothers. His latest trick is clapping hands and chattering away. Mummy has been very mean and made the dummy (pacifier) just for sleep time, so he has discovered his voice. Even though you can't understand what he is saying, he has such a conversational tone that it makes me think he really knows what he is talking about. He also loves swimming and when you count to three he closes his eyes in preparation for going under the water which he does with ease.
Well better fly as we are heading out for some more house inspections.
Will try and get back to post some pictures very soon,
Love to all,
Thursday, July 22, 2010
Saturday, July 10, 2010
We have had lots of free time. I don't know about anyone else but my boys love the opportunity to kick back and watch a DVD or just muck about with their toys. I try to make sure we have lots of downtime, but sometimes in a effort to fit it all in we end up rushing about. So this holidays I actually scheduled days at home (I know that probably sounds strange) so that we could ensure time at home and lots of rest. It has worked really well and I think I will do that on our next school holidays.
Probably the highlight for the older boys was going to see Toy Story 3 with their Dad. Jack and I went to the gym and then did some errands while waiting for them. Then we all went out for lunch. As luck would have it the hotel had free face painting and so a very tired, but happy Spiderman and Pirate came home with us.
This holidays has also marked our fourth year without Mum. In some ways it is hard to believe it has been so long, but in other ways it seems far longer. Mum would have loved the holiday times - I still have very clear memories of trips to the Parklands with Mum to meet up with friends for a play date and I suppose that is one of the reasons I enjoy doing the same kind of things with my boys. My Mum loved being a mum - yes, I know that many mums do, but she really did and would often tell us how being a mum was her favourite thing in the entire world. I only hope I can be half the mum she was and create such loving warm memories for my own dear boys.
Apart from that we have been trying to get a bit of maintenance done around the house and are in the throes of looking at getting an extension built. Since it was never in our plans (or dreams) that we would have 3 children we now find ourselves a bit squeezed for space. So we are weighing up between building up and increasing our living space or moving altogether. Our main concern is that we don't want to be weighed down with a large mortgage which requires me returning to work. Anyway, watch this space...
Friday, June 25, 2010
Small steps but important ones. Most encouraging of all is that he has happily coped with the chage in the coimputer usage and it is rare he asks to go on the computer. Most amazing of all last weekend during his allotted time he actually turned the computer off so he could come and play a game of Trouble with Mitch and I :-)
Hugs to all,
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Just small steps - but steps forward which is the most important thing of all...
Hugs to all,
Sunday, June 13, 2010
They both enjoy school - but are so different in so many ways. Mitch is a social butterfly and chats with all the "big kids" on the way through the school yard. Everyone seems to know him and it is nothing for three or four kids to stop him for a chat. I can understand why, because he is such a happy little chap and clearly enjoys the company of others. He even has older girls take him out to play with them during the breaks. He is also popular in his class and the other week when he was sick I had several of his classmates ask me with a lot of concern when he would be back. He is loving reading and has just hit that delightful stage where he has realised he can read!
Harry is less confident and struggles to understand why some of the boys in his class won't be his friend. He told me the other day that he asks one little boy every day to be his friend - it was heartbreaking to hear and yet I can understand why other kids sometimes find him too much hard work. However he is extremely loyal and has made friends with several children who are prone to getting picked on and he just doesn't seem to notice their differences. He is finding the class work more difficult and we are working through assessments with a psychologist to see if there are any underlying problems. Currently he is being tested for Autism and ADHD - and to be honest it would not surprise me if a diagnosis was made. BUT that won't change my beautiful Harry-Koala who is such a loving boy and who really wants to do the right thing (if only he could work out what that is).
School has been both wonderful and difficult but I am extremely grateful that at this stage both boys seem to enjoy going there and that their teachers are so perceptive and kind. And I remind myself that not so long ago the thought of them ever reaching school felt impossible...
Well back to my boys,
Hope everyone has a lovely day,
Saturday, May 29, 2010
I suppose that the problem with being a control freak is that you want EVERYTHING to be under your control and life just ain't like that. Sure, I have mellowed somewhat and have let my standards relax a bit. BUT I wonder why I struggle to get it all done and why I fell so damned tired a lot of the time. I know it isn't realistic, but at the same time I want my home to be clean and tidy, my boys happy and doing well at school and my husband to feel that he is still married to the girl he met. And it just doesn't seem to happen...
At the moment we are facing some behavioural challenges with Harry and whilst they are manageable it is just another ball to juggle. BUT I know we will get there, it is just it is so hard at the moment. I start the day with a plan of how I will cope with his tantrums and by the end of the day I am having worse tantrums than him (or so it seems)!
Well enough of my bleating - time to get off the computer (a glorious time waster) and spend some time with my four beautiful men. I AM so grateful for what I have... it just sometimes seems more than I can handle...
Friday, May 14, 2010
Pat and Jason Stevens (and someone's bottom - grin)
Jack enjoying his cuddles in his sling
Mitch & Harry with bantam eggs collected from Grandad's chickens
Okay okay I can't blame anyone other than myself for being so slack with this blog! After all I find time to muck around on Face book... BUT life is a constant battle to find time to do the things I need to do and want to do. The days often fly by and I find myself wondering just how it happened that my tiny, fragile prem babies are now gorgeous 5 year olds with attitudes to match! So here goes with an update...
Mitch is currently battling pharyngitis and laryngitis and has been home from school for the past 2 days. There is not much of him (weighing in at a hefty 15 kg) and colds and viral illnesses seem to hit him far harder than Harry. He has a croaky voice and a revolting cough, but appears to be on the mend. It could also be that the lure of a birthday party for a friend tomorrow is playing a role in his Lazarus like recovery! He loves school and has taken to reading very well. He tries hard and is popular with his classmates - in fact one of the mums mentioned her daughter was distraught that Mitch wasn't at school and was very worried about him (so cute). He also loves swimming lessons and of course trains. He has really taken a shine to Jackson recently and loves to play with him and tell him stories.
Harry is his usual exuberant self! He is a computer geek and loves nothing more than the opportunity to surf the web (under strict supervision of course). He enjoys school and fortunately has a teacher who is firm but fair. He was making a habit of going to the toilet a lot, so she made a toilet picture for him that he must hand in when he goes to the toilet and he is only able to use this four times a day. He also gets sent on a lot of "important jobs" - the other day he was very upset that I was leaving and his teacher asked him to take a message to another teacher. I have a sneaking suspicion it said "please occupy this annoying five year old" (grin). He has always been terrific with Jack and loves to help in any way (as long as it doesn't interfere with his computer time).
Jackson is growing up TOO fast. He is eating loads of solids - his faves are lamb shanks with mashed potato and mangoes with yoghurt. He is also rather fond of milk arrowroot biscuits. He is trying to crawl but manages to propel himself about the place with a technique akin to a caterpillar. He is such a contented little man and loves people. Wherever we go he attracts attention - and he loves it! Last month we flew with me to Newcastle for one of my best friend's engagement come wedding. You may have seen the footage on TV if you are a rugby fan - she was on the Matty John's show with her hubby Nick and Jason Stevens walked her down the aisle and serenaded her with an Elvis song. It was only a quick visit but we had a lovely time and Jack was spoiled with loads of cuddles.
The boys and I also had a lovely catch up with our dear friend Freya when she made a flying visit from the USA back to SA. We went to see the pandas at the zoo and enjoyed going out for a meal. It was all too quick, but we are looking forward to her next visit :-)
Kev is still working hard. He does a lot of Air Force reserve hours and also works on base at Air Movements. He is still into his games, but family life tends to limit his opportunities to play. As for me I am enjoying the challenges of being a SAHM and am trying (albeit slowly) to get fit and lose some weight (the never ending battle).
Life is very good for the five of us. We are lucky to be surrounded by good friends and family and we are blessed to have each other. Now before I turn into a bad Hallmark greeting card - I must fly...
Hope this find you all happy and well,
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Me and my big brother - can you tell I love him to the moon and back?
I can't wait until I can join my big brothers... then watch out!
Wow! It had been ages since I updated the blog! Life just seems to be so busy at the moment, but at the same time I know that I am just not finding the same amount of energy to pursue the things I once did. Must be something to do with having two active 5 year old boys and a very feisty little 5 month old (not sure where he gets his attitude from!?).
Mitch and Harry at Semaphore Beach
Life in the Reid household has been filled with activity. Mitch and Harry are loving school and are enjoying learning to read. When they get home from school it is into a bath, time for readers, tea time, reading eggs (a school endorsed computer program for reading) and then time for bed. Some days it feels like my feet don't hit the ground until I collapse into bed. What keeps me going is the enthusiasm both boys show when it comes to school Sure they get tired and grumpy, but they are making new friends, learning new skills and enjoying being part of something bigger than just our family. It is bittersweet to see them heading off each day - hard to see them growing up so fast and at the same time amazing to see what beautiful young boys they have become. Tonight was the Parent-Teacher conferences and I was pleasantly surprised with how well both boys are doing. Sure they have their challenges, but they are learning and keen to learn... which surely is a wonderful way to be. Mitch's teacher commented that he is doing very well with reading and although he struggles with the fine motor requirements of writing, he is a bright, confident boy who loves to tell stories (the good kind) and is learning how to participate in class. She did acknowledge that he is easily lead and because of his small size sometimes gets dragged into things he doesn't want to participate in, but that he is learning how to assert himself. Harry's teacher commented on how much he likes to help and loves his role as a computer monitor. He is enjoying reading and is doing very well with his sight words, maths and computer studies (of course). I am so grateful that the school and the boys' teachers are doing so much to make their first experience of school such a positive one.
Yum I just love food!
On Master Jackson - he is growing like a weed. Hard to believe that he has only been with us less than 6 months, since he rules the roost. He loves company and if the boys leave the front room, then he calls out for them. The boys are so good with him, although now and then they will tell me to give Jack a feed so he will pipe down during their fave TV shows. His reflux is becoming less of a problem and he has started solids which he loves. After so many struggles with getting the older two to feed, it is hard to believe this little man who positively inhales food off the spoon! He has two teeth which he has used with great effect on Mummy, in fact last time he bit me I yelled so loud it made him cry... so hopefully he has learnt his lesson.
As for Kev and I - somehow we manage to scrape a little time of our own... although not often together! Kev has his regular games night with Steve and as our friends Mick and Jenn have moved to SA, we hope he may manage a few more games nights. I go scrapbooking once a fortnight - and sometimes I actually get something done (other than chat!). I am also in the process of trying to lose some weight and so head off to the gym 3 times a week. It is little wonder that we both seem to fall asleep as soon as we sit down :-)
Life is sweet
BUT life is good. Our boys are happy and well. We are blessed with good family and friends. And we have each other. A girl couldn't ask for more (except perhaps that Sara Lee made French Vanilla ice cream in a low fat form which tasted as good as their sinful version).
Friday, February 5, 2010
As for Master Jackson he is quite enjoying some Mummy time to himself, but does not appreciate the school drop off and pick up. Cars are definitely not his favourite mode of transport and he has been known to cry for hours as we drive to visit Grandad. Last time on our way home Mitch started hitting Harry because Harry wasn't putting the dummy in Jack's mouth and Jack's crying was interfering with Mitch's DVD viewing. So I yelled at him and started crying. Then poor Kev had to drive the rest of the way home with Mitch, Harry, Jack and myself all crying! So car travel with Jack is a challenge to say the least (groan). Also our little butterball is gaining weight beautifully and now weighs in at a respectable 6.75kg. It is hard to believe, but at 4 months of age Jack weighs almost the same as Mitch weighed at 12 months old!!! And Jack is now rolling which is greeted with much applause by his admiring public (well in our family anyway). So our beautiful baby boy is developing well :-)
Not much else to report - life is hectic but good. I can't believe just how blessed we are and even when I am tearing out my hair at Mitch and Harry's latest antics, still in the back of my mind I marvel at just how lucky we are to have them with us.
Much love to all,
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Mitch and Harry started school today and were so very excited! Poor Harry was so excited he fell over outside the classroom and badly grazed his knee. So day one and we already know where the sick room is! The boys went to their classrooms (they are in different classrooms) and happily joined in the activities. Luckily Kev is on leave for the next 3 days so he was able to help me with settling the boys into school - not that they needed much help! They were busy chatting and drawing as we left and not a tear was shed (not even from Mummy).
This afternoon when I went to collect them they were so excited and happily told me all of the activities of the day. Mitch also proudly announced that he did "a huge poo in the toilet!". This had been a big concern of mine as toilet training is still a work in progress, but the teachers are taking him to the toilet 3 times a day which is wonderful. Nevertheless he has spare clothes just in case.
So the first day of school! What a milestone. Kev commented to me today that just over 5 years ago we could never imagine just how far our boys would come. And even if we had dreamed we would have imagined a special school or profound disabilities... how fortunate we are that our little men have turned out the way they have...
Wishing all Mummies and Daddies with children heading to school a smooth transition into the new school year,
Saturday, January 23, 2010
So not too long until they hoist their school bags onto their backs and head off into the big wide world of school. They will be in seperate classes (this was our decision) and this will be a new thing for them. In kindy they were in different groups but only some of the time - this will be a whole new experience. BUT I think it will be good for them both. They are very different both in appearance and personality and this will be yet another way of stamping their individuality on the world :-)
So as we gently slide into the new school term the world is full of promise and I can't help but think back to those tiny fragile little babies born over 5 years ago who so desperately clung to life. How we hoped and prayed that they would survive and how we had no idea of what impacts prematurity would have on their little bodies. And here they are now ready to face school - dealing with more than their fair share of challenges, but still happy and excited about being "big boys"...
Hoping your New Year is full of excitement too!
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
First of all I must apologise for the distinct lack of blogging on my part! In my defence I must say that the past few months since our little man arrived have been full on. Partly because Jackson has had settling issues and partly because the workload associated with a new baby and two very active five year olds has totally overwhelmed me. I must confess to being taken by surprise at just how tired I am and I have spent many nights worrying about how I will manage (as if there is any other option). Don't get me wrong I love being a mum, it is simply the logistics of organising the older boys for kindy whilst our latest addition screams blue murder which have had me often on the verge of tears. You see I like order and control (surprise, surprise I hear you say) and Jackson has thrown my life into chaos! I adore my little man with every fibre of my being, but it is very hard when he cries for hours and nothing I do seems to help.
Luckily (if you can call it luck) I have found some wonderful community resources and we ended up going to Torrens House after a particularly fraught weekend in which Jack cried for 16 hours straight. Torrens House is a live-in facility which provides support for parents of babies with a variety of issues including feeding, settling and behavioural problems. The Torrens House' nursing staff are so wonderful that words can't even express it adequately. They take frazzled families and gradually reinstill confidence in handling and caring for their precious babies. The staff there recognised his symptoms as being Reflux based and helped me work on settling him whilst also providing medical support. It would be wonderful to say that now he sleeps like a dream, but that isn't always the case... however he does usually sleep overnight for 3-6 hours between feeds and does sleep for short periods during the day. Which so so much better than the 15 minute cat naps he took day and night before.
And our precious little man is now much happier in himself and often enjoys laying on the floor madly kicking away at his toys and smiling at everyone which is a joy to behold. He loves his big brothers and they in turn dote on him, although at times Mitch has introduced him as "my brother who cries all of the time"! And now that he isn't so overtired and in pain we are able to see his personality shining through.
As for Mitch and Harry - only one more week until they start school! It is hard to believe that the tiny, fragile babies we brought home after 5 long months in hospital are now the big boys preparing for this next exciting stage. Their clothes are labelled and their lunch boxes are ready to be packed with food... all that remains is for Mummy to face their first day at school. BUT I will be brave!
So that is what has been happening over the past few months - lots of activity and a steep learning curve, but as we face the coming year I am excited at what 2010 will bring.
Much love to all,