Friday, December 30, 2016

Is 2016 Cursed?

So many people think so, mainly due to the number of celebrities who have died this year. But, in reality,  many celebrities die every year; what these people mean is that celebrities they particularly like have passed on.

Then there's been Brexit, ongoing horrors in Syria, and Donald Trump becoming the US president. Again, troubling things are constantly happening in the world. 2016 has been no exception.

For me personally, 2016 has been a horrible year. Much of what happened flowed on from 2015; while it is nice to draw a line in the sand and say a new year is a fresh start, one cannot always escape past events. This year, I have been so unwell with postnatal depression, I probably should have been hospitalised many times. I've wanted to walk away from my marriage and family, desperate to seek help in the city. Our closest mental health service is absolutely appalling. I am so glad to be rid of them.

I feel like I've achieved very little, apart from surviving. I love my little family dearly, and it devastates me that I must live with my mind and body shrouded by a dark cloud. It feels like I've spent much of 2016 struggling in my relationship with God, desperate for Him to remove this thorn from my side. But, in His kindness and mercy, we have had two wonderful live-in nannies - Jordie for seeding and Liz for harvest. If I'd been well, I'd never have had the privilege and joy of having met them.

In recent weeks I've received the news that three friends of mine are now separated from their husbands. This has affected me deeply. It seems that hearing about separation/divorce and babies dying is a big trigger for depression for me. I grieve and I pray for there to be reconciliation and change in those marriages. But I'm trying not to let it get me down.

I'm praying for a better 2017. I'm praying for Flynn to sleep, as sleep deprivation is a huge factor in my illness.

Do I think 2016 is cursed? No, but it hasn't been a good year for many people.

Bring on 2017. May it be a great adventure.

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

First Princess Layer, Now Princess Leia

A few weeks ago, my hen, Princess Layer, died.

Now the real Princess Leia has passed away.

Image from here
My dad texted me this morning reckoning my chook dying was an omen.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Not a Pinterest Christmas

I tried to do some Christmasy stuff with my boys (well, Rory in particular) this year, without falling into the trap of becoming a Pinterest mum.  Although, I still fall into the trap of comparing myself with other mums, I wanted to keep it low key while at least doing SOMETHING. 

This was our advent calendar.  Unlike last year's, we made it before December started and had all 25 days.  Rory painted one side, I wrote the numbers on the envelopes and he traced them.  I (mostly) remembered to put M&Ms in the envelopes.  The downside was that the Bible readings I printed off the internet went over Rory's head a bit and he lost interest very quickly.  We did read a few Christmas stories though.

The tree went up on the 1st December, with Rory, Flynn and Liz the nanny all helping.  The playpen was VERY necessary.  We'd really need an electric fence to stop Flynn grabbing baubles.

Flynn grabbed a packet of wipes and put them under the tree.
I'm not sure if that was his gift contribution, or if that's what
he wanted for Christmas.
I made these biscuits a couple of times from a recipe someone shared on Facebook.  I just used Milk Arrowroots to save time, iced them and decorated them with spearmint leaves and red M&Ms or Jaffas.

I took the boys to their daycare Christmas party on the 21st December.

My uncle's ex-partner made Flynn his own Christmas stocking, like she did for me and my brother, and my cousins when we were little.  Two years ago, I passed mine onto Rory, so she thought it was only right that she make one for Flynn.  She is so lovely and I'm glad we're still in touch.  I sewed Flynn's name onto it (alas I'm not much of a sewer).

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Fiery Flynn Has Found His Feet

Flynn is walking!  Rory didn't walk until he was 16 months, but within a few weeks he was walking a fair way down our driveway (which is approximately 700m long).  Flynn took his first steps at 13 months and at 14 months is well and truly on the move and into everything.  He is desperate to keep up with his big brother.  He turns 15 months tomorrow.

Oh, and his flame red mullet is gone.  He was starting to look a tad like Cameron Ling, so we took him to the hairdresser for his first haircut last week.

Cameron Ling image from here.

Monday, December 19, 2016

We Chose the Right Name

Duncan and I didn't know Flynn meant 'red-haired one' when we chose his name.

I only found out when I was browsing in a newsagent in Perth, back in August, and found this:

It's now on Flynn's bedroom door.

We certainly got his name right.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Don't Push Your Ministry Onto Others

My Bible study group has been looking at a series on the lives of different women in the Bible.  I usually expect such studies to include Ruth, Esther etc., so I was pleasantly surprised that this one contained some unusual choices.  One of these was Martha, the sister of Mary and Lazarus.

I'm used to hearing women's talks and studies on how we should be 'Marys' and not 'Marthas'.  But that's not what Jesus was saying when He gently rebuked her.  He wasn't saying hospitality is bad; there are other places in the Bible where Christians are commanded to be hospitable.  He wasn't telling her to stop serving Him that way.  He was gently rebuking Martha because she wanted Him to tell Mary to stop sitting at His feet and start helping her prepare the meal.  She was wanting Mary to fit into HER plan of how best to serve Jesus.

This was liberating to me.  Jesus is NOT saying you need to have a messy house and sit around doing Bible study all day (my husband would be happy about that).  We all have different gifts and ways of serving Jesus.  It's not up to us to stop people from what they're doing because we think they should be joining in with our ministry.  How many times have I seen that happen?  People having a single focus and passion who get annoyed with everyone for not dropping everything to be involved in their particular ministry.

A timely message at Christmastime to not judge other Christians because their gifts and passions are different to yours.  Just because they might not have time to be involved in what you do, doesn't mean they're doing nothing.

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Jolly Expensive Dog

That was Duncan's reaction when it told him the cost of Gypsy's vet bill.

I'd better backtrack a bit to the beginning.....

Two and a half weeks ago, Duncan was doing sheep work on a Saturday and was using both of our dogs.  It was a warmish day, but not overly hot.  Duncan took the dogs to one of the dams for a drink and a swim.  Maya went in, but Gypsy refused to go in the water, or even drink (she hates swimming).

Later on, Gypsy collapsed from heat exhaustion and Duncan had to rush her to the vet.  She spent two nights at the vet on a drip and other medications, before I was able to pick her up.  She has to complete three weeks of rest before she's allowed to go back to work (not that there will be any work for her now, because it's harvest).  No running around, so she has to go for walks on a lead.  Being a farm dog, she's not used to being on a lead and nearly strangles herself on the rare occasions she's on one, but I've been impressed so far.....she can now walk on a lead as well as any suburban dog.

The grand total of this misadventure....$1000!

I love her and I'm so relieved she's ok, but that was a big, fat ouch to our bank account (bring on Duncan's overtime pay).

Gypsy after a nice bath.

Liz, our nanny, giving her a brush and
removing the dreadlocks from her bum and tail.

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

The Death of the Buntine Princess

Princess Layer died yesterday.  At six and a half, she was my oldest hen, the only surviving hen from the Buntine days, and the only hen to survive the big move nearly six years ago.

She had a good and full life - two palaces, two roosters and numerous other hens to share life with over the years.

A friend of ours reckoned she lived so long because the force was with her hahaha.

She always used to come to up to me and have a 'chat'.

 I will miss her.

Princess Layer and Russell Crowe - the only survivors from
the move from Buntine.

Friday, December 02, 2016

Friday Funny


Can you imagine the nun sitting at her desk, grading these papers, all the while trying to keep a straight face and maintain her composure?

The following 25 statements about the Bible were written by children.  They have not been retouched or corrected.  Incorrect spelling has been left in.

1.  In the first book of the Bible, Guinessis. God got tired of creating the world so he took the Sabbath off.
2.  Adam and Eve were created from an apple tree.  Noah's wife was Joan of Ark.  Noah built and ark and the animals came on in pears.
3.  Lots wife was a pillar of salt during the day, but a ball of fire during the night.
4.  The Jews were a proud people and throughout history they had trouble with unsympathetic Genitals.
5.  Sampson was a strongman who let himself be led astray by a Jezebel like Delilah.
6.  Samson slayed the Philistines with the axe of the apostles.
7.  Moses led the Jews to the Red Sea where they made unleavened bread, which is bread without any ingredients.
8.  The Egyptians were all drowned in the dessert.  Afterwards Moses went up to Mount Cyanide to get the Ten Commandments.
9.  The first commandments was when Eve told Adam to eat the apple.
10.  The seventh commandment is thou shalt not admit adultery.
11.  Moses died before he ever reached Canada then Joshua led the Hebrews in the Battle of Geritol.
12.  The greatest miricle in the Bible is when Joshua told his son to stand still and he obeyed him.
13.  David was a Hebrew king who was skilled at playing the liar.  He fought the Finkelsteins, a race of people who lived in biblical times.
14.  Solomon, one of David's sons, had 300 wives and 700 porcupines.
15.  When Mary heard she was the mother of Jesus, she sang the Magna Carta.
16.  When the three wise guys from the east side arrived they found Jesus in the manager.
17.  Jesus was born because Mary had an immaculate contraption.
18.  St John the Blacksmith dumped water on his head.
19.  Jesus enunciated the golden rule, which says to do unto others before they do one to you.  He also explained a man doth not live by sweat alone.
20.  It was a miricle when Jesus rose from the dead and managed to get the tombstone off the entrance.
21.  The people who followed the Lord were called the 12 decibels.
22.  The epistels were the wives of the apostles.
23.  One of the oppossums was St Matthew who was also a taximan.
24.  St Paul cavorted to Christianity, he preached holy acrimony, which is another name for marraige.
25.  Christians have only one spouse.  This is called monotony.