Happy celebrations

Tomorrow is Christmas eve and also Maisie's 8-month birthday. She's getting so big and I'm not too happy about it. Sadly, the arrival of Christmas brings me ever closer to returning to work, and the end of my luxurious 12 months off. Oh don't get me wrong, there was some hard work in there too! Today we headed down to the Mornington Peninsula to deliver a Christmas present and stopped in at a couple of my favourite haunts...Red Hill House which is always a good place for gifts. I bought Maise a couple of large vintage blocks, but they're all wrapped up under the tree, so I'll show you some pics later on. (They are probably more pretty than functional, but I'll enjoy them even if she doesn't!) We also stopped in at an old favourite, the Merricks General Store for a hot chocolate and left with some yummy relish and wine. The weather is warming up tomorrow finally, so here's to a nice Christmas eve out in the sunshine..


Mon petit chien

I have met two dogs lately named Maisie. One a greyhound, wearing a fluorescent pink coat and the other a decidedly unintelligent fluffy white mutt. I don't know what this means about our choice of child's name, but our Maisie certainly pricked up her ears when these canine owners called their own. Come to think of it, her behaviour is rather puppyesque at the moment...sniffing around my feet in the kitchen, panting as she commando crawls around the house and growling when she's hungry. Unlike her four-legged friends, she has mastered the art of waving, clapping and calling for her dad. Nice how the one who spends the most time with her (little ol' me) barely rates a mention. Oh yeah...Christmas shopping alllll done. Yay.



So, you know a while back I told you I went deaf in one ear? (Here's a reminder) Well, it turns out, it's permanent!!! Soooo annoying. Last night I had an MRI to make sure there was nothing sinister causing it, which thankfully was clear. The unfortunate news is that the partial deafness is here to stay. Pardon?? Yes hilarious jokes like those never wear thin. Yesterday I ventured out to do some Christmas shopping, for those things I can't get online...and a woman rammed her pram into me. I must have looked at her incredulously because she told me she had said "excuse me" three times and I hadn't heard. Hmmm...see normally I would say she was a rude cow who squeezed on through whispering "excuse me" as an afterthought. But now? Well, I've lost all right to win arguments based on what I heard. Disaster. Some pics from the past week..


A spot of shopping

So I did end up going to the Magnolia Square market and bought a few bits and bobs. Maisie scored a couple of tops from Emma's bargain bin at the Knuffle Kid stall and I also picked up some gifts for others. As usual, Christmas is dangerously close and I really need to start thinking about presents. The idea of shopping makes me nauseous, so I'm determined to get as much as I can online this year. If you know of any great online shopping sites, please send them my way....my only fear is it will start an obsession, I love those packages arriving in the mail...good thing the bank is taking its time with my replacement card. (pics of the new purchases and the little monkey with her dad)


Show me the money

I am such a nuff. I forgot my pin number while standing at the counter to pay for groceries and after two attempts, I thought I'd remember it by the time I got to an ATM. Clearly the brain was still malfunctioning, because the machine sucked up my card and I was left sans cash and groceries and a husband on a business trip until Friday night. Crap. It's nice when you can use friends as your personal cash machine. It's also probably a blessing in disguise with 25% off at Megan Park tomorrow and this market on Friday...


The 24 days before Christmas

It's that time of year where all the weekends are booking up in the countdown to Christmas. It's also time I start putting things in my diary instead of constantly asking , "is that the weekend we are catching up with...{insert name here}?..." I've never quite understood the compulsion to use Christmas as a deadline for social engagements, as though post-roast, your social appeal diminishes. Nonetheless I always love the invitations that come our way during December. Strangely this year, I'll be bypassing the usual bevy of work related end-of-year functions, but I'll be sure to have a tipple with my young friend (yep she can drink water out of a sippy cup). Here's one for the diary if you need to buy some kids pressies...always a fun market.

Two little monkeys

Maisie had a grand time on the weekend hanging out with lots of little people. First with little Mia (pictured) for a Saturday breakkie and then her cousin and scores of second and third cousins at her nana's birthday party. We're still making our way through the leftover birthday cake...yummo.


Today I learnt how to..

So it seems, four days in Tassie is just the ticket for wellness. I feel so much better this week and perhaps not so coincidentally, Maisie is also behaving herself. Things she learnt this weekend:
1. Whispering is far too subtle when you can shout
2. Sleeping on your back is so uncool when you can slumber on your face
3. Filling your nappy is best accompanied with a long labouring grunt


Choppers in every sense

I knew it would happen. As soon as I thought I had escaped the assortment of infectious offerings doing the rounds, I was hit with two at once. Not only did I get the delightful flu (you know, the usual... nightsweats, shivers, throat infection), but I was also served up a bout of gastro for good measure. Mmm fun. Throw a teething baby into the mix and you have one hell of a happy household. The sickness put my new project on hold...recovering one of our dining chairs in the very fun Echino oilcloth (yep helicopter print screams infant friendly fabric to me). I completely dislike highchairs, so I figured the Handysitt is a good compromise, so long as I protect the dining chair from little miss blowing rasberries with a mouth full of pumpkin. Anyway, we're off to Tassie for a long weekend which I'm very much looking forward to. Maybe we can sleep in while Maisie reads the newspaper....her latest obsession.


Missing in action

Oh dear, I have been so bad at posting lately, but I promise to be better. I have had a grumpy baby, a sick husband and yours truly has been suffering a general malaise. 28 degrees today, so things are looking up... well not for Maisie, she has her immunisations in a few hours. Ewww, poor little mite. As promised, pics of the latest craft project - vintage fabric bunting - so easy, so cute and a hit with Maisie (it looks better up on the wall) - check it out at Poppet in the Post.


Happy half birthday

Maisie celebrated her half birthday on the weekend and was clearly so exhausted with the effort that she slept through the night on Monday. Sadly her fatigue was short-lived and now I am exhausted after a tedious night of a crying baby. The good news is that her love of books is paying dividends. She is behaving like The Hungry Little Caterpillar that I have been reading to her about and is slowly munching her way through my vegie patch. One day she will turn into a beautiful butterfly...and sleep peacefully...I hope.


Has anyone seen my baby?

Someone has stolen my baby and replaced her with a well-behaved replica, and I'm not complaining. So used to the screaming angst that accompanies Maisie's 7pm sleep session, that when she SMILED and giggled as I left her room this evening, I waited...barely breathing, for the realisation that she was alone, to set in. Then.... nothing. She chatted and cooed like those cute babies in the Huggies commercials and I sucked down some red wine and did a little happy dance. Now I'm not naive enough to expect this experience every night, but what a ridiculous relief to have this happy smiley baby just for one stress-free evening.

Actually the whole day was rather stress free and nice...lunch with my sister and her bub at The Little Ox (pic attached of my yummy salmon tartare with potato roesti, beetroot relish and poached egg), plus a surprise visit from some Newcastle friends who are getting married tomorrow in Melbourne - forecast of 15 degrees blizzard and hail - good thing they can laugh about it. Maisie also spent some time rediscovering the joys of her riotously coloured playmat (good thing babies have a short memory span) and I started my next project - sewing some funky vintage fabric triangles into bunting for the newly crowned angel's room. Have a lovely weekend all.


Dizzy and deaf

For six days now I have been deaf in one ear. An inner ear blockage has rendered me sans hearing in my right ear (save for the constant internal ringing), and experiencing the occasional dizzy turn. Such a delightful experience. But, clearly this wasn't debilitating enough. I have now been inflicted with a spasming back that has made the general act of movement near impossible. Thank the universe for osteopaths and a considerate husband who picks up little miss from her cot at whichever hideous hour she chooses for a feed and delivers her straight to her personal milk bar.

Just thought I'd share a couple of new treasures...a rocking horse that was well loved when I was a wee little 'un and already of great intrigue to Maisie...and a new print for mademoiselle's abode courtesy of Belle and Boo. Oh and this salad recipe....delish!

Haloumi, green bean, lentil and baby spinach salad

200g haloumi, broken into bite-sized pieces
200g green beans, trimmed
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 eschalot, finely chopped
400g tin lentils, drained and rinsed
50g baby spinach leaves
Salt and pepper, to taste
Preheat the oven to 240 degs (220 degs fan-forced). Place the broken haloumi and beans onto a lightly greased baking tray and cook for 10-12 minutes or until haloumi is golden. Meanwhile, place the oil, lemon juice, mustard, eschalot into a large bowl and whisk to combine. Add the lentils, spinach, cooked haloumi and beans. Toss to coat in the dressing. Season with salt and pepper to serve.


The munchies

Whoever said that introducing solids helps babies sleep at night is a big fat liar. Maisie is feeding as much as her newborn cousin during the wee hours of the night! I realise that once her tummy gets used to digesting the good stuff she may settle down, but for now it's midnight snacktime up to three times a night! Oh there's that and the screaming sessions at bedtime which I've been advised is most likely premature 'separation anxiety'. The cure? Me staying with her during those shrieks from hell until she finally drops off..and giving her something that smells like mum (poor kid!!) So, today's task? Sewing her a blankie... At least I finally finished making her reversible pinafore dress.


Bon appetit

Over the weekend, Maisie had her first sample of real food, well if you can call rice cereal 'real' food. She wasn't particularly impressed with the feast on offer, but is slowly learning the art of gummy chewing. I suspect her skills will vastly improve once we give her a flavour worth working for... We also visited the Red Hill market, which due to the replay grand final was mercifully quiet. It's such a great market, Maisie scored a new sunhat, a pair of pants and a little bib and I had the most fun of our entourage with the energetic Mitchell in the animal petting enclosure. So cute. Oh yes and there was that sunny Sunday walk along the beach and the lovely dinner at David and Susan's that we had to prematurely abandon due to a screaming baby (ahem.)...I love weekends (aside from the screaming baby bit)..


Struts and giggles

I keep planning to finish Maisie's dress. I made it during two nap-times, and all it requires are buttons, but fun things keep getting in the way. Yesterday Maisie visited her wee little cousin and spend a good deal of time trying to figure him out. It's rare that she finds someone smaller than her that squeaks and wriggles like she does. Then today she became the fascination for a bigger bub, the delightful Mia, who, at a tender 18 months has developed a fetish for shoes and does a hilarious little bum-out strut when she catches her own reflection. Next we lay under the clothesline in the backyard watching the sheets flapping in the breeze while Maisie squealed and giggled for an hour. Seriously. What a cheap way to get laughs.


Ice-cream Sunday

It was such glorious weather on the weekend. We had our first Spring picnic in the park and I reverted to a 5-year-old when Mr Whippy came trawling past luring us into buying some chocolate-dipped soft serve cones. Maisie, meanwhile has taken a lead from the scandalous Royals and discovered the art of toe sucking. Every chance she gets, in go the toes. Toes, squealing and getting nude are her favourite past-times.

It's looking like great weather again in Melbourne next weekend, we're heading down the coast for the Red Hill market and will be dragging out the picnic rug for sunny Sunday. Little Miss might be able to wear the new dress I am making her today. I'll post pics once I'm done.


Road trip

The Spring sun has finally emerged, so Maisie and I took a bit of a road trip to hunt for treasures. I was hoping I might stumble across a vintage highchair, but alas no luck. I did, however find a little jug for moi, and a fun 1950s basket that is perfect for a toy trove for Miss Marple. No road trip is complete without a trip to the bakery and how excited was I to discover the return of the egg flip Big M?! Happy days.
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