Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Thursday Inspiration


Denim and neon.


Delicate. Simple enough to make. Perfect for summer.


Again and again.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

More "Boring" Things





 



When I was expecting, I wrote a list of all the things I wouldn't impose on my child. I've kept to my word for most of it for now except maybe the occasional clothing items from Witchery Kids (still, on sale only). Ok, Zara Kids too.

Reading was something I said I would not force upon her but rather, I would encourage.

Lately, her expression upon reception of a book is the exact one I've been waiting for since she was born. Before, although interested when we were reading together, she would still chuck it away in favour of her toys when I first presented it to her. These days, her small face lights up as she holds the new book in front of her and she beams at me, obviously pleased. She would then make sure that once she's in her pyjamas and had her milk, that particular book would be in the stack of reading before bed time. 

It thrills me to no end. I'm raising a girl who reads. And I sure hope it continues.

I'm always on the hunt for new things to engage her interest even further and I found these three items above that I feel, would make it a whole lot more fun for her:

1. Little Red Riding Hood finger puppets-  Found these on eBay. They were inexpensive, only $5 AND with free shipping. 

2. Gruffalo audio book - We are going on a very short trip to KL in December. It's extremely last minute so we booked a budget red-eye flight. Miranda usually sleeps the whole length of night flights but just in case she doesn't, I'm hoping an audio book like this one, the iPad and coloring materials will keep her entertained.

3. Three Little Pigs play - It has a script and masks for story-telling and role-play. It comes with 4 masks (the 3 pigs and the wolf) and I can already imagine a fun evening with Dwayne, myself, Miranda and my father-in-law "acting".

Sunday, October 27, 2013

You Make Me Happy When Skies Are Grey


You are turning out be the kindest, loveliest little girl.

Daddy and I are incredibly blessed.  :)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Thursday Inspiration


White on white.
What I want to wear all summer long and I have already begun snapping up white basics.


Make it a good everyday for her.


The beginning of November is only next week! 
Time to start gathering Christmas recipes :)

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Bookish

Bookish



First Row: Miranda's current favorites.
Dinosaurs Love Underpants - Far-fetched history lesson and absolutely hilarious. Miranda laughs a lot when this is being read.
How To Catch A Star & The Way Back Home - Two books by Oliver Jeffers I bought a while ago but Miranda only seems interested now. It's almost like Neil Gaiman for toddlers- very imaginative.
Let's Dance Little Pookie - Sandra Boynton's the best with her rhyme and rhythm type books. Her prose is meant to be read in a sing-song fashion and all her books always score with my kid.
Second row: A book I've read and a book I'm currently reading.
The Orchardist - Beautiful, lyrical prose with vivid characters. The way she writes makes you feel like it's being played out right before you. Truly a page-turner.
The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry - A patient was reading it and the title piqued my curiosity. She said it's a goodie and so far, she's right (30 pages in).
Third Row: Books we want:
Tiddler & Stick Man - Thanks to Mitchi's littles, Katelyn & David, it's time to renew our interest in the world of Julia Donaldson. 
The Next Time You See Me & Disgrace - To be honest, just two books I saw on someone else's bookshelf.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

A New Table, Maybe?

Now that the new wallpaper is up, I have been trying to change up the look of the dining area. 

However, even though the square, wooden 8-seater dining table was perfect for our old home, I've been thinking of getting another to complete the look I'm after for this house.

And strangely, the round tables have been speaking to me this time. Round can still look elegant and formal with gorgeously upholstered chairs to give it a classy finish.

I'm just dying over these photos.





Sigh. Lust. But we all know I have to sit on this idea for a while.

Rude People In This World

We had a really lovely weekend. The sun was shining and it was hot, hot, hot! I love it when that happens. No second thoughts when I get out of the car, out of a shop. No need to psych myself up before I take off my clothes for a shower. Or when I get out of the shower. And the number of chores that get done so quickly purely because of the lack of discomfort from the cold. 

This weekend, my Singaporean friend, who was previously staying in Switzerland for 5 years, told me that she loved winter until she came to Melbourne. We were attributing it to the strong winds and insane temperature drops. Oh well. The good thing is how I truly appreciate a beautiful day now.

Good food, good company, so much done.

Only a little incident to mar the weekend. It's still fresh in my mind, even though it lasted for less than 5 minutes.

We were at Bunnings and as usual, we got Miranda a little trolley so she was pushing away at it happily. The good thing is that this trolley comes with a handle so parents can hold it and steer it in the right direction. Bless the people who thought of this!

We passed their Christmas display and I went to check out the price of the Santa with reindeer blow-up. Dwayne and I were talking to one of the staff when Miranda came closer to inspect one of the Santa displays. As she did so, a part of her shoulder caused one of the boxes to fall sideways...and onto the back of a woman's foot. I was gasping as it fell and my eyes followed exactly where the box landed. It grazed the woman's ankle (actually it was her shoe).

She immediately yelled out, "F***! S***!" To Miranda's face. I could see that Miranda was petrified. Never has anyone of us scolded her in that way before. However, noting the circumstance, Dwayne and I were apologising profusely to the woman. The Bunnings staff even admitted that those boxes should not have been placed vertically up.

The woman, however, refused to acknowledge our apologies. She just looked dirtily at us, as if to say, "Take control of your kid!" She walked away with her husband and what looked to be her 7 or 8 year old son. None of them said a word as they moved along. 

I lifted the box up and to my surprise, the box was so light! I realised that it was a blow-up inside!

What on earth was that woman thinking making such a big fuss at that? And to swear at a little child? How do some people sleep at night?

Monday, October 14, 2013

Weekend

A playdate, lemon blueberry mini cupcakes, a conversation over tea, a book, a nap, a party, Whatsapp convos with some girlfriends - a recipe for a great weekend.


Miranda with Katerina - The last time these two saw each other, they were 7 months and 5 months. 



While I baked, these two were working on the backyard. Well, Dwayne was.


At her Granny Mae's surprise party.


Hamming it up at the party!



Tea, cake, book on a Sunday afternoon while Miranda napped. Bliss.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Out Back

Now that the backyard is somewhat "steppable", we venture out a little more. I hang towels and sheets on the line, which has got to be one of my most favourite things about living in a house. The linen swaying in the breeze and the smell of fabric detergent wafting through is enough to make me be so thankful for this home. Little things.:)

Last weekend we bought some low-maintenance plants and a few vegetables - carrots, chillies, heirloom tomatoes, spinach and some herbs, mint and coriander. I ought to find some kale too, since they are supposedly the best green ever and cost a bomb in the shops.

Dwayne and I came home to find Miranda and his dad in the backyard one evening last week. Miranda was "helping" my father-in-law make way for a new project out back. It was a really nice evening so we all joined in somehow - I planted the vegetables, Dwayne helped his dad, Miranda helped me. First time planting anything and I'm really excited to see how/ if they yield!







Melbourne's Sun - as fickle as me.

Two Saturdays ago, it was shining bright as we were driving home from the market. I made a quick pit-stop to get this little "pool" so that Miranda could bask in the sun for a bit. We have a blow-up one that my brother got her for her first Christmas but since we didn't have a pump, I got this one for a quick fix. No blowing-up needed. 

Too paranoid about the fickle-minded weather, this crazy momma headed straight for the laundry room when we got back, cleaned out the pool tub, placed it in the backyard, filled up some buckets of water and changed her out of her clothes to a bikini. It didn't even matter that she wanted to nap and was cranky. I actually didn't let her sleep. 

Cos you know what? I couldn't bear for her to miss this pocket of sunshine.

She ended up having so much fun. Not pictured is her actually playing because I was rushing to do everything else. Only a few snaps.

And the sun went down after half an hour so I was right. You just really need to live in the moment here.

Also, don't worry, I  didn't forget to slip-slap-slop her. ;)





Can't wait for summer and more predictable, longer hours of good weather. Maybe we'll have her cousins over for a little pool party and mojitos for the adults. ;)

Picnicking with New Friends

A couple of months ago, we were at mass as usual on a Sunday. I noticed someone who looked around my age standing behind me. I saw her smiling at Miranda and then to me when our eyes met. As we were lining up for communion, I felt a tap at my side and it was the same person. She asked if I was from Singapore? I said yes and she tapped at Dwayne and asked, "Are you Dwayne?"

By a twist of fate, she happened to be the sister of a schoolmate of Dwayne's and she was also a schoolmate of our friend. I don't know how she recognised him, though. Dwayne was a really skinny kid with a head full of hair. Now he's put on weight and shaved his head. Whatever it was, she knew who he was immediately. 

It's also nice that we met in church - something about meeting in the house of God and how he works in mysterious ways ;) Both of us moved here because of our husbands and now have little children so it seems too good to be true that Mel lives so close to us!

Since I'm off on Fridays and that one particular Friday forecasted a good day, I suggested a picnic and she was game so we packed some stuff and had one at the park near where I live.





And this is my favourite picture of the day. Mel took it and it really looks like we were in the Yarra Valley and not just a stone's throw away from home.


Miranda enjoyed herself and Lily was in the stroller for most of it, probably enjoying the outdoors and the sun. :) We're aiming for a day out at Werribee Mansion next!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Way To Make This Old Lady Happy

We were in a Chinese restaurant, waiting for Dwayne to keep all the marketing back in the car so he could come back and join us for lunch.

I was playing with Miranda when suddenly I hear this guy say, "So cute! Your sister?"

Walked with a spring in my step that day, I tell you.


Us in Pics


Miranda and I on a Sunday morning before mass. Love this whimsical dress my mother bought her.


Miranda's best friend, her cousin, Talia.


My two true loves.




We tried Crust (gourmet) pizza for the first time last Thursday. The Moroccan lamb was so good. The other one we chose was the white proscuitto, which was pretty yummy too.



We went to the nursery over the weekend to pick some plants and vegetables to grow. She had a field day (pun intended).


My friend gave her this dress from the Hungry Caterpillar range. It's so cute and it just so happened that I had bought her this hat a few weeks that matched perfectly. I think she looks like a doll! :)


We love our prawn crackers!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

My Baby... A Longtime Love.

I have been playing around with the idea of wallpapering my bookshelf for a little while now. First, I bought another Billy bookcase from Ikea so the wall could be utilised fully.

The challenge was finding a wallpaper I liked and that would flow with the rest of the dining area/ study. The pattern had to be pretty and the colour, neutral, so I can later accent with statement pieces in various colours. Eventually, after months of searching, I found a Graham & Brown one I love.

Here is a close-up of the wallpaper. The background is more of a pearly white as opposed to a pearly grey shown here. I love the hint of gold glitter to highlight the pattern.


As this is my baby, I helped with the project. But because Miranda wanted Mommy's attention quite a lot throughout the day, I was in between jobs and the main people looking after it were Dwayne and his dad.

The simple part was taking the backing off the bookshelf, measuring the wallpaper, applying glue and then "pasting" it on.

The difficult part, and something we had completely not anticipated, was fitting in the backing after the glue had dried. We used a different method for each of the bookshelf. Two of the backings were quite flimsy because they are older and the last and newest was too hard. Dwayne, my father-in-law and I had to go through many suggestions and various methods to get them all in. We started at 1pm and didn't finish till nearly 9pm!


Number one


Number two

  
And altogether now...

I haven't really decorated it but I am so excited to. Just need to get some statement pieces :)