Tag Archives: socialising

What have we been doing?

ChristmasLunchAn AWFUL lot of socialising! We decided to host Christmas here in our lovely Launceston house, for Tassie friends who would otherwise be on their own – most of our friends here are also not originally FROM here, so we ended up with a good batch on Christmas Day, which was just lovely. I made one meat and one vegetarian lasagne, and with the marvellous contributions by visitors, we merrily ate all day while the kids enjoyed the pool, trampoline and new Chrissy pressies. We put the computers away on Christmas Eve and didn’t get them out until Boxing Day, which was a good move, I think!

Christmas night the big kids and I went with a couple of friends to another family’s property for a fantastic dinner and good company – husband stayed home after overindulging in desserts during the day and to put the little boys to bed early (Master Three was particularly in need of the sleep rather than social life!), but we enjoyed ourselves nonetheless.

Since Christmas we’ve had several play days, including a birthday party Miss Eight attended on Boxing Day, and chauffeuring children to various locations as well as receiving them here. On the weekend, Tansy, Finchy and the girls stayed over Saturday night and most of Sunday, when we were joined by the extended Flinthart clan for lunch and the afternoon – there are drawbacks to having creative friends, and the inspiration for new projects is one of them! We sent the Flinthart home with a story idea to write and I came away with even more things to do!

NYERemnantsNew Year’s Eve we again hosted a fairly impromptu get together with two other families – this time I said I wasn’t cooking but I ended up deciding my pizzas were nicer than Dominos so while we chatted and imbibed around the kitchen island I made and cooked several which were eaten with gusto by adults and kids alike, so I’ll call that a win. Given we had celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary at lunchtime with a meal at Hogs Breath (new to Launceston!), a lighter evening meal went down well. Oh, and it was certainly nice to relax with friends and watch the kids run riot, as Master Three had a spill off the trampoline (not jumping, but trying to drop the ladder off so the baby wouldn’t hurt himself climbing up!) and we spent a couple of hours in the morning at the Emergency room – a minorish break in the arm, requiring a half cast for a week. The resilience of youth is amazing, as he was literally bouncing after a meal and a nap!

We’re now awaiting the arrival of Helen, Stewart and J, for an overnight (and several day delayed, so we’re very excited!) visit, which will be followed on Friday by a catch up with mainlander Dr Slatter who is travelling about, and no doubt the next couple of weeks will continue to be hectic with child-wrangling in multiple forms. Gotta love a social school holidays!


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What a start to the holidays!

My favourite (naturally) of the Shaun Tan exhibit

It’s nearly 9pm on the first Saturday of the holidays and I hadn’t even noticed how late it was. That’s because the past couple of days have simply flown by. Yesterday began at about 3.30am with the departure of husband off to his fly out. Naturally I couldn’t go back to sleep, so after reading a bit I eventually got up, knowing there were a couple of big days ahead. I had to take the big kids to daycare to get to school (which they don’t usually do), because I was taking Master One to the eye specialist. He’s had several bouts of conjunctivitis and a seemingly perpetual weepy eye, so our GP referred him. Since we made the appointment three months ago, he hasn’t had conjunctivitis, naturally! I had it in my head the appointment was for 8.30 but luckily had put it in my phone with an alert for one hour before – was a touch surprised when the alert went off at 7am! Good foresight, past me. Dashed the kids to daycare, then discovered where the clinic actually was – one street down the road from us! No rush required. M1 started out okay, but the nurse put dilating drops in his eyes and within 10 minutes his behaviour had deteriorated quite alarmingly. When we eventually saw the doctor (who was absolutely lovely and great with M1), bubs was pretty feral, but the doc said that’s normal – the drops really upset them because they get all blurry. Poor bugger. Anyway, turns out he has to have a small procedure to open up the duct, now booked in for November 10. Didn’t think I’d have cause to be grateful for our private health cover so soon after paying the monstrous premium for this year!

WA Premier's Book Award winner Sally Murphy with judge Miffy F.

Was advised not to send him straight to daycare, so took him home for a nap (which I also may have done!), then when he woke up, dropped him at daycare and went to work for the second half of the last day of term! That flew by, as there was a lot to do (last day of copyright survey, wooHOOOOO!), and I had to leave spot on 4pm to collect kids and dash home to get ready to go out! Because last night was the WA Premier’s Book Awards, at last! Babysitter arrived at 5, and I left to go to the WA State Library for a really lovely evening. Met up with fellow judges and brilliant authors (including the very talented Sally Murphy, who I’ve been chatting with online for a while now!), enjoyed really nice snacks and drinks, and a truly wonderful ceremony, including a touching Welcome to Country by Barry Maguire, and pre-recorded videos including the ever lovely Shaun Tan chatting with 2012 National Year of Reading ambassador William McInnes. The winners all gave delightful speeches and it was just a great night. I particularly enjoyed meeting Scot Gardner (who was chuffed to win his very first award, as co-winner of the YA category with James Roy), Sally (winner of the Children’s category for her brilliant verse novel Toppling) and Shaun Tan’s mum and dad! Was interesting to see Shaun’s art exhibit as a feature of the evening as well, which was a nice touch as he was inducted into the WA Literary Hall of Fame (youngest ever inductee – by a LOT).

Shaun Tan's WA Literary Hall of Fame board

Not sure I got as much sleep as I would have liked, despite being home before 11pm. Awake too early, but had to get tidied up as the Batts were due at 7.30am. The Batt big kids babysat most of the others (took M1 with us) while Lyn & I toddled up to the airport to meet fellow judge (in multiple awards!) Mif, before she headed back to Melbourne. Had a great time chatting over a long late breakfast, before Mif went off to her plane and Lyn & I came home, via Helen’s just as they were about to finally leave on their big trip! Was so pleased to catch them and say goodbye. Lyn & I arrived home to find happy, fed kids and a house that was tidier than when I left it – gotta be happy with that!

The Batts departed to other tasks, and I sat down to catch up on some online jobs (like writing a blog post) and was checking through the million and one emails I had to respond to (okay, not that many, but there’s over 80 new submissions in my inbox, from just the past fortnight since I got sick! Madness!), when I realised that Bake Club was actually at 1pm at Alisa’s, not 3pm as I had in my head – ah, the week of wrong times! My computer told me that it WAS 1pm, so I bundled up the kids and off we went! No baking for Bake Club for us, but I promise I’ll do better next time! Regardless, it was a really nice afternoon, although M1 was very ready to come home by the end (okay, a bit before the end!) and made his displeasure well known. Little rotter was happy and chirpy as soon as he got in the car though, and STAYED that way for another hour or so before eventually going to bed LATER than he usually does! All that on about a half hour sleep today. Rotter.

And now I’ve just finished watching the penultimate Haven Season Two episode (argh, a week to wait for the finale!) and am about to go to bed. Weary, but have had a lovely weekend so far!

Oh, and yes, submissions for Apocalypse Hope are now CLOSED! Thank you everyone who has submitted. I intend to have the reading completed by October 31. Please feel free to query if you have not heard from me by that date.

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More socialising!

After a peaceful family day on Christmas Day, Boxing Day brought us a lovely afternoon with   and clan,   &  . Much food and drink and fun!   brought her truly excellent vanilla slice (with some customised just for me what doesn’t like passionfruit!) and with the big kids entertaining the little ones, it was a very nice afternoon. Pity about the cricket. And poor A & N had to come back to collect forgotten phone, which led to much overheating of car, but otherwise, all good!

Then today we had visitors from Queensland – a mate of hubby’s from when he worked in a little mine in a little country town, who he’s kept in touch with and who is now married to a girl I briefly went to high school with (although we don’t really know each other). They brought young daughters, so kids were once again entertained, and we had a lovely few hours including swims and a big BBQ. 

Today I also booked tickets in a sleeper berth on the Westlander. It only runs twice a week and happens to work out for us flying into Brissy on Thursday. Chances are better for the train getting through to our destination than a car, so while it means a longer journey, if there are delays with rain over the road, at least we have a bed and access to a loo etc without leaving the train 🙂 Will be an exciting adventure. I spent today looking at people’s updates on Facebook showing roads cut and creeks flooded, so we still might not get there, but we’ll have our best shot. Could be very exciting…

Tomorrow at this stage is looking like hubby taking the kids to see a silly movie, me taking baby to go shopping. Plan! 


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 Somehow, I only have two weeks left of maternity leave. Where the heck has the year gone?! Bub is now eight months old, and has had a real development spurt in the past couple of weeks. He’s now sitting up very happily on his own for ages, playing very cutely by himself. He’s also starting rolling, and just today managed to get himself back from his front for the first time. He’s suddenly got very long as well – seems to have grown about five centimetres in a week! And he’s most cute 🙂 

Big brother has buggered off to Queensland on his own again, for two weeks this time, to go fishing with Grandpop. Have managed one mono-syllabic conversation with him on the phone since he left on Thursday, so clearly not missing us at all.

That leaves Miss Four (nearly five!), who has been super-good since Master Seven left. No competition? Looks like we have another very social round of holidays ahead of us, including swimming lessons, birthday parties, ballet classes and hanging out with friends. We started that off on Friday night with an Intimo party hosted by a school mum, followed it up with a big tidy up Saturday morning, then headed to Mandurah. First stop (after a quick drop off sale of Worlds Next Door!) was the Batt-house for a baby shower. Naturally we stayed all afternoon (seems to be very hard to LEAVE these things – too much to talk about!). Then we headed to  ‘s for dinner and Worldcon debrief (with   and   too) which was absolutely lovely (although the maths nearly broke our brains!). Didn’t leave til after midnight! Baby and Miss Four were both awesome, despite a very late night (and  ‘s Chickie was once again fantastic with them!). But it made getting up at 6 this morning really hurt! Bub is an excellent alarm clock, but had to get up anyway as I was going to a farewell breakfast for the wonderful lady who took on my role at school for my leave this year. She’s sadly not able to come back after her long service leave next term due to family commitments, but looks like we’ve found someone else to share with me, which is great! Breakfast/brunch was long and lovely, and I didn’t get back until nearly midday. Picked up a quiche and a pavlova and took it to the friends who were looking after Miss Four, and ended up hanging out with them for a couple of hours. Eventually got home around 2, and all three of us went to bed for a couple of hours! 

Also in the last week, we’ve decided to get some renovations done on the house, so have quotes for new patio and pool fencing, building in the carport, carpets, vertical blinds and a couple of other little things. Means a busy couple of months ahead as things get done, but really looking forward to it! Hubby and I spent the weekend in the yard last week so we no longer have a jungle out the back, which is nice 🙂 Pool liner is buggered though, so we need to replace that as well and that hopefully happens very soon as the weather has turned GORGEOUS!

Tonight I’ve finally caught up on some jobs and am determined to finish my marking by the end of the weekend. Tomorrow we’re off to try to change swimming lesson times to a little earlier in the day, then to a cuppa with   and the first of the birthday parties. Onwards!

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Busy day…

Today was unexpectedly social. Turned out   was down in our neck of the woods and I had stuff to deliver to her (plus, always up for a catchup!). And   was (supposed to be) home alone. And I wanted to grab my Tupperware from   so I could use it for baking on Monday. And the kids wanted to know if they could play at their friends’ house. So between 10 and 11, after originally having no plans for the day, I organised the play date, tweeted with A & T to arrange visits, and on the way between the two dropped in on L&L, who very kindly invited me in for a cuppa as well! Was very pleasant indeed! I also need to say, I have the best baby – even though the poor little bugger kept getting woken up when we arrived at destinations, he didn’t get grumpy and was very good. He’s awesome.

While I was out, had a phone call from Helen to line up another play date for tomorrow as well, so the busy social rounds continue! Monday will be baking day (cake stall for school, prep for Tupperware party on Tuesday morn), Tuesday Tupperware, then meeting in Perth, then book launch in Freo! I’m pretty sure things are busy now right up to Aussiecon, no time for deep breaths…

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