Birthdays and baths and breastfeeding mermaids

I read this lovely post yesterday by Ruth. Just a simple, whimsical look at their bath time tradition. Reading it was like soaking in a hot bubble bath – just the soothing thing I needed. Most of my social media time this week has been taken up by the NZ election. I feel permanently angry and despairing about the media’s shocking bias towards National and the general population’s tendency to swallow it whole.

Reading Ruth’s post made me feel sorry for you lot, my lovely blog readers. You come on here and then I slap you you round the head with a rant about politics or parenting. Well out of order.

I thought I’d just give a little catch up on our lives – hoping some gentle musings might provide an antidote to all my ra-rah clamour.


Tim has finished the yurt extension and installing some solar panels. We now sit in a little cabin add- on in the evenings, with the lights on, reading and talking and feeling properly smug and snug! It is only about 3m x 3m but we are absolutely stoked and are filling it up with treasure found in the local dump shop.
photo (1)

I turned 32 last week and for the third year in a row we went camping. This time last year we were broken down in Italy – can you BELEIVE that has been a year? This time we managed to not break down but we visited our most favourite place in NZ. You dig a whole on the beach and it feels with hot water from a deep spring (imaginatively called Hot Water Beach hehehe.) We made an epic pool and sat there until the tide came in and swept cold waves in amongst our (3)

This is my breastfeeding mermaid look. Someone needs to design a nursing wetsuit, thanks. photo (2)

We are trying to be kind to ourselves. We’ve had a few disappointments/ hurts over the last couple of weeks. Somehow we manage to both internalise and externalise this by being mean to ourselves and grumpy each other. What is up with that? Warped I tell you. We are trying to go easy, seek out simple joys. We are lucky to have formed some deep and lovely friendships already here. If it wasn’t for our new friends this would have been a madly homesick kind of a week.

I have joined the library and am ravishing mountains of books. This is partly about being kind to myself but also because I read somewhere that the SINGLE thing a child needs to learn how to read is just lots of books and reading going on around them. No need to teach. It may happen much later, but it will happen. So bunkering down on the sofa with a good novel while the girls unravel loo rolls/ take every single tin out of the cupboard/ cover themselves in paint is very much a part of their education, thanks. (Any book recommendations HEARTILY received.)

Ramona keeps growing. (What is up with kids growing, eh?) Taking on new extreme challenges. I have always wondered about Ramona’s inability to jump. Perhaps it is a body memory of falling and breaking her leg when she was a baby, but she has never, ever been able to jump off things more than a foot high. However. This week she has begun to jump. Like, parkour styles. Off things bigger than her. Twice as high as her. Backwards. I just love the constant reminders from our children that we can keep our subtle encouragements to ourselves, they don’t need a push towards anything. They will get there, they will find their courage, in their own sweet time.

Juno, meanwhile, has been free running for about six months, stampeding through life. She is Sonic the Hedgehog but less blue. Christopher Wren with blocks. And she has begun saying “Uh Oh!” with stella comic timing.

That is us, for now. How are YOU?!

Treat yourself kindly, my friends. Read a book, take a bath, gobble chocolate.

(And Vote! Just don’t read your Facebook feed until Monday, when you can carry on pretending all your friends are as sensibly progressive as you. Teehee)

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5 things you need to enjoy the outdoors

1 A jar of peanut butter
*sings* Just a spoonful of peanut butter makes the hiking go down! This is my must-take to ay sort of activity outside. We always have a stash of PB in our bag be it a hike or a festival! We eat in by the spoonful and spread it on wraps. It provides instant energy and shorts any potential low blood sugar outbursts!

2 A pair of hiking boots
I have never been one for owning a pair of these but a pal turned up with a perfectly worn pair from the local Oppy and now I want to wear them even when I am in town. They are water proof and sturdy and if you want to take a proper hike you might want to look at investing in a good pair of walking boots (there is a good range available online at Tesco).
3 A sling
Oh, little legs. Sometimes they cope, sometimes they just don’t. We tend to all march up the hill but then put the kids in the back packs for the descent. We have a baby sling and one designed especially for big kids and I just don’t know how families enjoy walking trips wihout one.
4 A raincoat
There is no such thing as bad weather…yadeyadeyada. But, tis true, In fact. I LOVE sloshing about in proper rain as long as I am tucked up in my waterproof- then I feel like a smug, snug bird of a feather. “Nice weather for ducks!” I feel much beter about the kids spending yonks outdoors when they are fully esconsed in their waterpoof onesies! (Wish I had one!)
5 A carrying device
Because YOU KNOW you are going to come back with 7 different sticks, 3 lumps of mud (one possibly a dog turd) and 59 different leaves. I first had “A basket” down as the title for Number 5 as if we whimsically swan about carrying a wicker basket filled with nature. Actually it is nearly always a torn plastic carier bag from the local supermarket that I had stuffed in the foot well of the car. Not quite so folksy, but at least you are not clutching those twigs and turds under your arm.
Tesco provided me with some insights to make this post possible, but all opinions are my own…- please see my disclosure about that!
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