FINISHED!!!

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In the end the party deadline was looming and I just did NOT want to sew that damn box piped cushion cover. Nup. No thanks. Over it. I googled upholsters near me and rang one up in a panic, because it was 5 days out from the party. But Greg came through for me and wasn’t shy on the compliments for the diamond tufted back seat. Shucks. Thanks. They thought I had done an upholstery course.

My new motto. JUST PAY PEOPLE! Honestly just pay them.

Having said that, I did not for one second regret doing the diamond tufting on a D.I.Y basis. Proud of it actually.

Stay tuned. My diamond tufting tutorial won’t be too far away!

5 friends can fit on it or 4 non friends LOL. It is the perfect solution for the space I had.

Audrey turns ONE & we throw a party for her!

My little girl is now one and two days shy of her birthday we put on an almighty birthday party at our home.

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The sweets table.
You can pay professional companies to do this for you or buy specialty glass jars and platters to make it happen. Then buy scallop printables with pattern paper for all the tags and the skies the limit.

But personally, I just wanted to keep it simple and on budget. No cake pops, iced cookies, no macarons etc. All these are a couple of dollars EACH. Budget blown. Another budget blower is a fancy, tiered, fondant covered, 3D model animals, give a wedding cake a run for it’s money birthday cake. No Thanks. They don’t even taste nice, cost hundreds of dollars and need to be ordered MONTHS in advance. I may appear organised, but I am not that organised.
Besides all that, it would have been hard to mix in the homemade sweets that my mother in law wanted to make and I wanted to have. I went the rustic approach.

I didn’t even do anything on the computer for this. No printing either. I used my cutting mat, ruler and blade as well as a compass to create it all. Lastly I used a pointed pen and dipped the nib into white gouache paint.

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Sweets made my mother in law. Precision cut by my brother in law. Arranged by his girlfriend.

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mini cupcakes

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White chocolate cake. Purchased with the mini cupcakes.

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I made this little cake! I am SO proud of it. I have always wanted to ice a cake like this. Just needed a turntable and a scraper. Placed on top of the small Donna Hay cake stand. (17cm)

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$60 slab cake to feed the masses. Sponge with custard and fruit.
(This cake was placed close the edge and a kid or two had a cheeky swipe at it pre-emptively)

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I made these 3 cake toppers. Small skewers. Fabric mod-podged onto card board. Wired balloons.

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LOLLY BAGS! I was originally going to put in choc chip cookies in there. But I needed to buy little plastic bags for them to go in then close them off with ribbon and a “Thank you from Audrey” Blah. Too hard. I made all the cookie dough. Rolled them into balls and froze them in freezer bags. Ran out of time. At the eleventh hour I just bought a whole bunch of lollies from Coles.

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Cheese table. I forgot to pull out some more dips that were suppose to go on top of those wood blocks.

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Mumma bear and Birthday girl.

I did all the flowers for the party. I stayed up until 1.30am Saturday Morning. Went the flower markets at 5 back home in bed at 6.30am for some more zeds. Just chucked all the BLOOMS in the laundry tub filled with water. I am getting better at going to the markets. Knowing what I want. In and out and not buying every damn flower there.

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LOVING the carnations. Never in my life would I think I’d breathe that sentence. But there it is. 5 bunches for $10. Right up my alley.

I started the clean up and prep of my house on Thursday and my sister helped me clean up over 2 days. She drew the line at scrubbing my toilets! Boo!

We had to hire a marquee (budget blown) because the weather was not favourable.

The weather on the day wasn’t too bad. Not like my baby shower. We were joined on the day with 70 guest. Yep. SEVENTY! What the actual?? I don’t know how that happened. When I was doing the invites I counted 72 and we had some regrets and then I invited people from my mothers group and Robert invited some from work and then I was putting Audrey in the high chair so we could sing her happy birthday and I was busy prepping her cake and lighting her candle and then I turned around to see 70 people crammed into my kitchen.
TOTALLY OVERWHELMING but at the same time I felt so honoured.

I remember my wedding day. Blow by blow. But this day was a total blur! It was full on. But I loved it all.

I was anticipating 40 guests. So I completely under-catered, but thank goodness to my European in laws who always bring way too much food! I have never been more thankful. In the end there was more then enough food.

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We all sung her happy birthday and she steely faced stared back. Then I attempted to do the smash cake with her . . .

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Not digging it one bit. And then she cried. Her only tears of the day.
My plan went well. On the day of her party. I woke at 6.30am. I woke Audrey up. She didn’t want to get up. But I had a plan! I fed her breakfast and then I let her run around the house like a maniac while I was cleaning my gas cooktop and oven and my husband was picking up all the food. At 10am I put her in the high chair and gave her a bottle. At 10.20am I put her down for a nap. Right on schedule. She slept right through until 12pm which was the start of the party. Put her in her party dress, shoes and headband. Party started. She was such a good girl. She played nicely with her friends and kicked the soccer ball in the backyard. Mud all on her WHITE designer dress. And because it was on the long side. We just used a peg to hem it all. (Breathe a sigh of relief. The dress is back to pristine condition)

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Ava Poppy to Audrey Eloise: “Oh I love your smocking! Where’s it from?”

There was quite a few kids at the party and a few pregnant women too. My best friend was to make an appearance if she had not gone into labour. Her due date was the day after, but she had! And gave birth today after MULTIPLE days of pre/early labour! Mammoth effort.

Audrey partied all the way until 4.30pm

A BIG thank you to my family and my husband’s family. Their help was really appreciated!

Quite a few guests are asking “Same time, same place next year?”

Even in the pouring rain, guests were happy to sit inside the marquee and drink shots of rakija. I didn’t know this was happening until I found all the shot glasses in my dishwasher the next day! Too funny.

Audrey awoke from her nap and just my Brother in law, his girlfriend and my sister in law who is back home for a holiday were still here and we drank some wine and ate some left overs while reflecting on the party and they helped me write the list of who was here because I was honestly intrigued as to how many people came.

It is now a week since I started party prep and then had the party and then went to work and only NOW. NOW! Am I getting the chance to just sit down. WOAH. Intense. I don’t think I can do it again for baby number 2. But we will see. Mother guilt may kick in. I wasn’t going to make a cake for the party, but in the end I did.

Oh P.S who wants to come and mop my floors because it hasn’t happened as yet?

‘Sup

I have done my best to try and restore some work life balance.

My husband has made it abundantly clear that he does not want to do d.i.y/handiman jobs around the house on the weekend. I have made peace with it. He needs that time to unwind. He is also solo parenting with A.

So I have picked up some extra days of work to raise the funds to just PAY PEOPLE! Pay painters, pay carpenters etc.

Sounds odd. but more work to try and implement more work life balance for both of us.

And then hopefully I can take some weekend days off work here and there, because I lose income when I do that, but I will have these other days to carry me through.

My mum bought be a beautiful bracelet for my birthday!

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I want to put charms on it, but everyone is telling me not to.

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My sister got me this book because I really wanted it.

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I can’t keep my nose out of it! It is fantastic.

So here are some things I have done in the past weeks.

I took Audie to my husbands work after I finished a freelance job for a press ad because I was nearby and it was close to 5pm.

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We went to the beach for a walk and had fish and chips!

That was lovely but made me feel melancholy because summer has drawn to a close and daylight savings is right behind.

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I think Audrey feels the same way!

I heard on the radio that this afternoon was probably the last evening with nice weather of daylight savings to get out and about. I picked up A from daycare and told my husband to meet us at the park so we could push Audrey on the swing set and slide down the slippery dip.

Then we did groceries together (That is considered a date right?)  To get a roast chook and other odds and ends.

I have been whipping up some great meals in the kitchen! I need to post them more so I don’t forget what I have made and what went into them.

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Soba noodles, sautéed eggplant, spinach, bacon and julienned (with mandolin, makes quick work) zucchini. Oodles of parmesan and a quick vege packed meal on the table. I like the soba noodles. They take 4 mins to cook.

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Again with the mandolin. (I seem to go through phases, we had the brussel sprouts phase, then the zucchini phase and now the everything with the mandolin phase.

Fennel, spanish onion, sliced thinly with mandolin. orange segments (surprising time consuming to cut), fresh mint from my garden. SULTANAS!!! My 2nd favourite sweet food to eat behind chocolate. For the dressing I made a mix of lemon and orange juice, olive oil and a little bit of kewpi mayonnaise.

THAT was so bloody fresh and YUMMY. I ate mine on toasted fresh ciabatta bread!

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I also put my car in to be serviced and I FINALLY made it to The Grounds. FINALLY. (Only because I didn’t have to bother with parking.

WOW! I really enjoyed myself. I walked from the dealership in questionable skies (looked about the pour at any minute) for 20 mins with Audrey in the pram. By the time I got there and waited for a table, Audrey had fallen asleep. Then I was sat inside a VERY noisy cafe and I thought cripes. This isn;t going to end well. Tired bubba will wake in an almighty fit. . .

Totally slept right through it!

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This croquette was delish. I had a meal, these croquettes as a side and a fresh juice. My bill was in EXCESS of $30. Oh Sydney.

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I LOVED THIS DISH! So I tried the fennel raw. Now I wanted to try it roasted (Well I did try it recently at The Winery at Surry Hills for my friends hens party) But I mean, for myself. This is cous cous. Roasted fennel, capsicum, spanish onions and kalamata olives. Fresh cucumber and parsley. Lemon, olive oil, S&P drizzled over the top. YUMMERS. I had this again tonight but with the roast chook shredded into it. I am just a bit conscious of the carbohydrates in the cous cous. It is quite high. So I need something else to try. Anyone tried Freekah? It is low in carbs?

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Also in another exercise to manage work life balance. I am embracing freezer meals. I had about 3 dozen eggs in the fridge thanks to my in laws chickens, so I needed to use them up. So I made fresh pasta. I rolled these into cannelloni. It had ricotta, home grown spinach, parsley and basil in it. With S&P and parmesan cheese. An Italian lady at work said I should have put an egg in the mix too! Oh well. I have 3 meals in the fridge of this. Pull the rolls out frozen place in a baking dish. Cover with pasata. Some fresh basil leaves and crush just with the back of the knife 2 cloves of garlic. Cook in oven. In the last 5 mins. Grate lashings on cheese on it! 1 pan dinner in about 25 mins! No defrosting either.

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Made up some fettuccine. OMG so good. So silky. Takes 2 – 3 mins tops to cook!

The next day I came home from work and I had pulled out some mini meatballs that I had frozen and I was going to dish them up with some barilla penne out of a box and call it a day. But, Lord, I just couldn’t. I had the fresh pasta the day before and it has ruined me. So I started making fresh pasta. I thought to myself, if this takes too long I will draw a line in the sand. Wave the white flag and just cook the barilla dried pasta, but nope. I did it. Didn’t take long at all!

Fresh pasta for dinner on a day I have been to work and picked up my daughter from daycare! God I felt like I truly had my shit together. I was super mum and super wife.

Some of that also made its way into the freezer for another night when I possibly do not have my shit together.

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I bought 2 of these lamps for cheap as chips off Overstock.com. Just needed rewiring. I married a nerd. He did it for me! Super happy. I told him the flood gates are now opened. I predict many a US purchase, parcel forwarder housing lamps and light fittings for me. Poor guy! I just want to gold leaf the base and the finial.

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Love this guy!

I need to be pointed in the direction of other freezer meal ideas that aren’t completely carb loaded like I gravitate towards.

I have outsourced my banquette/bench seat cushion cover out to an upholsterer so I can just get it finished. So hopefully I will be able to reveal that soon.

It is less that one week til my baby Audrey girl turns ONE!!! Wahhhhht? what?

We are having a party on Sunday. It is turning out to be bigger then Ben Hur.

Audrey at 11 months

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I am getting a bit behind in my blogging. Tsk tsk tsk. (And commenting on other peoples blogs)

Audrey is now very very close to turning ONE. Umm what?

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I thank God everyday for this wonderful little girl. I am grateful I have managed to keep the monthly photo sessions up. Considering how difficult they have become to do. She WILL NOT stay still. And I am ever increasingly becoming frustrated with my camera because I only have a base grade one that is not full frame. (Might mean something to some people. I only learned about this a couple of weeks ago) and that is the source of my frustration. But I persevere.

We have 4 teeth and have had for quite some time. I hope to see some more soon!

Her favourite food is either chicken or lamb.

She MURDERS berries. Any kind, doesn’t matter. She doesn’t discriminate. I took pictures of her eating black berries. It was both adorable and morbid.

It resembled a murder scene.

I don’t worry too much about mess. It gets on her clothes, on the high chair, on the floor. Her clothes, I wash them, I hope for the best. If it is still stained, never mind they grow so fast any way. The high chair, if you are trying to keep that pristine, you are not being realistic. Let it go. I wash the cover often though. The floor, well little ol’ steam mop gets a massive work out.

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Her hair is so long! It is in her eyes. She is not a fan of the clips or the hair ties. But not dreaming of cutting it yet.

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She is running now! And starting to jump. She can also climb up onto the couch.

I have finally finished her 1st birthday party invites. I walked to the end of the street to place in the mail box. BUT IS GONE!!! NOooo!!

I’ve left it a bit late. But should be a good day for anyone that can come along.

There just doesn’t seem to be many hours in the day as there use to be. Doesn’t help considering I am increasing my working days.

From next week I am working 5 days a week. And not your conventional Monday to Friday. Oh no. I like to make things hard. I am working Saturday to Wednesday.

So I still don’t get a weekend. Or family time. But this is honestly the best it can be. My daughter won’t be in daycare 5 days a week. I personally think for her age, that is too much for me. (Plus the cost)

This way it is 3 days a week. The weekends at work at killing me. I miss out on a lot. But I don’t want to give that job away and find something else. So I keep on keeping on.

I MISSSSSSSSSSSS my husband. Oh I miss him so much. He took yesterday off work because it was my Birthday (26, just in case you were wondering) and I knew it was the only day off we would have together to do whatever we wanted in god knows how long. (Other days off we have is because of events, like a wedding) Well he had plans. But I just felt this immense pressure to try and a take over and ask what we were doing and to cram more in and to make it the best ever day possible and of course I ruined it. I ruin fun.

He planned to cook me dinner, but I just didn’t want to go home. I wanted MORE, I wanted to do more, I didn’t want the day to END! It was ok though, we went to Bloodwood in Newtown for dinner. It is a small restaurant, but we just sat right by the door and the stroller wasn’t an issue. The food was yummy and the cocktails . . . lethal!

Today I feel post birthday blues. I need to join a support group. I don’t know how couples whose partners travel or do conflicting shift work etc keep it together. I am desperately sad. I at least see him of a night time. But it is not enough for me. But not bad enough to throw my job in. I can’t do that. I have a baby, I have mortgages. I’ve just got to make it work with the circumstances I have but. . I’m finding it tough.

At least there is Adelaide to look forward too. Much like my Melbourne trip. I will be my husband, but not actually with him! He will be working, I will be tagging along.

What can I do in Adelaide with my baby. . . arghh TODDLER????

This post turned into a catch-all post. I have so many things to update on. . . maybe they will make the blogs light of day. . .

The past couple of weeks

How is everyone?

I am not normally a rain fan but since my interest in gardening has increased exponentially, I welcome it with open arms. Everything just looks better after a good rain. I am sitting by the window, with the back door open and I am basking in the sensory stimulation of it all!

Last weekend my very good friend got married! That explains the hiatus this blog has had. I spent a good chuck of the weeks leading up to it giving her a helping hand with the stationery and decor. It was good fun to spend time together.

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My daughter was so well behaved and oh so cute. This was the unofficial photographer taking a pic of the official photographer taking a pic of little A.

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I’m pretty sure she had a blast

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It is about every 4 months or so that a photo gets taken of me and the little one.

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The view. It was a glorious day. Just a pesky haze was hanging around. I am sure it will add a nice ambient moodiness to their professional photos.

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These are the sort of things I was helping out with

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I also did the invites too!

The venue was in Mosman and during the week we went there to drop stuff off and I am now aware there is a Jacadi Paris kids clothing shop there. . . my credit card knows it too! Heidi!!!!!!!!! I love ya, I hate ya!! heheheheh

I may have purchased Audrey’s 1st birthday dress and another pink dress for good measure. (Luckily they were both 50% off. . . but still more then I would wish to spend. Resistance is futile with this cutie though)

We had a great time too. Audrey fell asleep in the pram on the verandah, just outside. We covered her and the pram completely with a tablecloth. Husband and I took turns at eating our dinner and then we danced the night away!

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The day after I was the lucky recipient of the wedding blooms. (HAHAHA I know someone who hates this lingo “blooms” my bad, flowers!)

I have 2 different light globes in those sconces. Hence why they look different.

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I had a play with the flowers and did my own re-arranging.

My friend is getting married again today in Malaysia. If I were a wealthier woman I would be there! No doubt about it!!!

Such a shame that I am not. D’oh!

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I made this salad through the week! Delish. I was on a brussel sprout salad kick, now it seems I am on a zucchini kick. I have done raw, I have done bbq’d. I have done grilled.

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The figs are from my in laws garden. The parsley from mine.

Apart from all that. I am a total scatter brain. I have so much unfinished projects lying around and all these ideas and I don’t know what to work on. Overwhelmed.

Valentines day

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I bet you are all sick and tired of hearing about Valentine’s Day.

“JUST DIE ALREADY”

I heard you moan that!

Fear not. Husband is ultra NON romantic. Doesn’t think anything of the day.

Sob.

I do though . . . . .

Never mind.

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Damn Straight!

I made my husband a cute card and envelope that was sealed with lipstick lips. He appreciated it and smiled at the cheeky message inside.

We had his brother and girlfriend over for dinner.

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I made short bread love heart shaped cookies and put them in the bag. (Which there is no photographic proof of, you believe me right?)

My husband queried why there was vomit bags on the table. I side eyed him til kingdom come. What a tosser!

I made baba ganoush with lamb cutlets and spiced sweet potato chips. It was paleo except for the feta cheese. Well there you go. I have no idea what paleo is. I found a pic of this dish on Gourmet Traveller but the recipe wouldn’t load so I went hunting for similar recipes and that is where I found out it was paleo.

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Seeing as there were no roses for me. . sob. . again. .  I just stole these from the neighbours yard and put together a quick centrepiece. That is a soy candle that I made from my wedding.

My mum rang me in the morning, asked what I was doing for the day, then quizzed me to see if I was staying home for the florist delivery. Then I laughed and laughed and she laughed and we laughed some more. . . then we sighed!

We married the same men just 28 years apart! U.N.R.O.M.A.N.T.I.C

My hopefully future sister in law brought over love heart shaped brownies. And our men just laughed at us because we both made love heart shaped stuff. WELL DER!!!! Then I asked her if the florist lost her flowers too? And she said yes. I mean, what are the chances?? Then we giggled for a bit. Then sighed, then death stared our partners!!

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I made this for lunch right before doing a grocery shop as there was nearly NOTHING in my fridge. Left over piece of BBQ chicken and 1 very sad, stale looking piece of bread. I fried the bread up with some basil leaves (from garden) and tossed in the torn chicken and then put it together with some olives, feta cheese, tomatoes (from garden) and fresh basil leaves. S&P, EVOO and reduced balsamic!

What a knock out! I can be so clever some times.

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I cannot stop practicing calligraphy. There is literally half a ream of paper in my recycling bin of my practice sheets.

I think I am finding my stride.

practice – practice – practice

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On the up side. . . My Birthday isn’t too far away!!! Chance for hubby to really bring out the big guns LOL.

At least Audrey had a Valentine! Her Aunty! The card played music when opened. I got a super cute vid of her dancing/swaying to the music. I’ve watched it over 200 times. . .

Audrey at 10 Months

Well . . she started to walk at the tail end of this month.

I’ve also realised, that this posts don’t make sense. It is titled Audrey at X month and then I go on to talk about the previous month. So she started walking at the tail end of 9 months, not 10.

I didn’t even encourage it. I was hoping she wouldn’t be so soon as I am told, it brings a whole new level of crazy to the household. Baby proofing must ensue.

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She is wearing Stevie & Me. A local brand (Cronulla) Made in Australia. Which was a baby shower gift.

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Her hair is so long and in her eyes. I do the fountain pony tail where possible, but it doesn’t last long as she loves tearing the elastic out.

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Her other top tooth isn’t taking a very long time to come through. It has been right there, visible under the smallest veil of gum for what seems like the entirety of last month. It appears to be causing her some grief.

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This little girl of mine is extremely inquisitive.

Her lifting up the rug, sent me to a fit of giggles – / – Her pulling away the curtain to look behind was also very cute. I guess she was checking for baddies – / – She hasn’t managed to open the drawers in her room. The knobs are spanned too far apart – / – She was sitting at her door just peering behind it and seeing what was behind, then closing it again and repeat! She only stopped because I moved her away.

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See what I mean? Baby proofing! Stat.

If you have instagram and you didn’t see my video of Audrey walking, go and follow me. NeoReverie is my username.

That was posted a few days. She has improved leaps and bounds since.

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Any suggested hair do’s I could do for my little gal? Or just persevere with the elastics?

Melbourne 2014

Long time, no post.

Apologies. Something shit happened. Like really shit. Nothing to do with health, illness or death. But something pretty lousy, hurtful and plain annoying happened. I don’t want to write what it is because I do read back through my post to remember things and look back at what I have achieved and I don’t want to be reminded of this terrible incident. Just let the past swallow it up and take it away.

I did write it all down in a document at work. But I grappled with whether I wanted to post it or not. Do you ponder over what you will post and what you won’t?

I still haven’t posted my birth story because I can’t decide if I am that kind of person anymore. Am I completely honest and open as I use to be? I of course will let you in on every gory detail if you are my friend and want to know. I have no hesitation there.

I am just going to print out Audrey’s birth story and place it in her keepsake box and pray to God that my house doesn’t burn to the ground or gets stolen.

I also don’t want to write about bad things. Life isn’t all butterflies and rainbows, but I can just make my blog a little happy place only. Escapism for me. (And my readers, I hope)

I was feeling really low and negative after this event. There was lots of fuck this, fuck that, fuck the fucking world. FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCKKKKKKKK and I want to be less about the fuck and more about the pretty and the happy and the positive. Which sums up what I already am about. So no blotches on my blog. Back to business. The show must go on!

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My husband had a work trip to Melbourne. Which because of the public holiday on Monday. Meant he left on Tuesday morning and would return on Friday and HELLO, that just happens to be the non-working days for me! So I told him to book Audrey and myself tickets and a rental car. We tagged along.

We are budget conscience at the moment and holidays for us are just not going to happen. We would rather be spending the money on renovation of our house at the moment. I also am on a self-imposed leave ban. I am thinking about baby number 2 and I need to save my leave so I don’t have a total of 5 seconds with my baby before returning to work. I used my extended leave last time and that won’t accrue fast enough to have the same amount of leave this time around. So I take what I can get. Small mercies.

Having said all that, I did take a day off on Monday. Under duress it was! LOL. We had a picnic for my Mothers Group so that all the men could meet each other. There was a very long email chain that was going back and forth of proposed dates for this shindig and none of them was going to suit me because I work weekends and all the public holidays, but this was the date that suited the majority and a line was drawn in the sand. I did entertain the idea of sending my husband just with Audrey, but he is a pretty shy guy and that seemed kind of cruel.

I digress. It was a beautiful day and I relished in my leave pass. Ohhhh to be social! It really is an important part of life.

Then on Tuesday we rose at the ungodly hour of 4am! (well not ungodly because my co-worker in the lead up to Christmas was attending Church at 4.30am. A novena she called it. 9 days before Christmas!! WHAT??? Dedicated she is! I love hearing about other people’s cultures and traditions. Do you? Fascinating.

4am, out of the house at 4.30am for our 4.43am train to the airport. We walked in the dark with pram, 2 suitcases, nappy bag and laptop bag down the hill to the station. We made it to the airport without much fuss. I was immensely proud.

The flight with Audrey was great. She wriggled a bit in the beginning which was annoying in the confined space, but then she had a bottle and drifted off to sleep for the rest of the flight. She stayed sound asleep all the way til baggage collection. What a legend.

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My husband’s work site was next to the airport which isn’t ideal, but we had a rental car and I like to drive. I thrashed it up and down that freeway all week long! I used a tank of petrol in 4 days LOL. The air-condition was on full throttle constantly. I was certain the car was going to clunk out.

On the first day I went to Chadstone shopping centre because it was 39 degrees and I wasn’t taking baby girl out in that.

Had a browse around there and then I picked up my husband from work. We checked into the hotel and headed straight to the spa and pool!!! It had been a LONG day by that stage. Audrey had an absolute ball in the spa. It wasn’t a hot spa.

The next day I went on a MAMMOTH walk. I walked Malvern Road, High St Prahran, Punt Road and Toorak road and lots of little streets in between. I was so pleased with myself. I just kept on walking and walking. When I got back to the hotel I asked if I could borrow my husband’s laptop so I could plot the walk. 15km!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! For me, UNHEARD OF! Well I use to do long walks like these when I was a size 10. . . . .  I am so proud. I must get out more. I really must.

But, poor little Audrey had her little legs poking out the stroller and they got a wicked tan. Mummy guilt to the max!! I did make an effort to try and keep them covered, but it kept coming off. I aloe vera’d up her legs so much. She loved the massages.

Then on Thursday, I went to Gertrude St, Fitzroy to look at arty stuff. Then I met up with my 2 cousins. One of them has a 1 year old son who I haven’t met. That was lovely.

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My other cousin is a famous sommelier. Famous to me! HE HE HE and in the wine world. We went to a new café on Chapel Road Windsor. Around the corner from where she lives called Plenty. Delicious.

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That is a poached egg on top!!

Then I went to Hawthorne to visit a shop. . . but the GPS wasn’t kicking in on my phone so I just kept driving til it kicked in, I knew I was going in the wrong direction, but that’s ok. It was heading towards Albert Park so I decided to just do a drive through and view the gorgeous houses!! So picturesque.

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I went past another twitter girls shop and I saw the shopping strip. But I was melting and my daughter was catching zeds so I didn’t get out. Then I trotted back to Hawthorne. I didn’t realise that Hawthorne is also a gorgeous suburb. Very pretty houses there too. I went to a shop called Peony. I only walked away with a candle because the choice was overwhelming. I have fallen in love with this perfume. Well it was the bottle first. It looks so chic. I went over to the display and only saw French words on first inspection and my knowledge of French doesn’t extend beyond, Bonjour, Bonsoir, Au revior, merci etc etc. So I was out of my depth, then I saw the word Camellia. I have been on a Camellia kick of late.

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I have been in talks with an advance plant nursery for plant recommendations for a narrow spot in my garden and they recommended Camellias. So I have been doing a lot of research on them.

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I only got a slight whiff of it. So I need to track this range down in Sydney.

Then on the Friday I finished off the top end of High St. Picked up where I left off and did High St, Armidale. Then I met up with 2 mums from Twitter. Well. . . if we want to split hairs, back in the good old Vogue forum days. I already feel like I know Slavisa So funny. Her daughter is a few weeks older then Audrey and Eirini’s daughter is 4 months old. We had a wonderful afternoon in the Botanical gardens.

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Then I went and picked my husband up from work and we went the airport, returned the rental car and caught the plane home.

Thank goodness for work colleagues that are catching a flight 15 mins earlier who parked at the airport and who also has a car seat in their car. AND offers lifts home. HALLELUJAH! While he was waiting for us, he adjusted the seat and moved to the pick-up area and luckily we weren’t putting him out much because we live on the way to his place. The thought of catching the train home and walking up that hill was too much. I was exhausted from all that travel and working and baby nurturing!

Fabulous jam packed full 4 days in Melbourne! Just wish I got out and ate some decent food of an evening but alas, husband was way too busy and exhausted.

I have Heidi my designer beacon (always pointing me in the right direction) to curse thank for the bulk of these purchases.

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The dolly is called “Eloise” I didn’t realise that until I looked up the brand online and saw the title. I knew the doll spoke to me!!

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Liberty fabric garments from Jacadi

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Dolly, lavender sachet and table runner from Plane Tree Farm. Candle from Peony. Figs from my inlaws garden and FINALLY! My husband has finished the mantle.

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Loving the table runner.

And there was no stopping. It was back to work the very next day!! Arghhhhh

Ohhhh and Husband needs to go back at the end of this month for the second round. . . . decisions, decisions. My cousin lives near the Mornington Peninsula, So I might spend time down there. She was talking about hot springs!! YES PLEASE!!

3 year wedding anniversary

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The traditional gift for 3 years is leather and I instantly thought whips and face mask HAHAHHAHA. But that doesn’t really appeal to me so, I sought the help of a friend from my Mother’s Group to order a wedding album. She is an awesome photographer. It is never too late in my eyes. We didn’t order an album at the time because I always knew I could order it later. (and I was over bleeding money) Plus I wanted to design it ALL myself.

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This is the wrapping of the album for my husband. Kept it quite masculine I think.

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Tah-Dah! I had already done the bulk of the album design not long after the wedding. I just needed 2 nights (when husband was sleeping) to finish it off and be really happy with it. I had to run behind my garage one evening to ring my friend and rattle off credit card numbers as my husband was home! HE HE HE. The things you do for a surprise.

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It is a gorgeous book. I was sold on it when I first inquired with my friend about albums. Because you can do this. Double page spread, full bleed and the image going across the binding, sitting flat on every spread. Which is the way I was designing the album to begin with.

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Ah my bouquet! Phalis. Love them so much.

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I tried calligraphy, yet again. . . .  Without any practice in between. It is still very amateur. I did draw that laurel wreath though with the nib.

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These roses are bigger then my fist. Utterly gorgeous.

I cooked us some breakfast. I have been very excited about using these mini tomatoes!

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They are the size of your fingernail! Forget cherry tomatoes, these are blueberry tomatoes. (Real name. Tiny Toms or Tiny Tims. I can’t quite recall)

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So cute.

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We grow 2 types of tomatoes. I’d love to grow big beefy ones, but we don’t have the space.

Then I cooked up some lunch

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I made a big batch of basil pesto the other day. Basil was over run in our garden bed, so I hacked into it quite a bit. I used our home grown garlic too. This dish is totally healthy because I added spinach and zucchini too!! hehehe.

Then we went out to an Italian restaurant for dinner. Totally decadent and delicious. Major carbs fest.

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These Peugeot grinders are sensational and very chic.

My kitchen now looks very put together because of this tray. I purchased it earlier but on first inspection I hated the marble. I knew it wasn’t going to be no grade A calacutta . . but this crud was flakey. I instantly wanted to return it. So I put it back in the box. But just having these items on my bench willy nilly wasn’t doing it for me. So I retreated and decided to at least give the tray a go. And it works wonderfully. Just as I had hoped. So I’m keeping it. I purchased it from Peters of Kensington.

This year we celebrated 3 years and my parents will celebrate 30!!!

Audrey 9 months

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9 months!

You know that thing the say to make you feel better about your post pregnancy body. “It took you 9 months to grow the baby and your body to change, so it will take just as long for it to recover” Yeah sure it kind of makes you feel a bit better at 8 weeks postpartum. . . but when you are 9 months postpartum and you actually looked better at 8 weeks well then it kinda hurts. ARGHH. Anyway this post isn’t about me.

Little miss Audrey. She is so clever.

She has finally got through a top tooth. Seemed like it was taking it’s good ol’ time to make its appearance.

Her Aunty (my sister in law) who was visiting for 6 weeks over Christmas really hoped to see her walk before she left. I told her at the beginning that it was a long shot due to her age. Well on the night we were giving her a farewell, Audrey decided she would stand up, let go and take a step or two from her Aunty towards her Dad!

She is doing lots of standing without holding lasting about 3 to 5 seconds.

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She also enjoys clapping and pointing her finger.

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Still trying to work on her holding her own bottle.

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Her hair is growing rapidly.

I see her smiles ALL DAY LONG yet, pull out the camera, and have the hardest time trying to capture them.

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Photo shoots are exhausting! Mum kept yelling “NO!”, “Stop that!”, “Don’t move” and, of course, screeching “SMILE!!!!!!!” But I march to the beat of my own drum and I wasn’t taking any of that nonsense.