Our Free? Bed

30 05 2009

My husband and I have slept together on a double ensemble bed for the last seven years.  There was nothing really wrong with it, we are both small people and it was snuggly and comfortable.  But when my sister-in-law recently downsized she purchased a double bed and offered us her queen bed.  We thought, hey for nothing, it wouldn’t hurt to try it.

Trying it involved hauling the extremely heavy latex mattress into the stationwagon, dumping it on the lounge room floor and sleeping out there for a few nights.  We decided that it was hard but the extra space was nice so we got my brother’s mate to move the bed base over to our place in his ute in exchange for giving him our double bed.  A pretty good deal really – all up it cost nothing and we didn’t even have to get rid of our old bed.

Well not exactly nothing because of course we then needed to buy new sheets, blankets, doona, etc.  One of my current projects is to make a king size doona cover because I haven’t been able to find a pre-made one that suits our bedroom.

The bed didn’t stop being hard either.  I know it’s supposed to be good to sleep on a hard bed but I’ve honestly never slept on a harder bed anywhere before.  After a few weeks of both having very sore backs all day, we were seriously considering buying a whole new mattress.  We tried putting our old queen doona under the mattress protector for extra padding and that seems satisfactory for now.  After a few months of sleeping on it I’ve gotten used to it and will probably find every other bed uncomfortably soft from now on.

Another disadvantage of the new bed are the square top pillars at the foot of the bed which are particularly dangerous for our toddler and my thighs, especially in the middle of the night.

However, one of the big advantages (other than all the extra room) is the extra storage space.  Yay!  It’s quite a high bed and will fit at least 9 x 52L storage boxes underneath it.  With storage places hard to come by in our house, this is a big bonus.  As I continue to declutter and organise the house I’m sure it won’t take long to fill up this extra space.





More Rice?

27 05 2009

Ben is very adventurous and inquisitive but he’s also very accident prone with several accidents a day not uncommon.  Too smart to fall for the “kiss it better” remedy, he seems convinced that ice will heal anything.  In 50% of cases it actually does help (bumps, bruises, burns) so I let him believe that and for everything else, sucking on a piece of ice seems to soothe and settle him pretty well.

One evening recently, while I was preparing dinner and not watching him with eagle enough eyes, he managed to fall off a chair, run his car into the oven and burn his leg, and close the sliding door on his fingers.  Each wound was treated with the magic ice remedy and after the last incident he came running up to me with his fingers held out crying, “More ice! More ice!”.  I cracked up laughing.

Why?  Firstly because it’s the first time I’ve heard him use two independant words together like that (other than copying phrases like “here it is” and “i don’t know”).

But the thing that made it particularly funny was the way he sounded just like an asian waiter asking if I wanted “more rice?”  This has been a family joke for years and we always have a chuckle when we are at a Thai, Indian or Chinese restaurant and someone asks us if we want “more rice? more rice?”.  Now whenever I hear someone say that I will think of Ben’s ice obsession.

Lately, though, he’s taken preference to the star-shaped ice that comes from one of our Ikea ice trays so now he often comes running up to me requesting a “star” to make things better.





Shoe Clutter

8 05 2009

Inspired by reading this post I threw out 12 pairs of shoes today.  Now I only have 26 pairs.  My husband, who only has 10 pairs of shoes (including his slippers) thinks this is still far too many.

Some of my sparkly shoes only get worn once a year when I go to a wedding, Christmas party, etc.  Guys, of course, can just add a bit of extra spit and polish to their workday shoes and they are “dressed up”.

I also have a set of court shoes in black, navy and brown that probably won’t get worn much now that I’m not working in an office, but I’m not getting rid of them just yet.  I did concede to tossing my steel-caps, though.  I don’t think I’ll be working on-site again for quite a while.

26 pairs of shoes probably is excessive, given that for most of the day, most of the year, I don’t wear any shoes at all.  I’m lucky to live in such a beautiful climate.





Artistic Skill – Ben – 18 months

2 05 2009

img_5381drawing-18-months1

The painting was actually done at 16 months when he liked to jab the page with brush or crayon.  Now he either does big slow circles or vigorous side to side colouring.  Definitely right handed.





Remembering

30 04 2009

I have always had a terrible memory.  I often forget appointments or things I need to do.  I leave a trail of possessions in my wake wherever I go.  I forget names of people, places and things.  And it seems it’s only getting worse as I get older.

I’m good at logic and reasoning but terrible at memorizing things.  That’s why at school I found maths and science a breeze but struggled with languages and social sciences.  I could never have studied anything medical at uni because I would never have passed first year anatomy – too many names to remember!  And often I find myself giving up on the task of scripture memorization because as soon as I’ve mastered a verse, the one I learned previously slips out of my brain.

It’s actually more of a problem with the speed of recall.  I can see someone I know and not be able to recall their name until five minutes later.  I find myself talking about my garden and the new plants I’ve just put in, you know the ones with the big spiky leaves and the beautiful pink flowers, the um… the um…. and I can’t recall the name while I am having the conversation but if I sit down and concentrate on it for a few minutes I will of course remember eventually because I know exactly what they are.

I just read an article about a Mum who wrote a long letter to her children for each of their birthdays summarising the year – special achievements, funny things they did and said, favourite toys and games, etc. as a way of recording her memories.  I don’t think I would be able to do that very well because I would have a hard time remembering all those things for a whole year.  I need to write things down straight away.  This blog is as much for myself and my children as it is for my friends.  And I don’t want to get 10 years behind like I am with documenting my photos.  I need to be more diligent at writing down the seemingly mundane things that will make me smile when I read them again in 10 years time.

Lest I fotget…





The Sometimes Useful Internet

20 04 2009

I took down my really dusty bedroom curtains, put them through the wash and then hung them out to dry.  If I had brought them in and hung them straight back up I probably wouldn’t have had to iron them.  But of course I grabbed them off the line before a shower of rain and then they spent several days scrunched up in the laundry basket, so I created another hour of work for myself by not being organised and bringing them in earlier.

Ironed curtains in hand, I went to hang them back up and realised I had no idea what to do with the long piece of material that hangs across the top and ties up in the corners.  I had tried to take a mental note of what it looked like when I took them down but no matter what I did I couldn’t make it look right.  I went back and looked at photos I had taken when we first moved into the house which had these windows in them but I still couldn’t figure out how to make it look right.

So I looked it up on the internet.

The internet can be frustrating at the best of times, even when you know exactly what you are looking for.  When I started my search with terms like “hang across the top of curtains” and “rings at the sides of curtains”, I didn’t really expect to find much.

It took a while and quite a bit of reading but I have now learnt all about “scarf valances” (the bit of material that hangs across the top of curtain tracks), “swags” (the hanging bit), “tails” (the bit that hangs down the side) and “rosettes” (the knots in the corner).  I also now know that the rings I have screwed into my wall are actually called “valance creators”.  Internet searching becomes so much easier when you have some decent search terms.  I suddenly found dozens of pages giving me step by step instructions on how to hang a scarf valance and how to use the valance creators to give different rosettes.

scarf05

I suppose this is knowledge that would have once been passed down from mothers to daughters.  But so often this chain of learning is broken, particularly in our modern society where people are quicker to pay others for their skills and services then learn them for themselves.  I am thankful I have a mother and mother-in-law who are quite skilled at lots of things around the home and are always happy to pass on their knowledge.  (My mum recently helped me sew my first set of curtains).  I’m taking this chance in my life to learn as many of these basic household skills as I can so that I will be able to pass them on to my kids one day (if they want to learn).  I’m soaking up knowledge from other people I know, from books and magazines, and even from the (gasp!) internet.

Occassionaly I find the internet can be truly useful.  Every so often it stops being an addictive, brain numbing, time-sucker and actually proves its worth.

Thanks to the internet, my scarf valances are satisfactorily rehung and ready to start collecting dust all over again. 🙂

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Really Old Dirt

15 04 2009

When we moved into this house 5 years ago it was really very dirty.  Unlike renters, home owners have no responsibility to leave a property clean when they sell it.  So when we moved out of our rental into this house we were faced with cleaning two houses within a week.  Needless to say I only did what was necessary (like wiping out shelves and cupboards) when we moved in.  Having never cleaned an oven in my life, I cleaned two really filthy ones in the same week.  Then I gave up cleaning and got on with unpacking.

Some things got cleaned over time.  When I looked at the big dirty marks on the walls every day for long enough it started to bug me, so I cleaned them off.  Some jobs were just perpetually postponed.  And the dust continued to slowly build up every day in places unseen, like behind furniture, on top of fans, and in the window frames.

As I was attacking my bedroom windows the other day, and scraping all the dust and dirt from the tracks, I wondered if anybody else had ever done this job, or if the dirt had just been building up since the house was built 40 years ago.

And then I began pondering how much other old dirt there is in my life.

Sometimes I face sins that I need to deal with straight away before I can get on with my walk with God.  Other sins sit and stare at me until my convictions nudge me into making changes in my life.  But how much really old dirt is in my soul?  Slowly building up over time in places I can’t see (or don’t look).

So just as I’m breaking down my cleaning tasks and tackling one room at a time, one window at a time; I’m also breaking down my life and seeing what else there is that needs a good clean.

The comparison between cleaning and sanctification is quite intriguing and I’m sure I’ll reflect on it more in the future.