Saturday, 30 October 2010

Nostalgic mood is now kicking in

We are starting to move house today and I am feeling ever-so-slightly unsettled. We have been in this house for ten years and I, for one, am going to miss it.

When I told Peter that I was feeling 'fragile', he replied "the day has arrived and it's time to evacuate." (sounds like an emergency drill not house move!) then said "we didn't conceive any children here but it has been a good house."

We may not have conceived any children here (thank goodness .. three is enough!) but the ones we had already have changed so much in the past ten years that it seems like an entire lifetime ago that I was stressing about the last move.

A few of the big events from the last ten years that jump to mind:
  • My Dad passing away six months after we moved in. I'll always remember the conversations we had when we were painting the boys rooms and my grudging acceptance of his near-enough attitude to cutting in. He was right .. it doesn't really matter in the long run.
  • The boys all starting 'big' school. They've all grown up way too quickly!
  • Alex being diagnosed with autism. I can still remember coming home from a very unproductive meeting at his school and standing in the carport crying on Peter's shoulder about all my fears for him and his future.
  • The births of Mark and Bec's children. So wonderful to see them become a family of four and then five and it really didn't hurt that they're all cute!
  • The horrible phone call in the middle of the night to let me know that Pete's Dad had passed away. It felt like Pete was on the other side of the world even though he was only 700km away and all I wanted to do was to bring him home and make the pain go away.
  • All of the other seemingly small moments that added up to a sometimes painful, yet still wonderful, ten years.

Apparently that's enough reminiscing for now as we have boxes to move and 'stuff' to sort. The slave driver awaits ...

Thursday, 28 October 2010

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Out of the mouths of babes ...

Being the ever-so-slightly OCD type that I am, I decided to use a colour coding system on the proliferation of boxes that have taken up residence in every room of the house.

I thought that by giving each room/area a colour and labelling the boxes filled with stuff from that room/area with aforementioned colours, it would make it heaps easier to deal with the chaos that is moving house. Having so much more 'stuff' than the last time we moved house was frightening me just a wee bit because I could envision many complaints of "I can't find my ..." and "Why has he got my stuff?"

I even made a pretty little chart with the colours and areas clearly labelled so when the removalists got to the new house with the boxes, they would be able to easily find which room to put each box into ... see:
I was feeling quite proud of myself for being pro-active instead of reactive for a change until Andrew asked the blindingly obvious question:

"Mum? What happens if the removalists are colour blind?"

I think I'm just going to go and cry in the corner now. Please call me if you find removalists who aren't colour blind ....

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Plague proportions ...

Every room I walk into lately has one of these in it:

Even the hallways have sprouted these unusual growths:

Some areas have been more badly infected than others:

And this room appears to be beyond all but the most professional help:

(Take note of the smaller wild versions making a break away from the main group)

Luckily help is arriving soon ... I hope!

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Another step closer ...

The termite inspection guy has been and gone with the oh-so-wonderful news that the house is not infested with termites or any other nasty multi-legged creature (except for Brutus who took an instant dislike to him, as he does to every other male that comes within ten feet of the outside of the front door. Once said male is inside the front door, he couldn't care less .. great guard dog huh?) This means that we are now free to progress to settlement, which has been delayed two weeks due to the buyers changing their minds (and even though they changed them, they still don't work the way I want them to!!) about renting back to us for two weeks. I know they are perfectly within their rights to want vacant possession at settlement but why agree to let us rent and then change their minds? I'm a forward planner people .. I need to know what is going to happen so I can finish picturing the worst case scenario and implement the many and varied back-up plans in plenty of time! Don't mess with the system ... please? (warning .. breakdown imminent .. take evasive action .. warning .. meltdown in progress .....)

OK .. meltdown over for now. Clean-up crews have started fixing the damage ...

So from the very beginning, we/I have:
  1. agreed to the sale of the house
  2. agreed on a settlement date with us renting back for two weeks
  3. granted access to the building inspector as requested by the buyers (and then wondered why they wasted their money seeing as he was here for a grand total of 17 minutes with literally 2 minutes spent in the roof)
  4. found a rental and booked a date to move (after settlement, when Peter is home because I'm damned if I'm moving this all myself! What's that saying though ... damned if you do and damned if you don't!)
  5. been told that we are no longer able to rent back resulting in me burning a whole tray of pizzas at work as I was contemplating aforementioned worst-case-scenario of being homeless with all this crap junk stuff
  6. finally agreed on a (later) settlement date meaning I had to pull oodles of money out of my backside 'find' the bond money and payment for the removalists elsewhere
  7. passed the termite inspection (feels like being back at school .. passing this test and that exam!)
  8. packed enough boxes to deforest a quarter of the Amazonian rainforest (is it still called rainforest if it's been deforested? Always the deep questions here people!)
  9. freaked out about how I still don't have enough boxes to pack the rest of the crap 'valuable and vital items of everyday life'
  10. written long and rambling blog posts about how I've done so much whilst not actually achieving anything
  11. snarled at children who dare to interrupt my whining at the world to ask permission to make chocolate crackles as a treat for me for afternoon tea
  12. apologised to said children for snarling and grant them permission to make aforementioned chocolate crackles so long as they are delivered with a cup of tea
  13. decided to wind up blog post as I'm starting to sound ever-so-slightly mad like a raving lunatic who needs to be packed into a padded box for transport to a secure facility.

Off to have chocolate crackles ...

Mmmmmmmmm ... chocolate crackles ... yum!

After the week I've had this is oh so apt ...

funny dog pictures-Does stoopid hurt?  Would you like an Advil?
see more dog and puppy pictures

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Boxes, boxes, everywhere ...

Woohoo!! The buyers have finally had their finance approved (after a week's extension) so it's official ... we've sold the house! I have also managed to find a rental house and been approved for that too. Now I'm just madly packing everything that stands still long enough, which may be Peter if today is anything like yesterday.

For those whose husbands/partners aren't into motor racing, lucky you! It's Bathurst weekend when the V8 Supercars go round and round and round 161 times. However, that's not the most mind numbing part. That would be reserved for the endless discussions about the merits of this tyre versus that one, who was 0.001 of a second in front of or behind who, how long it took to build this car, how much it cost to build that car and we can't forget the endless repeating of the positions/times/leaderboard throughout the whole thing.

It does have benefits though ... Peter will agree to almost anything to get me to move out of the way of the TV! And apparently it's very educational though I'm not sure I want Drew to know just what these are supposed to be educating him about ...

(Is it just me or do most of these girls look constipated or like they're having some kind of fit?)

I'm sitting here listening to the occasional outburst whenever someone overtakes someone else and the running commentary from Pete, explaining all the minuscule details to the only one of the boys who is vaguely interested (Drew). I think they're both just waiting for the inevitable bingles and crashes that are bound to occur in a race of this length. That's when it really starts to sound interesting.

Bradley came into the study about three minutes ago and I sent him off to say good morning to his father with the instruction to stay and watch the car racing with him. Brad's response was "If I have to watch the car racing, I may as well go back to bed." Good to see one of my children has some sense!

Seriously though, it's one weekend a year and Pete enjoys watching it. He works pretty damn hard the rest of the time so I don't begrudge him this. It's heaps better than listening to, or worse, actually watching test cricket so I'm immensely grateful that hasn't started yet!

Now I'm off to pack some more boxes and try to work out why I thought it was such a good idea to buy so much Tupperware ....

Sunday, 3 October 2010

Some more show photos ...

Brad in his Viking helmet trying to avoid having a photo taken:

Ninja Brad:

Alex's remote control helicopter (purchased instead of a heap of show bags ..
his sugar rush could have been worse!!):

Amy in her funky new glasses and rasta hat (complete with dreadlocks):

Andrew going all rasta (and his shirt matches too!):

We survived the show. However, the post showbag sugar rush has only just started winding down ...

... and I am ready to kill the inventors of M&Ms ... specifically the person who decided bright blue food colouring was the ideal coating for a chocolate filled sugar coated sweet. Alex's teeth and lips are a beautiful shade of mottled blue. If we lived in a cooler climate I would be taking him to hospital on suspicion of hypothermia!

Then the fact that he is a teensy bit slightly OK, majorly 'sensitive' to blue and yellow food colouring, has meant an interesting couple of days. Yes I know I could have taken them away from him, but where's the blog post fun in that? (I tried to get a photo but retreated before he literally broke the camera. Teenage boys don't seem to like having their photo taken, as is evidenced by the number of photos of hands in front of faces that are now languishing in my archives.)

Overall though, we had a great day out and were home by 3pm. We arrived nice and early (9:20am) and managed to look at everything we wanted to see before the real crowds started arriving just before lunch. The first stop was the cake decorating (which all the kids had asked to see .. I know .. wonders will never cease!) We all had a laugh at the look on this groom's face:

and this couple:
Very well made, but my favourite was still the little mice peeking out from all sorts of places in this farmyard scene:

After the cakes, we checked out the sheepdog trials, log chopping, needlework/craft display (for Bec's gorgeous cross stitch sampler) and the dairy pavilion. Then it was on to the worst best part of the show ... sideshow alley. Thank goodness we were there early otherwise I would be writing this from the East Perth lock-up or Graylands Mental Hospital ... no sensory overload issues here!

Brad and Amy went on the bumper cars then had a go at an air powered cannon/gun thing where Brad won his new favourite stuffed toy, Whipper the dolphin. Then it was on to the laughing clowns where he won the only thing he wanted to buy ... a ninja sword. (It didn't stop him from buying another two anyway!) Amy had a go at climbing a horizontal, rotating ladder (and fell off) and Alex made his way around to the Scouting display and tried to go the whole distance around the rock climbing wall without touching the ground. He probably would have made it if there weren't so many little kids .. how rude!! :P

While Andrew ate lunch (no-one else was hungry ... weird!) we watched the dog judging then I sent the kids off to buy show bags while I wandered for a while on my own (bliss!). I checked out the photography and art exhibitions, the "only at the show" specials pavilion and the baby animal nursery before meeting up with the now-broke children. Much to my surprise, they said they'd had enough and were quite happy to go home with their diabetic-coma-in-a-bag spoils.

We caught the train home, where I retreated to the safety of my lounge chair with a magazine for some down time. When it got a little bit too quiet, I ventured down to the games room and found the spoils of the day spread from one end of the room to the other. Oh well, at least they had fun picking out the bags even if the contents only last a day or two.

Now I just have to get a job to pay for next year's expedition!