Christmas with the Duck Avenger!

Rapid updates to make up for the long absence. Don't forget to scroll down (or click here!) to see the classic stories that Blotling and Yoshi have translated, if you didn't see them yesterday! 

Ah, 'tis the season. Banker returns with with some new, beautiful re-edited versions PKNA #13 and #14. Those were the only issues of PKNA that nobody on this site ever touched, because they'd already been done over at an older site, years ago. There were some discrepancies, though. The Avenger is just called Paperinik, and the font has never looked quite right to me. So I think it's awesome to have a remake made.

So here, ladies and gentlemen, just in time for Christmas, is the new, Banker-ized version of the classic Christmas story:

And hey, the other one's topical too. At least it was yesterday when Banker first uploaded it, according to half the people I know on Facebook: It's about the end of the world.

PKNA#14 - Carpe Diem

Finally, there's good news for PiKappa fans from CERTAIN parts of the world at least: has apparently started to feature Superduck comics at least in Greece. For the Greek, you can check out this link:

That link probably won't work for anyone else (it doesn't in Denmark at least), but you can always give it a try (or try searching for 'Superduck' on Comixology) and let us know whether there's anything to be found. It's always interesting to try to figure out if there are other countries where it's available.

Merry Christmas!

Classic stories by Yoshi and Blotling

And finally an update on the main page! I am so sorry for my absence - and I especially apologize to Blotling, who finished second part of "The Salvation of the Duck Avenger" (now retitled "The Duck Avenger Strikes Back") a frickin' MONTH ago, but I've somehow overlooked it in the comics. And then real life and finals happened, and I've generally been a bit of a klutz.

In the meantime, Yoshi has finished another old-school Duck Avenger adventure: "The Duck Avenger versus The Contaminator". So if you haven't been checking the comments, here's some sweet new stuff for ya:

Big thanks to the translators. And again, I apologize profusely.

Oh. And hey. Merry Christmas!


So tired. Can't post. Except to post this, which is what I wake up to ( or should I say what wakes me up? ) every morning. Enjoy!

The A-B-C of A-M-Y .... Rehashed

I was doing a  little reading of my archives and it occurred to me just how much my life has changed since I first started this blog - so many things that I wrote about back in 2007 and 2008 really don't ring true anymore. So I decided that I might rehash a meme or two, with answers that are more 'me' now. Plus, a lot of you weren't readers back then so these memes will be kind of new to you anyway! You can find the 2008 version of the ' A B C ' meme here:
A. Attached or single?
Very much attached now - married, in fact, to Mick, my gorgeous hubby. I might be a bit attached to my kids too.
B. Best friend?
It wasn't along after I did the original meme that I had a falling out with my best friend at the time, so this is one answer that has definitely changed. I guess Mick would be my best friend now, or if we're talking about people I'm not married to I'd say K, a friend I met through mothers group.
C. Cake or pie?
This one is really hard. I like me some pie, I like me some cake, I'm just not sure these days which I like better. I think I'll go with pie.
D. Day of choice?
I like Fridays. Flynn is at daycare so I get a bit of time to myself, and then there is the promise of the weekend. I think that sometimes the weekend itself can be a bit of a letdown, but you don't know that on Friday - Friday always has that positive ' woo, its almost the weekend! ' vibe to it...
E. Essential item?
Leaving aside things like money or car keys, I'm still going to go with a pair of well fitting jeans. I live in them during the winter, and a pair of nice jeans with a white tank and gorgeous heels never fails to make me feel sexy.
F.. Favourite colour?
This one is easy ( if only because Flynn and I talk about it so much ) - its red!
G. Gummy bears or worms?
Gummy bears. Although I am partial to a sour worm or two, I prefer gummy bears, especially at the movies.
H. Hometown?
Dubbo, NSW. Also known affectionately as DubVegas ( you know, in that it is NOTHING like Las Vegas ). My family live here and we have an awesome zoo. Wana visit?
I. Indulgence?
Since having children my number one indulgence nis being able to sit by myself for am full hour and read a book, uninterrupted. Preferably in PJs and with a nice warm cup of chair latte to keep me company.
J. January or July?
Always January. Its summer, its my birthday and, quite frankly, the cold of July sucks big hairy ones.
K. Kids?
Two of - my son Flynn Charlie who turns 3 next week ( omg! ) and my daughter Tully Maree who is already 4 months old. Again - o.m.g.
L. Life isn't complete without?
My beautiful little family. Oh, and the interwebs. Major withdrawals if my internet ever goes down!
M. Marriage date?
Remember, remember the 5th of November.... The 5th of November 2011 that is.
N. Number of brothers and sisters?
Two brothers and one sister, all younger than me. I know I've mentioned it before but even though one of my brothers is deceased I still always count him. We've also told Flynn about his ' Uncle Eli ' and will take him to lay flowers on his grave on Xmas Eve.
O. Oranges or apples?
Apples to eat, orange juice to drink.
P. Phobias?
Clowns - I cannot believe I forgot to mention that in the 2008 meme! After being made to watch Stephen Kings ' It " when I was 7 I've always hated clowns. I'm really going to have to think hard about whether I ever take my kids to a circus....
Q. Quotes?
' it won't rain all the time ' - Eric Draven, " The Crow ". It was my favourite back then and is still so totally applicable now.
R. Reasons to smile?
My babies! And my husband! And when I',he made something cute and I dress Tully in it for the first time!
S. Season of choice?
Spring - it means the end of horrid old winter but its not stifling hot like summer. I like me a happy medium!
T. Tag five people?
No. You may tag yourself if you like though...
U. Unknown fact about me?
Mum... That I'm just a little but excited about going to Sydney for a few days after Christmas. I can't wait to see Flynns face when he goes on the ferry for the first time!
V. Vegetable?
Pumpkin - a really good piece of roast pumpkin is the bomb. Also, you can make it into pumpkin pie, which is dessert, and dessert is even more the bomb. Mmmm...
W. Worst habit?
Hands down its procrastination. Which is what I've started the cleaning schedule ( which is going great ) because I want to work on eliminating bad habits.
X. X-ray or ultrasound?
I've had both but I have to say I'd prefer to have an x-ray over an abdominal ultrasound. Holding in all that water is a right royal pain in the bladder!
Y. Your favourite food?
It really does depend on my mood. I mean one day I may be totally in live with a chicken dish, the next I'm salivating over cheesecake. I just cant choose a favourite and you can't make me!
Z. Zodiac sign?
Aquarius - not exactly to the letter but close enough

And there you be, the A-B-C of me. Possibly an introduction to anyone new around here, and hopefully a laugh for the rest of you!.

Dear Santa, I'd Really, Really Like...

Alright, so I'm a bit late to the party but the awesome-sauce Kylie from A Study In Contradictions has tagged me in the ' all I want for Christmas 'meme that being doing the rounds of the Australian blogosphere... So here I am, finally getting my list done for Santa!

1. An instant and non-evasive tummy tuck - yes I'm all for body loving and self-esteem and such, but if someone could just help me get rid of my post-baby pudding belly that would be awesome. Plus it would make my jeans just that more comfortable - bonus Chrissie present!
A little shack like this will do me just fine!

2. A 'forever home ' - I'm not going to be greedy and ask for a mansion or anything like that ( although hey, Universe, if you choose to smile on me then so be it ). I'd just like a beautiful family home where we can raise our kids comfortably. Preferably with four bedrooms, a big kitchen and a fairly modern bathroom. Oh and a big backyard where I can banish Flynn to when he needs to get out some energy and I need a break ....
Just for the record that's a gather and I can do those....

3. A complete working knowledge of how to sew clothes to fit myself - because I'm still pretty much a novice sewer and I don't technically know to accommodate my own bootylicious-ness. I got myself some curves and if I just knew how to drape/gather/tuck/dart to flatter the hourglass shape I'm currently rocking, I would spend all bloody day at my sewing machine. So many ideas and images of what I'd like to make, so many YouTube tutorials to watch before I know how to make them properly...

So hawt, but I bet so uncomfy...

4. Shoes, shoes, shoes, glorious shoes! - or, more specifically, insanely beautiful high heels that are actually comfortable for more than five minutes. Please.

5. Some kind of beam-me-up-Scotty, blink-and-your-there, teleportation type device - because it would make it sooooo much easier to put what little time off Mick does have to good use. That's not asking much right?

Moustache Be Gone!

We all know Movember was last month right? If you hadn't seen it all over social media, the abundance of men with patchy, scraggly mo's should have been a dead giveaway. And one of those moustachioed men was my hubby:

Oh yea - total porn star/ Chopper Reid/ motorcycle cop from the Village People. Whatever kind of moustache you think it looks like, you can't deny my fella can grow himself a good mo! Truth be told it didn't bother me all that much, but I can't say I was sorry to see at it go at the end of the month. And the end of the month - of November that is - also happens to be Micks birthday.

With the princess on his birthday.

And what does every good wife make for their husband in his birthday? Yes, of course - a birthday cake. So what better way to celebrate both a birthday and the end to stubbly, itchy, pash-rash kisses? Why with a cake like this of course!

To be quite frank, a moustache made of chocolate cake and sprinkles is the only kind I want anywhere near my mouth anytime soon!

Wine O'Clock

I mentioned a few posts ago ( at least I think I did ) that because Tully is a predictable night time sleeper I'm able to indulge an alcholic beverage or two of an evening. Not every evening of course, but of a Friday and Saturday night I've been having a little 'adult time ' with my hubby, with a cold beverage and a good chat. As a young adult I was a vodka drinker, and at the moment I'm partial to a nice cold glass of cider, but I am trying to 'grow up ' and become a wine drinker. So when the good people at offered to let me sample some of their range.... Well, how was I going to pass that offer up?

Of course, because I know absolutely nothing about wine I needed some help - which is where Mick came in. I didn't help navigating the site because its pretty easy to use but he did help me choose the varieties of wine we should try and when it arrived he was quite happy to help me drink them!

                                    I love getting special parcels!

I'll just come right out and say it - I am so not a fan of red wine. At all. But I thought if I was going to give the sampling thing a real shot I may aswell try a red so we got a bottle of Pfeiffer Seriously Pink Topaque a go:

The bottle was really pretty but it just wasn't my thing thing. It was far too strong for my palate, though being a rose liquer wine it taste a bit better when I mixed it with some lemonade. Mick said it was smooth and sweet though so I'll take his word for it.The next night it was another rosé, this time Yering Station Village Pinot Noir Rosé. 

I liked this one better than the first, but still.... I don't think I'd drink it again. I'm just not a 'red' girl I guess. Luckily, we still have a bottle of white and a bottle of bubbles to go, and I'm definayely a fan of .... So thanks Wine Selectors!

A Christmas Present Just For Me

Just a quick post tonight because I wanted to share the little piece of pretty that arrived for me this week. This year I thought I had been a good enough girl to warrant buying myself a little Christmas gift - something cute, but inexpensive. I knew that I would like a piece of jewellery, something that I could wear everyday but I didn't have a lot of moolah to spend ( seems us mummies tend to spend on everyone else first, right? ). So when of the very talented mums in my Facebook mums group posted that she'd starting making hand stamped stainless still pendants I knew I'd found the gift for me:

Excuse the quality of the photos - I took them on the camera on my tablet,  which ain't so great - but there I be, tired but rocking my brand new necklace. Want a close up?

Remember how I said the pendants were hand stamped? Well mine is stamped with the names of my beautiful children, and overlaid with a star ( because that's what my Bambinos are, and where they came from ). I love it - its so me. Not overly fussy, just a bit different, and very much unique. I can guarantee it will be worn everyday and Flynn loves the fact I have his name on it ( although he doesn't want me to wear it to bed... ' Mum, it will choke you!' ). And, best part, it was very affordable and totally cute!

If you are interested you can find Katie and the rest of her work at her Leo Love Designs page on Facebook. Inspired by and named after her gorgeous bubba Leo, I'm sure you can find a great gift for yourself or someone special this Christmas!

Writers Workshop Lab and the Common Core

Last year, I had the opportunity to participate in a readers workshop lab (you can check out those posts for more info!). This year our district is focusing on boosting our writing and alignment to the CCSS. Today, we got together to unpack the new standards and look at our students' current narrative writing samples. Here are some of my "ah-ha" moments....

How do we educate parents about the CCSS writing expectations?
-Show writing samples at Curriculum Night (just like we do for reading expectations).
-Standards are similar throughout grades, they "grow up" with each grade level adding more depth and scope (explain the over reaching goalsi
-Shared responsibility (every teacher is a writing teacher).
-Strong emphasis on opinion/ argument writing.
-This is not all-encompassing, there are only 10 standards (holes will need to in, based on teacher judgement). Some districts may add specific goals for each grade to address).
-Shared research and writing experiences (under the guidance of adults).
-Focus on the process, not just the content (stronger emphasis on revision).

Katie Wood Ray's book About the Authors is a GREAT resource to add to our Writers Workshop units that are given to us!
About the Authors: Writing Workshop with Our Youngest Writers
Find it on
What we can expect from First Graders for revision ...

Side note... Create this anchor charts together, using actual class writing, each year.
(charts are complements of Annmarie Johnson, Independent Consultant)

There are three types of writing in CCSS: opinion, informative/explanatory, and narratives.

In order to complete the above sort, we looked at the 5th grade standards in order to gain a broader perspective. For fun, we argued our opinions :). Those argument notes should fit into an opinion/narrative/explanatory column.

That was all before 10am!  Whew!

We then went to see my friend, Holly, teach her writers workshop for 1st graders....

She was thinking aloud.... not really a bad photo :)
Classroom observation (my quick notes)...
Mini-lesson: We can add precise words to our writing. (How To books) 12 minutes
-"Show me, don't tell me, what writers need"
-focus on planning (remember how we were planning...)
-defined plan for the day and defined "writerly words" as she taught
-mentor text
-whole group model of writing (as they learn the techniques)
-turn and talk
-connection to current work (link)
-students re-read what they wrote last session

Conferring with students: (individual conferences) 25 minutes
Reinforcing the set lesson reflecting the individual student's piece.
-reviews what student has been working on
-compliment to student
-jumps to the focus of the mini-lesson, "Where can we add precise words to you work?"
-student reads as teacher attempts to follow the how-to directions (finds vague areas together)
-student tries technique
-re-reads with the new words added in to piece

Actual student work
Share: brought closure to the original mini- lesson
-Students shared their work with a buddy (calling attention to the precise word that they added today).
-As a whole group, they added to their anchor chart on precise words.

Awesome Management....
-Holly takes a lap of the room in between each conference.
-Holly is a master at "starting slow in order to go fast". You can tell that her students are secure in the workshop model and the expectations. They get right to work and are on task ( as much as possible with first graders!). This is an ongoing area for me to be working on... My class tends to be a bit chatty this year!
-While all of this was going on, students were able to quietly reference the mentor texts that Holly had front loaded the unit with during an immersion stage.


We also spent a good amount of time analyzing writing samples from our students. We each brought our best sample, then a sample from a struggling student. We compiled the attributes of the best. This became our goal papers and an example of what is possible for our first graders right now in our process. Here is what we found....

This was our top selection from our group:

On the flip side, we went through the strugglers' samples and figured out what the conferring goals are going forward for that student.

The ultimate goal for all of these samples is to create a binder that we can use as mentors for our conferences. Like a published author, the students can see how REAL first graders can write. I'm thinking that at some point, I will have tabs so it can be referenced more easily.

Countdown to a Clean Christmas

So after finding some inspiring stuff whilst trawling Pinterest, and motivated by the wonderful mums on my Facebook mums group, I have decided December 2012 is the month where I finally get serious about this housewifey cleaning stuff. I make no secret of the fact that I'm a bit lazy when it comes to cleaning - I'm not a slob of course, just a bit of a procrastinator. I try to keep things relatively tidy ( or as tidy as you can get with a 3 yr old ) but the actual ' get down and scrub ' cleaning ? Soooo annoying!

However, I know it must be done. Truth be told I'd like to do it more often, not because I enjoy doing it but because I enjoy the way it makes me feel when my house looks neat and tidy. And, after many years spent living in my own home and having to clean up after myself, I've come to the conclusion that I work better when I have a list I can work from, and if I treat that list like I would a list of tasks at my paid job. So.... I've made myself a cleaning schedule.

Oh yes, a schedule. A roster, if you will. The idea is that if I can do 30 minutes of cleaning every weekday I can stay on top things. So rather than look at the mess and try and decide what to tackle first, I've scheduled a particular task for a particular day so that it becomes routine.

Don't they say that it takes 21 days to establish a new habit? Well, if that's true and I can stick to it I should be living a nice clean house by Christmas! Wish me luck!

You Do Not Name Your Baby 'Hashtag ' ! just don't! For anyone who missed it, there is a report doing the rounds of the interwebs that a Twitter mad American couple have named their daughter " Hashtag ". I sincerely hope I've been duped by a fake news story because, if not, I feel really, really, really bad for that little girl.....

Having just had to name a newborn, I feel like I can be just a little judgemental on this one. I mean its one thing to give your child a name that maybe isn't very common or not quite everyone's cup of tea ( like Milo or Gretchen or Rusty ).... But to give them a name that ISNT EVEN A NAME is just cruel! Of course, children will pick on each other for all kinds of reasons - maybe because they have big ears, or are a bit on the chubby side or they eat boogers - but i don't think you need to contribute to that by giving your child a wackadoo name ( I'm talking to you Jason Lee and your little Pilot Inspektor ). Also, not that anyone really cares - but I am also not a fan of "original " spellings.... Like Jaksyn or Iizak or Aymie. Don't over-complicate things prospective parents! If your child has to spend the rest of their lives saying ' no no.... Its spelt .... Blah blah blah " then you've made things too hard....

For the record, we went with " Tully Maree " because we wanted something that wasn't overly common but wasn't super weird either; we thought it went well with Flynn ( both names are of Irish origin ); I liked the meaning ( its a unisex name but the female form means ' peaceful ' ); and Maree is my mothers middle name. ( Also, as an aside, we had liked the name Tilly but after ' Underbelly: Razor ' last year we decided against it! )

So - is it just me or is naming a kid ' Hashtag ' all kinds of wrong or are you all for freedom of parental expression?

Anchor Chart Crazy

If you've read my blog in the past- you know this about me already... I LOVE me some anchor charts!  I don't care for store-bought items.  Frankly, they become decorations rather than actual learning tools.   I've never been a teddy bear on the wall kind of teacher, anyway.

My journey with chart-making goes back to when I was student teaching (fade into dream/ memory sequence, perhaps some snazzy fog for effect).....

I was in a classroom that had A LOT of decor items, but none of which really spoke to what the children were learning.  Don't get me wrong, she was/is a great teacher, but I often felt a bit claustrophobic with the floor to ceiling store-bought charts.  In a perfect retail world, all charts would come in all decor combinations (at least that wouldn't be so bad).  About the same time, I attended a week-long seminar on Quantum Teaching (click HERE for more info).  I'm a brain-based learning junkie, so I loved the experience.

One of the over-reaching concepts that I learned was that "everything speaks".  This includes the learning environment.  What we put in our rooms and up on the walls speaks to what we value.  The environment should reflect the students and what they are learning (the purpose for the classroom).  We cannot go about this haphazardly.  Another concept is that "everything is on purpose".  I take these two concepts with me in all realms of education.

Flash back to the present (insert Wayne's World music, if so desired!)....

Over the summer, if stumbled upon a FAB.U.LOUS. blog by two great teachers: Chart Chums . Do you know this one?  It will change your teaching life!  They just came out with a new book that I have post-noted, highlighted, and written all over.

Click here for more info
This book can be applied to all subject areas- not just readers and writers workshop.  It's more of a design method, than a book of ideas.  Their work is based on brain-based ideas, along with marketing and design concepts. 

I wanted to see if my students actually noticed the difference.... last week, we had a big discussion on our charts.  They wanted to ditch the ones that I had made (along with them during instruction) and keep the ones with my drawings and/or photos.  That sold me!  I will now only be doing things the "Chart Chums" way.  It speaks to my students and that is what matters!

What A Pretty Girl You .... Aren't?

I read this article on earlier in the week and its had me pondering the past few days. Basically the crux of the post is that the author does not want to compliment her baby nieces looks as she feels society focuses far too much on a woman's appearance and she'd rather build up her nieces other assets instead. But to never tell your niece, or your daughter, that she's pretty? I can't agree with that.

This is my pretty, beautiful, gorgeous daughter...

I understand that we, as the mothers of daughters, want to instill in our girls that they are worth more than just their looks - but to never say ' Hello there gorgeous girl! ' or ' Look at the pretty girl in her pretty dress! '. No, I don't think that's fair either. I think my job as a mum is to build self-confidence in both my children, and part of self-confidence is being comfortable with your body and having a good body image. How is a girl supposed to grow up loving her body, being confident in her appearance, if the people who love her the most won't pay her a compliment?

As a women who suffered from incredibly low self-esteem during her formative years, I can tell you a lot of that anxiety came from not feeling pretty enough.... And that was even WITH being told I was ' Daddy's beautiful girl '. I cannot imagine how much worse that 
feeling would have been had I not heard ' yes darling, you're pretty ' from my parents. Hell, even now, when my husband tells me I'm beautiful or that I look gorgeous in a particular outfit, I find it hard to believe that he could possibly be sincere.

So I will tell Tully that she's pretty. I will continue greeting her in the morning with " Good morning gorgeous girl ", just as Flynn gets a " hey handsome boy ". I will also tell them both that they are smart, funny, sweet, strong and that I love them ' so, so much ' ( as Flynn is want to say ). I make no apologies for that, and I guess only time will tell whether my ' compliments all round " approach will help or hinder my daughter when she tries to make her way in the world.

How about you? Do you hold back the physical compliments from your daughter, or do you acknowledge that her physical attributes are part of her overall make-up as a person?

OMG - My First Ever Refashion Post!

So you remember so I mentioned in my last post that I'd had a super sewing fail and in was hoping to be able to take that disaster and turn it into something else? Well - I totally did! And just because I love you guys and I actually remembered to take photos as I went along, I'm going to show you what I did! ( And please excuse the atrocious selfies! )

My original attempt was supposed to be an elastic waisted shirt dress. Pretty simple if you can shirr ( which I am yet to attempt ) or if you sew one line of thin elastic through the middle of the dress. The problem was, though, that I mis-measured the width of the dress and I couldn't stretch my elastic enough to make the dress fabric gather enough to fit me. So, after unpicking the elastic three.bloody. times. This is what I ended up with:

Yes, that is me in a giant freaking mu-mu. That's what I had made myself .... A mu-mu. But because I'm a cheapskate and I didn't want to just waste the money I had spent on the fabric ( a whopping $6 ) I decided to have a do-over. I started by chopping the mu-mu through the middle so that it was a knee length. I then took that bad boy in a good 6cms on each side because, let's face it, it was ginormous!
I then took a plain $4 tank top from Big W ....

... And cut it through just below my natural waist. I now had two halves for one new dress! Next step was to set my sewing machine to the longest stitch length and run a basting stitch the entire way around the top of my skirt. By leaving the tails of my thread long after sewing, I then pulled the top thread which gathered the fabric. The trick is to go slowly and gently until the waist of the skirt is the same width as the singlet. Then you slip the singlet inside the skirt, right sides together , waist to waist:

Then you sew together! I set my machine back to a regular sized stitch and straight stitched around the entire waist, making sure to stitch outside the line of the basting stitch, so it wouldn't show through on the front of the dress. When you've finished sewing, and you flip the skirt back down and right side out, this is what you get:

Kind of cute huh? And way better than the giant shapeless sack I'd started out with. Hell, it even looks cute with a wide belt:

And there you be, my first official refashion of a garment. Its not entirely perfect, and its not exactly what I was aiming for in the beginning, but I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out in the end!

Happy Thanksgiving and a BIG Sale!

I am thankful for so many things this year!  Both of my boys are healthy and growing into sweet young men (don't tell them I said that!).  My sweet husband continues to support me and my efforts in teaching my little first grade friends.  He really is just the best!

We are spending a long weekend at my brother and sister-in-law's house.  My parents also join us, along with family friends.  It's quite a party with 12 people in one house (plus 2 dogs and 2 guinea pigs).  You would think that we wouldn't need to spend the night..... we only live 5 miles away, but it's our time with family.  I've spent most of the day today on the couch, reading with my little niece.  She's only two, but LOVES her books.
I just wanted to stop by and say that I am still here, just crazy busy with work and my family.  I haven't forgotten the blog and have a long list of things to share (including an upcoming writers workshop lab, similar to the readers from last year).
There is also a big sale gong on at Teachers Pay Teachers this Monday.  It's time to empty out that cart and wish list! :)

All of my items will be listed at 20% off!
Click HERE to visit my store front.
You can find more great sellers by checking out the blog lonky party over at Blog Hoppin .
Until next time,

Home Alone? Really?

As we roll into the weekend, I'm feeling a little worn out. Not that I've had an overly stressful week, but it has been a bit busier than usual, and after having Flynn home with me today when he is usually at daycare I'm a bit in need of a wine and a sleep in tomorrow morning.

Home alone? What will
I do with myself?

I don't know that I can count on a sleep in, but I'm pretty sure I'll get a little time to myself tomorrow. See, Flynn and i went on a 'date' on Wednesday, out to the shops to buy Daddy name Christmas present and have a 'special lunch ' together.... And tomorrow is Daddy's turn to take him to get a present for me. Tully? Well no, she'll be staying home.... There is no WAY Daddy is ready to take two of them out all by himself! Mick hasnt even tackled the task of being at home alone with two of them, let alone out in a public place where all manner of hijinks can ensue!

But I'm okay with that - if Tully can have her usual two hour nap after lunch than I am happy to include that as Mick making an effort to give me some 'me' time. What do I plan to do with it? Well, let's just say I started a little sewing project for myself this week that turned into a bit of a sewing fail, so I'm going to salvage what I can of that little disaster and turn it into something else ( which I may or may not document later on this blog ) and then get started on a little dress for Tully to wear at Daddy's birthday BBQ next Friday night.

I also desperately need to vacuum the living areas but that can wait til 'me' time is over and done with!

Muse Wars - Round Four

 'Muse Wars' is a flash fiction/short story game that is hosted by the beautiful Lori over at RRSAHM. The object is write something inspired by the posted image. This month it was:

She was running. She may not be wearing the fancy brand name sneakers or exercise gear, but running was sure as hell what she was doing. What she always did - anytime something went wrong, someone said something that hurt her or just when life got in the way, got too hard. She thought if she could run far enough, fast enough....well, maybe it just wouldn't hurt anymore.

But she was wrong. Of course she was. She thought if she just stayed home, stayed away, then she wouldn't run into them and she could pretend she wasn't now an outsider where once she was such a vital link in the chain. She hadn't counted on the impact of social media, of being confronted by them not in person, but in words and pictures.

It was the pictures that upset her the most. When she was feeling thoroughly alone there were always the photos of them, out and about, photos of them making memories she wouldn't be a part of. Photos of them dressed to the nines, laughing, partying, playing the silly games that groups of 'best girlfriends ever! ' are want to play. Things that not only did she not get to do with them anymore, but that she did not do with anyone at all anymore. She hadn't found anyone to replace them, of course - for weren't 'best girlfriends forever ' irreplaceable?

And why? Why was she missing from those new memories, those Facebook photos and Twitter statuses that always gave her a slight pang ( not that she would admit it to anyone but herself )? Because when she should have stayed, and fought and spoke up for herself... Well, she'd run. And she'd continue to run, even though she knew where she was running to wasn't any better, any less hurtful, than where she'd run from.....

Zen and Quantum Physics

Banker returns with tales of the Dhasam-Bul monestary.

#43 Bonus: Zen and Quantum Physics - The Dragon's Sleep

#44 Bonus: Zen and Quantum Physics - The Door of Comprehension

#45 Bonus: Zen and Quantum Physics - Mystic Aphorism

#46 Bonus: Zen and Quantum Physics - Reeds in the Wind

#47 Bonus: Zen and Quantum Physics - The Flying Syllable

Dear Tully, 3 Months Old

My gorgeous girl,
I can't believe you are 3 months old already! I know it sounds clichéd, but I really can't believe how quickly the time has flown - it seems like only a week or two ago I was willing you out of there, and now here you are, my 3 month old chunky monkey pumpkin.

You are already such a beautiful girl... Not just pretty ( although those gorgeous long eyelashes do win you lots of compliments ) but you have a beautiful temperament. You are such a cruisy little poppet, usually quite content to lie back in your swing or on your play mat, watching the world go by. Actually, its more like people watching - you are such a people person and a MAJOR snuggle bunny. If someone is happy to have you on their lap, you are happy to snuggle in for a cuddle or a snooze.

Speaking of snoozing, you are a much better sleeper than your brother was at this age, and for that I am extremely grateful. Our feeding is going well now after a bit of a rocky start, and even though people say you don't get the same connection when bottle feeding, I really enjoy the one bottle a day you have - looking down at you and having you looking back at me. I also enjoy sewing clothes for you, and having you wear all the cute things I'm attempting to make for you!

And so - happy 3 months! I can't wait to see what you start doing next - finding your hands ( you're already fascinated with your feet ), rolling, reaching out to touch things, sitting up on your own and first words. Love you my gorgeous baby girl,

Love your Mama

Off the Air

Welcome to another installment of Banker's Bonus Stories! This week: Off the Air.

 All of them!

The One I Hate

I'll admit it - I am not the neatest of freaks. My house is quite thoroughly lived in, and though do try and clean some part of it everyday it retains that air of ' recent tornado ' that only a 3 yr old boy can provide. So even though I do my best there one job I just hate doing.... and that's cleaning the bathroom.

Maybe if I had a bathroom like this I might enjoy cleaning it...

The problem is that the bathroom isn't one of those jobs you can put off forever. You know, like folding the washing - you can put that off until you've cultivated yourself quite a nice Mt Washing-ton and it doesn't really matter. But if you put cleaning the bathroom off for too long and you start cultivating yourself a nice batch of mould.... which is really not that nice at all is it?

So I nominated Tuesdays as ' clean the bathroom day '.... and its now Wednesday night and I haven't done it yet. ( Drafting a pattern and sewing Tully a pretty dress has been way more important ). I'm not sure exactly what it is that irks me so much about cleaning the bathroom - maybe the chemical smells, maybe the myriad of surfaces that have to be scrubbed, maybe the fact I'm the only one who does it - but I know that now that i 've already misuse my cleaning day by one day, I have to get to it tomorrow. Or Friday, at the latest.

So what about you - which domestic delight do you find less than delightful?

Back To The Future

Do any of you remember when this blog used to have some substance? And by that, I mean do you remember when I used to write about stuff, about things that were happening out in the world beyond my front door? I do... and I so want to get back to that place. Don't get me wrong - I love my kids and my husband and the particulars of my life right now, but I'm tired of writing exclusively about them. And I'm pretty sure you guys are tired of reading about them, which is why my comments have dropped in the last 6 months or so.

This blog needs a resurgence.... it needs a bit of an injection. Not so much a makeover, just more of a changed up in content. I miss things like the Polly Dolly posts ( so sad that Danimezza discontinued them, and I'm not a big enough clothing size to play along with her new blog hop ) and Flip Off Friday, memes that assured I had motivation to post.

I miss reading a news article and getting my ranty pants on on here, miss sharing links and reviewing books and films.

So I'm making a converted effort. I'm still going to write about my family of course, and I'd love to blog more about my new found love for sewing ( hell, I may even attempt a tutorial at some point! ) .... alls I know is that things need a bit of a shake up around here!

MMMM #2 - Estrelita

MMMM #2 - Estrelita

A new translator has entered the ring! Thanks to translator Timbeano the Mickey Mouse Mystery Magazine rolls on. Awesome!