Sunday, October 28, 2012

Hello Weenies....

Some pix of firstborn on his way out to a Halloween bash last night as Wolf O'Donnell from some video game I've never heard of.  The mother of all mothers made the shoulderpads and the tail, I made the gloves and the headgear, and FF made the bionic eye (or whatever it is).   Beats fangs and a cape anyday.....

Saturday, September 22, 2012


and that's just to fill up the cracks.  Teenage boys x 4 involves some serious feeding. 
Tomorrow I have to bake muffins, plus make meatballs, while the boys load the car.
Then I have to buy fruit and bread when we arrive.
And if it rains, and they're stuck inside for too long, the food/ manchild ratio increases.
be afraid, be very afraid!!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Have you noticed....

that it's getting cloudier by the second.  It's my fault.  Sorry 'bout that.  We're due to head  over-the-border on Monday, so of course it stands to reason that the rain that hasn't appeared in the last 60 DAYS will appear the second we hit Tweed Heads.  Don't wash your car, dong hang out your sheets, and if you see anything going "two by two" head for higher ground, IMMEDIATELY.  That is all.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Today's contestants include:
                                                        Nesting Magpies
                                                        Kids on Skateboards

                                                        Prado Drivers of any description  
Congratulations, you have won the right to totally piss me off.... until someone even more irritating usurps your place on the Throne of  Assholery.   Live long and prosper, dipsticks!!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


that I shall be a better blogger from now on.  Looking back over the year to date just shows you how totally preoccupied I have been with everything in the universe except my poor neglected blog.  And I should keep up with it, since sometimes the only way I know what the hell is going on here is to read back a few weeks.  So, based on that principle, I've been living the high life under a large rock somewhere in the far outer reaches of Planet Mongo. 
Which I totally HAVEN'T.  I've actually been crazy busy chasing my tail and trying to re-order the universe in 15 minutes a day.  And,'s going pretty much how you'd expect, really. it is.


is in exam mode
has 40+ hours on his learners log book
wants to pick out a suit for Formal over the school holidays (!!!)
works most weekends
is on track for his 7th grade piano exam sometime next year
has decided to study veterinary nursing after finishing senior next year.
is STILL growing

Second Son:

is now homeschooling as well as transitioning to Cav Road for the start of year 8 next year.
is seriously kicking ass at drumming, and hoping to join the drumline program at Cav.
has grown two inches in two months.


finally built me my long awaited cat garden.
managed to find "the man from atlantis" so I could force the kids to watch it
found a new job but stayed with the old one 'cos they upped the ante (considerably)
dressed as a Fairy Penguin for the school trivia night, and totally rocked it!!

Yours Truly:

is still hanging on
spends much time growing small things in pots and protecting them from large things with fur.
wants an Ipad (just in case ff is reading) and another ragdoll (a seal point boy, please)


Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Doof Man and the Kozmic Soundtrack

I am in hell, and the soundtrack goes like this.....
DOOF DOOF DOOF DOOFDOOFDOOFDOOFDOOF repeat at regular intervals.
The house across the road which has been semi derelict for the last five years is now home to some semi derelicts.  FF is convinced that one of them is Charles Manson, and the resemblance is kinda a lock up your children and arm yourselves kinda way.  To be honest, they haven't done anything remotely cultish, nobody's pets have been sacrificed, no strange midnight rituals. 
Except for the soundtrack.  It's killing me.  it's the Doofiest of the DOOF DOOF ....all bass and loud enough to make my floorboards vibrate....and I'm three houses away on the other side of the street.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Sunday Night

and we are revving up for a new school term.  Which none of us want, and which we have no choice in, unfortunately.  Blech.  So I have been doing the housewifely/motherly thing and have been ironing uniforms and making muffins, when what I really want to do is stick a child under each arm and run away somewhere green and quiet where the only form of outside communication is a carrier pigeon.  Although I probably couldn't stick a kid under each arm now since one is nearly six feet and one is nearly taller than me, so the logistics are pretty dodgy on the whole idea.  And they probably wouldn't agree to come with me if there wasn't high speed broadband.  So it's gonna be school.  Second Son and I worked out that there's only about 12 actual weeks of school left for the year, discounting holidays, school camps and end-of-the-year-crap that doesn't have anything to do with learning.  Can't come soon enough for me.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Remember me?

I used to blog here....before my life got in the way, once again.  Things have been a little bit all kinds of frantic in the past month, we've had school stuff, teenage stuff, work stuff and just general "other stuff" all of which has kept me flat out during the day and up at night, and not in a mood for writing. Anything. BUT, we are putting the bad behind us, and embracing the good, which has included school holidays, where Firstborn, Second Son and myself get to sleep in while FF goes to work and supports us. Love that man.
This weekend we are here

dressed in our medieval finest, to eat drink and be merry.  FF and Firstborn are going for the jousting, Second Son for the archery, and yours truly is planning on a front row pew for the Turkish Oil Wrestling.  Nothing like a well marinated buff bod to rock a fair maid's medieval world. Oh yeah!!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mothers Day

in which I get many wickedly cool things, amongst which my absolute faves are these
and yes they are what you think they are....
knitted Iced Vovo hairclips.
Seriously dripping with cute.  My kids have excellent taste.

I also got one of these....
the suit, not the kid.  I know it's mothers day, but let's not get silly.
It's a Lazypatch Suit....jacket and pants made from a doona!!
Guaranteed to stop me freezing to death on the crossing this winter.
I got the slightly more stylish version....cow at the top, black at the bottom.
Although the tribe also presented me with a clip on cow tail to go with it.
And the mother of all mothers is at this moment knitting me a hat (with horns!!), so my ears don't fall off.

So, when you add these....
you can pretty much kiss winter goodbye.   MWAH!!!!

Hoping to add a picture of myself and the minions, depending on how co-operative they're feeling this evening.  Laters!!

Monday, April 30, 2012

You had to be there.....

but it was wicked ass funny when we thought about it later.  The mother of all mothers, firstborn and myself went to the Cav Rd 60th anniversary open day, as himself had two music performances.  It was really kinda cool...lots of  "old boys" (and girls), previous principals,  music performances and a decent coffe vendor.  Interesting to look back at how much things have changed.  UNTIL some well meaning person suggested  singing  "The School Song".   You kinda knew it wasn't going to be pretty when the first two lines went "This is our song, it's our school song".  And it pretty much fell into a mineshaft from there.  Although the line "We're brainy brawny brave and bright" managed to bring a tear to a few eyes, I have to admit, mine were watering for a whole nother reason.   I think I cracked a rib from swallowing giggles.   There were a few other bits that defied description because nobody remembered the words but the bit about "we'll do our very very very (etc etc) best" was a real show stopper, mainly because nobody seemed to know how many "very's" were stipulated in the lyrics.   Seriously, you can't script this stuff.  Best. Day. Ever.


So this is where we are. The last three weeks have been hideous.  After Second Son's interview at Cav, we were informed that because he doesn't live in the catchment area, he didn't stand much of a chance of gaining a place for year 8 next year.  I was ropeable....not so much about the catchment deal, which I had been aware of, but about the school not giving me the heads up that EVEN with a special needs sibling attending the school in 2013 and EVEN with well documented special needs, the chances of himself getting a placement where somewhere between Buckleys and none.  Which left me with no back up plan and a category 5 migraine.  We had basically decided that the only option open to us (after checking various private special ed schools which had no places and which we couldn't afford anyway) was to move into the catchment area, which meant that the school would have to admit us.  It would also have meant borrowing rent money, and splitting the family in two as Firstborn  and FF would have to stay here with nanna and the piano, as it's kinda hard to prepare for two 7th grade piano exams minus a piano, while Second Son and myself gypsied into the catchment area.  See where the migraine comes in??  Fortunately, after explaining the situation (many, MANY times) to a bunch of Dept Ed reps, we finally got someone to intercede on our behalf, and himself will be attending with Firstborn next year.  It still amazes me that with all the "excellence" programs that schools have, there is still a massive lack of special education services.   If it were me, I'd be taking down that "our school is a insert subject/sport/whatever  school of Excellence" banner and replacing it with one that reads
Turning disabled students into able adults for 20 years.....Special Ed, we have it!!!!
Looking at my kids alone, the Government of this country is going to save itself hundreds of thousands of dollars in pensions, paid carers and support services, because of the dedication and perseverance of the Special Ed services.  Try doing that with a football.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Mothers Month

is almost upon us, and true to form I have my lists ready,  catalogued in order of how likely I am to recieve it.  So, here's a sneak preview.
A is likely, B is a maybe, C is wishful thinking at it's finest.....

Extension to the Cat House  (A+)
Yes indeedy, this one is a sure thing, according to the tribe of three.  We already have a lovely covered catio, which FF enclosed in Catmesh in time for the arrival of the hooligans last August.  We spend much time out there, but because it's got a roof, and you can roll down plastic blinds to protect it from the weather, it doesn't really count as "outside", IYKWIM.   I have been after the tribe for MONTHS to build me a little outdoor extension to the catio, where myself and the furboys can soak up the winter sun and generally zen out, cat style.  So this was actually on the Wishful Thinking end of my list but I have been assured that it will be fully completed and ready for occupancy by the end of May. Which brings me to the next part of my list.....

all the goodies that the furries and I will need in our new establishment.  The last picture is all about the bench.... we already have almost 26 pounds of over-nourished Ragdoll in charge of Planet Hartwell.  More furries are NOT in my future plans at this time.

I'm hoping to score at least three of these....since we already have sleepers and bricks under the house, the bench shouldn't be a huge ask.   We also have an old tyre that's BEGGING to be recycled into something funky, and the chair has been on my Mothers Month list for several years, so I figure it's time it came to the top of the list.  The sundial I can live without, but it's awesome and I really want it, so we'll see what happens.....

Monday, April 16, 2012

The cat ate my mouse.....

and is still napping on my keyboard.  It's fatal....the sound of typing on a keyboard is aural catnip to Achilles.  As soon as he hears me start work, he appears on my desk, which in itself is no mean feat as said desk is standing height.  When he was three months old and weighed under 5 pounds (and couldn't levitate) he would lie under my chair making pathetic kitten noises until I picked him up.  More fool me, 'cos now he's nearly 12 months, weighs over 12 pounds and just appears in mid-air (scaring the crap out of me) before settling down on my keyboard, purring loudly and expecting my full and complete attention.  Who am I to argue??

Saturday, April 7, 2012

I seriously shouldn't be this excited/ ready for the Zombie Appocalypse


just shows you how chronically middle aged I'm becoming.
It's probably the most exciting thing that's happened here in weeks.
FF finally kept his promise to buy me some pantry cupboards to keep my stash in.
Now I'm ready for the Zombie Appocalypse.
Nasty little brain suckers won't catch me without my maple syrup.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Pottsville 2012

Kit 16yrs 8 mths

Hastings Point Estuary
Pottsville Beach

Sebi 12 yrs 3 mths

Pottsville Beach

Hastings Point Estuary

Sometimes I look through the lens and I seriously don't recognise them.  

Friday, March 23, 2012

Random Weird.

Got an email  from Vera, who is the breeder we bought the boys from.  We keep in contact, I let her know how they're doing, send her pix and stuff.  I sent her some shots of the boys in their crossing guard uniforms a few weeks back, and yesterday, she sends me an email saying that her hubby was flying back to Sydney from Qld and ended up sitting next to Grant Denyer from Sunrise and was telling him how we bought the boys as therapy animals, and how they go on the crossing with me  and apparantly Grant asked for my contact details and wants to pass them on to his producer.  (because they have an insanity quotient to fill??  who knows).  Personally, I am prepared to eat my whistle if anything comes of it, because the idea of Grant Denyer (or anyone for that matter) talking to their boss about my furboys standing guard with me at the crossing is as likely as me becoming an Immigration Lawyer.....and we all know how that turned out.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Project 365 I think we're still in March.

 X ray socks....Uber-Geeky!!
 Tell me a secret......
 Not my favourite place. he gets to move burgers with his mind, hmmmmm.
 Hey, it could be worse.  Firstborn's current reading list......
 Bruce's birthday mug.....funky, no??
 Ragdoll roadkill.  He's only kidding, I swear!!
The Smurfs that ate the world!!!!! 
If world domination is on your agenda, you need a husband who can crack hexadecimals.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Don't look at me like that.....

I know I'm behind in my 365.  Again.  But I have things going on.  I have to work, otherwise the stupidparkers will have no one to abuse.  Plus, my kids need feeding.  ALL. THE. TIME.   And I joined a forum for like minded insane ragdoll cat owners (of which I can proudly be counted as a double card carrying member, being both insane personally and the owner of two completely insane raggers).  So I have social responsibilities too.  And my ovaries grew teeth last Sunday and are still trying to chew their way out of my abdominal cavity.  Plus, my smurfs are overcrowded and I haven't harvested the sarsaparilla.  Good job it's the only thing that doesn't wilt.  On the upside, I made chocolate Whoopie Pies and they were beyond awesome.  Photos tomorrow.  I promise.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Project 365 Bon Nuit

I suppose I should be glad they leave me any room at all......

Friday, March 9, 2012

Project 365 catch -up....this is as good as it gets....I'm gonna pretend I'm caught up now, 'kay??

incorporating some pix from Bruce's Dr Seuss Birthday Bash (more to come) a close up of part of the truckload of medication I've choked on over the last fortnight, pancakes, my state of the art $5 sneaks, some cutie new baby gear for a recently mi-mawed friend with a brand new moonpie, my beloved antique Kodak, and far too many cat pix.   Enjoy!!


OK, the truth.  I was sick for about ten days, which put me woefully behind in my Project 365 challenge, BUT......I refuse to lay down and die.....even though I serously considered it last week.  Tonight, I'm gonna upload all the pix I have (there may be one or two missing from my three day doonathon when the pain meds knocked me out) and get my shit together.
On the upside of the downside, FF has once again decided that Planet Hartwell should relocate to places not here for a few days of zen over Easter.  He always decides this two weeks before Easter, when sensible mortals make their bookings the previous year, and yet he always manages to find us somewhere to be still and listen.  This year it's here

which is Pottsville on the Northern NSW coast.  If you want to know exactly where, you can do one of two things. 
1.  Check it out on google earth.
2.  Wait till we leave then look up and when you've found the biggest, meanest, blackest clouds in the Southern Hemesphere, we'll be directly under them.  In this

because I refuse to drag the campertrailer over the border for three days, spend two days setting up and pulling down and the third day cooking 57 meals under canvas because any time we're within a sniff of the ocean, suddenly the Tribe of Three require feeding on a semi-hourly basis.  And plus, it's gonna rain pianos.  Guaranteed.  Rain on a tin roof, I'm a big fan.  Rain seeping through the tarps on the tent.  Not so much.  Stay tuned for the the rest of my 365's.  I hope.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Things I like this.  Fractured fairytales with a scoop of eye candy.  Lush!!

Piano Practice.   Firstborn is working on Mendelssohn's Song Without Words, and it's heartbreakingly good.

Achilles and Hektor this morning when I asked them if they wanted to go for a walk while I delivered the papers.  Achilles jumped on the pram canopy and Hektor perched on the footrest, while I unzipped the cover.  Who says cats don't talk.

Tuesday nights at Baskin Robbins.  Extra scoop for $1.  Bargain.

Possibility of a move up for FF at work.  Praying and hoping.

Goodies from Jules.  My house smells divine. 

Concrete Zen, now that the evenings are finally cooling off a bit.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Project 365 (49, 50) Presets

Combination 365 for the weekend.....messing about with my lightroom presets.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Hartwells vs theTravelling Wilburys

So today we went to Wet and Wild for a much needed break.  Firstborn managed to get a day off, which is a rarity so we decided to make the most of it.  We hired a cabana (a little pricey, but SO worth it, plus we all chipped in) so that we could guarantee a table, chairs and some shade for the hottest part of the day.   Lunchtime arrives, and we go off to get some food, send the boys back to the table, while FF and I queue for drinks.  As we make our way back, Second son comes flying up and tells us that someone has moved into our cabana, and all our stuff is been taken to the security office.  I seriously couldn't make this shit up.  Sure enough, we get back to the table, there's a guy in uniform and a park hostess chickie, manhandling all our stuff while Firstborn is staging a sit in on a plastic chair. The two people who had moved in were not impressed, even when it was proved that Yes, we had paid the pricey cabana hire fee and we weren't a bunch of random gypsies looking to cop a squat in their 'reserved' area.  The funniest bit was when the woman kept repeating "but we reserved it", like it was some sort of magic catchphrase. We explained that we had reserved it too, and there was obviously some sort of double booking problem, but she was having none of it.  Fortunately, the security guy, who had been putting all our stuff back (complete with directions from second son about where everything should go, lol) managed to get them to leave before Firstborn challenged them to Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock.   And we all lived happily ever after.  Except for the double booking people.  They were pissed.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Project 365 (46, 47, 48)

Under Construction.
my trolleywenching keks....lush, no??

Achilles and Hektor @ 9 months
Safety First aka "Wait for the whistle...."

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Project 365 (45) TrolleyWench

This is some of the material I picked out for my TrolleyWench Costume.

is the reason it's covered in white hairs.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Project 365 (44) Covenant

Just a reminder that we'll never go under permanently.
Taken from the driveway 6.15pm.


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