Monday, March 29, 2010

Looong night ahead

Perhaps even a long week. She doesn't seem to be sick but is crying and dribbling. Not showing any other symptoms so I can only guess that teeth are on the way. Roh had teeth at 3 months. I had hoped Skye would take a bit longer.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Spontanaeity wins again

My expectations of organising the kid's bedroom last night  were happily smacked for 6 due to another spontaneous evening of fun, food and music.  Oh well...when I die I won't be saying "I wish I'd done more housework".

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Birthday Boy

Kirk is now 5. What a miracle! We weren't planning to do anything but all his friends turned up anyway with cards they made themselves. They had lunch and played outside until the storm when they hid in the cubby (sort of like a car full of clowns) and when it eased off they stripped naked and played in the rain and had a big mud fight.  Presents arrived from family via all sorts of routes and greatly appreciated. Thanking you all for everything.

Wicking Beds

These are water conservation gardens perfected by Colin Austin, a friend at Kookaburra park, and all the rage around Gin Gin because they work exceptionally well. Usually people build a polypipe and shade cloth protection over the top because the insects and sun are ferocious here.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Poco a poco

Little by little I am progressing on the multitude of projects. A couple of weeks ago, I banged in a few pickets for the new garden and today mulched and planted beans and sweet potato along the fenceline. WOW! Maybe next month I'll build a wicking garden! Phew! Better not get too ambitious...

Sunday, March 21, 2010


The month invokes the verb and suddenly Gin Gin wakes from its summer stupor and goes social! ESA held their cancer fundraiser. Tanya Sinden of the Boolboonda Tunnel Hall organised a quiz night because she's entering the Lions Medical Research Foundation Personality Quest. Multicultural Group celebrated Harmony Day with a huge dinner [YUM!] and the Chamber of Commerce ALMOST held the Gateway Festival (cancelled due to cyclone).

The theme for the Cancer Fundraiser was Masquerade and a few people came in masks and costumes. I went as the Bag Fairy who fills your kitchen cupboards with plastic shopping bags. I sewed an enormous skirt with ruffles from plastic bags and pinned a couple of sections of silver reflective tubing on my back for wings. The entertainment was provided by the highschool and the drama students were particularly dramatic with their black-light story-dance to Queen's Bohemian RaphsodyNote to self: bring a LARGE crate of wine next time - the ladies at the next table were having more fun than us.

The Harmony Day dinner was impressive. A Rwandan massacre survivor spoke on the importance of peace followed by music, entertainment, costumes and FOOOOOD - lots of it. Huge thanks to Nora Reeve who organised it - she even managed to pull the regional mayor. Sean, Issac and Jayson [Sankofa Band] played that night and were the best they have ever been. As a result they have been asked to do a recording for the Rwandan massacre survivors. Then I met Baya, an Indonesian, whose husband manages a scallop hatchery at Burnett Heads who seems also be doing research with James Cook Uni. Mmmm...I wonder if they want someone as a quality assessor?

Next weekend Bernie and Sean's mum arrive - let the festivities continue!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Long Live the Rat Race

10 years ago out of curiosity when teaching a primary class, I calculated how much time *I* had available to the individual kids. Once I subtracted time spent at lunch, assemblies, lining up, management, and the time they were away at library, PE, music, LOTE, RE, interschool sport etc... it worked out that as a group they were getting about 3.5 hours a day but if you looked at this as individual time it was below 7 minutes per child per day.  Ouch!  The amount of time kids actually received from me was even lower because we wasted so much time on marking the homework, revising, getting cranky, and fulfilling other people's agendas.

Tonight I am thinking about how much time is spent schooling. On top of their 30 hour school week, there is time spent on travelling and homework - anywhere between 3 and 30 hours per week depending on where you live and how much homework you get. So the average kid is doing a 40 hour week.

Compare this to home schooling where a child gets one-on-one for as long as they need it. They also complete their work in 3 hours a day. There is no travel or homework. This gives them a 15 hour week with plenty of one-on-one time. All that extra time is liberated for family, friends, personal interests and real work. Home schooling is definitely a good lifestyle choice!

The above rant was inspired by The Camp Creek Blog - courtesy of the Anti-Rat who linked to the site.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Bring on the tooth fairy

Kirk fell over and knocked out a tooth today. He was wailing over its loss because now the teachers at "school" (Mango Tree) would notice and ...[incomprehensible blubbing] ???  I am fanatical about teeth so it's my fault he is so upset. So...I rang the Tooth Fairy and Tooth Fairy told him everything would be all right and he would grow a new one soon and he must keep brushing them every day. Kirk was very pleased and delighted to know we are related to this fantastic mythical being [pictured below].

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Story Catcher

Radio National are offering people the chance to tell their life stories. [Innocent whistling...]

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

"They like me!"

Said Kirk when I caught him pulling green frogs out of their corners with a garden rake this morning. An odds and sods day today - much done but little achieved.

Friday, March 5, 2010

How high's the water, Moma?

But first, Sean announced this evening, "I bought a dog of bag food for you." My imagination is having a lovely time with this. Does it have legs?

After the extreme dry stretch we suffered this year I dare not wish the rain away but I don't know how long I can stand Johnny Cash running through my head besides we'll be singing the Volga Boatmen if this keeps up!  I thought this was a rowing song until I saw the You Tube and decided to investigate. We learned this dirge from the ABC's Let's Sing program in the early 70's.

Background to the song
People who sang the song - Burlaks
And Burlak Women love the associated videos in YouTube...