30 April 2010

This and that...

Well, it's Friday again.  Isn't it amazing how quickly life rushes by now that we're adults?  I so remember thinking the days were ever so long during my school holidays. I complained constantly about being 'bored' (a word my children were never allowed to use!). There were never enough books to read at home and our local library had such a lousy selection that it wasn't worth the long walk down there.

Today, I watch in horror as the days and weeks flash by!  Never mind the hours.  There is never enough time in any one day to get everything done anymore. I now have a multitude of unread books lining my bookshelves.  How things have changed!

Oh well, I'd better get on with that 'to do' list. It will soon be time to begin cooking.    

It's cold and wet here.  So cold it woke us during the night.  I must remember to get out our winter blanket tonight.

Enjoy your weekend!

April Blackbird

28 April 2010

An Attitutde of Gratitude - No.2

This has to be a quick post... I'm off to the dentist to have my broken filling fixed.

I am grateful for the wonder of modern flight.  Yes, despite the fact that planes were grounded due to volcanic ash, one has to wonder at our ability to board a flight in one place and arrive (sometimes many hours later) in another place.  It never ceases to amaze me.

My grandfather travelled to South Africa from Great Britain by ship and it took him weeks!  He met and married my grandmother in South Africa just after the First World War.  His parents never got to meet their new daughter-in-law or their seven grandchildren.  It was too far and far too expensive to travel as we do to-day.

So, for all of you who have become so accustomed to travelling around the world quickly (and cheaply, believe it or not), this is my reminder to you of how things used to be.

If you haven't done so yet, you might like to give thanks for this wonderful 'tool' we take so for granted in our lives.  We have only to look at how the grounding of planes has affected everyone (commerce, industry and the man in the street) to begin to understand what it would be like if we weren't able to travel so freely anymore.

Goodness only knows how these past few weeks are going to affect the economy of the world.  This ain't over yet.

April Blackbird

25 April 2010

Mission accomplished

Our Palma chicks are on their way back to work.

We had them at the airport by 4 this morning and there weren't very many people (which was surprising) to contend with, which was good.  They hadn't booked in online because they're travelling on mariner's tickets which have a larger baggage allowance and they needed to ensure their luggage was booked all the way through to Palma.  Which it now is. Mission accomplished.

We came home and got back into bed for another few hours.  It's been raining and the sound is very soothing.  Let's hope our Palma chicks get to have some good sleep on the plane.  Apparently, it's pretty full so there's little likelihood of them being able to stretch out anywhere.  They're 7 hours into their 14 hour leg as I type this.

Oh, by the way... New Mum Chick let me know her little one slept through the night!  Now that's progress!

April Blackbird

24 April 2010

All good things must come to an end...

We've been making a meal out of the extra time we've had with our Palma Chicks.  Now it's time to say 'goodbye' again... 

They'll be at the airport for a 6am departure tomorrow and a very, very long flight back via Athens and Madrid.  It won't be their first (or their last) marathon trip. They have truly become a pair of intrepid travellers.

We're doing a last family BBQ tonight and we'll try to get them to sleep for a few hours... 

Our house is going to be awfully quiet again tomorrow this time. I never had much patience with people who moaned about 'empty nests'... doesn't life have a wonderful way of teaching empathy?

All of which is just my way of saying that we've so enjoyed their company and we'll miss them despite the fact that we're so very grateful for all the wonderful opportunities they've created for themselves.  We wouldn't have it any other way and we'll work hard towards saving for the next family get-together which we're planning for February 2011.

Travel safe, family and thank you for this very special time together.

April Blackbird.

21 April 2010

Trials and Tribulations

Well after many months of promising to post a blog, my sister-in-law (Arabella Chick) has sat me down in front of the lap top and shown me how this all works!  April Blackbird is holding baby Chickadee who has finally fallen asleep after much resistance, so I really have no excuse.  It's wonderful having Arabella Chick and my brother visiting ... and despite the fact that I know they really need to head back to work in Palma, we're kind of thrilled that the Volcanic Ash has halted their departure ...

So a bit about me ...  I live in Sydney with my husband and was previously known as Preggie Chick.  Now of course the little one has hatched so I guess that makes me New Mum Chick.  Our littlest one is already 10 weeks old and growing rather rapidly! She is very tall for her age and after some slow weight gain in the past month appears to be chubbying up in the past week.  She is ever so gorgeous (of course I reserve the right to be biaised) and her personality is really coming through now.  We're starting to get lots of chuckles and she loves having 'conversations' with us ... increasingly when she ought to be sleeping!

My hubby and I have been building a house for what seems like an eternity, but in reality has only been just over a year.  The house itself is complete and we are just waiting for some of the external landscaping to get finished before we move in. The grass was laid yesterday and the driveway begins next week, and then I think we are good to go.  We resisted the urge to move in earlier due to the extreme dirt being blown all through the house ... I really could'nt face the thought of living with all the dirt and dust on a daily basis.                    

The past 10 weeks seem to have passed in a blur ...  The little one has reflux so things all got a bit hairy for a few weeks and the sleep deprivation became hard to manage.  We started her on Losec which has proven to be really beneficial and she is finally sleeping (fairly) well.  On Monday night she slept for 7 hours in a row ... I was so excited I had to wake my husband up to tell him ... just what he wanted at 4am. Needless to say I am starting to feel human again now that I am getting more sleep myself.

 Well, more later, but at least I have finally accomplished my first post!  Now if I could just get all those other things done that have been on the to-do-list for so long!

  New Mum Chick

20 April 2010

An attitude of gratitude... No.1

For a long time now I've been 'counting my blessings', it's the best way to stay sane.  With that in mind I thought I'd start sharing one thing per week that I'm truly grateful for.

This week is a whopper.

What a month this has been!  In fact, what a year this has been!

We started off the year by holidaying in New Zealand with our UK family.  My husband finally got to meet his little grandson; we both got to meet little Joshua who is the son of a very dear family friend; we caught up with extended family and got to visit with some very good friends.  Needless to say the time went too fast and we didn't get to do everything we'd planned.  We left New Zealand knowing that we'd missed calling in on a lot of folk we'd promised to see.

Our son went back to the UK as work beckoned, but his wife and their two chidlren were able to stop off in Australia for some time.  We had an amazing time together and were sad to see them leave again. A little bit of ourselves 'left' with them...

They just missed the birth of our littlest chickadee who arrived in this world early February.  We're having a wonderful time getting to know her and are always delighted to see the next stage of her development.
Our Palma chickies have been visiting us on their way back to Palma and I'm a little embarrased to tell you that I was absolutely thrilled when we discovered they wouldn't be able to fly back last Thursday night.  I know they have work to go back to, and I'm happy about that, but I've missed them so and it's such a joy to have their company for a little longer.

They're getting to know our littlest Chickadee and our family are trying to make the most of every available moment.  We take pleasure in the smallest of 'ordinary' things... like hanging out the washing together or chatting over dishes.  The sort of things so many of you take for granted.

This weekend we had a visit from 'old' friends that we've known since our children were tiny.  They'd been in Adelaide on business and had business in Sydney so we managed to spend some time together.

There's been so much to talk about!  We've had such fun.  We said 'goodbye' to our Auckland bound visitors and will continue to enjoy our Palma Chickies until Sunday when they are booked to continue their journey.

Tomorrow we'll celebrate my son's birthday together.  It will be the first time in years that we've had this pleasure.  We intend to make the most of it!

Someone once told me that 'home is where the heart is'.  'Home' isn't a place, it's a state of mind. 

April Blackbird 

15 April 2010

Sunday Stash #21

My husband and I went to the airport this evening to catch our flight to the UK only to find that all flights to the UK are cancelled until further notice until an ash cloud from a volcano in Iceland passes.  Oh well... it's not too much of a hardship to stay on holiday for a few more days in Sydney!

I know it's not Sunday, but I haven't done a Sunday Stash lately, so I thought I would just pop in some photos of my most recent Japanese fabrics purchased from Maico at FabHub on DaWanda.  There probably won't be many more fabric purchases for a little while as we have just been home and seen how much fabric I have ordered this last year and it is a little bit disgraceful... of course this hiatus probably won't last long as I am sure there will be some more fabrics released soon that I will absolutely HAVE to have.  I have my eye on some of the new Alexander Henry fabric at the moment... but ssshhh.... don't tell my hubby.

Aren't they beautiful?!  I really want to go to Japan some day... great food, great aesthetics, great fabric!

Maico was super lovely to deal with and very helpful.  Go have a look at her shop, I'm sure she would love to see you.

Arabella Chickie in Sydney, Australia

14 April 2010

On holiday, having too much fun!

Sorry for our absence lately... my  husband and I are on our yearly holiday home.  We have been to NZ and had a lovely time, and now we are in Sydney visiting with April Blackbird and family.  We finally got to meet the latest little chickadee and she is so cute!  It is so nice to be home with friends and family.  It almost makes us want to quit our yachting life.  Well, when I say almost, I mean it definitely makes me want to quit but only tempts my husband... he loves his job. 

Anyway... regular posting will resume next week when we get back to Spain.


Arabella Chickie in Sydney

04 April 2010

Sunday Stash #20

Happy Easter Sunday!

I haven't done a Sunday Stash in a while... but I have had quite a few fabrics arrive.  And I have finally gotten to see them in person!

Most of these are from the Breath of Avignon collection by American Jane for Moda.  And I think they are some of my favourites so far.

Arabella Chickie in New Zealand

01 April 2010

Blog Candy Links!

Wow! Two posts in one day... we are on a roll!  Thanks for the birthday wishes April Blackbird!  Happy Easter everybody!

I just wanted to stop by to share some awesome blog candy links for papercrafters.  These are not to be missed!!!

First up it is Jacki's Blogiversary on Paper Moments and she has an awesome giveaway package put together... check it out here.  Go see her blog, she has some really lovely cards.

Next, there is an amazing collection of buttons and paper being offered as blog candy over here on In My Minds Eye.  Go see... those buttons are gorgeous!

And finally Vicki has some Magical Blog Candy up for grabs over here on her blog, Summerthyme Studio.  And the pot keeps getting bigger!

All three of these ladies have lovely blogs and they all make lovely cards.  Head on over and have a look for yourself!

Arabella Chickie in New Zealand

Happy Easter everyone and a very big Happy Birthday to Arabella Chickie.

Arabella, you are truly a talented Chickie.  Those drawings are fantastic and would look absolutely fabulous on the walls of a few little chickadees I know of.

Love the upside down balloon in particular!  Can you buy removable, stickers to draw on?  The kind you can stick onto a childs' wall and then remove when they outgrow the subject?

So, this is your first official order.  We'll chat about the subject matter and prices while you're here next week (yayyy!).

For those of you who haven't heard, Arabella Chickie and her Rooster (my son) are going to be visiting our side of the world as of Wednesday next week.  The entire family is excited at the prospect of spending time together again. We've got all sorts of things planned...

In the meantime, I'm sure you'll all join me in wishing Arabella Chickie a very Happy Birthday for Saturday. We'll be with you in spirit as you celebrate your special day.

HAPPY EASTER EVERYONE... what is life without an excuse to celebrate it at every possible opportunity? 

April Blackbird