Thursday, 30 June 2016

30/30 - clubhouse

The kids discovered a little nook behind the armchair and declared it immediately their clubhouse.

Several happy afternoons and evenings have been spent behind there...including Miles too (he just escaped before I grabbed this photo). 

All happily, cosily crammed in together, they gave themselves club-names (Zeb, Archo and Violet, lol), wrote out club-rules (posted on signs on the wall nearby), filled a box with club-house-stuff and ... well, you get the drift. There seems to be a lot of club requirements, haha - all on theme!


This is the stuff of childhood. The magic of childhood. The memories of childhood... or so I hope - who can say! But it's been a joy to track my trio a little more closely over this past 30 days.

Yep, that's the end of my little Documenting Delight challenge in June! Thirty days flew by! While I didn't get as creative with the photos as I'd hoped (blah!), I am grateful that I took the time to capture those little family moments. Perhaps I will make it a regular thing each January?? As summer holidays may be a little easier to capture than wintery June!

Here is where I admit that what spurred me along on this sentimental project is that I will soon be going back to part time work. after eight years at home with the kids. Got me all nostalgic and even more eager to soak up these little moments of childhood. More on that to come....soon-ish!

Thanks for following along! xx

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

29/30 - My BOY!!

Mark was sitting on the couch and Miles jumped up for a big cuddle then after a few moments, sat back and proclaimed 'My BOY!!!!'

I suddenly recognised that that was what Mark usually says when he greets Miles with a huge hug... Miles must have thought Daddy had forgotten this time, so he would fill the gap! 

Funny the little routines they value, things you don't even realise, being treasured in little hearts and memories...

My boy and his Daddy xx

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

28/30 - bookworm

She has reached the level of bookworm where she walks around the house with her nose in a book. No major injuries.... yet!

What can I say, as a self-declared #booknerd this makes me very, very happy.

(Current read - Witches by Roald Dahl. She declares it the best, funniest book she has ever read). 

Sidenote: Who is this grown up little lady!? Where has my chubby faced little girl gone!?

Monday, 27 June 2016

27/30 - remembering papa

Lily writes her memories of Papa, beautiful flowers from Claire reminds us of the love and support surrounding us today, while three little glowing houses reminds me of how David's love and light lives on in my children xx

Kind/Cuind. Yes, he was, Eli xx

On the one year anniversary...

The kids decided to write out things they remembered about their beloved Papa. We sat on Papa's special blanket for an impromptu picnic as we shared the things we loved and remembered. 

'Kind' wrote Eli. 'He was nice and gave me cuddles' said Miles.

We listened to the audio book he recorded for them 'I love you from head to toe'. We gazed at the three little candles glowing inside three little houses. Little houses shining bright with light - Papa's light that shines on in three little hearts and memories, as well as up in heaven.

Then we sat on the rug, munching on the muesli bars that Lily had just baked completely independently for the first time. We dropped crumbs everywhere and knew that Papa would have thoroughly approved!

Documenting delight, every day in June.

Sunday, 26 June 2016

26/30 - marking time // one year on after loss

It's the day before the one year anniversary of the loss of my beloved step-father, David.

"They" say the first anniversaries are the hardest, and that the lead up can be worse than the day itself. 

I have so far found this to be true, as the tension coils and the emotions bubble up and over with even more bite than usual. It still hardly seems true that he is gone. Still. 

But today....

Our little family decorated stones, to lay at the foot of the tree where David's ashes are scattered, the tree by which he ran and played and climbed as a child.

We had a quiet afternoon tea with his 95 year old father, a gentleman of the highest order, still living independently and sharp as a tack, kind as can be. He had lit the fire at his home so he could roast marshmallows for the great grandchildren, on his super deluxe double-pronged metal marshmallow roasting stick. An activity David would surely have delighted in joining in, and he would have gleefully let the children eat all the marshmallows they wanted (likely hundreds!).

Today we missed him but could hardly talk about him, a grief still too raw to express, one year on. But it felt good and right to be together, drawing quietly near as the day approaches.

And where is our delight today?

In family moments, in still-tender yet fond memories and in knowing that we grieve, but not without hope. 

We miss him, but we know he is at perfect peace and that is the delight in the midst of my grief.

Documenting delight, every day in June.

Saturday, 25 June 2016

25/30 - a dirt-filled day in the garden

One of my most contented places to be with my family is out pottering around our garden. 

After weeks and weeks of rain, we were rewarded with a sunshine-filled Saturday so we all ventured out to our much neglected and very muddy backyard.

While Mark and I raked garden beds and cleaned out the insanely muddy chicken coop (poor chooks!), the kids had their own very serious projects going on. 

Over a couple of hours they worked intently... first making a 'dust bath' for the chickens in an old laundry basket (then desperately trying to convince them to sit in there!). Then they decided to make their own compost in a bucket using plenty of dirt, scraps, chicken coop droppings, and so on. The next project was a 'bug playground' and their own little veggie garden. 

Needless to say, there was a lot of digging in dirt and mud going on all morning! They are gloriously messy and happy as they invest in their own play - I love it.

Kids at play in the dirt, winter sunshine, family time together on a quiet Saturday.... I tell ya, it may not sound that thrilling but to me, it simply doesn't get better than this!

Documenting delight, every day in June.

Friday, 24 June 2016

24/30 - training in the fine art of BBQ

Miles learning the tricks of the barbecue trade from his Daddy...

while Daddy is just thrilled to pass on his favourite cooking form to a new generation xx

Documenting delight, every day in June...

23/30 - school excursion

My first time able to attend a school excursion along with Lily, visiting a historical cottage (Blundell's Cottage) and the National Capital Exhibition (yay, Canberra!). 

Her beaming smile was payment in spades.

How delightful it is to join in on school activities while your kid still thinks you are super cool for doing so!!

Thursday, 23 June 2016

miles {three}

When our baby boy turned three (back in January... oops) it was a big step for our whole family... firmly out of the toddler years and into a new season of family life. Such a big boy now!

I love to watch my little ray of sunshine grow and grow.... keep smiling, sweet son xx

This is his 'If I furrow my brows and look distressed, will you give me
what I want?' look. It's familiar ;)

Miles, at three, you are your own little man. We often joke 'It's his world, and we are just living in it!'. You are supremely independent, always on the go and always busy with your own little plan and ideas. You entertain yourself so well and love best of all just chilling with your family. You are incredibly charming, funny, sweet and affectionate. You know how to pull heart strings like no one else, Mr Charisma! You also know how to pull a smile with your cheeky ways!!! You are such a happy and joy-filled boy, full of affection and sunshine - with the occasional stormy cloud, we must admit ;) You adore your big siblings but also know how to hold your own ground with them. You have the strongest will of the three (lucky we have already had some practise, heehee) and I know that your passion and self-determination will serve you well in life, if you keep your focus on worthy goals. 

You are my beautiful baby boy and I just adore you to pieces! Our quiet days together this year, just you and me, have been dreamy and delightful and stored in my heart as a most precious season. I love to watch you grow, dearest sMiles xx


Lego, colouring, cars, trucks, diggers etc, porridge with blueberries, 'fixing' anything with tools, 'working' on anything, 'helping' always! Cuddles and kisses and being super affectionate! 

He says he likes...Christmas


Loud noises (vacuum cleaner, hand dryers, hair clippers). 

He says he doesn't like...Screaming (I sense an auditory theme!)

Contemplating what it means to be three...

The birthday celebrations...

In our family, the birthday person gets to choose their own cake... whatever they like. Except when you turn three. Then you have a jelly cake. Because Mummy found a photo of herself having a jelly pond cake when she turned three... and 3 year olds being fairly suggestive, was able to get all three of her kiddos to choose the same for their third, haha!! Well, Miles also wanted a gorilla cake, so I made it happen?! 
For the boy who has everything (thanks to older siblings)... a bug catcher kit and his very own flashlight. He was thrilled!!
Inspecting the Daddy Long Legs spider. He has been quite scared of them so hoped this would help calm his nerves... it did!
Bad photo but shining the light into the jelly cake was a huge hit!

A family fun activity for the birthday boy... bowling! First time for the clan, we had a blast x
Getting a little assistance...

Serious business.
Her 'quietly proud for getting a strike' face.

The Annual Interview...(his first year doing one!)

What are you going to be when you grow up?
I wanna be taller.

What’s that going to be like?
I'll be Dad!

What are your favourite toys?
The tractor and the helicopter

Who are your best friends?
Lawson and Blake

What makes you happy?
Playing, I like to race with Lawson

What makes you sad?
When I hurt myself, that feel me sad.

When you dream at night, what do you dream about?

What do you like to do with Daddy?
Have a wrestle

What do you like to do with Mummy?
Have a snuggle

What do you like to do with Lily?
Have a race, play Mummies and Daddies and I'm the baby

What do you like to do with Eli?
Jumping on the trampoline together

What’s your favourite colour?
Blue, green, purple

What’s your favourite book?
The giraffe book (Giraffes Can't Dance by Giles Andrea)

Whats your fave show?
Octonauts and Peter Rabbit

What does Daddy do during the day?
Drawing with me, he's like a worker at work and he likes to work with me, fixing.

What does Mummy do during the day?
Have a snuggle (like this!). Have a play with me.

What do you do during the day?
Play with the toys (helicopter and tractor), read a book quietly

It's good to be three because.....
Because I love to!!


Oh, how he grows! And oh, the places he'll go....

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

22/30 - blissed out

Blissed out on (raspberry cacao) Bliss Balls while licking a spoon covered in coconut oil.

Blissed out on our quiet home day ritual. He lunches at the kitchen bench while I potter around the kitchen, preparing home staples (yoghurt, muesli, school snacks for the freezer, etc), doing dinner prep, and the never-ending cycle of cleaning and wiping benches over and over and over.

Blissed out on the chatter that peppers our day, hearing his charming thoughts and quirky ideas and silly stories - a three year old boy unfurling before my eyes. I am reminded that when it comes to time with your children, a whole lot of seemingly 'nothing' really adds up to 'something'.

Blissed out on the the blessings and privilege of being a stay at home mum, whiling away the days alongside this funny little bear. How sweet it is. This era will soon be ending, I want to soak up every drop while I can!

PS Yes, I am heading back to the office soon. The end of my 8 year stint as a SAHM. Will write a post about that soon....ish!

Documenting delight, every day in June.

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

21/30 - quality time {father/daughter}

It's just a phone photo, texted to me by my husband, but to me it's so precious and simply had to be included as my most delightful moment today. 

We try (amidst the chaos of life) to take opportunities to have one-on-one time with our kids as often as we can manage. Special, simple and often a surprise! Tonight Mark picked Lily up to assist him on a special surprise birthday mission in preparation for Eli's upcoming 6th birthday (shhhh!) and decided to afterwards take her out for gelato. She was tickled pink and couldn't get over this school night novelty! 

And I can't get over how blessed she is, to have such a devoted, loving, present, wise and fun Dad. Their bond is so beautiful to behold xx 

Monday, 20 June 2016

20/30 - rest and reconnect

A bit of a cough on Monday morning, 
combined with a boy thoroughly exhausted as he nears the end of his first semester of full time school,
led me to declare a home day for him.... rest was needed! 

The rainy weather gave even more justification for a day snuggled in bed, just reading and reconnecting. 

Honestly, we have all felt the effects of end of term exhaustion and so it was good and much needed for this mama bear too, to spend a little down time snuggling with her beloved and tired little cubs. 

PS Had to sneak this one in too ;) #brotherlylove

19/30 - wanna chip?

'Wanna chip? Hey, wanna chip?

We had a dozen of the awesome teens and young adults from our church over for dinner and 'hanging out' tonight. This little guy is (slowly) learning to be the host with the most, walking around and asking everyone if they wanted a chip from the big blue bowl. 

Possibly in order to earn himself one ;)  But, hey!

It was a great night xx

Documenting delight, every day in June.

Sunday, 19 June 2016

18/30 - laugh and the world laughs with you

One of the many things I love about her...

Her ability to laugh at herself.

Even after she initiates a tea-towel flicking game with Dad (please note, I do not approve!!). The flicking gets a little out of hand, she ends up in tears but before too long the tears turn into hysterical laughter. She rolls around on the floor, giggling at the joy and pain she brought upon herself and we all decide to leave the tea-towel flicking game behind... (till the next night when she starts it up again!!!).

It takes a lot of strength of character to laugh at yourself. She's got it in spades.

Documenting delight, every day in June.

Friday, 17 June 2016

17/30 - oh, the places you'll go!

Oh, the Places You'll Go...

(Dr Seuss/Excerpt)

"On and on you will hike,
And I know you'll hike far
and face up to your problems
whatever they are.

You'll get mixed up, of course,
as you already know.
You'll get mixed up 
with many strange birds as you go.
So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact
and remember that Life's 
a Great Balancing Act.
Just never forget to be dexterous and deft.
And never mix up your right foot with your left.

And will you succeed?
Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)


Miles, we know, with your fiercely determined heart, that you will move mountains! 
And mis-step and fall. And wander, and roam. 
We pray for you, baby boy, as you find your path, that you will pursue one that is straight and true.
We will love, support and cheer you on along every step. 
Wherever it leads xx

Thursday, 16 June 2016

16/30 - a room of one's own

My creative little bower bird has flourished with a room of her own and a desk of her own too -  every young artist's dream!

Every evening she works away busily,.... on letters to penpals, stories, drawings, lists, plans and all manner of projects. Making messes and divising her own organisational projects and strategies (she outdoes me in the list making!).

It warms my heart to see her her working away here... my busy little bee xx

Documenting delight, every day in June.

15/30 - winter sunshine

A little afternoon reading (Where's Wally!) by the north facing window that gets the best light and warmth in our home during these sunny yet chilly days.

A boy's gotta soak up every ray of winter sunshine he can...

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Five Ways to Make Family Mealtimes More Meaningful

Family dinners.

Is it something you grew up with? I did. I guess it's one of those things where you assume it's just 'what everybody does', until my friends staying for dinner in my teen years started commenting on how different that was....or maybe they meant, how different/weird my family was?!?! Who knows, haha!

Family mealtimes weres something Mark and I wanted to continue when we had our own kiddos. Baby led weaning helped make that a natural transition even when the kids were tiny as they could feed themselves, and so easily joined the family table. And yes, dinner time slowly crept backwards from 7.30pm to the positively nursing-home time of 5.30pm. Ok, sometimes even closer to five!

Sidenote: eating this early definitely resets your body clock. When friends want to go out to dinner at 7 or 8pm, I am quietly appalled and pretty much gnawing my own arm off by the time that hour rolls around!!! #sad


Why family mealtimes matter...

There are all kinds of benefits to family mealtimes. Honestly, the benefits can be far richer and deeper and more long lasting than seem possible in those crazy moments of tired kids, stressed parents, rushed evenings and chaotic dinner scenes. It may seem like there is no way it's so valuable in those moments! Yet there is all kinds of research around the long lasting value of family meals. A regular time to connect as a family, a seemingly simple routine, helps form a sense of family identity that is so powerful!

A short list of benefits to family meal times according to the research (based on eating together as a family 4-5 times a week)...

  • Increased overall sense of family identity and connection
  • Children more likely to do well in school, have a better vocabulary, have greater overall wellbeing, less anxiety, and accept parental boundaries
  • Children less likely to do drugs, be obese, develop eating disorders, and hide things from their parents
  • Children more likely to eat well, with a more varied diet and and a healthy ongoing relationship with food.
  • Children learn conversational skills, develop a greater sense of self and learn how to develop and share opinions.

There are many other benefits, but you get the gist! More simply, it's a time to turn off the media and electronics that pervade our lives, sit down and just talk, deconstruct the day, and plain ol' interact all together in one spot! Kids get so much unconscious comfort from seeing all of their 'tribe' together. Eating together is also great modelling for your children both on meal time manners, etiquette and also healthy eating. Kids who eat with their parents tend to eat more, eat better and end up with healthier eating habits for life ! I could go on and on, but my focus in this post is more on the connection it creates.

Now let's be honest, in the 'early years', family dinner time is not always a tranquil and leisurely affair. Guaranteed at least one person is crying sometime throughout dinner, amiright?? Food is dropped (or thrown). Children run wailing to their beds. Passionate discussions about 'food preferences' (ahem!) are had. And so on... If you live life with little kids, you know the drill!!! All I can say is.... press on. Persevere. Even when it's chaotic, the mere routine of family meals provides a sense of stability and family connection to your children. And it's a chance for them to learn and grow! And in the midst of the chaos, there will be slices of heaven where you will stop and look around the table at your clan and think... 'Wow. My family! How blessed we are!'.

It's just good to be together and to take stock of that. Slowly and surely, the snippets of real conversation, laughter and happy chatter emerge and extend. And you know what?? Even the tantrums, the tears and the challenging behaviours are authentic parts of the fabric of family life too. As weird as it sounds, it's okay that the dinner table is sometimes going to be the training ground for working through some of those tough things. Persevere. It gets better. It takes practise, and that's ok. Slowly you have to get up from the table to fetch things less than 12,533 times!!

Some of your greatest memories will be of moments that organically emerge while gathered around that crumb-strewn family table. They are your people. Mess and all. It's worth it.

A disclaimer (of course).

I totally get that family dinner times are not realistic for everyone. We are blessed that we can make it work for us... my hubby moved jobs a few years ago, largely in order to make sure he could be home in time for dinner with the kids - it was a pretty big family priority for us! But I know that it's simply not realistic or doable for everyone, especially when some parents are not getting home till way past dinner or even bedtime or studying or working at night, etc. But if family meal times sound like a deal you want to get in on, think outside the box to make it work for your tribe. Maybe a family breakfast is more realistic? It may be short and sweet but it would be a great way to start the day together! Maybe weekdays are just too hectic but over the weekend you are able to all gather around a table for every meal? Start with what you can and hopefully it can grow. I've even heard of families where the kids need to eat dinner earlier, but sit at the dinner table again when the working parent gets home, with a drink of milk or some little nibbles, so everyone can chat together while the parents have their dinner. Think outside the box and hopefully you can come up with a workable arrangement :)

If you are committed to making family meal times work for you, I wanted to share a few ideas on how to make that precious time even more meaningful for your family, if and when you feel you are keen to 'build on' to the basics!! I love the idea of maximising this daily ritual. These ideas are all things we do or have done. Not all at the same time, usually!!! ;) Some things might just work for a season. We may do one or two things a night for a few weeks or months, then try something new. Often factoring the age of the kids and how tired we all are too of course. These are things that worked for us. Run with them, and cut them to size for your tribe!

And if nothing else, just eat together. You may all be slurping soup in silence, there may be complaints and squabbles but trust me... the ritual itself has value. Little moments of sweetness will pop up, treasured moments and conversations and family memories will emerge. Even if the only basic requirement is that your whole clan gathers around the table to consume food and beverage, even if it's takeaway or leftovers, it's still worth it. And the more you persevere, the better it will get as everyone comes to accept this 'compulsory family fun' haha!

Five Ways to Make Family Dinners More Meaningful

1. 'Highs and Lows'

This 'game' has lots of different names but I'm sure you know the drill. Everyone around the table takes a turn to share the high and low points of their day. It's a wonderful way to get an insight into everyone's world without having to just ask 'Sooooooooo, how was your day??' (to which the universal response is usually a bland 'Good', right!?). Gotta say, the kids responses to this are usually so fascinating and often comical. It's a great chance to talk through the low points especially and really get a sense of your kid's day. And also so valuable for the kids to see that their parents are people too (gasp!) with their own highs and lows in life - they get a sneak peek into our adult world and can learn from our perspectives and how we handle things.

2. Question Time!

A few months ago, my husband Mark rediscovered an old question game called The Ungame from his childhood, which has card packs of moral and spiritual questions. It's been an fantastic way to bring up topics of conversations we might not usually think of and really gives us some insights to the fascinating worlds going on in our kids heads!

A quick google brings up all kind of question lists for children that you could use to provoke similar questions around the table... these simple questions often provoke deeper conversations and help everyone gain insight into other family members.

(More family dinner questions here and here).

3. The Appreciation Plate

Our Appreciation Plate is brought out on special occasions (birthdays and other celebrations) but I also bring it out every month or two for a few nights when I remember as well - or often the kids request it! You can read more about it here but the basic idea of the Appreciation Plate is that one lucky duck is chosen to eat dinner off the Appreciation Plate that night. While we eat, everyone else around the table takes a turn to say something they appreciate about the person who has the plate.

This has been a beautiful, simple way to build up sibling bonds, with the kids finding ways to tell each other (and us parents!) things they love and appreciate about everyone else in the clan. Really sweet and often powerful to see the things they notice. Building a vocabulary of love, support, kindness and appreciation amongst my children as siblings is super important to me... I want them to know how to tell each other how much they care for each other! For words of kindness to roll off the tongue, it can take practise - it's a skill to be learnt and a mindset to adopt. This is a simple way to start doing this early. Hopefully it continues long after we are gone :)

Also, I got this special plate made because I am a sentimental soul after any excuse for a potential family heirloom, haha! But any old op-shop plate that looks a bit different to the rest of your plates will do the job - hunt down one that is a different colour or pattern or whatever!

4. Get Grateful!

Nothing complicated or groundbreaking... but not something that just has to be saved for American Thanksgiving Dinners either! Go around the table and everyone shares something they are thankful for.

Always good to count (and share!) your blessings.

5. Value Sharing

We are a Christian family, so several of our family table rituals centre around our faith. Firstly, we pray at the start of every meal. The kids usually take turns praying if they want to (they usually want to!). We hold hands around the table, and listen as one of our clan shares a simple message of thanks to God. Then we dig in, often doing Highs and Lows, Ungame Questions or the Appreciation Plate while we eat our meal.

In the last year or so, we have introduced a very short family devotional towards the end of the meal...(like, 5-8 minutes kind of short!). We might sing some Christians songs or more often we read and discuss a Bible story - my husband,Mark reads aloud while leaving gaps in the story for the kids to fill in (loudly!). We find it works well to do this while everyone is 'contained' at the table (rather than waiting till bed time as we used to do... we now keep bedtime just for regular storytime) and then lingering eaters can finish off their food while we all chat. Mark has been wonderfully consistent in keeping this going, and it's been a great addition to our family table. The kids are learning so much and they love it!

Now, if the Christian / religious thing isn't your game, no worries! You might instead like to incorporate your own family values in other ways. You could begin the meal with a simple blessing or even a family motto or special quote (Go Team! haha). You could take turns sharing one thing you are thankful for before eating each night. You could finish up the meal by reading fables or stories with a moral centre that you could then discuss as a family. Always thought provoking! Or read poems! Plenty of options to make it work for your crew and your beliefs.

The Wrap Up...

According to Tolstoy, happy families are all alike... but as much as I love Tolstoy, I happen to think happy families can be quite a bit different! So, at the end of the day, I think it's great to prioritise family meal times, but make them work for YOU - with your own wonderful mix of life circumstances, different ages and family dynamics, different routines and schedules.

We personally might do all or one or none of these elements I've written about each night. Usually at least a couple of them but you know what life is like... sometimes getting everyone fed is success enough! Also, we usually focus on family meals on the week nights, whereas on the weekends we often let the kids eat earlier while we parents eat later as a sort of 'date night in'. I think it's important to recognise that routines can come and go and that is ok - things work well for different seasons and as those seasons of family life change, so too can our rhythms. The kids are at an age now (3, 5, 7) where we have really hit our family meal stride (everyone can sit and chat and participate) and hopefully this will continue - though I know as the kids get older, social/extracurricular lives may be ramping up and it will be harder to get everyone home for dinner together!

Rest assured, we have our fair share of dinner time tears, disruptions and every shade of the emotional rainbow. Trust me!!! ;) But we press on. I've shared some things we do that make our family meal times more meaningful for us. Maybe they will spark an interest in you, to try at your own family table... or simply savour that family meal time just as it is, in whatever way is working for you!

xx Kate

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

14/30 - baby (almost) no more

Those deliciously chubby cheeks... they won't be around for much longer. 

I just want to scoop up and savour ever last morsel of his baby-ness. 

It's going... going... very almost gone xx

Documenting delight, every day in June.

Monday, 13 June 2016

13/30 - a day at the museum


Today was a beautifully sunny winter's day - it's freezing overnight, but Canberra makes up for it with these gloriously clear days! It was also a public holiday which means... bonus family time!

We didn't have much planned in advance but at the last minute (after a sleep in and a slow start), decided to meet some friends at the Playschool exhibit currently on at the National Museum of Australia. 

Oh, Playschool, happy 50th birthday! You continue to be the most charming and beautiful children's show on earth, in my opinion!

Later, after a cheeky Nutella doughnut morning tea, our little tribe strolled around the lake just soaking up the sunshine and a day without 'plans'. We watched the kids play on the lawns and rock walls outside the museum for a while, then ended up back in the museum where we each built some Lego tiles as part of an awesome Lego mosaic going into the Children's Hospital.

It was a simple happy family day, all the sweeter because it lazily unfurled before us without too many expectations. A 'bonus' day that felt like much more than we expected - I was left brimming with gratitude for our little city, our clan, and for simple and sweet days together xx

PS Ok, I promised I would only post ONE photo a day for this project but feel I should include this funny one too as more representative of the main destination of the day. My trio hanging out with Big Ted and Humpty!!! They are superstars in our world. Oh, Miles!!!! ;) I got a bit snap happy today so got plenty more but that will have to wait till a general post one day in the future - consider this a sneek peak ;)

Sunday, 12 June 2016

12/30 - a cake shared, a perspective gained

My sweet little social butterfly was feeling upset because she wanted to spend time with a friend but couldn't. After spending some time working through those tearful emotions she suddenly declared gleefully that she had a new idea.

She decided to decorate a paper plate, add a slice of cake and hand deliver it to some neighbours!

Sometimes when we are feeling low and a bit sorry for ourselves, choosing instead to focus our gaze outwards on someone else... taking the time to bless someone else... can suddenly change our whole perspective, our attitude, our heart. 

Who is the teacher here?? 

I hope she keeps this spirit forever. xx

Saturday, 11 June 2016

11/30 - cafe life // a new era...

He whistles while he works (colours).

We went to brunch this morning with some lovely (grown up!) friends... and all three kids sat and chatted and quietly coloured while we enjoyed a leisurely and delicious brunch.

'The dawning of a new era...' I commented to Mark afterwards. The kids did so well! Used manners! Stayed in their seats!! And it's oh-so-lovely to be able to eat out occasionally now with the kids - without constant wrangling and wriggling!

(I have to admit I thought this day would never feels like forever but these things really are just for a season!)

Documenting delight, every day in June.