moving day

It’s here! We’re leaving Wonderland today (and probably tomorrow too, in reality). We’ll set up camp in the spare room at the outlaws place for the first week or so while we prepare the shed for moving. The plasterboard is all done now so it’s well on the way to being a home, not a shed anymore!

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Unschool Monday: Sick Days

The sproggets and I are unwell today. We all have head colds. Nothing major, but we’re snotty (Babyman in particular appears to have a fairly constant supply of thick, green snot on his upper lip), we’re a bit grumpy & we’re tired after a restless night.  All in all, a good recipe for a home day.

When I was at school I craved home days. If I merely had a headcold I was dosed up on vitamin C and sent along to school with a hanky & a packet of butter menthol lozenges, just like my class mates. We couldn’t afford too many days off school, we might fall behind! The only way to get a home day was to vomit, then I’d have a special bed made for me on the couch where I’d lie watching videos & sipping lemonade through a straw.

My children aren’t of school age yet, but already I know they can afford to miss out on school. Not just on the days they’re unwell, they can miss out on school every day because they’re simply not going to fall behind.

Our sick day today has gone like this:

We’ve collected some firewood from around the property to light the fire. Even though it’s not a particularly cold day I’ve decided to light the fire because I subscribe to Rudolph Steiner’s theories about warmth. The energy my children don’t have to put into maintaining their core temperature is energy they’ll have to put into healing, growing, learning & just being. Today, because they’re unwell I thought it was even more important to take care of their warmth & light the fire to take the chill out of the air inside our home. Wonderland is a chilly house, often colder inside than it is outside. The sproggets spent some time lazily basking in the Winter sun on the deck while I folded washing. Once the washing was folded & put away the sproggets played in The Bubble’s toy/bedroom while I started making a chicken soup for our lunch. The sproggets have just finished their soup & are playing very quietly while I finish my food & type this blog post. In a moment we’ll wipe our noses yet again & hop in to the big bed for a snuggly afternoon sleep.

They’re not going to fall behind anyone or anything, they’ve been learning all along, just like we all do.

The big bed, all ready for us to snuggle & get well together...

Playing along with Owlet’s Unschool Monday.

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A (very) left field solution

We’re going to break the lease here at Wonderland.

It is a beautiful house, and it is a very impractical house.

The issue of safety is a huge one for us. We feel it’s just not safe enough for the sproggets here with the large, unfenced pond/lake so close to our doorstep. I’m having to be hyper aware of their every move in case they go outside without me noticing & it feels like I’m stifling them. The sproggets are frustrated by being trapped inside so much of the time & I feel frustrated with having become such a “No! Mumma”. I’m afraid to even use the toilet without inviting them in to be my audience in case they slake off again while I’m on the toilet. That’s how I know it takes Babyman just 30 seconds to get from our deck to the edge of the pond, it’s how long he was gone from my side while I used the toilet that day…

We’re also concerned for Dave’s safety, since he ate a rat bait at another house on this same property, a house he visits several times a day. He comes back from that house with various bits of compost & food scraps all the time & we’re concerned that if he eats another bait we may not realise it until serious damage has been done. There’s no fenced area we can keep him contained in, & it’s difficult not knowing where he is when he’s not in the area immediately surrounding our house. His training has slipped a bit since we’ve been here too, he’s forgotten that he’s not allowed inside because he’s being allowed into the other houses. He’s only 6 months old & consistency with training is crucial in this early stage particularly, since being here we’ve begun to lose status with him.

There are other things that make Wonderland unsuitable for our family at this time in our lives, which I’ll not go into now simply because that’d make this a lengthy & boring post, so I’ll just jump straight into explaining our (very) left field solution…

We’re going to move in to a shed.

Bean’s parents (the outlaws) have a reasonable sized shed at the top of their block, which will be easily insulated & gyprocked to convert it into a comfortable space to live. Their block is on a hill, & their backyard is in 3 levels.

At the very back there is a rear access gate, & space to park the kombis next to the shed. There is also a retired chook house which will take very little work to return to habitable condition for us to have some feathered friends again (BIG YAY!). Between the shed & the chook house are 6(?) empty garden beds just perfect to plant out with annual vegetables.

Stepping down from the top level takes you to a grassed area which is bordered with gardens. At one end of the grassed area is a mature Granny Smith apple tree & a mature pear tree.

Both of these garden areas will be easily fenced with inexpensive dog fencing, creating a secure yard for Dave & the sproggets. We can separate the top & second levels also, so Dave can be kept separate from the sproggets if I don’t want to directly supervise their play (I don’t leave the sproggets alone with dogs because I think they’re still too young for that).

The bottom level of the backyard is about 6ft below the second level, there is a large retaining wall between a courtyard & the second level which in effect separates the rear yard from the house.

We will have our fridge, pantry & gas camping stove in the shed plus the hooded BBQ outside meaning we can store & prepare food without using the kitchen in the outlaws’ house. When we are able to buy a new thermomix blade the thermomix will be back in action also & we’ll be even better equipped to prepare food in the shed. We’ll have water plumbed to the shed for handwashing & dishes, but we’ll have to use the bathroom in the main house for showers & baths. We’ll likely sort out some kind of composting toilet solution also, in time. Our washing machine only requires that cold water be plumbed to it so we’ll set up a smaller temporary garden shed to be our laundry. The water outlet can be directed to the base of the fruit trees & to the ornamental plants already in the gardens around the lawn using a grey water hose.

The shed is large enough to have a kitchen (there’s already internal walls separating a small room from the rest of the shed), our beds & a small lounge/dining area with our couch & coffee/dining table. We sit on cushions around a low table to eat dinner so that won’t change. It is a small space, but as long as it is a warm & dry space we will be fine living in it. With such a fantastic blank canvas for a productive garden I imagine we’ll be spending a lot of time in the garden anyway. We’re all happier out of doors.

The outlaws’ place is in town, easy walking distance to the beach & even easier walking distance to the town centre. It’s also a 5 minute walk to Bean’s workplace. We’ll be a lot less reliant on cars there, which is good from an environmenatl & an economical point of view. We’ll be more able to afford to drive across to Denmark (where we really want to be) once or twice a week also, since we won’t need to use our cars just to get in to Albany to go to the library, museum or shop.

The best part about it though is that we won’t be paying rent! If we are able to put the amount of rent we pay each week into our credit card & personal loan repayments we’ll be able to knock a huge chunk of debt off by the time Bean finishes his apprenticeship.

Finances have been worrying us a lot, so the motivation for our moving in to a shed is definitely financial.

It certainly won’t be perfect, there will likely be times I’ll resent it, but it is still a good solution to the problems we have with our current living & financial situation.

Besides, we’ve both lived for extended periods of time on forest blockade camps & I’ve also lived for months at a time in a kombi van so a shed with running water, insulation, electricity & even heating is luxury compared!

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Wonderland in pictures (continued)

Following on from this post, here is a photo of the kitchen at Wonderland.

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Wonderland in pictures

Finally…

Our loft bedroom, “The Cubby House”

The Bubble’s bed in The Cubby House

The view from The Cubby House

More views…

Pretty views, pretty stained glass & HUGE-bubble bubble wrap

Stained glass at the top of the stairs

More stained glass down the stairs

Stained glass & a view to the deck at the front of the bedroom building (now a glorified shed)

The Bubble’s other bed in her bed/play room – yes she has a quilt cover that matches ours

Loungeroom, right side

Loungeroom, left side

There are no pictures of the kitchen, because Bean forgot to take any. He was too busy making these…

Cane sugar free spiced biscuits

That’s the beautiful island bench they’re sitting on, I’ll get on his case about taking photos of the whole kitchen this weekend. Until then, enjoy the pic-heavy post after many wordy posts.

Update 23/5/2011: A picture of the kitchen can be found here.

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Room to sew

After years of dreaming about it, I now have a sewing room! Not a space in a junk room for my sewing machine & table. No! I now have a real sewing room. I don’t share it with the redundant pedestal fan over Winter or a heater over Summer, I don’t share it with photograhy gear, I don’t share it with a herbal dispensary… It’s just a room to sew!

With each day I live at Wonderland, I fall a little more in love with it. After radically rearranging the furniture we’re finally making this gorgeous, but somewhat impractical, house a good home for us. Now, finally feeling good about the more important rooms in the house – the kitchen (with new cupboard/drawer locks), our bedrooms & our main living area – I felt able to set up my sewing room Saturday morning.

The room is a small office just off the main living area, behind the stairs to the loft. It has a large glass panel in the roof, so the natural light is amazing. It’s a nice size with room to store fabrics, room to cut, room to move & room to sew.

This door leads to outside...

Sitting in my newly set up creative space Saturday night I felt inspired to get more work done on my reverse applique sampler which has sat untouched for a few months. I’m at the point of hand sewing and my right hand is quite stiff due to a couple of bone surgeries 7 and 12 years ago so hand sewing is slow going for me but even so, I’m loving reverse applique, it’s a simple technique & I think it looks fantastic. I love traditional applique, & learning reverse applique has opened up a whole new world of textile art for me.

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Unschooling unfolding

Last night we bought cupboard locks for the kitchen because I’m sick of saying “no” to my children & I’ve had enough of being hyper-vigilant in case they open the cupboards & play with the (breakable) crockery or the rubbish & (breakable) recycling.

As Bean was fitting them I felt a sense of calm & relief come over me, followed by a sense of uncertainty. Feeling calm & relieved about placing restrictions on my children’s freedom isn’t very “unschooling” of me. Shouldn’t I just be more calm about it & let them explore their environment with complete freedom so they can get it out of their systems & move on?!

This weekend we’re planning to erect a makeshift fence of chicken wire to enclose the large deck & a section of yard around the deck so the children can freely go outside & come back inside without me and so I don’t have to supervise their outdoor play.

There are 3 dogs, including our own, at the property Wonderland is a part of, there is a very large pond (verging on “small dam”!)  at the house closest to us & the 2 other houses may also have hazards unkown to us in their immediate vicinity so I feel reluctant to give the sproggets complete freedom to roam free range on the property. As vigilant as we are with Dave’s training, and as calm as the other dogs appear to be, dogs are still wild animals & either sprogget could easily do something that triggers a prey drive or a frightened or aggressive response in a dog so I like to supervise their play with the dogs. The pond is a big concern for me, I didn’t realise before we moved here that there was a path leading directly from our back deck to such a large, unfenced body of water. Babyman has already made his way to the pond of his own accord, and luckily he was followed by The Bubble who alerted the caretaker (whose house it is) to their presence. I was in the toilet at the time, it took Babyman less than 30 seconds to get there!  Hazards aside, I don’t want the sproggets at the other houses if the people who live in them haven’t explicitly invited them.

Thinking about this, these things we’re doing to make my life easier, I feel reassured that in restricting their freedom I’m able to give the sproggets more freedom, ironically. Making the areas of the kitchen that are dangerous, or even inconvenient, for them to access mean I can relax when they are in the kitchen area (which is right between their playroom & the loungeroom) instead of hovering over them being the oppressive “no” woman. Making an enclosed yard will give them the freedom to choose when they play outside & when they play inside. I can stay inside & do my thing while they play outside, knowing they’re not rolling about on a dog or putting their arms in his mouth to see if he’ll bite, knowing they’re not headed for the pond, knowing they’re in a safe area that still has plenty of interesting nooks for them to explore. As an added bonus, enclosing the yard will also give the guinea pigs a bit of relief from the salivating dogs who sit next to the cage watching them intently, trying to work out how to get in the cage & enjoy a guinea pig feast!

At first I thought unschooling was about total freedom which I feel uncomfortable giving to such young children, but on further thought, I see unschooling as freedom in widening circles. As I learn to trust our environment, & the children’s ability to be safe in that environment, I am able to let go of a little bit of control & they are able to gain a little bit more freedom – their circle widens. The sproggets are both still so young, and so their circle of freedom is currently quite small. I don’t believe it’s oppressively small though, in fact since moving to Wonderland where all of a sudden there is a lot more space available to the sproggets, I feel I’ve had to be more oppressive than I’d like to be in order to keep them safe. Their circle of freedom got too wide, too quickly & it’s been a bit of a shock to us all. In fencing the yard & securing the kitchen cupboards, we’re able to reign in the “too big” circle of freedom & get back into a “just right” circle of freedom.

Unschooling is unfolding in our home all the time. Slowly, as the sproggets get older, as Bean & I learn to trust. As we learn to trust them, learn to trust ourselves & learn to trust the journey.

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Downsizing Wonderland

In spite of how beautiful Wonderland is, I have been finding the practicalities of living between 2 buildings quite difficult.

The bedroom building has no wood fire or gas bayonet, so contrary to our sustainable ideals we end up using electricity to heat it. I know wood fires (& gas heaters too for that matter) aren’t very sustainable, a fire box would not necessarily be my heating method of choice in a home I owned, but an electric heater is even less sustainable!

We light a fire in the main house (kitchen, lounge, loft, office & one bedroom) which we benefit from for a short time of an evening, and then once the children are in bed Bean &/or I usually go to the lounge in the bedroom building so we can be close to our sleeping children. There are 2 doors & a deck between us if we stay in the main house while the children are in the bedroom building, which is just too far away for my comfort (or theirs).

Today I decided that in order to make Wonderland work for us I had to do some pretty radical furniture rearranging! I moved The Bubble’s bedroom/playroom into the large bedroom in the main house. That room has a nicer outlook & more natural light than her old room anyway so it will be more suitable for day time play. It also has tiles, rather than carpet so will be easier to clean & has the added bonus of not smelling like carpet cleaning chemicals like the bedroom building rooms do. I was able to move The Bubble’s bed on my own, but I had to wait for Bean to get home to move our bed…

We moved our bed up into the loft. That was very, very hard work! We also have a spare single bed in the loft in case The Bubble decides she wants to sleep with the rest of us. Even though moving out into her own bed in her own room was her choice, one she was happy with for a long time, she has recently felt a need to return to sleeping with, or near, us. I’m actually glad of this, I’ve missed having her near. She’s convinced she’s so big, but she’s really still small. She’s three, that is small. Three is small, challenging & beautiful.

The loft is very warm because it’s right above the fire place. One wall of the loft is windows looking out at the treetops, it’s pretty amazing. There is also a window in the ceiling of the loft, which means we can see the stars at night. They are so clear & bright out here where there is no light pollution.

The office will become my sewing room. It also has a window in the ceiling & the natural light is fantastic. It’s currently got a whole bunch of “sheddy” stuff & my bottles of herbal tinctures in it. We had originally planned for one of the rooms in the bedroom building to be my sewing room, so I could work close to where the sproggets sleep & play. The darker, cooler room we’d originally planned for my sewing room will be a much better herbal dispensary room, and the shed stuff will be much easier to arrange neatly in one of the other rooms in the bedroom building.

I found some mould on the wall in the built-in-robe in The Bubble’s new room. The wall is adjacent to the shower so obviously there is a leak. Our wonderful property manager (she really is wonderful) got onto the owner straight away. He’s actually coming to stay at the property (in another of the houses) for a few days from tomorrow afternoon, so it’s pretty good timing to have found a maintenance issue! He’ll have a look and decide what he wants to do from there. I’m sure it will be resolved quickly.

We’re finding money very tight, on an apprentice’s wage, so we’re considering finding someone to sublet a room in the bedroom building now that we’re not going to be living in it. We will use one or two rooms as storage, which will leave at least one bedroom & the lounge/foyer empty. Wonderland is an ideal space to share because the bathroom, toilet & laundry are separate to the main house & the bedroom building. Whoever is in the bedroom building would have space away from the chaos of family, until they want to use the kitchen. We’ll discuss it some more then perhaps put our feelers out…

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Tidy-freak

I’ve just finished tidying The Bubble’s room & the lounge/playroom in the bedroom building (remember that Wonderland is 2 buildings joined by a deck). Normally The Bubble & Babyman (to some extent) help me put the toys away in the baskets & on the shelves at the end of the day. I was going to let it slide tonight, I’m feeling lazy after a long day (The Sproggets woke early & only Babyman is asleep so far at 9.30pm!) but The Bubble was feeling uneasy about the toys on the floor, so asked me to pack them away for her.

I’ve noticed the toys get played with more readily when they’ve been packed away the night before. When all the trainset parts are in the trainset basket, the farm animals are in the farm animal basket, the blocks in the block basket, the playcloths in the playcloth basket etc. they’re ready to be pulled out one by one & be played with. When we wake to the mess from the day before, it seems to put us on the back foot. Mess is not the same as an unfinished project. There have been times when The Bubble has requested that we not pack up a particular game until tomorrow, because she’s not finished with it yet. Mess is the finished game that we walk away from before packing it away because something more exciting came up. Mess becomes more of a chore, the longer we leave it. When I leave mess, I feel a bit more hostile to it every time I walk past it, until I feel so hostile to it I start to wonder why it hasn’t just picked itself up so I don’t have to. I begrudge it for still being there. If I don’t tidy before I go to bed, I don’t sleep well. If I know I’m waking up to a sink full of dishes in the morning I’ll have a restless night, no matter how tired I am*. For this reason I’ve become one of those neat-freaks who puts things away as soon as I’m finished with them. I wasn’t always like this. My room was always untidy when I was a child. I was never very bothered about mess before having children myself actually. It’s almost as if the nesting instinct so many women experience during pregnancy just came one day and decided never to leave. It didn’t disappear once the first baby was born, and if anything it’s become even more settled within me since the second one.

I find that when my environment is disordered & untidy, I have trouble staying focussed & I often feel stressed or muddle-brained. I also observe the opposite of this, that when I’m feeling particularly depressed & in a slump, I don’t care for tidying up. My brain is feeling muddled, & so I make my otherwise ordered environment muddled also, so it matches how I’m feeling inside. I’m noticing similar in The Bubble. Babyman may be the same, but he’s still too young to really care much for his environment, he’s still quite focussed on what is right in front of him. He’s very good at living in the moment! Perhaps it’s just me? Perhaps The Bubble picks up on my inner chaos & makes it her own? I do think though, that she feels more centred when her home environment is ordered. She says she’s happy when her room is tidy & she takes pleasure in helping to pack things away into the right baskets. When she is having a rough day she will deliberately up-end toy baskets, not to play with the contents, just to make mess to walk away from.

Tonight, The Bubble now feels ready for sleep, assured that her tidy room awaits untidying tomorrow…

*Thankfully, dishes is really Bean’s domain & it’s rare for him to have to leave a sink full of dirty dishes for not having had time of a morning to do them before leaving for work.

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Wilde’s in Wonderland

We have named our new home “Wonderland”. The whole property is named something else, yet we have decided to dub our part of it Wonderland because of a white rabbit that led us up the path to our home a couple of weeks ago, just after we’d signed the lease, when we brought the outlaws around to have a look.

We were driving up the bumpy, gravel driveway when we had to stop for a very white (obviously escaped domestic, not wild) rabbit in the path. The rabbit hopped off rather slowly, but we knew we were turning off the main driveway onto the track leading to our new place soon & thought it would continue along the main driveway. Just as we thought we’d be able to get past the rabbit it dashed across the front of the car & hopped up the path to our place. WONDERLAND!

So Wonderland is an owner built place on 12 acres about 15km from Albany and 40km from Denmark. A very beautiful spot. The part of the property that Wonderland is on is native bush, surrounding properties have paddocks which make good firebreaks so I feel more comfortable about having bush so close to the house. There’s 3 other houses on the same property. So far I’ve only met the caretaker, who lives closest to us, and Bean has met one of the people who live in the other house. The owners now live closer to Perth, and come to stay at the property for a few days each month. Wonderland used to be their family home. I’m told there’s quite a community aspect here. There is a shared vegie patch & there is a sweat lodge not far from the house we’re in. I’m hoping to see evidence of that soon, I’m craving a bit of community.

The house is pretty amazing. There’s a lot of little (& not so little) bits about it that I don’t like so much. There are a lot of energy guzzling downlights which can’t be changed to a lower energy light very cheaply & heaps of single glazed glass making the place cold which make it quite unsustainable, I find this challenging because we’re really keen to limit our environmental impact & I worry that we may actually use more electricity here than we did in Perth!

It’s also not as “safe” as I’d like, though we just have to learn the hazards and behave accordingly (children included). There’s decks on 2 sides of the house which get slippery when wet (which is often!) and Babyman fell backward off the lower deck into a bush yesterday morning & again off another part of the deck trying to navigate some outside stairs today. Inside, there’s stairs to a loft (baby gate already in place so that’s less of a concern now), there’s a tile fire, the kitchen is wide open which we’re not used to (getting cupboard locks for the glass containing cupboards tomorrow). I feel like I’m spending all my time at the moment saying “no” and “not safe”, or nursing an injured child. The Bubble split her lip open last evening, that was a production, she went as white as a sheet Last night she woke up in hysterics 4 times, taking at least 30 minutes to console each time, she was in a lot of pain. She was trying to ride the wheely bug from the kitchen into the sunken lounge. I’d told her so many times yesterday that the wheely bug isn’t to be at the top of steps in case it falls down the steps while someone is riding it, it always has to be on the low side because that’s safest. Each time she’d snarl at me & I’d tell her I’d take the toy away if she kept playing with it dangerously because I didn’t want to see her hurt. I put it in the lounge but last evening she got it up into the kitchen again while we were sorting out dry nappies for Babyman & she rode the it off the step at a fast pace and hurt herself. There was a lot of blood & she was clearly in shock. I suppose she had to learn the hard way though, she’s that kind of person, she often hurts herself doing things I’ve suggested she not do. I gave her a lot of homoeopathic arnica (after years of studying & practicing herbal medicine I still don’t know how much I believe in homoeopathics to be honest, but the pillules give an injured or sick child something else to think about for a short time so they’re effective as distractions if nothing else), & she eventually settled for the night with Bean in her bed cuddling & consoling her. This morning her lip looked much better already & she didn’t seem bothered by it.

Anyway, back to Wonderland… There are other things about the house that are amazing. I love the tile fire for being beautiful in the same breath that I don’t like it for its inefficiency & dangerousness! The bush surrounding the house make it a beautiful environment for a home. The loft looks out into the tree tops, which is simply beautiful and it has a window in the roof which is nice for star gazing, I will certainly do this when I build my own place although I’ll use double glazed glass. There is some beautiful stained glass about the place too. I’ll take some pictures another time & upload them to the blog, for now there’s no use because it’s night time & there is no sun streaming through the stained glass. The toilet is separate from the rest of the house (combined bathroom, laundry, toilet area) which I have wanted for ever so long because Bean is smelly! The water supply is from a spring fed dam, and is amazing to bathe in, I’ve noticed we all have softer skin & hair since being here. Dave loves it here too. There are other dogs for him to play with & with all those unsustainable windows he can see into the house well so he doesn’t feel so isolated from us when we’re inside. He needs a kennel though, he’s currently got a cardboard box with a sheepskin in it for a bed, which is warm enough now but it’ll get colder. He’s also slowly chewing the edges of it, so he’ll end up without a home soon enough at the rate he’s going!

My absolute favourite bit about Wonderland though, and this is very daggy, is that our street runs off a road called “Old School Road” – there’s a place for sale on Old School Road and if I was rich & frivolous I’d buy it just for the address (and the fact that it’s an alpaca stud & alpacas are quite awesome).

We’ve not connected with any homeschoolers down here yet, I have sent countless emails to the Albany group co-ordinator but had no response, and Bean’s spoken with her on the phone but she was pretty non-committal, & just told him to email her! I think the homeschool network in Albany is largely made up of curriculum homeschoolers, & the fact that we’re natural learners/unschoolers/life learners/whatever makes us not really fit the mould for that particular group. No matter, we’ve got a plan to write a little homeschooling “personals” note out & put it on noticeboards around Albany & Denmark calling for people to network with. If there’s a natural learning network down here I’ll find them & if there isn’t already a regular natural learners meet up in the Great Southern I’ll do my very best to get one happening!

I did run into an old friend at the petrol station last week, and she’s given me her phone number so I’d like to tee up a catch up with her. She homebirthed her children, co-slept, full term breastfed, & carried them in slings (except when performing her whip-cracking show) & though I have no idea of her approach to education (bearing in mind I’m looking for playdates during the weekdays), I always felt comfortable with the way she treated her first daughter when we hung out before I had children so I’m excited to have seen her so soon after we moved her. I knew she was living in Albany, & had hoped I’d run into her sooner or later.

It’s taking time to find our feet, and I feel like I started with my cup already empty after our stressful 2 week stay with the outlaws, so with no way of filling my cup down here yet I’m finding myself feeling pretty low and questioning the sanity of this whole move.

The children aren’t coping so well. Babyman is ok really, although he’s feeding VERY often, every time he comes near me he pokes my chest and says “more”, he’s very insistent. It’s doing my head in actually, it’s no secret how much I hate breastfeeding, and without exaggeration he’d be feeding every 20-30 minutes during the day with the longest night time breaks being about 2 hours. The Bubble is really struggling, she needs kids to play with. She’s such a social child, and she hasn’t been to a playgroup for over a month now! She’s been doing attention seeking things like drawing on the furniture & the floors after Babyman drew on the walls. She tells me she doesn’t like me, she snarls at me, she tells me her Daddy does everything better than me & that she doesn’t want me to live with her anymore, she yells & rages and then she cries, tells me she does like me and asks for a cuddle. She’s needing Bean in her bed most nights. Her bedroom is lovely, I’ve made a point of creating a safe space for her to play & relax, hers was the first room to be unpacked and set up when we moved in. She’s gradually telling me she likes her new house so I just need to organise some playtime for her.

My sister and her 2 children came to stay for a couple of nights last week, which was wonderful, the children had playmates & I had a likeminded & beautiful person to chat with, although it wasn’t really for long enough unfortunately. They have recently moved from Perth to the Margaret River region (they have lived there before) so she understands the stress of a long distance move. We ate such amazing food, my sister is a fantastic wholefoods cook & I think it’s such a treat to eat meals prepared by her. She has such a flair with flavours & she’s not afraid to try something bold, where I’m much more conservative with my cooking. It was quite inspiring.

Speaking of food, we’ve found a gorgeous little organic food store in Albany, organic fresh produce is more expensive here than we were getting it for in Perth, the prices for certified organic at the farmers markets are outright ridiculous & the other stalls don’t sell organic so it’s good to find the store which is open 6 days/week. The bulk produce is often cheaper there than in Perth. Rice is $8/kg there & it’s $10/kg minimum in Perth. The people who run it are lovely, they used to run an organic orchard in Perth & were involved with the City Farm farmer’s market from its inception. They sell Jersey bath milk that is at least 1/3 cream, some weeks it’s been 1/2 cream, it’s just divine!

Bean was officially signed up for his apprenticeship again today. No idea where he stands with Tafe stuff & how long until he’ll have his licence sorted out, but he’s getting closer to it every day obviously.

That’s about all the updating I have energy for tonight, it’s already getting late again.

posted by wildecrafted in education,home,journal and have No Comments