Monday, 23 July 2007

"There is no me without you"

Thought I would share with you the book I have just finished reading:

"There is no me without you" is the story about a middle-class woman named Haregewoin Teferra in Addis Ababa Ethiopia. She lost her husband to a heart attack; then her 23-year-old daughter died from AIDS. In her grief, Haregewoin turned to the church and asked to be taken into seclusion. Instead of allowing this, the church presented her with two teenage orphans and asked her to house them. Despite protests from her friends and family, Haregewoin said yes. Once she opened her gate to the first two children, she never managed to close it again. Her compound became known as a haven: here was a woman who did not run away from AIDS-orphaned children or HIV positive people. From across the country, children were brought to Haregewoin . Her life shows what one human being can do for others in a time of crisis. As the brutal statistics about the AIDS crisis in Africa increase, Haregewoin is inspirational. Not only has she become a mother to these many orphans, she has also started a school and day-care system, and also a shelter for sick mothers.
I learned a lot about the enormity of the AIDS epidemic in Africa from reading this book. It is staggering to know that the number of AIDS sufferers in South Africa equal that of the population of Norway. And I learned a lot of the shameful facts about the pharmaceutical industry and politics as relating to AIDS drugs.
For more information go to this website:

Friday, 20 July 2007

Stop press! Missing tooth...

The front tooth that has been wobbling for weeks finally wobbled out completely this evening. This was a great relief to Turtle who was not sure whether the tooth fairy would be able to find him in Norway. Even worse was the prospect of the tooth coming out during the flight up there. Because, as Turtle will tell you, the tooth fairy is only 15 cm tall and can't possibly keep up with an airplane.

Perfect gap for a straw!

And, here are the gingerbread men we made today. Thomas decorated these himself, patiently lining up chocolate buttons. He wanted one to look like "Gingy" from Shrek ("No! Not the gum drop buttons!")
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Leaving on a jet plane.....

With 4 more sleeps to go, the excitement level is rising. Morfar called from Norway and he is getting pretty excited to see us again. He hasn't seen the boys for 4 years and LP for 3. They have changed a little since then.

Tom Ted (Turtle's teddy) is ready to go. Someone needs to tell him that it is not winter in Norway and that he should swap the fleece hat for his Speedo's

The kids' new super smart passports arrived yesterday complete with holograms, microchips etc etc.
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Monday, 16 July 2007

Every air-travelling parent's nightmare
This is the story of the mother and toddler who were thrown off a flight in Houston.....
I don't know if this is the full story, but it is a jaw-dropper! My first impression after reading this story is that this flight attendant should seek employment away from airtravel, and possibly from the service industry altogether....

Reading it made me feel ever so slightly nervous about travelling with my 3 little darlings next week when we go to Norway. Thankfully we are not flying Continental Airlines, so maybe we'll be ok, but ... if next week's blog entries are from Hong Kong or Kazakhstan, you'll know what happened :)

Sunday, 15 July 2007

A game of two halves.....

Since the soccer season is nearing an end, I thought we'd share a few glimpses of our little Tigers. This season Doodlebug was in the U8 and Turtle in the U7.

At the Carrington field. Doodlebug played defense this game and did a stirling job of keeping the ball away from the goal.

He earned "Player of the Game" for his efforts.
Posing with him is Best Buddy since Kindy, soccer teammate, fellow bookworm and Nintendo fan

Here is Turtle in action in his U7 Small Side Game.
He was enthusiastic in all his efforts and was rewarded.

Go, Tigers!
Both boys received their "Player of the game" trophies on the same Saturday. The trophies were proudly displayed on the shelf for a week until the next game.
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I love to ride my bicycle...

Today Peter and I took the kids out to the BMX track in Terrey Hills. They had a blast at least until the first stack...
Both were kitted out in new elbow and kneepads and looked very cool.
Just 6 laps around the track makes for a very good night's sleep.....
Little Possum wanted to follow her brothers down the track but we managed to persuade her that bikes with training wheels were not allowed so she found a place to make some great mud instead. Happiness all around.

Turtle in the lead with Doodlebug close behind.

Turtle just zoomed around but is thankfully unsuccessful at the jumps still....

Doodlebug playing catch-up

Ready, set, ..............
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Thursday, 12 July 2007

Our little Sugarplum fairy

Little Possim was given this dress which she discovered has maximum twirl capability and so she put some ballet music on the DVD player and treated Turtle and myself to an impromptu performance of The Fairy Dance. Choreographed, produced and performed by LP.
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Tuesday, 10 July 2007

USS Kitty Hawk

The aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk just left Sydney after visiting for a week one last time before going off to be decommissioned. I can't believe how big it is. About 7000 people are on board. And..... it brought some wonderful memories of going to see "Top Gun" starring Tom Cruise before he turned weird.
USS Kitty Hawk was named after Kitty Hawk, the town where the Wright brothers first took flight in their airplane. LP thinks that Pop flew the first airplane, but it was really the Wright brothers......

Meanwhile, back at the ranch..

Here is Turtle with this afternoon's creation. While Doodlebug was off doing his Egyptian thing, Turtle and LP had gone on the train to the city for an "expotition" with Marnie. They had a picnic down by the rocks in the Botanical Gardens watching the USS Kitty Hawk. Then they went on the Monorail to the Powerhouse museum where oodles of fun was had exploring various exhibits.

I don't know whether the USS Kitty Hawk provided the inspiration for the Lego helipad and the airplane and landing strip. All those red pieces around the H were perfectly fitted togeterh like a puzzle. Methodical little mind he has, our Turtle.
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Walk like an Egyptian, part II

Here's Doodlebug getting his certificate at the end of the workshop..... He didn't want to pose for a photo....
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Walk like an Egyptian...

Doodlebug just spent 2 half days at a holiday activity learning about Egyptian mythology. He now knows more about the ancient gods of Egypt than I do (not difficult since I have a scant knowledge in this area). Part of their workshop was to make these amulets. From top left:

Ankh (Granting life. All the gods carry it, and suffusing someone with life-force is represented by presenting an Ankh to their mouth),

Scarab beetle (the scarab had the power of seemingly giving new life from nothing but itself, and due to its habit of pushing dung balls was the symbol of the invisible power of creation which propels the sun through the skies)

The eye of Horus (Brings the blessings of strength, vigour, protection, safety, good health.... ). I have been educated....

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Thursday, 5 July 2007

Wonderful show!

Last night Peter and I went to see the Sydney Theatre Company production of "the 25th Putnam County Spelling Bee". Wonderful evening and not just because I got to be an adult for a night! I haven't laughed so much in ages. There were serious undertones as we learned of the backgrounds and insecurities of the spellers, but the show was full of funny jokes. There was some audience participation as 4 members of the audience were "volunteereed" to be part of the spelling bee.

Great cast including a surprising performance by Lisa McCune. I have only seen her in TV dramas and I must admit I had thought she was just another soapie actress. But , she shined in this production.... comedy talent and a wonderful singing voice as well. I will see her in a different light from now. The show also featured Magda Szubanski but she does not need any further introduction except to say she was on good form!

Sunday, 1 July 2007

Turtle made a spaceship out of a cardboard box and I just love the details he put in like dials/buttons/knobs and a steering wheel.
I am glad he is still finding amusement in a box!
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