Friday, December 30, 2011

Xmas Happenings and Resolutions for the New Year

Merry Xmas everyone!
Guess what someone got from Santa?
I know, I'm almost a week late, but I got here eventually. I hope you had a lovely Xmas and enjoyed the festivities. New Years Eve tomorrow, no real plans here. At almost 37 weeks pregnant, for some reason I just wasn't up to partying up large! So just a couple of friends and their kids coming over, some may drink, some may not. Some Xbox Trivial Pursuit, Monopoly etc. Pretty quiet!!
D and his cousin on Christmas Day.
Getting 2 toddlers to both look at a camera
at once is HARD!

Baby girl will be here in 12 days!! Less if she gets her way, I have my doubts she is going to wait until my scheduled C-Section date.

Have you made any New Years Resolutions yet? I'm kind of not focusing on it too much at this point in time. I think a new baby will keep me busy enough! There's the usual ones, lose weight, be a nicer person etc, but have added a couple of new ones to the same old same old.

1. Photo a day. Yes I attempted this earlier this year, but this will just be a self photo, and possibly a photo a day of the kids. Once a day for a year is a bloody big ask, but I'm with Dex (and baby when she gets here) every day, so whipping out the camera shouldn't be too hard. Uploading them, now that's a different question. Not planning to upload them until further down the track, so don't worry, you aren't going to be bombarded with a photo of me/my kids every day. But with a 2 year old, a new born and a mummy desperate to get her body back, I'm hoping there should be some interesting changes over a year.

2. Be a more positive person. You get in what you put out. And I find myself forever berating myself at being negative, and more so, being sucked in my other peoples negativity, which then increases your own negative outlook on life. I have a great husband, awesome son, money is pretty tight but we are still better than a lot of people seeing as we have a roof over our heads and food on the table, so I really can't complain!
The very cute letter and treats D and his daddy
left out for Santa and Rudolph.

3. Get back into my walking. Not planning on attempting to walk another half marathon as I did last year, but just walking for health, well being and weight loss. Even bought a fan-dangle new double pram so I can get out there once I am able.

So yeah. Keeping it pretty simple this time around. How about you? Any plans for New Years, or Resolutions that you would like to share?

Nikki xx

Monday, October 31, 2011

Things I have learnt since becoming a mum (Part 1) - The baby stages

I was thinking about this lately, what I have learnt, what I was told to expect and what I completely didn't expect at all, prior to becoming a mum.
Things I was told

* You will NEVER have any time to yourself AT ALL.
Well.....I disagree. Your sanity time is much reduced of course, but if you have a supportive husband/partner/friends/family/reliable babysitter, you can still find SOME time. Maybe not as much as you would like, but really? Would you have expected otherwise? I admit, I still didn't really leave him with anyone, even hubby really, prior to 6 months, but the offers were always there, I just chose not to take them and he was one of the "refuse the bottle" type babies so wasn't a huge option anyway!

I know my husband (an avid Xboxer) was told time and time again, "oh when baby comes, you won't have ANY time for Xboxing"... His reply from day one (and even now, 2 years later) is "I actually play more now than I did before having kids" Take that non-believers!

*Newborn babies sleep ALL the TIME
Pisht. These people are lucky. Me, I was lucky if Dex slept more than 40 minutes at a time during the day! Things started to improve a little at about 3 months old, but prior to that, nope. He was pretty good at night though, and I would take a good night sleeper over a good day sleeper anytime!

*Breastfeeding doesn't hurt, and if it does, you are doing it wrong.
Now I know the wife of the person who told me this (so yes, it was a male who informed me) will be reading, and I hope she has a giggle at this memory. Both of us were about to become mums for the first time. She was 4 months or so ahead of me and quickly learnt post-birth, that this is not the case. You can take all the lessons and read all the books in the world, but that baby hasn't taken said lessons, and he/she can't read yet, so it's still a learning curve. For most it takes patience, gritted teeth, more patience and I know in my case, more than a couple of tears before it becomes easier for both of you.

* You will be stuck at home and never get to go out
I guess there is some truth in this. It is generally EASIER, and requires a lot less preparation to just stay home. But you need a little bit of time away from the hum drum of home life. Even if it's just to go to the supermarket or do some odd jobs.The housework may not get done so easily, but at least you will all get a bit of a break and reduce some of that cabin fever that we all know. (especially when you have toddlers!! But that's a story for another day) I try these days to have at least 2 home days during the week, and 3 outings (although I wouldn't say they are kid outings, more supermarket, odd jobs etc. Am working on that though.)

Things I had to learn for myself
* Being on time suddenly doesn't always matter so much, and you don't get too worked up when you aren't 5 minutes early somewhere.
Before having Dexter, I was completely anal about this. If I wasn't at least 5 minutes early getting to something, I would stress myself out no end. It took me at least 6 months, if not a year to let go of this one. Try your best to be on time, if you are a couple of minutes late, the world most likely will not go up in a cloud of dust. And if it did, I guess the fact you were late is a little irrelevant anyway.

*The house will not always be tidy.
Ah yes. This one. I have just now, 2 years down the track, started to get some kind of grip on regular housework. Now there are a few reasons/excuses for this, but to be honest, many days it was just plain laziness/facebook addiction. There will always be days when it just isn't happening, and that's ok. Again, do what you realistically can, and provided your child is happy, fed and in a clean nappy, it's a successful day. My minimum I try and get done is dishes, washing, sweep the floor and pick up toys. Anything else is a bonus! Again, luckily I have an understanding and supportive husband who knows I try my best. (What he tells his friends and workmates though, I don't know)

*People will always give you advice. Listen and accept it graciously and it's up to you if you use it or not.
This can be an awkward one. I mentioned to a couple of close relatives prior to Dex being born that we weren't  keen to have advice (or more so, instruction) shoved down our throats. This by a few was taken as, we don't want any help, we don't want any visitors and basically leave us to it. You certainly can't get it right everytime! Anyway what I was told by others, and what I found was easiest, was to listen to the advice given, remember that they are trying to help, no matter whether it comes across that way or not, and in the end, you know what works for your baby, no one else, so you know (or you will learn), what works and what doesn't. 

*Being a mum is more rewarding and enjoyable than I could ever have expected.
Cheesy, yes. Cliche, quite possibly. I don't care. We have been having some rough times with Dexter lately, he's hit that "terrible twos" stage in a big way, and with me being 28 weeks pregnant with more than a couple of pregnancy related pains and aches going on, he has figured out mummy can't catch him if he runs away. So a few rough days, definitely, but on the whole, there is nothing at all I would change for it. And with #2 coming in January, I know I am in for a whole new shock again!

Stay tuned for part two of this, what I have learnt and what I was told about having a toddler.... 
Nikki xx

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Don't you hate it when..... (preggy moment)

Whilst at work, the preggy desire for a giant choc chippy biscuit on your break kicks in, so you waddle (oh yes, I'm a big waddler tonight) up to the vending machine.

You stand there for ages deciding what you want. (A giant chocolate chip biscuit REMEMEBER???), put your money in the slot, pick your bickie and bend over to collect your tasty treat.


Your hand gets stuck in the bit the biscuit comes out of (dunno what it's called, but it closed on my hand and it HURT)
The offending vending machine

Now, a non pregnant person would just use their free hand to re-open the slot and get bikkie and hand out. But no. My big braxton-hix-y tummy cramps up at the worst of times, and I can't move.

Eventually I get my hand and biscuit out, and slink back to my desk. It was a good cookie though. I'm just glad that I work nights and no one was there to see me!!
So now I have a rather sore hand, but a happy tummy. Tell me something similarly stupid has happened to you before? Please make me feel better!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 30 - Self Portrait

Mr D Wanted to be in on this. As well
as his musli bar!

And thus concludes my 30 day photo challenge!  May not have done them daily, but I got there in the end!!!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 29 - A parent/grandparent

Thought I'd go the whole hog since it's the second to last of the 30 day posts.
Me, Mum (Wedding Day), Nanna and Great Nanna. Incidentally, at
the same venue as my 30th will be at later this month.

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 28 - Todays Outfit

Top from Farmers (non-preggy but works well)
Jeans from Pumpkin Patch maternity
Jandals from #1 Shoes
Bump courtesy of my husband.

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 27 - Eyes

Extra tired, headachy, sore neck eyes. But they are my
eyes, nonetheless.

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 26 - Shoes you are wearing today

I don't like shoes at the best of times, so as soon as it started to
warm up again, I was back in jandals/bare feet. Excuse the mildy
swollen piggy toes, I think it's going to be a long summer!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 25 - Your latest purchase

Invites to my 30th Birthday at the end of the month. There's two parts to it,
hence the 2 different kinds of invites. To be filled out tonight and
posted tomorrow!

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 24 - Your favourite food/recipe

This was a bit tricky, I have so so many favourite foods, but not many photos of them, so I thought I would do one that I both have a photo of, and also know that it is always a big hit.
Oreo Cheesecake. Yep. So good.
1 packet of Superwine biscuits
1 large tub of cream cheese 
1 small bottle of cream
75g butter
1/2 cup sugar
teaspoon or so of vanilla essence
1 packet of oreos (the last couple of times I have used the chocolate oreos - heaven!!)

Melt butter in microwave. Whiz biscuits until they are small crumbs. Mix biscuit crumbs and melted butter and press into a cheesecake tin. (Sprinform tins are the easiest to get off after, and a small tin makes for a nice tall cheesecake. Press firmly into the bottom to create base and refridgerate for min of 30 minutes to set.

Beat cream in a bowl until its to a firm whipped consistancy. In another bowl beat cream cheese, vanilla and sugar together until smooth then add whipped cream. (This will be easier if cream cheese is softened a little). Crumble most of the oreos into the mixture and stir. Add the mixture to the set biscuit base and smooth top. Add the last few oreos you have saved to crumble on top. Refrigerate.

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 23 - Something random/quirky

My current Gestational Diabetes nighttime routine - Check sugars and inject insulin.
I'm lucky to currently only need insulin 1x a day, but check my sugars roughly 2 hourly. Joy. 

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 22 - Close Up


30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 21 - Your Letterbox

Yes yes I'm way behind again. At least I am doing all 30 days, they are usually all bunched together once a week or so, but oh well...

So. Day 21. My Letterbox. With all the rain we have had, and a sick, very clingy 2 year old haven't been out to the letterbox a whole lot, so got this on my way out the driveway yesterday, from the car!

When we built our place we were too stingy to buy a letter box, so
used the free one we got with a NZ Herald subscription :)

Saturday, September 24, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 20 - Your Hometown

View of Pilot Bay from around the Mount. Technically my hometown, as I
lived there for first 2 years of my life. (Mount Maunganui, not Pilot Bay)

Not a very clear picture as was taken on an old camera phone, but a view
from the Strand in downtown Tauranga, looking towards the Harbour Bridge.

Friday, September 23, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 19 - Happiness

Dexter + Sugar + Presents. That is all.

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 18 - Grass

Ok. I don't have any grass at my house, so I had a squiz through some photos for something a little different, and found this, Adam Zorb-ing in Rotorua. Lots of grass!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 17 - Sand

Te Paki Sand Dunes way way up north.
Hubby doing a super jump off top of Te Paki sand dunes.

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 16 - A Childhood Memory

I couldn't pick which photo to use, so I have used both :)
Horse riding at Millikins in Brookfield. It is long gone and there is now a subdivision there,
but as you can see, my love of horses started young!

Roller Skating with my mummy at Memorial Park

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 15 - Before and After.

Housework with a 2 year old "helping".... That is all.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 14 - A hobby of yours

Hmm. I have a few hobbies, but most of them would come under the "crafty" category. Here are just a few of my projects that have been sitting unfinished for SO long, and I am determined to make a dent in them before baby #2 comes!
Dexter's first year scrapbook. Although he is now 2, so I am even more behind on this!

Cute size 1 dress in a gorgeous print I found at the hospice shop.
Aussie holiday Scrapbook. Honey moon  Scrapbook.

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day - 13 - Your favourite colour

 PURPLE!! And Dex just happened to get a purple Ukelele for his birthday present from one of his nannas last week. Very cute and he loves it.

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 12 - Wheels

This is Dexters new bike that he got for his birthday last week. And his Ben Ten helmet! Unfortunately it is a bit too big for him, but he loves being pushed around on it! Sadly, mummy's 22 weeks pregnant and not so into pushing round a bike for hours, but Daddy has been on pushing duty so far!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Behind on the 30day challenge again, but with good reason!

Yes, yes, I know I am 3 days behind again, but have been flat tack organising Dex's 2nd birthday party celebrations. A whole other post of it's own, but just wanted to say....
I will be back tomorrow to catch up to day 15 where I should be by then :) I promise!!!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 11 - Water

Another easy one given our recent outings. These are all from the rail bridge down on the strand in town. A nice short easy walk on a sunny day!

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 10 - A nice view

**yes I know, I skipped day 9, will get back to it when I get a proper photo! (Hopefully tomorrow)***

Well this one is easy. I have a nice view from our lounge window, and with our recent family excusions I have come across some nice views as well (although some are views of water so will use those for tomorrows post I think!)

Sunset from the top of the Kaimais on the night everyone was out looking for a giant comet
View from the Mount towards Pilot Bay when doing all my walking training
for half marathon last year.

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 8 - Sunshine

Yes yes yes, I know I'm a little behind. You know why? Actually I have a couple of reasons. One is because I got so damned stuck on sunshine. We had weeks and weeks of constant sunshine, and I never took a photo, then the day before I got to Day 7, the weather packed up, and I really did want to use a new photo and it's been raining mostly since. So it's sunny right at this point in time so I raced outside and got as gooder picture as I could without blinding myself.

Excuse number 2 is that it is Dex's 2nd birthday on Friday, and so he has a HUGE party planned for Saturday and have been busy doing stuff for that.

Anyhoo, on with Day 7 and I will be back with Days 9 and 10 shortly.

Sun hiding behind the clouds 

Some of my succulent flowers in the garden outside lounge
And one other picture I took on Saturday, from the Tauranga Domain (when it was still sunny!)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 6 - Flowers

I'm back with Day 6! 
This is my rose bush just outside my lounge window. I love the colour and when they are out in full force, they smell SO SO good! It is just starting to get new growth on it now, and with the rain today I'm sure there will be loads more.

This is the Boronia that was outside our bedroom window. My brother gave it to me for my birthday a couple of years back and it had incredible floweres and a lovely smell, 2 years running, then overnight, it seemed, it just died off and we had to pull it out :(

Am just in the process of planting new bulbs (Dahlias) and new plants that I rescued from the Plant Hospitals, so am bound to have loads of flowers soon!



30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 5 - Clouds

So I'm a day late with Day 5, so I'm doing Days 5 and 6 today. It has been Murphys' Law here lately. We have had days and days of no clouds at all (none worth attempting a picture of anyway) and today when I got up it was RAINING. Typical.

So here is a photo of the Moon and some clouds just on sunset on Hamilton Island in the Whitsundays while on our Honeymoon. Hope it will do!



Friday, September 9, 2011

30 Day Photo Challenge - Day 5 - A Pet, past or present

So this is easy in terms of finding a photo to use. Not so easy is the fact that I have had sooo many pets, I just don't know where to start!

This is our cat, Mudd. I wanted a photo I took tonight, but the worlds laziest, most placid cat, decided to get up off the couch and follow me to get the camera, even though she had been asleep all night. She is about 8 weeks old in this pic, she will be 7years this Xmas and is the cruisiest cat ever, especially to have had to put up with a crazy miniature dachshund for 6 years and now a toddler who just wants to give "hugs"

Mudd's mum, Bella. We inherited Bella from a useless tenant we rented our house out to about 7 years ago. We came back from Australia to find that she had left behind 4 cats and refused to come get them. Bella still kind of lives with us, but shares herself between us and the neighbours. Sh'e about 7 or older, we don't know, except that she was still very young when we took her in.
Ahhh Odie. We got him from a breeder in Wellington at 8 weeks old and had him until he was 6, which was December last year. Unfortunately, he never adjusted to their being a baby in the house and could get quite nasty with him. It wasn't worth the risk and so we rehomed him to a nice couple at the end of last year. Still miss him heaps though :(

Odie and Mudd. They were the best of friends, although I must admit, Mudd is much happier and healthier without a dog smaller than her harrassing her 24/7!!