What Do You Say To A Bereaved Parent?

I've been struggling a lot with the strength of my emotions recently, as I always do on the run up to the anniversary of a lost baby. This time of year, it's the loss of Patrick James Doyle - Patpat to his family - who passed away 3 years ago at the age of 14 months and 4 days, known only to me through the internet, and the power of his mamma's badass writing. I'm not sure why it is that I feel the loss of this little guy so keenly but it's probably not helped by the fact that he was 10 days younger than Esme, who, on the day I read the news of his passing was lying asleep in my arms on the sofa after the fifth round of cielito lindo ....more

The Last Toilet Training Adventure

In this latest episode of where-the-hell-did-my-baby-go, apparently Miss Olive is no longer using nappies....more

The Great Outdoors

I have come to the conclusion that going camping is one of life's great exposers of truths. Camping has never been a part of my family vocabulary; growing up we stayed with relatives, or rented cottages and caravans, so my experience of camping was reserved for my twenties and consisted exclusively of visits to sporting events of varying kinds. My sleep was made possible by alcohol, high octane fumes and dancing until the early hours, and I viewed anyone who chose to go camping without these accoutrements with a healthy degree of suspicion ....more

Our Homeschooling Exemption

So we're a home schooling family now: I know, check me out just casually throwing that in there! Yup, we do a bit of unit learning, some workbooking, mix it up with a bit of un-schooling, y'know, just keeping it casual. Ahahahahahaha! ...more

Onwards and upwards in 2016

So a long time ago, when I was writing updates every week and before life got crazy, insane, busy, I posted about doing something called the Dusty Bookshelf Challenge. “What could be so hard?” I thought naively, “it’s not like you have much in your life right now, what’s a few more challenges?” Not long after that, shit got real and I'm genuinely surprised I got through the rest of the year alive. I long ago learned from Dooce’s mistake about talking shop on the internet, but seeing as it’s all good things, I'm going to take the chance: Not long after we came back from the UK, I was offered an amazing opportunity at work to manage a project that will deliver an important piece of software to every hospital from Hawke’s Bay to Wellington ....more

Slow Cooked Orange Pulled Pork - A Guest Post

The fam and I are currently off on our world tour, which left me with a bit of a conundrum: Do I give you all a rest from my inane drivel, or do I make judicious use of the schedule function? I sort of did both, and I am over the moon that Genie from Bunny Eats Design...more

Practicing Self Care

Yesterday I did something I haven’t done in a long time – I sat on the sofa, ignored the children and read a book. That might not seem like something to brag about. It certainly wasn’t something that impressed Keith who, at the point I rejected his suggestion that I read to the children instead of myself, called me mother of the year and suggested I write about that on my blog ....more

Burning Down the House

I’m writing this from the warm comfort of the new house, which tells you a little about how this story ends, but not much about the small bumps along the way. Maybe the biggest of which was nearly burning down the house on our first day which, even by our usual standards of property devaluation, is pretty effective. The new house boasted a gas BBQ housed in a lovely covered courtyard type affair which made it an obvious choice for dinner last weekend when the entire kitchen was boxed up and our friend was visiting ....more

A Review of "All I Know Now"

This is probably the last book review I’ll be allowed to write for a while. Hachette were very kind to send me a copy of All I Know Now: Wonderings and Reflections on Growing Up Gracefully by Carrie Hope Fletcher and because my children are closer to being teenagers than I am, I thought it would be a valuable read....more

We Accidentally Bought A House

We've been over here for a while now, and we have been pretty happy in our rented house: our landlord is lovely, the house is large, the rent is cheap, the view is lovely and the area is awesome....more