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My Daybook: December 4th, 2015

Outside my window…

the sun is shining, whilst we are still experiencing hot days, they are not quite as intense as the 40C/104F days of the roofing weekdybk dec 2

I am thankful…

that we didn’t lose our half complete roof in the storm Wednesday night, we were worried, I really believe God moved the winds away, giving thanks!

Storms at a city north of here caused the roof of the maternity ward at the hospital to collapse, trapping 22 adults and 5 babies!!

I am thinking…

was moving to wordpress a good idea? I seem to have lost all my readers, or rather all my commentators, my community. I feel as if I’m writing into a void, gee now I sound needy. Yesterday a long term reader (and friend) told me she doesn’t like my new format, perhaps many of you don’t? Maybe you’re still there, reading, intending to comment later though life is full and later never happens, I get that I do, but I miss ya xxxx

Learning all the time…

have begun All About Reading Level 2 with Jack Jack(9) and Jem(7), I just LOVE All About Reading, so brilliant! I know I’ve raved about it before but just have to shout out again.  This time I’m teaching two together and the synergy is positive, and to see just where and why JJ has been struggling is fascinating
dybk dec 3
Celebrating the liturgical year……

this week there’s St Barbara’s and St Nicholas’ Day to celebrate. Well St Barbara’s Feast Day has already been but we’re waiting till our oldest resident lad, Michelangelo(16) is home from the Australian Catholic Youth Festival to celebrate.

Attempting to achieve the most basic of Advent preparations but moving slowly there, we do have baby Jesus’ crib waiting and the children are adding a straw for every good deed.  One small achievement

From the kitchen…

well it’s all a little challenging at present.  Courtesy of roofing ‘incidents’ there are now two holes in my kitchen ceiling, thankfully ‘my roofer’ managed to catch himself as he came through the ceiling, though he is rather bruised.  Then there was a roll of sarking that left a neat hole. The electrical lights have been disconnected so having to cook by torchlight, the hot water system is still disconnected, so boiling washing up water on the stove oh and there’s a hole where the exterior door used to be.  So some challenges, but it’s all good, I have my roof on, well nearly completed

I am creating…

lists, lots of lists and trying not to hyperventilate at all we have to do between now and Christmas.

  • We have a trip to our son’s graduation next week, it involves a myriad of details – housesitters, presents to buy, bedding to organise and take
  • Bella’s birthday to purchase for three days before Christmas
  • A holiday to plan for, we’re playing tourists in Sydney, what to do, what to see
  • We’re also spending a few days with PC’s mum, some of his siblings and their families, so separate planning needed there
  • Christmas presents to decide for thirteen+ people and then to locate and purchase

deep breath…dybk dec 1

I am working on…

an itinerary for our holiday, checking out the best deals, stretching that dollar. Some tips for you in case your holidays include attractions

  • Kellogg’s currently have a promotion, Adults Go Free, we’re visiting the Sydney Aquarium and only have to pay for the children! Check out the promotion site, this is applicable for many other venues and in other states too
  • Taronga Zoo offer group rates for 10 or more, as a large family we’re a group! Sweet. Many attractions offer group discounts so always best to check
  • Checking out transportation we’ve discovered the Family Fare deal, this is applicable for buses, trains and ferries, we pay for all adult family members and the first child, then all other children travel free. Then there is the MyMulti and the Ferry tickets, comparing prices, seeing what options work best for our needs

I am going…

slightly frazzled with all the ‘plate juggling’ at present, though I think I’m slipping past that stage now and heading for the total mellowed phase. ‘She’ll be right mate’, chilled is good.

Talking frazzled, I emailed PC at work that I was going grocery shopping, finishing up in his lunch hour sometime, I didn’t have my phone (Michelangelo had it in Adelaide) if he dropped by the supermarket, ‘we could meet in the frozen aisle by the peas, I’d be the crazy looking lady’. So not knowing exactly what time I would be finishing up nor what time he would go for lunch exactly, it so happened that that’s just where we met! Talk about romantic, like Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr pledging to meet at the Empire State Building

I am hoping…

that 2016 is an incredible year for us academically. As I wrap up our academics of 2015 my thoughts are already turning towards the next year, most likely Michelangelo’s final academic year with us and I want him to finish on a grand notedybk dec 5

I am praying…

  • for our dear friends; Saturday they lost their father, father-in-law, grandfather. He will be sorely missed by them
  • for a world gone mad, so much pain and suffering and many seem blind or indifferent.  We’ve lost our way and we are and will suffer the consequences

I am pondering….

I have a major project percolating, praying about direction, should I, shouldn’t I. If so how to actually put this project into action, my mind is going round and round

I am reading…

Finished The Light Between Oceans, sympathy and yet not for the main characters, powerfully written

Escape From Mr Lemoncello’s Library, children’s lit. Very clever plot, well written. Intend on showing one of our librarian’s I think he would appreciate it. Just discovered the author has also written a sequeldybk dec 6

I am listening to……

so many podcasts to listen too and I’m not listening to any. Partially it’s listening devices, I think it might be time to request my own ipod, nobody wants to lend me theirs 🙁 though I did discover I can download on my phone but as my phone isn’t holding its charge for long I’m reluctant to spend time organising only for it to die a death. Then there’s time, though it has occurred to me if I finally begin exercising whilst I walk daily I could listen at the same time

I am hearing…

country sounds; kookoburras laughing, the rooster crowing, children playing. Blessed to live this life

I am struggling…

to keep all my ‘plates spinning’, but then it’s always like this every year in December. Not only are we journeying towards Christmas but we, PC and I, always seem to tackle major building projects this time of the year. I think the year we had a baby at Christmas was our most restfuldybk dec 7

Clicking around…

let’s chat about the blogs you read.  My friend(yes the one who doesn’t like the look of my new blog format) and I were chatting this week about what personally appeals to us when choosing what blogs to read. Friend is very drawn to pretty, lots of pretty, then subject matter. Whereas I’m drawn to writing style, then subject matter and my preferred look is more minimalist. Two friends who have much ‘subject matter’ in common, yet drawn to different blogs based on more than content. What draws you to the blogs your read and what keeps you visiting?

Around the house…

clutter, clutter, clutter. At least that’s what it seems like when you move half a house of belongings into sharing space with the other half of the house’s belongings.  Thanks to our roofing project all 8000 books, a room full of computers and a whole room of learning materials are cramped into the rest of our living space. I look about and want to start a massive de-clutter project immediately, I have to close my eyes and resist as starting yet another major project would not be good for Christmas cheer and peace at this stage.  After Christmas I mutter, after Christmas and I’ll be happily downsizing

One of my favorite things…

my extremely talented husband, he continually astounds me with his building skills. He is not a builder by trade, his career is in finance, yet he just ‘knows’ and if he doesn’t, he researches ‘how to’ then just goes ahead and tries and it all works out successfully. He is brilliant really
dybk dec 4
A few plans for this week…

  • welcoming Michelangelo home from the Australian Catholic Youth Festival in Adelaide. We can’t wait to hear all about his experience
  • celebrating the Feasts of St Barbara and St Nicholas
  • taking Michelangelo to the orthodontist to have his braces removed
  • attending our eldest son’s College graduation!!  Can hardly believe three years have passed already, flown by, although perhaps not for him;)  We are so proud of him and all he has achieved.
  • whilst attending Carpenter’s graduation PC and I will also be celebrating our 23rd wedding anniversary.  We’re planning a day together, with three adult children and two teens present this should not be a problem

A little peek at my day…

  • continuing with the roofing; more sarking, batten cutting, cutting the iron, screwing the iron down, hanging gutters, we’re so close, determined to finish the roof this weekend.
  • Christmas party for Princess’ dance studio, held at the Jungle Gym, taking all the children

Hi, I'm Erin, I've been sharing snippets of our Living & Learning since 2006! You'll find here large family logistics, home education, owner building, rural life, book reviews and hundreds of pages with book recommendations we've personally used.

14 Comments

  • Sherelle

    Erin, I actually like your new blog! Maybe those more tech-savvy than me can find some hitches, but I find it simple and easy to follow. (I don’t write a blog so my knowledge is limited.) Best wishes for your son’s graduation, has he any ideas where to next? Congratulations on your wedding anniversary. My husband and I recently celebrated 25 years. We wonder where the time has gone, but then look at our 9 children and say “that’s where!” (I often think St John the Baptist should be the patron saint of parents – “we must decrease and they increase.”:) I look forward to reading of more homeschooling and building adventures.

    • Erin

      Sherelle
      Thank you! That means a lot, and yes simple is what I was trying to achieve.
      Our son is planning to work for the next few months, juggling his part-time jobs. Then travel overseas for a few months, then turn his attention to his career. He entered Uni a whole year early so he’s taking his gap year now 🙂
      love that quote! very apt. We had a lovely dinner anniversary, served by our son at his work, so that was extra special.
      Thanks for the encouragement xx

  • Jennifer M

    I don’t read blogs for pretty, I read for content and writing. I’ve just been really bad about commenting as of late. I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed spinning my plates and frankly I don’t know how you are doing all of yours! It sounds like you are feeling a bit like Mary and Joseph in Bethlehem.

    I have often wondered what it would feel like to have summer for my Christmastime, and I can see there is a push to get projects accomplished because of the warm weather, which makes it hard to balance all those Liturgical Year celebrations and Christmas preparations on top of that!

    Prayers and hugs! I know you will do more than just manage–it will all come out well.

    • Erin

      Jennifer
      Now I’m not surprised you are after content 🙂 I’ve come to the conclusion we’re all suffering from ‘being bad at commenting’ I know I’ve struggled to read and to comment.
      Not sure how I’m spinning either, must be Our Lord’s help. Certainly like Mary it’s all minimal preparations for celebrating her Son’s birth.
      I’m starting to see the benefit of winter for Christmas, snowbound you’d turn to crafts. Summer the children just want to swim.
      Oh thank you, you’re such a supportive friend xx

  • Sharyn

    I’m still reading:) Just hard to comment because of time. A post like this I don’t know where to start though too. If we were having a cuppa we could talk for hours over what you’ve written here but to write something in the comm box, I don’t know where to start because I have so much to say. But here goes…

    It’s 40 where you are!! It’s been quite cold here for the past few days. One day was so cold it actually felt colder than winter! But no doubt Perth will crank up the hot from here on in.

    Glad you didn’t loose your roof and hope they were okay in the maternity unit!!!

    The new format? It’s all kind of the same on an iPhone.

    You’re convincing me with the AAR. Got one just starting and would like to try something different.

    What is sarking? And sounds like you’re camping but with a roof 😉

    I’m hyperventilating over Christmas too! And then someone is two tomorrow:)

    Sydney… I’d love to go back for a holiday. What to see? You could spend a few days just walking around the city. So much to see. St Mary’s cathedral, St. Mary MacKillop’s place in the north, botanical gardens, art museum, the Rocks area, catch a ferry to Manly (not hugely exciting but something to see), Chinese garden is lovely, or at least was 13 years ago. So many things to browse at while walking around. There will be the Christmas displays in the shop windows in the city, if they still have them which I remember as being really lovely. Centrepoint… I love the Blue Mountains. Worth going there if you haven’t.
    Oh and I’m sure Taronga would be great. Can’t believe we didn’t go while we were there.

    ‘Talk about romantic, like Cary Grant and Deborah Kerr’, so sweet, and 23 years, congratulations!

    Love that koala pic! Looks comfy doesn’t he, or she… Pic of your older daughter is really lovely too!

    I’m words first pics second too.

    Just finished a big declutter here. Ah, so good! The thought of 8000 books!! Bet you don’t move those around too often!

    You’re husband and kids are doing a great job with the house! They are an inspiration!

    Hope you enjoy your week!
    A blessed feast of the Immaculate Conception to you!

    And, Kookoburra?? 😉

    • Erin

      Sharyn
      If only we could meet, so much to chat about!

      Wow that cold in summer, crazy. The weather seems odd everywhere.

      We were so blessed in the storms. So frightening, heard one story that a mother was on the phone to her husband looking out, he told her to move away from the windows with all the lightening, she did and then the scaffolding plunged through where she had been standing!!

      Do you read my posts on a phone, does that mean you’ve written this wonderful comment on a phone!!?

      Wish we were closer so I could lend you my AAR so you could be sure before you buy, though like me you’ve more children to use the program.

      Can’t believe our babies are two already, seemed only the other day we were waiting to meet them. How did his birthday go?

      Thanks for reminding us about St Mary’s have added to the list.

      We had a lovely dinner out, where our son works, and he requested to be our drinks waiter, so special. I thought it rather romantic, deep freeze section shall now be our ‘spot’ 😉

      Glad you like our daughter’s photo, realised it had been a while since I’d shared any.

      I’ve a further de-clutter to go, don’t plan on moving 8000 books back.

      Thank you! They’ve learnt so many skills along the way whilst building our home.
      oh and sarking is a reflective, insulation foil.

      Yep, all we’re missing is a possum and an echidna, actually we have seen them, never a platypus though.

  • Erica

    I love the look of your blog, Erin! Crisp and fresh. Love your family picture; both, but the one where you are all in blue and black. Very pretty. 🙂

    • Erin

      Erica
      Thank you! I like that, crisp and fresh, you’ve made me smile!
      That photo was taken at my brother’s wedding last year, hoping to get an updated photo at Christmas this year.

    • Erin

      Peta
      Hi! Welcome, excited to hear from a fellow Australian, homeschooling mum. Have added your blog to my reads, look forward to getting to know you 🙂
      I hope my writings can help you in managing a large family, I know it’s been a journey of stretching and growing for me over the years.
      Wishing you well with your pregnancy.

  • Cassie W.

    I finally just got back to respond to your beautiful daybook and pictures! I know that I’m not commenting much but I still love your blog and read every post and I think it’s great! : ) Just keep doing what you’re doing. I’m not sure how you are posting so much with all the construction. This new blog is a different layout but I like it equally with your old one. Simple is in and I like simple.

    • Erin

      Cassie
      Aww thanks!! Really appreciate the encouragement.
      Blogging our construction posts is in part a diary to honour my husband, not only to show what he has achieved but a record for him to look back over. When we’re finished I’m planning on slurping all the building posts into a book for him. (have to work out how to do that yet)
      True simple is in, pleased to hear you like the new.

  • Mary

    Hi Erin! I’m sorry it took me so long to realize my link wasn’t up to date, but win for me to have so many posts to catch up on while I’m up with insomnia.
    I like the new look. I’d like to shed blogger but don’t have time to figure it out.
    Congratulations to your son!!
    I pick blogs to encourage and edify, yours is satisfying with images and words. I feel a connection in many areas and enjoy knowing other moms struggle and live and love in real life. It helps in times my new rural life gets lonely.
    A light in the wilderness! Thanks for sharing your journey! 🙂

    • Erin

      Mary
      Glad you found me then, same thing happened to another friend, thought I hadn’t written then had lots to read!
      If you decide to go this way I’m more than happy to exchange emails/skype and help you through.
      Thanks for your encouragement, the look is a work still in progress.
      Yes you know how exciting it is to have a child Graduate!:)
      Aww thanks {} Yes I feel the connection too and we have much in common. Rural life is an adjustment{} So kind of you!! I feel so humbled.

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