Monday, October 31, 2011

On a lighter note

This ad is brilliant. My brother in law drives an older model dual cab HiLux. He loves it too.


I was just watching this online. I'm not a huge fan of Doug Wilson's work. Not everything he says is complete rubbish, but there's a lot I don't agree with.

As someone who has worked as part of a team involved in diagnosing Autism Spectrum Disorders, ADHD and other developmental disorders, I do have some concerns that he seems to be suggesting that some children and parents (particularly those with milder forms of these conditions) may in fact be attention seekers.

I've been around long enough to see that in at least some of these cases, parenting and behaviour management strategies may not be the most ideal. And there are some professionals who may err on the side of over-diagnosis. Often under pressure from schools and other educational settings who are desperately chasing funding to support children who are having difficulties managing in these places.

But there are many children who DO have these conditions. And in some, although not all, cases, medication may be of assistance (to be fair, he does point this out during the video...).

To suggest that these parents are looking for attention and copycat diagnoses is not helpful. To be honest, I think he needs to learn a bit more about Autism Spectrum Disorders and ADHD before he says this sort of thing.

Don't you hate those few hours after a job interview

....where all you can think about is all the far better things you could have and should have said. Pointless thinking about that now.

I'm not too hopeful about getting this job. Even though I was asked two of the exact same questions I asked when I was on a panel for another job interview in a neighbouring health district a few months ago. I don't think I answered anything very well.

I still have a job to return to eventually. But it's a stressful one that I don't really want.

Maybe in the next twelve months I should think about a career change. Health promotion could be interesting.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

QANTAS grounding

Wow. This is big news. Lots of special news broadcasts going on.

I was actually thinking earlier in the week about blogging about the ubiquitous presence of Olivia Wirth, the QANTAS media spokeswoman, on television lately. It seemed like every news bulletin, there she was getting stuck into the unions for their actions. I was wondering if she was getting a bit tired of saying the same thing over and over again.

I don't know the ins and outs of the dispute. The last time I flew anywhere was in 2005 so it hasn't really impacted on me in any way. It will be interesting to see what happens next though.

No baby here...

...yet. 37 weeks today. Still feeling pretty okay. No swollen ankles, not feeling too bloated or anything. A bit tired but that's about all. I've only been this many weeks pregnant once before but I don't think I was feeling this good that time. Just goes to show what eating a healthy diet can do for you, really.

So now it's official: this one will be a full term baby. This is good. Hope that means it will get its act together with breastfeeding a bit quicker than Rosie did.

Still feeling a bit sad for our friends, who had another scan for their baby boy this week. Nothing much had changed, so they had to go through the pain of hearing the same news again. I don't think it would be any easier hearing it a second time. They are now having a week of holidays. I am praying that they will still be able to find some restful and enjoyable times.

Friday, October 28, 2011

How should Christians think about Assisted Reproductive Technology?

There are some great posts on Izaac's blog to help you with your thinking. You'll find them here and here.

Fortunately, we have never found ourselves in a position in which we seriously had to consider any kind of ART. When we experienced a period of time where we had difficulty trying to conceive, we already had two children, so we ultimately decided that if we were unsuccessful that we would be thankful for the children we already had. We have had friends who have faced decisions about ART, though, and it has not been easy for them.

In our church, it seems (from all outward appearances anyway) that the majority of couples and families have not experienced great difficulties conceiving children. It seems as though every few weeks, a new pregnancy is being publicly announced. This is a great blessing for which we are always thankful to God, but when this happens, it's easy to take for granted that having children is just a matter of choice, or what all good Christian families should be doing. The command to "be fruitful and multiply," "filling your quiver" and all that.

But in the midst of all this, it has sometimes seemed to me that it is those people who have not had difficulties having children who are quick to take the simplistic view that IVF or other forms of ART are wrong from a Christian standpoint. For those who desperately want children and are unable to have them, this can be very hurtful to hear. The reflections in Izaac's post are really helpful in challenging this view.

A book is coming out soon on the ethics of ART by Dr Megan Best, an Australian Christian bioethicist who has also written extensively on palliative care/death and dying. It has a catchy title :"Fearfully and wonderfully made."

I'm looking forward to reading it.


For those unfamiliar with these, Snappis are used to fasten cloth nappies.

A lot of modern cloth nappies come with snaps or some other kind of fastener already sewn in. I have a few newer ones that I bought when I had Rosie, but lots of my cloth nappies are older ones since I've had them since the boys were babies. The old ones are fitted nappies but need the Snappi to hold them closed.

In the past I've always been able to find Snappis at the supermarket in the baby aisle. We recently lost one of Rosie's so I asked Chris to look at the shops for another one when he was picking up milk on the way home from work a couple of days ago. He came back with a pink one and said it was the very last one in the shop.

So then I thought I should probably buy a few more since we'll need them for the new baby. So yesterday I went out and checked most of our other local supermarkets and a couple of chemists as well. No luck. I guess the demand for these isn't as big as it used to be.

Thank goodness for eBay. I came home exhausted after the shopping trip and looked online. Found someone selling them in packs of six, and for the first time I discovered they actually come in two different sizes (birth to 18 months, and 18 months upwards). $16 for a pack of 3 small and 3 larger sized ones. I like the bright coloured ones in the picture, especially the purple and lilac ones, but the ones I'm getting are mint, yellow and white...I think. They are advertised as "unisex" colours anyway.

And they will be in the post today. Hooray for online shopping.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Christmas presents 2010

I've finally finished spending up my ABC shop gift cards from last Christmas. These arrived yesterday. The AWW Christmas Collection book is full of food and decorations to drool over. I don't think I'm ever likely to cook a roast goose for Christmas dinner, but if anyone else is keen I have a recipe. The ginger marmalade glazed ham is my pick for this year.

And a fantastic CD by The Idea of North. I have blogged about them before here. Have a listen. Their voices are amazing.

Off to have a listen again now and to eat some dessert.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Boys names

We can't find one we agree on. I only have two that I like, neither of which Chris likes. Baby name books are not assisting in making the decision any easier. In my opinion, baby name books have a lot of non-names in them that the average person would never use.

We have a few more girls names, so I'm starting to think it might be easier if this baby is a girl. If it's a boy, it might be nameless for a while. I had another scan to check the baby's growth this morning. The sonographer asked me if I knew what sex the baby was. It was very hard not to say, "could you PLEASE just tell me so we can take the name books back to the library!"

Instead I told her that I thought my husband would be upset with me if I found out without him being there. She said I should just wait for the surprise.

Looks like it's back to the name books (with accompanying television coverage of the Queen's visit to Brisbane) to see if there are any other names I might be prepared to consider.

On the good news front, the baby's average measurements put it at 36 weeks + 2 days gestational age. Exactly where I am up to today. Pretty cool.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

36 weeks today

I have reached another milestone. I don't think this baby is going to come today.

It can't because I have to get through this weekend. I was asked to step up from assisting to leading the 18month-3 year olds program at church tomorrow because someone else was unexpectedly called away. Trying to decide which craft would be the simplest to do. Colouring in is looking attractive.

Next goal is 37 weeks + 2 days (Monday 31st October). I have a job interview then. And then the next goal after that is 37 weeks + 6 days, when Aidan was delivered (Friday 4th November). And if I can get that far, I will be entering unchartered territory.

I can do this. Only another couple of weeks of diabetes to go. I should start a list of all the no go foods I have now so I can get someone to bring them to me in the hospital after the baby is born.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

What would you think if.... saw this sign as you were driving on the highway??

Exotic = such animals as Bengal tigers, lions and grizzly bears. Apparently the owner (of a zoo in Ohio) let them all loose, and then shot himself. Read more here.

Of course, the animal rights campaigners are now up in arms about the decision to "shoot to kill" these animals. It seems they tried to tranquilise some of them but it wasn't working very well.

Scary stuff. I wouldn't want to be lying in bed at night worrying that these kinds of animals were roaming free in my suburb.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Reading to the kids...

When I went to the library a couple of weeks ago, Chris asked me to grab something that he could read aloud to the boys. This was what I literally grabbed (it was lying on a shelf in the wrong place) as the library was five minutes away from closing...up until then I had forgotten to do it and was busy looking for books for me....

For a random library find, it's been quite good. It has the stories (in an abridged kid-friendly format) of several of Shakespeare's more well-known plays. And at the back it lists all of his plays, the main characters in them, and a brief summary of the plot.

So far, Aidan has liked Macbeth the best. Liam enjoyed Romeo and Juliet. He previously read a shortened version of Henry V that he found in the school library and liked that too.

I'm planning to read it when Chris has finished reading it with the boys. I haven't read any Shakespeare since I finished Year 12. We read Hamlet in Year 12 and A Midsummer Night's Dream in Year 10. Wondering which of the others would be worth reading in full.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Driving the new people mover

Yesterday our new people mover was delivered. This morning was its first big test. Reversing out of our driveway and doing the school run. So far I haven't hit anything.

Thoughts so far.

1. Rosie took a little while to adjust. She had a tantrum when we put her into the new car seat. She was pointing at our old family car (the Honda CRV) and yelling "dat car, dat car" (translation "we should be in that car") as we drove out of the driveway. Fortunately that didn't last long.

2. It feels enormous. Probably because it is enormous. It's big even compared to most other people movers. I keep telling myself this will be an advantage as our children increase in size. And that I will get used to it.

3. The seating in it is very high. I feel like I am sitting above the rest of the driving world as I am driving it in suburbia. But I guess when I take it out on the highway and drive it next to semi-trailers I will realise that it is all relative.

4. I think this is the hardest bit. It feels like we have "crossed over" into the large family world. I was talking about this with a friend a few weeks ago. A better description might be whingeing, actually, about having to buy such a big car. Her theory on why I didn't want to do it was that having a people mover represents "having a large family" and that I didn't want to belong in that camp.

I think she is right. I was happy with our tent pitched in the medium sized SUV average sized family camp. Now we are in a different crowd. And I'm still not sure I want to be there. But there's no going back now.

Why oh why...

Do they have six customer service points in our local Medicare office, but there are only ever two of them that seem to be staffed at any single moment in time??

I ask the same question about checkouts in supermarkets, although at least there they will make some effort to open one if the lines at the already-open ones become too long.

This morning at Medicare, I was in a queue of at least ten people. Old people, women with small children, heavily pregnant woman (me). And four unoccupied customer service points. Which remained steadfastly unopened.

Is it just to create an illusion that fast and efficient processing of customer's claims might be able to happen in some utopian world?

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A very big storm is about to hit

Chris has gone out to pick up Aidan from a birthday party about 15 minutes away.

Praying that he'll be home before the storm arrives. And that there's no hail. We want to sell the car he's driving in sometime in the next few weeks. Hail damage is not what's needed right now.

Chaser team are back

Combining two likes of mine: politics and cats.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Book Chat Term 4

This term we are reading Don't Waste Your Life by John Piper. Our discussion group is on November 5th so that's another reason to hope the baby stays inside for a bit longer.

I finished reading it a few weeks ago so have passed it on to a friend to read. I didn't find it too hard to read, although I did struggle a bit with some of his "men in the war" stories. Don't know whether that would be more appealing to men than women.

But there was plenty of good stuff to take away from it as well. I was challenged by his words on wasting time watching too much television and spending too much time on the internet (guilty of both here), and he had some helpful things to say about living as Christians in secular workplaces as well.

Not sure if Book Chat will continue next year. The numbers haven't been huge (not sure if that relates to what we've been reading, scheduling issues or other things) which has been a bit discouraging. But I'm hoping that those who have joined in have found it encouraging and a good way to grow as Christians.

I've achieved my aim which was to finish reading Christian books rather than getting stuck in the pattern of just reading the first chapter and then never picking up the book again, so I'm thankful to God for this.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

This is the coolest house

You can see more photos of it here. A friend of ours lives there now. But she is selling. It's a beautiful location, across the road from a quiet waterfront. There's a nice little jetty there to sit on and go fishing. Or have a nice glass of wine.

We haven't caught up with our friend for a while so we're not sure why she's selling. Chris stayed with her for the first few weeks when he started working down here (while he was waiting for the rest of us to move down from Brisbane). Some of the sloping ceilings weren't fantastic for his tall frame to cope with.

Our friend is a great collector of old furniture. She likes to find stuff at kerbside collection time and carries it back to her place. Somehow the eclectic mix of things seems to work really well together. And it all feels really homely and just right for the style of the house.

It's not a house that's really suitable for small children. But it is amazing to see it inside. And it has a library. One of the A-framed sections is lined with bookshelves.

I'm a little bit envious. I would love to have a house with a library in it one day. I have another friend who has a library room in her home too. One of those unfulfilled dreams that might come true one day....

What did I just tell you?

See...some Youtube already!

I ordered this CD last night. I had an ABC gift card that is due to expire in November so I needed to get it spent. This group is excellent. I love the way their voices just blend together so beautifully.

My brain feels mushy

Like it's lost all previous ability to think about anything.

For the past few days I have been going through work-related stuff that has been sitting in little piles in my bedroom waiting to be sorted out. In some cases, it's been sitting there since before Rosie was born. A bit scary.

I thought it would be good to go through it while I have a bit of time to read it and decide what I need to keep and what needs to be binned. And I also thought it would be handy to do this since it's possible that I might have to do a job interview sometime in the next few weeks. Keeping my head in a bit of workspace, essentially.

It all sounds great in theory, but it's not working too well in practice. Ability to think and process information seems to have disappeared somewhere in the last few weeks.

But I am persevering. This afternoon I ploughed through the Queensland Health Child Development Services Action Plan 2011-2013. Exciting stuff. And tomorrow's task is tackling peer supervision techniques. I need those for Friday. I'm hoping to set up a peer supervision group at work that I can continue to access while I'm on maternity leave so my ability to think doesn't completely desert me.

Unfortunately, the other thing that goes with brain mushiness is limited ideas for blog posts. So if you see a few too many YouTube videos on here for the next little while, that is why.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Is booked for November 9th, at 38 weeks + 5 days. Four more weeks to go.

Now to see if I get there....37 + 6 is as far as I've ever made it before.

This afternoon when I took the kids to the hairdresser, I booked our next appointment for haircuts for the kids and me on the 8th November. Hope we make it.

It's all starting to feel a bit too real. Maybe I've been in some denial until now that we are actually going to have another one...

Monday, October 10, 2011

Jesus Camp

Last night I watched a 2006 documentary called "Jesus Camp" on ABC2. There are a few "highlights" on YouTube from it but I don't want to post them here. It was very disturbing television.

Some serious brainwashing was going on with the children involved.

When I googled it today, I discovered that since the documentary aired the camp has been shut down.

I think this is a very good thing. I felt really troubled watching the kids being manipulated.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Latest Getup campaign

Good stuff. For those not in Australia, this is an advertisement that aired during last weekend's AFL and NRL grand finals. It's about the current debate on introducing pre-commitment technology to stop problem gamblers pouring money they don't have into pokie machines in clubs.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Steve Jobs has died....and Apples I have known....

I just heard on the radio news that Steve Jobs has died. Read about it here.

In the article, it shows a picture of Steve leaning on one of the original Apple Macintosh computers. Our family had one of these when I was growing up. I did most of my Uni assignments for my undergrad degree on it.

Not long after my husband and I were married, we bought an iMac (one of the ones that came in lots of different colours) for my post grad degree. Sadly, we had to go down the PC laptop road for a while to run the software for my research data analysis. Never quite felt right.

And as I type today, here I am on a newish iMac....

Steve really did change history with his Apple computers, didn't he?

33 weeks + 6 days

This is the gestation at which Rosie was born. Today I am 33 weeks + 6 days pregnant with this one.

I am feeling very relieved this little one is not following the trend of progressively earlier arrivals that my other children have blessed me with.

One day at a time. My next goal is to make it to 36 weeks (when Liam arrived....)

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Very cool ukulele

I have been in love with the pineapple shaped ukuleles for some time now. Here is another one with a fruit theme.

It's on the Gold Coast Ukulele facebook page but not sure whether they sell it or if it's just there to amuse people.

Daylight savings whinge

Daylight savings time is back. Every year on the Queensland/NSW border, this is greeted by an avalanche of articles in local newspapers complaining about it.

When we lived further south than we do now, I loved daylight savings time. I couldn't wait for it to start every year. I loved being able to go for long walks on the beach after work with my husband and the one child we had back then.

Since living on the border, it hasn't been so enjoyable. We still run our clocks on daylight savings time every year because most of what we do runs on NSW time (Chris' work, kids' school hours, after school activities etc) but in the past few years I have come to realise that there are now many things that happen on Queensland time for us as well. They include my work when I'm there, all our church activities and Bible studies, and most of our friends live in Queensland so any socialising we do with them as well. The kids' GP runs on Queensland time (mine is on the NSW side). Rosie's music class is in Queensland. The more things we have started doing since we've lived here, the trickier it's become.

And our TV programs come from a Queensland transmission station so our TV programs run on Queensland time and anything on at 9.30 or later is too late to stay up for. Although at least the ABC have given us a nice gift this year by putting Q&A on their news channel at 8.30 Queensland time so that those north of the border can contribute to the twitter feed and submit questions. So I can still see it at 9.30 here. That is good. I missed being able to watch it last year.

I want to keep liking DST, I really do. And surprisingly, I do get used to running with two different time zones in my brain. It does get easier as the months go on.

But over the last few years, it has just felt more and more difficult as our family, our range of activities, and our circle of friends has grown.