Omg christmas is only 6months away!

i hear some of you groan but i LOVE christmas. I have no idea why people hate it. Just shop online if you dont want to face the mall people!

I love the decorations, i always plan a wrapping theme, i find new christmas music as well as the classics (kylie manogues santa baby). BD doesnt get into it but as we have a toddler this year im not holding back. I will deck the house out like there is no tomorrow! Lights, tinsel, fake foiliage. Maybe even a animated reindeer for the front yard, do i dare lol i made rue a stocking last year but it turned out quite giant so not sure if i will use it or make a smaller one so i dont have to buy as many goodies for inside. Dont want to get his expectations too high first year off the ranks.

Im also acting on some new traditions. A christmas eve box. Rue can open it christmas eve and it contains pajamas, a christmas dvd and or book and snacks. 

  
When his cousin is older he can come and hang out with his box and we can watch dvds together as a family. We have a tradition at the moment where we buy each other (siblings) a decoration for our tree. It came about when we all moved out of home and realised we had no decorations. 

I also want to wrap presents from santa like they actually came from him. Such a cute idea. Hipefully i can find some santa stamps, otherwise i might have to make them.

  
One tradition im not getting on board with is elf on a shelf. That thing just creaps me the hell out…

  

Beacuse cake

today i baked a cake that proved my oven is dodgy. It was a simple butter cake from innerpickle. Recipe called to bake at 180 for 30mins. I know my oven is hot so i put it at 160. At 30min the top was burnt and the inside raw. So i put it in for another 10mins. As you can see the outside is burnt, but hey, it has pink icing with sprinkles and was delicious and soft on the inside. 
   
  
Do you like the plate its on? It was a 20c find at vinnies. Great for cakes :)  

  

Rue ate the innards of his and gave the crust to the dog. BD scraped the icing off and ate the cake. Hey, i liked it haha

Love and dont use

As Rue will be 1 next month I thought i would go through the things that i loved and the things i wish i hadnt bought in his first year.

1. Infants Friend. Get it! They are wind drops and if Rue was screaming and couldnt be soothed i gave him a few drops and within 20minutes would poo or fart and go to sleep. Loved it.

2. Dummys. People say they are bad for babies but frankly the sucking motion is really soothing for them and Rue only ever had his to sleep. Not an issue.

3. Play gym. I had assumed i wouldnt need one of these and considered it a waste of money. But when Rue was about 2months old i realised he had nothing to do on the floor and was getting really bored. I went to Target and got a $40 gym and Rue still plays with it (he turns it upside down and plays under it now).

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4. Mummy hook. Everyone compliments my mummy hook and i seriously dont know how people live without it. You hang your grocery basket off it as you shop then your bags once you are done.

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5. Waffle blankets. I found these were the best for wrapping Rue. They were stretchy and the right shape and were about $12 for a pack of 2.

6. Wish i had a capsule. Didn’t see the allure as they could only be used for 6-12months but i can see the appeal now as rear facing car seats are a pain to get kids in and out of.

7. Highchair. We got a top of the line one from the inlaws but frankly its really large and bulky and rue still can hardly see over the tray. A small one would have been better as by the time he is big enough to fit it properly he will be using a kiddy table and chair anyway.

8. Baby shampoo, oil and moisturiser. Never used any of them. I used moo goo baby wash when he was little and now use a few squirts of johnsons baby milk bath. Babies dont generally have enough hair to need shampoo and water is just fine. Rues legs were a little dry for the first few months but is fine now so i have whole bottles of oil and moisturiser im trying to find a use for.

9. Baby shoes. Completely pointless and hard to get on. Just use socks.

10. Baby clothes. Rue was in onesies for his first 4months of life. T-shirts would just ride up on him so we never even used them.

11. Nappies. We used Woolworths brand which were fine. Huggies leak. Then the woolies ones started to leak and we are now on Aldi brand and im loving them. Cheapest by far and loved by mothers of heavy wetters.

12. Baby swimmers. Swimming with a baby isnt advisable unless you live in a really warm climate. Rue has never been and possibly wont for another 6months atleast. Swimming lessons are a waste of money in my opinion until they can follow instructions, at about 2 or 3yrs. (unless you haveĀ a pool or live on a property with a dam where they need to know water safety early), a bath is just as good for getting them used to water and much warmer! Most ‘swimming lessons’ for ages 3 and under are just for having fun rather than teaching them to swim.

13. Nasal aspirator. This seems really pointless to me and i never used one some one actually told me that it can irritate the inside of their nose and cause more mucus. Saline spray and a vaporizer work way better to clear stuffy noses.

13. Finally a recent purchase. Sip snap. Slip over any cup rim and turns it into a sippy cup. Takes up way less room in my handbag when we are out and about. Already made converts of some friends who ordered some on their mobile as soon as they saw rue using his.

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And a note of gifts. Its really frustrating when people get angry or insulted that you havent used their gift. Folks. I havent used half the things i bought, its not an insult we either didnt get around to it or it wasnt right for our needs. But thanks for the thought!

Reality

today i found out that a man i know, and didnt like, died in a car crash last week. I have no idea how to feel about it as he wasnt a good person yet i feel for his family and friends and those who tried so hard to revive him. 

It made me think that life is short and we need to live how we want. For me this is owning a nice little house in the country, its having my family safe and warm and making sure they know i love them. For some reason i felt the need to finish a quilt i have been working on so that me and rue can snuggle under it on cold mornings. This is the first quilt i have made for myself and its a much more complicated design than any i have made before but i already love it. I cant wait to finish it and see it keep my family warm for years to come.

  
 

Hobbies and jobs

when i was leaving year 12 i had to make a choice on what i was going to do with my life. I decided on two things and set off for the local Tafe open day. (Due to some bad advice in year 11 i couldnt go to uni). I loved photography and was darn good at it. But when i went to see the course it was all comercial photography, cars and merchandise. I wanted to be arty, portraits etc. One interesting part was forensic photography but did i really want to take photos of dead people?? 

my second choice was a bit of a long shot. I loved libraries and thought it would be an interesting place to work. The course looked good, how to research, lots of lovely people. My parents voiced their concern at where i would get a job but i decided even if i changed my mind i would have a good diploma under my belt. So i went for it. And i loved it! So glad i chose it and was suprised to find that there were hundreds of libraries i could get jobs in, governement departments each have their own library and as canberra was the public service hub i was sure to find a job.

Today though im still interested in photography. I maintain that the course would have been boring but now im looking at the new technology and wondering if i could make a go of some casual opportunities. I already helped my mum save several photos after they were flood damaged. Retouching them so that they could be preserved, and restoring others of my grandmother which had been ravaged with age. 

As my life is getting into the swing of important events, babies, weddings, loved ones who we dont see often, i am considering the perks of getting a digital slr again and watching youtube videos on the latest editing software. I want to capture all of these moments and not just share them on facebook but actually print and frame them. I think start up will cost me close to $1000 but as its tax time at the end of the month i do have the opportunity to dive in. This will be just in time for Rues first birthday and for the birth of my nephew. The camera im considering is the Olympus OM-D which seems to be a light weight option and the shape reminds me of my dads first camera. I already have Adobe photoshop but am considering Adobe lightroom for about $190.

  
Should i take the dive?? What was your first job prospect?

12-24months

i realised last week that i did alot of research on what to expect in their first year, but i have no idea what happens in Rues second year. I know they walk, talk a bit more…what else?!? After googling it a bit the thing that kept jumping out at me was that apparently at 12months you can stop bottles and formula. Its even recomended! I had no idea, i thought they had them until atleast 18months? But then when i thought about it it actually makes sense. Formula and bottles are meant to replace breastfeeding. Most babies start to wean off breastmilk at 12months so why would they still need a bottle? 

Rue has taken water from a sippy cup from about 6months but i do use formula to help him sleep. I thought i would have a go at putting cows milk in his cup. Well, he likes it but i wouldnt say he is anywhere near ready to stop the warm bottle. Next phase will be to give him cold formula 30mins before bed i think. Gradually get him off them :)

  
What did you find out that threw you for a loop? 

Birthdays

we have a busy birthday month coming up, rues two cousins have birthdays the weeks either side of his. Dont ask me how old they are, i think maybe 3 and 6? Or 4 and 6? Anyway, i have been busy ording things for Rues big bash online. I realised i only have 5weeks to go and thats not alot of time if you are ordering from America. 

My fave purchase were these cookie cutters from the Cookiecuttershop. Super excited to use them! They should arrive today. 

   
 
It will be a zoo/safari theme and his birthday invitations are also in the post. The image is from etsy and the cards are from vistaprint which had a half price sale so i got 50 for $12 (50 is the least you can get). Of course i only need about 5 but i decided the cost of cardboard and printing would come to more than $12 anyway. They are from Printablemiracles

  

Erin Condren planner part 2

after having some time to use my planner i thought i would do another review. Alot of people have gone crazy with theirs and i homestly dont know how they see anything they have that much cluttering up each day. I like a more basic approach.

 
Couple of cute stickers and some bill stickers. The doodles are from a recent staff meeting. I generally use the monthly pages rather than the weekly ones. I just dont do enough in a day to use the dailies. I have added a few of my own touches. I ripped out one of the note pages, cut off the pritty part, laminated it and used a coil clip to re attach it. I just use a sharpie and eraser to write on it. Now i have a moveable notes bookmark. I also made a smaller one that sticks out the top like a page marker. Great for quickly finding the current week.

 
My other addition is a weight tracker page i got on etsy. It had the holes already punched which makes it alot more sturdy.

  

I have a heap of cute stickers but not nearly as many as some people. All up i like the planner but cant say i get alot of use out of it. For its pritty factor i would buy another one, but for the price of postage (about $20-$40) i hope they eventually get an Australian office! I also think they should capitalise on extra pages for their planners as there is a roaring trade on etsy but the only offering on the Erin Condren website are extra covers…