Monday, January 25, 2010

J-Man turns 11!

He had been to Moto-X the night before with his Dad, and arrived home on the morning of his birthday with his best friend J13 and cousin M12.

He opened his presents. He already had his second x-box controller, and knew about an xbox game he'd asked for and seen me purchase (PGR), but I had hoped to keep his last present secret.

Unfortunately, he had seen the courier arrive with it, and Princess had blurted what she thought it was. He had mentioned being "addicted to Guitar Hero" (a demo), and I was trying to see if I could get it and stay within my budget. Princess had told me he really wanted it and I had said I was trying to get it but not to tell him. I secreted the rather obvious-looking package away, but J-Man went looking for it and eventually confirmed what he supposed- that his final present was the guitar.

I was really disappointed for him knowing all his presents before the day- though he acted surprised enough. Anyway, he enjoyed unwrapping them and Princess and Tombliboo had made cards for him too. He had asked for a pianta, so we went outside to give that a whack.

I didn't want to make it too easy to smash, and in my exuberance- I pretty much made it impossible to smash. A slit with a craft knife soon sorted that out, and lollies, lollipops and mars bars showered down in to our carport.

The boys headed back inside with their loot, and with J-Man's favourite chips (Tomato Skoffs, ex Munchos) and fizzy (Coke) they played on his x-box, and went for a quick drive to the shop to buy x-box live points so he could get the full version of a demo he enjoyed (Castle Crashers).

We had his favourite homemade lunch (dinner usually), Chicken Laksa, and then his cake. He had requested a lemon cheesecake (like last year) "but without the onions."

There were no onions in last year's cheesecake. What happened was that the gelatin went too hard- probably I left it too long...and I wasn't sure what to do, but went ahead and beat it as the recipe directed, hoping it would come right. It didn't. The cheesecake taste nice, but the texture was somewhat less desirable. It really looked like there were small chunk of onion in it, and it was a bit of a disaster.

This year I found a recipe that had a jelly in it, and hope for the best. It tastes heavenly (though insanely sweet), and I added a hand-drawn duraseal-covered xbox controller to the top with a happy birthday sign and 11 candles. He was very pleased.

After lunch, J-Man and his friend went Rock-climbing with his Dad. He came home around 5pm ,and played on his xbox until friends of hours came over for dinner and the evening.

J-Man, Princess and Tombliboo had a wonderful time with H13, Z10 and J6..playing xbox, cards, Wii (the friends brought their's over), and swinging on our clothesline.

We got pizza for dinner- J'Man's real favourite, and said goodbye around 11pm. He was keen to watch Frankenstein, but I was had it so we agreed to head to bed and definitely watch it the following day.

The plan for his birthday had changed several times, and he didn't like that, but said it had been a great day. Happy Birthday Gorgeous!

Scooby Dooby Doo!

My children have loved Scooby since their first introduction to him. We first watched the film with J-Man when he was 3. Princess and Tombliboo have watched Scooby since birth. Their television/movie watching habits differ to J-Man's...where he would watch a movie once, then probably not want to see it again for several years- his younger siblings are happy to watch a movie, then play it again directly after.

Both the little ones, as 2 year olds would actually watch the same film only for an extraordinary amount of time- maybe 12-30 times before moving on to another film, and proceeding to watch that same film to the extremes of the first.

I won't pretend it never bothered did. But I tried to keep quiet. If that is what they wanted to do, I was happy to facilitate.

Scooby has lasted such a long time. Right when it seems we have seen every episode a new movie or series will come out. This is a series that began in 1969! Between our own collection, and Fatso (dvd delivery service) and You Tube, we can see a lot of Scooby- and the little ones never seem to tire of it.

Recently they have played Scooby and Shaggy. They take breaks from it, and do other things, but they remain in character for most of the day. They replay snippets from movies/cartoon episodes, and they create their own as well.

Princess (7) plays a great Shaggy- she has a real knack for imitating voices (as evidenced by her American accent, followed by her English one, and currently an odd mixture of Kiwi-American-English). Tombliboo (3) does a good Scooby, and has incorporated "r" words in to his ordinary vocabulary. "Roh-Oh Raggy!"

Sometimes I am enlisted to join in their play. I get to be Velma, because I've got "brown hair". Yesterday I was told I must not say "Jinkies" so often. "Mu-um!", Princess informs me, "Velma says "Jinkies" when she finds a clue, just like Shaggy says "Zoinks" when he sees a monster or ghost- you can't just say them all the time and think that makes you Velma or Shaggy."

This morning, Princess in her ever-imaginative way has created a storyline which would do Hannah-Barbera proud. She has made a collar for Tombliboo, raisins in place of Scooby-snax, and various clues she has left around the house.

I love watching them in their play, listening to how it is developing, noticing how much of the subtleties of the movies they are able to incorporate in to it, seeing just how long they can play at something with minimal props. I love watching them interacting, though there are 4 years between them- this one shared interest enables them to be of equal value in the game.

I think I might clear a space on the bench, and suggest we make scooby snax together!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Quick Update

Life is great at the moment. It's sunny, which is always nice...everything is ticking along smoothly. We're at home a lot, which is great for getting things done, and giving children the freedom they need. But we're out a bit too, which gives us a neat balance.

The house is always a mess, and it's quite hard for me to handle that- since it seems like I am cleaning up all the time..but as my dear Nan (87) says..."You can't have children without mess."

I'm trying to lose weight. It seems to be working fairly well right now, but I am on Day 4 (after a break at Christmas) and that is when I usually throw it in. Hopefully it's different this time- we'll see :0)

This morning Princess found the doctor kit, and asked if I would be her patient.

Princess: "Next...that means you come in and lie down, Mum."
Me: "I'm very sick- I don't know what's wrong with me."
Princess: "I'll just check your heart. It is beating loudly- you are very loving."
Me: "Thank you, yes, I love a lot of people a great deal."
Princess: "Now I will check your blood pulse."
Tombliboo: "Pulsatilla? Yes- I have it right here."
Princess: "I think you are probably very tired and need a long rest. Can I get you something to eat or drink?"
Me: "Yes, I am very tired"
Princess: "You need to have some medicine."
Me: "Oh, I don;t really like taking medicine."
Princess: "It will be ok- it's is very necessary, and it tastes like strawberry."
Me: Right. Good. Well, now I would like to see if I can get the trampoline put up for you."
Princess: Mu-um...we're playing! We need the trampoline, but we really need you to get better. Dr T will cherish you until the morning and I'll come back to check on you."
Tombliboo: "Just lie there sir, and I will play you some music." (gets out his electric guitar).
Princess: "Cook-a-doodle-doo...Good morning- how's the patient? I've checked over all your tests and I think there is nothing medically wrong with you any more. Would you like your nails cut?"