What’s my morning routine?

We’re onto the 10th part of this blog challenge – I thought it would be hard to keep up but I guess I love pouring out my thoughts so much that it hasn’t seemed too difficult to find the momentum. That’s also possibly because of the number of hours that I’m awake in a day versus the hours I sleep (and one fine day I might crash and wake up like a week later?) – but so be it!

Today I’m meant to share my morning routine with you – I hope you can stomach it! 😉

First thing in the morning, I wake up to light streaming through my curtains and birds chirping outside my window. I stretch and yawn, feeling great that I’ve had a good night’s sleep and am ready to take on the new day! I sit back against my plush pillows, sipping herbal tea and trying to decide what colour I’ll paint my nails. Bring it on, skincare regime and yoga…

morningI should feel like this every time I wake up in the morning…

Oh wait, sorry, I think that might be happening in an alternate universe, but certainly not in my house…

Somewhere between 4.00am and 5.30am
Jared (the 12 week old) stirs. He either goes back to sleep easily, or he’s in the happy chatty mood that is so cute but also means he’s not going back to sleep for at least another hour or so. Which brings me to…

Somewhere between 5.30am and 5.45am
Jacob (the 2 and 3/4 year old) rises, and there is the rushed scurry between hubby and I to try and get him to go back into bed. He doesn’t go back to sleep, but some days he does agree to lie in bed until his Groclock sun rises (which is around 6.45am). Other days, it can get quite loud…

6.40am
Hubby gets out of bed and gets ready for work. Jacob and Jared conspire against me and both are wide awake, and Jacob conveniently sits on my head and tries to get me to read him books. So I drag my sorry self out of bed to make Jacob breakfast if hubby hasn’t already done it. I put on the kettle and pop a croissant into the convection oven. Then I make my coffee and try to enjoy my croissant while cuddling the bub and feeding Jacob his Weetbix bites & Cheerios.

One thing i might mention is that we say the “Superman” grace every morning and practically every meal (courtesy of Jacob’s cousin in Canberra who taught it to us when his family were over). It goes like this:
 (To the tune of the “Superman” theme)
Thank you God for giving us food
Thank you God for giving us food
For the food we eat
And the friends we meet
Thank you God for giving us food… Amen!

7.45am
Hubby leaves for work and I try my best to get things in order for the day, such as:
– Get Jacob to finish his breakfast and feed Jared
– Wash hands, brush teeth, clean Weetbix off my clothing and milk out of my hair.
– Change both boys’ nappies and make them presentable
– Feed the dog and top up her water
– Put Jared down for a nap before he loses it.

20160519_080313Shh, Jacob, don’t wake him!

And finally, we work out what we are doing for the day. The following are some of the things I usually do during the week:
Going to playgroup. I often go to one that’s tied to the school Jacob will be going to, and I’ve just started checking out a bilingual Mandarin playgroup too, which is really interesting (and I’m so amazed at how much Jacob has picked up after only going twice. Today he literally sang me one of the Chinese songs – he wasn’t even paying attention when they were singing it, or so I thought anyway!)
Swimming lesson. Jacob LOVES swimming (though he puts up a fuss all morning and all the way there about not wanting to go, and then when we’re there he doesn’t want to go home). Routinely after swimming he gets a nice hot milo and a hot shower at home.
Shopping. I usually try to do this on Jacob’s childcare day but sometimes I have to attempt the shops, ugh! Lots of coping strategies including numerous snacks, entertainment, and sometimes we play hide and seek with the pram cover (mainly when I want him NOT to see the Peppa Pig car ride on that we’re walking past).
A morning in. Sometimes we just have a lazy one – chill out and play with Lego, play outside, read some books or sometimes we do sneak in a bit of TV (if Jared is asleep and if I need to get housework done).
– Church. Jacob loves to go to church as he enjoys the kids program and gets to see his grandparents and sometimes his cousins too.
Anything. Like tomorrow, I’m taking him to this event called “Touch a Truck” where the local council is giving kids the opportunity to ride in and operate a garbage truck! So excited and really hoping there won’t be too many people there!

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What’s the best part of your daily routine?

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Big Camp! (Part 1)

So, last week we were away on a church camp where Jacob had his first taste of living in a tent! Our church conference organises an annual camp which goes for a whole week (due to popular request) in the first week of the school holidays. I was intent on going so I volunteered myself to help out in some areas there (though in retrospect, I would have loved to see more programs too!).

ImageHere we are, all set up! Dan and I had the tent while my parents-in-law were cosy in their caravan. We had power in the daytime (hence the yellow cables) but it was turned off at night, so no heaters at night *sob*. It was quite nice and warm in the sun but it did get a bit cold at night. Jacob refused to sleep in his portacot (even with a nice furry sheepskin blankie) so he hopped into bed a.k.a. air mattress with us, which was nice because he’s like a hot water bottle anyway.

We were actually camping on a school oval, not out in the bush, but it did get cold anyway. It’s a big Lutheran school up in the Barossa and has a wonderful campus with lots and lots of space. They even have a Jesus Walk, which is a little woodland area set up with some visuals and little devotional readings to contemplate Jesus’ death and resurrection.

ImageOne of the areas I was helping out in was the Beginners/Kinder division, which is for kids 0-6. The room was transformed into a little jungle, which set the mood well for the week (and the kids had an awesome time!). The theme song for the week was “Who’s the King of the Jungle” which I had never heard before, but now I can’t get it out of my head!

ImageJacob thinks he’s king of the jungle. Lots and lots of soft toys to play with!! We brought along his little jungle tunnel for the little babies to play in (and also for any of the older kids who wanted to show how quickly they could crawl through the tunnel). There was also an outdoor area where kids could play on the slide, build houses with some huge lego blocks, sit in the ball pit, etc. It was amazing to see the dynamics of the little kids, especially since there was such a huge range of ages and abilities. Jacob was one of the littlest ones there and it was great conditioning for him to, to get used to bigger kids.

ImageI also helped out with Women’s Ministries (and no, it’s not just because they had such an awesome high tea spread)! The whole camp’s theme was on being Set Free, so we talked a bit about freedom and how to be set free, not just in physical terms but emotionally and spiritually too. I had to miss a few programs there as they clashed with the Children’s programs, but it was a great journey of discovery and I look forward to delving deeper into the subject. I can’t say I am truly free yet because there are chains that I still have yet to break, but I know that in due time, they will be broken!

ImageA beautiful view of the sunset over the oval, and the moon’s out too! 🙂 I think that the sky is just more beautiful up in the Barossa, but maybe that’s just me. It was interesting roughing it out (a bit) but after a long day or a busy play session, anywhere’s about good enough for a nice sleep.

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Also, Jacob turned 8 months yesterday! How time flies! 🙂 I won’t do a full monthly update for him, though I must say he’s grown in leaps and bounds in the recent weeks – not so much in size, but in intellect and ability. Jacob, you continue to light up my life! 🙂

Jacob’s Dedication Day!

I don’t know how many times I’ve said that I’m busy, but I really am!! Been sleeping late, waking up early and still doing several wake-ups each night so it is a wee bit tiring. We’ve just had so much on – a funeral and meeting with my mum’s friends, and a lot of cooking to do – but it’s all been worth it.

Before I get into it, I’ve added something to my living room – can you spot it here? I said it was a gift to Jacob but really, I think I might enjoy it more than him. 🙂

ImageAnyway, while there was a lot going on in the week, it was really just the lead up to Jacob’s Dedication which happened at church today. It was so lovely to have our friends and relatives gathered for this event.

Just to clarify, for those who do not know the term well, this is different to christening and baptism. Being in the Seventh Day Adventist church, baby dedication is a practice of praying for the child and the parents that the child will be brought up in a godly manner. This is reinforced by a prayer of support from the church and others present who pledge to be a part of the child’s upbringing. After all, it does say that it takes a village to raise a child.

ImageI was slightly worried because the service was cutting into Jacob’s nap time. Even though he had a sleep in, I knew he would be a bit cranky. He was really quite squirmy when we were up the front, though he was still relatively alert and smiley. We said a prayer for him and Jacob was silent the whole time, just gazing at the pastor as he spoke. What an angel he was!

I’d like to thank everyone who came to his dedication – we really loved having you there to support us and share in our joy. And also thank you for all the gifts we received! We are just so blessed!

prayI look forward to seeing Jacob grow up with some firm beliefs behind him. While the direction in his life is his choice, I really hope that Dan and I can give him a good Christian upbringing and a childhood to look back on with joy. Today we had many children in the church, and it just made me think of how Jacob will have so many friends in the church, and a whole heap of fun. 🙂

I sang a special item for the dedication today:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q03zbRst1K4

I just fell in love with the lyrics – here’s the first bit:

When the sun starts to rise
And I open my eyes 
You are good, so good
In the heat of the day
With each stone that I lay
You are good, so good

With ever breath I take in
I’ll tell you I’m grateful again
When the moon climbs high
Before each kiss goodnight
You are good

So how can I thank You
What can I bring
What can these poor hands 
Lay at the feet of a King
I’ll sing You a love song
It’s all that I have
To tell You I’m grateful 
For holding my life in Your Hands

I hope I did the song justice! I made a silly mistake and put the microphone stand too near me, to a point that I couldn’t reach some of the lowest notes of the song – I dodged the stand once in a while but then just decided to knock it each time and hope it didn’t fall over.

Anyway, to the cooking!! My mum made some lovely melt-in-your-mouth bites called Momos, and I made cupcakes (though I have to admit I cheated and used packet mix!).

20140308_140848_AndroidAlso, family events are the perfect time to get group shots. The older two cousins were running around outside, but we got a picture of Jacob and his cousin Malachi. It was so cute to see them interacting, but Jacob can be a bit pushy.

PushThese two are only 3 months apart and I’m sure they’ll be very good friends when they’re older.

MalachiAnyway, on a final note, I’m sure a lot of you have heard about the Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 that went missing (and has reportedly crashed in the ocean off the coast of Vietnam). Such news saddens me and while things sound grim, I will direct my prayers to them and to the families who are agonizingly waiting for news of their loved ones.

Have a great weekend otherwise, everyone!

Costumes and other crises…

Another busy weekend… sometimes I feel that weekends should be commitment free, but then I think I’d feel terribly bored and unproductive.

Anyway, this weekend was spent painting the youth room at our little countryside church – the walls have been lime green for longer than I’ve been alive, so we decided we’d give it a fresh coat of neutral cream paint (hey, anything’s better than lime green!).

I didn’t manage to take a picture, more so because I wasn’t allowed into the room much – paint fumes can be harmful to an unborn baby. I still would like some involvement in painting our baby’s room though – we’ve decided on cream with a green feature wall.

I’m also shopping around on Ebay for some baby wall decor. I do like these ones quite a bit:

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I just really love green, don’t I? Anyway, I’ll definitely take a good picture of the baby’s nursery once my husband and I have figured out what to do with it.

Anyway, my crisis of the week is to get a costume together for my brother-in-law’s party. He’s having a Star Wars themed party and I have the following issues:

1. I’ve never actually watched Star Wars before, at least not all the way through. I know who R2D2 is and I’ve heard of Jedis but that’s about it.

2. There aren’t that many female characters in Star Wars – I envision there’ll be like 10 Princess Leah’s at the party.

3. I’m not going to fit (well) into any of the costumes I buy/rent because of this baby bump.

I’ve learned that there is indeed a pregnant character, Padmé Amidala, so this could be my chance at not looking too out of character. I really love this costume but I doubt I’ll be able to find one, and I’m hopeless at making costumes:

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However, I do have some things I could put together to make this costume (without showing my belly, of course).

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I hope that’s not being overly ambitious here – my legs will never look like Natalie Portman’s, though I have a post-pregnancy plan…

Anyway, I promise that my next post will be more mentally stimulating. I apologise but I’m practically brain-dead now and probably require a lot more sleep.

Just to prove to you that I do have the ability to write, I just wanted to share the JOM Magazine’s latest issue: http://issuu.com/jommagazine/docs/jom05

My articles in particular are on pages 50, 56 and 57 of the magazine, and they’re generally about homemaking 101. I honestly don’t know if I’m the right person to give that sort of advice at the moment – I can’t find my sole pair of maternity work pants because it’s buried somewhere under the unfolded sheets, spare bedding and the Christmas tree.

Finally, before I go, I rediscovered the joys of having a bath! I thought that pregnant women weren’t allowed to have baths, but apparently it’s just hot spas and saunas we should avoid because they’re simply too hot. Warm baths are okay…

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Correction, warm baths are divine (especially with a bath bomb)…

Have a great week everybody!