Wednesday, August 28, 2013

St Pat's winter concert

Last Wednesday and Thursday, Sarra had her school's music winter concert performance. Sarra has been playing the clarinet since grade 3 and it has been something I have really wanted to encourage in the kids because I think reading music is a great skill and an appreciation of music makes for a more well-rounded person and playing an instrument brings self confidence and a sense of accomplishment.

 Westbury Primary School has a great music programme so we have been very lucky to have the opportunity to really capitalise on that and explore a love for music. 

This year in grade 7 at St patrick's College, Sarra continued with private tuition and playing in a school band with the clarinet and halfway through the year, her teacher asked her if she would like a go at the bass clarinet. She absolutely loves it and even though the instrument looks really big and she has to sit on two chairs to play it, it sounds really good. So now she has private tuition at school doing alternate weeks with the clarinet and bass clarinet.

The photo is shocking as it was really dark and the iphone just doesn't cut it but Sarra is second from the right sitting next to her teacher.

I absolutely love the music programme at St Pat's and how wonderful and passionate the music staff are about music and that they go the extra mile to help the students capture their passion. As well as playing in the band with a variety of other instruments, Sarra plays in a clarinet ensemble. They practice once a week at lunch and the teacher makes herself freely available to run this ensemble.

Sarra is sitting second from the right again in this clip, for her ensemble performance.

Sarra is in the development band and will move onto the intermediate band and then finally the concert band. The concert band did the final performance of the night and Simon and I had spent part of the night each outside with Flynn as he was making too much noise and was completely overtired, as the concert went for 2 hours and did not finish until 9pm.

But we were both inside for the concert band's performance and to say it was amazing was an understatement. It sounded brilliant and even Flynn stopped mucking around and sat awestruck by the instruments all working together in harmony. It will be very exciting to watch Sarra grow in experience and practice and move up through the ranks of the music programme.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

{The Man Who Loved Boxes}

  Book Week has come around again this year and I was really glad that only Jonty had to come up with something this year and Oliver and Hallie's classes didn't participate. I have a love/hate relationship with Book Week as I am not very creative and although I don't really mind that, I like to come up with something that my kids will get excited about and reinforce to them how much fun reading is and then hopefully they will grow up loving reading just as much as I do.

Hallie had cut out this box for Jonty and that was as far as I got until my friend Suzanne said she had this book at her house...

I loved reading it to Jonty and it has an awesome message about a man who loved boxes and how all his neighbours would laugh at him and thought he was a little different and eccentric but that his son loved it because it was something they could do together and it showed his son how much his Dad loved him because they were spending time together.

From there the box evolved into a box of boxes with lots of cut outs of different boxes stuck all over the box.

The only problem we found at the book week parade was that being in the box meant you couldn't sit down and I couldn't help but giggle as Jonty patiently stood and waited until it was kinder's turn to do their parade around the room.

I couldn't go around everyone and ask if they minded having their child on the blog so I just blurred out everyone's faces. Something we have to be mindful of these days.

This is Jonty with his kinder teacher explaining what book he was.

And Jonty posing with his kinder teacher Mrs Riley and Mrs Wishy Washy aka kinder aide, Jenni Rixon.

I couldn't help but take a pic of some of the other teachers. I love how they all got into the spirit of book week too.

At the end of the day Jonty came home with a beautiful book called Jack Frost and a laminated certificate congratulating him on his participation in book week. It was a really lovely gift from his kinder teachers. a great way to remember book week and how fun reading can be.

I must admit our costume wasn't the most creative or the most imaginative, or the brightest or had the biggest wow factor, (actually it was probably not even close to even being very good :)) but Jonty and I worked on it together and we read  The Man Who Loved Boxes together and so for us the time we spent together chatting. laughing. creating memories. was by far the very best part of Book Week.

Monday, August 12, 2013

An all nighter

One night last week I put Flynn to sleep AWAKE in his cot and he slept 12 hours straight without waking up and calling out to me and crying for "up Mum" which is for me to go in and pick him up and put him in bed with us. (see how he has me wrapped around his finger)

He has by far been my worst sleeper yet. My dream babies were Oliver and Jonty and they still are amazing sleepers. Jonty in particular was exceptional. He has never woken up in his whole four and a half years after sleeping through from about three weeks of age. No ear aches, teething, night terrors or anything else. When he has been sick he has done the vomit in bed but has gone straight back to sleep after I have cleaned him all up.

Jonty at 2 months old (Chelsea Parsons Photography)

Now Flynn.
I have decided that I have made a rod for my own back. You see he comes into our bed every night and I don't get much sleep because he likes to sleep in my arms with his cheek practically pressed up against mine. None of the other kids ever did this, staying in their own beds from newborn age. Oliver did go through a phase when he was about 2.5yrs where he would just get up and come and hop into our bed without making a sound.

And as much as I hate having broken sleep these past two years and feeling like a walking zombie alot of the time, I can't help feel that all too soon he will be too big to want to climb into bed with me and those precious cuddles that you have with babies, where you are the centre of their world will soon be a far distant memory.

I think that's why I fed him for so long, all of 2 years and 1 month. (I caved under pressure and yes a little judgment as to why I was still feeding a now 2 year old. I wish I hadn't caved. I would have stopped soon then anyway but I wish I had of stopped for my reasons and not for other people.) I think though I fed him for so long because I wanted to keep that bond going forever and not accept that my little baby was now growing up.

Flynn has been probably the first baby that I have really wanted to stay small. With all the other kids, I was wanting to hurry them through the newborn stage because I knew things got a little easier as they got a little more independent but the more kids I had, the more I started to realise that time seemed to go faster and my little babes didn't stay little for very long.

Lately too, Flynn has been hopping into bed with Hallie (they share a room) at bed time and she reads him her library book and he goes off to sleep and then I transfer him to his cot until he wakes sometime in the night. A few times he has slept with Hallie all night but if he has woken in the night he has still wanted to come into my bed. At least now he can put himself off to sleep at bed time so that is an improvement. He knows I am not going to cave at bed time and let him back up so within about 3-5 minutes, he is usually asleep... until sometime between 2 and 5 in the morning. It's good too that Hallie and Flynn share a room because when I give them their 11.30pm meds, I can just keep the meds in the one room.

So for now I think I will keep enjoying Flynn coming into our bed most nights and be grateful for the time I have curled up with him snug in bed while he continually face plants me in his sleep to try and get closer and tickles my nose with his hair.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Off to Brazil

This morning Simon, Flynn and I went to the Devonport Airport to see our nephew Allister off on his mission to Brazil. On the last day of the school holidays, we went to visit Simon's brother Dion and his wife Kay and the kids to say goodbye to Allister and have a nice lunch with them. It was lovely to relax and chat and spend time together before Allister left.

the Triffitts minus Josh who is on his mission in New Zealand.

This is the third time, I have seen a family member off on their mission, after Josh left for New Zealand and Jakob left for Japan. It is such a time of mixed emotions as you think about how proud you are of them and their parents but sad as you know they are gone for two years and will be missed so much.

It is hard to watch my nephews say goodbye to their family and see how much they will miss them but it is also beautiful to see the love between them all.

Hardest of all I think is seeing Kay (Mum) say goodbye as I know how strong the bond and love is between a mother and her son and although I will be really sad and miss them like crazy for two years, I really hope my three sons choose to follow in the footsteps of their cousins.

Goodbye Allister. We can't wait to hear about your amazing experiences in Brazil. We know that you are going to have the time of your life.