27 January 2014

Our Christmas

Last year (already?!) we made the most of having my sister Sarah in the country for Christmas for the first time since 2010. Usually we do our own thing in the morning and then head over to hang out with family for lunch after church. 'This' year (2013) we made different plans. As soon as we woke up, we piled into the car in pyjamas and headed straight over to Mum and Paul's house, where Sarah was staying too. I had loaded up the kid's presents the night before - they were very surprised by my sneakiness!

Together we had a lovely time opening presents and eating our traditional Christmas breakfast of oven toasted croissants, smothered in fresh raspberry jam, yum yum!

Rosie opens Gryffen's presents for him

I was torn between wanting to enjoy watching the kids have a great time and wanting to capture it on the camera so we could look back and remember it long after the toys have all broken. Consequently, most of the photos are blurry blurry blurry! I figure a bad photo is still better than no photo at all.

The chaotic wrapping paper-strewn aftermath

Christmas is one of my favourite days of the year. This year I really felt a sense of worship as I listened to my favourite Christmas hymns during December. Emmanuel, God with us. Amazing. I love to sing those beautiful songs with my church family in the morning and not only enjoy the Christmas-ness of them, but also the incredible beauty of the words. I LOVE to spend the entire rest of the day and evening with my extended family. I'm blessed to have two sides of a close-knit family, and whichever side we choose each year, we always have a super enjoyable day chatting and laughing and over-indulging in gooooooood food. Because what would a birthday celebration be without party food, right?

24 January 2014

Dental Therapists and Pirate Teeth

This week I have taken the three 'big' kids (actually, at 5, 4 and 2, they're all still little) to see the dental therapist. You'll notice we don't use 'dental nurse' anymore. I wonder when that changed?

They were very brave. Even Tristan (2) sat on my lap and opened his mouth for inspection, with only a little bit of coaxing. Rosie was very excited and, while Elliot was still on the chair, kept asking, "When can I sit on the chair?" She looked very cute in her ladybug 'helmet.'

At 5 years old they take the first x-rays, and it turned out Elliot had a couple of little holes forming in between his teeth, where toothbrushes don't reach. Enter the Pirate Tooth!

While it looks obvious-ish in his mouth, I've decided that this is a very good way to go about dentistry in childhood. In a previous life (pre-children), I used to be a Dental Assistant, so I have witnessed at close quarters the fear and abject terror of grown adults as they walk into the dental surgery. Anything that cuts out drilling, scraping, mouths full of fingers and instruments, and painful injections in childhood is a good thing in my book. Perhaps we'll be raising a generation of children who don't fear going to the dentist because they haven't been subjected to painful experiences there.

It's tempting to feel embarrassed that MY kid is the one with a 'fake' tooth (It's still there in all it's glory, just under the crown.). Like I should be ashamed that I let my son's teeth get holes. But you know what? Baby teeth are soft, and we do everything teeth-related right. (Apart from sometimes forgetting to brush in the morning after breakfast. We can do that better.) Instead, I will be proud that we regularly get our children's teeth checked and act when action is needed. Go Mama, go! Save the teeth!

14 January 2014

Holidaying at Papamoa

I have been so busy hanging out with my family that I've had very little time for blogging. The best kind of excuse, I think! I figure I'll just blog about the things we did as time allows, and ignore the date stamp!

Before Christmas, we spent a week in Papamoa with my Mum and Step-dad. The weather was Gorgeous (with a capital G!) but the children were all sick which, to be honest, put a serious damper on my enjoyment of it all. Fabulous timing, of course. However, it was still wonderful to get away from all the Christmas rushing and constant housework at home!

It was so lovely to watch the kids pottering about on the beach. The little lapping waves at the harbour (Pilot Bay) suited my quiet-loving kids well. Tristan in particular was fearless at the water's edge - he loved it! (Which of course meant we watched him like a hawk the whole time, though thankfully there were no head-first plunges!)

We enjoyed lazy days and picnics at the beach's edge, where the newly-built boardwalk meant my wheelchair-bound Mum could sit on the mat with us and forget about her limitations for a while. Mum used to be such a beach babe. It must be hard for her to watch her precious grandchildren down on the beach and not be able to join them.

I am very thankful for the gorgeous sunshine I could soak up (even my lily-white skin managed to pick up a bit of a tan!). And especially for the time we could hang with my special Mum. Rosie spent one entire afternoon perched on Mum's lap at the top of the beach. Bliss for her company-loving little soul.

One of the best things while we were at the beach: my long lost sister arrived home for a two week visit! It was so good to see her and hang out! Love her!

Beach holidays are the best, yes?