23 June 2010

From their personal blogs ...


I was saying something about the Glad Wrap, and Buzz said he knew all about it. It and those other blokes. After much brain-straining, he remembered where he'd heard of it.  It was from a story in his new Bible - Gladwrap, Meshach and Abednego, he said.
- - - - - - - - - -
Buzz had been counting quietly to himself.
Buzz: Mum, I can count all the way up to ... um ... 54!
Me: Oh wow, that's great.  What about 55?
Buzz: 53, 54, 55 ... oh yeah.  I can count all the way up to 55!
Me: Awesome.  What about 56?
Buzz: Oh yeah.  I can count up to 56.
Me: How about 57?  And 58?
Buzz: Yeah, 58.  I can count up to 58.
Me: Can you count up to 59?
Buzz: Oh yeah.  I can count up to 59, yeah.
Me: What about 60?
Buzz: No.  I can't count up to that. 

Mr de Elba, just back from getting a haircut: "Look at my hair, Buzz.  Do you notice anything?"
Buzz, nodding sagely: "Mm-hmm."
Dad: "What do you notice?"
Buzz: "It's like a Jedi?"
- - - - - - - - - -
Driving home from dinner one night, Buzz was extremely tired and irrational.  He became very upset because Woody's car seat was encroaching on his space and made his seat sit slightly askew.  He couldn't flip out his drink holder on the inside arm of his seat, either.  When I explained calmly how it was the addition of Woody's car seat to the back row that made this happen, Buzz lost it.  "See?  This is why we shouldn't have had another baby!" he roared. This is the only instance of Buzz ever being unhappy about the addition of a third child to the family - it had never happened before and it's never happened since. 
- - - - - - - - - -


pumpkin = "punquin"
asparagus = "biscarragus"
- - - - - - - - - -
Jessie: Let's put my Spotty Dogs undies on today.
Me: Actually, it's not Spotty Dogs (dogs with spots), it's Scotty Dogs (dogs from Scotland.)  SCOTTY dogs.
Jessie, wrinkling nose: Skocky Bogs?
- - - - - - - - - -
Sore nose:  "Ow!  My Schnozz!"
- - - - - - - - - -
"Buzz, stop doing that!  I will gowl at you and skeem at you: GRRR-AAAAH!"
- - - - - - - - - -
"I don't say segitoes anymore.  I say mos-quit-oes!"
 - - - - - - - - - -
Jessie had a tick on her arm, and was screaming while her parents were trying to gently remove it.  Buzz got scared with Jessie's screaming, and he started crying too, loudly.  When it was all over, Jessie shouted petulantly at Buzz: "You can't cry!  It's MY tantrum!"
- - - - - - - - - -
Peeking around the door at her mother: "Oo! What are you doing in here, feetheart?"  (sweetheart.)
- - - - - - - - - -
Sweet Pea = feetpea
difficult = giffidult
- - - - - - - - - -
Standing in the front of the trolley at the supermarket, arms raised high: "Yee-haa, cowboy!"
- - - - - - - - - -
"I need to suck my wrap!  I'm getting Fetty Mouth (a sweaty mouth.)"
- - - - - - - - - -
Jessie had remembered a conversation from a week ago, but all the details were wrong.
Pointing to the crack beneath the dishwasher:  "Mummy, remember that monster that went in there?  The monster that was a cucumber that had two legs and some things coming out of its head?"
Me: "What?  Oh!  In there.  Yes, the words I said were 'It was a centipede and it had a trillion legs and two spikes coming out of its bottom.'  You sorta remembered it.  It did go in there, anyway." 
- - - - - - - - - -


6 months

  • sitting
- - - - - - - - - -
9 months
  • crawling
  • using differentiated tongue movements, and said "bla bla bla" in the car
- - - - - - - - - -
10 months
  • saying "Did-did-did" for Daddy
- - - - - - - - - -
11 months
  • saying "Izzy" for Jaz/Jazzy (the dog)
  • whispering "siss" for "fish" when he sees Jessie's fish mobile 
  • has had 7 teeth for some time now
- - - - - - - - - -

21 June 2010

A Big Earner

I always loved driving through the country to my small country schools.  I'd often listen to a Brisbane radio station as I drove, just so I could hear a Traffic Report.  "The Mt Gravatt-Capalaba Road is stop-start due to an earlier accident, and all cars are being diverted from the Gateway Motorway..."  I sailed past crops and cows, through tiny townships with ancient pubs and small weatherboard houses on giant blocks of land.

Once I saw a fox running across my road.  Another time, I saw a pheasant.  Frequently, I had to go very slowly on the narrow road to one township because I'd get stuck behind a carrot truck.  I was alerted to the presence of the carrot truck a few kilometres before I saw it, because of the orange splodges on the road.  Smashed and squashed carrots.

Then I'd round a corner and see a little truck with an eight-foot deep open container piled extremely high with carrots, spilling bright orange cargo as it wobbled slowly down the narrow lanes.

Most other therapists thought that taking a government car was the best way to go, and they were disappointed if they were forced to take their own car and claim mileage after the fact.  Perhaps they hadn't done the maths involved - taking one's own car was undoubtedly much better.  Where they would complain about the evil nemesis "Wear and Tear" wreaking havoc on their precious cars, I would smugly remember that "wear and tear" basically means you'd take your car in for its regular service a week earlier than otherwise (the cost of the service being more than amply covered by the previous month's kilometric allowance.)

Then one day I worked out how much money my little car brought me for a one-hour trip to one of my country schools.  I compared that figure with what I earned each hour.

And darn it, if my little Ford Laser didn't earn more than I did!

20 June 2010


Scaphoid, lunate, triquetrum, pisiform, trapezium, trapezoid, capate, hamate.

The eight bones of the wrist.

WHY can I remember those from my anatomy lectures 16 years ago, but I can't remember to send Buzz's library book to school with him on Monday mornings?

Sigh.  I guess it's because I don't have tutors to teach me rude mnemonics for remembering library books.

- - - - -
Those are the versions of the names we learned in our lectures.

19 June 2010

Enjoying Today

"I'll see you later Mum," Buzz shouted over his shoulder as he raced out the door.  "Woody!  I'm leaving!"  Woody raced down the hall lugging his AFL bag and collided with Jessie who was heading out to meet some friends.

"Hang on - do you need to take something to eat?" I asked.  "An apple?"

"Already got one, Mum," called Buzz, over his shoulder.  I looked at the fruit bowl.  "One?"

"Okay, a couple.  Maybe six-ish.  We'll be fine.  C'mon, Woods!  Where are my keys?"

I tossed his car keys over to him and followed my big boys out to their car and watched them throw their footy gear in the boot, jump in, start the engine and head off down the street.

Then I shook myself out of the daydream.

I went and changed Baby Woody's nappy and helped Buzz with his homework (find some words that start with 'm' in the newspaper, cut them out and stick them in, draw some mushrooms and marshmallows, find some things around the house that are metal, sing the Munching Mike song, draw some 'm's in the air with our fingers ...)

I made a mental note not to wish it all away.

15 June 2010

A Crappy Little Gab called Hordon

Adrian Plass's fictional self was once unwittingly roped in to present a children's talk at a local church.  While he was a proficient speaker in front of adult crowds, the thought of presenting a children's talk terrified him (as well it should) and he spent weeks regretting the horrible situation he found himself in.

After miserably failing to summon the courage to politely pull out of his speaking engagement, he fronted up on the awful day and with sweaty palms and a terrified, squeaky voice, began his children's talk.

He began, as he said, with a horrible unintentional spoonerism.

"There was once a crappy little gab called Hordon..."

The ensuing confusion was reminiscent of the similar confusion I create when I commit a similar unintentional spoonerism, which has been happening with depressing regularity.

This Sunday, I was attempting to lead Kids Worship accompanied by an extremely cool song that was played, through no influence of my own, on a small plastic CD player that emitted a weak, tinny, trebley sound.  I needed all my charisma to carry my enthusiasm to the minds of the small children who were bravely trying to copy the actions and sing the unfamiliar words.

The song was "I've Got The Joy" by Go Fish.  (Did I mention I love Go Fish? And also that this is not an advertisement, that they either haven't heard of me or are now putting a restraining order in place against the weird Australian lady who says she "loves" them?) If you want to refresh your memory regarding how awesomely cool this song is, listen to a bit of it here. Then buy their album, if for no other reason than to placate Go Fish and convince them not to place the restraining order.

The first verse says "I like to dance ... cos I've got the joy."  The second verse says "I like to sing ... cos I've got the joy."  The third says "I like to shout ... cos I've got the joy," and the fourth says "I like to clap ... cos I've got the joy."

The fifth verse says, "I like to" -pause- "... cos I've got the joy," presumably to let you fill in your own action.

And the sixth verse says, "I like to ..." and then it all gets weird.  The lead singer sings "dance-clap" while the BGVs sing "sing-and-shout!"

The words "clap" and "sing" are on top of each other, providing the Kids Worship Leader with a dilemma.  What to do?  What to sing?  How to do actions without getting tangled up?

I decided to attempt "Dance-clap-sing-shout!"

That was stupid.

Because what I actually shouted at the group of confused children was,

Like a crappy little gab called Hordon.

11 June 2010

Go Fish!

Our family is right into the music of Go Fish.    Every day on the way to school we pump up "I've got the Joy" (listen to part of the song here) and when we cook, we dance around the kitchen to the Ten Commandment Boogie and Acapella Sound, both can be heard in part here.  Christmas at our house is filled with the sounds of their album Snow - but unless you've got a hot tip that I haven't, if you want this album you might need to order it from the US (that's what I did.  And at the same time, I decided oh what the hey, I'll get their Party Like a Preschooler album as well.  )

Can you imagine the excitement at our place to hear that there is a new album (complete with DVD and a VBS curriculum!  Midgets, here I come!) due for release in August?  Yes!  The Go Fish Guys are Kickin' It Old School!


Now here's a very cool thing.  Go Fish is letting us (the world, not just our special special family) listen to an entire song from their new album each day on their website.  They say that if you become a friend of theirs on Facebook, you can access the page where they are posting their songs.

Not being a Facebooker myself (for fear of old highschool losers catching up with me) I thought I wouldn't be able to do this, but I found that if I went to their page, I was able to click on the little pink "Kickin' It Old School" icon and go to the place where they're posting their new songs one by one.

It's been worth it! Get in quickly and you might still find Sweet Song Of Salvation / I Love To Tell The Story before the next song goes up there.

And if you're in the US or Canada, they might give you a pre-release copy for $15 if you become a friend of theirs on Facebook.  I'm sure they'd do it for ME, but they say they don't want to ship it to Australia.  If I simply can't wait, I will ask them nicely if they will.

Don't want to get into Facebook?  Check this little clip of one of my favourite hymns which appears on Jamie the Go Fish Guy's blog:   Blessed Assurance.

Now if that doesn't get your toes tapping and your mind shouting "Woo-Hoo!" during a quiet moment in church, I don't know what will!


This was not an Advertisement.  Go Fish have never heard of me.  But once they realise I am their biggest Australian fan, they will come and perform at Easterfest and then at our church for the Easter Sunday service.  I have it all planned.

08 June 2010

Not so helpful

There's helpful, and then there's helpful.

On Monday morning, the first school day of the new school week, Buzz woke up and got dressed.  All by himself.

In his Superman costume.

A Wonderful Week

Five blogging friends met up this week.  Emily Sue came to visit Givinya de Elba, Crazy Sister, Hippomanic Jen and Swift Jan.  Mrs Long-Lived-Rock also got to meet Emily Sue and put a face to the blog.

Emily Sue confessed that prior to her trip, she was a little worried that we wouldn't all hit it off.  I'm glad that we did though, not least because she spent a considerable amount of time and money travelling the 1,500 km to visit all of us!!  I'm sure she was glad that we declined to play the part of wild Internet crazies and murder her, as proposed in the weeks prior to her visit.

Fourteen minutes after Emily Sue's bus left town, she sent a text message to me.

Emily Sue: I've changed my mind - can I come back?? ;)

Givinya: Absolutely!!!

Emily Sue: Great!  Now to work out how to hijack the bus ...

Givinya: I will just wait here at the bus station until you return.

Emily Sue: Ok.  You might want to buy a coffee while you're waiting.  Sigh.  That's the worst part of great holidays ... they have to end.  And this one was a ripper.

- - - - -

We really did have a wonderful time!

04 June 2010

O I C D BD ii

(Translation: "Oh, I see the beady little eyes.")

As you have no doubt noticed, I have completely lost my blogging mojo.  However, I love my blog and have no desire to stop blogging.  For this reason, on Tuesday night I wrote a few posts and scheduled them to drip into your Readers for the next few days.  I hope you enjoyed them.  I did.

Now, I've been meaning to write down a few Speech Files stories.

I remember the time I was working in a very small country district with a little boy who was quite difficult to understand.  Even though he was very quiet, he always tried his best in therapy.  There were many times when I didn't understand him, but I tried to keep the communication positive and give him some good experiences communicating.

One day, we were doing a therapy session in a quiet spot in the school library.  The day was getting hotter and the doors and windows of the small country school library were all open to let in the breeze.

During the therapy session, my little student said the longest sentence he'd ever said.  Joy!  I saw an opportunity to give him some positive reinforcement in the way of an actual conversation, but honestly, I had no idea what he'd just said.  His speech contained so many errors I couldn't even guess.

I asked him to repeat what he'd said, and he did.  Again, I desperately searched my brain for some context that would help me guess at a few of the words he said, but to be frank, I still couldn't imagine what he'd said.

I hate doing this, but I really wanted to have the conversation so I asked the little guy once more to help me understand what he'd said.  And again, I was lost for a translation.

Then I did something that I don't do anymore.  I pretended I understood him.  Perhaps now, with a few more years experience I would say I was sorry but I didn't understand him.  Maybe I would sheepishly suggest that "my ears weren't working", but I wouldn't pretend I understood something I didn't.  This is because I know now that your white lies will find you out.

I turned back to the speech work, and something on the floor caught my eye.  A small black head with beady little eyes was looking up at me and my brain jumped to the instantaneous conclusion that it always jumps to when I see small heads with beady eyes looking at me - SNAKE!

I screamed!  No, not a little "Eek!"  A convincing scuh-REAM!"

In the next split second, I'd realised it wasn't a snake but a magpie that had wandered in through the open door.   Not only had I disgraced myself by screaming at a little black bird, but I'd let on to my speech student that I'd lied about understanding him.

With the benefit of sudden context and a pretty good auditory memory, I realised that the little mite had been patiently telling me "A bird is in the room."

As his speech improved over the years, I hope he told the story of the silly speech lady who jumped a foot in the air and screamed when she saw the magpie, despite being adequately warned of its presence.

I would deserve that.

Piano Teachers

Some piano teachers
 Smack the poor dear children's wrists;
Some piano teachers
Make you want to curl your fists.
Some piano teachers
Teacher kids what music's about;
Some piano teachers
Freak their poor lil students out.

03 June 2010

Imagine a new house is being built next door ...

The house is done, new neighbours in!
You've even met the Dad
The kids seem sane (at least, at first)
But the mother seems quite mad.

02 June 2010

A post dedicated to my sister.

Oh to have a little sister
Just like mine is pure bliss.
Perfect skin, eyebrows and teeth,
Sometimes her hair's like this:

01 June 2010

An Artiste

"Hey," I said to Mr de Elba. "Who drew this picture? It's not Buzz's style, but Jessie isn't drawing real things yet.
She just writes her name: scribble-hyphen-scribble. 
She doesn't do actual people with eyes, mouth, hair, hands and feet.  So who drew it?"
Turns out, Jessie is older, cleverer and more grown-up than she'd let on.