Saturday, December 26, 2009

The rolling over sequence:

She started on her back in the middle of that playmat.



And then she rolled onto her tummy, which is par for the course.


But what's this? A new development! She rolled back over!


And just kept going and going and going...

Thursday, December 24, 2009


I always thinks she looks smaller and cuter without clothes :)

Oh, and please forgive the dribble on her chin... she hasn't figured out how to use tissues yet :)

This photo clearly demonstrates one of my favourite little sayings: "No amount of cleaning will make this house look like a baby doesn't live here."
Observe the change table on the right, with the nappy disposal thingie just behind it, and the highchair through the doorway on the left. Plus, of course, the baby. Bit of a give-away. And directly behind her, that yellow thing, is a baby-specific washing basket. It has a thingie on the top which supposedly makes it look like a tiger, although I don't really see the resemblance...

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Happy December everyone!

In the last month we've had lots of visitors - Andrew, then Aidan's parents, then my parents! Everybody, naturally, came only to see Elspeth. She's the popular one! And now the dreaded C-Day approaches (or X-Day, if you're American or lazy), and we are left quietly alone to not-celebrate. Aidan's working on the day anyway.

Elspeth has been a marvellous little baby, although she did forget her grandparents and cry at seeing them for a little while. But as soon as she realised they were nice, she was nice to them!

She was horrid to an old lady today, though! We were in the supermarket, and some nice old lady came up to say hello, and what a beautiful baby, and all those things old ladies say when confronted with gorgousness. And what does Ellie do? She starts screaming, of course! The poor woman was mortified that she made my baby cry!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Just a few random snaps of baby Elspeth!








Saturday, December 12, 2009


Just had a very nice few days with Andrew. Didn't get out of the house very much - tough with the bub - but as shown in this grainy photo, we did go out to dinner at the local Spanish restaurant which I love. Thanks Andrew!

Tired. Elspeth had a restless night. Me too.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Ok, rant time. If you don't like swear words, don't read this.

What the FUCK makes anybody think they have the right to bash the shit out of somebody?


Where do people get off? What the hell are they thinking?

Some utter wankers in Melboure this morning bashed the crap out of a taxi driver because he wouldn't drive through a red light.

I mean, seriously, what the fuck? The taxi driver was doing his job and obeying the law. So they broke his nose and a car mirror, took back the money they'd pre-paid him, and scrammed.

Where has society gone wrong, that people seem to think this behaviour is ok? What have we done to make it acceptable amongst some groups to be like this?


This sort of thing makes me really angry.

I mean, shit, sometimes I feel like hitting somebody - but I don't! I have restraint and self-control. What is wrong with these people that they can't seem to stop themselves, or maybe they don't want to stop? It's happening more and more these days - not a day goes by that the papers don't have some story like this, and it's really getting to me.

I'm beginning to embrace a very right-wing view of crime and punishment, despite my generally left-wing politics.
Take these people, put 'em up against a wall, and shoot the fuckers.

No more second chances, no more getting out on bail, no more slaps on the wrist for violent crimes.

Fuck up, break the law, and that's it. In the slammer, or in the coffin, what do I care! I've had enough of the cunts. Yes, I said CUNTS! And I meant it.

I want my own country.
I don't want to share a world with these people.
I don't even like to think that we're the same species.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

I have done very little today. I may consider leaving the house later. I should probably go and get something for dinner. I'm tired. It was a restless night.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Good morning Blogosphere!

Yes, it's morning. 7.30am. Having babies does really strange things to you - like make you get up before midday.

Normally I feed her then go back to bed, but she's been an irritababy of late so I'm trying to follow one of Tizzie Hall's routines a little more closely.

Tizzie Hall is an odd name. But she is, apparently, a baby whisperer. I can whisper "baby" too, but I don't think that's what it means.

She has set out routines for babies of all ages - how long they should be awake and asleep, how often they should eat, and when they should eat solid foods.

I've been using her routines as a guideline and they have helped. But my own laziness drives me back to bed instead of keeping Elspeth up for 2 hours.

But not this morning!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Upon Aidan's suggestion, I am going to begin documenting the odd things that happen around this apartment. We believe the place is haunted, despite natural skepticism, and here's why...

  • A necklace of mine went missing. I mean really missing. I've had four people search this place from top to bottom with no luck.


  • Other small items have occasionally vanished, usually to be found shortly after asking for it back aloud. (These items are usually found somewhere I've definitely already looked, like where I thought I'd left it in the first place.)


  • A piece of pizza disappeared - I was leaving it for Aidan, but he swears he never ate it, and I know I didn't.


  • A bottle of Elspeth's milk was moved from the living room to the bedroom, and neither Aidan nor I recall doing it.


  • A bottle of baby oil was moved from the bed to the bedside table, ditto. (This was just last night.)

  • At night I often here little tinkly noises just like one of Elspeth's toys with a bell inside it. But Elspeth is asleep in her cot beside me.


  • Aidan and I have both seen a person - or at least the suggestion of a person - in a particular spot in the apartment. I generally see a silhouette out of the corner of my eye, nothing clear or definite, but Aidan says he's seen it directly.


  • These are the things that stick out, which I remember having happened at some point since we've lived here. I will continue to update if anything else weird happens.

    For the record, here are some common "symptoms" of a haunted house that I have not noticed:
    cold patches
    marks on the walls
    objects here that aren't ours
    lights going on and off
    unexplained bloodstains
    discord or animosity in the house

    And another symptom which I'm not sure about is hearing voices, footsteps, and doors opening and closing without explanation. It is sometimes difficult to be sure if certain noises are coming from our place or next door - we are in an apartment block. If I had to guess, I'd say that most of what I hear is from next door, although sometimes at night it really does sound like water running in our bathroom. Not sure on that one, though.

    I have noticed a feeling of being watched, which apparently is common, but I'm going to put that down to paranoia and nervousness induced by the other things.

    Wednesday, November 25, 2009


    Today is our 3 year wedding anniversary!

    It's been a jam-packed 3 years with lots of happenings and changes. The one thing that hasn't changed is our happiness!

    We have a lovely day not-planned: nothing concrete, just snuggles and declarations of love, followed by an Indian meal to be delivered to our house later tonight. Screw cooking on our special day!

    Saturday, November 21, 2009

    The giggle videos

    video video



    Right. It has been far too long since I blogged, so here I am to tell you about Elspeth's amazing week and our holiday on the coast.

    She is now four months old.

    In the last week she has rolled over, eaten solid foods, begun to regularly sleep through the night (11pm to 7am), and been dunked in the ocean. How awesome is my baby?

    So anyway, mum and dad picked Ellie and I up on Saturday to head down to Merimbula - Aidan had to work, so he came and joined us on Monday. The weather was great - almost cold at times, a lovely contrast to Canberra's unholy heat. We swam in the sea, we walked on the beach, we read books, mum and dad were utterly enthralled by little Elspeth - she's turning into such a giggle-pot! It's gorgeous. She is just growing up in leaps and bounds; it won't be long before we need a priso- er, playpen!

    And now we're home again, and that's all I have to say about that.

    Thursday, October 22, 2009

    Things that make me hate the world:

    A man threw his daughter off a bridge, and will probably be acquitted or get off lightly on mental health grounds.

    Kids are bullied to the point of suicide.

    A woman is murdered, and people who aren't even suspects won't come forward to assist police.

    Doctors rape their patients in shocking abuses of trust.

    Alcohol related violence is on the rise.

    And this is just today's Fairfax news; I haven't looked at world news or any other news sources today. I want to become a vigilante and just shoot the deserving in the head. Do you think I'd look good in PVC?

    Thursday, October 01, 2009

    There is just one month left until NaNoWriMo! One month in which to decide subject matter, think about it, and plan it, before I have to sit down for a month and write 50,000 words. Again. This time I'm thinking of writing about preganancies, births, babies. Just because I won't have to do much in the way of research! I've just been through all that, and it's all fresh in my mind. But I don't know yet. Of course, I could just as easily write about an alien invasion - from the point of view of the aliens. Or humans invading another planet, so we're the aliens. Or the day the fruit juice factory exploded and covered the town in orange juice, causing dreadful problems for people with citrus allergies. Who knows?!

    Tuesday, September 29, 2009

    Our oven hasn't been working for a few weeks now. Not a big deal, as we don't often use the oven - the stove-top is more our thing, and that still works. So anyway, the electricians are here now fixing it. Yes, plural. One guy arrived, and I thought that was fine. Then another guy arrived. Finally, a third guy came. Three dudes to fix one oven! Except they can't fix it. They took the element out and apparently it just fell apart. They're going to recommend to the real estate agent that a new oven is in order - frankly, I could have told them that two years ago, but now it's official!

    Sunday, September 27, 2009

    I had a dream last night. A very bizarre dream, which, unusually for me, I remember in great detail and with clarity.

    It went like this.

    I left my house alone, leaving Elspeth by herself. This, by the way, I would never actually do. The city I walked out into looked a little like Madrid, and a little like Melbourne, but wasn't either of them. I went to this really odd little shop which sold lots of old-fashioned children's/baby's accessories and furniture, staffed by two older ladies who looked like they'd stepped straight out of Victorian England. They had two very scrawny ugly babies in the shop, and I stayed there for about an hour looking after those babies. God knows why. Finally I realised I should get home to Elspeth, so I left the shop. After I'd left, I realised I was wearing nothing but a dressing gown, and didn't have my wallet, keys, or phone. I was locked out of the house, and I couldn't call Aidan to come home and let me in. So I was running around the streets of this increasingly-Madridesque city desperately seeking a solution, when suddenly I bumped into an old teacher of mine from high school. He didn't seem at all bothered or surprised to see me, even though I was very nearly naked, and he came with me to my house. Together we found a window that I got through somehow, and that was it. Either I woke up, or I just don't remember any more.

    Saturday, September 26, 2009

    Our little girl is 10 weeks old now! Actually she was 10 weeks old on Wednesday. Time is flying by so quickly!

    We had a visit from Aidan's parents last week, which was wonderful. We went to Floriade (again; we went with my mum the week before!), and just generally hung around having a nice time.

    Elspeth is a great sleeper; in fact I'm about to have to wake her up for a feed. I find it's good to do that because it means she doesn't have to cry and get stressed about being hungry; I anticipate it if she hasn't eaten in four hours.

    So, a quick one, just to say that all is going well and to share the above photo. It's one of the very few shots I have of the whole family! (Normally I'm the one holding the camera, so there aren't many photos with me actually in them!)

    Thursday, September 10, 2009

    It has been a long time between blogs. For that, I apologise to my readers if I have any left. Things have been busy, as I'm sure you can imagine!

    Some things have been going on, as follows:

    Firstly, Elspeth is eight weeks old today! I can't believe it's been that long already. She's doing really well, growing and eating like a pig. She's on soy formula now as we believe she may be lactose intolerant. She's so gorgeous! She can hold her head up most of the time now, and she's really getting the hang of hand-eye coordination - I hear jingly bells every time she whacks one of her dangly things. (I don't care if it was by accident, it's still wonderful!) She also seems to be smiling at me quite often! A lot of books say it's just gas or something, but it really does seem to be in response to seeing me smile at her!

    From Elspeth - One Photo Per Day

    From Elspeth - One Photo Per Day

    Secondly, I've been studying away like... well, honestly, like somebody who really doesn't want to. I loved my Ancient Myth subject, I've finished everything for that and I think I'll do quite well. But my Religion subject is fairly dull really; I'm procrastinating doing this damn essay which is due in two days... bah!

    Thirdly, my mother is coming to visit this weekend!! Yay! Always nice to see her, and she just loves seeing her little granddaughter! Last time my parents came up, mum kept just going over to stare at Elspeth with an adoring smile on her face.

    Anyway, for somebody who hasn't blogged in weeks, I've said remarkably little now. I suppose I just don't want to bore by going on and on about Elspeth - although I could!! Anyway, very probably almost everybody who reads this has seen everything on Facebook.

    Saturday, August 29, 2009

    Elspeth with gas :)

    video

    Monday, August 10, 2009


    We have just had a lovely family weekend, with my parents and my brother visiting Canberra to see Elspeth and I (and Aidan but he was working for most of it). It is the first time my brother has met his neice; I think they'll get along better when she's a little older. My apologies for the very poor image quality - I keep forgetting to bring my camera with me, so these were taken on my phone.

    The weekend has been a complete write-off in terms of study, so I have to get back into it fairly solidly tomorrow, but it's been worth it - great to see my parents again. Especially my mum - she is LOVING being a nana, taking every opportunity to hold, touch, or even just stare at Elspeth!

    Half an hour ago when I said goodbye and left their hotel room to come home, I was really tired. The walk back here in the cold, then changing and feeding the bub, have woken me up so now I can't sleep... which sucks - I was hoping to take advantage of her being asleep before Aidan gets home from work, which should nicely coincide with the next time she'll need feeding... oh well, it won't work out now. The best laid plans, etc!

    Thursday, August 06, 2009

    Now it is time to gloat about how good I am.

    Not only do I have a happy, healthy, three-week-old daughter, and not only was the real estate agent pleased with the property inspection this morning, but I am also keeping up with my (officially) "full-time" study load and getting quite good marks!

    I've been really surprised and quite impressed with myself; in the past, when attempting online study, I've quickly lost motivation and ultimately failed. However, with just three weeks of this study period to go, I've kept plugging away at my two subjects and remained interested.

    Here is where I currently stand:

    For the Myth unit, I have to submit four tutorials (all of which I have done) and one major essay (which I am halfway through). I'll be graded on the essay and the best two of my tutorials - I've got one 7 and one 8 out of 10, which I'm fairly happy with.

    For the Religion unit, I have to submit a 500 word tutorials on each of the six religions covered, and one major essay. I've done three and two-halves of the six tutorials, but have not yet started my major essay. This unit is quite flexible and permits extensions, and my course co-ordinator knows I've just had a baby, so I will be taking full advantage of that, but I'm still pleased that I've done as much as I have so far. (Incidentally, for the three completed tutorials so far, I got a Distinction.)

    Having one child has given me a new respect for mothers of multiple children, particularly twins. However my own mother (who had two of us) has expressed admiration for my efforts at mothering and studying together. Go me!

    My next challenge is to figure out what, if anything, I should do in the next study period (which starts at the end of this month). I know that, as Elspeth gets older, she will take up more time and won't sleep as much, so I will probably only do one unit instead of the two I did this time. But which one? I would love to do an English subject, but there's a lot of reading involved and I'm not sure that I'll have the time or the concentration to do it justice. Another history unit would be interesting; I was thinking perhaps one on the fall of the Roman Empire. Creative Writing could also be fun, but again I'm not sure I'll have the required concentration - unless I could write about babies!!

    So anyway, I've got some thinking and some work to do. I'm really very glad I did decide to undertake some study - not only does it improve my future prospects, but it also keeps my mind active and gives me something other than Elspeth to think and talk (and blog) about!

    Monday, August 03, 2009

    Elspeth is now officially a formula baby. After breastfeeding of late she's been irritable, extremely gassy, still hungry, and difficult to settle (most likely because of the above). However after two bottles of formula today, each time she has had very little gas and settled down well again afterwards. She just seems to react better to the bottle than the breast. I can't say I'm all that disappointed; honestly I was quite depressed and stressed about breastfeeding anyway, but willing to keep trying so long as it was best for her. But that appears to no longer be the case. Perhaps I'm just not producing enough. At least with a bottle I know just how much she's getting, which is something that had bothered me the other way - why don't breasts have measurements marked on them? Very poor design. I will do my utmost not to feel guilty about this decision; at least she had over two weeks of the good stuff, that's more than many babies get.

    Wednesday, July 29, 2009


    Elspeth is two weeks old today! Where has the time gone? Seems to fly by so quickly - next thing you know it'll be a month, and then three and six months, and a year! I'm feeling a lot better about things, and I've figured out a trick or two to help Elspeth... like putting one of my t-shirts under her so she can smell me, that seems to help her settle down a bit! I'm also feeling a bit better about my occasional use of formula to feed her; it helps that Aidan has read a little bit about it and realised the pressure on women to breastfeed is just insane, he's eased up a bit and understands that sometimes I just need a break! He was very much in favour of keeping everything natural - no formula, no pacifier... but honestly, once you live with a baby (and I'm with this baby nearly 24/7, unlike Aidan who still gets to go to work and sleep uninterrupted occasionally), you figure out that sometimes these artificial aids are a godsend.

    Oh, the last little stump of her umbilical cord came off last night! I realise that may sound quite gross, but it is nice not to have to worry about it anymore.

    In other news... I really don't have any other news. I'm very baby-centric right now, I'm sorry. I was so sure when I was pregnant that, after the birth, I would still be me - Stace, Aidan's wife, your friend, and not just Elspeth's mum. But here I am, pretty much being nothing but a mum. Still trying to get some study done, but concentration is lacking... yawn...

    Monday, July 27, 2009

    The last 24 hours have been difficult. Before I go any further I want to make it absolutely clear that I love my daughter very much, all the time. But, oh my god... why can't they be born with more communication skills?? She's been so unsettled, crying for no apparent reason, not sleeping or even lying quiety unless she's being hugged by Aidan or myself. We've both gotten a bit... tetchy... I just feel so helpless and useless. Aidan's been utterly wonderful in trying to give as much help as he can; I'm trying to write essays and stuff at the same time as being mum... but Aidan can't breastfeed! A couple of times I've had to ask him to give her a bottle of formula, which he doesn't like doing, but it's a godsend to me just to have that little bit of extra time, and rest, and both hands free.

    I've been doing a few quizzes and suchlike, mostly on beyondblue.org, and I'm beginning to worry that I may be suffering genuine post-natal depression - and that concept only depresses me even further. I'm going to mention it to my GP when I see her next Monday (if I make it that far without going crazy!!), but hopefully it's just the "baby blues"... Everyone says the baby blues go away about a week after the birth; it's been nearly two weeks now... I dunno, I guess I'll just hang in there and see what happens. If nothing else, maybe some temporary antidepressants can just take the edge off it and help me get back on track. I hate the thought of taking them, though. Oh well, whatever will be, will be...

    Saturday, July 25, 2009


    Elspeth is ten days old today. Here are the things I've learnt in the last ten days:

      Babies are messy, but somehow their mothers don't actually mind the spit-ups and poop.

      Being a mother is also messy - you don't truly appreciate maternity pads and nursing pads until you have a child.

      Babies don't always have a reason for crying, and you can't always fix them.

      Absolutely everybody will make you feel guilty if you contemplate using formula instead of breastmilk, even just sometimes for convenience.

      Everybody will also make you feel terrible if your baby isn't always sleeping flat on her back.

      Babies can't tell the difference between feeling hungry and having gas pains - so I have no idea if I'm feeding her when I should be burping her, or vice versa.

      Post-natal depression and hormonal changes really are a bitch, even in very mild cases.

      It's extremely difficult to concentrate on studying once a baby has entered the equation.


    There are probably more things, but I don't remember. My once-sharp brain is turning to mush. Aidan tells me I'm coping well and am a good mother, but I don't feel like it. I guess I need more practice.

    Thursday, July 23, 2009

    It often seems the "done thing" amongst women to complain about their menfolk. It's normal to roll the eyes when a man is mentioned, or to say "Men!" with an attitude of amused scorn. But, if I'm being honest, I have nothing to complain about.




    This post is a tribute to my wonderful husband Aidan. He works full-time, he does loads of housework, he helps as much as he can with the baby, he pampers me with backrubs and cups of tea. He is ever-supportive, loving, and is simply always there for me and, now, for Elspeth. He wants nothing but the best for all of us. He might be the big tough man when he has to be, but he's got a tender streak that comes through for his womenfolk.

    So to my husband I say: I love you, and thank you.

    Tuesday, July 21, 2009

    Elspeth Abigail Irving
    Born 7.37am 15th July 2009
    The Canberra Hospital


    My apologies for not blogging earlier! I'm sure you'll understand I've been a tad busy. Thanks to Andrew for leaving the comment on my last post :)

    The story of the birth:
    I began having contractions on Saturday morning (the 11th), seeming fairly regular, and I thought that was it... but they faded, and stopped. Then started again on Sunday morning. Then slowed... then sped up... the long and short of it is, I had a rather uncomfortable few days! I called Delivery Suite at the hospital a couple of times and they told me to stay home, stay home as long as I felt comfortable, so I did... until mid-Tuesday, when the contractions seemed closer together, longer lasting, and more consistent. I was examined and determined to be 3cm dilated - in other words, in active labour. I could have told 'em that!

    I won't go into huge detail, largely because I'm a bit hazy about it all myself! But little Elspeth wouldn't stay facing the right way. She was what they call "face to pubes", which is exactly what it sounds like - she was facing up instead of down. They tried to turn her, but she just kept turning back. I have a stubborn child. So, instead of the nice calm quiet birth I'd planned, I was carted to theatre, given an epidural, and had the poor child yanked out with forceps! (But only after attempts to vacuum her out failed.)

    We came home from hospital on Friday afternoon, and all things considered I think we're doing rather well. Elspeth is an awesome feeder, she's almost back up to her birth weight already, and she also sleeps pretty well most of the time - sometimes for up to four hours at a time! She was rather jaundiced, but that's passing now - a midwife called around this morning to do a final check on her, and gave the all-clear that no more tests should be necessary and we're officially "discharged" from the hospital midwifery service. She was also pretty bruised and scratched from the suction thing and the forceps, but that's also healing up nicely and all you can really see now is a small circular mark on her head and one black eye.

    We have created a beautiful daughter; Aidan and I are both very happy and very much in love with her!

    Saturday, July 11, 2009

    Well, false alarm this afternoon - I thought my waters had broken, but according to the doctor that hasn't happened. Possibly just an uncontrollable gush of urine, which sounds quite gross but is apparently normal. But later, after we got home from hospital, I'm 99% sure the "mucus plug" I keep hearing about came out, so that means things should be moving along pretty soon... Fingers are crossed...

    Thursday, July 09, 2009

    The midwife today said it really could be any time now, but it still may not be for over a week... They don't even think about inducing or anything like that until at least 41 weeks, and even then if everything seems healthy they might leave it for another few days... sigh...

    Wednesday, July 08, 2009


    Well, here I am, on my official due date, and still not in labour. In fact, the only unusual thing to have happened so far today is that I'm out of bed, fully awake, well before midday. My more usual thing, when unemployed, is to sleep until at least 1pm! So I don't know if that was just anxiety keeping me awake, or if my body's trying to tell me something's happening soon... fingers crossed, anyway!

    Sunday, July 05, 2009

    I forgot to mention that our car has been all fixed up and we're back on the road. There's not enough evidence regarding who did it, officially, so that bites. But at least we're mobile; we won't need to get a taxi when I go into labor!

    Friday, July 03, 2009

    There are 21 emails which Hotmail has identified as crap and moved automatically into my junk email folder.

    - 5 of them offer to enlarge my penis (didn't know I had one...)
    - 6 of them offer me money, discounts, or free things that I haven't signed up for
    - 4 of them want to help me lose weight (while pregnant?! great idea...)
    - 1 is a phishing email supposedly from Hotmail themselves (because they don't know my password)
    - 2 of them offer true love (thought I already had that...)
    - 2 of them offer me great travel deals with limited eligibility (I think you have to live in the USA!)
    - 1 says something about a king whose daughters were all beautiful (lucky guy)

    Who the heck falls for all this junk? I read somewhere recently that, as consumers have started to wise up to email scams, text messages to your phone is the new big thing. I have two main issues with this.
    Firstly - what do they mean, started to wise up? Surely the human race isn't so stupid that we've only just started to catch on to something that's been happening for at least fifteen years... oh, what am I saying? Right, ok, moving on.
    Secondly - the text message scams are exactly the same as the email ones! Just using a different medium! Why on earth would any of these apparently newly-wise consumers fall for the same thing sent a different way? Oh... yeah, ok.

    We're really not the brightest, us humans, are we? Perhaps the eternal optimism gene needs to be switched off so that we realise that not everybody has our best interests at heart. There really are people out there who just want to take us for a ride, steal our money, trick us, lie to us, hurt us, inconvenience us, and annoy us. There are people out there who are not nice people. They've always been there, but the internet has brought them closer.

    Watch it out there, folks. It's a big bad world, and it's getting smaller!

    Wednesday, July 01, 2009

    39 weeks



    I feel as though pregnancy has become my ground state. I always have been, and always will be. There is no beginning or end, there's just this big round belly in front of me no matter which way I turn! Labor has become an abstract concept; having an actual baby even more so.

    I saw my GP this morning, she said that the baby has dropped a little, she's lower than she was a week ago, but is still not actually engaged. Apparently, however, it's pretty normal for first babies not to engage until labor starts, so it could still be any time now. Everything's fine, her heartrate is still good, as is my blood pressure, she's measuring perfectly normal, and I haven't had either a dizzy spell or a faint spell for at least a few weeks now.

    The stuff I used to clean the bathroom mirror the other day says "no streak" on the bottle. It lied.

    Saturday, June 27, 2009

    Some random thoughts on current events...

    I'll get Michael Jackson out of the way first, since the subject of his demise seems unavoidable. He was a fantastic pop artist, and a troubled individual, and it is sad to see him go - as it is sad for anybody to die. I make no jokes about his skin colour, allegations of abuse, or suspicions of plastic surgery. He was what he was, whatever that may have been, and I'm sad that I'll never be able to see him perform live.

    Farrah Fawcett has also passed away. I knew next to nothing about her, but I'm sure she'll be missed.

    A family has won a $800,000 lawsuit against another family because their son fell/jumped from an unsafe bunkbed, acquiring head injuries and mental problems in the process. Although if he jumped, I'd have to argue that he had mental problems to begin with. The judge in this case deemed it more likely that he slipped rather than jumped; however given that the kid was 10 years old at the time, I'm betting he jumped. Anyway, I'd like to take this opportunity to once again picket for the removal of all safety signs and labels, and the abolition of civil law entirely.

    That's about all that's going on in the world that I can be bothered making comment on right now. Sleep well, everybody.

    Wednesday, June 24, 2009

    Just got back from 38 week doctor's appointment. She pretty much said that any time from now is "fair game" for this baby to be born. All is well, healthy, etc.

    Friday, June 19, 2009


    Well, it's 37 weeks and 1 day. I think I've been pretty good, on the whole - reasonably healthy and happy throughout the pregnancy, with minimal emotional outbursts. But now I think I'm justified in complaining!

    I can't do anything without getting short of breath and/or dizzy. I really mean anything. The bending down involved in putting clean dishes away does for me. Common sense prevents me climbing on a chair to change a lightbulb. Going shopping is right out of the question. Home delivery for the win!
    I'm always tired. I've been awake for about 13 hours, done almost nothing, and I want to sleep again very soon. I look a bit freaky most of the time with massive dark circles under my eyes.
    I feel ill the instant I lie down every evening. Most nights I end up vomiting - it's kind of odd, I really just feel like I've got gas, but I can't seem to burp properly without puking. Oh well, at least I feel better in the stomach afterwards.
    I really just want to have this little girl, to see her and hold her and love her and mostly not to be carting her around in my belly 24/7 anymore! How women have been doing this for so long is beyond me; surely there's a more efficient way?!

    Thursday, June 11, 2009

    36 week midwife visit

    Position: head down, not engaged, her spine is down my right side
    Heart rate: approx 150
    Measuring: 35cm
    My BP: 108/52

    In other words, everything's going well.

    Wednesday, June 10, 2009

    Jiggly belly!

    video

    Friday, June 05, 2009

    Our car got stolen overnight. What a bitch.

    Tuesday, June 02, 2009

    What an odd day. I've quit my job, yet I keep going back! Technically speaking, I quit my position as a temp through an agency, to take up a casual job directly for the company instead. Much more restful - a low-stress job, doing pretty much whatever hours I choose (eg, today was 11-4), for a much higher hourly rate. And then I come home and work on assignments. Like, why is dharma so important to Hindus? and, comparing the attributes of older Olympian gods with the younger generation.

    Wednesday, May 27, 2009

    This is my 1,111th post, which is kind of cool.

    I have two days left of work. Sort of. I'm quite sure I'll be coming back to do some casual work for them, so it's more of a transition than really leaving, at least for now.

    Still, it's pretty exciting and cool. It's not often you get to quit a job, and even less often that you get such a good reason to do so. However, there are good reasons to be both happy and sad about leaving.

    I've actually rather enjoyed this job. Of all the jobs I've had, it's been one perfectly suited to my talents and temperament, and I've been very fortunate in that my colleagues are all wonderful people with whom I've had not just a good working relationship but also many friendships.

    I will miss a lot of people - it's all very well to say you'll keep in touch, but that's not the same as seeing them every single day. I'll miss the work itself, as well as the trust and responsibility that I had.

    But I'll be able to concentrate on my studies, and get lots of rest. I won't have such demanding obligations, or tricky questions from my boss!

    And then, of course, I'll be a mother! Back to demanding obligations, but still no boss.

    Wednesday, May 20, 2009

    It has not been a good couple of days in terms of illnesses and injuries! First we have Chris in hospital (check the comments on his latest blog post for updates on his condition, thanks to Donn, Gerry, and Ponita), then I did my nearly-passing-out trick again at work yesterday morning, and now... yes, Aidan has come through for the trifecta! Late last night he did something inexplicable, and managed to hurt his ankle quite severely while doing nothing more strenuous than walking past the vacuum cleaner. We thought at first it was broken, and took a taxi down to the hospital immediately... but after waiting in Emergency for five and a half hours it was determined to be just a very bad sprain. I do mean bad. He can't put any weight on it, he certainly can't walk. So, we stumbled back home at 5am, and now I'm playing nurse to this rather unwilling patient! He's never been much good at being looked after; he's usually playing Dr Aidan to my Damsel In Distress. However, I managed to make him a passable breakfast of bacon, eggs, hash browns, and toast this morning - not my forte, since I'm a cereal person myself, but apparently quite edible. And now I've got him sitting quietly on the couch reading like a good invalid!

    Monday, May 18, 2009

    Many people who read this blog will already be aware that Chris, aka Within Without, is unwell. He has had a stroke and is in hospital. Whilst recent news regarding his situation is pretty positive, the entire incident has brought home the concept of mortality with something of a shock.

    You never think that certain things can happen to you or your loved ones. Bad things only happen on TV or in the news. Other people get personally effected, not you. But not this time. This time it's us.

    Chris, our thoughts are with you and your family. Aidan and I wish you all the best and a speedy recovery; we hope you're back blogging and Facebooking and just generally being you soon.

    Tuesday, May 12, 2009



    I dedicate this video to my husband, my brother, and my best friend - all of whom have something in common ;)

    Friday, May 08, 2009

    Hooray, I'm going back to school! Sort of. I've signed on to do a couple of units with Open Universities Australia, as a precursor (hopefully) to proper full-time study next year. I've had to take a bit of a long-term goal and work backwards to reach this point: I want to study linguistics, which limits my choice of university to two, realistically. Either one will look more favourably upon a mature age student who already has a couple of university units under her belt. Applications for university open in August, so I should already have done those units by August. Which meant signing up to begin now! So, if blogs in the near future start rambling about ancient myths and various religions, it's because that's what I'm studying and not because I'm going mad.

    Friday, May 01, 2009

    Right, I saw the midwife yesterday and told her in detail about my multiple "incidents" of blurred vision and whatnot. She knew exactly what I was talking about, said it wasn't that unusual, and the deal is this: My uterus is getting huge, as it tends to do during pregnancy. And if I sit or lie in certain ways, it can press down on some major blood vessels carrying blood to the brain. So, the brain goes into panic mode at not having so much blood available, hence the hot flushes, shortness of breath, and blurry eyes. So I shall watch my posture, and sit forward if I feel it coming on again, and I only really need to worry if it's accompanied by headaches and/or swelling or puffiness of the limbs and extremities. Which it has never been, so it's ok!

    Tuesday, April 28, 2009

    Today has been the least pleasant day so far in an otherwise rather nice pregnancy. I haven't stopped feeling ill all day - I'm not sure if it's indigestion, gas, too much chocolate, or the as-yet-un-felt "morning sickness", or possibly a bit of all of them. I've been extremely tired, as I didn't sleep last night due to feeling ill (see above) and being kicked. And then tonight (during childbirth education classes at the hospital) I had another of my little hot-flush blurred-vision episodes.

    I'm thinking of cutting back my hours at work, if the boss will let me, and considering stopping work entirely earlier than originally anticipated, but I just don't know. I feel a bit guilty; work is so busy right now, and I'm the only full-time staff member who can do my job properly. It makes it quite difficult when my immediate boss is telling me to look after my body and my baby and take time off, while my own conscience says that I need to be at work. I guess I'll figure it out in time... but if I still feel like this tomorrow I'm taking the day off.

    Saturday, April 25, 2009

    Anzac Day is yet another occasion on which I feel at odds with everybody. It's such a big deal here, commemorating our fallen soldiers and stuff. I understand intellectually that a bunch of guys went to some shitty places and experienced some shitty things, and loads of them got killed, and that if they hadn't the world would now be a very different place. But honestly, emotionally, I don't really care. It all happened long before I was born, in places I've never been, to people I never knew. All I feel is slightly uncomfortable and guilty at not feeling anything more. I feel like the media and my fellow Australians are trying to manipulate me to care, but I don't understand their purpose in doing so. I feel like a complete outsider, an alien, almost a criminal. Especially here in Canberra, where it's practically blasphemy not to go to the Dawn Service. I slept until 10, so there. Fuck it.

    Thursday, April 23, 2009

    For those of you I don't have on Facebook, and those of you who haven't gotten around to looking yet, here is my beautiful baby Elspeth during her 3D ultrasound on Saturday:




    Saturday, April 18, 2009

    Rant time.

    I took the 980 bus to work today, as is usual when I work on Saturdays at the University of Canberra (my second job). Fine. I got there, and the woman who usually co-ordinates everything was away, leaving some other people in her place. They didn't know I was coming, so they didn't have anything ready for me. So they mucked about getting that done, and that was a minor irritation.

    Then I had to go home. I caught the 980 bus again, which worked fine last time and got me home safely. But this time, for reasons unknown to me, the 980 became the 932 when it passed through the city, and thus took a different route. By the time I realised we weren't going to take the right turnoff, we were past it and in unknown territory. So I asked the bus driver the best way to get to Kingston from there. He told me to stay on that bus until we got to Woden, and then take the 938. But when we got to Woden, the 938 had just left, so he told me to take the 900 into the city and then the 938 going back the other way to Kingston.
    In short, it took me over two hours to get home, when it should take 45 minutes, and I visited nearly every god damned suburb in this god forsaken town on the way.

    Nothing is easy here. Nothing just works, nothing is logical or simple or intuitive. We have found this time and again, in all sorts of situations. This town doesn't make sense, and I want to go home.

    Wednesday, April 15, 2009

    Today was the 28 week midwife visit, primarily to have my injection of Anti-D.

    Here I am this morning:


    And today's details are as follows:

    Fundal height: 28cm (the size of the uterus, used to assess foetal growth and development) - this is perfect for this stage of pregnancy.
    Foetal heart rate: 148 - also normal.
    Edinburgh Depression Scale: 9 - apparently anything over 12 requires referral to Mental Health, so I'm still good!
    Glucose Load: 6.3 - I have no idea what this actually measures, or what units that 6.3 should be expressed in. But apparently it's within the normal range and I don't have gestational diabetes.

    So everything is going well, which is good to know. I figure, anyway, that as long as I can still feel Elspeth kicking away like crazy and there's no abdominal cramping or bleeding, she'll be right!

    Thursday, April 09, 2009

    I see in the news today that a Melbourne train driver has attacked a passenger after the passenger approached him to complain about a cancelled train. My first thought is, the passenger should have used proper channels to make a complaint; it very likely has nothing to do with the driver concerned. In a way I don't blame the driver for snapping: working for Connex recently must have made him very unpopular, subject to countless criticisms and the butt of a hundred jokes. The company has not been faring well lately and it is not his fault, yet, as the person seen representing the company, he cops the blame from thousands of commuters each day. Don't get me wrong, I don't condone violence or the attack itself. All I'm saying is that I can understand the urge to hit back - literally - at the complainant!

    Wednesday, April 01, 2009

    I don't usually blog from work. I have more important things to do, like work. Goodness knows there's no shortage of it. But today, nothing is going right. It's just so frustrating, I need this little "time out" to rant and rave!! Things have disappeared, things haven't been done correctly, things have been put in the wrong places, and things are pissing me off! I feel like I've spent half my day so far searching for things that aren't where they should be, or, apparently, anywhere at all. I thought today was going to be so productive and awesome, I had it all planned out... instead, I have two half-finished things on my desk, waiting on (hopefully) some missing things to turn up, or new copies to be provided. So not only did I not catch up at all, I've actually fallen further behind than I was!

    Saturday, March 28, 2009

    For the record, the shortness of breath/hot flush/blurred vision thing happened again this morning. Passed reasonably quickly, felt fine afterwards, didn't see a doctor this time.

    Wednesday, March 25, 2009

    Thanks to little Elspeth and her antenatal acrobatics, I scarcely slept last night. And when I did manage to get some shuteye, it was only REM sleep and I dreamed of work. So now I feel like I've been at work all night, and I just got up to go to work again!

    Friday, March 20, 2009


    I have no more to add. It's been a long week, even though I only worked three days.

    Monday, March 16, 2009

    24 weeks

    Had an incident this morning. I was on the bus going to work as usual, when I suddenly felt hot, sweaty, and short of breath. It wasn't long before my vision started to blur, then disappear completely. I was nowhere near passing out; I didn't feel faint, I just couldn't see anything. Happily a colleague was on the same bus, and saw me looking weird; she helped me get up and walk to the office, by which time my vision had returned... temporarily. Within about ten minutes of getting to work, it happened again. So, my boss drove me to the hosiptal. After waiting a good two hours or so in Emergency (which is fine, I was hardly dying), the doctor poked and prodded me, then told me it was more or less normal: hormonal and blood pressure changes associated with pregnancy. Well, that's what he thinks based on one isolated incident. Essentially, little Elspeth is getting selfish, claiming all my resources and leaving me short.

    So anyway, I'm feeling ok now, I'm at home and will not be going to work again until at least Wednesday. I am forbidden (by Doctor Aidan) to do anything strenuous or worry about anything, so after I've published this post and finished my lunch, I'll be having a quick shower then going back to bed.

    Thanks again to Alice (the colleague on the bus), MaryLou (the boss who drove me to hospital and sat with me a while), Nathan and Stephen (the colleagues who worried and helped me at work this morning) and, as always, Aidan (the concerned and wonderful husband).

    Tuesday, March 10, 2009

    Some of you may already be aware that this time of year plays host to the World's Greatest Shave. Poor sods like me choose to shave their heads in support of Leukaemia research. I was a little early; the Shave doesn't officially start until Thursday, but since my hair was pissing me off, I bit the bullet and went for it.


    This is me half an hour ago. With my accidental emo-fringe and very nearly a mullet.


    This is what came off my head.



    And this is me now!

    For those of you who haven't yet, but would like to, you can support the cause by sponsoring me. Click on this link:
    http://my.imisfriendraising.com.au/personalPage.aspx?SID=59435
    if you would like to do so!

    Saturday, March 07, 2009

    We bought a scanner! So, here is my shoe:

    Thursday, March 05, 2009

    For the record: I have a cold, I'm tired, Elspeth is bashing me up from within. I'm so showing her this on her 21st to make her feel guilty.

    Sunday, March 01, 2009

    This child of mine is definitely Aidan's. She's hyperactive, and getting so strong! I'm sure it won't be long before I can put a ping-pong ball on my stomach, as advised by Cazzie, and watch Elspeth kick it off from within! If she's like this at 22 weeks (well, it'll be 22 weeks tomorrow), what will she be like for the second half of the pregnancy?! It's so awesome to feel her in there; I tend to zone out a bit every time I feel her squirm and just focus on her instead of whatever I'm meant to be doing. I must look like I'm going batty sometimes, sitting with my hand on my belly and a faint smile on my face, staring at nothing!

    I have to figure out when I'm going to stop working. I've already stopped riding my scooter; when you spend a good twenty seconds staring at a button wondering what it does, only to realise it's the ignition, that's when it's time to stop!! So I'm taking the bus, which is turning out a lot easier and quicker than I had previously thought. Anyway, I should be able to work up until quite near the due date; my job is not physically strenuous and I can sit down for most of the day. On the other hand, I'm already suffering vagueness and fatigue (suffering is probably not quite the right word; on the whole I love being pregnant); I'm not sure how that will effect my work performance as these "symptoms" will undoubtedly become more pronounced!

    I also need to decide what and if and when and where to study. I mean, I know I want to complete some form of tertiary education, but being uncertain as to where we might be living for the next four years or so makes it difficult to contemplate anything other than online/correspondence courses. The problem with this is twofold: Firstly I'm not certain that I have the self-discipline to stick to my studies independently; and secondly I can't find any correspondence course that deals specifically with linguistics, which is what I'm very keen to study. I'll figure it out eventually, I'm sure: possibly a combination of on-and-off-campus learning, or just acknowledging that I may need to transfer to a different uni/mode of study halfway through. It'll all work out, somehow someday!!

    Thursday, February 26, 2009

    I would like to address a post to an occasional reader who goes by the name of Ubiquitous.

    It may come as a surprise to you to realise that I don't actually like you. It may further surprise you to know that this has nothing to do with our history or any wrong you may or may not have done me at any point (or vice versa). It is simply that your personality and mine do not match, and something fundamental about both of us prohibits me from liking you. It is at least as much myself as you who is to blame for this; I was essentially a child when we knew each other well and I have grown and changed considerably since then.

    This blog exists for a couple of reasons. Firstly I created it as a diary, a memory aid, so that I could look back on what I'd been doing and feeling and thinking at any given time. Secondly, over time, this blog has become part of a network of friends and a way of keeping in touch.

    I acknowledge that a blog exists in the public domain and that I have no right or power to actually stop somebody reading it. However, as you are not my friend and can have no real reason to be here, I ask that you restrain yourself from visiting as much as possible and refrain from leaving comments or any evidence of your presence at all.

    Please don't think that this is my way of dealing with critisism. Critisism, particularly from you, does not worry me. I am not that insecure. I just want you to get over me, and leave me alone. I've tried to be sort of nice, but now I just want to be honest. Nobody else I dislike bothers contacting me, I see no reason for you to be different. Thank you, and goodbye.

    Wednesday, February 25, 2009

    People really annoy me.

    So many people seem to think that the world owes them something, or that they should get something just because they want it.

    WRONG!

    You get what you work for, you receive in response to giving, you are owed what you lent.

    A person in Australia has both privileges (sometimes confused with rights) and responsibilities. However, to my mind, you should forfeit your privileges when you shirk your responsibilities. For instance, if you do not drive your car in a responsible manner, your licence may be taken away from you. Driving is not your right; if it were you wouldn't need to pass a test in order to do so.

    This rule of thumb extends to other, more abstract, concepts. Taking responsibility for your actions on the whole ensures the continuation of privileges such as respect as well as more tangible things.

    But in our increasingly-Americanised society, accepting responsibility is a thing of the past. People blame the police for giving them a speeding fine (to stick with my cars/driving theme for now), yet never stop to think that they shouldn't have been speeding in the first place. In this time of passing-the-buck, why do we continue to allow privileges to those who do nothing to deserve them?

    I'm going to switch now from driving to social welfare. In Australia, you can get payments from the government for a variety of reasons: being unemployed, being disabled, being a single parent, and so on. Many of these people, no doubt, are doing the best they can and maybe even looking for work to pay their own way. But a huge marjority, from my own observation, are just sitting back and letting the taxpayer support them via government pensions. Never do these people grasp control and responsibility for their own lives; they are content to leech off the system and do nothing to deserve the assistance they get. Whilst I fully support the concept of helping those in need, I object to helping those who haven't tried to help themselves.

    Here's a nice little example, which doesn't reflect any particular individual but is a very common scenario:
    Bob is a herion addict who lives in government housing. Bob has no job, and is a petty criminal to fund his drug addiction He thinks stealing is ok, because he's strung out for the next hit, man. His girlfriend Sue is an alcoholic who works a couple of hours a week as a check-out chick. Their small child lives with them in the home they are both too apathetic towards to clean. They're rarely sober or coherent enough to adequately care for the child, or even for themselves. Neither of them completed highschool, and neither have ever held a job for more than two months before getting fired. They've both been living off government benefits and paying just $50 a week in rent for an extended period of time.

    These people have been given money and a home - they shoot up or get drunk with the cash and they shit on the home. (Literally: I've heard many stories of faeces trodden into carpet and used needles lying around.) There are rehabilitation programs and centres available (also provided by the government), but Bob and Sue have not bothered to take advantage of them. There are government-run employment agencies geared towards helping the disadvantaged. Our government will even pay for you to study at university if you want to, and you don't need to start paying them back until you're earning over $40,000. Every imaginable service is provided for them, and yet they continue to be a drain on society rather than contributing to it.

    I begin to have trouble seeing why our government, or anybody, should continue to assist Bob and Sue and others like them. They have forfeited their responsibilities to themselves and to their community; why do we continue to grant them privileges and rights?

    In my own country, when I have one, a person will have to satisfy strict criteria to qualify for any form of government assistance, and that will be limited. If you won't contribute to society and act as though you're part of it, you're on your own.

    Friday, February 20, 2009

    I've been feeling Bean (or, as I should now try to call her, Elspeth) move with increasing frequency and strength recently. But last night was the first time Aidan's been able to feel her from the outside! She booted him in the hand, and he pretended to be very upset. Those of you who are already mothers will likely understand when I say it's kind of eerie at the same time as being totally cool - there's a tiny person swooshing around inside there, and she's making herself known quite insistently! Very exciting, though. It's like a final confirmation: she's there, she's healthy, she's growing. I've also had people who I haven't said anything to ask me "How much longer?" so I'm obviously showing in a very pregnant-looking way now! It's getting slightly daunting: there are so many things I need to know and do and buy! But I have nearly five months until she's due, that's (hopefully) plenty of time to get organised. I'm booked in for prenatal classes in April/May, and a friend of a friend has recently given birth so there's a source of advice too, as well as that infinite resource known as the interweb. Not to mention my mother.

    Anyway, I'd better go and get organised for something a little more immediate: work.

    Thursday, February 19, 2009

    I get sad sometimes.

    Monday, February 16, 2009

    It's a girl!
    Or a boy with a labia!

    20 weeks from the outside


    And 20 weeks from the inside!

    Sunday, February 15, 2009

    I was going to hold off until tomorrow to blog... but I'm excited!

    I have my 20 week ultrasound tomorrow morning, and with any luck we'll be able to find out if Bean is a girl or boy! Beano or Beanette?

    I'll post pics here and on Facebook either way, or even if we don't actually find out - apparently sometimes they're shy, but given that this is Aidan's child I'm quite sure it will have exhibitionist tendencies. I feel like it's going to be a girl, god knows why, but Aidan thinks it'll be a boy.

    Really, there's no way at all of knowing... and we'll both be thrilled either way. Anyway, I'll stop blathering. I'll tell you how it goes tomorrow!

    Tuesday, February 10, 2009

    On a brighter note than my last post, I have decided to shave my head in the interests of raising money! Yes, the Leukaemia Foundation's "World's Greatest Shave" is happening again this year, and I'm doing it for the first time. I've had a couple of pleas (from members of the older generation) to colour my hair rather than shave it off, but lets face it, I ALWAYS colour my hair. There's no point gaining sponsorship for something I do all the time anyway! Whilst I feel a bit funny doing a second post in a row asking for money... I'm going to anyway. If you feel the desire to sponsor me, you can click here if you like! And in mid-March I'll shave my head and post the pics here and you can all laugh at me! Surely that's worth $10 or so? :)