Wednesday, August 31, 2011


One of my brothers has a full time job that only really requires him to work a few hours a day.
‘Work smarter not harder,’ he tells me, as we set off for our daily constitutional by 2pm in the afternoon.

Often by this stage, Q and I have already been on a couple of walks, possibly a swim, done some serious crawling in the park, admired the planes, birds and dogs in the neighbourhood, thrown some food around the kitchen, sung a few songs, done a few dances and Q has napped long enough for me to put on a load of washing and contemplate cleaning the floor, so I am – justifiably I feel – a little pooped.

In the early walking days, (as a runner I was having a hard time adjusting to walking as a legitimate form of exercise) I used to carry or push Q myself as a bit of extra training, but now I happily offload her to her uncle and enjoy the hour with two arms all to myself.

Now, we are both redheads and people always think redheads are related even if they’re not but for some reason, with a kid in between us, people suddenly think we’re both the makers of the human.
Which is creepy.
And really, really gross.

The upside to this – for my brother of course – is that carrying this human ably and comfortably in his arms also means he gets hit on by all and sundry.
Young and old, male and female, partnered or not, he gets the look.
You know the one.

I used to get it.
Once upon a time.

Or perhaps more accurately I got it once, once upon a time.

Whatever, I remember it in the dim recesses of my brain back when I was glamorous and exotic.

Hang on a minute.
That’s the person I imagine I am.

Well I must have gotten the look at least once, or I wouldn’t be here to tell this tale of my daughter the romance magnet.

My other brother’s friends regularly ask me if they can borrow her on a Saturday morning for a trip to the markets – their ‘niece’ in one arm, a bunch of organic asparagus in the other, they get more hits than a smack addict on a bender.

So, since I can’t seem to land a gig at the mo’ I’ve decided to hire her out.

Whatdya reckon?

80 bucks an hour?

I provide all food and other equipment, all that’s required is that you return her in the same condition as when she left.
Except if she’s yelling. Then you can’t return her until she’s stopped.

I mean, if she got a commercial or a film or something I could take the profits and she wouldn’t even know, so where’s the difference?

Contact me if interested.

Monday, August 29, 2011


I belong to this funny little website that posts audition notices that you can submit yourself for.
Today they’re looking for
·               a case study who feels cosmetic surgery has changed her life
·               a go-go dancer for an immediate start in Kuala Lumpar
·               participants for a World Record Attempt in the largest bikini parade


A mother who is willing to give up multi-tasking for a week.

That would be a really shite week.

Here’s what would have been compromised if I hadn’t multi-tasked this morning:

·               Laundry versus getting dressed – I have a little system of sorting laundry while letting my deodorant dry, picking up Gregory’s leave-em-where-I-drop-em dirty socks while pulling on a pair of jeans and starting the laundry while cleaning my teeth since the bathroom and laundry are the same room.
·               Q getting dressed versus…actually that’s one thing I can’t do while multi-tasking, in fact I could do with 9 extra arms, because she is a little wriggling, excitable mover who has developed an awesome new break-dance move where she flips to her tummy and starts crawling at lightning speed all in the same motion.
·               Packing Q’s emergency outing bag while answering the phone. (Having lived 8 years overseas and only seen my brothers every six months or so, we now talk several times a day and usually see each other at least twice. It’s very daggy).
·               Putting on sun cream while wrangling Q as she wrestles with the shower curtain. Many a time I wear it in my eye and have a red, itchy eyeball for the rest of the day.
·               Hanging out laundry while talking to the neighbour over the fence and stopping Q from eating a Slater. Which one would you let slide?
·               Put away washing up from last night while hosting a Tupperware and saucepan party for Miss Q.
·               Writing this blog while spilling a cup of tea on the desk, narrowly missing the computer and eating lunch – a ferrero rocher and a chocolate mint slice biscuit - at 2.15 in the afternoon.

That's multi-tasking.

 And that's why women should run the world.


A slight correction to last night's blog.
I have absolutely nothing whatsoever in common with Megan Gale.

I meant Miranda Kerr.

I know I should be embarrassed but i'm not.
Perhaps because I do stupid things all the time.
Perhaps because I'm overtired.
Perhaps because it's funny that someone can be that ill-informed.
I even looked up how to spell Megan.

Have a great day.


Nothing, except we were both in David Jones today.

I know it’s a rubbish photo but I didn’t want to get any closer for fear I caught some of her foundation.
She was wearing A LOT.

Then again her face was completely unblemished while I was sporting a bloodied scab from a squeezed pimple right on the end of my rather substantial schnoz.

I don’t frequent DJ’s too often and that is not going to change as long as I’m accompanied by Q and her chariot, because every entrance of their street level begins with a set of stairs.
Of course they have that annoying drive-on lift thing for people in wheelchairs, but I’m shopping with the double handicap of a/ hating shopping and b/ lacking patience, so I just pick up all ten kilos of Q plus a few for her chariot, lug the thing up the stairs and continue on my way.

I don’t know what Miranda was doing in DJ’s (she looked a little irritated and bored if you ask me) but I was there to buy Miss Q a new hat because the one she currently wears is dually successful in both completely blocking her vision and simultaneously providing absolutely no protection whatsoever.
It is a total design FAIL.

I think they styled it on a butternut pumpkin instead of a human head.

Imagine a hat on that.

While I was there, I also picked her up a pair of sunglasses because she has Welsh-Irish-Melanoma-High-Alert heritage and as a responsible parent I felt compelled to do so.

But I’ll tell you something for nothing, they don’t do much for her looks, (They bamboozle her a bit - she doesn’t know where to look, so she rolls her head around a bit like a blinded fly) and I suspect the wearing of such things will cause an immediate cessation to the current stream of compliments I receive about my girl.

Although let’s be real, no one’s actually going to come up to you and tell you your kid is ugly.

Are they?

Miranda had gone by the time I’d finished my shopping, which was a shame, I would have gladly shared my table while I breastfed Q in public, because upon closer consideration, I do have something in common with Megan Gale.

No, no, it’s not the breastfeeding in stilettos, she stole that idea from me.

Nor is it the drug-free labour. I did that too, although that could also be because it happened too fast for me to even ask about medical intervention.

Ditto getting back into her size negative clothes.
Yeah, same.
I didn’t even have to move out of mine. I just wore my designer hipsters and an extra-long singlet made for me by the same designer Heidi Klum used when she was pregnant.

No, no, the thing we have in common is far more significant.
Real life changing stuff…

Our kid’s names rhyme.

Oooooooooooooooooh folks, what do you think that means???

Sunday, August 28, 2011


You know, you get a lot of compliments as a mother.
It’s just that none of them are about yourself.

‘Oh isn’t she cute.’

‘Gee she looks engaged.’

‘She’s talking well.’
No she’s not. It’s babble with a few mamamamamas thrown in, usually in the form of a whinge.

‘Wow she’s alert.’
I find this statement somewhat odd. It’s like people are shocked to find my child is not permanently lying in her pram in a semi-comatose state.

‘Oh what beautiful eyes she has.’
Nup. Can’t even take that as a compliment because both my husband and I have blue eyes so it was a sure bet she was going to get them. 
Unless I’d been diddling with the postman…

‘My she’s busy.’
That’s not a compliment at all. That’s actually code for ‘does she ever stop?’

It goes on and on till you just accept them all with a smile and a non-committal ‘yeah she goes orright’ because you don’t want people to think you think she’s engaged, cute, alert, busy, pretty, gorgeous, delightful…blah blah blah, even though you do, because that would make you seem like the mother of all mother-wankers and then all the other mothers talk about you behind your back in mother’s group and then they start making arrangements to meet at a time they know you can’t because you’ve become the mother-wanker hate sponge.
There’s one in every group, and you’re it because you couldn’t disguise the fact that you agree with every stranger who says something nice about your child.

Oh hang on, I don’t go to mother’s group.
Perhaps that’s why…
Anyway, the other day I got the best compliment we’ve ever had in our 9-month relationship.
Someone told my sister-in-law that ‘Q and Naomi look so happy together’.

Isn’t that brilliant?

Buggar the looks, that’s genetics.
Yeah she's a cute kid, but Gregory and I are no supermodels so we’re really hoping she didn’t peak too early.

Her social personality can’t be credited to us too much either.
I suppose we orchestrated it, but I’d say she’s social because she spent the first few months of her life surrounded by her family because we were living with her grandparents, uncle and sister-in-law as us kids waited for our apartments to become available. 
Now she just assumes everyone she meets is there for her complete joy and satisfaction.

Ditto her energy, that’s just the kind of kid she is.

But the fact that she looks happy being with me?
I’ll take that.

Because I’m not gonna lie, (and I don’t care what the mother’s group says) I’m pretty darn happy being with her.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


When G and I were preparing for the arrival of our human, we packed our ‘labour bag’ with all sorts of goodies we would be told we would most definitely need.
·               spray bottles to cool me down
·               prunes. To prevent any difficulties resulting from the downstairs trauma I presume
·               jellybeans for sugar hit
·               takeaway menu for nearby pizza joint.
·               Large underwear. (It was a matter of extreme vanity that I got back into my g-strings and out of those horrendous grannie-panties just as fast as I possibly could).
·               Heat pack. Nice idea. No chance it was ever being used.
·               Ural or other such UTI-preventer. This labour gig is so not classy.
·               iPod to keep us company throughout the long ordeal

Except ours wasn’t a long ordeal. In fact that bag didn't even leave the car until after Q arrived.

But after the family had left, the midwives had done their duties, Q was soundly sleeping in her little Moses basket, my husband lay in an exhausted post-adrenalin slumber on the bed, I plugged in that iPod and put it on shuffle, and as I gazed down at my two favourites, this is the lyric I heard…

you want her all over again…

It’s a song by The Audreys called Pale Dress, and while the rest of the lyrics - in fact the entire story of the song - are completely inappropriate, every time I hear it played, my heart leaps back to that Teflon moment late on that shining summer’s night.

Nothing could touch me. 

Not the adrenalin, the fatigue, the pain, the exhaustion, nothing penetrated but the unfathomable love and joy I felt for the man who gave me the human I had just met.

My most glorious human.

Invented, manufactured and produced by Llewellyn Hart Productions.

Happy 9 months Q,
I would, I could, everyday I know...

I want you all over again.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

THE DANCING SECRETARY - Today's Profile of a Stranger

There’s a woman in my tap class who intrigues me.
She’s short – petite. Pear shaped but that’s most definitely a compliment. Her figure suits her and she’s slender, just shaped like a pear.
She’s very attractive; her eyes are magnificent with makeup. Dark and exotic. Tonight she wasn’t wearing any.
She’ll age well, she’s older than you think. It’s her heritage. Armenian father, mother from Cyprus. They gave her great skin.
She’s a legal secretary. A very good one. She works for the top guy at a top firm. He knows she’s good, so he treats her very well. Great pay, gifts for Christmas and birthday and she can leave early if she needs to. Though she never does, there’s too much to do and she’s very conscientious.
Dancing is a hobby for her. She’s single though, and she knows that taking dance class three nights a week – a class filled with girls and gay men isn’t going to help her out in that department much.
She’s had a few boyfriends, but she’s a bit more of a traditionalist than they seem to care for. She should have married the boy she dated at high school, but that seemed too predictable to her.
And now it’s too late. He’s long married, with children.
She’d love children, adores her nephews and she knows she’s still got time.
She’d like to travel with her man before they have babies though, so she hopes he turns up soon.
People think she appears a tad snooty, but really she’s just shy. It’s a common mistake with shy, pretty girls. It’s presumed your looks give you confidence to be open and gregarious, but it’s just not her. Besides, she doesn’t think she’s that pretty. Not pretty enough to break down all social barriers.
She bought an apartment in Neutral Bay years ago. She’s an excellent saver and she inherited some money from her Cyprian grandfather. He migrated here and established a very successful importing business, supplying other immigrants with treats and treasures from their homelands.
But she always heads home for Sunday family dinner. Parents, brothers, their wives and sons, and her mother’s delicious almond honey dessert.
It starts her week off right.

This is today's profile of a stranger...

Monday, August 22, 2011


In honour of Q’s 9-month anniversary, I’ve decided to keep the celebrations going and celebrate some of the crazy, odd, rude, weird and funny things people have said to me during the growing, delivery and earth-dwelling moments of the divine Miss Q.

In no particular order…

‘Are you a natural redhead?’ a shoe saleswoman says to me when I’m 39 weeks pregnant and decided I really needed to buy a new pair of shoes.
‘Yeah, I’m way too lazy to dye it,’ I reply, I get this question reasonably often.
‘You’d better watch out then. Redheads don’t clot well. Be careful you don’t haemorrhage to death.’
I sure don’t get that answer all the time.

‘If you want to do everything you can to avoid a miscarriage,’ says the doctor I saw for the first and last time after this comment, ‘avoid spicy food and running.’
I had already run 60k’s that week.
By the way, there is absolutely no scientific evidence to support the theory that exercise can induce a miscarriage.
So there.

‘You’re definitely carrying a boy.’
The only person who was right was the old bloke who works at the funeral parlour on the corner.

‘Oh no, you won’t feel an episiotomy,’ says the midwife who took us through our antenatal classes, ‘they do it at the height of a contraction.’
Contractions hurt more than having my clacker snipped without anaesthetic.
Is there any way out of this?

‘It looks like you got at yourself with a whipper snipper,’ my husband proclaims when he sees the home-job bikini wax I performed on myself mid pregnancy, when I couldn’t see the offending area.

‘Miso soup is excellent for labouring women.’
No idea why. I think the midwife that told us that just likes it.

‘Try some nipple tweaking and rigorous sex,’ my godmother alarmingly informs me during my final weeks, which were full of brutal pre-labour, ‘that ought to bring this baby on.’
It didn’t.
Nor did running ten k’s.
My girl came when she was good and ready, but when she came, boy did she come. See point below.

‘Is this normal?’ Gregory mouths to the midwife halfway through our very fast labour.
‘No,’ she mouths back, ‘but she’s doing an excellent job.’

‘Eat an egg a day and the baby will slip right out of you.’
Boy am I glad I didn’t do this. She would have flown out.

‘Oh, your daughter likes to get around naked,’ a mother comments to me when Q was rudee-nudee in the middle of last year’s sweltering summer. ‘Careful, not liking clothing is one of the first signs of autism.’

‘Wack a cabbage leaf inside your maternity bra to prevent mastitis.’
Enough said.

‘Hmmmmm,’ a concerned child worker said to me a while ago, ‘you really want to encourage Q to crawl before she walks. If she doesn’t she may be dyslexic.

And my most recent favourite…
‘Isn’t it nice you had a daughter,’ an old lady says to me at the swimming pool last week. ‘You’ll have your daughter for the rest of your life. But not your sons. Daughters-in-law are like the war, they take your sons away.’

Happy 9 months Q.
Without you, I never would have known any of this.
And then where would I be?


Today was Q’s 9-month anniversary and she decided to celebrate by putting her arms in the air and saying ‘up’.
Not once, not twice, but three times as a request to be picked up.

She is a genius.

Or she would be if she could remember she’d done it.
No amount of cajoling, monkey-ing or bribing has prompted her to say it again.

I celebrated by rejoicing in my mother-in-law.

Odd, you might say, as women often have fractious relationships with the mother they inherit.
But who could be fractious with a woman who bakes a triple batch of choc-chip cookies, puts them in a box and sends them to you across the universe.
I am not kidding. That is the kind of mother-in-law I have.

Holding to the theory that broken cookies have had a calorie leak, and not wanting the cookie jar to look untidy with any misshapen pieces, I dutifully munched my way through about 17 of those babies, all of them poor and injured, having suffered a couple of fractures on their long flight.

Gregory didn’t eat any because he has been struck down with the vomit bug.

I tell you, euthanasia is looking like his best option these days.

Man Flu, slipped disc and now gastro.

How much can a man wife take?

I don’t know why I ever thought I’d make a good doctor.
My bedside manner is dreadful.
Then again, Gregory’s bedside is dreadful so perhaps it’s fair.

Miss Q knocked her lip over the weekend (because she is gung-ho and determined to stand and walk) and caused it to bleed.

Instantly I snatched her out of Gregory’s arms and sang our special ‘I love you’ song till she calmed.

Poor G. He’s lucky if I pass him a bucket.

Wife love. Mother love.
Jeez, are they ever different.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


A while ago someone said to me that they ‘couldn’t understand my reasoning for bringing a child into the world. I wouldn’t dare bring a kid into a place as sorry as this,’ they said.

And as I sat down at my computer today, I would probably have to agree.

It’s my fault for having the Sydney Morning Herald as my homepage I suppose, but today it’s cheerily reporting:
·               The death of a 4 year old, mauled by a pit bull
·               A mother of 4 dies after a routine operation
·               They have a found a shoe at the site where they suspect Daniel Morcombe is buried
·               The Murdoch’s are faffing around trying to wriggle out of accountability with their disgraced media empire
·               Gerard Depardieu peed in an airplane aisle, and…
·               A man was eaten by a shark whilst on his honeymoon

These are all horrible, horrible events - even the Gerard Depardieu incident. Imagine if you were sitting next to him – but what depressed me even more was that to find out information about the current state of the famine in Somalia, I had to wade through something about Kurt Cobain’s daughter coming of age, the dangers of teeth whitening and some elevator gossip twitter sensation who works for US Vogue.

Now that could make you question the world your child will inhabit.

So then I looked for the good stuff. They were also reporting…actually no, it seriously is a depressing day for news. Not much positive stuff at all.

But I’m positive.

Miss Q could grow up to discover the cure for cancer, or AIDS, or rudeness.

She could be a champion hurdler and inspire other youngsters to exercise and help reverse the tide of obesity in this nation.

Perhaps she’ll become a nurse and work in aged care. Looking after the very people who say we shouldn’t be having any more children.

Maybe she won’t be spectacular at anything in particular at all. Maybe she’ll just be, no not maybe, definitely she’ll be a loving, gracious and kind citizen of the world.

And I reckon that’s reason enough.
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