Friday, June 29, 2012

Unexpected Suprises!

Thank you shopadocket!  I never check the back of my supermarket receipts because there's never any vouchers of interest on there, so don't bother.  The other day, for some reason I flipped it over and discovered a lovely little gem.  Discount voucher for the hairdressers... a very good valued voucher.  And it got better... it was from the hairdressers I've been to once before and had planned to make my regular hairdresser.  And I'd been needing a haircut and colour for a long time (with a friend's wedding coming up, I knew I really needed a freshening up!).  I couldn't believe I was looking at this great voucher!  It was perfect timing.

So, I booked myself in and arranged a friend to babysit Little Spring.  And what a fantastic morning I've had.  I knew I was in for more than just a cut and colour, going by the package that was on offer, but there was really a surprise around each corner.

When I got there, they took me to their beauty section, where they waxed my eyebrows and then proceeded to tint them and my eyelashes... something I've wanted to do for quite a while.  That was an unexpectedly nice surprise.  When they'd finished with my eyes, they proceeded to do a mini facial.  Mm... relaxation, followed by a shampoo.  Totally relaxing!

I was then taken back to the salon section, where the hairdresser cut my hair.  At this point, I figured that my pampering experience (aside from the usual cut and colour) was over.  It looked great, having a fresh new cut, and I hadn't even had the colour put in yet.  Next came the colour and waiting whilst the colour 'took'.

I was then taken back over to the beauty section, where the basins are and they rinsed the colour out.  I was once again pleasantly surprised when this was followed by a hair treatment, slight scalp massage and a hot towel wrap on the hair.  Heavenly!  This was surely the peak of my pampering.  Nope!  She rinsed the treatment out and then proceeded to perform an even deeper scalp massage!  Mm... this couldn't get any better!

With the hair rinsed, it was time to go back to the salon section for my hair to get dried and styled.  Well, that's what I was expecting... instead, once I was seated, the assistant asked if I was ready for my Indian Head Massage (including shoulders).  Oh, yes indeedy, I was ready!

Finally, the hairdresser dried and styled my hair and that was the end of my "me" time!  All whilst enjoying a delicious hot chocolate and yummy bite sized "Boost" bar!

After paying for this pampering session (well over 3 hours worth!), they handed me a gift bag packed with even more value... three more vouchers for free, valued between $40 and $80, a mini book on 'styling essentials' and hair product samples.  I love value for money and I walked out of there a very happy lady!

The eyes have it - waxed and tinted!

Lighter and more coverage than I was expecting but still love it!  I had told the hairdresser that I wanted a lighter colour this time, so it's not like I didn't actually ask for it!

So, what do you think!?

This experience has certainly taught me that I need to check my supermarket receipts in future, to make sure I'm not missing out on any more shopadocket gems!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Five Minute Friday: Risk

It's been awhile, but I'm linking up with Five Minute Friday again... here are the rules:

1. Write for 5 minutes flat – no editing, no over thinking, no backtracking.
2. Link back here at Lisa-Jo's house and invite others to join in.
3. And then absolutely, no ifs, ands or buts about it, you need to visit the person who linked up before you & encourage them in their comments. Seriously. That is, like, the rule. And the fun. And the heart of this community..


I don't skydive, or bungy jump, or jump into pools full of electric eels... but I lead a risky life.  Well, at least on my blog.  Putting something on my blog is risky; whenever I post about something I want to do, or a challenge for myself, I'm making it public.  That means accountability.  If I don't do it or achieve it, everyone will know about it.  There's nothing private about the failure.  But it gives me incentive to do it!  My "Cooking Like Grandma Experiment", my "36 to 36" challenge and many others.

I'm also taking a risk when I put my opinion out there.  Everyone has they're own view and it's often different from your own.  I've just posted about how we are potty training our daughter.  Many will disagree with our method.

I often put my heart on my sleeve... or at least I try to.  I run the risk of opening myself up to people who don't really care.  Right now I'm telling you all that our beautiful daughter was conceived through IVF.  A million reasons that can fall under the category "risk", both from the perspective of the actual procedure as well as just talking about it now and how we came to have a wonderful almost 3 year old in our lives.


Wow!  Five minutes is so restrictive!  LOL.  I always get cut off mid thought, so will need to learn to touch type much faster!

Friday, June 22, 2012

#36 (36 to 36)

I've started another task on my list today... Number 36:
Be more intentional with Little Spring's toilet training, without pushing her. Look into it a lot more (have already Facebook researched it amongst friends) for hints, tips etc.
Basically, using the feedback I received from my friends on Facebook, I decided to just go ahead and start a new method for Little Spring's toilet/potty training. There is SO much information on the web, that it can all get a bit confusing and overwhelming, so thought I'd go with what I sort of already thought, that was confirmed or enhanced further by the feedback. To condense what I wrote on Facebook in my response to everyone's feedback: I've heard it before, but they all confirmed it for me that basically it should be child-led, not parent-led and not to push until they are ready themselves. For quite awhile now, we've kept Little Spring in nappies, but encouraged her to sit on the potty and do wees. She then gets half a snake for her efforts. She's now refusing the potty more (I've heard kids can regress for a little while) and thought I might step up the effort, with a different tact. After reading all the experiences of my "Mum" friends, I liked the idea of a chart... Little Spring's at a better age to understand what that means now. I don't want to push Little Spring too much, especially after I've heard a number of mums comment about the heartache and wasted effort, when ultimately the child really decides they're ready, but think a change of tact and vamped up effort might work.

Firstly I purchased all the 'supplies' I would need - stickers, Freddo Frogs, and small & major achievement rewards. It was a little hard finding the smaller toys... I didn't want to buy anything too 'cheap and nasty' but I didn't want to spend lots of money either, so I found toys that had multiple elements in the packet that could be divided up into a number of rewards (playdoh sets, cooking sets etc) and found a couple bargains in the $1 bin in Big W. There was also a 'throw away' bin of some great toys that are normally quite expensive but they were getting rid of them really cheaply that I could use for the major achievement rewards (Snow White and 2 Dwarf figurines). Secondly, in true Nelle fashion, I went a little OCD on the details of the chart and printed something out and laminated it. I laminated it so that Little Spring could stick her stickers on it, but could reuse it as required and not have to print it off each time we restarted or filled it up. Laminating also protects the paper from getting tatty. Anyway, here's the plan...

Little Spring's reward chart and stickers. For every wee she does, she gets 1 sticker. For every poo she does, she gets 2 stickers. I bought 2 types of stickers for her to choose from - stars and flowers in a multitude of colours. Little Spring knows shapes and colours well, but for children that don't, this chart would also have a bonus learning element when choosing their sticker/s. It does, however, help Little Spring with her counting and she can actually see the value of counting in a 'real life' situation.

I know that there are some very conflicting views on how to teach a child to become toilet trained (like all child-rearing, everyone has their own view and there is never one way that everyone agrees on), so I understand that some readers may not agree with our method, and that's okay. I'd love to hear your own method (please leave a comment below), but please don't judge us for ours.

I included a picture of Jemima from Playschool on Little Spring's chart as I wanted something familiar on there. She received Jemima at the recent concert she went to and loves her. Jemima will help her count the stickers and I'm hoping I can use the actual doll as a way of connecting on a different level. Anyway, once Little Spring has achieved 5 stars in a day, she receives a Freddo Frog.

I was going to have a "small achievement reward" at the end of 7 days, but as I had so many things up my sleeve, and 7 days is a long time for Little Spring's age, we decided to change to every 2 days. I put all the rewards in a box and she can choose one thing out of the box each time.

At the end of 7 days, Little Spring can then choose her major reward of a Disney character. Once we have our first full successful week, I'll tweak the reward system accordingly. I have no idea how this will go and it could possibly be a complete flop! Big Spring and I are on the same page, however and don't want to push her in anyway. We are offering her the incentives and encouraging her to use the potty or toilet (her choice of which), but it will be up to her to say yes. If she says no, that's fine (disappointing, but fine!) and we'll ask again later. So, that's the plan... wish us luck and please let me know your thoughts on toilet training (how you toilet trained, how successful you were and your advice etc)...


Further reading: If you are interested in the information I collated from Facebook here it is:

I asked the question "Parents: I need some advice! Would love your feedback on how and when you toilet trained your child/ren... and whether you'd do the same again. Did they fight against it, or was it their choice/did it willingly?" and received these answers (with some very minor editing on my part):

Mum #1: I was 'told' that I should start toilet training Lachlan because he was 2 and leading into summer. So I started and I would not do that again as what followed for 2yrs of pain. Both girls though were wanting to wear undies before I was ready and despite me trying to hold off both basically toilet trained themselves by the time they were 2 and half. My recommendation they will let you know when they are a little interested. Encourage but don't stress if are are not showing any indication that they want to be toilet training at the 'right age". Each child will progress at their own pace.

Mum #2: With my children summer Autumn was the best time to toilet train them. Good QLD weather is the best for that. Mine were easy to train. I never stressed about it and I encouraged them. I had 2 summer babies and 2 winter ones. While I say it was easy, I know some parents do have their struggles.

Mum #3: Josh my first was so easy, summer times a great time and he was 2. Tyler started well at 2 but then decided he didn't want to do it anymore so back to nappies, then I was worrying cause he was coming up 3 and had no interest, but some slight encouragement and he decided he was right, and Hayley did the same started at 2 was doing really well then just decided she didn't want to, gave her a month or two and we tried again and she's doing excellent even out of night nappies now and she's 3 next month, but I don't think it should be forced; encouraged but they know when they are ready.

Mum #4: Cloth nappies, if you have them are a great way to introduce the sensation of wet to your little one. I basically start when then can pull on and take off their pants. I don't use pull ups, particularly in the early training as they are too much like undies and seems to confuse things. I also time wees, and have recently seen an expert article suggest that this is better than teaching them to hold on. To begin with, on the hour, and then tweak it up or down to give the child easy success. Noting that a big drink can be followed sooner than you think by the wee. And becoming a broken record of "poos go in the toilet" or "wees go in the toilet"...but not a frustrated record. And don't ask me about poo training, I've just finished with no4 and still don't have a clear plan as timing has never worked for me. I always get the wees first. If they are young, 1-2.5 years, its important for the adults to be responsible for reminding when to go, as they are a bit young to take on the responsibility by themselves.

Mum #5: We're just mucking around with toilet training - had first accident today and not sure I can be bothered pursuing this. But we're home this afternoon so we'll go nappy free again and see how that goes! Pity it's the beginning of winter - agree summer would be a better time

Mum #6: Have you ever seen a 21 year old in nappies? No I had trouble with my youngest, he has a lot of tummy and bottom issues; at first I was stressed as I wanted him trained to go to 3 year old kinder when he was about to turn 4. First he had no idea there was no hold gesture or anything. Then I placed Undies inside the pullup... they feel the wet but your flooring does not! I became really stressed as birthday 4 came and he did not go! One day I kid you not I put him in undies to teach him, he wet them, I slipped on the wee not knowing it was there fell on my back and hurt myself! he saw it all happen, and went to the toilet after that. Cyndi was 3 and so was Josh. It is in normal range! ask but do not stress, she will when she wants, my story proves it. Josh started just after 3 cos he was scared of the toilet and hated the potty, he went toilet because they changed the pull up design from mickey mouse to buzz light year, he was not happy and decided toilet was better. Its not just about the feeling the need to go its all about confidence. Some are good and some are unsure. Keep yourself happy and it will happen. Do not listen to braggers. Last year in prep there were two mums who bragged their children were trained at 18 months.... but those very same children pooed in their pants on a regular basis! Cyndi decided to go to toilet when she saw what was in Joshua's nappy and disliked the dirty look! they are all different. it will happen

Mum #7: When I pushed the issue nothing happened. I just took my cues from him!

Mum #8: Too long ago to remember!  Pull-ups were great for night.

Mum #9: Someone once told me that if the parents use the toilet, the children will eventually use it too! I had two in nappies at one time, but I don't remember toilet training to be a big issue. What I would have given for pull-ups!!!!

Mum #10: I reckon later is better than too early - the earlier ones seem to be having more accidents for longer. I had two aborted attempts due to F screaming about having to do poos. I did the naughty thing and actually pushed her on this on the 3rd attempt as I knew she was pretty much okay for wees - took a day of lots of tears but from them on was pretty much trained (27 months or so). We had a box of treats and a chart (with rows of 10 dots) and she got one sticker for a wee and two for a poo and she would stick them on her chart - once she had 10 she could pick something out of the box. Worked a treat. For a few days she was focused on the stickers but soon forgot asking for them and although we kept them for the odd big treat, that was it. First few weeks out and about are a bit touchy ... dreading that bit!! But good luck!

Mum #11: I toilet trained Tom at about 3, and Maddy toilet trained herself at 2.5, I made her wait until I was on annual leave, she was ready earlier. Both only took about a week, it's just waiting for their cues. If you do it too early it's pain for everyone involved. Don't feel pressured from anyone.

Mum #12: There was some resistance from both boys for about a week, but with toilet training charts etc. they slowly got the hang of it. Girls are meant to get it quicker and drier! No 2 is still having accidents before he knows to go and it's been nearly 9 months of undies now! None of us mind. My fault - I forget to do the hourly reminder to go. Easily by 2 1/2 y.o.

Mum #13: A wise person once told me, "If the parents are toilet trained, then the children will be too!" [Guess which 2 sisters responded to my question on Facebook, with the same answers?!]

Mum #14: My advice would be look for cues eg- sometimes she might actually stop what she's doing and realize she is weeing then use that to talk about going to toilet etc... Everyone has their own way of doing it and some start early some later, with kiara I followed "the book" and it was more stressful than anything and I took her to doctors thinking something was wrong with her he gave me best advice wait for her and I've done that with other 2 and been much more successful you can always encourage to by taking Little Spring to choose her own knickers. Do what works for you two and follow your mother instinct; better to be patient and get it right then rush it because somebody tells you it's time.

Mum #15: Caleb has a star chart and if he did a wee he got a star. If he got 5 stars in a day he got a Chocky Frog. If he got 5 stars a day for 7 days he got a match box car. Poo's was a whole different story.I asked him about every 45 minutes to start with and made sure I was home most of the day. He was not quite 3 and after two weeks we had no wet pants - again poo's a whole other story!

Mum #16: We are only just approaching this milestone with Micah. I found this article helpful: As a result, I purchased a couple of the books she recommended and Micah LOVES them. He wants to read them at bed time every night!! He hasn't used the potty yet but he is doing LOTS of potty role playing and conversation. I know he will get there and will just follow his cues while providing an environment that encourages the use of the potty.

Mum #17: I agree with the others who say to wait until they are ready. Just after Ruby turned two she was ready, but we were so busy with end of year stuff and Christmas that we missed our opportunity. Also as her big disabled brother is still in nappies we didn't push the issue. She asked to go a couple times during the year but it wasn't until the week before her third birthday when she said "mum, I want to wear knickers now", got some Dora ones for her birthday and never looked back. Well, I exaggerate, it wasn't that easy.. Lots of accidents, especially when over-tired or distracted, but a couple of months later I thought 'wow I haven't had an accident in a while'. The same thing happened with night nappies a few months later.

Mum #18: We let H pick a potty and some undies a while back and talked to him about big boys wearing undies. We'd ask him occasionally if he wanted to use the potty or wear undies and he'd say "soon". My folks were over at Easter and he decided to go into undies then. I then just kept reminding him to keep his undies dry and use the potty if he needed to go. I had a packet of these Cadbury tiny egg-shaped M&M things and gave him one when he produced something in potty in addition to lavish praise. Took about a week and a half -set back a bit as he wouldn't use potty at child care. So we're lucky in that when he decided he was ready, he just got it.

Mum #19: After telling me for a few weeks when he had a dirty nappy, a week before master 3's birthday I started sitting him on the potty in front of the tv for 10 mins immediately after breakfast (a treat for him!), just to get him used it. After a week he actually used it, and he was rewarded with a mini M&M from a tube I had bought. I told him he could get more if he used the potty more, and he was successful a few more times that day, but the next day he used it something like 20 times to get a choc! I ended alternating between the chocs and a bottle of bubbles that he could blow after using the potty. Only had a few accidents, but with constant reminding about needing to wee (you need to wee before we do such-and-such) he very easily made the transition to the toilet.   I think that was the main thing - we had him in jocks from when he started using the potty, then I made it that he had to pee before we did anything (before morning tea, before we went outside, before we went in the car etc), and made it clear that we weren't going anywhere until he had been.
He chose his own jocks at the shop. He had been waiting until night time for a nappy for number 2s for the first 3 nights, so we set up a reward chart to encourage number 2's, and he was able to pick a small car at the shop after 10 stars.  We flew to Sydney for a weekend on day 3 of training (not ideal timing, but he was ready and we didn't want to stop him), and rewarded him with a bigger chocolate when he was successful with number 2's for the first time on the toilet. Only one accident that weekend and that was when we didn't ask him to wee before he fell asleep in the pram.   We restricted drinks after tea and he has only wet a handful of times overnight since training. We didn't want him to be dependent on pull-ups so we only used them for a couple of weeks, cos I know too many 5 year-olds who still need to wear them. For a while, if he refused to go to the toilet before bed we'd tell him that he needed to wear a pull-up, and he decided before long that he was a big boy and wanted to wear jocks. Definitely helped that he was ready. The right incentive helps too (helps with all manner of 'training'), but it doesn't have to be expensive or too excessive (I never thought a bottle of bubbles and mini M&M's would work for toilet training, but it did!!).

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Dear Friends in Adelaide

Before coming home after our trip to Brisbane and the Gold Coast, we travelled further south to Adelaide, SA so we could attend our 18 month review/debrief (wow... it's hard to believe that we've been in Cairns for almost that length of time).

Because the wives of the graduating pastors for 2010 are so close, it was a wonderful time of fellowship and catching up, even though it was a 'requirement' and 'facilitated'.  It was helpful to share our struggles, challenges and praise points at our respective parishes as a group.  On the Wednesday night, we organised a gathering of the husbands, wives and kids (where applicable).  Many of us hadn't seen each other since the husbands were ordained; a lot had change, obviously, in those 18 months!  Here's what we captured on the night:

The Pastors from the Graduating Class of 2010 (minus one)

The Wives of the Pastors from the Graduating Class of 2010! (again, minus one)

And we attempted to get the kids all in one shot... but that was never going to happen:

 All the kids at least in one spot, even if not ready for a picture, so I attempt to take a quick snap because I don't know how long that moment will last... but someone's butt got in the way! (I won't mention who the guilty party is... lets see if the rightful owner recognises their own derriere!)

 Samuel and Little Spring staying put while the rest of the kids go AWOL before we get a chance to snap a formal picture

Almost all the kids gathered, but Micah and Grace not happy (brother and sister) and Eliza takes the opportunity to make a break for it

I give up on a group shot and try and snap some individual poses so we at least have a picture of every kid to look back on and compare at our next reunion...

Poor Samuel, he just sat patiently throughout the whole ordeal wondering what the big deal was.  He stayed in place and posed, ready for the camera!

Micah now happy as he was free from the torturous horrors of having to sit and pose for a group shot!

Unfortunately we never got a picture of all the kids together before we left the Sem in 2010 (I'm saddened by this, but wanted to make up for it with the group shot attempted above, but at least we tried this time!).  Anyway, here are the group shots of the adults from their respective ordinations and graduations (Sem Wives Graduation Celebration - an annual event for the departing wives):

 2010 Ordination Class

Sem Wives Graduation Class

Sunday, June 17, 2012

A New Week

Tomorrow is Monday.  And I'll be starting my weekly planner (activity list).  I'm excited!  It means a 6am start but it also means an exercise plan, healthy eating, better time management and hopefully a more fulfilling week.  A lot to ask of a little planner, but I'm sure it's up to the challenge!

Time to head to bed and write a few more cards (#12 on my list) and spend some time listening to God through my devotion (#8 on my list).  Better get moving... it's an early start in the morning!

How to Plant Your Garden

I don't know where this originated, but I received this via email and thought I'd share it on my blog.

How To  Plant Your Garden 

First, you come to the garden alone, while the dew is still on the roses.

(image credit: taken by my Aunty Ellen)

For the garden of your daily living:-

Plant three rows of peas:

Peace of  mind
Peace of heart
Peace of soul

Plant four rows of squash:

Squash gossip
Squash indifference
Squash grumbling
Squash selfishness

Plant Four Rows of Lettuce:

Lettuce be faithful
Lettuce be kind
Lettuce be patient
Lettuce really love one another

No Garden is Without Turnips:

Turnip for meetings
Turnip for service
Turnip to help one another

To Conclude Our Garden You Must Have Thyme:

Thyme for God
Thyme for each other
Thyme for family
Thyme for friends
Water freely with patience and cultivate with love.  There will be much fruit in your garden because you reap what you sow!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

A Special Mummy-Daughter Day

On Saturday, while Big Spring went to Synod, Little Spring and I headed out to Seaworld for a very special Mummy-Daughter day.  I didn't realise just how special it would be until we were there.  We got there very close to the opening time, to make the most of the day.  I used Little Spring as a gauge, to see when we should go home (i.e. when she got tired and/or grumpy, I would take that as my cue to head back to our apartment where we were staying).  Much to my amazement, except for one little outburst just before lunch, Little Spring was wonderful the whole day.  She was truly in her element and I enjoyed sharing the time with her.  Here's how the day unfolded:

Welcome to Seaworld!

Checking out the penguins... just like "Happy Feet"!

Little Spring seeing some dolphins up close for the first time (and bringing back memories of when I was at Seaworld when I was 16 or so, when I first fell in love with them!)

Resident polar bear!
Looking at all the stingrays.  We could pat them, but Little Spring wasn't keen!  I touched a few though!

Little Spring absolutely LOVED the dolphin show, and so did I!  On my life bucket list is to swim with dolphins... one day!

Sponge Bob Square Pants parade.  First ever experience with Sponge Bob and not overly impressed.  Thankfully Little Spring wasn't too taken by it all, so isn't insisting on watching more!

A very cute, excited little girl having her lunch on the lawn.  Stocking up on energy for a very big day!

Waiting for Sponge Bob 3D movie to start... thought I'd give him a second chance after the parade.  Alas, a big disappointment and confirmed that it won't be a regular viewing in our house!

After looking at all the animals, it was time for some fun on the rides... wasn't sure how she'd go on the carousel as the last and only time she's been on one (in the States in a shopping mall), she hated it and cried and clung to me the whole time.  This time, however, she absolutely loved it! I did capture her enjoyment on video, but the file is too big to load...

Next ride, a plane!  Little Spring was in her element, considering how much she loves flying in a real plane.  She was even able to make this one go up and down by herself!

Dora the Explorer show - we've never watched Dora on TV before, but Little Spring got the hang of it pretty quickly... she certainly loves her dancing!

Shark watching from the safety of behind the glass!

 A beautiful blue-sky rainbow turned very vivid when the sky turned grey very quickly!

2nd last ride for the day, which I discovered just before we started heading home... can't believe I'd missed it earlier in the day, not that we didn't already have plenty to do!  The sacrifices of a parent.  By this stage it had begun to rain lightly... Little Spring was kept nice and dry in the cabin of the truck, but I had to sit on the top, exposed to the elements!  She was too short to ride by herself, so I stuck it out in the rain for her enjoyment!

The very last ride for the day and I'm REALLY glad that I found it right before we left... it must have been Little Spring's absolute favourite ride of the day.  Considering how much she loves turbulence on a plane, this would have been right up her alley.  I was hoping to upload a video, but unfortunately it's too big again.  Every time the seat dropped, she laughed so much!  My grown up girl - her first ride all by herself (all the other rides, I had to accompany her, which was fine by me!)

 We very unexpectedly lasted a whole day and it was time to go home.  The sun was setting and getting dark quickly!  I managed to snap this quickly as we headed towards the park entrance (we left right on closing time!).

Time for one final photo before heading back to the apartment... I hadn't taken any of the two of us all day, so thought I better mark this special occasion with a picture!

I wasn't surprised to turn around in the car and see Little Spring sound asleep!  A big day for her - she did so well and I was so proud of how well-behaved and happy she was for almost the entire day!

Pastors' Wives Unite!

After Pastors' Conference was finished, we headed further down the coast so that Big Spring could attend Synod on the Gold Coast.

That night, I headed out to a Pastors' Wives Dinner that we are hoping will be a regular event each year (this is the second year that it's happened and hope to continue that tradition).
It was only a small gathering, but our little group are hoping to grow the awareness of the Pastors' Wives gatherings and set up a network for all the wives whose husbands are pastors.

The "Class of 2010" reunion (unfortunately missing Kim as she traveled to Adelaide early). (I'm annoyed that Blogger is mucking around with my photos again!)

Adventures and Play Dates

The Spring family recently traveled down to Brisbane so Big Spring could attend Pastors' Conference.  While he was there, Little Spring and I hung out with some dear friends.  We did this last year as well, while Kim's husband and Big Spring hung out at the Conference.  Here's what we got up to (very kid focused as you can see!)...


 we walked to the local shopping centre for lunch

  had fun in the play ground (loving the static in Little Spring's very fine hair!)

chilled back at home (can never take a candid picture if Little Miss Photogenic is aware of the camera being out!)

 showed lots of 'love' to Samuel, Evie's little brother who we finally got to meet


Little Spring and Evie get their groove on at Tiddlywinks (THE best concept ever - a cafe for the mums to sit and eat/drink and a huge dance floor for the kids to dance around on, with a very interactive, very kid-friendly DJ) (With rhythm like that, Little Spring is definitely going to be having dance lessons sooner rather than later!)

 Kim and I headed out to a mummies only dessert evening after dinner.  I ordered the Baci cake... the plate was a work of art!


An annual event - the playschool concert!
Little Spring loves being a surrogate big sister to Samuel!

Disappointed this photos is upside down - I love Little Spring's big eyes in this one as she cuddles her new Jamima doll (last year at the Playschool concert, she got Humphrey!).

Playing chasey on the big oval after a fun time at the concert.

Later in the afternoon, I packed up our bags and the car, while the boys finished up at Pastors' Conference, ready for our drive down to the Gold Coast... stay tuned for the next installment of our southern adventures!