First Day of Year 1

Jonty starts school again today after a two month summer break. He has now had his first day of year 1. It’s funny I’ve been thinking lately how grown up he is getting. But when I just looked at his photos from this morning, I’m grateful to see that he is still little. I’m cherishing this time while they are young.

It’s a bit funny being the parent bringing my child into school on the first day. I used to always be the teacher. I kind of miss that first day vibe. Greeting excited children, enthusiastic about the year ahead. Reassuring parents and making a good impression so they will have confidence leaving their precious offspring in your hands. Getting to know the students, learn names, (actually, I don’t miss that, I’m awful at remembering names), determine ability levels and work out how to best cater for the unique individual needs throughout the year. There is always a buzz of excitement as children are keen to display and use their new books and stationary. The clothes and shoes are often new, ready to become marked with stories of their school year. Although not too marked. I remember the awful feeling sending home a little girl who had enthusiastically rubbed black paint onto her paint shirt, but it soaked right through onto her uniform. It never came out. The Mum was not happy. Understandably. I made sure J Boy’s art shirt was plastic backed, just remembering this experience.

But today. Today was about being the parent. After weeks of preparing him for school, the day came. He has been nervous about his new teacher. She is known to be strict. Of course, since Jonty is very strong willed, The Accountant and I are delighted with situation, knowing that his teacher will ensure he be respectful of others and learn obedience. Jonty will learn soon enough that she also has a sense of humour and will be sensitive to his needs also. But over the last few weeks he has been nervous about starting school. Thank goodness he has been open and honest enough to share his concerns with me. I hope that he always will be able to feel comfortable to speak to me about what worries him. It has created some lovely moments of teaching where I have advised him of the need to apologise should he do something wrong (he will, I’m sure of it) and to accept responsibility for his behaviour and to recognise when he has done wrong and change the course of his behaviour. We have prayed together and I have seen him face his fears with a quiet confidence.

The Accountant and I both took him to school. Miss Rachael came in early and looked after the younger children. These are the type of things that mean a lot to Jonty, and quite frankly, Alex and I rather love sharing these moments with him. He has a brand new classroom. Lucky fellow.  Shiny, new and equipped with all the mod cons. He found his desk, and approved of it’s location. He said to me, “I love this spot. This is a great spot!” And so I left him sitting at his desk, ready for a year of learning and growing. I can’t wait to hear the stories of his day when he gets home.

My thoughts are also with the thousands of Queensland children who will not start school today because of the floods. We are praying that as the waters peak and recede they will have strength and grace to rebuild and continue your lives. I’m especially thinking of Bundaberg where I lived as a teenager and often visit still.

Did a child you love begin school today? What have been your first impressions of the school year for 2013?

Don’t forget to enter to win a Personal Planner. Click here because time is running out! (This competition has now ended.)

I Blog On Tuesday with Essentially Jess.

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Iron Man

Recently I was woken out of a deep sleep by J Boy, a couple of inches from my nose asking, “Mum! Can I learn how to iron now?”

I say, if the boy wants to learn how to iron, you teach him to iron!

Extreme concentration.

He was so proud of himself. He told anyone who would listen for the next few days, “I can iron now!”
Luckily Nanny B was around to help her grandson when Mummy got busy with the triplets!
Yes. We are all happy with this arrangement.

What jobs do your kids enjoy?

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10 Month Triplets + 2 & 6 year old boys. And a Daddy.

I thought I’d just update you on some of the day to day happenings in our household at the moment.

The triplets are practically big kids now. They often eat vegemite sandwiches for lunch.

And they are having water in sippy cups after they eat. (Still using bottles for milk.)

We have a very cute dragon living with us.

J Boy has loved playing soccer this season. Even though he is pretty well clueless about the rules of the game and spends a great deal of his time falling to the ground and rolling around the field. (We’re working on getting him to stay on his feet for an entire game. It’s harder than you may think.) It seems like he’s just starting to get the hang of it though. Which is a shame, because it’s the last game of the season on Saturday.

The triplets have now become a tourist destination. We had a Japanese exchange student, Genki, who is staying with a family in town come to visit us for a morning. He was a great young guy who fitted in with the family happenings for the day. He played with the babies and built a train track for T-Star, who adored him for it and re-named him as “Donkey”. The babies had to be quarantined into the porta-cot to keep the track safe from imminent destruction. I let Genki feed the triplets, and he did a great job. It can get a bit crazy. When Miss Rachael asked if he wanted her to take over he jumped up so quickly that I thought there had been an ejector seat installed in our chair. I think he did enjoy the experience though! We took a photo with the trio and Genki, but they decided to get grumpy (something about it being lunchtime) so they had to be bribed and are photographed with arrowroot biscuits!

 Alex had a lovely Father’s Day. So proud of my amazing husband who is now father of 5.

We really tried to spoil Daddy, with everything from a power tool (chosen for Dad by J Boy), basket ball (chosen by T-Star) to homemade works of art.

For lunch we had takeaway fish and chips in the park with my brother-in-law and his family. We make a jolly little party with the four adults and ten kids! We’re quite the rent-a-crowd these days! The kids loved playing with their Daddies. The triplets couldn’t believe the freedom of being in the great outdoors. Poor little things, don’t get out much. Hopefully they will a bit more now it’s Spring. The big kids especially hung out on a plastic thingy that you were chucked balls through. I don’t think that it is supposed to be used as a climbing frame, but the kids thought it was brilliant. Until J Boy got stuck in one of the tubes. Luckily Daddy came to the rescue. That’s why Dad’s are heroes.

Once we got home Daddy had a chance to play with his new toy. I think he liked that.

I’d love it if you took the time to comment about what’s happening in your family of late! What did your family do for Father’s Day? (And guess what? I’ve now enabled a reply button in the comments section, so I can comment on your comments. Hurrah!)

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Spy Party

I don’t know how J Boy gained his interest in spies at such a tender age, but he has become rather obsessed with them of late. After seeing on TV that overseas spies had been jailed after being caught there was a brief week when his resolve weakened his desire ‘to become a spy when he was a man.’ During that week, he decided he might become a farmer instead. However, then the toy sales came, and he decided that the thrill of using the myriad of spy gadgets trumped the danger involved with espionage.

This means creeping around the house, covert missions, binoculars and secrets are all favourite occupations of my eldest son.

So, a spy party was the obvious theme when celebrating J Boy’s 6th birthday this year.

With the triplets taking so much time, I tried to keep everything as simple as possible. Easy food and simple games were a must. I wasn’t able to spend as much time preparing as I normally might, so even some of the easy games that required preparation ended up being abandoned. However, I think the day went well in the end and the kids seemed to enjoy themselves, and that, as they say, is the main thing.

So here is how the party progressed.

1. Arrival – Security Scan. Photographed. Fill in Sign on Sheet. Obtain Code Name.

Agent Daddy looked very official as he scanned all the Junior Agents with J Boy’s new toy as they entered. Miss Rachael became as efficient as Moneypenny when getting the kids to fill out their names and take their fingerprints. Two words were picked from two separate containers (one of nouns, and one pre-dominantly of verbs) to make into a code name. Some of the classics were Marshmallow Booger, Snot Chaser, Lion Creeper and the birthday boy was Ant Zoomer. The kids thought it was hilarious.

The little ones being processed.
Oh dear. I think Agent Daddy is planning to frisk Agent Mummy.
The secret agents who turned up at Mission Headquarters for an elite spy training program.  The invitation said to come dressed as a spy or in disguise. They did a wonderful job! I particularly liked Agent 99 and Chief in the top left hand corner!

2. Laser Maze
The mission: Get through the course without touching the laser beams. (Red crepe paper, yellow warning tape.)

The course. Training has begun.
Special Agent Dr. Lion (Codename) completed the course with finesse.

I got this idea from pinterest, although the original idea was an indoor laser maze., To avoid extra mess and chaos I avoided bringing the troops inside. So, we decided to do an outdoor maze. Agent Daddy had the brilliant idea of setting it up under the trampoline. The kids loved crawling through the play equipment to get there and then bending and twisting to get through the obstacle course without touching the laser beams. Thankfully it was only a training course, otherwise I’m afraid a few alarms may have sounded…!

4. Spy Tins
Target practise throwing balls at tins painted as enemy spies.

Ze enemy is in ze tin.

This had been a craft project in our house over the last couple of weeks. An excellent opportunity to use up all those formula tins!

5. Pass the Parcel

Classic party game.

You will have disappointed guests at any child’s party if this game is missing. We made it fit the theme by downloading Mission Impossible and James Bond theme songs on I Tunes and playing them as the music. Admittedly, the significance was probably missed on the children who have not watched either movie. My nephew asked why we were playing ballet music. Ballet music apparently is anything instrumental.

6. Food!
Standard party junk food fodder.

Dinosaur fairy bread

To keep things simple, I had a fair few bought treats on the party table such jam tarts, mini pies and sausage rolls, chips and lollies, etc. The kids were mainly concerned with only the lollies anyway, even though we had just had a chocolate treasure hunt. I did have some fairy bread, homemade brownies, cake pops and the birthday cake.

The cake pops were little mini bombs. The little fuses were painted red on the end.

Warning! Explosives. Bomb Cake Pops.

I have been wanting to make a rainbow cake for a little while, so I suggested this be J Boy’s cake this year because I knew that it would be relatively simple to make. To keep with the spy theme said that it was a “Mystery Cake” because no one knew what was inside. I’m really happy with how it turned out. I was generous with the colouring, which resulted in lovely vivid colours. The gasps of approval when I cut the cake was very rewarding!

7. Drinks.

SPY-ders and Water with a twist – Truth Serum!

Proving that consumption is often to do with marketing, the water nearly all disappeared! How often does that happen at a kids party?

We also made spiders/spy-ders. I don’t know if this is just an Aussie thing, but if you aren’t familiar with it, it’s soft drink (soda) with a scoop of vanilla ice-cream in which makes a frothy creamy drink. Always a popular choice with kids. (Sorry, I didn’t get a photo of that one.)

8. Spy Mission.

Operation Retrieve Party Bag.

Towards the end of the party I gathered the kids together and very seriously told them that despite all our security checks at the gate, an enemy agent had got in and had stolen the box of party bags. (Agent 99 was quite alarmed at this news and had a mild panic attack.)  I had previously written out some badly rhyming clues to lead them to the next clues hidden throughout the backyard. The final clue led them to the box of party bags. I then held a spy training course on how to use the secret invisible ink spy pens with the ultra-violet light built into the pen’s lid. Very impressive stuff. (I bought these from Mad About Science. I was so proud to have a party bag that didn’t consist of mere cheap Chinese plastic rubbish toys that get thrown out in two minutes.)

A spy party was lots of fun. It’s a shame that once all the guests went home, the days finale had to be The Accountant severing an artery in his arm while doing odd jobs around the yard. This required an emergency trip to the doctors and six stitches. But apart from that I consider the day a success and my little 006 agent had a super day, and that is the main thing.

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Birthday Week

Not much action here on the blog this week. It is birthday week. Whenever there is a birthday in this household, I spend a lot of time in the days preceeding getting ready for the day to make it as special as possible. Yesterday was J Boy’s 6th birthday. On Saturday it will be his party. All efforts this week see-saw between these events and keeping the family alive and fed in the meantime.

Hopefully next week I can share the particulars about the party. He’s into spies right now, so it will be Top Secret 006 party.

Yesterday he had a wonderful day. Of course the theme of most presents were all forms of intelligence gathering and covert operatives. He was totally thrilled.

Time to open presents with the family

The triplets loved the paper. Playing with it and eating it.

The cousins came over for afternoon tea.

They played hard with the new toys for several hours.

B Man and J Boy.

The cousins went home, Grandmother’s came and bestowed gifts and an aunty and Grandma stayed for dinner.

Presents for a Secret Agent from Grandma.

The menu of course was chosen by the birthday boy. Spaghetti Bolognaise, Soft Drink and Ice-Cream. I love doing a child’s dinner party. So easy! I did cook an awesome bolognaise, deciding for the special occassion I wouldn’t pour it out of a jar. Four hours in the oven. Delicious.

So, what happens around your parts when there’s a birthday? Do you spend lots of time preparing?

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A New Era: The Saturday Sport Soccer Mum

A new era has begun. Yesterday J Boy had his first official Saturday club soccer game.

Isn’t he cute running around in his dress oversized shirt? It took a lot of convincing to tuck it in. By half time I had persuaded him that it looked like a dress untucked, so I was given permission to interfere in the name of enhancing masculinity.

For a few weeks now I have been taking J Boy to soccer training. The kids are incredibly cute, but my goodness, the teacher in me sits on the sidelines and grits my teeth. I am so tempted to interrupt and start getting kids to put their hands on heads, giving instructions talking very slowly, start issuing phrases such as, “1-2-3- Eyes on me” and blowing a whistle ad nauseum.

However, if I gave into temptations, J Boy probably wouldn’t have a smile like this while he practised his moves.

So I sit on the sidelines, giving the occassional frustrated encouraging yell. (Isn’t that what soccer Mum’s are supposed to do on the sidelines?) “J Boy, are you listening?” “Good kick!” “J Boy. Stop! Listen to what you need to do.” “Good on Ya!” “J Boy! Listen to your coach!” I like to think I’m helping improve his game.

J Boy is fortunate to have an incredibly nice coach. Poor fellow. It’s his first time coaching. I bet he never knew what he got himself into before his first training session. There are some of us who go to university for four years before we are confident enough to engage with 5 and 6 year olds. You can tell he’s learning on the job, and he really is doing well. Just like any trained teacher he is learning that sometimes you have to scrap all your planned activities and make it 5 times simpler and keep as much variety and action as possible to maintain the kids interest. Consequently the boys think he’s wonderful.

We arrived fashionably late on Saturday but just in time for the big game. The game wasn’t really too early in the morning, but my goodness, it’s always a huge effort whenever it involves getting five children into the car and on the road, especially at the beginning of the day. I fed the babies, showered and dressed myself, packed snacks, bottles and drink bottles, (all for the kids, next time I’ll have remember to cater for the parents also), packed the nappy bag, searched for hats, (Thankfully T-Star avoided sunburn despite his missing headgear. How is it that I can’t find any one of the six hats that will fit on his head when I’m in a hurry?) Thank God for sun cream lotion. Then we bundled the babies in the car and rushed to the ovals. In two cars. For big events these days we need two cars. It’s a simple matter that the triplet stroller just cannot fit in the back of our 4WD, which has the storage capacity of an ant’s suitcase.

When The Accountant got to the oval, he rushed J Boy to his designated area, left him under the care of a proud grandmother, ran back, loaded the trio and we all rushed to our rightful spot on the sidelines.

When I got there I took a moment to stand and watch and cheer for my boy and the team. I was every bit the proud soccer Mum. Then I turned around to search for the smelly baby that The Accountant caught a whiff of as he had put a seatbelt on. I located the offending party. Nappy was changed, and then bub was undressed out of long sleeve overnight jumpsuit and into a lovely summery outfit to match the wondefully warm autumun day we were having.

Glance up. Shout out a few more soccer cliches. Make a mental note to discuss with J Boy the advantage of scoring in one’s designated goal rather than the opposing parties. Fish next bub out of stroller to change into more appropriate clothing. Discover another poo. Change. Glance up. Note with pride that our team scored a goal before all the little tackers fell over their own feet and ended in a pile. Move onto third baby. Oh joy bliss. Third poo. And it’s messy. Change nappy. Change clothes. Finished! Look up eager to watch the game.

This is what I see.

A proud Grandad congratulating his little grandson’s efforts. Game over. Sigh.

Maybe next time I’ll get to see more of my son’s sporting prowess.

Two of J Boy’s little mates were playing in one of the next games. We stayed on to watch that game. Bravely trying to conceal our dissapointment that our request to keep the three boys together had not been granted.

During the 2nd game I breastfed three babies. This game ended to the sound of three babies starting to grizzle. Packed them back into the stroller since the sport of mat rolling was no longer giving the trio satisfaction. Wheeled three now crying babies back to the car. Bundled three now screaming babies into the car. Unbuckled Joey who was in complete meltdown. Fed him again. Buckled him back in and got car in motion asap to try and regain some peace.

All babies fall asleep. Arrive home. Get babies out of the car and into cots asap. All babies are awake. Time to start feeding again. Ah. Such is life.

It’s quite possible the whole family may not be on the sidelines every week.

But at least one of us will. We will be there proud to be supporting our child and giving him the opportunity to develop a healthy life style and develop co-ordination, skills, team spirit, team participation and give him the chance to develop true Aussie sportsmanship.

How did you spend your Saturday? Does you have a child participating in team sport? How do you feel as you watch them on the sidelines during the games and training?

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Instant Parenting at Bathtime

Yesterday I shared a story about my sister’s cunning when dealing with her rioting brood. See here I coined the phrase, “Instant parenting”, the parenting where you make a move to deal with your child(ren) in an instant. I was reflecting on my favourite instant parenting moment that happened in our household.

I was making dinner one night and hearing all types of wailing coming from the bathroom where The Accountant was engaged in a battle to get a 3 year old J Boy bathed. “I don’t want to take off my clothes”, “Don’t touch me”, “You can’t make me take my shirt off.” were all the type of phrases I was hearing the child protest, interjected with copious amounts of tears and stomping of feet.

In an intance the wails became howls and were reaching dangerous decibel levels. I went to investigate. The Accountant had complied with J Boy’s refusal to get undressed.

Unceremoniously he had dumped the fully clothed child in the bath.

I love that man.

Despite the fully clothes bathing episode, J Boy still LOVES his Daddy. In fact, I think it is moments like the fully clothed bathing episode that ensures that he will always have a great father/son relationship.

I’m still eager to hear any ‘instant parenting’ stories. Do you have bath time battles also?

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4 Month Old Triplets: Update

Hi! *She says a little shamfaced, knowing just how truly appalling she has been at blogging of late*

I’ve been thinking I just need to get on and do a little update. At the moment I’m feeling so very motivated, as I’m feeling great – I’ve just had six hours uninterrupted sleep!!! Hooray! The triplets were very difficult to get to sleep last night, a fitting conclusion to the day which was also full on. However, they were all bathed, fed and asleep by 7:00pm and what do you know – they slept through until 5:00am! And again I say Hooray!

The triplets are now 4 months old. They are completely delightful, flashing big smiles liberally and starting to be quite the chatterboxes, gooing and gurgling away, kicking their little legs furiously to express the wild excitement to be living such a grand life.

Their colic and reflux is settling down, although it is far from over. We are now at the stage where they are constantly throwing up. We go through myriads of bibs during the day and several changes of clothes. However, they do not seem to be crying as much, a nice indication that it is not painful. They are still feeding around the three hour mark as a general rule. Sometimes more, (and on days like the last few), sometimes less. For the last two days they seem to be drinking continuously. However, since they have slept through the night, they are fully forgiven!

OK. So, proof that life is crazy busy at the moment. I started writing this post over a week ago. I’ve got 20 minutes in the house by myself now, (J Boy at school, T-Star is hanging out with Grandma and no helper for a little bit) so thought I’d try to finish it. Already, I can hear some movements indicating that one of the three sleeping triplets is waking. OK, heard a dummy drop on the floor. Life with triplets… Time is up.
(Turns out, Missy is stirring, but seems quite content, so I’ll motor on…)
I should firstly add that the communal sleeping through the night, most certainly didn’t take off. That night was a one off. And as it turns out, even the validity of all three sleeping through that night is contested. The Accountant maintains that Chook woke up at 3:45. I’m sure it was 5:00.  Suppose it doesn’t matter now, just hanging out for them to do it ‘again’. The Accountant recently bought an expensive bottle of red. He has pronounced that it will be consumed after all three babies sleep through five consecutive nights. He originally made it 7 consecutive nights, but in the desire to consume the bottle sooner, he adjusted the goal. Phew. I think the bottle may be a tad dusty before we pop the cork. Or rather, unscrew the cap…
 J Boy is continuing to enjoy school. He is super tired by the end of the week, and consequently his behaviour at home can get quite feral. I’m sure this will get better as his stamina improves and he gets more used to school.
T-Star is getting used to being ‘the man of the house’ once Daddy and Jonty leave for school. He is still a very doting big brother, and can be very helpful. The other day I had three screaming babies and only two adults. I ended up sitting next to T-Star as he nursed a baby and fed him a bottle. Turns out it was activity enjoyed by baby and toddler alike! He’s a very sweet and loving child. Until he starts chucking major two year old tantrums. Eeeek. Never fun, and I tell you, T-Star can chuck a doozy! 
T-Star continues to be mad about motorbikes. Here he is after hearing Daddy arrive home after his bath. He charged outside and was super thrilled to get a ride on the driveway decked in nothing but a towel!

 A Further update:
It is now the third week since I started this particular post. Last week I had a moment in time, but blogger was playing up and I wasn’t able to post, so I had some script saved in Word. It’s truly reflective of life at the moment. Busy, busy, busy. The triplets are now 5 months old, and despite my original joyous declaration, their sleep seems to be getting worse rather than better. For the last several nights I have been interrupted hourly most of the time. Hence I’m rather exhausted at the moment. I had my first episode of pure exhausted desperation yesterday morning when I just couldn’t settle Joey down in the early hours of the morning. I ended up howling. The Accountant came to the rescue and shipped Joey off to another room. But he had to swap Joey for Chook, so it was still another hour before I got to sleep, but at least Chook was content to feed, whereas Joey was just wriggling and crying, inconsolable.

We had our first weekend without Alex this weekend past. My youngest sister was so kind to come around and help out the entire weekend. I also shipped the two older boys over to my mother and other sister, so it all went smoothly, apart from the interrupted sleep. (Not helped by the fact that my sister and I got to bed late doing sisterly pursuits such as chick flicks and online window shopping.)

I think I’ll sign off for now, before the interruptions continue and I never get this posted. Has your life been full of interruptions also? Who or what normally interrupts your schedule?

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First Week of School

J Boy is now a school boy.

We’re so proud of him. And to be truthful, he’s so proud of him too. He struts around as proud as a peacock in his school uniform and tries to catch people’s eye so they can admire him. He loves to push out his chest and display the school crest to anyone who expresses interest.

You’ve got to say the right thing though. One Myer’s shop assistant mistakenly commented that he was a great little brother. Oh the indignity. She didn’t stay still to be corrected, so J Boy took it upon himself to yell out as she walked away. “I’m a big brother – we have lots of babies. And I’ve FIVE! And I go to SCHOOL!”

In case you were wondering. There were no tears from me.

It was a lot easier to say goodbye when I know that he is so ready for school. It is a little sad that this period when I get to spend so much time with him throughout the week is over. He did make it easier for me in this area also, by constantly teasing T-Star over the last fortnight. It’s quite peaceful at home, even though we do still miss him. So now I will continue to cherish the precious early childhood years with the remaining four children at home.

I think that J Boy was sincerely disappointed that I didn’t cry. I had joked that I might a few weeks before school. He took it to heart and the night before school began he warned me how hard it was going to be. “It will be worse for you.” J Boy solemnly declared. “When I’m at school, you’ll have to put the babies dummies in by yourself all day. You’ll probaby miss me so much you’ll cry so loudly that the neighbours will hear you.” On his way to the classroom, he examined my eyes and seeing no tear glistening within and he told me, “You may not be crying now, but when all those three babies start crying. You’ll be crying with them.” The poor child was so disappointed that I coped so well in his absence.

J Boy had the pleasure of starting school with his cousin and best friend, “The Pocket Rocket”.

The good thing about having my neice in the same class as J Boy is I get to hear what is happening. At the conclusion of the first day, The Pocket Rocket was full of stories of what had happened throughout the day. When she paused, I asked J Boy, “And what did you do today?”
“Mum” he sighed with an air of exasperation. “We’re in the same class. We do the same things…”

And with that he assumed the air that he was ‘off the hook’.
A little later in the week, I managed to get a part report.
“Did you learn a new sound today, J Boy?” I asked.
“Yes. The girl sound. What’s the girl sound Mum?”
“Well, would it be g-g-g- girl. The letter “G”?”
J Boy thought hard and then looked confused. “I don’t know Mum. There’s lots of letters in the alphabet. It could be any one of them.”
Have you any children/neices/nephews/friends children who have begun school? How do you get extra information about the school day so you don’t just hear that they have forgotten, or that ‘nothing’ happened.
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"Makes You Smile" – January Photo a Day Challenge

A little while ago I told the tale of the gnome and the budgie.

Sadly the budgie is no longer with us. He came to an unfortunate end when a large lump of wood was dropped, severing his plaster torso from his body.

The gnome lives on, and is frequently moved to various parts of the garden by J Boy. Whenever I encounter the gnome, he makes me smile.

As cute as the little fellow is, it’s not him that makes me smile. Rather it’s the thought processes of the five year old for choosing the gnome’s location that gives me mirth. Here, the gnome stands in a hole dug by the dog. The gnome is guarding the hole, making sure that the dog will not dig in the garden bed again.

See. No dog dares to dig.

Which makes me think. I ought to put a gnome here.

or maybe here:

 or I’d even consider posting a gnome sentinel here:

Because, whatever your opinion about garden gnomes, you must admit. They are far more aesthetically pleasing than the fillers that The Accountant has been using to deter the dog from further excavation work in his favourite holes.

So, do you have a garden gnome? Or do you have a dog that digs?
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