29 July 2015

Non-Travel Holiday Diary - Day 3

  • 13,765 steps
  • MissyMoo1 (8) and MissyMoo2 (6) went to their usual before school care and Hubby had a rostered day off work, so he, MissyMoo3 (3) and I went out for breakfast.
  • Then it was off to Bunnings, as we're starting to work on the yard.
  • House pottering (washing, general tidying up)
  • Out for lunch with a good friend and MissyMoo3, which lasted until school pick-up time!
  • MissyMoo1 had a friend over to play (her turn!)
  • Blogging
  • Ironing (there is no holiday from ironing!)

28 July 2015

Non-Travel Holiday Diary - Day 2

  • 14,274 steps
  • Had MissyMoo3 (3) at home with me
  • Did reading with MissyMoo2's (6) kindy class = beautiful. I love getting to know the kids and I love how happy it makes my kids when I can help out at school.
  • Visited my grandmother - she's had a rough couple of months with her health. She was in great spirits, telling me stories about her siblings growing up. So nice to just sit and listen to her.
  • Took MissyMoo3 to the library and borrowed books for all the kids (and me too!)
  • Home for lunch and a play
  • A friend came over for coffee.
  • Picked the big kids up from school
  • MissyMoo2 had a friend over to play (something we can't usually do, as I walk through the door at dinner time on a Tuesday when I'm working)
  • Out for dinner with friends = lots of laughs.

27 July 2015

Non-Travel Holiday Diary - Day 1

Monday - "official" day 1 of holiday:

  • 14,426 steps.
  • KIDDY FREE! MissyMoos 1 (8) and 2 (6) at school; MissyMoo3 (3) at pre-school.
  • No rushed drop-off = a win for me and for the kids
  • Mopped the floors - this might not sound like fun but doing it uninterrupted was as close to fun as it could get. There were no little feet running through, slipping over. And the floors were clean for more than just a few minutes.
  • 2 cups of coffee completely consumed.
  • Menu planning followed through with grocery shopping ... alone. I finally feel like home life won't be a scramble this week.
  • Reading
  • Picked MissyMoo3 up early from pre-school and had time to talk to her teachers about her day.
  • Picked MissyMoos1&2 up from school (they usually come home on the bus) and took all three kiddies out for afternoon tea at the bakery.
  • Made bolognese and even had sufficient reserves of patience to allow MissyMoo1 to help.
  • Blogged.

Good start, says I.

Holiday at Home

Guess who has three weeks off work?!

Jealous much?

When my parents gave me the dates for a holiday they were planning (which means we need to find alternative childcare arrangements for MissyMoo3 instead of Nonna two days per week) and those dates fell during the school term, I wasn't terribly excited about having to take annual leave while the kids were at school and not be able to do cool stuff with them. But my thinking has shifted.

As you would have noticed from my sporadic blogging activity and some recent posts (here, for example) touching on the subject, I haven't been feeling terribly relaxed in recent months.

I now have three weeks just to be "mum" and "Francesca".

Three weeks which include a few completely child-free days!

I have decided to attempt a "holiday diary" of sorts on the blog. Think travel diary but without the travel part. I want to look back on this period with a smile when I'm back into the swing of things at work. I want to make sure that I do something for "Francesca" every day as well as enjoying my cameo appearance as a stay-at-home mum.

The break started off with a bang - the night following my last day at work, we had a playgroup mum night in at my place where the wine and laughter flowed. This began a weekend of family time and socialising.

So buckle up, readers. This blog just got busy again.

26 July 2015

Francesca's Festa of Favourites: July 2015

Francesca Writes Here

Hello and welcome to the second half 2015 - eek! How did that happen?!

Before we go hurtling towards Christmas, lets look back to the month that was. We had some great June reading. Here's what was linked up:

My favourite favourite for June was written by Kelly at A Life Less Frantic.

She wrote about the semi-colon as a symbol to pause and then keep going. There are times when a full stop might seem like a solution; but a semi-colon allows you to take the time you need, breathe, collect yourself, and then move forward to the next ph(r)ase.

Powerful stuff.

Moving on now to now. How has July been going for you? Can you believe we're in the second half of the year?!  Wanna join in a festa to celebrate/commiserate?


"Festa" in Italian means "party"(and, if you look around this blog long enough, you'll see that I'm a fan of throwing Italian words around). This is a place where you can add links to your favourite posts for July 2015, but here's the difference: they don't have to be posts you've written (but they can be). You can link to any blog post from July 2015. 

Have you read or written something moving, funny, informative or otherwise awesome? Link it ☺

There are no rules here - it's pretty laid back. There is no obligation to read and comment on all the posts if you link up, but of course you can if you want to.

If you've linked a post or had one of your blog posts linked by someone else, you're welcome to add the Festa button to your blog. The hashtag is #frafesta for social media sharing.

Time to get linking. I'm looking forward to reading your July jewels.

24 July 2015

So ... How About the Weather?

Thanks Facebook. You showed me an endless stream of photos of people in my hometown building these:

Hey, how's it going?

When I was growing up there, we generally got the cold without the snow. Now in my current home, oh yes, we got the cold without the snow. Ice on the windscreen did happen, though. That was pretty cool.

In an attempt to embrace winter instead of complain about it, we recently had a "Winter  Wonderland" day at playgroup. The kids arrived dressed in their beanies, scarves mittens etc ready for a winter-themed play morning.

We started off making paper snowflakes (don't ask me how, I've forgotten. Google it!)

Then the kids went outside to gather some sticks. We made a "fire" (orange crepe paper) and sat around it reading stories. It was just beautiful.

16 July 2015

A Cat's Life

In the recent cold weather, The Fat Cat has made herself comfortable ...

... extremely comfortable ...

15 July 2015

2015 Reading Challenge: Goals and Greatness

Back in February, I wrote a bit of a wrap-up of my 2014 reading adventures. I had hoped to follow this up with a bit about my reading plans for this year ... and it's now July.

The good news is that I have been reading a lot more than I have been blogging!

This year on Goodreads, I set myself a challenge of reading 50 books in 2015 and I'm pleased to say that I'm on track so far. Now before you fall off your seats at the realisation that this year's goal is almost twice the number of books I read last year, allow me to explain.

I've been quite interested in reading some of the books MissyMoo1 (8) likes to read - I'd like to get to know her tastes and talk to her about reading. So I set the goal at 50 with the intention that a decent number of them would be children's novels. So when I say 50, it will probably be more like the equivalent of 30 adult books by the time the year is out!

Setting myself goals for reading can sometimes mean for me the difference between picking up a book and not. And I have read some amazing stuff already this year, so I am grateful for the greatness the challenge has led me to.


Do you set yourself a reading challenge each year?

Are you on Goodreads? Look me up if you are

14 July 2015

A Pink Craft Explosion!

This is probably how you could describe my house much of the time with three daughters all keen on getting creative in their own ways.

But today I blog about a particular occasion ... which actually happened in November last year, but it's better late than never to write about it, while I retrieve my blogging mojo from the swamp of apathy.

MissyMoo1 (8) had a birthday sleepover to celebrate turning eight. She was allowed three friends to stay the night (any more and things could have been scary for her poor mother i.e. me!). We hadn't been in the house long and didn't have any grass in the yard, so having more friends over at that point really wasn't an option.

It was a busy 18 hours. With six kids in the house (and the fact that it was a "party"), there was constant preparing of food, eating, clearing up, getting the next activity ready. But you know, I really enjoyed the lead-up to the weekend and the party itself. Cruising the shops for craft and party supplies, setting it all up and seeing happy kids' faces was very special.

It's a privilege to see the girls' friendships develop as they're growing. It's also wonderful to see them do different things together and get to know them all and their interests. But basically, with a bunch of 8-year-old girls, if there's food, music and craft, you can't go wrong!

A picture says a thousand words

I would do it again ... but maybe I'm just saying that because eight months have passed!

04 July 2015

The Glass is Half Full ... of Rain!

I could whine about the sudden torrential downpour which occurred in my lunch break when I had just been to the shops (without my umbrella)...


I could focus on my good fortune at having parked the car halfway between the shops and the office so I was able to bunker down in the white bus until the worst of it passed.

What would you do?


Things have been really bloody hard lately. And so much of what is troubling me aren't my stories to tell, or they're not things I feel comfortable with sharing here.

So on the blog, I've preferred to remain silent rather than unauthentic.

Now, this changes.

No I'm not going to spill about the shitty stuff. But there is still so much good in life. There are still so many great stories to tell. Birthdays, laughter, gorgeousness of people and surroundings. I choose to tell them. No more silence. I choose to reclaim the time I have sacrificed on this blog.

You might not get the full picture, but does anybody get the full picture about another human being? Do we ever truly know anybody else completely? We can get close in the most intimate of relationships, but on a blog? No, this blog doesn't make you know me. But you get to know a bit about me. You get to find camaraderie in the similarity of our experiences, or you get to juxtapose your completely different path in life against mine. You get from this blog whatever you take. And I give only what I can give.

Thanks for sticking by, friends.

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