Sunday, March 22, 2009

Garden Visitor

When I first saw this little guy (or girl, or whatever it is!), I thought that it was a snake. Easy to do, given the colouring, scales, head shape, etc! But on closer inspection, you can see that it definitely has legs! Phew! And double phew considering that Ruby had it bailed up out by the rock wall. There is a family of them that lives here, in my garden.....and it's a family that both dogs do not like! Too bad though...they just have to get used to these sweet, placid little blue tongue lizards!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

All The Better To See You With, M'Dear!

When your nine year old comes home from school one day and asks you get her eyes checked because she is having trouble seeing the board, you kinda sit up and take notice.

When, after a few days, she comes home and declares that it is all ok because the teacher changed whiteboard marker pens and she can miraculously see again, you kinda wonder if any eye check is necessary.

But, when you decide to go ahead with the eye check 'just to be on the safe side' and sit and watch that same nine year old fail many of the obvious eye tests, you kinda realise that there is a problem.

And so, we now have glasses!
Being a worldly and experienced mum (ok, read 'paranoid' and 'seriously trying to avoid more stress' type, instead!), I elected to spend the extra money and get two for school and one for home! Extravagant? Perhaps. But I know Miss Nine and remembering to bring home a pair of glasses each day from school and return them the following morning is just never going to happen efficiently! And who wouldn't want groovy, trendy glasses when they come with cases like this:

And this:

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

A Very Black Day for Sport!

Most people who know our family know that we love cricket (ok, with the exception of the 9 year old, of course, but we are working on her). I guess that as the mother of a cricket-playing and sport-loving son, many would think it was inevitable that I focused interest on this sport.

In fact, my love of cricket goes back to the time that I was 13 years old. Back in those days, Australian homes usually had only one - two if you were lucky - big box black and white television sets and long hot summers where sport dominated daytime television. In our house, at that time my slightly younger brother somehow managed to dominate the daytime television viewing over the school holiday period. I remember that summer of my 13th year very clearly. Prior to that, cricket was typically on my 'boooooring' list. But at that particular time, we were living in an inner city Queenslander that was so hot during the day time that we tried to escape to the backyard shade as often as we could. Somehow, my brother and father managed to lug one old television set down the back stairs and had set it up (with the help of a very long extension cord) under the shade of the backyard mango typically Queenland-ish!

Faced with the choice of sitting in the wooden hot house for the day time or lazing under the backyard shade watching cricket, I very sensibly chose the cricket. I decided upon that age-old philosophy of 'if you can't beat 'em, join 'em!' And hence my cricket loving years were born.

Throughout the years, I became obsessed with following this summer sport. Sitting at the 'Gabba on the sun-filled hill (which has since been built upon) during teenage summers or sitting at home watching Australia play the likes of India, Pakistan, England, the West Indies etc became a regular pastime. As a young teenager, I obsessed over players and their statistics (ok, and their hot bods! I did say that I was a teenager! ;) ). In fact, I had a cat that I named after England captain, David Gower at one stage and names like Imran, Garner, Richards, Logie and the up-and-coming Waugh brothers stand out as players who I loved to watch.

Today, as a cricket follower and the mother of a cricket-mad son, I feel sad. Sad, because one of cricket's blackest days seems to have descended upon us. To hear that the members of the SriLankan international cricket team were injured during a terrorist ambush which deliberately attacked their team bus in Pakistan is shocking. Although many countries have refused to play in Pakistan in the past number of years due to safety concerns, the thought that any cricket-loving persons would choose to attack men who are doing nothing but playing sport and entertaining people is abhorrent. Certainly, sport and politics have been entangled for years, but this is the first time in cricket that lives have been at risk. Suddenly, the sport that speaks an international language has faced evil in the eye.

For the past five nights, in our house we have been lamenting the lack of cable television to view the Australia vs South Africa test match from Johannesburg. We have been walking around the house with radios plugged into our ears to catch current scores. Yes, we are that mad! I guess that listening so intently to the progress of our team, makes us acutely aware of the reverence that cricket is placed in in so many households around the world. Given that, it just makes the whole situation in Pakistan today so much more shocking.

Yes, it's a black day for cricket and sadly a black day for those innocent citizens of Pakistan who enjoy watching cricket played in their country! My thoughts and prayers are with players, the deceased and their families.