Saturday, October 31, 2015

A Busy Week of Busy!

Dad was in hospital.  He had an infection and needed antibiotics. 

He came home. He is tired. 

Mum decided it was time to get a new bench top in our kitchen.  She had finally saved up the money.

The plumber and the electrician came to visit. 

A man took me out for coffee.  Don't get excited... nothing came of it.

Someone came to install the new bench top. 

The kitchen sink got taken out!!

Two little girls came to visit yesterday afternoon (number 7 and number 8).  I will tell you more about that later. 

Shelly had to go to the vet for a mani/pedi.  She has finally forgiven me. 

Today, was Halloween.  There were lots of children knocking on my door early this evening.  I have run out of chocolate.

I am tired. 

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

What Shelly Did...

I don't usually like those cat shaming photos on the internet.

This one is funny, though.

The dog shaming is what makes me really laugh!! Dogs are so silly!

Last week, I was typing up a blog post (for my other blog) and I was nearly at the end.  I needed to edit it, add images, maybe write a concluding sentence.  It was almost finished.  Shelly - who has been fed and has a full water bowl - climbs up on my laptop and sits on the keyboard! She then stands back up and starts stepping on various keys, trying to jump up and play.  I finally get her off the keyboard and try to assess the damage.  She had deleted the entire blog post (which I apparently hadn't saved yet) and closed the window!

I was just speechless.  I couldn't be mad at her, because I'm almost certain she didn't do it on purpose.  She didn't, right?  She doesn't know which keys she was standing on.  Does she?
Look at that beautiful face! She couldn't possibly do something so naughty on purpose!!

Just for fun.  Here's another Silly Puppy Dog. 


Sunday, October 18, 2015

Tips for Perfect Pet Photos

You may have noticed I like to capture the memories.  I like to take photos of Shelly, playing, sleeping, looking at me like I'm silly, eating and even ignoring me. 

I find it a bit frustrating when she poses for the perfect picture and by the time my camera clicks, she has moved!!  I'm not getting a new phone so I can get a faster camera.  I'm sure there is probably some way I can change the settings so that the camera I have works faster.  In the meantime, I have found a way to get Shelly to focus, so my camera has time to focus too. 

All you need is one of these...
Image Source

That's right. all you need is a pipe cleaner!!!
Bend and twist it into any shape you like as long as you give it a 'tail' that can tuck into your phone cover.  Then, tuck it into your phone cover.  Simples!

Show your kitty the new attachment to your phone then start snapping.  Here are some photos I took of Shelly, using this awesome little fluffy wire. 

Have you ever seen a more beautiful kitty?
There are lots of listicles offering tips for great pet photography.  Many of these articles include the almost 'common sense' info.  Here are some ideas that I have picked up from my reading and experience.
I couldn't possibly have planned this photo! 
1. Be ready, always!
You never know when your little treasure will do something cute.  Be prepared.
2. Have Fun!
If you have some time and want to take a few photos for something specific (e.g. I made a calendar for Nanny last year with photos of Shelly for each month) get out the treats and the toys and have some fun. 

As you can see, some of the best pics were impromptu
and included Shelly's toys!

The treats feature too sometimes!

3. Relax. 
If you are relaxed, your kitty or puppy or bird or goldfish will be relaxed too.  That's the best way to get a great photo.  By the way, this is true for photographing humans too.

4.  Tidy up.
Have a nice clean space that has nothing you will notice later and not want in your pictures.  Some really great pictures of Shelly have been ruined by the pile of laundry in the background. 

5. Try different angles and shot types. 
The extreme close up may really bug your pet.  I know there are times when Shelly doesn't want me in her face.  Lots of photographers will tell you to get down on 'their' level.  If your pet is on the floor, you get on the floor too and take photos from the same height.  But some of the best pics I have seen are from unusual angles.   I have photos from Shelly's level, from under, above and beside her.  Don't worry if it isn't the 'recommended' shot type or angle that you are 'supposed' to get.  Take it anyway.  You might be surprised with the results.

6. Edit
Use an online or phone application to edit your photos.  Crop, change colouring, reduce red eye, blur edges, do the lot.  Have fun with it too.

So there are my tips.  Have fun!!

Friday, October 16, 2015

One Sentence to describe the last week.

I still haven't done the yoga video. 

Cats don't need a video!

... Or maybe they do!

Friday, October 9, 2015

# 7 came to play

This morning, Ms 3yo (7th of 8), woke up early.  She told her mother that after Kindy she was going to Grandma's house to play with M.  How cute is she?!

Not long after Ms 3yo arrived this afternoon, we had a conversation about her new shoes.  This picture is the closest image online that I could find.  Below the picture is a recount of our exchange. 

Me: wow, did you get new shoes?
#7: yep! Frozen shoes!
Me: Frozen?  Are they cold?
#7: (bends over and touches the toes of both shoes for a moment before saying) no, they hot.

I laughed out loud!!

Just now, we had another exchange about the infamous shoes. 

Me: "hey #7, where are your shoes?"
#7: I don't need them.
Me: (LOL) but where are they?
#7: I don't know.
Me: can I take a photo of your shoes please?
#7: okay. :D
Me: can you get them for me please?
#7: Uuummm... they are at the door. 

They are NOT at the door. 

Oh well!  I better go find Shelly.  She doesn't enjoy visits from the children as much as I do. 


Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Holidays are Over... =(

By the time this is posted I will starting my first day of Term 4 at school.  That means it's time to review the "To Do" List and see what I have actually achieved.  It is important to celebrate success.  I hope there is some success to celebrate. 

1. Walk at least 6 times.
I managed to walk 12 times!  That should count as credit for the next item. 

2. Do my Yoga video twice
This one didn't happen.  Perhaps I will do it before school officially goes back.

3. Clean out the Linen closet

4. Complete and Lodge my Tax Return

5. Visit the Warra Animal Shelter to finally deliver the donations that are filling up my house.
The donations are ready to go, but we haven't quite got to the shelter yet!  I am hoping Mum will be able to help me with that this week.

6. Catch up on the medical appointments
I went to the Specialist and the Physio but there are still two medical professionals on the list.  Oh well!

7.  Do more tidying up in the back room- this room is going to take forever to get right!
I put more stuff in the back room but I didn't do a lot of tidying.  Oh dear, we were doing so well and it seems the wheels are falling off the wagon. 

8. FINISH organising my bedroom
Oh, I did that! =)

9. Spend time with THE kids.
I did this one too! =D

10. Catch up with some teacher friends
I caught up with one teacher friend for lunch and another friend on the phone.  While I didn't get to everyone on the list, I am ticking this one.

11. Have a PJ Day
Yep, I did this too!

12. Blog

13. Set up my Teacher Folder for Term 4
It is as set up as it can be.  So this one counts as a tick too!

14. Go Shopping - clothes, storage, stationery
I went shopping last week.  I bought two tops for work, a few storage items and some stationery.  I also bought stuff for my prize box at school, craft supplies AND Christmas gifts.  I'm ahead of the game on this one.  =D

That's that then!  I am going with mostly successful.  The jobs to catch up on should fit into my weekends between now and December, so I'm okay with that.

More to come, More to say, Always More.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Why I Love Quality Time with Kids

  I'm exhausted today after spending the last two days with my nephews and nieces. 

The first day was spent watching Mr #1 (he's 15yo) play futsal.  They played in the Schools Championships, unfortunately they didn't make it into the Semi-final, but they played well.  I'm not a sports fan. I don't see how some people get so attached to players and plan their lives around game days.  I don't understand all the rules and the emotion attached to a score. I wasn't that great at sport either which probably explains why I don't follow any sort of team.  When it comes to my nephews and nieces and their sports, I am an enthusiastic supporter.  I dress in team colours and shout encouraging platitudes with the best of them.  I love it, because I love my nephews and nieces. 

Any time I get to spend with "my" kids is a blessing.  I love being with them.  We love to do so many things together.  I love it for various reasons and I hope they have more than one reason for spending time with me. These little ones inspire me.  It is an absolute pleasure to watch them grow.  They welcome me with open arms (literally).  They remember little things that make me seem magical in their eyes. They all have their own special skills, loves, desires and ways about them.  I truly enjoy our time together. 

They inspire me as they live entirely in the moment at hand.  Of course, as a toddler one doesn't have any real worries beyond those of the present.  However, it highlights the joy available to us if we let go of everything else and just be in the moment.  I have so much fun when I spend time with my nephews and nieces because I put everything else aside and make them the most important person in the room.  I hope that is why they like to see me.  I enjoy it because I am not worrying and I'm not even thinking that hard.  It's glorious.

Watching my sister's children grow is a delight! When I see Mr #1 with his friends, with his little sisters, with his parents, I remember holding him in my arms the night he was born.  An interesting journey it has been.  I see first steps, I hear first words, I sing happy birthday and I'm invited to school plays and sports days.  I have been to doctor's appointments and sat by hospital beds. I have been the baby sitter on call and the favourite aunty for sleep overs.  I get to take part. I'm so lucky.

Who doesn't love cuddles? Who doesn't love seeing someone's face light up when they see you?  No one! That's who! 

Each of them have a different story of when they have had a sleep over at my house or just been for a visit.  We have built cubby houses in the living room with sheets and furniture.  We have painted a sheet by throwing paint dipped cotton balls and balls of paper.  We have dropped Mentos into Diet Coke and stayed up late watching movies. I have painted faces and had my face painted.  I have had my hair styled beautifully. What a wonderful way to spend my holidays.

I could go on for hours telling stories about the little things my angels have done over the years, but there is no time for that.  There is far more fun and frivolity to be had.

That's that then!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Look what I made

I promised that you would see the card I made for Mum for Mothers' Day.  I have also made cards for my sister, nephews, my dad and some work colleagues.  I have a lot of decorative paper- I bought them for some reason.  Anyway, I decided that I better stop buying craft and card making supplies and start using them instead.  So, this year, I am not buying cards, I'm making them. 

I would give you step by step instructions with each card image, but it really wasn't that complicated and I just stumbled through it myself.  If you are new to the card making thing, my advice is to look at various websites and use Pinterest to keep images of the cards that you like, then use them to inspire your own designs.  That's what I have done. If you check out my board you will quickly see the inspiration of my own cards. 


Click here to see my Pinterest board of card making inspiration. 

The "crooked" card I made for mum!

Birthday card for my brother-in-law.
Balloon paper, Happy Birthday paper, a circle cutter, scissors, glue and a Sharpie!
Easy as pie!
I'm particularly proud of this one.  A 'good bye' card for one of my bosses who is going to another school for the rest of the year (then going on leave).  We anticipate that he will return next year. 
I made this for a work colleague who is off on long term leave which will probably be followed by retirement!

Front and Inside of the card Shelly (and I) made for my dad for Father's Day.

Another in the Fathers' Day collection.  For my Dad, from me!

Birthday card for my nephew: made from a card template and Kmart washi tape.