26 April 2012

happy little Vegemites

I'm feeling pretty darn fantastic today so I thought I'd share. Actually, I felt even better a few minutes ago - would have gone so far as a fan-fucking-tastic - but then I added up my WW points for the day & realized that tortillas are no friend of mine (can you say addiction?). And now Evan is crying on the floor because he knows I'm trying to actually do something selfishly. Babies know these things - if I was doing something I hated, he'd be a happy little chappy rolling in the floor, minding his own business but he must be able to tell that I'm typing happily so he has to interrupt.

Also, he pooped so he might just want that changed.

In any case today is okay. Ben is at daycare after a doctor's appointment this morning -  he is healthy, wealthy & wise so don't worry about him. Well, maybe he's not so much wealthy or wise just yet but healthy is good enough for now. He's had a bit of personality meltdown recently but I don't want to weight down my good mood going into all of that so I'll save it for another day when I feel more like venting on crazy toddlers & half-assed sleep training & all that fun stuff.

Yesterday I stole a bit of time to myself for the first time in a gazillion years. After Marcel's five days away last week we knew I needed to get away from everyone before I stopped loving them. I have had some rough days as of late but that's not the focus today so moving on ....

Marcel was home yesterday because it was the ANZAC Day holiday (google it, I'm too lazy to explain at the moment but it's like Veteran's Day) so I took myself out to a movie. Saw The Hunger Games & enjoyed it if you can actually say that you enjoy a movie like that. It's not the perkiest movie of all time but I could not bring myself to watch what would undoubtedly be a tearjerker Zac Efron movie alone so Hunger Games was my backup.

Let's be honest, I have become one of those people who sees movies out so rarely that if I have that blessed movie popcorn & a drink in my grubby hands & no responsibility on me, I will declare whatever I'm watching to be a masterpiece.

I do have one niggling issue that I need to clarify with those of you consider yourself Hunger Games aficionados. What is the deal with everyone calling Josh Hutcherson a heartthrob?? I realize that as the mother of two boys I really ought to be nice to young dudes & don't get me wrong, he's cute but young girls are going apeshit over this kid who frankly looks like the kid Rocky from National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation to me. I seriously kept reminding myself to imdb him when I went home to see if it WAS him. It wasn't.

Anyway, even his character wasn't some great guy either in this one. He wasn't evil or anything but he was a bit of a pushover & the only time he was really charming was when he was manipulating someone so unless Thor's brother has mega douchebaggery in his future with the sequels, this fella best step up his game because I am just not seeing it. Seriously, the tall drink of water back home is taking care of your family while you're fighting to the death so he's awesome & Miley Cyrus isn't the turd we all thought she'd be so I can't discount him for dating her in real life. So why are people all not into Gale? Is it because THEY NAMED HIM GALE? Worst names ever in this movie.

And why is Lenny Kravitz in it? He's not bad at all, in fact he's good but I can think of a few black actors who could have done just a kick-ass job of that role & could use the exposure of such a massive trilogy on their CV. But again, he's good, seriously easy on the eyes & appears to have done a deal with the devil so that he will never age so I will end my complaints here.

I can not & will not say a bad word against Jennifer Lawrence because she rocked my socks off. Made me want to run home & dye my hair brunette again too. Was also impressed by Woody Harrelson & Elizabeth Banks who I didn't recognize for ages even though I knew she was going to be in it.

So anyway, that's my rundown of nothing. Don't bring your spoilers around here for the next two books/movies please because I plan on downloading them to read. Because you know I have so many opportunities to sit & read a good book these days ... NOT.

I hope you enjoyed this newer, happier Ashley today. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that she'll stick around for a while but I make no promises. Grouchy Ashley might be funnier anyway - this one keeps singing that latest Katy Perry song & I do not care for that song one bit.

Okay, I'm not going yet - I just hit up google images so let's get back into this, folks. Josh vs. Liam - it's on like Donkey Kong.



Liam's brother.

Sorry, got distracted. Case closed.

20 April 2012

Faces of us (minus M & E)

But wait, there's more. When Ben & I were getting on each others nerves for about the 700th time today, we resorted to our favorite palate cleanser ... Photobooth. That is one of my very few mothering tips. Toddlers loves Photobooth almost as much as 32 year-old women who refuse to act their age.

So I present to you our latest crop of fun:

This one's my favorite because we look so goshdarn happy.

This is Ben's favorite because we're blue.

This is why you'll never beat me in an ugly-face contest.
I know my worst features & am not afraid to use them.

Every artist is a cannibal, every poet is a thief

Hoo boy, I had been feeling very confident about surviving these five days without Marcel but today that just went out the window, shot to H-E-double-hockey-sticks. Now I shall be crawling, battered & bleeding across that finish line with crazy Ben attached to one leg & whiny Evan attached to the other. I hope I still get a trophy.

Let's hit the rewind button for a second (for those of you too young to have had a VCR, the rewind button was necessary to go backwards in a movie - it was terrible, you didn't miss anything) to last night. No, no, no let's go back to Tuesday night first. We - we being me, by the way, but I hate to be on the spot here - decided to test Ben's Phenergen.

Wait, I have to keep going back don't I? *sigh* Some of us just have the gift of storytelling, don't be jealous.

We are flying for our big vacation at the end of next month so we bought some Phenergren to knock Ben out on the long flight & to use for the first few nights to hopefully help iron out the jet lag situation. Yeah, I drug my kid - anyone who has done regular 14-hour flights with a little one will understand this. If you choose not to drug that is A-okay with me but you have not spent that much time in a metal tube full of judgmental people with MY SON so don't judge me either.

Anyhoo, the chemist said to be sure to test it a few times before flying because in some kids it has the opposite effect & hypes them up instead. Spoiler alert: that did not happen to us so rest easy for now. I figured I needed all the help I could get while Marcel is away, especially after Ben had a great nap at daycare on Tuesday. Perfect time to test out the meds!

It really didn't seem to do anything for him, he went to bed pretty normally without much of a fight but it took him a little while to actually sleep. Whatevs, no drama good or bad. But he talked in his sleep all night, jibber jabbering nonstop every time I woke up. Then he woke up around 4.30am ready to go for the day. I finally convinced him to go back to bed for a little while (thank you, Jesus) but by 6.00am he was good to go.

Okay, another rewind moment - Evan & I now have the bed to ourselves, which is kind of awesome in the scheme of things. It would be more awesome if he was in his own bed down the hall but that's all my fault so I'm just going to pretend this is peachy until I have the energy & brainpower to do some sleep training. So he's sleeping better in a less crowded bed because his head isn't right around my boob region where he can smell & drink milk on tap. He still is half-waking 2-3 times a night to scoot over & have a quick drink & doze off again. This is no big deal, I barely wake up normally but now that I've had a taste of having half the bed to myself, I am drunk with delight so after he has his little sips I carefully & hilariously roll out of the bed (literally) & set up the pillow fortress on that side (he has his little sleeping bag so he doesn't roll anyway) then go to the other side of the bed to sleep awesomely by myself. Eventually he worms his way over there & we repeat the song & dance until morning.

I do not recommend co-sleeping in anything less than a King bed, by the way. We have a Queen & that's just stupid. Unfortunately, a King would take up our entire room & I am too attached to our Reject Shop bedside tables. Yes, that's right there is a store called The Reject Shop here in Australia & I have bought too many things there, which probably makes me a reject.

ANYWAY, back to Ben ...

So he had another doozy of a nap at daycare yesterday & I was already dreading the night where I would no doubt be fighting with him until the late night. He asked for the medicine & I thought no, I can't give him the medicine again. Then I started stroking my evil twirly moustache & having dastardly thoughts. The chemist DID say to try it a few times & Tuesday night wasn't a good example because he was loony anyway.

So yes, I drugged him again. It did not go well. He still fought with me half the night, he still ended up asleep on his floor, I lost my temper too many times, the usual. Then the little poo-head talked in his sleep all night again. What the what??

Ooooh, PAUSE for a moment. Ben just asked me for something & I said "Sure, Sweet Potato." He replied "I not sweet potato. I Ninny." He is glorious, I tell you. GLORIOUS. He stubbornly calls himself Ninny instead of Benny & I can not wait to remind him of this on a regular basis when he's a teenager. But back to the neverending stoooooorrryyyy ....


I wish I could remember everything he said because it was full-on conversations. The only part I remember was him saying "Oma" because I thought how much Debbie (that's Pastor Eisele to you!) would love to know that but then he said "Yucky" & I laughed in my half-asleep state. To be fair, it sounded like it was "Oma, yucky" not "Oma yucky" as in he was telling her something was yucky not calling her yucky. What on earth does he dream about?

And yes, he was back up at the crack of dawn so I am very sleepy. The day was a shitstorm from there - he had a fever this morning & some tummy troubles as well but he seems okay now. Evan has had some napping issues, I have gotten very little accomplished, both boys were attached to me all day.

On the plus side, it was finally beautiful weather all day, I finally managed to sweep the house while Evan screamed in his crib & Ben was locked outside with his iPad (it's the only way it could happen for this terrible mother/housekeeper) & now we're making a cake while Evan finally naps. With blue frosting. At 5pm. I'm thinking that the fact that Ben hasn't napped today means he might still go down halfway easily even after the sugar & blue food coloring rush. I've been promising to make a cake with him for ages & wanted to do a trial run of the blue frosting for his birthday (the only thing we know about his birthday is that it requires a blue spider cake)(I'm using lots of parentheses today, aren't I?).

Ahhhh well, I don't need a life do I? Oh crap, yes I do! I had a good chat with my GP about my occasional bouts of the ole postpartum depression. She says I need a hobby & to be more selfish with my time. *sigh* Don't get me wrong, she wasn't downplaying the seriousness or anything & said to call her immediately if it seems to be more serious than just exhaustion + no life of my own = wah waaahhh. 

So now I have to find something I like to do as a hobby. Maybe I'll revisit the days of my terrible 8th grade poetry. I don't think I ever told anyone (except Joy, the prime victim reader of my poetry) that my dream in life at the time was to go to college at Trinity College in Dublin to BECOME A POET. Are there actual poets these days? Like, that's what they do for a living? How? I don't know what my whole plan was but I imagine it was all a ruse to seduce Bono.

Anyway, I seriously have no hobbies. I like to make exhaustive to-do lists & have several going at the moment. I also am a good packer & am already packing various bags for a holiday many weeks from now. I don't think those count as hobbies as such. I refuse to count my exercise as anything but ass-slimming, therefore not fun & NOT a hobby. Cooking would keep me in the house & it's impossible to be selfish with my time if I'm still juggling in the three-ring circus.

I'll keep you posted on the hobby front. And my cake is done now (kinda, the bottom might still be raw but I'm okay with just picking it apart) so if you see Ben flying past your town mid-orbit tonight after all the sugar & blue frosting, be sure to say howdy to him.

And if you're wondering where the lyric in my title is from, I invite you to visit my good friends U2:
The bizarro zumba commercial at the beginning only adds to the excellence.
Also, please note that this period in time (early 90s) is when I fell in love with Bono - leather, fly glasses, overly dyed hair, he was GLORIOUS!

18 April 2012


Sorry I keep disappearing - I'm having a hard time trying to say what's in my brain. That sounds really dramatic but I don't mean it in a sick, living inside my own thoughts too much kind of way. I mean it in more of a ... uh ... well, yeah, like I'm losing intelligence & can't find words, which severely limits my ability to ramble aimlessly as I usually tend to do.

Marcel left early Tuesday morning to go hike in the wilds of Tasmania with some friends. Must be nice, right? Just kidding - I know how great I have it with my partner in crime & he deserves an escape, which is very rare. And one day when I don't have a little human attached to me 24 hours a day I shall escape myself.

Luckily, I am surviving his absence quite well so far. If you peeked inside our house you would not agree with me - it kind of looks like a pack of deranged animals was let loose in here & then a hurricane came along after that. Ben had a friend over & her mom & I had such a lovely time with each other that I didn't waste any time following the kids around cleaning up. And it is POURING down rain this week - it literally started immediately after Marcel left the house & has yet to stop - so we're stuck inside, driving each other nuts.

And I know you're thinking that I should just get out there & take Ben out to wear him out but it's seriously bad, lots of flash floods popping up & I'm not stoked about getting stranded out there with my dudes.

Also driving me nuts is the fact that I should be at a Chicks at the Flicks, watching The Lucky One or whatever it's called. Shut up. I have been proud of never seeing a Nicholas Sparks movie but it's Zac Efron HAVING SEXY TIMES (finally, might I say). I'm watching TV & they keep showing ads for it constantly - I will have to go see it this weekend once the mister returns from Tassie.

And here we go - I have literally forgotten where I was going with this blog. I know I had things to discuss, probably very important, life-altering views on mothering but one mention of Zac Efron HAVING SEXY TIME IN A SHOWER (according to the preview) & I can't remember my own name.

Ah well, I'm off to take a bath - not for any luxurious reasons, I just need to soak my achy old lady body - turns out that caring for two nutty children on your own is exhausting. I always have the utmost respect for single parents but whenever I have to spend a bit of time on my own I want to start handing out crowns to all of you who do this all the time because you are amazing people. Honestly, you deserve much much love.

11 April 2012

oh no

I consider myself a savvy woman of the world. Well, if you don't count that declaration, which sounds dated & dweeby. In general I think it would be pretty darn hard to pull one over on this gal - I have read enough detective-type novels to know what's what in the criminal mind & in my worst moods I have silently wished someone would try to mug me just so I could beat the crap out of someone. That's right, I assume I'll win.

So riddle me this folks, what did I do when a tradesman dude showed up on my doorstep to fix something that I thought was already fixed? I shrugged my shoulders, let him in, proceeded to tell him that we don't have that alarm system actually hooked up, nope there's no dog to worry about & sure you can piddle around in my garage while I'm cleaning things up around the house. I'll just leave my purse & all our valuables right there on the table near the tiny vulnerable children while I'm scampering between rooms.

Ugh, what good am I?

Granted he came in an actual Telstra truck & we have been having internet problems but they really didn't give us any assurance on the phone that it was fixable & Marcel didn't think they ever mentioned sending someone out to fix it. I saw no problems with any part of this scenario as it unfolded.

He was here for about an hour & it wasn't until about the second half-hour, way after I told him about the alarm not being connected to anything (which was actually relevant to his work, RIGHT?) & that no dogs would attack him, I thought this could have all been very suspicious. I was clued in by my savvy right hand man, Benny.

As the dude (nope, didn't bother to ask for a name) was making an unholy commotion in the garage, Ben & I had the following conversation:

Ben:  Hear that noise?
Ash:  Yeah, I hear it.
Ben:  What that noise?
Ash:  I don't know. I guess it's the dude.
Ash:  I guess he's drilling something? Maybe looking for a wire? Adding something to something else?
Ash:  I don't know what that noise is.
Ben walks outside & peers over the gate into the garage.
Ben:  I see you! (to the dude)
Ash:  Don't bother him, Ben! He's working ... on something.

He went in & out of our back fence & was seriously making enough of a racket that he could have made a thousand keys to match our lock (what? he could have had secret locksmithing tools!) or he could have been digging a tunnel directly into our house & I never would know until my tiara collection disappeared or my diamond-studded hundred dollar bill stash came up missing.

Anyway, all's well that ends well because our internet works like a dream now - he doubled the speed by replacing a wire that someone in the past obviously chose to fix WITH TAPE when it ripped or whatever.

I'm still not clear on what happened today but I have now realized that it's really the perfect scheme. A handyman that actually fixes a problem like a leak or mysterious electrical thing that no one knows any better about AND they dig a tunnel into your personal jeweled jumprope museum. So when they leave you think everything's hunky dory but when you go to take a luxurious exercise break a few days later (no one uses jewelled jump ropes every day, duh), BAM! You realize you've been screwed.

It will still take you a while to put two & two together, wouldn't it? Because that dude solved something, gosh darn it, he can't be bad. And by the time you admit to the police "Well, there was this dude that asked a lot about alarms & dogs but I can post pictures to Facebook faster now so it can't be him ... hang on a second, that does sound weeeeird ... ooooh, you don't think it was him, do you?"

Ah well, lucky for me we own nothing of value. But I will keep a fierce eye on the poor Coles delivery guy when he brings my groceries this afternoon, mark my bloody word.

Sorry I've been gone so long. Have you even noticed I was gone? Whatevs, no hard feelings. After all the illnesses were done passing their way through our hallowed halls I was just drained & unhappy & having a hard time coping in general. I'm feeling much better this week after a long weekend with Marcel at home. Hopefully my mood will stay up but I'm still a bit nervous about how down I was actually feeling - very little temper left, no energy or enthusiasm for anything, blah blah blah. Luckily, Evan's 6 month checkup is next week - a little late, whoops - so I guess I'll have the post partum depression talk to make sure all is well with my soul. My mothering skills are already suspect at best so I really don't need emotional bad health on top of that! Shall keep you posted.

I've had so many other things to discuss in this here blog but I've forgotten it all so I'm going to go - I think I hear the grocery truck pulling up anyway. Have to get my game face on so I don't go giving him copies of our front door key & the schedule of when the house is empty or anything.

Take care of yourself!

03 April 2012


For the few of you that aren't on Facebook, I thought I'd share a photo I posted yesterday.

Ben kindly shared his baby doll for Evan to play with, which I thought was very nice of him (sidenote: when Ben gives something to Evan he automatically says "very nice" because that's what I always call him) until I got down to play with them.


How did we create a child that looks exactly like a toy we've had for a couple of years? Spooky.