Bananas at the Beach

A few weekends ago, we went to Cottesloe Beach for a picnic and play.

Callum at Cottesloe Beach

It’s been a while since we’ve done something spontaneous and fun as a family.

The weeks have been flying by, with our days completely dominated by the routine of breakfast, school, extra-curricular activities, homework, dinner, bath, and bedtime.

The boys are up at 7am, and it’s practically huh-hup-hup like soldiers until 8pm.

I hardly get to play with them anymore. I’m cooking dinner, washing dishes, helping with homework, overseeing their jobs, running the bath, putting things away etc. I just want to hang around, chat and kick a ball with them. But there doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day.

Banana Peel on Cottesloe Beach

The trend is scary. I can see how, if we didn’t do anything about it, that in a blink of an eye, I’ll miss my children’s childhood. Days will blur into each other and I’ll miss the details of my life.

I guess, that’s why our weekends are so precious.

Boys at Cottesloe Beach

The boys had such a good time. They spent close to 2 hours just mucking about in the water and sand. They made up a game where they had to run up the beach before the wave caught them. Then they would shuffle down the slope on their bottoms, letting the waves tumble them over.

It was magical to watch them have so much fun.

Making Baby 3 – Hello World!

Baby Liam

Everyone, meet Liam. Liam, meet everyone.

Suddenly, my family will never be the same again. It is exactly how we dreamed it to be.

I am too tired to be ecstatic, but I am glowing with relief, joy and fulfilment.

I have three healthy children. My life is truly blessed.

We are all doing well.

I’ll post up the full birth story as soon as I can.

Click here to see the whole story of Making Baby 3.

How To Get Un-Pregnant

Karen 40 Weeks Pregnant

It is terribly ironic, that after spending so much time trying to get pregnant, I now really want to be… NOT PREGNANT.

Every mother I meet seems to have a story about how they brought on their labour, or have some entertaining piece of advice they received.

Go for a very long walk.
Go for a very fast walk.
Make love.
Clean the bathroom.
Do some gardening.
Go horse-riding.
Go for a bumpy car ride.
Drink one tablespoon of castor oil. (This will produce diarrhoea, as well as a baby.)
Have a massage.
Eat spicy food.

Well, I’ve tried some of the afore-mentioned things AND STILL NO BABY!

My doctor says that at 40 weeks, I’m doing well, there’s nothing wrong with me, nothing wrong with the baby, everything seems to be going fine – so I have declined to be induced, until absolutely necessary. I guess, as much as I am complaining, I actually want to have as “natural” a birth as possible.

So it’s my own fault really. I have chosen to wait it out!

Click here to see the whole story of Making Baby 3.

Life Rebounds

A few weeks ago, a couple of American readers emailed me and said they hoped I hadn’t been affected by the tragic bushfires in Australia – which were so bad they made worldwide headlines. A couple of hundred people were killed in what have become known as “mega-fires”.

Actually, the fires were in Victoria, on the east coast, and I am in Perth, all the way over on the other side of Australia. This is like the distance between New York and Los Angles, or Madrid and Moscow. A long, long way.

But, the climate and vegetation is basically similar, and we have the same risks. Everyone is terrified of bushfires. And only a few weeks before the Victorian fires, we did have a pretty big scare here in Perth with a bushfire, right in the middle of the city. Next to the Perth CBD is a huge area called Kings Park, a spectacular combination of war memorial, cultivated botanic gardens and natural bushland. It’s a fantastic asset for a city to have. But the natural bushland component, like all Australian bush, is very volatile in summer.

Kings Park Bush Fire

In January, a huge fire burnt out a large section of the park where we sometimes go for an evening walk and to admire the views of the Swan River. It seems the fire was deliberately lit. Fortunately, Kings Park’s famous features – the Botanical Gardens and War Memorial Lookout – were saved, and nobody was hurt.

So a couple of weeks ago, my husband and I went back to see what Kings Park looked like after a bushfire.

At first, it was pretty depressing. Everything was black, grey and brown. The ground was carpeted with ash, and every tree and shrub was blackened. The metal name plaques for the plants were melted.

But then I started to see little sprigs of green. Just poking out of the ash, or bursting determinedly from the side of a seemingly charred, broken stump.

Kings Park Bush Fire

I recalled from school lessons that fire is an inevitable and natural part of the cycle of life in Australia, and that some species of plant seeds will never even germinate without the smoke that comes from a fire.

And it was great to see that, however bad the fire was, life is still there, waiting for it’s chance to bloom.

Making Baby 3, Week 40 – Now It Hurts

Okay, I admit it. I made a big mistake. I presumed that since both my previous boys had been born in the 38th week of pregnancy, that the third would be as well.

I am now almost 40 weeks (full term) and the baby still hasn’t arrived!

I have never been THIS pregnant. And it hurts. Literally.

I am getting tighter and heavier by the day. It takes a phenomenal amount of effort to bend down to pick something up. Or to get up from a chair. Or god help me, get up from off the floor!

My butt hurts when I sit. My feet hurt when I stand. My back hurts when I walk.

My baby is kicking me in the lungs and in the stomach. I have nerve tingling sensations in my legs from his head pressing against my spine. Every time he moves, my tummy feels like a balloon being stretched to its limit.

When I go to sleep at night, the pressure of the baby on my organs make it really hard for me to breathe.


My belly button, which is usually a nice deep “inny”,  is pushed out so far that it sticks out of my clothes, like an huge, rude nipple. I have to go to the toilet every 15 minutes because there is no room for my bladder to expand.

My entire family are carrying around mobile phones, waiting for me to ring and say one word – LABOUR! – so they can spring into action.

But it’s not happening. Day after day, I am still very pregnant.


I think worst of all… my biggest mistake is, telling everyone that I was expecting the baby in the 38th week.

Everyone (and I mean EVERYONE) I meet, says, “You’re still pregnant?” or “Any news yet?”

It’s driving me crazy!

Where is this baby!?

Click here to see the whole story of Making Baby 3.