Abby’s Class Situation – Update

Last Friday we went to talk to Abby’s principal to discuss the possibility of changing her to the other prep-class at the school.

We made the deal with her, that we would observe Abby at home and she would make sure the teachers did the same at the school.

As the perfect mum I am, I had forgotten the meeting and arranged a surf trip instead. Yep, just hand me that mum of the year reward now, thanks!

Anyways, Josh was a champ and went to the meeting alone, while I took Lulu and Billie to the beach. Hey, I have been to numerous meetings and parent things without Josh, so I think it was completely fine that he did it. And I completely trusted him with the task.

I think we both kinda knew the outcome before hand, really.

On the very positive side, the school has actually taken our concerns very serious. The principal herself has talked to Abby, about her friends in the class, three times during the week. She has also talked to the other students to paint a pattern of their friendships. And she saw one – a pattern. This means that Abby has connected with a couple of other kids whom she consistently during the week mentioned as her friends – and who also mentioned her. All good.

That she still prefers playing with a couple of kids from the other class is okay as long as she starts to feel “at home” in her own class as well.

Our main concern was actually the conservative teaching methods used by Abby’s teacher. This we have chosen to let go a bit. Mainly to keep the good spirit. For Abby’s sake. We might take it up later on if it evolves in a direction we can’t accept.

Bottom line is – Abby stays in her class and it’s okay. At least we made the teachers aware of our concerns and I honestly think they have been more focused on the social integration this past week. I could be seeing what I want to see, but that’s my experience – and I am still happy that we didn’t just let it be.

❤️

In Other News

It’s back to reality around here. The University of Queensland is back on this week. Josh started on Monday and I am going there tomorrow – I only have to go once a week, every Thursday from 9am. – 6pm. Making a day of it, you know.

We still haven’t really figured out the logistics of it all but that will come. Right?

Besides uni, both Josh and I are currently looking for part-time jobs to pay our rent and our camping trips. It’s been a bit harder than expected, to be honest. It’s not easy finding a job in a city where your network is tiny and when your last real job was 6 years ago in Denmark.

Last weekend I actually took a 5 hour barista course to get a little bit more on my CV. If it will lead to an actual barista job time will show. No matter what, it was fun to learn something new and I now know the actual difference on a cappuccino, a latte and a flat white.

And yes, I dream of going camping a lot more. Once we’re all settled in with uni and jobs and what-not we’ll start planning. Straddie, Byron and somewhere up north is definitely on the list. Fresh air, sandy feet and surf beaches are a must.

We still haven’t finished painting our bathroom.

The weather has cooled down a bit here. We can really feel the autumn coming our way – today it’s only 27 degrees and I am actually wearing a long sleeve as I type.

Today is my mother’s 75. birthday. I really wish we were in Denmark to help celebrate her. It sucks being so far away on these occasions. Thankfully we have FaceTime and we will sing her a little song later tonight.

Ohh, and Abby just lost her first tooth in school today. My little trooper didn’t even tell her teacher, because she was scared of getting in trouble. The tooth fell our in the middle of a lesson where she was “supposed to be learning stuff, not play with her tooth”. We assured her she would never get in trouble for loosing a tooth – or the teacher would be in trouble with us.

We have started a family tradition around our dinner table each night. Everyone has to say three things that made them happy during the day. It can be big or small. Billie usually says something in the line of “I was happy in the sand pit” and “I just love my whole family”. Tonight I will definitely say, that I am happy to see so many people have tuned into my little blog lately.

Thank you!

❤️

Red Hot Chili Peppers Are Coming to Brisbane

…And we are going to their concert. Tonight. On a Monday. How rock’n’roll. Yeah, that’s just the kinda people we are. No worries in the world. Going out to rock concerts on random weekdays. Drinking a beer even. A(!) beer. Because we need to drive home – and pick our baby up on the way. Ohh, and tomorrow it’s Tuesday btw. School, preschool and uni day. Ain’t no sleep for the wicked.

It is the first time Lulu is being babysat by other than my parents for a couple of hours back in Denmark. Today we dropped her off at a friend’s house. A friend who is home “alone” with her own three kids tonight, but still happily takes on another (ours) – such a legend!

We just left there and the drop off went so much better than expected. I did worry a bit about it. Afterall, Lulu has never been with anyone else than us and she’s been a bit mummy and daddy sick lately. So far so good! To be honest I am mainly concerned that Lulu will be quite a handfull for Sophie the Legend if she gets sad. Having a crying baby is never fun, let alone if it’s not yours. I mean, I know Lulu will be absolutely fine – even if she cries. She will be cuddled and kissed all night long, I’m sure. Fingers crossed they will all have a hyggelig time

Meanwhile Abby and Billie are being looked after at home by our neighbour who is a such a darling. She’s a stewardesse and only got back from an overseas flight this afternoon. Thank God the “horrible” cyclone buggered off, so she could fly in today. The girls are loving her and they could not be happier being there.

Our Brissy village might be small, but it’s a good one.

So yeah, Red Hot Chili Peppers – at Brisbane Entertainment Centre. Brisbane Entertainment Centre. That sounds like it would be a venue in, like, Brisbane, right?

We thought so. It kinda is and then again not. It’s a 30 minutes drive north of the city, so we have just legt our bikes at home and jumped in our trusty, golden people mover instead.

So wild & free!

The tickets for the concert is actually my birthday present to Josh. He has always been a huge fan of Red Hot Chili Peppers, so it was a pretty safe buy. And a present that I benefit from as well. See, I’m clever like that.

We need this tiny break. We haven’t been out together without the girls since NYE, where we went out for dinner and were back before 10pm. Before that we hadn’t been out for years. Literally. Our last concert was Mø in Sydney while I was pregnant with Billie. That’s too long.

Now, I just hope the girls are all doing great and that their babysitters aren’t reaching breaking point anytime soon.

Soon we’ll be singing along to some hits from my teenage years. Can’t fault that. It will be good. Rock on!

❤️

Helicopter Parents In The Making

We felt like naughty, little school kids getting sent to the office, but we did it. We went to the principal’s office to have a chat to her about Abby’s class situation as we will like her to change classes. We have been talking about doing it for a while – basically since Abby started school. Yet, we doubted it a lot during the past weeks. Were we over-concerned? Or over-controlling? Should we just let it go?

Having children is such a constant learning process. As soon as you have adapted to their current development stage they change and their circumstances change as well.

We have never had a school child before and we know that she will have to learn to act withing the immediate school setting she gets put in – she can’t just change teachers or class mates whenever she (or we) feels like it.

However, this is only prep and getting a good start to her school life is so important, so we decided to follow our gut feelings and take action. And I am glad we did.

We Have Tried it Before

Last year, when we just moved to Brisbane, we put Abby and Billie into a preschool which they absolutely hated – not from the word go, but after a short while. It was horrible. Still, we could have said “it will probably get better soon”. We considered doing so. Thinking we were overreacting and that it’s normal that kids are sad when starting a new place.

But it just felt wrong and we had to trust our gut feelings. We moved them to another preschool and it was the best thing we have done for them. The new preschool – the one where Billie is in now – is amazing and the girls immediately blossomed there.

Abby hasn’t been miserable in her current class. She’s doing okay, but she’s not loving it either. Especially socially. She hasn’t really connected with the other children yet – and to be honest, I think there’s already a bit of a toxic environment going on there. A couple of, apparently popular, girls already teaming up ignoring the other girls when they feel like it. Girls! Seriously, they are five years old!

In the other class Abby has a couple of friends already and the girls seem pretty chilled – as well as the teacher.

The chemistry between us and her current teacher could be better. Her way of teaching is quite conservative and old fashioned and I hope the other teacher will suit us and Abby better. You see, to really florish Abby needs to be set free a bit. She is so true to authorities that it almost becomes a hindrance, if you ask me. She will do anything to please the teacher, so if the teacher is very strickt, Abby won’t try to think “out of the box” or follow her own creativity – she will just sit straight up and down (with her hands on her knees, because that’s “the rule”) and “always do as the teacher asks – also when the other kids are being little chatter boxes”.

That ability probably will be a general advantage in this rather conservative australian school system, but if we can push her a bit in the other direction we will. Afterall, I did write a post only this week about how being scared of making mistakes has always been a huge disadvange for me and still is to this very day.

So, Will She Move or Stay?

Anyway, the final decision whether to move her or not will be taken next Friday, when we go there for a follow-up meeting.

The principal took us very serious and her and the two prep teacher will observe Abby during next week and then make a decision based on their findings – together with our informations about Abby’s behaviour before and after school (she has complained about stomach pains a couple of mornings).

No matter what, just the fact that we acted on our concerns feels good. And even if she stays in her current class I hope that her teacher, now being aware of our concerns, will be encouraged to integrate the kids better socially.

School should be fun when you’re only five years old❤️

Being Perfectly Average

I have been struggling with some major, lets call them, self definition issues lately. “Just a mom” doesn’t cut it anymore, but who am I, these days? Well, maybe I just need to get a hobby. Who knows.

I just feel like I am standing at a cross road – and I cannot move. I just stand here like a fool. But I want to move. I want to go somewhere. Anywhere, really. And then again…I want to lead the way. But I feel lost. And it frustrates me. Mainly because I do have some ideas I wish to follow. E.G. I want to give this little blogging adventure of mine a real go, but I hit the wall again and again. Ouch! Here’s why. Or at least here’s a bit of the ‘why’…

I am a perfectionist.

Yeah right, what a silly statement from someone who’s clothes are cringled and who’s house is a mess. Hang in there…

I also have a relatively intelligent head put on to my body. Ohh! An even more ridiculous statement to throw out into the open, from someone who never even managed to pass her studies back in the day. Well, we’re not talking mensa smart here, but I get around, right… (even if Josh did score higher in the intelligence test we took a while back. Yes we did).

Sounds like a great combo, ay. Unfortunately it can be a troubled one. You see, I am a smart, lazy perfectionist.

True story, I don’t make this shit up – I have it from my psychiatrist. He was very convincing.

So, what does it even mean? A smart, lazy perfectionist. Well, it means that I can do almost anyything I set my mind to. In theory. In reality, it often means that I don’t even get started on my projects or tasks. I get overwhelmed – because I know that getting it perfect will demand a shit load of work from me. And then I give up beforehand.

A side-effect, or a side order, of this mind of mine is that I am ridiculously scared of mistakes and failure. This being my biggest issue, really. Because we all know that you learn from mistakes – and constantly trying to avoid them or hide from them doesn’t do anyone any good. Ain’t no exciting future in that, I can tell you.

So, bottom line is that I am very aware of my weak points when it comes to self development and I do know what it takes to get somewhere. Anywhere. Unfortunately there’s sometimes an extremely long way from knowing to doing for me – hence me writing this right now.

Old mate psychiatrist also went on with something in the line of “you can do anything if you learn to manage this chaos inside you – but are you really willing? Do you dare?”

Hmmm. I AM willing. And I think I do dare. I am working on this, guys. I have learned that it is okay not to be the best at EVERYTHING. kinda. I have not yet learned to love that I am not good at everything I touch – at first try. But slowly getting there…

My studies commence next week. Last semester I studied two courses; Media & Society and Public Relations. I did fairly good at both and I have come to terms with that being okay. Afterall, I did also have a newborn baby and two additional kids to look after so barely made it to any lectures.

Putting my achievements into context like that is important for me even if it shouldn’t have to be, I guess. For now it makes it easier to have some kind of “excuse”.

I am practicing. I try to not always compare myself to the best. I try to aim less at being the best, but instead doing my best.

I am practicing and I am pretty sure it will take a life time to master. This is in my blood, guys. Hey – my brother have a custom made painting in his house saying “number one, number one, number one, no-one cares about the rest” – it’s two meters high. And red. And there’s a photo of himself in it too. Yeah, that’s where I am coming from. Haha!

Shit man.

Sure, I am in it to win it. Always will be – but I will also try my best to be in it just to have a good time. And learn from my mistakes. No matter what I get into, I hope. So please bare with me if I more consistently spam you with blog posts that aren’t ground breaking, amazingly, fantastic, ‘share it with all of your thousands of besties on Facebook’-good. It’s just me trying to find my way and practicing being okay with being average. Context and excuses, you know.

And just for the record, average can be pretty perfect.

❤️

Friday Mood

Friday is probably our favorite day of the week. Dooh! I mean, who doesn’t love Fridays? It’s a given, right?! Even if you – like us – aren’t working, Friday is still special. I don’t know, it’s something about the general mood of the town. That, and the fact that it’s socially acceptable to have an afternoon beer, because…it was such a long and hard week and…finally the weekend is here! You’ve deserved it. The beer, that is.

Today has been no different. The mood has been great and for the first time in a long time we have just been home doing home-stuff all day. Abby has been in school and Billie has been living the life with iPad and snacks galore. No complaints. Lulu is just her chiller self. She’s a pretty chilled baby in general. She’s happy as long as she can explore and do whatever she wants, really.

Anyways, I almost finished my mission of the day – my rearranging of our patio-project.

Before photos:

I still need to do a bit of painting and we need to get some lighting for the dinner area – potentially some pendants?

After photos:

Ohh, and we most definitely need more plants. It has been so hot lately that the plants have been struggling to survive on the patio, so we relocated them to our carport. Now some of them are back in action, but we need to get more, for sure.

I love this space now. It feels so much more like an extension of the house instead of just a patio. We’ve got ourselves an extra lounge room. Yay!

Tonight we will have our first BBQ here and very soon I will open a beer and drink it in my new, favorite coffee/beer spot.

Cheers!

Have a great weekend❤️

Exploring: Enoggera Reservoir

Today we jumped into a lake to cool down. It was fresh(water)! We went to Enoggera Reservoir, also known as Enoggera Dam. Such a great alternative to the beach on a hot day only 15 minutes drive from Brisbane CBD and quite a little gem, if you ask me.

The biggest downside to Brisbane is probably it’s lack of proximity to the beach. When the temperature is well above 30 and the humidity equals a pumping steam bath there is nothing more tempting than jumping into the ocean for a swim.

Luckily there are some pretty decent alternatives in or close to the city.

There is, of course, the beach pool at South Bank and several decent public pools with good facilities. However, there are also more natural options such as dams, creeks and waterfalls.

Today we went to check out Enoggera Reservoir – and one thing is for sure, we will be back!

Enoggera Dam

As the name suggests it is actually a water reservoir for Brisbane, so obviously it is not completely natural, but that’s okay. It was build in 1866, so it is fair to say that it has settled into the natural surroundings by now.

Even if it is man made back in the day it is beautifully positioned amongst the trees and bush land at the start of the national park. You truly get a feeling of being far away from the hustle and bustle of the city, yet Brisbane CBS is merely a 15 minute drive away.

The water is not pristine, clear and blue as the ocean, but compared to the sometimes quite wild waves at the beach, it was so nice to swim in the calm lake water – and the kids loved it.

There are no BBQ facilities or toilettes at the dam and the café located at the entrance to the park closes early, so I would recommend bringing food and drinks. A good occasion to give the ol’ Esky a workout, ay!

Besides swimming the area is also used for other recreational purposes such as kanoing, mountain biking and hiking. It is possible to rent kayaks and paddle boards at the site and it is very popular to bring blow-up swimming aids of all kinds.

Next time we go we will definitely combine the swim with a hike on one of the trails joining up with the national park – and visit the Walkabout Creek Discovery Centre and cafe, which unfortunately had closed when we got there today.

How to get there:

It was a 25 minute drive from our house at Kangaroo Point and well worth it – and still a lot closer than the beach which is an hour on a good day, easily 1.5 hours when the traffic is heavy.

There is parking at Walkabout Creek Discovery Centre at 60 Mt. Nebo Rd. The Gap, Brisbane QLD 4061. From there it is a 5 minute walk to the dam. The path is nice and wide and you can bring a pram or stroller if needed.

Don’t – as we did – just tap in “Enoggera Reservoir” to you GPS, unless you wish to drive up the mountains and stop in the middle of nowhere 🙂