Good Enough Mum – Slack Sunday Mothering


Sometimes it’s very wise to do some slack parenting. A bit of benign neglect can be good for the kids.

But who cares about being good for the kids, it can be good for the mum.  And for the au pair too, in our case.

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How To Find A Great Au Pair in Australia – Advertising

When we decided that enough was enough and it was time to find a live-in au pair again, we turned to Gumtree.

In the past we used the website Great AuPair which connected us to young people overseas who were keen to come to Australia.

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Welcome to Bethany – Say G’Day To Our New Au Pair

Well, thank goodness for a spare pair of hands. I’m so grateful. What a difference it is making to the househol to have a fresh young face, and those essential spare pair of au pair hands. 

Bethany moved in just the day before our Intn’l Man of Mystery disappeared off on his latest mission. He’ll be away until about the 17th December, it’s a long haul.

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Diner Disasters – It’s Not Just My Kids Who Misbehave in Cafes, Is It?

Oh dear, the pictures tell a thousand words each. Not an eating out success. Linking to Wordless Wednesday over at My Little Drummer Boys, pop over!

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Snowy Scotland – Nature’s Artwork

My mum and sisters are shivering in snowbound Scotland just now.  What a contrast to Sydney where it’s steamy and number one on my gratitude list is having a pool.  Splash!

My elder sister is called Mairi Stones, she is a felt artist, mum of twins… and photographer of Mother Nature.

Aren’t these photos Mairi took just gorgeous?

Scotland Snow on Hills

This is the shore near my sister's house - nice view! That isn't snow on the beach, it's frozen sea left when the tide went out.

Leaves frozen in ice

Mairi went to the pond near her house and saw lots of leaves on the ice, she peeled some off to reveal this beautiful image.

Leaves frozen in ice 2

Leaves frozen in ice 2

Leaves frozen in ice Scotland

Leaves frozen in ice 3

Gorgeous photos… and here’s it’s hot… weird, weird, weird.

Have you visited Scotland in the winter?




Good Enough Mum – How One Son Sees His Mum

At last!  One of the children is interested in taking photos… I might finally make an appearance in some of the family photo albums.

That’s all I’ll say as I’m linking to Wordless Wednesday, kindly hosted by My Little Drummer Boys, pop over! [Read more...]

Holiday Mum – The Bairns Go To Bali

Hooray!  Myself and the bairns and our recently-returned Intn’l Man of Mystery have skedaddled away for the school holidays.

To Bali!  Triple hooray!

I’m not updating the blog whilst away, having a break from electronics as well as everything else.  But here are just a few photos from our first days.

Look forward to being back in Sydney and posting more info on great family-friendly places, both in Sydney and beyond.

All the best

Seana – your poolside correspondent xxxx

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Good Enough Mum – Here’s Another Handy Hint!

Here's a very useful little device for jotting down those hard to remember but vital to do items. The hand! An aide memoir that has stood the test of time! I use mine all the time, handier than an iPhone, more portable than an iPad, and you'll never lose it when out and about!

Today I’m grateful to have two hands, one to write and one to be written upon.  And grateful for the habit of list writing on all sorts of surfaces, I’d be lost without my lists.

Linking today to Kymmie over at A Day In The Life Of Us, she’s hosting Weekend Grateful, pop over to read some thoughtful, some funny, always grateful reflections on life.

Do you write things on your hand?  Or did you give that up in high school?

And, most important question: what’s written on your hand?

WAHMum – How To Be Productive 1 – in one minute!

Here’s a little video I made – please forgive the bunches, not my usual look.  My daughter made me do it!

I’ve just started this new Youtube channel and am aiming for videos of maximum one minute; video paints a million words so why go for longer!!

Slapped Cheek Disease Looks Like This

Poor wee Rusty Rocket, his face is a mess.

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100th Post!! The Things I Know About Blogging… Errr… Actually…

Well, it’s been 100 posts, amazingly.  Here are some of my newbie thoughts:

1.  I don’t know any thing about blogging! It’s a bit like life, the more you know about it, the more you know you don’t know.  It’s like an unfolding paper puzzle, with pretty things flying out as you unfold more and more.

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My Family Reviews… uDraw GameTablet

I wasn’t sure whether this blog did reviews….. until somebody asked. As it turned out, it does.

The uDraw GameTablet appealed because I have children who love to draw.  I thought they’d get a kick out of drawing on the TV screen via the Wii so jumped at the chance to  ‘try before you buy.’

Plus, the Wii in our house is such a boys’ zone. I was interested to see whether Ms5 would like to use it to draw.  If she did then there’d be more kids fighting over the Wii – the joy!

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The Death of My Dad – Grateful for Peace + Acceptance

On my father’s gravestone, the inscription begins:

‘With love we remember

David McDonald Smith

Builder, musician and sailor.’

Dad passed away two years ago this week so I have been thinking about him a lot.  And about IT ALL.

I’m so grateful that I can say today that he truly is remembered with love.  There were many times I didn’t think of him fondly when he was alive.
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Good Enough Mum – The Plan Is… There Is No Plan!

I’m all for using a weekly meal plan.  Great idea.  My mum always made one, both my sisters use them, and I do too, currently using the beautiful ones I get at Kikki K.

But as with most of my plans, my meal plan has a fatal flaw.  It never works!

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Good Enough Mum – Crust Conundrums

Now how many calories are in this little pile of crusts do you think?

Is it only me??

Does anyone else make a moral dilemma out of the question of whether to cut the crusts off the kids’ sandwiches?

I think I need help and advice!

You see, my kids love the crusts off.  But I loathe wasting food.  So if I cut off the crusts I tend to eat them myself… often with a smidge of extra butter and vegemite.

Nibble, nibble, I’m a terrible nibbler and am trying to break the habit.

What to do?

Well, generally, I don’t cut off the crusts.

Then, when I do, I sometimes keep them and eat them for breakfast or lunch.

Occasionally it all gets too  much for me and I chuck ‘em into the compost bin.

What’s a nibbling mum to do?

Are you a crust cutter?  A crust nibbler?

Does anyone else in the whole wide world have this problem?

Or is it just me?



The Old Trolls – My Real Mothers’ Group

Mothers’ Groups are an Australian institution, but one that can cause mixed feelings amongst those of us whose children turn out not to fit the ‘norm.’

I’m going out to see the Old Trolls tonight, and I can’t wait.  Our monthly get-togethers are the highlight of my scintillating* social life.

You see, the Old Trolls** is my mothers’ group, the contemporaries whose kids are like my kid, whose lives were turned topsy turvy like mine was, who now share the  experience of parenting a teenager on the autism spectrum.
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Sydney School For Mums – Term Two Report Card

Our family life is measured out in terms. Terms we can get our heads round.  They’ve got beginnings, middles and welcome ends.  And here we are again.

Having said that, I’m swooning with pleasure yet stifling screams at the end of the preschool/school term.  My children are so diverse in age and temperament, wrangling four of them at once is a major handful.  But it is fantastic to jump off the term’s treadmill for a bit.


Grateful My Husband is Here Not There

Of course, when one’s husband is an International Man of Mystery, it goes with the territory that he travels. But travelling for work can get out of hand.

Take 2010 and 2011 when he did a rotation in Yemen. In the oil industry, a rotation is a common thing in more dodgy locations. He did a 28:28 rotation ie 28 days straight work then 28 days off. Travel days are part of the days off, boo hoo.

So my Intn’l Man of Mystery would generally be away for four and a half weeks and then home for three and a half weeks. Overall, he liked it, the black and whiteness of it.  He was either working or with the family, no overlap.

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A Sister Sets Sail – Sailing Around The Meditteranean With Kids Aboard

I have two very lovely sisters who both live in Scotland, Mairi and Morag.  No, you don’t get more Scottish names than theirs.

Mairi is the eldest sister.  Morag and I agree it’s a marvellous thing to have a big sister; someone to copy and learn from your whole live through, someone to look after you.

So this week Mairi, her husband and their two children are finishing packing up the family home, packing up their boat and preparing for a year of sailing around the Meditteranean.  It’s a big week at their house.

They are brave, don’t you think?  I very much admire their adventurous spirits and their derring do.  Their boat is not big, but the waves they face will be.
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Top 5 Podcasts For Mums On The Run

Oh thank goodness for podcasts; nothing would get done round the house without them. Nor at the gym.  And the delightful drive down to the South Coast would be far less edifying. All we mums on the run need a few distractions as we go about our endless daily tasks.

Here are my favourites. All of these podcasts can be found on iTunes, I download them to my iPhone, then tuck it into my bra and off we go.

Chris Evans Breakfast – The Best Bits

From the BBC and as broadcast on Radio Two, this cheeky chappie and his gang make hilarious breakfast radio, aided and abbetted by numerous chatty celebs and the Great British Public. This is my very favourite for tidying up the kitchen, washing dishes and hanging up the washing.  These tasks are far more appealling when in the company of guests like John Cleese, George Michael, Hugh Lawrie and of course the irepressible Chris Evans.
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