Monday, October 30, 2006

Turtle Power

At our dinner table tonight ...

ME (looking at the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle that Cherub has borrowed) : Which one is this?
CLIMBER: Donatello.
CHERUB: NO!! Dat's Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle!
ME: Well, yes, but there's 4 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and they've all got different names. There's Donatello, Raphael, Leonardo and Mi..
CLIMBER : Michael Jackson.

FIXIT : (Sniggering appreciatively) Heh heh, you mean Michelangelo!!

CLIMBER : It's not funny!

ME: (Trying to suppress giggles and ending up making chortling noises out my nose)

CLIMBER: Stop laughing.

FIXIT: (Pulling himself together) Sorry.
ME: (Shaking all over, lost it totally)


ME: (Practically falling off my seat)


ME: (Finally sobering up.) Sorry, darling.


I think he's forgiven me.

(Just don't tell him I blogged about it).

I didn't know the kid had even heard of Michael Jackson.

Saturday, October 28, 2006


Yes, yes, its not quite Halloween yet, but this week we've been pulling out all our gothic stops.

We had Nell over for cake and birthday presents. Now that she's out fending for herself, she is in dire need of The Cook's Companion. As Nell says, she lost custody of Stephanie in the property settlement, but that may have been a good thing in the long run, as she is now the proud owner of the pretty rainbow stripe version and the reinstated missing 20grams of butter. I also decorated her cake in her fave motif, aka Emily the Strange , another queen of red and black. Although as you can see towards the bottom of the cake I ran out of black stuff.

Then last night (Friday) the Climber and I went to a Halloween Party with all the boys from Prep T. Apart from our hostess, I was the only other mother to dress up! She is really into Halloween and had all these spooky toys like a popcorn bowl with a hand in the middle that grabs you when you dip for popcorn. She'd done thematic food like ghost meringues on sticks and a black-spider cake that oozed green pus (jelly) when we cut it, the whole house was decorated with scary stuff and she told spooky stories and they played ghostly games like "Wrap the Mummy up like a mummy". (My team wrapped right over my face so I got scented toilet paper in my mouth, yecchh). And then she took us all out trick-or-treating which would have been more fun if it hadn't been so bloody cold out. We came home with an enormous stash of goodies, which even when split generously 16 ways there was excess. I guess Fixit and I'll have to eat a lot of it for him, I really don't want my kids having that much sugar..sigh.

This is the Climber getting ready

And this is the face of the one who was left behind ...

and this was the ghostly howl that followed us as we drove away.

" ..I want to come toooo... come back ....I want party tooooooo..."

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Too awful.

This is going to sound white-bread and middle class and hopelessly emotive...

What is it with the human race that we have this potential for such cruelty towards each other? And how on earth can we deal with people like those vicious, stupid bogans who committed atrocities on a vulnerable young girl and then publicised it with their rancid DVD ?

I went to school with some pretty horrible bogans and I was scared of them and hated them, and I am therefore trying (probably uselessly) to protect my kids from that experience by sending them to school in an area where the families are kind, caring and decent people that I like and feel some kinship for. I know I'm naive and that I can't protect them from everything and that bad eggs are everywhere. I know this.

But if I could always keep my kids away from cruel thoughtless creeps like that, I would. My heart goes out to that poor child and her devastated parents.

Monday, October 23, 2006

For Nell. On Her Birthday.

Once there were two little boys who lived with their mother and father. And they were very lucky little boys because they had an extra-special-person in their lives. Her name was Princess Nell.

Princess Nell came from the magic kingdom of Goulburn, where she learned from her wise father the many facts of science and from her clever mother the many techniques of art.

When Princess Nell grew to be a woman she came to live in the important royal city of Melbourne and she soon made friends in her new home, because as well as being beautiful, she was kind, and funny and genuinely interested in other people. And it was in Melbourne that she met a handsome prince, and for 10 years they joined their royal households together.

Princess Nell became best friends with a woman called Stomper Girl and her partner Mr. Fixit. When they told Princess Nell they were growing a baby together she was very happy for them and did not allow the fact that their whole social life was about to be ruined interfere with their friendship AT ALL. And Stomper and Fixit were delivered of a fine baby boy called The Climber, and Princess Nell watched him grow and was a kind and loving friend to him. And when Stomper Girl and Mr Fixit grew their second baby together, it was Princess Nell who agreed to be their standby child-minder if labour started in the middle of the night.

Which it did.

But the night that the new baby chose to arrive was also the night that Princess Nell and her Handsome Prince of 10 years decided that their Royal Union was over. It was an emotional night for poor Princess Nell. She was frightened by the agony of Stomper Girl's birthing pains, and racked with the misery of her own break-up. But being a true Princess, she rose above her own torment and took good care of The Climber that next day.

After a while, Princess Nell decided that, to truly mend her damaged heart, she needed to return to the kingdom of Goulburn and the care of her mother. Stomper Girl and Princess Nell wept tears at their separation. But after 6 months, Princess Nell returned to Melbourne and came to live at the Castle of Fixit, where she stayed for nearly 2 years.

And the two little Fixit boys, Climber and Cherub, were so happy because they loved Princess Nell with all their hearts. She was like a kind big sister or a substitute-parent. And those boys were blessed to have on tap someone who loved them and played with them and spoiled them and didn't nag or shout like their real parents occasionally did. And they were sad when she went to live in her own castle. And always overjoyed when she came over to play.

And that is why they are such lucky boys, and why they will be very excited to help Princess Nell celebrate her birthday this week.


  • She loves origami and paper-crafting, but hates scrap-booking.
    (This is the cool card she made for me last birthday marking her contribution the iPod Fund. That's my silhouette she's used.)

  • She loves Climber's Lego and has added greatly to his collection.
    She also buys it for herself sometimes (but she lets the boys play with it too)

  • She is addicted to the following : Afternoon naps. Cigarettes. American TV cop shows like NCIS etc. Playstation.
  • She only wears black and red.
  • She loves to read. Mostly about serial-killers.
  • She has voted on Australian Idol. For Millsy.
Happy Birthday Princess Nell, with love from all at Fixit Castle.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Who's Running This Blog, Anyway?

Earlier this week, the boys played a little trick on me. They got in the car ready to take Climber to school while I did my last minute mad scramble around for hats, schoolbags, keys, wallet, phone, sunglasses etc. And they sat in each other's seats.

It was very cute, especially Climber in the baby-seat, and they were laughing away at having tricked me, until I said "I'll get the camera".


I was told I wasn't allowed. So I said "why not?" and Climber said "no blog" .

Because he doesn't want people to laugh at him.

So I'm not putting the photo on the blog.


I have put a link to it here at my Flickr site.
You are only allowed to look at it if you promise not to laugh, okay?

The thing is, I don't think its that funny. Cute, yes. Funny - not really that side-splitting.

So I've included some photos I think are much funnier instead, which could probably follow on from H&B's "Kid In A Box" theme.

Because who's blog is this anyway?

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Melbourne International Tap Festival

Lou Lou, Dormeshia and me
(after Dormeshia's class, hence the 'glow')

Phew! What a day. This weekend, Melbourne put on its very own International Tap Festival. It's small, its a bit hit and miss, but it's a great thing that we have it. Chiefly because it gives local practitioners like moi a chance to learn from a couple of fantastic tap artists who make the trek out from the US to share their knowledge. I don't get the chance to do classes any more now that I'm teaching so much and running a young family, so I get excited at the chance to learn with people of this calibre.

Sunday night was the show...what can I say? There was fantastic and there was good and there was ordinary and there was some stuff that was just erk. But a lot of heart and a lot of hard work and a lot of rhythm, so by-and-large it was fun.

And then today was The Teacher's Day!!!

Got myself a tad worked up before this one, not sleeping properly for 2 nights beforehand because I was haunted with dread that I would be the WORST IN THE CLASS. Or that the Americans would shake their heads when they saw me tap and say I can't believe you're teaching other people...

But I always do this to myself. And of course I was fine, I picked it all up and could do everything and I was by no means the worst in the class. Mind you, I wasn't the best either!

The teachers, Jason Samuels Smith and Dormeshia Sumbry-Edwards, were beautiful and amazing and outrageously talented, but also very giving and patient. I think I distinguished myself with Jason, sadly not because of my impressive tap though. My friend Miss Lou-Lou and I were getting photos with Dormeshia and Jason in the lobby and Dormeshia was busy so I said Jason is it okay if we do you first? Yes, I really said that. He looked a bit taken aback and was quick to work the laugh that such a badly phrased question deserved. Talk about Freudian slips ... because, you know, it's not that I don't appreciate my lovely partner and 2 gorgeous kids but Jason is very delicious...I'm just saying.

Lou Lou, Jason and me - the picture really doesn't do him justice!

What else? Well a fellow student gave us dirty looks for talking (quietly, mind!) during the class which I can see might have been annoying, but we were discussing the moves, not just gossiping...

I'm so glad I did it. Spare a thought for me tonight, teaching 2 classes with my tired old legs...

Saturday, October 14, 2006

The Cherub's New Shoes

Yes, tap shoes for my Cherub! Because yes, he's joining in at class now (lollipop bribery). And no, I am not hankering secretly for a girl-child, despite his long locks and girly shoes!! You can't buy lace-ups for small feet. And yes, he danced beautifully in the new shoes and he loves them.

Wine Bargain Alert!

Melbourne Bloggers!!! Have you heard about the $2 and $3 wine at Dan Murphy's? South Australian chardonnay for $2 a bottle and cab merlot for $3, apparently usually selling at around $16 but being thrown out due to some wine glut. We bought 12 bottles last night, haven't tasted it yet but at that price even if it is ordinary which my friend tells me its not, there's your cooking wine and the wine you bring out for people you you don't really like covered for the next few months!! Only available till Sunday and limited to 6 cases per customer. And also has been mentioned on ACA so you might want to get in early....

Spent last night catching up on the final 2 episodes of Doctor Who (damn social life has been interfering with my television schedule) and I loved these lines from it.

Make sure you read them in a metallic dalek voice.

Dalek : Daleks have no concept of elegance
Cyberman : This is obvious


Cybermen: You have just declared war
Dalek : This is not war. This is Pest control.

Laugh, laugh, laugh.

I have been enjoying having a sexy Doctor for the new series, both Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant. Was I just too young the first time round or are these in fact the first sexy doctors? I think all those Sylvester McCoy/ Colin Baker people who I never even watched just went for eccentric and funny, but what about their predecessors? I think no, but perhaps I didn't know better. Should ask my Mum.
Mum, did you ever fancy Jon Pertwee in that velvet tux and the frilly shirt? Or Tom Baker in the scarf?

Thursday, October 12, 2006

I Wore My Tap Shoes to Boot Camp

Melbourne Fringe Festival 2005

We put on a show at the Fringe Festival!


It was called I Wore My Tap Shoes to Boot Camp and we performed at a very groovy (and slightly dive-y venue) called Pony. It was enormous fun, and although our opening night was quiet, by the end of the season we had full houses and the show had developed into a fast and funny piece that we felt very proud of.  The audience reaction was fantastic and it felt like they were having as much fun as we were!

The cast and crew were all such beautiful women to work with - all those shows, rehearsals and extra gigs and the whole way through you could feel the good vibes, willingness to work hard and willingness to extend themselves. Never once was there even a hint of slyness or cattiness so common to the world of showbiz. What a bunch of performers they turned out to be too! When I first outlined the show concept to them there was a collective mutter of "we don't have to say anything do we?" But by the end there was no stopping them!

Here is the blurb for the show

A tap-teacher (spookily also called Miss Caroline) signs up for boot-camp to help her students become excellent tapping machines. Instead she meets a drill-sergeant obsessed with Australian Idol. What follows is a night of laughs as the audience votes and Australia's first "Tap Idol" is crowned. The finale features the girls rejecting military rigour for fun and funky (with a bit of help from JT and the Black Eyed Peas)

The review:

"the tap beats are clear and synchronised"
"Miss Caroline is an animated and accomplished dance captain, with a knack for devising ... effective routines."
"The show's closing combination, the iconic time-step set to the Black Eyed Peas, was my favourite moment."
"The girls performed with great warmth" ....
(Beat magazine review by Jess Thompson 3/10/05)

Snippets from my week

Climber returns to school and develops obsession with a first-grade girl called Shiraz (still trying to find out if she has a sister called Chardonnay, will keep you posted). Obsession apparently caused by the fact that she kicked one of his mates in the face. Climber seen next morning cuddling his pillow and calling it Shiraz, and telling Cherub to get his own pillow/Shiraz. Announces he can't wait to get to school to play with Shiraz. Find out later he did in fact go up to her and ask if he could play with her but she wouldn't let him. (Heartless minx!!!) Obsession continues unabated but morphes into a 'chasing girls' type game with his preppy-boy-posse, involving a lot of very dramatic peeking round corners and diving behind trees. Best moment: when 5 of the boy-posse decided to hide by crouching behind a 2-foot-high wall, not realising we could still see their school hats. On the day I forgot my camera.
I'm wondering if Shiraz's "assault/ignore" technique might be the modern way to get yourself a fella.
Or at the very least a stalker.

Cherub quite enamoured suddenly by concept of undies. Even sits on toilet for the first time, although he doesn't manage to produce anything. Wears undies successfully for the hour before bathtime and looks completely gorgeous in a Bob-the-Builder pair. Gets squidged by doting parents many times. Insists on taking them to bed that night, and to creche the next day. In his hand, not on his bottom. "Look I got undies!!" he announces to everyone. When he tells Climber he's got undies like his big brother and me, gets corrected. Apparently only the boys in this house wear undies. I wear knickers. Now you know.

Cooking Disaster #? (lost count)
Do the right thing, use left-over roast lamb bone to make stock. Proceed to remove bone and other ingredients by tipping contents into a colander straight down the sink as in the manner of draining pasta. Lose half the stock down plughole before realising.

I think the main thing here is that I made the effort to produce home-made stock...

Monday, October 09, 2006

Felicitations, Mister Fixit

It was Fixit's birthday on the weekend so he and I went out for dinner at Blue Chillies in Brunswick St (thankyou Nell for the babysit and thankyou Lazy Cow for the recommendation). Yay, its fun to go out with your man once in a while. I work nights so we don't get out much but like the advice columns say, you should make time to go on dates with your partner after you've had kids. Brings a bit of sparkle back into your relationship...

Anyway, in honour of his birthday I think a list is de rigeur but it's late so it's a quick list:

Five Facts About Fixit
  1. He is tall, dark and handsome (although not that photogenic)
  2. He is really good at fixing stuff and he has a huge passion for motorbikes so in his late 20's he started an adult apprenticeship to become a motorbike mechanic. Unfortunately, despite the fact that this country is allegedly crying out for skilled workers, the pay rate for motorbike mechanics is roughly on par with childcare workers. The theory is that we're okay with this because we both prefer to have job satisfaction rather than soul-destroying jobs with better pay packets. And he would have job satisfaction except that most of his co-workers are bogans and not all that blessed in the brains department.
  3. He always wins at scar wars because as well as having had his shin bones come through his skin in a bike accident (not his fault), he has an enormous diagonal tummy scar from having a kidney removed when he was a baby. He has been known to say he got it in a knife fight or from a shark attack.
  4. He still has complete sets, including the box, of "technical lego" from his boyhood. He still likes putting it together.
  5. He needs to know exactly where something is. It is not good enough to say that the pub is in Collingwood. He has to know which street, the nearest major intersection and local recognisable landmarks. He gets this from his father. Don't ever start a "where is" conversation when those two are together unless you really want to know exactly where it is.
He is also funny, a loving son, father and partner AND every morning he brings me a cup of tea in bed and looks after the kids while I warm up to the day. Even on his birthday*.

Here he is displaying his loot. Happy birthday.

* Don't worry, he had a good birthday. I spoiled him at other times during the weekend :)

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Stylin' Up

Have I mentioned I tap-dance?

Here's a little montage of my posse, the Tap-pets, from performances over the last year or so. All these pics available to view on my tapping website any time in the last 12 months.

Note the stylish get-up. Funky military styling to give us that air of "tough yet cool" . And a touch of don't mess with us atty-tood.

I just thought I'd mention it because I hear there's another tap-troupe in town who might've adopted this look. Recently.

And I just want to say...

I think the military look is sooooooooo last season.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

The Baby who was Meant to Be (part 3)

Right now Cherub, one more push and your birth-story-for-your-birthday is out...

The main thing you need to know about the birth of the Cherub is Vee-back. No, this is not some yogic birthing position. It's an acronym: VBAC, short for vaginal-birth-after-caesarian.

You know how before you have babies you have this kind of tv/movie type idea of childbirth which involves one contraction at which point you turn to your support person and say I need to get to the hospital now and then suddenly you're in a hospital gown and everyone's saying push and you go red in the face for maybe 2 minutes, then a beautiful clean baby is handed you and everyone kind of mists over? Well, when I had my first, aka the Climber, the birth experience I ended up with was more along the lines of; discover have odd blood disorder so give up early on any hopes of natural labour in birthing centre. When labour finally begins (2 weeks overdue will you just get OUT of me please) only get admitted to hospital on the third time we front up, get strapped to bed with electronic gizmo belt to monitor foetal distress due to meconium in waters, and spend next 15 or so hours watching my contractions on a piece of graph paper, vomit copiously into kidney dish and watch poor Fixit try to deal with mess because midwives busy with women whose labours are actually progressing, get increasingly frustrated by non-dilating cervix, steadfastly cope without the epidural (still trying for some semblance of natural birth) then get told baby in distress and end up with emergency caesar. Which after all the above was a big relief actually, kind of like being told its okay you don't have to finish this job, we'll do it for you. But as I say he was in distress so after the caesar I got one little glimpse of him and it was off to special care with him and Fixit, and I was sent to recovery on my own with the night nurse. It was hours before I held him. It wasn't quite how I'd pictured it.
And I know it's all about the package you get at the end and not how he was delivered but still..

So I read up about this VBAC thing and I talked it through with the charming Dr Shane of the Royal Women's Hospital and he was great and supportive and I signed up. Even though at one of my visits I was seen by Dr-Old-School who put the fear of God into me about the risks because if your caesar scar ruptures during labour its straight to the operating theatre and if it comes to that would you like us to tie your tubes while we're in there (what?) and by-the-way you may end with a hysterectomy if anything goes wrong.

I found the onset of second baby labour much more sudden than first. With Climber it was pleased smile, ooh, I think that might have been a contraction!! Whereas Cherub started with one biggish contraction which caused waters to break, after which it was straight to the top of the richter scale with every one. Couldn't move without having a screechingly a.w.f.u.l cramp. At the hospital they saw me trying to manoeuvre from standing to sitting in the waiting room chairs, called for a wheelchair and admitted me immediately.

So its feeling a bit familiar now because I've vomited in the kidney dish again, and I'm strapped to the bed with the belly monitor, but after a few hours of agony, the spectre of the ruptured uterine scar was beginning to haunt me as was the pain and I called for the man with the back needle...ohh the relief. Suddenly its calm in there and I suggest to Fixit he might like to walk himself down to the shop to get a coffee for him and the crossword for us. Which unnerved him considerably. With Climber I'd made a fuss when he left the room to wee. And I'm quite enjoying myself now, the cervix is dilating away with no effort on my part at all, wheee this is so easy and I feel fine, but they have given me the top-up button to control the epidural which apparently you can't overdose with but after a while I realise I've been a bit trigger happy because I've lost all sensation up to my neck and at that point they take it away from me.

At some stage I start having blood pressure issues (went down to 50 over 30 at one stage) which sends Cherub into distress and means that every so often they have to heave me like a paralysed whale onto my right side (if they put me on my left I vomited) and of course the anxiety levels go through the roof again because distressed baby means caesar. And because I was anxious and woozy from low blood pressure I can't remember it all now, but somehow we made it to pushing. But I've got a shitload of medical staff in the room now so things aren't too hot. So for my more natural birth here's what I ended up with: stirrups, vacuum thing, two types of forceps, a tear, an episiotomy, haemorrhaging, blood transfusion and at least an hour of stitching. (We're talking salt baths for the next 3 months)

But I do get the plop of a warm, bloody baby on my chest for a little minute before the pediatric team whisk him into the corner and check the vitals. And it's another boy. And he's okay. And its not long before they let me have him again and he has a good quiet breastfeed and I hold him and look up at Fixit and I'm so happy I did it this way.

And now he's three. Our little cherished cherub. Thanks for holding on.

Happy birthday.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

The Baby who was Meant to Be (part 2)

It's at times of crisis that you really find out the value of your family and your friends. Ours rallied round us in the year that the Cherub was grown and born, and I don't think we could have made it through without all the help and support they gave us.

I was still in the first trimester of pregnancy while Fixit was dicing with death and some of you will know how lovely that time is, when even your earwax is exhausted and you constantly feeling like throwing up. Anyway, this means that I now know the following: stress lessens morning sickness and exhaustion, (in a I'm too worried to pay attention to myself kind of way) but pregnancy exacerbates stress.

In that first 24 hours when they wouldn't let Fixit out of Emergency because he was too touch-and-go to be sent to the cardiac ward, we had my Dad, and our friends Astrid, Mick and Nell all organising care of Climber who was only just 2, and taking care of me too in a here, eat-some-dinner, have you got enough money for phone calls, I'll wait and hear what the doctors say sort of way. And from then on, Dad and Kathy (his wife, a doctor) were constantly at the hospital helping us understand the doctors and terminology and risks and ... stuff! And my Mum dropped everything and immediately flew down from Sydney to stay and care for me and the Climber. And friends and family dropped in meals and rang me up and offered to mind Climber and went to Bunnings to buy sand for him to play in and fixed the buggered alternator in the car and sat with Fixit in hospital and brought him puzzles and motorbike magazines to read. And rang or visited us every day to find out how he was. It still overwhelms me to think about how magnificently people came to our aid, and gives me so much faith in human nature.

Apparently Fixit made medical history at St Vincents where he was so wonderfully looked after, there may even have been a medical journal article about him -woohoo! They told us the doctors were having shouting matches in the hall trying to work out how to treat him without killing him. (Just like E.R.!!) His heart had swollen up by that stage so speed was of the essence but Fixit has only one kidney so there were risks involved. They did explain everything really well to me but I couldn't take it in properly because I was frightened and pregnant. In the end they inserted a filter into the main vein to block any more clots and treated him with blood thinners and it worked and he's still with us today. It's probably just as well he's as tough as an old boot and strong as an ox. Thank goodness.

Once he was home and recovered we were able to announce to his family and the world at large that I was pregnant! I look back and wonder why we just didn't tell more people at the time. I mostly felt that I oughtn't pull focus away from Fixit's situation, but also we didn't want to burden his family and particularly his Mum and Dad with extra worry because they were in that excruciating position of knowing their child might die and now I'm a parent I can't think of anything worse.

The next thing that happened during Cherub's incubation was that I lost my job and we had to move and I got so depressed that there were days that I couldn't stop crying. The job thing is a long story, the gist of which is that the school where I taught tap got sold to an ethically-challenged pain-in-the-arse and I walked away voluntarily. The house thing was that we had been in a great location at very cheap rent but we didn't think we could fit another baby into it so we ended up paying more rent to live further away, and the hardest bit was knowing we'd never be able to afford to move back to that area. And I couldn't stop crying. Fixit had to come home from work one day because I was sobbing so hard I couldn't cook, my friend Astrid made her mother go for a drive so I could come over because I couldn't pull myself together on my own. God it was ghastly. My eyes fill up thinking (and writing) about it.

When moving day came Climber went to visit my Dad, and Fixit's parents, my aunt and uncle and our friends Mick and Nell came over and organised me. I'd done almost no packing, my heart wasn't in it. At least if you're 6 months pregnant people don't get too pissed off with you for not pulling your weight.

This picture is of us on our last day and that was the best smile I could muster! You can kind of see the curve of Cherub. Through all that stress and depression and angst, that little baby kept growing in me and hanging on. I never sat there and communed with my bump like I had for Climber, never insisted Fixit talk to the bump, barely remembered I was pregnant for most of it. So different from that first glorious excitement of carrying the Climber. But that little Cherub grew well and stayed with us and Astrid said "that baby is meant to be."

Only one more obstacle to get through, little bump. The birth. Which must be told tomorrow because again, this is too long!!

Monday, October 02, 2006

The baby who was Meant to Be (part 1)

On the weekend we celebrated the 3rd birthday of my baby, our little cherub. We had a morning tea in the backyard with friends and families and sugar-filled delights, and he got spoiled with lots of wonderful presents. And after all the running around, cleaning, baking, shopping and organising that make parties so much fun for parents, Fixit and I actually did enjoy the proceedings which were nice and casual. Pics here if ya wanna see. (Note to self though. Only 1, make that o.n.e., party a day for my kids from now on. Climber had a schoolfriend's 6th birthday party the same afternoon and ended up spewing in bed at 11.45pm from sugar overload. Noice!!!)

To celebrate the fact that my little cherub is now 3 (three!! - where did the time go?) I thought I would tell the story of his passage to the world. Because there's nothing like a birth story, is there?

Cherub was an accident a surprise! We had not yet got to the point of having the second child discussion, although I was feeling ready. Fixit was feeling like the finances were too awful for us to have more kids, which they were but then again if we'd waited till the finances were good we would never have procreated, ever. I guessed very early on that I'd been knocked up, I was visiting my Mum in Sydney and just got the urge to buy folate tablets. So after I got home to Melbourne and did the test there was a sort of painful "how are we going to manage" conversation. And then not too long after that conversation we went through this incredible health saga with Fixit and the money thing just kind of faded away.

Fixit got a Deep Vein Thrombosis (a DVT) for no reason that we could ever find out. But the problem was it didn't throw up any leg DVT symptoms. It just started sending blood clots quietly up to his heart and lungs. So for quite a while he was feeling awful and breathless, but not in an easily-diagnosable way. So maybe its asthma, maybe bronchitis, lets check out his heart, try ventolin, try antibiotics. And even when finally the leg presented symptoms and we had a firm diagnosis, the breathlessness was not really taken into account so he was sent home to be treated via the hospital in the home system with blood thinners. And then luckily, a very conscientious junior doctor from the GP service we'd been seeing rang us up because he just happened to have been standing near the fax machine and seen the DVT diagnosis and he remembered seeing Fixit and the asthma and he said it's probably nothing but I just want to be sure, could you go the hospital for a nuclear lung scan so we can rule out P.Es (Pulmonary Embolisms or blood clots in the lungs), it's just to be on the safe side. So that's what we did. My friend Astrid took Climber, who was just 2 at the time, and I went with Fixit but kept my distance from him and the nuclear ray machine because I was pregnant.

Next thing we know, it's straight to emergency for Fixit, he's not coming home because his lungs are 75% covered in clots and he could die at any moment and they don't even know how to treat him because his heart and lungs are by now under so much stress that one more PE could finish him off. And suddenly I'm hugging him like mad because we're both so frightened and the possibility of a few minute nuclear rays doesn't register any more.

I've just realised I can't finish this in one hit, especially not on a Monday which is a v. busy day. So at this thrilling point in the narrative, I have to say be continued...