Monthly Archives: August 2010


When I was pregnant with the girls I had moments of urgent need to clean and move furniture, which is commonly referred to as ‘nesting’.  Wikipedia explains it as such:

[The] Nesting instinct refers to an instinct or urge in pregnant animals to prepare a home for the upcoming newborn(s). It is found in a variety of animals (both mammals and birds) including humans.  In human females, the nesting instinct often occurs around the fifth month of pregnancy, but can occur as late as the eighth, or not at all. It may be strongest just before the onset of labor.  It is commonly characterized by a strong urge to clean and organize one’s home, and is one reason why couples who are expecting a baby often reorganize, arrange, and clean the house and surroundings.

This time round my ‘nesting instinct’ is on steroids (metaphorically).  So far, this week (and note we are only up to Wednesday), I have vacuumed the ceiling, had a complete meltdown regarding the chest of drawers in our room and removed everything out of it, shoved the drawers into the corridor and demanded a new one, sorted out all the baby clothes and paraphernalia we have stored over the years (6 boxes worth), washed the curtains, cleaned out half the pantry and written a list of everything else that I need to do.  I (and hubby) are hoping that this little burst of ‘necessary’ cleaning will depart as quickly as it arrived.  But I’m not so sure it will – I’ve seen my ‘to do’ list!!

While there are some obviously really useful and practical positive’s to this burst of nesting, there is also the reality of exhaustion hitting, and hitting hard, at the end (sometimes in the middle of!) each little project and the effect it is all having on my dodgy pelvis (which is a whole other story).  I have to learn to moderate.  Hubby left for work this morning after a very stern speech informing me of my greater responsibilities and being careful not to tire myself out – and he is right.

Perhaps because the instinct to nest is so strong this time round, I am also acutely aware of how innate and almost primal it is.  In the middle of my ‘chest of drawers meltdown’ I was very aware that somewhere in my head I had made a connection between the chest of drawers and making the house clean and safe for the arrival of bubs.  And while the connection may not be obvious, the absolute necessity to make the house ‘bubs appropriate’ is tainting everything I do and is very obvious to me.

I love that part of how we are created includes an inbuilt trigger to make our environment safe for a newborn – it is quite extraordinary.  Normally I couldn’t care less about dust on the ceiling, but at the moment all I can think about is removing all dust from bubs soon to be environment!!  It is an extension of being a mum – and I like it.


At the moment I am loving…

Jerome K. Jerome (not just because of his name!)

friends getting engaged

finding ways to help little girls to read and write

preparing for a very important wedding (my little sister’s!)

And I am eagerly awaiting…The Italian Film Festival (and my TOMS).


I think heels (as in – high heels) are one of the most ridiculous and illogical creations of all time.  Why women wear them is beyond me.  I am a flat shoe girl and at the ripe old age of 33, I don’t think that is going to change now.  So all this leads me to say that I bought a pair of TOMS recently.  They haven’t arrived yet so I can’t comment on the comfort/practical element yet, but what I can say is that I am happy to have spent money on them and not on cheap Chinese made ones from the local shopping centre.  The basic idea behind TOMS is that for every pair they sell, they give a pair of shoes to a child in need.  And while I am not typically big on out sourcing my sense of justice, if simply by buying a pair of shoes I can know that the company I am buying from has great sense of their responsibility to the environment and humanity – then it makes it worth my while.

I’ll let you know how they are when they arrive!

the winner is…

Book club voted and the winner is…

We Have Always Lived in the Castle, by Shirley Jackson.

So far a few very keen readers have finished the book and are impressed – that bodes well.  I am about half way through and am quite compelled by it.  It is very different to what I thought it was going to be.  From page one you feel a little chilled, like something isn’t quite right in ‘the castle’.  The characters are enticing from the start and despite their strangeness you feel a warmth and empathy towards them.  I have no idea how it is going to end (which is how I like it!).


We have been away for the last week, having a much needed holiday on the NSW south coast.  We stayed in a gorgeous spot overlooking the beach, had BBQ’s for tea every night, ate breakfast on the balcony and drank lots of cups of tea while reading.  The girls were sick the whole time we were away (still are) so they were happy to chill out drawing and reading most of the time too.  And we were also lucky enough to see whales hanging out in the bay, playing and splashing – they were really very amazing.  Hubby desperately needed a holiday so he spent lots of time on the bike (lucky him!).  I find it hard to prioritize going away like that, luckily hubby believes that it is essential and will make it happen regularly.  Even if it’s just clearing the weekend so we have a couple of days together as a family without the craziness of work, kinder runs, kids party’s etc. etc.

While we were away we went to a community market which consisted of a lot of second-hand books and gorgeous local fresh produce. I managed to pick up this little treasure.  I am very excited about this.  It is a (vintage) Magdalena tin.  Magdalena’s are a typical Spanish cake that you eat, dunked in your coffee, for breakfast.  We ate this every morning at our local coffee bar in Madrid.  They are delish and decadent. So this afternoon the girls and I are baking!

to russia with love

I am quite obsessed with The Book Depository of late.  Probably because I am eagerly awaiting a delivery, but mostly because it is an extension of my love of Russian writers (who I am awaiting delivery of!).  I have long had a fascination with Russia, particularly its political history and it’s many literary genius’ (bias much?!).  I just finished reading Anton Chekhov’s ‘The Kiss and Other Stories’, which was beautiful.  Chekhov simply tells you the story, in great detail, observing what most of us would dismiss, and he does it without passing judgment or offering an opinion.   I have now moved on to Fyodor Dostoevsky’s ‘The Idiot’, which I am loving.

Reading Dostoevsky or Chekhov or Tolstoy or any of them, feels like pure escapism, which is a lovely option at the moment!