We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us.
It is not just in some; it is in everyone.
[Marianne Williamson]

Friday, February 27, 2009

G is for... great expectations

I am having trouble with Tricia's blog - The Miss Rumphius Effect - every time I go there my browser crashes and I have to restart the computer. I can't even leave her a comment to say it is happening (or to let her know about my poetry stretching lol. This one wasn't that good an effort, but I did like my sijo(s)?).

As a result, I am not linking directly to this week's poetry stretch instructions, because I have finally got my computer stable enough to post my poem (I hope)! This week's challenge was to write macaronic verse - a poem that uses one or more languages, usually for comic effect. Here's mine (nowhere near as good as the other offerings she received!) but my brain is not working at its best, for obvious reasons :P

The boys are cranky.
They are sick.
Sniffling, snuffling, sneezing.
I am sick too.
Ich bin krank.
God Bless You.

You don't want a photo of us in this condition (trust me!) so here is some gorgeous, gentle green instead.

Can you see the little froggy hiding in the centre of the pumpkin leaf? We counted 5 green frogs on the pumpkin vine yesterday :D

It is still too early here for the Poetry Friday roundup. I shall try to locate the host and do the link later.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY (Tuesday 24 February 2009 )...

Outside My Window... last night's thunderstorm has left everything clean and freshly washed. The sky is now blue and it's looking like a nice warm day ahead.

I am thankful for... my new bluepearl earrings - a valentine's day present that arrived a little late :)

I am thinking... about all the things I need to catch up on.

From the learning room... lots of lego.

From the kitchen... mmmmm pancakes today - tomorrow is Ash Wednesday.

I am wearing... more striped flannelette pyjamas shades of blue this time.

I am creating... still working on the home journal and the button book.

I am going... to get Wombat dressed before breakfast.

I am reading... this nice idea for prayer during Lent - Lenten Lights.

I am hoping... to get lots of washing dried and put away today.

I am hearing... Wombat sitting on my lap and chatting about a playdough elephant he has made.

Around the house... the bugs have hatched out in the humidity caused by all the rain, so we are all itchy again. Lots of washing and vacuuming to do.

One of my favorite things... Wombat's imagination.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week:

  • try to get to Mass tomorrow

  • continue building my home journal

  • battle the bugs

  • decluttering

Here is a picture thought I am sharing...

Munchkin - soon to be on the move...

This snippet of my life brought to you courtesy of the Simple Woman's Daybook. If you would like to join in too, you will find all the details here. Thanks, Peggy!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Come to the water

I am behind on everything this week... so I will backdate this to Sunday lol... Steff found me the words to the hymn I was looking for (THANK YOU!!!) - no music this week, sorry. If I get the chance I will sing it for you sometime this week :P

Come to the water

Come to the water, you who are thirsty
Though you have nothing I bid you come
And be filled with the goodness I have to offer
Come, listen, live.

Why spend your money on what cannot fill
The emptiness deep in your heart
Listen to my word and you will enjoy
Goodness and peace in your heart. (ref)

Just as the heavens are high above earth
My ways and thoughts beyond you
Call me your father and know I am near
I will be Father to you. (ref)

Just as the rain falls to water the earth
Just as the seed becomes bread
My word upon you can never return
Until my longing is filled. (ref)

Friday, February 20, 2009

F is for fantastic fun!

This week's poetry stretch was so much fun - I couldn't stop at just one! Tricia, from The Miss Rumphius Effect, challenged us to write a sijo! This is Korea's answer to the haiku. I'll leave you to check out the rules over at her blog - and even if you don't want to know how to write one, you should read the example she posted by Linda Sue Park - I will never look at a storm in the same way again!

Here is my first one:

An Amphibian's Nightmare

A tiny frog balances delicately on a blade of grass.
It trembles under his weight as he peers at his own reflection...

He jumps - startled! For a moment, he feared he saw a handsome prince!


Here is another...



Fluffy yellow wattle flowers cluster thickly together,
branches drooping under an avalanche of perfumed pompoms --

a buzzing bandit flees, saddlebags overloaded with gold.


And another (a true story lol)...


Lessons in forgiveness

A little boy takes the papers his mother has measured and cut
with careful precision and pours his glass of water over them.

As she starts to yell, he smiles... says "Mummy, thank you for having me!"


And the last one (for now - I am sure this is a form I will return to! Thanks, Tricia - I love it - though I don't know how successful these will sound to others!) Wombat was playing outside, getting bored with my preoccupation (I was composing the above). He said - "Tell me a story about DIRT, Mummy!" So here it is:


For thousands of years, this soil
has been forming: from broken trees
and mountains eroding
into tiny particles of dust...

for God, in his wisdom, knew
that little boys need dirt to play in!


I had my camera ready - this is Wombat's smile when I got to the punchline :D (note the state of his clothes lol)

This week's Poetry Friday is graciously hosted at The Holly and The Ivy. For some reason my internet connection drops out whenever I try to open that page, so I hope I get the chance to put my entry in before it is too late!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I did it - finally!

For several months I have had a handmade toy bunny packed in my bag waiting to be 'dropped' for the Toy Society. Today...

I finally managed it!

Go on - click that link and see what I'm talking about!

(I could have linked to my blog or flickr account, but since both have lots of photos of the boys and the toy was dropped at a local shopping centre, I suddenly felt all protective and didn't want them being recognized at the shops lol)

Now to get sewing on the next toy!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

The veggie patch

It is almost exactly a month since I first wrote about the raised garden bed which Wombat and I revived as a veggie patch, and since I have lots more photos of it I thought I'd do an update.

Shortly after the last post, an unknown predator chomped the top off all our lovely bean plants! There are a number of likely culprits - wallaby, wombat (the four-legged ones) or one of the feral deer that roam our bush.

We replanted, and after a little searching around, I gathered enough pieces to build a rather functional fence. I was quite pleased with myself as it actually looks quite tidy. I slid the piece at the back (to the right of the photo) over the star stake, so it opens like a gate. Wombat loves it as it gives him more places to climb :P

The bean seeds seemed to approve as well - especially after Wombat and I raided the old chicken pen and scraped up all the loose straw to use as mulch (with a pram and/or shopping in the boot of the car whenever we go out, it has been quite a while since I last managed to get a bale of straw home lol)

Everything started to look a bit sick when we had weeks of extreme heat, but a little more searching under the house revealed some rolls of shadecloth. Problem solved (and more fun for Wombat).

When the rain started last week we were instantly faced with fungus problems (gotta love this place!!!) so I removed the shadecloth (storing it nearby so it would be quick to rehang when necessary). The sun and breeze made short work of the fungus. It was a good thing I hadn't wired the shadecloth on as I originally planned! It was so hot when I hung it that I just tied it with a bit of string and anchored it with clothespegs from the washing line! Turns out that was a very practical solution as it can be removed and replaced according to the weather.

We moved a nice egg tomato from a pot (where it wasn't getting enough water) into the garden, and at Wombat's insistence we planted corn (seedling emerging below). Corn technically should be planted at the start of summer, not the end, so we shall see what happens.
Here are the bean seedlings now - Wombat is waiting anxiously for them to get tall enough to be twined around the wire! A hint for gardening with toddlers - you can't keep them out of the garden, so add stepping stones! It took a few weeks practice, but Wombat is now very good at only walking on the tiles (and the bean pole and fences) and not treading on the soil.

This is the whole setup - beans at left back, tomato mid-right, two patches of corn (5 seeds in each patch) at front left and pumpkin/melon at front right. Not sure what it is as it popped up from the compost we spread as we were restarting the garden. The compost came from kitchen scraps, so it will be interesting to see what fruit develops. There seems to be two plants, as there are two different types of flower - a big orange flower which I think is a pumpkin and a small yellow flower which might be a melon.

If you are wondering how I plan to grow both a pumpkin and a melon (as well as everything else) in such a small patch (just over 1.5 metres square) the seedlings popped up right in the corner, and I just trained the vine out over the edge. I left a gap for it to creep under when I built the fence Now the 'pumpkin' is sprawling to the left and the smaller melon is trailing to the right, all providing nice shade for the soil and helping to trap moisture in the surroundings.

I will do another update in the future to show how things are developing.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY (Tuesday 17 February 2009 )...

Outside My Window... still raining - hasn't stopped all week!

I am thankful for... My car passing its rego inspection with no repairs needed.

I am thinking... about where I might find my missing earring - I think it may have gone flying when I was dashing around changing the sheets on Sunday.

From the learning room... lots of fun free printable matching games from

From the kitchen... food pyramids stuck on the fridge and cupboards as I attempt to explain to Wombat why he needs to eat his meat and veggies for dinner... and why chocolate is NOT on the breakfast menu! Here's a nice printable food guide and eating plan for young children - it's a pdf file. I'm going to make up a similar chart for myself!

I am wearing... purple and blue striped flannelette pyjamas

I am creating... a home journal / log book / control journal - whatever you want to call it! Attempting to get more organized, anyway...

I am going... to do some shopping with the boys today - get them out of the house at least!

I am reading... about washing my hair with bicarb and apple-cider vinegar. I tried it - and it's great! The best explanation I have found for why? is here.

I am hoping... for a little bit of sunshine to dry the washing!

I am hearing... Munchkin gurgling and singing and 'talking' on my lap as he tries to work out how to eat everything on my desk, including the keyboard and mousemat.

Around the house... everyone eles is just starting to wake up.

One of my favorite things... getting a great deal on ebay for something I need.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week:

  • continue building my home journal

  • sort the lego

  • decluttering

Here is a picture thought I am sharing...

Blue-eyed Wombat, listening to the wind...

(The overalls are one of the ebay bargains referred to above - $50 Oshkosh for $18 - yay!) Wombat is needing new trousers!

This snippet of my life brought to you courtesy of the Simple Woman's Daybook. If you would like to join in too, you will find all the details here. Thanks, Peggy!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Unplug your kids - wrinkle

After being stuck inside for weeks due to extreme heat and then having to cope with another week of solid rain, Wombat really wasn't in the mood for much this week. We even bought him the DVD of Wall-E and allowed him to watch it during the daytime! But before you revoke my unplugged-mama status - when the inevitable demands for merchandising began, I redeemed myself by making a cardboard Wall-E, a (homemade) playdough Eve and a lego cockroach lol (I suggested making the cockroach out of pipecleaners, but I was overruled :P)

The only 'wrinkle' project we managed inside was when Wombat glued a picture of a puppy from a magazine onto a balloon. A few days later the balloon popped and Wombat said "The puppy is all wrinkled!" and then burst into tears! (May be a fun project to do with an older / less sensitive kid lol) No photos, as I had to quickly dispose of the evidence!

When we did finally manage to get outside, I tried to incorporate as many 'wrinkly' ideas as I could find. For example, we talked about how the pumpkin flowers were all wrinkled up tight in their buds, before stretching their petals out and unwrinkling!

And we sat for a while and watched the wind "wrinkling" the surface of the water on the dam.

Wombat was inspired to join in, and made a few 'wrinkles' of his own, with a long stick.

Meanwhile, Munchkin watched from the safety of the chinese babycarrier. The sudden cold change is really making his growing teeth painful, so he is not sleeping much at all, and much of my night is spent cuddling a screaming baby. Perhaps he was just joining in this week's project - seeing how many new wrinkles he could give his mother lol.

Can you believe these boys were running around naked for most of the past few weeks - and this week we have had the heater on every day!

You can join in the Unplugged Projects too, or just visit the other participants and see what great ideas they have! Next week's project is clothing!

Sunday, February 15, 2009


I really enjoyed the challenge of learning a completely new hymn last week - though the words were much easier to get into my mind than the tune! I suspect the version I am now singing is more my own tune than the right one, so I will have to come back to the Canticle of the Sun again over time. This week, though, back to the tried and true.

It has been raining constantly for the last week (ever since I made the mistake of mentioning fire and praying for rain lol) so for this week's hymn I wanted "Come to the Water (you who are thirsty, though you have nothing, I bid you come...)" but I couldn't fnd the lyrics anywhere on the internet, and I can't remember the words to some of the verses, and with the sky falling and a public warning out for a whooping cough epidemic, Yeti vetoed taking Munchkin to Mass (where I could have looked them up in hymn book), so that one will have to wait!

Instead, I am looking forward to another favourite...


Come back to me with all your heart,
don't let fear keep us apart.
Trees do bend, tho' straight and tall;
so must we to others' call.

Long have I waited for your coming
home to me and living deeply our new life.

The wilderness will lead you
to your heart where I will speak.
Integrity and justice
with tenderness you shall know.

Long have I waited for your coming
home to me and living deeply our new life.

You shall sleep secure with peace;
faithfulness will be your joy.

Long have I waited for your coming
home to me and living deeply our new life.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Stay on the bus!

The poem and photo for "F" will have to wait for next week. I've been sideswiped by this week's poetry stretch. Tricia challenged us to write a love poem without using any terms of endearment or soppy lovetalk. Yeti and I will have been together for 16 years this March, making tomorrow our fifteenth Valentine's Day together. I still have never written a love poem for him. The time for that poem has come!

First, a few words of explanation. Yeti turned 55 last month, so he is a dyed-in-the-wool original hippy. (At 35, I'm forever destined to be a rainbow-coloured-wannabe LOL.) One of Yeti's heroes is Neal Cassady. He drove Furthur, the Merry Prankster's Magic Bus, and when he wasn't driving, he liked to play throw-and-catch with a sledgehammer. Neal is no stranger to poetry - he is the "secret hero" in Howl! I'm certainly no Ginsberg, but when I started trying to write a non-traditional love poem for Yeti, these were the things my mind revolved around. I was even inspired to buy a poster of Further - as she looks now - for Yeti's anniversary present (see photo below). I asked Zane Kesey (Ken Kesey's son) to write one of his father's quotes on the poster: "People think love is an emotion. Love is good sense."

("Furthur" is the motto of our relationship. For our wedding, we had an owl and pussycat cake, and the name on the pea-green boat was "Furthur". The sign on the back of the original bus read "Caution: Weird load." lol I guess that applies too!)

And now for my poem. I am going to keep it to give to him on our anniversary, partly because I want my present to be a real surprise, and partly so I have time to let it sit and think about whether I want to change anything. I'd love any advice! Please note - the Beat Generation were into experimental creativity in all its forms. This poem is not in reference to any mind-altering substance - except love, of course!

I'm still searching for a title. I'm thinking something with "aura" in it, but I just can't get it... maybe I'm looking in the wrong direction... I'd use 'Furthur', but it's already an acrostic!

Flipping a sledgehammer, working a rhyme,
Using our dreams to keep grasping the real.
Round the free will we go, turning the wheel.
Trip to the metaphor, skip through the time,
Hold onto happiness, stronger than steel -
Under the rust is a rainbow's appeal.
Riding the merry bus: love is sublime.

Pictures by Zane Kesey.

And to finish, something from "my" era that gives me the same peaceful-happy feeling that I mean by "aura" :D

Poetry Friday this week is over at Big A little a. See you there!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Unplug your kids - float

We did three different activities for float, spread out over the whole week.

First, one very hot afternoon, I half-filled a tub with water and brought out Wombat's bowl of magnetic/non-magnetic objects. He did a little bit of sorting into floats/sinks but was much more interested in "sink" lol...

Then I showed him how some of the objects he had classified as 'sink' (a shell and a metal bell) would actually float if placed carefully on the surface of the water.

Other interesting explorations involved trying to sink something 'unsinkable' - the plastic shower curtain ring, which floated to the top each time it was sunk; trying to float something 'unfloatable' - the heavy spring, which floated in its jar-lid boat; and the half-and-half - the fuzzy yarn which floated until it got waterlogged and then sank.

The next 'float' activity involved a little preparation. I used some plastic packaging from a tray of custard tarts, and froze some very diluted watercolour paint.

Here are the frozen colours...

We then played with floating them in our tub of water and watching them melt.

I must admit, I probably found them more fascinating than Wombat - the way the colour had formed tree-like rings as it froze was very pretty...

Wombat had some fun swirling them and trying to sink them, and generally playing floating iceberg games...

for about five minutes... and then they were all melted away lol... (it was another VERY HOT afternoon)

On Monday we had a cool change, with a little rain, providing the perfect chance to get outside after more than a week of being cooped up by the heat. I wanted to make sure Wombat burned off as much energy as possible, so I 'floated' some balloons around the yard, tying them to trees and clotheslines with pipecleaners.

We played 'bop the balloon' with me yelling out "Bop the red balloon" etc. This gave us a chance to work on colour recognition too. Wombat is really good with his colours, but he tends to mix up blue/purple and pink/white so we will be working on those a bit more.

I tried to vary things a bit by suggesting jump, skip, walk backwards etc, but he wasn't interested in stepping outside his comfort zone, so I 'ordered' myself to do those things to show him what I meant. I didn't think he'd enjoyed the game all that much as he stopped following directions after a little while. I got him to direct me for a bit and then the game ended. When I took the balloons down, though, he insisted that he wanted to play again, so I think this is an activity we will keep and grow with over time.

You can see more great unplugged interpretations of float over at Unplug your Kids. Next week's project is: wrinkle.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY (Tuesday 10 February 2009 )...

Outside My Window... rain! Blessed, gentle, soaking rain!

I am thankful for... answered prayers! The change in the weather and the chance to get the boys outside yesterday.

I am thinking... about the families in Victoria whose lives and homes have been destroyed by fire. I am so grateful we have not had any real threat here this year!

In the past (before kids) my role in our fire-fighting plans was to stay inside the house with a hose and soak the carpets and curtains, watching for sparks while Yeti battled the blaze outside.

Now, the boys are too young and MIL too old to risk their lives, so my job is to drive them to safety and care for them while Yeti stays to fight alone. He is well equipped to do so - we have the only really large water supply in the street and this year we have spent as much as we could afford on two diesel pumps and firefighting hoses.

Once upon a time everyone in the street thought the same way and would have co-ordinated their response. Now they are all city-dwellers and hobby farmers who have moved out here for a "tree-change" and they pile into their cars and leave at the first whiff of smoke. The rural fire service is tiny, staffed by volunteers and can't possibly be everywhere at once. Yeti has more than once put out small spot fires that would have blazed to major infernos if left to burn.

He is smart, resourceful and experienced but I am endlessly grateful that in the 16 years I've been here, the major bushfires have skirted around us and our plans have never been needed for more than a grass fire. As he gets older, the stress and worry of this time of year is getting worse.

Yeti is spending a lot of time studying the changing climate patterns and trying to locate our new home. We have decided we will be leaving here. The only (minor) questions are when, and where we will go. I am praying he finds the perfect solution soon (and drooling over the huge houses and beautiful properties he shows me on lol)

From the learning room... We have been cooped up inside due to the heat so much lately, but it has given me a chance to try some new activities. This is one of them.

I gave Wombat a tray of flour, getting him used to the idea of copying letters. He had no interest in copying what I showed him, but did spent a happy hour drawing his own tracks - moving from the tray, to his own table, and then onto the floor. After a bit of persuasion, I even got him to help me sweep up afterwards!

(While this was going on, Munchkin was on a mat in the middle of the kitchen floor, learning to crawl. I didn't take any photos for you, as he was wearing even less than Wombat :P)

From the kitchen... cheese scones for Wombat, rusks for Munchkin, muesli for me.

I am wearing... purple wrap-around skirt, white top, bare feet.

I am creating... lots of origami boxes (masu) for storing phonics objects. I'll do a full post about them when they are finished.

I am going... to do lots of vacuuming today when Yeti takes Wombat shopping.

I am reading... blogs lol.

I am hoping... that the rain stays for a while!

I am hearing... the silence! I am so used to the constant buzz of the portable air conditioner we bought for the playroom, it seems strange not to have it on.

Around the house... MIL is going away for a few days so we will have the place to ourselves :D

One of my favorite things... the tea mug my nieces made me for Christmas - it holds just the right amount for a good cuppa.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week:

  • plant some sweetcorn
  • get some sleep
  • take some macro photos

Here is a picture thought I am sharing...

A contemplative Wombat, eating a pear under a gum tree...

"Mummy, tell me about the tree's blood."

This snippet of my life brought to you courtesy of the Simple Woman's Daybook. If you would like to join in too, you will find all the details here. Thanks, Peggy!

Monday, February 09, 2009


Found this over at The Lazy Organizer - and just HAD to share it :D Hope it makes you smile too - because you are great!

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Canticle of the Sun

I have by no means reached the end of favourite hymns that I want to learn properly, but this week I felt like trying something new. St Francis is a huge favourite of mine, and it is SO sunny here - so I have chosen The Canticle of the Sun.

We spent today fire-prepping (clearing away all loose flammable materials, running the pumps to water the walls and surrounding grass/trees, packing bags in case we need to evacuate the boys). We have been incredibly lucky so far this year, not even a whiff of smoke on the horizon. But with daily temperatures over 40 degrees Celsius (that's 104F) everything is tinderbox dry. All we need is a spark to light it.

Victoria, where my sister lives, has not been so fortunate. So far there are more than 100 suspected deaths - 96 confirmed. It's quite horrific. For once I am glad my sister and her family live in the big city! and in case you are wondering - I'm keeping those bags I mentioned packed and ready for the rest of the summer - just in case!

Canticle of the Sun

The heavens are telling the glory of God,
and all creation is shouting for joy.
Come, dance in the forest, come, play in the field,
and sing, sing to the glory of the Lord.

1. Praise for the sun, the bringer of day,
he carries the light of the Lord in his rays;
the moon and the stars who light up the way
unto your throne.

2. Praise for the wind that blows through the trees,
the seas' mighty storms, the gentlest breeze;
they blow where they will, they blow where they please
to please the Lord.

3. Praise for the rain that waters our fields,
and blesses our crops so all the earth yields;
from death unto life her mystery revealed
springs forth in joy.

4. Praise for the fire who gives us his light,
the warmth of the sun to brighten our night;
he dances with joy, his spirit so bright,
he sings of you.

5. Praise for the earth who makes life to grow,
the creatures you made to let your life show;
the flowers and trees that help us to know
the heart of love.

6. Praise for our death that makes our life real,
the knowledge of loss that helps us to feel;
the gift of your self, your presence revealed
to bring us home.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

E is for ... exciting!

I couldn't seem to do anything with this week's poetry stretch at The Miss Rumphius Effect. My diminishing rhymes refused to cooperate. So, I returned to another difficult poetic form which I have tried and abandoned many times over the past few months - the ballade - and this time, it worked! Yippee! It also gave me a poem about Eucalypts - something I have found very difficult to write about because of this poem, which I have posted for a previous Poetry Friday and which for me, describes the bush so perfectly that any attempt I make always suffers from the comparison. Hmmm... my computer is really playing up tonight, so if I manage to get this posted before Saturday dawns, will you buy me breakfast at Milliways? I guess not - unless I can manage three more impossible things - like catching up with the backlog in Google Reader, answering an email from an old friend, and getting Wombat dressed without tears... somehow I doubt it :)

The Eucalypts

The cocky's perch, the sly goanna's lair,
the hangout where the fruitbats fuss and tease,
a shelter for the shy koala-bear,
the acrobatic possum's high trapeze.
Above the whispered swaying of the breeze
a piercing song the shrill cicada thrums:
the music of the bushland's towering trees.
My heart will always live amongst the gums.

A blue haze rises in the hot sun's glare
as oil exudes from eucalyptus leaves
and shimmers in the overheated air:
a breath of freshness 'midst the city's wheeze;
a cure-all antiseptic for disease;
a favourite of all dinkum aussie mums;
a remedy for sniffle, cough and sneeze.
My heart will always live amongst the gums.

An aromatic scent beyond compare
as blossom-heavy branches seek to please
the lorikeets; a pair of gang-gangs, rare,
return each year for gumnuts, and the bees
with pollen-laden bags and golden knees
are gathering their loot with honeyed hums.
No substitute could compensate for these:
my heart will always live amongst the gums.

Oh royal eucalypts, your majesties
give blessings beyond reckoning or sums.
Though I may travel far across the seas,
my heart will always live amongst the gums.

Our host for Poetry Friday this week is Elaine from Wild Rose Reader.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Small Successes

This is something new I am trying.

"It’s important for moms to recognize that all the small successes in our days can add up to one big triumph. So on Thursday of each week, we’ll do exactly that."

Why not join in? Can you think of three things that have gone right for you this week?


1. Getting Wombat to nap almost every day this week by setting the timer for 30 minutes and lying down with him on the playroom floor. There has only been one day when he hasn't fallen asleep before the beeps (I turn off the timer as soon as he is asleep lol)!

2. Decluttering my Christmas cards by allowing them to be cut up instead of trying to save them for posterity.

3. Munchkin pooping in the potty the first time I sat him on it.