If I was to do project 365

Washing

If I was to participate in something like taking a photo a day every day for a year, this photo would be today’s.

I was reading about participating in the project, and also on BlogHer, and immediately knew what I wanted to take a photo of, even though I’m not participating in the 365 Flickr group or anything similar.

I might do it one day, or maybe I’ll just give it a bit of a whirl and see what transpires.

I’ve just hung the clothes out on the line and it’s quite warm here today so they won’t take long to dry. Then I’ll be able to fold up and put away this lot and the other two to three loads I’ve done over the last couple of days that I haven’t yet put away. I don’t mind washing and hanging clothes out, but I always procrastinate the folding up and putting away bit.

Pooh

The other night when I went to see Slumdog Millionaire I left JJ with my sister for the evening. When I went to pick him up he was deeply asleep like this.

Asleep with Pooh

Because he sleeps so deeply it’s possible to take photos of him and he doesn’t stir. See examples here, here and here and here

My sister took this one before I arrived.

Pooh and Jules sleeping

We told him that he was cuddling Pooh and he didn’t believe us. Sorry love, here’s the evidence.

Making the most of it

Looking towards Sellicks Beach

Yesterday was a day that epitomises being on holiday in my own town. A friend organised a get-together down the coast on a beautiful beach I don’t go to that often, probably because I go to other beautiful beaches in the vicinity. We’re spoilt around here for beautiful beaches.

It wasn’t a really warm day but that didn’t stop the kids going into the water while us adults supervised and chatted amongst ourselves.

It’s a beach that cars are allowed to drive on, for the moment anyway. For the most part, people are fairly sensible with their driving but some went a bit too fast when driving past our group which is just silly when there’s people walking around and kids running back and forth to the beach.

Cars at Silver Sands

After the beach I dropped JJ at my sister’s place and met a friend to see the movie Slumdog Millionaire. The Director, Danny Boyle, who directed this also did Shallow Grave, Trainspotting and The Beach.

I’d heard lots of good reviews about Slumdog Millionaire and I’d recommend going to see it. It was a bit confronting which it needed to be to be true to the lives of kids growing up in the slums of Mumbai and three people left the cinema during some more confronting bits.  The rest of us who stuck through it thoroughly enjoyed it. If you go and see it you might cover your eyes up for some of it but hang in there. It is written.

We enjoyed a Malaysian meal afterwards.

I can certainly say that yesterday was one of the great days I’ve enjoyed these holidays.

Learning to swim

For the last couple of years I’ve had this time of year off and taken JJ to VacSwim – a government funded swimming program. It gives him the chance to spend a concentrated amount of time learning how to do swimming strokes and he also learns some water safety.

Splashing

Last year he couldn’t really touch the bottom of the pool at the shallow end, 1.2m, and this year he has no problem touching the bottom. As if I needed this confirmation that he’s grown – the clothes and shoes that no longer fit can attest to that.

This year it’s also a bit of a struggle to get him changed. He’s just that bit too young to go and do it all by himself in the boys changerooms – showering, getting wet things off, and just being by himself in there. And he’s too embarrassed to come into the girls changerooms with me because he doesn’t want girls seeing his bits. We compromised. I took him into the girls changerooms and we went into a cubicle with a door.

Today was a bit cooler so even though I had my bathers on I didn’t go for a swim with him afterwards.

JJ is pretty confident in the pool and water and I wish he’d listen more to the teacher as I wonder if he’s not a bit over-confident, but some things sink in and he really enjoys it and I know he benefits.

Getting out the pool

Being a tourist

The day after New Year’s Day JJ and I packed up the car yet again, harnessed Monty and off we drove to Victor Harbor. We managed to get the one way joke (the Southern Expressway) which makes the trip a bit quicker but the bit after that’s usually a pain in the ass because of crappy drivers. There’s also a really high incidence of fatal car crashes which always makes me a bit nervous about impatient drivers. We were lucky this time.

A part of the drive is a really long and reasonably steep hill. My little car starts off at the speed limit (100kph) at the bottom of the hill and three quarters of the way up it’s down to 80kph. This meant that I saw the turnoff to a lookout which I spontaneously took.

I’ve never stopped at this lookout before but I was obviously fairly relaxed and in holiday mode and not in a real hurry to get to our destination, hence the stop.

I had my camera with me too and as I haven’t been taking many photos lately I thought it was time to remedy this.

The photo below shows the coast on the horizon, around Port Willunga way.

At lookout on way to Victor Harbor

JJ loves collecting the seeds off the weeds you can see in the foreground. I got him to throw them up in the air.

Throwing seeds into the air

Can you spot JJ?

Today I was reminded of being a tourist again when we popped down to Glenelg to purchase a few things. I used to live at Glenelg and hated Jetty Road being so crowded on a Saturday morning when all I wanted to do was buy the paper and an iced coffee. I’m very glad I don’t live there any more. Visiting a touristy place like this is fine but not living there is good too.

Here’s for a divine 2009

After my last post I’m happy to report that my down in the dumps feeling didn’t last too long. Christmas day came and went and it was quite pleasant. The whole family came to my place (except for niece and nephews who spent the day with their father) and we ate, talked and played Eye Toy on the Playstation.

Christmas table

Apart from ants invading my cut up roast chicken (fortunately it could be saved) the day could be classified as a success.

Since then I’ve been away for three days visiting friends and family. I caught up with an old school friend I haven’t seen for 25 years. It seems like such a long time when I consider that some people I know are this age.

I became an expert at making strawberry daiquiris and substituted strawberries for mango for one round which was also very delicious. I can also say that I’m having some alcohol free days because I’ve consistently been drinking and it makes for a much clearer head.

By the time New Year’s Eve came around I was really tired and compounded this by going to a friends place in the afternoon for a catchup, dinner, and then driving down the hill to the other party I was invited to. It was really good timing because fireworks were happening at Brighton and I wish I’d pulled over and whipped out my camera. I didn’t pull over and I didn’t have my camera so I don’t have any beautiful fireworks photos.

I walked into a room full of teenagers at the next party and I now know what I’m up for in eight or so years time if I drag my son along to a party in town. He’ll just want to go to Glenelg to run amok with his friends and he’ll nag and nag me until we fight about it. This is what I witnessed happening with the teenagers at this party. Some were allowed to go to Glenelg for various reasons and the others weren’t for various reasons. JJ was really well behaved with his young friends and was safely tucked upstairs watching The Incredibles when midnight struck. I wish he’d crashed out like his two mates but he was sitting with his eyes glued to the screen. It was a good excuse for me to leave after the inevitable anti-climax at midnight.

I couldn’t drag myself out of bed until 10.30 the next morning and I can’t even blame a hangover as I’d driven the night before and drunk very little.

I’ve had another little trip out of town which I’ll blog about later and now JJ is doing Vacswim. I used to do vacswim when I was a kid and it lasted for two whole weeks. Now it’s on for seven days, not ten which is short-changing our kids. At least I got in early this year and pre-enroled which meant that I got in at an early time. Last year we couldn’t get in until an 11am session which really ate into the day, but this morning we were home by around 11. We will be using the extra days where he doesn’t have to go to vacswim to go away to the coast for a few days before I have to go back to work.

I’ve also been tidying out cupboards. This is something I really ought to do more often. I cleaned out a pantry shelf that hasn’t been touched since I moved in ten years ago and there was so much stuff that was out of date it’s embarrassing to write about it. I’ve never lived in one place for such a long time since I was a kid so moving fairly constantly meant I would clean up every time I moved. Now that I’m staying put for a while means I have to just clean up, throw things away and put things back in their spot.

One thing I did find was my son’s other grandmother’s address. She lives in London and I’ve never met her but JJ’s father gave it to me a while back and when I tried to find it last year I couldn’t and thought I’d lost it forever. When I did one of my cupboard cleanouts I found it.

I want to send a couple of photos and a short letter to him via her address just to say that he’s growing up very nicely thank you and I’d like his contact details just so we have them on hand if JJ wants to contact him. What do you think? I don’t feel a pressing need to talk to him, I just want JJ to be able to contact him and perhaps meet him one day when he’s ready.

I’ve been reading about others’ grand plans for 2009 and I can’t say I’ve really got any. I’ve got some vague ideas, one of which I’ll be chatting to some friends about tonight, but nothing definite.

Other than that I want to do short trips away with JJ, and perhaps the dog. I’ve never been on the Great Ocean Road and this could be a good thing to do in the next lot of school holidays. Now that I’m nearly eligible to accrue 15 days a year long service leave, this gives me two extra weeks a year’s leave I can use toward doing things like this. Mmmmm.

Spyro, and Christmas dumps

During a weak moment the other day I bought a new Playstation 2 game. I ummed and arred over this because I have it on good authority that JJ is getting some other video games for his Playstation this christmas but I gave in. It was a toss up between The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon and the new Crash Bandicoot game but JJ chose Spyro.

It’s a two player game so we’ve already wasted more hours than we probably should have on the game. I justify it to myself by saying that we’re on holidays and this is the sort of thing you’re supposed to do, spend time in front of a screen trying to figure out how to kill all those baddies.

Because it is a two player game we have to work together and we have huge arguments about where to go next and what to do next, but when it comes to the crunch, ie defeating those baddies, the teamwork effort comes to the fore and we triumph. Well usually.

And it helps having another mind on the game so when the generation X one fails, the seven year old one comes through. Yesterday Spryo and Cynder were in the enchanted forest. We’d found the key, unlocked the orb thingies to get to the raft to do the rescue and for the life of us couldn’t figure out how to get the damn raft moving. One dragon (Spyro or Cynder) could grab hold of the raft but not both of them. We tried one and two player mode and still nothing worked.

I’d just come out to the kitchen to look on the internet to try and solve the problem while JJ played around and he found out how to do it. Because these dragons can fly, one dragon was anchored to the raft and the other dragon flew and dragged the raft along. They dragons are anchored to each other by a line and the line only stretches so far.

I don’t know that I would have the patience to have figured this out myself, not without leaving the game for some time, but JJ figured it out. Clever boy.

When we finished the game Spyro: A new beginning I found that fairly frustrating because it wasn’t always clear where you had to go and it happens here too. I think something should be built in, some sort of timer, so that if you’re lost and have been lost for some time a clue comes up, or an option for a clue is available.

My other frustration with this game is that the two dragons look very similar in colour so when they are fighting the baddies it’s hard to tell which dragon you are in two player mode.

It’s a playstation free day today because we have other things to do around here like prepare for family on christmas day.

I’ve spent the morning waiting over half an hour just to buy prawns and then spent some time driving around the supermarket carpark to get the last bits and pieces I need for tomorrow.

And I feel really down today. Yesterday a friend rang at midday to invite me to drinks last night with them and some mutual friends who are in town. Drinks would be at their place but I wasn’t allowed to take JJ even though he would be in bed. It made me feel really unwanted and unloved. I know my son would have been no problem and I didn’t really see her problem with it.

Then I found out that another friend had a party recently that I wasn’t invited to. I’m not a really close friend but they did come to a party I had and we live fairly close to each other and get on very well. Again I felt really unwanted and unloved. It’s hard to switch off from these feelings and it’s not how I want to spend a couple of days that are supposed to be fun.

My posting frequency will be very light on here over the next couple of weeks so enjoy your holidays everyone.