Sunday, August 30

Not breaking any land speeds...

But she might get a prize for being cute...

Saturday, August 29

Cuteness Personified


Flowers for Ba Ngoai

Flowers For Ba Ngoai

Friday, August 28

There Is Always Hope...

Today is Daffodil Day and I encourage you all to donate generously to the work that the Cancer Council of Australia does... 1 in 2 people will have cancer in their life... And if you don't have it, you most probably will know someone who does... In my case, my family experienced the pain and heartbreak first hand and walked the journey with my mother who battled hard for 18 months against renal cancer and lost the fight in 2004 at the age of 48.

This photo taken to remind us that no matter what the situation, there is always hope...


Thursday, August 27

Beetles In The Basin

As soon as Beth got out of bed this morning, she started singing this song... repeatedly... as we were walking down the hallway... as she was sitting on the toilet... as I was getting her breakfast ready...

Just in case you're not familiar with this little ditty - here are words -

Beetles in the basin in the bathroom
Brown and black and blue
Beetles in the basin in the bathroom
I'm in the bathroom too
How embarrassing!
I'm in the bathroom too.

Wednesday, August 26

Playdough Fun

Playdough Jewellery

Playdough Chaos...

Captured these shots the other day when Beth and I were playing with playdough the other day... The first shot would be our girl proudly showing off her playdough jewellery in the form of bracelets... The second shot, is the crazy chaos of brightly coloured dough that occurs when we are making our creations... on that day we were making cupcakes and sushi out of the playdough.

And just a little random tale - Beth has started doing this very cute thing where if I'm telling her off in a stern voice and I have my serious, non-nonsense expression on my face, she will say "Mummy? Mummy? Make a smile!!! " and then look me straight in the face and do this huge cheesy grin at me to try and get me out of my serious mood and get me to laugh... It's worked a few times... but other times, I have to really try hard to keep a straight face if I really want her to get the message about something... Really hard, when she's doing her darndest to get me to crack a smile... Phan's hopeless, he just ends up smirking when he sees her doing that to me...

Tuesday, August 25

Scones anyone?

Yesterday we had a napless day... so we decided to make some scones... I decided to try making lemonade scones... To be honest, the idea of lemonade scones always seemed a bit weird to me... the concept of cooking with soft drink is something I've tried to avoid... it just seems... well... odd. Anyway, I thought I would give this recipe ago... after all it consisted of 3 ingredients, a bit of stirring and cutting out the scones... seemed easier enough to do... and really, I didn't have great expectations... but my goodness! These are probably the best scones I've ever made! Good size, nice rise, just a little crunchy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Perfect served with whipped cream and some jam... apricot jam for Beth (due to the strawberry allergy)... delicious...

Here's a condensed version of the recipe - full version can be found here

Lemonade Scones
Makes 12-14 scones

2 cups + 2 Tbsp of self-raising flour (I used 2 1/4 cup of plain flour with 4 tsp of baking powder)
2/3 cup cold lemonade (I used sprite)
2/3 cup 35% fat thickened cream

Preheat oven to 225 degrees Celsius.
Sift flour in a bowl
Mix lemonade and cream in a measuring jub.
Add liquid to flour and gently fold ingredients to make a dough(don't over mix).
Place dough on a lightly floured surface and cut out scones (I used a 5cm diameter cutter)
Place scones close together on the tray so they are just touching (this is important to create scones that are high rather than spread out and flat).
Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until pale golden and cooked through.
Serve hot with jam and whipped cream.

Lemonade Scones... Mmmmm...

And here's one of our girl enjoying them -

I Heart Scones

Sunday, August 23

The "Yeah Yeah" Song

We are so proud... well, Phan is at least... She's on the way to becoming a longtime, true fan... :) Sorry, the video footage is so long, but I wanted to get to the end where she asks for it again... "more yeah yeah song".... ? Yes, darling.. you can have more of the "yeah yeah" song...

Friday, August 21

Playdough Drums

FB users divert to - to see the video.

Those of you who have seen and played Rockband or Guitar Hero World Tour console game (available on Xbox, PS and Wii) will be familiar with the drum pad set that comes with the game and the colours of the pad. I made playdough in 4 different colours the other day and Beth of her own spotted the similarity of the colours and asked me to "make drums" and to "get some sticks"... (paddle pop sticks were the closest thing I had on hand) so I made some little drums and next thing you know, she's got her own little playdough drum pad set and she's drumming and singing away... She's her very own rockstar...

Thursday, August 20

The "Daredevil"...

(FB users divert to -

On the whole, Beth is a pretty reserved child... She doesn't like fast things or spinning or swinging things or moving things... She kind of likes to be in control of things at all times... So it's quite a surprise she's developed a love for riding down this slope at playgroup... It's taken about 3 weeks for her to get the hang of it and then work up the courage to go down the hill... It started with her only going about 1/4 of the way up the slope... then 1/2 way up the slope... then she would let go of the handlebars when it went too fast and she got scared (absolutely the worst thing you could do, as she almost fell of a number of times until I convinced her it was better to hold on tight so she wouldn't fall off!) And then she would pester me into helping her push the ride-on car/bike thing all the way up the hill until I talked her into doing it by herself... So now she loves riding down the hill countless times...

On a separate note... I've decided to blanket ban all strawberry related foods for Beth... I've mentioned the eating-a-whole-punnet-in-15-minutes episode that related in 1.5 months of itchiness and sleepless nights... A few weeks ago she drank 2 mixed berry flavoured pop-top drinks (only after did I realise that equated to 1/2 a litre of drink!) during a 30 minute grocery shop... and then was itchy for a week or two after that.. On Sunday, she had the equivalent of about 1 tsp of strawberry jam (one of those tiny little kraft packets) with a scone for morning tea... I hesitated at the time, but she was sooo excited about having scones with jam and cream I let her have it... Bad idea... we've had 3 nights of itchiness and interrupted sleep... I was a grumpy bear this morning due to the fragmented night we'd had... hoping it only lasts a week or so, but this pain is so not worth it... So no more strawberry jam or strawberry flavoured anything from now on! The only upside of the interrupted nights... she's napped 2 days in a row (which is unheard of these days!) and today, she actually napped for 2.5 hours... I snuck in a nice long nap too (I really needed it after last night!) So tonight, we went late night shopping at Chermside for a couple of hours, since I figured Beth would be full of energy after her mega-huge nap... Haven't been late night shopping in ages, so it was a nice change and fun, although the only thing we bought was contact lens solution for Phan and Beth developed a fascination with some plastic animals in Kmart, so we came home with a snake and a crocodile... No soft, fluffy animals for my girl... noooo... she prefers reptiles...

Wednesday, August 19



Playing peekaboo under the covers of mummy and daddy's bed!!!

Tuesday, August 18

Baking Biscuits...

The Best Part Of Baking...

We made condensed milk biscuits today... it made a *colossal* amount of dough, so I froze half of it, and then we had fun making biscuits with the remaining amount...
Here's the recipe we used -

Condensed Milk Biscuits

500g butter/margarine
1 cup sugar
1 can sweetened condensed milk
5 cups SR Flour

Method:Cream the butter and sugar until light and creamy.
Beat in the condensed milk until well combined.
Fold in the flour a cup at a time.
You may have to turn the dough out on to the bench and knead in the last of the flour.
Ball or slice and bake in a 180C oven for 10 - 15 minutes.

I forgot to add baking powder to make the flour self-raising... so the biscuits didn't rise or spread very much, but they're still pretty tasty... It's a very versatile mix that you can add different flavours to - we made 3 varieties - plain, a choc-chip batch and ovaltine with choc-chip... mmmm....

Amongst the mess we made, I managed to pause and wash my hands so I could get a bit of video footage of Beth in action -

(Facebook users, divert to to see the video)

When we first started making the biscuits, Beth kept grabbing dough by the handful and going "Ewwww... it's sticky!", which is what I wanted to video... but by the time I started videoing, she'd gotten over the sticky factory and I think she only says it a couple of times on the video. Also I don't know if you can see, but bits of dough actually go flinging across the room... lots of fun cleaning that up!

Monday, August 17

Surely that can't be comfortable...

Surely that can't be comfortable...

It's been a looong day... Beth didn't go to bed 'til about 10pm last night and was awake from about 6am, although we didn't get out of bed until 7am....
And one of the hazards of dropping the daytime nap (we're down to about 2 naps a week now), is that sometimes the 2.5 year old thinks she's not sleepy... (despite persistent encouragement from a nagging mum to have a nap) and then suddenly at 4:30pm... *poof*... you find a little person on the couch like this. She was actually holding a drink in her lap too, but I moved it... I don't like Beth sleeping that late in the afternoon (I don't like her sleeping past 2pm actually!), but despite my best efforts, there was no waking her.. so I let her have a short 30 minute nap on the couch... and then woke her up... and she was a grumpy bear... She's currently sitting on the couch a bit spaced out and waking up still... I'm going to go harrass her into having dinner now...

Sunday, August 16

You Can't Catch Me, I'm the Gingerbread Man...

You Can't Catch Me, I'm The Gingerbread Man

Beth was pretty excited about getting a gingerbread man for morning tea today... Although, she much preferred to play with him than actually eat him... and when one of his arms eventually broke off and she ate it, she spat it out within a couple of seconds... Apparently she's not a fan of gingerbread ... like her dad... but that's okay... it means I get to eat him... :)

Thursday, August 13

Popstar in the Making?

Do you think she's going to live out the dream her mum wanted to live and become a popstar one day? :)

(For those of you seeing this note through a Facebook feed, click on "View original post" to link through to my blog, or go directly to to see the youtube video... for some weird reason, Facebook doesn't embed the youtube links in my blog post...)

Wednesday, August 12

Hello There Little Kangaroo...

Hello There Little Kangaroo...

Just quickly wanted to share this... we went to Alma Park Zoo today (it was a public holiday for Ekka) and I got this cute little shot of Beth with a little friend...
The lighting was shocking (so uneven and dappled), but I couldn't exactly ask the kangaroo to move to a spot where the light was better, so had to make do... I love this shot, despite all the technical flaws...

Monday, August 10

Our Little Lady...

Our Little Lady

Just some of the out-takes from the shoot we did a few weeks back (the same shoot that the photo in my blog header comes from actually)... hilariously funny, these really make me laugh... She's such a lady isn't she?

Sunday, August 9

Masterpieces - Part 1

Masterpieces - Part 1

As I've previously mentioned, we are accumlating artwork at an alarming rate at the moment... there are just so many random pieces of paper lying around the house that I feel like we're in the business of mass art production.

It's most unlikely that we are going to be able to store all these wonderful pieces of art, but it seems such a shame to throw them out without any record of them, so I've decided to start a series called "Masterpieces" and here is the first part of this series.... stay tuned for more (and there will be *many many* more!)...

Thursday, August 6

What to do when your child doesn't want an afternoon nap...

What to do when your child doesn't want an afternoon nap...

You spend it in the garden of course, collecting a whole bucket (or two) of leopard tree seed pods... amazing how simple things can amuse a child for an afternoon... (well, actually, more like half an hour, but hey, that's better than nothing)

Tuesday, August 4

A Reflection... [5 Things I Want To Do In This Lifetime]

- Finish writing and recording a CD of my music and songs

- Travel and see more of Europe again

- Find the time to do some charity work, to make a small difference in somebody's life

- Be around to be grandmother, for at least a short while... (Disclaimer, I don't want Beth to be in her teens and popping out kids though... I want to see Beth grow up to be a responsible, well-rounded adult and to have enjoyed her youth before going into parenthood!)

- Visit my family in Vietnam again

The reason for this post - I recently found out that my uncle, Cau Chin, has terminal late stage liver cancer... He is the youngest on my mum's side, only about 40 years of age and has 2 children aged 7 and 11. He's only expected to live 3-6 months and it makes me sad to think I'll not ever get to chance to see him again... I met him and all my other uncles and aunties on our trip to Vietnam 4 years ago and I'm so grateful that I got that opportunity... I have many fond memories of all of them and especially of Cau Chin as I was often on the back of his motorbike as we travelled around Vung Tau...

... life isn't fair sometimes and it is too short...
Take a moment out in your day to be grateful for the blessings in your life ...

I'll finish this with a family group photo from our trip to Vietnam back in 2005... good times... -

Old Holiday Snap - Vung Tau, Vietnam 2005

Monday, August 3

Shiny New Car...

Shiny New Car...

Well, we've actually had it a couple of weeks now, but Beth still loves it... she gets in it at least once a day and drives around the house in it, often with a soft toy friend (or two!) in there with her... I have a watering can on had to "fill it up with petrol" as she demands me to... :)

Sunday, August 2

Making Humpty Play "The Kitchen Numbers Game"

Beth got this toy phone from her grandparents and there is a game on it which flashes up a 3 digit number and you have to press the correct numbers and a pancake gets added to a stack... Once you have 5 in a stack, a little "tada" song gets played... and you repeat it. Beth's pretty good at playing the game now (took her a little while to recognise digital numbers) and this morning she made Humpty play it with her...