A blog about life - the good, the bad, the people, the books, the games, and coffee.

Thursday, 30 June 2016

Book Thursday

Freddie and the Fairy by Julia Donaldson and Karen George

Freddie and the Fairy is about some golden rules on speaking clearly. It is probably best suited to an older little, the 4 and older crowd. But as with all Julia Donaldson’s it’s all sorts of fun to read. The rhythm and rhyme is fun, as always.

Freddie helps Bessie-Belle who is stuck in a tree. She grants him a wish as thanks. Unfortunately, she’s hard of hearing and Freddie doesn’t speak clearly. So as you can guess, things go wrong in all sorts of fun ways.

The illustrations are softer, and paler,  than the work of some other illustrators Donaldson has worked with, but it suits the tone of the story perfectly. It provides the right tone to help you not feel as if you’re laughing at the fairy for the mishaps, it’s more that you’re laughing at how it all goes wrong.

Sadly, Keiden doesn’t enjoy it as much as I do, he’s given it 2/5 on the rereading scale. I give it a 3/5.

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Zombie Prompt #26

Pet peeves

 Gosh this one could turn into a very long list, but I'll keep it short. It bugs me when: 
  • people are rude
  • when my questions go unacknowledged
  • when someone is running late and they don't let you know - look, sometimes I'm the late person, but I always let those waiting for me know I'm running late
  • people who just touch others dice - it's so, so rude
  • touchy folks who don't check if you're a touchy person before touching - no unsolicited hugs

What are your pet peeves?

Prompt from her, image from her.

Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Just over it all

I warn you this is a self-indulgent vent.

We're finally getting some marks back, and I just keep on missing 70. Which is all kinds of frustrating, I want to do better. Yes, there is feedback, but it's too late to help for those modules as I'm done with them. Hopefully it'll help with others. I have been getting 70 - 75 for things in another class, so I know I should be able to do it. But not getting there is ugh. And it's not even things I've left for last minute, at least then I'd have that excuse :-/

I'm over Keiden acting as if his ears are ornaments and not for listening. He's almost 2.5 so it's peak challenge two's time, but still. Ugh.

And I'm pretty much done with myself. Just ugh, such...[insert all kinds of words that aren't fit for polite company]. Granted I'm sick, and I the self pity flag is flying high. *sigh*

How goes you today?

Monday, 27 June 2016

Sunday, 26 June 2016

Saturday, 25 June 2016

Friday, 24 June 2016

Five for Friday

The clouds are starting to brighten - so that's a good thing.

I got great, constructive feedback on the first draft of my research proposal. Having a supervisor who is interested in your work, and things you can do it is all kinds of new and amazing to me. I may still be a bit upset about what happened with me when I tried for an MA the first time, although it still comes up just because my current supervisor is amazing. The power of a great supervisor should not be underestimated. Ever.

This song is rivalling Hamilton for most plays this week.

I had forgotten just how much I enjoy musicals, so it's great to rediscover that.

Yesterday, we got Keiden's quarterly assessment. And it is amazing, just how much more he is doing there now that he is more comfortable. If you remember his previous one was odd for us, as there was a lot school said he wasn't doing that we had seen him do at home often. It's pretty clear that we have an introvert, and we need to keep on advocating for his agency because he can't right now.

Thursday, 23 June 2016

Book Thursday

My Friend the Weather Monster by Steve Smallman and Bruno Merz

This story is a great feelings book, and because of the talking points included at the back a wonderful resource for slightly older readers. Probably best suited for children 4 and up.

The story is about a monster who leaves near a town. When he is happy the sun shines, when he is sad it rains. And it had been raining a lot lately. Tom, a child in the village decides that the monster needs cheering up and they should take him cake - clearly Tom is on track because cake fixes everything ;).

I love this story because it’s a wonderful way to introduce your little to what loneliness is, and that although someone is different they’re not scary. Also it reaffirms that cake fixes everything :).

It’s a wonderful read, with lovely illustrations and shows that a little kindness can give you a new friend. Keiden, doesn’t have an opinion on this one, as we read it once a while ago. I give it a 4/5.

Wednesday, 22 June 2016

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Dark clouds

I've been/am sitting under many dark clouds lately. It'd be infuriating, only I don't have the energy for that. There was therapy today - therapist confirmed it's a depressive episode/cycle/patch [what do you call this?] Either way, I'm doing the best I can. And generally hiding from the world through books. Books ftw!

Monday, 20 June 2016

Odds and ends

  • Still struggling with words here
  • The long weekend was good. Keiden was very excited to see his ah-ma.
  • The rain has been amazing.
  • Father's day was an easy pj day at home, and in the evening I ran some homebrew Pathfinder for Jerall and two friends. All J really wanted was to get to play instead of GM.
  • The social combat rules in Pathfinder can be a lot of fun.
  • Keiden fell asleep last night clutching his current favourite book.
How are you doing?

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Friday, 17 June 2016

Five for Friday: Keiden Edition

Lately there are two things Keiden needs to do in order when he wakes up. The first is get a snuggle from me, and the second is pick up a book and start reading *squeeeeeee*.

His love for books has just grown more and more as each day goes by. As mentioned above, there's book first thing in the morning. But books also go with him everywhere he can take them. He needs to finish reading a book before he'll start eating or go to school.

He's also gotten that he needs to be responsible for his things. Okay, he pretty much just gets it right with his books, but I'm taking it as a win as he remembers his things without prompting. On Sunday we were at friends, he took a book with and remembered it needed to come home with us.

I'm glad that we don't do the clothes fight. Although it's frustrating when it's perfect wellies weather, but he insists on wearing his normal shoes.

The planes obsession is being joined by one with dinosaurs. Anyone know where I can find great dinosaurs in planes pictures for him?

Thursday, 16 June 2016

Book Thursday

Spot Goes on Holiday by Eric Hill

Spot, is another classic character. Keiden was a lucky fish and got this as a gift from his cousins, because for some reason his parents didn’t get him any. And he loves dogs. Given that he loves dogs it’s not that surprising that Spot Goes on Holiday is a big win.

And this one is made even better because it’s a lift-the-flap book. I have yet to encounter a little that doesn’t love a lift-the-flap book. In this one Spot and his parents go to the beach. At the beach they have all sorts of fun, including burying dad under the sand.

It’s a lovely book to use a day or so before going to the beach. It’ll help build excitement, show your little what to look out for and give them ideas of what they can do at the beach. It’s great for after beach trips as well, it’ll be a great tool to help them recount what they did at the beach.

On the Keiden rereading scale this book gets 3/5. On the parent rereading scale it also gets 3/5.

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Zombie Prompt #24

Best on-the-go breakfast recipe

A banana or apple generally tends to hold me till I can get something else. Or I'll grab a toastie and coffee from somewhere if needed. We tend to not do breakfast on the go though - oats, pancakes or eggs at home, is standard for us.

Prompt from her, image from her.

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Monday, 13 June 2016

Sunday, 12 June 2016


The big ones from this week are:

  • moments of laughter
  • gaming with friends
  • Jerall having fun baking
  • Keiden having school - I am a better mommy for time apart from him
  • silly songs
  • hugs
  • tickles
  • coffee
  • finally getting focus on my work
  • a free pdf of a book that I just know is going to be very useful for my research
  • great books
  • my ability to read quickly
  • rain - although we need so much more of it
  • the joy of rediscovering movies and songs
  • bullet journals being easy to create
What's making your list this week?

Saturday, 11 June 2016

Friday, 10 June 2016

Five for Friday

  • Keiden has started talking to the teachers inside the building. He has only been talking to folks at school outside, while playing.
  • I finished an assignment early. And then promptly didn't get started on work for next week. *sigh*
  • A bullet journal might just be the thing that gets my dreams of managing my time better.
  • Free books are the business - seriously folks look into bookbub.
  • This is a great read for a moment of hope after all the other things on that Standford rape case. And read this, it's Biden's open letter to the survivor. 

Thursday, 9 June 2016

Book Thursday

The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler

I’m pretty sure that there isn’t a parent out there who doesn’t know about The Gruffalo, it is a modern classic. The book that for some, me included that’s made Julia Donaldson a go to author for books for little.

The story is about mouse taking a stroll in the woods. Along his walk he meets animals who invite him over for tea, with him as the snack. He scares them off with tales about a gruffalo, who just so happens to snack on an item made from that particular animal. This works until he meets the gruffalo, fortunately mouse is a quick thinker and it all works out well.

It’s a book that most people adore, myself included. Sadly, for me it just isn’t a book for Keiden yet. Something about the rhythm of it, just doesn’t work for him. So on the Keiden rereading scale it’s a 1/5 - he’ll half listen to it - but on the “It’s wonderful, and I’m heartbroken that my child doesn’t love it scale” it scores 5/5.

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Zombie Prompt #23

Share things you have pinned that you want to try before the end of the year.

All the lols. I don't pin anymore, and even when I did it was mostly just a collection of gorgeous photos and illustrations. Do you pin? Is it useful or just another spot to stare at pretty things?
Prompt from her, image from her.

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Monday, 6 June 2016

No real words

I've been having a fight with words lately. It's not been going well...I place all the blame at the feet of my assignment for an overview of ethnographic methods. Having to write, something for marks, without using theory is not something I can do. It took me the entire weekend to write 2 paragraphs - I need 4 pages.

Anyhow it has turned into me not really having words for anything. So this is today's post. Hopefully, there's something better for tomorrow.

Sunday, 5 June 2016


Topping the gratitude list this week:

  • coffee
  • cake
  • tea
  • being able to pick out great presents for folks
  • books
  • getting assignments done sooner rather than later
  • gifs
  • therapy
  • breakthroughs in therapy
  • voice notes
  • chocolate
  • bean curd nigiri
  • discovering new authors
  • hugs
  • great highlighters
What's making your list this week?

Saturday, 4 June 2016

Friday, 3 June 2016

Five for Friday: Keiden Edition

Keiden walks to the beat of his own drums. He had a massive tantrum this morning over not wanting to wear his pjs to school. It's pj day today. I really wanted him to wear his, being part of something that the group is doing is good...he refused to. Jerall said to just let him wear clothes, and so he has. This parenting gig is hard.

He has taken to calling my Mommy Toi when I do something he is not impressed with. He picked it up from me, because when he's getting warnings about his behaviour I say Keiden Toi.

Puzzles have currently replaced blocks as his favourite toy.

The Planes obsession is still going strong. So much so that when my mil is coming down we're going to go  fetch her from the airport so that Keiden can see many planes at the viewing spots.

In the past 3 weeks he just shot up...growing like a weed is he. We noticed this because we were at friends place, and the last time we were there 3 weeks ago, he was at the same height at their table. Yesterday, we visited and he was taller than the table by half a head 0_o

Thursday, 2 June 2016

Book Thursday

Monkey Puzzle  by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler

This is the same team that brought you The Gruffalo,  so you know it’s a good one. Little monkey has lost his mum, and kind butterfly is helping him find her. She asks him questions about mum, and each answer leads them to a new answer. Will monkey ever find his mum?

If you’ve read The Gruffalo to your little, then the illustration style will be familiar to you both. The bright colours, are always a winner. The rhythmic language and repeated words are also a winner. It adds that extra layer of comfort from a beloved story.

My little monkey loves this story, enjoys finding butterfly, saying “No, no, no!” when butterfly gets it wrong. And just generally bounces off the wall when we read it.

On the Keiden rereading scale it’s a full 5/5. On the parent rereading scale, 5/5 too.

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Zombie Prompt #22

What is one holiday tradition you want to start in your family?

We have a great tradition already, and one that I'm sure it'll stick. Jerall and I started it before there was Keiden, and managed to do so the two Christmas' we've had so far. For Christmas Eve, we get some nice eats and treats, and have those while watching non traditional Christmas movies like Die Hard, Star Wars, Batman Returns...and then I watch Love Actually and The Family Stone in the days leading up to it. Sometimes the boys watch, mostly they don't. We still need to nail down a good kiddie one for K, but generally Star Wars works.

What do you do/do you want to do?
Prompt from her, image from her.

tums2tots columnist

2019 Reading Challenge

2019 Reading Challenge
Cassey has read 10 books toward their goal of 100 books.

2018 Reading Challenge

2018 Reading Challenge
Cassey has read 0 books toward their goal of 100 books.

2017 Reading Challenge

Cassey has read 1 book toward their goal of 200 books.

2016 Reading Challenge

2016 Reading Challenge
Cassey has read 9 books toward a goal of 100 books.

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