Gotta Laugh

Alfred in the Xmas tree 008

Alfred in the Xmas tree 013

Alfred in the Xmas tree 009

Alfred in the Xmas tree 014

And this is why my Christmas tree is full of holes and broken branches.

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Cats and Christmas do not mix

by Veronica on December 2, 2013

in Evelyn, Gotta Laugh

I tried to take a photo of my Christmas tree the other night. Pretty lights flashing, tinsel catching the light, and a half grown cat clinging to the trunk of the tree, freaking out and destroying the entire thing.

Christmas trees were not made for households with toddlers and cats. My floor is littered with baubles, torn down, thrown away, batted around. There is a thin veneer of glitter over everything; the herpes of the craft world.

Alfred in the tree

It was warm today, pushing 30C during the afternoon. Evelyn ran around naked, refusing to eat and drink. By 5pm she was angry, tired, thirsty. She flailed, and fought, and screamed, and refused everything.

We went to bed at 5.30pm, with a couple of books and a soft blanket. 90 minutes later she wasn’t asleep (dammit) but she was ready to join the household again. I’m not looking forward to Evelyn in summer. She doesn’t deal well with heat, and when you add liquid refusal to the mix, it has the potential to be an incredibly crappy few months.

But at least it will be crappy with sunshine. These are the silver linings.

We see her doctor this week. I’m nervous, hoping to find a solution to all the feeding issues, but also hesitant to pin too much hope on one person. There are no silver bullets here. I learned to stop hoping for magic a long time ago.

What we do have is a strong team, a dietician and speech pathologist advocating for us, and a support network spanning the entire Internet.

I am more grateful than you know.

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I WIN, So there, take that.

by Veronica on November 29, 2013

in Gotta Laugh


50,000 words in 29 days.

I’m dead, dying, exhausted. But also exhilarated.

By all accounts, November has been good to me this year. I’m writing regularly at Money Circle, Evie is being positively delightful and the year is starting to wrap up.

But for now, you can find me curled up on the couch, catching up on the TV I’ve missed this month, and reading escapist fiction.

Unlike last year, I finished my story this time. I got to write THE END in giant letters at the end and everything. It will gain some extra words during editing when I smooth my scene transitions and fix my plot holes (does anyone know where the dog was hiding in chapters 2-5?), but FINISHED.

Finished finished finished finished.

First draft FINISHED. THE END. Giant big letters proclaiming me DONE.

Feels good Internet. Feels good.

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Christmas Bauble Reflection

I know. It’s not December yet, and so what I’m going to say might make a small portion of you really grumpy. Because CHRISTMAS IS COMING AND YOU CAN’T STOP IT.

Phew. Obviously I needed to get that out of my system.

My house is covered in tinsel vomit and abandoned baubles. Everyone is happy.

The kids have been begging for the Christmas tree since the beginning of November, asking when we were putting it up, could we decorate the house, when are we doing the treeeeeeee. It was getting annoying. Tonight we gave in and amidst much carolling and excited squealing, Nathan put up the tree. You’ll note I said “Nathan” not “We”, because I didn’t help. Instead I made Naan bread and sang badly while I got to watch everyone else do the work.

I must say, this was the best tree putting up ever. Yes. I went there. Not being involved was awesome.

Our Christmas tree is passive aggressive. I don’t think I told you that story, but a few years ago, I asked Nathan to go and buy a fake tree. He agreed, and then didn’t do it. I asked him over the course of two weeks, before finally, he went down to Big W and bought the biggest tree they had.

“She wants a Christmas Tree? THERE. Have a GIANT FUCKING TREE.”

It’s kind of awesome. It made me smile then, and it’s made me smile every year since. Giant Christmas Trees – a passive aggressive way of saying I love you.

It’s been interesting to watch Isaac transition to the holiday season. Pre-kinder is almost over and we feel that he’s ready to start in February when school goes back. But the end of the year is always a chaotic time, with orientations and parties and endings and beginnings. I’ve come to the conclusion that he is our very own holiday grinch, and I am okay with that. He had a meltdown earlier because we wouldn’t turn the Christmas Carols off. Despite being a boy who likes music (but not lots of people singing, like say, at a school choir), christmas carols are just a bit too much.

He will be all right.

I’m watching Evie right now, pulling off all the Christmas balls. I warned everyone this would happen – to leave the bottom section undecorated. But no.

If the Christmas tree survives and stays decorated until Christmas day, I’ll count that a success.

I’m not quite sure where the year has gone, to be honest. Lost in a haze of appointments, worry and PND I suspect. But I’m ready for it, ready for the holidays, and Summer, and long days without any plans.

It’s going to be nice.

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Flying by the seat of my pants

by Veronica on October 29, 2013

in Animals, Gotta Laugh

And by “flying” I mean “falling with style”.

NaNoWriMo is nearly here and I’m freaking out. FREAKING OUT.

I had a plan. It was a great plan – and then I scrapped it in favour of something I thought I actually had a hope of finishing. So I worked on plan #2, with Nathan quizzing me on motivations and evil and plot twists. At which point I scrapped it in favour of something I could actually publish under my pen name.

So I took to my third idea, which is a mere germ, and I ignored it. I’ve written it down, but I haven’t got a character, a plot, any subplot, or ideas.


But I’ve got three more days, right? Three days. That’s like FOREVER. Except it isn’t and I’m terrified.

Upside: It’s nearly November and I’m going to have to start whether I’m ready or not.

Downside: It’s nearly November and I’m going to have to start whether I’m ready or not.

Unrelated, a story about chickens:

I have eight baby chickens at the moment, to three mothers. Three chicks belong to one hen, and the other two hens have a sisterwives agreement and they’re sharing their nest and five babies equally. That’s the setup. This is information you need to know.

The sisterhens have been scratching around near the house, showing the babies the tastiest grubs to be found under my fruit trees.

Also around my house are the cats.

Earlier today I was minding my own business when the hens started freaking out. Suddenly, Alfred flew across the yard at full speed, one of the mothers hot on his heels, clucking angrily, fluffed up like a beachball. The other mother stayed close to the babies, protecting them from all evil.

Only they hadn’t actually checked on where the babies were, and when the mothers finished fluffing at Alfred, they called their babies directly into the netting surrounding our jumping castle.

Cue freakouts. The mothers were freaking out, two babies were trapped in netting, and Alfred was trying to figure out if he could work this to his advantage.

I ran outside to rescue the babies, because I AM NICE.

The mother hens didn’t see it this way, and they fluffed up and tried to attack my face. I freaked out, they freaked out, and Nathan laughed at all of us. When asked to help protect me, he stood there, thought about it and replied “Nope, it’s too funny to ruin. Although I could go get the video camera…” Bastard.

So there I am, trying to rescue two very frightened chickens from collapsing netting while not one, but two mothers try to attack my face.

Jumping into the deflated castle, I managed to lift the netting and create a shield to protect myself from the raging balls of fluffy fury while I rescued the babies. And by rescued, I mean “swiftly caught and then threw at their mothers, trying not to lose my eyes in the process.”

Everyone survived. I needed a cup of tea to recover though.

From my Facebook Page:

Alley the cat caught herself a starling and ate it. Confidence boosted, she thought that the next thing to catch and eat should be a chicken.

The chickens disagreed. Alley will not be catching chickens any time soon.


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