Summer at home in Daisy Hill

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

A CALL FOR HELP at the other end of the country.

So the call came, "Is it possible for you to baby sit for the weekend?" 
Luckily, our calendar was clear so off we flew to Melbourne way down south. (But closer than LA where they used to live.) It so happened that Bernie was working and Sonya had been asked to fly to LA for the weekend ??? to work on a show that is coming to Sydney in Jan. Sonya is doing free lance production manager work now and then.
We arrived on Friday and Bernie and the boys met us at the airport at the same time Sonya was at the international terminal waiting for her flight but we didn't see each other. 

Earlier that morning, Fox had been to his new school with the Start Up Program, where the newbies go to school a few hours each Friday to prepare them for when they start for real next January. I think it is a super idea.
Bernie showed us around the house and then went off to work. He is acting in the series called, "Wentworth". It will be shown on SoHo next year. 
So we played with the boys, fed them, bathed them and put them to bed. This is all fairly new to us. It was learning as we go. 

The next morning we went for a walk to the duck pond and playground. Thank goodness for Google Maps. 
 On the way we found a bendy tree to climb.
 and hug.

 Then it was feed the ducks and make sure Banjo didn't throw himself in.

 Sonya had told us there was a playground near the duck pond but we walked and walked and couldn't find it until we turned around and found it on the way back. (Where Fox had said it was.)
 Then we walked home. It was a long way for one tired little boy who by now was a tad grumpy. So it was  piggy back time. 

On Sunday we worked out where the nearest train station was and what time the trains left for the city. (All Hail Mr Google!) Thanks to Sonya's suggestion we took the boys to the city square to post a letter to Santa. We had written letters to Santa the day before and I promptly forgot to pack them in the bag which was full of snacks, wipes, a book and an iPad.

 So when we arrived in town we walked the streets looking for a newsagent to buy more letter writing materials. On the way we had fun with theses statues. Thanks to our friend Ken, we have a description of the sculpture : Three Businessmen by Alison Weaver and Paul Quinn
These three statues are on the corner of Swanston and Bourke Sts Melbourne.
"Officially named the 'Three Businessmen Who Brought Their Own Lunch: Batman, Swanston and Hoddle', this whimsical, life- sized sculpture pays homage to Melbourne's three pioneers, returning them to the city's streets as pedestrians observing Melbourne's development throughout time."



 Surprise, surprise, Santa arrived in the City Square and we didn't have to line up for long.




At the last minute I found a flower stall selling cards and envelopes and we were able to sit in the park and write another letter for Santa (He apparently answers the letters posted here)

Why would you design a Santa Mailbox with the slot too high for little children???


 Time for an ice cream and a snack. Banjo had fun trying to organise his napkin and in the process wiped his ice cream over Fox's jumper (sweater). Fox wasn't sure that he liked his ice cream and said, "I guess we can't change it for a different one?"

 It was getting close to lunch time and tired time so we headed back to Melbourne's famous Flinders Street Station. Melbourne is also famous for its unpredictable weather. It was cold (17°C) even though its summer. The next day it was hot. (33°C)

 Mr Google told us we needed the Glen Waverley line to get back to Darling Station.  When the boys started getting restless I remembered the book and iPad that I had packed....pity about Santa's letters.


 Bernie returned from his weekend job and took the boys to a playground so we could have a rest. But Bernie plays in a band on Sunday night so we took over again.

 Fox made his own Pizza but Banjo wanted spaghetti.
He wouldn't let me cut it or twist it. It was hilarious watching him. 
Soon it was bath time, story time and then we all fell into bed exhausted.

Monday morning we had to return to Brisbane and Aunty Kate took the baton and cared for the boys until Bernie returned from work. Sonya arrived home the next morning.
It was fun bonding with the boys but we found it tiring. I take my hat off to all those grandparents out there who care for their grand children on a regular basis.
(All photos except the first were taken by Bill, the first by Sonya.)

34 comments:

  1. I agree about how exhausting it is and of course all the bits and pieces you need to take when you go out (my granddaughter is only 18 mths old so nappies etc). No wonder you forgot the letters. Exhausting but such a joy to be able to spend time with them. Starting school already, time is passing too quicly

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  2. Oh phew, I'm exhausted just reading this post. But what FUN things you did with the boys - and so necessary to bond with them. Around me here in Marquard I see more grandparents (mainly grandmas who are widowed) with the little ones on a regular basis. I also wondered WHY would you have a mailbox to Santa with the slot so high. Thanks for the tour through Melbourne and sharing this special time with us. Greetings Jo

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  3. Yes, I'm quite exhausted too. Looks fun, though. I'm tickled by the idea of a post box that kids can't reach - but if I'm honest I've never really thought about it! Love the look of that station. Seems quite a hike for baby-sitting..!

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  4. Hello Jo, it is amazing to see how fast your grandson are growing. Fox is a handsome young boy and Banjo is a sweetie. I know you are so proud of them and your family. A fun but tiring experience, I am sure you would jump at the chance again though. Wonderful series of photos. Have a happy day!

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    1. Diane, I am so sorry about the name typo..

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  5. lots of work and lots of fun.. i love the tippy toe shot trying to mail the letters and the Santa shot to... that was a real adventure for all of you. i would have loved the train ride...

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  6. I take my hat off too! It is so tiring but so fun. These pics show a whole story of a fun time with them. The tree climbing, Santa, cute trying to reach the Santa mailbox, etc

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  7. Sounds like you had a good time despite finding it tiring. I am amazed there is no step for the children to post their letters. What a daft idea making it so they cannot reach!!! Keep well t'other Diane

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  8. Looking after children that age can be mentally exhausting too.

    People set up tripods outside St Pauls to photograph Flinders Street Station, but I like this very different angle from where ToH took this photo and its not an easy spot to maintain your space and sightline.

    Santa mail boxes to high and Myki ticket machines too low. Idiots!

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  9. All that fun and you managed photos, too! Wonderful!

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    1. No Cynthia, I took my camera but didn't take one shot all these photos are from Bill's camera.

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  10. Babysitting can be tiring..but your grandchildren are lovely

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  11. Lovely to read about your time with your grandchildren. Energy can be a challenge when they are young - need for the GP to sustain it for long periods and managing the children's high levels and sudden drop to over and grumpy. A different energy is needed with teenage grandchildren and involves mindful fortitude and understanding of a teenage world that was never mine. I'm finding this more difficult - missing my former closeness with the [now] young woman. Those banked fun and loving times are so important for future relationships.

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  12. Seems you had a great time. It can get tiring, but we all manage..

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  13. Hi Diane. Thanks for saying hello. Beautiful children. Great memories to cherish. Wonderful photos!

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  14. What a busy, busy time you had. But such precious memories!

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  15. And what a fine city Melbourne is! Not very often that I recognise places in other peoples blogs! Nice.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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  16. Melbourne is so much closer for you than LA Diane. Looks like you and Bill had a great time with the grandies. Growing up so fast.

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  17. Santa certainly earns his money dressing like that when its 33 degrees. As do babysitters for two small boys.

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  18. You done good Granny! Those boys are adorable but even I would have a hard time keeping up with all that. As for Santa's letters - you got it done anyway and it was apparently more important to have a book and Ipad for later that day.

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  19. Well done you both! It certainly is tiring. Perhaps especially if you don't do it regularly, when so much then is about working out the routine. I smiled that Fox knew where the playground was. They know more than we realise, I think! I'm often surprised when Elodie proves to be right or knows where something is kept.

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  20. Diane, There is a reason that people of Grandparent age aren't able to reproduce - we'd drop from exhaustion. I love mine to visit, but when they leave, I need to recuperate. Your Grands are very cute - I've enjoyed watching them grow. What did we do before Google?

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  21. A long journey for your baby-sitting job Diane but I'm sure once you're rested you will remember it with many laughs.
    Yes they need to make Santa Post-Boxes more kid friendly .... dropping that letter in the slot is the fun part !

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  22. I'm sure the boys loved having you for babysitters! You know how to give them a fun time!

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  23. A fabulous post Diane and the thing I love about it most is the wonderful memories you are creating for the grandchildren to look back on. Oh dear indeed who did design that Santa mail-box! I have to say that's the best looking 'Santa' I've seen for a while and its a lovely photo with the boys. Melbourne is a great place to zoom off to for a weekend babysit! x

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  24. Lucky that you were able to hop on a plane and head over to Melbourne Diane, you guys are the best grandies! The boys always look like they're having so much fun. Must admit I'm really looking forward to my son and family coming over from Sydney for Christmas but I do agree a full-time Gigi I would not like to be :)

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  25. Lucky that you were able to hop on a plane and head over to Melbourne Diane, you guys are the best grandies! The boys always look like they're having so much fun. Must admit I'm really looking forward to my son and family coming over from Sydney for Christmas but I do agree a full-time Gigi I would not like to be :)

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  26. Watching our grandchildren is such a joy, it must feel wonderful having them in the same country even if to watch them involves a fight to get there.

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  27. Well that was a fun wy to visit Melbourne.

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  28. A wonderful reason for traveling, knowing that your grandchildren are at the end of the journey :) They are as adorable as ever! Great photos!

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  29. Sounds like an EXCEEDINGLY energetic weekend! But a lot of fun.

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  30. Exhausting but rewarding would be the best words I would use to describe your time spent with yiur grandsons, Diane. We currently live 90 minutes away from our grandchildren and know how much work babysitting can be, even though we are not called upon often. Thanks to your and Bill for sharing your visit.

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  31. Yes, almost full time grandparenting can be very exhausting, Diane. However, I find I have more patience with my grandchiuldren than I did with my children

    Thank you for your good wishes on my eye surgery. I am doing well over a week post op and seeing so much better out of that eye. I am now looking forward to having the surgery on my other eye and hopefully having the best vision of my life. I'm thankful for a good doctor and modern medicine, that's for sure!

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  32. Ha ha, you didn't really need Mr Google ... I bet Fox knew just where he was going all along, not just the playground;)). They are such cuties. I remember how tiring it was to have toddler + grandkids for overnights ... And we were much younger when we were first time grands

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