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And if you thought i couldn’t get any lazier, I didn’t manage to get any photos except crappy phone pics last week! So here is Maya showing off her drawing and Kiran eating a cake.

If you’d like to see some examples of more talented photography (not difficult) I suggest you have a look at this gorgeous sunset beach portrait, this cutie with sparkler (braver than me!) and all of these beautiful shots.

Linking up, as always, with Jodi

I seem to have lost my prime lens after I went on mini holiday with my mum so fingers crossed I find it or there will be no half-decent photos on this blog for the rest of the year….


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Ok so as I’m over 2 weeks late with this, I think we’ve given up all pretense that I’m making any effort with this project anymore, but I will continue nonetheless!

Here we have a little impromptu outside bath time tea party just before I went away without my babies for the first time for two whole nights! Meep! (more on that later)


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Maya – rowing a boat down a river infested with crocodiles. Apparently.

Kiran – face lit up by the glow from the tablet. I have to hide it from him – he’s too addicted. What do you want to do Kiran? “Playing game!”

We grew a chicken! (sad ending)


Made has always had a thing for having lots of animals around. In fact I think it’s a Balinese thing – most family compounds  will be home to a few dogs, a family of chickens and various other creatures. New visitors to Bali are often woken by the many cockerels that seem to have no concept of when it’s night or day – in fact it’s important for families to own at least one fighting cock as ceremonial cock fights are an important part of temple ceremonies and the male representative from every family is required to bring one – if they don’t have one they borrow one!

Anyway, in the time I’ve known Made we’ve gone through many many chickens, ducks, puppies, even a squirrel. None of them last very long and eventually either die, wander off or are stolen. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you’ll have seen the two ducks that we had as pets for the last 6 months or so – raised from babies they ended up being the bane of my life, eating every single green thing in the garden (including all the grass so now we have a big patch of soil instead of a lawn) and pooing everywhere. When the girl duck started laying eggs I was happy they were at last being useful but then they ran away and decided to join the herd (flock?) of ducks that were being farmed in the rice fields. The farmer kept bringing them back but then the girl duck died suddenly (the farmer brought her back, said she was sick and she was dead within 1o minutes. The boy duck was supposed to be sacrificed for a ceremony but made couldn’t bring himself to do it so he ended up living back at the inlaws for another few months… I think he’s still there now.

So I’m not a big fan of chickens, especially the stupid loud cockerels but they make Made happy so whatever. We’ve gone through several since we’ve been at the new house, all boys that eventually lose in a cock fight and meet their demise. He came home one day with a white chicken not intended for fighting but because it “looked pretty”. It surprised us both when it started laying eggs (Made thought it was a boy). Being a small chicken, it lay rather small eggs so instead of eating them, Made decided to try raising chickens. See our ghetto nesting box:


Yes that is a wastepaper bin lined with newspaper.

So the dutiful chicken sat on her eggs, barely coming out to eat or stretch her legs for around 21 days. If felt much longer and I was  convinced that all the eggs were duds and we were going to end up with a depressed chicken. But to my surprise I came home one morning after a night over at the inlaws and found a tiny black and white chick running around the yard!

None of the other eggs hatched so the mother hen only had one little one to look after and she took to motherhood well, sheltering her baby under her wing and shooing us off if we got too close. The little chick seemed to be happy and healthy but then I found him dead on the ground when he was about 2 weeks old :( He was still in the place where they slept and had been running around fine the night before so I’m inclined to think that the mother smothered him by accident :(

I knew nothing about chicken rearing before this but after doing a little research, the death rate for baby chicks seems to be fairly high so it’s not too surprising, although a bit of a shame as we only had one and he was so cute! I guess we will just wait for the mama hen to get broody again and try again – it’s nice that it’s so easy and we just provide somewhere safe and dry to nest and let her get on with it! I always thought you needed a load of expensive equipment for raising chickens…

Here are a few more photos. RIP baby chick!

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I don’t have a photo of Kiran yet this week but I’m determined not to be late with this one and I’m hardly on the computer at the moment as grandma is here visiting! So I’ll update with Kiran’s photo later.

Maya has a new friend and it was her birthday this week so we went over for a little party. She has a bamboo fort with swings, a trampoline and a swimming pool so obviously Maya thinks she’s died and gone to heaven every time we go over there! I accidentally on purpose kind of left it too late to enrol her in pre-school this year (although we could probably do it mid term) and instead looking forward to more time playing and swimming with my girl :)

Updated with my handsome boy as promised:


I love his hair! I never want to cut it!

So many pictures to love last week! I found it hard to choose just a few: Belly and big sister, magical woods, and being silly.

Linking up with Jodi

Adventures in weaning


Kiran had his last breastfeed about a week and a half ago so I think I can say at this point that he’s finally weaned. This was rather overdue – I’d alwaya intended to stop around the 2 year mark (I’m not one of those women who can breastfeed their kids until they’re 4+ though I have huge respect for those who do). After over 3 years of breastfeeding with only a 3 month break between weaning Maya and Kiran being born, I was done. I wanted my body back!

I knew weaning Kiran was never going to be an easy task as he was far more attached than Maya ever was. Maya was down to only a couple of feeds a day when I started weaning her at 10 months and by the time I totally phased it out at 12 months, she barely noticed. I substituted night feeds for a bottle of water and that was that.

Kiran however would scream at me if I refused and work himself up into quite a state. His word for feeding is “numbedik” – a contraction of the Balinese for “little drink”, minum bedik,  and I was getting really tired of those being his first words to me every time he saw me. Obviously a simple distraction/refusal plan was never going to work with Kiran.

I’d heard that Japanese women put sticking plasters over their nipples and say they have an “owie” so I tried this first. It worked right up until bed time when he started hysterically screaming at me again and telling me to take the plaster off. in desperation i googled and found a mumsnet thread where several women had put vinegar on their nipples with success. i’d already tried the Balinese method of coffee a few months back with no success but I had vinegar in the house so worth a try right?

The next time he tried I told him that because I had “owies” and it hurt he could try but it would taste bad. Of course he wanted to try, which he soon regretted. He didn’t try again after that :p I couldn’t believe it was so easy after all that effort! He did ask a few more times and asked if it “still hurt numbedik?” but I just showed him the plasters again and he gave up. 28 months – not a bad run!

Freeeeeeeedom! I was also an emotional wreck when I weaned Maya (i guess being heavily pregnant didn’t help) but no hormonal craziness this time. Hurray!

Even better, since he’s been weaned he’s slept through the night at least twice. This has NEVER happened before. He’s nappy-free at night time now too. Where did my baby go?!


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Ok so I blatantly didn’t get organised last week as I’m a whole day late with posting this again and i didn’t even get the DSLR out this week. So all I have are a couple of phone snaps from the beach – glad we went, it seems to be a constant battle to reclaim our Sunday family time. Made some important decisions for my business and family this last week – I’m giving up freelance writing and it’s all or nothing for now! Wish me luck!

Last week I loved this magical light, this little artist, and these thoughtful portraits.

Sponsored video – Help a child reach 5

I think this is one of the saddest videos I ever watched:

In most western countries, if a young child dies, it’s a horrific tragedy. In many third world countries, however, watching your child die is just a part of normal life for many people. This video tells the story of Utari, living in a small village in Indonesia where it is tradition to plant a tree when a baby is born. Sadly as so many children die before their 5th birthday, in many cases there is nothing left but the tree.

Worldwide, 5,000 children a day die from infections like diarrhoea and pneumonia. In many cases these deaths could have been prevented with proper hygiene and medical care. Coming to Indonesia from the UK, I was shocked at the lack of education when it comes to basic health care. Even the simplest things can help to prevent a child’s death. For example, when a baby has a fever it’s important to keep them cool but here they think that they should bundle them up and keep them warm – I shudder to think the damage that this misinformation is caused.

Basic hygiene is another huge problem, with very little attention being given to keeping areas like the kitchen and bathroom clean and even something as basic as hand washing. Simply washing hands regularly with soap could help to prevent these diseases that take so many young lives (in case you didn’t know, regular hand washing is the best way to protect yourself from colds and flu).

All that is needed is education. Sadly this is also something that is lacking in many parts of Indonesia. Last year Lifebuoy adopted Thesgora, India, and managed to reduce incidents of diarrhoea from 36% to 5% just by teaching the people about healthy hand washing habits. This year, they are adopting Bitobe, Indonesia so that more children can reach their 5th birthday.

Lifebuoy has committed to improve health by teaching a billion people about the importance of hand washing by 2015. You can read more about their campaign by visiting www.lifebuoy.com or visiting their Facebook page.

This post is sponsored by Lifebuoy, but all thoughts are my own.



I’m getting later and later with project 52 and I didn’t even get a decent photo of Kiran on his own. Must try to be more organised this week! The kids entertained themselves for quite some time running up and down chasing the rooster around the garden. I find it hard to get the balance right between letting them have fun and keeping them safe. I love to see them laughing and playing together but have visions of them falling and knocking their teeth out or splitting heads open (like Maya already did back in January). I can deal with skinned knees but have no wish for another emergency room visit any time soon. Trying hard to stop shouting “be careful!” constantly…

Last week  I loved these siblings in a buttercup field, these adorable little faces, and this rainy day portrait.

Linking up with Jodi


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