Wednesday, 29 September 2010


I realised I never wrote about Powderfinger. Last week Friday night we went out to the city to see this iconic Aussie Rock band. Sue and Gareth got us tickets and we met them there. Powderfinger never made it outside Australia and I'd never heard of them (just fancied a night out and I always like going to see bands). I'd found a babysitter, Matthew, a Dutch 16 year old boy who lives round the corner. The boys met him the week before and really like him. It was such a great night out! The concert was in the Supreme Court Gardens, in the city near the river. The band was really good, easy music (sing along songs) and the crowd just loved them. What a noise they made. Good atmosphere and the best bit I found was that the band enjoyed it so much too. The drummer laughing and just giving it away. Cute singer too!
Hopefully I get to go out again on Friday. Katja, Simone and I talked about going to the cinema....


On Monday we went to Marloes' house. It was 29 degrees and the boys played nicely with Julian and Kieran. They have a swimming pool and had a great time. Yesterday we had such a fantastic day! We met Katja and her girls on the beach (at City Beach). When it was the middle of the day and you should be out of the sun we came to our house and I baked pink pancakes (with beetroot blended through the mixture) and they tasted great and the kids thought they were fab! It was just a try out after Katja inspired me with her spinach pancakes and this works too! I made some purple playdough and the 4 children played for ages with it. Then Simone called, another mum from the Dutch playgroup. She suggested meeting at the playground at Floreat Beach (also not very far from here at all) to drink some wine as she had something to celebrate. Katja and I thought it was a great idea, so we all headed there and stayed till 5.30, all six children playing nicely together. So relaxing! I could get used to this!!!
But I will start filling in the forms for the teaching registration.... it would be good to work as well..
Today I am looking after Cleo, Katja's oldest daughter. It's cloudy and we had a bit of drizzle earlier. The plan is to meet Tamar today. Carmen is off school (holidays). Willem is counting down till his birthday. His party is on Sunday in the park. 12 children are coming! And Tuesday night my parents get here! Yippie!!!!

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Group photo!


We finally have a working phone line. Phone is charging up now so from tomorrow you can reach us. Please don't hesitate calling us, we will call you back as we call for free (we call through the modem, a bit like skype).  Just remember the time difference!

Monday, 27 September 2010

Mt Lesueur

We also visited Lesueur National Park, famous for it's wild flowers.

Beautiful beaches

We spent time of beautiful white beaches. This one is at Sandy Cape near Jurien Bay. You can also camp there (good to know for next time!)

First camping trip in WA

We went camping this weekend as Jamie had the Monday off. Katja (my friend I met at the Dutch school) and her family joined us. It was a last minute desicion and it was great as it reminds me a bit of Oman, going with a group. Of course it's different now we have children but not less fun and it was really nice to drink a glass of wine outside the tent when the kids were in bed. Katja and Ian (he's South African) have 2 girls, just a little bit younger than Willem and Frank. We camped in Leeman, a fishing village 310 km north of Perth. The campsite was busy as it is the school holidays as well but we got an ok spot at the edge of the park. We visited the Pinnacles desert, which is a really weird and beuatiful landscape of limestone pinnacles sticking up out of the yellow desert.

Monday, 20 September 2010

To make you jealous

View from the trampoline...

They're everywhere!

These Portugese millipedes are all over the place! In the house and we saw millions of them in Bold Park! When you touch them they roll up, cute!

Penguin Island

This Sunday we went to Penguin Island, a small island off the coast of Rockingham, a town about 50 km south of Perth. We didn't see any wild penguins as they are all out at sea catching fish for their young who are well hidden in the bushes. We did see some rescued ones during a feed by the rangers. They are tiny! Apparently you can see the penguins in December or January when they loose their feathers and can't swim. We will definitely go back then. Anyhow, it is a lovely, relaxing island with lots of birds like these terns. Lots of shrieking seagulls who foolishly build their nests (with eggs and chicks) right beside the boardwalk. We also saw pelicans and king skinks. Beautiful blue sea. Unfortunately Willem has developed a real fear of the big waves and when we had to walk across a narrow beach with big waves he got a panic attack. Screaming, crying.. dead scared. Poor boy. At the other side of the island the sea was calm and then he runs in and out happily...

Saturday, 18 September 2010

It's working!

Since we moved to Perth we started this new "dinner regime". The idea is that the boys have to eat something from each pan but they choose how much (well, one pea is not allowed, it has to be a spoonful). When they finish their plate they get to choose something from the "treat-tin". It's worked out so well! Maybe because everything was new to them, I don't know, but they've been eating everything I've cooked for them.  Today it was red snapper with roasted vegetables and they both ate pumpkin, courgette, onion, pepper, potatoes and carrots and the fish of course. But this week we've had chilli con carne (it was a bit hot for them but they still ate it all with lots of water) and cous cous with cardamon seeds and salmon with sesame seeds and soya sauce. They've been eating stir fry vegetables etc etc. Brilliant. And today they wanted green pancakes again and now they even know what makes it green as I asked Willem to add the 2 big handfuls of spinach!

The swimming lessons went well. They both jumped in the pool (without me) and loved it! We heard today that next weekend is a long weekend so we are looking for a place to stay and go a bit further a field... Can't wait!

Thursday, 16 September 2010

My first night out!

Wednesday night I went out with a bunch of women to a very trendy tapas bar. Roelien was in town. She lives in Kuala Lumpur now but used to live here and she came to visit. Marloes came along as well and two other girls I hadn't met yet. It was very nice, good food but small portions and the service was friendly but very slow. Still we had a nice time. Some loud Aussie guy bought us another bottle of wine (for the Dutch ladies) and he said it was one from his own winery (yeah, yeah).

What else have we done... We walked through Bold Park,  a big piece of bush land just opposite our house. The boys walked for 5k and we saw millions of millipedes. It's very pretty with great views of the city as it is on a hill. Willem went to Kindy. He's really enjoying it there. On one afternoon we walked (3k) around Lake Monger, it's near the city but still pretty. Three playgrounds around it to keep the boys going and plenty wild life. We heard the cute sound of the banjo frogs and loads of water birds.

It's getting warmer now and yesterday I put sun cream on the boys for the first time. Spring is coming. We spent a few hours in Kings Park, still the boys' favourite. Also Matthew came to get to know the boys. He's 16, lives around the corner and he's Dutch. He will baby sit for us next week when we go to a concert of Powderfinger in the city, in the Supreme Court Gardens. Sue and Gareth got us tickets for this iconic Aussie rock band. The boys liked him and didn't want him to go so that's good.

This morning the boys have their first swimming lesson. I am not going in the pool with them so hopefully they enjoy it and progress faster. Then we are going to see my friend Urmila, she has just moved house. Jamie is going out for drinks tonight with work and tomorrow he's going to a pub in Fremantle with Gareth (lucky Jamie, Fremantle is soooo nice!)

The veggie garden is growing slowly. Nothing has died so far! Tomatoes, a chilli plant, lettuce and herbs....

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Frog fest and more

Yesterday evening we went to a frog fest in a wild life centre around a lake (our cousin Jim would've loved it). There was a sausage sizzle, we all had torches to look for wildlife and the rangers showed us a bobtail skink and a huge marron. They also told us about the 12 species of frog that live in the Perth area. Fascinating! There's a turtle frog. It looks like a wee turtle, lays eggs not spawn, walks (can't hop) and makes the sound of a frog. We learnt about the motorbike frog, that makes the sound of a motorbike, the Pobblebonk or banjo frog which makes the sound of a banjo! We heard them as well walking around the lake in the dark! Fab! we only saw one frog, a motorbike frog but it was still worthwhile.

This morning we went for a cycle ride. Willem was determined to cycle himself and did very well! We cycled up to Floreat Beach (which it not very far at all) and the left willem's bike and put him (like Frank) in the bike seat and cycled on to Scarborough. It was fun.

In the afternoon Blair came with his family. I knew Blair in Oman, he was a friend of one of my best friends (Ed)  and we haven't been in touch at all the past 10 years. But as it always seems to go in expat life.. that doesn't matter. He and his wife Jacqui and their 2 boys (4,5 and 3 years old, so very similar to Willem and Frank) came over for a play date and it was really nice to see him again so they stayed for a pizza as well.

Tomorrow we have a birthday Party, My friend Tamar's little girl turns 3.

We also have a labour government now, Julia Gillard is our prime minister. The just managed to get the support of the greens and the independents to form a government (after a very split election between Tony Abbott (lib/national party (rightwing)  and her labour party.

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

money money money

Money, money, money
It's not funny... we've (temporarily) run out! Gosh it's sooooo expensive here!
It's Jamie's Birthday and he got soaking wet cycling back in a big storm today!
This weekend it was Fathers Day and we went to John Forrest National Park. Big granite rocks, wild gorgeous smelling fresias and more wild flowers. The boys saw their first kangaroos and walked            (hm... ran) a good 4 kilometres. On Saturday we invited Marloes and family over and they brought bubbles as a house warming gift and stayed for dinner, very nice.
We also planted some seeds for the vegetable garden: lettuce, tomatoes, chilli, spring onion, rocket, herbs, beans.. easy stuff as it is quite difficult here in this climate. Hope it works out. Yesterday a friend of a friend, Lesley, came round. I met her at a birthday party a couple of weeks ago and she also lives in City Beach. She's really nice and she helped me with tips for doctors, babysitters, dentists and places to go etc. Today I had a look at some gym memberships in the area and we looked at some swimming lesson programmes. Hopefully the boys can start next term. Still need to unpack some boxes but don't really feel like it at the moment. Also cleaning this big house is going to take up a lot of my time.. boohoo!

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Last Sunday we went down towards the coast to see the runners in "City to Surf". A big sporting event. Marathons, family walks and a 12k run from as the title says: city to surf. I'd love to take part next year. Around 50.000 people join in these various events. Quite a few people overdid it though and collapsed in the heat. Lots of medics around to give extra oxygen. It was a hot day. On Tuesday we had lunch at Katja's house and she baked green pancakes for her girls and the boys. She just added a big handful of fresh spinach to the mixture. The boys thought it was great! On Tuesday Jamie got very wet as it rained all day. Unfortunately the man who was supposed to fix the air conditioner couldn't make it anymore so we were quite cold that day. He came yesterday and now we've got heating and a lovely warm lounge. Guess we won't be needing it soon but then at least we can make it cooler in the house as well...Yesterday Jamie joined Willem at Kindy for a father's day sausage sizzle. He took 2 hours off work and so did 80% of the other fathers. Really nice, it's part of the culture here, I guess..
We unpacked most of the boxes and it's starting to look good.
Today we went to Bold Park. It's a huge piece of bush land just around the corner of our house. You can do walks and a little drive away was this great playground. This afternoon Tamar is coming with her girls for a play date.