Saturday, 24 September 2011

Willem's Pirate Party

Today we celebrated Willem's 6th Birthday on the beach with a massive Pirate Party. We did it early because his birthday is in the holidays. He invited all of the boys from his Pre-Primary class and 3 girls + Cleo and Carmen, friends from outside school. 17 kids in total. The weather has been a bit unsettled recently so we were very lucky with a beautiful, sunny day.
Jamie had been busy making the pirate ship cake the night before and I sorted most of the games and food.
It was a fantastic morning, if I say so myself. It started with some drawing and some pirate books to "read". Then we all got together and played games like "Pirate Pirate Captain, a treasure hunt, gold coins search, walk the plank, water bomb fight, lots of pirate grub to eat and treasure to dig up. Most children came dressed as wee pirates (or mermaids)! It's a great group of kids and we had a lot of fun.

Wednesday, 21 September 2011


This morning I got a phone call from the Quintilian School, an independent school here in Perth and also the one where the Dutch School has a room. A lot of Dutch children go there and we are there every Tuesday as Willem has his Dutch lessons there. A couple of weeks ago I handed in my CV and there was the first call for relief teaching! Unfortunately I couldn't make it as I promised to go on the school trip with Kindy and Pre-Primary to the Art Gallery but it's a start!
On Monday I visited the Dutch Nursery class to see their way of working (actually observed my friend Marloes teaching) so I can do relief teaching there soon. This term it's easy as I can just bring Frank along to the classes. Next year it's easier as he will be in school 5 days a week as well.  Hopefully next term I can  work every Tuesday morning (as an assistant) in the Dutch Nursery and do some relief. Tomorrow I will observe Wilna again, the head teacher with the individual children although I am not sure if that's what I really want...
I went to Bold Park Community School today, another independent school to bring my CV (I already emailed them) and they were happy to see me. As they work differently from other schools (Reggio approach and some Steiner) they've asked me to do a trial morning next term. They also said they really liked my dress, like that would be a criteria to join the school :) But it was also promising.  So.. it's beginning to work out.. Although.. still no news about my ID number from the Government. They're a slow moving body, that's for sure. When I have it I can work in all the state schools too.

The trip to the Art Gallery was fun. I went along with Willem's class and they looked at the Aboriginal Art and all the stories of Dreaming with it. They also did some great artwork themselves.
Frank's Kindy class also learnt about Aboriginal Art and Frank is so inspired! His teacher said he was a great interpreter of the paintings. He found a stick on the way home and straight away started painting lots of dots this afternoon. He said he wanted his painting to go on the wall in the art gallery too!

Saturday, 17 September 2011


On Thursday I went with 3 friends to Guildford, a small old town not far from Perth with lots of antique and art shops. We had a lovely lunch and it was nice to spend a day with the girls. In the evening my friend Noor organised another night in The Stanley (one of my favourite hang outs) for all the Dutch women. Quite a few new faces which was really nice. Especially liked this girl Inge, who teaches African Dance in Fremantle. Hopefully I'll get to know her better.
Had a "chat" with the head teacher of the Dutch NTC school "De Schakel". I sent her a casual email after reading the newsletter in which it was quite obvious they were struggling with relief teachers at the moment. So I offered to help out. We talked for a bit and found out we both started teaching in exactly the same school: Driestromenschool in Middelburg, special needs education. Anyway... she can't promise me anything just yet, only an assistant teaching job for next term (one morning only). It doesn't pay very well and it wasn't what I really wanted but it is a start and who knows.. I just really hoped I could work in the Australian system but am getting nowhere at the moment.
Tomorrow our old Aberdeen friends (Tamar and Urmila and families) are coming for a BBQ. Unfortunately the weather is slightly unsettled, showery... but it'll be fun anyway. And in the evening we've got a "Bring and Braai" at Katja's as her South African husband turns 39 (I think).
Also I've started a book club. I didn't think it would be so easy as everyone is very busy but in no time I managed to get 10 women together. We're reading The Potato Factory (on my request) by Bryce Courtenay. One of Australia's most famous authors (although he's really South African). I hope it's good.. so far it's a good read.. I had to choose something quite quickly...and this was recommended...
We also went to Bells Rapids last weekend in the Swan Valley. Lovely spot along the river. We were just a wee bit too early for the wild flowers... I'll attach a few photos later.
Yesterday we went to the Frogfest at Herdsman Lake again, just like last year. We knew about the frogs now and still didn't see any but it was still a fun evening.
 Guildford with Thea, Simone and Katja

 Bells Rapids
Can you imagine what it will look like when all these flowers are in bloom??

About the boys.. Willem's reading is improving heaps, also in English. Frank is interested in reading now too, so we've started slowly...Willem's still very much into computer stuff. Frank is still totally obsessed by his cuddly toys Bambi and Kangaroo. He didn't want to go to Kindy last week. Reason: he only has one friend (Gabriel). Asked him who he likes to be friends with.. he said: Not A, cause she wears glasses and not E, cause she's already friends with R. And not B, J, J and A cause they don't listen to the teacher and not B cause he's already friends with I... but maybe D.. Yes, I like D to be my friend. So.. Delainey is coming for a play on Monday..

Busy now organising Willem's birthday party. We'll do it before the holidays on the beach. A total Pirate theme party. Lots of organising but I don't mind.. He's invited a lot of schoolkids and two other friends.
And we're also looking forward to Jamie's little sister's visit the 1st week of the October holidays. Willem and Frank can't wait to spend time again with their cousins Joe, Jim and Jack. They live in Sydney now, so it's not too far..

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Murder Mystery Dinner

Last week I organised a dinner party at our house called "Passion Pasta and Pistols" It was set in New York in an Italian restaurant and the owner had been shot in the back. Grieving family members came to the restaurant to support each other only to find out one of us was the killer!!!!

It was a fun night. Our friends really put in a tremendous effort in their outfits and roles, including accent! Lots of laughs.

I did well on the catering side too. Fabulous anti-pasto plates, wild mushroom pasta with fresh parmesan and rocket salad and  delicious chicken cacciatore..

Jamie was so full he didn't eat till 4.30 pm the next day!

 Mama Rosa, cooking the pasta for 25 yearze!

 Marco Roni, Mama Rosa, Bo Jolais, Angel, Father Alfredo, Tara Misu and Rocco

 Clair Voyant is awaiting the guests

The killer!!

Sunday, 4 September 2011



We had a fantastic holiday in Bali. We stayed in Villa Oasis, in Sanur, a fishing village on the beach. Our "villa" (it was more an apartment) was one of four around a lovely pool. It really felt like a little oasis in the heart of the village. It was quiet en peaceful. Sanur's beach was nice with a 4 km long promenade with bars and restaurants. It didn't have any waves as there was a reef just off the coast. Jamie thought this was a bit disappointing but the water was warm and clear. The boys loved the pool. We were quite lucky as there was another boy (Lorenzo, 8 years old) in one of the other apartments and they got on really well and played for hours on end in the pool. We also made some lovely day trips. Highlight was to Gunung Batur, a real volcano and Willem and Frank made it to the top (1717m). The day after we treated them to a water park with lots of slides which they totally loved. We also visited interesting and impressive temples, beautiful rice terraces and saw lots of monkeys in Ubud. Jamie went up the highest mountain one night for sunrise (Gunung Agung, around 3100m) and had the most amazing views.
The people are so lovely and the food is delicious. Willem and Frank really liked nasi goreng!