I’ve been inside…

Everything takes a back seat when you play survival. That dance class.. I remember the high hopes.. Before the throat virus. Honestly I can’t remember what came first in the past 3 weeks but we’ve had virus after virus, both babies teething, fevers, sore throats, I got run down and got a sinus infection, migraines… I should really call this blog “Getting sick with Shan” or something.

What I really need to acknowledge though is; how fast you can go from being in an okay mindset, to victim, resentful, blamey yuk person. On day 3 of NO sleep, I lost it at dinner time when Amalia spewed her last mouthful of dinner everywhere. I went to my room and rang my Mum crying before telling her my solution. That’s when she ended up in the high chair, clothes on, in the shower. I literally could not deal with anything else, turned out it was a great idea and everything was clean. Thanks Lauren (my sister) for getting her and the high chair out.

Saturday night 3.30am I again didn’t know what to do and called Mum who was obviously asleep. My 4 month old had been screaming for 3 hours and I can’t even remember why but I know I asked if it was okay to leave him to cry as I knew there was nothing actually wrong and I needed sleep. She said everyone reaches breaking point… to which I replied “THAT WAS ON WEDNESDAY!!”. Thankfully after leaving him to cry for a little longer he fell asleep (Please don’t think I left him to cry for 3 hours, no way). Now I’m not even sure which one it was now come to think of it, because I’d had so many nights like this.

My 16yr old step daughter around this time decided she was going to move out.

What I want to portray here though is the scene for my mood. I took a backseat to my emotional state and became very aware of feelings that were coming up. I started to vocalise resentment and considered hurts that hadn’t been dealt with. I realised stories were being made in my head and previous stories that no longer worked were being remade. It was an interesting time as I became very depressed and uncertain.

I didn’t want to create stories that did not serve me. I asked to be released from my resentments. I asked for guidance.

Every time a story came up I began to challenge it. I forced myself to pick up books, words and read as much positive influences that I could. Some days I felt like crap. Some were pretty good. Sometimes small things upset everything but to be okay with it all became a lesson. Sometimes I feel so worthless because all I “seem” to do is look after babies. I realised that my intense desire to always “study” is something I use to define my worth. I don’t sleep a lot and no more than 3 hours for my longest sleep. I do have limitations at the moment, but they won’t last forever. My kids might be challenging at this stage, but they will grow up, and boy I don’t want to miss that. Or discredit others who are having a way rougher time.

But I do want to say it’s okay to fight for survival sometimes, be kind to yourself and let “pressures” you put on yourself take a backseat. Sometimes that pressure was even getting the kids or myself dressed on those shitty days. I’m not supermum. I don’t have it all together all the time. It’s so far from the truth sometimes and boy have I been dealing with shit that makes me realise how damn judgemental I am and really question my self esteem and confidence in relation to raising my family.

Another thing I know is just how selfish I have been. I haven’t been able to give myself in any form to anyone other than my kids and sometimes not even them, for self preservation. When you are absolutely scraping the barrel, there’s nothing to give anyway. So sorry to those who have been there for me and I haven’t even been able to ask how you are.

3 weeks of sick. 3 weeks of slowing down. Awareness. Healing. Change.

It’s just me, my 11 year old and my 2 babies from now on. Life can change in an instant, for anyone in many ways.

I’ve been forced to reconsider who I am, what I stand for and where I want to be.

Thank goodness we are all better physically so we can focus again on the good and positive things in life.

Count your blessings.

And here I am tonight. Looking forward to my first break from the babies in I have no idea, more than 5 months.. I get to go walking for 2 hours. In the morning. I can’t wait.


The Forgotten Blog Post

It’s almost as ridiculous as the time my sister removed all the wrappers from the can’s in Mum’s pantry, but someone has peeled all the stickers off the shampoo and conditioner. Blast it. I love how it was blamed on the 18 month old but one of the stickers was at adult height on the shower door…

Got me thinking about this Mum Bun phenominum, but no one really talks about the Mum Bum issue. I swear I went into birth my now 18 month old with a body builder booty and came out with a butt that closely resembeled my Mum’s bum. So weird as if over night it lost all elasticity. And it just never seemed to come back. I can fit pants I haven’t worn in years because there’s just nothing to put in them now… I’m sure it’s a thing isn’t it?

Maybe one day I’ll get to visit a gym. All the squats I do at home don’t seem to work because I can’t check into the gym on facebook and everyone knows if you don’t check it, it never happened. I did however pull out my guitar for the first time in over a year last night and because I’m a big girl, after my nylon stringed accoustic was stolen I brought my first steel string guitar. My calouses are completely gone, I guess they ran off with my bum, and now my fingers are in so much pain from less than an hour playing over 2 nights. I’ll have to try and make time to harden up.

Last week I was certainly on fire when Amalia slept in my bed (for no more than an hour, she is super wriggley) and a picture from above my bed fell off the wall and I spidey sensed it and karate chopped it away from her face on the way down. I guess this was evened out when I did the pram jam on my fingers the other day when we visited the butterfly exhibit at the museum. My heart melted when my daughter and her cousin ran round holding hands.

I nearly had a heart attack though when one of the kids got out the elevator on the wrong floor. We were jammed in behind the prams, the door shut and we ended up moving to the floor above! I was laughing with nerves and was so relieved and surprised to see she was standing waiting for us when we managed to get back down to her floor! She could have been lost in history…

Tonight we waited for over half an hour with the rest of Auckland City to see the lights at Motat. I’m not sure what I was expecting but I’m pretty sure I’ll never get that 30minutes back.

And while we are on the subject of time wasters… I organised to view a property out Hobsonville. It was through a young guy and as we were the only ones who turned up I can only assume he had forgotten to meet us. We waited for about half an hour again, I called and checked my emails and finally went to the back door where I jumped the ranchslider off the lock.

I wondered if there was an alarm so I rang the guy again who answered and pretended he was sick. Good one guy.. I asked if there was an alarm because the back door was open and I wanted to have a look through. He said it was ok because I had asked and if I could lock up after! Sure young guy, I’ll do your job for you. The property was awful. So glad we broke and entered rather than coming back to see that!

Tomorrow I’m going to a 2 hour silent dance class. I had better tape my mouth shut as I’m sure I’ll end up forgetting.

Wow… I never made it to that class… That was the beginning of this next blog…

(This was written A MONTH AGO)…


Sick with it all

I feel like I want to hibernate until sunny season. Hopefully we have had all the gross sick out the way now, touch wood! I used to be so healthy and never sick, I guess since my body has been growing, feeding and nurturing humans for the last 3 years non-stop with little sleep involved I have a lower immune system at the moment.


The car seats are still next to each other in the car. It seemed so much better (easier to get another child in the back without climbing through the front to land between the babies) except when I turn around and Amalia has thrown a blanket over Madden’s head, or he gets covered in wet wipes, food or poked and prodded. I’m being to think segregation was the best option after all, either that or find out where she’s locating all the goods and redirect the channel elsewhere.

I got the results back from the ultrasound I had on the lump on my boob. Good news.. It’s just an axillary tail.. not the type I can listen to music with I don’t think, but otherwise known as breast accessory.. baggage… Apparently I carry it under my armpit.. Not sure where you store your baggage but looks like I found mine…


Because when you feel this sick why the heck would you want to show your face????

Next thing you know I’m undressing at Amalia’s swim lessons and find a trail of the bumps I got rid of the other week, running down my leg.. OMG>>> What the heck is wrong with me!! Don’t answer that.

So, then for some reason, the weather packs in and turns ice-cold. I think that’s when I developed a head cold, hay fever and it soon became a sore throat. Amalia came down with a cough, snot and after picking up Ashton from school Friday he ended up in the bathroom from midnight. You’d be counting your lucky stars the babies alright about now.


She might be a bit more than just sick judging by how she drives the car with the seat up. 

Next thing you know the blimmen ant’s decide to hit while your already suffering and start nesting all over the place. I do the old ant bait trick for a day before I absolutely loose it with the fly spray (I’m sorry environment, I feel so bad for using it but please understand the desperation).

Now I’m off to the Dr’s for Madden’s 12 week check. After going to crèche and walking around all morning, then through the doctors I discover I have a sticky white mess all over the crotch of my black jeans. OMG it’s huge, the doctor notices and says “Don’t worry it’s fine” and I embarrassingly reply “If you didn’t know I was a single mum of 4 you’d be thinking the worst”. It’s Amalia’s sticky rice flake porridge (don’t even ask about the state of the washing machine after that load).


Cheeky tounge poke

Tonight Amalia gives me a good old eye gauge for which she went to time out. I still can’t see properly and at this stage I have no voice from my sore throat. Madden’s is fine though and he.s demonstrating by screaming for hours, completely unsettled. He finally nods off so I shower Amalia, start washing my hair at the same time, when he starts crying again. Dripping wet and cold I figure my best option is to bring him in, it might settle him. It seems to do the trick until we get out and the screaming begins again.


Maybe he doesn’t like that I put the cardy on backwards. 

Next thing you know Ashton’s school rings. 1/3 of the school is chronically sick and if half falls sick they close down. Luckily Ashton is one of the sick ones to collect tonight I’m told, while Madden screams  and I freeze. Apparently the parents are catching it too. So I sit here debating my options of wearing my gas mask, wet hair, I just can’t risk getting the baby sick, I decide to beg my sister to get the sicko.

Thankfully my sister takes one for the team and drives to get him while Tayla holds the baby so I can dry my hair. Ashton is home and goes straight downstairs. We have a conversation with our faces covered and just using our eyes. It’s practically how you communicate with teenage boys anyway. He’s all tucked in now with Marmite crackers and electrolytes.

And it seems all is well in the world again.

Yesterday at the supermarket Lauren mentioned how we practically know everyone there on the checkout and aisles. I tell them all they are my friends. I wonder why no one has invited us over??


Fairy on the field

I turned up for the rugby game last Saturday morning covered in pink glitter make up. Me, who usually wears none. I told everyone I was an undercover fairy. They thought I was joking. Both weekend mornings we had 2-year-old birthdays. Tayla was going to dress as a fairy on the Sunday and make balloon animals, but when she ended up getting her new job, so she had to pull out. I decided this was something I could do! But if I do that for Sunday I should do it for my niece on Saturday too.


Even my nose was shimmering… Undercover fairy.

As we are always busy I had to get partially ready before going to the optometrist, then rugby. Somehow the careful preparation I put into making the day work turned on me. We ended up late to the birthday as the game was hours away. I fed the baby before getting to the party and unknowingly turned up wearing this fairy dress, wings, hair flowers and one swollen boob popping out my dress from rush feeding to get in on time.


Wishing it was a dress up party… When good ideas go bad.

Before I was able to put the baby down, my bubble wand broke and I end up just looking like  a weirdo holding a giant baby at a birthday with one boob hanging out my dress. I  explained the ballerina slippers were from adult ballet classes gone bad and before you know it we are off again to run kid errands.

Later that night we went to my daughters creche to decorate for the party the next day. This is where I lost my 1-year-old. It was dark. She couldn’t have gotten out the gates but this didn’t relieve my panic. I was screaming round the premise when I found her in the children’s toilet holding wet toilet paper and cleaning the seat.. UGHHH. I didn’t want to touch her let alone the giraffe, rhino and tiger she’d thrown in the toilet next door.

The next day I was prepared enough to feed both sides before becoming a fairy and had back up bubbles just in case. I was in my prime again. In fact I was sure years ago I was running round an Enlightened Dance Party blowing bubbles wearing a tutu. Now I was welcoming guests yelling; “Bubbles, fairy bubbles, I love glitter, fairy float fluff and no I’m not cold, fairies are magical”. I guess I’m going to end up living vicariously through my kids…

Later this day I was in the shower with Madden after getting Amalia all ready for bed. It’s not often I get to shower alone, or with one kid. I guess this wasn’t the day for it either. I can’t remember how or why but what I do remember is ending up with Amalia dressed for bed and in the shower with me and the baby too. Sometimes you just have to take a deep breath, roll with it and think; “At least I can save on the clothes washing!”.

Now let’s see, Thursday we met a friend at Smales Farm for coffee. Trying to juggle a sleeping 1-year-old on the hip and carry an awake baby in the capsule, I managed to keep the sleeper asleep. For a while. When she woke, it was all over, she was off, and I had to go home. I had a meeting in an hour anyway. I packed the kids into the car and my car started screaming at me. It wouldn’t turn on. I took out the manual and realised I did not know enough Japanese to order a meal anymore, let alone fix my car. I soon realised that by unplugging the inverter from the cigarette lighter the squealing noise stopped. Then the kids started. There’s really no unplugging them. I popped the hood while balancing the 10 week old and decided the ticking battery must mean it was flat.

Now I’m definitely not hopeless with cars but my car is totally hopeless. Stupid automatic, I couldn’t put it into neutral to push it away from the kerb and jump-start it.  I couldn’t get a car next to it and I had to get home for the meeting. So I tied the kids to me and set off for the bus when my Mum rang and saved us all. Gone are the days when these issues are easily solved as a single person.


Dealing with kids, cars and roads becomes a logistical nightmare. When we came back with a battery generator thing I ended up push pressing Amalia in her car seat above my head across the car park, car to car. She thought it was great hanging upside down in her seat restraints giggling while I locked her out above the head. Boy do I miss training sometimes.

I guess it’s ok. I miss the challenges the gym had. I miss the way I felt strong and happy after a workout. I try to find the time to workout in the living room even if it’s not as often as I would like. These days challenges come from trying to remember words I know but can’t articulate from “baby brain”. I feel happy when I have uniforms washed and dried, kids dropped off to the right place and on time. I feel strong when I realise I may not be the best or have it all together all the time, but I am doing my best, day by day and I haven’t given up, as much as sometimes it’s all too much.

I’m looking forward to writing my experiences over the years into a 2000 word submission for a publication I was asked to be a part of. I may have to shorten this to key words to fit it all in I’m thinking.. Which is interesting. It’s all very well reflecting on the past and situations I have dealt with, they may bring insight or inspire someone but I had a great idea… What would be even better for myself (not the publication), is to write a story for my future. There’s nothing much to gain (for myself) in reiterating my life . Why not attract what I want to gain by creating something positive for myself and my kids.

Just a thought. Maybe that thought might bring awareness in your life. Do you dwell on the past? Or create your future? Maybe my future blogs will become…

Shannon reversed into car parks so if she broke down she had no issues jump starting her car. She passed legislation to lock down all toilet seats around toddlers.

Wednesday I take Amalia to swim lessons up near my Mum so she can watch Madden. We left the house at 9am, swam (splash frittered) for half hour, drove to Saint Kentigan’s to watch Ashton’s soccer game ( chase Amalia off the field while Mum held the baby and watched Ashton play), get in the car and sing Wheels on the Bus and Baby Shark all the way to Long Bay College and watch Tayla play soccer (jump on drains with Amalia and make a game out of holding onto the fence so I could watch her).


This may or may not have accidentally been sent to me… 

All the kids do so well in their respective sports. I love watching them play but man do I need eyes in the back of my head and a great imagination to keep the crazy baby busy.. On the way home the babies were in the back and Tayla was squished in between. I drove most of the way. Madden screams when the window is up, he gets so hot. Rain, wind, freezing temperatures you will find us driving like icicles, singing kids music, while Madden is toasty. Except this day. We were once again stuck in traffic, and the wind stops so Madden screams. While in traffic we make a break for it. None of us can handle it anymore so we jump out, Tayla gets in the passenger seat, Mum in the driver’s seat and I try dive through the window to land between the car seats, stick a boob in his face and blow on his head. The things we do huh..


This takes me to last night.. I think.. My 2-year-old niece came to stay and it was Ashton’s social. This meant 3 seats in the back, one window down, one Friday night fever boy and a screaming baby because my niece thought it was hilarious to pull the dummy and shush the screaming child. Try driving with a hand over the dummy in Madden’s mouth while holding the steering wheel. Least I don’t need to do the yoga twists this week…


Friday night fever guy


I did think it was going to end up a disaster as I’m certainly not qualified for early childhood but I must say I was pleasantly surprised. There were no injuries, no screaming for mummy and everyone went to bed amazingly. Even if picking up Ashton and Tayla from work on the way back from social meant Ashton my 11-year-old had to sit rear facing in the car seat..


So here’s to having all the babies and more. I certainly take my hat off to all you people out there looking after kids on a daily basis.

Sorry again for the untimely blogs but being time poor means I get to spend more time with my kids and try catch up on everything else when I can.

P.S. we are getting over the fear of holding monarchs. I am not sure I can keep hatching them though as the trauma when there are problems is all too much. I now have one in my freezer that was deformed and dying. I couldn’t even put it in there myself as the pain was so real. Thanks Darren for saying a prayer and doing the hard bit. Hopefully it doesn’t become dinner because I’m not getting it out.


Covered in kids


Naming of Fart Box

It’s taken 9 and a half weeks to name baby boy who we lovingly and descriptively called “Fart Box”. All this time and he has had no name. It was important to me to get to know him and I didn’t want to rush the wrong name. Now he has 5 (including sir name)… You may think this is a little excessive, I do for sure, but enough is enough, the name must go on. Tayla-Paris has one name, Ashton Lee has 2, Amalia Cosette Kevin (that’s another story) has 3 and now fart box has 4.

The name I went with was floating in the background this whole time while the front-runners didn’t seem quite right. The one I loved most ETHAN RYKER was not loved by all. I was told by 2 psychics that his name was ETHAN and I thought YES. But every time I tried to make that decision I wondered if it was because I was told that was his name. What if it used to be his name and it was time to update it? The second name was his Fathers choice, the third was my great Uncles name. Years ago I asked my great Uncle what made a happy marriage as he was married over 50 years. He replied “Communication and Love; people fall out of love with each other but as long as one person always is in love it is enough to pull the other through”. The fourth name was suggested on a short list by Tayla and I fell in love with it but not for a first name. So here begins the story.


Earlier in the week I had to drop Ashton to the airport. We all know what I’m like with the blimmen airport and with all the kids now, first I had to go to an eye appointment, drop Tayla at beauty course, it was pointless to go home after so we went straight to the airport. We happened to be an hour early but parking at the supermarket again and carrying 6kg+ in a front pack, pushing a pram and carrying bags we needed the time. However being early has its problems too. Amalia… trying to contain a firecracker and entertain whilst feeding and changing nappies is not easy. Walking to and buying her an almond milk from a cafe can only take up so much time and jumping off stairs and running every which way is super fun. I now endeavour to never be early.


On the walk back, I took a moment to identify with the pain and suffering a 3kg pair of boobs in a bra causes. Thank goodness I have small breasts. I just couldn’t walk on the daily otherwise. Maybe that walk is why my back has been out of business the past few days. I couldn’t even get out of bed in the night and lift my 1-year-old back into bed without my eyes tearing up. Grateful I’m on the mend.


Soaking up the baby cuddle time before he grows too big.

Until last night that is. Someone was hiding in the bushes at our house. We called the police and 2 hours later no one arrived so I told my sister to record on her phone as I cleared the property with my phone torch. I found someone deep in bush and crouching I prepared to tackle him when he moved. I yelled at my sister to call the police. I got him, then he took off his top and jumper and me with it. Again I leapt getting him in a choke hold and he flipped us into the bush where I lost a shoe, grabbed hold of his pants and as he stepped over me they came down. So here I am grabbing hold of an almost naked guy while my sister is hyperventilating to the police squatting in front of us. It was like a slow motion scene where she’s saying “I can’t, I can’t, I can’t (slow down, talk or breathe probably)”, he’s trying to dress himself and I’m awkwardly clinging to his leg when the police pull in. So now my neck is sore, I’m covered in surface grazes, grass stains and my back is still sore.


Mum modelling – Ugly shoes, bruises from running after kids, bra I haven’t been able to wear in years under see through top covered in baby spew and casserole and two-tone hair regrowth. Before I went bush ninja. 


Tayla and I have been out driving at night now she is 16 years old. I’ve never taught anyone to drive before and it’s actually not easy for me to do. Lucky she is a pretty good learner driver. Even when she nearly crashed us through a fence when practicing parking she reacted fast enough to stop us before I even realised what was happening!


Tayla has also started a YouTube channel featuring little baby Amalia who thinks it’s soooo fun to help sissy with her make-up. It’s hilarious.. All the videos that end in Amalia’s nose up close saying cheese and her ending the video. Every time Tayla has sat so patiently in the background waiting for her to comply and film. It’s so much entertainment to watch what goes into it 🙂 I know it will be hilarious when they get going. If you want to subscribe the link is http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yAetD3X2DZQ.  The channel is called Makeup by Tayla-paris. Get in there and show some support!


Ashton has just started rugby season. On muster night he played his first game, got a try, hurt his ankle and has just gotten clearance to play. Thank goodness since we just paid for the season and have invested in fixing his eyes with glass contacts he wears overnight to correct his vision, meaning he doesn’t need to wear glasses. Meaning no balls to the head during sports resulting in protected brain cells. Although night time can be a frustrating and tedious time with him having to poke himself in the eye with glass.

Anyway I could go on forever as I promised myself I wouldn’t write until I named the baby. So let’s leave it here for now and go out with the introduction to …..


Madden Conor Noel Oaklen Bruce

Goodnight everyone!

Don’t DRINK and TONE

I’ve really taken some time lately to freak out. I have been super unmotivated to do anything for months.. I’m talking life progression here. I mean I get all the day to day stuff done that preoccupied and distracts me from thinking about the future.


I spend time worrying about my allergies and immune system rather than taking action and VITAMIN C to strengthen it. Tonight I just did Centergy in my lounge once the kids were all settled in bed.. I did happen to have a small wine on the end of my mat but I haven’t exercised in MONTHS so we needed to celebrate. On a side note… NEVER drink and tone… It is terrible in the reflux area and totally defeats all purpose; to get healthy and strengthen immunity.

I am super looking forward to my walk tomorrow with a friend and my kids tied to me, after we visit the Doctor’s for my babies 6 week check up. ANXIETY right here. I’m faced with the controversal to vax or not to vax… This calls for a wine… Just kidding. I’m sure I can deal with the anxiety by holding my breath until I decide. I have been researching for days on the vaccinations, so you would think I can make an informed decision right? Well you underestimate MUM LIFE>> every time I sit down to read I have a baby scream, tend to them, do the washing, get some food prepared, remember I was researching, answer the phone, read a book, vacuum, mop the floor, remember I was researching, go to the loo, ohhh fill up the toilet paper, may as well clean the bathroom, realise I am not progressing in life as I’m too busy refilling toilet rolls, OHHH the research! How did I forget? Oh my Spotify turned off again because someone rang.. What was I doing again? That’s right.. I put my baby down… somewhere.. And he still doesn’t have a name so I can’t call him!

Amalia is on a special diet at the moment for Candida. Basically because I’m a plant doctor I diagnosed her bloated stomach  and Marmite (I was thinking marmite has a yeast in it) smelling morning wee’s as Gut Disbiosis. The real doctor didn’t even know what that was so now I’m beginning to think my life calling is getting a doctorate. The doctor actually confirmed her thrush as a mild 1 colony gathering. I have now learnt thrush armies can visit in multitudes of colonies, thank you Doctor.. She gave me a topical cream, but this isn’t going to solve the problem. So cutting wheat, dairy and sugar I hope is going to do the trick. After 2 days there was a significant reduction in the bloating and slight increase in the food bill… GAH>>> The things we do for good gut bacteria.


My brother became a human fart gun. He was told he couldn’t eat NERF GUN bullets… So he ate 3. He ended up in hospital on laxatives and after passing 2 my sister asked if he could stick them to the bottom of the toilet bowl. Apparently if he didn’t pass the third he could end up in surgery as it was blocking his poo shoot and he would end up talking crap if it didn’t unblock.. I haven’t heard from him in a while so I better follow this up.

In other news I am now narrating my whole life to the kids. I tell the baby what I’m about to do to him ie: “GOO now I’m going to put your arm in the sleeve hole and here comes a nipple train, open wide”. I talk to Amalia like; “Wow, you are doing good pouring water all over my leg, but next time shall we try aim for the funnel?” Or “Do you want to eat the peas off the floor or vacuum them?” Or “Well done, your hugging your baby brother, Now don’t squash him please”. And now that Tayla has just turned SWEET SIXTEEN, passed her drivers licence and had a week of celebrations, we are doing night time driving lessons. “As we drive up to the pedestrian crossing we check for people, look both ways, slow down now, start indicating now, check your mirror, check your blind spots, turn right, look down that road”. It’s actually insane the expectations on learner drivers and makes me realise all my bad habits like, driving with my knee, or placing my left foot on the console when I drive. I’m such a bad influence and it’s really hard to drive legitimately.

Anyway, I have discovered I am a life coach guru. It’s been a whole day of changes in my life. I am now a professional life remodeller ( I actually have completed an introduction to LIFE COACHING – which I found useless) to add to my plant doctor repertoire, business entrepreneur/enthusiast/wannabe and being a mother.

Maybe the full moon that has just been has shifted something in my life that has got me thinking about my future and taking the necessary steps to make changes and re-evaluate what I need to achieve my goals. Has anyone else felt a recent shift in perspective?

I’d love to hear all about it!

Here’s a 3 kid pile up for your perusal, 2 kids climbing a rock wall at Western Springs on Easter and one giant selfie from Ashton.


Call me Doctor Leaf a lot

I guess doing my Horticulture qualification has made me feel like I can diagnose my own ailments. I mean, I may not be an actual Doctor but I’ve learnt how to solve problems with research. Really a Doctor is someone who has studied for years, knows how the body works and what viruses and bacteria do to make us sick.


This is the new baby, nothing to do with the topic. 

It’s quite similar really to a paper I did on Plant Life Cycles, Pests and Pathogens. I passed, except I’m not certain what made the hole in my Feijoa leaf. But plants/people, pests/pathogens… Same same. You could say I’m a studying first year plant Doctor… The biology and mechanics are really very similar. So anyway, I had a sore finger and found out it is Dyshidrotic Eczema. Don’t ask me to pronounce that. It only lasts a wee while and can be brought on by stress or funnily enough, seasonal allergies, of which I sometimes get from PLANTS. Personally I’m not sure how just one of my fingers could be stressed out but I’m sure it will soon pass and my finger will return to normal.

I had another ailment too which kept me up at night worrying. This one I was too scared to google it as I didn’t want to find I had google cancer. So I took photos and sent them to a friend to google for me. I told her not to tell me if it was something bad, just if it was a good thing. She said I had nothing to worry about. I asked her how long she has been studying plants. You can’t just go off the advice of any old person deciphering google. The stuff on the internet is not always TRUE>>>>


Another thing, I have enhanced pigmentation around my lips from pregnancy still, it kind of looks like a permanent brown lip liner, which can come in handy to accentuate my pout I guess. I’m not sure what the line from my belly button to pubic bone is supposed to be accentuating but that’s still there too. My core is getting stronger again and my back has started to relax a little. The annoying thing is, when you have a small baby, overnight your other old baby seems to get frigging heavy all of a sudden. I’ve been ordered to do pelvic floor exercises but no sit ups. So the only heavy lifting I do is lifting my kids and try not to sneeze, if you do you just hope for the best…


Aside from this the week has been much the same. Amalia has had fever, Farty Mc Fart Pants is growing into that name. We ran out of clothes one day we were out and had an incident. We went for a walk and bike ride through the graveyard and Amalia tried to take a loose nameplate home. Ashton drove a kart down a hill and into the bush, did some target practice with his rifle in the backyard and Tayla came home from work saying the baby has grown heaps and turned ginger.


Not impressed to be wearing his 1yr old sisters pink top after an incident.

We don’t have a bath at home, which post incident I was told I should have used the baby bath. However the other night I put the kids down and went to relax in the shower with bath salts and oils in a bowl of water while eating an ice block. I did hear a pop type noise when I tried to sit in the bowl, and it seemed the plastic bowl would collapse under my weight, so I squat sat and ate my ice block while the bowl suctioned around me. It wasn’t the most comfortable shower/bath. And it wasn’t until after my shower I realised the bowl had cracked and most of the water was gone, so that was a fail. Don’t try that at home. Probably a good thing though, as I’m sure no one would really want to use the bowl again after I sat in it.


Amalia is trasitioning to a big girls bed this week. Night one took an hour. If I knew that at the time  I wouldn’t have bothered yet but thats the thing with follow through.. You have to do it or else your no longer the boss. So we both shared the bed and every few minutes I would move closer towards the door until I stood at the door. There were tears and pointing at the cot from her , words of encouragement and guilt from me. I let her choose the next day, mostly because it was convenient for my meetings and time effiecient, but tonight she went in her bed and the ordeal only took 10minutes. Until she was woken and we were in and out of bed and the bedroom again and again. After a discussion I ended up closing the door to her room when she got out of bed, she cried, must have got back into bed and went to sleep! I couldn’t believe it..


Here she is charging herself with the computer cable. 

My midwife came today and baby has put on 500g this week, if you have no idea what that means like me, it’s alot…She asked how I was feeling. I said yesterday I was having weird thoughts. She said “Like what?” I said the baby was looking at me funny… She said to get some more sleep, laughed and asked if there was anything else I wanted to ask her? I said “Is it weird if I take the kids for a walk in the graveyard?” She said “Yes, why”. “Well it’s just across the road and I can walk the baby and Millie can ride.” She told me not to stand on the gravestones. I didn’t tell her last time Mille tried to bring one home.


Have a fantastic week everyone xxx


When S*&^ happens…

I’m not going to lie. There was a small part of me that thought I was not going to be able to cope with another child, and there still may be times that I can’t or will need a break. My current outlook however is one of moderately rested, chillaxed, poo covered relief.

I stayed in hospital the night I gave birth and another night, more so for protection of my sleepless mind and needing a break from my 1-year-old who came to visit and was swimming across the floor, running through the curtain in my room and banging the crib against the wall.


I was lucky to have a good support team at home who helped look after the crazy girl and help tidy the house; thanks Tayla. My sister and Mum were instrumental in helping with kids, food, transport, showers and the stupid things you take for granted like; hands over the next few days and lifetime hopefully. I sure learnt fast what it was like to have a 5 seater car with 2 car seats and 4 kids. I also fast learnt that carrying a baby, doing groceries with a toddler and trying to bag fruit was a definite NEVER. Front pack will always be in the car for moments like these.


Adjusting to the extra tike, getting into the swing of things, I really got into swinging things. While making Amalia’s dinner and juggling a baby I grabbed her bowl to fast and biffed it across the kitchen smashing it all over the floor, singing “It’s ok, ha ha ha what a mess, let’s clean this up”. I got this all together… Once the kids were to bed, I put the rubbish out. The recent bag I filled with the bits out of the fridge and freezer that I didn’t want to go smelly over the week. I accidentally missed last weeks rubbish so that went out too, along with the recycling and I was so PROUD of myself. Piece of cake this whole kid, cleaning, living stuff.. I got this.. and the next day when the rubbish was still there… I was so PROUD I was the only one on my street who was 6 days early with the rubbish. Hah! Who said this was going to be hard 🙂

Next thing you know… Baby starts getting a gunky eye. I’m freaking out it’s from Amalia poking his eyeball and he’s going to go blind, so I start drenching his face in breast milk.. Supposedly better than Nana’s Raleigh’s. I get woken the next morning by Ashton’s school asking me to pick up my child who was found sleeping on the bathroom floor. Excellent. I get my boy, sterilise him and segregate him downstairs, issuing him Marmite crackers and electrolytes and ban him from touching anything. Poor soul had the worst stomach bug, but I couldn’t take my chances getting myself or the kids sick. Finally it was Amalia’s turn to fever and grump while Tayla unexpectedly fainted at work.


So we’ve had sickness run rampant through the house but we got through it just fine. What we did have to watch out for, was Amalia loving the baby to death. Mostly death by accidentally trying to sit on his head. Sticking her fingers in his mouth, ears or eyes. Trying to drag him by the foot or worse… if he had his nappy off. You really had to watch that girl, which is precisely what I asked my sister while I changed his nappy. “Please don’t let her fall on his head” I warned her. “You had one job!” I screamed as I flipped Millie over on the bed as she sat/fell towards the babies face. “I didn’t think she would actually do it” Lauren said.

Next time Lauren was around I pretty much forced her to change babies nappy while I cooked us dinner. I was pissing myself as I stood in the kitchen listening to her moan and scream as he fart pooed at her with no nappy. I decided I better go help as Millie was standing there watching too. The whole nappy was full and he was still going. It was spilling everywhere and don’t ask but I ended up with handfuls of poo. Literally. It wasn’t funny until he then started peeing and I had no more hands, Millie started screaming as it aimed towards her, I’m literally lying on the floor pissing myself laughing too while Millie kisses me, I’m holding poo so I can’t do anything and Lauren is screaming holding the pooey nappy and we are witnessing Niagra Falls.


This week I have been farted on more than I care to recall, pooed on, spewed on, scraped food off the floor, had to express milk direct into a sandwich bag, forgotten which kids were born on which birthdays, forgotten I had a new baby, forgotten Amalia was at crèche and been looking for her, had nightmares about people stealing my baby, forgotten to take kids to appointments and been surprisingly happy and content.

I have also come up with some pretty good ideas for dealing with life in this household. Like having a list of dinners that everyone eats so I don’t have to think what to cook and lunchbox ideas, showering me and the babies all together instead of showers and baths, just wearing underwear if I’m home alone to save on mammoth washing loads and learnt NEVER to make the mistake of removing the nappy thinking the poo has stopped.

On Monday Ashton had midterm break and Amalia had crèche, so this was a good day for some one on one time with Master 11 and the 11 day old tag along. I told Ash to check out what movies were on and we could be back in time for creche end. We ended up at The Black Panther! What a fantastic movie! Well the first part anyway. I totally underestimated how cruisey it would be with baby. I was sitting in my seat when I felt warm and wet in my crotch… I didn’t think it was me… Babies first leakage… took care of that, thankfully before lights dimmed and then for the first time ever he decides to be grizzly, so the whole time was a mix of; feed, burp, swing, burp, pat, move, feed. Until it was time to leave.. not because the movie actually finished, or trying to escape before angry people hunted me down for the squawking, but because kids.. Pick up time for creche. Now I have no idea how the movie ends, I look like I’ve pee’d my pants walking back through the mall and the guys that are paid to get your attention for something were chasing me trying to explain their cause (which they also did on the way in) and I feel sooo guilty having to blow them off without even listening..

But we were going to be late otherwise and now I have more kids I don’t want to miss a beat and have people think I can’t look after them. Like the lady at the kids first Lantern Festival who said “Look she’s even got one strapped to her chest”, like it’s not normal to wear a baby, push a pram and walk with your adult kid, Mum, Sister and any other possible straggling kids that may have appeared to be mine too. On that note.. One festival is enough for a few years. That was insane to manuever with a pram!!

Anyway it’s taken me 3 days now to write what normally takes me 1 hour. I will blame the census for making me fill in papers for all the kids but it’s also due to settling babies, writing references, eating biscuits and trying to wash extra sheets that have been peed on.


Just a quick note too to say a massive thank you to Renie Jackson for her amazing pregnancy shoot and post – partum new-born shoot. Aren’t these photos amazing?? It’s funny because when I exit the house I look nothing like this wearing a singlet and shorts with my hair in a knot, but it is so nice of her to capture these moments. I need them to remind me how much I love my kids when s*&^ happens.

The birth of BOY

The day started like any other. Itching to get the baby out, contemplating my options and wondering why I was now 2 days overdue. My midwife had told me this baby would be small, smallest of my biological children and not to try entice it to meet the world.

I had eaten curries galore, bounced on the tramp, tried reflexology and prayed. Myles had come down from North waiting to be there for the labour and as soon as he got down contractions started. They were painless regular hicks increasing in intensity mid afternoon, until I got stressed out and they stopped. Later we decided to go for dinner and a movie. Contractions started slow during dinner and stopped again for the movie. Until Myles’ phone rang, scared the crap out of me and brought on the one and only contraction during the movie.

After it finished I refused to go home. Myles sat in a bus stop while I walked tirelessly up and down the main street in Takapuna, half on and off the kerb trying to drop it out. This was the night and I refused to go home. I walked around a tree-da-bout so many times I got dizzy, so decided to change direction (and scenery). We walked blocks in Takapuna into the night and as my phone started to die, I text my midwife saying the contractions were becoming regular and frequent, my phone was going to die and I was going to go run the stairs at Les Mills. To which she replied; “Shannon GO HOME. It’s probably false labour. Get some rest and charge your phone. Don’t contact me again unless it’s serious, I’m tired.”

I was so disappointed. I was super upset. I could not go one more day pregnant I was going crazy. And that was it. Contractions stopped. I was so sure… It was exactly like how my last labour started but again it stopped. How could this “false labour” they speak of try trick me like this when I was sooooooooo hopeful.

I went home and cried. I made Myles promise to come get me immediately if anything happened and crawled into bed to be sad and wish the baby out. I was exhausted from pregnancy and sore. About an hour later, I had an intense contraction, it was super painful but I was to scared to text my midwife in case it was false labour tricking me. I messaged Myles and asked if he was awake, saying I think I’m in labour but let me be sure as I don’t want to annoy anyone. 1 minute later I text a lot of obscenities asking him to get me immediately I need the hospital.

Turns out I couldn’t wait and luckily my sister drove me there. I was backwards in the car seat screaming my head off and every time we went round a corner I wanted to punch her for erratic driving. We rang Myles on the way to tell him to meet us at the hospital, but all that came out on our 8 minute drive was “AGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH, you talk Lauren!”

At the hospital, Lauren opened the car door for me to get out and said she’d get me a wheel chair, at which point she turned around, slamming me in the car door mid contraction. I mean if that wasn’t enough pain. She was trying not to laugh as I screamed even louder, alerting the ambulance people. They looked nice, like they weren’t trying to kill me. The wheelchair came at me, but I just couldn’t get in. I looked at it front on, I put my head on the seat and crawling on the ground pushed it with my face screaming, “I think my waters just broke!”, all the while trying to keep my shoes dry.

The ambulance staff found a bed and were trying to help me get there, while I was screaming, “I’m not going in without Myles!” and Lauren was saying; “Don’t be stupid, your baby is going to be born in the gutter.” I was still crawling outside the hospital as Myles turned up and helped my into bed where all hell broke loose and I attached my face to the top of the bed with my teeth screaming, “It’s coming!!”.

Thankfully my midwife was already at the hospital and was ready to deliver. I think the baby came less than an hour after getting into the room. It was a surprise gender reveal and most surprisingly, the size, being 8.8lbs. Biggest by far of all my babies. How the heck that was inside me and managed to get out I have no idea, but he didn’t even fit half the clothes I brought to hospital for him/her.

Aside from the sheer pain of such an intense and fast labour, I was SUPER excited that I finally had my body back and although my aches and pains were replaced with new excruciating and interesting ones, I was certainly glad to have a break from the old ones and be holding this new little soul on the outside.


I, like usual, have no idea what to call him and probably won’t decide in a hurry as we get to know the little guy. Although this may not be the first time I have had a child, it most definitely is different and challenging in so many ways.

Helmets off to all those mumma’s juggling work, home making, cooking, nurturing relationships and commitments to people, outings, study and whatever your day entails, all whilst slinging one kid on the hip and another on the boob.

Unless your kids are like 10 and 11 now as that may be a bit awkward, but still hard all the same!



Stage 5 clingers…

Vadazzle my plug hole

It’s been a funny week with anticipation for the arrival of baby, opportunities strangely presenting and things going wrong.

Eventually, after living in the fly plague, we found the only thing that sufficed was a fly swat and bribing my kids with the prospect of dinner if they squished a certain amount of flies. This was the only thing that brought the numbers down and managed them.

So we are all on top of that WHEN ants happened. Our house has a lot of bush outside and I know we have many nests. Good old ant bait used to do the trick but they are invading us from all angles. I am not sure what it is about the boxes in my house, there’s no food in my bedroom, yet the ants keep coming. I have to vacuum a path through them in the morning and today I had to clean my pantry 3 times! First time in 3 days they even went for food!?? Now if that’s not frustrating enough.


Mmmm, I’m an ant and I love boxes 

I vacuum and mop every day, however after getting my vacuum fixed the other week (apparently now the hose is broken) it’s in for repairs again, so I am borrowing my sisters. Thank goodness. But don’t breathe yet.. Things come in 3’s right? So tonight the front loader washing machine starts leaking. There’s nothing caught in the seal so I STUPIDLY try another load.. The SMELLY cloth nappy load which yes, starts leaking across the floor unbeknownst to me for a while… Second mopped floor of the day…

With 3 days left until baby, you would be forgiven for thinking the last broken thing would be my waters? But no… No matter how much spicy food eating and tramp bouncing I do… The baby refuses to budge, but my 1 year old wakes up and I find her amber teething necklace hanging broken from her neck. PLEASE, PLEASE may the replacement turn up fast as a new baby and a teething grumpy baby is not going to be a good combo I’m sure.


Millie has just started creche finally and everyone is surprised at how independant she is and doesn’t care if I’m there or not. She made me a Valentines cookie which I dared not eat after watching her make it. Ashton and Tayla also got me sweet chocolate and diffuser gifts each. Super lucky to have such amazing kids 🙂

My Costochondritus has become so sore, I thought, as we do, it certainly has to be worse than inflammation, so naturally I googled my concerns and found a hypochondriac thread and realised that the cancer I thought it must be fit perfectly with others thoughts and in fact it probably was just a painful case of what I was diagnosed with in the first place as was discussed in the chat. Anyhow this lead me to showering due to pain and applying hot water to my ribs while sitting on the shower floor. I realised I had zoned out and was super relaxed, but all I had been doing was thinking about my problems and concerns. The last one being… Is vadazzling a real thing and if so, what do you use to stick diamonte’s on your hoohaa?? I later researched this and it became the talk of my sister’s birthday, but back to the shower.


I thought, while I’m down here I may as well clean the plug hole.. Which led to this mostly innocent facebook status, which in turn led to the biggest laugh I’ve had in a while. At least now with the bathroom ceiling, toothbrush holder and plug being clean, I feel I can readily give birth without worrying about the state of the bathroom…

Last minute preparations included making some better toy storage for the lounge so it doesn’t look such a mess, except that every day the baby wants to play and messes up my tidy now… I have been approached to shoot with some great photographers (the day before my due date!), thankfully they wanted head/shoulder shots and were happy to go ahead even though I’m smuggling a basketball and will potentially flood their studio.. Murphy’s Law… It’s a thing..


I’m also sleeping a heck of a lot better since seeing a Kinesiologist. You know those people who tap certain areas on your body and push your limbs up and down to test your meridians are working? I didn’t either until I experienced it for myself, and surprisingly, the assessment, although I pretty much did nothing, was exhausting! You could feel the energy at work. Just what I needed right before this baby comes, fixing my sleep patterns and also easing up on my back pain. I still have the nerve pain and can’t walk well at times, plus the inflammation but I’m sure they are a bi-product of this baby and will evacuate my body with the labour.

So 3 days left and I’m contemplating what else I can get rid of, clean, fix or sell. How will I go about fixing the washing machine, what to do with the ant situation, when can I pick up my beloved vacuum and who will want to look after my 1 year old until her necklace arrives?

I think in saying all that, the most important question really is, are there any bedazzlers in the next 3 days with a spare appointment.

I really think it would be nice to open your eyes for the first time and think you live in a disco ball….



Because we always drive and eye mask…