Monthly Archives: February 2010

Unwelcome Visitors

This morning I noticed this in the corner of our garage.

Thousands of busy wasps creating the most amazing nest I have ever seen.

Cleverly creating honeycombed cells in preparation for thousands more wasps.

Busily forming a casing to cover the nusery.

It is an incredibly beautiful sight…

but my Pete said they cannot stay.

He plans to evict them tomorrow.

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Let Us Eat Cake

Today we celebrated the birthday of Ashleigh’s gentleman caller.

He’s studying to be a vet, so Leoni from Happy cakes made these for us.

They tasted as good as they look.

Happy birthday, Harry.

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An Excerpt

Philip has recently applied for some bursaries to support him in his senior years of high school. One of them required a reference from his school. This is an excerpt from the letter written by his Deputy Principal:

“Philip’s teachers commend him highly because of his maturity, self-motivation, caring attitude, tolerance of others and dedication to hard work. He is a conscientious and capable student who works productively as a member of a team or independently.

Philip is a confident and mature young person who has a good academic record, consistently receiving high levels of academic achievement in his subjects.”

 It made me weep.

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Yesterday…

These beautiful fabrics arrived in the mail.

This was a highlight in an otherwise crappy day.

Pip woke early with a headache, then spent the entire day vomiting. This boy does not like to do anything the easy way, so by 5pm he was at the doctor’s office with very low blood pressure having an injection to stop the nausea and allow him to rehydrate.

So while I may have been physically cleaning vomit off floors, towels, sheets, clothes and out of buckets, I was designing a new quilt in my mind.

It’s a shame I have to finish the two half done quilts before I can make it…

Even though Pip is still in bed asleep I have been in to check on him once (or twice, or more) and he is much better today. I’m sure he’ll have a monster headache when he wakes up, but it won’t be anything that plenty of fluids can’t fix.

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Beautiful Paper

I received a parcel.

It came to me from Lesley in Western Australia. Some time ago we agreed to a blog swap. If I quilted a quilt for Lesley she was willing to make me a papercut like those of hers that I so admire. Who would refuse an offer like that?!

Today this treasure arrived.

Can you see how stunningly beautiful it is?

Lesley has patiently and skillfully cut around each shape with her supersharp scalpel.

 I especially love the flowers which have fallen to the ground.

Thank you, Lesley. I love it!

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These are the times…

that I want to keep forever.

Pip: Hey, mum. Want me to play my guitar for you?

Me: Yep.

So we look on youtube for songs and then google the lyrics.

His hands move furiously across the strings as he  plays along and we both sing.

Today it was this song:

Who knows what he’ll learn next. Whatever it is I hope he plays it for me.

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Time to sleep, little sheep.

I have been watching a documentary about sleep called Dead Tired.

I am finding it very interesting. I am a person who does not seem to need much sleep, it’s incredibly unusual for me to feel tired. I have been particularly interested in the experiments conducted and the science of the brain which is being discovered.

A perfectly fit and healthy young man participated in an experiment which saw him sleeping only three hours per night. The aim was for him to do this for one week and undergo lots of physical, mental and medical tests along the way to monitor his experience and give a window of insight into the purposes for sleep.

You can imagine that after the first night of limited sleep he felt exhausted. In a driving test three days into the experiment he had more than ten micro-sleeps, including one that lasted for over thirty seconds. He was totally unaware that he had slept during this time and had felt he that was completely alert. The brain needs sleep to synthesise thoughts, memories and experiences. If you don’t get adequate sleep then your brain is able to take a sleep without your permission. This is a micro-sleep. A few seconds where your brain just logs off. You think you’re awake, you think you’re under control, but your brain waves and eye movements indicate that you are asleep.

By day six, in his brain’s desperation to get an adequate level of deep sleep, he had begun dreaming while he was awake. Dreams allow your brain to make sense of the experiences of the day. Your brain catalogues your experiences, matches them up with other similar thoughts and helps you to create memories during your dreams. This man’s lack of dreaming had caused him to hallucinate. These hallucinations were terrifying to him. He thought he was losing his faculties and going insane. The results of medical tests indicated, amongst other serious problems, that he had the early stages of type two diabetes. Just six days earlier these symptoms did not exist. Physical symptoms had begun to manifest from the mental exhaustion.

As you can imagine the experiment was terminated immediately. Less than a week later, with adequate amounts of sleep all of these difficulties and symptoms had gone.

 This experiment had caused me a lot of reflection in the past few days. Are we so busy as a society that we are exhausting ourselves into mental and physical health problems? Could we be so silly?

Go to bed early tonight everyone. Let your brain drift off into sleep. Let it dream to its heart’s content. (if a brain can have a heart…)

I know I will be.

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