week 740 / week 612

This week has been overshadowed with Schools Spectacular, but also had an event at NSW Parliament House.

With Huff starting rehearsals super early, Dad took Puff to swimming lessons. It was pretty quiet given there was also an international sporting game on TV that morning, but Puff battled on and is improving in technique.

puff at swimming

Mum was watching a Friday night and a Saturday afternoon performance of School Spec, the former while Dad and Puff were at Thanksgiving dinner, and the latter while Dad and Puff went to a morning tea for a friend who has recently finished a ministry apprenticeship to hear what she would be doing next.

puff at morning tea

Meanwhile at School Spec, Huff was being given a gift of pie to keep her energy levels up during the final performance.

huff with pie

Dad and Puff finally made it over to the stadium.

dad and puff looking for mum and huff

Huff’s favourite installation near schools spectacular was the reptile display – that’s where she wanted a family photo to be taken, so we obliged.

found the family

Dad and Puff enjoyed watching the spectacle.

puff at arena

And one last thing for this week, Huff had her orientation day for next year’s high school.

huff after school orientation

week 738-739 / week 610-611

It’s been a long two weeks. While Mum and Dad were preparing to go to a marriage course, our bird escaped! We were not expecting to see him again, but then on Friday we heard from a neighbourhood family that they had found him, and now he’s back.


Puff continues to be responsible for his commuting to and from school (except on his many early starts where we give him a lift).

puff home from school

To celebrate (after another marriage course session) we went to the movies.

huff, puff and mum at the movies

And Huff still loves the swings as much as she ever has. There was a brief chance to go to the swings on the way home from school.

huff on a swing

Also this fortnight, we had a baby shower for Aunty S, and visited Doc together.

week 736-737 / week 608-609

Dad has been travelling a bit so there are not as many photos as usual. Lots of events, though.

Huff was performing at the Opera House in a choral concert. In between rehearsal and performance we had ice cream.

huff with epic ice cream

There was a father/daughter event at Huff’s school so we played some games together (including Dad being the unlikely teacher of Huff in how to bounce a basketball), and play on the slide that she has largely outgrown.

huff on weird slide

Puff has been using his emerging AV skills to do more and more volunteer work, and then Dad has the occasional opportunity to spend time catching up with him. Finishing his maths exams for the year has helped him feel like he has more time.

puff at breakfast

On Sunday morning Mum went out for breakfast with friends, so Dad and Huff and Puff went out separately for breakfast. Huff found a transformer toy and figured out how to make it transform.

huff at breakfast

Huff had a dance recital for her school dance group and did an amazing job of dancing.

huff on the way to dance performance

Huff also went to a camp with some friends from church. Puff and the dog went to see her off (Dad was away on a road trip for work).

huff and puff and pippin

While Huff was away at camp, we went out for lunch, where Dad and Puff practiced our being-photographed-together skills by actually smiling. It’s still a work in progress.

dad and puff at lunch

week 735 / week 607

Puff had a couple of significant maths exams this week, which we don’t really have photographic evidence of, and a dental update, for which we do have photos! Here’s his last photo with braces.

puff's last photo with braces

And here he is without his braces. He looks a little different to when they were put on. And happier.

puff's first photo without braces

 Dad and Puff went for a walk together on Saturday morning, followed by breakfast.

puff having breakfast with Dad

 In the afternoon we had a friend’s birthday party to attend. The kids had a great time.

huff and puff in the car

Pippin continues to be a great addition to the family. Here’s Dad and Huff patting him after he’s taken a rest from running in circles around the backyard.

huff and Dad with Pippin

 And for some Huff-Dad time, Huff suggested we do some clay sculpting and painting of the sculptures together. Dad had a great time, and huff made progress on the clay she needed to use for a school assignment. Multi-tasking at its finest.

Dad and Huff painting some clay.

week 734 / week 606

Back to school and regular routines again, in the lead-up to Mum’s birthday this week. Huff was keen to tidy up her hair in anticipation of upcoming events.

huff at haircut

Mum was interested in having some Kurtosh, a type of pastry, so we went to Wollongong (with Puff at a friend’s house) to grab some, and see aunty C, uncle J, and E and T.

huff and family with kurtosh

Sunday after church we went to “chaos lab”, where they had a lot of fun family activities. There was a hall of mirrors, where the kids showed off their respective comfort level with mirrors.

huff in hall of mirrors

Puff enjoyed the place, even though it was aimed at a much younger audience.

puff in hall of mirrors

Huff’s favourite thing was perhaps the glow-pencil she received.

huff in glow room

Having made herself her own eyebrows, she made some for Dad too.

huff and Dad in glow room

There was a ball pit of clear plastic balls, with coloured light underneath. Adults were even allowed in.

huff and Dad in ball pit

We each had a custom artwork on the back of our hands.

family hand-prints

Then on Tuesday was Huff’s long-anticipated choral concert at the Opera House. We had dumplings for dinner (the seagulls were less interested in them than other food options).

huff and puff at pre-dinner

The kids were happy to pose for photos in an iconic location.

huff and puff near harbour bridge

In fact, the whole family was, even if there were some photo-bombers.

family photo at opera house, near harbour bridge

Huff was a bit hard to spot among the giant choir, but we managed to find her, and enjoy the performance.

huff singing in the opera house

Next week: Puff’s exams and the long awaited removal of something.

week 732-733 / week 604-605

School holidays are over so quickly. Dad is still on holidays for a few days. Quite a few highlights. The kids spent an hour each day in the first week doing swimming lessons. We celebrated the end of swimming lessons with a family breakfast.

huff and puff at post-swimming breakfast

At the end of the first week, it was time for Pippin to have an adventure of sorts. Huff was very brave in looking after him.

huff with pippin

Dad and Huff went to explore a museum, which netted huff a new red coat, and we explored the past. This is the kind of classroom that was common in western Sydney in the 1940s and 1950’s.

huff in an old school classroom

IN the second week of the holidays, we went down the coast for a few nights to have some time together; we even took the pets along with us. Pineapple travels pretty well in his tiny travel cage.

puff and pineapple in the car

We had lunch at a place where there were these outdoor beanbag chairs.

Dad, huff and puff on holidays

Puff enjoyed the wind in his hair on the white sandy beach.

puff on the beach

Huff was keen enough to re-visit the beach that she insisted on being woken up to see the sunrise, which was largely obscured by a lot of clouds, but was still a little visible.

huff on the beach at sunrise

There was a lot of screen time, but a lot of non-screen-time as well.

huff and putt on holidays

Like this time spent cooking marshmallows in the fireplace.

puff and huff playing with fire

We also had a sleepover for one of the cousins. Huff did a great job looking after her cousin.

huff and T

Finally, on Sunday night, to make the most of the remaining holidays, Dad and Huff went and saw a movie, and then had a quick exploration of Burwood Chinatown. The free sample of a durian roti was quite a surprise.

huff out at night

And now we’re back to the regular routine of school, with some end of year exams looming.

week 731 / week 603

Lots of adventures thus far (and lots of home days) in the end of school and start of holidays). Here’s Huff delivering her lines as Scarecrow to a couple of her friends.

huff in a play

Realising that huff is in year 6, and the number of times she wants to play on the swings is very limited, Dad took her past the swings on the way home. She still loves them, but the days are getting shorter.

huff on the swings with Dad

On the Queen’s memorial public holiday, both kids wanted to visit (different) friends for somewhat overlapping times, so Mum and Dad could have a meal together without kids. On the way back, Dad and Huff had a chance to stop for some naan and catching up.

huff enjoying some naan

Friday night the youth group had a dress-up night, and the kids went as a princess and abstract Scrooge McDuck respectively.

huff and puff off to win a dress-up night

Sunday after church we had lunch with new friends after Dad was guest preaching. Puff ordered an epic milkshake.

puff and an epic milkshake

And now we find ourselves in the middle of another set of school holidays!

week 730 / week 602

We are nearly at the end of another school term. The passage of time continues swiftly on. Pippin is a key part of family life; Huff took him for his first walk; he seemed to enjoy it. It was good to be a proud Dad watching her look after a little life and give him careful instruction.

huff walking Pippin

On Sunday Huff was in an end-of-term play for Sunday School. The costume was impressive.

huff ready for the Sunday School play

We had some family time after church having lunch together. Puff’s hair is growing out a bit: this may be the longest it’s ever been!

puff at ramen

His prowess with chopsticks is increasing too.

puff with chopsticks

Oh, and Huff now has a feature phone, and is adjusting to that. We all are.

huff with her phone

Now that the recorder performance is over for the year, Huff gets to branch out and try some new recorders: this one is about half her height!

huff with her giant recorder

Counting down to school holidays now.

week 729 / week 601

The week of Huff’s year six camp! We were up early in time for some pre-camp photos.

puff Dad and huff

It’s encouraging how well they get along.

huff and puff

Huff had everything she needed in a giant bag.

huff on her way to camp

She came back tired but happy, filled with stories.

huff after year 6 camp

Saturday Dad and Puff went down to Bundanoon to visit a camp. Puff had heaps of homework to do, so he managed to make up a space for getting some work done.

puff doing homework

Lots of other adventures with cousins, church, and some family time together.

week 728 / week 600

Busy week; Mum had covid, so Dad was doing some extra chores and looking after the kids more than usual.

Plus we had some extra time in the city as Huff had a recorder concert in the city:huff puff and dad in the city

We filled in the time admirably, pausing for some sushi train for dinner

puff at sushi train

The kids were excited to have sushi for dinner (as was Dad).

huff at sushi train

Huff performed really well and enjoyed spending the time with her school friends, but it was a very late night (especially stopping for a late night Naan bread snack on the way home).

huff after recorder performance


puff tired after recorder performance

Even Dad was quite tired during the week, with the puppy continuing to provide us with early morning starts.

Dad tired after a long week

We then had more musical performances from Huff at the school spring fair (despite the rainfall there was a good turnout), and a trip across Sydney so that Dad and Huff could move some plants around for Aunty S and Uncle N.

Then it was Fathers’ Day. With Mum still isolating, we went to church without her, had delicious lunch that Mum ordered and then visited Doc before spending some time watching a movie on the home TV together. 

And lastly, we had ten pin bowling with Puff’s boys group, while Huff put the finishing touches on the packing for her school camp. 

puff plus sugary drink

Now that Mum is out of iso, family life is a bit easier again. It’s great to have her back, and looking a bit healthier again.