1. This is my niece’s approach to kissing. Open your mouth as wide as it will go and then fall like a ravening beast on the lips of the one you love. Come to think of it, I’ve dated men like that, too, and its a lot less cute in grown-ups…
2. Me: “Here you go, Moo-moo, have some grass.”
Cow: “I’m standing in a field full of the stuff, you silly cow. You didn’t by any chance think to bring chocolate, did you? No? Thought not.”
3. Man and Large Column. There’s a lot of this in Stockholm. I’m drawing no conclusions.
4. It has been quite some time since I was a Nanny, but I can still sing a French Lullaby like a pro. A combination of “Au Clair de la Lune” and “Frere Jaques” had her nodding off every time. I don’t wish to know what that reveals about my singing voice.
5. My brother and sister-in-law (who incidentally I feel I would have been friends with had we met independently of my brother, which is nice) have four different rare-breed, free-range hens in their back garden. They are named after the four Aunties. Somewhat disconcertingly, each of the four hens seems to share looks and personality with her namesake. This one is me, “Trucie Woo”, and she is the most curious and least nervous of the four. Also, the most greedy and the most prone to attack exposed toes, but we’ll gloss over that…
6. My niece, Pickle, is learning Baby-Sign Language. Not because she’s deaf, rather because it seemingly helps lessen the communication frustrations that can lead to screaming fits. (And I’m all about the lessening of the screaming fits). Apparently, babies’s brains can comprehend basic nouns and states significantly before their mouths and soft-palates can properly articulate the words to describe them. I was sceptical, I’ll admit, but it actually works. At 9 months old Pickle can ask for a drink, some food, some ‘more’, tell us she’s wet, or cold, or hot, she can ask for music or a book or a toy and indicate lights and clocks – all with her likkle pudgy hands. Its beyond cute.
7. This photo from the GRID 08 conference is fairly self-explanatory. Yellow is for Co-operation (not Co-operative, but English is a second or third language for most delegates, so close enough), and we were mostly clustered near the bottom left of the diagram where the x and y axes are our ‘natural behaviour’ and our ‘consciously altered behaviour when at work’. Despite this inauspicious omen at the start, the conference was a success. Which if you ask me just goes to show you what nonsense most ‘Personality Tests’ are. 🙂
8. Pickle loves books. I am convinced this reveals something profoundly literary in her. 😉
9. I confess to having got slightly carried away when buying presents to take back to the UK from Australia. As a result, my god-daughter now has a t-shirt with a furry koala, a book about a wombat and a ‘Quoll & Friends’ colouring book. My niece has shoes with koalas on the front, a teething platypus, a kangaroo glove puppet and Ugg boots.
10. They are kind and loving and patient and generous and funny and I miss them already.