Friday, November 10, 2006

Christmas Letter 2006

Georgia and Matthew at Carols (Dec 3)

It has been a wonderful year for us. We have many blessings, for which we are thankful.

This year we experienced several seconds. Our second child arrived in July and we bought our second home.

We are very happy and comfortable in our new home. Since moving in in February this year, we have made some changes, including painting the walls and polishing the floors. More changes will be made in the near future.
Matthew snuggles up for his first Christmas Carols (cute)
Matthew Montague Gordon arrived after a very quick labour on July 10. Matthew is named after his great grandmother, Audrey Kenny (nee Matthew), his father, Monte and his grandfather, Gordon Goulding. Matthew is a very happy, alert, delightfully easy baby. It was a special day when we celebrated his baptism on October 29th. Family and friends gathered at church early that morning and then joined us for a brunch afterwards.

Georgia was very grown up singing carols by her own candlelight!

Georgia is living up to her name – cultivator of the earth – and is doing a great deal of gardening with Monte in the garden. We celebrated her third birthday on October 20th with a delightful fairy party. She is talking beautifully and is very tall for the average three-year-old. It will be exciting when she starts kindergarten next October.

Rebecca is enjoying her time at home looking after the children, and has been spending some spare time knitting and sewing, as well as meeting with other mothers for playgroup and reading group. Her plan is to return to work part-time, teaching English.

Monte continues to run his business, Sweat Technologies, from home. Monte’s passion at present is gardening. He is growing a productive vegetable garden, as well as growing new plants from seeds and learning about permaculture. Other activities Monte has been taking part in is renovating our home, including building a new kitchen and renovating the existing extension to contain a home office and a home theatre. One of the most enjoyable projects was to create a playroom in the sunroom.

We have had a busy year, and no doubt, the New Year will be similar. We wish you a very happy Christmas and a safe and happy 2007.

Warmest wishes for the festive season,
Monte, Rebecca, Georgia and Matthew Goulding

Georgia, Rebecca, Matthew and Monte...

Merry Christmas from all of us!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Matthew's Baptism

Matthew poses, wearing the beret made by my mum

We had a marvellous day today as we celebrated the baptism of our lovely Matthew Montague Gordon. The church service was lovely. What stands out in my memory was Matty's attentive gaze as the minister (Rod) explained to him the blessing that his baptism brings. Then Matthew smiled at Rod as he prayed that Matthew's ears would hear the Gospel and that his mouth would proclaim God's love. I felt that Matty knew in some way what was happening. He smiled when I made the sign of the cross on his forehead.
Matthew with his Baptism Bear, made by the sewing group at Church Matthew with Rebecca and Monte, and the Baptism Candle Matthew and Georgia

I read a poem that I wrote for Georgia and Matthew. When I wrote the poem I cried, because I just poured my heart out, as best I could with words. It is possible t love your child to bits but still be frustrated when the three-year-old is too excited to sit still to have her hair done!
The Family Photo

I am blessed to have my family. As Georgia often proclaims: "I love my family!" I am blessed to have Monte, who I have known almost half my life. He is a wonderful man. He does so much for the children and me. He is a better person than I am!

Matthew with Grandma and Poppa GouldingMatthew with Nanny and Gramps Turner

We are blessed to have our parents, who offer support and help and lots of love. We thank them for their help for the baptism party, and for being there in our ups and downs, always. They really love our children, and it brings so much joy to us when we see them loving Georgia and Matty, and the children loving them and raving about them. Georgia: "you're wearing nail polish like nanny!" They certainly have an impact!

Matthew with Uncle Russell, cousin Isaac, Auntie Lori and Uncle Chris
Matthew with Auntie Emily and Uncle Arthur

We are blessed to have our brothers and sisters; we are blessed to have so many uncles and aunties for our children.

And I thank my very good friends for being there too! Thank you for coming to see our baby be blessed!
Our prayer is that Matthew will bless other people's lives like he blesses ours. You only have to see his smile as he engages your eyes to know that he will touch many lives for the better.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Birthday Girl

Georgia preparing for her fairy party, waiting for her guests.

We had a lovely time celebrating our daughter's third birthday last weekend. The weather was perfect for a fairy party, and Georgia was so excited. Six of Georgia's friends came to the party. We played fairy dancing, parachute and some other little fun games. Mostly the children wanted to eat, and there were only a few squibbles over the food (twisties, pies and sausage rolls, jelly cups and, of course, fairy bread!). My good friend Kristen brought along her makeup and painted the fairies' faces (except Sankkit, who was painted as a tiger!). I was so exhausted by the end of the day, I slumped into a chair and fed Matthew for a long time; my feet too sore to stand up anymore.

Special special thanks to the people who helped us on the day: Amanda for making beautiful cakes, Kristen for her face painting, Brooke for lending us lots of chairs, and MAXINE AND GORDON for doing ALL the cleaning up at the end, thus saving our sanity and our lives AGAIN. Without these people the day would not have been so great. Thanks from the bottom of our hearts.

Georgia, complete with face painting and a special necklace from Grandma and Poppa.

Georgia with the birthday cake, which was a success. (I tried to hide the broken-off Barbie legs!)

Georgia and Matthew with the cake. She just adores her baby brother. Several comments were made about Matthew enjoying Georgia's 21st more than her 3rd! ;)

VERY proud parents.

And the little fairy was tuckered out, so she slept for most of the following 24 hours, and lived happily every after.

Until next year - or next weekend, when we celebrate Matthew's Baptism (I'm buying the cake!).

Monday, October 16, 2006


Oh my gosh, it looks good enough to eat!

Yesterday we added 5 new ladies to our family. We got some chicks: Ava, Bessie, Chloe, Daphne and Ella (yes, we can tell them apart, at the moment). We can't keep Georgia away; she really loves them! We must admit that they are really cute. Our cat hasn't noticed them yet!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Cloth Nappies

I am proud to say that I use cloth nappies! I used them with Georgia, but I am more strict about using them now. It's partly to save the $3000 we would spend on disposables, but it's mostly to save the stress on the environment. Disposable nappies took 2/3 of our rubbish bin each week. People suggest that perhaps, with the current water restrictions, it might be better to use disposables, but I disagree. Disposable nappies are bad for our environment, fom the moment they are made until they lie for ever as landfil.

I do, however, use biodegradable nappies during the night, and when we go out, some times. I have heard that if you use an incontinence pad with a cloth nappy they absorb a lot more. I will try that when I run out of disposables. One package of nappies is lasting a lot longer when you only use 1-2 a day.

Using cloth nappies is not hard. It doesn't take that long to do an extra load of washing every 1-2 days. It is good to reuse the water from soaking or washing; the garden loves it. I use the fitted/shaped nappies. I just love the fat nappy-but. And I thought that they might restrict Matthew's movement, but he is rolling around just fine!

Thursday, October 12, 2006


Matthew is changing. Growing, changing. He's three months now. He is getting a tooth. If he's not getting a tooth, he is just dribbling more, gnawing more and being more grumpy. He is trying to sit up, and when we hold his hands, he pulls himself up and smiles and giggles with glee. He is really into his toys, particularly the ones he can hold and chew. He likes a little "noodle," which is a long stripy fish, that he can hold and chew. He also likes his cooled teething ring, my fingers, my shoulder and any other toy he can grab.

Georgia is changing. She will be three on October 20. She has skipped size 3 clothes and is right into size 4. What I thought was a cold is actually hayfever, but she is calmer, happier and more gentle with the baby now. She adores her baby brother (nothing much there has changed though!). I love talking with Georgia. She says the cutest things! I've learned that her brain reallys is like a spnge, as she really does soak in everything we say! Occasionally she will pat me and say, "it's ok honey!" or "come over here babe." We're looking forward to her fairy party next week. Maybe I am looking forward to it most of all. I can't wait to play games with the little fairy friends! I am changing. I am so calm and happy these days. We've got a routine in the house. I feel like I usually get enough sleep! You know what? Monte does all the cooking. I think he's great. He makes my life so easy. Monte, Georgia and Matthew just make my life great :)

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Angels make us smile :)

As Matthew has settled into a sleep routine, I am returning to my old insomniac ways! I enjoyed the 7 weeks I had of feeding my baby in the night; it gave my night wakenings a purpose! Now, Matty is sleeping 8-10 hours a night. He is such a good baby! He smiles and giggles all the time, except when he is hungy, which is often, when he sort of calls out for me. He rarely cries. I thought that after Georgia, who was also such a great baby, I'd be in for a shock with this one, but no, I have been blessed twice! At 12 weeks, Matty is 7.5kg! He's 62-63 cm. He is learning to suck his thumb, and gnaws on his fist a lot. I am wondering if he is feeling ready for solids. No way! I think his teeth are moving up. He is well out of newborn phase. Goodness, that phase doesn't last long! Never mind if the bunny-in-a-rug phase has ended; we're getting giggles and more communication, and seeing changes in his development each day, which (to be honest) is more exciting!! He's pictured here, having tummy time at 11 weeks. He loves his tummy time. He's also trying to sit up. He pulls himself up a lot. He is very strong.
Georgia isn't very well at present. She has had a persistent cold lately, and is having a fitful sleep as I write. She is only sleeping 11 hours a night, so she gets very tired and cranky at the end of the day. She is in childcare two days a week. We found that she was pining for company, always asking for her friends to come over. It seems that sometimes her parents' company is not enough, what with daddy working a lot and mummy endlessly feeding the baby. We recently put shelves in the playroom cupboard, and packed her toys away neatly. Now there is more space to play. Georgie and mummy play shops and tea parties in there often. The morning sun warms the room up delightfully. We are learning about packing things away too.
We were lucky to catch up with Monte's sister, Sarah, and our nephew, Isaac, some weeks ago. It was very special to get the cousins together for their first group photo together. It was Sarah's first meeting of our Matthew, and she approved of the bundle. Soon, Matthew will catch up to Isaac in size, and they will be running around together before we know it. People keep saying that Isaac and Matty will be able to play cricket together, and we always remind them that Georgia is very capable of playing cricket thank you very much!Our neice, Angelica, is pictured below. My mother is still in America, at present touring around New York. Actually, a text message from mum is the reason I'm still awake (thanks mum). I'm glad mum was able to visit Sophie when she had her baby. I'm slightly envious that I never received that much help when I had my babies, but that has made me realise how strong I really am. Soon after my babies were born, I was back into 'normal' mode. I just cope well. It helps enormously having my husband home with me all the time, even if he is working hard in the office. And having mum away now has made me realise that I cope well with the demands of being a mum; I have learned a lot and am independent. When I think about moving interstate I can remember that, so I know I could cope if I had to. Anyway, it's good to have a neice and hopefully we'll meet her soon.
There's not much I'm doing apart from being with my children right now, and I love it. I miss teaching a bit. I really love the students and I love teaching and I love English. I am enjoying my time off - who wouldn't? I know I will return to my career when the time is right (in a few months!). I am contemplating studying photography. I really enjoy taking photos and editing them and collecting them and telling stories with them. If I could do it more seriously, I think I'd really enjoy it. I enjoy knitting too, but I don't get time to do it much. I love writing, but my blog is my only writing at present. No, I tell a lie. Monte's parents gave our children loose leaf folders to collect stories in, and I have written a few for the collection. I love writing short stories, and I had never written for children before. I enjoyed it. After reading children's books all the time, I'd have to say I know what makes a good kids' story! I'm looking forward to writing some more.

We're planning a fairy party for our angel (are you my angel? no, I'm your fairy girl). I am planning an exciting cake too. Last year I made a tea party cake, complete with dolls that the girls could take home, and a mini tea set on a round cake table. The chairs were cupcakes with timtams! This year - well, we'll see. It might be a flop!

We're also planning the baptism of Matthew. I haven't thought about that cake.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Life Is Beautiful!

The stereotypic family is pictured here. Mummy and Daddy and son and daughter. Girls in pink, boys in blue, proud parents, sleepy children...
Family life is really quite wonderful at present. Now that the first 6 weeks of Matty's life are well out of the way, we are developing a routine AND getting more sleep, as he has been sleeping for at least 7 hours a night for over 2 weeks now! Georgia is waking up early too, so our house is up and bustling by 6:30am each day (parents more likely to be trudging than bustling!). Matthew is weighing in at 6.5kg and Georgia is 102cm now, so both our children are well above average in size (err, probably related to parents' similar plight). Matthew arrived on July 10 this year, after a rather short and violent, but uncomplicated labour. Matthew is pictured here on Father's Day, smiling his way into my heart at 8 weeks. He is a typical little boy: wanting to always be in the action and see everything; wanting his mummy; wanting to eat; doing loud pop-offs and belches; being overly gorgeous; and sleeping. I am so blessed to have this angel in my life. I've never felt happier!
Georgia, my life started when you were born. I will never forget the exhilaration I felt when they handed you to me on October 20 2003! It has been a wild journey for the past (nearly) three years. Here, Georgia is pictured holding a 1-day-old baby chick at the Royal Adelaide Show. Going to the show was a lot of fun. We couldn't belive how quicikly you can spend money, and we didn't even buy showbags! It was a hot day, so we bought lots of drinks, and I bought Georgia a fairy on a stick, because I can relive my childhood through her if I want to!

Our family is growing! On September 9th, my darling brother, of whom I couldn't be more proud, married Cassie, who I adore. They are truly a wonderful couple and their wedding day was testimony to that. They are deeply in love and deeply generous to their family and friends. What a stunning couple!

My sister, Sophie, has just given birth to an 8lb6 girl, Angelica Grace Gennari, in Baltimore USA. My heart aches as I want so desperately to be near her and give her a hug (and cuddle the little bundle).

Life is Beautiful. Don't forget it.

Spring Events

September 7 - nephew Isaac turns one

September 9 - Alex and Cassie's wedding

September 12 - our niece, Angelica, born to Sophie Turner

October 13 - mum comes home from USA

October 17 - Nanny's birthday (Audrey Kenny [nee Matthew])

October 20 - Georgia's 3rd birthday

October 22 - Georgia's birthday party

October 29 - Matthew's Baptism