Category Archives: Family

Christmas Holidays

So I’ve got a couple of weeks off work. Time to spend with
my two favorite girls Jo & Mary. We have been taking the
opportunity to catch up with relatives first morning tea with my
Mum & Dad then a trip up to Bluey’s Beach (mid north coast
near Forster) then a further leg to Orange for Christmas itself.
Has so far been an enjoyable time with not much more planned just a
good excuse for a rest and to play around with my newish iPhone.
So, what would be Christmas without a gingerbread house?

Speaking of foodstuffs I had some damn good
dinners over the last week or so. BBQ Marinated butterflied lamb,
bacon & French toast, roast turkey, and

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Posted by on December 28, 2010 in Family, Relaxation, Travel


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Travelers have returned

It is Mary’s half birthday and we have made it home safely from our little trip to Orange – some photos of the trip can be seen in the photo gallery

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Posted by on May 2, 2010 in Family, Travel


Mary Rose ‘Peanut’ Collins – the journey so far

Newborn Mary & Mummy

Already Sucking Her Thumb

DOB: Monday 2nd November 2009
Time: 8:41pm
Weight: 3.57kg (almost 7pounds 13ounces)
Length: 49cm
Head Circumference: 34cm
Parental Status: Doting

You can’t fool me, I saw you when you came out

I was keen to have children, although I must admit that my initial reaction when Jo told me that she was expecting a baby was of apprehension and nervousness. My range of feelings throughout the pregnancy were excited, happy, scared, worried, and at times a little strung out. Although mostly I was happy if for no other reason than I knew Jo was over the moon about having a baby in her arms by the end of the year & anyone who knows me will know already that I am a big softie who gos ga-ga and mushy over a kitten so I was never going to be a match for a living, breathing, kicking, independent and free thinking girl that is also half of me and half of Jo.

Mary is not just a little newborn baby she is also a teacher — before Mary was even born I learnt so much from her about going with the flow, rolling with the punches, and to expect the unexpected. Also to relax more, that life flies by in seconds, and not try to manage every little minor and insignificant parts of my life so that I can enjoy the parts that really do matter. What do they say?

“Accept the things I cannot change, have courage to change the things I can and have the wisdom to know the difference”

The journey of our little girl is by no means finished, however every step of it so far has been challenging but also amazing. From the first ultrasound at 12 weeks, the first time I felt her kicking, the weird and wonderful cravings that Jo had — I think Jo practically lived on frozen ice and Sunnyboys for 3 months of the pregnancy, reading about what was happening inside of the womb and what to expect from labour and the newborn baby — possibly in hindsight I had read a little bit too much information but I was interested and I like to know how things work so reading satisfied by thirst for information, to when the big arrival day finally came. Jo’s pregnancy was textbook medically however not easy on her Jo experienced a long period of nausea and her heightened sense of smell could set of another bout at anytime without warning, Jo was tired and restless at times insomnia got the better of her and could go days without any proper sleep, this all put stress on her. By the last trimester probably like a lot of other women who have been pregnant before her she just wanted it to finish and at times my smiling happy Jofus had lost her happy who could blame her?

At about 2:30am Monday 2nd Nov the finish line finally came in sight for the pregnancy stage of this journey. Jo’s waters broke on quite a large scale, and took both of us a bit by surprise Jo was at this stage 39weeks so we knew that it could happen at any time however we both expected baby to come late rather than earlier being first baby and Jo had done a little bit of nesting over the weekend not a large amount and the waters broken without any signs of contractions. So anyway a quick call to the hospital and Jo’s midwife and we were on our way to get Jo and Peanut checked out. We stuffed around a little bit Jo had a quick shower and I organized the remaining things we needed – battery chargers for phones and cameras just in case. We both jumped in the car and drove the 30 odd minutes to the hospital under a full moon. I think we both expected to get to hospital have a quick monitor of bubs heart and be told to come back once contractions we closer and labour was established. Peanut had different ideas – she was playing up a bit on the fetal monitors either lying on or squeezing her umbilical cord and moving as far away from the heart rate monitor as she could. this caused the doctors to be a little worried that if we were to return home and she was to continue playing up something potentially could go wrong so an induction was decided to be the best option for both Mum and baby. We would have arrived at delivery suite of the hospital at about 3:40am and Jo was on the fetal monitors till around 6 or so. A quick ultrasound confirmed that Peanut was posterior meaning that Peanut was head down but instead of Peanut’s spine being facing towards Jo’s belly it was facing towards Jo’s spine which is not ideal for birthing a baby as it creates large amounts of pressure and pain on Jo’s spine and back aches even when there are no contractions. The induction started around about 9:00am and with the help of some gas and showers things started to progress well. By 2:00pm the back pain was getting unbearable and an epidural was quickly arranged and in place by 2:20pm – I think after that Jo was ready to divorce me and marry the anesthetist :-). Unfortunately that didn’t solve all her pain issues as well as they are expected to and after 51/2 hours more and 3 further epidural attempts it was decided that the epidural was not taking as well as it should, and also that Peanut appeared to be stuck halfway in Jo’s pelvis the decision was made by about 8:00pm to have a caesarean section in order for Peanut to be born. At 8:41pm Mary Rose finally arrived, and her two parents have been doting over her ever since.

As it turned out the Monday and the following Tuesday where not really very nice days weather wise at all (Thursday got up to 36.2 degrees) so being pregnant at home would have not been comfortable at all, it was much nicer to have those days in air conditioning in hospital. Well planned I have to say in hindsight.

Whilst Jo was finishing up in theater I took Mary and spent some daddy daughter time cuddling her and getting to know her for about an hour or so until Jo was able to be brought back and could give Mary her first feed. Newborn screening tests were performed a bit earlier than usual at during this time also to ensure that Mary didn’t have Galactosemia which there was a 1:200 risk of as I have it. The test results for that came back Wednesday afternoon all clear for Classical strain of Galactosemia but further tests are needed to be performed after 48hours and then again at 10 days to get the full all clear. The next two days I spent at the hospital with Jo helping her out with what I could and her midwife assisted her on late Tuesday afternoon to get up and start to walk around again, by Wednesday Jo was quite able to do move around and do everything that she needed to do so much so that the midwives are saying she could be hope by Thursday. This will depend on how Jo feels on Thursday though.

Mary is the most lovely placid little baby I have since, she is just gorgeous and nearly always happy at the moment. Mary feeds really well and when she is awake she is quite alert. I just love her to bits, and I know that Jo feels the same way. Whenever I am not at the hospital I miss them both terribly and just can not wait for them both to come home.

The journey so far has been the best journey of my life without a doubt and I can not wait for the rest of it

You will always have a part of me
Nobody else is ever going to see
Mary girl

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Posted by on November 5, 2009 in Family


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Peanut has arrived

Joanne and James proudly announce the safe arrival of their newest family member. Mary Rose ‘Peanut’ born at 8:41pm weighing in at 3.57kg (7pounds 13ounces) 49cm long. Mum & Baby are both well and Mary is feeding well – photos.

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Posted by on November 2, 2009 in Family


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Days by the Ocean

Days by the Ocean
by Raymond J. Bartholomeuz (1986)

In the steammy, sensual rivercave of my mind
I stumble, I stagger, I stammer
Like some crazy South Korean circus clown
Lost, lonely, lifeless, laconically lazy
Marooned, marooned
I’m on a lagoon
I am an island
I am an isthmus
I come from Bermuda
I don’t believe in christmas
look out oh sinister holy man
look out oh righteous Bolshevik
I care no longer for your petty problems
I make my own decisions now
Today I laugh, I joke, I chitter chatter chitter
But tomorrow, tomorrow I go to Phillip Island

Everytime I hear this poem my first memory is of my brother absolutely cacking himself to the point I thought he would mess his pants. Then it just got funnier when the young kid when on and did a cracking rendition of it himself. Hands down the funniest piece of Australian poetry I’ve every heard. Man I miss Hey Hey It’s Saturday.


Posted by on September 14, 2009 in Entertainment, Family, Relaxation


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Joanne is Up the Duff!

Joanne and James attend 12 week ultrasound and find out that Joanne is pregnant with a 12 week and 4 day baby named for the time being as Peanut Collins –

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Posted by on April 30, 2009 in Family


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Jo & James’ Wedding

James and Joanne proudly announce their wedding, for photographic evidence of this memorable and joyful event you can go to –

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Posted by on August 18, 2008 in Family


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