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Although now as I write this the clouds are rolling in and I am wondering whether I was a bit premature in my announcement. Having said that it has been a lovely few weeks with a couple of 30s and clear blue skies for days on end. Fingers crossed tonight’s grey is just a blip that will soon move on; otherwise I will be having words with Jamie!

So what has been happening? Well my gorgeous boy turned 2 at the end of October – thank you for all the happy returns, cards and presents. I can safely say he had no clue what was going on! At one point during his little party his friend Martha chased him around the table attempting to shove her present into his arms and when he refused to take it she stomped back to her Mum, I can’t blame her. Although ever since Jack did open that present he has been hammering and sawing everything in the house, which can be a little irritating when I’m trying to get 5 minutes of quiet to get rid of a headache. We just had a small gathering in the local park with a couple of friends, then back to the motel to open more presents. I then put Jack to bed and Abi played with everything blissfully happy until he woke up.

We gave him a Little Tike’s Coupe Car, one of those red and yellow bubble roof ones that he adores. Occasionally he’ll insist on taking it to Port Fairy with us and driving it around the town, which is very sweet but means everything takes 3 times as long, including crossing the road which at times has proved a mite bit dangerous! He also uses it to make the long and arduous journey from the living room to the front door on occasions, such a useful toy J. But now he’s 2 he’s growing up in leaps and bounds. He repeats everything, although not always very clearly or correctly. He’s taking to calling Abi a ‘naughty boy’ as that’s what she calls him. Singing Jamie’s version of 3 Blind Mice, which replaces ‘she chopped off their tails with a carving knife’ with ‘da dad a da’.  And I have to stop Abi exclaiming in pleasure over whichever plate she gets for lunch, as as soon as she does Jack is wailing to have ‘piggy one/elephant/butterfly’ too. He’s also currently addicted to Diego. For those of you with no kids or grown up kids Diego is the cousin of Dora the Explorer – a cartoon girl who speaks half in Spanish, half in English and goes about the place rescuing baby animals, finding lost treasures and whatnot with the aid of her trusty monkey sidekick Boots. Diego, also an animal rescuer, has a baby jaguar, a magical backpack and ‘Click the Camera’, who I swear sounds exactly like Rosie Perez. So as Abi ended up counting in Spanish, no doubt it is only a matter of time before Jack starts repeating words in Spanish too. Hopefully my GCSE Spanish will stretch to understanding him.

Abi is being a very good big sister, singing songs to Jack at night and dragging him around her kinder so he knows where to go. She’s been accepted to her 4 year old kinder, starting 2 days a week next Feb – I still cannot get my head around the school year over here. She’s also been helping out with our newest batch of chicks, which are now almost 3 weeks old. She checks on them every time she goes to the loo and fills up their food if they look hungry. We have 24 of them this time around. We had 25 but one of them was born with a deformed leg so we had to put it to sleep. I say we but neither Jamie nor I could do it so I drove around to the neighbour’s parents’ farm and sheepishly asked if he could do the deed for me. He was very nice about it, despite his wife and me screaming at him and flapping our hands when it looked like he was going to snap its neck at the breakfast table. It was over in a flash and I took the little one home to be buried, I figured it was a good thing for Abi and Jack to be part of it. That was probably a mistake as Abi burst into tears when I started to bury it, distraught at the fact that she would never see it again. I managed to distract her with the thought of all the chicks that needed her and now she’s completely over it. There is another chick – Hoppy – whose feet a little twisty and we put plasters on him to try and straighten them out but I am not sure it’s going to work, we’ll have to wait to and see. But since then we have lost 2 more of the older chickens and Jamie and I have managed to get to them first and pop them in the bin before she has noticed. I think the older lot are getting to the end of their life so they might start dropping like flies. With this in mind we went to the local battery farm as they were selling 45,000 of their 18month old layers and bought 20 of them. They are pretty wretched looking, a lot of them missing huge amounts of feathers. On the way home we had them crammed into boxes in the back and half way through the journey I suddenly heard Abi cooing and there were 2 little heads poking out having a look around. When we arrived home we realised one of the boxes had popped open and there were 6 chickens tucked against the back door and a lot of chicken poo – Jamie was not impressed. The first few days they spent most of their time hiding in one of the 2 coops but now after a couple of weeks they are starting to travel further afield. Hopefully they will start to grow their feathers back too now they are free ranging it. So we currently have 3 grown roosters, 3 14 week old roosters (don’t ask what we are going to do with those I’m not sure I can think about it yet), 28 ISA brown layers and 1 random little black hen who produces teeny eggs and finally 24 3 week old chicks in the brooder. And then 2 cats, 1 budgie and 9 cows. It’s just the way I imagined life would turn out when I was 5 J

The rest of the news is Jamie is in the process of building a water feature in the pond, after lots of false starts he is now cementing the back wall of it, hopefully it will all be done in a few weeks and we’ll have a tranquil waterfall – and a pond for that matter. My Mum and Dad are out in 3 weeks which will be lovely, especially as Abi is having her tonsils removed on the 19th Dec. I am very nervous but I know it’s for the best.  Hopefully she’ll be alright for Christmas Day, which is at our house this year, with lots of Langleys about it will prove to be chaotically fun. Plus it’s the first Christmas we will have spent in our own house so I will be buying a tree – for the first time – and starting my decoration collection. I know its November but I am just a little bit excited.

Finally best news is that my sister in law – well technically Cousin in law but let’s not be picky – has given birth to a beautiful baby boy called Cooper. I am so excited, so after March I will be an Auntie 3 times over. Jamie is crowing because he has correctly predicted the sex of the last 5 babies – ours and friends. So if you are pregnant and want to know the sex drop us an email! Anyway I cannot wait to spoil him rotten with plenty of kisses and cuddles. So completely broody at the moment it is not funny. Right I am off to take my pill. Kisses to all you lot, cannot wait to see you in March – note to self must book tickets.