Wow, it’s December! How did that happen?

Hasn’t the year flown?

It’s been very quiet around here this week, with little one on camp.

He arrived home Friday, looking very ‘urchin like’, with some muck in his hair, that he had used to gel his hair up for the talent quest … 3 days before! I couldn’t wait to get him home and soak him in a dettol bath. There have been 5 shampoos and we still can’t get the stuff out of his hair!

Final report? … “it’s the best camp I’ve ever been on in my entire life”. He was delighted that he actually got to eat the food and not starve for 3 days! (unfortunately there’s some psychological damage from the last camp he went on). He said all the children with ‘dietary confinements’ (love it) got to speak to the chefs and everything got ok’ed at the top. He raved about the beautiful lasagne and the delicious (nut free!) chocolate puddings they made for ALL the children so no-one was left out, and how he didn’t have to sit and watch the other children eat Arnott’s biscuits for morning tea as there were biscuits for him too!!! He is still going on and on about the food. It’s nice to be able to have what everyone else has and not always be the odd one out. Wow, what a concept! There’s a lot to be said for ‘duty of care’. It has given me great peace of mind. I could seriously get used to it!

We missed him heaps.

Big son had his last week at his school … forever.

He DID walk across the ‘forbidden grass’ on his last day … and didn’t get a ‘Saturday’ (detention) … although he immediately got yelled at by 2 teachers as soon as he set foot on it  … but he said he jumped up in the air, clicked his heels together and kept walking on it. He said it felt great. Probably the only rebellious thing he has done in 8 years there.

He goes on camp this week, at the Uni, with his new Senior School. Good plan. The school must know that there is a bunch of melancholy students who have just left the familiarity and safety of their old schools … a bit fearful about what lies ahead in the new year, with new teachers, new friends to make and a heavy workload. Good to allay the fears and start the holidays off with a team building camp so that the new students have the opportunity to get to know their lecturers and fellow students. Takes away some of the mystery, and the unknowns, so that they can then relax into their holidays, knowing a little bit more about what’s in store next year. Sounds fun too. They stay overnight in one of the Uni colleges and on the last day all the parents are invited to a big BBQ to meet everyone too. Sounds very pro family, pro community, very down to earth. A refreshing culture that I will embrace with gusto. I’m even going to sign up for tuckshop. I know.

Finished off the week celebrating a fellow blogger’s birthday.

It’s always very loud and joyous.

A monthy highlight. We all sit down and just breathe out!

It’s always spectacularly gastronomical.

I never cook anyone any dinner when I get home from these gatherings. It’s always ‘fend for yourself night’. #motheroftheyear

2 more weeks until we’re in the thick of it, attempting our French! I can’t believe I have not put up one decoration this year. I have not been near the shops and have not purchased one Christmas gift. We are going to buy each other something special at the beautiful Paris Christmas markets … as we will be there for the week before and over Christmas. It’s a very freeing feeling, escaping the commercial madness. It’s going to be a very different Christmas. A very simple Christmas.

More French lessons today. I played a French radio station to my little one the other day. You should have seen his shoulders slump in despair. He didn’t realise they spoke that fast!  He was getting a bit chuffed at how much he has learnt. It’s going to be an education over there all right!

Happy Sunday everyone!

A-M xx

P.S. I am dreaming that I am speaking fluent French in my dreams. Could that be possible? Is there a recess in my brain that has assimilated what I have been learning and knows something that I don’t know? It’s very curious because I can understand French people in my dreams. Well I think can anyway!


This is where I muse about home design, interiors, life with my boys and other stuff that stops my heart. I own my own Real Estate agency, 'Cape Cod Residential', through which I stage, style and sell beautiful homes all over Brisbane, Australia.

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  • Dianne
    December 2, 2012 at 7:38 am

    Speaking of France, went to see The Intouchables yesterday. Some of the movie shot in Paris,it is a French movie, a must see movie.

    • A-M
      December 2, 2012 at 8:30 am

      I am hoping it’s available on the plane! I am saving all my movies for then! xx

  • Siobhan
    December 2, 2012 at 8:54 am

    Fabulous news about little one’s camp. Inclusion is everything!!

    I laughed at the grass story. I remember the “Holy Grass” at our school. Crossings were punishable by death! SO happy that he walked across and threw caution to the wind.

    Surely your dreams mean the French is locked and loaded, ready for the trip!

  • Priya
    December 2, 2012 at 9:06 am

    Don’t know where the year went either ….loved that act of rebellion and the fact that your younger is so happy and beaming at current school .Can I please join the bloggers lunch next time …. My excuse that those pics make my mouth water and I am pretty good at eating ( wish I could say that about blogging:) Have a fun filled , festive Christmas in Paris . Priyaxx

  • Melinda
    December 2, 2012 at 9:15 am

    – tell your little one he shouldnt fret – pretty much everyone in Paris speaks English however they do seem to prefer that you “have a go” in French first before they help you out. ( he should def keep up the lessons of course!! )
    Also from our experience French people ( esp shop owners, restauranteurs etc) LOVE kids – our children were completely spoilt with little treats, sweets and special “complimentary” desserts etc wherever we went.

    It will all be better than fine! x

  • Hayley
    December 2, 2012 at 9:31 am

    I can’t believe they’re not allowed on the grass! Good on him for rebelling and feeling good about it!

  • Virginia
    December 2, 2012 at 9:45 am

    A-M, I recall when my husband and I were learning Italian before our honeymoon, I would dream in Italian and be able to understand it all in my dreams. When we got there I was pleasantly surprised that it translated into reality! Hope it does for you too! Vx

  • Gail
    December 2, 2012 at 1:00 pm

    Ordering breakfast entirely in French will be your confidence builder. You can do it! What a wonderful trip to look forward to.

  • Neen
    December 3, 2012 at 5:01 pm

    Way to go getting on that ‘forbidden grass’ !!!! Bi-carb soda might help with little ones hair gel. A friends hairdresser used it to get wax prouct built up in her sons hair, came out easy peasy after 1 wash. I figure the bi-carb would help break-down the chemicals ???? No idea !!! Enjoy your Paris Christmas 🙂 Neen

  • Engineer Mum
    December 4, 2012 at 12:52 am

    Big Son did well! Especially in front of two teachers! Onwards and upwards. We have done all our new school orientations and I have great news for you… Our eldest got an offer too as someone is leaving! New school for both of the big kids! I blubbered on the phone to the enrolments officer. She thinks I’m hilarious

  • Karen Jolly
    December 5, 2012 at 6:10 am

    Your dream reminds me of the movie “Julie Julia” with Meryl Streep is talking with a French accent to her tutor in France and says “was I speaking English? I thought I was saying everything in French!” Always makes me smile!! 🙂

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About ‘A-M’

This is where I muse about home design, real estate, interiors and life with my boys. I am starting my next house build, 'The Next House That A-M Built', and hope to have some action on site in January 2018. While I am building I will continue to run my Real Estate agency, 'Cape Cod Residential', through which I stage, style and sell beautiful homes all over Brisbane, Australia. I have an unrivalled staging inventory which enables me to present all manner of homes in their absolute best light for sale. It brings me such joy to be able to do Real Estate so differently and achieve great results for my clients. I am so grateful to be living such a creative and exciting life ... that I have created through blood, sweat, tears and physio appointments!
A-M xx

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Anne-Maree Russell in Brisbane, QLD, AU on Houzz
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