Saturday, January 15, 2011

Hello, My name is Trini, and I'm a Partyholic...

.... it's been 21days, 2hr and 54mins since my last party.
For those that know me, you know I love to entertain. We have people almost every weekend, sometimes twice on weekends and occasionally even mid-week. Thankfully I married a man who also loves social interaction, and gets antsy if we haven't done a BBQ or at least people over for drinks in 10 days. Socializing is great, but there is nothing like throwing a full on party. It's been just over 21 days & I'm now having withdrawals.
So, thought I would start sharing some of my parties that I have thrown in the past, not only to give those that don't know me a taste of what I'm like, but also just to document for myself. I think I'll start by going backwards....

#1 Cromie's Orphan Christmas on the Lawn
Every year we gather those around us that don't make the pilgrimage home for the holidays. It's our way of bringing a bit of cheer and spirit to those around us, and to give our kids a hearty Christmas full of laughter and great food. Anyone is welcome and guests are welcome /encouraged to bring their friends or relatives that may be in town too. 
We spent Christmas morning just as everyone else did, buried in a sea of wrapping paper, taking those insane twistie ties off all the toys, adding batteries to those that Santa had forgotten to do. Then as D helped the kids explore their new treasures I set about the setup and cooking. I'm not totally insane, I had done some prep the day before, but I am a last minute kinda gal.
As the weather was looking iffy, I left outside till last, deciding to start setting the table at 2 as everyone was arriving at 3, just in case of rain. at 1:30, it rained lightly for 15 mins - - I breathe a sigh of relief as I started to lay the table.
Just as our 34 adults, 24 children descended on us, the skies opened. And I mean literally as they descended on us. A bus load of guests arrived and as they turned up our driveway, it started to HAMMER down. With a shrug (and a large glass of Veuve!) we greeted our guests. Children shuffled themselves off to the kids rooms, immediately segregating into Boys and Girls... they didn't care about the rain. We just poured the wine and chatted. Everyone had bought at least one plate of food, so we got that sorted inside (instead of the original outside plan) -As you can see my theming was red and white....

Singapore gets rain often, this I've already mentioned. It usually passes and if it does everything dries off relatively fast. So after the torrential downpour, I set to striping and resetting the outside table. As long as they had a glass in their hands, everyone was happy to help pitch in. Red skirting was thrown over the pool fence or in the dryer. White table cloth was replaced with my white photography backdrop, plates were wiped, candles emptied chairs dried - all with relative ease. (below, half way through the reset... skirting on the pool fence)
As we waited for the skirting to dry and my turkey was resting we were surprised by some Carolers. Domestic Helpers on their day off had banded together and were walking from house to house singing Christmas Carols for anyone who would listen. Yes, I thought of everything... well ok, this was a complete fluke that just made me look good (which I did confess to later) but definitely in my notes for must do next time!
After caroling, came the man in the Big Red Suit. Actually he was ready before the carolers- After scanning the crowd for potential St Nicks (D sooo not interested in doing it) one man finally agreed to do it. Just as he was about to step outside, the carolers had turned up, so he waited patiently whilst everyone sang their hearts out. Remembering it is 32 degrees in Singapore, patiently is such a feat! So this poor man lost about 10 pounds whilst waiting.  With a Ho Ho Ho, and no sign of heat exhaustion he emerged and did a brilliant job! One by one the kids sat on his knee, each of them walking away with one of my fabulous Stuffed Parties Jumbo Christmas stockings. 
Then it was the adults turn. Each adult had to bring a gag secret santa gift, anywhere from $0-20, the tackier the better! Whilst being fed beer through a straw, Santa endured every single person (and the men seemed to get bigger the further along he went) There were some beautiful and original gifts, I must say. D got a hot pink cadillac, I got a giant (and I mean giant) singing christmas bauble - which I have had to since confiscate off the kids. We had purchased a giant toothpaste tube toilet roll holder & had MY photo engraved on a beautiful keyring, but wait it gets better- it lit up! Gifts to be surely treasured forever! 
After Santa was relieved (and returned to his normal state of shorts and t-shirts) We brought the food outside, carved up the turkey and sorted out the kids. Kiddie tables were scattered around the yard and all chomped down happily, whilst big people had more drinks. The table was re-skirted and just as we lit all the candles on the table, the miniature Xmas trees' lights were turned on across the table and as the torches were lit behind the table, there was a huge clap of thunder. Looks like we were destined not to actually eat on the lawn. 
With a heave ho, all the men of the crowd carried the huge table of food fully laden up the stairs and into the middle of our lounge room, just in time for torrential rain hit the ground.
What could we do??? 
We Laughed!
Absolutely divine food and plenty of it followed, then continued into the scrumptious desserts. 
I had made the 10kg Turkey, Roast vegetables, Thai Pineapple Rice salad, deviled eggs, A simply scrumptious Chocolate Trifle (never done a chocolate one before and it was sooo delicious) and of course my prize pavlova. Each family had brought at least one dish as well, so we were overflowing in food! 
The rain continued into the night as we poured family after family into taxis, with the last departure about 11 we flopped wearily on the couch to hoe into the left overs.
'Twas a fab night, a great tradition started back in Hong Kong that we will continue to do as often as we can. But perhaps next year we'll have a marquee...

Friday, January 14, 2011

in for repair...

I LOVE to snuggle up with pillows and a doona, in my scrumptious bed, designing, FBing, Twittering, trawling the internet and stumbling through my new found love of blogging. It's where I feel at home.
I've suddenly found myself at a loss now as I can no longer blog in my comfy zone. My laptop unexplainably died the other night, straight after posting 'How our Bodies Deal'. Took it in for repairs and found out that it was the only one of my Apple products we didn't take the apple care warranty out on. (of course it is! And it's Just out of warranty!)  Looks like the logic board needs replacing (phew haven't lost any of the stuff I hadn't backed up yet - - which is alot) but bad news is that it means $$$
So until I can get it repaired, am stuck working on my desktop - - which is not my ideal creative zone. And although great for graphic design/photography purposes... not an ideal size to be lugging to the bedroom. Now I need to reconnect with my IMAC, it's been a while, there is hours ahead of me cleaning it up - transferring graphics and photos to external drives to free up space..... urghhh....
 Although the machinery of the house may be still in intensive care, the little people are doing well. Z hasn't had a fever in 24hrs now and has broken out in a beautiful post-viral rash, so he is healing really well. His spirits are back up and we all enjoyed his rendition of the Star Wars song over dinner (then encore after encore as he realised he was super cute!)  S's eye is back to normal, but she remains on drops for a few days. We are hitting the kitchen this weekend, as Singapore's biggest Junior Masterchef Fan, she is begging me to show her the workings of the kitchen. L is back at soccer in the morning (thankfully) he'll be able to run off some of that energy on the field. J is into yet another novel and I think a trip to Borders this weekend to spend some of his Christmas money may be in order.
Me, well am hoping that these antibiotics kick in tomorrow, am feeling better, but still waiting for that wow, I feel so much better feeling. 
Thank you all for your thoughts, love & beautiful emails/posts/fb messages etc - keep sending them our way!
(to comment, please click on the left hand link to this post. Currently my blog does not allow you to comment directly from the front page, previous posts are ok, just not the current one. Not sure what the issue is, but until I figure it out- I would still love to hear from you! You will be able to comment using the left hand link of the current posting ... what a pain, am so sorry!)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

50 Facts About Me

My laptop has died, I'm still ill & Z man is still ill. You don't want to hear reruns of fevers and doctors visits, so I thought I would steal an idea that is swarming the blogging world at the moment. 
Thanks to Woogsworld, Cupcakes Frock and Pink & Diary of a Girl Abroad, in particular for starting the trend.

50 Random Facts about Trini

1. I am 33 years old
2. My eyes change between blue & green depending what I wear and my mood
3. I'm hyperflexible (sooo not as cool as it sounds)
4. Am allergic to Strawberries
5. Secretly love Chabby Chic, but own nothing of the sort
6. Not so secretly love Teen Feel Good flicks
7. In contrast, also love a good thriller
8. I was born in Paraguay
9. I am the second eldest of four
10. I did a 30 sec spot on Heartbreak High where I played a junkie
11. I used to Ballroom dance
12. I could spend all day home-wares shopping
13. I dislike clothes shopping
14. I HATE shoe shopping
15. I suffer from Patella Subluxation (kneecap dislocates spontaneously)
16. Came 2nd in a statewide fashion design competition
17. I have four gorgeous and extremely different children
18. I Love Elephants
19. Prefer Savory over Sweet
20. Can count all the pedicures I've had on one hand (or foot as you may)
21. Have never being skiing
22. More a bloke's girl than a girl's girl
23. Arnica is my secret weapon
24. When younger, I wanted to run an orphanage when I grew up
25. Since having babies, I cry whenever I see others cry, regardless of context (or even if I have no clue what the context is)
26. I cannot drink beer since the huge night in Uni
27. I battle with anxiety and depression
28. I have NEVER ever waxed
29. I have had my mouth washed out with soap for calling my sister a bitch
30. Cricket bores me (I have tried)
31. I love my Apple products (even with the issues at the moment)
32. I do not play tennis
33. I survived an attempted sexual assault
34. I can do anything creative that is thrown at me
35. I have no interest in doing a triathlon
36. 13 & 14 give me anxiety attacks
37. I think about my dad every day
38. Find it hard to say no
39. I married my best friend
40. My man makes me laugh every day
41. I played Juliet in year twelve and aspired to be an actor
42. Am very loyal to those I love
43. Cannot live without my strong blacks in the morning!
44. I am the one to put the furniture together and hang the pictures in our house
45. I can & love decorating a cake
46. Love Dim Sum Sundays with the kids
47. Only bones I have broken are toes (3)
48. Still check to see if all my kids are breathing before I go to bed
49. Would love to own a darkroom one day
50. I love throwing parties!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Our Hearts are with you

Simply, I don't have the words...
We are watching from afar, and floored by the devastation!

So to all my Family, dear Friends  & new Blogger Friends in Queensland, please be safe!


Monday, January 10, 2011

How our bodies deal

I've been through hell in the last few weeks with various different illnesses (and now my eyes are watering with hay fever... arghh.. can't catch a break!)

So as illness is consuming my life at the moment, I'm curious....

What are you like when you are ill?

Me, I usually plow through unless I'm insanely sick. This usually means that I take longer to get over what I get.
D rarely gets ill, in the 12 years I've known him, think he's taken 3 sick dys (when he is ill though.... he is a typical boy - - no-one has ever felt as sick as he feels)

Not sure how
S deals really - - not yet. S takes after her father in the fact that she rarely gets ill. She has had two (count ‘em TWO) fevers in her whole life - not bad for a seven year old. One was after her Rubella injection at 15 months and the other was about a week before school broke up last year. Occasional runny noses and slight coughs.... but she keeps on going.

J is the Polar opposite. He gets fevers for EVERYTHING! To the point I don't get too worried if just a fever is involved. Unfortunately J was found to have an allergy to paracetamol at a very early age, which apparently tends to get worse with age (don't want to test that theory), so he gets a mixture of ibuprofen (which he gets nightmares with) and Voltaren. Weirdly enough he is also allergic to his own snot. Yes you heard me right....snot.
Thankfully I have managed to train him to blow his nose properly... but this is the kid that loves being filthy, he has one spoonful of yoghurt and it's everywhere, on his clothes, in his hair on the table, don't know how he gets any in his stomach! From a young age, if he had a runny nose, he would wipe it with his arm right, which ran it across his cheek. His skin reacts so badly, his nose his cheeks (and whatever else touches) would get a severe rash. But regardless what is wrong with him, he is a flaker. He goes flat, beaten by whatever illness has grabbed him and pathetic...

L is a vomiter. He is like clockwork. Once he starts you can clock him 6 hours from start to finish. If he starts just before bedtime, I know it's going to be a looooong night - guaranteed. He's one tough cookee... my his stomach can be a little sensitive (funny since he eats everything and he is an expat baby eating...he should have an iron gut) and if something doesn't sit quite right... up it comes. I don't think I've ever know him to throw up just once, it's always once he starts on it goes. Thankfully he is not like his older brother, not quite so keen on being filthy and has perfect aim into a bowl.  It's only when a fever accompanies, I know it's serious. Spirit wise, he is a roller-coaster. Upbeat, but goes flat about 45 mins or so before his next hurl.

Z is awesome. He continues to be so in every aspect of his personality. If you just watched him, listened to him - - you would have no idea he was running a 39.8 temperature. This morning I woke (at 7:50am!) to the first of my children waking up talking to his teddy. Was telling  teddy "Oh no bear, look wet... uh oh!" I walked into his room to found that he had thrown up all over his bedsheets. 'Oh Mumma, what a mess! So wet! Clean Peeease!" I picked him up and he giggled, pointing to his bed 'Oh what a mess' I gave him a cuddle and thought maybe he was a little warm due to having just woken up (all my boys are hot sleepers) I take his temp and find he is running 39.8. Let's have some medicine buddy. Then I pulled him into bed with D & Me, waiting for the others to wake up where he just talked my ear off. His temp has been up and down all day, appetite not really there, but just as happy and giggly as ever. It’s probably going to be a long night, as it is a high fever, but he is the happiest little sick guy and the smiles and love I get when I wake him to give him medicine is just precious. 
(The above photo is just before bed tonight, waiting for his temperature to go down before i put him down, cuddling me)
Every one of my babes is completely different, not just in their personalities, but how they deal with the obstacles. I love their differences - have to say it keeps me on my toes!