life of a packrat

Our modem died on Sunday, and if you sniffed it there was a suspicious burny smell. So we were cut off from the world of email, blogs, flickr and it made me feel, well a bit panicky. Not like being on holiday cut off, for which one plans. More like, what if the conveyancer sent me an email and I didn't read it. Or what if I wanted to buy something online... like perhaps a new modem? Anyway, I bought another one today and more or less figured out how to connect it properly. The only issue is that the send/receive on outlook seems to have become somewhat temperamental. But working. So, this afternoon I have been inhaling the internet with great pleasure. Inhaling it, I say. Utterly tragic. Anyhow this post was meant to be about my latest opshopping exploits...

Despite the fact that I'm trying not to buy or otherwise acquire anything new, the opshop has been good to us of late. On the way to the craft retreat, the Salvos at Kyneton had a beautiful window of old board games in well used but good condition. In the city, they'd have been for display only or asking an exhorbitant price. So I tentatively asked how much they were and then had to ring Gerard to see what he thought. We now have monopoly and a draughts set. The draughts are beautiful but I love how the monopoly game has writing in the lid. It sends a big tingle down my paper emphemera loving spine. Also bought some books: an Enid Blyton story book about two children who go fishing, an old TV comic compedium and a Dorothy the Dinosaur golden book, in which the other characters keep stepping on her rose garden. She doesn't yell at them, even though she is obviously very unhappy about it. It's on high rotation at the moment. Very high rotation. Romp-bomp-a-chomp.

Then last Tuesday, I was in Savers with Grace waiting to meet Gerard for out appointment to see Mr Bostonov* at the bank and Gerard called me to say he was at Don Bosco standing guard over a really great chunky Lego train set and that I should come and have a look. We bought it (it was really great) and then dashed off to our appointment. When we returned to pick it up, I found some really great books including these three Alison Lester board books. We had the other one already and being a total Alison Lester fan, it delights me to have the complete set. I was going to give them to Ruby, but Grace is loving them almost as much as Dorothy. They were only twenty cents each and the Lego was also absurdly cheap, so I felt like I should pay a bit more, a feeling I sometimes have at Don Bosco. It's one of my two favourite opshops: cheap, friendly, community minded and they support good causes.

Expect photos of Lego soon. It is dominating the loungeroom in a charming way. At this point.

Then on Friday, after my GP appointment at which I learnt the scary news that my medication is a bit below what's considered to be the theraputic range (I'm dreading pressure from my new psychiatrist to increase the dose to the point where I'm a fat(ter) totally level robotic blimp), I stopped by Savers again. We're looking for a new wardrobe for Grace's room as the one she has now, although lovely, is far too big for her new room and not very child friendly.  No wardrobe, but..... more books for Grace (we like books) and these Enid Gilchrist pattern books for me. When I saw Sue's at the craft retreat, I knew I wanted some too. Sewing, retro, paper, ephemera - what's not to love?  I thought $4.99 was a bit exy, but when I got home there were more than I expected in the bag and it looked like they were meant to be $4.99 each. Eeek. I feel a bit guilty, and the freak in me wanted to go back and correct the error, but it was an honest mistake. Maybe it's karma for how shabby Savers were when I asked to return stuff from my psychotic shopping spree back in 2005.  Anyway, I do love these books. Not just for the patterns but for the ads too. Check it out, the fantasy of the yummy mummy is certainly not a new one...  And I think my mum may have had one of those child leash things for my sister.

* Grace has an old phone in her room and Gerard often plays a game with her, pretending that Mr Bostonov from the bank is calling. He asks her if she would like to talk to him. If she says no, he says, no she's not avaible now and hangs up.  As we were signing the loan documents, Grace kept burbling on about Mr Bostonov. It was pretty funny really.


  1. Oh score! We've done really well with board games from the op shop lately too.
    At the age of 5 Frederique still loves those Alison Lester board books (we were given a set when Fred was little). The good thing about well made delightful board books and simple picture books like that is they make great first reading texts - much nicer to look at, and much more satisfying to read than the awful school readers they get. Maybe one day Grace can read them to Ruby like Fred reads them to Una.

  2. That Lego charm?

  3. Oh I think I just turned bright green with envy over the lego train set score - our two favourite things.

  4. aaaw the nostalgia for kiddie things.
    My Mum had Enid Gilchrist sewing books for us when I was growing up. I read LOTS of Alison Lester to my two. Lego - nuff said, classic stuff in fact I still have about 40 litres of the stuff that I have collected/inherited and cannot let go. Its not going off in the cupboard I had specially built for it is it? I doubt I'm gonna have many grandchildren....the time will be right someday, but my son will appreciate me keeping it too when I hand it over to him.
    And I too would be quite, QUITE panicky if my modem went down for days. OOh, my stomach is churning just thinking abut it.

  5. Hey, I was thinking of you today when that Nick Cave song came on the car radio (Dig Lazarus Dig?). There is a Janet AND a Betty in the lyrics. How freaky is that? Well, not as freaky as Nick, I guess. But funny all the same.

  6. Those kid leashes - I always thought they were dreadful until I spent some time caring for my very active nephew who will. not. stay. close. Then, I got it. If they came with an opportunity to wear that coat and hat I'd saddle up both girls every day.

  7. Bargain Leggo is certainly a find, it is ludicrously expensive new. Peanut isn't into the Wiggles yet (give her time) but she does love the new Wiggle and Learn show on ABC kids, in particular the cover they do of Duke Ellington's The Mooch.. the look on her tiny face is priceless !

  8. I came home tonight to find my laptop burning hot! It survived but I suspect that was a close call.
    I think I love Alison Lester more than my kids do!

  9. I do enjoy reading your blog. I also love children's literature and now so do my kids. To me, there's no better gift for a child than a great book.
    re: the medication, if the dose is working for you, then don't feel pressured to up it. My psych med dose was 'titchy' my doctor called it, yet when it came time to come off it, it still took me 3 months. Go figure!

  10. PS. Don't worry, I too get a bit frantic if the internet is cut off. If I don't have internet, half my world is gone!