Friday, July 08, 2016

How did that happen? Little Jo at 9

It was memorable moment in our lives when Sister as a Christmas present presented Mother with xray scans of the baby growing within Sister. Mother was confused and late Step Father looked like thunder. How could Sister and Bone Doctor produce a baby? Step Father eventually went on to say, I am not sure this is a good idea, yet before he died when Little Jo was about two and a half, he loved her dearly. Before he died, Sister wrote a letter to Step Father, thanking him for being her father and all he had done for her, which I can remember as getting her out of serious scrape once among many other things that a father would do. Mother said when Step Father read the letter, it was the only time she had ever seen him cry. Mother in her usual manner, was quite sanguine about the news of her dyke daughter having a baby. While Mother is a very difficult person and probably voted for Malcolm Turnedbull, she is very socially accepting of the different and if she has issues with two of her four children being gay, neither of us two gay children know about it.

Anyway, some of you who are reading my blog now would have read about the birth of Little Jo at time she was born back in 2007 and when she was a baby and as she grew up.

Little Jo turns 9 in the middle of this month, and after a surprise visit to see the musical Matilda in town, she will come here and we are hosting a family party for her. R asked me if he should make sausage rolls, or buy them. Then Sister hit. I will bring the food. No, you don't buy the birthday cake. I will make it. We planned to buy a really nice cake from Bread Top in the shape of a dog. R was furious and went on about Sister all that night. I should have thought ahead and told Sister that we are hosting the party and we will do all. R concluded with, next time, I will tell your sister I am just too old to do parties. Don't worry, he was just sounding off at the sound board, me.

Today, Tuesday, while trying to stay dry as it rained and rained, we caught the tram to Balaclava to visit the most amazing shop to buy party decorations. It is in a side street and is huge as well as being a bit of rabbit warren. We bought some birthday themed serviettes, some sturdy paper plates for finger food and a happy birthday banner. We also ordered some helium filled balloons which we will pick up on Sunday morning. Wow, that adds up at $2 a balloon and we ordered 18. There was no heating in the most amazing shop, so we did not hang around after making our choices, and headed to Balaclava Station to go to town.

The rebuilding of Balaclava Station is complete and is a rather good job, methinks. There are stairs for the fit and a gentle ramp for the not so fit and less abled. We had just missed a train, but the waiting room was lovely and warm, just like the old days when stations had waiting rooms with a fire burning in a fireplace. A rather dodging looking young family, think parents with badly bleached hair, bad and missing teeth and a shared packet of Winfield cigarettes,   and with them their two under 10 children with what seemed to be household possessions in a shopping trolley were generally ignored, especially by the grandparent couple with their lovely quiet and calm grandchildren. Such is the mix in Balaclava.

Then there the train problem at Richmond Station, the last station before the main station, Flinders Street. I will save that for another post. It made me very cross a few years ago when I experienced and made both of us very cross this time.

We had a bowl of deliciously hot soup at QV, mine Portuguese bacon and heaps of other stuff, nearly a casserole, after exiting from Melbourne Central Station, not as easy to exit as you might think. Had a half hearted look for a gift for Bone Doctor's fortieth later this month, made our way to to our favorite outdoor place for coffee, then tired of all this busyness, cold and rain, caught the tram home. Golly, while it was a late start because of the rain, it was nearly three o'clock. The heating up a degree and siesta was had  by R, while I had some quiet time lying on my bed with my tablet.

I had noted some mince beef thawing in the kitchen. Oh, so nice, roast meat loaf for dinner.

The innocuous sounding and looking Astoria Paper Products is a wealth of treasures with everything you might want of a party and more, at reasonable prices.


22 comments:

  1. Little Jo is not so little anymore! Have practically seen her grow up on your blog.

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    1. Ad Rad, yes long term readers would have. I struggle to remember her at certain ages. Fortunately I have here and lots of photos.

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  2. Not little at all. The helium balloons were a lovely touch. You seem to do celebrations really well.

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    1. EC, you just have to go to a big effort for kids now. They expect it.

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  3. Balaclava Station is my closest, and I also do most of my weekly shopping in Carlisle St (or Glenferrie Rd). Great shops, including Astoria Paper Products as you noted, great cakes and tram connections, but dismal parking.

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    1. Hels, it has been very interesting to observe the changes in Carlisle Street since we first moved to Balaclava in the early nineties. We couldn't even buy a decent cup of coffee but we had a hardware store, clothing shops and ever so much more that is not there now.

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  4. They all grow up to fast, but they are teenagers forever or maybe it feels that way.
    Merle.................

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    1. Merle, it is just hard to believe how the time goes. I await with glee the battles she and her mother will have when she is a teenager. They are both headstrong and bossy.

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  5. I love those party shops! Here in Adelaide there used to be Peter Van the Party Man, with everything you could want and in catering sizes too, for businesses.
    I hope the party is lovely, and squabble free too. Maybe next year the discussions about who will do what can begin soon after New Year or Easter, so there's plenty of time to get sorted.
    Gosh, 9 years just flew by didn't they?

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    1. Ah River, we never squabble out loud in front of each other and I wouldn't have missed out on her nine years for quids. She has grown up in a very different world to how her two young cousins will grow up but that is fine. All are spoilt by my standards, but in different ways.

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  6. Roast meatloaf 😆

    Nice blog post Andrew .. well written. You must tell us one day how the two of you got together.

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    1. Thanks Carol. It really could have done with some proof reading, but at times you just say......damn it, and publish.

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    2. Meatloaf gets baked in the oven, at a pinch you could call it a roast, especially if you do a tray of potatoes and carrots with it.

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    3. River, R's meatloaf is very fine and always served with roast vegetables.

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  7. I love your family stories. Your mother is a character! The kids grow so fast, like kittens. One can get helium filled balloons here at the dollar store, with all sorts of things written on them, glitter galore. A buck each.

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    1. Strayer, with writing the balloons are $2.50. With exchange rates, your $1 costs us over $1.30.

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  8. Crikey Andrew ... We have a Jo too and guess what?? She's 9 on the 13th of this month. We are having her party at our house today. It's going to be a great day. Mum ALWAYS makes and decorates cakes for the kids. Our next blog (but it might be a few days away) will be all about our Jo's day and her little sister G's (Georgia) birthday last week. There will be two pictures of their cakes. I think you'll be impressed. Mum and and the little girls Mum are getting very good at decorating their cakes. We have ONE helium filled balloon. Talk about cheapstakes at our house, aye??

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    1. Wow Charlie. Our Little Jo is 9 on the 11th, just two days earlier. I sure the single balloon will be very nice, probably shiny with a nice long tail you can grab hold of, Charlie. I look forward to seeing the photos of your family.

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  9. Time goes by so fast ! 9 years already ! How nice of you to organize a birthday party for her. I think your mother was a remarkable woman, not all parents at that time acted like her !

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    1. Gattina, no, not all parents did. My father just put his head in the sand and ignored the obvious. He did like R though. Mother has long been a reader of women's magazines, and the letters people write in seeking advice about their son/daughter, among other things. You can get the picture.

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  10. Grace at Perth Daily Photo said: Gosh imagine Little Jo turning 9!! Where does the time go.. before you know it she'll be a teenager and then the fun begins 😃 it would have been a little frustrating for R if he was all geared up to do the party food but still you are providing the venue which is probably the main thing!

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    1. Sorry Grace, had to change R's name to R. Haha, yes the fun will begin in her teenage years. As it happened, it was a great afternoon and we are now thoroughly whacked and about to watch 50 years of Playschool.

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