Monday, January 17, 2011

United We Stand

Like so many others, I've been deeply affected seeing the devastation & loss the horrendous floods have brought to my fellow Aussies north in Queensland.
The response by Brisbanites to their brothers in great need has been awesome. An army of 16,000 volunteers turned up on Saturday & 10,000 answered the call yesterday. I am so proud of these ordinary people who stand in a queue with their gumboots, brooms, mops, hoses & buckets. Ready to be bussed out to the houses & businesses of complete strangers in faraway suburbs. They just want to do their bit - you are legends each & every one of you.

My 3 weeks vacation has gone in a flash. We had a house full of guests for 12 days & it was bedlam. The bookings spreadsheet I had done pre-Christmas never left my hands & was an organizational God-send. I cooked, cleaned, shopped, stripped beds, washed linen, remade beds & then started the cycle all over again. I haven't opened any of my Chrissie books, seen a movie or spent an arvo on the sofa. Although I did get my priorities right & managed to hit the New Year sales for some compulsory retail therapy.

We had a lovely Christmas Day at Son #5 & his gorgeous girl Miss A's house. I was so proud of them both, they did a spectacular job with lunch. With 4 out of 5 sons home, it was inevitable that a large amount of post-prandial clowning around occurred. I have the perfect caption for the above image, but MOTH would sue!

Over the Christmas period, things got out of hand amongst the reunited brothers on occasion & I was forced to read the Riot Act to a number of the sons. You know who you are & are pictured below.

Enough said!

A much more civilized shot of the Little Darlings & MOTH for The Hedge's Christmas Album. At 6'5" MOTH looks to be the quite short in this pic, either that or Son # 2 is still growing at 31. Each Christmas I put out a request that they make an effort & dress up for lunch & every year they do - NOT!

There was another birthday for moi. The numbers 55 suddenly appeared on my speedometer last Sunday, but there's no way I'll be sticking to my speed limit this year!

MOTH's famous Christmas Lillies displayed a great deal of confusion due our cold, miserable, inclement December weather. For the first time ever, the yellow Asiatics bloomed first & were a riot of colour for weeks.

Then their White siblings made an unfashionably late appearance last week & have filled the house with their breathtaking perfume.

Lastly, I want to thank everyone for the beautiful & very generous comments left on the Our New Bathroom post. Your words have left MOTH & I positively buoyed & we are so grateful that you all managed to go the distance with us. In all the flurry of activity around here I really hadn't a chance to stop & revel in the joy of it all. However, we had a group of friends over for dinner on Saturday night & during the course of the evening I did what everyone else was doing. I wandered up to the new 'facility' instead of dashing into the grotty ensuite as normal. As I watched the nifty self-closing lid gently descend to meet the loo seat (only a mother of 5 sons can get teary-eyed over that remarkable innovation) I suddenly became quite overcome with emotion.

For the first time it really, really hit me that the Bathoom-From-Hell was no more, & in it's place was the fabulous room I've been dreaming about for so long. Back to work for me tomorrow, but it's lovely to be back here with you all. I have a big year planned, so I'd better get to it.


Images 1 & 2: Courier Mail 4: Amazon 7: Treehugger


  1. Happiest of birthday greetings Millie - I love to read that you won't be sticking to the speed limit, I couldn't imagine it somehow!

    MOTHs lilies are spectacular and I can only begin to imagine the gorgeousness of their scent.

    Your handsome bunch of lads must make you prouder than proud.

    Here's to sunny days ahead,

    Felicity x

  2. So nice to see you Millie. Like a welcomed tonic, a sight for sore eyes- just what I needed.
    Happy New Year- those Lilies are amazing and must be heavenly in your lovely home.

  3. Happy belated birthday Millie! Sounds like a bust few weeks have been had in your household - hope things slow down a bit for you now so you can enjoy your Christmas books.

    What lovely family photos x

  4. Happy Birthday Millie
    Sounds like you had a wonderful christmas break with your boys and MOTH... I hope this year brings you much happiness and more fun..

    It's is unbelievably sad about the floods though it warms the heart to see the incredible spirit and sense of community as they help each other cleanup and salvage what they can...

    Have a great week and good to have you back.. ciao xxx Julie

  5. Welcome back Millie - what a big few weeks you have had - happy birthday and happy new year - oh what a handsome bunch you have there! Here is to a great 2011 made all the better with that amazing invention in the soft close toilet!!! Leanne xx

  6. Dear Mill's,
    We are all devastated at the news of the floods and it is heartbreaking watching the news.It looks like a third world country. I remember seeing one family sitting on top of their car looking resigned to the fact that they could do nothing, only to hear that the mother and son were rescued but the father was lost. I often think that it must be awful to get just a little bit of water in your home, but, I cannot imagine the loss of lives, the utter devastation, and for all of one's possessions to be ruined or washed away..I must say that it does the heart good to see everyone rallying round to help.I know of many people who are going over from the UK to help. Here's hoping that the rains subside and the clearing up process can begin as soon as possible.
    On a lighter note, it is lovely to hear all of your news about your Christmas. It sounded a busy time, but to have most of your family together is the best, isn't it ? Belated birthday wishes ..... I'm afraid it's the big 60 for me on the 1st of February !!!! You've got five lovely years before yours !!
    Lastly ( sorry to have rambled) your #3 son must have been so excited having his mix played at midnight New Year's Eve. We have much to be proud of.....I fimly believe that it's the mum behind them, don't you !!!! haha.
    Here's to more fun and laughter in 2011. Love to you, MOTH and the family and I look forward to seeing which room will be the one from hell this year !! XXXX

  7. happy belated birthday miss millie!! it sounds like a wonderful, fun, exhausting three weeks. you need to go back to work to rest up!
    prayers to your countrymen and women....

    happy you're back!

    p.s. 'pints' chillin' in the frig for yours and MOTH's visit!!

  8. Oh yes, that flooding is just awful! :(

    I love seeing your sons and reading about your fun Christmas! They are all so handsome and look like there is never a dull moment.

    Happy birthday!!!! xo

  9. i hope you received my birthday greeting... heartfelt and i wish i could have flown over to take you to a nice dinner and we could visit ... but no you were stripping beds! (he he)

    and your boys are quite striking... too bad i am too old!

    and last but not least... i wish i could come flush that toilet and tell moth 'THANK YOU"

  10. and of course... you know how i feel about the flooding... completely saddened.... xoxo

  11. Millie,
    Looking forward to a wonderful year with you too!
    Good for you for cracking the whip with those boys.
    Keeps them on their toes...for an evening at that their beautiful mum can go have a long pause in her gorgeous spa!
    Xo Lisa

  12. Happy Birthday, old gal!! (kidding) I have been full of worry for your lovely country. Its amazing when dreadful things happen how everyone can come together for the common good.
    Your boy-lot is a handsomeone...goodness gracious:)

    Happy New Year, with that new bathroom--wowza!

  13. Hilarious shot of MOTH with water coming out his ears! Dear Millie, thank you for recommending the Stirling Hotel. We drove down the main street during our recent visit to the Hills, and I was waving like crazy in case you were there. Did you see me? We also drove past the pub in North Adelaide you mentioned (with the egg chairs), but, alas, only to find a FoodMart and gawp like tourists, not to have a drink.

  14. Happy Belated Birthday are now in my League well till May..
    Glad to hear you made it through the busy time with your guests...
    Nice xmas shots for the album...

  15. Welcome back Millie and happy birthday you gorgeous gal!
    It's wonderful to hear about all the help and volunteers that have gone north to help the flood victims in Qld. Its incredible the number of natural disasters that happen around this time of year... and the number of wonderful individuals that should be commended for all their help.

    Looking forward to a year with you at The Hedge!

  16. Happy Birthday!! And Happy Bathroom!! xx

  17. Happy Happy Birthday Millie!!

    I've been thinking about everyone affected by the floods.


And none will hear the postman's knock
Without a quickening of the heart.
For who can bear to feel himself forgotten?
~W.H. Auden

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