maxcelcat: (Badtz Maru 2)
can I claim a deduction for toys?
"Can I claim a deduction for toys?"

My kid is a little charmer. We were running about doing errands Monday. First stop was Deb's dentist, conveniently located in East St Kilda. And weirdly across the street from an apartment I shared with my then girlfriend back in 2003!

There were two little old ladies also in the waiting room. They were most charmed by Henry. I was telling one of them how his teeth were bothering him. She said "They'll do that for your whole life". The other little old lady said "They grow up so quickly. I still remember when my son was that age. Now he's 57..."

Then we ended up at a tax accountant to do our taxes, oddly enough. It was only afterwards that I realised that said accountant sat at a desk without a computer on it. The last time I saw anyone working at a desk without a PC on it was in about 1995...

Henry amused himself by flailing about on the office floor. As we waited, Deb invented a new version of a popular old kids song as we played with Henry's toes:

"This little piggy went to the tax accountant
This little piggy stayed at home
This little piggy was claimed as a dependant for tax purposes..."

Turns out the accountant had ten(!) grand children, and was quite pleased to meet Henry.
maxcelcat: (Space Man)
I direct you to my blog post on Pippy Quark on the subject.

I should work out how to cross post from Wordpress to LJ.
maxcelcat: (Agent Smith)
I hereby nominate the guy who made these as Father of the Year! What a nice thing to do for your kid.

His son has a toy favourite toy, Stanley, one of Thomas the Tank Engine's friends.

First his dad made this film about a day in the life of Stanley, complete with a little animated face:

Then... He sent Stanley into space!

I hope I'm a cool dad like this :-D
maxcelcat: (It's Time!)
This my sponsor child, Junnatun. Today, 10th of July 2012, is her ninth birthday. This picture is a couple of years old, but even so she seems to me small for her age.

I sponsor her through Plan Australia, a non-religious charity, and I strongly encourage you to do the same. Costs me only AU$43 a month. I'm just pleased I can help one girl stay in school.

She lives somewhere near here:

View Larger Map
Although I'm not sure exactly where, there certainly doesn't seem to be much in the way of towns in that part of the world.

And here's a drawing she did for me, part of a letter:
Drawing by my sponsor child

So, you're rich and live in the first world, go to and sponsor a child as well.

Happy Birthday Junnatun!
maxcelcat: (Catnip Cat macro)
Following on from this post, here is another thing I learned from my two year old niece: Although a chop-stick looks like a straw, it doesn't work like a straw. No matter how hard you try!
maxcelcat: (Badtz Maru)
I had lunch with my two year old niece today. She was brought along by my dad who's looking after her at the mo while my sister in Canberra.

Things I learned from her today:

  • The carpet on my office floor is great for rolling around on

  • Disposable chopsticks can be a very entertaining toy

  • Her second birthday was a month ago. Every day since she has said "Today is my birfday!"

  • Miso soup can be drunk with a straw!

I should hang with two year olds some more, they're very informative ;-)
maxcelcat: (Cat Go Blah Blah Blah)
Crazy Uncle

Friday morning I took my niece to the Zoo. The zoo opens at 9AM, and she sleeps at midday so there was a window there where we could visit the zoo without her falling asleep.

Getting to the zoo early on a weekday is good and bad - good because there's no one there, at least until the school groups start turning up. Bad because some of the animals appeared to still asleep. The stupid Gorilla's for example.

I figured I'd aim for the most active and/or fluffy animals. Oh, and the butterflies - said niece is rather fond of them insects.

So we scampered around the zoo. The little monkeys and Lemur's were a hit, but I can report that the most interesting things at the zoo, in decreasing order, are:

  • Other children and toddlers. A number of times I said "ignore the kids, look at the monkeys"!

  • Seals, there was clapping whilst the seals swam

  • The floor of the seal enclosure. It was metal and very textured

  • Fish - there are some in the same building as the seals

  • My chocolate muffin

  • Butterflies

  • The pigeons and seagulls that surrounded us while we had lunch

  • Kangaroos and Emu's

  • Elephants

I was surprised the mega fauna wasn't of more interest, they'd even got three adult elephants and two baby elephants holding each others tails and walking around the enclosure. I'd have taken a picture, but I was wrestling a pusher and a small flighty toddler! The tigers weren't up to much, nor were the lions, maybe that was it. I do feel sorry for some of the bigger critters there, there's not nearly enough space for them to move around.

She is so at that age were she bolts all over the place. I had to prevent her from wandering out of the butterfly enclosure three times, the door for some reason being very interesting!

I bought her a floppy stuffed elephant, which I'm told was a huge hit - she's been talking to it ever since, and singing the "Heidi, Heidi, Ho The great big elephant is so slow" song. I came home and needed a nap :-)
maxcelcat: (Lamington)
A number of times recently (well, twice in the last twelve months or so) I've had the chance to catch up with friends who are long-term residents overseas. It's becoming more common, as is them turning up with their partners and babies in tow!

Today it was my old friends (from RMIT back in about 1995 - yikes!) Luke and Laura, and their "new" child Kate. Kate who will always be a bit special since she was born on my birthday in 2009 :-)

We all went to the Zoo, which was an excellent idea to entertain the large number of toddlers who turned up. Er, and my girlfriend Deb who, in certain contexts, acts like a six year old. Usually at the Zoo or indeed when we both went a bit batshit at Legoland in the UK in 2009.

For the record: Meercats are cool. Sleeping Wombats are cute, and apparently I resemble one!

Back in April of what is last year now, Clive and Zoya came to visit with Katherine, their kid. She took a liking to me, and said the first complete sentence I've heard her say in English, which was "I like you!".

Jack and Polina (and their new baby Tim) will be in Melbourne in late Feb., so I'll be able to do this all again. They're the folks I stayed with in Berlin (hmmm... which I still haven't blogged about...) Jack is also Marvin the Bitey cat's original owner so they will have to catch up, and there can be patting!

I guess I've reached a Certain age where a) large numbers of people I know are living overseas and b) many of them are reproducing!
maxcelcat: (Bug)
In the last four days (Easter weekend in other words) I've encountered not one, not two, not even three but four children under three years old. My niece, who is nearly two months old, my friend's kid Katherine and two twins called Aden and Rory.

Kids like me. Katherine declared "I like you!" when she was leaving - the first complete English sentence I've heard her utter. She utters lots in Russian. And today Rory tried to get me to get into their car so I could go home with them...

I should probably have some of my own :-)
maxcelcat: (Tram In Snow)
Over the weekend (Sunday in fact, in one of the local cafes which I prefer because of the way they make their chai) I got talking to a couple, whom I shall call A and H.

I met them through [ profile] paula_angela, although it turns out H at least knows a lot of people I know through the ALP.

A and H want to have kids, they have only one problem... They have two wombs and none of that other stuff required to make a baby! Hence they put out the call for... Men!

So we had a terribly interesting chat. I've talked about this stuff before, although not seriously, with at least two sets of lesbian friends. It's faaaaaar more complicated than it might first appear. So many things need to be sorted out, such as:

How much contact/involvement does the third party have? Is it just a donation and nothing further? Or does one work out an arrangement up to and including co-parenting? How does this stuff end up impacting on my relationships and (later) decisions to reproduce? If I end up through various circumstances being responsible for the child(ren) in question, that would make having kids of my own complicated. This is before one gets into the legal implications - in this heterosexually biased world, the biological father is technically responsible for the child they produce, no matter the exact circumstances of its conception, or even if it already has two mommies.

A and H have been together for a long time, which is encouraging. And they've really thought about this stuff. What they want to do is form a relationship of sorts with someone (possibly me!) over a period of months or so, before anything happens. It's a bit like going on a series of dates at some level, they have to like me before they'd think about wanting to... Er, I wonder what the polite term is here? Before they decide to chose me...

Will have to introduce them to Deb as well, make sure we all get along.

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