How to prepare for baby no.2

I have noticed, with more than a hint of envy, that some women seem to be especially gifted at motherhood. Whether a breezy pregnancy and birth, outstanding confidence with babies and toddlers, or simply the possession of an otherworldly patience—I look upon the lives of these extraordinarily gifted mums with awe. And the disappointing feeling…

Finding contentment in parenting

‘Which age do you find the easiest/hardest?’ A mum recently posted on a Facebook forum. Hundreds of responses followed, with each mother listing the ages and stages she found most challenging or most delightful. There was great variation in the responses: ‘Newborn is easiest! They’re so sleepy and cuddly’ ‘I’d take toddlers over teenagers any…

How to Host a Welcoming Christmas Celebration

My sisters and I joke that we grew up with the Christmas Grinch. Our mum hates the commercial fuss of Christmas and has always tried to avoid the material focus: no tree, no decorations, and no fussy Yuletide crafting sessions. Occasionally my sisters and I would rally, decorating a bedraggled tree we found on the…

What we don’t tell first-time mums

A well-documented phenomenon occurs regularly around pregnant first-time mums and I can’t help but take part. Let’s call it The Realism Checklist. Maybe it’s because pregnant women glow too much from all those pregnancy hormones? Never fear, we—your fellow mums and card-carrying, seasoned professionals—are overwhelmed by the need to prepare you for what’s ahead. I…

How to parent in public

Cucumber, lettuce, tomato… with effortless repetition the teenage boy at the checkout scans my groceries, the bleep bleep punctuating the bustling of a busy supermarket. Suddenly the tantruming wails of a small child echo loudly from the next checkout, and pained cries drown out the bleep bleeps and rustling of plastic bags. The checkout boy…

The Sinclair Collection: What we’re about

We’ve had our blog up and running for just over a year. The Sinclair Collection aims to collect all the different parts of our online lives in one spot for our family, friends, supporters and anyone else to check out what we’re up to. Who’s writing? Most of the writing and updating is done by…

How to ruin Christmas

My sisters and I joke that we grew up with the Christmas Grinch. Our mum hates the commercial fuss of Christmas and has always tried to avoid the material focus: no tree, no decorations, and no fussy Yuletide crafting sessions. Occasionally my sisters and I would rally, decorating a bedraggled tree we found on the…

The Mum in My Head

There is a mum who lives inside my head. She is silently judging, always offering opinions about my parenting. I hear her cautions daily and I second guess my steps. I catch myself before making decisions, wondering what she would do instead. Sometimes she is a distorted version of my own mother, my mother-in-law or…

Fush and Chups in ‘Straya: Unexpected Culture Shock

Our Kiwi family has been living in Australia for just over four months: 139 days of enjoying consistently warmer weather, glorious beaches, excellent gelato and an abundance of charcoal chicken outlets. Culturally the two countries are pretty similar: notably relaxed, egalitarian and fun-loving. However, there are a few tiny differences; a couple of things about…

A Father’s Vengeance

Gladiator, The Punisher, Taken, The Patriot, Collateral Damage and Max Payne are all films about a father’s revenge. There is something powerful about a revenge story. In each of these stories the hero reacts as enemies harm his family, and he plots and exacts his vengeance on them. I don’t know about you, but when…