The Monday (Tuesday) snapshot : true love edition

So I’m running late again, with my Monday snapshot. But there’s a very good reason for that.

Last week was our third wedding anniversary. THREE YEARS! Crazy talk.

The day before, I had no present, no card, no car (hub-in-boots needed my vehicle after an incident involving a tow truck) and no idea.

I googled anniversary ideas (no, not original) and this came up:


A present for every hour. So at 8:03, hub-in-boots had a pressie saying “thanks for bringing home the …”. It was a gift wrapped bacon sandwich. Weird, but bacon is his favourite. Thing. Ever.

At 9:03: “I thought we’d lose the ….off our backs”. And inside, a new shirt.

The rest were mainly scooby snacks for work, but at 12:03 he got: “I asked Jensen to say CHEESE for your birthday. He thought I was NUTS.” and this pic:

Very cute.

At 4:03, he got an email with a picture of 21 Italians, as we were off to a restaurant called Ventuno.

What he didn’t realise, is that we were going by :

Water taxi! We have a jetty at our place, and we’ve always talked about getting a water taxi somewhere, but in three years we never have. After a big “can I be bothered” then a “i shouldn’t spend the money”, my friend Sim told me you only live once, just pull my finger out and do it. So I did.


We had champagne (from 5:03, you still make me feel bubbly inside!), and took our glasses, and the pram (!!!) down to the jetty.






And why is my post late? Food poisoning (from a party, not our anniversary dinner!). And let me tell you, true love is not water taxis on sydney harbour, it is holding your wife’s hair back while she hurls. And hurls. And hurls….

Oh! Sully! The Places You’ll Go!

Today is a really special day.

Today, one year ago, a friend of mine (captain complicated pregnancy in this blog), had a baby, Sullivan (Sully). This is not my story to tell. I don’t have all the details, so sorry girls if I get anything wrong, and perhaps it’s not my place. But I’d still like to write a post to mark this day.

Sully had been a long time becoming the little brother he was meant to be. There was a lot of loss and difficulty before he was conceived, so he was very very wanted. And at the 19 week scan, there they were, in a wheelchair, out of the scan place, running down Missenden Road to the hospital with a dilated / shortened cervix, straight into surgery for cerclage (a stitch in the cervix to prevent miscarriage). 

This has a whole other resonance now, my being 18.5 weeks with that very scan next Monday.

Anyway, Sully’s mum, Captain Complicated Pregnancy (which is fairly reductionist of me, she’s an all round cool chick, not just an incubator!), was put onto immediate bedrest, and this was in and out of hospital. It was strict, and it was not easy, as she had a toddler tearing up the house at the same time. As a couple, they had lots of support, but some burdens somehow fall to us alone, and despite everything and everyone around us, make us feel isolated. She was in hopeful spirits, craving mexican, and the breakfast bruschetta we always ate after Saturday boxercise. She was watching series of Dexter, amongst other things. Unlike me, she didn’t knit. And along with her lovely partner, she was counting down the weeks, trying to live out the weeks, trying to grow this boy until he was a viable baby. Every week was important. Every week was vital. We all counted the weeks with her. It feels bloody to me familiar now. 30 weeks was a point of great celebration.

And, beyond all expectations, Sully made it to full term. At some point they took out the stitch, and there she was, Mum /Mum to be, at the hairdresser, madly texting us all when the contractions began. She tossed up about going in for waxing on the way to the hospital. Mad woman. But did the sensible thing and went directly to the labour ward.

Sully was born by Caesarean section. And then everything went quiet. No news from her, none from her family. Silent. No emails. No texts. Til we finally found out, what seemed like ages later (and was probably, in reality, a few hours after labour should have finished), but I knew the silence had a dark quality.

I went to boxing on Wednesday night, and her aunty wasn’t there. And there were people standing around in shock, in tears, almost in tears. And I realised something was wrong. The daily emails started. And we all prayed

Sully had difficulties during birth, and to this day, I don’t think they know what happened. Beautiful perfect Sully, born on the 22nd, and on the 25th after many who loved him had met him and held him, they turned off his respirator. He opened his eyes for the first time, and looked at his mums with big clear eyes. Sully, at least in body, didn’t make it through that day.

So today is Sully’s birthday. And my friend, who has been a source of enormous support, and empathy, and dark jokes, and laughs during my present”internment”,  who along with her partner and family suffered an immeasurable loss last year, has asked that everyone do one simple thing tonight, in his honour. .

To read Dr Suess’ Oh! The Places You’ll  Go! Sully’s other mum, his Beb, read this book at his memorial service last year, and it was beautiful. We drank a lot that night. His mum stole a salt shaker from the club to “pay” me for the taxi ride home with hub-in-boots at the wheel. I think i still have it around here somewhere….

I’d  like to ask you, as my blog readers, to sit down tonight, and read the Dr Suess book, as a birthday present to him.

  • And if you can’t read it, then click here and watch this lovely mad version at The Burning Man festival on youtube. (get tissues. It makes me cry every single time…)
  • Read it to your loved one, your child, your unborn in your belly, your dog, your cat, your friend over the phone.
  • Pop out at lunch and buy the book,
  • Read it here where the full text is posted on the bottom of ‘Don’t Stuff’s’ blog post: Oh! The Places You’ll Go! 
  • get an iphone / ipad app of the book, and sit down and enjoy storytime
  • Feeling creative? Post a vid of you reading it on youtube, or anywhere, and include Sully’s name
  • send it out in the blogosphere via your blog
  • email it
  • Tell Sully’s family, via the comments section below, the places he has been today, where and how he’s been remembered.
  • Post a link and ask your friends on Facebook to read it

Sullivan Darcy Kippax, Sully. Celebrate his wonderful little life. Sully’s mums and his family will see your comments. They will appreciate your gesture, this precious 7 minutes of your life, to remember his.

Happy birthday Sully. I know you would have been a real tear away. A mad little fella. A heart breaker. I wish today we were cleaning cake off your face and helping you to blow out your candles.

Oh! Sully, with everyone remembering you today, the places you’ll go!

UPDATE: So far today, Sully has been to Australia, the UK, Poland, the US, Germany, Malaysia, Canada, and Egypt. And Mauritius and New Zealand. Today (23rd) also to Peru!

And here’s some pics of wishes being granted…

Lachie and Bella at bedtime on the Ipad in Sydney
Juliet, Soph and Tom in Melbourne Australia. You can tell it's colder there!

and hub-in-boots and I read it too. This is a prop book (Dog Loves Books by Louise Yates) because we really read it off the iphone app….

Jo, Stew (Hub in boots), Gumby and Grover


Here's Molly reading it with Aunty Trace in Sydney. She waited patiently, paying attention until the story was over before going outside to bed. awwwww.

Wrapped in cotton (wool)

Montmatre, Paris honeymoon
cake shop in Paris
Gondola, Venice, our honeymoon
"swimming" in piazza San Marco, Venice, during aqua alta at midnight.

Apparently your second anniversary is cotton. WTF? Are they trying to break marriages up? Paper, then cotton? When do we get to the good stuff? Can’t we do it in reverse? (Diamond, then Emerald, then…)

To his credit, hub-in-boots woke me up this morning with pancakes and blueberries (please see former cake comments hub-in-boots. I’m not even going to TEST my blood sugar at 8:30) and a cup of tea, and a beautiful handmade cotton scarf from India. It comes from a Fair trade project called Shurjan in Gujurat, India, that helps women develop their business skills.

I ignored the cotton thing (hate rules), and bought hub-in-boots tickets to the Picasso exhibition tomorrow night. With his mum. (As much as I love Picasso, I’ve been to Picasso’s house in Barcelona and seen his pre-cubist work, seen the exhibition in Melbourne a few years back, and been to Renia Sofia in Madrid to see Guernica, so I’ll live).

The wedding day timetable

This was a busy day, two years ago. It was about now I was up and showering, and then the day was planned out for me on a blackboard (thanks bro)…lots of hair and make up, a roaring ride in a lotus convertible, until finally walking down the aisle at 4:30pm.

I knew once I’d done my speech and our dance I could really breathe out. I was looking forward to that moment all day. So I thought today I’d put up the last part of my wedding speech.

As a bit of background, Stewart (aka hub-in-boots), is the third Stewart that I’ve dated. I told him when we “met” online that I couldn’t date him because I’d hit my Stewart / Stuart quota for one lifetime. Stewart 1 was in the army, and Stuart 2 I lived in London with. I married Stewart 3.

When we first dated, I kept getting confused about his code of football. He specialises in umpiring, not playing, and I kept getting in trouble for calling him a referee (which is the code of football I grew up with). He also has been yelled at, on field, for looking a little like Mr Bean. sort of. He has long skinny legs, so his nickname at footy is “Chook” (and I, as a result, am Mrs Chook). He drives a little bright blue convertible Mazda, which his rallying friends call the Smurfmobile. When he concentrates on driving, he refuses to engage in conversation, or facial expressions. I call this “driving man”. And he made terrible cups of tea. For three months, when we first dated, I choked down these horrible concoctions at his apartment, always refusing a second cup. It turned out, he kept peppermint tea, chamomile, fruit, and ginger teas all in the same cannister as “normal” tea. Hence the taste sensation.

Stew had not dated much when we met, so he couldn’t read signals. He also did I a lot of interesting things, like forgetting to buy me dinner on our first date, being half cut and on a boat full of strangers by the time I showed up after work via the ferry to his annual sailing trip, a few months after we met. When ever he offered me an arm out of a chair or out of a car (or indeed got dressed), he would make a circus noise and say “hey hup” like he was an elephant trainer moving a large beast.

The speech was inspired by Dr Suess’ Green Eggs and Ham.

I knew Stews.

Stews a few.

Do you like Stews to date?

I do not like them, or their mate.

Do you like Stews in the army?

I do NOT like Stews, they are barmy!

Do you like Stew in Londontown?

I DON’T like Stews, they get me down.

Do you like Stews from Sydney’s south?

I do not like his KISSING MOUTH!

Do you like Stews like Mr Bean?

A Stew like this I’ve never seen!

Do you like Stews that umpire, not a ref?

I DON’T like Stews, man are YOU DEAF?

Do you like Stews in a bar?

A STEW in a BAR? You’ve gone too far.

I DO NOT like Stews in the army or Londontown or when its balmy

I DO NOT like Stews from the south, a Mr Bean umpire kissing mouth

I do NOT like his movie laugh

I do NOT like his hairy bath!

I do NOT like sprint cars! A Winner?

This guy forgot to buy me dinner!


I will say it til my face is blue,

I DO NOT like Stews, Stews a few.

Do you like his driving man?

No! His cups of tea? I’m not a fan.

Would you date him on a yacht?

I would not, could not, on a yacht

With Tea and valentines forgot

I could not date someone that long free

And WHEN would he find time for me?

I could not date him at a picture show

He’d slap my knee and then bellow

I could not date his tiny shorts and

Chicken legs and funny snorts

And circus noises, and toothpaste talk

“HEY HUP!” he’d say, and then I’D walk.

He can’t read signals, by GOD it’s true


You do not like Stews,

So you say

Try it! Try it! And you may!

Try it and you may I say!



I DO like Stews! Stews are fun!

I DO like Stews! But ONLY ONE.

I LIKE his great big blue eyes

I like his skill with a surprise

I like it how he pours champagne,

And how he’s CLOSE to QUITE insane.

And I WILL love him at a track


And I will love his movie laugh

And when he puts candles round my bath

I LOVE how he makes everything FUN

He’s kind and caring, there’s only one.

I love his hugs, and stupid jokes

And Steweeisms, he’s SUCH a bloke.

I love the speed at which he drinks

And how his tongue pokes out when he thinks.

I love it how he makes me feel.


I love his skills with a kitchen knife

I THINK that I should BE HIS WIFE!

And finally, I can say it’s true

I DO like Stews….Stew, I DO!


Happy anniversary Stew, aka Disco Stoo, aka Chook, aka hub-in-boots. Love Jojo x