Identifying Strengths


A couple of years ago we were referred to Brighter Futures, a government-funded early intervention program that provides support for vulnerable families. At the time, I was pregnant with Rosie and struggling with HG, Mercedes was in and out of hospital, and having worked full time since we arrived in Australia 18 months earlier, I’d [...]

A Conversation With The Psychiatrist


Today I had a phone call from Mercedes’ psychiatrist. My 7-year old has a psychiatrist. In case you were wondering, that doesn’t get any less weird no matter how many times I say it. She had good news. They (the psych registrar and the psych consultant) have spoken with our paediatrician and together they have [...]

My New Toy


For months now, I’ve been coveting a ‘Nifty Fifty’ – a Canon 50mm 1.8f prime lens – but even with it’s relatively tiny pricetag, given how tight money is right now, it’s been a pipe dream. This week, hubby got a fairly decent tax refund and I found an Australian seller on eBay offering them nearly [...]

Getting Ready for World Breastfeeding Week 2014


In a couple of weeks time, it will be a year since I started Five Degrees of Chaos. By complete coincidence, that first week I started the blog, it happened to be World Breastfeeding Week, so one of my first ever posts was about my breastfeeding journey. Twelve months on, I’ve certainly had a lot [...]

Tips and Tools for Tackling Childhood Anxiety


A few weeks ago I read a brilliant post over on My Three Ring Circus sharing tools for helping with childhood anxiety. It sparked quite a bit of conversation on Facebook – turns out childhood anxiety is far more common than you’d think –  and reminded me of a some of the other little tricks and tips we [...]

Words To Live By


This week, I’m guest-hosting The Lounge, the linky where all the awesomest bloggers hang out. This week’s topic is ‘Words to Live By’… A little under a year ago, I wrote this post about being a less-than-perfect parent. It remains one of my most-viewed posts to date. In it, I shared my fundamental philosophy on [...]

The Best Birthday Ever


Being born mid-July, Chiara’s birthday almost always falls in the school holidays. She missed out on a proper party last year for similar reasons to Rosie – Mercedes was going through a rough patch of hospital stays, we had houseguests for several weeks, and money was tight. This year, money is still tight but we [...]

Touched Out.


Don’t get me wrong, I love breastfeeding. I believe in natural term breastfeeding, and letting my child lead the weaning process. It’s just that right now, I don’t LIKE breastfeeding. You see, breastfeeding is supposed to be about two people – mama and babe – but of late my bossy, stroppy toddler has decided that SHE [...]