Category Archives: Ickle things

Clive, the Cress Head


Well, hello. What have we here?

Meet Clive, our resident cress head. He’s been with us for just over a week now, and is comfortably settled on the kitchen window sill (although we took him outside for this pic). He’s doing very well; his growth from a few little seedlings to a full head of hair has been nothing short of phenomenal. It almost seems a shame to send him for the snip…

I can’t claim credit for Clive, although I did remember to water him once we got him safely home from playgroup. Ickle was in charge of his design and delivery, and she has been quietly tracking his progress ever since. In fact, he has been much more of a hit than the little veggie and herb pots we planted a while back.

That experiment has not been a huge success, I must admit. Our peas yielded the grand total of 6 dry little nuggets; the baby carrots are currently the size of my thumbnail (surely even baby carrots grow bigger than that?); and the mint has decided to shrink rather than grow. Only the basil and parsley are hanging on in there.

Not that I am put off. On the contrary, we shall try again and be assiduous in our watering efforts next time around. And we’ll make a success of it, just like Clive.

Veggie Patch

P1020096Some time ago, I mentioned my plan to start a little veggie patch at home. It’s taken us a while, but we finally acquired some seedlings from Bunnings*, which have been planted for a couple of weeks now. And they seem to be doing pretty well in their new surrounds, despite Icklegen’s exuberant watering technique and my inability to have grown anything in the last few years.P1020091P1020097

I’ll admit to having a slightly grand vision for our patio-cum-nursery: tomato plants weighed down with delicious ripe fruit, beans clambering up trellises, herbs bursting out of terracotta pots…you get the picture. But, for the moment, I’ll be content with our modest collection of tiny plants in plastic pots. Icklegen certainly is. She names the various seedlings after me as she wanders along with her pint-sized watering can “basil, parsley, mint, peas, carrots.” And we enjoy rubbing the leaves of the different herbs between our fingers to release their special fragrance.P1020108

And, hopefully, from this initial experience will come the realisation that not all food has to be plastic-wrapped and delivered in anonymous grey plastic bags by the man from the local supermarket. But, rather, that it can be grown by a mummy and her little girl in a few pots on their patio. Green fingers permitting.P1020116

*Bunnings: leading retailer in Australia and New Zealand, selling a vast range of DIY hardware and garden supplies. 

Ickle Feet

Icklegen has ickle feet, as we discovered back in June, when I took her to have her feet measured for her first pair of shoes.

“Ah”, said the sales assistant, “She’s a size 3D – very small feet and narrow too – I don’t think we’re going to have any shoes in her size. Pre-walkers, maybe.” And she was right. There was nothing suitable for toddlers with size 3 feet who are already up and about on their feet. And no other kiddies’ shoe shop in the centre we had just trekked to especially for the occasion.

My heart sank. I had been so set on getting my little girl her first pair of “proper” fitted shoes. With the days getting cooler and wetter, I didn’t want her running around outside in her bare feet anymore, or in the tiny pair of fabric-soled slippers we had found for her. Something had to be done.

I called a couple of stores recommended by other mums at playgroup, but to no avail. Same old story, “She’s only a size 3…hmm”. Most littlies, it seems, are at least a size 4 when they start to toddle.

So, I sat down at home one evening with a nice mug of camomile tea and got to work on Google. And I found some really great online stores, with fabulous little shoes and sneakers for little feet of all different shapes and sizes. I finally settled on see kai run, an American brand, with an Aussie website bursting with vibrant choice for children of all ages. It has a wealth of information on little feet and shoes, and a seal of acceptance from the American Podiatric Medical Association (so must be good!) There is even a chart to print out so you can measure your little one’s feet at home. Not a bad idea, given that US sizings are different from those in Australia, although good luck using it. Icklegen couldn’t stay still for 10 seconds standing on a sheet of paper.

Determined not to mess up as a first-time toddler shoe-buyer, I decided to call customer care. When I explained Icklegen’s feet weren’t just small, but narrow, I was recommended a couple of models, and one stood out and said “buy me!”


“Stevie” in hot pink: thoroughly girly and utterly gorgeous. And also very practical for my little girl who likes to run around by the lake and get wet and dirty. So I ordered, and a few days later the sneakers arrived from Victoria, where see kai run have a retail outlet. And they were perfect in every way. Robust, colourful, washable…and, I hope, comfortable (well, Icklegen never complained !). So a few months down the line when her feet had grown (almost to a size 4), I bought another pair “Peyton”: trendy black-and-white polka-dot high tops in the sale. Scrumptious, and a bargain at the price!


Has anyone else out there had issues with ickle feet? Any suggestions to share?