Thursday, December 31, 2009

Meet Swishy and Bobbie

Yes. We have goldfish.

Miss Nearly Four has finally turned four.  My
One of a kind,
Understanding and so
Loved  little girl has been a part of my life for four years (nearly she was born at 11.09pm).

Her favorite present is her toy cash register and she is especially enchanted with the credit card that came with it.  I personally prefer Swishy and Bobbie.

This year she...
Was underwhelmed by bagpipes in January

Wondered why her mother was dragging her around Fagan Park in 40 degree heat in February

Started at pre-school in March

Went camping in the back yard in April

Was totally underwhelmed by afternoon tea in May

Blew bubbles in June

Helped dig up the front garden in July

Went to visit Norman Lindsay's house in August

Picked Sweet Peas in September

Fell off the swing in October

Went to visit Sydney Harbour Opera House on a very windy day in November

 and sang in the kindi concert in December.

Happy birthday my angel.  May your 4th year be as wonderful as your third.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Dinner Disaster

So I blog away here and post up pictures of lushious desserts and wonderful dinners and I'm all lah-di-dah and aren't I just the Best Chef Eva.


Yummy eh?

The pale browny bits you can see are egg. Slightly burnt egg. Okay, burnt enough to taste burnt-eggy.  Have you ever tasted burnt egg? There really is nothing quite so revolting.  The last time I ate it I was about 5mins pregnant with Miss Five and hurling everytime I moved.  Hubby made me an omelette and burnt the crap out of it, but being all newly-wedded bliss etc I choked the horrible thing down, and then loudly barfed it back up again. Ah pregnancy how I miss you.

Today I had my revenge on hubby, because not only were the eggs burnt, but there was WAY too much chard and it was seeping brown liquid that looked a lot like the stuff that come out of the bottom of the worm farm.

Oh sigh.

I resorted to feeding the family raspberry icy poles and left-over green butter icing from Miss Four Tomorrow's birthday cake.  Oh and toast.

Even the dog won't touch the stuff. He just looks at his rather full bowl and then looks at me as if to say, "you're kidding right? RIGHT?"  Thus far I am not kidding, but he'll get some kibble when I get motivated enough to go and wash-up.


The Christmas Tree is still up, in fact the Christmas table cloth is still on the table and covered in Christmas crumbs. Every corner is full of empty boxes and scrunched up scraps of festive paper and hubby, the kids and I are eating our way through leftovers and lying barely conscious in front of kids movies.  The washing pile is gargantuan, the playroom looks like a tip, and every spare bit of surface is covered in clean piles of china and cutlery waiting to go to their rightful homes or cupboards.

I went shopping for a chicken coop yesterday and came home with an aquarium. (I seriously did. I'll post photos tomorrow, well if I find the camera - its under something, somewhere, maybe - hubby took the one above on his phone for the nitpickers out there).

'With-it' is not a phrase that would describe anyone in my house right now.

But its good. A warm, laidback summery holiday vibe. (Well if you ignore the tired crabby children and constant bickering and whining for food that is ladened with sugar and none of that healthy shit thankyouverymuchindeed).

And on a final note...

Dear person who got my blog when googling for Brothels in Umina. Given all the hand-painted signs along the roadside from Gosford to Umina saying MASSAGE and a phone number with no other contact details leads me to believe you are probably the type who couldn't organise a shag in a brothel even if you tried.  My suggestion is to shut down the computer and go and join an A-grade football team, that way you'll get a root and won't even have to pay for it, though you might have to do it in front of your team-mates. But hell, you think sex is a meaningless transaction anyway, so what difference would an audience make?


Monday, December 28, 2009

The obligatory Resolution post

Last year I made three resolutions...

  1. Be eating 25% of food from garden by 2010
  2. Use less water and electricity
  3. Lose weight
Well, Its been a mixed result.

I cannot in all honesty claim to be eating 25% of our food consumption from the garden.  This has been due to me totally screwing up my planting and realising in August all the things I should've planted in April, not to mention war with snails, drought conditions, me being a girly wuss when it comes to killing caterpillars - I like butterflies, and no decent watering system.  

Still, I wanted to get the vege gardens established and my fruit trees planted, and I've achieved both of these. I've learned a lot and am going to leave the 25% goal in place for next year.

I can claim VICTORY in using less electricity.  I have electricity records going back to 2006 and our usage has been reduced significantly over this year.  We have dropped about 10 kilowatts a day which means we are using about 20% less electricity PER DAY. YAY us.  However, our electricity bills have not changed and we still spent about $2,200 in 2009, same as 2008 (in 2007 and 2006 we used more electricity but it cost us less, hmm).  I think the main savings are from using the air-conditioner a lot less, especially in winter, not using the spa at all and having one of our fridges switched off for part of the year.  I also got a slow cooker this year and I wonder if its constant use has contributed as well.

Water is not so easy - and I have records of our water use going back to 2004 (yes, tragic, I agree). 2006 was our Year of the Leaks and we used in excess of 1000 litres a day at some points during that year.  I know. Mindboggling.  Still things have improved since then. In previous years we've used 700+ litres a day during summer, dropping to 400 or so litres a day in winter. This year we have used about 600 litres a day with no seasonal change. This can be attributed solely to watering the garden I think.  We're spending about $800 a year and that hasn't changed in the last three years.

Its still far too much.  According to Sydney Water a three person house should be using around 450 litres a day and a four person house about 550 litres a day.  I see us as a 3.5 person house and the goal I am setting for next year is 500 litres a day. This year we're hoping to get water tanks and at the very least a water butt, so if that happens things should change significantly.  

Don't even ask about the diet.

So. To 2010.

Goals are...
  1. Diet (oh stop yawning). In the last year I've gone from sitting on 78kgs to 84kgs. Neat huh? NOT. That cannot happen again.  2010 will be the year of me getting to 65kgs and I'll be doing weightwatchers. Watch this space for moaning about points.
  2. Improve water use.
  3. Reduce electricity use further
  4. Remove chemicals from swimming pool (oh that's going to be so amusing, we want to turn it into a swimming pond with a natural filtration system)
  5. 25% of food from garden
  6. Start Masters degree (if I get in)
  7. Write Boys of Summer and Fat Chance
  8. Sleep, love, hug, holiday, smile, rest, blog.

Saturday, December 26, 2009


Boxing day lunch.

And the kids are still asleep.


Phew - Survived

Before I start babbling on about what a great day we had I just have to get one thing off my chest.

My mother regifted me.


Here is the present in question.

I'd seen it used on several occasions and when I unwrapped my present I assumed She'd got me one the same as hers because it was so useful.  Had just launched into freestyle comedy sketch for my sister using it as a bra when She comes in and says, "oh, I gave it a good wash for you."

A good wash?  WTF?

Yes. Turns out she didn't want it any more. So she gave it to me. For Christmas.


But, other than this almighty disappointment we had a fun and fabulous few days.

The run up was brutal, so unbelievably busy and the kids were so excited they were outdoing themselves when it came to being completely evil.  On Christmas eve I was still cooking at 10pm and wrapping at midnight. Hubby and Brother in law were diligently assembling Ikea furniture for the kids - assisted by a very nice merlot - and m'sister who has a 6mo and is currently the most sleep deprived person I have ever met - was in charge of handing around mince pies and the carol collection - sadly I only had kids carols on the ipod so we listened to Six White Boomers many, many times.

Of course it was flaming garbage bin day AGAIN (it seems to be garbage day every Christmas) and so the garbologists came around at 4.30am and woke all the children up. Xmas day on 3 hours sleep. YAWN.

The kids loved their pressies though, and I am loving their new desks.

Now they are both playing happily in their own space now, rather than bickering over the one small table. YAY for family contentment.

The hordes arrived at around 10ish, by which point the kids had unwrapped most of their pressies, ready for the next wave from Grandparents.  Action in the kitchen went into overdrive and just when everyone was about to starve to death lunch was ready.  Lunch continued until 5pm and then the family walk commenced - it's about 200m long, to a nearby lookout.  Family bickering commenced along with the walk as indigestion hit.  It was a beautiful thing to see half the hordes storming back home in a huff and the other half lying on the footpath screaming whilst I got glared at by the neighbours, who were having walks with their well behaved families.

I was devastated when they all went home soon after. Devastated. No really.

The house is totally trashed, but we've got the Sydney to Hobart on the telly and all the leftovers out.  Hubby and I are tag-teaming naps and the kids are trying to break/lose as many of their new toys as possible. Already I have confiscated yo-yos that were being used as weapons and stopped Miss Four In Three Days eating any more bath gel crystals.

Hurray for the festive season and it being over until next year. 364 days to go people. 364 days.


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

My Day For Christmas Cards

Today was my day for Christmas cards.

First in the letterbox was a scrap of photocopied paper with a picture of a Banksia stuck on it, hubby's name was mentioned and so was someone called Vic.  I have yet to ascertain who precisely Vic is, or whether Vic is a man or a woman. But apparently they live here.  On the back was a page of the Book of Luke. Yes. FROM THE BIBLE.  And a scribbled note... Dear Neighbours, have you re-read this Christmas account lately? Its worth it!


I don't have the heart to tell her that 1) My children have church and circus mixed up, and are convinced church is where you go to see jugglers, lions, tigers and bears, and 2) The closest our family gets to a religious experience at this time of year is when we sit down to eat.

Second in the letterbox was a card address to me in my ex-husbands name from a friend who has known me since I was 11. Le SIGH.  Ironically I also got a card from her parents today, and all names were correct. :)

Third. I got a lovely card from a lovely lady I have never met, spoken to or even emailed. Friend of a friend who wanted to send me something - how Christmassy is that??


Wish List

Dear Husband,

So that we do not disagree as to whether I have given you my Christmas/Birthday list AGAIN. Here it is, on the blog in photo form. :)


I have noted you request for a "jar of man smelly" and will be letting the kids choose something from the Priceline aftershave discount section. mmm. Brut 33 perhaps?

Best wishes.
Your wife. :)

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Garden post

Spent the afternoon harvesting in the garden. Not a bad haul really, especially given all the 40+ days we've been having.  A lot of things, like my lettuces and asian greens are burning off before they even have a chance.

  • Tomatos are all green because I ripen them inside - the moment then even look slightly reddish dogs, cats, birds, children and possums make a beeline for them.
  • Yellow one at the front is a slightly overdone cucumber. But it is a cucumber nonetheless.
  • Beans, corn and a couple of kilos of desiree spuds and one forlorn squash in the middle.
  • Er yes that's a nice rug on the table behind the vegies.  It needs cleaning. Badly.
Once I've got rid of the spuds I'll be putting in sweet potatoes.  Presently they look like this. I'll break off the little stems (slips) and plant them.

Other than that its been an annoying kind of a day. The kids are tired and keyed up for Christmas and being very hard work. Also the yoghurt I was making curdled.

So a litre of milk thrown away, and a mess for nothing. Very vexing.


Friday, December 18, 2009

De-crappifying the House

Been de-crappifying the house this week.  Just down to this one basket of clutter now...

Well, if you don't count what's actually in the cupboards. Now that is totally another matter. But HELL, if I can't see it then it can't really be that bad - just pass me another hair-elastic to tie the door shut please.

Had a BHG moment Christmas shopping the other day and bought some decorations for the bathroom window-sill.

Neat huh?

Oh okay, the kids are going to snap their little legs off and flush them down the loo the moment they spot them. But it looks almost civilised in there right now (barring the large stack of PC World and Top Gear magazines anyway).

Had a long conversation about Pinky-pie and her two missing shoes with Miss Nearly Four this afternoon. That's Pinky-pie below. Believe it or not, but we have a total of seven pink horses in this house - about about fifteen non-pink ones.   Of all the creepy weird toys my children gather (mostly from McDonalds - not that we ever go there - ahem) this is the one that creeps me out the most. A pink plastic horse with a dress on and even SHOES. I mean WTF. Srsly.


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Rash statements

Dear BOM (that's the weatherpeople) its too farking hot. Please rectify at your earliest convenience.  Yours truly C. Nicholas (author).

Christmas shopping assault on Hornsby Mall this morning was wretched hot.  When it gets above 35 or so Westfield air con packs it in and frankly the whole place starts to get a bit niffy.  Like old cheese but with a underlying note of B.O.  Hmm.

Anyway. Aside from scalding off all my tastebuds, both tonsils and a large part of my oesophagus with the tea they serve at Gloria Jeans, the trip was without incident - even had all clothes on the right way in. Yay me. Got pretty much all I needed and when it comes to Christmas I'm saying Bring It On.

This overwhelming burst of confidence has led me to make a few rash statements today, the most amusing so far being... "I want these school holidays to be happy and healthy and for me to look back on it and be sad its over."

Happy?  That's the entire family yelling at each other over the dinner table? Yes?
Healthy? Non stop TV and DVDs and take away every night, right?

Oh, I see you wiping away tears of mirth those with school aged children.  I mean mostly I can barely cope with my children for the weekends and now I have seven weeks ahead of me. SEVEN WEEKS. Nah. It'll be fine. FINE. (halp).

Another rash statement has been, "I'm going on a diet." But I say that so often and I'm so bored by it that I may actually manage it one of those days. And yes, I am aware this attitude is craptacular.  Nobody needs to point that out.  Dieting is just so boring. All the points counting and the fussing about portion sizes and the guilt - OH THE GUILT. Still. I did find myself seriously contemplating one of those fat wobbling machines as a self-birthday present the other day. How appalling was that? I know the theory; exercise and lower calorie intake, there are no shortcuts... but oh if I could just stand there and get it all wobbled off - perhaps whilst I was eating an iced chocolate or something. Mmm. Chocolate.


Then there was, "I'm going to clean the entire house by the end of the weekend." Which I said to my mother. She's coming over on Tuesday to do a pre-Christmas spot check. Oh she of little faith.

Uh OH. Thunderstorm has arrived. Better post this before the power goes...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Ikea - god help me.

So imagine, if you will, heading off to hand in part of your application to do a Masters, and this happens to be at a place you once worked.  Imagine also that you bump into old workmates and see familiar faces. Imagine as you leave you glance at yourself in the reflective window and think, "Christ, who is that over-weight woman? She's got her top on inside out."

Yes. That was how my day started.

Of course, I didn't take the hint and headed on to Ikea with hubby and Miss Nearly Four in tow. NINE DAYS BEFORE CHRISTMAS.  Look, like that perm I got for my Year 10 formal, It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time.

There was a lot of screaming. Not only were meatballs were thrown in the cafeteria, they were also spat. There was fake choking. Fluffy toys were ripped apart with teeth AND THEN we chose to go through the self-service aisle at the end of the whole horrible experience.

Which was mostly fine.

Apart from the woman who queue jumped in front of me pretending she couldn't see me over the gigantic mattress she was wiping out children, harried employees and furniture displays with. The HAG do you realise I stood there fantasising about strangling you with my bare hands - and I was NOT the only one I reckon.   And the security guard who chose to lecture us on the dangers of allowing children to ride on top of trolleys - I mean what sane person stops people who have just made it through the whole Ikea experience and are heading home to discover exactly which bits have not been included in their cardboard box of irritation, and lectures them?

Incidentally Miss Nearly Four has inherited the ape monkey genes from her father and its almost impossible to dislodge from anything unless she chooses to be dislodged.

The whole Ikea thing took 90minutes including the cafeteria tantrum - it felt like SO much longer.

Tomorrow I am going to finish my Christmas shopping if it kills me, or until I kill someone.  My advice is to avoid Hornsby Mall tomorrow. It could get messy.


Monday, December 14, 2009

PC Christmas Card

Egads.  Got these lovely Christmas Cards with Aboriginal artworks on them.  All completely pc until I got to this one.

Scandinavian backpacker skinny-dipping in a billabong, perhaps?
Sunbaking tourist who has not had breast implants, maybe?

Message inside reads...
May every happiness be with you this Christmas and throughout the new year

Am at a loss as to who to give it to.

Not admitting to anything

Here is the extent of my blogging over the weekend...
May have possibly overdone it on the wine and cheese last night.  Whilst I am in no way admitting anything to anyone, it is 2pm and I'm lying in bed with a splitting headache and plotting ways to kill the door neighbour who is chainsawing something Very Loudly outside the window.  Maybe its his fucking yappy dog that old tree.
Oh GOD. shut up. shut up. shut up.
There are people in my life who are a Very Bad Influence who refuse to realise that I can't drink like I did when I was 19 and had a liver.
After this I may possibly have passed out had a nap for several hours.

Ahem. Yes, classy.

Aside from this I spent the weekend Christmas shopping and bought myself my Christmas present for this year.  Please feel free to mock / sympathise with / laugh at / envy my new steam mop.

In fact it has already produced a Christmas Miracle. Yes indeed. Our telly room no longer smells of cat/dog/child wee.  Its all been steamed away. JOY.

Now you're thinking it can't get any better than that.

Oh but it does.

NOT ONLY did I de-wee the telly room. BUT I ALSO discovered the source of our flea infestation (a couch) AND nuked the little buggers in a carcinogenic chemical onslaught.  So now, aside from a small sprinkling of dead or dying fleas falling off the dog onto any surface that shows them up nicely, we are flea free.

Domestic goddess me.


Friday, December 11, 2009

Another kindi concert this morning and the kindi disco tonight and I've just whipped up a spectac picnic in the space of an hour... Phew. Then a party tomorrow and then we're clear until Christmas (apart from shopping, menu planning... oh you are all living it as well. I know this).

Wonderful Megan emailed me this today.  Made me laugh :)

Dear Santa,

I've been a good mum all year. I've fed, cleaned and cuddled my children
on demand, visited the doctor's office more than my doctor, sold
sixty-two cases of choc.bars to raise money to plant a shade tree on the
school playground. I was hoping you could spread my list out over
several Christmases, since I had to write this letter with my son's red
crayon, on the back of a receipt in the laundry room between cycles, and
who knows when I'll find anymore free time in the next 18 years.

Here are my Christmas wishes:

I'd like a pair of legs that don't ache (in any colour, except purple,
which I already have) and arms that don't hurt or flap in the breeze;
but are strong enough to pull my screaming child out of the lolly aisle
in the grocery store.

I'd also like a waist, since I lost mine somewhere in the seventh month
of my last pregnancy.

If you're hauling big ticket items this year I'd like fingerprint
resistant windows and a radio that only plays adult music; a television
that doesn't broadcast any programs containing talking animals; and a
refrigerator with a secret compartment behind the crisper where I can
hide to talk on the phone.

On the practical side, I could use a talking doll that says, 'Yes,
to boost my parental confidence, along with two kids who don't fight and
three pairs of jeans that will zip all the way up without the use of
power tools.

I could also use a recording of Tibetan monks chanting 'Don't eat in the
living room' and 'Take your hands off your brother,' because my voice
seems to be just out of my children's hearing range and can only be
heard by the dog.

If it's too late to find any of these products, I'd settle for enough
time to brush my teeth and comb my hair in the same morning, or the
luxury of eating food warmer than room temperature without it being
served in a Styrofoam container.

If you don't mind, I could also use a few Christmas miracles to brighten
the holiday season. Would it be too much trouble to declare tomato sauce
a vegetable? It will clear my conscience immensely. It would be helpful
if you could coerce my children to help around the house without
demanding payment as if they were the bosses of an organized crime

Well, Santa, the buzzer on the dryer is ringing and my son saw my feet
under the laundry room door. I think he wants his crayon back. Have a
safe trip and remember to leave your wet boots by the door and come in
and dry off so you don't catch cold.

Help yourself to cookies on the table but don't eat too many or leave
crumbs on the carpet.

Yours Always, MUM...!

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Garden photos

The sunflowers have come out.

And my purple king and rattlesnake beans are doing spectacular things

And is it just me or does this cucumber look very... very...



Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Firstly apologies to anyone who is finding my blog slow to load. Am being spammed, and we'll just have to wait until they wobble off and find someone else to irritate. sigh.
Suffered something of a devastating rejection today.  No not a novel - am pretty resigned to that in any case.  No. This was much worse...

You see today was the pre-school end of year concert.  Watched much adorableness and singing and dancing and yawning (Miss nearly 4 was utterly underwhelmed by proceedings and spent the time she wasn't showing the audience her dog-chewed underpants, yawning - but its okay, I recorded it all for her twenty-first birthday or to sell to Channel 10 when she's a famous politician and we have a falling out about which retirement home I'll be incarcerated in).

So. Yes. Concert.

After the singing we had a lovely afternoon tea.

Everyone brought something; chips, fairy bread, christmas tree shaped shortbread you name it...  It was all swooped upon in a scene that reminded me of seagulls and after a ten minute feeding frenzy there was barely a thing left.

Except for one plate.

Behold my offering of vegemite and avocado sandwiches, and note the lone grape left on the fruit platter in front of it. Yes. They even ate all the fruit.

Vegemite and avocado is a childhood family favorite - I love it. Everyone loves it.  Don't they?

As one who prides herself on dishing out the yumminess on such occassions I experienced the chilly realm of rejection. I was the parent that brought the shit-dish that nobody wanted to eat. Yes. Today I was that parent.


Still. As stuff-ups go that was nothing compared to the one a friend of mine has made...

Having rashly stated to a friend that as we'd received no Christmas cards so far this year, it was obvious noone was sending them, and so therefore I wasn't either (GFC and all that), Australia Post promptly made a liar of me and delivered half a post box full of cheery red envelopes this afternoon.

Every single one for hubby from his ex-girlfriends or their mothers, except for one.  That one was for me from a very very old friend. A friend who is fully aware that
  1. I divorced in 2002
  2. I remarried in 2005
  4. My second husband's name is NOT Tom
But she addressed the card to me, Miss 5, Miss nearly 4 and Tom anyway.

Which is nearly as bad as the friend who has somehow switched my first married surname with my second married surname and uses it to address hubby in correspondence.

Yup. Good one guys.


Monday, December 07, 2009

Battling Glumness

So back to Centrelink again this morning.  But finally it looks like they've got all the info they need and hopefully will be processing our claim in the next couple of days.  Centrelink always reduces hubby and I to beyond glumness and so we've spent a lot of the day telling each other that this is a passing phase and that he won't be unemployed forever, and next year he'll get a job, that we won't lose the house etc, etc.

Things were also helped by half a dozen krispy kreme doughnuts and big cups of tea. 

Yes, yes, I am poor and fat.  The winning streak continues.

Or is that the whining streak?


In other news I am trying to talk myself OUT of doing a Masters in Creative Writing next year.  It would be insanity. INSANITY.  Just when I get some semblance of a life back I hurtle off and commit myself to years of study. Madness.

Oh. But it would be so FUN.

Also, I tried my hand a making pizza dough from scratch.

And I look at that photo and all I can think is that its looks like my stomach hanging over my jeans.

Nice visual eh?

OKAY. Tomorrow I will go on a diet (again). Just for you.


Sunday, December 06, 2009

That looks like poo

So, because its December and Christmas and I cleared out the pantry (found things in there that pre-dated hubby) and all was good in the world, I made chocolate mousse last night.

Turned out quite nicely (except for the bit where it fell onto the plate and left all the things like ears and eyes in the rabbit mould it came out of) and was embellished with milo and chocolate sprinkles, which frankly raised it to the level of haute cuisine.

"That looks like poo," said Miss five.
"But poo with milo on it," said hubby.


Thursday, December 03, 2009

Things that have been faintly unsucessful today

Its been a monumentally busy day here at our house.  Sped off to my old workplace, Macquarie University, early on - and found myself as enchanted with the place as ever, oh Mac Uni, I shall return to do my PhD in literature (I mean HELL, like m'sister is going to be the only one of us with a PhD, ahem) - got the documents I needed and then hurtled back to Centrelink to finalise a few odds and ends with them.  Of course being Centrelink there are still a billion other bits of paper they need, but yanno it was worth sitting in that wrist-slitting office with the lighting that sucks the colour and joy out of existence for an hour and a half, because now they believe me when I claim to be an Australian.

You know what really annoys me. REALLY?  The fact that because I was born in the UK I have to endlessly prove my Australian citizenship.  I officially became an Aussie back in 72, at the grand age of around three weeks old. I KNOW. How I could've existed for those first few weeks as a pommie I have No Idea.  And now 37 odd years later I am still waving around a grubby bit of paper that was presented to my mother all those years ago.

I mean I...
  • Have spewed out the back of a ute doing circle work in a paddock
  • Don't know the words to The Second Verse
  • Say Fark all the time
  • Own ugg boots that smell appalling and squelch even when dry
  • Know what a boat race is and refuse to enter them because I 'sip like a girl'
  • Cannot exist in a world where there is no beer, lamingtons, vegemite (or iSnack 1.0 as we like to call it), and thinks pavlova is tops.
  • I even had a boyfriend called BRUCE (alas I kid you not)
But apparently this is all irrelevant in the face of a handwritten, cat pee stained (don't ask) bit of paper issued by Australia House in London. Bureaucracy. I ask you.

Hmm. Yes. Digressing again. So, Centrelink - fairly unsucessful

Then I went shopping, forgot TOILET PAPER - which is a bit of a disaster actually - totally unsuccessful

Picked up the kids (remember them both (success) but both slightly more damaged than when they left this morning - just a few falling-over scrapes and bruises, no biggie - but still mildly unsuccessful)

Promised kids I'd make a strawberry smoothie.  All ready to go when I suggested we add a banana to the mix. Commence screaming.  Lure children from room to watch Barbie Christmas Movie (yes I have no soul), add banana to blender then pour in milk. SOMEONE (remember we call hubby someone) didn't put the seal on the blender. Milk pours out of blender onto bench and floor.  Kids return on hearing yelping. Ignore milk to fish out banana and hide in sink before they see it. Clear up mess. Convince children to return to movie. Fix blender. Add banana. Add more milk. Press on switch. A lot of noise but not very much action. OH GOD NO. Forgot to put blades back in. Kids attracted by noise of blender. Me desperately trying to stand in front of blender to hide banana and shove blades back in, kids equally desperate to Help Mummy.  Much shouting. But...

Get it all working in the nick of time. Smug and happy that children will consume that farking banana. WIN for me.  Such a rare win.

Children reject smoothies on grounds of strawberries (which they asked for) - completely unsuccessful. But I enjoyed them.

Then they decided to do a spot of face painting.

With texta.

That does not wash off.


Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Never let it be said that I have any dignity whatsoever.

Miss Nearly Four: Can I make you look like Barbie?
Me: Knock yourself out.... Ow, ow, ow, ow, ow, ow, ow.
Miss Nearly Four: Sit still.
Me: OW.
Miss Nearly Four: Perfect. Now we have to take a photo.
Me: Must we?
Miss Nearly Four: Yes. Right now.
Me: Heartfelt sigh.

Yes, Barbie's twin sister me.



Decorating The Tree

Decorated the tree yesterday. Here is our magnificent creation.

Done with much dancing with tinsel and singing of carols and drinking of hot chocolate and me having heart-attacks about the kids smashing baubles and treading on them and then ending up driving madly to hospital as they hemorrhage out of their foot and then holding them as they were stitched up. Oh the blood, the blood...

What? It could have happened.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Three weeks to go people (give or take a day)

NaBloWriMo - National Blog Writing Month

Woo hoo, I did it. Oh yes I did it. :) Thirty posts in Thirty days - and only the odd filling in lettuce photo amongst it.

YAY me.

But, there is NO REST for this eager blogger. Oh no siree.

Tomorrow I decorate The Tree with the help of two very small bossy people (and one very tall one). Much sugar will be consumed and probably a lot of wine.

Then its making lame presents for everyone (because we are POOR). Just raised giving second hand presents to the pre-school aged cousins with my mother - SHEESH - you would've thought I'd gaily announced I was giving them a lump of coal or a sock puppet made from one of hubby's Unwashed Socks. Ye Gods, my eyes water at the very thought.

Then there will be a great deal of baking and photos of badly glazed ham, steaming christmas puddings (on a hot day with 98% humidity) and super-saturated solutions of brandy butter.

Then there will be an obscene amount of fake snow and paper snowflakes stuck onto windows regardless of the 40+ temperature outside.

And do not forget the HORROR of school holidays starting in 17 days (not that I'm counting).

Ah its going to be good.


And just whilst I'm on the subject... All I want for Christmas this year is for hubby to get a job - last year it was a tonne of dirt for my vege garden. Funny how things change.

People of the Book

So the Blog This challenge for this week is to write about a book that's caught our interest in 2009.


As a writer I KNOW I should have a thousand books I've read, or could recommend, or are sitting beside my bed in a to be read pile. But sadly I'm usually so busy researching and writing that I don't get time to read as much as I'd like.

Still, never fear. I do have a recommendation...

People of the Book by Geraldine Brooks

Liked: Engaging story, easy to read, brilliantly researched, the prose just lights up the page and you feel like you are there with the character, looked forward to picking this one up each evening (which is more than I can say for Nora Roberts's Tribute, what a yawn fest that was).

Didn't Like: Awful ocker heroine, pathetically weak and perplexing ending, over use of stereotypes. The fact they wrote "A Novel" on the cover - er, thanks but its bleeding-sodding-obvious.

Speaking of covers...

I'd like to include a couple of my favourite covers for 2009. Both of them made me snort coffee out my nose all over the screen at some point this year.


<- Check out her hands if you haven't spotted it.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Saturday, November 28, 2009