Aug 31, 2012

The Photo A Day August Challenge - Part Two

Part two of my August attempt at providing pretty, funny or just plain weird photos for your pleasure.
See Fat Mum Slim's blog for details on how to join in for September.

DAY 16: FOOD... sorry it's healthy, I ate all the Maltesers.

DAY 17: FACES.... and no, facebook, I don't want to tag them all, ffs...

DAY 18: INSIDE... One is, one isn't. I think they want to swap places.

DAY 19: HOLE... many, many small ones, in fact. And yes, they're meant to be there.

DAY 20: TODAY... the first freesia opened.

DAY 21: COOL... So many cool things to choose from today, like the weather, my saggy baggy tracky daks, or my daughter's demeanour... but I went for my fave handbag. Bought it so many years ago (so long I can't remember) for $20 and as animal print has come in, gone out, come in, gone out, and come in fashion again, it has stood the test of time. People have been commenting on it wherever I go since the day I bought it, and have even reached out to stroke it, thinking it's fur. (it's not, it's like a microfibre type thingymajig). I think it's cool.

DAY 22: HOME... Home means lots of things to me, but to be literal, here it is with cat on chair and dog at door.

DAY 23: PAIR... soooooo many options, but I kept it clean and decided on a pair of pears. Tasty looking, aren't they?

DAY 24: PATH... minus the dead mouse which was on it yesterday.


DAY 26: DREAM... there's a very good reason why I posted a pic of Megan Gale at the races for the Dream theme. This blog post explains it.


DAY 28: CLOCK... not my biological one. Though they did both stop ticking a while ago...

DAY 29: DOWN... Feeling down because some limbs from my beautiful tree will soon be coming down, thanks to our fucking neighbours.

DAY 30: CARD... This will be the Husband's father's day card on Sunday, shhhhhh, don't tell him.

DAY 31: HIDDEN... Husband found this hidden, half-buried under a bush in the garden. Dog pleaded guilty. She forfeited her daily treat and entered into a Good Behaviour Bond, which has subsequently been broken several times. And she doesn't give a shit.

Aug 27, 2012

I Dream of an Aqua Genie

Don't you hate it when people start telling you about their night-time dreams and they don't realise that while it may be interesting to them, it's incredibly boring to everyone else?
Me too.

So anyway, I had this weird dream on Sunday morning, for which I blame three things.

1. I watched a TV show called Can of Worms last week.
2. Before I turned off the laptop on Saturday, the last thing I did was check Sunday's theme for Photo a Day August.
3. Whilst minding my own business Saturday night, my daughter spotted a couple of grey hairs on my head and suggested that maybe, just maybe, it was nearly time to start colouring.

I believe these three things whirled around separately in my head until, at some point in time between kissing the pillow a while after midnight and the dog standing on my bladder at 8am, they collided in a riot of colour, improbability and desperation.

The photo theme for Sunday was, in fact, "DREAM". I went to bed wondering what photograph I could post to represent the theme... dream home, dream holiday, dream husband, dream lover (hey George, Daniel and Hugh, line up)... and briefly thought to myself "Wouldn't it be interesting if I had a really amazing dream tonight that I could somehow represent in a photo..." So my subconscious was ready for some scintillating REM sleep action.

Apparently my subconscious was also ready to deal with my psychological and physical ageing brought on by my 'grey' issue, by first dream-taking me to the hairdresser where I became a hot auburn-haired mama (which is my own colour anyway; clearly my subconscious is afraid of change), then taking me on a spending spree, money no object, through a beautiful shopping centre I did not recognise. I tried on some gorgeous dresses in a very spiffy boutique (miraculously my subconscious had shrunk me to a tiny size 6, apparently that's one change it's not afraid of?) before settling on a stunning (in my dream it was, in reality it sounds hideous) outfit of a bright aqua dress with sparkly diamantes on the neckline, a matching jacket, glittery shoes and a giant-arsed flowery, feathery fascinator/hat creation. All similar to what I've pulled together below, but think bigger and bolder, with way more sparkles (my subconscious wants me to dazzle onlookers to the point of blindness and then break my ankle in too-high heels while simultaneously piercing my head with wired feathers).

A Dream I Had

At this point I could probably get deeper into the psychology of dreams; as another birthday and a first date with Clairol Nice'n'easy Colour Number 113 approaches I'm perhaps trying to recapture my youth through regaining my long-lost dress size and hair colour, dreaming of places I've never been, unlimited finances I've never had, and clothes I'd never wear. Even the fact that I dream loudly with noise and action in vivid colour is apparently of great fascination to those stuck in a quiet monochrome slumberland, a la The Artist.

But wait, it gets weirder.

Throughout my dreamy shopping spree, there was someone with me. My BFF. Hovering in the background, chatting amiably, helping me choose clothes, always just a step behind me, like Prince Philip is to the Queen (except I don't think he helps choose her clothes, thank goodness). She was a shopping genie, who stealthily appeared at my side to hand me the snazzy jacket and look-at-me headgear.

But she was faceless. Not that she didn't have a face, just that I didn't look at it (I was looking at clothes and shoes, people) until I came out of the change rooms dressed in my aqua explosion.

I looked at my dream-reflection, in particular at the monstrosity on my head, then turned to my dream-BFF and said "So, we're going to the races then?"

She dream-smiled and said "YES!"

And I saw who she was.

Remember the TV show I mentioned? A hilarious panel-type show I really enjoy, which last week featured the lovely Megan Gale. Yes, indeed.


My subconscious was so hellbent on making me younger, slimmer, and extremely dream-awesome, it gave me an even younger, stunning supermodel as my BFF (pictured below for those who don't know her).

Perhaps my subconscious knew Megan
is not averse to an aqua dress....
... is often found in the vicinity
of racetracks....

...and clearly has no issue with
oversized millinery.

I'm not sure in what parallel universe Megan would ever follow me through a shopping centre doing BFF duties... sure, I think she's fabulous, she has a good sense of humour, we have similar hair and eye colours, and her girls are also awesome (though I suspect they sit a hell of a lot higher on her chest than mine do)... but sadly for me, I think I was dream-punching above my weight.

When I got home (it was my real home) in my dream, I asked my Husband to unzip the dress (and it was my real Husband, dammit you lazy subconscious) and shockingly, I was the real me again. Not a size 6, no new hairdo, no Megan in sight.

And then I woke up.

I suppose you can dream-dress it up any way you like, but underneath it all, I'm just me.

Fuck it, I'm going back to bed.

Aug 20, 2012

Oh Brother, Big Brother

After a 4 year hiatus, during which none of us missed it, Big Brother is back on Australian television.
Why, you may well ask. Me too. I have several theories which I've been mulling over for the last, umm, 20 seconds.

One is money, though I had recollections of Channel 10 losing money on the show in its previous format. Didn't they? Correct me if I'm wrong (I've only had 20 seconds, no time to research). The other is that Sonia Kruger, the host, is on such a massive contract with Channel 9, they needed to give her another vehicle to fully utilise her exquisite (? I may have meant excruciating...) verbal talents and get value for bucks. But mostly, I believe it may be because Zoo Weekly have run out of ex-housemate bimbos willing to pose in almost nothing, now that Krystal has given up 'modelling' to study acting.

Krystal from BB2006, wearing what
appears to be a dishcloth she stole
from the Big Brother house. And
before you ask, yes, they are fake.

And to be fair, perhaps TV executives felt us women were missing bathroom scenes like this...

I decided not to post the full frontal pics I found.
I must be getting old.

... so this year they gave us Bradley...

He is younger than my son, so I will
not be looking at him. At. All.
I have forced myself to sit through the first week of episodes, purely for research, so I could pass my findings on to you all and save you the trouble of wasting your precious time. Think of it as a community service. I mean, you could spend that time searching your groin for ingrown hairs, cleaning out your earwax, and scraping the soles of your feet with a Ped-Egg, and retain more brain cells than you would if you watched the show.

Look, I get that there is a certain 'people-watching' element to it. I have watched many episodes of previous series (but never been a completely addicted convert, my main enjoyment was watching the Friday Night Games show because I like to see irritating people get pummelled in various ways). It could be an interesting social experiment. We can learn a great many things from watching and noting the habits, idiosyncrasies and interactions of other people... mostly that there is always someone dumber, vainer, more selfish, more critical and more judgemental than us. Which in turn, makes us feel good about ourselves (ahhh, I may be understanding the attraction...)

Unfortunately, the premise of the 'big secret' this year (all the boys had an individual secret and the girls  banded together to match each secret with each of the guys - the roles are reversed in the second week) has done nothing but make the female housemates appear to be Judgey McJudgersons. As they watched the entrance of a suave, very good looking male, several of the girls screamed "Ooooh, he's the millionaire." Of course, because you have to be attractive to make money, ffs.

Not that the guys were much better; Benjamin was dressed nicely with spiffy braces so he was immediately 'Gay' (which he is, but that's beside the point) and Michael (Dave Grohl's ranga twin) has long hair and a scruffy beard so he was the 'Bogan' (which he isn't, he has the IQ of a genius and 'hates' bogans). To their credit, the guys apologised to each other for making snap judgements, but I suspect some of the girls will continue in their Judgey McJ ways.

The lack of diversity in the housemates this year surprises me; they're as 'white' as my arse cheeks during a full moon, and nowhere near as old. The dreadlocked George Baramily (the real millionaire, worth a reported $3.7million) may be from an ethnic background.... or he may just have a really good tan from working out in the mines in Western Australia. Layla is a Pom and part Maori, part Polish, but the most culturally diverse thing about her is the giant rollers she wears in her hair while she has lessons on how to speak Strayan. Oh, and Layla honey, if you want to find an Aussie surfer guy to mate with, you may want to NOT call it a 'surfing board'.

I think Channel 9 missed a really good opportunity this year. They could have kicked off this new era of Big Brother with a fascinating mix of people, but they've let me down. They could have filled the house with 20-55(or older) year olds from many diverse backgrounds, who have lived, worked, married, divorced, travelled, had kids and changed the world...

... because really, who doesn't want to see this in Zoo Weekly.....?

So, this may be Eddie Murphy, but
you get my drift.....

I must admit I am intrigued by Charne and her gorgeous retro look, Estelle the humanitarian lawyer wannabe, and Josh the sweet and particularly cute (but still young enough to be my son) singer from Adelaide who has dated 100 women....

Oh brother, I'm going to keep watching, aren't I?

Aug 15, 2012

The Photo A Day August Challenge - Part One

Yes, I have jumped back on board Fat Mum Slim's photographic bandwagon.

DAY 1: OUTSIDE... Our winter has been an almost endless parade of blue sky and sunshine. Bliss.


DAY 3: COIN... from the year I was born... yes, I'm that old.



DAY 6: WRITING... A recipe, of sorts.

DAY 7: 8 O'CLOCK... I went for 8am. I was probably hugging a wine at 8pm.


DAY 9: MESSY... No prizes for guessing whose room I went to for this. As a funny footnote, facebook wanted me to tag Robert Pattinson's face in the poster on the wall.

DAY 10: RING... My grandmother's. With 70% of the stones missing. Time I did something about that...

DAY 11: PURPLE... Three Shades of Purple: Scarf, nails and jeans.

DAY 12: SPOON... Some old ones.



DAY 15: READY... for breakfast. Jasper (aka That Fucking Cat) almost screamed the house down waiting for breakfast, then tried to knock the camera out of my hands to get the food. No sensitivity towards my needs for a good pic, bloody greedy cat.

Aug 13, 2012

The Blah-Blah Who Cried Wolf

You all know the boy who cried wolf story, don't you? He bitched about his life so much, even though things were humming along pretty well most of the time, that when he really had a problem, nobody believed him or really gave a shit. Or something like that. Anyway...

Firstly, let me remind you that I am peri-menopausal. This means that there are many varied things that really shit me to stabbiness. And things I care deeply about, so much that I can be a bawling mess. On the other side of the double-headed coin, it also means there are many things I really don't care about. Do not give a fat rat's clacker. Seriously, save your breath, I am just not interested.
My Care Factor can go from zero to extreme and back to zero faster than Usain Bolt can run the 100m, depending on wind conditions.
Either way, my tongue gets poked out a lot.

Me, most days

Secondly, I am old. Older than most of the bloggers I read and the tweeters I tweet with. Five, ten, fifteen... hell, maybe even twenty years older than some of you (can we perhaps settle on an average of ten years? *sobs*). My two kids are young adults. I have the advantage of experience and hindsight when it comes to parenthood. As a result, I know I may come across with a bit of a "been there, done that, didn't kill the kids" attitude, but that is because... well, I have been there or roundabouts, I have done that or something similar and my kids are still alive. And still talking to me. And are actually quite lovely young people. So, I figure I may have done a few things right which worked for us (there isn't always a clear right or wrong). Did I mention they're still talking to me? I did?

Every child-raising experience is different. My two were. Both were breastfed. Both wore disposable nappies. One constantly had a dummy, one didn't have a dummy at all. One slept through the night from 4 weeks, the other took 2 years. One was healthy, the other required medication, surgery and specialist visits for 10 years. One had swimming lessons, one didn't. One ate everything in sight, the other only ate custard. One was a follower, one was independent. One is creative and artistic, the other wouldn't have a clue. One is co-ordinated, the other isn't. One loves sport, one hates it. One reads, one doesn't.


The fact is, most of us get through those early years relatively unscathed and mentally intact, even when we think we won't. Yes, it can be hard. Yes, there were bad days. Yes, there were tears. Yes, there was boredom. Yes, there was drudgery and monotony. Still is.

Thankfully we don't even need corkscrews any more

BUT I CHOSE THIS LIFE. I CHOSE TO BE A MOTHER. With all its ups and downs, highs and lows, risks and surprises, tantrums and empty wine bottles (that may just be me).
I KNEW FULLY WHAT I WAS GETTING INTO. And this may not go down well, but anyone in this day and age of oversharing on the interwebz and mountains of information, advice and warnings at their fingertips who moans and groans and wails that they "didn't know it would be like this" or "this isn't what I signed up for" is either ignorant or in denial, extremely immature, or, dare I say it, being melodramatic and looking for attention.

*waits for backlash*

 *keeps going regardless*

I know of families with severe problems who are positive and uplifting, not whingers. A mother of nine who built an orphanage to save other children who doesn't complain. A survivor of domestic violence who uses her experience to help her look forward and move on, not moan. Couples who have lost children but still look for the joy. And people who struggle to have children at all. Some who travel to the other side of the world and back just to try and become a parent.

So I am genuinely tired of the 'woe is me' type attitude I keep coming across and inferences parenthood is 'soul-destroying'. If it is said/written with humour, sarcasm, satire and self-deprecation in more of a "woe the fuck is little old me, my soul is drowning in Napisan" attitude, then okay, I'll hug you, pour us both a wine and laugh/cry along with you, because heaven knows I've been there. And if you think you are genuinely suffering from depression, then please seek help and I will TOTALLY support you all the way, because heaven knows I've been there too.

But if you look around at your little family circle and there is no mental, chronic or terminal illness, no life-changing disability or tragedy, no abuse or threats hanging over you, you have a roof over your head, food on the table, and you have healthy, smiling, happily grotty children looking back at you, then please don't talk/write about your life in morbidly depressing ways. Don't use artistic licence to embellish or exaggerate. You are doing a huge disservice to those who are really struggling.

I can't remember where I
hid the gin!
By all means share your experiences. Honesty is important.
Tell us the sink is full of dishes, you've run out of clean undies, and the kids have had saveloys for dinner three nights in a row. Tell us you've had a crappy day because you ran out of coffee and your favourite pants no longer fit and the dog stole the leg of lamb you were going to roast for dinner. Tell us you cried at a Huggies commercial because your youngest has just started school and you'll never need to test a nappy's absorbency again and you miss it. Tell us you forgot your own name when you had to fill in a form because everyone seems to just call you MU-U-U-U-UM these days. Tell us you feel like you haven't slept for a month. Tell us you had different expectations. Tell us you are sad sometimes. Tell us you are unsure of what you're doing. Tell us you sometimes go to the toilet just to hide from your kids.

But think about how you do it.

If life isn't actually too bad, then please don't make it sound miserable. 
Whining about parenting is not an Olympic sport, people. You don't have to go for Gold.

Don't be a blah-blah. Find those big girl panties (I sincerely apologise for using that word, I hate it too) and stop crying wolf.

Because I don't want to be lulled into not caring about your grumbling ways if that wolf really does turn up one day and craps at your front door.

Now that I WOULD care about.

Aug 9, 2012

Hello Sailor

This is Tom Slingsby.

He won a Gold Medal for Australia in the Men's Laser at the sailing.

Let's look at him, err, his medal, again.

And again.

Okay, one more. Yes, I know there's no medal in this one, just Tom...

Oop, found another one.

To show I'm not completely one-eyed, here is Oscar Pistorius of South Africa.

He didn't win any medals, but he won my admiration and my heart.

Sorry, what? He runs on blades? Not sure I noticed...

To show I'm also not sexist, here are a couple of women who caught my eye...

You're welcome.


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