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Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Feelgood fuzzy inducing video for the day

Tracey linked to this video first in her blog and I'm shamelessly following her lead here. Go to her to find out the history behind the piece, because its a great example of clever entrepreneurship.

Otherwise, just enjoy.

My world is full of blighted goals and promises

Well, I'm going to chock in a few posts today, in case I don't get a chance to over the next few days, while I wrestle with mum's technology.

I mentioned my sister is staying this week, and accompanying us part-way on our leg home on the planes. During her stay, I was going to get on the treadmill (as if an extra twenty minutes is going to make any difference to how I fit into my swimmers this late in the game!), write up draft posts for emergencies and all other kinds of trivials. I've done NOTHING. I've been too tired.

To make matters worse, its cool and rainy here today, so I'm going to have to think of a way to keep the kids entertained while I try to get everything in order. Wish me luck!

My Christmas has come early! (and perhaps my birthday too...)

I’d been hoping this would happen before we went away. We all went for a drive this morning and came home to see the mail had already come. Poking out of the mailbox was a crudely folded magazine, wrapped in plastic. I’d been told it was coming out sometime this week or next. I unwrapped it then and there, with the end of my car still poking out into the street, possibly holding up traffic; I’m not sure.

There was my article! Towards the end and blessedly intact (I’ve sometimes seen my words hacked by editors until it looks nothing like the work I’d submitted. But that could’ve been my fault to start with! But I digress…). I was really quite chuffed.
Then, a girlfriend called around. She handed me a package, all wrapped beautifully.

“What’s this for?”
“Next Tuesday?”
Me, confused: “What’s next Tuesday?”
Her, probably incredulous: “Your birthday!”
Oh, that’s right. I’ve been too stressed this week, I forgot.
In sum––a nice day.

*Note: this isn't the edition I'm in. This is just a photo of an old one.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Generation Gap: Or, "When I feel old"

My Sister: “Since when has there been a new introduction to Play School?”
Me: “This has been the introduction for ages”
“Well, I haven’t watched for ages. I work, you know”
Me, getting huffy: “I work too, you know”
“I work away from the TV set”

That made me think, well she has a point. If I was going to be reactionary and paranoid, I’d jump up and down and say, “Is that all you think I do? Sit and watch TV all day?”
Then I stopped and thought, “Well, I do have the TV on a lot of the time.”
That thought depressed me so much I am acutally pleased
that non-ratings season TV starts next week.
Which depresses me even more.

*Three stars to the person who can tell me which Stephen King book I’m emulating here, which I happen to be reading at the moment.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Does this increase or decrease my credibility?

C-List Blogger

Thanks to Schmutize, again, I have found a little badge with which to adorn my blog. Not that it’s the most flattering one ever, but it is quite timely as I was celebrating just the other day how my Technorati ranking has jumped 90,000 places in just the past six weeks or so, and now my ego has returned to earth with a thud. My hubris has been overcome. If indeed it exists anymore, because I'm running on such sleep deprivation (can it truly be possible for an eight month old to be getting his molars? Well, Riley seems to think so) that my brain is running on minimum. No driving cars or operating heavy machinery for me. Which might explain why I've been throwing clothes indiscriminately into my suitcase these past few days getting ready for our holiday. Does a child really need winter flannellete pajamas when we're travelling into stinking heat? Apparently, yes. Plus spare clothes for doll. My daughter needs an entourage worthy of a President or Queen.

Anecdote of the Day

Adam is trying on new boardshorts for the summer ahead to swim in at the beach. He and Keira are in the changing rooms. He pulls them on, holds out his arms for her inspection and says, “How do they look?”
Keira strikes a Rodan’s Thinker’s pose, then says as officiously as Anna Wintour would, “Do a twirl, dad. Twirl!

My little fashionista!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

For anyone looking for a bit of joy in the festive season

Here in Melbourne, Myers (our version of Bloomingdales?) have a very famous window display that is uncovered every year by B-lister celebrities and people, baffingly, queue up hours to see it. These Koalas below were part of the display until they were taken down due to complaints about their...questionable...activity. For the record, they're supposed to be helping each other in and out of a costume I believe. I'll have to chase that up. Personally, I don't think there's anything wrong with teaching children the facts of life via a pair of humping koalas, but that's just me...

List time equals fun times for all

I stole this from Teena who got it from The Crazy Rants of Samantha Burns who saw it over at Diane's Stuff, who got it from Skye who got it from Renaissance Blogger.

The idea is simple ... copy, bold the things you’ve done and post.

Here are mine:
01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said “I love you” and meant it

09. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game

16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby’s diaper

21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse

29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster

35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer

40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was drunk
42. Had amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country
44. Watched wild whales

45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your CDs
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Played touch football

61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain

65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites

70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight (DOES WARCRAFT COUNT? THEN, YES)
72. Gotten married

73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest

79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an “expert”
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage

85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
88. Kissed on the first date – ER, DOES PICKING UP COUNT? THEN, YES

89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house

92. Buried one/both of your parents
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently
95. Performed in Rocky Horror – OH GOD I WISH
96. Raised children
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn’t stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn’t have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Touched a stingray
110. Broken someone’s heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone

114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a facial part pierced other than your ears
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper

129. Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
131. Parasailed
132. Touched a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad - and the Odyssey
135. Selected one “important” author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you’re living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn’t know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146. Dyed your hair
147. Been a DJ
148. Shaved your head
149. Caused a car accident
150. Saved someone’s life

I didn't rate as badly as I thought I would've. If I'd've travelled to Europe and a bit more of the USA, I reckon I would have kicked ass. This makes me feel better, as I found out last night I (currently) rate as a C-Lister Blogger - - but more of that tomorrow!

Friday, November 24, 2006

‘Things I don’t understand’ Friday

I don’t know what’s wrong with me. I don’t seem to have found a kernel of absurdity that I need to write down in what’s normally my rant-reserved day of the week.

Don’t get me wrong; the usual weirdness has gone on in the world. Studios green-light movies such as Santa Clause 3 and yet kick Peter Jackson off the new Hobbit project.

Fox has showed some sense to scrap the OJ book, but I haven’t heard their reasons for approving the debacle in the first place. I read that Tom and Katie flew in their wedding guests at their own expense…hmm…I don’t want to be mean, but that’s a tad ‘Nigel-no-friends’ for my liking!

I’m sorry, that’s all I’ve got. Wait, there is Michael “Kramer” Richard’s racist tirade: but I don’t want to dwell on the ugliness of that moment.

Ok, it’s official now. The other day the horoscope moved into Sagittarius which means my birthday is right around the corner. Part of me is ecstatic (it always kicks off the party season which is the month of December); the other part is choking on the reality that another year has flown by.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Milestone Time

Riley's first word today - this afternoon at approximatey 5.45pm, to be specific - was "dad dad dad".

And now he won't shut up saying it!

Upcoming holiday notification and general matters

Happy Thanksgiving to all my overseas friends!

Next week we’re off for our big annual holiday back home. I am very excited, as well as trepidacious, because we’re flying and in my experience there are only two types of behaviour that kids can demonstrate whilst flying: pure angel or pure demon. (At least I’ll probably be able to prise a post out of the adventure alone!)

Where does that leave Miscellaneous Mum? Exactly as before, hopefully. I’m still planning on maintaining my ‘post a day’ quota (for my own sanity if nothing else)–– that’s if my parent’s existing PC technology can handle my demands. You see, my mother’s old computer rattles like an overheating boiler when you ask it to do anything more difficult than open ‘solitaire’ to play. She does have a laptop, which I’ll rely on, but even then I’ll be gnashing my teeth together at her dial-up speed, and probably be wishing I’d bought some sort of satellite connection to keep up with my broadband-lifestyle.

At the moment I’m working on a little post series, which I’ll be posting intermittently, about the little patch on earth I call home, because even though I rag on it from time to time (and Adam forever is) it is a lovely looking place.

Here’s a picture to whet your appetites!

This is back-beach, so called because it spans the distance between the back of South West Rocks and Hat Head, the next beachside town (what an imaginatve name). It's not a swimmer safe beach- it's not patrolled- but it is popular with surfers. South West Rocks is a half hour from Kempsey, so it's not technically my hometown, but I'm willing to claim it so!

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Do you want to know what’s funny?

Funny is hearing a two-and-a-half year old, who has still not mastered her English mother-tongue, say “Shitsu Dog”. It’s a mess; it sounds rude; and is about the closest thing she can say before crossing the line into getting into trouble.

What cute/rude words do your kids make?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Weight control website heads-up

It’s my pleasure this week in my eMoms Blogjolt to talk about Katiebird’s blog Eat4Today.
Katiebird is a regular reader and commentator on many, many forums (I think she even pops in here from time to time ;)) and is very positive and encouraging. Her site takes this one step further, and helps facilitate weight loss or control for others by journaling her own progress. If you would like help in this area, check her out!

I think (?) I’ve mentioned before about my own…history…with food journaling. Once I get the courage together to go dig out my old diaries, circa 1997*, I’ll scan them in and we’ll all give ourselves a belated Halloween’s scare, because they are very scary. Let’s all remember, and I can’t stress enough, that that’s a different thought process and place of negativity than katiebird’s raison d'etre. I can't help but ponder on how interesting it is when something that can be so helpful is turned into something less so. But that can wait for another post.

It's going to be a stinker of a hot day in Melbourne today (forecast 36 degrees, which means it will be 38 degrees where I live. Knocking on 100 degrees farenheit for our foreign friends). Ech.

*Anorexic/bulimic/gym addiction year.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Somehow I knew this day would come; just not this soon

Riley has discovered his penis, in what will (in all probability) become a lifetime love affair (to paraphrase a comedian who's name I can no longer recall).

He sits in the bath and twiddles it between his fingers like banjo strings and I can't help but cringe a little and I don't even have one!

What do I do? Turn my head and ignore it or tell him to stop it?

I'm not overly concerned, don't get me wrong. I'm just getting used to boy-stuff!

I reserved this book from the library with great expectations, only because I have such regard for the show. I’d hoped that it wasn’t going to be one of those rushed, badly edited jobs that cashes in quickly on its subject’s success.
Sadly, my hopes were dashed.
I gave up after about thirty pages. I found its style jaunty and confused. I barely knew any of the celebrities it talked about (it’s definitely written with a UK audience in mind). I skipped to the end and gratefully found a chapter devoted to the reason I borrowed the book in the first place—that being a recount of David Wallaim’s swim of the English Channel in July 2006. I found it quite interesting-and sad- how he had to keep his extensive training secret, so as not to jeopardize the integrity of the charity and the project he was swimming for. And how the media concurrently honed in on his weight gain, writing it off as him being lazy when he was being far from it! (He had to put 'padding' on to make the trip).
I can’t imagine swimming for 10.5 hours, let alone in the freezing waters off France. Good on him. The fact he did it so much quicker than predicted, clocking in one of the top fifty times ever, must be delicious frosting on the cake. Mmm…cake…

Sunday, November 19, 2006

This'll get bums on seats!

Here's a still from the next Harry Potter movie in production. Now I know I'm ten years older than Daniel Radcliffe, but he's not a bad looking lad and, well....I must admit this photo made me sit up in my chair a bit.

July 2007 is too far away! (Only if the movie's good at least. The past two have been).

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Further to yesterday....

And I was thinking, if you did buy one of those trees, you know you'll just be inviting criticism from those nearest and dearest to your heart.

You can just imagine the conversation:

Guests are leaving after food, presents, over-drinking, partying. They're satisfied, but are dying to cast doubt on their hosts' hosting perfection. Well now they have the perfect opportunity.

"Did you see their tree?!?! How dumb did that look?"

Sometimes we make it all too easy.

Friday, November 17, 2006

'Things I don't understand' Friday

Here’s another example of how the world is making less and less sense. Who felt the need to create this? More importantly why? And for what possible purpose does it serve, other than to drive up sales? Aren’t the only people who are in the market for inverted anything are your run-of-the-mill devil worshippers? I’m sure even they’d draw the line here because, let’s be honest, it’s a really tacky idea.

Another thought: if there are devil worshippers who practice Christmas, then isn’t that a case of exercising a supreme double standard?

My issues with the tree:

1) I’d be constantly worried about it tipping over.
2) Won’t the star become lost at the top? You could hardly see it, especially if you’re short or a kid. And if you’re a kid, that’s arguably the best bit of the tree––arguing over who puts it up there.
3) It just looks stupid.

Does anyone actually like it? Can anyone conjure up any positive attributes, because I hate being negative and am happy to hear the case for the defence before pronouncing sentence.

There’s a challenge!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Thanksgiving? What’s Thanksgiving?

I’m writing this specifically for this week’s Carnival of Family Life. The theme was ‘Thanksgiving’, which I felt pretty much dealt me out because we do not practice it in Australia. Then I thought a bit more and remembered I have been lucky enough to experience Thanksgiving first hand and perhaps it might be nice for others to hear a fresh, wide-eyed, non-jaded recount of the holiday.

I should first admit my continuing ignorance, and I’m sure there are fellow Australians who would plead similarly. I knew Canada held the holiday a full month before America, but to be honest I thought, for them, Thanksgiving and Halloween fell at roughly the same time. I had to check Wikipedia to find out the specifics (it’s the third Thursday, who’d have guessed it, in November, apparently, fellow Aussies). All the rest I know of is from the movies: feasts of food with Turkey as the main ‘attraction’, family-get-togethers-and-inevitable-fighting, and lots of decorating in orange and brown hues to symbolise the end of the harvest season*. That’s about it. That’s all I know.

I was in Canada in October 1995, visiting my aunt who was living there for a period. Her friends invited us all around to join their Thanksgiving dinner. I kept quite a detailed travel journal, but unfortunately it’s at my parent’s house, so I cannot go find it to check what we ate. My only real memory of the meal was an entire table filled with foods I had rarely, if ever, eaten before; especially pumpkin pie, which tasted a little funny to me. My greatest emotional memory was of a lovely evening; of warm, fuzzy acceptance and kindness (a small glass of wine helped stoke those feelings too!) This lasted until the food was cleared away and I was shooshed off down to the basement with our host’s teenage son so the adults could have a ‘break’.

I also remember the giant toilet bowls which re-fill almost to the top after every time they flush. I never went to the toilet without the fear that at some point I would cause a plumbing disaster. Our toilets over here use a quarter of the water, I think!

Australia will never have Thanksgiving; it’s not part of our history or culture. Culturally speaking, there is a huge backlash at the growing number of trick-or-treaters who are appearing every Halloween so I can just guess what would happen if we celebrated Thanksgiving. But I think it would be special if we did get to experience it, just once. Our main holiday is Christmas, which is inevitably tied up with the giving and getting of presents. As far as I know, you don’t get presents at Thanksgiving. It’s about giving thanks. We should all endorse that!

Am I right?

*If I’ve fact-checked wrong here in any way, be sure to let me know.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Battling stage fright

The other week, I went to a book party. You know, like a Tupperware party, but instead selling children’s books. It was really interesting to listen to our host. She’d only been in the business for about two months and was extremely nervous; that having spent most of her recent years at home with her young children had made her nervous speaking out now in front of a group of adults, when she used to do it regularly.

I’ve been used to speaking in front of large groups since I was a child. I used to read at church of a Sunday; getting up in front of the congregation to read passages from the bible wasn’t a big deal. I’ve never understood why public speaking ranks higher than death in polls of people’s biggest fears.

Until now: well, kind of. When I return home next month for a holiday, I’ve volunteered to speak to the final year high school students about such issues as stress management, mental health and just generally trying to keep your head above water (I’ve had a bit of experience). Then my mother (who works at this high school) says I might like to talk to the English students about creative writing as well. Er, ok? I know about English (I have a Masters in Literature. Yes, I’m degree-name-dropping) but I really don’t feel adequately qualified to talk about writing. Essays, yes. Prose, not so much. Don’t get me wrong: I have tonnes of ideas. I just hope they translate properly and I don’t come off looking like a loser.

I just read that last sentence. Classic low self esteem talk there: pure adolescent mentality. I’m sure I’ll be fine. At the very least, I’ll fit in!

No, scrap that. I’m going to be positive and engaging.

What do you do to ward off self-sabotaging thoughts?

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

The most beautifully constructed sentence in the English Language

Editor: "Karen, can you please email through to me your invoice for your article?"

Oh, life is sweet some days.

What we're reading at the moment #1...and other domesticities

Firstly, we had Riley's eight month check in at the local nurse yesterday. This is not news unto itself, really, just an excuse to say in the past four days he's started to crawl and climb the furniture! What a clever boy!

His teeth, though, are causing terrible problems. His eighth one is about to come through. Then the molars are due next; but it's too early, isn't it?! Keira was EIGHTEEN months old before she was at the same level of dental maturity. Anyone who had early teethers out there, let me know when their kids got their molars. I'd appreciate it!

Anyway, here's our list of the month:

Pajama Light, Gale Sypher Jacob (Dutton Juvenile, 2006)

Keira’s particular favourite at the moment. This really is a special book. She and Adam even now go on their own special ‘Pajama Walks’ at twilight (down to the supermarket, usually to get me chocolate, but shhhh I didn’t tell you that, it spoils the sentiment!) The smudgy watercolours give an impressionistic feel; perhaps to help the children visualize, then crystallize, the scenes in their own heads. I love it.

The Night is Singing, Jacqueline Davies (Dial, 2006)

Pre-bed kids, in my experience, can often have the willies––especially if it’s a stormy night or a full moon (I’m not kidding). This book may help dispel those, with its lovely rhyming structure, gloriously textured illustrations and an emphasis on safety and security. Keira also loves saying the word ‘lullaby’. She thinks it’s hilarious.

The Very Best Doll, Julia Noonan (Penguin, 2003)

Keira likes this because she’s such a girly-girl and adores her own special doll. So she empathises with it well. I particularly like the illustrations; a kind of old-world vibe. Not a television, telephone, mobile phone or gadget-dependant toy to be seen. I find that most refreshing.

Chatterbox, Margaret Wild (Penguin, 2006)

Lastly, here’s an Australian writer for good measure. We’ve had many a MW book here, and this is her latest one, I believe. It’s the story of a baby who won’t talk, then suddenly does, and her family’s not sure which way they’d prefer it! Great for introductory words (so it’s almost too young for Keira) but the colours and humour keep her entertained.

Monday, November 13, 2006

“The Power of Marketing Compels You!”

I’m writing this lightly, as I tend to do with most posts, but deep down I think we all know how serious this subject can become. Anyone with children over the age of about two will be able to tell you the power advertising starts to have. Television ads, once only admired for their colours now take on a deeper significance. Once Keira hears a McDonalds one, for example, she will come running from the other end of the house to see what new toy they have to accompany their Happy Meals. Part of the crime here, for me, is that I know from working there that these toys may cost us about 60 cents, but only probably cost five cents in truth.

Some kids grab at whatever product or character which most appeals to their personality. Now for Keira, it’s the Disney Princesses. After a few deep breaths, I can deal with this, especially now Adam and I have discovered a covert strategy for helping us deal with the times Keira becomes difficult. For example, Supernanny over here advertises for Continental. If Keira doesn’t like what we’ve served her up for dinner, we just say, ‘Oh, but its Supernanny Rice!’ or ‘Supernanny Soup’ and decides that that’s OK and she yums it down. I wonder sometimes about the lack of honesty we’ve resorted too—because generally she’s an excellent eater—but an empty-plate usually trumps all other considerations: especially when it’s the end of the day, and we’re all tired and just waiting for bedtime to roll around.

How do you coerce your kids to do as they’re told? More importantly, do you ever feel guilty that you have to?

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Sunday, November 12, 2006

Lessons in sensual-manipulation etiquette

Yesterday, I was booked in for a massage and facial. I’ve had this voucher since last birthday, which was almost a year ago*. As the appointment time came closer, I realized I was wearing a g-string.


Good question. I started to wonder, ‘Does the masseuse want to see a bit of butt floss?
I answered myself, ‘She’ll probably ask you to get nude anyway.’
‘What if she doesn’t? If I leave it on, isn’t that …you know, icky?’

You see, I’m having this internal conversation with myself. This is a good day. On my anxious days, it’s on a deeper, noxious, level.

‘Honey, she’s seen it all before, all shapes and sizes.’
‘But not my ass.’
‘So go change your bloody knickers then!’
‘No screw it. Because if I were being paid seventy dollars an hour, I’d be prepared to look over the odd unsightly body part, and on a scale of the Worst Things I’ll Ever See In My Life, my ass, I’m sure, only ranks somewhere slightly above the middle and I can live with that.’
‘Well, touché’.

So down I went, g-string clad, and it was pure heaven. Exhibitionism-1 Modesty-0. And I couldn't've cared less!

*Hint, hint.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Contender for the world's most boring post topic

I swapped washing powders this week. Our new one has an added bonus of fabric softener. I like it. Our clothes smell per-ty.

Go on, think of something just as boring! It's hard. It's a talent.

And for God's sake don't apologise about it. That's what I've learned today (assuming I'm reading schmutzie correctly. I could be wrong; I usually am).

Friday, November 10, 2006

Right, that's it!

Further to my post earlier, I've just gone outside and discovered another Huntsman on the deck, which did NOT move on, despite my prodding. So, half a can of bug spray later (they're stubborn things), it's dead and the pest people have been rung and booked in.


A Mexican standoff

For the past 48 hours a Huntsman Spider has set up residency for itself in our bathroom. I am no arachnophobic –having to live in the land of dangerous animals, I am kind of impervious to them – but there’s just something about these guy’s black, cotton wool eyes that makes me want to gag.

Adam says, “Just spray the damn thing” but watching it twitch and convulse on the floor, with its legs contracting back onto themselves in death, is worse in my mind. It didn’t do anything to me, they're not poisonous and usually they move on after a spell, so I’ve had the ‘live and let live’ motto foremost in my head.

But soon it will have to go because it is starting to play on my conscience. I might be feeling bad about something and this spider looms over me like God, or my guilt (you say tomato, I say…) For example, this morning, Keira was prattling for going on an hour about something and I was,

“Princess charm? Princess clock? Perfect Time? Keira, I CAN’T UNDERSTAND YOU!”

Both of us exhausted, I eventually figured out she wanted her Princess Crown down out of the cupboard. Oh, right.

So feeling totally useless as a mother, I go into the bathroom to use the toilet, and there’s this Huntsman, looming over me, squirming in glee (I’m sure) at my failures.

Pest Exterminator time.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

'Things I don't understand' Friday

Most other blogs have a 'thing', a theme day. Here's my attempt at originality. I'll start my own!

1) I don't understand just how Britney and Kevin's divorce makes such big headlines. I mean BIG. You'd be forgiven for saying, "Reece and Ryan who?" With more important things happening in the world--like why does the Australian government always use Melbourne Cup day to slip important legislation through parliament. Or tries to-- I just don't see how it rates.

The position the media is taking seems to be "our little girl has come to her senses". Indeed, maybe that is so, but they're also making it out like it's not so much of a big deal: 'Sign a bit of paper, hand over a pay off settlement and then move along quick sticks, sing another song and everything will be hunky-dory'. That irritates me.

2) Why do people build little fences? I mean, silly fences that only come up to the knees. Are you expecting to be burglarised by elves sometime in the future? Do you think Santa brings with him evil minions? What confuses me even more is people build accompanying GATES to go with said fences. AND USE THEM. I saw a couple walk out of their home the other day, and the husband lovingly opens this tiny little gate for his wife, which was really cute, but I thought, "Just step over the damn thing!"

Do you know what I want to do? Buy a garden gnome and leave it overnight, just outside the gate, waiting. It's purposes unknown: friend or foe?

That'll screw with their heads!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Christmas (card) time is here again

Yesterday I sat down and wrote out my first round of Christmas cards. This early habit of mine is the bane of one of my particular friends, who begins to panic (I think) at the telling sight of cheap envelopes appearing in her letterbox. Yet for me, who loves the season, I just can’t help but get into the spirit by November.

I have Christmas cards to thank for getting me onto Temptation last year. I was only called up to be a reserve, with no guarantee of being a contestant, but at the sight of me writing up cards in the green room, at the beginning of October!, had the Producer laughing and quite possibly doubting my sanity. This novelty must have made me stand out from the other contestants and I got my berth for glory. Or they could’ve been waiting for me to have a mental episode whilst taping. That would’ve been great for ratings.

So, who out there in internet-land would like a Christmas card from little old Miscellaneous Mum? Why don’t you drop me an email with your name and address and you might get a surprise! I’m spreading season’s greetings to the world!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

What I'm wearing (or not) these days

Nola talks a lot here about what I’ve been meaning to post a topic about for ages. While I’m not technically much of what you’d call a WAHM, it’s still been a resolution of mine since I’ve lost most of my baby weight never to be seen in public again in tracksuit pants (sweatpants) UNLESS I’m coming from or going to some sort of exercise. I’ve lived enough in those clothes in my pregnancies to ever voluntarily look the same again.

Funnily enough, I’ve always enjoyed wearing those kinds of comfy clothes, whether it be for convenience or, at worse times in my life, as a disguise.
At university, when I was tragically thin, I would wear Adam’s clothes to hide my small size (oh, the irony). Now, when I wear tracksuits, SOMETIMES it’s because I want to disguise myself behind ordinariness. Which isn’t a bad thing in itself, but I’m sure I can do it just as effectively in nice jeans.
So, I’ve turfed all my oversized jumpers (sweaters) and all but one pair of track-pants. And may I say I feel better for it.

I haven’t come to this conclusion alone; for some time I’ve knelt and prayed in thanks at the feet of Trinny and Susannah, my ‘What Not to Wear’ girls. At some point in the future I’ll write more extensively on their fashion philosophies. They make sense to me.

In the meantime, it mightn’t hurt to ask yourself, “Have I sold out my self-esteem for an elastic-banded waistline?” If you don’t like the answer that comes back to you then perhaps it’s time to go shopping?

Monday, November 06, 2006

Contact Me

It's occured to me that when I re-jigged the site I forgot to add a Contact Page.

So here it is. Wasn't it worth it?

Email: miscmum@gmail.com

If I decide I like you, I'll divulge further details at a later stage ;)

For Sale: New Mummy

This picture is from a catalogue; many of which are increasing in number in our letterbox as we get closer to Christmas.

Keira finds this picture and comes up to me, pointing at it.

"New Mummy! Buy HER Buy HER!"
"What about her boobies?"
"They're nice"
"Did your dad tell you to say this?"
She whips around and shares a giggle with Adam. He pleads ignorance, but I don't know....

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Shower time again

Me: “I’m going to go have a shower
Keira: “AGAIN?”
Adam: “She’s always having showers, isn’t she Keira?”
Keira: “Yeah, for TWO HOURS!”

In my defence, Keira now is talking about everything in two hour increments: The Simpsons goes for two hours, cooking popcorn takes two hours, driving to the supermarket…well, you get the picture.

Thinking of our water shortage, I did keep it short. But I’m not going to apologise for the few minutes of peace I get!

Or should I?

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Not one of the beautiful people

We decided to do some Christmas shopping this morning, and so bundled up the kids and set off for Chadstone.

For anyone not in the know, Chadstone is about the most famous, biggest, and best shopping centre ("mall") in Melbourne. It is about the only place you'll rub shoulders with the Prada-clicking heels of rich doctor's wives and the shlub who lives around the corner. We usually fit into that second category. However, I admit, when we do go to Chadstone, I do tend to dress it up a bit.

So, deciding to be funky, I wore this t-shirt.

Despite it being a colder day, I took off my jacket, so as not to obscure anyone's reading pleasure (whether or not it's the same pleasure as having an unobstructed view of my breasts is another question....)

Did I get any looks? Hmm...hard to say. At the coffee shop, where the average demographic was of 30-something men waiting for their lattes, then yes. But those looks could have just been the boob factor coming into effect.

Sometimes I thought I could see the tell-tale squinting as someone honed in on the words -- until I realised my nipples were erect. Damn air conditioning!

Otherwise, nuthin. NOTHING. I was a little disappointed until I realised that most other people there were wanting the same thing; to be looked at. So we were all a little self-obsessed. Which depressed me no end and I was quite thankful when Riley starting having a meltdown in the pram due to lack of sleep and we could go home.

Back to where we're normal. Dags, but normal.

But I still like my t-shirt. I'll give it another go next time :)

Friday, November 03, 2006

Wanted: Calling all relatives to be TV stars!

It’s been over a year now since I’ve been on TV (gosh, doesn’t that sound vain?!), but my stint on Temptation has got me wanting to win more money! I’m putting it out there: come on, relos, let’s go on Bert’s Family Feud
! I’ve had a taste and I want more!

I know it’s hopelessly camp and corny, but we could win BIG! Plus, it’ll be tonnes of fun.

Come on, I know (some) of you guys read this. Forward it on to others who mightn't.

What have we got to lose?!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

My run in with the law!

Yesterday, deciding to be crafty, we set out to get some cardboard boxes so Keira could make teddy playhouses or some such. The walk only takes two minutes to get to our local bottle shop; this takes us past our local police station, which is only about a one minute walk away (a fact I find most comforting). With Riley perched up top, we go and get various empty wine and scotch boxes of different sizes. These go in Keira’s part of the pram while she walks the rest of the way home.

As we pass the police station, two cops come out. They take a look at me, at the ‘goods’, at Keira and I’m sure they’re about to stamp me as an alcoholic, unfit mother when I pick up one of the boxes and wave it at them.

“These are empty”.

Ah! A look of relief passes over their faces. They both smile and wave us on and they hop in their patrol car and leave.

Tee hee!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

What do I want for Christmas?

I’m serious. I never know what I want. I usually say “nothing” and truly mean it. Of course, by the same token, that doesn’t mean I don’t get that same thrill of opening presents as the next person.

This year, Adam has said to me, “Write a list of at least twenty things you want for Christmas”. Twenty! Good Lord. (Note: I wont get twenty things, he just likes a range to pick from)

My problem is, when I do think of something I want, it’s pretty boring.

What is an idea for a present that’s a) not too expensive b) practical and yet c) pretty cool? Something you’d be likely to get out again later in the day and not be lost amongst the torn wrapping paper, to be mistakenly chucked out.

Better yet, why don't you tell me what YOU want for Christmas?!