Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Seven Signs of Ageing

1. After having your muscles stretched to accommodate enormous babies three times, the hospital Physiotherapist shoves her hands wrist deep into your flabby belly immediately post the third one vacating and says,"Yeah, that's never going to go back to normal, without surgery".
2. There's an audible (apparently benign and "nothing to worry about" but really quite loud) click sometimes as you walk, meaning that anyone passing you will look about themselves thinking, "what on earth was that audible, and really quite loud, clicking noise?"
3. If some bloke gives you a second look as you're out and about and you haven't been "clicking", you don't think, "yep I'm looking good today", you check to see that:
a. your skirt isn't stuck in your undies
b. you don't have toothpaste (courtesy of being in a hurry after getting two small humans ready and not having enough time for yourself in the morning), texta or stickers (courtesy of your artistic 4 year old) or grease/paint/dirt (courtesy of your renovating nonsense) on your face
c. you've buttoned up your buttons in the right button holes.
d. you don't have a herd of cats following you because you are exhibiting all three of the above and look like a crazy old cat lady.

4. You'll see an 80 year old woman at the local shops wearing exactly the same shirt as you and go home and throw that same shirt into the old rag and painting clothes pile.
            4.1 You now think of your clothes in terms of, "this is too young (tight T-Shirts with pithy slogans), this is too old (shirts worn by 80 year old women)".
5. You buy moisturising creams containing exotic ingredients that can't have anything really to do with getting rid of wrinkles and the cost of said creams increase exponentially in relation to each passing year ( I have to put this in context. I don't buy $200 tubs of the stuff from the "beauty" departments of up-market department stores, just Nivea and Olay, ahem . . . supermarket. But I find myself getting sucked into the tiny jars with ridiculous names like DNAge instead of the plain ordinary Nivea. Even though logically I know there's no difference).
6. Your artistic daughter draws pictures of you with two horizontal  lines across the forehead (the only consolation being that pictures of her dad have three lines).
7. You inadvertently divulge your year of birth in conversation with another mother at your children's school and she says," Oh, you're doing well for your age" . . . ! ! ! ? !!!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Destruction and Pool Heebie Jeebies

Old ramp is demolished in readiness for our new back deck. Boys like a bit of destruction!

It's going to be so wonderful. We're going salvage yard fossicking this week to get some lead-light windows for one end of it (I love salvage yard fossicking!).

Linus also started swimming lessons this morning.

Public swimming pools, oh joy!

I don't exactly have a phobia, more like a deep case of the willies concerning public swimming pools. I'm not a germaphobe or a clean freak but the "Human Soup" in these things....Brrrrrrr yuck. Hundreds of people spitting and snotting and dipping their hairy dangly bits in the water. And I'm not in the least convinced of the water-tightness of those "swimming nappies" on the babies!

Lucky I don't have to get in the water with him. I've told him he has to keep his mouth closed at all times and I'm working on covering up the look of abject horror on my face with a look of "excitement" or "pride" in his progress (I probably look completely demented).

It's no good reminding me about the chemicals; the germs may be dead but it doesn't change any of the soup's basic  ingredients.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


We have a long standing joke with my parents about our inability to grow a Strelitzia flower. Well, when I say "joke" it's usually them pointing out our continued barrenness and their fecundity and giggling. These things are as hardy as all get up and grow in the most neglected of gardens (like the abandoned house down the road amongst the dead wild oats !) but we never seem to get a flower...

Well, bugger the Bird of Paradise . . . we've got Irises!


Friday, September 17, 2010

Quilty or Not Quilty?

Well, I finished Astrid's quilt with time to spare. That's the good news. 

Here's the bad.

1.  It's not very straight. Well the outside edges are straight but don't take a ruler to the squares.

2.  There's a decapitated deer. Oops!
3.  I picked gingham for the back. No wonder the woman in the shop looked down her nose at me like she was thinking "novice!" when I poo-pooed the ugly stiff tie-dyed purpose-built "quilt backing" fabric. There's a reason you don't choose a soft floppy fabric with lines on it to make your wobbly shame more apparent. I gave myself a headache with Fabulon fumes trying to stiffen the material so that I could line it up straight. All to no avail. Also, by the way, why are shop women in wool and fabric shops so snooty?

4. And the biggest confession I have to make is . . .

it's not actually "quilted". 

Well, it is a sandwich of backing, wadding and top but there's no stitching through the layers. It was a combination of the inadequacies of my 20 year old machine (rocking foot, what's that?) and my extreme lack of patience. I tried, I grumbled, I used a bazillion safety pins, I grumbled some more, I hand tacked it (yes, HAND TACKED), I SCREAMED (the hand tacking had brought me to the brink) and then I  sewed around the edges, applied a binding (with lovely mitred corners I might add some things I can do) and called it DONE.

Oh well, it's cute (actually it's really cute) and I made a pillow case to match  (with all deer keeping their heads).

I think my first will be my last though.

Big Up Respect! To the Quilters Massiv out there (because I know you're all into Ali G style West Indian  Street Slang).

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Sad Songs

Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a complete cry baby. I will cry at anything, ANYTHING. Especially bad for me are commercials for telephone companies (you know the sort with the grown child calling home to mama in Italy), children's stories (The Happy Prince and don't get me started on The Little Matchstick Girl) and sad songs.

There are some songs that it doesn't matter how many times I hear them I lose it . . . Bwaaaaahhhh!

Okkervil River's John Allyn Smith Sails 
Iron and Wine's Naked as we Came 
Iron and Wine / Calexico Dead Man's Will 

(Actually a LOT of Iron and Wine has me teary . . . I love him so! He could read the phone book and I'd listen completely enraptured and soggy with tears).

So anyway, the other day my little guy came out of school with a very serious look on his face.

I asked, "What's wrong?"

He said, "Can't tell you till we get far enough away from school". . . I was worried (remember the haircut? Kids can be cruel about such things).

We walked halfway home and he decided that it was enough distance and told me that the teacher had been playing some songs for the class while they worked. There was one song that was partly in Spanish and partly in English about a cat. He was enjoying it immensely (I've mentioned before he LOVES cats). That was until the part where the, "cat falls off the roof, breaks his solar plexus and dies". . . he cried his little eyes out telling me about it. And you can bet I cried too. The two of us sniffling away outside the fruit and vege shop and Astrid looking at us in a perplexed way (she only cries when she's really ANGRY).

He described the song so well that I found it; SeƱor Don Gato . He doesn't believe the last line about him returning to life.

He had sat quietly in his seat during class and cried without anyone seeing him and then had cried on and off discretely at school whenever he thought about it. He was inconsolable.

Poor little guy has inherited my BooHoo gene . . . Astrid appears safe however.

Thursday, September 9, 2010


I have a bit of a vexed relationship with hairdressers. I try to explain what I want and they look at me like I'm speaking Venusian. This is bad enough when it concerns my own head but I also have "control" over my poor offspring's noggins.

See this photo of Linus? That is a ROCKSTAR haircut. I have no idea how I managed to be understood (perhaps she was wearing a Babel Fish?). Sadly for us that particular hairdresser disappeared from the salon (she may have returned to Venus).

Today I couldn't put off the poor little guy's haircut any longer. The woman who lives behind us keeps referring to him as "the girl" (although I suspect she may have issues involving her brain and a life led too long on the wild side).

As pure chance would have it there was a young lad in the waiting area who sported exactly this haircut (it must be mentioned that he was pre-haircut and his mum had plans to shear his all off. I think he looked cool, but then I'm from Venus). So I pointed at the boy and said, "like that please"... Pudding Bowl was NEVER mentioned, I promise . . . and yet, here we are . . . lucky he has to wear a hat for school, that's all I'll say.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Astrid's Kindy class has "Dress up like a Pirate Day" today...I'm not sure why, seems that "International Talk Like a Pirate Day" is next week (although I guess that's a pretty arbitrary day in itself, so it could potentially be any day you feel like calling someone a Dirty Bilge Rat with indemnity)?!

She was very excited. She wouldn't have us telling her she was a pretty pirate though!

In other news: HOORAY!!!!!! After an absolutely nail-biting day yesterday, I think I'm in love with Tony Windsor and Rob Oakeshott (the Historian won't mind a bit). It took guts to go against the bullying tactics of the Coalition and back the Labor Party. Fingers crossed that the Coalition don't turn into Scurvy Dogs and keel-haul the new government, the Dirty Bilge Rats!!! the way, the major national Australian newspaper (Rupert Murdoch's propaganda machine) needs to have a long hard look at itself. It has behaved abominably, hopefully they have lost all credibility and will be seen for what they are.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Green, Green Soup

Do you have one of those recipes that you make about weekly and is really quick, really easy and really cheap and also surprisingly delicious?

Here you go:

Pea and Rocket Soup

1kg Frozen Peas
1litre good vege stock like Massel
1 bunch (a colander full from our vege patch...that's as exact as I can get) of  Rocket (that's Arugula, Lindsey)
1 onion
1/2 tbls Dijon mustard (but that's because I put Dijon in most things . . . except . . .  cake)

Cook onion in a little olive oil till softish. Bung everything else in and simmer for about 15-20 mins. Then "Mouli" (mush) it a bit to make it not too smooth but not too with some grated parmesan cheese if you want and definitely with some freshly ground black pepper . . . delicious (seriously, and low fat and good for you and incredibly almost Kryptonite or Algae green...but don't be put off, try it,you won't regret it)