Sunday, November 18, 2012

Light at the end of the tunnel

There is the teeniest, tiniest flicker of light at the end of the longest, darkest, most claustrophobic tunnel ever. I am FINALLY getting to the end of the workload for the year.

I promise to write posts of a more profound nature in the coming months. Looking back so far I think this blog is just a melting pot of whinging and general first world nonsense. There are far more important goings on in the world. However, it has helped me to move on with a few things. I don't really know why. But I keep reading that others say the same. I guess putting things out there in the blogosphere brings clarity.

I am, unfortunately, still having a LOT of trouble with the memory. Not so much that I can't remember things, more that I am just VAGUE AS. I can't seem to remember to stay focused on the task at hand. Simple tasks that I have been doing perfectly for 43 years are simply going awry in a bad way. I have just recovered from an INSANE 48 hours. This is what happened:

  1. Friday: Put lamb roast in oven to cook for an hour. Check on roast one hour later, realise I have set oven to GRILL and not fan force. Dinner one hour late that night.
  2. Saturday morning: Drive off from petrol station leaving petrol cap on boot of car. Lost petrol cap forever.
  3. Saturday afternoon: Put colour in hair to hide 50 shades of greysomething I do quite regularly. After 45 minutes I rinse and hair still very grey. Go to apply the conditioner included in the pack and discover it is not actually conditioner but the COLOUR mixture in a very similar container. Had put conditioner in hair for 45 minutes. IDIOT. And even then could not put the colour in because it has to be mixed with the special solution stuff that I had already mixed with the "conditioner".
NOT SO Nice and Easy
I'd like to think that all mums and 40 somethings in general are going vague at this time of the year. Am I right?

Oh and today, one of my very good friends sent her daughter over with some toys they no longer use to give to our peeps.  One of the toys was a loud, noisy plastic sword with flashing lights and a neverending series of loud beeps. Far, far worse than a Zhu Zhu pet. Hammerhead was absolutely delighted, never having been the recipient of such an offensive toy weapon. I couldn't bare to confiscate the toy so early in the peace. HM {irate} vacated the premises within 60 seconds while I sat and endured this horrid noise for a few hours, firing off a THANK YOU text to my friend, who assures me the batteries will die any minute. I now have The Surfer on a special mission in the shed (deep down in the dark recesses of the back yard jungle) attempting to use up the batteries as fast as possible.

If you would like a picture of this you can now follow me on Instagram at @msinsanejane

OK, it's back to the books. Hope you're all having a great weekend. xx

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Sayings that aren't so

I am completely baffled by the phrase "slept like a baby". Like most other babies on the planet, my babies slept for two hours at a time, woke up, cried and needed a nappy change. If I was lucky, they went straight back to sleep and repeated the cycle later on, OR they carried on for a bit and then called out again every five minutes just to see if I would come up and visit. This went on for a few months, actually, some nights it still goes on with Barnstormer, albeit minus the nappies. So in my personal history as a mum, I would hardly be truthful in using the sleeping baby phrase as a way to describe a comfortable, blissful, uninterrupted eight hours of luxurious sleep.

 No. No. No.

Instead, I would say "I slept like a teenager". Every night The Surfer sleeps like a baby. He could sleep through an earthquake. He could sleep through a demolition even if it was happening in his room. When I was pregnant, I was so worried about the fact that his bedroom was next door to the baby's room, I lay awake at night wondering how on earth was I going to sound proof things. The night we bought Hammerhead home from the hospital--and I should clarify that our new bundle of joy was named "Hammerhead" within hours of his birth for his tendency to open his mouth like a shark at the whiff of some food--I was more worried about The Surfer waking up than Hammerhead. Our darling baby boy was a feeder. A BIG feeder. So anyway, Hammerhead was up two or three times that night and of course, The Surfer had no idea. For all he knew, I was still in the hospital with Hammerhead. NOTHING had changed with his night time routine. He had his bedroom door wide open even. DID NOT HEAR A THING. I was so relieved--and it continued. The Surfer slumbered through no end of nonsense. And even Barnstormer couldn't break him. Not even with her midnight demands for weetbix. The demands that even the neighbours have commented on.

Some people think it should be "I slept like a husband" but I cannot personally relate to this. HM wakes up if someone across the road steps on a tissue. I may have mentioned before about his keen sense of smell--well he also has bionic hearing, just like Jamie Somers. So, he is up and down like a yo-yo all night, trying to find the would-be home invader which is, more often than not, a branch of a tree brushing against the house. Or a fly daring to land on the outside of the sliding door. He may be the only person I know that sleeps worse than a baby.

Another saying I don't quite relate to is "the house looks like a brothel". Now, my experience with brothels is somewhat limited. In fact, I have only ever been inside one on television. Having said that, I was a big fan of the series Satisfaction, which had an uber cool Melbourne-chic brothel. It reminded me of a time in my single life when I had a massive bedroom that I painted "Cadbury chocolate purple" and finished with silver picture rails. Everyone (including my own father) told me it looked like a room that should be rented by the hour, yet this brothel-esque room was ALWAYS immaculate. This was of course, pre-kids, back then when my house was spotless and I was out for dinner every night drinking champagne. THAT TIME was the only time that I could honestly say my house looked like a brothel. Now, I say it "looks like a tip". I find this is a much more accurate description.

What sayings do you have a problem with?

Friday, October 26, 2012

October Evaluation and Assessment

Just a quick post to firstly say am feeling extremely overwhelmed and stressed at the moment and haven't had a chance to blog. It's all my fault and again, I have not stuck to what I said I was going to. Damn lists. Who needs them! I don't even want to look back at that list I posted a few weeks ago as I'll bet I've achieved nothing on it.

I've been a tad greedy with work projects and said YES to absolutely everything and then I whinge about being up all hours working and having no life and no time. My reasoning, at the time, is to get ahead now so that I can afford to take some time off over summer to get that bikini bod down to the beach with the peeps. The bikini bod is not at all achievable, but I do intend to hit the beach.

I'm feeling left out of things at the moment and looking forward to nailing these last projects. Barnstormer told me the other day that I was not allowed to go with them to the pool because I "haven't finished my work or met my deadlines". She just turned 4. She talks like a performance manager. She told me I "need to re-organise my work things so that I have time to do fun stuff". She also said that "making excuses is not the way to go". Why am I not as intelligent as her? It's not fair.

Even though this year has another couple of months to it, I have learnt that:

  • I am crap at meeting deadlines when it comes to writing  my books.
  • I am most excellent and efficient at meeting deadlines when it comes to editing reports.
  • I spend too much time looking at life through a screen of some sort.
  • My medication makes me focus on myself, to the detriment of other family members, more than I should.
  • I lost my mind some years ago, but more recently, my medication has severely diminished my short-term memory.
  • I think my short-term memory has disappeared.
  • Did I mention that I don't seem to remember anything?
So, quite simply, these are my three goals for 2013:

1. Get off the meds. Or at least CHANGE the medication.
It's affecting my ability to work. I can't remember how I've styled things in documents and am continually backtracking. I feel like Guy Pearce in Memento. I have to keep writing notes to myself about things to remember. I've missed appointments, I've missed Barnstormer's ballet lessons, I've cooked meals three times. I've left taps running and left the house. I've forgotten where I've parked the car at shops. I've forgotten where I'm going when I've got in the car. I've forgotten if I've taken my medication that morning. I've forgotten that HM's aunty died four days ago and asked how she was.

2. Just say NO to book contracts.
Unless  there is nothing else going, the motivation just isn't there at the moment to meet deadlines.

3. Walk along the beach every morning.

This stuff is GOLD. Makes me feel good all day.

Right, I feel better already just for writing all of that down. How is everyone else travelling at this time of the year?

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

We live on Weird Street

I am tired of talking about me so this is, quite plainly, a post about other people. And why not start close to home ...

It occurred to me when I was driving down our street some years ago, that almost everyone that lives here is weird in some way (except, of course, the darling people at number 67). In a nutshell, I believe that most of the residents that have chosen to live on this hilly beach side street, have been afflicted with varying degrees of OCD or just general weirdness, with regard to their property and behaviour.

It all starts with Number One and that would be where my parents-in-law live. I shall spare them from this post but they clearly fit into the category of weirdness that our street is all about. In fact, they can probably tick more boxes than most when it comes to strangeness.

And obviously, our house has its own multiple dose of OCD that has been talked about on here before, however, I would like to highlight some other goings on just to make me feel normal. I shall start by saying that nothing below has been embellished or exaggerated in any way. And of course no names have been mentioned.

Case #1
Last year the next door neighbour, putting himself at the huge risk of falling off a very high ladder, awkwardly proceeded to paint his already [professionally] painted roof alcove a lighter shade of cream, becauseand I quote: "It wasn't the right shade of cream". Apparently there are Fifty Shades of Cream. However, it looks exactly as it did before. He almost dislocated a shoulder doing this.

Case #2
The man across the road took 15 years to build his carport. I even saw the start of it in 1996. We call it the Taj Mahal. If I was going to be slightly unkind, I might even suggest that it does not match the house at all, but who am I to comment on modern architecture. As if this wasn't enough weirdness in itself, he wrote down how much it all cost {OK, not very weird}, but he rounded everything to the nearest 5 cents {somewhat weird}. I know this for a fact because he told HM that the Taj Mahal carport cost somewhere in the vicinity of $19,875.45. He made a point of saying he rounded it off to the nearest 5 cents. Who does that? Then, after completing this mammoth 15 years of hard labour, he and his wife put the house on the market!! They weren't even planning on enjoying their Taj Mahal.

On hearing this, I looked the house up on the net to see what they were offering and the real estate agent had the AUDACITY to write on the ad: RENOVATE OR DETONATE! The Taj Mahal builder must have been horrified at the suggestion of demolishing his very hard-laboured carport. I suspect he took it off the market then and there as it would now appear that they no longer seem to be selling.

Case #3
The man next door to the Taj Mahal washes his 4WD every day. He was even seen washing it on Christmas Day. He also has labels on everything inside his house. Labels about the channels on the remotes, instruction labels for how to use the DVD player, kettle, microwave, oven, etc. I know this for a fact because we grabbed one of the tellies he put out on the bulk rubbish collection one year and he took me inside to hunt down the clearly labelled remote that was inside a clearly labelled cupboard. AND I mean, labelled as in providing a little mini-inventory of what was inside the cupboard.
Interestingly, this man has four sons and every single one of them is a commercial pilot.

Case #4
The lady across the road, on the other side of the Taj Mahal, once purchased an old typewriter from HM when he had a garage sale many years ago. It was a medieval early-electronic typewritera collector's item if you will. He sold it to her for the princely sum of $5. A mere two days later, she was on the doorstep, somewhat aggrieved and demanding her money back (as in a full refund of the $5) as one of the keys did not work. The thing was ANCIENT.

To this day she often gives HM the evil eye, like he is some kind of neighbourhood con-man cheating her out of her life savings, last seen jumping a fence on A Current Affair.

Case #5
On the corner there is a mad scientist type who is ALWAYS hammering and banging away in his caravan, even late at night. He has four grown up children who still live at home. They are all around 30 and each of them has a partner. At any one time, there are about six cars out the front and it looks like all of them are there for dinner. It's kind of like the Brady Bunch with randomsas in the kids bought in the other kids to create a blended family. It's one person short of a commune. When Hammerhead and Barnstormer hit 30 they are out of here, if not WELL BEFORE. I mean, HM will be 85 by then! We will want some peace and quiet in our old age.

Case #6
There is a man over the hill who never, EVER opens his roller shutters in the front rooms and has bricked in some of the other windows. He's been living there for at least 45 years (HM grew up on this street and has never seen the shutters open). His house has ocean views and is probably worth a fortune, but the living room carpet never sees the light of day. I'm thinking someone has got some serious drug lab stuff going on OR they have that weird anti-sunlight diseaselike the kids in The Others. I hope one day they don't find something horrible inside.

Case #7
Next door to the house-of-darkness lives a nice man who waters/mows his lawn ALL DAY. He used to have the best piece of lawn on the street until the people on the other side of him built a new house and installed AstroTurf. His world turned upside down that day.

Case #8
There is an elderly lady down the hill a bit, in a very large expensive house, who for some reason dresses like a homeless person. She is often seen walking home from the shops with grocery bags way after dark. A very safe time for an elderly lady to walk a kilometre to the shops and back. And she has a very nice car which I have seen her drive many times. And plenty of hours during the day to drive to the shop.

OK, I'm leaving it here. There is more but that's quite enough I feel. Do you have a strange street? Surely our street can't be alone.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

My five-year-long weekend

In the tradition of the great procrastinator that is me, I feel I need a break from the riveting national curriculum standards assessment tests I am currently writing to blab on here about how great it is to be a weekend. Even if it is raining.

Except for a while now I've realised that there is little distinction between my weekends and my weekdays. It will all be different next year I expect when BOTH kidlets are at school. As it stands now though, Hammerhead is only at Kindy two days a week and Barnstormer has pretty much decided to defer her course at her pre-kindy institution. Her self-imposed gap year, if you will.

Once upon a time I had a 9-5 publishing job. Friday was just the best day in the universe and always ended with Friday drinks at some cool bar like this one which ended up with dinner somewhere cool like here and then we'd head somewhere groovy like this to finish off. The weekend started slowly with breakfast somewhere like here followed by a drive to the gym if I was super good. If I was extra good I might have even gone inside! Then possibly a visit to see a relative or friend and then lunch somewhere like here which may have also turned into dinner there as well. After all, it was only a hop, skip and a jump from my apartment.

Then Sunday would be home-cooked hot brekky followed by reading the papers with good coffee, followed [unlikely] by the gym and then maybe a movie here. The afternoon would inevitably involve a drive to Freo to meet up with the gang somewhere like here or  here. Then it was back to work on Monday, heads down till Friday. There was a BIG distinction between the weekdays and the weekends.

In my life now, any day of the weekend could pan out exactly the same as a weekday. And "after work" drinks happen EVERY NIGHT. During the week HM is often hanging around pruning working from home instead of training it into the office, and the kids are home at least three of those days, except The Surfer. There will be the obligatory family outing to a cafe like this, followed by lunchtime shambles and then [usually] I will settle down to do some housework paid work in the afternoon before the dinner time madness sets in while everyone else absconds to here to play on the beach and watch this:
This is indeed The Surfer.

Sounds like fun and most days it is. And then it all happens again on the weekend. Which means I also spend a lot of time doing work and cleaning on the weekends and I never really get that fantastic feeling that one gets at the end of the working week, because it never really ends.

I never feel on the weekends that I deserve to kick up my heels and be glad I got through the week, because it is STILL GOING and then it rolls into the next week and the next week and suddenly five years have gone by for me, where I can't recall the weekends. We rarely go out. It's not like our weekends are full of social gatherings and nights on the tiles. We're too tired for that at the moment. If I meet up with friends it could happen on any day at all. If HM and I go out it happens on whatever day someone can babysit and random drop-ins happen 365 days of the year. And yes, did I mention already that every night has "after work" drinks???

So in fact, my life is now one giant, long [working] weekend. And when I think about it like that, I realise it's an excellent way to be and there is a mix of everything. But it is going to change soon.

Next year, EVERYONE is at school, even possibly HM if he's not at the office, and I will then have ample, peaceful time to do my full-time hours without having to do them at night when all the peeps have gone to bed.

And it will be precisely then, my friends, when I am alone with just ME, my laptop and crap D-grade Foxtel movies playing in the background, that I know I will grieve so badly for these timeswhen everyone was hanging around at home, demanding my attention, trying to comb my hair while I am emailing, pruning while I am hanging out the washing, eating the muffins while they are meant to be cooling on the rack, accidentally purchasing kittens on Gumtree while playing games on my iPhone, messing up the kitchen after my cleaning, commentating surfing movies in an OTT Californian accent while I am editing background papers for the State Planning Strategy, and leaving Lego EVERYWHERE that it is possible to leave Lego.


Thursday, October 11, 2012

Listless no more

I've been swapping emails with a new friend and she's inspired me to think about making a list of things I want to achieve in the year ahead. My year of being thirty thirteen. I’m hopeless with lists. I make them all the time but I very rarely complete everything on them. My outlook calendar is constantly flashing up reminders of things I should have done, months ago.

Even when I write a simple shopping list I will take it to the shop with me and occasionally glance at it, but I will still buy 20 things that are not on it, and forget to buy at least ten things that are.
So I am going to write a sensible list below that everyone can see, even those 47 readers who log on here from Belarus each day [Прывiтанне! Маё судна на паветранай падушцы поўна вуграмі]. Who knew I could speak Belarusian? 

If you're curious, I just wrote: “Greetings, my hovercraft is full of eels”.

This list is my WELLNESS list. It’s about keeping sane, happy and healthy:
  • Remember to take all tablets EACH morning, including fish oil.
  • Follow a skin care regime EVERY night.
  • Go for a walk at least three times a week, rain, hail or even cane toads falling from the sky—like in that masterpiece of film making, Magnolia.
  • Go on date with HM at least once a month. On Date Night, kid conversation is to be off limits.
  • Eat less carbs and more protein. 
  • Try to see girlfriends more often.
  • Try to get negative thoughts out of head as soon as aware of them.
  • Spend less time cleaning and more time playing with kids.
  • Put at least 15% of all work contracts into my ING savings maximiser and LEAVE it there.
  • Stop whinging. (optional)
  • Stop procrastinating with work stuff. Get it over and done with.   
Happiness is nothing more than good health and a bad memory.
-Albert Schweitzer

If you haven't already please go and LIKE the INSANE JANE Facebook page. And ... even though I shouldn't, I've now got a Twitter account @MsInsaneJane oh dear...

Friday, October 5, 2012


Gosh, it's been so long... I don't know where to start?

It just goes to show if I'm happy and I know it I don't have time to blog as am too busy clapping my hands. If I'm sad and I know it then it's blog, blog, blog. Well, this is true for me anyway. I find I could churn out a book when I am depressed. Not so, when I am feeling groovy. In fact, it's times like these I can't even think of anything to post about.

So I'll just waffle from here on in I feel.

It's the annual birthday season at our house. HM is first, then it's me, then it's nephews x 2 and then it's Barnstormer's. And so it goes on until Hammerhead and Barnstormer start waking up asking "who's birthday is it today and will there be a Beyonce castle?"

Who would have thunk it? There really is a Beyonce Castle. 

Beyonce castle made me laugh a lot at the time. I just love these crazy phrases the kids come out with. The other day Barnstormer was going to her cousin's "First Holy Chameleon". And Hammerhead still loves his "havavocado". They're just too cute to even correct.

But I digress. Again.

Birthday season: I turned thirty thirteen as I am calling it (thanks GF). I never liked the idea of 43. It's a prime number; you can't do anything with it. It doesn't have any factors. I so can't wait for 44.

It was truly a less than glamorous start to this new odd age as well. First of all, I woke up ill ... all sinus-y and blah. Then I had to try and get psyched for a lunch out somewhere, mainly to please the kiddies. I've now realised that my birthday isn't about me at all. It's all about the kids. They need presents to wrap. They need a cake with candles to blow out. They need someone to sing Happy Burfday to. They need to see all their little cousins. They especially need to hear their beloved grandparents' increasingly famous rendition of Happy Birthday sung on speaker phone.

Anyway, no sooner are we seated at lunch venue of choice when we spy The Surfer's mum lurking outside on the beach and so we invite her up for lunch. Now if you had have told me only a few years ago that I would be sitting down for a wine on MY bday with HM's ex as the only other guest, I would have laughed my head off. But now, if the truth be known, I see her more than any of my friends. I see her more than my best friend. I probably even talk to her on the phone more than I do with any of my friends and of course, she adores the little people. I'm thinking it's only a matter of days before I can ask her to babysit them while HM and I go to the Greek Islands for three months.

Anyway, back to my birthday. I had arranged for the best-grandies-in-the-universe to look after the little people while HM and I enjoyed a rare night out at a venue that had to be no further than 500 metres from our abode. But of course after gas bagging at lunch and then at home all arvo, I suddenly had LARYNGITIS. I did not want to go ANYWHERE and so our rare night out became totally extinct. But all in all it was a pleasant day, and I got to see one of my besties who was over from the other side of the country.

So now it's school holidays. And the Royal Show is on. And once again, HM and I have decided that the little people are STILL too little to go to the Show. At least that's what we keep telling ourselves. We figure why put ourselves through a tiring day of expenditure and sugar overload when they have YEARS of the Show to look forward to. So next year will be the year that we finally do the Show ... or not. In fact, I'm now wondering how long we can keep putting off this family day at the Show. Maybe they will be 17 and 18 before we finally get there. They don't know what they're missing and besides, The Surfer has bought back showbags for everyone. Even one for me. It was all girly with pink and orange poppies on it, filled with lots of luxurious samples of anti-ageing face creams and scrubs. Apparently he had to carry it around for a while. It is believed that some of his mates distanced themselves from him at the time.

Which reminds me, I wonder what The Surfer thought when he watched Puberty Blues and saw the girls being told "You're dropped!" on the beach for not standing there with their boyfriend's chiko roll and choc milk after a surf? The Surfer is almost fifteen and I cannot imagine him or any of his friends EVER eating a chiko roll. And if he had a girlfriend who could surf that would just be the ULTIMATE. Times have changed.

Ok, enough waffle. So it's a new year for me and I should probably make some new year "resolutions" but I'm not going to. I'm not putting any pressure on. I'm just going to aim to get through the year without incident. Definitely without a backward slide into the madness.

Of course the leading lady in my life is Barnstormer.
Drum roll ... and now for the question which is supposed to prompt you into leaving me a comment: What is the best new year's resolution you ever made, that you actually stuck to?

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Away, Away

We are down south. The Surfer is participating in the Gracetown Grommets which commemorates the anniversary of the Gracetown Tragedy. His coach is not going to be there at this comp. This is probably because the coach's father was one of the nine people killed that day.

It's always very heartbreaking to roll up at Huzza's and read the memorial. You simply cannot go there without thinking about the cliff tragedy.

It's cold and rainy down in Margaret River at the moment. It's just like going back to winter. But it's lovely to put the pot belly on and drink a red wine or two.

And I feel great about being alive. I am even loving the rain.

It's been great to get away for a few days as well. It was a week of death and funeral and horrible stuff in Perth. HM's friend, (who was also The Surfer's cousin on his mother's side) passed away and all the old cronies came out of the woodwork to count how many of them had passed away. LOTS. Many of them by bad life choices. I think this is why HM makes the most of everyday.  Also think it's why he doesn't see some of those old cronies much. It must be hard to sit there and watch your friends waste their life.

So get out there and enjoy every day. I'm about to go and visit a couple of wineries I feel ... as soon as the boys get back from surfing ... ho hum. Might be going for a walk with Barnstormer instead.

Hope you're doing something good today.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Spring has sprung

Spring is finally here. It's that time of the year when we can now enjoy a wine in our alfresco area. The one that has the built-in shade of the creeper that HM prunes religiously. I call him The Constant Gardener. He has a great sense of humus. Sorry. REALLY sorry.

And in the same way that winter makes  me feel like hibernating in my girl cave with a case of cab sav under ten doonas for three months, spring makes me want to empty out cupboards and drawers and PURGE. I get a major buzz from giving bags of clothes to the Good Sammy bins. Yesterday I took four huge pink garbage bags full. Oh, what a feeling.

I have also thrown out anything that I haven't worn in five years. I have always kept them, thinking that I'll get skinny enough to fit back into it, but HM says "this is never going to happen, just move on and chuck it all out". This coming from a man with a SHED FULL OF CRAP... bags of his old clothes. From the SEVENTIES. His idea is to just move it all out of the house and into the shed; that way he is not seen as a hoarder. So I got my bag of clothes that don't fit and put it in the shed. That way if I SUDDENLY LOSE TEN KILOS I can go and retrieve it...

I often wonder what the neighbours think when they see me carting bags and bags of stuff into the car. OR down to the shed. It happens a lot. And I know they are always looking out of their window. We have weird neighbours but that's another post entirely.

Then it was off to the shops with Barnstormer on a birthday gift mission for HM. Stupidly gave Barnstormer a donut with pink icing to eat early on in the scene. This resulted in her mimicking all shop assistants when the sugar kicked in about 30 minutes later. She even mimicked the Politix shop guy's extremely camp accent. Quel horreur!

He said: "Isn't she adorable?" but I could tell he was really mortified when she said: "This is fabulous, would you believe it's cotton but got lots of give because of the 10% elastane!" complete with hand on hip.

Oh and this also happened yesterday:

[While watching Bold and the Beautiful:]
Barnstormer: Why is she crying?
Me: Because Liam doesn't want to marry her anymore.
Barnstormer: Why?
Me: Because she did the wrong thing?
Barnstormer: What did she do?
Me: She went a little bit crazy and did some silly things. He doesn't love her anymore.
Barnstormer: But you're a little bit crazy a lot of the time and Daddy still loves you. 

And also this:
[Hammerhead arrived home from kindy with something he made in craft. It was basically a strawberry container with two corks stuck on it and a patty pan on top.]

Hammerhead: Look at this Mum, look what I made.
Me: Oh wow, what is it? It looks like a robot. Is it a robot? Or is it a monster?
Hammerhead: What? Mum, you're crazy. It's not a robot or a monster, it's a strawberry container and I glued two corks on it and this cake thing.
Me: Of course.

Now to work out what to make for HM's birthday cake...

How is your spring going? Do you have a spring in your step?

Sunday, September 9, 2012

I am Alice in Wonderland

So, I've been having some extremely hectic dreams of late. Actually I always have them. But just lately, they seem to be even more vivid and convoluted than normal.

The Stuff Dreams Are Made Of - John Anster Fitzgerald, 1858

They're not nightmares and they are not usually scary, just a little bit twisted, if anything. The dreams are lucid, extremely theatrical and almost always, movie-length long. I think it must be the medication, but in all honesty, I've always been one for strange dreams, even as a child. Every dream is like Alice in Wonderland. Ones that linger with you all day. Some I NEVER ever forget. Ones that seem to go on for hours and hours. In fact, in one dream, I managed to have a five-year relationship with Owen Wilson. In this dream we met, then I met his parents, we got engaged, we had a big massive wedding (even though in my dream he was not famous). We lived in a big Vermont-style house (as if I would know what that is) and drove one of those station wagons with the wood panelling. Then once the honeymoon phase wore off, we had a baby boy (the labour was as painful in the dream as in real life), then two years later we had another baby. We even had a couple of birthday parties for the kids in there where I made the most spectacular cake that was a mini replica of an erupting volcano (?).

It was something like this.

Yes, all of this excitement happened in the comfort of my own home one night a couple of years ago, after I went to bed. Of course, I woke up very confused. VERY CONFUSED. Suddenly, five years of family memories did not really exist.

They say that dreams are made up of the debris in our minds that collect during the day. OR at least I think I read that somewhere. That being the case, I do not know where the Owen Wilson dream came from. He is NOT the man of my dreams and it wasn't like we'd even recently watched a movie with him in it. He does not even feature in my Top Ten People who I would like to be with if I wasn't with HM. And now I can't watch ANYTHING with him in it without reliving all of that dream and thinking about what nice parents he had and wondering how OUR kids are going. One was called Rusty. And did he remember to put the car in for a service?

She is SUCH a nag. I wish she'd stop hassling me ...
I don't even know her, I never had a car with wood panelling.

Almost every night I dream. And they are always these long epic dreams. The sort of dreams Cate Blanchett might star in. There is always some kind of task that needs to be carried out, and in some cases I wake up mid-task so there is no resolution. I feel strangely ripped off and all day I wonder if I could go back to sleep quickly for the ending.

Psyches Dream by Josephine Wall

HM thinks my insane dreaming is possibly a result of me being something of a movie buff. Others say it is my vivid imagination. I feel I have to tell HM about my dreams so that I can get him to understand why it takes SO SO long for me in the mornings to get it together. I have to separate the dream from the reality.

And HM has no real experience of dreaming. He dreams, but it is forgotten before he wakes up and he may remember one thing only, if anything at all. I had a dream last night, he will announce. "Oh what happened? Tell me all about it?" [I am SO excited for him ... but it is always shortlived].

HM's dream: I fell into a swimming pool. 

That's IT. 
No other details.

In my dream it would be like this: We were at this dark castle, it was in the middle of the desert, everyone had a white four wheel drive, and I seemed to be wearing some kind of Elizabethan costume. Sometime after the main meal of Tripe we were all lounging around outside. And I slipped and fell into this huge swimming pool that seemed to come from nowhere in the yard of the castle. It couldn't be seen before and there were hundreds of people standing around all watching me fall in, and they were wearing masks; it was some kind of  masquerade party. And other people then jumped into the pool and some of them turned into mermaids and grew tails. Then all of a sudden the swimming pool water drained out of the pool and it revealed a secret code that was written on the floor of the pool, and there was a trap door on the side of the wall. The door opened and Frodo burst through it. But then he wasn't really Frodo and later on in the dream he morphed into the Year 5 teacher at Hammerhead's school. And he wanted everyone to follow him through the trap door to the "ship" but we can't get out of the pool because the floor of the pool has turned into quicksand and we are sinking and no one seems to be able to pull us out as we are sinking too fast and their arms aren't long enough and we end up pulling more people in with us  ... and so it goes on. Curiouser and curiouser.

It should be stated at this point, that I am not a reader of fantasy fiction  and I haven't even seen the Lord of the Rings trilogy. I am not into sci-fi or fantasy at all.  Absolutely nothing against this genre, I simply am not clever or abstract enough to understand the plot of the books and movies of this style. I can handle David Lynch though. In fact, he could easily be the scriptwriter of my dreams.

One other curious thing: I have this ability in my dreams to come up with one liners that only that character/person would be capable of. The other night I dreamed that HM's long-dead friend was actually alive and  knocked on our door dressed in a stolen policeman's uniform. There was all this dialogue in the dream which I was late able to regurgitate. When I woke up, I told HM exactly what happened and what was said in the dream. He said that is word-for-word what his friend would say. That ONLY he would say. He had a VERY DISTINCT sense of humour. So somehow in my dream, I was able to dream up stuff that someone else may have said. Maybe if I have a dream with Einstein in it, he could potentially explain to me a new theory that I could then develop. DREAM ON ...

Do you have strange dreams like me? Tell me about the weirdest one, if you can remember it.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

In the endless sea

I'm lost in a sea of blogs. I really started blogging at the wrong time. I should have started it years ago but didn't because I knew I'd get lost in it and I didn't have the time. And as predicted, now that I have started it, I am getting very, very lost in it AND I DON'T HAVE THE TIME.

Au secours © Rene Maltete

I'm not getting lost in my own blog, mind. I can churn out a (some would say) way-too-long post with barely ten minutes on the clock. Then I shamelessly rip off pics from Google images carefully source and credit a few relevant images and voila, Bob's your aunty's live-in lover.

NO, what is happening is that I am getting lost in everyone else's blog. Everyday I find a new one that piques my interest. Some I am completely addicted to and of course I have to read back on all the years I've missed! Some I like to check every now and then. Some I read and think "goodness me, this person is like my own voice talking". I have a twin. I have several twins. So much so it's scary.

In my travels on the interwebs I have noticed that MANY, MANY parental bloggers seemed to have the same motivations when it came to starting their blog as I did. They wanted to keep their sanity. It's definitely been some sort of therapy. When I look back to what I wrote at the beginning, I know I feel much better than those horrid days.

I love blogging for the creative release as well. I am a frustrated [read: self-taught] web designer and I like to tinker on the net. I love fiddling about with codes. I get a little buzz when I change something in java script. It's not my day job but I do have the patience for it. HM is often amazed at my patience for all things technological. He thinks I would choose my laptop over him if it came to it. He might even be right.
So have YOU got a favourite blog you like to haunt? Or have you got your own blog that I haven't yet discovered. Any kind of blog. IF either, please leave me a comment below with the link!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Nothing embarrasses me more than ...

... typos, grammatical errors and absent-minded apostrophe use in my OWN POSTS. It just goes to show how the brain can let you down. At least one has the opportunity to go back and fix these 'grammar sins' and hope that no-one saw. But sometimes it is too late. Oh calamity.

Such faux pas are deemed even worse when you try to make a living from editing and publishing. Things I often do absent-mindedly in my own writing include inserting the wrong homophone, e.g. elicit OR illicit | new OR knew. I know the right one to use; I am just in a super hurry to get the post written and clearly not paying as much attention as I should.

Just thinking I should apologise for some of the errors that have snuck in. SORRY!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


It's very late. I'm supposed to be working while the household sleeps. And I've just about nailed one of my books that had a deadline some weeks ago! Anyway, here I am watching Dateline and again, hoping my little Christmas Island buddy is mentally OK up there with all that craziness.

I've been reflecting of late.
I've been thinking how much better I feel since I started this blog. I don't feel anywhere near as melancholic as the past few months. I'm too scared to even read some of my earlier posts.

I feel really good. I've got so much to look forward to. But I still miss my friend. A lot. So much so that I've realised there is something from stopping me from getting down to her neck of the woods to see my other very good friend. My long-suffering dearest, bestest friend since aged 5. But hopefully this Friday. Hopefully.

I also miss my OTHER FRIENDS who are no longer walking on this planet. I hate the fact that some people have to die young for whatever reason. And I shudder to think what they must think, if they are looking down from that great cocktail bar in the sky, when they see me moping about depressed and miserable with my life that has nothing wrong with it. Wouldn't they love to give me a good kick. Even I would like to give me a good kick, upon reflection.

If only my brain didn't have to go through those periods. I'm ashamed that I have spent days, even weeks, possibly whole YEARS like that. Where nothing makes you feel good.

I thank all my lovely friends who have been such a good support. And my current beautiful family and my 'original' beautiful family.
And all I can say, is that if you are feeling blue, do go and get help. It can so easily be treated. And when I am feeling like that again in the future--and yes, it's inevitable that this will recur--SOMEONE please tell me that I am back there in that horrid place so that I can acknowledge it and move on up again. HM tells me, and tells me and tells me and tells, but I take AGES to listen. We always think we are prepared for NEXT TIME but invariably, there's that nonsense again and days and days of madness. Those crazy months of me in some weird land. That no one else is allowed into. Irrational World. And it's IMPOSSIBLE trying to rationalise anything with an irrational person.

And then when I am good. EVERYONE is good.

Even the kids did the right thing tonight at bedtime.
 Beat the blues, tell a friend or tell me or at least look up BEYOND BLUE.

Sunday, August 19, 2012


Yes unsubscribe now. It's continuing. Insane blog posts are coming at a rate faster than ever before. However, no more whinging. Definitely no more whinging about my lovely family. And no more whinging about my first world problems.
Life can be so cruel.

My current columnist-icon of choice is Nikki Gemmell. She's not new of course and I've been reading her columns in The Australian right from the beginning, but she is now THE ONE I turn to, before anything else, on a Sunday over my mid-morning coffee. And she doesn't feel the need to have a full size pic of herself in gaudy fashion plastered in the middle of her column. She's also a long-time favourite author. And yes, it's [OH MY] fifty shades of decent writing. Having said that, I was a tad dismayed to see that she's changed the covers of her fabulous books to look almost exactly like some other tomes that I will refrain from mentioning. Holy crap. But good for her--she deserves the recent rerun of literary success as a result of THOSE books.


Changing tack somewhat, a dear friend alerted me to my alter ego online today. Check it out - she is Sane Jane and is some kind of "organiser". She comes around and de-clutters your life. Love it.

So who's your favourite columnist/author?

Saturday, August 18, 2012

High on life

Today is glorious. It's the perfect spring day but it's in August.

It's just amazing how much the weather seems to affect my moods, struggling for a long time with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) which I am sure many, many people do. Am thankful I don't live in Finland.

Today am on top of the world. Have taken Barnstormer to Ballet, have sat in the sun and watched Hammerhead get the wax off all the surfboards and am now trying to finish my mountain of housework blog uninterrupted while HM and F-i-l watch the football. I even spent five minutes chatting pleasantly to the [usually] cranky deli owner about the weather.

Today I am as high as the Eiffel Tower.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Friday rant

It's only 11.17am and things aren't good.  Day started at 6.30am with HM firing up the iPad (next to me in bed) as I snoozed. What makes him think it is OK to start streaming a surf comp from Tahiti at full volume at that time? It is still dark. Not even the little people are awake and I've got an over the top American surfer accent blaring in my ear. What's more, HM seems to think that I am INTERESTED in this comp and fully expected me to wake up and lean lovingly on his shoulder, oohing and aahing over the various manoeuvres on display. What is it with surfers????????

If Kelly's not in it I don't want to know about it.
Anyway, I went seriously mental at him and suggested that he use the earphones that are right next to the iPad. I even implied what he could DO with those earphones if he didn't put an end to the nonsense immediately. He acted all surprised at my attitude. And all this coming from a man who cannot handle me (silently) reading my iPhone in bed at night!!!

OK, then I get up and find that Barnstormer and Hammerhead have done a spot of rearranging in their bedroom while I was snoozing and HM was in Tahiti. Their room is chaotic: the slats are off one bed, there's mattresses blocking the doorway, there's a whole pile of bags with "clothes that are too big for them" strewn all over the floor and every single book has been taken out of the bookshelf. One of Hammerhead's t-shirt drawers has been emptied. When I [somewhat angrily] enquired as to WHY the redecorating, Hammerhead calmly pointed out that they were merely looking for his "favourite white colourful t-shirt" which had gone down the side of Barnstormer's bed! Hmmmph.

I'm an angry bear today!
Then there's more chaos at breakfast time which I won't go into. But it was something like this without the drop-in.

This was shortly followed up by an email from the publisher re manuscript. Except it's now from the "editor" that has been assigned to the project. Apparently, lots and lots more stuff to take on board. The sort of stuff that should have been mentioned up front. Can I amend 77 pages of manuscript by early this afternoon, Eastern Standard Time? As in NOW. Do they not know that we're behind them?

The fact that I am blogging right now should clearly imply that NO, it is not going to happen.

Every single room in the house looks ransacked. Hammerhead has rekindled a love affair with all of the toys that I'd secretly culled yesterday while he was at Kindy and put into a large bag that should have gone into my car boot last night. Wants to know why they're in what he calls a RUBBISH bag. Is suspicious that they are being removed without consultation. We are talking about toys he played with when he was six months old. He is accusatory in tone. He has arranged them all neatly in the lounge room and is guarding them fiercely. He even gave up a ride to a cafe with Barnstormer so as to protect the haul.

The day must get better. And the day will end with wine. How's your day?