Wednesday 29 July 2020

Things are not always as they appear...

It's been a grey old week, and I took this photo because it looked like life had become B&W. (However it is actually a colour photo).
Sometimes things look bleaker than they are. If your life is feeling a little colourless at the moment, try some small changes to shake things up.
What can you do to make the ordinary extraordinary?
Linking with #SundayBest

Don't reinvent the wheel

I have kids in 3 different schools and I've found there is a constant need to visit uniform shops, create costumes for performances and provide notes for excursions, driving courses to attend, study lectures and a myriad of other things that may or may not be brought to my attention.

I had to go to Kmart to buy the shirt needed for the concert, so I emailed the class and took orders, and got what I could, as it seemed pointless for everyone to have to go for the same thing.

When I discovered we'd missed the excursion note, I emailed my friends just in case they were in the same boat and one of them had also missed it. She too was able to call the office and pay, and sign the form before departure in the morning.

With the HSC pending, we're sharing information on open days and other things that may be of interest. There is information everywhere, not just the school news letters, so it's worth sharing what you find.

If you aren't doing this, consider starting to do so. Life gets busier and busier, and the high school students are not necessarily as efficient as they should be. What started as an easy habit in primary is just as useful in high school.

We don't all need to reinvent the wheel - if you're going to the Uniform shop (if it's offsite), put it up on FB and save someone the trip.

If you have to make a costume for the concert, work together with the other families who need the same costume. Many hands make light work - and having many people scouting different locations for the difficult items is a blessing.

Offer to carpool to those weekend birthday parties. Let someone else have some of their weekend back. Next time they might do the save you the four hours out of your Saturday.

They may not be your child's friends, and they may not even be your friends, but you are all kicking around together for 6 or more years, and they are your child's cohort, so it is in the interest of your 'village'. And you never know, one day it will be you who gets the much needed heads up, or saved the trip to the shops.

Over the many years, it all evens out in the end.

I found this sitting in drafts so linking this three year old post with 

My Random Musings

Sunday 26 July 2020

Christmas in July

At Noi, Petersham
I was posting something about Christmas in July (mainly to wind up the anti-Christmas-starting-too-early people as a joke), when a Belgian friend asked why I had a Christmas picture up...and it occurred to me that Christmas in July wasn't a global thing, because of course, in half the world Christmas actually is cold, and July is hot...

It is most commonly celebrated in South Africa, New Zealand and Australia, and is sometimes known as Yulefest. It started so that we could comfortably eat a hot Christmas roast (as Xmas lunch is often prawns etc because it's too hot too cook) and go somewhere with the possibility of a chance of snow...

It was just that weekend of the 25th (or thereabouts) but is now pretty much all of July with all sorts of festivities.

It can be done with presents, but usually not unless there are little kids involved. It can be done with extended family, but usually not. It can be done at home, but usually not. In fact, it's stress free, obligation free Christmas. You don't even have to do it with the same friends every year. You can mix it up as much as you like. It's Christmas without any expectations.

The good people at the Grounds made this sensational cake (you have until the end of the month you get your hands on it, order here). Ginger, Cranberry and Orange flavours...The kids all turned their noses up at it and then licked the plate while it sounds very sophisticated, it tastes delicious to all palates!

I had planned a celebration with the kids and ordered roast pork (which was a WHOLE LOT of CRACKLING - a big crowd pleaser!) and the cake. A couple of sides and we were sorted for an easy Xmas feast. However, the night before pick up, I was COVID tested. I realised I couldn't do the pick up, nor drive in the same car with a family member to run in and pick I rang the Grounds to organise delivery. They were so kind and delivered it for free. Those that follow my Instagram may have noted I was a very regular customer during lockdown...and I can't recommend them highly enough! Their kindness & understanding cheered me up no end.

(Probably should have taken a photo of the pork when first served on the table, as it looked amazing. However, this is why I'm not a food blogger. Too greedy to remember to take photos first!)

Test results came back just before dinner and I was able to sit at the table with the family that night.

Canceled plans and spontaneity seem to be the norm in this new world order, and it's something that takes a bit of adjustment for me. However, sometimes, like a Christmas miracle, it all works out in the end.

Do you celebrate Christmas in July?

Linked with #Allseasons because in Australia,  July includes a faux xmas it's a seasonal post in this part of the world.

Thursday 23 July 2020

Raised the bar....

Tina Turner is 80 and looking fabulous. While I'm not really one to focus on the external, I have to say she really raised the bar. Check out her Insta to see what I mean.

Looks aside, she reportedly left Ike with 36 cents in 1976. Eight years later, and at the old age (in rock'n'roll terms) of 45, she took the world by storm when she released the album Private Dancer, with the massive global hit What's Love Got to Do With It. (The original is here.)

She kept doing what she loved until she retired at 70. She's been busy with the musical Tina and other projects while battling a myriad of serious health issues.

If you're looking for inspiration, she's the real deal. Whatever you are going through right now, may she be an example of light at the end of the tunnel.

The great lady sums it up perfectly “How did I think I would be at 80? Not like this...I’m happy to be an 80-year-old woman.”

Kygo released his mix of the 36 year old song (can you believe it was that long ago?!) last week and I haven't stopped singing it. So it's this week's #SundayCovers. Hope it puts a spring in your step like it did for me.

Linking my colourful light at the end of the tunnel shots with #MLSTL #TheRandom  #WordlessWednesday 

3 Little Buttons

My Random Musings

Information is the bridge to understanding

I had to get a COVID test and I asked if it would show if I'd already had it, because on our return from Singapore in January, we got really, really sick. The doctor asked why I didn't get tested then. I replied 'It was January. We didn't think about it. It was just a thing that happened in China back then..."
Fast forward six months and the whole world knows way more about this disease than we care to.

This I think is the perfect example of how a little information and understanding can change your whole perspective. Maybe we need to pay more attention to medical and scientific fact. Perhaps then our old antiquated views on climate, race and the LBGT community (and a myriad of other issues we seem to be behind in) would be less damaging.

“Wisdom is not a destination, wisdom is just a bridge. It takes you from a misty world and takes you to a sunny world where you can see everything clearly!”
― Mehmet Murat ildan

As an aside, I am after any of the quoted above Turkish Playwright's (quoted above) work in English. If anyone knows where I can get it, please let me know. 

Linking this post from last year with #GardenAffair

Wednesday 22 July 2020

Southern Highlands - Share my Snaps!

We had a lovely little overnight getaway in the holidays, and while COVID and the bushfires put a dampener on our plans, we still managed to have a great time. A lot of things were closed due to COVID and some of the bush walks, including the one to the Glow Worm Glen were closed due to bush fire damage.

It was very interesting to see that the hotel in Sutton Forest had a really serious COVID safety plan in action - restaurant was closed, bathrooms in the public spaces were closed, staff in masks, number of people limited to 4 or 6 in the billard room and other lounge rooms etc. 

On the way home the Headland Hotel made us sign in before entering and you got a sticker when you showed your ticked app, and were allowed to then enter. The barman questioned where my sticker was when my long hair hid it from view.

Twin Falls - though you can only just make out the one on the left

These small towns seem more organised than both Sydney and Canberra in a lot of ways. It was an interesting experience.

The more this is our normal, the easier it is to see what's safe and what isn't, and I guess our job is to remove ourselves from anything that isn't.

I was really loving life over the break, easing ever so slowly into real life again.

Stay safe, and stay out of elevators, people!

Linking with #WildbirdWednesday

What are you loving this week? One of the things I really loved, was seeing my Instagram look like my real instagram for a change! Small thing but it really made me smile!

Linking with #WaterThursday

“Enjoy the little things in life because one day you`ll look back and realize they were the big things.”

― Kurt Vonnegut 

Please note this 24 hour trip was prior to the NSW Health request to avoid unnecessary travel.

Friday 17 July 2020

Self Portrait of the artist with skylight.

I was getting ready and for some reason, glanced up. I saw my reflection in the skylight. (Okay, I'm not really referring to myself as an artist, just captioning the photo that way to be funny).

Are you ever surprised to catch a glimpse of yourself from an unexpected angle?

Linking with
Pieni Lintu - MakroTex challenge

Wednesday 1 July 2020

Taking Stock - July

I'm shutting the blog until around the 24th July to have a holiday and maybe write a little more productively. I have the NYC 1000 word story competition coming up and a few other stories I want to work on, not to mention focus on time with my kids in the holidays. So have a great break everyone, stay safe on the roads and be COVID sensible....

Taking Stock
Cooking: Unfortunately yes.
Sipping: Negroni's. The perfect winter cocktail
Reading:The Remains of the Day (Ishiguro) and The Time Keeper (Albom). Very late to both these titles but enjoying them so far...
Looking: At COVID numbers and travel ideas. I find the interstate rules a little confusing. NT sends me emails that they are open (so perfect time to visit Uluru) but then I look at the govt site and it's requiring 14 days quarantine...(which is fair enough but a 3 day package isn't going to work with that!). So going nowhere for a while longer...
Linking with #WeekendReflection
Listening: Debutante:Race, Resistance & Girl Power - an interesting podcast free on audible on Indigenous history and the GEST podcast  on Soundcloud from the University of Iceland lecturers from the course on Gender and Intersectionality. I may have finished the course but they're so interesting I'm eagerly waiting for the next podcast each week.
Wishing: This COVID thing was over. I'm jack of it and get sad at what the world is turning into, and worrying NSW will turn into Victoria any minute now...
Enjoying: Catching up with friends in real life.
Appreciating: How lucky we had it before this real life shitshow kicked in.

Eating: Nothing interesting. Trying to cut out the junk but eyeing off the Merivale at Home boxes....could I be missing some of lockdown?? What is that about?
Liking: Taking photos again.
Loving: Flo Kennedy. I just learnt about her and she was so inspirationally kick ass. "A lot of people think I’m crazy. Maybe you do, too, but I never stop to wonder why I’m not like other people. The mystery to me is why more people aren’t like me."
Watching: High Fidelity and Future Man...both better than I expected. Future Man is HILARIOUS once you get into the rhythm of it.
Excited by: Buying tickets to a concert and the movies....We're seeing a singer I've never heard of but he looks like we'll like him and you know, it's a concert, so does it matter?  Off to the cinema TWICE this week!

Wearing: Leggings...even Cheshire Cat ones (for The Alice but pretty much any other time too!)
Sorting: End of Financial Year stuff. YAWN!
Coveting: Elf houses. I want the elves in my garden....(And yes, this is prompted by the Eurovision movie).
Feeling: Happy. No reason but guessing coming out of lockdown is part of it, submitting the BAS and getting ready for school holidays could be the other part. Getting little bits of my social life back must be triggering some of that joy....

Dancing to: 

Have a great July everyone! Stay safe, don't forget masks when you need them. Keep sanitising and keep your distance....see you when I get back online!

Linking this old post for the photos with #FloralFridayFoto and #SkyWatch

Follow more on Insta as that never takes a break...