Thursday, 27 February 2014

Old Fashioned Baking Day

How did those people in the olden days do it and with such good grace and effortlessnes... Buggered if I know.

Today I started with this stuff and a too many frozen blueberries to count and worked my guts out and sweated up a storm to create 3 dozen of these.

Well actually I made 4 dozen cos the first dozen were a bit shit and I didn't want Zig's mates to laugh at him cos his Ma can't cook, so I had to start over.

While they were cooling I trundled off to the shops to get something to transport them all in and found a trundle box which I thought might do the trick. The muffins are approximately 9cm cubed so 36 take up quite a lot of room. I bought a ruler at the first place and measured the boxes and then went to another place to make sure I had found the best bet cos again I don't want these cruel little blighters to be laughing at our lovely fella.

Boxes bought and muffins are iced, now just waiting for the icing to harden. All packed and ready to go.

I know some people have memories of the smell of baked goods wafting from the kitchen and I can imagine that would be a wonderful childhood memory to hold, but the Old Woman was not a baker. It was about as much as she could manage to open a packet of biscuits and that was only when she felt peckish.

It is important to me to make this sort of stuff for Zig, firstly so that the teachers doen't need to go the epi-pen on the nut allergy kids and secondly so he knows he is loved.

I reckon when he is old enough to be thinking about baking some stuff, he might remember the home made stuff he has been treated to and have a bit of a smile. Or else he could be a wise old sausage and always buy store made stuff and save himself the trouble.

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

AWL Fundraising aka chicksatlunch.

Off for a fundraising lunch today and I must admit that I was a little apprehensive.

It was all a good bit of fun and silliness. I met a smorgasbord of women of different ages and interests, and bought lunch and raffle tickets and paid to play heads and bums - yeh it is a primary school classic but the winner went away with a bottle of decent plonk. I offended a woman when I said the thing she had won was maybe the ugliest thing I had ever seen. This was before I realised that the winners got to choose their prizes. I do believe she spent a few seconds convincing herself that I had said something else and that she had just misheard the slight. I won a prize and picked through the nylon covered hangers to grab a beautiful bunch of orchids. Very pretty indeed.

There was a geriatric magician who's arthritis made some of the slight of hand more than a little stilted and I think he was a bit smelly, but that might have been all part of the act.

The musicians must have gotten lost on the way and so a couple of the women tried to fill in with some humming and crooning. And the kitchen staff might well have done a MKR FAIL by forgetting to turn the oven on and our meals were delayed until after 2pm. This allowed plenty of time for wine bottles to be emptied and champers to be downed.

It was certainly fun. My only regret is that I chose to sit facing out to the water and the boats, next time I will face the gaggle of girls so that I can get a really good look at em all.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Reality TV - How real is it?


There's a cooking competition on the tellie at the moment MKR (My Kitchen Rules), and watching it I am wondering just how REAL it really is.

I have been cooking for a very long time. Now I don't pretend to be an expert, far from it, god knows I don't even like it a little bit, but cook I can.

Some parts of cooking are just elementary, like what needs slow cooking and what can and should be tossed onto a flame and almost instantly pulled off again. The list of basics is quite long and for anyone thinking they might like to compete on a culinary show, well they surely would have looked up at least a few.

The idea that that there is REALLY one disaster after other is more than a little hard to believe.

I get the need to include dickheads and quirky folk and old people and youngsters. The ratings would be piss poor indeed if all the contestants were pleasant but surely they all aught be able to cook.

So REALITY TV it's not.

I guess none of the so called reality shows are remotely REAL. Could there really be a dozen or so women prepared to battle it out amongst themselves for some unknown unseen bloke and could he REALLY be that much of a narcissist? Yeh Ok that's possible but I don't reckon men like this would be easy to find in large numbers! Can regular people just jack in their jobs for months at a time to run around the world or survive on an island or build a house or repair someone else's place?

Big Brother was the jumping off point I think. And when it started, the carefully selected hodge podge of people were literally dumped into the house and left to their own devices. It was a bit of a psycho drama. Now they are given tasks that entertain (themselves not necessarily the viewers), and have odd visitors and letters from home and conjugal visits ( Ok I made that up)  and so I reckon the outcomes are also predetermined.

The tellie arguments and disasters and upsets and the odd characters are orchestrated and rehearsed and edited - not at all REAL.

I think this is just very cheap TV. No money wasted on script writing or costumes or sets or cinematography.

There is I bet an excellent reason why the ABC do not make 'em. Surely someone would be jumping up and down if the ABC spent public money making this kind of crap. And the commercial channels make it because it's cheap and catering for the lowest common denominator of viewers.

Beggars belief really that I am still watching this shit! At least I can record it and fast forward through the ads and the 'coming up next's.

Monday, 24 February 2014

Zig's Birthday Week and it's all Hands on Deck

The not so little fella is a big 9 NINE this week and that means pressies and cakes and party preparations.

There are 2 kids in his class this year with epi pen nut allergies so he has asked for blueberry muffins for his school cakes.

I am making these on Thursday cos I have time and a fool proof recipe for muffins and then Belly and I will take 'em up to school on Friday in time for morning tea.

It is amazing just how quickly kids get into the hang of the nut allergy routine. When I said I was gonna make the cakes Zig grilled me about whether they would be nut free and how did I know even if I was making them from scratch, that the ingredients would all be nut free. And I guess he has a point. I can only hope that the flour factory and the sugar factory etc are all busy enough to not have to moonlight making peanut shit.

We are so lucky that Zig doesn't have to worry about any of this, and just as an aside I do wonder when it became a 'thing'. I have no memory of Bell's mates having any issues and certainly there was no problem that I can recall when I was at school all those centuries ago, so how did it happen that this generation has this potentially lethal ailment?

After the school visit Belly and I will do final bits of shopping for the party and on Saturday I will get my little list of stuff sorted for an early exit on Sunday. I think Steve would like to come up so Zig knows he is loved, but I am not sure that the early exit will work in his favour. We will wait and see.

Bell has got a number of games planned which require the kids being brave and getting filthy, so I am looking forward to taking lots of mucky pics.

Roll on filthy sunday I reckon. Snags and sweeties and games galore. Yippee!!

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Poppy's WW1 and WW2 details are online!

Army personnel in Gorari, New GuineaArmy TitleArmy Service Badge
Home pageCivilians ListWW2 Overview page
About this Nominal Roll pageGlossary of Ranks pageContacts and Links page

Search by Name Search by Service Number Search by Honour or Gallantry Search by Place
Service Record
ServiceAustralian Army
Service NumberQ120051
Date of Birth6 Aug 1898
Date of Enlistment29 May 1941
Locality on EnlistmentCOORPAROO, QLD
Place of EnlistmentBRISBANE, QLD
Next of KinWARD, MARY
Date of Discharge15 Mar 1944
Posting at Discharge3 AUST DETENTION BARRACK
WW2 Honours and GallantryNone for display
Prisoner of WarNo

How it came up is a mystery, but this morning over coffee Steve and I were chatting about my grandfather, Poppy Ward. He was a pretty silent fella and my memories of him are few. He used to say, 'Look up' all the time and this meant a myriad of things like, get out of the way, yes that's right, not now, and very occasionally look up. He had lost at least one toe to frost bite in THE WAR, he was very tall and my Nanna seemed to love him a great deal.

Anyway I said that he had lied his way into both WWs and I wondered what else I could find out about him.

Online research is bloody amazing. In very short order I found out quite a lot.

He had indeed been in both wars and he finished off WW2 as a sergeant. His mother's name was Eliza Alice. He was born in Maryborough 06/08/1898.

The birthdate seems to be about right but as I imagine he lied about his age both times I am not sure of it's actual validity.

Who was responsible for entering all this data onto a system I wondered? Some of the info was updated as late as 2005. I can only guess at the level of boredom involved in sitting for days and months and years typing in this stuff. I reckon that the original ledger entries were in tiny neat cursive of the day and perhaps these are faded and contained in dented rather somewhat mouldy tombs.

It's rather lovely to think that all these records are now available forever and it is a government expense that I certainly do not find remotely irritating.

I wish I could have found a photo to lead this blog, but the search was not long and I am not expert by any means so it is not out of the question that a photo will appear sometime in the future.

Friday, 21 February 2014

Catholic Institutional meddling in Education = a licence to do as they please!

All day I have been putting off writing cos I didn't want to rant on and on about the catholic church's methods of cover up and semantics, but the venom just has not subsided.

I read this morning that the great thinker - yeah sarcasm is the poorest for of wit, Christopher Pyne minister for education in  Australia has appointed the vice chancellor of the Australian Catholic University, Greg Craven, as chairman of the committee investigating all that is wrong with TEACHERS in this country!! And to think, this at the end of a week where the Brisbane courts have been full of stories from a catholic school in Toowoomba, where staff just didn't think it important to report or investigate allegations of molestation and rape. In total 44 complaints were made against Gerard Byrnes who was finally charged and found guilty and is serving 10 years in jail.

I am sick with boiling bile as I hear that again as recently now as 2007 / 2008 the catholics just didn't want to deal with this abuse and so more children have been hurt and raped and abused and IGNORED.

Now I know a number of very fine people who readily admit they are Catholic. These are kind smart wonderful folk who I much admire and enjoy spending time with. We rarely if ever discuss religion, I am sure in no small part, because we all know it would get ugly very quickly.

I do not pretend to understand their beliefs and I am sure they find my complete lack of belief equally puzzling.

And I do not hold them at all responsible for the appalling atrocities committed in catholic institutions by catholic staff. The catholic system must however be seriously flawed at best and disgustingly corrupt at worst, to allow the sickening abuse of so many children over such a long period of time, probably since institutions took hold.

When I see these latest arseholes on the tellie leaving court, I have to fight the very real violent urge to find them and belt the shit out of them with a bat. They are soo bloody blaze about not having protected these kids. 'Oh well, oops I made a miscalculation.' ' I didn't want to believe it.' 'I thought someone else would report it to the police, even though yes I knew it was my legal and professional duty to do so.'

The Principal at the time of the abuse, Terry Hayes was responsible for ignoring the initial complaints, he accepted Byrnes' resignation and then re-hired him as a contract teacher straight away. How is Hayes not complicit in all this?

Anyway I have turned red in the face writing this and my irritation about Mr Pyne's latest appointment has hardly been addressed.

How can anyone think that someone representing an institution so fond of protecting it's good name at the expense of innocent children, is going to come up with a plan to make better teachers?

It clearly does not matter one jot what legislation is in place to protect our children, institutions like the catholic church will always put their own PR ahead of what is morally right.

The cynic in me thinks that maybe these are possible recommendations from Greg Craven's committee.
  • Teachers should be smarter about flouting the law.
  • Teachers should be tested on their ability to protect the good name of their fellows.
  • If fiddling must happen then it would be best to be done in private so there are no witnesses.
  • Teachers should NOT believe children.
Yeh I could go on an on, but I am now puce with rage.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Painting again.

Last week I re-joined the RQAS ( Royal Queensland Art Society). I didn't go to the workshop but I did stump up the cash and became a member.

Now what I like about this place is that each month they have a theme for the paintings and so it sort of sets a bit of a task and gives some direction if direction is lacking and as I haven't painted in a long time, direction was definitely lacking.

March's theme is DREAMING. Now as I have whinged previously, I am not getting much sleep at the mo, so dreaming is something that I am very keen on. I would love to spend a week just dreaming and floating along and waking up refreshed and rested. When I think of dreaming I think of flying gracefully and swimming elegantly. I think of being weightless and naked and svelte and lovely.

I blotted out an old painting and set to making my dreaming a canvas reality. I love playing with paint and watching it morph into unexpected designs and so the background became a wonderful splodge of blues and pinks and whites and purples with bubbles and smudges.

I was happy with how it looked. It seemed hopeful and inviting. Then I found some photos of Belly learning to surf and the images were so sculptural and flying-like that I thought I would use them as inspiration.

Well paint and draw and doodle and fiddle I did, and now every time I step back to have a look I am a little more concerned about where my head might really be. The images that I can control are sweet and calm and relaxed and wonderful, but what is appearing is hostile and miserable and confronting and violent. Steve looked at it and wondered if it was a murder scene. I don't dislike what I have made but it's just not what I had in mind.

But maybe what is in my mind while dreaming on these hot sticky nights, is not even close to what I would like to be dreaming, so I reckon I might just leave it as it is.

It certainly makes you wonder what was in the mind of Munch or Charles Blackman to propel them  to make some of their little bits of misery.

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Girlie High Tea


Quite the chaotic morning with well meaning strangers ringing the door bell to let me know that my water metre is leaking.... I mean OK, but who does that?? I am pretty sure that I would not be waking complete strangers to let them know water was escaping onto the ground outside their house and I certainly would not be ringing and ringing and bloody ringing. Seriously I thought it was some shitty kids just practising being painful.

So yes there was water leaking and a call to the Council saw some plumbers arrive and then no water to the house and when I got home I guess all was fixed, though I must admit I didn't look cos I don't really care if the footpath is having a bath.

With makeup applied in the rather vain hope that it didn't slide right off my face onto my chest in this heat, it was off to Maria's for champers and sweeties and much much later a cuppa. Maria had spent what I can only imagine to be about a year cooking all these little bits of lovely. We sat in the shade in a breezy spot and caught up on the gossip. Who was dating who, who had gained 2 pounds who had lost their phone, where to go on holidays and where best to buy and then hide your women's' play things. Ah women's chatter, no wonder men don't get it!

Most of the women I had met before and there were a couple of new-to-me gals. A lively time was had by all. Thanks so much to Maria for welcoming us all yet again!!

Maybe I should pull on some wellies and go have a look at the water problem - Oh No - No wellies, oh well.


Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Still filthy hot with a side of showers.

One of the only fab thing about my inability to sleep well is that this morning I got to see the few drops of rain fall.

Even now more than 2 hours later the sky is trying hard to have a little pee, but I can't help thinking that maybe it has a bladder infection and that some medication is in order so a full stream can be restored.

I don't reckon the heat is gonna break until there is some rain, and certainly the trees and the grass could do with a drink.

Just an aside about the garden, I was out there yesterday and trying to do what I could with the fish pond and I noticed a big fat grub on one of the new plants we put in just a week or so ago. I got closer and the whole bloody thing was covered in 'em, and so was the other one bought at the same time. I have been worried that the plants seemed to be failing and have not been able to work it out, but these grubby little fuckers seem to be the cause. The only things it seems that grown in the dry are the bloody grubs!

So I removed 'em all, careful not to actually touch one with my bare hands..ooh YUKKY. and ended up with a bucket load but didn't know what to do with the greedy little sods. I was just gonna tip 'em into the park but I was worried that they might crawl back over here cos the food is soo good, and then Steve said that worms can re-grow from either end if they are chopped in half so if I was gonna kill I had to do a real damn fine job of it. I put on my trusty thongs and ground those fuckers into a grub paste on the concrete. Don't reckon they will be coming back anytime soon.


 Off to Brisvegas today with tape measure and cleaning products, and the lovely anticipation of afternoon tea with Zig and then dinner all together later when Bell gets in from work. Am gonna have to pack a 'work-a-day' shirt cos I reckon almost certainly just sitting still will see me sweat through at least one outfit and it would just not do to embarrass the darling Zig when I pick him up. Nobody wants to be collected by a stinky sweaty Ma now do they?

Monday, 17 February 2014

The Heat in the Old Days

We have had a few days of really hot humid yukiness and I reckon that all the modern 'conveniences' are actually making it more difficult to manage.

I grew up in Brisvegas, and it got HOT HOT HOT in the summer. No I am not going into a rant about global warming, but I will say that it has always been bloody hot in the summer.

As kids we would open all the windows, run around in our togs, set up the sprinkler and go sliding through the wet grass until and after we had worn holes in the arse of our pants.

I have no memory of table fans going all night to enable me to sleep, and there certainly was no air-con.

We wore cotton clothes and sprayed ourselves with water and I guess just generally sucked it up.

Now the heat comes with dilemma after dilemma.

I am spoiled. I have a pool and air-con, and we designed the house so that the breeze would push the hot air around until it is sucked out on high. So wouldn't you think I'd have nothing at all to whinge about.


Once a decision has been made to turn on the air-con, its all hands on deck cos the many windows need to closed as well as all the doors and then you need to decide which zones are gonna be given a burst and what temp seems like a good idea.

If the machine is set to rumble all night then a light coverlet is needed in case the cold creeps into your bones. Last night I started with no sheet or cover while the cool kicked in and then I pulled up a sheet and then I pulled up the cover then I got up to pee and then I got up and turned off the rumble then I got up to open the windows and then I just got up. I reckon its got to be far less trouble to spray some water onto your cotton sheets and just know you are gonna be hot. I am now sooo bloody tired and hot and irritable that I might have to go and float around the pool.

Except that the shade has not hit it yet and the feeling of all that sun cream is a bit yukky, and its a bit early to go in in bra and knickers ( I feel a certain obligation to protect the retinas of the neighbours and the people in the park) so that mean Togs are in order, but the sweat trickle has stuck my dress to my back and getting into said togs requires an Olympic tugging effort of at least 2 or 3 people. So the cool allure of the pool is problematic... see how spoiled a girl can be.

I don't enjoy the rumble or the smell of the air-con so during the day all the windows and doors are flung wide, except the garage door which is a battle point between Steve and I. I like it open he likes it closed so it is a bit up and down like a whore's drawers.

But the heat this time is being delivered courtesy of the stinky northerly breeze which is blowing a gale but bringing no relief. Everything needs to anchored down or it blows around like an indoor tornado.

The truly odd side effect of this moving air, is that the fire alarms are being set off, so a ladder is required to remove the battery and there we have another sweaty stinky task, not required in the 70's.

So this is the problems of heat survival in 2014
  • water restrictions mean no more sprinkler action.
  • ozone leaking sunburn means pool action is kept for late afternoon.
  • the open window / door policy causes the ongoing shrill beeps of the fire alarms which Dog finds terrifying so there is a very real trip threat involved in the chicken high stepping  around her as she runs between my legs for comfort.
  • the air-con has robbed me of sleep so I am cranky and I doubt I would be any more cranky if I was just hot.
Oh for the simplicity of the 70s.

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Now there are more than 50 options for Gender

Transgender: Sometimes abbreviated to trans, this is

Facebook, which I must admit I really really enjoy, has just announced that it has increased the gender option drop downs from 2 to more than 50.

Well surely this just shows political correctness going completely bonkers.

And this does not come from some WASPy old woman who has never been out of the bubble.

I dated a bloke who was full of all sorts of secrets, and one night he finally decided that it was time to reveal a couple so he nicked into his room as Allan and came back as Julie. I wasn't all that shocked about the cross dressing. Who cares what people wear? But as the months rolled on and his conversation never moved too far from women's fashion and shoes, well it became a bit tedious, so we called it a day.

Some months later he rolled up at home and told me that he wanted to be a woman and would I help him buy underwear to hide all his bits, which I did. He was saving for the slice off, and growing boobs and lasering his beard. I was surprised that he refused to spend any money on voice coaching cos I reckoned that would have been money well spent.

Anyway we lost contact as you do with old boyfriends, and I rarely thought of Allan / Julie again, until I met another bloke years later, who somehow reminded me of him.

This fella had run into me at an Art show and had then hacked into the Dept of Ed computers to find my address and phone number. I suppose warning bells should have already been ringing!

Anyway on our first date I was had this niggle that became a roar, and I just blurted it out. 'Tell me, do you want to be a woman?' He said, 'No.' I suppressed my certain knowledge and finally some months later he told me the truth. Oh well another bit the dust.

I have given my wedding dress to a gay mate who was getting married and I dressed in a Dinner Suit so I could give him away.

I have attended parties where I reckon I might have been the only straight, as I was born intact woman.

And through all this I do not recall any conversations about what LABEL anyone wanted. We were all just a jolly little group happy having drinks and  a laugh.

So who came up with this idea? And what is the difference between a woman and a female? And I haven't looked but do I now get to choose whether I am a woman or a female or a lady, and if I do, how am I gonna choose, cos actually I don't give a shit.

Is it the old grumpy woman in me that doesn't give a shit?

Is someone at Facebook just taking the piss?

Saturday, 15 February 2014

The Winter OMG Did you see that? Olympics.

Right now it is about 35 stinky degrees and I have taken off everything I can without scaring the neighbours or getting arrested for flaunting flobbly bits less than fabulous. My imagination is running to those ski slopes in Sochi. It would firstly be an excellent time to give my rainbow scarf a very long fine outing and the cold on my face would be just an added bonus. Being a product of the movie and tellie age I suppose if I was thrown in jail for the waving of my scarf, then at least I would not be sliding sweatily around on the concrete floor, instead it would be more than a little chilly. Ah how lovely!

Anyway sometime has been spent watching this spectacle. It completely beggars belief how these folk have the nerve to throw themselves down the slopes and half pipes.... no I am not going all groovy on your ass, until now, I thought this tubey thing was a half pint or a half pike. But it doesn't matter what you call it, I reckon these folk are just plain bonkers!

They have fallen like rag dolls off the slope loop thing and become mangled at the top of the pipe where there just doesn't seem to be enough room to swing a cat let alone provide any breathing space for a mad fly through the air girl or guy. Instead of hearing about all their recent successes mostly the commentary is about their body bits that are missing or hanging by a thread. When I heard that someone was flying headfirst into some crazy abyss and did not have an ACL to bless himself with, well this is where I drew the line. Nothing connecting the knees to the legs, SHIT! 2 knee braces and a pair of skiis and some crazy death wish, and what about the guy who has a broken hand so cant hold the ski sticks, so goes without 'em.

The competitive nature of athletes which drives the 'hot' games seems to be reserved for the figure skaters and I reckon quite a lot of them might like to borrow my pretty scarf. Perhaps the gay community's disgust and dismay about the Russian laws can be displayed through less than subtle costuming at the ice rink.

I would love love love to see competitors dressed in the rainbow, completely kicking Russia's arse.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Valentines Day including the roses

For years now, Steve and I have all but ignored this silliness except for the placement of a series of silly cards in spots which demonstrate that we know each others habits well. Steve places cards in the evening prior to, cos I am always in bed first and he is always up last. I put something in his cereal box and he places something next to the kettle. I pop something in his hat and he hides something near my tooth brush. Oh dear how all very predictable.

But today when I got home from a silly little outing, I ran into a big old bunch of roses.  Now the cynics among us might wonder what wrongs he was trying to right. It's the old story isn't it? The bigger the misdemeanour the bigger the bunch of flowers and if the err was huge, then only a florist shop will do.

But I don't reckon Steve has been up to mischief. I don't reckon he has any guilt to purge. I reckon it is far more likely that this year he has had 4 days on the trot of walking passed all the nonsense as we walk through the village for coffee, and busy bodies prompting him to remember the DAY and the flowers. It would have been impossible to ignore or forget. So organised he was and very nice too.

I am going to stick my face right into the bunch and enjoy the moment.

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Bursting the Boredom

No this is NOT about cooking! I just liked the graphic.

Today was set up to be just the usual, just ordinary, plain even, yeh ok, maybe a little yawn making, and then during coffee things moved a little out of the groove.

A very pleasant lady from the bakery which was the topic of the Macaron disappointment stopped by and apologised profusely for her arrogant boss. I was pleased that even though she was on hols last week, my story had gotten around and she felt compelled to say something. I am pleased too cos this means there are no hard feelings with the girls on the counter so I can go back and buy bread, well at least I am gonna send Steve over after for a French stick for dinner and see how we go.

Maz joined us and we caught up on her Reno plans and might have even been able to save her some cash by sharing some pond building tips that we discovered by trial and error and a great deal of research.

My phone rang and as almost never happens, I had it with me and Andrea said she was at my front gate, so I swished on  home in time for a lovely visit and a great story about her recent travels and runs in with the Laos police.

Then off to the RQAS ( Royal Queensland Art Society) for details about the weekend workshop. The gallery has had a fine refurb since the last time I was there, and the paintings were worth a little look. I found the info for Sunday and then I read the materials list and now I am baulking a bit. It was a comprehensive list indeed, right down to the weight of the paper, the size and shape of the brushes and the brand and COLOURS of the paint.

Well, many years ago, I decided that I was not really fit to teach ART at high school. I could barely control my impulse to rip the brush, pen, pastel, whatever out of the kids' hands and do it for 'em. Not good form for a teacher. Well I can't help thinking that everyone is gonna walk out on sunday afternoon with something that looks much the same as the next persons. I don't really want to do that. I don't know what I want to do, but I know it's not that!

All was not lost though as I met the new president and he is a jolly bloke and I reckon I am ready to join again and that could well be the impetus I need to get cracking.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014


I have been composing a new art piece in my brain for a few weeks now. No not this piece, it's old but I do like her!

I watched a recorded episode of 'Colour in your Life' and the Mccanns were showcased. No I didn't know who they were either. Lucy does watercolours and Barry does acrylics. I liked the way Barry painted even if I thought all the maths and geometry was too much for me to be bothered with.

They are both teachers as well as full time artists.

They run regional workshops all around Australia.

They are having a workshop all weekend here at the RQAS at Broadie.

Well, I reckon this might just be the kick start I really needed.

I rang the listed number and was sent to answer phone. I hope that they ring me back.

It seems to me that this might be one of those, 'meant to be moments'.

I reckon I might head out there tomorrow and check it out.

I have been procrastinating about getting started so I hope that this thinking is not part of the procrastination. Last week saw hours spent cleaning and tidying my studio, so I could get painting, but still no brush has been dunked.

It's a pity that the Gallery is closed cos otherwise I might have driven over NOW. Or maybe NOT.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Life's simple pleasure

It doesn't take much to make me smile these days. After grunting literally like a big old piggy today trying to give Belly some breathing room and a little more space, we tried the peak hour dash from Brisvagas to the Goldie.

I am glad that I was not Steve because that meant I was not sitting next to me. I must have stunk like a 3 day old nappy full of maggoty shit. You know when you are a stinker cos you don't want to be near yourself, well that's what I was like today.

There was a 4 car pile up at Mt Gravatt and that meant 3 lanes converging into one. That's 3 lanes of pushy, pissed off, been at work all day folk and stinky old me. I just sucked it up, turned the air con on to high and the radio on LOUD, and did the clutch dance for what seemed like miles.

And then the clouds parted and the crash site was passed and all of a sudden 1 lane became 3 and then 4 and the trip home was a breeze. Sometimes coming across a pile up can be bloody lucky, well not for the crashers obviously, but  I reckon we were home faster than the usual peak hour trawl along. Yippee!

The Dog was just so bloody happy to see us. She ran rings around us both and jumped up like a maniac.

But the best part of the day, which I am only admitting to in a whisper cos it beat Belly's excitement over her new purple shelves and even the big 'love you' cuddles from Zig, was dragging this filthy arse into the shower for a good long scrub.

You just have to love going from putrid to squeaky with the rough application of the fluff thing.


Monday, 10 February 2014

Making Memories

I stumbled upon that old movie 'Stepmom' with Susan Sarandon, Julia Roberts and Ed Harris. It was more than part way through, but that didn't matter cos I had seen it before.

It's sad and lovely all at the same time. So I laughed and cried and enjoyed Steve being at golf, and I wondered if it was indeed possible to purposefully set out to create memories or if they just sort happen and stick to the happy side of your brain.

I'm either pretty lucky or maybe just a bit retarded, because I have a short memory span for most shitty events and hurtful arsehole people. Oh I remember stuff at will but the memories are not sitting there bubbling away creating their own bit of brain bile.

I really hope that Belly and Zig's happy brains are full of  wonderful, silly mad moments and that they are not buried so deep that they need oversized shovels to resurrect them. I like to imagine them bursting out laughing for no apparent reason as a silly moment takes hold in their brain.

And I don't just mean memories about me, I mean all happy moments. I just want their happy brains to be full full full to bubbling up overflowing.

Sunday, 9 February 2014


What a quiet old Sunday it's been. Up latish to folding laundry and washing sheets and walking Dog in the misty rain. Yeh it dawned on me too that the sheets might not dry in this weather. Ho Hum!

Coffee at Bay Salt in the village and was lucky enough to grab a  just baked apple muffin not long out of Avril's oven, then off to see about some shelves or a shelf unit or something a bit useful for Belly's kitchen, Well the truth is that last Thursday I noticed that the lovely big flash toaster we gave her for Christmas was still its box along with other stuff on top of her nuker so she admitted that there was just no room for it. Steve and I are on a mission to make room for it!!

We went to Freedom and that was useless but nice and then set the Satnav for Masters. This was a bit of a fuck-knows idea.

The machine guided us and it stood out like a boil on your butt. One could easily be forgiven for mistaking it for a Bunnings except that it is blue not gaudy orange or is it green....

The shop was less nice but more useful than Freedom and we came away with 2 purple 2 packed shelves which came with fixings that Steve, wearing his engineer's hat, was pretty sure would do the job. We also got 2 'pool balls' for the price of 1 - a very happy coincidence.

Out to the park with Nikki and Sam and Dog for a natter and a play - Nik and I nattered and dogs played.

Long Sunday bath with a crescendo of scaping legs so that they slide seamlessly into the new sheets - one of life's great, pleasures.

And now there is the lamb roasting smell wafting through the place and I am bloody hungry. I am lucky that Steve cooks it, cos if it was left to me it would just never happen, especially on a Sunday. I grew up with cheesy toast or eggs on toast or something on toast on Sundays, so the idea of going the whole hog, or lamb or standing beef ribs, just does not compute, even after all these years of Steve doing the traditional on Sundays.

Look out! don't get between this woman and Steve's baked spuds!!

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Macaron madness


Adriano Zumbo makes a damn fine macaron. If you wanna find out how there are plenty of places online where you can watch him step by step, but me, well I am just too bloody lazy and I have not got any kitchen machinery suitable for the task so I prefer to buy 'em. On the web it says that a well made macaron can be kept in the freezer for up to 6 months. That's a long time!! I thought they were far more fragile than that.

Belly's birthday cake, bought NOT home made - shock shock shock! was decorated with macarons.

They failed the longevity test.

They were collapsing empty shells.

They were a great disappointment.

I was embarrassed.

I bought the cake from HORNERS BAKERY SORRENTO.

It cost $35.

Now this bakery has been in business for more than 30 years. I remember going there when Belly was Belinda, I was married, and we came to visit Nanna and Poppy. It was THE place to go all those years ago and I have been going there all this time. Now I live across the park from it so it's a handy place to go for a fresh loaf and Zig is the fourth generation of my family to get treaties there.

Suffice to say I have a long long association with the place.

So I thought it reasonable to go and have a chat with Rob the son of the founders and now I think the chief baker.

I waited outside so our conversation would not cause any embarrassment in the shop.

Rob popped out and was pleasant enough until I mentioned the cake. I had ordered it Wednesday and when I asked, was assured that it would be made fresh for Thursday.

Rob didn't try to deny the fact the cake was stale and less than it should have been. Instead he explained how the cake was made and that it's a 2 day job and that it was never going to have been made to order with only one day's notice and that the macarons do not last on the ganache layer of the cake and that they would always be less than fabulous.

He made it clear that he was happy to sell a stale cake and that if I didn't know that the macarons would be rubbish then that was my problem. I guess he is right. Let the buyer beware and all that!! He walked away without any concern or apology or comment about the lie told by his staff.

Well that was all quite the pisser!! I like the bread from there and have been happyish to pay their premium for all manner of baked goods. I have recommended them time and time again.


So here's my solution. Tell everyone about the shitful customer service and warn against buying the macaron decorated mousse cake and continue to buy my bread there as a last resort.

Oh and I think they use macarons on other cakes as decoration. I reckon we'd all do well not touch them with a pointy stick, the fuckers would collapse into dusty tasteless expensive air.

And finally if you have a complaint about anything bought from this place, you'd be as well going to tell the butcher or the candlestick maker as to bother this baker.