Remember yesterday, when I re-capped the week in a colourful hey-i’m-finally-learning-to-play-with-photoshop post?

Here we are today and already a whole new post is required to catch-up on what’s happened since the last one. Today has been a day of, shall we say, Events and Contrasts.

It has included, so far, in only partly particular order:

  • needing to get up quite early (even allowing for extra hour’s sleep afforded by the end of daylight saving) because of errands and stuff
  • emptying in the fridge
  • doing a pleasing and thorough grocery shop
  • putting a big dent into the front bumper of my car by driving into my front gate instead of, you know, the driveway I drive into every day
  • thankfully only denting the plastic bumper and not breaking any lights or panel work
  • seeing my cousin off at the airport
  • my cousin, miraculously, not leaving anything behind (this is completely unheard of)
  • my football team blowing a gigantic lead and losing heartbreakingly
  • a nap
  • cleaning the house top to bottom including mopping the floors (this last point being relevant because it’s a miracle equal to my cousin not leaving anything behind, but also because of other events that will be revealed in a moment)
  • going out a second time for the groceries I forgot
  • managing to drive safely into the actual driveway
  • several loads of washing
  • discovering that having not washed clothes for more than two weeks I still had not made a dent in the ‘good’ underwear supply, but had run out of hoodies
  • getting all the towels dry before the rain started
  • putting the char siu pork in to marinate
  • undertaking the semi-regular roasting of the almost dead tomatoes and chilies ritual (later to be pulverised and turned into sauce)
  • making a variation on this recipe from Lucy of the Design Files (such variation being, of course, almondless)
  • the house being subject to a sudden (though expected) storm with rain so heavy that it leaked through the exhaust fan in the toilet which it only does when the rain is very heavy at a certain angle
  • such leaking ruining, of course, the only recently and miraculously mopped toilet floor (bastard!)
  • going out in the pouring rain, getting out the ladder, and cleaning out the gutters because it’s the easiest way to see I’ve done them properly but also because they were rapidly overflowing despite being recently cleared, for which I blame the lack of recent rain which has resulted in a lot of dry leaves dropping from the nearby trees
  • adding ‘get the quote to replace the gutters’ on to the list of things I absolutely must do this week no matter how busy I am, together with ‘book the bloody car in for a service and perhaps now some panel work’ and ‘get a quote to replace the security doors’, noting all these things have been on The List for weeks, but The List is now written in red

…And t now it is 5pm.

And I’m going to have a tumbler full of wine.




Happy New Year

Well, 2012 was what can only be defined as A Year.

It’s tempting to write it all off as horrible, but the truth is more complex. Isn’t is always?

2012 was professionally very fulfilling, and personally harrowing. (And that’s totally ignoring the fact I turned 40.)

2012 in extremis.

But we’re still here. And over the last couple of days my brothers, my step-mum, my sister-in-law, my nephew, my niece and I have woken up to this:


The lovely view from the balcony of the house my Dad built.

We’re really sad that he never got to see it finished, and truth be told having got through Christmas relatively unscathed I burst into tears driving into Anglesea yesterday morning just thinking about it. But I also know he wanted us to enjoy it, and we’re really going too and think of him every time we’re down there.

And as for 2013, a little more balance would be welcome. Really, that’s all I want.

Happy New Year.


When I moved into this house I took the doors off the main wardrobe to (a) make the room seem bigger; and (b) to see the clothes.

The room isn’t small, but it’s long and narrow and the wardrobe was built-in some time after original construction and so makes it even narrower. There is about 20cm between the end of the bed and the wardrobe.

Leaving the doors off leaves me with lots of access to the clothes – there’s nothing hidden that I forget I own and so I don’t end up wearing the same thing over and over out of laziness and forgetfulness. And I quite like basically sleeping in a giant dressing room.

I left the wardrobe doors out in the garage figuring that if I ever want to sell I’ll need to put them back on, or that at some point I might change my mind or need them.

This week I have my four-legged ‘nephews’ staying with me, so I decided the easiest way to protect the precious shoes dog-proof the house was to put the wardrobe doors back on and throw everything in there. The dogs are generally well-behaved but one has been known to find a pair of my shoes wrapped in a plastic bag, under another bag, and eat both the plastic bag the shoes were in and part of the shoes. So I’m not leaving 85-odd pairs just on display to tempt puppies while I’m at work.

In the back of my mind I thought that maybe once the wardrobe doors were back up I’d be happy to leave them there.

Nope. They’re serviving their shoe-protecting purpose, but after the dogs go home those doors are going straight back out to the garage.

The room might appear neater with them up, but behind them things are a mess – it’s so much easier to keep the open closet neat – and the room seems much smaller. It’s probably not helped by the doors being the same colour as the walls.

And I’d forgotten how heavy and annoying they are to open and close. No easy glide tracks here. It’s two hands to open one door.

Most importantly though, I can’t see my clothes. With the open closet I can just stand there, look at the whole range of clothes and shoes in one view and pick an outfit. Now I have to lug four doors open and closed to get to the different outfit elements and then try and remember which door the shoes of the day are behind.

In the back of my mind in recent weeks I’ve started very, very tentatively planning the renovation I want to do on this house. I’m not in any rush to do it, but it’s always been on the agenda and if I don’t start at least giving it some proper thought I’ll never set aside either the time or the money to do it. So I’ve been allowing my mind to at least drift in that direction.

While I’ve always had a rough idea of how I’d like to make a renovation work – part of the appeal of this house when I bought it was that I could immediately see possilities – one of the things that’s never formed fully in my mind is how to best work in closet space in a new master bedroom.

Now at least I know, after only a couple of days, that it’ll need to be open and easily accessible to eye and hand.

Maybe I’ll just set about designing a giant walk-in closet, with slightly better planned placing for the bed in the middle of it.

Dishes tell the Tale

If you want to know the story of my week, any week, of any year, the best place to look is the ‘dirty’ side of the sink.

And yes, there is always, bar a couple of hours some time during each weekend, a ‘dirty’ side of the sink. I don’t have a dishwasher, and I used up my lifetime quota of doing dishes as soon as I’ve cooked or eaten during my years in share houses. So the dishes stack up during the week – not in any gross way, they’re rinsed or soaked – and get done some time on the weekend. Unless I need to use a pot again.

Sometimes the dirty side loaded up with pots and pans and oven trays.

Sometimes, like the weeks before Christmas when I was travelling a lot and working like crazy and had a lot of functions on, there’s bascially nothing there.

And sometimes it looks like this:


Plates. Almost all the plates. Nothing but plates.

What does this reveal about my week at home? That it’s been hot and I’ve been lazy and home a lot more than usual. It means toast for breakfast and sandwiches for lunch – when it wasn’t junk food at the cricket for lunch, as it may have been, once or twice – and left-over lasagne for dinner.

I made the lasagne earlier in the week, before it got hot. And it is good, definitely, but even I’m not quite sure about eating it several nights in a row. Though it does seem in keeping with this, the laziest week of the year.

It’s not that I haven’t considered and been tempted by other options, and I do have plenty of stuff for salads in the fridge. But, typically, everything I feel like making that is not toast or left-over lasagne requires the oven. And I’m not that crazy. So toast and left-over lasagne it is. And only plates to wash.

Which I really must go and do now, as otherwise there won’t be any left to eat the last of the lasagne from tonight.


* Why yes, that is a tile featuring a bottle of Chianti and a lobster. What, you don’t have one of those in your kitchen too? You’re missing out.