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Showing posts from December, 2014

2014 round up...

Well, here we are on the very last day of 2014 and as coincidence would have it, this is post number 2014 on this blog (yes, that's right, I'm going to start 2015 with post number 2015 as well, because that's how I roll!)...

2014 has been... interesting.

The Grumpy Old Man told me this morning that 2014 was disappointing for him. He was disappointed that our previous home was sold from under us when they had given us assurances we could live there for a few years. He was disappointed that the big boys didn't make more of the opportunities their high school affords them...

Me, I don't feel disappointed. I guess I didn't have many expectations when this year began. I did think we'd still be at Leeds Street at the end of the year, but yesterday I realised I've well and truly settled into this new house. I don't want to move from here now. It's not as perfect for us as the other, but the other house is gone now, and we've made this house a home,…

Desperate Measures...

Today I've been working on something that is so very not me at all... I have been compiling a recipe folder. Yes, you read that right. The anti-foodie has been compiling a recipe folder.



Desperate times call for desperate measures, as the saying goes.

I am, and I'm sure many of you can relate to this, entirely over the nightly ritual of 'What's for dinner?'... This is a phenomenon which has its own meme (for those of you lucky enough not to have kids). See!


Yes, we suffer from this too.
The Grumpy Old Man is the cook around these parts. He used to love cooking. He hates it now. Partly because he's tired when it comes to cooking time, partly because none of us can agree on what constitutes an appetising dinner - there is always someone pushing their plate away and declaring a lack of appetite. It's a thankless job and over the past 18 years of cooking for us, we have managed to suck all the joy out of the process for the Grumpy Old Man, like blood thirsty mo…

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

We did!

It's been wall to wall excitement, family, and food. Today we're packing up Christmas but before we do I thought I'd better capture the frivolity here.

Christmas started a few days before Christmas here, with the arrival of a brand new 55" television, thanks to a number of my family's (Dad, my brother, and my parents) help. This extravagance was mostly a gift for me as it had become impossible for me to see our old 32" television with my deteriorating sight. Of course, my sight will continue to deteriorate and I guess one day (hopefully not too soon) the new television will also become impossible for me to see, but this gift means I can enjoy my favourite show and characters for a little while longer.


Because of the size of the new box, we had to rearrange the entire lounge room, put the buffet out in the hallway and bring the hall stand (a trusty old Expedit shelving unit) into the lounge as a television stand. This has really opened up the lounge ro…

Delicious Food, ready when you are…

So, let me tell you about some awesome fun my family and I have been having in the past couple of weeks! I was given the opportunity to taste some absolutely fantastic gourmet foods from a new company which is just beginning to spread its wings in Australia. The company is called dish’d and they offer a new and exciting way to experience delicious food from around the world right in the comfort of you own home! Now, as I had the pleasure of finding out, these aren’t just any old pre-prepared frozen meals, they’re the kind of food you find restaurants, prepared by an experience chef who wants to offer something innovative, creative and tantilising!
I was a little worried about how the family would take to this, especially Bryn who has, well, let’s say, an extremely (frustratingly so) discerning palate (in layman’s term, he’s a fussy eater)… So, I ordered a range of side dishes, mains, and desserts, some more recognisable to the kids such as spring rolls and vegie lasagna. As I was goin…

Create, don't consume...

Around this time every year I fly into a bit of a panic. It's not as bad as it was, say, seven years ago, but it still happens. You see, tomorrow Erik and Lukas go on summer holidays, and then at the end of next week Bryn and Ari join them. The next three weeks will be okay because, well, there's Christmas and then there's New Year's. But then there is January, in particular the first three weeks of January.

We can never afford to get afford to get away, and so we spend January at home. I will most likely be working, which gets me out of the house, but the rest of the guys will be at home niggling one another. It can truly be a sucky time. Mostly, the kids want to play computer games. I get that, it passes the time, it's a form of escapism, and frankly, if they could do it without squabbling, I'd be tempted to let them while away summer days going on virtual quests.

But, you see, there's the rub, they really aren't able to play the games without fightin…

Levelling out...

Okay, so let's see. I got back from Wellington on Wednesday evening last week. I felt completely outside my head on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Like seriously, I wasn't gone that long, but it took me nearly as long to settle once I got back. Part of the reason for that is that Bryn had left for camp the morning of the day I returned, so I didn't have my family back in one place until Friday night.

On Saturday I went to the Swedish Church Christmas Fair in Toorak with mum. It has grown so much over the past decade. We barely knew anyone, but it was marvellous all the same. We had Danish pølser (hotdogs) and frikadeller (meatball on black bread with onion). Listened to Scandinavian Christmas music, and of course, bought scandinavian Christmas decos!


I loved these lights and had to have them! Also on the table you can see a candle holder consisting of four connected, red-painted wood hearts, a little 'nisse' (christmas elf) with a long beard and his nose sticking o…

Holding back the tears ~ aka. The 19th AAWP Conference...

So, here I am on the second day of the big conference. It has been amazing. Mostly just because there are other people in the world just like me! You know the old trope of the lonely writer, well, that's probably not true for everyone, not strictly true. I have many friends and acquaintances, good friends, people I feel lucky to know (you guys know who you are, I think). Having said that, none of them are writers trying to break into the academy. Some of my acquaintances are, and hopefully we'll be able to form friendships as time passes, but even so, these are not people I see all the time, and being acquaintances, I'm only just getting to know them, and them me, so it is hard to know how they are experiencing the entire three ring circus that is pursuing one's creative writing impetus, but also attempting to be recognised as a scholar, and even more so a pedagog.

But here, at this conference, I've found others like me, which the same thoughts and feelings, and fe…