Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Next update will be in the New Year.
Wishing all friends and family a wonderful Christmas and a Happy Safe 2010.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Matthew and Madeline gave their final speeches as Middle School Captains at the Graduation ceremony.
Matthew receiving his graduation certificate from the principal Ross Switzer.
The two school captains and the Middle school Principal Bronwyn Gagliardi cutting the graduation cake.
So for a couple of updates.
School is finished for the year, Matthew and Sarah are on summer holidays until end of January.
Ivan is overseas in York, PA and New York (wish I was with him), Elizabeth is working hard at her job and I am trying to get into the Christmas spirit with temperatures over 37 degrees Celsius for the past 3 days. A bit tough, although the children and I did make 14 dozen Christmas mince pies and 11 dozen curry mince pies on Monday. So now we are hot and fat!
The house is decorated and the shopping almost finished. I have ordered the Turkey and have begun planning the menu, so with just 2 weeks left, we are finally beginning to think Christmas will be here soon.
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Tonight I have taken my new laptop to bed with me (no hubby he is away) and started writing Book Two.
My plan is to focus on writing a further 50 000 words just like the first book, no editing or trying to tell the story, just focussing on getting that 50 000 words. That way I am hoping that by the end of the 50 000 I will have another great story.
Word count 1480.
Here is an explanation:
A pass is a 4 (50-65%)
Credit is a 5 (65-74%
Distinction is a 6 (75-84%)
and a High Distinction is a 7 (85%+)
I am working towards a Bachelor of Arts degree hopefully majoring in English and Writing. Initially I thought I might major in English and Religion and this is still a possibility. If I go this path my writing will just be incorporated into my English degree.
Who knows where this will lead, maybe to an honours degree, but that is way down the track still.
At the moment, my plan is to do just 5 courses per year instead of the 'usual' 8 courses. Three in first semester and 2 in second; this way I can enjoy the journey and the process and still have time for the family.
26 years after writing my last exam I survived another one. I don't know my final results for my exam, but my final English grade is a . . . HIGH DISTINCTION '7'.
Happy dance time.
I have a GPA of 6.5 for second semester and am so happy. Can't wait now to tackle 2010 first semester. I am going to take 'Fundamentals of writing; Gothic literature and possibly Australian Literature (depending on the lecturer). Roll on March 1st, 2010.
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
So for all the fans that have been following The Creators (I know there are thousands of you out there - LOL) let me know in the comments section of this post and I can send you the rest of the story via private email.
Many thanks for your support (family and friends). It has been a great journey.
Sunday, November 29, 2009
I am finished with one day to spare. 100 pages, 48 chapters and 50 177 words.
My novel has been submitted to NaNoWriMo and it has been validated and I have been awarded a winner's certificate. On December 2nd, I can log onto NaNoWriMo and download a certificate to print a free proof copy of my manuscript as well, but more importantly than any of these things, my reward is that I have a novella. A story all of my own making, rich with wonderful characters that I have found along the way.
I am doing a happy dance inside as I sit and write. I will continue to post chapters online, hope you enjoy everyone.
Thank you to everyone who has supported me along the way, to my brother and Michelle for reading along chapter by chapter. To my husband for his patience when I sat writing, rather than talking to him. Thank you to my children for their understanding and to Sarah for being the creative child who inspired my heroine.
I hope one day I inspire you all to follow your own dreams.
Thursday, November 26, 2009
My actual portfolio only received 66% which is a little disapointing, so I will be glad to collect it and hopefully learn from the comments. This however, does not diminish my delight in my overall grade, which is the only one that actually counts.
Now I only have to wait for my English results which should be out on Wednesday 2nd.
On the writing front I had an amazing day yesterday with 5722 words. Total so far is 38 376 words, really on the countdown now with just 11 624 words to write. The end is in sight.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
I have had a big morning writing 4148 words.
My novella is up to 35 Chapters, mostly around 1000 words each with a few longer and a few shorter ones.
The climax is fast approaching and I am trying to hold it back. Hope you are all still enjoying the chapters day by day. Will post an extra one today as a reward both for myself and my valued readers.
Last night it was Matthew's presentation night, he was awarded a prize for his service as Middle School Captain and also as the oldest student had the priveledge of passing on the candle of knowledge to the youngest Grade Seven student.
It was a wonderful evening with the highlight being Matthew and Madeline announcing next year's Captains.
Well Done Matthew.
Monday, November 23, 2009
Today despite having my haircut and going out to movies with Elizabeth I have managed to write 2301 words bringing my total up to nearly 32000 words.
The story is going really well and reaching the pre-climax parts. I hope you are all still enjoying the chapters. See the next post for Chapter Twelve.
Sunday, November 22, 2009
Thank you to my wonderful family who today have allowed me to write, who gave me inspiration for character's names and who are so supportive.
Now I am over halfway to the end. Only 23 097 words to go and 8 days to write it in - that is 2888 words per day. It is going to be hard work but I think I can do it.
I took a week off (big mistake) to study for exams, my brother's visit and children's school activities so the pressure is back on.
This morning I have written about 2300 words, but still need another 2800 words a day. Luckily it is Sunday, so might get another session in later.
For all those who have been following my story, please let me know what you think so far. Feedback good, bad or indifferent is inspiring, because it means someone out there is reading. Chapter Eleven will be up later today - am off for a swim with my family now. Back to the writing later.
Friday, November 20, 2009
I have great pleasure in informing you that you are to receive the following awards on Presentation Night:
Mavis Reath Awards for Literature - Years 4, 5 & 6 Poetry
Mavis Reath Awards for Literature - Years 4, 5 & 6 Short Story.
My talented girl has won not only the poetry award, but also the short story award, which had to be 400 words or less (Sarah's was exactly 400 words). She entered her poem 'Circus' and her short story 'The Picture'. These competitions are judged not by the class teachers, but by a recognised poet and writer. So this achievement in winning both categories is even more impressive.
Sarah I am so proud of you. Your creative talent is amazing. Well done! See below for the poem and story.
by Sarah Adair 6S
Red and white stripes of the Big Top
Jumping, catching, flying, landing
Acrobats on wires, large trampoline
Flexible people want to be seen.
Lion tamers, elephant riders
Little French poodles riding bikes
Candyfloss, popcorn, peanuts and more
Everything you can buy from the stall.
The Ringmaster calls in the clowns
Funny faces, big floppy shoes
Smiles painted on chalky lips
I love the circus and all its tricks.
Droopy eyes in the car
Dreaming of being a circus star.
By Sarah Adair 6S
A light stroke of a paintbrush is all it takes to bring a painting to life. The dots and lines covered the canvas in rich, earthy reds and browns. The people that stood before the famous piece of art in the gallery didn’t understand the new painting.
“I don’t understand why the artist painted such a little kangaroo?”
“It doesn’t even seem to belong in the painting.”
The little kangaroo felt even smaller and sadder as he heard these comments.
“Five minutes to closing time,” the speaker crackled.
The little kangaroo watched the people leave the gallery and the lights slowly dim.
A sigh crept around the gallery as all the figures stretched and groaned.
“I hate posing all day for those art critic snobs” said Lisa Mona.
“That’s not a smile, well what would they know” said The Scream.
“Well at least they don’t call you small” said the tiny kangaroo.
“Hush Junior, don’t talk to strangers” said the sun, peeking from behind Uluru. “We are far from home in this cold, wet land. Don’t annoy the locals.”
“Locals, who are you calling locals?” screeched The Scream.
“I don’t know why they have let dotted riff-raff into the Louvre” whispered Lisa Mona.
Everyone leaned out of their frames to peer at the strange foreign painting that now hung in the gallery. Junior tried to hop behind the big mountain, but fell out of his frame.
“Ha, ha, ha,” laughed The Scream.
Poor Junior felt sadder than ever, he was so far away from Australia and all alone in this new place.
“Don’t listen to them,” said Vinnie Gogh, “I don’t.”
Junior decided explore to escape the comments that made him feel small. Hopping from room to room, he met many famous sculptures and paintings. Some were very friendly and some were just plain rude.
Junior realised that he had been hung with some very special paintings and started to feel a lot bigger and more important.
Junior wandered back to his painting.
“Oh look Spotty’s back,” snickered The Scream and Lisa Mona.
Vinnie Gogh said, “Leave him alone, he is far more important than you think. He represents his whole country. We are all from here.”
Suddenly, Junior felt a whole lot bigger and better. He hopped back into his painting as the sun lit the gallery.
“Thank you,” he whispered before the visitors came to stand before him once more.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Results December 2nd or 3rd!
Time to now kick back and relax, enjoy the next few days with my brother and then 3 months holiday and Christmas.
Thank you to all my family and friends for your best wishes and support, it means such a lot to me. I didn't realise just how nervous I would be when faced with an exam situation, so thank you.
December 2nd, results should be out - so will let you all know.
Monday, November 16, 2009
I have been counting down the days until I could selfishly spend the time with my baby brother and last night as I sat with him, laughing and sharing him with my family - all of this happened.
Then he spoke to his beautiful daughter's Michelle and Laura-Ashley on the phone and his amazing wife Wendy and I realised how much they were all sacrificing, so we could share him for the week.
So this I dedicate to Wendy, who is the best woman my brother could ever have wished for in a wife. Also to his beautiful daughters, thank you for sharing my brother with me. I hope you cope okay without husband and Daddy and thank you from the bottom of my heart
Monday, November 9, 2009
Thanks for the email comments, hope it is keeping you interested.
Yes a broken big Toe!
Sarah and Matthew were playing on the trampoline on Saturday evening and he bounced awkwardly, landing on her big toe. She came limping into the house in tears. We applied lots of ice, elevated the toe, strapped it up, but today the doctor confirmed that it is fractured.
So for the next week, Sarah is on crutches and then no PE, trampolining for the next 4 weeks.
What a Pain!
Sunday, November 8, 2009
This morning I have found a few quiet minutes well almost an hour and have got back into my story. Writing another 2000+ words, my total is now up to 14 271 (942 words ahead of schedule still). Fifteen chapters written and more importantly I am enjoying the process.
I like my story, I hope you are enjoying it as well.
Thursday, November 5, 2009
I am writing furiously every day, avearaging about 2388 words per day.
I am thinking of posting up the story chapter by chapter (undedited of course) to get your reactions, this is in response to a couple of requests. What do you think? I now have over 22 pages and twelve chapters - that is 11 944 words.
I will wait for everyone's response and then decide, if not I will post little bits and pieces as I go along to wet your appetite and then you will have to wait for the edited story.
Here is a synopsis so far:
Sarah McCandless is a young 16 year old teenager. She is ordinary, a normal girl.
A group of Selectors appear at her school and she is chosen by a Selector called Melissa, while other people have been chosen for guilds such as healing, special forces etc, she is chosen for the mysterious Creator's guild.
She leaves her family immediately and travels with a group of about 50 young people to a school in Los Angeles, where she finds out more about not only the school but also her strange gift - a talent that she shares with all the other students. A gift for writing.
Along the way she makes a new best friend Chloe, and a fantastic group of friends, Janine and James - twins and Richard and Lucas.
And then . . .
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
The joy of this project is that I can be as verbose (meaning wordy) as I wish. I need the extra words. The story is really flowing and at the end of the month, I might have something special.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
So I am going to share a story with you.
My Mom has a friend, they have been friends for over 40 years. Friends through good times and bad, happy times and sad and luckily now with the amazing technological age we live in; friends across the world - emailing, skyping, chatting on the phone and just staying in touch. This lovely lady is extremely talented, but like many women of her generation, she was given very little encouragement in her youth. She believed[s] that she isn't very good at things. We know different, but years of messages to the contrary take years to rewrite.
This lovely lady has been enjoying some of the poetry that I have been writing and also sharing the news of my year at university. The other day she sent Mom an email with a story idea for me. Mom told her to write it herself. Her reply: "I couldn't do that, I can't write."
Well isn't it amazing, but guess what yes she can. Below is a beautiful poem, that our dear friend has written. I am honoured and thrilled to share it with you. She has a really good sense of rythm with this poem and has used a very good 2nd and 4th line rhyming scheme. It flows, it expresses a beautiful sentiment and it is worth sharing.
So enjoy a poem, written by a talented friend, Margaret from South Africa.
A Rhyme Dedicated To My Best Friend
I have a friend from long ago
Who's heart is true and caring
She never focuses on herself
Her love is so endearing.
She loves to plan and seeks to find
Someone she can assist
She is selfless in every way
A heart you cant resist
I'm glad she is a friend of mine
We have known each other for years
If I could be as nice as her
I wouldn't cry so many tears
She's been with me through thick and thin
She's got me through hard times
I owe a lot to this dear friend
That's why I wrote this rhyme
Am I going crazy
I don't normally write a thing
It must be her good influence
Cause now I want to sing
Monday, November 2, 2009
The ideas and thoughts are flowing easily at this stage, so am hoping to capture as many of them while I can. This week I do not have too many appointments, so am trying to stay ahead of the game.
Next week is chaos, so will have to see how it goes.
Another installment will follow soon.
Sunday, November 1, 2009
Sarah sat stunned as another Selector stood up and selected another group; she thought she heard she was from the Artist’s guild and then a couple more for the Developer’s guild. She didn’t even notice that she was the last person in the room. Her hair covered her face and she stared at her desk. A light tap on her shoulder made her jump and she looked up into the greenest eyes she had ever seen; green serious eyes that appeared to be able to read her thoughts. She looked away quickly and only then noticed that she was the only person still left in the room. Looking back she tried to speak and shut her mouth on her words as the Selector began: “Sarah, you are special. Sarah you are different and until now this has been your curse, now it will be your gift. We have left you alone to suffer, we have left you alone to grow and learn. Through your life and experiences you have learnt empathy, you have learnt fear and compassion, all these things are necessary for what you will become. We have been watching you for some years now and all of us agree; that you are the only one of your class that is worthy of selection into the Creator’s guild. In fact you are the only one who has been selected over the last four years.”
Thursday, October 29, 2009
That is just 1666.66666 words per day. I am asking everyone to help encourage me. Keep me going and who knows what I will produce at the end of the month. The idea is to just write, no editing, just as many words per day as possible. What is the result. No prize, except a certificate of completion and the amazing success of having written a novel.
One of my uni friends suggested I give it a go and guess what I am going to do it. So call me crazy, inspired or whatever, but from November 1st, I am a novelist.
I will keep you all updated. I don't even have a clue what I am going to write about yet, but I have 2 days to think of something. So any ideas would be most appreciated.
Friday, October 23, 2009
I received my English essay on King Lear back yesterday. It was worth 30% of my mark and I got 97% for it. I am so excited and pleased that all my hard work and effort paid off.
The comment from my tutor was the following:
"This is a very well-written response. Your eloquence and engagement with the text both do you proud!
Your integraion of the critical reading into your argument is a good technique."
So far I have received 95%, 97% and 100% for attendance, so only have my exam to study for and I will have passed my first year English subject.
Friday, October 16, 2009
Today I am writing with a little more pride than usual. I ask you to check out my beautiful Sarah's blog 'Vesta Mini-Magic' http://vesta-mini-magic.blogspot.com/ she has written a wonderful poem called 'Circus' which she is going to enter into the school poetry/writing competition. Also the story called 'The Painting', both of these entries, she wrote yesterday. An amazing girl.
Then this morning I received a phone call from Matthew's mathematics's teacher. She said that she had Matthew in her class and he needed to tell me something. Of course I just panicked, what had gone wrong!
It wasn't that anything had gone wrong, but rather that he had received his results for his entry in the National Math competition that he sat last term. He competed against Grade 9 & 10 students (he is in grade 9) and received a DISTINCTION, placing him in the top 16% of the country's math students for his age group. I tell you I was completely blown away. Math has never, ever been my strong suit, and here is my son completely acing the exam.
So with my amazing Professor (Science) husband; Elizabeth our Ancient History expert; Me the writer and poet, Sarah - the musician, artist and writer and now Matthew both a school leader, amazing comedian and Math expert - We have it all covered!
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Unfortunately, my single exam falls on the Wednesday of the week that my brother is visiting from South Africa, but it is only a 2 hour exam and I will be well prepared by the time he gets here, so that is all okay.
I am starting to plan for the 3 month break, wondering what I will fill my days with. I am going to continue writing poetry. Read as many of the books that I can for the English course I am planning to do next year and enjoy my scrapbooking hobby, cleaning house, preparing for Christmas and other things.
It has been an amazing year and I can't wait to continue next year.
Monday, October 5, 2009
Anyway I took a deep breath and read my poem.
There was silence, a deep silence that lasted and lasted.
Then one of the girls whispered: "I felt like clapping."
The whole group then burst out clapping - for My Poem.
It created so many questions, so much comment and so much intrigue. Everyone loved the mystery, they wanted to know so much about it and one of the guys, said he was so glad that he knew the author, so he could find out just that little bit more. What an honour, I truly feel like I am now officially a Poet, not just someone who writes ditties, and little bits of poetry and prose on the sideline.
I am a POET!
So if you want to read all about it, check out Vesta-Poetry and read
"Our name is Ruth."
PS. I received my exercise portfolio back tonight as well. Worth 20% of my results and yes I did it. I got 18.5/20 another High Distinction. I am currently floating around the moon. I can see the stars and they are within my grasp. Fly high everyone, chase those rainbows and follow your dreams.
It is funny, I did get accepted, I have flourished and succeeded with good results and I do fit in (sort of), all my insecurities however, still exist. I worry about being older and standing out, making a fool of myself and not succeeding (even though my results say otherwise). Yet each week rolls by and I don't fail, I thrive. I love the learning, the joining in at tutorials and lectures and just being at university. There is still however, that little insecure child inside that keeps rearing her head and telling me otherwise.
Last week I received another little piece of reassurance to tell that little girl to quiet down.
I spoke to a lovely young lady at my local phone shop and she asked if I went to Uni, when I said yes, she said "I thought I recognised your voice, you are from my poetry lecture." I realised I must be making a positive noise/contribution. We had a good laugh and a connection, it was lovely.
Ivan then said how much he loved to stand outside my tutorial class on Monday nights and listen to my laughter and contributions as he waited to bring me home. I had not realised that he did this, and it gave me such a warm glow to hear that I wasn't making a fool of myself.
How often do we live with the fear that we will fail, so we don't even try? How often do we allow the little child inside to rule and tell us we can't do something, or that someone will laugh at us - so we don't even try.
I am glad I tried. I am glad that I am succeeding. I am determined everyday to keep trying and to tell 'my little child inside' that she is safe and I can look after her and Me.
Friday, October 2, 2009
Ivan sat last night and read every single page - his comment "This is so professional and beautiful, I much prefer it to the other albums." That was really nice to hear. In the long run, I think it will be more cost effective, save heaps of time and take up so much less space on the book shelves.
I am in the middle of the UK one now and find that I can create a couple of pages at a time and walk away, so that is great. There is no mess or fuss and the end result is fantastic. After years of anti-digital album talk from me, I am convinced.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
I have just critiqued and analysed a poem for an essay and handed that in on Monday, so I am now hoping that I have done well in that piece of assessment. I have a 1500 word essay to write on King Lear and have read about 15 books/articles on him, oh boy, I did not know that so much had been written on a single Shakespearean play.
I must admit to totally loving every minute of my 'intellectual' life. I find myself so absorbed, that I lose hours and days of time.
So sincere apologies to all fans of Vesta, I will try to be more diligent in future.
Check out Vesta poetry for some new posts over the next couple of days.
We have been challenged to enter a poetry course competition to write a Triolet. It is a very structured poem (see details on Vesta-poetry), the prize is a $200 book voucher from the campus book shop, what an indulgence.
I will be posting my efforts for some comments, wish me luck.
Sunday, September 13, 2009
It was actually an amazing experience to see this female give a shake and out pop about 4 live baby fish at a time. All the other fish in her tank eat the babies, including the male and female large guppies, so they do need to be seperated, hence the news tank.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
All my hard work is paying off. Today I got my first essay back from my English course. My first assignment was a 700 word essay on Beowulf. I discovered the art of being concise in trying to write an academic essay in just 700 words and eventually after some hard work and 7 drafts submitted my essay.
My result was 95% - a high distinction. My only 2 errors were minor technical errors, that I did not even know about before this, without a single error in content. I am thrilled.
My tutor's comments were:
"This is a focused, thoughtful, and very well-constructed essay. No words are wasted. You use textual examples very well and there are some wonderful close readings. Keep up the good work!"
I have to say it is with so much joy and pride that I received this result. I am loving my courses, my poetry course is inspiring me to write almost everyday and this English course is developing my love of books and literature even further than it already is.
As I always tell my children, you get out what you put in, and this time it sure is the truth.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
We are all celebrating, this is good news, so now she can just wake each morning, take a deep breath and live life. None of us know how long we have, when we will die, so I guess she is no different.
Mum, this is the best news ever, glad to have you around for a little longer.
Friday, September 4, 2009
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
To be a great painter, one must draw, paint and study. Learning about colour and form, experimenting and just painting.
To be a great sports man or woman, the same rules apply, hard work and practice.
I have begun to realise that the same rules apply to being a writer, a poet. The inspirational thoughts and poems that I have written in the past can be improved. If this is my craft and my gift, then I must work at it. I must write each and every day. I must doodle with words, write dittys that will never see the light of day beyond the computer file in which they are stored. But, in doing this practice, I will learn, learn the form of writing, practice will give me the inspiration and hopefully out of all of this my great works will come.
So once more today I have been writing, writing poetry and working at my craft.
I am a writer, I am a poet.
I have my first exercise portfolio ready for submission on Monday for Poetry, I am happy with the results of my work and will be even happier if I get a good mark as it is worth 20%.
Life continues apace, with the children already counting down to our next short holiday, in 3 weeks time, it will be Spring holidays for 2 weeks and then we are in the final term of this year. Sarah has picked her language choice (chinese) for Middle School and Matthew will soon be chosing his subjects for his first year of Senior school. Time is just flying.
Someone had the audacity to point out the other day that it was less than 4 months to Christmas - Yikes!
Anyway enough rambling today, from a beautiful sunny Brisbane winter/spring morning I hope you have a wonderful Day.
Monday, August 31, 2009
The good news is that she is feeling a lot better and looking well, although tired.
Ivan came home from Bolivia on Friday, a few hours late - after travelling for about 42 hours.
Saturday and Sunday we gardened and Ivan cut down a few branches of the trees overhanging our roof. Needless to say the branches reacted badly to this and attacked back. Result one battered and bruised face.
It was a beautiful weekend, our 'winter' temperature reached 30 degrees on Sunday and the children took advantage of the recent warm weather that has heated up our pool water enough for a swim. Elizabeth said it was cold but refreshing.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Now I am not adverse to housework, but there are so many other things that I love filling my day with, that I tend to do what is required, when needed and avoid the rest at all costs.
Today I did not have to take the children to school (again - thanks Mom), so hopped into some old clothes, dragged out the 'dead elephant' (vacuum cleaner) and started at one end of the house cleaning. I achieved miracles and even did all the little annoying tasks that I kept ignoring - like defrosting the bar fridge and even the big one in the laundry.
I think the ice shows that it needed doing.
I also wiped down window sills, shortened my new blinds, washed floors and took down the doorbell that has not worked for the past 3 years. I have hung out and brought in a load of washing and even ironed it. Cleaned the whole kitchen including the utensil holder and put a roast lamb in the oven.
I feel that I deserve the award for Domestic Goddess of the day - so am going to now go and reward myself with a hot, deep bubble bath and a book for 1/2 hour before the children get home.
When we moved into the house, every window was decorated with net curtains. Now I don't mind some net, but it was a little too much. Over time I have taken down various curtains and replaced them and finally it was time for the bathrooms.
I got a great deal on blinds for the children's bathroom, toilet and also my en-suite and again with Dad and Mom's help hung all the blinds. Now we can use the bathroom without having to close the windows for privacy. Today I even tackled shortening them, this time by myself and I succeeded so am really happy. They look classy and elegant.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
If you look closely at the cold tap on the right, you will see the washer at the bottom - now this should be at the top holding the handle on. Our house is 18 years old and is beginning to need some TLC. I haven't had a hot water tap for ages in my bathroom sink and the children's was just dreadful. So Dad kindly offered to help me replace them all.
Working in such a cramped space made life really difficult.
As always these tasks end up being far more difficult than first thought and although we managed to replace my taps on Friday in about 3 hours, the children's bathroom proved a different story. After 5 frustrating hours, we had it all connected but were worried about the old copper piping, it was kinked! We switched on the water and instead of a fountain of water into the sink, we had one underneath.
So it was off to the local hardware store before he closed at 2pm to buy a few more fittings and finally around 3.30pm - it was all finished.
My lovely new taps. I can't use them yet, as I am waiting for the silicone to cure under the drain-hole, but now hopefully I will be able to wash my face in hot water instead of cold.
Thanks Dad - you are an amazing man.
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Now yesterday was a public holiday and the children had the day off school. Elizabeth worked in the morning, but I took the day off. It was only last night as I was heading to bed that I realised that I had completely taken the day off. This was a first. I had still done a load of washing, washed the dishes, fed my children but in my head I had the day off.
I spent the day scrapbooking, I sat in front of my computer for most of the day - creating journalling boxes, decorating my album and indulging my passion for my hobby. I did not think about all the chores I had to do, I did not feel as though I was letting anyone down and I did not feel like I was 'indulging me!' I was just taking a public holiday.
What was the difference, I don't really know, but now that I have experienced this, I know that I will be able to do it again. I will allow myself to take a day off on a weekend to relax and not fill it with all the things that have to be done. I will not feel guilty about not achieving all the things that are always going to be there for me to do. I am allowed to live a 'normal' not a Superwoman life.
I can stay at home and have a public holiday or a weekend and I also realise that I can allow Ivan to do the same. So many of our weekends are tainted with my frustration that he does not 'achieve' all the chores that need doing. I forget that he too needs some down time and that he does not need to work all weekend, every weekend in the garden, around the house. We don't have to be busy all the time.
This has been a liberating and powerful experience, so to everyone who has a public holiday or weekend coming up - remember you too can just give yourself a day off.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
I only have a few pages to go, that is because I forgot to print about 10 photos, will do those tomorrow and then it will be completed. I am so glad as I now have another finished project.
So my achievement for today - 26 pages of journalling boxes and decorating.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
I am not sure if anyone has a real answer to this question, for it is out of failures that huge leaps of success are sometimes born. Yet, we are taught from a very young age to fear failure. Schools test and mark us on everything that we do, even our attendance is marked off daily and not appearing is seen as a failure. Failure on behalf of our parents who do not get us to school, failure on behalf of ourselves that we would rather be somewhere else; failure to appreciate the opportunities we are given.
Failure is a very big word and carries with it, massive amounts of guilt.
I have feared failing my whole life. If I gave up on something then I was a failure. If I didn't not achieve that 100% - I was a failure. If I was not the very best person that I could be - I was a failure. If I asked for help - I was a failure.
I have realised that failing is not something to fear. Failing can just be a choice, or maybe it is because I do not have the skills required, but most importantly failing at something usually results because I do not want to do/achieve/finish something. I wonder why I ever thought that I had to do/achieve/finish these things in my life.
It has taken me over 45 years to realise that I cannot fail (Yes, I guess I can in reality); but the sense of guilt of failure is so much less when I look at it rather as a choice issue. I fail because I chose a different path, I fail because I chose not to be interested or to try to conform to what is required from an outside source. I do not however fail ME! I only fail the task - it is not personal.
All of the above post has resulted from a recent choice that I have made.
I have chosen to drop my online religion course for this semester. When I first started thinking about this, I feared being seen as a failure by my family, friends and strangers; even the lecturer who doesn't know me or even care. It took me a couple of days, some discussion with Elizabeth and Ivan and then I made a choice. I was not enjoying the course, I did not need to be doing it and I could chose to drop it. The sense of relief and peace was immense. I had not let anyone down, especially myself. Instead I had chosen to follow my dreams. I had tasted something and decided that I did not like it. I could chosen to stop, chosen to walk away and I was not a failure.
What path are you walking today? Are you failing or are you choosing?
Sunday, August 9, 2009
For my recent USA and UK trip I have decided to do a creative memories digital album, I am so enjoying the process and have just completed another 15 pages - total now up to 44 pages. It is looking wonderful and the process is easy and fun. I am slowly learning how the program works and experimenting with different layouts. It is much quicker than a traditional album, so heres hoping that it turns out well.
It is almost spring in Brisbane, not that it is ever really winter. I know this because the mornings are lighter and my roses have started shooting even before they have had their winter prune.
Also my Jasmine creeper that sits outside my study window is starting to bud.
Today the temperature is a beautiful 22 degrees in the shade on my patio and I decided to prune and feed my roses.
Now this is something that Ivan and I usually do together, I prune and he turns and weeds the bed, but he is not here so all on my own, I pruned, weeded, turned the bed, watered and fed the roses. I am feeling nurtured and refreshed.
Yesterday, I was feeling tired and unwell, so this earth energy has renewed me and I feel tired but satisfied. Look out in the next few weeks, for some lovely photos of the rose bed as the new blooms appear.
Friday, August 7, 2009
Faculty of Arts Dean’s Commendation for High Achievement
We are writing to congratulate you on your excellent results during Semester One, 2009.
These results place you in the top band of students enrolled in your program. This is an achievement of which you can be justifiably proud.
Your academic transcript has been annotated to show that you have been included on the Dean's List for Semester One, 2009. A copy of this List is displayed on the Faculty noticeboard.
We extend our warmest congratulations on your academic achievement during this year, and wish you well in your future pursuits.
Professor Richard Fotheringham
Faculty of Arts
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
It is now fully charged and this morning I have floated around the house on a cushion of music, doing my chores. At the moment I have 'Unchained Melody' playing on repeat. It is one of my favourite pieces of music and whenever it ends I never want to move onto the next song, so have it on repeat for the moment, it is wonderful.
If anyone out there in the blogger world knows how to add a piece of music to my Blog, please will you send me the instructions. As it would be great to be able to add this great song to this post, but sorry folks - don't know how????
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Last night we celebrated my Dad's 71st birthday with a yummy roast lamb dinner.
Saturday, August 1, 2009
I sure will miss him once more as he is away for the month of August. I know that he misses us all very much and just this one little thing means that I can keep him safe and filled with my love, then I am happy.
Safe Travels Ivan.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
But - I am overwhelmed at the moment and it is going to be a challenge!
For English Classics alone (let alone Poetry and Religion) I have to read:
Chaucer - "The Miller's Prologue and Tale" from The Canterbury Tales
Shakespeare - King Lear
Jonathan Swift - Gulliver's Travels, Part 4
Jane Austen - Pride and Prejudice
James Joyce - "The Dead"
Robert Browning "My last Duchess"
T.S. Elliot - Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock
Poems by Phillip Larkin
Jean Rhys - Wide Sargasso Sea (finished)
Toni Morrison - Beloved (finished)
Salman Rushdie "The Prophet's Hair" & "English is an Indian Literary Language"
Plus 14 Chapters of Literary Criticism Theory.
It is huge and overwhelming and this is just one course.
I have hired a DVD of King Lear, hired the audio book of Beowulf and am contemplating attaching a copy of something to a wire frame to dangle in front of my glasses so I can read as I work through life.
It is going to be wonderful.
My family is not going to have any clean clothes, cooked meals (takeaway is on order), a clean house or a sane mother, but boy oh boy, I am going to thrive and succeed and have fun doing it.
Today was my first English lecture and I went straight to the library afterward and wrote up my notes as I waited for Elizabeth to finish her lecture. So I am ahead of the game. Hopefully, I can stay that way, so send me good eyes, a sponge for a brain and lots of hours in the day.
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
My amazingly talented youngest child has once more blown me away, with her amazing gifts. My Mom has been teaching Sarah to do a little pyrography (wood burning) and Sarah decided that because I love Angels so much she would do one for me for Christmas.
Over the holidays (when I was away) she found this picture on the Internet and traced it onto the wood. Then things got in the way and she left it. Today she had some time with Granny and Grandad (she has been home with a sore throat) and decided to 'have a go at Mommy's Angel.'
Well not only did she have a go, but has produced this MAGNIFICENT GIFT. The detail and beauty of her talent is wonderful and I am blessed by my child who gave it to me tonight. I want to boast to the world of her talent, but will restrain myself to sharing on my Blog.
My son is the person in my life who makes me laugh the most. He has a very quick-witted sense of humour. He finds something funny about almost every situation and sometimes it is inappropriate, but I still find it really funny and have to harness in my natural desire to laugh and play the parenting role.
Yesterday we were driving home together and a large truck pulled into the Garden centre in front of us. Matthew commented that they looked sinister and were probably carrying something dangerous. My reply was: "Probably grass!" His reply: "No weed" My reply "No pot/s", his reply they probably have "crack in them". And so the two of us giggled and laughed for a few minutes. Bonding in a way that I thank God for every single day.
I love laughter, it cleans my insides! It is hard to worry about things when a real laugh takes hold. I love clever humour and fun. So laugh everyday, find something funny, a joke, a song, or maybe a silly comment. Just Laugh!
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
My new Blog friend Darlene is waiting for some health news and today posted an inspirational Blog called IF. She commented that 'If' the news was not good she would live her life, like she was dying - but not recklessly; and continue to treat people the way she wanted to be treated.
And if the news was good, she would do her happy dance and pretty much live the life she was planning to live if she was dying.
This made me think, that if we were told today that we only had a certain number of days to live, what would we change? It made me think that this is how we should live our lives everyday, because even though we may have years, months or even days to live - each day should be lived like it is our last.
I believe with all my heart that at the end of each day, I should go to bed and know that if I did not wake in the morning, I would be satisfied that I had lived my life to the very best. Made mistakes along the way, but lived. Tried my best and lived. Enjoyed each and every gift and faced each and every challenge with grit and determination. Treated all those I love with respect and honesty and all those I don't know or don't like just the same.
To my friend Darlene, I wish you well, I hope your results are positive and healthy and I am proud to be able to say I have a Canadian Blog Friend - Eh!
Friday, July 24, 2009
It feels like forever, since I was at home alone, with no urgent assignment due, no cases to pack and organise for a trip (yes, I know that is such a hardship) and most of the housework completed. I have the two loads of washing on the line, the dishes washed, the groceries packed away, the cleaning from 2 days ago still looks good and I am home alone - Yippee!!!!!!
There are many things that I could and perhaps should do today, but I think that I am going to indulge in some serious ME time. I am going to relax and finish 'Beloved' by Toni Morrison (it is one of my text books); I am going to skim through my new text book: "How to read a poem and fall in love with poetry." I think that I will indulge in a tasty cheese and salad sandwich on fresh whole grain bread with a big glass of Lime Juice with ice and just refresh my brain. And I think that I will do most of this out in the beautiful Brisbane Sunshine.
Today is going to be about battery recharging!