Friday, July 31, 2009

Not long to go now!

We are going on an Australian cruise with my family in December - can't wait! We got another update letter today which got me excited for the upcoming trip! (38 people in total are coming!!! some family & some friends of the family)

I love the logo they use on the letters - however an Aussie would never use the word shrimp - it's prawn!!!


The countdown is ON!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Amazing what the mind can do

I worked a bit late last night, and on my hour drive home I debated with myself.
*You should go to the gym
**But I don't feel like it
*You have no good reason why you shouldn't go
**But it's been a long day, I'm tired, there's laundry to do and I have to fill out my tax documents
*You could do all of that after the gym, and there's a class on at 7:30
**But then I wouldn't be home til nearly 9, and I'm tired and I don't want to

and on and on - for the whole hour drive - amazing how many justifications my mind can come up with when I'm feeling just plain old lazy!

Eventually I gave in & just went home, did 2 loads of laundry, filled out my tax documents and then watched a show Channel 2 (ABC) just started showing last night United States of Tara (from the Showtime channel in the US) . It is starring Toni Collette as a Mom with DID (dissociative identity disorder - which is another name for multiple personalities). It was quite an interesting show because it focused not only on her disorder, but also her family and how she tries to keep a balance. I think Toni Collette is an excellent actress (and Australian - she lives in Sydney!) but also the script is good. The show was written by Diablo Cody who wrote Juno. Also I like that her husband is played by John Corbett - who we know from Northern Exposure & Carrie's boyfriend on Sex and the City!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Wood & stuff

This weekend we went down to see my in-laws and bring a load of wood down for the bed Murray is going to build with his Dad - lucky that Bruce is long - it fit in just fine!

We had a lovely weekend or relaxing, eating lovely food and catching up!

On the way back we laughed when we noticed the graffiti on this van - hmmm. However I do think the idea for this company is brilliant - we see them all the time. They buy old soccer mom vans and kit them out with stuff for camping (bed, stove, storage, etc) then they graffiti them with all sorts of goofy sayings & drawings (this one had giant fish on the sides as well). Obviously they are doing well as these bumper stickers show how many countries they operate in!

Back home we still had some wood - didn't want to weight Bruce down too much in one trip! Just had to move it to the side last night so Betty could still fit in! The mechanic is fixing her up & she should be ready tomorrow - hooray!

Missing School Holidays

The last 3 weeks have been school holiday time which means the roads have been SO quiet without all of the school runs and people taking time off work to spend time with their kids.

It is only 9 kilometers (about 6 miles) from our house to work - and the past few weeks we have made it in 25 minutes - fantastic! Back to the norm now though - usually it takes about 50 minutes, but the traffic was partically horrid today so by the time I got to my desk it took 1 hour and 20 minutes - lovely.

What's that - about 9 km an hour average I guess - yuck. Good thing morning radio here is so entertaining!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Sometimes I really miss the tube

I love having a car again - especially after 3 of years of waiting for a bus, then a train, then another bus to get to work! But sometimes I really miss the tube..........

Yesterday I drove about a mile or 2 before realising that the temperature light was on! The gauge was on low, but the light was on. I called Murray & we decided I'd go home and ride into work with him as I had a morning meeting and didn't have time to call roadside assistance right then, and I was already running a little bit late!!

I had the guy from roadside assistance come last night, and he noticed that the coolant is low, and it has leaked ALL over (you can see it all over the place because it's Pink!). He gave me the worst and best case scenario, topped up the fluid, and told me it was a good thing our mechanic is so close by, otherwise he'd suggest I have a tow truck on standby just in case.


So I'm back with our other car Bruce today - which is always an adjustment. He is just SO much longer, and the blinker is on the other side which I always tend to forget when I first hop in. Oh well.

I'm crossing my fingers for the best case scenario (that a hose is just loose & is therefore leaking).

Sometimes I do miss the easy access to public transport that was frequent & cheap in London - so much less drama then having a car!!!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Thursday Photos

More randoms
My work mate Ken went to Japan on holiday & brought us back green tea KitKats! Bizarre looking but yummy - they really just tasted like white chocolate:)
He also gave me some sachets with green tea powder - you just mix it with hot water & it makes a lovely tea! Interesting!

Loved this note I found when I got home tonight - ha ha! This avocado is just about off - must eat it tonight!

My Sister's Keeper

I went to the premier of My Sister's Keeper with Helen last night and WOW was it good.

I cried so much that my whole face felt raw from wiping my tears away, but wow what a touching story.

I think it helps as well that I read the book SO long ago that I had forgotten the twist. Also, I really do think that seeing a movie not long after the book means you are always disappointed - as movies never seem to be as good as the book because the level of detail is never there.

I loved it, but it was the most emotional sad movie I have seen since Beaches. It was one of those where you are crying in the happy scenes just cause you KNOW what's going to happen!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Random mid week post

1. When I left this morning I noticed the pool near us (which has closed for winter) had a bunch of ducks swimming around in it. I THINK they drained it recently, in prep for next season. I have the feeling ducks does not equal nice clean pool - ewwww.

2. It is meant to be 23c (76f) today. It is the middle of winter here. Hmmmmm I can't complain. Althought the weather guy on the radio said it'll cool back down to the average winter temp - about 15c (60f) tomorrow. Eh - I can live with that. But I'm still looking forward to SUMMER when we can swim again in the ocean (the water is frickin freezing right now!!!)

3. We started on Season 5 of the show '24' last night - we had been putting off watching it for AGES because we KNOW how addicting that show is. Proof in point we watched 3 episodes in a row last night - and easily could have watched 3 more. Gosh that show is good - I LOVE how every single episode ends on a cliffhanger!!!

4. I was sad to hear that MCA from my favorite band of all time the Beastie Boys has cancer - I hope they get it all & he feels better soon! And please when you're feeling better - come to Australia for your new tour! Would love to see the BBoys again in concert - they rock.

5. I hear that Paula Abdul has been dumped from American Idol - no surprise there. She has been acting loopy for years now! The question is - who will the new Paula be??? I am curious!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Today I went to a lovely 'High Tea' to celebrate Helen's birthday!
Cassie & Me

Birthday girl Helen & Me

They had lovely tea sets - hard to grab that tiny little handle though!

Cassie & Helen

Peita, Helen & Kristy

Our group - Cassie, Helen, Me, Peita, Kristy & Louisa

They had LOTS of lovely things, scones (with jam & cream of course), savory pastries, and fancy sandwiches & LOTS of gorgeous tiny little desserts! Oh and TEA of course - we got to choose a type from a menu. I chose Darjeeling - very nice I must say!

Helen with her special Birthday dessert plate

I thought it was quite pretty:)

A lovely afternoon but WOW I am STILL full! Had to try one of everything of course:)

Another Whale Session!

Well we had another weekend of blue skies and hot this really winter? Murray had time to kill while I went to a High Tea so he decided to try his luck again at whale watching just outside the Sydney harbour. This time he brought his longer lens.......

Just for info - On average about 70 whales a day pass Sydney.

Monday, July 13, 2009


Early Sunday morning we made our way to Circular Quay on the ferry to....
celebrate my sister in law Helen's Birthday (a few days early)!!!

Me & Murray on the boat

The sky was ominous and a bit rainy - but the sun DID peek through now & then

Our surprise was that we took her out Whale Watching!!!

I screamed the first time this huge humpback whale came RIGHT by our boat! It was SO exciting! They are the size of a bus! No joke. Just the head is like the size of my little car!

diving back under

and down with a huge splash

Helen & Murray up on the viewing deck - lucky we wore our waterproof jackets - it was rainy & the wind was freezing!

The whales did about 30 breaches - it was AMAZING. Their pectoral fins were SO long and floppy when they flew out of the water they looked like wings!

Doing the backstroke

Adults range in length from 12–16 metres (40–50 ft)

We followed these two whales for about an hour and a half - they took turns leaping out of the water

They weigh approximately 36,000 kilograms (79,000 pounds)

Waving HELLO

They really are SO amazing - we were totally entranced

It was THE most amazing whale watching experience we have ever had. They breached about 30 times...

and at times they were SO close. Wildlife is just Amazing.

They are heading North to their breeding grounds in Northern Australia where the water is warmer.

Their babies can't swim when they are born, so they also need to be in calm water (which is why they stay near the reefs) so they can hold the babies up to breathe and keep an eye out for predators.

Humpback whales typically migrate up to 25,000 kilometers each year.

The final tail 'fluke' of the day and they were gone.

What an amazing day!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Blurb book here we come!

I have decided that after 6 months of slacking, I really need to get started on getting our travel blog printed out into a book. It was our way of sharing photos with family and friends, but it was also our travel journal. It makes me nervous that it's just sitting on the web - we need a hard copy!

I downloaded the software from Blurb and right now it is 'slurping' up our photos (their word - ha ha) - 6,863 in total! Um WOW - that's a LOT of photos. Thank goodness for smart software like this that can upload the photos & text FOR me - now I just have to arrange it & make it look all pretty - yay!!!

I think this will make a good winter project for me!

Hmmmm just a FEW photos to go!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Working on the flat

We also got some flat work done this weekend
We had to order custom blinds because our windows are slightly (like an inch) larger than standard - so annoying. I can hardly believe they are longer than our table - wow - big windows.

Of course a lunch break with hot dog leftovers was necessary - another miserable winter day in Sydney!

And finally - both bedroom blinds were up! Looks 1000 times better than the original blinds from the late 80's!! And these new ones completely block out the light - fantastic - since the building next to us has a hall light that never goes off - very annoying in the evening!!!

Shame we didn't get them done in the time for the 4th of July - but between cooking & cleaning like mad there just wasn't time.

Oh and we got curtains for the living room up too - I must get a picture!