Monday, 28 September 2015

How To Rock A Road Trip

Hello dear people! Welcome to another marvellous Monday! Or perhaps I should say mind-blowing Monday. You see, I have some astonishing information and wisdom to impart.

Did you know that it's exactly one year since the 28th of September 2014???!!! Or am I the only one who spotted that? I am known for my genius like abilities after all.

Furthermore, it's approximately one year since I brought to you some ground breaking life hacks in this post. Well, technically one year and six days, but details!

No doubt this advice has been utterly life-changing for you. Therefore I feel it is only fair to share with you some more of my sage advice and insights.

In no particular order here are some random life hacks/thoughts and advice- Ness style pertaining to road trips. I've just come back from one so I'm an expert! 

Be sure to read until the end for my FREE BONUS TIP!!!! This is an exclusive offer and will expire in approximately eleven billionty days!! Or actually never, but details. Besides, my blog is always free because as outrageous as it seems no one will actually pay me to write drivel on the internet. I know, right? So rude!

Anyway, here is the moment you've been waiting for.

Road Trip Life Hacks - Ness Style

  • Packing is stupid. You will always forget stuff and/or over pack. The only thing to do is to take a fuck it attitude and decide that there will probably be shops wherever you are headed, so you can buy whatever you forget. Unless you holiday in some remote area of the world, in which case you're probably crazy anyway so I can't help you. Oh yeah, and make lists in the first place. List do help. Sort of. Unless you have the uncanny ability to lose lists and panic and agonise over what should go on it and... Yeah,whatever. Stick with the shops thing.  

  • You will not actually explode and die if you are ever, for instance, in a motel in Wagga Wagga with dodgy Wi-Fi and consequently cannot get internet access. This will be a good thing. It will force you to go outside into the sunshine and socialise with people and read books. Actual books. Remember those? Speaking of books, you simply must go on a book shopping spree! At Vinnies (or similar op shop). They have ones the size of football fields in these country towns and everything is so cheap and nasty you can buy enough to fill a truck. In fact, you may need an actual truck to transport it all home, but like I say - DETAILS! 

  • While on holidays you must avoid whatever makes you fat. See above. You will eat all the food. ALL. THE. FOOD. And drink all the scotch/wine/gin/vodka/whatever you fancy. This is why elastic waisted clothes were invented. No amount of walking will eradicate this damage. By all means walk, just don't expect any reward for it other than fresh air and/or sunshine.

  • Sleeping in the car during a long road trip isn't very refreshing. You just wake up all dazed and confused and in the twilight zone with a dodgy neck into the bargain. But do it anyway. It's better than being the driver. Ahem.

  • Children will never get sick of eating Maccas. Meanwhile you will feel nauseous at the sight or mere thought of those golden arches. Children will delight in these holidays as an opportunity to thrive on a steady junk food diet. I suppose you can't blame them. After all there is not much else to keep them entertained. See above point re dodgy WiFi. There is nothing you can do about this either. Just go with it and enjoy not cooking for a while.

  • If you're like me and that glamorous modelling career you dreamt of didn't exactly pan out, there's probably a reason for that. Don't bother packing make-up and hair straighteners and co-ordinated outfits. Just go for comfort and practicality. And warmth. Especially if you're in Wagga Wagga. Jumpers and coats are your friend. Those crazy people walking around in shorts and t-shirts are exactly that. Batshit crazy.

If this miracle never occurs at home, it certainly won't occur
on holidays. Give up.

Congratulations! You're now infinitely wiser with my help. You're welcome. And now, just because I'm so generous here is my promised free bonus tip:

  • When you arrive home you will inevitably have shit tonnes of unpacking and washing to do and have to get back into domesticity pronto. So my advise is:  Listen to podcasts or music while you pretend you're doing housework/washing to make it less tedious. I'm positive you would never have thought of this avant garde and mysterious tip without me. Shut up. Done.

Stay tuned until this time next year for more of my wisdom and life hacks. I'm heading into my 45th year and becoming more and more wise each day. Or is that wide? Oh well. Whatever. See you on the road!

Linking up with Kirsty, Alicia and Eva.

Have you been on any road trips lately?

Do you have any road trip life hacks?  

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Strategies For Night Owls

Everyday I face a formidable challenge. It's unthinkable that anyone should ever have to do this. It's requires herculean effort and extreme sacrifice. You know what I'm talking about, right?

Yes, it's that's dreaded moment when I have to get out of bed!! 
Okay, I'm being a tad melodramatic. But my fellow night owls will know what I'm eluding to. 

What I'm trying to tell you is, I have never been a morning person. This dates back to when I was a child. My brother was always cheerful and happy when he woke up, but I was crotchety and curmudgeonly. Truthfully, I'm not really sure what that word means, I just felt like saying it. 


Right. Got that out of my system for now. 

Anyway, what was I talking about? Oh yes, mornings. I've never been enamoured with them since childhood. 

All my brother would have to do is glance sideways at me and I would wail "Geeeeet!" and then sulk and simper. Now, my brother was a bit cheeky so he'd keep winding me up. It didn't take much.

"Muuuum!" I moaned, indignant "Mark's LOOKING at me!!"

I mean, how very dare he! Everyone knows you should never commit the cardinal sin of looking at some one first thing in the morning.  Worse still, imagine anybody speaking to you?! Outrageous!  

It now appears that as a seasoned night owl, I have also bred a whole new generation of night owls. We are all night owls in this family. Supposedly owls are wise and intelligent creatures. We know that it's preposterous to be up at stupid o'clock. As the saying goes: ain't nobody got time for that! 

There have been periods of my life when I rose early and actually went to work.  At one point, when I worked at the NRMA call centre,  I started work at 7am. In retrospect I am quite astonished that I did this. Both the call centre job and the getting up early to do it. Shudders. 

There have even been exceedingly rare occasions when I woke up early to exercise. However, my version of 'early' was something like 7am, not at the crack of dawn. Also known as sparrow fart and stupid o'clock. See above. 

Moreover, I've survived (barely) the sleep deprivation of having three children. No wonder I'm always bewildered and tired. 

But there must be some coping strategies for us night owls. Such as: 

  • Hook yourself up to an intravenous coffee drip.
  • Take nanna naps everyday.
  • Quit your job or become a shift worker.
  • Have a pea-sized bladder which forces you out of bed each morning to go to the loo before you explode (works for me).
  • Have children. Not only will they regularly wake you early, they will intensify the effect of the pea-sized, exploding bladder by jumping on it each morning.
  • Become a vampire.
  • Become a witch.
  • Decide that the old saying 'the early bird catches the worm' is absurd. After all, who wants worms anyway? Worms are gross! 
  • Become a Furry. That way you can pretend you're a pet and snooze on and off all day long. 
  • Become Batman.

All jokes aside, I have found the nanna nap strategy to be effective lately. Now that my boys are older and can amuse themselves by attempting to kill each other for  certain periods of time, a little afternoon snooze is doable. Preferably they are power naps rather than nanna naps. The ideal outcome is that I wake up feeling refreshed and energised, instead of like a hundred year old woman named Beryl. Sometimes it works, often it doesn't (just call me Beryl). But still, I'm up for the challenge. 

Additionally, some strategies that can also work for me are taking a vitamin B supplement daily, eating well and, conversely, getting regular exercise. The more I laze about the more lazy and lethargic I feel. I do have to force myself to do this but I always feel better afterwards! 

Plus, I can also comfort myself with this article. The article states that these are scientifically proven reasons being a night owl is better, so it must be true. Besides, it was on the Internet so of course it's true, right? So ner! 

So there you have it. Night Owls FTW! 

Linking up for I Must Confess.

Are you a morning, afternoon or evening person? 

Monday, 14 September 2015

Confessions Of The Noncompetitive Kind

Today's revelation will probably come as a huge shock. Wait for it. The truth is,  I don't have a single competitive bone in my body. I know, right?!! Who would have guessed? 

The fact that I'm a spectacularly unsuccessful blogger and undomestic goddess with no career whatsoever would never have given that away. Winning! 

This probably explains why I've never enjoyed games of any description: board games, sport games, card games, PlayStation, Xbox and anything else that I've never heard of and don't want to. I also abhor Candy Crush, Farmville, Stick Run and all Facebook games. So there's actually no point in ever sending me gaming requests if we're Facey friends. Just saying. 

The thought of sitting  at a Poker Machine mindlessly dunking in shit tonnes of cash makes me want to poke my eyeballs out. Come to think of it, I don't even take any interest in competitions or giveaways or even purchase lottery tickets. I don't even have a 'you've got to be in it to win it' attitude. Weird.

I don't get into any sport whether it's playing or spectating. I've tried, but I just can't drum up even the smallest amount of enthusiasm or interest in anything. Not for soccer, rugby league, AFL, tennis and especially not cricket. Bats, balls, BORING! 

On the positive side, it's helpful to not actually give a flying fuck when the State Of Origin or Grand Final is on. I couldn't care less who wins or loses. While every one else is sobbing into their stubbies or lamenting their team's wooden spoon status, I'm thoroughly unconcerned. Meh.

However, for success in life in general it would probably be useful to have a bit of fight and competitiveness. After all, we do live in a competitive society. 

I don't know why, but I've never been some one who thought about life in the sense of setting goals and having ambition. I've just drifted along aimlessly. I've always been an off with the pixies space cadet. This isn't exactly helpful in life. I often dislike this trait and wish I was more of a go-getter. More driven, focused and disciplined. 

Maybe it's just that it's hard to strive for something when  you're not exactly sure what it is you should be striving for. It sounds weird but when you struggle with basic things in life like I always  have (anything from talking, to driving to feeling comfortable in my own skin) all you really want is to be 'normal'. Whatever that means.

Apparently you're supposed to hit 17 and suddenly have all the wisdom of the ages and have the utmost clarity of what your calling is. Or something.

But I was so ridiculously shy, quiet, awkward, introverted and just plain old weird that everything seemed out of my reach. I knew emphatically that I did not want to be a teacher. Imagine a whispery voiced Ness attempting to control a room full of children ( I often can't manage my own three, but that's another story. Shut up). So that was out. A careers adviser suggested that I study journalism since my English teachers felt I had writing ability. This seemed absurd to me. I figured that to be a journalist you had to be pushy and possibly even aggressive. So that was out. I couldn't be a nurse or anything in a medical setting because I'm squeamish. So that was out.

I thought, one day I'll wake up and have the confidence or ability to do these things at an certain age. I too, can be mediocre Mrs Average. Have a run of the mill office job, friends, a car, a house, a husband and two point five kids (even though I've never quite understood how you can have point five of a child, but then again, I've never been good at maths)  and be a socialising, multi-tasking soccer Mum. Technically I can tick a few things off that list, but the job remains elusive, while the multi-tasking and socialising with ease are still somewhat fraught and difficult.

The only thing I ever knew with any certainty that I wanted to be was a Mum. Imagine my chagrin to find that I am quite hopeless at the above description. Okay, I won't say hopeless. That's a pretty dire 'all or nothing' word, but it's all challenging for me.

You'd think that being dreamy and whimsical would be helpful to become a writer, but I reckon focus and discipline would be much more helpful. 

I can get lost in writing and forget everything. It would be better to be able to do it for an arbitrary amount of time and then switch attention to other tasks, something I struggle with. Additionally, in order to succeed as a writer you have to be competitive and good at self-promotion. I SUCK at self-promotion. 

Mr 6, on the other hand, is extremely stubborn and competitive. He can't stand losing. I'm not sure if this is good or bad. He's not above making up his own rules in an underhanded attempt to win noughts and crosses. I do put aside my aversion to games in order to play with my little man. 

I suppose I can always comfort myself with the old tortoise and hare fairy tale. The idea that 'slow and steady wins the race'. This is an apt analogy for some one like me who is definitely slow and steady and hates the old 'come out of your shell' cliche. The fact that this is a fairy tale and therefore hogwash is completely irrelevant.

There are times when I witness the behaviour of competitive parents at children's sporting events and come away rather bemused. Of course I want to encourage and support my boys, but wailing at them and berating them like a deranged and possessed demon? Um no, I don't think that's helpful at all.

These days the trend at schools is to give all children participation certificates at school events and not highlight winners and losers. Even though I totally missed out on any sort of competitive gene, I'm not sure I agree with this. This is in spite of the fact that I was always the reject that nobody wanted on their team when sport captains were made to choose their team mates. I still remember the one and only time I did receive a sport award at school assembly and how special I felt. Sadly it didn't propel me into becoming a competitive, driven 'winner' but I suspect nothing ever will.

Just for shits and giggles I looked up the synonyms (the same) and antonyms (opposite) for the word competitive and this is what I found:




Killer instinct

Therefore I've come to the conclusion that all of you competitive folk can have your dog-eat-dog, aggressive World. I'm happy in my own little passive one. There are unicorns, cakies and rainbows over here and strictly NO GAMES!! 

Just a random doge meme instead. 

For no other reason than Mr 6 finds them hilarious and the doge doggy looks vaguely like our dog Cookie. You're welcome.

 Plus, we are having tacos for dinner tonight. See? I can be organised and driven when there is food involved!!

Meanwhile, when I logged into Blogger the other day to write this post, I discovered that some one had stolen my old blog spot address and was passing it off as their own with one of my archived posts. Maybe I'm winning at life after all if some one wants to pretend they're me complete with the ubiquitous bogan status!

So I guess I'll just keep plodding and dreaming through life and let all of you winners and strivers get on with it. As you were.

Linking up with Kirsty, Alicia and Eva.

But before you go please tell me:

Are you a competitive person?

Monday, 7 September 2015

Our Outback Adventure On Father's Day

There was a time when Mickey Blue Eyes was quite the fan of the Sunday drive. We would all eagerly get into the car and set off on our Sunday adventure.

The mountains, the beach, the city. The World was our oyster. Or something. What does that expression even mean? Besides, oysters are gross. Shudders. Why couldn't the saying be 'the world was my cake'? MUCH better. Anyway, what was I talking about? Oh yeah, Sunday drives...

Alas, the years have drifted on and the boys have gotten older. For some reason they are not as enthusiastic to schlep out for the day with their parents. I can't imagine why. I mean, we're completely fascinating and entertaining people, aren't we? Cutting edge, hip and cool type parents. Okay, maybe not...

Does any teen or tween ever think their parents are cool? Just the fact that we use the word 'cool' renders us to the totally lame pile. Everyone knows 'cool' stands for 'constipated, overweight old lady'. Duh.

Cue Fathers Day.

I figured that this would be a perfect opportunity for Mickey Blue Eyes to bribe entice the boys out for one of his whimsical magical mystery tours.

"Let's drive to the central coast and have fish and chips!" he exclaimed, upon waking up. There was a collective groan from all three boys.

"Okay, we'll go to Windsor instead," he bartered.

I shuffled into the shower. The sound of the doorbell rang through the pulsating water.

Two of the boys mates had shown up.  If they weren't interested before, they were certainly less so now.

The shower fog seeped into my mental fog and I suddenly remembered I should have given Mick  his present.  Once dressed, I put together our dodgy gifts in gift bag and woke up Mr 6 who groggily marched out and proffered it to his father. Mickey Blue Eyes looked at it in a dismissive fashion.

"You didn't have to get all that," he muttered.  It was only some booze, nuts and a five dollar mug from the school Fathers Day stall, but I pretended that it was a supreme sacrifice.

"That's okay," I said, hoping I looked all weary and worn out from the effort.

It didn't appear that we were going on the afore mentioned drive so I got straight into my five km run and shit tonnes of housework. Snorts. Just kidding! I settled in with a book and fell asleep. I woke up in a daze a short time later and Mick and the boys were taking the dog for a walk.

I rang my Dad to wish him a happy Fathers Day. I'd already seen him twice through the week. I reflected about how lucky I am to have my Dad.  Happy memories were in mind of all the tickles and stories and games of red light we played in the cul-de-sac where I lived growing up. He's also an excellent Grandpa. He and Mr 14, in particular have a strong bond with their shared passion for Manchester United.

My Dad also has some classic 'Dad Jokes' which he still treats my boys to.  

Joke Number 1:

Him: Want a lolly?
Child: Yes!
Him: Go to bed and kiss your dolly! BOOM TISH 

Joke Number 2:

Him: You know what?
Child: What?!
Him: You're mad and I'm not! 

I know, right?! You can see where I get my comic genius from.

After the phone call we had some lunch and pondered going out for dinner.  Outback Jack's here we come. Because CLASSY.

Mick decided to tease the boys by asking them if they were going to  have the crocodile or kangaroo. They weren't impressed. Yay for Dad jokes! See above.

Image credit: caption

We arrived at the restaurant, settled into our booth and ordered. The boys were bored witless almost immediately. This led to us dropping some serious coin into one of those chocolate machine contraption things. There was a whole shit tonne of enticing chocolates and treats perched perilously on the edge just waiting to be pushed over. It looked so easy. It wasn't. Eight or so bucks later all we had was one pathetic Freddo which was dropped when opened. Awesome. 

Our food arrived. I can only say one thing; the burgers are better at Hungry Jacks.  In fact, the burgers are better anywhere except Outback Crap. 

As we left the restaurant it was raining and Mr 14 wanted to navigate us home. It's a charming game that he and Mick play. Mr 14 gives directions which take us around the World before we finally arrive home.

Consequently, we did end up going one of Mickey Blue Eyes' entertaining Sunday drives. This also involved one of his little touches called 'here we go round the roundabout a million times until everyone feels nauseous'. Okay, it was only about three times around each roundabout, but that's enough to make me nauseous. Fortunately there were no other cars including a police one around, or the night would have become even more interesting... 

Thus ended our entertaining Fathers Day of 2015. Fun times. 

Image credit:

Linking up with Kirsty, Alicia and Eva

How do you celebrate Father's Day?