Saturday, 3 December 2016

The Month That Was November






Hi there lovelies! Hasn't the year just flown by? Here we are in December and Santa is well and truly on his way! 

But before we bring on Christmas and ALL THE FOOD let me tell you a bit about November. 

After four years of ad hoc blogging I finally started an online blogging course! I was powering through it, reading all about editorial calendars and scheduling posts and what not, when I I suddenly had this STUNNING thought: 

Yeah, nah. 

I'll just continue in my usual ad hoc fashion. Yay! 


The thing is, the course seems to have come up at a time when I have my regular round of the 'blogging blahs'. Meaning, I just couldn't be bothered blathering on here about myself. Which is weird because we all know that I'm completely FASCINATING. Shut up.  

During November I didn't get to all the blogging link ups that I normally would. But I did manage some. I pondered the importance of exams and the things I'll be remembered for. Additionally, I paused to take stock and recall the news I'll never forget.


What else happened in November?  Oh, that's right! Mr 7 became Mr 8! It was his birthday, just for the ubiquitous Captain Obvious... He had a laser tag party and, of course, CAKE! 

On November 11th Mickey Blue Eyes and I celebrated our 21st wedding anniversary! It was also my parents 50th anniversary! We went out for some brunch and enjoyed the day. 

And then, there was MORE CAKE when we celebrated my dad's 78th birthday! 

Last weekend we took off for the weekend to visit the Hunter Valley Gardens Christmas Lights Spectacular. It was awesome! On the way in I randomly bumped into the amazing Mim from
LovefromMimIt was wonderful to meet her after following her breast cancer diagnosis at around the same time as mine.  

Here are some of my craptacular SPECTACULAR photos of this merry event: 


















Skillz, people! Be very jealous! I can't imagine why Mr 15 doesn't want to be seen in any of my photos...  Ahem...

It was a very fun way to spend a weekend and the boys ultimately enjoyed it, despite originally being HORRIFIED that they had to go. Imagine your parents torturing you with a weekend away!? What are we like? 

Last Wednesday Mickey Blue Eyes and I headed to the central coast to visit our friends Kim and Mark who moved there earlier this year. A lovely, relaxing day was had by all....until....

December rolled around. 

Apparently we can't do Decembers without some sort of drama... 

But lets leave that for the December round up! Sorry, just a nice little cliff hanger there... 

Cheeky, I know.  Stay tuned! 

And that was another November! 

Linking up for The Month That Was  and Archive Love.


What did you get up to during November? 

Monday, 21 November 2016

News I Will Never Forget








Every now and again I emerge blinking and bewildered from my bubble. The little cocoon of obliviousness I have concocted in order to mosey along in this mad, mad world. 

Mostly (I'm ashamed to admit), I don't watch the news. It's a self-preservation thing. You see, I'm a bit wobbly. Beneath my placid exterior, lurks my familiar nemesis. That evil bitch known as anxiety. 

Unlike the skinny bitch inside me screaming to get out, whom I usually shut up with chocolate (BOOM, TISH), Anxiety Bitch is bit harder to tame. She screams. She lashes out. Pokes, prods and makes her evil presence known. I hate her. I'm still learning to let her rage on and not pay as much attention. It's working. Sorta, kinda.

Anyway, my point is, the news isn't my thing. For some reason it's all bad. Go figure. 

But there are certain things over the last 20 years or so that have busted into my bubble.

I do remember hearing about these things...

The Port Arthur Massacre

This was made even more horrific by the fact that Mickey Blue Eyes and I had been there just months prior while on our honeymoon. It could very easily have been us. For those who have no idea what I'm talking about, you can read about it here. We visited again five years ago with the boys. It was already an eerie place, given it's history. Now it's unspeakably sad and sinister.  

The death of Princess Diana 

I was working as a waitress in a cocktail bar... 

No wait. That's an 80's song. Things get confusing when you're in and out of a bubble.

I was working in call centre for NRMA at the time. I was taking a call from a customer. Because that's what you do in that job, oddly enough. Which explains why I don't do it anymore. But I digress...

The woman on the phone was very distraught and informed me that the news of Princess Diana's death had just been reported on the news. Pretty soon everyone was talking about in it the office.  The mood was sombre. 

9/11

I was in 'Mother Of A Newborn Zombie Land' when this happened. I'd crashed early and managed to get some precious sleep. Mickey Blue Eyes came into the bedroom and woke me up beside himself. He said something about planes crashing into the World Trade Centre. I was just SO PISSED that he woke me. I failed to grasp the enormity of what was happening in my sleep deprived daze. Eventually I stumbled out to the living room. I watched the images on the screen in horror. 

The thought that echoed through my mind: What kind of a crazy arsed, fucked up world have I brought my beautiful, innocent baby into? 

Those were the things that pierced through my bubble. 

And of course recently there was the whole US election thing. I've never paid much attention in previous years, but it was kind of hard to miss it this time around. But I'm not saying another word about that. Nope. No way.

With the way 2016 has gone it won't be long until the next bit of batshit crazy news. There's still another week of November and the whole of December to get through... GULP.

If anyone needs me I'll be in my bubble. 


Linking up for Life This Week and Open Slather.


What news will you never forget? 

Friday, 18 November 2016

Taking Stock









Hello, gorgeous people! It's me again, popping up here whenever I feel like it! I accidentally typed 'pooping', but I changed it. Although that probably works, considering the general quality of posts here...

Related: I've finally done something I should have done YEARS ago. I signed up to do
 Blog With Pip and Blog Magic in a special two for one deal! 

Anyway, our week two assignment was this 'taking stock' thingy that I've seen around on lots of blogs.  


Too easy!  

On with the show....

Drum roll please!




Making : Everything super awkward. It's a special gift of mine!
Cooking : Dinner. Because the dinner fairy never shows up. Rude.
Drinking : Tea! Always tea. Even though it's warming up. 
Reading: Last Woman Hanged by Caroline Overington. Gruesome, but fascinating! 
Wanting: Equilibrium.
Looking: Like Kath from Kath n' Kim with my nanna curls. Noice. 




Playing: Eye spy with Mr 8. 
Deciding: Where and when to go on holidays. It will NOT be Dubbo. 
Wishing: I wasn't so anxious.
Enjoying: Getting black into exercise. Slowwwwwly. But getting there!

Waiting: For the kettle to boil. Helps if you plug it in I have discovered.  
Liking: Peace and quiet. I don't currently have any. But I would like it.
Wondering: Why I can't think of anything I'm wondering about right now, but at midnight when I should be sleeping, my mind will swirl with ALL THE THINGS.
Loving: My family. 
Pondering: See wondering.
Considering: What new template to put on this here blog. Well, in actual fact I did apply a new template (did anyone notice...?). Then I realised it doesn't look any different when viewed in mobile. Damn. So now I'm considering changing it again...  Decisions, decisions.  I am not good at them. Sigh. 
Watching: The Wrong Girl, Rosehaven and Please Like Me. 

Hoping: We get to go on that holiday. 
Marvelling: That I'm still relatively sane after the year I've had. OK, it's debatable...
Needing: Exercise! 
Smelling: Oranges.  
Wearing: My classy K-Mart attire. Be very jealous. 
Following: Um. I'm not a follower, I'm a... erm...

Not a leader either. Details.
Hmm, I dunno, haven't looked at Twatter in a while. Oh! But I signed up for Instagram, so hit me with your handles on there so I can follow YOU! 
Noticing: That time is on fast forward while I'd like to be on pause. 
Knowing: I am actually looking forward to Christmas instead of being all bah humbug! I know, right?! I don't even know who I am anymore. 
Thinking: Too much. Especially at midnight. See: Wondering and Pondering

Feeling: Blah, then brilliant. Then bored, then ebullient. Then bleak. And brilliant again. I'm a moody bitch. 
Admiring: My parents. They celebrated their 50th anniversary last week!
Sorting: Clothes. 
Buying: Birthday, anniversary and Christmas presents. 
Getting: Fat. Okay, fattER. Ahem. 

Bookmarking:  Um. Nothing comes to mind...
Disliking: Headaches. I had one for two days this week. Gah. 
Opening: My mouth. To eat too much food... See: Getting.
Giggling: At the cute things Mr 8 says.  
Snacking: On all those delicious summer fruits. The only good thing about summer. Nectarines and mangoes FTW! 
Coveting: Chocolate and cakies. What else? See: Opening and Getting
Wishing: That 2016 wasn't quite so WEIRD. 




Helping: Hmmmm. I tried to 'help' Mr 15 with an assessment. All I can say is I'm glad I'm not in high school anymore... 
Hearing: My stomach grumbling. Apparently it's lunch time. It always comes back to food with me, doesn't it? Oh dear. 


And that is me 'taking stock' on this fine day!

Wish me luck with the rest of the course(s). I need it! 


Linking up with Bloggers & Bacon for Archive Love.

What have you been opening and getting? Um, perhaps I should rephrase that...

How are you 'taking stock'? 



Monday, 14 November 2016

Are Exams Important?








 Hello, people! Welcome to another Monday! That glorious and beloved day of the week. People love Mondays! The same way they love root canal. Do you know what I'm saying?
Anyway, once again I am joining in the fun for Life This Week over at Denyse Whelan Blogs.  I missed it last week. Oops. 

Let's talk about exams! Simply because that's the prompt. Otherwise I wouldn't really talk about them. If I did I'd have two words: 

EXAMS SUCK!

I say this because I wasn't very good at them. 

Case in point: it may be hard to believe it (if this blog is anything to go by), but English was one of my best subjects in high school. However, I failed English in my HSC!

My poor mother was so astonished and dumbfounded that she truly believed there must have been some kind of mistake. She insisted that we enquire into this grave injustice.

We wrote back to check. This was back in in 1988, the time of the old snail mail.  Subsequently, I received confirmation of my abysmal results. YAY! 

EPIC FAIL.  





Every now again I still have hideous dreams (nightmares) that I'm back at school or doing exams. It's always such a relief to wake up!

Whenever I'm in a situation of being tested or having to think quickly on the spot, I can't seem to process it. It was exactly the same for me with job interviews. I'm not sure if it's an ASD thing or just a Ness thing. Either way, clearly I'm special. So very SPECIAL. 





I sometimes wonder if I'm doing the right thing as a parent, because I'm not pushy or demanding about exams or achievements. Sure, I want my boys to do their best, but I don't want them to be despondent if they don't or can't. The HSC and high school is not the be and end all of life! I don't think so, anyway. But then, I would, wouldn't I. Considering what I just revealed. Moving along...

Anyway, in my (admittedly limited) experience, no employer was ever the least bit interested in school or HSC results. I have no idea if this has changed these days. Has it? 


So that's my thoughts about exams! Deep, huh? Yeah, not really. It's obvious why I never became an academic. 

However, I feel like I should throw in an impromptu exam, just for shits and giggles. I should test YOU. But I know nothing. NOTHING!

Hang on, I know about The Carpenters!  

May I present to you the most IMPORTANT test you will ever take. 

 A Carpenters Pop Quiz: 



What were The Carpenters Christian names?: 

a) Richard and Linda.
b) Sharon and Darren.
c) Karen and Richard.

The Carpenters were one of the most successful pop music duos of all time. But how did they meet?

a) In college.
b) At the hairdressers, getting a bowl haircut.  
c) They were brother and sister!

How did they come up with the name "Carpenters"?

a) They were devoted Christians and Jesus was a Carpenter.
b) They loved woodworking
c) It was their family name. Duh. 

The Carpenters often referred to their music as being influenced by 'the three B's'. What/who were they referring to? 

a) Boring, banal, bland.*
b) Beethoven, Burt Bacharach and Barbra Streisand.
c) The Beatles, The Beach Boys and Burt Bacharach.

*(I don't think we can be friends anymore). 

Finish the lyric: Why do birds suddenly appear every time you are near...?

a) They sprinkled moon dust in your hair of gold and starlight in your eyes of blue . 

b) Before the rising sun, we fly.
c) Just like me, they long to be, close to you. 

During the 1970s, The Carpenters were known for voicing THE ultimate burning question of that tumultuous decade. What was it?

a) Don't you remember you told me you loved me, baby? 

b) Can't we stop hurting each other? 
c) All of the above. 

What instruments did the duo play?

a) None. They just pretended like all those dumb 70s pop groups.**
a) Glockenspiel and tambourine.
c) Piano and drums. 

**(You're pushing it).


In 1978 The Carpenters recorded a Christmas album. What was its title?

a) Christmas With The Carpenters.

b)  Merry Christmas, Darling.
c) Christmas Portrait. 


Karen Carpenter tragically died on February 4th, 1983 at just 32. How did she die? 

a) A plane crash.
b) Who cares?***
c)  Heart failure due to complications from anorexia nervosa.

***(You are officially dead to me). 


Which iconic pop star is responsible for this quote about Karen Carpenter: 
"I'm completely influenced by her harmonic sensibility."

a) Cher.
b) Michael Jackson.
c) Madonna. 

If you answered with all C's, then congratulations!

You scored A PLUS! 

As for the rest of you; take a good hard look at yourselves. What are you actually DOING with your lives?? Disgraceful! 

This is the most IMPORTANT exam! The rest are rubbish. 

You've been told. 

Now off you go and educate yourself about all things Carpenters! 

But before you go, just one tiny question...

What exactly DO 'normal' people think about and remember? Ahem.

Linking up for Life This Week. 

Also linking for  Open Slather and Mummy Mondays.

Do you think exams are important? You know, proper ones...? 

Images: Pexels; Pinterest

Saturday, 12 November 2016

10 Things I'll Be Remembered For







Hello again, dear readers! 

You forgot all about me? I'm sure that's not possible! Is it?

Of course not! Even when I'm no longer around, I'm sure I'll be remembered fondly by many of you. While I have no plans or intentions to go anywhere for a very long time, recent events have certainly got me thinking. 


Here's ten things I think I'd be remembered for: 

KINDNESS

I'm always polite and nice to people. Even those who would never like me even if I gave them a small yacht and a lifetime supply of chocolate.That's just the way I am. I always think of that meme that goes around. The one about how everyone has some kind of internal struggle you know nothing about. So just be kind. Sometimes people refer to me as being sweet. It used to make me nauseous, but now I think it's a good thing. It's means I'll be remembered for a being a sweetheart. Okay, it is a teensy bit nauseating...


BEING A LOYAL FRIEND

I don't make friends easily, but I'm very sincere and loyal once I do. And online friends count now, right? Otherwise I'm practically Nelly No Friends...


MY CUTE SENSE OF HUMOUR

I'm as funny as a fungal toe nail in person. However, give me a device and an internet connection and you'll suddenly discover something about me you never previously noticed. I have a personality! Who knew? 

MY FAMILY

One day I will shuffle off this Earth for tea and cake in the sky. Hopefully, a very long time from now. But my boys will still be here.  And I expect they'll all be top blokes (I would say that, I'm their mother...). So I'm taking the credit for it, even in the grave. 

MY WRITING/THIS BLOG

While my writing may never reach any grand or literary heights, I hope that I've been able to entertain and amuse SOMEONE out there. You're laughing WITH me, not AT me! Aren't you? 

MY INTERESTING HAIRSTYLES

I've gone from a fetching mullet-perm to an elegant poodle-perm. More recently I've been totally on trend, embracing the clown look. Furthermore, I can effortlessly segue into a foxy lady and channel Kath Day-Knight from Kath n' Kim. Noice. Unyewwwsual. 





MY CARPENTERS & CAKIE ADDICTION

Whenever you are trapped in some sort of easy listening hell you will ALWAYS remember me. For instance, you might be trapped in the dentist's chair.  A Carpenters song may echo eerily in the background as your jaw aches. And you will think of me. You know you will! And once again, you're totally welcome! 

Also, when I'm gone it will be your duty to honour me by eating ALL THE CAKE I can't have anymore.  You can't deny that it's a great legacy I will have left you. Use it wisely. 

MY QUIET NATURE 

I'm so quiet, there's a good chance you won't even notice I'm gone. Or maybe, just maybe, my resting bitch face will be curiously missed.  After all, a quiet, pleasant person (with a misleading resting bitch face) is preferable to some one who is nasty, gossipy or racist. 

I was going to add something about my tenacity in the face of adversity. I'm a breast cancer survivor and all that. But really, I'm just one of many people who've done the same. It doesn't make me special.

Well, maybe a little bit. Give me a break! That shit is HARD. 

So that's what I think I'll be remembered for! Let's fade out with a bit of Barbra...

Memorieeeees, like the corners of my miiiind....

Linking up (late, as usual!) for Friday Reflections.

What would you like to be remembered for? 

Images: Pexels, Pinterest

Friday, 4 November 2016

The Month That Was October







Another month done and dusted! I'm glad something is. Dusted, that is. My house certainly isn't. But it's all part of keeping up with the trends now that Halloween is apparently a thing in Australia. Cobwebs and dust FTW! 

Anyway, what can I say about October?

Well, curiously it is the only month of the year that begins with an O.  It comes after September and right before November.

What is the point of this meaningless information? I'm glad you asked. The thing is, I'm trying hard to think of something remotely interesting that I did during this illustrious month and what have I come up with?

NOTHING.


This reminds me of that phenomenon known as small talk. 

The scenario goes like this. 

I am busy doing all the numerous things that we call life.I get a phone call or bump into some one I know.

Them: What you have you been up to?
Me: Um..... 

My mind goes blank and I forget every single thing I have ever done in my entire life. 








It can't be just me. Can it? 

Suffice to say that I'm sure I did some something worthwhile in October. 

This blog was dutifully updated each week for your entertainment.

I shared what I've learnt about blogging and pondered the difference between being tidy or organised. 

Related: my de-cluttering mission has been kind of on again off again. But slow progress is better than no progress. Isn't it? 

I attempted to become all zen and mystical, to calm my manic mind from its swirling thoughts. From over thinking about my dubious attempts at de-cluttering and numerous other pointless ponderings.

I considered taking up yoga and transcendental meditation.  Pffffft. Yeah, RIGHT. That thought didn't repeat itself, oddly enough.

Instead, I turned to yet more distraction like a normal person. This involved watching a plethora of programmes on my laptop. 


Including:

The Wrong Girl
Rosehaven
Catastrophe

The Secret
Home Fires


And many more. 

This ongoing quest to avoid reality also meant I continued to read up a storm. And since I was on a roll, I decided to participate in triathlon!





Well, MY kind of triathlon, anyway. Sniff. 

There were more appointments, including my first ever with a dietitian. 

My recommended eating plan is low fat and low GI.Talking or writing about diets is terminally boring, so I won't say anything more about it. Furthermore, each time I publicly announce these things I always spectacularly fail. Oops. Moving on...

So that was a very underwhelming October. 

BUT... if this time last year has taught me anything it's that boring is good. God I love boring. 

I hope you do too. Because this post was certainly a good cure for insomnia. Ahem. 

And with that I am now all over November.  Game ON. Actually pyjamas still on. Maybe I better get dressed...

Linking up (late!) for The Month That Was

Sunday, 30 October 2016

A Halloween Story








Hello folks! I'm a little late to the Friday Reflections party. Oops.

But we all know that the party doesn't start until I get here! Right? 


Oh. It did. How rude.

Anyway, here I am regardless.  May I present to you a lovely little Halloween story? 

It's total fiction. I'm sort of sick of myself at the moment. Meaning, I'm sick of writing about myself. So I made something up.

I will preface this story by saying that Halloween has never really been a thing here in the land of Oz (also known as Australia) until the last few years. Consequently I never celebrated it as a child. My boys have asked to go trick or treating tomorrow. Therefore, I'm reluctantly becoming a convert. Well, I do love me some candy, especially in the form of chocolate... So it's all good! 

Except for the part where I'm currently seeing a dietitian and I'm supposed to be eating healthy. Again: OOPS. 

But back to my story! 

Here it is: 



A HALLOWEEN STORY


It wasn't the thought of a grisly death that scared Harry. He was more alarmed by the idea of his prolonged, uneventful existence stretching before him, bleak and relentless. Another nondescript life, as colourless as the next. There was nothing remarkable about him. There never had been. Never would be. It didn't matter what his mother thought. She herself was a lumpy, broad-faced jowly woman with a booming voice and a plethora of opinions. None of them unique. All of them bitter and bigoted. It wasn't an achievement to be held in her esteem.

The only people his family bestowed their good will upon were exactly like them. Anyone who was different in any way would be treated with suspicion, even contempt. These bloody foreigners coming over here and taking our jobs! Even though his mother had never actually had a job for anyone to take in the first place. Not Doris Weber. She'd been a dutiful house wife. Just like every good mother should be. Her condescension to Irene had been unbearable. There marriage was swiftly over. He didn't blame her.

He flicked over to her Facebook profile now. Her beatific smile beamed back at him. Her ebullient nature had been in stark contrast to his introversion. Between that and his officious mother, the union had been doomed from the beginning.

Here he was, approaching fifty with little to show for the advancing years. A patchy employment history, a divorce and an overbearing, elderly mother. She still turned up or phoned him every other day to tell him how to live his life.

He sat here in his shabby home in a dubious suburb. He didn't mind it here. But Mum was horrified. His sister too. Margaret had the appropriate cookie cutter life. The urbane husband who'd climbed the corporate ladder. The ubiquitous McMansion in a leafy, suitable suburb. Their children were teenagers now. He was the odd uncle. Unwelcome really, at Christmas and other occasions, but tolerated.

He poured himself another rum with just a dash of coke. Even his taste in booze was inappropriate. Ominous clouds gathered in the sky as he sat at the window. He loved a good storm. Some people didn't understand his fascination with weather. But everyone had their things. Something that was odd to some one else, not them.

Children were shuffling along the street now, in makeshift Halloween costumes. He knew they wouldn't come here for trick or treating. He might be a paedophile! Their parents would protest. He wasn't. He wasn't even overly sexual at all. Yet another oddity. Another thing that Irene couldn't fathom in the end. She'd wanted children. He was ambivalent. It wasn't that he didn't like them. In fact, he liked some of them just fine. Yet others, not so much. Children were just small humans, after all. What made them different to adults? Lightning pierced the sky. The inevitable thunder shook the house. Shrieks sounded as distant figures started running through the rain.

Harry took a long swig of his drink, enjoying the sensation of it sliding along his tongue then burning his throat. Jagged rain pelted the window. His blinds were fully drawn. Anyone could see in. The ghoulish clown face appeared with the next slap of thunder. A shock of vivid red against the sombre grey sky. Harry jumped, spilling his drink. He hadn't really cared about these ridiculous clown sightings. It perplexed him that he was so riled. He clearly needed something to stir his malaise.

He leapt from his supine position to stumble drunkenly to his front lawn. His bellows were swallowed up by the storm. He stood sneering and soaked, ridiculous now. Neighbours peered through windows, as the prankster disappeared around the corner. He shuffled back inside muttering and cursing.

When he heard about the murder on the late news he felt a curious sense of detachment. 79 year old Doris Weber had been stabbed to death in her suburban home in an apparent trick or treat incident gone horribly wrong. He could hear her now. "This isn't America! Why do we have to follow them?" The phone was ringing. It would be Margaret, beside herself with horror, but secretly thinking of her inheritance.

People were so transparent. His drab reality was now sordid and sinister. And he liked it.

Slowly he moved to answer the phone.


Linking up for Friday Reflections


Do you celebrate Halloween? 

Do you have a Halloween story? 

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Conversations with Belief








Hello again.  Here I am with some of my disjointed, ad hoc thoughts about belief... 

When I was a girl I liked to believe that there really could be fairies hiding somewhere among the flowers in the garden, just like the ones I read about in Enid Blyton books.

I believed in the old 'they lived happily ever after...' myth at the end of every fairy tale. 

As an adult, one thing I hate hearing is the old 'everything happens for a reason' cliche. 

I  do believe in laughing at how ridiculous life can be.

I believe in a good sneeze. But only with my legs tightly crossed because otherwise.... Well, you don't want to know. Suffice to say I'm a 45 year old woman who's had several pregnancies. 

I believe that no matter how old you are you never stop learning, wishing, discovering things about yourself and life. 

I believe that so many things are overrated. And underrated.

I believe that I am just writing rubbish because I don't really know what I believe. I'm very confused. This will not be new information to anyone who has read this blog before. Ahem. 


I believe that what doesn't kill you does, indeed, make you stronger. And I'm strong enough now, thanks very much. 








Of course there is the whole issue of belief in one's self. One of my major core beliefs has always been that I'm weak and a scaredy cat who can't cope with the grittier side of life. Time and again this belief has been proven wrong. See above. 

Do I believe in God?

The short answer is NO. There is a part of me that would like to be able to believe. It often seems that some people who do believe are able to accept and cope with the most confronting things; even death. They genuinely believe that it's 'God's will' and they're going to a 'better place'. I would love to have some sort of belief that gave me such a sense of peace and comfort. But truthfully it seems like nonsense to me. 







Of course, there are always moments when I would like to keep an open mind. Keep my options open. You know, just in case. Emergency God, as the joke goes. The one you suddenly find yourself calling upon in desperation while in the depth of a crisis. Imagine yourself plummeting to your certain death in a plane crash or awaiting your test results  - begging and pleading with God. A God you're not even sure you believe in...

Weirdly, I don't remember doing this when I got my cancer diagnonsense. Did I? I believe I was more matter of fact. My attitude was: I have to listen to the doctors and get on with it have medical treatment. That's what will save my life. Not God. 

I've never been spiritual or cosmic or 'out there'. Although as I mentioned above, as a child I was much more whimsical. I am a mass of contradictions or dichotomies. I'm logical yet scatter-brained. See? That doesn't even make sense. 

I seem to have become more attuned to paying attention to my logical side these days. Oh, except when I'm catastrophising... That's another story! But there is room for being fanciful. Some things do require common sense, others don't. It's no accident that the tag line of this blog is: In my own little world...

It's a happy place with cakies and unicorns. And, of course, Carpenters music. Some people believe Karen Carpenter is an angel. Maybe she is? Who knows? Again it makes no sense to believe this and not believe in God... But nonsensical ad hoc, irrational thoughts and musings are my specialty. We all have our strengths! 

Anyway, one of my favourite Carpenters songs is called Look To Your Dreams... 

To say I'm romantic would be quite semantically true
But make believe passion has fallen from fashion's milieu
It's understandable why we're a little confused
It's asking for trouble just watching the six o'clock news
But for a moment, all things aside
Look to yourself, somewhere inside

Look to your dreams
Don't they still seem worthwhile?
Don't they still seem in style?
Aren't you glad they're still there?

Look to your dreams

There's a need for them now
When the world has us down
Aren't you glad they're around?

Once conceived, once believed
Fantasy's reality's childhood
And like a seed, visions need constant care
Like a child would, we should

Look to our dreams
We can still reach the stars
We can still break the bars
We have built here on Earth

Look to your dreams
And tomorrow may be
Better for you and me
The future may say, blame blind yesterday
For taking dreams away
They could mean more than they seem.
Written by John Bettis, Richard Lynn Carpenter • Copyright © Universal Music Publishing Group






You will either feel uplifted or slightly queasy after that. Or perhaps a curious mixture of both? You're welcome.

Right. I'm off to take my meds search for fairies in the garden. Enid Blyton and Karen Carpenter couldn't be wrong. Could they?


Linking up for Conversations Over Coffee and IBOT


What do you believe in? 


Monday, 24 October 2016

Two Months Until Christmas









Hello there gorgeous blog reader! I am delighted that you are back here again. 

It's Monday, which always comes after Sunday and before Tuesday. I figured I may as well take my Captain Obvious to the next level. Why not? Rhetorical question...

So anyway, here I am. Back to entertain to you in my typical fashion! Which means that I have absolutely NOTHING to tell you. Not a thing. But that won't stop me! I will proceed to babble on about bugger all for several paragraphs. Right. On with it.

So where were we? 


Oh yes, not only is it Monday, it's also October 24th! And you know what that means, don't you? It's just two months until Christmas! 








This time last year I was walking around oblivious to the fact that I had cancer. Yikes. Thinking about this macabre fact reminds me of seeing Lawrence Mooney doing stand up on the telly.

He did a spot of black comedy about cancer. The observation went something like this: that you can stub your toe and be doubled over in agony. Meanwhile when you have cancer growing in your body - NOTHING. Not a twinge. Scary, scary shit. And so true, in my experience. 

I'm not sure what it is about this time of year, but we seem to like being all dramatic, getting cancer and stuff, conveniently right before Christmas. Aren't we show offs?

Yes, apparently Mickey Blue Eyes got his diagnonsense in October of 2004. So it's always been such a jolly old merry time for us. Yeah, NOT. Which brings me to what I want for Christmas: NOTHING. Meaning, I want this period of time to be extremely boring and uneventful. 

Anyway, I expect I should probably start shopping. Every single year I say I am going to be organised and every single year it sneaks up on me. Needless to say, I am not organised AT ALL. Which is slightly embarrassing, after boasting in this post about being organised. Awkward. 

Look, I have my own version of being organised. I have such a boring life that it spices things up to live dangerously and leave Christmas shopping until the last minute! It's all part of a plan. A not very well thought through plan, but a plan nonetheless. 

For example, last year I was a Christmas shopping NINJA. When I got my diagnonsense on December 4th, I hadn't done any Christmas shopping. So I went out the following Monday the 7th and did all my shopping in one day. Then I had surgery on Thursday December 10th. Winning! 

My GP was quite impressed. That I got on with it and did what I had to do. Looking back, I am too.

This may come as a shock, but I'm not exactly the jolliest person at the best of times. So yeah, 2015 wasn't a brilliant Christmas for me. Typically, at this time of year I would be all cynical and bah humbug. But not this year. I don't have to have surgery before Christmas, and chemo in the new year! YAY! 


The most exciting thing I want to happen during this period is listening to Carpenters Christmas music. You know, just for something COMPLETELY DIFFERENT. 

Yep, we're so organised around here. We currently have no idea what we're doing for Christmas. Usually we have Christmas lunch at my brother and sister-in-law's place. Where ever I am, I will proceed to eat myself into a diabetic coma. SUCH FUN! 

As a matter of fact, it suddenly occurs to me that I have started shopping. I have ordered one thing online. See? I told you I was organised! The current status in our family is this: only one boy(Mr almost 8), sorta kinda believes in Santa. He's not totally convinced, but he's clinging to it. Just in case. 

Last year I didn't send any Christmas cards, for obvious reasons. Does anyone actually do that anymore? Nope, methinks. Instead they start boring as batshit blogs. Related: this space began because of the silly old Christmas letters I used to send. It's my gift to the world! No, there aren't any refunds or exchanges! RUDE. 








Meanwhile, I am seriously considering putting up the Christmas tree early, though, just to get into the spirit.  Shit, I really must be ill. This is more serious than cancer, people. I've become one of those people on the left...







Save me! 


Linking up for Life This Week.

Also linking up for Open Slather and Mummy Mondays.

Which one are you? Jolly or bah humbug? 

Are you ready for Christmas? 

Friday, 21 October 2016

21 Random Facts About Me





1. My parents named me Vanessa after seeing Vanessa Redgrave in the movie Camelot. Almost everyone calls me Ness, except my parents and Mick who stuck with the Vanessa thing. 
2. My hair used to be straight but now it's curly because I had chemo. Sigh. 
3. My favourite drink is tea.
4. I can't wear perfume. It gives me headaches. 
5. I didn't learn to drive until I was 36. 
6. When adulting seems too hard I often fantasize about being a dog. I draw the line at becoming a Furry, though. It'd be too hot in summer. 


Image credit: https://onsizzle.com/i/i-dont-want-to-adult-today-i-dont-even-want-2681494


7. I'm struggling to get back into exercise post breast cancer. 
8. I almost never listen to the radio.
9. I prefer showers to baths.
10. I love reading but don't understand how people can read in the bath.
11. As a child I was scared of elevators and escalators. And boats, and heights and cockroaches. And people. Nothing much has changed. Ahem. 
12. I didn't realise I was pregnant the first time until around 26 weeks (approximately six months).
13. To my right there is a tall bookcase and a smaller one. Both are filled with books. Well, I did say they were random facts. 
14. I am trying to de-clutter my home. But it's not hoarding if it's books, right? (See above). 
15. I am terrible at multi-tasking. Except when I'm blogging, Facebooking, drinking wine and eating all the food simultaneously. I SMASH that. 
16. My middle name is Faye. Which sounds like an old lady name in 2016. Totally goes with my nanna curls. Winning! 
17. I don't think I'm interesting enough to make it to 21 facts. Thinking, thinking, thinking...
18. I've never had a sister or a daughter . Never will. Interesting. (I do have two wonderful sister-in-laws). 
19. I live in the same suburb I was born in 45 years ago. 
20. I'm super untidy but I can't stand having sticky or wet hands. Weird.
21. I am currently sipping a cup of tea. See point number 3. I am NOT eating cake with it. I am very sad and wistful about this. And I'm not even skinny yet! RUDE. 






There you have it. 21 totally random facts about me. You're welcome! 

Linking up for Friday Reflections. 






Are there any interesting random facts about you? 

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Letter To My Sixteen Year Old Self








Hello again! I'm back with a lovely regurgitated and tweaked offering! Why not? 

I stumbled upon yet another blog link up over at Life Through The Haze. It sounded like something I'd be up for. And when I read the prompt for this week, I knew I had something in the archives. So I've updated my tender letter to my sixteen year old self. 

Side note: wasn't I cute? And skinny. No bat wing nanna arms or double chins. Oh well, there's more of me to love these days. That's one way of looking at it!  

Anyway, here is the updated letter: 






Dear 16 year old Nessie,

Hello, it's me, your 45 year old self. There are a few things I wanted to say to you.

First things first.

A mullet-perm is a bad idea. In fact, it is a truly DREADFUL idea. Do not go there. I know it's the 80's and everyone is suffering from TES*, but please, resist. At age 45 you won't even have to bother with perms because you'll be sporting some lovely nanna curls. Don't ask. 



Mullet-perm circa 1987



Nanna curls 2016




Right. Well dear, I know you're very lonely right now, and you don't have many friends. Sorry to tell you, but the one or two 'friendships' you have now are going to go pear-shaped.

There is something called Rotaract. GO.

You will be out of your comfort zone. You will be awkward, but - eventually - that is where you will meet lifelong friends (or at least until age 45 anyway). Oh, and you will meet your husband there too!

Even though, dare I say it, there is really no rush to be married. (Shhhhh, don't tell Micky Blue Eyes).

In the future there will also be something called the Internet. There you will be able make online friends with other Carpenters fans. Consequently you will no longer feel like a freak for your obsession. 

There are some other interesting things you should know about 2016. Here goes: 

People don't listen to records anymore. You'll hang onto your Carpenters ones, though. Because CARPENTERS. Duh! 

Those Back To The Future Movies LIED. There are no hover boards! But this won't particularly concern you since you are afraid of heights. Yes. Still. There's nothing you can do about it.

There are no time machines, so really there is no way for you to see this drivel  genius that I'm writing to you. I blame Steven Speilberg. It's like those movies were total fiction or something! See previous point. I thought I was watching a documentary. HMPH. 

It's super weird and bizarre and kind of bullshit around this point in time. Both personally and just in general. I can't even begin to explain how weird. 





Related: you need to learn that the past is over and the future hasn't happened yet. After a life-changing event** you will slowwwwly learn to live in the present. And then maybe you'll stop writing trite letters to your past self. I hope... Ahem...

But let's finish this one now that we've started...

You tend to believe lots of silly stuff about yourself. Like you can't learn to drive. It will take you longer. A lot longer. But you will.

You also believe you can't cope with the hard stuff in life. There will be hard stuff, sadly. See above. But, guess what?  You will actually cope okay. It won't be easy, but you will be okay in the end. I promise.

And Nessie dear, you will always be the most quiet, shy person in the room. You are never going to be loud, bubbly and outgoing. There is no magic age when you will 'come out of your shell'. It's not going to happen. And it's okay. It really is.  As Oscar Wilde said: "Be yourself; everyone else is taken."

Also remember this:

You don't have to like everyone you meet and they don't have to like you.

I repeat:

You don't have to like everyone you meet and they don't have to like you. Liberating, isn't it?

Also this:

You wouldn't worry about what everyone thought of you if you knew how seldom they did.

And most of all: your mental health is always more important than what someone may think of you. 

There is something else about you that is different***. Something beyond just being shy. Not bad, just different.  I was going to tell you, but I won't. There is a reason you won't find this out until later. You're not ready.

But when you do find out, I want you to seriously re-define what success in life really is - for you. And STOP, once and for all, comparing yourself with super outgoing, non-different (for want of a better term) people.

Oh, and if any of your teachers/relatives/friends ever mention that they think you're good at writing, there could be a chance they're actually not putting you on. So have a go. Just write. Something. Anything.

Even a boring as batshit blog is a start. What the hell's a blog?  You'll find out.

Sincerely,

Your 45 year old self. 

PS. You're really not going to listen to me about that mullet-perm are you? Oh well, I tried. Sigh. 

*TES = Tragic Eighties Syndrome
** In late 2015 I was diagnosed with early stage breast cancer. 
***In 2011 I was diagnosed with ASD formerly known as Asperger's Syndrome. 

Linking up for Soft Landings.


What would you say to your 16 year old self? Besides any future lottery numbers...