Monday, November 28, 2011


At this time of year I eagerly look forward to the Christmas edition of some magazines I sometimes buy. I added the Womens Weekly to my purchase of Better Homes & Gardens and Family Circle.

But as I browsed through I could not find many recipes that I thought I would try this year. Amongst the sweets and savouries, puddings and stuffings it seems to the same old same old.

I am pretty disappointed.

Could it be that there is nothing new out there to try.

I might try Donna Hay in the hope she has some new ideas. Otherwise its back to the old faithfuls, not that they are no good, but if I make the same thing every year it might get tired. Every year I must make rum balls, the glace fruit cake, spice cookies, shortbread and gingerbread stars and even last year there were a few new things to try that could become favourites.

My clippings book is full to bursting already but I can always squeeze in another favourite of the future.

Sunday, November 27, 2011


Here are some of this years cards

 We have been making them over the past few weeks

 This is a new design but they are very messy
 The maribou trim sheds and sheds, you may not thank me if you get one of these, but often there is a lot of tinsel and glitter drifting around anyway.

 We have been doing more stamping than previously

And Erin has been playing with my supplies and has whipped up this one

I've got a busy week coming up, doing work things every day this week. But I am still going to try to get some more crafty things done as well.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

The tree...

is up.

Finally says Erin, she has been nagging at me to put up our Christmas tree. Maybe I will get into the spirit now the blinking, silvery tree is reminding me each day that time is ticking away.

I've been making some Christmas cards and will take some pics tomorrow if the sun comes out.
Today has been really wet, about 50 mls filling the rain gauge and flooding the garden beds and garage. It has been very grey and gloomy. I have some craft projects that I wanted to get finished this year. I should have them done before Christmas is celebrated in our home next Christmas!

 Hopefully the weather will improve for Christmas parties and breakups that are coming up.

Monday, November 21, 2011


As published in the Geelong Advertiser this morning, our results

39 minutes exactly!

 I am really pleased with my result. As you can see I placed 2874 of some nearly 11,000 participants.

Can you see me down there??

As we were running along the sound of running shoes slapping the bitumen made me smile. It was a good feeling on the day and I am still basking in that feeling now, especially as my result is an improvement.

I was feeling that my time for a wet 5km in Lara was a bit slow so went back to recheck the Mothers Day result of 29:56. No wonder it seemed fast, it was only 4km.

So I have improved in both in time and how I actually feel when I am running. This kind of reward makes the training bit seem not so bad and I never thought I would say it but...

I'm looking forward to the next one.

(Can't wait til May, will have to find something in between)

Edited to add: Results published by the Run Geelong team are
Overall position: 2822
Gender position: 1257
Category position 40-49yrs: 238

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Run Geelong...

 The morning was clear, sunny (only 12 degrees) and perfect for running

This second hill slowed my down, I took this phone pic and then started running again.

We did a lap of Skilled stadium at the end of the 6km rpute and I was doing really well until I psyched myself out and stopped running about 3/4s of the way around. I thought this is crazy, I have run nearly the whole way, including all the way up the first hill, so I then sprinted to the finish line. The timer said 40 minutes so I think my time will be just under that. It was very congested at the start as about 10,000 of us made our way to the start gate.
I tried to get a self pic as no-one would be my official photographer today.
Here I am, an hour after the race, pretty pleased with myself. This was the best run yet (and I hate hills, but I used to hate rain as well)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Weekend rain...

It hasn't been very nice weather for the Strawberry & Cherry Festival this weekend.

It was very wet this morning and has rained on & off all day. Last night when the cool change came through we had gale force winds and lashing rain, probably not good for the fruit. They were concerned that there wouldn't be enough crop to last the weekend and the weather probably hasn't helped.
Bacchus Marsh is a produce dominant town and this festival usually helps to bring big crowds to devour the fruit. Hopefully tomorrow will be a bit better for them all.

The rain didn't stop my last training day before the fun run tomorrow. I'll be up early to get to the start line.

I'm hoping for good weather too.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

More training...

Today was hot, up to 28 degrees. I wanted to have a run in the count down to the next fun run on Sunday. I dont do well running in high temperatures so was glad when the cool change came. I went down to the track at 7pm and half way through a little rain fell to keep me cool. It felt like a really good run, doing 2 laps of the 3km trail.

I've got my race kit, just a few more days and I will be ready.

Sunday, November 13, 2011


The (Bill) Gates as Chris calls them, are finally done.

We had the idea to put an access to the big shed when we fixed up the backyard. Chris had the frames for ages and it was becoming a procrastination point. Chris always wanted to have the access since the shed went up about 5 years ago and I wanted the backyard fixed up first. We would argue back and forth about which should come first and nothing got done. I eventually won and the backyard was done. Since all that work (in June) Chris had gone back to his procrastination about finishing the gate and since then progress has been very slow. Each weekend the weather has been getting warmer or during his week off  it was rain that stopped play.

Today was going to be THE day. The day I could stop nagging and finish off this job. I had to help more than I planned and it wasn't that bad a job. I can't see what the hold up was after all.

One last chance at stalling

The frames were in place, we added the colourbond sheets

 Chris got to use a couple of his whiz bang power tools

 The gates are hung, the fence removed, the middle post dug out, dirt levelled off, a board put in place and the drop bolts attached.

 Ta da!!!
Now Chris can procrastinate as long as he likes on moving stuff around in his shed to accomodate the car when he wants to work on it. I don't want/need to be involved, its his domain. Which means it might never happen.

My nagging is done (for now).

Saturday, November 12, 2011

My garden grows...

Remember this garden bed, planted just a few weeks ago?

I had Erin take some pictures this afternoon to check progress
We are very happy to see colourful flowers blooming, making us feel better.

Pippa is also hanging around in the garden,
And she spied my new Emu decorating the garden, a birthday gift from my sister. Chris pinned its feet down as it was prone to falling over in the wind. It is overseeing the kangaroo paw nicely

More examples of Erins photography

Its been a warm, sunny day and I got a bit sunburned replanting a tree out the front. I haven't got my head around sunscreen weather yet.

Friday, November 11, 2011


Hayley told me that today is a special day. Apart from being our Remembrance day, the 11th of November 2011 has special significance as a cleansing day.

After a run this morning, after a pause to remember our servicemen and women, I had a cleansing day.

I unblocked a toilet and scrubbed clean a saucepan. The pan was severely burned when Callum was put in charge of cooking the macaroni (he left on his bike and totally forgot about it, the contents of the pot were about to catch fire when the smoke detectors alerted Erin who was in her room with door shut. The burnt pasta on the bottom of the pot was set like concrete. I had tried a couple of the regular things to try to salvage it but it wouldn't budge. In a last ditch effort I sprinkled dishwasher powder in and left it be (forgot about it actually). Today I chipped at it and it started to come away and then a scrub with steel wool and I've saved it from the bin. I have a drawer full of saucepans but this stainless steel one had been my mothers and even though the handle had come off the lid I used it frequently and it looks like I will be able to continue to cook up a storm in it.

Many couples tied the knot today (Happy anniversary to Little sis who got married on this day many years ago too) and some lucky babies have a very memorable birthday. I often think that Hayley nearly had a memorable birthday but missed out by a few hours, she could have shared Princess Beatrices' birthday of 8/8/88 but if you believe in the fate of birthdays/dates she may have had a very different life indeed.

Next year will be the last of these special dates for some time. My calculations say 2/2/22 will be the next one.

Thursday, November 10, 2011


Number 1 son rides a motorbike.

Number 1 son is 20 years old.

Some say these two things shouldn't go together, something about 'immature brains' 'feeling indestructible' and 'risk taking'.

Boy Racer senior is sooo old he has forgotten what it was like to be young and 'indestructible'.

All this was reinforced last night when Melbourne had the worst storms ever forecast and Callum decided he was going into the city to a band signing at a music store. At 5pm. Into the eye of the storm. Despite the best warnings of both parents. And a big sister.

But off he went on his bike (at least he took his wet weather gear), lined up, got some stuff signed and then came home. When he got here Chris was waiting in the driveway, pacing. When he arrived he was very wet but safe and didn't know what all the worry was for. Much like his father had done exactly when he was that risk taking age.

And we didn't get the storms that hit other areas. Lucky for Callum.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Ooo it was hot today. And muggy and cloudy. With bursts of alternating grey and sunny skies. Yesterday was a swim day so today was a run day and by 530pm I thought it would be OK. I had thought at the beginning it wouldn't be too bad, still 27 degrees at that time.

 But it was tough and I really had to push myself hard to keep going. By the end I was overheated and scarlet faced. I didn't feel well. It took quite a long time to recover.
It made me rethink the next fun run in just 12 days. If it going to be hot I might walk more than running. I might be psyching myself out, thinking about those hills as well.

I'll see on the day, but I'm not going to push myself past my limits just yet.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Soul surfer...

today I watched this movie.

The story of Bethany Hamilton, the girl who had her arm bitten off by a shark when she was 13. It was a very moving story of how she overcame this handicap to continue with her goal to become a professional surfer.

I really enjoyed this movie, take some time to see it too.

Saturday, November 5, 2011


I always like to know where I am going and in particular where I will park when I get there.

Take this latest Fun Run for instance. I wasn't concerned about the actual running, I had trained for that part and even if I couldn't run the whole distance it wouldn't be the end of the world. I wasn't concerned about the weather, and in the end the rain didn't spoil my day. I had most of the details under control but did get a bit stressed out the day before about where I would park and how that might affect me.

Likewise with the next Fun Run I have registered for, this one is in Geelong and they are expecting thousands to enter. My biggest concern is where will we all park? and if I have to park a long way away, will I get to the start on time. Maybe I should catch a train and be an hour early or dashing over to the start line. Silly I know but I can't help it. Maybe I should be more concerned about the hilliness of the course and the chance it could be scorching hot. I ran today up my big hill for practice and was red faced for hours afterwards.

If I have to go to a study day at a new venue, the parking issue will be in my mind until I'm sitting in the lecture theatre taking notes. I can vividly remember the anxiety of the first day of each year of Primary school where we had to find our place in a line in an assembly area. I would feel a near panic at not getting in the right place at the right time.

I was thinking about this again this morning as I headed over to Melton to help out in the Festival parade. Erin and I were running a bit late and I knew there would be road closures, Hayley was already up there and luckily she texted me to let me know the start position was nowhere near where the last parade was held.

A bit of anxiety that was really unnecessary in the scheme of things.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The pedometer...

Hayley bought me a lovely pedometer for my birthday and I have been wearing it to work, on walks and runs. I wore it last week at work and clocked up 5 kms around the unit. It has 3 functions; counts steps and you can read it as steps or kms, and it calculates the calories ( or kilojoules if you prefer). The drawback with the calories function is when you know you have burned up a big whack of energy you don't feel guilty about a little indulgence as a reward.

It was also a very sweet colour and showed me the date and time.

I wore it on the Run on Sunday and didn't give it a second thought until much later that night. I couldn't find it anywhere, not among my soggy clothing or the bag I took. I had lost my lovely pedometer!

I emailed the event organiser hoping someone might have found and handed it in. Imagine my surprise when I got a prompt reply with a positive outcome. Someone had indeed found it and been honest enough to hand it in.

Justin has it and I can pick it up on Friday when I head back to Lara. He did offer to post it but I think its been through enough, it may not survive Aust Post as well.

In hind sight I didn't need to wear a pedometer on that day, I knew the distance I was going to cover and each km was marked so you could check your progress. It has never come loose before so I'm not sure why this time it did, I've been running with it since Hayley gave it to me.

I am still astounded that it will return to me so I can count steps again.