July 2009

I haven’t been posting much of late. With my replacement being trained up at work, I don’t really have a lot of free work time to be updating during the day and the last week my Mum was visiting from QLD and I have a friend in town from Amsterdam so most of my ‘home’ time is taken up catching up with the two of them. We also have 9 days left in the country so we are frantically trying to sell the last of our belongings and organise ourselves before next Monday.. eep is all I have to say about that though, because if I start going into it my head could just explode!

In 101/1001 news, I am a little bit closer to completion on a few of my tasks which is nice. I am almost half way through # 69 (Get rid of 101 things that I don’t use or need) It’s been surprisingly easy considering we are moving house. My favourite part of that challenge was giving my boss’ son one of our old guitars. He has been coming into the office after school once or twice a week for the last couple of years so we have spent many an afternoon chatting to each other about the world. He is 14 and absolutely in love with all things musical so when we were talking about getting rid of one our electric guitars he seemed like the perfect choice. The day after I had given the guitar to his Mum to give to him that night I came to work to find this:


He had picked the flowers himself at a reserve where he likes to walk sometimes, and the note was so beautiful that I almost started my Friday morning crying at my desk. He talked about how he couldn’t believe I had even wanted to talk him all those times and how I was so nice and friendly and how lucky he thought was just to know me *sob* he said that he had really mixed feelings about me moving to NZ but that he was really excited for all the great things that were going to happy to me in the future. What a wonderful kid! I wish I could bundle him up and take him with me!

I have managed to cross off two things on my list completely this week:

#90. (Sell/Give away clothes that don’t fit anymore); I have sold a few of them on a forum I frequent (making about $400 which was nice!) and the rest are all packed up ready to be taken to the Salvos next time hubby has a day off work.

#62. (Say yes to more social situations); while technically this is an ongoing challenge which I will keep at for the duration of the challenge (and my life) I feel like I have done well enough at it so far that I can justify crossing it off. Last week was a big week for me, I had dinner planned with someone every single night of the week, so when Friday night came around I was really looking forward to settling in at home with a movie and some chocolate. When my old friend called in the morning asking me to come to a super indie movie opening with him I almost declined, but remembered my list item and said okay. I ended up in a strange suburb in Western Sydney watching a premiere indie thriller movie in a ramshackle theatre with 30 super cool bohemian film students (or ex film students), I ate free popcorn and got to watch the newest short film project from this years Tropfest winner – on her personal mac, in her office, with headphones, while everyone else downstairs played movie soundtrack trivia – I drove the streets of Sydney with my old friend for hours laughing and chatting and talking and ate a midnight dinner with him in the front seat of his car before getting home a little after 1am.


All in all it was a wonderful night, and although I could barely keep my eyes open when I got home, it was well worth it!

And, since it’s something I would normally say no to, and since I had been out for dinner with someone every night last week, I’m counting that as a successful cross off.. I will continue to work at it though, and will report on any other significant progress as it comes up.

Yesterday, while at lunch with my family, there was some contention about the ‘meals outside’ issue. We ate at a beach side restaurant, with walls so open that I thought it could almost count as a meal outside (#99) There were five of us at lunch so I took a vote, two considered the seat to be outside while the other two said it was inside (darn it) I was supposed to be the tie breaker, but I figured I wasn’t a reliable unbiased source so I took the tie to count as a no, which means my tally still sits at 5/101. It was still a great lunch though, and it was a spectacular day in Cronulla yeasterday, almost beautiful enough to make me not want to head to chilly Queenstown next week.. almost.. but not quite!


After family lunch I spent the afternoon with my Mother. She flew back home this morning and it was the last time we’d get a chance to spend time together for quite a while (what with me moving to another country and all). We saw a movie and spent hours in Nulla Nulla cafe downing coffees and chatting away. It was so great, except that spending time with her just makes me miss her even more once she goes home again.

Anyway, that is the update from me. Back to packing and cleaning and organising our lives…

So, today was the Triple J Hottest 100 songs of all time, which was equal parts excellent and frustrating, but I’ve been meaning to do my own hottest 100 list for a while, it’s one of the things on my 101/1001 list (can you tell I have a thing for lists?) so I thought I’d use today’s countdown as inspiration to finally get my list down on paper (or virtual paper at least).

Of course my list isn’t a hottest 100 songs of all time list.. I don’t pretend to have enough knowledge to compile a list like that, my list is more a list of songs that have influenced my life or that have meaning to me. So it is more of a Hottest 100 songs of me.

Anyway – here goes! Even though I will have changed my mind by this time tomorrow!

100. A Perfect Circle – Pet
99. The Doors – Light My Fire
98. Fiona Apple – Slow Like Honey
97. Fischerspooner – Emerge
96. Incubus – 11am
95. Metallica – Enter Sandman
94. The Prodigy – Breathe
93. New Order – Bizarre Love Triangle
92. The Grand Silent System – At Close Quarters
91. Muse – Supermassive Black Hole
90. Soundgarden – Black Hole Sun
89. Tracy Chapman – Bang Bang Bang
88. Augie March – There is no Such Place
87. System of a Down – Chop Suey!
86. The Cruel Sea – The Honeymoon is Over
85. The Doors – People Are Strange
84. Tori Amos – Me and a Gun
83. Something for Kate – Electricity
82. Joni Mitchell – Big Yellow Taxi
81. The Verve – Bitter Sweet Symphony
80. Silverchair – Tomorrow
79. Depeche Mode – Just Can’t Get Enough
78. David Bowie – Life on Mars
77. Dire Straits – Romeo & Juliet
76. Mairi Campbell & Dave Francis – Auld Lang Syne
75. Crowded House – It’s Only Natural
74. New Order – 60 Miles an Hour
73. Editors – The Weight of the World
72. The White Stripes – Seven Nation Army
71. Simon & Garfunkel – Mrs Robinson
70. U2 – Sunday Bloody Sunday
69. Bright Eyes – First Day of My Life
68. The Tea Party – Walk With Me
67. Damien Rice – The Blowers Daughter
66. Smashing Pumpkins – Perfect
65. Hilltop Hoods – Nosebleed Section
64. The Cure – Lovecats
63. Nirvana – Smells Like Teen Spirit
62. Coldplay – Yellow
61. Smashing Pumpkins – Lily
60. Rammstein – Du Hast
59. Nine Inch Nails – The Fragile
58. Tool – Eulogy
57. The Verve Pipe – Colorful
56. Gerard McMann – Cry Little Sister
55. Tori Amos – Silent All These Years
54. Pearl Jam – Daughter
53. Death Cab For Cutie – I Will Follow You Into the Dark
52. Apoptygma Berzerk – Until the end of the World
51. Nine Inch Nails – Closer
50. Red Hot Chili Peppers – Under the Bridge
49. The Lovemongers – Battle of Evermore
48. Ben Harper – Diamonds on the Inside
47. Smashing Pumpkins – Today
46. Bernard Fanning – Watch Over Me
45. Nirvana – Heart Shaped Box
44. Jack Johnson – Better Together
43. Eddie Vedder – Let my Love Open the Door
42. Pulp – Common People
41. Urge Overkill – Girl, You’ll be a Woman Soon
40. Apoptygma Berzerk – Eclipse
39. Joshua Radin – The Myth of Us
38. Gary Jules – Mad World
37. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Henry Lee
36. V.A.S.T – Touched
35. The Smiths – Girlfriend in a Coma
34. Radiohead – Paranoid Android
33. Nine Inch Nails – We’re in This Together
32. Juno Reactor – Personal Jesus
31. Smashing Pumpkins – Bullet With Butterfly Wings
30. Paul Westerberg – Dyslexic Heart
29. U2 – Dancing Barefoot
28. VNV Nation – The Farthest Star
27. Ani Di Franco – Two Little Girls
26. Counting Crows – Perfect Blue Buildings
25. Powderfinger – My Happiness
24. Covenant – Dead Stars
23. REM – Losing My Religion
22. The Tea Party – Stargazer
21. Cranberries – Zombie
20. Radiohead – Karma Police
19. Mike Doughty – I Hear the Bells
18. Jeff Buckley – Grace
17. Cure – Just Like Heaven
16. Pearl Jam – Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town
15. Powderfinger – These Days
14. Live – Iris
13. Joy Division – Love Will Tear Us Apart
12. Jackson Browne – Running on Empty
11. Johnny Cash – Hurt
10. Pearl Jam – Jeremy
9. Tori Amos – Crucify
8. Ani Di Franco – What if No-one’s Watching
7. Wolfsheim – Once in a Lifetime
6. Eddie Vedder – Throw Your Arms Around Me
5. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Into My Arms
4. Joshua Radin – Today
3. VNV Nation – Beloved
2. David Bowie – Rock n Roll Suicide
1. Jeff Buckley – Hallelujah

I realised today that i am 38 days closer to day zero and that progress on my list hasn’t been going so well. It hasn’t stalled completely either which is good but things aren’t moving along as nicely as I would like. I suspect it’s because I kind of feel like my whole life is on hold at the moment until the move. Anyway I decided this morning to take a bit of a look at the list and see if there was anything I could do today and I found two things that I could at least get started on. #47 (make a list of 101 things that make me happy) and #41 (Write a list of 101 places you want to see before you die). I started both lists and have managed to complete one. The other will stay safely in my drafts until it’s ready to be unveiled but for now here is:

#47. Make a list of 101 things that make me happy

1. Brunch with my husband in the sunshine
2. Starting a new book by a favourite author
3. Waking up without the alarm/sleeping in
4. Hot chocolate by the fire
5. Being able to see the stars
6. The sound of waves crashing on the beach
7. Photo of the day with my Mum
8. Holidays
9. Laughing until I cry
10. Friends visiting from interstate/overseas
11. Long emails from friends/family
12. Catching up with friends for coffee
13. Sitting on the grass in the sunshine having a sandwich and reading a book
books sunshine
14. Freddie (my lovesac beanbag)
15. Planning my next holiday
16. Putting “pins” in my Places I’ve Been Trip Advisor map
17. Having a clean house
18. Reading through my travel journals
19. Visiting a new country
20. Seeing something in person that I’ve read about
21. When my husband’s wedding ring catching in the sun
22. Home made dumplings
23. Taking photographs of beautiful things
24. Talking to friends on the phone
25. Making lists
26. Having savings in the bank
27. Buying plane tickets
28. Being a vegetarian
29. When my dreadlocks are neat and tidy
30. Writing
31. A new episode of a favourite TV show
32. Hearing my husband laugh
33. Roadtrips
34. Using my imagination
35. Hugging people hello who I haven’t seen in a while
36. Going out for meals with friends
37. Walking around and listening to my ipod
38. Waking up in the middle of the night and realising I still have hours to sleep
39. Dancing around my house when there is noone else around
40. People watching
41. That feeling when I’ve just had a really incredible dream
42. Doing nice things for the people I love
43. Buying books
44. Massages
45. Making it home just before it starts to rain
46. Listening to the sound of rain on the roof as I’m falling asleep
47. Re-watching a favourite movie
48. Planning future adventures
49. Christmas at Mum’s place
50. Having my four besties in the same place at the same time (rare!)
51. Seeing old people holding hands
52. Finding the perfect present for someone I love
53. Making mixed cds for people
54. The smell of fresh babies and puppies
55. Getting money back when I do my tax return
56. Reminiscing about happy times
57. Walking with a friend
58. Watching people who are in love
59. Finding a really great song
60. Freshly cleaned sheets on my bed
61. Finding a restaurant with great vegetarian food
62. Getting mail
63. The smell of really great coffee
64. Crossing things off to do lists
65. When people ask me for travel advice
66. Naps
67. Getting a new high score in Bejewelled Blitz
68. Having a seat free seat next to me when I travel
69. When my husband picks me up from work and opens the door for me from inside the car
70. The smell of wood fires
71. Being snuggled in bed when it’s cold outside
72. Putting clothes on straight out of the dryer
73. Visiting art galleries
74. Feeling inspired
75. Feeling the vibe when everyone is happy and having a good time
76. Having the solution to someones problem/question/need
77. Getting lost in a daydream
78. Making a difference
79. The feeling of anticipation before a good night out or a holiday or a visit from a friend
80. The smell of jasmine at dusk
81. Summertime, when the sun sets really late
82. The smell of vegetables stir fried in sesame oil
83. Feeling connected to the people in my life
84. Being able to inspire people
85. Finding little ways to show friends and family that I love them
86. When people trust me enough to confide in me
87. Saying I love you at the end of a phone call
88. Having a really great word in Scrabble
89. The smell of my knotty boy dreadlock wax
90. Tasting the food on someone elses plate when we go out for dinner
91. Dessert
92. Lying on the floor in the dark and listening to music
93. Making other people laugh
94. When my backpack is right there on the baggage carousel when I get off a plane
95. Getting new stamps in my passport
96. Remembering past adventures
97. Seeing my friends happy
98. Feeling passionate about world issues (although the picture is of tears it really does make me happy)
99. Learning new things
100. Unexpectedly hearing a song I love
101. The fact that I have so many things that make me happy!

The end!
I really enjoyed making this list, in fact I challenge you to do the same if you can. It’s heartwarming and kind of exhilarating to realise that our happiness (well mine, anyway) depends on so little. Not lots of money or extravangant things.. just simple every day stuff.


Though technically I wasn’t tagged by she who’s house smells like vanilla, I’m going to do this meme anyway. Seems like a nice and easy way to easy myself into Friday morning.

The rules:
1. Respond and rework; answer the questions on your blog, replace one question that you dislike with a question of your invention, add one more question of your own.
2. Tag eight other people (if you feel so inclined). If you’re reading this, consider yourself tagged!

So here goes:


What is your current obsession?
At the moment, Converse shoes. Suddenly I just keep finding these new styles that I WANT to buy. So far I’ve managed to restrain myself, but they are just so puuuuuurty!

What is your weirdest obsession?
Home birth! Which isn’t all that weird except that I’m not a mother and am not pregnant. I love reading home birth stories and I love love love all the women on JB who have inspired and nurtured me and taught me so much.

What are you wearing today?
Purple dreadband, thick rimmed black glasses, black Tshirt (with a thermal underneath), jeans, purple cons.

What’s for dinner?
Nachos! It’s my usual Friday celebration dinner.

What is your top five favourite days?
1. Nong Khai and the Thailand Fire Ball Festival (read about it here)
2. Visiting Umphang School in Thailand (read about it here)
3. Last Saturday in Melbourne
4. My wedding day (is it sad that it’s 4th? I don’t think so!)
5. The day I took my Nan skydiving for her 60th birthday

What’s the last thing you bought?
Other than food type stuff? Um, Jeans!

What are you listening to right now?
The guys in my office talking about motorbikes

If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go?
Paris, just to wander around, get some coffee and pastries, take some photos.. beautiful!

Which language do you want to learn?
Spanish! Because I really really really want to spend 3 months in South America next year.

What do you love most about where you currently live?
That it’s a 10 minute walk from work and that it has a lovely view. But other than that I don’t like Sydney at all and I can’t wait to leave (3 weeks to go!).

What is your favorite colour?
Purple! I’m purple obsessed!

What is your favorite piece of clothing in your own wardrobe?
What wardrobe? haha. Um I have this black top that is loose enough that I can hide in it when I’m having a fat day and it’s super comfy and light enough to wear in summer and with a thermal underneath it’s great for winter too. In fact I love it so much I bought two!

What is your favourite way to spend a day off?
Wake up without the alarm, have brunch with my husband, take a walk somewhere beautiful, vegan yum cha for lunch at The Green Gourmet, spend the afternoon with a great book (curled up in my giant lovesac), dinner and a dvd at home (as long as hubby is doing the cooking).


What were you doing ten years ago?
Wow, 1999, What a nightmare of a year. In the first half I was 19 and trying desperately to get out of a very unhealthy, abusive relationship. I was studying at TAFE and trying to find work, my self esteem was in tatters. In the second half I was living alone for the first time in my life, and working at the television station in town and volunteering at the local youth refuge and trying to come to terms with being on my own. Things got much better for me from late 2000.

Describe your personal style?
Casual hippy about sums it up. My jeans always have a flare, my shoes are purple, my dreads have lots of colourful beads, usually my tops are black though – hiding my cupcake belly!

If you had $100 now, what would you spend it on?


What are you going to do after this?
Work. It’s my last day here on my own before I have to start training my replacement on Monday, I have a lot to organise. At 11am I’m meeting my husband for coffee. The only 30 minutes we’ll have together all day.

What are your favourite films?
Oh, I love movies, this could take a while!
The Breakfast Club
Some Kind of Wonderful
Empire Records
Eternal Sunshine of a Spotless Mind
Boys Don’t Cry
Before Sunrise/Before Sunset
The Notebook
Big Fish
Vanilla Sky
Natural Born Killers
Chasing Amy
Return to Paradise
Okay, I’ll stop there!

What inspires you?
Beautifully written novels, nature, freedom

Your favourite books?
The Dark Tower Series
The Time Travellers Wife
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
Everything’s Illuminated
Goodnight Mr Tom
Bridge to Terabithia
The Kite Runner
White Teeth
The Ground Beneath her Feet
The Pact
Anything by Ian McEwan
White Oleander
I love books!!!

Do you collect anything?
I used to colled frogs. Now I collect experiences.

What makes you follow a blog?

Generally I follow a lot of amazing, empowered, incredibly inspiring women. (or if they are funny!)

What was the most enjoyable thing you did today?
Felt my husband resting his head on my shoulder.

What new skill would you like to learn?
There are so many things. Top of the list, I would like to learn how to make clothes.


Life is so strange at the moment, with the countdown to New Zealand ticking away, and our house practically empty, and hubby working so many hours. I’m finally able to sleep at nights with the help of my CEO’s extra sleeping bags, and some herbal sleeping pills, which means at least I’m not a raving lunatic during daylight hours anymore – this is a huge relief to my husband, who is the person responsible from talking me down from the rooftop when I enter into crazyville! – and I’m almost used to sitting on a fold out camping chair in the middle of my bare loungeroom like some crazy homeless squatter, and I hardly notice anymore that all my work clothes are crumpled and unprofessional looking from having everything squished into my little backpack.. it’s really quite amazing what you can get used to.

The one thing I’m not used to yet is the fact that I’m spending so much time without my husband. For the past few years we have spent almost every evening together, he cooks dinner for us, which we eat together at the table with some interesting conversation and we go to bed at the same time, read a little, talk a little, fool around a little then sleep. But at the moment he’s working nights and at first it was all “Woohoo! Time alone!” and I would watch movies I’ve already seen (hubby hates that) and eat cupcake mix right from the bowl and take extra long showers and spend too long on the phone with the girls. But the novelty seems to have worn off and now I’m all “Hohum empty house” and I wander around sighing like a malcontent and looking longingly at the empty fold out camping chair next to me as I watch “The Breakfast Club” for the seven hundredth time.

By the time he gets home from work I’m all cozy and asleep so even though I wake up and hug him hello and ask him how his night went, I’m usually asleep before he’s finished telling me about the woes of his day and since our beautiful king sized pillow top bed is in a container half way to New Zealand and we are sleeping on inflatable mattresses we don’t even really have the luxury of spooning the night away to recharge the husband deficit. He wakes up in the morning to drive me to work so we do at least have 10 minutes together in the morning but with so much going to plan before our final flight those minutes are more like business meetings than romantic rendezvous. I remind him that he only has 3 more weeks to organise the wedding name change on his passport before our international flight, and he tells me the times that the real estate agent needs access to the house to show prospective tenants through our walk in wardrobe. I give him a shopping list and remind him of our ever dwindling bank balance and he gives me a bag with his shoes inside, the ones that need the sole fixed before we leave town. Then we kiss goodbye and I climb the stairs to my office to start another – poorly motivated – work day.

I’m lucky enough this week that we’ve managed to have one day off together, a whole 24 hours of bliss.. this Sunday. Until then though, I’ll be the one walking through the empty house all glazed eyed and zombie-ish with a reheated frozen pie in one hand dreaming about the days of gourmet meals and chatter.

photo credit

This weeks challenge from Blog this:

Tell us fifteen facinating, far fetched, frightening, funny or frivilous facts about yourself. Those bits of trivia that are floating around in your life.

Can you eat 10 burgers in one sitting? Do you sleep with your eyes open? Can you tie a cherry stalk into a knot? Speak 5 different languages?

All those things that you’ve bored your friends and family with for years – We want to know.

  1. I don’t know how to drive. But it’s on my list
  2. I’ve lived in 23 different houses in my lifetime (about to be 24)
  3. I am a vegetarian and an aspiring vegan
  4. I daydream constantly.. and as a result I am very unproductive
  5. I have 169 cities pinned in my ‘places I’ve been’ trip advisor map and I get excited anytime I can add a new one
  6. When I was 10 I played a practical joke on my little sister that resulted in her getting stiches in her chin
  7. I fall in love, just a little, with almost everyone I meet
  8. I am a feminist
  9. I believe in Karma
  10. Last week when I found out Eric Bana was playing Henry in the movie adaptation of “The Time Travellers Wife” I was so frustrated that I ranted at my husband about it the whole drive home from work (Eric Bana will always be Chopper to me.. sorry Eric)
  11. I have incredibly vivid dreams
  12. I’m constantly worried about the people I love dying, everytime the phone rings my heart skips a beat
  13. I am embarrassed by how much money I have spent at the Book Depository in the last 2 years
  14. I love Twilight.. even though normally I’m a total book snob, I am stupidly, mortifyingly, obsessed with all things Edward
  15. I’m really excited about finding out the person I will be in ten years time (and twenty, and thirty!)

I was blog surfing today and I’m not exactly sure how I got to this particular blog.. you know how it is – you start somewhere and click a link here and there and then all of a sudden you’ve no idea where you are anymore. It’s like six degrees of separation in the blogiverse.

Anyway, I found this blog and there were so many wonderful things on there – most of which I am planning on blogging about in the next couple of days, but for today, the thing I really needed to see, was this:


I guess that doesn’t sound all that poignant, but today has been a rough day for me, and it brought me some comfort. This morning I woke up early – from the cold mainly, we are in the process of moving overseas and our stuff was picked up last week to start the process of sea freighting it over the Tasman sea so at the moment I am sleeping in a sleeping bag, on an inflatable bed. It’s the middle of winter here so it hasn’t been the most comfortable of nights. Anyway, I woke up this morning and I did a pregnancy test. It’s not the first pregnancy test I’ve done in the last while, but I was hoping that it would be my last.. for 9 months at least.

No such luck.

We’ve been trying to have a baby now for what feels like a long time, though I’m reluctant to say it that way because I know there are lots of women who’ve been trying for a lot longer than we have. We’ve been trying to have a baby now for one year, 3 months and 7 days – not that I’m counting! So this morning’s negative pregnancy test wasn’t just a negative pregnancy test, when you’ve been testing for this long it really does start to knock the wind out of you. So, I was wandering around today, after having the wind knocked out of me, feeling a little bit like a zombie anyway because I haven’t been sleeping well on our inflatable mattress/sleeping bag bed and everything feels a bit surreal now as well because our house is totally devoid of furniture and we’re making this gigantic move etc etc etc and then I stumbled across this blog and saw this post – and in particular, this picture and for a second I just couldn’t breathe.

“It doesn’t mean it’s never going to happen… it means you’re not ready for it”

It could be the lack of sleep talking – I do tend to get a bit crazy when I am especially tired or hungry, but it really spoke to me. Because on some level I really don’t believe that I’m ready for it. I wonder if anyone truly does? I can’t say for sure whether I’m really not ready for it, or if I am creating this sense of not ready for is as a self defense mechanism so that I’m able to survive if we ever do find out that we aren’t able to have children. I can feel myself doing that sometimes, when people ask us about babies and I say something flippant and off hand about maybe never having them.. all the while hiding behind this shield, sick with fear that we won’t be able to, that i’m barren.

Anyway, all of that is besides the point because tonight I’m going to go to sleep and I’m going to be remembering those words “it doesn’t mean it’s never going to happen” and they are right, it doesn’t mean that. This negative pregnancy test, this one solitary line, doesn’t mean that next time there won’t be two lines. It doesn’t mean that I’ll never be pregnant. It just means that I’m not pregnant right now. And I have to believe, even if just to get me through today and tomorrow and the next day, that one day it WILL happen and that the reason it’s not happening isn’t necessarily my fault. I am not faulty or broken or useless, I am just ‘not ready for it’. Looking at it that way makes me feel a lot better. Stronger… at least for now.

Anyway, thank you Sarah for being my little shining light today.

picture credit

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