head and shoulders


first rule of sweatclub …
(middle park: melbourne)

Yesterday I took an annual leave day to gather 2 years (oops) of tax documents and meet our new accountant. Yes, we’ve finally graduated past H&R Block. The 2 years of dithering was mostly filled with much yeah, we should find an accountant … oh, yeah, we should get on to finding an accountant … .

Anyway, finally we sourced a recommendation1 and hopefully she can find some clever ways to minimising our dreadful tax bills in future – as well as getting us up to date.

Afterward we felt very grown-up and full of achieving!

Now we need to sort out the wills & such. At current rate of progress, hopefully we can cross this off the grown-up list sometime in the next 20 years.

And full of achieving, we felt all fired-up-and-ready-to-go and considered attempting to complete all of the outstanding painting & other small ThePalace(OfLove) odd jobs before Xmas (cue much mirth from viewers of Grand Designs). For that, we need a plan of work. Clearly, I need to channel all of my mad ops management skills (oh hai! future highly-paid dream job). Realistically maybe a quarter of those things will happen

Also, I ran a small (3km) distance! and I was pleased that my cadence and foot strike is slowly improving. Wondered how I ever could regularly run 10 kilometers. FatController texted me to see where I’m at and I have dutifully ignored his message. I have 4 paid-for sessions remaining. I’m thinking that I will advise him of my newly acquired exercise terror and ask if we can do a gentle 30 min session on 2 Nov and see how we go from there if I do not break.

Wishing I could channel a fearless high achieving go getter.

1We’re trying to adopt the recommendation methodology for all our services/tradespeople.

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like a dream


melbourne crossing sign

I’m really rather unsettled at the moment.

This is the first time in almost 10 years at SML where there has been minimal in-fighting and (in more recent years) I have no active enemies. Everything is going to schedule and we’re all happily working together, quickly finding solutions when issues arise and getting things done – ahead of target. No catastrophising, no slagging anyone off, no undermining. JUST WHAT IS THIS PLACE?!?!?!

Today Dr12 told me he hoped I would continue to model my behaviour to everyone – because I am so positive, energetic and solution-focussed. WUT?

Is this how normal workplaces are?

Can we keep it?

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patchy

Our experience of the completely insane once-in-a-century storm (and what a storm!) involved 4 litres of water pouring through Bessie’s ceiling and a late night/early morning power-outage.

I was forced to drill a drain hole to prevent the whole ceiling collapsing under the pressure and poor Bessie was forced to sleep on the couch (falling water being as nowhere near as soothing as one might imagine).

Don had the clever idea that our insurance might cover the repairs (a very large patch of ceiling is a quite mess) and he was right! An assessor is coming to visit tomorrow morning.

Fortunately the power was restored quite early in the morning and we have a gas stove-top, so despite the lack of electricity I could still make our morning coffee.

We’re quite sad we’ve already packed away the heater because it is really quite cold this evening. But at least we’re not snow-bound.

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yes, there’s gas in the car

Shopping bags: fin!

I am full of love for the spotty + stripey linings and the less plastic bags we will be forced to accept.

Recently we seem to buy way more than will fit our bags – especially after one went MIA (hope to spot it somewhere, hopefully on someone tres-hip).

Surely 6 bags will do it, or we really need to re-assess our purchasing.

Truly, I am full of the m4d sk1llz.

I regularly need to remind myself of this.

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This morning we were up betimes and actioning items early (though we can barely avoid the early, what with ravenous kitties + So!Much!Sunrise!)

In our quest for bulk bottles of passata rustica for tonight’s best ever bolognaise, we visited amatos for the first time in forever. We used to shop there very regularly back in the day. Now that we live closer I have no idea why we stopped.

Anyway, I’m generally all about the bone dry riesling, but was suckered in by the awesome shape of this pino grigio:


bottle comparison to best ever riesling

And it is full of yum! But I’ve probably enjoyed a little too much of it.

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We’re spending the late afternoon + evening pottering about and listening to Steely Dan: greatest hits. I think what put it in Don’s head was our recent most excellent lunch with the babies at Gil’s diner1 when we were in Melbourne – where they were playing the vinyl. I *heart* Steely Dan, so it made the lunch even better. And the record player was attached to a valve | tube amp! So exponential fabulousness! I’d never actually seen one InRealLife before. So awesome + Do Want. Though as Don pointed out the kitties would probably make very short work of such a device.

Tomorrow morning we collect Joan and Ajax from the airport after their trip to Cambodia. In an hilarious Seinfeldian parallel – they got one upgrade. Ajax, of course, let Joan have it. For the next little while we will be calling her Jerry.

1Recommended by Bessie who happened upon it with her Dad earlier in the year.

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graduating

You may recall my mention of using out GiantTV box as a bedhead for over a year and my eventual desire to replace it with something proper.

The box was just perfect – apart from the fact that it looked like a tv-box with a couple of planks of wood above it.

You would not believe how difficult it is to find a bedhead that has a ledge to rest lamps, coffee, kitties and ephemera on and that is not thousands of $$ (or even one that is thousands of $$$). I’d toyed with the idea of getting a cabinetmaker in to construct a custom solution, but that is way too much of an indulgence I think best saved for when we have gazillions of $$$ to throw about.

We decided against trying to make something ourselves because, well, our carpentry skills are less than optimal and we aren’t really down with the ye olde log cabin aesthetic.

Searches on the InformationSuperHighway yielded some appealing options – which unfortunately were located in Scandinavian countries – shipping being rather prohibitive.


excellent bedhead 1


excellent bedhead 2

We eventually settled on ikea. Yes, yes I too laugh at our resolution to never visit ikea again. Just about every recent purchase is from there.

Don loves it. The kitties have enormous fun in the hole at the back. I am less convinced and kind of miss the box.

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virginia

I spent the afternoon cutting the lining and straps and sewing up the bag sections for the 3 new Kon&Tarol shopping bags. I estimate it has been a few years since I have sewn anything black and Holy!Goodness! I can definitely mark myself down as an old lady. It was virtually impossible to actually see where I was sewing. And that one time I had to unpick – ARGH! I was forced to use a needle threader for the machine and I was in bright daylight. Time for magnifying spectacles and a dazor lamp.

I’m somewhat flippant about it, but I had really not appreciated how much the eyesight deteriorates in the … ahem … mid to late 40s. Thank TheUniverse! for the wonderful, magical kindle – where I can bump up the size of the font to my liking, otherwise I would have trouble reading. As an aside, I was very much enjoying Clive James: Cultural Amnesia, but thought it would be one of the rare non-coffee table, full of pretty pictures, books improved by reading the hard copy version (for flagging and annotation purposes). That was until I saw one InRealLife and the typeface was so tiny that I could barely discern it.

When I think that I have another whole lifetime ahead of me (ZOMGWFTBBQ! Just ponder that for a moment!), I shudder to think of my eyesight at 90!

But I digress. What this sewing and cutting and ironing did was really reinforce that I need my own little nest for pottering/crafting. ThePalace(OfLove) is perfect – except for that (okay, and a couple of other very small hideously expensive things).

Bessie was back in her other home this weekend so I took over her room (after tidying it – what a messy puss she is!). It was blissful to be able to spread out and leave the ironing board up and sewing machine out – and enjoy the company of sprawled out kitties.

I really, positively, definitely must fit-out the upstairs landing (though I must compete with the weekly washing laid out on the drying racks) for such (and other) activities.

ActionItem for October/November.

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muddy

I’ve been relatively productive this weekend – on Saturday I’d been for a 3km run, visited the butcher, greengrocer, chemist and filled the car with petrol before 9:30am and had chicken stock on the go before 10:30. Full of win and achieving!

Then I spent a good deal of time doing laundry tasks, making chili con carne and watching many episodes of grand designs. And I knitted a lot of stocking stitch.


admire the evenness of my stiches

I love this acrylic yarn and the stripey effect, but I have NO idea what to do with it. I was thinking a cushion, but I’m really not feeling it. What I really need to do is get about 20 balls and knit a stocking stitch blanket. From memory, the ball was $2.95, so I’ll have to do some maths to see how much I’d need for to make one – and wait for a sale. The stocking stitch is very meditative.

Yesterday we bought garden things and did the spring planting. The soil in all the pots was dire and needed an injection of manure. It was a difficult decision between cow, chicken and sheep – but we went for the traditional cow. It’s a shame kitty poop is not known for its fertilising properties because we have PLENTY of it. We’ve gone for minimalist plantings this year: basil, parsley, coriander, additional thyme, mint, rocket and a passionfruit vine – which hopefully eventually will cover the railing and provide shade for the seedlings and more delicate plants. All thoughts of tomatoes and cucumber have been abandoned – inevitably ends up disappointing.

Today is a public holiday. Daylight savings has commenced, the weather is gorgeous and Don will be smoking ribs in harky, the smoker. I plan to pack away the winter clothes, embrace the ironing and maybe finally complete those shopping bags.

I do so enjoy these lazy times. As do the kitties:

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