Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Bloody mature aged students!

I'm going back at uni.

I finished my Bachelor of Creative Arts, but never completed my BA in English Literature. I was so sick with my first pregnancy - the whole idea of uni just *poof* disappeared.

Enrolment day was quite surreal. The place was swimming with nervous looking teenagers with campus maps and exhausted, somewhat frazzled looking staff. But it was actually really exciting. My life has changed so much since I was here ten years ago. I have two kids, a few extra kilos and a kindle!
I have downloaded my book list already...

My first subject is called, 'Social Justice and Children's Literature', the book list looks great. I have been wanting to read 'Uglies' by Scott Westerfield for ages and it is on the list.

I am very worried at the moment though, I am in a panic that I will not get into the Tutorial that I wanted, I only have babysitting time for the lecture, so I need the tutorial on preschool day!

Fingers crossed - xxxxxxxx

Monday, September 06, 2010

I emerge unscathed...

January 10th was the last time I blogged.

I discovered facebook and blindly abandoned blogland without a kind thought or moments hesitation.

But really, who cares why I haven't blogged. My excuses are boring me.

My Husband and I watched Shutter Island last night, my gosh it was soooo good.

So good, we put it back to the start and watched the beginning again, just to see....

Sunday, January 10, 2010

I have a secret!

I can't seem to stick to the one story. I stop, I write and I move on.

It's almost like a "fear of narrative commitment"! It has to STOP.

I have decided to try a new strategy. I am going to keep the whole world of my story a secret. All my characters and narratives and places...all secret. I won't even be telling my husband.

It seems that once I tell...the story just - floats away -

No more!

It is my new years resolution and it is so bloody hard! I hate secrets and I hate surprises.

There is a sort of agony in suffering alone with these characters. It is my duty, sometimes, to play havoc with their lives- let them fall of the proverbial edge, and not even extend a hand to catch them.

But it is also wonderful, like having imaginary friends all over again. I often wonder, do other people think in imagined narratives throughout the day? About characters that they haven't met and places they haven't been?

Anyway, shhhhh. I'm not telling a scrap! And this one will be finished my years end, so help me!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Bit of a Dreary start to Spring

But the garden likes the rain,

As do the vegetables...

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Dinner Party? Fun or Nightmare?

I love dinner parties.
I watched a few episodes of a British TV show called 'Come Dine with me' on the cooking channel, this evening. Four people take turns at hosting a dinner party, and the best host wins 1000 pounds.

The contestants are rude, obnoxious and ungrateful toward one another. And they cloak their 'constructive criticism', in a rather moth eaten air of either 'high society regality' or in some cases, sheer vulgarity! And they are the fussiest eaters I have ever seen! But the commentary is nothing short of HILARIOUS.

I was so excited when one episode after another came on... I loved it.

I'm going to plan a dinner party....I am....and I will give y'all a running commentary of my plans a test dishes!

Thursday, September 10, 2009


I went to see a play called 'Elling' on Saturday.
It was fantastic. I can't say that I have seen a 'really good' play in some time, not for any lack in going.
It is about two men who have lived together in an asylum for some time, they get released and move into an apartment together. The play follows their reintegration back into the 'real' world. Their story is complex, as are the characters - and there is something delicate about this story, something fragile that really appealed to me. The play was based on a Norwegian book and film of the same title. I am really keen to have a look at the film now and see what is gained or perhaps lost in the transition.

I felt absolutely sucked into the story, I found myself sitting in my comfy red chair, wanting these two odd men to find a pocket in this strange world, that would fit them.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A bite of writing...

I have never posted any of my own writing on this blog. But I am often curious about what other writers are writing, when they are not blogging.

So here is a bite from my novel in progress:

I held onto James’ hand tight, pigs grunting, a fuzz of voices and animal cries; symphonies under the monotonous clang of the blacksmiths hammers. The narrow passageways between the stalls were crammed with barrels of ale and wooden crates filled with dusty ducks and cranky geese. I felt a surge of excitement ripple through me whenever we came here. I loved to look at the beautiful ladies in their dresses of fine fabrics; green and gold and even some of the ladies from the court dressed in silks as red as blood and shiny like the skin of a polished apple. They walked differently to me, I tried to stand taller – to move my hips, one pushed forward and then the other but my flat brown shoes felt clumsy and my hips were narrow and skinny.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Banana Heart Summer - A fantastic Book

I am loving this book!
I am just a short way in so far, but I am more hooked at the beginning of chapter two than I have been with a book - since, OMG I don't know when!
The novel is by Merlinda Borbis and tells the story of a young Filipino girl living in a poor neighbourhood with a violent mother.
The rich and delicious language, evokes a real sense of the heat and the sensuality of the small tropical town. The prose drips with the flavours and smells of the food that shapes 12 years old Nenita's world.
It is published by Murdoch Books.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Painted Veil

My husband and I watched 'The Painted Veil' last night and we sat mesmerised by it for the whole 120 odd minutes of the film. It is an adaptation of W. Somerset Maugham's novel by the same name, written in 1925. For a romantic period film it had a surprisingly suspenseful plot.

Edward Norton plays a bacteriologist who takes his new English wife, who is much less smitten with him than he with her, to Shaghai. And after she falls head first into an affair with an English diplomat, Norton blackmails’ her to accompany him to a cholera ravaged village deep in the heartland of China. The landscape is a beautiful and a serene backdrop for what is happening all around them. The complexities of their relationship are wonderfully agonising and painful. And Norton who starts out as a slick haired; pasty doctor who prefers the light off, gradually becomes 'a bit rough around the edges' and sexy.

I won't give any major spoilers because it is too good a movie to risk wreaking it for someone. But I will say that my only real critism of the film is the frequent flash back scenes that serve only to reassure the audience that the film makers didn't think that we were cluey enough to fill in the blanks on our own. I would have preferred to have appreciated the really powerful, non-verbal, emotional conversations that were acted out between Edward Norton and Naomi Watts.

Regardless, it really was one of the best films I have seen is a while, particularity when it comes to romantic drama.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Some finished Knits to Show

This my little girl wearing her Anouk, a pattern from Knitty. It was knit out of a cotton/bamboo blend. But I can't remember which. I made this while she was still in the tummy. It was the smallest size, but I made it a bit longer.

Check Spelling

The front, little poser!

This one is my most recent FO, it is the One Skein Wonder Shrug from Glampyre Knits. I used Cleckheaton Country Naturals and the smallest size. It is going to stretch I think, so it will fit for a Looooong time :)


See that tiny red dot in the distance, barely! We were busy putting the baby shoes, onto baby feet and my son said he was just going to have a little look at the grapes. we realised they were a long way away and so said, sure just go down the hill a little way and come back (We were going to visit a local winery) and when we called out he didn't answer! My heart sunk in my chest and I ran so fast I probably looked like an athlete! (Ha! I wish) And he had gotten 1/2 a kilometer away in the time it took me to lace her shoes.
Isn't that a scary thought!

To Game or Not to game...

I was just reading a post on Happy Families blog about whether to let kids have gaming consoles, or not. I find this really interesting, as we have recently gotten a Nintendo Wii.

I am not in favour of defending gaming simply because I have allowed my child to play, but because I find the topic really interesting.

Imaginative play is important, the most important sort of play that children need. But a balance between imaginative play and electronic play is still healthy, in my opinion.

Every generation feels nostalgic about the games and toys; the stories and the fantasies of their own childhoods. I certainly do; She-Ra dolls and Strawberry Shortcake, skipping ropes and elastics. But play needs to include popular culture as well, to prepare children for the world ahead of them. I think that the conventions of gaming play are as important today, as the conventions of family storytelling around the fire was, pre-television and radio. While we do sit around, as a family, and read aloud often -we also go hell for leather on the Wii sports games, and slouch in front of the T.V on cold winter days with popcorn.

I don't think that we have really found the balance yet, we still have dramas about the amount of time allowed on the games machine and computer, but on the other hand he has begun to understand some of the conventions of fantasy gaming. I say fantasy gaming, because I think that adventure and world play is more constructive for kids than 'kill 'em and smash 'em' games (although I do let him play these on occasion too) He will search through the landscape for objects before moving into a new landscape and try different objects through the worlds - summing up for me what he thinks will happen and what he needs to find to activate the next part of the game. Wall-e has been quite a good one - it has lots of puzzle and problem solving tasks. He is learning the game terminology, and about caring for disks and electronic equipment and even about using menus to save games and change chapters.

Popular culture is filled with the skills and lessons that a child of the period needs for their life. So, we have chosen to go for a balance - it is sometime fraught with tears and tantrums when mummy says no games machine right now. But I think, in the end it has been worth it.

Friday, March 27, 2009

A little bit of good news....for me

Much to my delight, my little girl has decided that she likes sleeping in her own bed. A blessing for my back; which has been feeling rather crooked of late. All of a sudden, at 14 months, she has begun to sleep quite happily for two hours each afternoon as well! Quite amazing!!

While I feel ready, to now separate from her during the night, I am often surprised at how opinionated other parents are about the choices that mothers and fathers make about other children's bedtime routines.

I feel strongly that 'freedom of choice' is of paramount importance; and how long a baby shares the parental bed is a very personal and individual choice. I understand why people feel strongly about it though, ones sleep is crucial and I know quite well how exhausting little ones can be. But that shouldn't negate 'my' choice to have baby in my bed, if that is what I feel is best for baby and me.

For the first three months of her life, she slept lying on my chest all night. And no! She didn't fall off, I didn't squash her and I didn't wake up tired and sleep deprived. I loved it, not for everyone

I completely understand; but it was for me and it is a memory that I could not have deprived myself of. All of the little things; her sweet milky scent, her tiny snuffling noises and her cheeks like the slightly fluffy skin of a warm, squashy peach.

I daresay that I will not be sending her back during the night when she wakes for her 2am milk. In fact, I have - as I am typing at this very moment, one perfect little foot resting on the side of my laptop...but at least we have made the first steps toward bedtime independence: that’s a good thing.