Sometimes on the way to your dream,

you get lost and find a better one.

Monday, October 31, 2011

stoopid TV ads

We've all seen those TV ads for the "Geniebra"?
There's another one with the same bra under a different name...

Anyway, there's a bit where a woman is struggling to fit into a bra that's clearly several sizes too small,
and the voice over says "don't waste lots of dollars on a bra that doesn't fit" (or something like that), to which I always reply, (What!! We all talk back to the TV...) "no, spend lots of dollars on a bra that does fit. You'll be more comfortable and look better."
The ad also mentions underwire that digs in, "extra" boobs caused by too small cups...

Really, what woman in her right mind goes out and buys just any old bra, no matter how pretty, without trying it on, or at least checking the size tag.
So do the right thing and get properly fitted or measured and buy what's suitable for your figure.

And you'll have no need to waste your money on something that looks like a glorified elastic band.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sunday Selections #41

It's Sunday Selection time again!
Time to post photos that have been hiding away in your computer files, photos that you may have completely forgotten about.
Have a hunt through your files and find them.

This idea comes to us from Kim at Frog Ponds Rock, who realised one day that she takes many more photos than she uses, as we all do, and wanted to post some of the older ones on her blog.

A once a week meme seemed like a good idea, so Sunday Selections was born, and anyone at all can join in.

I often choose a theme for my Sunday Selections and this week my theme is


One year I came home from work one day to find Halloween images cut from black plastic and strung across one wall of the living room.

Black Cats, facing in both directions,


Witches going East, 

Withces going West

Little gold Stars strung between them

and a Ghoul hanging in the carport.

Behind the ghoul and at other points in the carport there were bats and cobwebs.

A whole bunch of witches moved in... of whom helped herself to my jewellery!
Cheeky girl!

To join in with Sunday Selections, post photos of your choice under the Sunday Selections title, then go to Kim's site, add your name to her linky list and leave her a comment.
We all love comments.
Then have alook at what others have posted for their selections.
There are some really good photographers out there.

Saturday, October 29, 2011


I have made a remarkable discovery!

Back story:  a section of my left thigh has been sorely aching for some weeks now.

The discovery: when I raise my leg to rest my foot on the chair rung, as I so often do,
that part of my thigh gets pressed against the table leg.

Ha Ha !!  I can stop having random thoughts about bone cancer....

black velvet

sub-title; thanks to all blood donors everywhere. *

The thing I remember most about March 16th, 1990, is the Black Velvet.
Not a dress, not even a piece of fabric, but a sense, a feeling.

It was the day of my hystercetomy.
My operation had taken hours longer than expected as the surgeon found more and more invasive pre-cancerous lesions, so just kept cutting.
I haemorraghed badly, requiring two complete blood transfusions* and had to be revived once.

I was expected to surface from the anaesthetic about four hours after being moved to the recovery room, but I didn't.  I stayed under until the next day and scared everyone silly.
I'm nothing if not thorough....

The very first thing I became aware of was the soft, velvety blackness that my mind had been floating in. I felt warm and safe and desperately wanted to stay there, so sank back into unconsciousness.
But the machines recording my life signs had alerted the nurses that I was finally waking up.
The next time I became aware, they were determined to get me awake.
The black velvet cloud still surrounded me, but I felt myself rising through ever-lightening layers of black, then grey, and began to hear sounds.

I heard Nurse ---- calling my name and felt her gently slapping at my ankles.
I remember "come on now Elsie, time to wake up" or something similar.
I struggled to open my eyes and the first thing I focussed on was my older daughter's face.  She just happened to be standing right where my eyes were looking. They were all there, T, M, K, J and (then-now ex) Hubby. They'd been waiting so very long for me to wake up, going home only long enough to eat and change clothes.

My brain was still foggy, but I was so very glad to see them all, in spite of wanting to still sink back into the
 black velvet cloud.
I remember trying to speak to them, but I'm sure I wasn't making any sense, since my mouth was drier than the Sahara. A couple if ice chips were fed into my mouth to help.

Nurse Somebody, (I don't remember her name), was checking tubes and beepers and drips and turning me over on to my back. She checked my wound and dressing and asked if I could feel anything she was doing.
I disappointed her by saying I couldn't feel anything below the waist. In reality all I said was no, no, no to every question.
She said the operation had been the previous day, so by now I should be able to feel something, but I couldn't. (From previous ops, I know this is normal for me)
Nurse Niceface was concerned that I couldn't even feel my overfull bladder which was even now letting go and wetting the bed as she watched. So a catheter was inserted to take care of things until feeling returned.

At this point I think they lowered the amount of morphine in the drip, because pretty soon after that I began to feel.
At first a tingling in my legs and lower back, then I felt the pulling of the stitches and the soreness of my belly muscles.

Oh My God!!  Even a tiny "get comfortable" wriggle caused intense pain. This was not good, not from my point of view anyway.
Where was my lovely, warm, black velvet oblivion?  My soft, comfortable floating cloud?

Once I'd stabilised, I was moved into a regular ward and left to sleep.
Aaaah!   The Black Velvet!    Bring it on!
But no, just a regular sleep, as well as I could manage now that I was feeling the pain of being sliced up like a side of bacon.
Mmmm, bacon....

Day two in the ward found me very uncomfortable. My belly was filled with gas and I couldn't pass it. Various nurses came and massaged the belly and back whenever they were doing their temperature taking rounds, and said I should move as much as possible to help things along.

Ha Ha! I'm a real chicken when it comes to pain and moving was definitely painful, so I didn't try very hard.

A few hours later, Nurse Niceface came back, telling me this wouldn't do at all and I'd better get moving.
I burst into tears and complained like a whinging little kid. (In my defence, I was in pain).
The bed was moved to a semi-sitting position and Nurse Not-So-Nice-Now moved my legs for me and then turned me onto my other side in readiness for an injection which would help with the gas.
The turning did the trick and I forgave her as I immediately felt tons better, no need for the injection now.
And the catheter was removed too.
That's a strange sensation. I don't think I can describe it.
Sort of like a semi-inflated ballon being pulled out of you.

That evening I was told I could get up and shower if I wished, or I could have one more bed bath. I opted for the bed bath, but the next day I was helped into the bathroom and showered while sitting on one of those shower chairs with all the holes in the seat to let the water through.

(I've just this minute decided to buy one of those when I get older, so I don't fall and break a hip or something)

After that? Well there was no stopping them!
Up you get!
Go and sit on the chair while we make your bed.
Take a little walk along the hallway. Get moving.
(All said very nicely, with help to walk if I needed it.)

Oh come on! I like being a slug. I'm not the exercising type!
Still, I did it and I'm glad now that I did.
Recovery is faster once you get moving.

Hubby and the kids visited every day, I remember the day M checked my meals order form and noted that I'd chosen vegetables with lunch and dinner.  Same old mum, he said, always with the vegetables.
My mum came too, all the way from Pt Pirie. She insisted on seeing the wound and counted the stitches, disappointed to see there was nine. Couldn't they do one extra and make a nice even ten?
I was happy enough with nine.....I'd seen the wound in the mirror, a huge cut, set in the under curve of the belly, almost from hip to hip. Mum wanted to know if i had cancer, I told her no. Technically, I wasn't lying, these had been PRE-cancerous lesions, all removed with clean margins, no need for chemo or anything like that.
(Don't neglect your pap smears!!)

A month later, I started a new job. At the shoe factory. Walking was still painful, especially stepping down off kerbs etc. At the six weeks check up I mentioned this as the doctor examined me, then said the internal (self-dissolving) stitches line had become infected, he prescribed antibiotics and things cleared up nicely. I'd thought the internal pain was normal and was merely asking how long I could expect it to continue.

All of this is so very long ago now, but I can still remember and feel the black velvet sensation, and most nights now, I can use this to help me get to sleep. I lie as still as I can and imagine a cloud of black softness drifting down, over and around me, I can sometimes see the blackness creeping in at the sides of my closed eyes.
Then I'm asleep.

Friday, October 28, 2011

avocado - the fruit, not the colour

Colour? I hear you saying it.
Who doesn't remember those oh-so-stylish avocado kitchens?

But this is about the fruit.

Many years ago, before avocados were the popular everyday item they are today, they were seen as "health food".  Back in the days when health food was something only the fanatics or hippies ate.
I read and was told they're good for you. Low calorie or some such.
You should eat them. They're good for you.
Try one, they're good for you.

I remember once a friend gave me a small chunk from the one she was eating.
I tried to eat it, which meant I put it in my mouth and immediately wished I hadn't.
It felt wrong, tasted awful. I spat it out and apologised to my friend.
Vowed to never try that again.

Now, we all know I've got a very sweet tooth.
I recall a steady childhood diet of heavily sugared cornflakes for breakfast,  plum jam sandwiches for lunch, baked beans on toast for dinner. I'm sure there were other foods, but that's what I remember most.

I've noticed though, that in recent years, beginning perhaps 15 years ago, I'm developing a taste for more savoury things. I'm eating salads more. Spicy things more. The main focus of my meals is no longer dessert.

Maybe it was time to try avocado again?
I thought about it for weeks.
Then I bought one.

It sat in my fridge for three days, I just couldn't bring myself to even cut into it, let alone eat some.
Until tonight.
I'd had dinner hours ago and wanted a hot milo before bed.
As I got the milk out of the fridge, I also took out the avocado. I made the milo first, in case I needed something quickly to get the taste out of my mouth.

Then I cut into this fruit. Not the way most people do, I just sliced off the tip.  I cut a very thin slice and nibbled at it. A teeny, tiny nibble. Held it in my mouth for a bit, and it wasn't so bad. I finished the thin slice by tiny nibbles and wondered how I could use up the rest of this alligator pear.

I decided that mixing it in with my usual salad ingredients was probably the best way.
So tomorrow, Friday, (well, that'll be today, because I'm scheduling this for the morning),  I'll buy some fresh salad leaves, and have it for dinner. Probably not the whole thing, just a bit of it. Mixed with greens, tomato, shaved parmesan.....

The latest buzz in health foods is beetroot.
I don't like beetroot......

Thursday, October 27, 2011

title? Hmmm....yesterday?

Yesterday's bus ride to town was....interesting.
It was a type of bus I'd never been on before, not a new one though.
All the seats were too high, fine for regular people, not so good for the rest of us, so about 98% of the population, my feet didn't reach the floor properly, just my tippy-toes.
There weren't many of us passengers at that time of day, but all of us were over 50, with me being the youngest on board I think.
(Unless there were people at the back that I didn't notice).

Anyway, the ride was jerky. Very jerky.

Either the brakes were "grabby", or the driver was stomping on the pedal too hard.
We all spent the ride grabbing for support and bobbing around like corks in the ocean.
My neck was not happy.

I started taking notes.
Bus route, bus number, time of travel, where from, where to.
In the city, when rounding a corner from xxx Street to xxx Street, one elderly gentleman slid off his seat, landing heavily on the floor, banging the back of his head quite hard.
It really did sound like someone had dropped a bowling ball.
As the bus driver pulled over, (if he hadn't I was going to make him), another elderly woman, myself and the man's wife all moved to help him. I instructed him to stay down for a moment and get his balance before getting up. Then we three helped him back to his seat. He was quite heavy, so this wasn't easy. The driver had walked back to see if he was okay.

I added this incident to my notes.
When we reached the stop where we were all getting off, I noticed the man was looking quite grey and got more concerned. I spoke to his wife and learned he is diabetic and they had just come from the hospital, where he'd been undergoing some tests.
I advised them to go to the transport office and file a complaint or report, whatever it is they do in these situations. The wife said they would and I said that I'd email an account of the ride and the fall as soon as I got home from work later in the day. Which I did.

I think this was necessary, because he fell hard and the head bang was awful to hear, he may have sustained an injury not immediately apparent, and this should be on record if he needs to go to a doctor at a later stage with headaches or something.
We exchanged names and stuff like that, then I went across the road to wait for another bus to get to work.

Almost at Norwood, I heard the message tone on my phone. a message from my electricity supplier, asking me to call *this* number and quote *that* number in regards to my electricity account which was overdue, according to them. 
Not on your nelly mate!!
That bill is paid!  In full!  And 5 days before the due date.

So I rang and got put on hold for a while, then spoke to a nice young girl who tried to transfer me to the correct department, but couldn't get through. I said, look, I have to get to work within a half hour...
She said she'd email the department to phone me at home about 5pm. Okay, that's fine.

Then I went to the bank to get a little cash from the ATM.
It took my card, didn't give it back, didn't give me any cash, didn't even spitout a receipt.
So I went inside and the nice young primary-school-age teller went to the machine and told me it had just spit out a card at the front.
Well! I ran outside as fast as my little knees would allow, to get my card before someone else grabbed it, then came back in and withdrew cash over the counter.

After all this, by the time I got to work, all I wanted to do was turn around and go back home.
I've never had such an eventful morning.

Thank goodness the store was really busy, (I'm talking flat out here), so my shift went really quickly.
I napped on the buses on the way home, then sat around waiting for the electricity company to phone me.
They didn't and still haven't, so I'm guessing they checked their records and found my payment.

Another day in the life of River...

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

christmas at work

Christmas is coming up way too fast for my liking.
I'm not ready for it.
The heat, the crazy crowds....

I started thinking of Christmases when I hadn't been working at Coles.

Years ago, I worked in a shoe factory.
Clarks Shoes. Yep, the one that makes all those kids school shoes and baby and toddler shoes too.
Remember Baby's First Walkers?
We also made men's shoes, the Hush Puppies line, and women's shoes, which I could never buy any of because the fittings just weren't wide enough for my slabs of meat. (feet)

All year, the bosses would bring in the orders and we'd jump through hoops getting them made and sent out.

Christmas was a different story. Orders still had to be got out to the shops, but we'd be closing for three weeks, so there'd be a bit of a rush going on.
But the atmosphere underwent a bit of a change.

Tiny Christmas trees began appearing on people's work desks.
Tinsel got strung around the machinery.
Shiny hanging decorations in the form of bells, trees, stars were everywhere.
We were all looking forward to breakup day.

On that day, we'd arrive at work earlier than usual, some of us wide awake, others straggling in later, half asleep, some hungover from partying the night before.....we'd sit around the big christmas tree that had been erected in a cleared space and chat. Some people exchanged gifts.

We were waiting for breakfast. On this one day of the year, we took things easy, sitting around, no work was to be done by us, (until after breakfast) today was the day the bosses did the work.
Outside, tables and chairs had been dragged out from the cafeteria, shades had been put up to keep the sun off us, barbecues were being fired up.

All the bosses, even the factory manager, would be cooking and serving. We'd move ourselves outside as soon as cooking began, the smells of sausages, eggs, bacon luring us to the eating area.
Huge stacks of paper plates, plastic knives and forks, tray upon tray of barbecued food and mountains of toast were waiting for us.

Everyone was in a happy mood. We'd laugh and joke with the bosses, make fun of those who'd chosen to dress up as chefs, others who had worn Santa hats, remind them not to burn the bacon, ask which one of them had laid all those eggs.
We'd line up and get a paper plate each, some plastic cutlery, and file past the barbecues and stacked tables to collect as much breakfast food as we wanted. There were tubs filled with ice containing juice, soft drinks, milks plain and flavoured.

During breakfast more people would turn up, mostly younger single people who had slept in and now straggled in bleary eyed and smelling strongly of the drinks they'd had the night before. They'd get themselves a heaped plate of greasy bacon and eggs, a stack of toast, somehow manage to eat it all before they were fully awake. One year a few of them actually fell asleep at the tables!

It was a great party atmosphere, quite different from the occasional sausage sizzle lunches put on during the year to reward us when a particularly important order had been finished and sent to the shops on time.

After about an hour and a half, the barbecues were turned off and clearing up began, by the bosses of course, not by us, although a few people chipped in to help. Leftover food was stacked on one large table to be eaten by anyone who wanted it during the rest of the day. The tubs with drinks were moved inside to the cafeteria and left for us to help ourselves to all day long.
Sometime during breakfast there'd be a speech or two, thanking us for our hard work during the year and the Christmas raffle would be drawn. I remember one year I won a bottle of Scotch, which I passed on to my ex when he came to visit the youngest boy that Christmas.

Then the work of the day began. We still put in some effort, but nobody really worked hard.

At morning tea time the bosses would come around to everyone and hand out bags with mince pies in them, some would eat them cold, many would go and warm them up in the microwave ovens. A few of us, (me) would bring in our own mince pies since we didn't like the mass produced ones.
The day before, many of the workers brought in such things as home made chocolates and cakes etc to share around, I remember one year I'd bought in enough tiny chocolate Christmas puddings that I'd bought, to give one to each of the bosses. I took them around and there was one left over. Thinking I'd miscounted, I shrugged, and ate it myself. Then, (oh, I still feel awful), the one that I'd forgotten came to my work table and asked if I had one for him. I felt so very bad as I lied and said I must have lost one somewhere as my basket was now empty. I promised to bring him one the next day, at the breakfast, and I did, but it wasn't the same...

Work on that day always finished early, at lunch time. After the morning tea break, work in progress would be gradually finished up with those at the beginning of the line turning off their machines as they finished and cleaning up their areas, before moving along and helping those still working to get finished . Machines were thoroughly cleaned, floors were swept, lights were turned off.

Then as we clocked off and filed out through the doors, there were the bosses again, wishing us Merry Christmas and handing out Christmas puddings.
Jokes were made, hugs and handshakes were given, and the factory closed.
Dark and silent for the three weeks until we returned.

First day back at work?
All decorations had to be removed.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

yoghurt commercial - take two

Inside the EasiYo maker is a plastic 1kg container with a screwtop lid.
This is what you mix the yoghurt base in.

The instructions tell you to half fill this container with cool drinking water, then pour in the yoghurt base. At this point you can add 2-4 tablespoons of sugar if you wish. I added sugar the first few times - 3 tablespoons - then gradually cut down. This last batch has only one tablespoon.

I use a whisk to mix in the powder, others screw on the lid and give it a good shake.
Top up the container with more water, screw on the lid and give it a final shake up.

Inside the EasiYo maker, pour boiling water to the top of the baffle, (funny name - baffle)

Sit the yoghurt container inside the maker, screw on that lid, then leave the whole thing to sit overnight, or all day if you make it in the morning.

And there you have it, your own homemade yoghurt.

And this post only took an hour and a bit to put up. I had to cancel a few photos that weren't loading....

Monday, October 24, 2011

how easy is this!

Making your own yoghurt, the EasiYo way.

Let's assume you've just bought the EasiYo yoghurt maker and you're wondering just how easy this is
Start with a packet of Greek style youghurt culture........

to be continued.........

because I have waited
 for the second picture to upload
and frankly I don't have that kind of time to waste.

I have blogs to read, comments to leave, a book waiting on the coffee table, a new episode of The Big Bang Theory on TV tonight.

Do you suppose this is happening because we've stayed with the current version of blogger instead of switching to the latest upgraded interface whatever thingy version?

The thing is, I'm happy with this version, (well, I was....), why would I change?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Sunday Selections # 40

Welcome to Sunday Selections # 42

As bloggers, most of us have built up picture files of photos we think we might use "one day".
Often as newer photos are added and used, these older files get forgotten about.
They lie dormant on our hard drives, quietly singing to themselves, "what about me, it isn't fair..."

Well, here's your chance to use those forgotten photos.
Have a gander through all those old files and choose one or three or more that heve been there "forever" but unused. You know, because a better idea came along.

Post them on a Sunday, under the Sunday Selections title, then link back to Kim at Frog Ponds Rock,
because this wonderful concept is hers. Then hop on over to Kim's, add your name to her linky list and leave her a comment.
It really is that simple!

For today's selection, I've chosen

I know I've done a tree theme before, but I love trees.....

The needle formation of this tree reminds me of the grass skirts of Hawaii.
Not that I've been there, but I've seen them on TV and in books.

Single pine tree, standing in stately solitude.  (ignore the smaller trees)

Near dusk, these shadowy trees frame the lit window of the house across the road.

Storm damage.

At various points along The Parade, at Norwood, dresses are hung from the trees to advertise an upcoming
fashion parade.

Anyone at all can join in with Sunday Selections, just follow the instructions above the pictures and have fun with it.

aaarrrrgh!! frustration...

I've been trying to put up my sunday selections post.

I started doing it last night, only to have the computer stall time and time again when uploading the photos.

Finally gave up and went to bed at 2am.

Woke up at 7.30 this morning and tried again.

Same thing.  *F***

Turned it off and cleaned my shower.

Turned on and tried again.
Sunday Selections take #3

Well, this is no better.
Stalling, stalling, stalling.

I should have done and scheduled it yesterday afternoon, but I was napping....

I'm shutting it all down again and going to the shops.
I have a couple of prescriptions that need filling.

I'll give it one more try later this afternoon.
After I've run it through a defragmentation program.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

I've had a houseguest

Unusual for me, I know.
People don't stay over at my place.
I haven't had anyone sleep on my couch since........

People visit, drink coffee, go away again.

Anyway, last night just on dusk, there was a knock on my door.
A young man I know rather well, with his own young son.

Can we come in? We need a few hours down time.
Yes, of course.
Clearly both were a little stressed. Maybe more than a little.

The home life is not ideal and recently things have escalated. (Drugs are involved)
To the point where two days ago, the young boy found a way to sneak out and run for help.
Running from neighbour to neighbour, desperately knocking on doors, until one let him in and called the police while the boy tried to calm down.

Well, the  police spoke to him, calmed him down, then located the father who was at work.
He took the boy to a friends house to stay for that day while he went back to work.
After that the boy stayed with his dad, who wasn't at the family home anymore.

Last night, the father had to work some overtime hours and wanted his son in a safer place overnight, so came to me.
He had to work and didn't want the boy staying alone overnight. (He's only eleven and three quarters).
Couldn't leave him with any of his other friends, because the mother knows them all and would track him down.

What else could I do? I let him stay.  He'd gotten away with nothing but what he was wearing and on the way to my place his dad bought him a few essentials which he was carrying in a plastic bag. Along with his I-pod, loaded with games to amuse himself with.

Dad went off to work, son settled himself on the couch.
We got to talking and I discovered that he had no toothbrush, only one pair of socks and his favourite thing to drink was iced coffee. Things that I didn't have handy.
Luckily Woolies is a short walk away so off we went and we bought him some stuff.

Back home again, I showed him how the shower works and as soon as he was cleaned up, I put his "runaway" clothes in the washer.
He'd already eaten, a huge "burger with the lot", (not from Macca's, a real meal with egg and salad), so I ate dinner while he inspected my dvd collection. We discovered that he is a huge Big Bang Theory fan so spent the rest of the night watching the entire first season before I started falling asleep in my chair.

We rearranged the couch cushions, (I offered him the bed, but he said the couch was fine), got him a couple of blankets, (thank goodness I hadn't sent all of them to Goodwill) and we slept until almost 8am.

I was up first, so quietly made a batch of pancakes and put some in the oven to keep warm for him, while I ate mine. I found out that he has never had maple syrup! Never!!

Today was the day I'd planned on going to the Plant and Craft Fair if the weather was fine. I looked out to see brilliant blue skies, so we washed up the pancake dishes, then set off.

I'd put the camera in my bag to take photos as I wandered around there, but in the end I didn't bother.
We wandered around stall after stall of plants which I couldn't buy, (no garden space), and many more stalls of homemade crafty things like toys, hats and scarves, quilted things,  jams, sparkly trinkets, and of joys! two secondhand book stalls.

The boy spied a book on Egyptology and asked me if he could please have it. Well, of course he could. His dad had always had an interest in ancient Egypt, so did his uncle and I was pleased to see the boy was following their footsteps. And guess what? He plays basketball, just like his uncle did, both of them fans of Michael Jordan and Shaquille O'Neal.

At the second book stall, I found a novel for myself, a murder mystery, then we wandered on home again as the flowering trees, (white cedars, very pretty and filled with bees), were making my cough more irritating.

I offered lunch, but we were both still pretty full from the pancakes, so we sat and chatted while we watched more of the Big Bang Theory, I showed him old photos of his dad as a baby and young boy, then we discovered the skateboarding photos. He loved them, he'd heard his dad speak of his skateboarding days, so I printed them off for him to keep. Plus a few of his uncle with the basketball and hoop in the backyard.

The dad picked him up after his overtime shift had finished about 1pm, (there was a big order that just had to be completed) and once they were gone, I suddenly realised that although the boy was pretty self-sufficient and I hadn't had to do much in the way of looking after, I was still pretty exhausted. Some of it mental exhaustion, I'd discussed the home situation with the dad and frankly I'm quite worried about what is going on there, and what will happen in the future. There is another, younger child there that needs to be rescued.

So as soon as they left here, I fell asleep on the couch, and didn't wake up until 7pm.

And here I am, alone again, still watching more episodes of The Big Bang Theory, (once I start I like to watch all the way through), and worrying about this family, going through so much right now, unable to do anything but be a safe haven when necessary.

Names have deliberately been omitted, anyone reading here who knows who I may be talking about, please do not mention names in comments. Not even initials.

Friday, October 21, 2011

something I haven't made in quite a while.....

....Devilled Chicken Wings.

Have I posted this recipe before?
I don't remember and I'm too lazy to go back through my archives and check.

fresh out of the oven, you can see there's plenty of sauce (gravy?) around the wings because I only bought one kilo instead of the usual two. With two kilos, the wings get that lovely browned barbecued look.
I added carrots, because I like them in this.

On my plate with a potato-broccoli mash.

Here's the recipe:-

  • 2kg chicken wings or drumsticks
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon oil
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 cup tomato sauce.

Put chicken wings into a lightly oiled oven-proof pan
Fry onion until beginning to soften (this is where I add rough chopped carrots if I'm using them)
Add everything else  (I whisk it all up in a big jug as I'm measuring, then just pour it onto the onions)
Bring to the boil then simmer for a minute
Pour this mixture over the chicken wings making sure each wing is coated
Bake at 180*C until done to preferred crispness, about 1-1 and a half hours
 Drumsticks will take longer to cook through than wings,
for those I usually put foil over the pan for the first half of cooking time.

When done, the chicken is usually so tender the meat just falls easily from the bones.
This is finger-licking food, have plenty of napkins ready.

As soon as the wings have been served, transfer any leftovers to a fridge container and soak the cooking pan while you're eating.
This makes clean-up so much easier.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

the friendly blogger award

Delores, over at  The Feathered Nest,  has awarded me with this---->

The Friendly Blogger Award.

I have to say, I'm tickled pink!

To accept this, all I have to do is link back to Delores, then award this to other bloggers that I think deserve it.

Well, here goes,

Blurb from The Burbs

Good Googs

Frog Ponds Rock

Sleepless Nights

Dancing With Frogs

High Riser

Wrestling With Retirement

Chick Chat

Our Great Southern Land

Suger Coat It

Mummy Mayhem

Pearl-Why You Little...

The Plastic Mancunian


You're all super friendly,  so take this award, please.
You all deserve it.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

there may be some bad karma headed my way

I don't feel very good about myself right now.

I did something completely out of character.
Lost my temper.

A few weeks ago, I'd bought a couple of  lightshades to put up in the flat.
From their available store stock.
 (no ordering required)
Pretty things, one for the kitchen, one for the lounge.
But I couldn't fit them and returned them.

Then I chose a simpler pair of lightshades from their catalogue.
The store had to order them in, because their usual stock is quite fancy stuff
and what I'd ordered was just plain coolie-hat shaped, brushed nickel outside, white inside.
Metal shades.

But I couldn't fit them to my fittings.
So today I went there after work to return them.

The manager said he was sorry, he couldn't keep ordering things that people didn't want and couldn't refund my money.
Keep ordering?  As far as I know this was the only time I'd ordered anything.
I suspect the real problem may be that the plain coolie-hat shades probably couldn't be re-sold in such an upscale "decorator" shop.

Anyway, very suddenly, unaccountably, inexcusably, I was upset. And angry.
I stormed out of the shop, slamming the door as I did so.
I immediately felt terrible at what I'd done, and felt worse when the manager stormed after me and told me my behaviour was ridiculous. 
As if I didn't already know that.
(Maybe he'd had a bad day?)

I apologised, (sorry, sorry, sorry, over and over), then kept walking to the bus stop.
I felt so bad about myself,  I cried all the way home.
(Tried not to, but hid my face behind sunnies and a hat).
As soon as I walked in my door, I looked up the phone number of the shop and phoned to apologise.
The manager wasn't there, but I left my message. The girl on the phone was very nice.

The problem with my batten-fix light fittings is the black part that holds the globe has been pushed a little too far into the part that's screwed to the ceiling, so not much of the thread is showing.
 I can't adjust that, (not without calling an electrician), so when trying to fit a lightshade, the "skirt" won't screw back on to hold it.

(I needed much thinner, plastic lightshades, (or none at all).
As luck would have it, last weekend,  I spied a couple of these old style plastic shades on a roadside dump.
I brought them home, washed them, and tried to fit them. They went up beautifully.
I now have lightshades.
Free lightshades.
Of course now I'm still stuck with two expensive metal shades that I  have no use for).

*Worse in my eyes, because I was in uniform, so putting forward a poor image of the store I work in.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

well colour me stupid

I had to be up early this morning if I wanted to be at work on time, (and I did, I have a good track record there), so I thought I'd watch the Jeff Foxworthy Show while I ate breakfast.
 I haven't seen it in yonks, and Jeff is funny.

So after the fastest shower in history, (my history, not world history), I turned on the TV at 6am to find a commercial playing. One of those info-mercial type things.

For the Magic Bullet.
We've all seen this? Remarkable little machine that does everything a blender would do?
Yep, that's the one.

Well, it just went on and on and on.....

I cooked and ate breakfast, took my vitamins, drank my juice, read a few pages of "The Big Issue", washed my breakfast dishes........the damn thing was still going!!

At 6.30 it finally ended, to be replaced with ads for makeup; weight loss product; Baker's Delight; some car driving in the desert making crop circle designs; an ad for the Australian Red Cross  Blood Service; an ad for the "Homes Under The Hammer" show.

Then the Martha Stewart Show came on.

Wait, that's not right!
Isn't Jeff Foxworthy supposed to be followed by The Six Million Dollar Man??

I checked the TV Guide and found I'd been watching the wrong channel.
Gosh Darn It All!!!
No Jeff Foxworthy for me today.

Jeff is on 7Mate.
I'd been watching Home Shopping on 7Two. 

So I switched over and watched the rest of Jag instead.
Because I don't like Martha Stewart.

In other TV related things, I find it amusing that after watching one of my dvds, the same movie is often on TV within 10 days or so.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sunday Selections #39

Welcome to Sunday Selections  #41

As bloggers, most of us have built up picture files of photos we think we might use "one day".
Often, as newer photos are filed and used, these older files are forgotten.
They lie dormant on our hard drives, quietly singing to themselves "what about me, it isn't fair.."

Well, here's your chance to use these forgotten photos.
Have a gander through all those old files and pick a few, (or just one), that have never been used, you know, because a better idea came along.

Post them on a Sunday under the Sunday Selections title, then link back to Kim at Frog Ponds Rock,  because this wonderful concept is hers.
Then hop on over and add your name to her linky list, leave her a comment too.  She loves comments as much as we all do.

It really is that simple!

The theme I've chosen for today (you don't have to use a theme, I just like to), is--->

(wrought iron work)

Used for fences and to decorate verandahs and balconies.
There are many different designs and I'm in awe of the original craftsmen who created these pretty artworks.

Looking closely at some of these, you can see where some parts have been replaced by recreated panels, probably not in the original iron, but a modern alternative, like cast aluminium.

Adelaide is full of such prettiness and I'm sure the other cities are too, along with country towns, old farmhouses.......

This beautifully maintained fence, with matching gates, is something I see eight times a week, on my way to and from work. Every time, I wish it was mine.

To join in with Sunday Selections, follow the instructions above the pictures and have fun selecting your photos.

Saturday, October 15, 2011


We all know what they are.
Words that read the same backwards and forwards.

We all use many of them.
madam - refer - civic - mum - dad - pop - level - boob - nun -
radar - noon - glenelg ( a famous Adelaide beach, not so nice now that it's all "touristed" up)

But how many of us notice numerical palindromes?
I like numbers, so when I see these, my mind does a little happy dance.

Many times at work, when I'm totalling a customer's purchases, the sum will be a numerical palindrome.
Ignoring all dollar signs, we have  61.16;   23.32;   18.81;  and the more obvious ones - 33.33;   55.55;   99.99

Dates too have their palindrome list.
This year for example, we have the eleventh of November.
Pretty cool!
here are a few more:-
(I won't write the obvious, the eleventh of almost every month this year)

12-1-21 and the twelfth of almost every month in the year 21 (can't use October)
(You'll notice I'm ignoring the "20" just as in the last century everyone ignored the "19")
Moving on --->

19-1-91,  a year I will never see,
13-8-31,  a year I hope to see
(I'll be 79)

Sequential numbers give me a little happy too.

Last year's  8-9-10  for example.
This year's  9-10-11

 I'm sure you all can come up with more examples

Friday, October 14, 2011

I planned on getting out and about today

so of course it's raining.

I'll still go out and pay my rent, but I don't know about the other stuff.
They can all wait for a dry day.

So here I am on the couch with my feet up, talking to all my friends.

I could do some housework.....I should vacuum the floors....the kitchen floor needs a mop over.....

Oh, wait!
Grocery shopping!
I'm out of icecream!
Need some milk too.....and bread......I don't think there's any vegetables in the fridge either.
Well, there is one onion.

Damn, gotta go out in the rain after all.
Bye now.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

I'm back!

I'm ba-a-a-ack!!
(sing song)
and I'm so relieved!

Wish I knew what was going on, but I'm so glad to be back here.
I had a message from blogger asking me to verify who I was, which I did, and then I was able to access the blog again.

I'm sure you're all just as happy as I am, I'm grinning from ear to ear.
Now I can eat....

I've spent the last few minutes crying my eyes out

I arrived home from work totally knackered, so took a nap, then woke up to a text message from my daughter K, aka no-one, who wanted to know if I had removed my blog.

Well of course I hadn't, why would I?
I love blogging and putting up photos etc. I love receiving comments.
I love all the friends I've made out there.
All of you, my lovely readers.

So I got out the computer and tried clicking on my link in my "favourites" list.

Uh Oh
Blog not found.
This blog has been removed.
Wasn't me!!


I did a google search - nothing.

I've left a question on the Blogger Help Forum and I'm waiting for replies.

I've accessed this page through the BlogList on  no-one's blog and I hope this post goes up.
I'd like some answers.
And I'd like my blog to be back where it was.
(With all previous content in place of course).

Has this happened to any of you?
Have you logged on one day to find the entire 16 months you've spent blogging just vanished without a trace?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

muffins? no no no

Vegetable fritters.

Baked in a 12 cup muffin pan.

It's a non-stick pan, so I didn't think to grease the cups even a little bit.
Then I allowed the fritters to cool in the pan.
So of course they stuck......

the bottoms of my vegetable fritters looked like this....

...but they were still tasty.

oh, you want the recipe?
Well, there kind of isn't one.

Let's see, grated carrot, finely diced onion, quickly stirfried, let it cool, toss in some grated zucchini, set aside.

Make up a "pancake mix" with less milk, an extra egg, and a sprinkle of white pepper.
Stir in the vegetable mix, pour into the muffin pan cups, bake until cooked through.
I skewer tested  at twenty minutes and they weren't done yet, so back in they went, eventually being done at about thirty minutes.
I had the oven set at 180*C.

Very much a "hit and miss" recipe.
I'd never made these before and I may not make them again.
Then again, they did make a nice change from sandwiches at lunch.
Equally nice hot or cold.

If you don't want to bake them, I suppose you could fry spoonfuls of the mix, just like you would pancakes.
This would result in a flatter fritter, mine were more muffin shaped.

Monday, October 10, 2011

I waited all day for this (possible spoiler content)

Heck, I've been waiting all weekend!

Two weeks ago, channel nine started advertising the new season of The Big Bang Theory.
Season 5.
I love this show!
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE The Big Bang Theory.
Love all the main characters.
Sheldon, Leonard, Howard, Rajesh, Penny, Amy, Bernadette.
And Prya, Rajesh's sister.
And the secondary characters.
Stuart, who owns the comic book store, Kripky, from the university, Zack, one of Penny's ex boyfriends.
(I don't love Leonard's mother.....)

I was impatient for the new season to begin.
So last Friday when they finally announced the time slot, I flipped through the TV Guide to the correct page and drew big pink circles around "7.30 - to be advised"
Yes, I have a pink pen and it writes with pink ink.

Tonight was the night.
All day at work I couldn't concentrate properly.
Hayfever and a headache may have had something to do with that.
So, tonight at 7.30pm the new season started.
Not just one new episode, they played two!!
I was so happy!!

I laughed and laughed.
I didn't think it was possible for Sheldon to get any quirkier, but he has.
I wondered about Penny moving back to Nebraska, (as advertised), it didn't happen.
That's a relief, I like Penny.
I'm amused at Amy becoming more and more "normal", well her version of normal anyway.

The only problem now is I have to wait a whole week to see the next episode.
I can watch the reruns, I can watch my dvd copies, but they're not Season 5.....

I don't want to wait a whole week! 
I need my Big Bang Theory!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

'cos the times they are a'changing..

As you'll all notice I've switched to a pop-up comment window.

Apparently pop-up comment windows are the ones that people are able to leave comments on, not the embedded below post ones.

Since I love my comments, I've made the switch.
It's dead easy.

Go to your dashboard page, select settings, from the tool bar across the top (in your settings seection) choose comments, then scroll down to where it has the selection for the type of comments box you want. Click the little circle that says pop-up box, scroll down to "save settings" and wait while it makes the change.

Then you're finished and your blog will now have a pop-up comment box.


Sunday Selections #38

Welcome to Sunday Selections #40

As bloggers most of us have built up picture files of photos we think we might use "one day".
Often, as newer photos are filed and used, these older files are forgotten about.
They lie dormant on our hard drives, quietly singing "what about me, it isn't fair..."

Well, here's your chance to use these forgotten photos.
Have a gander through all those old files and pick a few, (or just one), that have been there a while but not been used.
You know, because a better idea came along.

Post them on a Sunday, under the Sunday Selections title, then link back to Kim at frogpondsrock, because this wonderful concept is hers. Then hop on over to Kim's and add your name to her linky list, leave her a comment too.

It really is that simple!

I've chosen a random selection this week, just as a change from my usual themed style.
I hope you enjoy them.

 One of my favourite trees, a big old oak tree in Queen Street, Norwood, SA

Dymocks Book Shop in Rundle Mall. I haven't been inside in quite a while...

Honeysuckle flowers that I had growing in my yard at my old home.

Australian Geographic, a great place to buy gifts.

 Shadow of a picket fence on a brick paved footpath.

The only decent photo of the moon that I've ever been able to take.

Join us and have fun with your Sundays. Instructions are above, in blue.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

just for you JahTeh!

Hi JahTeh, I think you'll get a smile from this.

I spotted it from the bus the other day and when I went the same way again later in the week,  (okay, today), I had my camera ready.
Got off at the correct stop and took these photos.

 Peeking over the fence...

....the Brick OutHouse!!

(P.S. if your nephew is offended by this, I apologise.)

You don't see many brick outhouses these days; even in the past most were galvanised iron or wooden structures.
I bet they wouldn't have lasted as well as this brick one did.
I wonder if it is still in use and whether it is still a toilet or just a handy storage space.

We'll probably never know.

Friday, October 7, 2011

I love days off

I really do.

Sleep in, have a  leisurely coffee.
Read a book for a while.

Wander off to the post office where I pay my rent.

Then home again, where I noticed the roses had new flowers so I cut a few for my kitchen.
Three yellows, two reds and a beautiful pink edged cream one.

Then, I spent a couple of happy hours wandering around in my front garden.
Of course we all know it isn't exclusively mine, but let's not get bogged down in technicalities.
I can see the whole front yard from my door and window, so that's good enough for me to call it mine.

I pulled on my new gardening gloves, got out my recycling tub, the new secateurs, the new pruning saw and went to work.
Deadheading the roses, sawing off a lot of dead wood from them, pulling out odd bits of grass and some young thistles here and there.
I had a wonderful time
I have to tell you though, most of these are old fashioned rose varieties, with thorns.
Lots of thorns.

Even with the gardening gloves I got stabbed and scratched quite a bit.
I washed off with undiluted Dettol, then followed that with hot water and lots of soap!

This is very satisfactory work, because I know the rose bushes will reward me with lots of new blooms.
Heaven is in my front yard.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

a specific request-lava lamp

Anyone who has been reading here for a while knows that I live in Adelaide.

So I'm wanting replies from other Adelaideans.

Of course you interstate people can chip in too, but I don't think overseas answers will be much help.

How many of you remember those Lava Lamps that were so popular way back in the 70's?

I have a son who loves those things and I'd like to buy him one for Christmas this year.
I'd  prefer a brand new one,  but I don't know where to get one.

I've tried places like K-Mart, Target, Cheap-as-Chips with no luck.
I'd rather not go to e-bay, I've heard bad things......

So here's my question.
Where in Adelaide,  (or possibly Melbourne, Sydney, other cities),  can I buy a Lava Lamp?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

ugh! the frizzies!

It's raining here in Adelaide.
Not a lot, but enough to wet the ground and need an umbrella.
Today's rain was more of the misting down kind, at least it was while I was waiting for the bus.
As the bus pulled up, I closed my umbrella in preparation for getting on, but the driver was a tad slow in opening the doors.
So my hair got misted on.
Just enough to make it frizz.
I spent my entire shift at work with my head looking like I was wearing a steel wool wig.
Luckily there are no mirrors at the checkouts, so I couldn't see myself.

Monday, October 3, 2011

daylight saving....(whinge, whinge, whinge)....

.....foisted upon us many years ago by our government for the summer months, has gradually been extended until it now covers all of spring, as well as summer.

That's six full months.

As far as I'm concerned, that's way too long.
I wasn't happy with the original short arrangement, I've never been a fan of daylight saving.

Now that I have to put up with it for a full six months, I may just go crazy.
Okay, crazier.
Since I already went crazy with it last spring/summer.

I really don't see the point.
Apparently it's to give people a chance for more of a social life after work.
Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't people somehow manage to have perfectly satisfactory social lives before daylight saving was even a thought in someone's brain?
Really, if people want to socialise, they'll do it. Whatever the weather or the time on the clock.

For me, getting home from work and having x number of hours before the sun goes down is enough, I don't need  x +1.
At the end of a long hot day, I just want that glaring sun to go down.
I'm not one of those who goes out and gambols about in every available minute of sunshine.
I did that when I was 10 and I'm over it.
And to have to put up with it for an extra three months is almost unbearable.

I know that many of you are happy to see the summer months and love the extra hour of daylight, and that's okay. For you.

Me? I'm more than happy to live in the "dark ages" as it were. Regular times, no daylight saving, just the time honored sunup and sundown.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Sunday Selections # 37

It's Sunday Selections time again!
Time to post photos that have been hiding away in your computer files, photos that you may have completely forgotten about.
Have a hunt through your files and find them.

This idea was brought to us by Kim of Frog Ponds Rock, who realised one day that she takes many more photos than she uses, as we all do, and wanted to post some of the older ones on her blog.

A once a week meme seemed like a good idea, so Sunday Selections was born and anyone at all can join in.

I often choose a theme for my Sunday Selections and this week my theme is:


 Somewhere in my suburb

 An old pub balcony; the lower part of the building now houses several specialist shops.

 Pub balcony in the city. This one is my favourite.

 This picture didn't load. Possibly it will show when the post goes up tomorrow?
(It's a Hotel, I think)
 Row upon row upon row..

 Close-up of city apartments.

 Another oldie, possibly a Hotel or Boarding House. The keyhole and part staircase entrance looks to me like this veranda has been salvaged and transported from an old Queenslander.

Modern city apartments.

 Little semi-circlular balconies above a bigger square balcony.

 Some official building.

 More modern city apartments.

City apartments behind and between the offices.

To join in with Sunday Selections, post photos of your choice under the Sunday
Selections title, go to Kim's site, add your name to her linky list, then leave her a comment.
Then have a look at what others have posted for their selections.
There are some really good photographers out there.