Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Everybody should have a jacket with a giraffe on the pocket

It took me a little while to realise exactly what this object in front of me was. I'd dragged out every reference tome I could lay my hands on - from the Encyclopedic World Atlas to The Biology of Microrganisms by Brock et al, to (in desperation by this stage) Name That Flower by Clark and Lee. I held it up to the light, I sniffed at it cautiously, I even spoke to it in two languages, hoping against hope that I could figure it out.

Then, ever so slowly, a distant memory sluggishly made it's way to the surface of my murky old grey matter. This, my friends, was a FINISHED OBJECT! A finished Tweeeeeedy jacket, to be precise! And it only took me 8 months to make it (ahem).

Project specs:
Pattern - Tweedy Giraffe Jacket by Phildar, from the Tricotez Calin Automne/Hiver 2002
Yarn - Legende in Rubis and Jeans
Needles - 3mm and 5mm

I love this jacket - it's so supercute that I'm almost tempted to make one for myself! I think Grumbles likes it too - she kept trying to feed the giraffe with the biscuit I'd bribed her with so she'd stay still - awwwww!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

A bag for the bag

I think I am in dire need of a new bag. My current one has a hole so big in it that it looks like a big gaping mouth. “Hello”, it seems to be saying. “Remember me? I’m your bag! Let’s go to the pub – it’s been a while since I came home stinking of ciggies and spilt beer.”

As you can see, my bag also is a smart arse with an attitude problem. Actually, no, it's been a good and faithful companion. Really, it has barely complained at all about all the stuff it has been made to lug around, including dirty bibs, notebooks, address books, far too many receipts, stale old jellybeans that so far I have been too lazy to take out even though they are rolling around the bottom, bottles of formula and the odd nappy (unused). And that hole is just the beginning. The cotton is so thin and distressed that another week and there will be six more holes like it. I'm not sure if I'll be able to stand the slander from all those mouths (Why didn't you take better care of us? Hey fellas, I guess an old bag like us is only fit for an old bag like her! Bwahahahahahahahah!)

So, peoples of the internet: Any bag suggestions?

Monday, December 18, 2006

I'm too old to crash on the floor

Oi there, Tiger. Off the boat now. I don't even know whose boat this is, let alone why we're clamouring all over it (actually, one of our party knows the owners, but still!), so off we get.

Besides, we've got Hanukah to celebrate at Grandad and Buba's place. Lots of food, and even more ducking of the pschyco minor bird that shall be hell bent on swooping anybody who ventures into the backyard, let alone anywhere near it's nest. And then, just for fun, you're going to miss your afternoon sleep, become exceedingly over-tired, and then insist on sleeping with us tonight. Normally I don't mind that so much - it is, after all, a very pure and wonderful pleasure to wake in the middle of the night, and hear your soft breathing, and know that all is well in our little world - but tonight we've got Poppa staying with us, and he's sleeping in our bed, which means that if you want to sleep with us then Galumph and I will have to be in sleeping bags on the floor of your room, because there's simply no room on the couch for anybody else, no matter how small they are.

Oh no: the waterworks have started in earnest. You really want us near. Okay, my love. I'll trade you one cold, hard floor for a cessation of tears. Deal? Deal. Sleep well, tiger.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Christmas has come early!

Sometimes, as I’m busy inside, doing whatever it is I’m doing whilst Grumbles has her sleep, I’ll hear the vrooooooom-vroom-vroom of the mailman’s motorbike. The mail’s come! Hooray! What surprises does it have in store for me today? However – this poses a dilemma. A decision has to be made – do I creep out and gather it up, at the risk of waking up Grumbles (and cursing myself, every single time, for not oiling our very squeaky front door), or do I wait patiently inside, then hold her hand as we go out together? Oh, the tussle between patience and temptation!

I can bitterly inform you that it is a terrible disappointment to do the not-so-quiet creep, waking up Grumbles in the process, to be rewarded with the likes of… a CityWater bill. Yay. And another from the electricity company. Hmmm. And oh look, just to really cheer me up, our credit card statement. And Grumbles, well, grumbling in her bedroom.

“You woke me up for CityWater? Jeeeeez, Mum” her cranky red face will say. “I had at least another 40 minutes of sleep in me, or would have if you didn’t insist of galumphing around, gathering bills. No more craft time for you! Plus I’m going to be a grump for the rest of the afternoon. Not really worth it now, huh?”

So it is with much pleasure that I show you my mail box spoils today! And the best bit is that, being a parcel, it was delivered early by the contractor guy, rather than the regular mailman, so no waking up of anybody. Huzzah!

Snazzy notebook holder, with a lovely new notebook, so I can write down all my ideas, and then one day turn them into a publishing sensation, and some sweet photos of Grumbles taken by her office mate. Shannon, you RAWK! The best internet blogging friend a girl could ever wish for!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Why I'm not quite myself today.

The last day or two I've been a complete mess. A big nose-honking, blubbering mess. Why? I've just read The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. I started reading it on Tuesday evening, finished the night off with a huge bawl, and then, once the Galumph had gone to work on Wednesday morning, placed Grumbles in front of a Playschool DVD (which I let her watch TWICE in a row! Oh, the shame) whilst I sat in the hallway, still wrapped in my husband's dressing gown, and heavingly sobbed my way through the rest of it. Even just thinking about it now is making me go all teary. Poor Henry. Poor Clare. And she was just so... true. And good. Much better than I think I could ever be if my husband was a time traveller who kept popping off to goodness knows where, and sometimes I had to wait for years before I would see him again. I would be so angry, and tired, tired, tired from it all.

So the main feeling has been that of fragileness. It's been a while since I was dragged through the works like that by a book. In fact, not since I finished The Pursuit of Love by Nancy Mitford have I been so broken up. I spent so much of last night just rolling over to give the Galumph big tight cuddles, until he finally put his hands on my shoulders and said "Honey, I'm not a time traveller. I'm not going anywhere!" "I know", I sniffled back. But then the phone rang at 11:30, with some guy from the UK calling Galumph about a critical work problem. He was gone for quite a while, so when he finally crawled back into bed I mumbled triumphantly "You DO time travel - you've just been in Bristol for a hour, and left me all alone!" Poor old Galumph. He had no answer for that one.

Anyhoo, brilliant book. Although I hope there's no sequel or anything. Ms Niffenegger, I just don't know how much more my poor, squeezed-out heart could take. Now I must go and rub moisturiser on my sad red nose. Next time I read a book that unleashes Niagra Falls, I'm going to honk away on a good quality hankerchief, not recycled toilet paper like I did this time. Good for the environment, not so good for the schnoz.

Also, I think I might print out Alicia's marvellous summer reading list, then hit the second-hand bookstore this afternoon. Sucker for punishment, I know.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

It's beginning to look a.... ahh, you know the rest

I am totally rocking the Christmas spirit. Check it out:

Stars in the hallway...

...table decorations...

...and, of course, our very own snazzy match box Advent calendar.

Excuse the blurry photos. Two coffees in the morning, and I'm all shake, shake, shake! Either that, or I'm just waaaaaaay too full of the Christmas spirit. Or I have Parkinson's. Eeew.

(I know it's a bit late in the day to be making Advent calendars, but you can find some awesome ideas over here!)

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Can you believe this was my husband's first concert!

I never again want to find myself in such a large space with some many sugared up children again. It was madness. It was chaos. It was a Wiggles concert.

Actually, it wasn't too bad. The new Yellow Wiggle was pretty good, although he sadly lacks those Peter Gallagher-esque eyebrows of Greg that I loved so much. And Grumbles was supremely well behaved (read: completely overwhelmed), and quietly sat eating her dates and raisons whilst every single other child in the entire arena ate chips and lollies.

But never mind the songs, or the dancing, or the choreography - the best fun was watching the two mums with four boys between them, who we had the good fortune to be sitting behind, continually slapping the kids everytime they slapped their brothers. "I've TOLD you not to smack your BROTHER!" Thwack. Thwack.


Saturday, November 25, 2006


Today is election day in the Australian state of Victoria.

In our fine, dry land it's compulsory to vote, so there is always a long, snaking line.

But the best bit (apart from having your say about who should run the state)? Aaaaah, the sausage sizzle at the end!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Excuses, excuses

Where have I been the last week or so? Goodness knows, but I can tell you one thing - I appear to have lost my blogging mojo. Completely misplaced it. In fact, I haven't even been reading any blogs, so if any of my regular haunts has had some bizarre misfortune occur, say like their great aunty Mabel tumbling out of the pensioner bus as it docked at the servo, landing rather ungainly on the tyre air hose and was pumped full of air until she exploded, and admist their grief they've been wondering why I haven't left a note expressing my condolences then, sorry. Maybe I'll get to it later on this week. Actually, probably not. So, better late than never:

I'm awfully sorry to hear about the explosion of Aunt Mabel.

Now that's over and done with, I expect you want some hard and fast excuses for why I've been absent. Well, I've been doing lots of swimming. Man, I am such the superstar swimming person now. I'm a-racing down that pool. In fact, you know that snail you trod on yesterday on the way to the mailbox to grab the details about Aunt M's funeral, I am almost as fast as that snail had they avoided their sudden, rather squishy death and been dropped in the pool and told to swim, swim, swim! Still, the arms are toning up nicely, and I can do 20 whole laps without collasping, so that's a good thing.

What else? I made a cat for this lovely person, but unfortunately gave him a name with previous traumatic connotations. Oh well. That might explain why Basil is doing his best dead man impersonation in the pic.

Gah, I've just reread this post, and helllloooooo, scary gory tone, Jorth. I'm going to disappear before any more grisly thoughts make their way from my brain to the keyboard to you. Yikes. Enjoy the swimming pic.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Mr. R. McScruffity, Esq.

Rufus! Ruuuuuufus! Come and meet the readers, you rascally cat. For the last time, put down the martini and get yourself over here. Right, everybody meet Rufus McScruffity. Rufus, meet everybody. Now, Ru, would you like to tell everybody a little bit about yourself? No, I should do it? Okey dokey, he's made entirely from scraps, is a gift for Grumbles for Christmas and is based on the cat pattern in Denyse Schmidt's Quilts.

Excuse me a sec, Rufus is trying to tell me something. Oh! You want me to tell them interesting things about you! Got it. Well, Rufus likes to spend his days banging away on his typewriter, churning out best selling mystery novels under the pen name of Doofus McCrappity, and then at five o'clock on the dot every day he prowls over to the local garbage tin bar where he enjoys a very dry cat food martini, and has a yowl with any delectable felines he comes across. Quite the ladies man, our Rufus.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Horses vs. Life On Earth As We Know It. Damn - the horses won.

Not a bad turn out for the Walk Against Warming we did on Saturday. 30,000 people walked in Melbourne alone! Ok, so it's not as impressive as the 120,000 who went to the races on the same day, but I suppose watching the gee gees run around a track is far more important that letting our pollies know that we want action on reducing greenhouse emissions, hmmm?

(Psssst! Go sign the petition here!)

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

A dress, a plastic shell and some pimples walked into a bar...

Random things:

- Recently our suburb had a hard waste collection day, and the Galumph was quick enough to grab this little beauty off the street. I always wanted one of these shells, and let me tell you, it's GREAT! Whack in a dribble of water (even better, use the bucket of water collected whilst showering), put the Grumbles in her bathers and hey presto, she's happy for hours. One of these days I might even don my togs and jump in there myself.

- I've finished another dress, and I am so excited about this one that it's pathetic. Unfortunately, you'll all have to wait for pics, as our rechargable camera batteries aren't playing ball. Over 10,000 charges my sweet arse. Try, hmmm, 53 at best. How can I be a concerned enviromentalist, dutifully recharging my batteries instead of buying new ones all the time if they are going to conk out on me faster than you can say "oh, look, another crap product labelled as green". Answer me that, battery makers.

- I upgraded my skincare range from cheapo supermarketo to something much more swish, and my skin has decided to celebrate by breaking out in as many ways as possible. It almost looks like I'm desperately trying to win the "Most Acne Riddled Skin, Sponsored by Scary Chemical Cleaner, and If You Win We'll Put You Up On Our Website So People With Hangovers Who Need To Go To Work Can Take One Look At Your Photo Then Rush To Throw Up, And Thus Manage A Day At The Office With No Further Danger Of Hurling Because Thanks To You and Your Hideously Grotesque Zits They Have Got It All Out Of Their System" competition.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

The devil is in the details and the make up

Meet Fudge. He's a ham. Actually, to be truthful, he's some sort of corgi mix, but you know what I mean. Grumbles is mucho taken with him, I suspect due to all the licks she receives, each one accompanied by an awfully high-pitched squeal of delight. Thank goodness Fudge has gone home with the Mother-in-law-ship, I'm not sure just how much more my ear drums could have taken.

I went and saw The Devil Wears Prada last night. Terrible movie - instead of making me shun fashions as being frivolous and unnecessary, and taking the focus away from what is really important, it just made me want to run out and buy a hair dryer so I could have a sleek shiny fringe like Anne Hathaway. Sigh. Too easily influenced, just like my mother always said. Damn her for being right. But those clothes! And the spiffy eye make up! Is it so wrong to want gorgeous hair and knock 'em dead eyeshadow? Especially that purple. Oooh, heaven! Or hell, trapped in a bathroom mirror. Just look at all those greys, that's more than enough to bring me back down to earth, and banish all thoughts of hair dryers from my mind.

Monday, October 23, 2006


It appears that racing fever has struck this town!

Saturday, October 14, 2006

The sure-fire hit of the summer

Peeling open my eyes and shovelling off the sticky sleep that threatened to glue them shut again, I blearily noticed that the sun was shining outside. This could mean only one thing: a photo session! I unearthed myself from the assorted crumpled bits of toilet paper that have been masquerading as tissues, peeled the Vicks container from out of an unfortunate place, heaved myself off the couch, cast off my Yoga Wrap, skedaddled to the bedroom and donned my newly finished favourite thing, then instructed the Galumph to get snapping. Jorth Sewing Enterprises proudly presents the one and the only thing to be footling around in this summer - a bright spotty dress!

Project Specs:
Pattern - Simplicity 4224, size 8
Description - Strapless fitted sundress, with flared skirt and fitted bodice (tie belt optional)
Fabric - Color Beat for Robert Kaufman (purchased at GJ's), 100% cotton, 2 metres
Notions - 40cm zipper, 1.3 metres elastic for bodice

What can I say - I love this pattern, and I love the dress! It was easy to put together, fits like a dream and will see me happily through all those blinding hot days with style and class (or something!) I can see myself ditching all my other dress patterns and making one for every day of the week, or something equally sad. Heck, when you're on to a good thing...

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Watch out for bears!

The last few days I have: struggled to keep anything down, struggled to eat full stop, spent most of my time next to a sick bucket, been boiling hot, been freezing cold with uncontrollable shivers, and laid in bed with two doonas and a blanket on top of me. This bug is a killer, I tells ya! Thanks for all your get better wishes - Grumbles is back to her usual bouncing self, and I managed to eat lunch today - yahoo!

I also read The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton plus A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson. One of these books is about two people's struggles against the social norms of New York society in the 1880s, the other is about a middle aged guy's walk of the Appalachian Trail, and his merry adventures along the way. What I didn't expect was to spend all of last night tossing and turning, dreaming that Bill Bryson needed to go back in time to save the Countess Olenska from having her money cut off by her family, and if he didn't succeed in his mission then the bears would find him on the trail and eat him alive. Very, very disturbing. Least of all for Bill.

Also, before I became incredibly nauseous, I started sewing myself a new frock for summer. I'm using Simplicity 4224, and I wish I felt better so I could (a) finish it then (b) wear it!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006


I'm soooooo tired. The last two nights have been spent continually getting up to change vomitty sheets as poor old Grumbles battles a nasty virus that's a mix between gastro and the flu. Yum. Poor kid - she doesn't even have an appetite for icy poles (don't worry, it's what the doctor said for her to have, as water will make her throw up more quickly and dammit she's right, it did!). I have to admit, I'm not feeling so hot myself. Thank goodness the mother-in-law-ship is coming over to look after us. As soon as she steps in the door I'm going to just blob under a doona, maybe watching Anne of Green Gables. Actually, no I won't. I never do. I'll run around before she comes, tidying up the house, and then insist on making dinner and endless cups of tea for her, because I'm pathetic and have no idea how to blob.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Hanging out on the front stoop

I have a feeling that this summer is going to include a lot of lounging in the sun out the front, slurping on home made yoghurt icy poles, watching the neighbourhood stroll on by. Stopping to smell the roses and watch the cherry tomatoes ripen. Don't forget the sunscreen!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

If you see a woman on the street muttering to herself as her hat flies off for the 14th time, that would be me

The walk to the park today was the best workout I've had in a long time. If I wasn't straining against that incredible head wind (and when I say incredible I mean INCREDIBLE!) then I was diving off in every direction trying to catch our hats before they blew themselves into the city or maybe even Byron Bay.

So now I'm home, and I'm gazing out the window, and can you guess which thoughts are occupying my mind? Washing - that's right, washing! I'm one of those mad people who get very excited over hot windy days because I could do about 10 loads today and THEY WOULD ALL DRY! Never mind the fact that I do a load every day anyhow, and therefore have no need to wash anything because I am so super organised when it comes to washing - it's a hot windy day, dammit! Maybe I could wash some shoes... it's been a while since I've done that. Alas, if only we had some curtains in this place.

Get a hold of yourself! Melbourne is in the midst of a water crisis, and you truly have nothing more that needs washing (yet continues to gaze at the washing line longingly).

Oh, two more things - if you're driving around keep an eye out for cyclists, because today is Ride to Work Day here in Victoria. Also, Rathdowne Remnants has New Look patterns for a measly $5 until the 21st October!

Monday, October 02, 2006

A very convenient wake up call

Ahhh, watch out for those feet! And mind the camera, honey. Feet, and swings, and fresh air, and sunshine. It was a lovely weekend, full of good things and much laughter (now I come to think of it, her feet aren't such a good thing - they stink!). But a serious weekend, too. The Mothership came up to babysit for us, so the Galumph and I scuttled off (actually, I made him run most of the way, because I thought we were going to be late, but then we got to the cinema 20 minutes early, d'oh!) to see An Inconvenient Truth.

Well. What can I say? Most of the stuff I already knew, but it hit me differently this time, being presented in such an accessable manner, with professional graphs and slides plus an eloquent yet very human speaker. Did you know that the Artic cap is melting so quickly that polar bears are drowning because they can't find any ice to sit on? These are bears that can swim up to 100 kms a day. If you haven't seen the movie yet, I implore you to go, go, go! Or at the very least think about your actions, and the impact that they have upon others. Please. It's easier than you think.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Random things

- I went to a Medecins Sans Frontiers information session the other night, and one of the speakers had just come back from southern Sudan. Recently, Sudan has begun exporting oil (you can read more about it here), and are sending a lot of bulldozers out to build roads and set up infrastructure for the wells. The speaker told us that the bulldozers will just doze right through anything in the way - villages, houses etc and she even witnessed, to her horror, small children being crushed by the machinery because they didn't manage to get out of the way in time. I feel sick just thinking about it.

- On a much ligher note, I've started a regular thing of taking Grumbles out for a hot chocolate on a Friday. It's something I'd like to continue until she leaves home (ha, if she lets me!) - a bit of mum/daughter catch up time. I have romantic visions of picking her up from school in a few years time, and us happily gossiping away over steaming hot choccies, and then trundling off to meet the Galumph on his way home from work.

- I've also spent this week making myself a pair of pants, woo hoo! I'm using this pattern, and my goodness me it's coming up a treat! Hopefully I'll get it finished today, and some pics taken on the weekend. I'm particularly enamoured with the green polka dot lining I've done on the yoke. We all need some polka dots in our life, even if they are hidden away.

- I have absolutely no plans whatsoever to watch the Grand Final, and that's the way I like it! Glory in September indeed. Instead I think we'll take a stroll down Lygon St if the weather is nice and indulge in an icecream.

Monday, September 25, 2006

What did I do on the weekend?

Oh, I had fun! We went down to my mother-in-law-ship's place, down on the coast, and took not one but two walks that ended in us scampering for shelter away from the rain. At one stage it even hailed - what a riot! And I'm wearing my new woollen wrap top (made using this pattern here), which is another reason for my 'grin-like-an-idiot' cheesy.

Did I mention the wind? No? Well, it was windy. Super windy. Fantastic to blow all the cobwebs away. Good times. And very pink cheeks.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

A moving target is hard to shoot

Man, that kid can move. And move. And move some more. But I did my best. I present to you all Jeans featuring Grumbles.

Project specs:

Pattern - My own
Fabric - Stretch denim for jeans, red dot cotton (same as top) for pocket linings)
Description - Loose jeans style pants, with front and back yokes, front jeans style pockets (lined), back pockets, contrast top stitching and elastic waist.

I deliberately made the pants rather long, as I wanted her to get a couple of years wear out of them. The pattern is so easy - so far I've made two pairs of jeans plus three pairs of cords, all with elasticised waists so she can pull them on easily for herself (coughtoilettrainingcough).

Best of all, I'm pretty sure Grumbles likes them. She happily spends many a minute each day stuffing picked flowers into all four pockets, so I'm glad I included them (I dare say the people who grew the flowers aren't so pleased, but I can't stop her, I've tried!)


Ahoy there, me hearties! Don't forget that today is International Talk Like a Pirate Day. Arrrrrr!

Monday, September 18, 2006

What do you do with a kid who won't sleep?

Oh dear. I promised pics of the jeans, didn't I? I did try and get some photos over the weekend, but the whole 'smear the peanut butter all over my funky new jeans' look that Grumbles was sporting just didn't cut it, so you'll have to wait until they've been washed and Miss G decides to play ball. However, I do have a photo of the Tweeeedy jacket I'm knitting her - check it out!

Cute, huh? It's from the Phildar Tricotez Calin Automne/Hiver 2002 book. So far I've done the back, the right sleeve and half of the left sleeve. It seems to be going well, but I'm positive I've made a mistake in the translation somewhere, and me being me, I won't pick it up until I'm trying to sew the darn thing together. Oh well. I mean, I could go over it all now and save myself the trouble, but I'm lazy. I'll just sail right on in and curse my ineptitude later.

Not much else to report. We had a busy weekend, and as a result Grumbles is overtired, and won't sleep. She's currently bouncing in her cot, bellowing out her versions of Wiggles songs. Get some sleep, wouldya kid? We've got things to do today!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

The mouse in the house

Ah yes, I know it's Wednesday, but I'm going to tell you about our little adventure on the weekend, as the last few days have yielded very little blog-worthy material.

So: Friday afternoon my dear friend K and I were emailing away, and she asked when we wanted to go and visit her mum's farm in country Victoria. No dates in the next few weeks suited, so on the spur of the moment I said "Hey, let's go tomorrow!" "Agreed!" she typed.

The next morning was a flurry of activity. We raced around and packed our things (do you know how much stuff you need to carry with you when you have a toddler? A LOT), then zoomed into the city so I could get my haircut (this is not something I usually do just for country weekends away, I'll have you know, this was booked in weeks ago), then we picked her up and away we drove.

Two hours later we arrived at the farm. It was lovely. Paddocks dotted with sheep and horses as far as the eye could see, and that big blue sky all above us. We had a quick lunch, then pushed up our sleeves and dug out all the weeds from the vegie patch.

Four long hoe-wielding hours later we were done. The pile of weeds dug out was so large that we could have made a bonfire out of it. I only wish I'd taken a before and after photo, nagdamnit. After savouring a glass of red whilst watching the sun set and admiring our handywork, we headed inside, had a gorgeous meal of kangaroo steaks on couscous, then settled in front of the fire before heading to bed.

Now, you'd think after all that digging I'd be guaranteed a good night's sleep, right? "Wrong!" squeaked the usual inhabitants of the house. I was just drifting off to sleep when I felt something sharp attacking my wrist bone. I absentmindedly kneed the Galumph in the back, and said "Stop doing that thing with your fingernails, wouldya?" In a sleepy voice he replied "Whaddareya talkin about? My hands are down here". A moments silence followed, before we jumped out of bed yelping "EWWWWWW - MOUSE!"

Now, normally I'm not too fussed about mice. I grew up in an old farmhouse in the country, so I'm down with the little rodents. Mice are mice, right? But when it's dark, you're in a strange room, and you've just discovered that one has been sampling YOU for dinner, it's slightly unnerving. We flashed the torch around, and moved the bed back from the wall. This might have been a mistake, as the carpet was, well, carpeted with mouse droppings. Of course, all this activity disturbed Grumbles, who tossed and turned and wouldn't go back to sleep. After a couple of hours we ended up dragging her into bed with us. In morning, as I made up her port-a-cot, the worse discovery came - mouse poo in there everywhere! AND stuck to the back of her pjs! No wonder the poor tiger was a bit upset.

The moral of the story is... actually, there is no moral. Cats are good? Mice are bad? They're certainly gross! And if you hog the hoe for four hours without giving anybody else a go, then you'll end up with a nice case of hoe-arm.

Friday, September 08, 2006


So much going on, so little to report. Here's a stab at it, anyway:

- Since the weather has decided to become rainy and miserably grey again, Grumbles and I have been indulging in some paint therapy to banish the rain clouds away. Must be working as the weather forecast for next week is fine, fine, fine!

- I've been devouring books whilst the Galumph busies himself with conferences calls almost every evening of the week. The latest is Monash: The Outsider Who Won The War by Roland Perry (isn't that the best name? Roooooooland Peeeeerrrrry!). Fascinating stuff, even though military history isn't usually my cup of tea.

- I've been sewing jeans for Grumbles. Really must get my behind into gear and post a picture. Maybe whilst I'm at it I could post pics of the three pairs of cords I made her, too.

- I've also been knitting a super cute tweedy jacket for her. Isn't my logic superb - wait until summer is upon us, and then embark upon a winter garment. Ahem. (Actually, it's taken me so long because I had to translate the pattern from French, and just kept putting it off. Remarkably, when I finally sat down to do it, it wasn't that hard after all, as is always the way)

- I've been eating really, really well this week. Salads with dinner every night, and heaps of greens. I must admit, I feel great. Bright eyed and bushy tailed and all that.

- Finally received the latest Phildar Pitchoun knitting magazine in the mail, and my giddy aunt it's a ripper! And do you know the best bit - IT NOW COMES WITH AN ENGLISH TRANSLATION! (runs around loungeroom, skidding on the crayons that litter the floor whilst waving arms in the air)

Right, off to sew back pockets onto Grumble's new pair of jeans.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Father's Day

Father's day was...

- Cheesy scrambled eggs for breakfast, with a pot of tea (so civilised!)

- Lots of lying on the bed whilst Grumbles had her sleep, reading interesting new books

- A family bbq that afternoon in Brighton, huddled under a canopy, hoping that it wouldn't rain

- Champagne that evening whilst watching Pretty Woman (gee that film seems so innocent now! I mean, I know she's a prostitute and all, but still, innocent compared to the bump-n-grind that features in the average video clip these days)

Happy Father's Day, Galumph! I'll watch soppy movies from the early nineties with you anytime.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Countdown #5

Finally, the big 100 is here! Whilst I've enjoyed doing this, it's been getting harder and harder to think of interesting facts about myself. If today's effort is a little on the shoddy and desperately-scraping-the-bottom-of-the-barrel side, then please excuse me.

Seatbelts on? Let's go!

20 - I lovelovelove getting dressed up. I'd always rather be overdressed and look fabulous than look blobby like everybody else.
19 - You will never ever catch me wearing trakkie daks. Those days are over, my friends! (Unless I go for a run, and it's kinda cold, but that's different)
18 - Having said that, I don't mind if other people do. Go for comfort, kids.
17 - I'm currently having French lessons, even though there is no immediate plan to travel to a French-speaking country. Just something to do, really.
16 - I was a really stupid kid. Good at school, but stupid at common sense things. For example, my brother was a runner, and had the special running shoes with the spikes on the bottom. Once he was cleaning them, and I was sitting beside him, and for a joke he told me to place my hand on the table. Idiot me did it, and he slammed the shoe down on my hand then had to peel it out, spike by spike. I was bawling "Whaddja do that for?" and he answered in shock "Why didn't you move your hand, like everybody else does?" Like I said - stupid.
15 - I don't cope very well if I don't get a full, uninterrupted 8 hours of sleep. Particulary when I don't get it for a few days in a row. I was fine when Grumbles was a babe, and needed feeding every few hours, but that was because I was acclimatised to it. Now those days are gone, I'm back to being a psycho grumpybum.
14 - Every month I sit down and figure out a monthly menu plan, so we know what we're having for dinner each night. Then we go to the supermarket, buy all the grocery items we need for the month, and stock up on dairy and fruit 'n' veg as we need it. Nerdy, but damn the system works! No more wondering what we're eating each evening - just look at the list on the fridge and say "Oh! Salmon on braised chickpeas!" Mind you, this is usually followed by an expletive and "I've forgotten to soak the chickpeas", but never mind that.
13 - In the past I've sported the shaved head look. It really didn't do me any favours.
12 - Now half my hair is short, and the other side is long. It's quite a look!
11 - I'm thisclose to becoming a vegetarian, but I can't bring myself to give up sausages and salami. Pathetic, isn't it?
10 - I don't shave my legs nearly as much as I could. I know it's time to do it when squirrels stop by and ask if they can live in the leg hair forest.
9 - I love riding my bike. It's such a good feeling, when the day is fine, and there's no wind, and you're going fast enough to feel ever so slightly rebellious, but not so fast that you can't stop in time, and guys in cars look over approvingly thinking to themselves "Whooooa, hot chick on bike at three o'clock" (okay, maybe I'm just imagining the last bit) and then you stop and buy an icy pole, and plonk down in a park to eat it, and at the end of the evening you happily say "What a fabulous day!"
8 - Speaking of icy poles, my favourites are those 50 cent lemonade flavour numbers, and I am extra happy if they have been sitting in the freezer all winter and have ice crusties on them. Yum!
7 - I'm always thrilled to pieces when somebody asks me "Did you make that?", and I can squeak back "Yes! Yes, I did!", but then about 8 seconds later my world falls to bits because I think that they only asked because it looks so crappy and handmade.
6 - I can recite Jabberwocky. (Did you hear that noise? It's the barrel.)
5 - I like learning the history of sayings. For example, mind your ps and qs is from the days of old, when bar tenders would yell out to their rowdy customers to mind their pints and quarts, otherwise they'd be taken from them. Apparently.
4 - I'm a very slow swimmer. So, if you're going to start drowning and need to be saved, please don't do it when we go swimming together. I'll never get there in time!
3 - Those questions, where you get asked "Which four people would you most like to have over for dinner"? I can never think of an answer for it, because I am convinced that anybody getting the invite would respond with "Oh, Jorth? Good gad, she'd bore me to tears! Put in the bin now, there's a good chap, and we'll just pretend we never received it"
2 - My mother named me after a character in a very well known movie musical. Do you have any idea how frustrating it is to have every second person burst into song when they are introduced to you? (I'll save you the trouble of wondering - it's damnably annoying)
1 - I have nothing more to say. For the moment. But at three in the morning I'm sure I shall think of the plethora of more interesting facts that I should have put down.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Countdown #4

Rightio, here we are, back again. Some commenters were clamouring for 1000 things about me. All I can say is this: Are you guys crazy? I'm really not that interesting. Forty to go, and I'm scratching my head and procrastinating as hard as my procrastinating muscles will allow me, which isn't very much, as by nature they are laaaaazy.

Enough, eh? Diving in:

40 - I'm bad at team sports. I get too grumpy when things go wrong. Grumpy soon turns to aggression. Last time I played in a netball team, I was sent off the court for kung-fu kicking the ball out of somebody's hands (hey, she was a nasty!). The moral of this ditty is don't ask me to play in your team.
39 - I'm always tickled pink when somebody refers to a vehicle as a job. As in, "Did you see that speedy little job just fly by?"
38 - I am a big fan of stationary. To me, the smell of a freshly shaved pencil is akin to the bouquet of rare flowers.
37 - I prefer tea to coffee. Irish breakfast is the current favourite.
36 - I came this close to swapping my biotechnology degree for a degree in applied physics, but my chemistry lecturer talked me out of it (the fact that I was failing chem probably had something to do with it).
35 - I went on to fail chemistry again. Only organic - I passed physical and inorganic. Close, but no free radical.
34 - I do not like the music of Andrew Lloyd Webber. Sorry, dude.
33 - I do like the music of Hot Hot Heat. Check 'em out, they rawk!
32 - I once chase Tim Rogers down a street in Perth, and wrung his hand and told him how much he rawked. With a bemused air, he thanked me, and meandered on his way, whilst I spent the next hour shaking like a leaf and cursing my inepititude.
31 - I bought a trumpet on the weekend - how exciting! Now all I have to do is learn to read music, and I'll be a trumpety goddess!
30 - My favorite movie is White Christmas, followed by Gosford Park. Although when I was about 13, I read in that venerable upholder of journalistic integrity, The Herald-Sun, that Bing Crosby was a cross-dresser, which put me off him and the movie a bit.
29 - I'd just like to say that I never read the Herald-Sun anymore. However, when I was 13 I didn't get much say about which tabloidish crap was brought into our house.
28 - The Guardian, however, will always be welcome at my breakfast table. Which is just as well, as it's my homepage, and the brekkie table is usually neglected in favour of the computer desk, as it's the only time of the day I get to peacefully scan the blogs. Just in case any of you were wondering why I always seem to leave my comments at 7:04am.
27 - I like to walk. A lot. Which is good, because my feet are my main form of transport. This isn't to say that I was overly thrilled when the Galumph suggested that we do a bushwalk for our honeymoon.
26 - Still, we did it. Four days around Wilson's Promontory, with a week in a cottage in Yarram. I heard Paris was overrated, ya know?
25 - Whenever we told any of the locals in Yarram that we were honeymooning there, they looked at us in utter disbelief before laughing. However, one of them did ask me how long I'd been in Australia for, so I wouldn't take too much notice of what they say.
24 - I still have no idea which country she thought I was from.
23 - I cannot make a pavlova to save myself. I thought my chest was flat, but the pavs take the cake (heavens to Betsy, out come the baking metaphors). So, I just smother my failures (pavs, you dirty sods) in cream and fruit and call them 'meringue flans'.
22 - I am really looking forward to owning a home with a vegie patch and fruit trees out the back.
21 - As a child my favourite food was cold stew sandwhiches. Oh dear.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Countdown #3

Here we go, here we go, here we go again...
60 - I am a very good touch typist. You know in movies when they make the typing go across the screen in the suspenseful high-tech computer scenes? I could totally be the typist doing the typing, I'm THAT good.
59 - Although, just between you and me, I have a sneaking suspicion that I would crack under the pressure. Whenever I'm playing pool, I always get the 'eight ball jitters'. No matter how brilliantly I've sunk the ball in the ol' pockets before, I always take about 10 shots to pot the black. Thus usually allowing my mediocre opponent to win (what, you think I'd play against good players? I'm THERE TO WIN!)
58 - As a teenager, my rather athletic brother thought I'd make a good runner. He was right - I was pretty speedy, light and had a fair bit of stamina. He started making me do training sessions, which went well, until he devised a way to make me go really fast: he tied a rope around my waist, and then tied the rope to a tyre and then made me run up the Mahoney's hill with it bouncing behind me. The Mahoney's hill was practically a 90 degree angle. The theory behind this was that without the tyre I would be Speedy Gonzarlas.
57 - It ended up being more like not-so-Speedy-with-rope-marks-around-tummy-arlas. Do you people have any idea how hard it is to run up a hill with a car tyre attached to you? BLOODY HARD.
56 - I was also rather scared that, whilst staggering along with the tyre, the Mahoney's bull would come along and chase me. Or even Mr Mahoney himself. Let me tell you, this didn't add to the joy of the training sessions.
55 - In my mind, the smell of summer is Jasmine. That's all there is to it. Jasssssmine.
54 - I learnt fairly early on that Santa Claus didn't exist, but I played along for years for the sake of my sister, who is four years younger than me. I have a feeling that my parents thought I was rather daft and slow to clue on.
53 - And that reminds me, my favourite smell is Christmas tree. I can't stop myself - even if I'm at somebody's house, if they have a Christmas tree, you'll find me with my nose nestled right in, oblivious to the dangers of needles and ornaments poking out me eyes. I have to be forcibly dragged away from the damn thing.
52 - I love playing Trivial Pursuit. Love it, love it, love it.
51 - For some very obscure reason, 7:11 is my favourite time of the day. I know, seriously weird, who else has a favourite time of the day? Except maybe the Queen Mum, for whom 5 o'clock meant cocktails. AM or FM, doesn't make any different to me. 7:11 is where it's at.
50 - I like anecdotes about old time movies stars. Particulary the one about Marilyn Monroe meeting Arthur Miller's mother for the first time. They'd gone around for lunch, and Marilyn had to use the toilet, but didn't want anybody to hear her wee, so she ran the tap the whole time she was in bathroom. A few days later, Arthur rings up his mum, and says "So, what did you think of Marilyn?" His mother answered, "Oh, Arthur, she's lovely. A beautiful girl, really beautiful. But just between you and me, she pisses like a horse!"
49 - As children, my brothers and I would play frisbee with dried cow pats. Occaisonally you'd pick up one that wasn't quite so dry. No fun. (Bad joke: What do you get if you sleep under a cow? A pat on the head!)
48 - I have quite a few grey hairs. They can stay. I know they're going to win in the end, so why even bother opening up a pack of hair dye? Besides, they make me look distinguished, which is good, because nothing else does.
47 - I love clothes. Unusual ones. Not unusual as in whacky, more like well thought out design. I don't follow fashiony trends, just go for pieces that I love and will wear for years and years to come.
46 - I would never wear anything that wouldn't suit me, just because it was in fashion. I'll leave fashion for the younguns, and create my own distinctive look.
45 - I believe any outfit looks better with lashings of eye shadow and mascara.
44 - I had 24 hour morning sickness. It was horrid. I threw up everywhere. Even cleaning my teeth would make me hurl. On my first day back at my old job, as a contractor, I threw up on my shoes before I even made it into the building. Mmmm, nice beginning. "Hi, I'm Jorth, and yes, thank you, I am aware that I smell like sick"
43 - I much prefer to knit with bamboo knitting needles. Yes, I know that it's a boring fact, but I'm fast running out of tidbits here.
42 - I find saying the word 'parenchyma' to be rather therapeutic.
41 - I'd love to frollick around in ocean for hours on end, but I'm so skinny that I turn blue after about three minutes. And then my teeth start chattering, and my limbs feel too heavy to move. So I'll never be a surf life saver. All those years of eating NutriGrain wasted! (For the record, it's best with hot milk)

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Countdown #2

80 - I have a strange desire to learn how to play the trumpet. However, when I learned the cost of a beginners trumpet, I nearly fell over. Wow, pricey.
79 - I hated high school. HATED it. I cannot at all understand why people refer to it as the 'best years of their lives'. On the last day of school, when everybody else was sobbing and saying 'we'll keep in touch forever', all I could think was "Thank goodness this misery is over, now move out of the way so I can get out of this hell hole!"
78 - Once my brother and I were wrestling on a fold up bed, and he slammed my head against the railing, and made my front tooth (a milk one) fall out. Darn thing wasn't even wobbly. However, the tooth fairy definitely came up with the goods for that one.
77 - My all time favourite book is The English Patient. However, there are many others vying for the title.
76 - I don't tend to laugh out loud watching movies or shows, even if they are side-splittingly funny. I instead make that 'harumm' noise, and tilt my head back in an approving manner. Yet if you tell me a good joke I'll be on the floor, begging you to stop because you are making my tummy hurt.
75 - I cannot draw to save myself. Actually, if I had to draw something to save myself, I could probably come up with some sort of scribble, and then my executioners would laugh at how badly rendered it was and then shoot me.
74 - I am really, really glad I don't get my period any more. Kissing those excrutiating cramps goodbye is the silver lining to an otherwise awful experience.
73 - I taught myself to knit using the internet. Predictably, I made quite a few mistakes.
72 - I have a rather large and ugly birthmark on my arm. My parents freaked out about, and insisted that it be removed. Four rather painful operations later, there is still birthmark left, however it's messily scarred, and if I hold my arm up a certain way, you can see the nice concave piece missing out if it. Niiiiiiiice!
71 - Strangely enough, I'm now rather fond of the remaining birthmark, and have no desire to have it chopped out again.
70 - Since getting married, I don't feel right wearing other rings on my fingers.
69 - I will never, ever say no to cracked pepper.
68 - If I find a book I love, I will read it over and over and over again. Not just once, more like 15 times.
67 - I cannot drive a car. At this point in my life, there is absolutely no desire in me to learn, either.
66 - I used to ride a scooter to work - remember those, and all the kids were riding them? Yep, the kids and me. People at work used to laugh at us (the Galumph would coast alongside me on his skateboard), but then when they realised that we bet them to work everyday they soon stopped laughing.
65 - I found out the hard way that scooters don't handle well in the wet.
64 - As a child, when there was nothing showing on tv on a Sunday except Wide World of Sports, I used to go through the odd-sock bag and try and hand sew clothes for my dolls out of my dad's old ratty grey Explorer socks. Not only were they indescribably ugly, but looking back I realise that I must have been desperate for something to do.
63 - Take me to a pub, and I'll order a pint every single time. None of this pot nonsense for me.
62 - I have a fear of heights. However, I didn't discover this until I was halfway over the bridge connecting Granville Island to Vancouver. Jeez it was hard getting across. All I wanted to do was jump off the bridge so I wouldn't have to face it anymore. Apparently, this is a normal reaction to have.
61 - My favourite breakfast food is sardines on toast with lime juice and cracked pepper. Mmmm, sardine breath!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


It's my 100th post in four posts time. Crikey! I had a few ideas for celebrating, like blogging in the nude (too cold), witholding my blogging talents until all countries in the world united and came up with workable strategies to deal with climate change (no one returned my calls) or, just for pure novelty value, blogging at the top of a pole (scared of heights). So it would appear that I must fall back on that hairy old chestnut, the 100 things post. With a twist, however - I shall spread mine out over 5 days, just so all my wonderful readers can wake up each day and savour the joy of anticipation: What wonders will she reveal to us today? Or something like that.

Plus the camera isn't playing fair, so no new pics to show. Ahem. Let the countdown begin!

100 - My real name isn't Jorth. But I suspect you'd already figured that out.
99 - Likewise, I didn't actually christen my daughter with the name 'Grumbles'. It's much worse that than, bwahahah!
98 - After three entries I'm already sick of talking about myself. This is rather odd, considering this blog is all about me, me, me.
97 - Once I cut the top of my thumb off on a meat slicer (salami was the culprit). I staggered out the back, passed out and had a fit, in the process giving my boss a nice right hook and splattering her with blood. She had to throw her shirt away as she couldn't get the blood stains out. Eeeeew!
96 - Two years later I mangled two knuckles on another meat slicer. You can only see the scars when I'm really cold.
95 - I love red shoes.
94 - I also love high heels, but alas, cannot wear them as I have bung knees (yes, that is the correct medical term).
93 - I once trained as a mortuary technician. It was a bit of a dead-end job (note to self: must find better mortuary technician joke). Actually, it was a very sad job. Not to mention messy and smelly. And I didn't find the uniform of biohazard suit, gumboots, lab glasses and mesh gloves to be particulary attractive.
92 - When I was a child, I wanted to be a librarian. Sometimes, I still think I do.
91 - I still haven't figured out what I want to be when I grow up. However, I do harbour a secret ambition to be an internet rock star.
90 - Before I had Grumbles, I wrote professionally for a living. I was a technical writer. What does one do? This: Composes written matter relating to instructions, policies, procedures, science, math, or engineering for use in external or internal company publications. Investigates and studies material used through examination of systems, diagrams, and interviews. Plans and produces contents of training guides. Yes, it was nearly as exciting as it sounds.
89 - I love food. Eating it, cooking it, reading about it.
88 - If I continue to collect food magazines and recipe books, we may need to invest in another bookshelf.
87 - I am very particular about the way dishes are done. I have a system, and by George it works. If you can't follow the system, don't even offer to do the dishes in my house.
86 - No. 87 worries me a little bit. If I'm like this now, what will I be like when I'm older? Doesn't bear thinking about.
85 - I love bad pirate jokes. Like this one: What kind of movies do pirates watch? ARRRRRR-rated ones!
84 - I sometimes wonder why my husband puts up with me.
83 - I grew up on a diary farm. Still, this didn't stop me from identifying a cow as a bear when we were in Canada.
82 - One of my dreams is to ride around Prince Edward Island.
81 - At my wedding reception, which was held in the unit we were living in at the time, we hired an Irish backpacker we'd found in a pub only a few days before to cook the bbq, as the girl who was meant to cook the sausages got hit by a 15 year old driving a stolen car as she walked along a footpath in North Melbourne, and had her leg broken. It was kind of hard to explain that to people.

Rightio, more Jorth snippets tomorrow!

Monday, August 21, 2006

Sunday in the park with Grumbles

As you can probably gather from the above pics, we went and saw the Picasso exhibition on the weekend. Afterwards, the Galumph and I were discussing the pieces shown, and the Galumph lamented that not many paintings were displayed. "Hold on, silver!", I exclaimed at the very top of my voice. "They had the Weeping Woman - c'mon, how good is that? What a coup getting that over here! The Weeping bloody Woman, for goodness sake!"

A moments silence followed, before the Galumph informed me that the NGV has OWNED the Weeping Woman for years, and is actually famous for having it, and dur honey everybody knows that.

D'oh! Ignorance and stupidity coupled together again!

Friday, August 18, 2006

Yoga Wrap

Finally, my Yoga wrap is done, and it's every bit as warm as I suspected it would be. I finished it last night, and as soon as I had secured the last bit of thread, I slammed into my jimjams and snuggled on into it. Ahhh, woolly goodness - I like!

What's that ya say? You want pics? You got pics!

Project specs:
Pattern - Yoga wrap from Winter 2005 Vogue Knitting, size small
Needles - 6mm circulars (bamboo, of course!)
Yarn - 4.5 balls Rustic 12 ply in Earth from Bendigo Woolen Mills

Even though I was bored silly whilst knitting it (maybe it was the 119 stitches on 6mm circs that was weighing me down, both literally and figuratively) I kinda miss the ol' knit two together, yarn over, knit one, yarn over combo. Not so much that I'm going to rush out and knit another, but still, it sort of makes me feel like when summer comes to an end. Gah, pull yourself together, girl!

Anyways, it's as warm as toast, and I can see I'm going to get a lot of wear out of this one. Yahoo! Actually, double yahoo - when I was in the supermarket this morning a lady stopped to tell me how much she liked it! Oh yeah, I'm rocking the Yoga wrap!

UPDATE: For those who want the pattern, you can buy it from the Vogue Knitting Pattern Store.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

It's a seaming party!

The washing has been hung out, the dishes have been washed and dried, the grocery run has been completed, Grumbles is in bed snoooooozing away. Let the seaming begin!

Monday, August 14, 2006

A party isn't a party unless there are sparklers

And a party isn't a party unless a dodgy plastic chair gives way under a guest.

And then that guest grabs the table to stop himself falling.

And then the table lurches alarmingly, sending everybody's glasses flying across the table, cascading liquid onto the floor.

However, no glasses broke!

Until later, when another guest, on his way out, banged the table and knocked off a wine balloon, sending glass shards scattering across the floor.

And a party certainly isn't a party unless the remaining guests stay until 2 in the morning, singing along to old daggy favourites on YouTube.

PS If you're wondering why I'm not holding a sparkler, it's because I am always convinced that they are going to take my eyes out. Now the secret's out.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Finally - some craft!

I am so bored with knitting the Yoga wrap, which I'm sure you can all tell by the pitiful amount I've done on the second sleeve. Blah. Over it. However, must persevere so that I can actually wear it before winter is over.

Not much else going on around here, except that I think we have a cat in our roof. I can hear it meowing at odd hours, and I'm pretty sure that it met the normal resident, the possum, yesterday, who did not appear at all pleased to have a house guest. Galumph bravely stuck his head into the man-hole to seek it out this morning, balanced upon a chair upon a table, shaking a box of porridge oats to try and entice it out, but to no avail (just in case you were wondering, the oats were meant to sound like a box of dried cat food. I told him the cat wouldn't fall for it). I was a sook and hid in the bedroom with Grumbles, as I'm not a cat fan, and for some reason I've got it fixed in my head that this cat is going to be naaaaaasty. However, he/she declined to come out. Maybe the possum made friends? Maybe I should just call Pete the Possum man and get him to sort it out. Looks like more hiding in the bedroom.

I'm pathetic!

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The big 3-0

Happy birthday, Mr G!

Monday, August 07, 2006

What did I do on the weekend? Oh, nothing much...

Bzzzzzzt! What was that flying past? Ah, the weekend. Zoom. So many things done. Like:

- Lunch at our French teacher's place. It was amazing - Watercress soup, followed by goose with cauliflower souffle, shredded zucchini and minted peas, and to top it all off, poached pears atop chocolate mousse. Can you believe, she actually plucked and cooked the goose herself. Talk about effort! And here's me not even bothering to do my miniscule amount of French homework each fortnight. Oh, the shame!

- Took blur-a-riffic snaps of the council fellows working hard through Saturday night to fix the humungeous gas leak down the street. When it came to machinery, you name it they had it. They'd even set up lights around the perimetre, so it was like a football game: Council vs Gas Leak. Council won, in extra time. As in 12:30 that night. Just as well we had plenty of Hornblower episodes to watch. Whaddya mean, nobody else does that on a Saturday night? Sheesh!

Mmmmm - gassy.

- Cut the Galumph's hair. I dread doing it, and for some strange reason he dreads having anybody else cut it. So, of course, I let it get as long as possible until G has had enough ("It's itchy!"), and then the trimming begins. Each time I swear that I'll never let it get that long again, because it's painful to cut, and he's getting a chop every six weeks. Which never happens, and thus the vicious circle continues. I have no idea why he likes me cutting it - I'm such a snappy hairdresser, pushing his poor head this way and that and barking at him to shuddupwillya? If I were him, I'd be fearing for my ears, but he bizarrely enjoys it. Strange fellow.

- We pulled out all our front garden, leaving only the silverbeet, which has yet to be eaten at all, behind. It looks kinda odd, like a silverbeet island in a dug up soil ocean.

- Cooked some of my world famous chocolate raspberries cakes for Galumph to take in to work tomorrow for his birthday. Great fight on between Galumph and Grumbles over licking the bowl. Galumph claims he let Grumbles win, but since I had my back turned anything could have happened.

- Discovered that the only way to get Grumbles to smile at the camera now is to let her pinch my neck. Nice one. So, in all the photos we took, Grumbles looks cheeky but delighted, whereas I looked pinched-out and freaky, with far too many teeth showing and my neck sagging in a frightening preview-of-me-at-90 kind of way. I'd hate to scare small children who may have wandered in front of the computer, therefore the excess Photoshopping. Plus it hides the grey.

Can you see the tell tale hand, still hovering in the neck vicinity? Mischievious blighter.

Onwards and upwards. The Galumph is 30 tomorrow. Wow!