Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line!

I'm at work right now drinking diet 7UP - how awful huh? I started drinking diet soda when moving to America. Everyone around me at work drinks soda. (Soda for you esteemed Aussie readers = soft drink :) hehe). Anyhow, last week I decided to get rid of the bad habit I've only recently acquired. I'm allowing myself one soda per week. I don't really drink alcohol (maybe one drink a week) - and am kind of against any sugary drinks. I don't see the need to drink that much sugar when I eat way too many cookies and chocolate as it is. Its called limiting my bad habits.

I'm sitting here and thinking about my up and coming trip to Western Australia. Thanks for the props dear readers. I'm so excited and cannot wait to go home and be with my family. I haven't seen my Mum in over a year! And yes - I will be taking pictures and posting some up. That beach I posted a pic of below isn't far from home - about a 30 minute drive. How crazy nice is it?! Most of my closest friends have left Western Australia now and moved to big cities on the East Coast of Australia. But one thing we all miss is the beaches. The sand is powdery white (you don't get dirty feet!) and the water is crystal clear, and an aqua blue. I haven't lived in Western Australia for 6 years now (I left at 22!) - but whenever I go back to visit I'm overwhelmed by the beauty of the place. Saying that, I would never change that I moved. There is something to be said for seein the world and experiencing different cultures. There are so many beautiful places in the world - beautiful in their own way. Sydney is the cleanest, prettiest city I have ever been too. California has amazing mountains, beautiful beaches. I love the palm trees here and the amazing sunsets. When I go to the beach most days here I feel in awe of it all. And England/Wales - so green and lush. Lovely old cobblestone streets and quaint villages. I remember being on a mountain in Wales and feeling like I was in the Sound of Music - with the rolling hills! And New York is possibly one of my favourite places on earth. Central park is a place I daydream about almost every day!

Raving over. I got on a tangent just then.

I was watching a taped Oprah last night - about blue zones - the people who are healthiest/live the longest in the world. The short of it is - its all about having a good diet/exercise and sense of purpose in life - and being around good friends. I'm thinking of going vegetarian and religiously drink a glass of red wine every day (like the Sicilians!). I rarely eat meat anyway. Maybe I'll stick with fish still. I include eggs and beans, lentils in my diet - and lots of vegetables (not enough fruit). But maybe I should start incorporating soy milk and tofu and cut out meat all together. I'd like to say I was all around healthy, but I love cookies too much!!!

Thats about it. Its now Wednesday and I'm home sick. I woke up with a really sore throat and feeling sick. So instead of sharing the love at work before Thanksgiving, decided to stay home and spare my dear colleagues.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend with your families - and having some time off. Does anyone get into black Friday shopping? I'm skipping it - too crazy.

ps. I'm hearting these boots right now:-

Monday, November 24, 2008

Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It is already tomorrow in Australia.

The weekend was pretty good. Most exciting thing is that I booked a trip home to Western Australia over the holidays! My cousin is getting married, and I was feeling sad I couldn’t afford to go his wedding. Tickets dropped a fair amount (still expensive though!) and I’m now flying out for his big day! It will be a time all my mum’s side of the family get together. It has been 6 years since we all have been in one spot.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


I gave in. Head hanging... I bought the striped Free People jacket. It was too gorgeous to pass up for winter. Here's how I did it: opened a Macy's account (15% off purchase) and there was a button missing (but a spare one to sew on!) - I asked for a discount for that - they gave me an extra 15% off. Nice! I got $50 off the jacket! Justified purchase? Maybe?

So, as far as the 6 month clothing ban goes: I'm a complete and utter failure. I feel like I have let down my fellow bloggers! I did just as a reader commented on. What happens when the 6 months is over? You go crazy?

Well, I broke - and went a little crazy. I felt the need to have some warm cozy sweaters/cardigans for winter. My apologies people. I'm not a crazy shopper, but there was a need. I also bought this other Free People cardigan:-

I think I'm done shopping for a while.

I just started reading Captain Corelli's Mandolin from the beginning. I started it a few months back, but got distracted with another book. I was about to read "Everything is Illuminated" but I only just finished "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close" (a fantastic novel which I highly recommend!). They are from the same author, so the writing style is similar, if not the same. So I thought I'd embark on a novel by a different author, and save Everything is Illuminated for a little later. If I don't see the movie beforehand that is! If a book is adapted into a movie I like to watch the movie first, then leave it some time before reading the book.

I used to be an avid bookreader. Then, in my early 20's got so incredibly busy travelling, being with my friends, working etc etc that I read maybe one novel a year. How I missed out. Now I'm married and life has settled down somewhat, I've been able to get back into it wholeheartedly - and I'm loving it. My dear friend Miss R is the most avid and passionate bookreader I have ever met. She is known amongst people for her love of books. Miss R has bookshelves dedicated to her library. For years now she has been on my case about getting back into the big wide world of pouring over books. Well Miss R - case closed. I'm back.

I was reading a review on the movie "Australia" - its 3 hours long! Which was film critics main flaw on the movie. Many dubbed it an epic. I can't wait to see it. Indulge in the scenery of the land I grew up in. There is something beautiful about the outback that gives me that feeling of home. The other day my MIL was saying she always gets this nice feeling as she flies back into San Diego. She gets excited to see the lights and the familiar surroundings. I told her I get that when I fly into Perth, Australia. This feeling sweeps through my heart - I love to see the gum trees and red dirt on the sides of the roads. My MIL said "thats the feeling you get when you land home". I tried not to get to nostalgic around my MIL, but I had a feeling of longing and wanting to fly into Perth airport to experience that. I have heavy boots just thinking about it.

The other night my husband and I watched Dial M for Murder with Grace Kelly. I haven't seen it in years! My husband's grandma has the best old collection of movies you've ever seen. We borrowed about 10. It was like Christmas. I think.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Looks I'd love to Rock!

My husband has always liked Natalie Portman. He thinks she is pretty and classy. Well, she is. I love her classic style and beauty. I also love her casual looks. I think I'm going to try to pull these off for work/hanging out. Which probably means dressing like I usually do, but actually doing my hair properly.

I'm also thinking of taking photo's of outfits I wear that I really like. Not to air them to the world necessarily - but so I can remember what outfits worked well. I hate it that I try outfits on - think they look great, then forget about that combination. Time comes for going out: and I get all "I have nothing to wear". Which is crazy.

Today I'm wearing a velvet navy blue vest I bought at Bondi Markets in Sydney in May, which... until this time... haven't worn yet! I'm going to also try wearing clothes I rarely wear. Maybe taking photo's will inspire me to wear them more?!

Jacket I can't buy

I'm wanting this jacket by Free People really badly. However... of course I'm not buying it. But how gorgeous is it?!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

How do I look?

Thats a loaded question right? Well, it can be.

One of my colleages, a Web Developer/Technician in his mid 30's... super quiet... we never really talk... comes in after lunch. Stops by my desk and says "how do I look?" I looked up at him thinking "whats different... his hair?". "Is it your hair?" I ask? Yes. "It looks Great! Did you get it cut at lunch?" Yes.

My colleague is nice. Super quiet in everything. You can't hear him walking around the office. He came up to my desk the other week, didn't say a word, just took scissors - I jumped out of my skin!

Then last week I was putting milk in the fridge and a hand appears in the fridge also! "Aaaghhh! don't do that! cough or something, make some noise!"

It reminds me of that episode of Seinfeld - you know the one - where Elaine has this colleague who is super quiet and always creeps up on her. One day she gives him a packet of tic tacs, so they rattle when he is walking around. I related this episode to my colleague who didn't know what I was talking about. Oh well.

Its a first: I'm speechless!

I received my first blogger award! Thank you so much Daring to Dream! How lovely of you! The bloggers I'd love to pass it on to already have blogger awards I think! Including Observation Mode, Daring to Dream and Techno Doll. If this isn't the case, please consider yourself awarded! I appreciate getting to read your blogs, thoughts - and that you update regularly (unlike me sorry!).

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

One Day... Maybe Sunday?

This sounds a little silly, but one of the things I would love to do in my life is buy a video camcorder and live near my friend Miss R and record comedies/documentaries. We both just love the camera... and the camera loves us!!! heheh. kidding.

We've made some winners in the past, and they've all been hilarious. Well, we've thought so at least.

Thats a bit of a dream of mine anyway. Its one of my favourite things to do with Miss R. When we're together we become the weirdest, loudest, funniest versions of ourselves. Don't you love it when you have a friend like that. When I think of my friends, they all bring out different things in me, and no doubt I in them. My friend Miss M, we both love embarrassing tv shows. Embarrassing in that I don't always like to admit how much I enjoy watching E Hollywood and Gilmore Girls and The OC etc. We chat nonstop and have an altogether brilliant time together. Miss S is a lot like a sister to me. My friend Miss J is a great talker also and we talk about absolutely nothing. Miss SS, we don't necessarily talk about anything in particular, but joke around constantly and have neverending smirks on our faces when together. My mate Tongers - we take one subject and toss it around endlessly, exhaust all possibilities then take that same subject and do it all over again. I think in our 5 years of friendship we've had one or two serious conversations. My cousin, also a Miss R - we're completely different, but very alike also. We have similar views on things, similar mannerisms. My cousin is super sweet and lovely. I'm cynical, loud and obnoxious, like to think I'm funny, and we get on like a house on fire. I'm super grateful for these people in my life. I'm sad they're the other side of the world.

Traditionally Stater Brothers

I had the funniest little thing happen to me last night. My husband and I were at some shops and were near Stater Brothers, so went in to get some grocers. Side note: Oh my goodness, their tinned goods are half the price of that at Vons!

I'm at checkout and this guy, about my age, says "Did it take you longer to type up your grocery list, or find the groceries?". I pretty much always have a list with me, otherwise I forget things. My response? Well, I thought he was being condescending. My response was: "90 wpm!" 90wpm? He laughed and said "I go to the store, buy whatever looks good and then end up at taco bell for dinner anyway". "Taco Bell is ok..." i replied. And then I felt the need to explain myself "You see, the thing is, it takes a couple of minutes to do up a shopping list. It takes multiple trips to the store if I forget items." The guy laughed and I went my merry little way. How bizarre was that encounter?! I like that he was friendly. Not many people openly talk at checkout, I like brief exchanges in everyday life.

I think in this day and age, it makes a difference if you smile at someone and let them go first and be polite & friendly. I know when people are that way with me I'm pleasantly surprised and it lifts my spirits. So, I try to be friendly and nice - and usually people are super nice back. As opposed to scowling and having the "me first" look/attitude. Granted, there are times, especially if I'm in a rush or am in a bad mood that I have that annoyed look on my face.

I'm thinking of making traditional English scones tonight. I'm craving some with cream, jam & a cup of tea.

Last night I made a slow cooked Moroccan Lamb Stew. It turned out terrifically! My cooking skills are still being honed in on. Sometimes its hit or miss. This one was a hit. Yay!!! I was thinking of taking some cooking classes to learn what flavours/spices mix well. I'm good at following a recipe, but want to understand the science of cooking. Cooking classes are around $60-$70 a pop. So I guess I'll just have to get out lots of books :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Another Item I cannot buy!

I love this jacket. I was with my MIL and I took her to Anthropologie. She needs an entire new wardrobe of clothes. She had never shopped at Anthropologie before (?!) - usually shops at Ann Taylor Loft and Macy's. My MIL was amazed at the beauty of the clothes (and cost). Here's a jacket I tried on that looked amazing on, and fit me perfectly! Alas, no, I'm not buying it. Of course. Maybe in 6 months it will go on sale?! It looks like one of those pieces that is not everyone's taste. It is however completely my style. And maybe if its still there when my Mum visits in February, she'll love it and take pity on her daughter. Heheh. I love my Mum! And miss her greatly.

Voluntarily tagged.

This was a "if you haven't been tagged"... And I haven't done this before. So here goes:-

8 Things I Am Passionate About (in no particular order)
1. My husband and closest friends
2. Tea with scones
3. the beach
4. Style. (Not fashion in particular)
5. Classical music
6. Europe/european style
7. Art
8. Relaxing with my friends at the beach and laughing until we're crying

8 Things I Want to Do Before I Die (in no particular order)
1. do a roadtrip around Australia in a campervan.
2. Visit Paris for a good amount of time with my husband
3. Live in New Zealand for 6 months to a year
4. Get to know myself better. I'm still figuring it out. I'm young, give me a break:)
5. Be true to myself
6. Read the entire bible. And understand it better/study it more. Hey, I'm being honest here:)
7. Live reasonably close to all my family at one time, including my friends Miss R, Smith & Smith, Miss M and Q&A.
8. Go snorkelling at the Great Barrier Reef
9. (because I can) - go to New York with Miss R.

8 Things I Say Often (in no particular order)
1. Gotcha!
2. No worries
3. How're ya going?
4. She'll be right
5. Yeah, I reckon
6. Now you're talking turkey
7. Whatever (said "whateva")
8. At the end of the day...

8 Songs I Could Listen to Over and Over (in no particular order)
1. No Surprises, Radiohead
2. The drugs don't work, The Verve
3. Don't Dream its Over, Crowded House
4. Across the Universe, The Beatles
5. I want you, Elvis Costello
6. I wanna be sedated, The Ramones
7. Djoba Djoba, Gypsy Kings
8. If I ever leave this world alive, Flogging Molly

8 Things That Attract Me to My Best Friends (in no particular order)
1. Sincerity
2. Ability to laugh at themselves
3. Humour!!! Laughing at everything and anything. Sense of humour is a big goer in our inner circle.
4. My friends are all kind and generous people.
5. Having similar interests! Most of my friends are pretty stylish kids - although its not the most important thing to them. We all love having a good time and doing weird wacky things together. We all seem to have a big love of music. Often playing instruments together, or seeing bands together. We all love curry! And a good coffee!
6. They're all go-getters and love life. All of my friends have travelled the world.
7. Its a mutual admiration society. I admire my friends for who they are as people. They're people with strong values.
8. They're all damn good looking.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The long & winding road

I've had a hectic and somewhat sad last week. Hence my lack of writing. My little brother has had some major family problems, which sadden a sister the other side of the world. I haven't felt like writing or sharing much. Anyway! Its a new week:)

At the moment I'm reading "Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close" by Jonathan Safran which I'm enjoying immensely. This is a very well written novel which I'm totally engrossed in. I feel totally caught up in the story and as if I'm somehow related to Oskar - or am a friend of his.

Today, as we all know, its voting day. It is CRAZY here in the States. I think Americans have really fought for their rights here. They are big into politics. Living in America is such a change to living in a country like Australia. I once read in a Bill Bryson novel that in Australia the Priminister could walk down the main street in a city and people wouldn't care too much. Its such a different culture. I constantly feel surprised about the rallying for Prop 8/11 etc, politics is all that is on the tv & radio - and people talking about politics constantly. People even asking me who I'm voting for?! Its just different. Which I respect. You can't move to another country and not expect there to be some major differences. Politics is a big deal here!