Welcome to my blog.

My blog expresses my views and thoughts and in no way intends to offend however that does not guarantee it wont.

I write in a stream of consciousness and sometimes the odd typo or bad grammar may appear - please excuse these.

Please feel free to leave a comment if something inspires you to do so.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

So What Do You Do To Cheer Yourself Up?

Well I go shopping for handbags it seems.  Went to the doctors this morning about my bung knee, she was not happy Jan and is really worried about my inflammatory arthritis ... so off this afternoon for xrays on knees, ankles and feet.  Should that be cankles?  My ankles are so swollen (so are my feet and knee) from the arthritis it is a little scary.  Good news though was my blood pressure was 123/76, woo hoo.

So, feeling a little flat, I decided to take my worn out body for a quick shopping trip, and just because I can, I went to Strandbags looking for some luggage (I will blog about that soon).  They didn't have what I wanted, but they did have the most divine buttercup yellow handbag ... it called my name from across the shop and just jumped into my hand.  It was fate I am telling you.

Now while purchasing said bag, I spied a laptop bag that was so beautiful it just had to be mine.  Black embroidered and embossed leather, 3 compartments, just to die for.  So I bought that too.  Well tomorrow is my birthday after all!!!

It wasn't until I got home that I realised I had bought a Kardashian bag - horror of horrors, but it is just so beautiful, I can ignore that, and just hope no one else notices.

See, isn't it something to covert???

The photo just doesn't do the colour justice, it has a black gusset underneath the bag
and black handles and shoulder strap.

The offending brand - lol 
Lovely yellow accents inside the bag
And 3 compartments - bliss

How divine is this laptop bag, my Mac is going to be so happy tucked up inside.

Embroidered and embossed leaves and flowers - so gorgeous and this
photo does not do it justice in any way.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

le Tour de France - Our Time

And so another Tour de France ends, Cadel Evans puts on a good show but fails to win back to back championships.  Bradley Wiggins wins the Championship, a first for England.  Thomas Voeckler while claiming the King of the Mountains, also claims the title of the most interesting face of cycling, the grimaces that flash across his face as he pushes up those mountain stages are a sight to behold.  Peter Sagan wins the Sprinter's Green Jersey and if this year is anything to go by, he will be a GC champion of the future.

I am sad to see the Tour end, I love Phil Liggett's and Paul Sherwens commentary, I love the French countryside and the images of the peleton train stretched out along the road while they power forward to catch the break-aways.  I love the quirky displays the little french towns put on while the peleton races past.  I love the thrill of seeing the cyclist's traverse the narrow streets and the many sharp corners, the steep descents and torturous ascents and those huge round-a-bouts where the peleton spilt and rejoin.

I was impressed this year by the spirit of sportsmanship shown by the riders when the peleton 'sat up' to allow Cadel Evans and others to rejoin after someone threw carpet tacks on the road and caused countless punctures.

Most of all though, I will miss watching it with my hubby.  We have very different tastes in TV shows and le Tour is about the only sporting event that both of us watch together.  So for 3 weeks of the year, we sit down at 8.30 p.m. and share an hour or two in front of the telly (longer on weekends).  We chat about the race, yelling at the idiots who run on the road, we laugh together when Phil gets something wrong in his commentary, we rewind bits to check out the crashes (and weren't there a lot this year??) and we cheer for all the Aussies, and for all the breakaways trying to stay clear of the thundering peleton.

So now le Tour has finished and hubby and I go back to our normal nightly routines, me in my study and him in his ... a little sad really.  Viva le France, Viva le Tour can't wait till you are back next year.

Monday, July 23, 2012

What Am I Doing Here? My Gym Diary

What the hell am I doing here?  Wanders through my thoughts as I walk on the treadmill, gradually getting up to 4kmh, my knee slowly getting sorer and sorer, my hips feeling totally uncomfortable. I feel so awkward, so uncoordinated, so out of place it is scary.

I look around me and see a young woman jogging on her treadmill, her eyes forward, totally focused, never missing a step.  I look forward again and see two women, side by side on spin bikes, pumping their legs in an every increasing race, standing from the saddle, sweat shining on their backs, and again the thought crosses my mind ... what the hell am I doing here?

There is no one in the gym that looks like me, no middle aged overweight women, just young fit ones it seems.  Maybe it is the time of day or maybe this is the norm - sigh.

My 5 minutes on the treadmill is up, and suddenly my personal trainer appears at my side, enthusiastically asking how I am today.  Do I tell her the truth?  Nah, I just water it down a little, not too bad I hear myself saying, apart from my knee being a little sore, when in reality I am aching all over and my knee is killing me.  She smiles and takes me off to the new program she has designed for me.

Chest presses, rowing, arm curls, stretches, twists and more treadmill.  Do I feel endorphins pumping - nope.  Do I feel like a fish out of water - yep.   My knee is even sorer on the 2nd round of the treadmill so after 2 minutes I stop.

So 3 times a week I am supposed to go, and once a week she wants me in the pool, not here as there isn't one, but at the small heated pool in a nearby suburb?  Really I think to myself, when do I fit that in, apart from the fact it is horrible there.

What the hell am I doing here?  It keeps crossing my mind like my new mantra.  Then I look down and see my stomach, the new grabable stomach ad flashes into my mind, yep that's what I am doing here.  Trying to get fitter, trying to lose some weight, even 10kgs would make me happy.

Do I think I can do this, not really.  I am not motivated, my personal trainer is nice but not really for me I think, but then is anyone right when your mind is not there?

Will I keep trying, sure that's why I signed up for 3 months, I don't want to waste my money.  So my gym journey has began, so has my gym diary, lets hope I eventually feel those zinging endorphins and not my pain ... maybe then I have a chance.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

ReadyAnytime Ad & Pitching a Tent

Now I know that impotency is not to be laughed at, I fully support people getting treatment if this happens to be an issue to them.  I imagine it would be a horrible thing to have happen at any age.

I have to question though the message in the ReadyAnytime ad that we have seen time and time again over the last three weeks while watching the le Tour.

Hubby and I have sat there with bemused looks on our faces as we try and work out the analogy (subliminal message) in this ad.

So if you haven't seen the ad, it starts with a man and a women gardening, she bumps into him, looks at him lovingly and brushes something out of his hair, then they start putting up a tent, walking over a bridge, suddenly they are in countryside outside the tent that they were pitching in their garden.

So I assume that the reference is to the whole 'tent thing' that can happen in bed first thing in the morning in summer under the sheet (well at our house anyway).  But I am still struggling to be sure that this is the ad's message, and if I was a man, I am not sure that this would inspire me to buy their meds.

Does anyone else struggle with the messages in ads?

Again, I know that impotence is not a funny thing, but hubby and I are beginning to think that this will be our new code phrase for sex.  Hi honey, you want to pitch a tent with me?

On a serious note, if you have erection problems and need help, please seek it, here is the link to the website.

The Last Week or So in Pictures and a Few Words

Last weekend I went to visit my father, all I can say is that I will never get that 4 hours back again, more's the pity.  So rather than bore you all with just how boorish my father really is, I thought I would share some of the delightful things that have happened over the last week or so. 

I was surprised at work by the delivery of some gorgeous bright gerbras
from my youngest daughter, with a card that said "Just because I can"

I found the T2 store at Booragoon and bought these cute little canisters to store my teabags at work

I also bought this very bright orange tea cup to enjoy my tea.  Seen here brewing
some lemongrass and ginger tea.

AJ was 12 weeks old this week, what a bundle of cuteness she is!

A new coffee machine and some bright T2 canisters joined the coffee and
tea corner on our bench at home

Some fairies found themselves a new home at Grandma's house and a little
grand-daughter was thrilled to find them there.

Hoping you all have a great week to come, mine will be busy with a work conference for the first 3 days and then 2 days off to relax, there might be a birthday in there somewhere as well so I am sure I will be lunching with my Mum and Pop at the Kardy to celebrate. 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Tea for Two and T2 for tea

I think there is a song lyric that goes something like 'tea for two and two for tea', heavens knows if I'm right or not.  But it seemed like good title for this post, even though I butchered it a bit!!

The back-story to this post, and doesn't every post need a good back-story when it is about something that could be as mundane as tea??

I was going to go to Blogopolis in Sydney, bought the ticket and everything.  I ended up not going for a few reasons and was happy to donate my ticket to a friend of my daughter.  Jokingly I said something like 'don't forget to bring me back the bag full of goodies'.  Well I did get some goodies - a delicious box of Haigh chocolates and a little box of T2 teabags as a thank you from Veronica.

Now a couple of years ago, I had shared a pot of T2's Rooibus loose leaf tea with the lady who was doing my massages at that time.  It was a little bit yummy, but the nearest T2 stores are a fair distance from my place and the closest one was at a shopping centre in Perth that I loathe, so I didn't look any further.  Little did I know you could by T2 teas online ... seriously why did I  not think to google it?

So the little box of a selection of teas was taken to work and I have enjoyed sipping on cups of Gorgeous Geisha, French Earl Grey, Red Fancy Fruits, and most recently Melbourne Breakfast tea (all of which I have drunk black).   I was so inspired with the French Earl Grey that I went online (yes I saw the address on the box) and ordered myself some teabags.  
Downloaded this image from their website so not high quality as the box is still at work.

What I really love is that these teas are loose leaf tea in a little shiny bag, not like some teabags that look like the sweepings of the floor.  That's right, they are the loose leaf variety that you can also buy from T2 for your teapot but in this cute little bag.  Sure they don't have the full range in tea bags, but hey, the teabag range still covers a lot of great sounding (and tasting) teas.

What I love even more is that I got free shipping (yes I had to spend a certain amount, but that wasn't hard - lol) and that their marketing is fabulous. 

Look at the gorgeous postage bag, look at the gorgeous box, look at the lovely foil lined bags full to the brim with gorgeous tea.

This is not a sponsored post, but hey T2 people, if you see this and want to send me some Melbourne Breakfast tea, I will be jumping for joy!!!   Only tried the Melbourne breakfast after I had ordered the others and it is divine.

I ordered the Lemongrass and Ginger without trying them as they are two flavours I love, and they did not disappoint, even the smell when I opened the bag had my taste buds zinging.

Don't you just love a good cup of tea?  

Cool black postage bag
Great box with magnetic closing on the flap

Bursting at the seems with gorgeously flavoured tea bags - yum
My arty tea bag shot, worthy of being on their website don't you think ?

Uploading a Video - Lets See How I Go

When I came home from work early Friday afternoon, I opened up the blinds to let the sunshine in.  Max straight away got on the spare bed and every time I entered the room he started rolling on the bed.

So I grabbed my iPhone laid on the bed with him and took a couple of videos (that in itself is a new thing for me to do).  Of course, he didn't roll around as much as he was when I wasn't on the bed, but he still is cute, even if I do say so myself.

So lets see how I go uploading these from Vimeo.com

Friday, July 13, 2012

This Body

This body of mine is truly doing my head in.

Once, long ago, I was thin, then I had 4 children and my body decided it like being bigger, and with each baby it got bigger and bigger.  So when I finished having my children I was no longer thin, not by a long shot.  I say my body decided this because I can truly say I did not eat for two, I was reasonably active and certainly having 4 children kept me running around.

My body has not varied it's weight much in the 30 years since I was pregnant with my last child.  It goes up and down by about 2-3kgs but pretty much has stuck at the same weight all that time.

I said to myself, I will be fit by 40 - didn't happen, couldn't get myself motivated and with working and raising a family I never seemed to have the time.

I said to myself, I will lose some weight by my 50th birthday - didn't happen, by then my arthritis was out of control, my motivation was zero and I was just plain tired all of the decade between 40-50.

So now I am nearly 57 and in the last year I have lost 12kgs, not through any effort but through the side-effects of one of my medications.  I am now off that medication and I have put on 1.2kgs, because my body likes being the weight it is.

I on the other hand don't.  I am tired of being obese, I am tired of hiding myself from my hubby (my issue not his), I am tired of being tired, I am trying to get fit so I can be healthier.  So I joined a gym.

My body on the other hand has other ideas.  One session and my arthritis is the worse it has been in 10 years.  I am in so much pain that it is ridiculous.  Seriously, I am over my body dictating my life ... so tomorrow I will go back to the gym, seriously body, we need to lose weight so be a little kinder to me - please!!!

See here's proof that I used to be thin!!

As a p.s. to this post, my personal trainer has just cancelled todays' session and can't fit me in until next Saturday, so is the Universe now plotting against me as well - sigh!!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Connections to the Past

My attempt at an arty photo

Connections to family are important to me.  The vase that I grew up seeing in my Grandmother's house now sits in my house.  The chairs that belonged to my other Grandma occupy space in my study and my library.  I can see these things on a daily basis and remember the good times, the connections I had remain strong even though sadly both my grandmothers are no longer living in the physical sense.

When my hubby's mother died, his family divided up a some of wedding presents that my mother in law had kept in a cupboard and rarely used.  There were some beautiful items, and each of the children took away something that linked them back to their parents.  Hubby chose a set of six small cut crystal glasses, still with their original maker's sticker, which we have recently started using when we indulge in a little muscat, they are beautiful glasses to drink from and each and every time I feel a connection.

Last weekend a new connection to family was made when my Aunt, my father's sister, sent me a gift.

You see, when I was growing up, my Aunt and her family lived overseas for much of my childhood and then when they returned to Australia, they settled in Canberra as my Uncle was in the Diplomatic Service.

We didn't get to see them often and they were my fantasy family, living in exotic lives in far off places.  I remember how excited I was when they used to come to visit, I remember the gorgeous doll my Aunt sent me.  Later in life, my Aunt would visit more often, but still years went by between the visits.

I was overwhelmed when she contacted me recently to say she wanted to send me a gift.  It was hand delivered by her eldest son last weekend.  I am even more overwhelmed now.  So overwhelmed that I can't ring her so I wrote to her instead.  

Dear Aunty V

When you called me a few months back to say you wanted me to have your pearls I was overwhelmed with your generosity.  Little did I know how emotionally overwhelmed I would be when I actually opened them. 

While I have not had the pleasure of seeing you on a regular basis while I was growing up, or even as an adult, given the physical distance that has always separated us, I always held you warmly in my heart.

You and your children were my fantasy family, living a life of excitement, travelling and living around the world.  I am sure that your reality was in some cases quite different.
One thing I always remember when you did come to visit was the smell of your perfume when you cuddled me. That smell was reassuring, it was warming to my spirit and in some way luxurious to me.

Imagine my surprise when I opened your wrapped gift to be enveloped by that scent. I thought at first it was just the box that held the pearls, but no, it is there on the pearls themselves.  

You can not begin to understand how that made me feel. It took me back to my childhood, it took me back to your embrace and it bought more than one tear to my eye.

I will wear your pearls with pride and pleasure; I hope the scent of you remains there for a long time, a treasured reminder of the gracious and generous lady who gave them to me.

With much love
K xxx

Connections to the past keeping those people in the present.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

It's All Greek To Me

Obviously Google thinks I have changed my language to Greek, or something that looks like Greek.  So everytime I Google Search I end up with Greek and English on my page.  The funniest thing is I google mapped something and the street names were in Greek.

Now I am on a Mac so normally we are free from viruses, and I certainly haven't changed my country or language settings to Greek (or whatever this foreign language is).  So I am totally bamboozled.

Hubby is going to tweak something or run some clean up something, so hopefully soon things will be 'clear as mud'.

Has this happened to you at any time?

It really is quite amusing in some ways and frustrating as hell in others.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Head Space

Do you have those days, weeks, months - the ones when your head space is clouded and dull, where everything seems too much trouble.  There are bright spots, like my massage and lunch with Amy (the best hands in Australia), cuddles and talking with my grandkids, sunshiny winter days - but mostly it is just overwhelmingly negative in my head at the moment.

Not depressed as such, but just too much to deal with, and the frustrations of trying to make things better only to be thwarted by doctors being on holidays or appointments booking into 2013.

I am not naturally a pessimistic person, always glass half full, but lately I keep getting smacked in the face by things that don't seem to be getting any better.

Take the D2, new medication - has made little to no difference.  Take the needle phobia - 3 months or more of injecting myself twice a day has not make it go away.  In fact, it is really doing my head in.  I just feel numb, so while I managed to stick that needle in, and push the injector button, I feel that each time I do a little bit of me dies.  Weird hey?  So I ask my D2 nurse if there is a support group, people going through the same crap that maybe I can join.  Seems not.  So I ask my doctor about seeing someone, sure she refers me, then he is on leave for all of this month, so who knows when I will get an appointment?  And yes, Mum, I know I can talk to you, but I don't want to, I need this to be my journey - hopefully you understand that and don't get offended.

So I am not looking forward to my visit with the D2 specialist in a couple of weeks, I know he won't be happy and that he also won't understand - after all, while he is a specialist - he doesn't suffer with D2 or have needle phobia.

Then there is the pain in my back, leg, knee and foot - all caused by the nerve in my back.  So I get a referral to a specialist - seems he can't see me until Jan 2013 - right that's a lot of help.  And I have private health, so this is not a hospital waiting list!!!.  So back to my doctors and I get a list of 4 other guys who might have shorter lists, well one has retired and two are December at the earliest.  But yippee I managed to get the 28th September - what???  That's right I am happy about an appointment months away.  Still, I need something to happen, walking around the shops today, I managed 20 minutes before I was in agony and heading back to my car.

Then there is the 12 kilos I lost because of my arthritis medication giving me diarrhoea most days, now I am off the meds, the weight is going back on.  Of course it is.  Then I hear on the radio that I need to walk briskly for an hour a day, 5 days a week.  Right, that's going to happen when I can only manage 20 slowly at the shopping centre.  Still, I am going to the gym tomorrow to see about joining.  How many hours on the weights do you think I will need to do - I hate to think, but I have to give something a try for if I go on insulin I will put weight on.

I think a lot of my issue is that I normally don't really think about myself, my focus has always been outwards - looking after every one else first and I have got into the habit of ignoring myself.  The D2 has been lurking in the background for years, I knew it was coming, I tried to avoid it, but I didn't try hard enough - it was too easy to ignore the warnings, too easy to think it would be years coming.  There were too many days of saying tomorrow, I will deal with it tomorrow.  Well you know that tomorrow never comes.

I don't know why I struggle to put myself first, but I do.  I'm not saying I am not selfish in some ways, heaps of ways even.  But it has always been easier to not think about me, it seems strange to even say that and I am not sure that anyone else would understand.

So now when I have to put myself first, well, it just seems so dammed hard, and I am so tired - emotionally, physically and mentally.  As try as I might, I just can't seem to get my head into the space it needs to be.  I even said to my Mum that maybe I just won't try, maybe it was easier to just keep ignoring until the end.  But I know the end with D2 is not pretty, but I just don't know that I can keep doing this for another 20 years, not sure I can even do it until the end of this year.

Then there is the self sabotage, suddenly I am craving all the things I am not allowed to eat, and every now and then, and some time way to often, I allow myself to indulge.  God, I am an intelligent woman - what's going on???

So excuse the indulgence of this post, I am just putting it out there in the Universe, not looking for sympathy, and not really feeling sorry for myself either, just tired, really, really tired of the crap.


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