Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Facebook

I read a statistic in the paper this weekend that the usage of Facebook in Australia has jumped from 2500 to 250000 since the beginning of the year (or something like that, don't quote me). It certainly seems like about once a week I get an invitation from someone to "become their friend" on Facebook.

So yeah, I signed up, linked to some friends and family, and have rather been enjoying it. I have a lot of cousins who are quite a bit younger than me and I didn't spend much time with them as they were growing up because I was studying and stuff, and then they were teenagers who never came to family gatherings, and then I left the country. They're mostly on Facebook now and it is great to be connected. I even found out one of them is pregnant today via Facebook - it's takes years for the family grapevine to pass that info along sometimes! Louise, if you find my blog - congrats!

Another funny thing about Facebook is how you can sometimes find folk from your past. The article I read referred to Facebook as "Stalkbook" because people were looking up old flames. I had to laugh aloud yesterday when I received a message from my first ever serious boyfriend when I was 17. If you read my 100 Things you may find a reference to him ;-). Wierd.

Milord is not interested in Facebook or blogging or any of the new open communication on the internet stuff. He's a bit older than me and I think the whole instant-messaging thing just passes him by. I guess I'm lucky he managed to write me all those emails that made me fall in love with him 2 and a half years ago! It's certainly not his usual style.

Thursday, 19 July 2007

Evil Cat


Milord has a cat from his previous life. Her name is Portia and his friends call her Satan. She's a russian blue (probably), and is the unfriendliest animal I have ever met. Unless she's hungry, of course.

People who haven't met her, and who hear me talk about her, accuse me of hating cats. I don't hate cats. I'm not wild about them, and I have to be careful after petting them to wash my hands quickly because I am slightly allergic, but I don't mind them at all. In fact I can play with a kitten for hours, and have been known to pet a cat for ages if it sits in my lap while I'm watching TV.

This one is different. I once asked m'Lord if he got her from a rescue shelter for abused cats because she dislikes being stroked so much, especially near her hindquarters, but he says no. Apparently many years ago a child knocked on his door with a tiny kitten, saying it had been found and had he lost one. An hour or so later the same child knocked again saying did he want it as they couldn't find it a home and m'Lord and his then Lady had cat already. So they took it in.

12 years later he still has an aloof, grumpy, fussy, unfriendly parasite in the house. Not the ex, the cat. She won't eat the same food two days running, she won't let herself be brushed, she doesn't play and she growls at our friends. I don't see the point.

Recently she developed an overactive thyroid or something, which has made her even more grouchy and she can't stand to be touched. She wind around my legs vocalising while I'm cooking, begging for attention, but the moment I bend down to stroke her she acts completely offended.

When my friends say they'd love to get a cat I offer them Portia, but they always say "Not yours, it's horrible".

Friday, 13 July 2007

Old News - Newsletter July 2007

Well here we are at the middle of July, and I don’t think I have much news, but I’ll have a go anyway!

Milord’s mum is really ill. Her lung cancer is growing in spite of the chemotherapy now, and it has come to the point where the treatment would probably kill her sooner than the disease so they’ve stopped it. She’s been given a few months to live and Milord and his sister are taking turns in being with her 24 hours a day at her home in Brisbane. She wants to stay at home for as long as possible before going into a hospice, but someone has to be there all the time. Milord’s sister has suspended her job to be there during the week, and Milord is flying up most weekends to take over and let his sister go home to her family. It is very hard on them all.

So I’ve had the house to myself rather a lot recently. At first it was rather nice to have some space, but I’m over it now and miss him terribly. That is, until he comes home and grumps around the place like a bear with a sore head. I know it’s my job to absorb it and be cheerful, but I’m kind of over that too! Some days I feel like moving in with a mate and letting him and his horrible cat grump at each other instead. Bad girlfriend.

The househunting has been pretty awful. We’ve decided that it is one stress we can do without at this time and are taking a break from it. I don’t know when we’ll start again, but hopefully at the end of the year. I really miss my little house in England sometimes, and I’ve been ever so homesick lately. Probably because I just don’t like the house we are in now, and being in it alone really brings home what I am missing.

Anyway, enough moaning.

As you know, my permanent visa came through the other day (yay yay yay!) and I have to go out of the country to get it. We have booked to go to New Zealand in September, for a few days of skiing in Queenstown and a hop to Auckland to get my visa and visit H. I’m a bit nervous about skiing as it’s been about 5 years, and Milord and I have started exercising to build up our thighs. Hopefully it will all come back once I’m up the lift looking down the mountain!

Speaking of exercising, I have signed up for a Sydney fun run called the City to Surf, which is a 14km run from the centre of the city to Bondi beach. The main reason I signed up was to have an incentive to get running to hopefully shake off some weight. Sadly I’m doing something wrong, because although I am fitter and faster I am actually gaining weight! Running isn’t supposed to build muscle, is it? I have also started using a personal trainer once a week, and she’s killing me. Lunges, squats, press-ups, all the things I really don’t like! Hmmm, maybe that’s where the “muscle” is coming from… On the positive side I have beaten my personal best around the Bay, at last! Tomorrow I intend to try to run the Bay twice, as that is pretty much the same distance as the City to Surf. I imagine I’ll be walking most of the second circuit!

That’s about it, not very interesting… We’re trying to pay off our credit cards so aren’t getting out much, it’s quite cold and surprisingly wet.

Mid July

Well here we are at the middle of July, and I don’t think I have much news, but I’ll have a go anyway!

Milord’s mum is really ill. Her lung cancer is growing in spite of the chemotherapy now, and it has come to the point where the treatment would probably kill her sooner than the disease so they’ve stopped it. She’s been given a few months to live and Milord and his sister are taking turns in being with her 24 hours a day at her home in Brisbane. She wants to stay at home for as long as possible before going into a hospice, but someone has to be there all the time. Milord's sister has suspended her job to be there during the week, and m'Lord is flying up most weekends to take over and let his sister go home to her family. It is very hard on them all.

So I’ve had the house to myself rather a lot recently. At first it was rather nice to have some space, but I’m over it now and miss him terribly. That is, until he comes home and grumps around the place like a bear with a sore head. I know it’s my job to absorb it and be cheerful, but I’m kind of over that too! Some days I feel like moving in with a mate and letting him and his horrible cat grump at each other instead. Bad girlfriend.

The househunting has been pretty awful. We’ve decided that it is one stress we can do without at this time and are taking a break from it. I don’t know when we’ll start again, but hopefully at the end of the year. I really miss my little house in England sometimes, and I’ve been ever so homesick lately. Probably because I just don’t like the house we are in now, and being in it alone really brings home what I am missing.

Anyway, enough moaning.

As you know, my permanent visa came through the other day (yay yay yay!) and I have to go out of the country to get it. We have booked to go to New Zealand in September, for a few days of skiing in Queenstown and a hop to Auckland to get my visa and visit Heidi. I’m a bit nervous about skiing as it’s been about 5 years, and Milord and I have started exercising to build up our thighs. Hopefully it will all come back once I’m up the lift looking down the mountain!

Speaking of exercising, I have signed up for a Sydney fun run called the City to Surf, which is a 14km run from the centre of the city to Bondi beach. The main reason I signed up was to have an incentive to get running to hopefully shake off some weight. Sadly I’m doing something wrong, because although I am fitter and faster I am actually gaining weight! Running isn’t supposed to build muscle, is it? I have also started using a personal trainer once a week, and she’s killing me. Lunges, squats, press-ups, all the things I really don’t like! Hmmm, maybe that’s where the “muscle” is coming from… On the positive side I have beaten my personal best around the Bay, at last! Tomorrow I intend to try to run the Bay twice, as that is pretty much the same distance as the City to Surf. I imagine I’ll be walking most of the second circuit!

That’s about it, not very interesting… We’re trying to pay off our credit cards so aren’t getting out much, it’s quite cold and surprisingly wet.

Monday, 9 July 2007

Personal Torturer

The gym I belong to gives you a free personal training session every month as part of the membership deal. Initially I thought this was rather cool, and I used my sessions to ask the trainer about specific exercises to firm my butt or how to use the weights or whatever. Then the trainer I had been seeing left the gym, and I was assigned a new one called Rene.

And Rene is out to hurt people! I had one session with her and several days later when I was walking normally again I determined to never go back, and I didn't for over a year. I don't like pain.

Now, it seems the gym has become techo-savvy and they have discovered that I have a backlog of a year's worth of PT sessions owed to me. Rene rang me up a couple of weeks back to arrange a session, and I was such a wuss that I went along last Monday. She hasn't eased up at all! On Tuesday I could barely make it down a flight of stairs, and on Wednesday night I was on painkillers and Milord was heating up wheat bags to put on my back because it was in spasm...

And guess what? I've booked in for sessions with Rene every Monday midday until the City2Surf run! That's 5 weeks of torture every Monday - and my next one is in an hours time... oh why do I let these things happen to me!? Today I will ask her to skip the exercise for the back and core muscles as my back is still not quite right - of course that means that she will be able to make me do something else instead.

On the positive side though, I broke 50 minutes for the first time around the Bay yesterday! 48:48 - fantastic.