Wednesday, 30 January 2008

Latest Photos

Yes, third post of the day - I'm bored!

Here's some pics from the wedding I went to the other day. My dress is not black, it's blue with a black lace overdress - at night the flash lights it up. I got rained on and my hair was driving me nuts!


I never think of myself as tall, because in South Africa I'm not, but in other parts of the world I am. Wierd. The bride looks a little silly in this shot, but it's the only good one of me (sorry Gillian!).


And here's Milord and me looking cute ;-).

Edit: I need to photoshop this to get rid of the creepy guy in the background...

9 Weeks

70.8kg. Oooops

That was a rather huge long weekend! It was Australia day on Saturday and we had Monday as a holiday. I think the only time I stopped eating and drinking was when I was asleep. It could be worse - Milord gained over 2kg in 3 days! He says he's bloated... I think he's been listening to my own excuses for too long!
Edit: He's lost 2kg overnight! I guess he was bloated... sadly I only lost 0.2kg overnight, wah.

We're on salads for the rest of the week. Luckily I like salad ;-).

So, what happened this past weekend? Friday afternoon Milord played golf, and I joined him after work. I had volunteered to drive us home so was doing ok until we got home and opened a bottle or two of wine... well I had to catch up you know!

On Saturday - Australia Day - we joined a group of friends at a picnic spot overlooking the city, Opera House and Harbour Bridge. We watched ferry races, tall ship races, fly-bys and parachuting displays. It was a blazing hot day and while the 3 girls huddled under a beach umbrella the 3 boys moved under a tree a little way away. They also took the cooler boxes into the shade with them. In hindsight this may have been a bad thing as the boys were practically legless by mid afternoon! The two girls I was sitting with were not drinking as one was driving and the other is pregnant, and I was taking it easy - in fact I fell asleep for a while! When I woke from my nap and wandered over to Milord for a refill I was startled to discover "we" had finished 3 bottles of wine... plus assorted beers. Hmm. I'm not going to go into details, but let's just say that things got a bit messy after that and Milord woke up alone in the spare room feeling rotten on Sunday!

I wasn't too bad on Sunday myself, and went out for a short run. When I came home Milord was up and about, in a slow-motion sort of way if you know what I mean! At midday I dragged him out for a sushi lunch and a glass of wine which helped a lot... and then we went ring shopping!

I wasn't sure what I wanted, which metal, which stone, which setting or anything, so I thought we'd just go into a couple of jewelery stores and try things on. Milord's favourite jeweler is Tiffany's, so we started there. Wow. I realise now that I have no idea about jewelery! It doesn't mean much to me so I've never even window-shopped and the prices took my breath away. We ended up spending a month's salary for both of us... but they're gorgeous!

I tried on gold and platinum rings, and while they both look good on me the gold one really shows up the diamonds. This is my engagement ring:


phwoar!

Then we tried wedding bands. Gold looks wrong with Milord's skin tone, so he chose a platinum wedding band. The platinum band on me looked silly next to the engagement ring as it was too flat, so I said I'd just have the one ring as a combined engagement and wedding ring. Milord wasn't having that (isn't he great?), and after a bit of insisting we settled on this as my wedding band:

double phwoar!

You should see them worn together - fab! And then Milord's platinum ring works with mine too. Ooh I'm so happy!

I don't actually have them yet - to get our GST back we're going to pick them up just before we fly to South Africa and then they are duty free! Sneaky eh, but 10% of what they're costing is not to be sneezed at! I do wish I had my engagement ring now, but it's not too long to wait ;-)

So then we went to the pub to celebrate buying our rings... The rest of Sunday was a write off!

On Monday Milord and I went into town to finalise our gift list, so that's done. Then we headed for Chinatown for a Dim Sim lunch, but got sidetracked into a Tapas bar instead (Kat, I thought of you!). Several nibbly dishes and a bottle of wine later we headed home to relax on the couch with the papers... but then we were summoned to the pub for a few drinks. Once we got home again I gorged on too much bread and cheese and fell asleep on the couch.

Detox! Detox!

Friday, 25 January 2008

Zombies

I love zombie movies...

One of my favourite movies of all time is Shaun of the Dead - a British comedy/horror. It is hysterically funny - if you like British humour and don't mind a bit of gore give it a watch.

A couple of years ago I popped over to Australia to have a closer look at Milord after 5 months of emailing. We had a very rainy day during my visit and rented a couple of DVDs. He chose something about Peter Sellers and I chose Shaun of the Dead telling him he was going to love it... he did, but it probably wasn't the best choice for a "first date" kind of movie! Zombies don't exactly get you all romantic, eh? (The Peter Sellers movie was worse I reckon. I didn't enjoy it and fell asleep halfway through)

It's now one of Milord's favourite movies, so I was right about him... we have the same sense of humour although he really struggled with Napoleon Dynamite which I thought was very funny.

Yesterday we watched Dawn of the Dead, on which Shaun of the Dead is loosely based. Milord sat through the first part of it going "Now what are you making me watch? This is rubbish." until he finally relaxed and let himself be sucked into the story. He tends to resist ridiculous movies, but enjoys them eventually - and so too with this one. At the end he turned to me and said "Yeah, you're right, that was excellent!".

I've also made him watch 28 Days Later, and he liked it so much we rented 28 Weeks Later soon afterwards. I didn't like that one as much - it was too gruesome.

What things have you introduced your other half to, that they were surprised to discover they enjoyed?

Tuesday, 22 January 2008

10 Weeks

"Hey!" I hear you saying... "What happened to week 11?"

That's what I want to know too! Well, my wedding date came forward a little, and I was originally counting from a Saturday not my weighing day, so here I am at 10 weeks to my wedding day... 10.43 weeks if you're feeling pedantic!

I'm 70.7kg this morning. That's down on last Tuesday but up a little from where I got to by Friday, so I'm not thrilled. (Note to self: it's a downward trend, relax and stop beating yourself up!)

5.7kg to lose in 10 weeks. I can do it, it's not extreme... I was lazy last week, I had another chicken pox jab on the Monday and it flattened me for days so I skipped the gym. And it was raining all week so I didn't walk home. And then Milord and I led each other astray with bottles of wine. So no surprise that I've not lost much!

I will be walking home today and I will be going to the gym during the week. I will stick to Weightwatchers and I will keep off the booze until the weekend. It's Australia Day on Saturday which is always a major piss-up here in Oz - it is unpatriotic not to get plastered apparently. Ah well, when in Rome eh?!

Wedding News: Our flights are booked and we have organised a 5-bedroom villa in Camps Bay for the week before the wedding, where we will be joined by the best man and his girlfriend, the best girl and her family, my mum, and maybe another couple. It has a private pool and a deck overlooking the ocean - stunning! Warning - following the link may turn you green with envy!

Phrase of the Week

Actually, this isn't happening weekly, but I haven't found many fun phrases lately! This was my word of the day from Merriam-Webster's online dictionary.

weasel word \WEE-zul-WURD\ noun:
a word used in order to mislead a person or to avoid a straight answer

Example sentence:
Instead of just saying outright that jobs are going to be cut, the head of the company has taken to using weasel words like “corporate restructuring.”

Did you know?
Some people believe that weasels can suck the insides out of an egg without damaging the shell. An egg thus weasel-treated would look fine on the outside, but it would actually be empty and useless. We don't know if weasels can really do that, but the belief that they could caused people to start using "weasel word" to refer to any term intended to give the impression that everything is fine when the speaker is really trying to avoid answering a question, telling the truth, or taking the blame for something.

It's not the destination

I came across this in the Backpacker blog of my local newspaper. He talks about how sometimes getting to a destination can be as interesting as the destination itself, and his readers have commented with stories of the wierd and wonderful journeys they have experienced.

So here's one of mine:

A bunch of years ago I was travelling with my then boyfriend "Mountain Man". We'd just spent a couple of weeks in Ko Tao, Thailand, learning to dive (awesome), and now we were in Nepal heading off on the Annapurna Circuit Trek (even more awesome). This is a 2 or 3 week hike around the base of the Annapurna mountain range in the Himalayas.

We had all the gear, we'd hired me a porter to carry my pack (MM needed no porter thanks very much, real mountain men carry their own packs, only wussy city dwellers and girls use porters), we had our bus tickets and permits and were ready to roll. We hauled ourselves out of bed in the early morning darkness and made our way to the bus station. Which turned out to be a vast gravel parking lot swarming with busses, people, food and water sellers, and the odd confused tourist. No one spoke English, there were no signs, and we were at a complete loss to even begin to find our bus.

My porter, Sangam, found us thank heavens and threw himself into the fray, returning half an hour later to guide us to the correct bus and we clambered aboard. It was tiny - we could each get one butt-cheek on our seat and we had to balance our packs on our knees. We'd assumed we were on a bus dedicated to hikers, but then all manner of people began to come aboard... ancient wizened women, gnarled men, bright eyed youngsters in flipflops and torn t-shorts. Chickens with their feet bound were stuffed under seats, and a goat on a leash was lashed to the top of the luggage which was itself perched on the roof of the bus.

It was a long drive, and the bus got hotter and more fragrant as the day progressed. We stopped once or twice for the passengers to stretch their legs or use the loo (that'd be a squatting station over the river - don't drink the water!), and then the bus began to groan its way up into the mountains. The roads were rutted and full of potholes, many so big that we had to cross the width of the road against oncoming traffic to get around them. The drop was sheer with no railings and the occasional section of road had been swept away by landslides leaving a piece so narrow that I had to suck in my breath to help us squeeze across. From time to time we'd see the tumbled wreck of a bus far below us as we weaved and swayed along.

At first I was terrified, and then eventually I consigned myself to fate and fell asleep with my sweaty face pressed into my pack. I awoke suddenly to an almighty crash as we failed to dodge a deep pothole, and was even more startled to see a goat fall past my window! The whole of my side of the bus screamed at the driver to stop, we pulled up in a cloud of dust, and the goat's owner scurried from the vehicle to check on the poor thing. Luckily its leash was so very long that it hadn't strangled, but it wasn't very well... it spent the rest of the journey cradled in its owners lap, adding a subtle aroma of goat to our already ripe environment.

We got to our destination in one piece, but I remember nothing more of that day - it is completely eclipsed by the journey!

Monday, 21 January 2008

Shark!

I learned to scuba dive back in 2000, in Ko Tao, Thailand. If you are a diver, or want to become one - this is an amazing place to learn. Excellent diving, almost no current, and a very laid back vibe! It's a tiny island with nothing to do but dive, snorkel or lie on the beach.

My then bloke Mountain Man and I spent 2 weeks on Ko Tao. In the first week we got our PADI Open Water certificates - during which time we didn't see a single shark. During the second week we were meant to head back to the mainland for sightseeing, but Mountain Man got an incredibly bad ear infection so we stayed put until he was well enough to travel. We ended up at the village doctor, who was totally grossed out at the amount of earwax she syringed out of Mountain Man's ears. "What that?!" she kept saying. "Ew, what that?!".

(Mountain Man had been telling me off for years for mumbling... he didn't have a problem with it afterwards!)

Then we had to wait a few days until the antibiotics worked. I spent most of a week sitting on our hut veranda reading secondhand books, eating crisps and drinking iced tea watching a steady warm rain fall while Mountain Man languished in bed. We then spent several weeks trekking in the Himalayas in Nepal, which is another story. The scuba was what I wanted to do, and the trekking was what he wanted to do, so we did both! I've not been trekking since we split, and I believe he hasn't been diving...

In October 2001 Mountain Man and I went to Egypt. This was right after 9/11 and the place was empty! It's supposed to be high season, but the world was so jumpy about travelling in that region that most people had cancelled their plans. It was great actually, we didn't have to queue for anything! We spent several days exploring Cairo, Luxor, the temple of Karnak and the Valley of Kings and of Queens. Then we headed to Hurghada on the Red Sea to do our Advanced PADI certification. The diving in the Red Sea is awesome! Clear warm water, enough current for some terrific drift diving, and the most amazing coral and fish.

And sharks. I saw my first shark off Hurghada. It was a black-tipped reef shark, probably about 5 feet long. I was so stunned that I went slack-jawed, and my regulator (breathing mouthpiece) slipped from between my lips and bubbled off merrily to behind my back!


Luckily the very first thing they teach you when diving is how to find your reg under water and I had it back within seconds! Then I looked around for Mountain Man and the instructor and saw them frantically finning away from me - chasing the shark for a closer look! To this day I have yet to see a group of divers NOT chase a shark. And I have yet to see a shark NOT run away. Good, that's the way I like it!

Sunday, 20 January 2008

Wedding Venue Booked

Yay! Step 1 completed... we have our venue booked and so now we have a firm wedding date! Friday the 4th of April 2008 is going to be our special day.

We got into the place we wanted - a snazzy hotel overlooking the sea on Cape Town's west coast - the 12 Apostles Hotel (that's the name of the mountain range behind it). We will either be marrying in the hotel gardens overlooking the sea, or we might go to a nearby beach for it. I'm tending towards the hotel option as it's the least fuss, but Milord needs convincing!

I've hired a wedding planner based in Cape Town to help me out. Not cheap, but there is no way I could organise it from here with the time difference and stay sane! It's kind of fun to be able to say "Can you investgate this?" and she comes back with all the info 24 hours later!

We've made a start on a gift list at a local department store. I know some people hate gift registries, but shipping gifts back from Cape Town would be a nightmare and asking for money is awful. This way folk can buy something from the list and it gets wrapped and delivered to us in Sydney - or else they can buy a gift voucher from the store and we can get something that we want with it... I had fun wandering around the homewares department yesterday making a list. Milord reckons we don't need anything, and although he's sort of right all our stuff is so old and shabby! Mismatched plates, chipped cookware, faded towels... this is the perfect time to upgrade ;-). I'm keeping the items as reasonable as possible so that even on the South African Rand people should be able to afford a rice bowl or a towel or something.

I suppose I need a dress now. A friend of mine recently shopped all over Sydney for a wedding dress, so I've asked her to take me around to all the stores. I have no idea what I want, but it's going to have to be off the rack as we don't have time to knock something up. I'm a pretty normal shape and size, especially in dresses, so that should be fine. I'll try on all the styles to get a feel of things, but I'm hoping for a simple sheath sort of thing. I'll be looking at evening gowns too in case they're more "me"!

We haven't looked at rings yet. Milord and I don't have a free weekend together for a few weeks, but when we do I'll drag him out to look at ring sets. I'm not bothered about having an engagement ring, or about having a diamond in it, so that opens up our options. I'm not fussy about the gold/platinum thing either, whatever looks nice.

I've just had the whole weekend to myself as Milord was away at a friend's farewell from Friday 'til today. He's on his way home now, should be here in about an hour. I've had a lovely couple of nights lying starfish in the bed and sleeping really well! I heard on Friday that I'd probably get my venue so that relaxed me a lot, and now it's confirmed I'm thrilled.

Friday, 18 January 2008

Book Review - Wintersmith

Wintersmith - Terry Pratchett

Review Summary: Not bad for a "young adult" book, and you can never go wrong with Discworld stories.

Plot Summary: Young novice witch attracts the attention of Winter, and has to get rid of him so that Summer can return or else the world will end.

Review:

I've read almost all the Terry Pratchett Discworld books out there, and Milord gave me this one for Christmas. Bless him, he didn't realise that it's a "young adult" book, or that it is book 3 of a series. I haven't told him yet...

I'm going to start by saying that I love Discworld stories, and that the Witches are my favourite characters after Death. I did find that this book does not stand well alone - read the others first (I haven't). There is too much backstory left out regarding our young heroine Tiffany and her army of Scottish pixies - who steal every scene they are in.

I read the book in one sitting on a lazy day, and as with all Terry Pratchett's books it's a rollicking read and you won't want to put it down. The ending felt a bit pat and there wasn't much character development, but maybe that's a "young adult" thing - I haven't read this sort of book in a long time. It could have been a lot darker, and a lot longer - months skip by in a blink. Girls rule, boys are wussy, witches rock, respect the planet, and having snowflakes in your image is cool.

So, enjoyable, give it to your tweenie daughters along with books 1 and 2.

Thursday, 17 January 2008

Winner!

Hey hey - my first ever blog award ;-)



Go check out her site, she's hilarious and warm hearted and also planning a wedding!

I'm determined not to bore everyone rigid with my wedding planning, so I'll try really hard only to post milestones reached, like rings, dress, venue and so on. The same with trying to slim down for The Day. I'll keep that stuff for the weekly weigh-in!

I hear Milord's ex is trying to start a rumour that I am am pregnant, and that's why we're marrying so quickly! Admittedly wanting to start a family soon has something to do with the timing, but I have no intention of being pregnant on my wedding day - I want to be able to drink and eat anything. Plus we want to go scuba diving on our honeymoon and you can't do that preggers either! Oh well, time will prove her a liar!

Tuesday, 15 January 2008

12 weeks...

Weekly weighing day... actually the scale's been pretty good to me in spite of all the champagne that got guzzled over the weekend! 70.9kg today.

I was really really good last week once we got past our anniversary. I kept under my Weightwatchers points, visited the gym 3 times and walked home 3 times. I was doing pretty well on Saturday too until we got home and started celebrating!

Saturday night we told family, and on Sunday we started telling friends. By Sunday evening our house was full of wellwishers, and although everyone was gone by 9pm I'd had far too much to drink and Monday was rather hard work!

I got home last night with every intention of being asleep early, but then the emails started flooding in from everyone in the UK and South Africa who'd just logged on to their email or checked my blog ;-). I did get into bed by 10pm, turned off the light and stretched out expecting oblivion. Shortly before midnight I got up for a cup of herbal tea to see if that would help... I think I finally dropped off around 2am, and had wierd dreams to do with weddings. Think something might be on my mind?

Now then, we're trying to get married as soon as possible because winter (which is nasty in Cape Town) is coming and I don't want to wait for next summer for our wedding. I'm gunning for the first week in April if I can find a venue... now I have to wait for South Africa to wake up again before I can book anything! I hate this time difference thing!

If we get the date I want we will be married in 12 weeks time! Wow.

If I stick to my Weightwatchers and lose half a kilo a week then I'll hit goal on my wedding day! How's that for an incentive? Think I can do it?

Oh I'm so excited...

Monday, 14 January 2008

Flying High

Milord took me flying on Saturday. He has a light-aeroplane license and we go for a fly every few months to keep his hours up. I quite enjoy it, although landings terrify me!

This time he said he wanted to go somewhere new and chose Moruya, about an hour and half's flight south of Sydney. We packed a couple of bacon sandwiches and a bottle of water and set off around 10am. It was a very hot day, but once we were underway with air vents blowing it was ok. We headed to the coast, passed Bondi beach, and followed the coastline southwards. It's a lovely flight along cliffs and beaches, and you can really see how underpopulated the country is! Nothing but bush once you get away from the city...


Bondi from the air


Unfortunately, as we got close to our destination we ran into cloud. We climbed above it and carried on going, but at Moruya the cloud was unbroken as far as we could see. You can't descend into cloud in a light aircraft... So we had to abandon our plans and head for home.

We were a bit low on fuel so decided to land at the first airfield along the way - Goulburn. (note to self - never go to Goulburn!) The place is truely the middle of nowhere - hot and dusty and swarming with flies - kind of stereotypical Australia! We had the scariest landing ever coming in too... as we touched down a gust of crosswind threw us to the left on one wheel and I thought we were about to cartwheel off into the grass and explode in a fireball. Luckily Milord got us down ok but I think I lost 10 years off my life! And then they didn't have fuel after all - bastards. We sat in an aircraft hangar and ate our sandwiches, then climbed back into the hot plane and took off again.

Eventually we got back to the start point, exhausted, hot and bothered and scarily low on fuel. What a relief! We got into our air conditioned car and I started talking about a shower and a nap... at which point Milord suggested we go to the beach. I thought this was a bit odd as he's not really a beach person, but agreed and we went to find some sand and sea.

We went to Bondi beach which was heaving with people. I'd assumed we were just going for a paddle as all I had was shorts and a t-shirt on, but then Milord produced a picnic blanket, towels, and my bikini! I was startled and very impressed! He'd packed our beach gear as a surprise, because Moruya airfield is right on a beach and he'd hoped to swim and picnic there. We had a swim which was lovely and then lay on the towels watching the people...


Bondi from the ground


And then, Milord said he'd hoped to do this on a secluded private beach, but anyway... would I marry him? He'd even fashioned a ring out of tin foil! Of course I said yes!

I am so very very happy!


At first glance that looks like a huge rock doesn't it?!

Friday, 11 January 2008

Belated Resolutions

I'm not much of a one for New Year's resolutions - but after a bit of pondering I've come up with a few goals and changes to aim for this year.

Goals:
1. Buy a house.
2. Change jobs.
3. Start a family.

Changes:
1. Save more water - turn off the shower when I shave my legs. doing it
2. Recycle more - rinse and recycle tins in addition to the paper, glass and plastic we already recycle. doing it
3. Stop expecting Milord to propose - it's making me cranky. having trouble with this one
4. Attempt to live on one salary so that when the babies come it won't be such a shock. having trouble with this one too - we live too well!

That's about it - all quite achievable. In fact, I have some exciting news - I've just given notice on my current job! In 5 weeks time I will be looking for something new, hopefully more interesting and maybe for more money... sweet.

Note that I don't list weight stuff in my resolutions... I intend to merely carry on doing what works in that department.

Thursday, 10 January 2008

Sun Dreaming

A lot of the blogs I read are in the Northern hemisphere. I've just come from Alice's and she's talking about being snuggled up in bed with her cat while the icy winter wind howls outside.

So I thought I'd share some sunshine shots of my back yard, taken a month or so ago on a lovely day. Not sure where Milord was - playing golf probably - but I was sitting outside with the weekend papers and a glass of wine and thought I'd capture the mood.

Here's the back yard. That's the gas barbeque on the right, and you can just make out the huge shed at the back. We have a scrap of lawn but don't use it because it's too shady and full of ants. Instead we live under a big leafy tree just outside the back door...


You can just make out the cat to the left too... she was loving the sun. I got down on the bricks and managed to get a close up - not easy because she's a cranky old thing and hates it when you get close.


And finally - Milord's bonsai collection, located just past the barbeque (actually they have now been moved around the corner into the shade because it's too hot, but back in late November they were in full sun). He's been collecting these for years and has a lot of fun pruning them from time to time. In our group of friends bonsais are known as F.U.L.T's (F***ed Up Little Tree's). They're not really my thing, but he likes them. Luckily they need very little attention!


There you go - a little sunshine to make your day!

Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Bad Scale!

Growl - 72.1kg

I am officially off alcohol, on Weightwatchers and hitting the gym for the rest of January!

Monday, 7 January 2008

Book Review - Temple

Temple - Matthew Reilly

Review Summary: Pure bollocks, but entertaining if you're in the mood. Lots of gore, no sex, and very silly.

Plot Summary: Mild mannered linguist morphs into Indiana Jones and saves the world through feats of inhuman strength and ability in the jungles of Peru. Several times. Without losing his hat or glasses.

Review:

So, there's this young professor of ancient latin at some American university, who gets asked by the army to help them translate an ancient latin document en route to Peru, with his old flame as part of the team.

The document was written by some Spanish priest back during the Spanish conquest of Peru... which is interesting because it is written in a very modern style, complete with dialogue and exclamations. Anyhoo - it relates the tale of this priest helping an Incan prince run away with some sacred idol deep into the jungle, being chased by nasty nasty Spanish soldiers. They reach some village surrounded by giant man-chasing alligators, fend of giant man-chasing panthers, and stash the idol in a temple on top of a very very high pillar of rock reached by a rope bridge.

Our hero translates all this, they find the village where they are captured by German special forces who open the temple unleashing giant man-chasing panthers who are impervious to machine guns. Oh yeah and then a Nazi doomsday cult attacks and takes the idol...

After this it got really silly and I can't be arsed to write any more. I did finish the book but it was a struggle.

I don't think I'll be reading him again.

Second Anniversary!

Today is the second anniversary of my arriving in Oz to stay, and of moving in with Milord. Funny to think that just two years ago I was on my way to Sydney with just what I could carry and a tummy full of butterflies!

I won't deny that my first couple of months were perfectly miserable as I came to terms with a new land, new town, new man and jobhunting. I suffered from insomnia caused by stress and his snoring so I was tired and cranky and lonely and it wouldn't stop raining so every day was a bad-hair-day! Milord was in the throes of a divorce and had a heap of emotional baggage to work through... And "Aussie English" is different enough to "Saffa English" to cause some major mis-communications over the most trivial things!

Even at our worst I always knew he was "The One" for me though, and I stuck with it because I knew that underneath the baggage was the bloke I'd crossed the world for. I found my feet, got used to the snoring, learned to translate Aussie, found a job, got my visa, and we began to pull in the same direction. Since then we've only improved, and I can honestly say that the past year has been brilliant relationship-wise (and Milord had his snoring fixed - whoohoo). We have big plans this year including buying a house and starting a family. We might wed, although Milord is still a bit gun-shy since his divorce so who knows!

On the subject of marriage - this past Saturday friends of ours got married. They are Irish living in Sydney, so a mob of friends and family came out from Ireland for it and they also invited many new friends from here. They hired a farmstay property down a dirt road in the middle of nowhere as the venue, two and half hours drive from Sydney. It turned out pretty well, as the party carried on until nearly dawn but we didn't disturb anyone else.

Unfortunately the day was really wet, but we managed to get everything under cover and it didn't affect the spirit of the day - in fact it was a good thing as it kept the flies away during the vows (note to self, farm=flies)! It was a lovely ceremony, the bride was radiant, and we had a brilliant party afterwards. A lot of folk were camping including us, so that was interesting in the rain and mud!

I went to bed at 2am, and Milord followed at 4am. We slept surprisingly well but were woken by the chickens and roosters at 8am. We got up in the rain, rolled up the tent and were headed home by 9am. Once home we showered and went back to bed for a couple of hours, then had a lazy afternoon washing muddy clothes and bedding while sipping wine and reading books and newspapers.

A lovely weekend, but we're still a bit tired today. We will be going out for dinner somewhere near home tonight, but as we're tired and broke it won't be terribly flashy.

PS. I fitted back into a dress I hadn't worn in a over year for the wedding, and I got a lot of compliments! I cheated a little with control-top knickers, but that's allowed eh? Hopefully someone will have taken a decent photo that I can post soon ;-)

Friday, 4 January 2008

Searches

Search terms which brought people to my blog:

USA, 24 Dec: "preparing for a juice fast"
I just love that you're considering prepping for a juice fast on xmas eve! That good eh? Actually I get quite a few hits on juice fasting, but I'll only comment about them if they're unusual.

USA, 26 Dec: "ow! my armpits itch"
Canada, 2 Jan: "itchy nipple hot tub"

I see it's the people in cold countries coming in with these searches... Dude, disinfect your hot tub! Stuff grows in the warm, dark, moist environments - and don't forget the cover as it clings there too. Ick. I'm not sure I ever want to soak in a spa tub again!

That's it, nothing very interesting this week. Maybe I should swear more? (Hi Dad)

Thursday, 3 January 2008

Graph - December

I saw this on someone's blog the other day and thought it was cool. I already keep a spreadsheet of my weight so why not post the graphs?

Weight Graph December:

sigh - not a great month weight-wise! +1kg

Weight Graph to Date:

but at least a downward trend, eh?

First Diet Post of the Year

I'm going to stop numbering these because I'm losing track...

Oooh, not good. Evil ham and champagne! Ok, fessing up (deep breath) .... 71.8kg. Up almost a kilo since last week, which is a annoying but not a surprise.

And I feel rotten today: headache, puffy, creaky, tired. I had plenty of sleep and no booze and only fruit and salad yesterday - I reckon I'm detoxing and that's why I feel so terrible. Sad to think I'd be feeling better if I'd had steak and wine last night lol!

Milord also feels ghastly today after joining me on the detox jaunt. I've instructed him to drink lots of water in the hope we can flush the poisons out faster. It's mid morning and I've had nearly a litre of water, 1 coffee (yeah I know but I needed it!), 1 tea and 1 tomato juice. I slosh when I move... C'mon kidneys - you can do it!

Hopefully some of that weight gain is water retention and will be gone tomorrow! Sure hope so ;-). Who else got given extra padding by Santa this Christmas?!

Update: been reading my blog and it's almost totally about dieting lately. Boooring! Surely I have more going on in my life than that? No? Well then, I shall just make stuff up! I'll try to keep the diet stuff to once a week now...

Wednesday, 2 January 2008

Happy New Year!

Here we are at the start of a new year. I have a very good feeling about this one!

It was a very busy and very social festive week-and-a-bit. We threw a barbeque for 25 people on Xmas eve, went over to a friend's the next day for a late Xmas dinner which carried on into the early hours, travelled up the coast for a night so that milord could play golf with his cousins, then went a couple of hours towards Canberra for two nights over New Year's to stay with friends where we lived on champagne and cold ham and I had more than my fill of small children.

I am utterly exhausted, broke, back at work, and looking forward to a couple of days detox before a good friend's wedding on Saturday. She's Irish, so has hired a property out in the bush so that the party can continue all night and into the next day. We're going to be camping, which is interesting... I have never pitched a tent in dress and heels before!

Here's a shot of my first ever Xmas tree... I have to get myself a decent tripod - I really don't suit being viewed from knee-height! Milord turned out ok though, maybe because he's squatting down. Isn't that the cutest tree ever? The presents totally dwarf it. Most of those are for me too har har...



Milord got me several excellent books for xmas, as well as quite a bit of very good sports gear. I got the giggles after the third jogging/gym item and asked if he was trying to tell me something! It's all stuff I had hinted madly about, and I'm very chuffed. Almost everything I got him was along a photograph theme... I got hold of some lovely old wedding photos of his parents and framed them, and framed some fun pictures of us diving, flying and looking generally good. I also managed to collect pictures of all the children of his friends and family around the world and made them into a calendar, because Rob loves children and adores those of his mates - he's godfather to several! He was very pleased.

We also scored spice pots and cookbooks from friends, which was nice. And some less nice wierd knicknacks and chunky jewelery... that I don't wear. These folk have seen me around for nearly two years and I never wear more than a delicate chain or tiny earrings, and they keep giving me huge beady stuff. Must be an Aussie thing. Ah well, better than the big lavender gift pack and Sydney harbour placemats I got last year and still can't get rid of! Some of the naffer stuff might find its way to the charity shop soon I reckon.

The weather over Xmas was cool and wet and over New Years it was lovely and hot at last... very pleasant.

And weight-wise? Well, I was trying to be good most of the time! I managed to get to the gym a couple of times over the holiday, and on non-party days we stuck to salads where possible. I hopped on the scale between Xmas and New Years and it said I hadn't gained so that was fantastic! I haven't braved the scale since my champagne and ham marathon though. What is it with Aussies and cold ham after Xmas? I don't even like the stuff that much but that's all there was for several days... I snuck out to the village for a salad lunch and a bag of apples on New Years Eve-day because I was sick of bread and ham and cheese. Bleah.

Today I am on fruit only, and loving it. I have discovered sun-dried tomatoes as a snack too - they are kind of savoury so hit the spot. Obviously not the ones in oil though! So if tomatoes are point-free on Weightwatchers, are the dried ones free too? I can't seem to find non-oily dried tomatoes on the site to check... what do you think?