Monday, January 26, 2009

I finished reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson on Saturday night. I bought it last Sunday when we were in Port Macquarie so it would be pretty close to a record. I just couldn't stop reading it.

On Saturday night Big Jay went to the Neil Young concert (yeah, he has a thing for mouldy old hippies, what can I say...) and I read the last 300 pages non-stop. I finished just before midnight and then couldn't get to sleep until after 3:00 am. Sheesh.

On the surface it's a bog standard mystery but there's something about it. Can't quite put my finger on it. I love the character of Lisbeth Salander and can't wait to catch up with her in the next book (which I plan to buy sometime this week; too bad we aparently need to wait a whole year for the third and final instalment to be translated).

I have to admit to struggling in the beginning. It was all those Swedish names; I felt I would have benefited from a whiteboard and some multicoloured markers to keep everyone in order. But once I got into the swing of things the story just took over.

Highly recommended if you're a mystery buff like me.
[I don't give a crap which particular day we celebrate it as long as we get to have a day off and keep getting our annual fill of the Sam Kekovich Lamb ads.]

It was our 11th wedding anniversary yesterday. Last year (the big TEN) we went down to Melbourne for the Australian Open finals weekend (this year they only seem to be up to the third round so the timing seems to have changed). Anyway, celebrations were on a lower key this year.

Mum took us out for lunch at the gorgeous HarbourKitchen&Bar at the Hyatt on Sydney Harbour. I love this restaurant, with its beautiful view and wonderful food. They even have a reasonable kids' menu (which is novel for such a hoity toity restaurant). It was nice to dress up and enjoy a lovely afternoon by the Harbour. Thankfully the children behaved themselves which made it extra nice. [I am constantly conflicted by my philosphy that children should be exposed to nice food and nice restaurants and my ongoing experience whereby children misbehave in aforementioned nice restaurants thus causing stress, anxiety and an aversion to taking aforementioned children to aforementioned restaurants.]

I will hopefully add some photos from the day tomorrow (when Big Jay uploads them from his Blackberry at the office... stay tuned).
A couple of pics from our recent trip to Port Macquarie.

[Our dear friends Therese and Brett and their girls Claudia and Kimberley recently moved up to this lovely little holiday town and we made a long weekend for ourselves and drove up there for a four day visit. We had a fabulous time. Thanks for the wonderful hospitality!]

Here's Claudia relaxing by the pool with Marianna.

Here are Will and Kimberley. We've had these two betrothed since playgroup days.

Friday, January 23, 2009

So I know you've all been waiting with baited breath... so I won't keep you in suspense any longer.

I had the endoscopy this afternoon... have I mentioned how much I love a general anaesthetic? or at least the junior version, the sedation? Oh what I wouldn't do for someone to turn up every evening and give me a shot of that magic stuff.

But I digress. All is well. In fact the doctor found absolutely no sign of an ulcer or oesophegitis. The only thing he noticed was a possible tiny, eency weency gall stone on my ultrasound scan but said there is no way that would have caused the pain I had experienced (and that is nothing to worry about at the moment).

After all that there is nothing really wrong with me (well, apart from the obvious psychiatric problems you are all familar with). I am putting this whole episode down to a serious case of overeating during the silly season. And possibly a tiny bit of subliminal stress.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

For those of you interested in my health "issues", here is an updated. [And why wouldn't you be, it's fascinating stuff!]

a) I'm feeling great. No pain to mention since about last Tuesday.

b) My doctor wants me to have an endoscopy (tube with camera down the throat to check out what's happening in the tummy). She wants to know exactly what's going on down there so she can tell me how long to stay on the medication prescribed by the ER doctor. So I'm booked in for Friday afternoon. Will let you know what they say. [I know you can't wait to find out!]
So a little bit of catching up. My sis Jules came over from London for a Christmas/New Year holiday visit. It's so good to be with her. So easy and fun. I was a little scared to think about her visit before she came because it was a little painful thinking about her going back so soon. I'm happy for her adventure but I miss her little I don't even have the words to describe.

We had some fun together. Our best days are spent shopping and yum cha-ing. There's nothing I enjoy more. We had such a day and, apart from the silliness of Vicky Christina Barcelona, it was fantastic.

We went to a place called Din Tai Fung which had long been on our "must do" list. It's a Chinese restaurant which specialises in these dumplings which contain meat and soup. They are interesting little morsels but overall I would say I don't need to go back anytime soon. Yum cha at one of our usual haunts such as East Ocean is a much better idea.

What was special about this place was that they brought out a little cot for our handbags. Yes, you read correctly. A little mini-cot was brought out and placed next to our table and our bags were picked up off the floor and deposited in this little bag bed. Better still they then brought a little white blanket and covered our bags with it to add to the overall cot effect. Too cute!
Oh, Anthony! Everly is really a chip off the old block. Love THIS pic.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Last night when I was telling Marianna off for cutting her colouring in paper into a zillion pieces of confetti which she left all around her bedroom she showed a little of what the future may hold.

Eyes flashing she stormed back into the lounge room after me.

"My other mummy Nuery is my MUMMY. And daddy is my DADDY. But you're not my MUMMY!" she yelled into my face.

If this is 3 1/2 what will 16 be?
There's something wrong with me [enough of that!] at the moment. It started with a strange stomach ache, like I'd swollowed a stone which had wedged under my rib cage, last Thursday afternoon. It continued Friday and Saturday, spreading now and again throughout my stomach and then into my upper back. I haven't been sleeping because I couldn't find a comfortable position.

Sunday morning Big Jay took me to the Emergency Room at the Sans. They did a blood test which showed nothing and have said it's probably oesophigitis or something similar but probably not a gall bladder thing. I'm going to have an ultrasound this afternoon which will hopefully cast some more light on the problem.

I have been taking an assortment of stomach pills and Panadol but nothing has helped. Until I remembered that I had some Digesic leftover from my last op. I had some last night which at least helped me sleep for a few hours. This morning I took Somac which is a once-a-day pill for my stomach and it has helped ease the stomach pain. Right now it is the pain around my shoulder blades which is bothering me the most. I don't know if this is related to the stomach thing or if it's just a result of not sleeping and laying around on the sofa a lot.

I don't know what this is but it isn't any fun at all. I'd have 10 hysterectomies for one of whatever the hell this is.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Vicky Christina Barcelona.

Now that's almost two hours of my life I'll never get back. Have you noticed that this is a very common comment on my part when discussing movies lately?

To say I was disappointed would be the understatement of the year (so far). After really enjoying Scoop a couple of years ago I was so looking forward to Woody's latest offering. On paper it had everything going for it but the reality was just ... nothing.

The annoying narrator was driving my sister crazy but I nodded solemnly, nursing my suspicion that there was a point to the annoying narrator; that there was a purpose and that we would be richly rewarded at the end for putting up with his boring droning. I was wrong, so wrong. There was no reward, no payback, nothing, zip, zilch. There was just the END and absolutely no explanation as to what was THE FUCKING POINT!
Oh, and HELLO to all of you who left a comment on my NYE post. I didn't realise there were so many of you out there. Thanks for reading.

Despite my father's assertions that Blogs are the greatest waste of time ever I think they great. I mean what else would us frustrated writers have to do with ourselves if it wasn't for our blogs? Not only can I write my meandering thoughts in a public venue but I can read the meandering thoughts of others. I can enter the lives of other people, anywhere in the world, and get a glimpse of their reality. I love that.
You know I love Maddox. He may not be politically correct but that's probably why I love him so much. Not only is he friggin' hilarious but he has also put into words (to save me the trouble) of exactly what I hate about the new batch of James Bond movies with THIS review of Quantum of Solace. And I haven't even bothered to see it. After Casino Royale (which I couldn't even sit through) I just knew that this next installment would be a double pile of doggy doo doo (and it is).
New Year's Eve on Cockatoo Island was truly magical. One of those nights when everything just lines up for the perfect evening. The weather was just right, warm but not hot. Our pre-booked tents were set up and in great condition (dare I say almost new). The island itself was interesting to explore and they had not overbooked it so it was not overcrowded and there was plenty of room to set up and enjoy the fireworks, centre stage.

The fireworks themselves were certainly the feature of the night. Not only did we have a fabulous view of the Harbour Bridge which is always the setting for the major display but there was a fireworks pontoon set up maybe 100m away from where we were sitting so we had our own personal mini version of the big show played out above our heads. Truly awesome (in the real sense, not the Bill and Ted sense). Both kids watched the 9:00 pm family fireworks but Marianna was asleep before the midnight spectacular started.

If you get the chance, I would certainly recommend NYE on Cockatoo Island as an amazing way to bring in the new year. I was really impressed with how it was all managed; clean facilities, no drunk bozos (which are a feature of Sydney NYE's in general), everything peaceful and family friendly.

We went with our dear friends Melani and David and their kids Sebastian and Valentina and it was wonderful sharing such a special night with them.
Things got a little crazy food-wise during this Silly Season. I think we went for about a week and a half without actually feeling any sort of hunger. We just rolled from one over-the-top meal to the next. I love food but even I've had just about enough. It's down to fruit/youghurt breakfasts, salad roll lunches and modest dinners this week. I even got back on the stepper thingy yesterday morning.
So to recap... Christmas and surrounding days were busy, really busy. I'm fairly sure they were fun but I was too busy to notice. I just remember a whole lot of cooking and washing up, a whole lot of shopping in days prior and a rabbit. Yes, we have a rabbit. A cute dark gray dwarf lop earred rabbit. His name is Jasper (as opposed to Bum Bum, which is what Will wanted to call him). Any bunny rearing tips gratefully appreciated at this point.

Anyway, Santa came and went, as he does. Lots of pressies all around. As usual it's the presents you least expect to be popular which are. In our case the last minute game of Mouse Trap, purchased as an afterthought, has proven to be a big hit. The kids don't want to play it but they love setting it up and making the trap work.

The Guitar Hero PlayStation game which I thought Will would go crazy over has proven to be a little too difficult for him (and me). Only Jason has the interest and patience to master it at the moment. Maybe it's just us but this is how hard the game is: after spending a great deal of Sunday afternoon playing it Big Jay can only manage around 50% accuracy at the EASY level. God help me if I ever hear Pat Benetar's Hit Me With Your Best Shot again!