Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

You know how they say a picture tells 1000 words? I often think that a picture misses out 1000 words. There is always so much more to a story than one brief second.

Wordless Wednesday is a chance to share images not stories - except for the story that the image tells.

Here are some from this year.

Linking up with my blogging friend Trish for this week's Wordless Wednesday.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Remembering names and faces

I have really bad facial memory. I don't know if that is a thing or not but I am shocking at remembering people that I haven't seen in a while. Or haven't spoken to.

People that I used to work with, people I currently work with or people I see around but don't know, I am hopeless at thinking quickly and putting the name to the face to the place.

There was an auction in our street last week, the house was just two doors up so we stood outside to see how it went. On the front lawn was another family and I kept thinking the woman looked familiar. I decided she must be from the same swim school as us, or maybe her kids do dancing and I have seen her there, or perhaps the little boy was from creche last year. There were over 100 people at the auction so I quickly roamed around to see who else was there and then listened to the auction.

Then yesterday a lady at work asked me if I knew Emma, a photographer who had taken my photo. No, I said, I don't know any Emma at all, and I haven't had any photos taken by an Emma. You must she said, because your face is on the promotional brochure that I got in the mail. Nope, I said, it can't be me, must be someone who looks like me.

She said she is really good with faces and even though we have only met a couple of times she KNOWS it is me. I had to think and think and think.

Then I googled my own blog.

Yes! That's right. I remember Emma. Yes. We did have some photos taken. Yes, Emma is really lovely, I loved the day she took the photos.

I started flicking through them again and saw this one.

Last year when I saw that photo I hated that mole near my mouth. It's the first thing that I always see in every photo of me. But now it's gone. Still healing, still a month of sticky tape on my face to wear, but it is out, it was totally cancer free, and it is gone.

When I told the girls it was coming off, Immy was worried that she wouldn't know which Mummy was hers when she came out for school pick up. I told her not to worry I would call out her name, just to be sure.

And while I was waiting around for the Preppy doors to open I noticed another woman. The same one from the auction. Yes, that's it. Our kids are in the same class at school.

How good are you at remembering faces?

Monday, April 7, 2014

I need help with hair straighteners

Years ago my sister gave me a hair straightener for my birthday. Possibly she thought it was about time I added one to my tools to assist with bad hair days. 

There was nothing fancy about it, just a basic model and it worked ok - if you used it. Took me a couple of years to really give it a go. 

I did use it for dance concerts and attempted to get a few curls with it but it just didn't work, the edges were too rough and it was too big. 

Last year with yet another dance concert that needed Popps with a head of curls I sought out the help of my Mother in law. She is a big user of tools to get your hair under control and I tried out a few of her sleek and hotted up weapons of a bad hair day. 

I couldn't get control of them at all, however she also had a new tool of mass frizz destruction. 


It had been a gift from Father in Law Huey. FiL Huey had seen this gadget and thought it looked pretty useful. 

I couldn't get it to provide curls in Popps' hair but I was intrigued with this thing. 

I wanted to see if I could get it to work for me. Surely this is the tool I have been looking for. 

Let me tell you to save your money. The Instyler looks good but do not let this fool you. 

The barrel is huge and it is hot, unlike on straightening irons, there is no plastic backing on any side so you regularly touch the edge of an ear or the back of your neck and you BURN THE SKIN FROM YOUR BODY. 

I decided it was because my hair was too short so it couldn't get around the barrel, but as my hair has grown I have still burnt myself with this thing. I have also burnt the bathroom bench because when you put it down, the freaking hot over 400 degrees barrel just touches whatever it lays on. I have burnt face washers and melted plastic bottles with this thing. 

Worst of all, the Instyler has made me develop OCD. It is so so hot and burns so quickly that I keep worrying about if I have turned it off. One day I actually made Mr H leave work and drive home to check it was off for me, I was so worried about burning the house down. There is no auto switch off on this thing, it is just a damn hot rod of stress. It also takes a really really long time if you want to style your hair with this thing. Apparently it takes you from damp to wet hair, but that is only if you are happy to take about an hour just to dry your hair. 

So it is time I admit defeat, accept that I can not master the Instyler and return it to MiL Huey. At the same time I need to invest in my own decent hair straightener, because although I might have the straightest hair on earth, short hair needs assistance in the morning to make it work ready, as I barely have any skin left on my ears as it is, I need something a bit safer to use, and I would really like an auto safety switch too. 

Do you have a hair straightener, is it safe for me to use? Would love your recommendations.

Week 14: From Above


Hello School Holidays.

Mr H is missing in action due to being on night shift this week so it's just us girls.

And minecraft, freaking minecraft addiction is in the house.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Things I think of when I have to think of something else.

I had a little procedure today.

Isn't that an odd sentence? Is that just something I say now because I have been working in a hospital for three years? Procedure. It's what people have.

Anyway, you know how I had my naked photos taken, well they have already come in handy and today I had to go under the knife. Not really all that big a deal but as I hate needles and stuff I had to concentrate on not fainting and think of other things.

When you are told to think of something else it's really hard to think of something. So I tried to concoct a blog post in my head. What would I write, what could my next post be about? Nothing came to mind.

Should I write about stuff coming up for Easter? What about some reviews of stuff that I didn't like - is it nasty and bad karma to write about things I don't like? Would I make the makers of the stuff sad, hurt their feelings? It's not nice to say unkind things. Then again, should people be made aware of dodgy products so that don't waste money on stuff I don't like. But what if it is just me that doesn't like it and everyone else does - kind of like gin. I don't like gin, but I do like vodka, but lot's of other people like gin.

Perhaps I could write about how it felt when they were cutting, that it felt like she was drawing on me with a texta and even though it didn't hurt I was concentrating really hard on not moving and not fainting. I could write about my heart rate when she said we need to do "insert medical term I had not heard of" right now, have you had a pace maker? It's bleeding more than it should.

I could write about how nice the nurse was, I thought she was so friendly and made me really relaxed, I felt like we could be friends, if it was different circumstances we could go for lunch.

I laid there thinking of how this was such a simple procedure and it was still annoying to have to go through, my heart cracked a little for all the pain and suffering people with real illness have to cope with, for days and sometimes years on end.

Then before I knew it, 45 minutes was done and though I had one less mole on my freckled face, I still had no idea of what I could blog about next.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Week 13 of My Family and Me

We have hit the three month mark so it's a good time to take a breath and see where we are at with my challenge.

As the year began I noticed that both Mr H and I were in too few photos on both of our phones. If we were to print up the last 7 years of our lives into a photo album it would be like we didn't exist. The challenge to ourselves was to get more images every week, mainly one. Just one image per week that included one of us, or both, with the kids. 

No rules at all, just an image that reflects we are THERE! 

We started off pretty well.

Then got more creative. There were exciting times happening, a first day of school, holidays, a new cafe opened near us and Mr H ate a breakfast bigger than his entire torso.

Some images didn't make it on to the blog, but they still make it into our albums.

Look carefully at the shop mannequin in the middle.

I like to call this following image Clairey's Cowch, it is just as comfy as it looks. Usually we wouldn't have bothered to get this image, it was only that I was thinking I needed one for my challenge that made Mr H take it.

This week I am throwing in a picture of the girls with their Granny, and I am also going to make a bigger effort to get some more images with all of their grandparents. Do your kids have many photos with their grandparents? 

Grandma did some baking with the girls this week, it's her thing, she isn't into playing games or toys, she cooks, it seemed like a bit of fun, and best of all, there are smiles all round. 

I am adding the linky in again - sorry I have been a bit slack putting it in, if you haven't joined in yet, maybe you can try for a photo just once a quarter with your family - that would be four photos a year. This week is a great time to start.

Friday, March 28, 2014

The Juice Detox

This week I took on the challenge of doing a juice detox.

Just because. Because I wanted to see how I would feel at the end of it. I wanted to see if I could do it. I wanted to see if removing certain things from my diet would help with the rather cranky skin that I have right now. I also wanted a bit of a kick start into some healthier eating habits after recently falling into some bad ones.

I didn’t do it to lose weight and didn’t weigh myself, but there has certainly been a reduction in my waistline. I know this because my work pants fit properly with a shirt tucked in, rather than a shirt hanging out to hide the feral muffin top. Anyone else ever have that?

Things I thought beforehand
  1. I am a strong person and will not be beaten by hunger
  2. It’s only three days, I can do anything for three days
  3. I don’t like green juice, I hope there isn’t too much green.
  4. I also don’t like beetroot juice, I hope there isn’t too much of that.
  5. I will rest and relax and laze in the bath while my body restores itself to a new me.
  6. I hope it will kick start me into making better choices with what I put in my mouth.

Things that happened.

I was never actually hungry.

On Day 1
I consumed every bit of my juice, that is 3.6 litres of juice, or quite a lot of fruit and veg (6 kgs worth). While I wasn’t physically hungry, my mind kept telling me that it was time to eat, that everyone else was enjoying a meal and I was silly not to join them.

In the end I took a shower while the household ate dinner. I had cooked it, and it was a delicious beef casserole, not that I tasted it, but it smelt so good. Mentally I found it difficult not to eat it. At this stage I was also starting to doubt myself. Another two days seemed like a really long time. There was a part of my brain saying things like “a little bit won’t hurt” and “who would even know”.

I went to bed, second guessing why I was doing this stupid detox.

But, it is only three days. You can do anything that causes discomfort for three days. 

Day 2

When I woke, my first thought was, I need to drink juice again. I don’t really feel like juice.

But once I got the kids organised and had the convenience of just drinking a juice that had been freshly made and delivered to my door, I was more than happy to have juice again. It is all made so easy for you.

It would also seem I am quite fond of green juice, but the juice with the parsley in it was my least favourite.

I am also happy to report that beetroot juice is better than it sounds. 

At the end of Day 2 I was still not feeling hungry I had not even been able to consume the full amount of juice provided. Day 2 was pretty easy.

Day 3 

I did not rest and relax, as per the suggestions from Schkinny Maninny and by Day 3 when I was at work running around I was starting to feel a bit funny. It was a weird feeling, I wasn’t hungry, I didn’t feel like eating, but I also felt very tired. When I got home later that day I ended up eating a handful of grapes while I sat down for awhile, this got me back to feeling ok. Schkinny Maninny recommend that you eat a small amount of fresh fruit or vegies if you are feeling really hungry. 

Considering I had heaps of juice that I was yet to consume I really should have drunk that, I am not sure why I didn’t, possibly my body was just exhausted, it was now Wednesday arvo and the last time I had eaten real food was Sunday night. But a few grapes got me through.

I never got to take the bath.

This is all the juice I had left over at the end, which I drank on Day 4.

Life is busy and juice detox or not, there are kids to feed, wash and dress and get to swimming lessons and dance classes, plus there are work commitments that need to be met. I don’t have the luxury of just sitting around watching tv for three days, drinking juice. 

As the night went on, I was feeling good!

What else?:
By Day 3 I was consuming a lot less. I never finished any of the 600ml bottles on day 3, I just wasn’t that hungry. I kept them all in the fridge and was able to stretch this detox to a fourth day, by simply adding in a salad for lunch on day 4 and a very small dinner meal.  On Day 5 I woke thinking about what I could eat. I wanted everything, but at the same time I didn’t want anything that was going to ruin the feeling that I had.

I felt fantastic. 

It’s hard to explain. My skin has remained acne free for the week (this is a big deal to me) I have slept really well, I feel positive of mind and overall, I just kind of feel happier. I think this sounds a little hippy la la ish, but by feeling good on the inside, it seems to have affected my mental health more than I considered possible.

What didn’t I like:
Juice is sweet, there is a time that comes each day where your mouth feels grubby. Schkinny Maninny describes this as ‘gutter mouth’ it’s pretty much your body getting rid of toxins. I found that a peppermint tea helped. 

I also think I would like to try the juice and soup combo that Schkinny Maninny offers, just as a way to not have so much sweet juice. And, I really like soup – I could trick myself into thinking it was a meal.

Last notes: I loved the savvy marketing. The detox was made as easy as possible to complete. Delivered to my door each morning,  they had considered everything I might need to know and were regularly in touch, with post cards in my esky of juices and emails each morning, they also included a golden comment that businesses everywhere could learn from – they said they are not perfect, that they are still working to make the product better and to do that, they welcome your feedback, whatever it is. A business that listens with open ears to what the target audience wants will go far. 

Would I recommend a juicy detox? Yes. I would suggest you try and schedule it in when you have fewer commitments if you can, but either way, you will find the customer service, the juice product and all instructions of a pretty high standard. If a detox is something you have been considering,  Schkinny Maninny is worth a look.

Schkinny Maninny is in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

Feel free to ask any questions regarding the detox, I will answer if I can.

Sckinny Maninny provided me with the juice to review, I was under no obligation to write a blog post on the juice, however there was so much interest from my instagram and facebook that I am sharing what I thought.  I was not paid to write this review.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Week 12: Cubby demolition

We had a cubby in the back yard, it was what every kid needs and wants, a place to hang out and do whatever they wanted to do.

Which means in the last two years it has hardly been used.

There were a few times when the girls headed in there with their friends but most days they played around it, not in it.

They were warned that if it wasn't used, it would go.

So down it came.

They instantly decided to use it as a stage and wanted to use it for concerts. Ideally they wanted to keep the base for good.

But we had better plans.

The space has been taken back and we are preparing it for some veggie growing this winter.

We finished the weekend with the weekly task of brushing Immy's hair until there were no knots. This is not much fun for anyone, we are yet to find a conditioner or detangler that helps, but the brushing must be done, at least once a week.

And that is #MyFamilyandMe for this week.

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