Monday, December 31, 2012

Forecast: 14-23°
Attained: 14-21°

Went to see The Hobbit today with soulsis! Really enjoyed it, soooo exciting, if icky gross in a couple of places.
Loved the Dwarves costumes but got very cross with their table manners, just as I did when reading the book. :)
And I loved the bunny sled, and the way Gandalf went all gooey when Galadriel spoke to him...
Movie went for almost 3 hours but never felt like it - always a good sign.


I will be seeing this again soon. Oh yes.
And clearly I'm going to have to read the book again. Oh look, there's a copy within 10 feet of me. Excellent.


Sentences that never bode well:
Gee, it's quiet.
What could possibly go wrong?
Well, I think that's the worst of it behind us...


Saturday, December 29, 2012

Forecast: 14-22°
Attained: 15-22°

Note to self: if falling asleep on the couch, make sure you're in a comfortable position beforehand. Ow...


Excerpts from Suggested New Years Reading Resolutions, taken from Booktopia's latest newsletter.
(Edited and/or expanded by moi.)

I will read one classic.
I will finish Gone with the Wind in 2013.
I will read one poem every month.
Maybe? I don't have a lot of patience with poetry. Perhaps that's why I should try to keep this resolution, eh?
I will read the book BEFORE I see the film.
I tend to work the other way: if the film catches my imagination I'll read the book to get extra insight.

I will read one thing outside my comfort zone or read one thing from a genre I have a prejudice against.
I try to read as widely as possible anyway. I've been shuddering my way through the occasional teen/adult paranormal romance in 2012.

I will not cheat and read the ending before I get to it.
Never been tempted!
I will not spoil other readers' pleasure by giving away crucial plot details in conversation, no matter how enthusiastic, indignant or intoxicated I am.
I have done this in the past and felt so guilty. If I'm going to flail at someone now I always check first that a: they've already read the thing or b: they don't mind spoilers.
I will not be a book snob: I won't put down someone because I think their taste in books is trashier than mine.
I never say it out loud. I'm only judging them in my head. Does that count?
I will not crack the spines of books unless they belong to me(Sorry, but I like that sound, it's like the noise of the book surrendering itself).
No. Just no.

I will not give up on a book because I don't like/can't identify with the central character. What kind of a pathetic excuse is that? (Do you have to like Raskolnikov to appreciate Crime and Punishment? Unpleasant characters are all too human and so much more interesting in their complexity).
I will however give up on a book if it's rubbish. Life's too short for bad fiction.

I will give away books I don't intend to reread once I have read them to my local library or to a community book drive or charity.
I am already (slowly) working through my pile of 'read and pass on' books.
I will reread something I loved as a child /adolescent so that I can enjoy it all over again and rediscover my original joy at discovering it.
Sometimes this works, sometimes it doesn't. Wind in the Willows is a constant delight; Anne McCaffrey's Pern books were disappointingly simple when I reread them as an adult.
I will read something written by an Australian author.
Yup. I already have both fiction and non-fiction in the pile, ready to go...


Another pic of KittenKong asleep. Fast asleep on the 'puter. She didn't flinch when I moved, nor when I used the flash. I love the way her tail is hanging straight down the back.

Forecast (Thursday): 15-32°
Attained: 15-30°

Forecast (Friday): 15-22°
Attained: 16-21°

Didn't do an update yesterday cos I got home very late from The Astor's double bill of Deathly Hallows pt 1 & 2. Was good to see the movies again; I'd only seen them once each at the cinema and hadn't got 'round to getting the dvds yet.
Yes, they're flawed, not masterpieces by any means but epic enough for all that. And that bloody snake!

[spoilers? really? fine...]

I jumped every time it attacked someone. Also, I'd forgotten how upset I was by the Gringott's dragon, and how much it hurt to see Hogwart's attacked.
Still can't quite get over Snape's floofy hair though...


I have no idea what's going on here but it's very pretty.


Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Forecast: 12-26°
Attained: 14-22°

Today I've eaten left-over cheese, crackers and dips, and blueberrys. That's balanced, isn't it? :)


The mystery parcel Joules sent me for xmas is a gorgeous Japanese wooden comb! Photos tomorrow when the light is better. (Having been told to not open my present until xmas, I'd put it away out of sight and had akshullly forgotten about it until Joules reminded me!)


This is the txt my brother sent me yesterday:

I lol'd. :)


Inadvertent face cookies made by Soulsis. They was delicious!


Forecast: 15-22°
Attained: 15-21°

Merry Xmas!
Went over to the cubs' dad's place today for xmas lunch (cubs had stayed overnight). The roast chicken and veg were very nom, if I say so myself.
Soulsis and her chicks came over later in the afternoon and we all hung out, having fun and lols. (Didn't eat much though, any of us, cos we were still pretty full!)

It was a good day, very relaxing, with enough food left over I won't have to buy anything for a couple of days...


Yesterday, Xmas Eve, I nicked out to the supermarket for last minute supplies. It was busy and the parking was chaos but everyone was quite good-humoured about it; lots of cheery 'this is madness!' banter. :)


Soulsis gave me a set of these stacking houses!

So cute! Will have to have a think about how I'm going to decorate them.
There's a load of other adorbs stuff on the site, too...


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Forecast: 25-28°
Attained: ...° (buggered if I can sort it out. It was 29° at 3am, then the temp slowly dropped throughout the day. At 3pm it was 22°!)

It's been six months since I last attempted to donate blood. I made the attempt again today but was knocked back again cos my haemoglobin count was still too low!
I had reluctantly agreed to have some blood drawn so it could be tested for a more accurate reading but when I revealed I had a blister on my foot that was 'still-weeping', I wasn't even allowed to do that.
Eh well, can try again in another 6 months.


Relaxed Cat is tewtally chilled...

That's me she's sprawled on.

And because I think my cat's adorable when she's asleep... more pics!


Monday, December 24, 2012

Forecast: 19-39°
Attained: 16-38°

Put the tree up, finally. Looks a bit sparse?

Not with the LEDs on!

There's 2 more boxes of decorations out in the shed but, eh, don't think there's need for any more...


Saturday, December 22, 2012

Forecast: 12-30°
Attained: 12-28°

Bleurgh, sugar hangover. Absolutely my own fault...


This is a detail from a model of Bag End, made by Maddie Chambers/Brindley. There's more pics on the site, plus the whys and wherefore's for the model. (Yes, she does realise it's not Bag End as described by Tolkein, but there's practical reasons for that.)

This is the sort of level of pernickety I'd love to achieve in miniatures. I have a few concrete ideas/designs it's just a matter of getting organised enough. One day... :)


Aaaaand it's that time of year again. [snorfle]


Forecast: 12-23°
Attained: 15-22°

I'm on holidays! [happy dance] Plus I was able to sneak out leave a bit earlier, which was a good thing cos I needed to go and start my xmas shopping. Yeah...

So, dreading it a bit, off I hied to the local shopping suburb. Wasn't as bad as I'd feared, despite being this close to xmas. I was able to find a car park fairly easily and while the centre was crowded it wasn't teeming. Was in and out and done within an hour and a half. Mind you, I didn't have that much to get and I'd had the forethought to make a list, so I wasn't aimlessly blundering around.


Remember Pick-up-sticks? I d/l a version to play on my 'phone. It's nicely mindless but also weirdly zen, concentrating on getting the sticks out in order. :)

It comes with handful of basic 'skins' to start with:

I chose spots...

... but have played enough to earn enough points to 'buy' one of the special skins.
Nice! Might go for the 'sausages' skin next time.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Forecast: 14-23°
Attained: 14-22°

Cubs have been at their dad's for the past few days. Should I be surprised at the lack of washing up I've generated on my own? :)


Is it too late to put the xmas tree up? I s'pose it's still a few days 'til xmas, and then I usually keep the tree up 'til the New Year...


Ad hoc xmas 'tree' at one of the remote campuses.

Not a tree at all!
(See, there's reasons not to chuck stuff out. Lots of things can be repurposed.)


Hee, recently rediscovered this song. It's getting a thrashing on my playlist/s.




Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Forecast: 19-32°
Attained: 18-32°

Forecast for today was for late showers but alas they started early, before the heat, so today was for the most part unpleasantly steamy.
Eh, could've been worse.


The boss shouted us to lunch today, at the local RSL.
I had a grilled chicken breast burger 'with a hashbrown'. I'd assumed the hashbrown was going to be on the side, so was surprised to see chips instead. I was even more surprised to discover the hashbrown was inside the burger. See it there, just under the top bun? Weird. But delicious.




Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Forecast: 12-25
Attained: 12-28

Work held it's annual 'thanks-for-working-for-us-have-some-food' xmas luncheon today. The caf was very crowded, though we did manage to get seats, and the food was nothing of note, alas.
Slices of beef and pork - I got both, without asking this year - a cheesy, bacony potato thing, mixed steamed veg (corn, carrots, beans, peas with the occasional micro-cube of red capsicum) and gravy. Same as last year.
There was also a can of drink on offer, and either a mince pie or a piece of shortbread. I had the pie cos I'm already shortbreaded out.

Yes, it was free and it felt like it!

No matter, we're having our own library-lunch tomorrow, at a proper restaurant. :) I'm looking forward to that.


KittenKong has been sleeping on my pillow again. Iz very adorable, as long as I don't roll over and end up inhaling fur. :)


Monday, December 17, 2012

Forecast: 12-22
Attained: 12-22

Bit miffed.
I'm on a fortnightly payment plan for utilities. My most recent gas bill said I was almost $200 in credit. Awesome! - quoth I - Now I'll be able to reduce that a bit and put the extra towards the elektrickery!
No. The gas company is upping my fortnightly payments. Only by a little bit but... grraaagh.
Yes, I probly should've said something when I was told but a: I'm never at my most coherent when I'm seething and b: the operator I was talking to had such a thick accent I couldn't bear the thought of miscommunications. [grump] Maybe I'll email the company when I've calmed down...


I need a duck...
Or an acrobatic tit...

See, smiling now. :)


Sunday, December 16, 2012

Forecast: 17-21°
Attained: 16-23°

Hey, cubs are at their dad's for a few days.
I suspect KittenKong will get tired of the sound of my voice. :)


The track's growing on me...


Forecast: 19-24°
Attained: 21-24°

In anticipation of my forthcoming holidays I'm in the process of buggering up my sleep cycles.
Pity though, that I still have one week of work to get through...


This is fabulous!

National Museums Liverpool online advent calendar.

Open the doors to reveal items from the collections :) Click on them to explore details.


Saturday, December 15, 2012

Forecast: 18-24°
Attained: 19-22°

One week to go! [happy dance]


Cubs and I took their dad to see Skyfall this evening for his birthday. Enjoyed the movie even more the second time 'round. (There are reasons I did but it's late and I'm tired and marshalling my thoughts beyond the basics like 'ooh, I could do with a cup of tea...', is pushing it. :)


Because damn I love this song...


Thursday, December 13, 2012

Forecast: 21-35°
Attained: 24-35°

So, three days of above 30°. I'm knackered. Looks like the weekend will be cooler...




A news item on the radio this morning was about the pope posting his first tweet. The newsreader ended the 'story' by saying that so far he hadn't tweeted what he was having for breakfast, or expressed an opinion on Team Jacob*. I laughed. :)

[*The breakfast bit was true but I couldn't remember what the other akshull inanity was so grabbed something at random.]


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Forecast: 16-33°
Attained: 15-34°

Bit of a to'ing and fro'ing day today.

First, to the main campus at work for the monthly staff meeting. Then, out to one of the outlying campuses for stuff. Then, back to the main campus for an afternoon tea to celebrate the official launch of our new library management system. Then, back out to the other campus to finish off there.

AND THEN the cubs and I trotted off this evening to see the Avengers movie again at the Astor!

(I had planned, for the purposes of research, to try and keep track of a few things in the movie - how many times Loki was taunted, how many people he personally killed, how many monologues he indulged in etc. - but I got hopelessly distracted. Oh dear, will have to watch the DVD again. [hand to forehead]. This dedication to accuracy can be such a trial...!)


Gah! And we've had the first huntsman spider of the season in the house. Fortunately a cub bravely caught it for me and lobbed put it outside.


Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Forecast: 13-29
Attained: 13-28

On the wall of the carport early this morning...


QR codes are everywhere. Even on Spam for goodness' sake.

(The Spam QR went to a much simpler site than the product website above.)


Monday, December 10, 2012

Forecast: 12-24°
Attained: 12-21°

Yay, go me, I tidied the laundry today and neatly stacked at least one of the piles of books that've been lying around, unstacked.


Mmm... breakfast...


This is a craft sheet from Lincraft. It says it's for 'Easter Egg Cosies' but we know they're actually zombie bunnies.


Forecast: 14-20
Attained: 15-20

Overhanging cat.

My girl is a solid peasant of a feline.

We are well suited. :)


Sunday, December 09, 2012

Forecast: 20-37
Attained: 22-37

I return triumphant!
So yes, picked up my prize this afternoon for the short-short story competition. $20 gift voucher and a squee book! 1000 Steampunk Creations.

(The above is a photo of my copy cos it was just too hard to nick a pic from online.)

Michael Pryor, an Australian author, presented the prizes. He also gave a very entertaining talk on Steampunk, its origins etc. (He also had some interesting things to say about the writing process, and research, and listening to your characters. I was able to relate to that. :)

Anyway! Here's a pic of me and him. (It's a bit blurry, sorry, but it's the only one where I don't look vaguely psychotic or 'just take the gorram picture...'.)

(Oh, see the fish necklace I'm wearing? Soulsis gave me that. I luvs it.)


After the prize-giving I zipped on 'round to Penny's, cos she invited me to share her air-conditioning, where we chatted a bit, then I fell asleep on her couch. Penny woke me in time for dinner - steak and salad! - and then we watched Porco Rosso. Was an excellent evening. Thanks, Penny!


Friday, December 07, 2012

Forecast: 15-27
Attained: 14-30

A few weeks ago, quite by accident, I stumbled on a short story competition hosted by a local library. The story could only be 50 words - not 50 words or less, 50 words exactly - with a title of up to 10 words, and it had to have an element of fantasy...

Got a phone call today telling me I'd won*! :)

I'll be trekking out tomorrow afternoon to the awards thingy. Prize is 'a book' (unspecified) and a gift voucher to Minotaur Books. Bit pleased with myself, oh yes.

[*There were two categories, under 16 years old and over 16. I'm wondering if there'll be more than one winner in each category? :)


Only have to wait until May. Tch.


Thursday, December 06, 2012

Forecast: 13-22
Attained: 13-21

The snargly cub is getting better, however - not unexpectedly - the other one is now teetering on the edge of snargledom.
And only 2 weeks 'til I get some hols. Woot.


Wow. Thorki!pr0n is very easy to find on tumblr. [shifty] I think I may have a problem...


Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Forecast: 12-18
Attained: 12-18

Oooh! Hawkeye was in an episode of Angel: first season, conveniently. Well, I was planning on collecting the series anyway...


Oh dear, New Zealand...

(from here.)


Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Forecast: 12-18
Attained: 12-17

Oh dear, I haz a poor sick cub, coughing and snargling. Lucky the school year's ended.


Sorry to bring this up, Joules... :)

On this page here you can Build a Royal Baby. [titter]


Monday, December 03, 2012

Forecast: 12-22
Attained: 14-21

Cubs are on holidays so on this day, my usual day off in the week, I could actually get a decent sleep-in.
Or, it would've been a decent sleep-in if I hadn't gone to bed stupidly late because I knew I was going to be able to get up later. [sigh]


Sunday, December 02, 2012

Forecast: 14-21
Attained: 14-20

Something to look forward to!

Giant strawberry plan approved by the council

...SSS Strawberries has proposed to build a big strawberry which will act as a shop, cafe, education tour and offices and tomorrow's planning committee meeting is D-Day for the big decision...

Hee, this will be in Bundaberg, which is even further north in Qld than where my brother lives. Would I travel that far to see this? Yes. Yes I would.


This song is effing awesome. (I made a joke there, but you won't know what it is until you watch the clip.)

This is easily my favourite song for the year. :)

Warning for LANGUAGE!


Forecast: 19-26
Attained: 18-27

Cubs and I took their cousins to see Skyfall today, for their birthday.

Wow! I like the Bond movies, especially when they go beyond the 'action ride' to something deeper, as this one has. Plus, it has the best opening credits of any Bond film. Ever. Everything in it is relevant.

Also, the bad guy is really, really scary, yet sympathetic. Completely messed with my head. :)


There was stuff happening near/at the cinema, too!

Yes, the tree has been wrapped in knit/crochet. It's a thing, apparently. Yarn bombing.

Soulsis was saying the 'artists' had just bought old stuff from the second hand shops but, no, I'm pretty sure at least some of it's been custom made.

And here's a good way to brighten up those dull dull dull chain link fences! Note the red-back spider in the bottom left corner...

Ah, you've gotta love independent cinemas in the outer suburbs... I do! :)


Saturday, December 01, 2012

Forecast (friday): 23-28°
Attained: 25-26° (I finally went and looked up the code for the degree symbol)

(Had planned on finishing this update last night, but was interrupted by fanfic [reading] and then thunderstorms. Speaking of which... poor KittenKong. She was torn between wanting to be where I was, as usual, but I was watching the storm, which she didn't want to know about...)

Pfft. It got down to 25° thursday night. [grump]


I mentioned I was overpaid last fortnight, well, being of the generally Lawful-ish Good alignment* I let payoffice know. After some to and froing of emails it appears that I am actually entitled to being paid for a public holiday that falls on a Tuesday - even though it's not one of my contracted days - because I've worked more than 50% of them (heh, all of them) for six months. Good to know - this means I'll also be paid for Xmas day this year.

(imaged nicked from here.)

[* Yes, this means I do things like only cross at the lights, I don't cross against the lights. I will queue more-or-less patiently. I will give back change in a shop if I'm given too much etc...]


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Forecast: 19-38
Attained: 19-39

Imagine, if you will, a day where the temperature reaches 39 degrees, then imagine a school hall, unairconditioned, filled with people...
And then imagine the main carpark at the school is closed - because there's building work starting - which entails parking some distance from the school then treking, in the 39 degree heat to the crowded hall...
And then imagine they'd run out of programmes so there isn't even anything to fan yourself with...*

But aside from that the evening went smoothly, and quickly, with lots of enthusiasm for award recipients and performers. One cub received the Maths award for Yr 11 while the other cub essentially received the runner-up Maths award.
And then we had icecream, and it was good.

(*Akshully, I was lucky enough to be sitting next to a lovely woman who was happy to share the air when fanning herself. Plus, we'd scored seats right next to the open doors so we benefitted from the tiny, tiny breezes that found their way in.)


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Forecast: 16-27
Attained: 15-28


D'awww, adorable!



This is the actual title of an actual book, published in England in 1742.
A cheap, sure, and ready guide to health : or, A cure for a disease call'd the doctor : instructing, how to prevent being cheated and destroyed by the exactions and unmerciful usage of ignorant and oppressive physicians and apothecaries : and to prepare at home the proper medicines for usual distempers : with the prices, to save ninteen shillings in twnety, and expend little more than a penny a dose : likewise a new account of the connection of distempers, key to all physic, and to know any disease/ set forth by the benefaction of a very worthy private gentleman, to contain more than any book of the kind, at the lowest rate, as necessary for all families, and all persons.

(The record is from the National Library of Medicine. Good gods, my love of the interwebs knows no bounds... :)




Building Safety Awareness on tumblr.
Temecula, CA—A fence crashed into a car on Monday. Witnesses said alcohol may have been a factor. The fence was cited for traveling against the flow of traffic and slapped with a “reckless endangerment” ticket. Courts are expected to demand the entire fence to stay out of traffic, be covered in reflective material, and have flashing red lights installed every five feet.



Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Forecast: 14-25
Attained: 15-23

Woke up to thunder and lightning this morning, it was fantastic!
The drive to work in the teeming rain was less fantastic, as was having to share the roads with dickheads who don't know how to drive in the rain. Sheesh.


Work has introduced a thing whereby you can buy extra time off. Normally, if you run out of accrued leave and need to take more, it becomes leave without pay which is no fun financially. Now with the bought leave, you still lose the pay for those days but the cost is spread over your salary for 12 months. Quite a sensible idea, really. Good to know there's options if needed rather than just taking time off and not getting paid.


Combat kitchenware. Oh yeah...


Monday, November 26, 2012

Forecast: 14-22
Attained: 14-21

It may have only got to 21 today but the UV was fierce.


Happy duckling. :)


Cubs are in their last week of school for the year. Short week, too, and they're being shown through the course requirements for their Yr 12 subjects. Akshully sounds like a lot of fun. :)


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Forecast: 16-22

Cute idea!
Mad Hatter Ornaments.


I would really really like to buy some books but alas, cubs' school fees need to at least have a deposit put down, added to which I was overpaid last fortnight so will probly have to give that back as well. [sigh]


Forecast: 15-34
Attained: 13-34

KittenKong, exiled from my lap for being annoying, sleeps instead on the printer...


Friday, November 23, 2012

Forecast: 12-27
Attained: 15-21

End of the cubs' exam week and their dad and I took them out for noms at the Piggy Place. So full...

Hee, and despite some issues with a couple of subjects both of the cubs are up for awards this year. No idea what for, we'll find out next week. :)


This is from Think Geek. It's called the Useless Box. I quite like it.


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Forecast: 12-21
Attained: 12-21

I feel the need for a hamsterball of solitude.
Possibly bigger than this one, though. :)

(thanks for the vid, Joules! :)


Crystal clear tape, indeed...

(Was I at a smidge of a loose end at work today? Perhaps...)


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Forecast: 19-22
Attained: 17-20

[rolling around laughing]

Lifted from Hilarious Subtitles on Chinese Bootleg of The Avengers.


Just been on a little bit of a muzic buying binge on itoons (yay, payday). I did kinda sorta make a dint in my wishlist, but then I promptly replaced the newly bought items with other tracks I'd like.

One of the songs I bought today was Lovesong, by The Cure. (Sorry, this is the only version of the clip I could find online. It has an annoying non-skippable, non-fast forwardable ad at the beginning.)

Absolutely gorgeous track but the video clip makes me titter.

They're surrounded by glistening penises!


Easily amused? Oh yes... :)


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Forecast: 13-28
Attained: 12-28

Ahahahahahahahah! [gasp] Aahahahahahahah!

Robot Chicken Avengers Parody


[solemn] It works.


Monday, November 19, 2012

Forecast: 10-23
Attained: 12-24

Girl's milk. Obviously. [snort]

(Pointed out to me by Penny. :)


I ❤ Carp?

A tablet of compressed tea I bought in Mildura. (Plus my favourite teapot.)

Beneath the pink foil was a coarse black tea that made an ok brew.


[snerking] A public service announcement from Metro Trains here in Melbourne.


Forecast: -19
Attained: 11-19

Oops, meant to do an update yesterday but got distracted.

Yay! Series 3 Wallander is showing on our ABC!
Boo! No Tom Hiddlestone...

(Still really like the series, though. :)


Friday, November 16, 2012

Forecast: 11-18
Attained: 12-18

I'd heard a little bit about Henrik Scharfe so I decided to look him up.
I only managed to get 30 seconds in to the first clip before I ran screaming. :-/

(Nope, no links. Go look for yourself.)


Professor John Murtagh is an excellent teacher and his books on General Practice are fantastic. However, I'm curious about the cover pic on this one.

Clearly this is meant to be a GP consulting with a patient and her young, not infant, daughter.
Why is there a fact-sheet about breast feeding on his monitor...?


I love pop-up books, really truly love 'em, and was intrigued and delighted to see one demonstrated at the conference I went to a few weeks ago. It was on an ipoop but I figured there'd have to be some for android devices, surely?

Found some!
I bought one today: Sandra Boynton's 'The Going to Bed Book'. I spent most of my lunchtime playing with it, making the characters move, and things spring out of drawers, and turning on the hot water tap in the bathroom and having the screen fog up. So much fun! :)

A screenshot. I'd tilted the 'phone to one side and the characters all slid down the deck. Hee.