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31.3.10

26.3.10

Friday Funny - Learn From My Fail

Let other people's experience give you a giggle and some very good advice at Learn From My Fail.

While in a public bathroom, do not giggle at the lady in the stall next to you because she is having an explosive movement, you might find that you are out of toilet paper and now need to ask her for some. #LFMF

24.3.10

23.3.10

That Moving Thing

This moving house (technically flat) thing is totally kicking my ass.

Or, let me clarify: The stress caused by moving house (and other things) has caused me to catch a cold/flu/resurgence of glandular fever that is totally kicking my ass.

I hate it when I go quiet on my blogs, but I haven't been able to help it lately. Between the absolute fantastic times I have been having with my mental health lately, the moving, the absolute lack of energy from being sick... Needless to say, blogging has been right up there with all the other things I want to do but just haven't had the energy to get to.

Things seem to be looking up today, though, and I managed the energy to shower (yay!), get on a train and meet the Bloke at his workplace. Even better, I did some writing. Sure, I didn't forward the story any on my WIP, but I now have the slightly disturbed, guilt-ridden past of my main character.

We all have to start somewhere, right?

I'm not kidding myself; I'm not expecting to get any writing (besides work writing) done until we're unpacked and in the new unit. But that makes the times I do write all the sweeter...

19.3.10

Friday Funny

THIS IS AN INCREDIBLE ILLUSION...
Read all the Numbers....
S l o w l y and in O r d e r!!

Be careful not to MISS ANY

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30







…scroll down




















TOMORROW, I'LL SEND YOU THE "ABC"s

It's so easy to amuse young people…

17.3.10

15.3.10

Moving!

No, not moving blogs - moving home!

Yeah, it's finally happened. After whinging about this place for so long, an opportunity The Bloke and I couldn't refuse popped up. Starting on April 6th, we'll be starting a new lease with a new unit!

With the increase in police visits, stereo fights (between two of our neighbours - not anything we participated in) and screaming matches as well as the construction noise of thirty-six apartments being put up across the road, The Bloke and I put our housing search into full throttle. Unfortunately, prices in and around Melbourne are freaking ridiculous, so the search was hard going.

However, the universe actually decided to smile at us this time. We have a couple of friends who had a unit coming up for rent with decent rates - cheap for this area. It's not far from where we are now, but it's far enough to take us away from all the freaking noise. It'll cost more than we're paying now, but we can make the money side work. Plus, we've been assured by the current tenant that all the neighbours there are very quiet.

Our lease starts on April 6th, so my days lately are filled with mornings working doubly hard to get work done so I can spend afternoons sorting and packing. This will be my first house move (I came to Australia with one luggage bag and my laptop), and I'm quite excited at the prospect. If for no other reason, I'm happy to have the huge sort through all our stuff.

While the timing could be considered bad with all the mental stuff I'm dealing with right now, I'm finding it to be a welcome distraction. Also, organizing all the stuff has been inspiration for organizing my life a bit as well.

So, if I'm a bit quiet for a while, you'll know what I'm doing...

(Anyone in the Melbourne area want to buy a 68cm TV? How about a hardwood 6-seat table? Portable air-con?)

12.3.10

Friday Funny - Little Johnny Wants a New Bicycle

Little Johnny went to his mother demanding a new bicycle. His mother decided that he should take a look at himself and the way he acts. She said, "Well Johnny, it isn't Christmas and we don't have the money to just go out and buy you anything you want. So why don't you write a letter to Jesus and pray for one instead."

After his temper tantrum his mother sent him to his room. He finally sat down to write a letter to Jesus.

Dear Jesus,
I've been a good boy this year and would appreciate a new bicycle.
Your Friend,
Johnny


Now Johnny knew that Jesus really knew what kind of boy he was (a brat). So he ripped up the letter and decided to give it another try.

Dear Jesus,
I've been an OK boy this year and I want a new bicycle.
Yours truly,
Johnny


Well, Johnny knew this wasn't totally honest so he tore it up and tried again.

Dear Jesus,
I've thought about being a good boy this year and can I have a bicycle?
Johnny


Well Johnny looked deep down in his heart, which by the way was what his mother really wanted. He knew he had been terrible and was deserving of almost nothing. He crumpled up the letter, threw it in the trash can and went running out of the house. He aimlessly wandered about depressed because of the way he treated his parents and really considered his actions.

He finally found himself in front of a Catholic church. Johnny went inside and knelt down, looking around, not knowing what he should really do. Johnny finally got up and began to walk out the door and was looking at all the statues. All of a sudden he grabbed a statue of the Virgin Mary and ran out the door.

He went home, hit the statue under his bed and wrote this letter:

Jesus,
I've got your mum. If you ever want to see her again, give me a bike.

You know who

10.3.10

9.3.10

Meet Jorge

Lately, a lot of my friends - close and not so close - have admitted that they are dealing with some level of depression. Some are feeling overwhelmed while others are battling a full on episode of depression.

I, too, have been having my own rough times, and seeing my friends going through all these things hurts. Seeing people I don't know going through rough times hurts.

Now, it may seem silly, but I figure that to help my friends, I need to start spreading a little love around. Why don't I just help my friends and leave it at that? Because that's not enough. I'm not satisfied with helping 'only my own' and no one else.

You have to be the change you want to see in the world, right?

That's where Jorge comes in.

Jorge is a 32-year-old man who is married to Elizabeth, age 28, with whom he has 3 young children. They live in a rented house in the town of La Sierra Central (Peru).

He wakes up at 5 in the morning daily because he has to walk for about an-hour-and-a-half to be able to get to his crops. However, this does not bother him. To the contrary, he considers this to be normal due to the location of his fields, and because he keeps his family's well-being in mind every time he puts in a lot of effort. He has been in agriculture for 5 years, and what he likes most is harvesting because he then sells his produce and pays for both the household expenses and his children's education.


Jorge applied for a loan of $550 on Kiva.org for fertilizer to produce a better crop. Through Kiva, I was able to donate the last $25 to give him the total amount he needs for fertilizer.

$25 is a lot to me, but it's not so much that I can't spare it when I have it to make a complete stranger's life better. Will I get my money back? Probably. If I don't? So it goes.

I'll never meet Jorge, and it's very unlikely I'll travel anywhere close to Peru. But I want to help. I want to help spread some positivity around in the world.

Why?

Because while I can help my friends directly through their times of struggle, wouldn't it be amazing if someone I helped, helped another person and spread a chain reaction that, hundreds of people down the line, meant my friend (who was a perfect stranger to someone else) received some help? Wouldn't it be great if the stones of positivity I'm tossing into the lake of life caused ripples that helped those I loved - and I'd never know?

To me, that possibility is the definition of true beauty. So that's why I'm helping Jorge.

...and joining in on a few other positivity projects, but those are other posts for other times.

8.3.10

5.3.10

Friday Funny

4.3.10

Onions, Layers, Honesty & Depression



After making a promise to Blog Naked - meaning blogging with more honesty and openness - I'm making good on that promise. I'm talking about what is going on instead of disappearing from my blogs.

When I don't post, it's not because I have nothing to say.

I stop posting for two reasons: I get busy or I'm struggling with depression. Lately? It's a lot more about the latter than the former.

Like way too many people, I had a childhood that left me like a particularly large onion: a lot of layers. For a long time, since before I came to Australia, I have worked through these layers. In an effort to become a better person and figure out the reasons for my less pleasant behaviours.

As you can imagine, the process is not easy. Who wants to face the lies they have told, excuses they have made and chances they deliberately missed out of fear/anger/stubbornness/etc? Even so, I've kept on.

But with each layer I peel back and discover, feelings come pouring out. Because of the circumstances that made these layers, the old feelings are often negative. Nothing is more heartbreaking than the fear of a little girl, even if the event happened years ago.

Feeling those things over again, exposing the raw wounds, often sends me into depression. I can handle those things better now that I am an adult, but the pain still exists. And when it's hard to get myself to take a shower, blogging isn't my highest priority.

I'm dealing with things the best I can, even if it means crying, interrupting my husband at work with a phone call or just plain admitting to myself (and to my husband) that I'm having one of my 'crazy days'.

I choose not to be medicated because, frankly, I think going for the causes instead of masking the symptoms is the way to go. I know my depression stems from my past. I know that dealing with all the things I have dealt with so far has made me a stronger, happier person.

Sometimes it's all about saying the words to someone and getting them out of your head. Some days I need a cuddle. And some days I just can't blog or get out of my pyjamas or face the world because it's just too much.

On other days, it's blogging and the friends I have met online that get me through the toughest times of my life.

For that, I thank you more than you will ever know and thank you for your understanding during the quiet times.

3.3.10

Wordless Wednesday

The World & The Bloke Are Conspiring Against Me


When I first came to Australia, the closest I had ever come to 'public transport' was the school bus I rode on for a large part of my life. My first train experience? I cried. I'd gotten to Camberwell station to transfer to the Alamein line and no one told me that multiple lines leave from the same platform (and I didn't know any better). I was coming down with a severe cold at the time, was miserable as I got rained on and ended up taking the Lilydale line by accident and getting off at East Camberwell (one station back in the direction I'd come from).

Yeah. Good times.

Since then, I have grown a lot. I navigate the trains with ease and bum around the city trams with no stress (unless it's hot, the tram is crowded and people are stinky). Trains and trams? Easy pie. However, I had yet to navigate bus lines and didn't particularly care to figure it out. After all, I had trains and trams, right?

Well, The Bloke has been prodding me for a while to start trying to figure out the bus system so I have more options for places to go. (You'd think he's forgotten that I'm on my way to turning into an introverted, house-bound vampire.) I've been ignoring his prodding.

Until yesterday.

You see, I had an appointment at the hospital for 3.30. Usually I am so paranoid about being on time to things that I would have left at 2.30. But nooooo, I would just walk to Eastlands, catch a taxi and that would be that.

This is where the Universe comes into The Bloke's evil plans.

I got to the shopping centre and found no taxis. It was already ten after three because I forgot that it takes time to walk places. *headdesk* By the time 3.20 came around with no taxis in sight, I decided to book it to the train station (a short walk from Eastlands) and get off at East Ringwood. From the station to the hospital, it is about half a kilometre's walk, but I knew I could make it and only be a little late.

The trouble is that I didn't know it was the East Ringwood station I was heading for. I knew approximately where the station was from signs I saw the last time I headed home from the hospital, but that was it. So I asked at the station.

Do you think they would give me a straight answer? Of course not.

He refused to tell me the station - I had to eventually figure it out because he referred to the Lilydale line - because 'it's too much of a walk' and I would do much better taking the trip by bus. I mentioned my urgency and the fact the bus - after he put a timetable in my hands - takes twenty-five minutes to get there and I needed to be there...

...five minutes ago.

But nope. The walk would have just been too much for me so I had to take the bus.

I was so upset about being late to my appointment that I just got my ticket and followed his directions to get to the correct bus. I must have looked pissed off because no one would sit by me on the ride.

I did get to the hospital and I did get to my appointment a half an hour late, but even had I had to wait ten minutes for the next Lilydale train (which I wouldn't have) and still added the walk in, I would have gotten there sooner than I did taking the bus.

Grumble, grumble...

After my appointment, I decided not to wait the ten minutes for the next bus to pick me up and headed to the station to check a.) how long the walk would be and b.) for sure which station it was.

Lo and behold, about a seven minute walk (at a decent clip) from the hospital to East Ringwood station.

As I got on the train and headed toward the city to meet up with The Bloke, I decided that he and the Universe had obviously conspired to make me navigate the bus system against my will.

It's just too obvious.

On the good side, my liver function test results came back all good and they don't need to see me again! I am finally, officially all good to go after the gallbladder removal surgery.

And now I need a nap.
*Picture found here because I'm too lazy to go into the city today and get one myself.