Sunday, 27 April 2014

De-lurk, ploise!


I have changed my comment settings to allow anonymous comments, though I will still do the approval thing.
So if you have not been inclined to join Google/OpenID, you can now say your thing*.
Come on, de lurk! Say hello! Tell me something about yourself.

* I am of the school of "if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all". If you have a beef, say so constructively, and identify yourself. We are all adults here!

Villa Cilla

Hi There,

I had a post in the pipeworks reflecting about ANZAC day and how happy and lucky I feel.

I can precis it by saying I feel happy and lucky.

If (God forbid) I was given a dire prognosis tomorrow, I would be satisfied with what I have done in my life, and where I am now. I have (mostly, barring the odd meltdown) made peace with my past, and I feel calm about my future. I have all I need, and most of the things I want. My relationships are satisfying, and that with myself has improved over the recent years.

plus, on the weekend, we met Tig, the French Bulldog. How can this little fella fail to put a smile on your dial. I cannot even deal with how cute he was...

That's that, really.

Sooo, there's been a bit going on around here. I am trying to get chapters 1 and 2 written before I go away in June. Hence my sporadic and sometimes less than meaty posts.

My job arrangements are changing. In a good way, but there is a bit to get my head around there too.

Preparations for trying for a little 'un are being attended.

And the fella and I have been looking for a house.

That's quite a big thing, I think. Our ideas of what constitutes a good dwelling overlap mostly, it's just working out the nitty gritty that can get us occasionally bogged down.

We have looked at a few houses, and researched the market via the real estate sites. We have an appreciation that the going price of the house is about $100K above the upper end of the estimated sale price - give or take! Cheeky devils.

There are some houses that are immediately attractive, plug and play, gussied up. But I realise that a lot of that is smoke and mirrors. A good interior designer. Use of double beds instead of queen beds to make a room look bigger etc.

What I am starting to appreciate is the house that is a tarter-upper. One that is serviceable, liveable, but not recently prettied up. Not something that needs major alterations to.

I know! I have had no particular interest in interior design before! I look with awe at Heidi's and Naomi's blogs.

Today I actually PICKED UP a home decoration magazine!

And....and.... I made my first trip to Ikea! So many ideas there! It was overwhelming! The cool things you can get there! The choice! We even had the meatballs!

I like the idea of changing some floor coverings, putting a lick of paint on, gussying up the kitchen to what I would like. If the place can be lived in for a few months to get a feel for what would work, before gussying, so much the better.

It would be good to make a place very much our own, with our own stamp on it. It's not something I've done before. I'm excited.

Wednesday, 23 April 2014


I have a mish-mash of things I want to put on here today.....

  • I have found that, as a young female doctor, sometimes, no amount of skill, knowledge, kindness, compassion or patience will get the the message across. What I think will work though, is if I hire an actor and give them a script. The actor will be a sixty year old white upper middle class male. That will help immensely.
  • The dog has discovered "upstairs, where the Hoomins live". She very carefully creeps up there and has a look around. We shoo her off very quickly.
  • The fella and I are off to Europe in June. He is in Spain for a conference, I will join him there after a few days in London. We will head off to Istanbul for a week or so... ISTANBUL BABY!
  • I have a tax bill to pay :(
  • But it doesn't matter as MANDAREENIES are in store. MANDAREENIES!!!!
  • Tony Abbott wants to buy some fighter jets or some such for squillions of dollars. Can't he get Aunty Gina to buy them? 
  • That tax bill I have to pay is probably more than what Aunty Gina Pays....
  • I am on antibiotics for sinusitis. Gah.
  • I am glad this is a short week.

Now...serious mode here.
My heart breaks for the children (for of them, aged 5-15) of Fiona Warzywoda. She is the lady who was stabbed to death by her partner in a busy suburban Melbourne street.
Without saying too much, I have been touched deeply by family violence. It always makes me feel sick to hear of these things happening.

This article contains an email address for if you would like to help the kids. They have lost their mother in horrible circumstances and have very little in the way of material goods. Please donate, if you can.

On a broader note, it is great to see people like Clementine Ford, Tom Meagher and Anna Bligh join the narrative. It needs to be ingrained in the public consciousness that family violence is not acceptable. Perhaps powerful men like Tony Abbott, Malcolm Turnbull and others can speak out too.

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Easter. Plus a Ranty Mc-rant.

Hi All, and happy Easter/ Pagan Festival of Fertility or something...
{and a warning that some of this might be ranty and controversial}

It's been a quiet old weekend in Cilla-ville.
Thursday was a busy old day, but intentions were good to make hot cross buns in the Thermomix. By Thursday afternoon, HCBs were purchased for the event that I could not be arsed.

Friday morning - lo and behold, I could not be arsed, particularly not after Boot Camp!

Anywho, back to Thursday evening, I went out with a good girlfriend for a cheeky wine or two, a nice din-dins, then to the Princess Theatre for the comedy show, Puppet up.

It was basically a mix of Jim Henson/ Muppets-esque Puppetry, improvisation and lots of rudeness and swearing. It was cute and naughty and hilarious and very enjoyable.

Saturday involved house-hunting, traipsing through the same bunch of properties as a bunch of other aspirant home buyers.

The whole idea of house auctions depresses me a little. The ultimate sale price of a house often bears little resemblance to the estimated sale range given on the ad.

Give me a private sale any day.

Anyone with a good story of an auction can feel free to share it, though.

Then some shopping in Doncaster Shoppingtown, followed by a chillaxed dinner at Bar Fred. If you are down in Melbs you should come with me.

Kate and Wills and Bubba G are in the country.  Kate's frocks have been crashing websites.

I think this number was from LK Bennett. It distresses me somewhat that I know this. Plus she wore her hair up. She looked pretty.

Essentially she is an objectively pretty, non-threatening, lithe lady with great fashion sense who had very good luck with meeting a royal and squeezed out a photogenic male heir.

Why all the idolatry? Is this the metric by which women should be measured? (I think it is, but it should not be).

Does she add anything tangible other than a bit of sparkle? Are we that in need of a bit of sparkle?

The saddest thing is, she is far more interesting than Wills (Prince? What prince?), who is as boring as batshit. But he flies a chopper and (in theory) rescues people. That has to count for something

On a slightly different ranty vein, a relative of mine who recently had a baby said that having a baby is the highest blessing there is, and that it is "wrong" when children get sick, and on that basis we should all dig deep and donate to the Good Friday Appeal for the Royal Children's hospital.

This raised my hackles on a number of levels.

The whole "having a baby is the highest blessing" and "the hardest job there is" thing gets to me a bit. Those types put their child's photo up as their own profile pic on social media, but whinge about the trials of parenting. They hint at how their life has far more meaning now they have children. I probably sound a bit churlish here, but a few out there will see where I am coming from. I won't go into it too much.

Suffice it to say that the mothers I admire most are people like Sydney Shop girl, Faux Fuchsia and Mrs Woog. Their blogs inject the whole craft of mummyhood thing with a big dose of sanity, humour, joy and humility. Most of all, they retain a strong sense of themselves, and manage great careers, social lives and friendships. It is what I aspire to, if and when I am lucky enough to become a mummy.

It is indeed heartbreaking when kids get sick, unimaginably so. The RCH gets millions of dollars in donations. That is fair enough.

I work at the other end of the age spectrum and there are most certainly not those kinds of resources coming in. Without saying too much, it would be nice if this group, who are at the end of worthwhile lives and have paid taxes and borne children and seen hardship, got some of the same monetary resources, and a place in our consciousness.

Anyway, that is me for tonight.

In Bella-dog news, she has gotten very cheeky. She helps herself to the kitchen benchtop. She got her paws on some chocolate eggs (not too many, chocolate is no good for dogs) and hot cross buns. She also brings her bones inside to chew on, but, in the absence of bony chews, the remote control will do. The fella gets cross with her, and the dog gets very sheepish, but he can't stay mad with her for long.

Also, I have had this Johnny Farnbottom song in my head. It is kind of nice but kind of annoying

You are welcome.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Blog Tag!

 Hello, and happy Good Friday! I hope you are enjoying it, wherever you are. x
SSG put me up to this.

1. What time did you get up this morning? 

This morning, about 8:15, for Bootcamp. Got rained on.  
2. How do you like your steak? 

With fancy herby butter, a hollandaise or bearnaise sauce, or some hot English Mustard (it cures what ails ya)
3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema? 

I saw Dallas Buyer's club on the 'plane to Malaysia. Great acting.

4. What is your favorite TV show? 

House of Cards. All the way. So brilliantly acted. You already know my opinion on Kevin Spacey.
So You Think You Can Dance
The Blacklist with James Spader.

5. If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be? 

Somewhere near my loved ones. I am happy here in Melbourne. I love travelling but feel connected to Melbs.

6. What did you have for breakfast? 

Peanut butter and honey on Sourdough Multigrain toast. That cures what ails ya too!

7. What is your favorite cuisine?

Depends what I am in the mood for - French, Italian, South Indian, Vietnamese, Malaysian....But often I just love a bit o' simple home cookin'

8. What foods do you dislike? 

I can't think of any at the moment.....

9. Favorite Place to eat? 

So, so many!
For Breakfast - Julio, Fitzroy North. Great Bacon.
Near Work - Lip, Ivanhoe.


10. Favorite dressing? 

Good old olive oil and red wine vinegar, with salt and pepper.

11.What kind of vehicle do you drive? 

Hyundai i30. Red.

12. What are your favorite clothes? 

My witchery jeans, dressed up with heels, a nice top and a blazer.

13. Where would you visit if you had the chance? 

Turkey, Israel and Jordan.

14. Cup 1/2 empty or 1/2 full? 

Full- always.

15. Where would you want to retire? 

Near my loved ones.

16. Favorite time of day? 

The morning of a weekend - around 7 or 8 am.
17. Where were you born? 

Melbourne. I know. Melbourne Born and Bred.

18. What is your favorite sport to watch? 

The tennis, in the summer.
19. Bird watcher? 

In Sri Lanka, I loved watching birds. But not generally.

20. Are you a morning person or a night person? 


21. Do you have any pets? 

Bella Pumpkin. Such a lovely little girl, but doing sleep-farts at the moment. Yuck.

22. Any new and exciting news you'd like to share? 

Off to Europe in June.
I am in "pre-trying-for-baby" preparation - have had blood tests, pap smear booked etc. Need to buy those vitamins.

23. What did you want to be when you were little?

Architect, Doctor, Hairdresser.

24. Are you a cat or dog person? 


25. What was your last drink? 

Coke Zero. I needed the buzz!

26. Always wear your seat belt? 

Yes, I feel funny without one.

27. Been in a car accident? 

Only little prangs.

28. Any pet peeves? 

Cold people. People for whom everything is everyone else's fault. Grumpy or hateful people. Inconsiderate people.

29. Favorite Pizza Toppings? 

Sausage and Broccolini, at 400 Gradi in Brunswick. It's the shizz.
Also at Bar Fred, they had a pizza with chorizo, pineapple, red onion, capsicum and chilli. That was also the shizz but they've taken it off the menu.30. Favorite Flower? 


31. Favorite ice cream? 

Movenpick Vanilla Bean Icecream.

32. Favorite fast food restaurant? 

Fish and Chips. Or Fush and Chups as my Kiwi Fella says.

33. How many times did you fail your driver's test? 

Just once!

34. From whom did you get your last email? 

My fella. To catch up for a meal on easter Monday with friends.
35. Which store would you choose to max out your credit card? 

I have not done that, but it would have to be a travel related spree - a luxurious guided tour in France or some such.
36. Do anything spontaneous lately? 

I am quite a spontaneous person. Some might say impulsive. But yes! This trip to the UK/France in June is a spontaneous thing.
37. Like your job? 

My word. It's stressful and frustrating at times, but I couldn't imagine myself doing anything else.

38. Broccoli? 


39. What was your favorite vacation? 

Cuba. Sri Lanka. Had a ball.

40. Last person you went out to dinner with? 

Last night, my girlfriend M. We then went and saw a show.
41. What are you listening to right now? 

The whirr of my washing machine, the heater going. I like silence and white noise.
42. What is your favorite color? 

Dusky pink, Deep red.

43. How many tattoos do you have?


44. How many are you tagging for this quiz? 

Ruth at Clothing fixations.
I can't say Naomi (CSW) or Shauna, as they can't at the moment.
Heidi Apples

45. What time is it? 

3pm, good Friday.

46. Coffee ?? 

Always. Plunger in the morning, Moccona to build up a head of steam at work.

My favourite phrase of the week is "you can't put off what you have already done". With this in mind, I am going to finish off the tax/salary packaging stuff I was doing, plus some chores. 
Have a great one x

Friday, 11 April 2014

Funnies. First World Problems.

Well Helloooo!

I have been meaning to blog, but every time I go on the computer I feel I should be writing my thesis. Hence I have been staying away from my computer and having a nap instead.

But perhaps I can warm myself into thesis writing by writing a blog post.

The Melbourne International Comedy Festival is on at the moment. I have been and seen a couple of shows - Colin Lane (of Lano and Woodley) and Tom Gleeson (of The Project fame). Tom Gleeson was probably the funnier, and he performed to quite a large room. Always good to have a good larf, though unfortunately I often start wheezing and coughing when I do that! First world problem....

I managed to catch up with Flora Fascinata on Monday, she was visiting from Brissie. We had a lovely lunch and chat. Always great to meet fellow bloggers in the flesh.

Things are moving forward with the work developments, and I am looking to go part time with the PhD. My fella said that doing a PhD was like running a marathon, and having run one I would say it was right - at the beginning you feel bullet-proof and like a bit of a hero; in the last third, it it just bloody hurts and you sometimes wonder why you did it.

Another first world problem.

I have managed to procure some help for the grunt work so hopefully that will free up some time for me to write....(not nap).

The fella and I have been discussing holidays, trying to get some time to get over to Europe and see some friends (some bloggy friends of of which is not too well at the moment...)

Yet another first world problem.

In amongst this excitement, we have been house huntin'! Did you know mortgage translates to Death Hand in French?

We moan about the costs, but we are mainly looking quite near to the city. We may have to suck it up in terms of location, price and "niceness" of the house. Again, this is a first world problem. A DINK problem.

The doggy is good. Her little personality is shining through. And I took delivery of my boots.

So, tell me about your first world issues...