Monday, 1 September 2014

There Is No Place Like It

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I have come to the conclusion that I am quite literally full of hot air.

I rabbit on about craving a little break on my own and yet when push comes to shove and I get that opportunity, I find that I am basically all talk and bravado.

I had my few days away at ProBlogger over the weekend and by day two I was homesick and seriously missing my midgets and my man like no-ones business.

Can you believe it? There I was in an insanely cool hotel getting to meet up with so many insanely awesome like minded people and one single Face time session with the tribe at home and I came undone.

Ten minutes of mad rambling about all the news from home was all it took. Ten minutes of the kids fighting with each other over who gets to hold the iPad and tell Mum their news first and a hunky hubby patiently hovering in the back ground for his turn to speak and holy Christmas nuts I wanted to click my heels and be there with them to hear all their news in person.

How much stuff can happen when one is away for three days?

Clearly a lot!

One child can get his much longed for pen license and get his melon fair and square in the newspaper clutching his team ball mid tackle.

Another child loses two teeth in two days and is forgotten about by the tooth fairy... two nights in a row. (bad weather meant *ahem* that the the flying conditions apparently weren't very safe for fairies).

A third man/child decides he is going to be all mature and responsible like and help manage the other kids and the husband goes and gets even spunkier whilst I'm gone!

Clearly a bucket load can happen when one is off on a break.

Yep. I'm all talk.

The idea of getting away sounds good to me in theory, but the reality is that if my tribe aren't with me then there is no where I would rather be than home with them.

How about you - Do you get impossibly homesick for your tribe or do you truly 
welcome some time to yourself?





Friday, 29 August 2014

Weekend Rewind - The Farty Blogger at ProBlogger Edition

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So we are day one down of Problogger and the nerves have been holding out and I have successfully managed to avoid completely humiliating myself. Quite a feat given I am nervous as all hell and I have a belly full of gas that I have been desperately holding in.

I mean seriously what is it with me and conferences and farting? I haven't even been overindulging on mints this time and yet still I find myself with a gut full of gas.

Is it because I am subconsciously inducing it with all the thinking about gas I have been doing?

Could my brain be connected to some part in my gut and they have this devious little communication going on where my subconscious says "Hey guts, don't you think things are going a bit too smoothly for her? How bouts we get a little action going just to stir things up for fun?" And so my guts are all "hell yeah, we're up for that".

OMG I'm so sorry. I just had an imaginary conversation between my brain and my guts.

All this talk of gas - can you see what being away from my boys does to me? I am missing them so much that I am even missing their fart obsession.

Speaking of fart obsession, you know how I said I haven't completely humiliated myself so far? Well that isn't entirely true. In fact it isn't true at all because I did actually have a moment of utter embarrassment this morning when Tessa and I entered a lift full of people.

We were all squished in like sardines and someone made a comment about us all getting to know each other up close and personal.

I of course piped up with something totally moronic "Let's just hope no-one farts whilst we are all in here" to which the response was stone cold silence.

Yeah a deafening silence that felt like it went on for an eternity.

Seconds later I shook my head and said out loud "Yep clearly my fart joke went down well" to which finally there were a few mild giggles. More importantly and thankfully - the elevator Gods felt sorry for me and brought my suffering to an end by arriving at our floor.  I made a hasty escape from that lift before I forever became known as the blogger who made a really lame fart joke in an elevator at a Professional blogging event.

I die.

Only one more day to get through. Surely I can do this without further humiliating myself.

In honour of Problogger we have decided to make this Weekend Rewind a special Problogger edition, and we are leaving the link open all week for everyone to join in. Link up your favourite post from the week or maybe your post Problogger wrap up.

Heck link up a post that is almost entirely about farts if you like.

Why not, I just have!

Do you suffer from foot in mouth disease?
How about any embarrassing body stuff when you are nervous?





Link up your favourite post from the past week and then if you get a chance, pop around and say hello to some of the other lovely linkers. The Weekend Rewind blog hopping party starts every Friday night at 8pm and links will close on Sunday night at midnight. Link up here or over on Bron's blog (Maxabella)Sonia's blog (Sonia Styling) or Kelly's at A Life Less Frantic

Five Easy And Affordable Weekday Meals AND A Giveaway

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This post is brought to you by Coles

I’m gonna let you in on a little secret, just between you and me and the rest of the internet…

I have a brand new infatuation going on with the food channels. River Cottage Australia, Paddock to Plate, even good old Nigella has been on high rotation and the upside of my new foodie crush is that I have been spending a lot more time in the kitchen than I normally do.

Let me clarify exactly what ‘normal’ time in the kitchen looked like for me …. blink and you would miss me!

Come on, it’s no news that the kitchen and I haven't always been friends, and yes I have guilty of abusing my hubby’s good nature and leaving him to do as much of the cooking as I could possibly get away with.

But recently I discovered all these foodie shows whilst I was flicking around waiting for The Bachelor to start and blow me down I have actually been enjoying them. 

I know right!

My Foxtel box is full of recorded programs and more than that I have been inspired to spice up our meal plans with a whole load of new recipes.

The kids and the hubby are seriously loving that I am cooking all these new dinners and they sure are laying the praise on thick. Of course I am totally soaking it up and my head is getting so darn big with all their complimenting... but *ahem* who am I to tell them to stop?

My goal is to build up a 6 week cycle of easy weekday meals that the kids actually enjoy. The idea being that I can then use my menu planner to plan our meals a week ahead, especially handy if we have a busy week planned. It also allows me to take advantage of some of the cheap Down Down prices Coles have on offer on some of their family favourite quality meats.

Dude I can save us some serious dosh. Dosh that can go towards the overseas family holiday I am desperately saving up for next year.

Feeding the family for less and making meal times easier for me – Totally for the win!

Below are the first 5 Easy Weekday Meals I came up with utilising the RSPCA Approved Chicken Breast ($12 bucks a kilo) Thigh Fillets ($11 bucks a kilo), 3 star Beef Mince ($5 bucks a kilo) and Thin Beef BBQ Sausages (1.7kg for $7 bucks) on offer at Coles.

Oh and just a heads up - I also have a chance for you to win a $100 Coles voucher at the end of this post, so make sure you enter so that you could possibly save even more dosh on your grocery bill.



























So how would you like to win a $100 Coles voucher to put towards your own grocery shopping?

All you need to do is leave me a comment telling me in 25 words of less;
 What is your number one tip for making weekday meals easy?

Then follow the prompts in the Rafflecopter widget below and BAM you are in with a chance.

The competition is open now and closes Friday 12/09/14 at 7pm AEST

So tell me, what is your number one tip to making weekday meals as easy as possible?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Coffee Shop Chatter - The Fine Art Of Procrastinating

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This post was supposed to go up yesterday, but I was so organised writing lists about being organised that I wasn't organised to actually hit publish on this. 

Yeah I get the irony. 

Moving on.

**********************************************************

I am doing my usual procrastination trick today... I am sitting in a coffee shopping drinking coffee and making lists about what I should pack and what I need to do before I head off to QLD tomorrow.

I should be at home and actually putting the stuff on my list into my suitcase but instead... well a certain coffee shop by the beach had a salmon brioche with my name on it, and it was calling me and who am I to ignore such a call?

So I have laid out everything on my bed ready to go but when I say everything, I mean literally everything because I am really bad at making decision and narrowing down choices.

I do the old "I'll take this just in-case" and "Oh but I might feel like wearing this instead of that" and then there are the extra couple of outfits required in case I spill my coffee / breakfast / lunch or cocktail down the front of me. That's something I'm also really bad at - actually getting food and drink into my mouth.

Meh If it's good enough to eat then it's good enough to wear.

Right?

Right! (I say as I fish a piece of cucumber out of my cleavage).

The other first world problem I have is I think I may have just jinxed myself in that I laid out a whole load of white clothes and according to my calculations (or lack there of) that time of the month could arrive anytime between now and ... oh the next 30 days.

I am awful of keeping track of that time of the month.

I mean it's not hard is it?

Generally I know roughly where I am in my cycle based on how many people I want to stab or hug on any given day. But despite promising myself I will write down the actual dates every month, I never do and so once a month you will usually find me trawling through my diary trying to remember where I was during that time last month so I can figure out when I can expect it to arrive again.

Hence why there is a shitload of white clothes in my packing pile - because basically I have no idea when I am due. Although I suspect Murphy's Law will ensure it is due at a time when the only thing I have to wear is something white.

I think I need to go home and rethink my options.

I think I need to go home and actual be productive rather than sit here and write lists about how to be productive.

One more coffee...

Are you a Planner Packer or a chuck it in kind of gal?
Do you keep track of that time of the month on a calender or just sort of guess?


Tuesday, 26 August 2014

How to Ensure You Never Run Out Of Things To Say On Your Blog

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Something I am a total sucker for are random 'how to' articles that entice me to click on them with headlines like;

"How to Organise Your Life In 5 Easy Steps"

"How to Have a Whole New Wardrobe Without Spending A Cent"

or "How to Spice Up Your Sex Life in 3 Easy Moves" (I did actually click on that one and let's just say my eyes were seriously assaulted by what I saw.)

Often I click over ready for my moment of enlightenment, but instead I'm left with an anti climatical sense of disappointment.

Man I hope that's not how you feel after reading my post today ... although there is quite the possibility.

One of the questions I often get asked by friends and readers is "Do you ever run out of things to talk about on the blog?"

Usually I just respond by laughing and making some completely weird face where I cross my eyes and attempt to lick my nose with my tongue...I have no idea why I do that. Probably because I figure it is better that I pull some weird head rather than admit the truth - which is that since I suffer from chronic verbal poo it is very unlikely that I would ever run out of things to dribble talk about.

That doesn't necessarily mean everything that everything I have to say actually gets published here on the blog.

No sirree.

One little peek at the back end of my blog and you will spy a bucket load of posts all typed up and ready to go... but they will probably never ever see the light of day.

Most of them are ranty panty kinds of posts where I am basically letting off some steam and telling someone to go and suck a fart but without actually having to say it to their face. Because according to therapists I am passive aggressive...

NO SHIT SHERLOCK? I HAVE TO PAY YOU TO TELL ME THAT?

I prefer to think of myself as non confrontational....

Whatever.

Usually those kind of posts come about after someone or something has ticked me off and I have sat down with my laptop and stabbed out some kind of emotional tirade instead of using my words like a legitimate grown up would and telling them how I feel.

Often they are written at a time of the month where I am irrational, hormonal and totally dangerous around sharp objects and so I have a rule that I cannot hit publish on these types of posts for at least 24 hours after I have written them.

Nine times out of ten when I go back to them the next day I'm all "Holy Shitballs you CAN'T Say that" and so I leave them to sit and gather cobwebs.

I kind of like the idea of one day printing them out and publishing a coffee table book full of ranty ramblings.... I will call it 'How To Tell Someone To Go and Suck a Fart Without Actually Telling Them'.

Or something like that.

I have digressed.

So how do I ensure that I never run out of things to say on my blog?

I journal.

Yep that's pretty much my not so secret weapon.

I journal daily, often throughout the day. I might record a note or an idea on the run and then I add it into a weekly document that I have saved in Dropbox. I can add to it at any time and I can access it from my phone, my laptop, desktop or iPad, whenever I need to.

During the day when I am working from home the document is always open and I add to it as the thoughts come into my head or ideas pop up. It could be a conversation I had with someone or something that happened whilst I was out.

I take photos of any projects I am working on as I go and record the details in my journal - that way if I decide later that it might be something worth sharing, I have all I need ready at hand.

I also take photos everywhere I go as they act as a prompt to remind me of things later than night when I am writing in my journal, and those photos of course can also be used in any resulting blog posts.

Once a week I sit down and plan out my blog posts and I read back through the last week of journaling and there it all is. The good stuff, the bad stuff and the embarrassing stuff ripe for the picking.

I choose my topics for each post and basically I just cut and paste from my journal and flesh it out once it is in a draft format. If I am feeling super organised I might do a whole week's worth in one sitting. Otherwise I just write my posts at nighttime when it is quiet and I can actually think.

Occasionally something crops up that I am busting to write about right there and then... and so I do just that and simply push the other post I had planned aside to another day.

I'm going to go so far as to say that a journal has the potential to be one of a blogger's most powerful tools... and besides all else, I think it's fun to read back through some of the random things you've been thinking about or doing on any given day - and in my case, realise just how much of a nut job I sometimes am!

So that my friends is pretty much how I never run out of things to say on my blog.

What about you - Do you write in a journal?
Do you ever run out of things to say?
For our bloggy friends, how do you plan your blog content?