Jan 31, 2010

Sunday morning and the living is easy.

There's something about waking up on a Sunday morning that's different.  The sun casts a different light on the world - no matter what the weather or season.  It's just a bit brighter and a bit more radiant on a Sunday.

 
Case in point, our front porch.  The lawn looks greener (but still in need of a mow), the pot plants a more vivid green and the distant flowers a deeper pink.
So, after luxuriating in the morning sun, R and I hit the road for a walk and my favourite (not) form of running - intervals.  I suck at intervals.  I am not built for speed and don't 'push' myself.  Isn't it enough that I am out running every day before work?  :-P  

As  a reward, after we returned home, I gave myself a pedicure on the porch whilst reading the Sunday paper and having a cup of tea.




Armed (or should that be footed) with my freshly painted pink nails, bring it on new working week!

SSG

Jan 30, 2010

My baking skills have regressed, time to find hubris and hit the books.

Butter Cakes Recipe With Picture - Joyofbaking.com *Tested Recipe*


How disappointing. My latest cake failed. It sank and then didn't cook to the middle. Sigh. Double sigh. I have lost my baking mojo. As a kid it was so easy. I just found recipe from the old Womens Weekly's in dad's waiting room, put everything into mum's Kenwood and bingo, the cake worked. That Kenwood is an heirloom. Mum bought it when she first migrated to Perth with dad and its lasted her 3 adult children with only one service for a motor change.

Now, I'm in my marital home with my wedding gift Kitchenaid, special beaterblade off eBay and the aid of millions of recipes off the net. I am having a 60% success rate with my cakes. I've been converting US measurements to metric and sometimes using both US and metric (anything in cups and spoons is cool, except for butter) and ounces totally flummox me.

Humbled, I have turned to science and the instructions (when all else fails).

Practice, practice, practice.

I heart the weekend

 
I love the weekend!!!!!!  There's always a sense of adventure and freedom when I wake up (at the crack of dawn) on Saturday morning.  On non working weekends of course.  After a week of being stuck in the confines of a hospital - the food, the colours, the endless coridoors - the weekend spells escape and adventure.

Armed with coffee and the handbag d'jour, I'm off.  I'm still mucking around with my DSLR and new lenses.


Stop one (an iPhone photo, above).  The car wash - with free paper and carrot cake.  Somehow I always get conned to get an upgrade on the cleaning service yet it always takes half an hour.  Not complaining.  The as good as new car then gets driven home and I try to lower my carbon footprint by using public transport into the city for a bit of a stroll.  iPhone in tow as I listen to podcasts of the BBC interview.
 
I can't lie - no trip to the city is complete without a bit of retail therapy.  Today's haul was brought to you by the letter A - Autore and Aesop.  I have officially joined the pearl stud brigade.  Won't be opening until our anniversary, will post a photo then.  They are gorgeous.

I also love Aesop and their quirky shopping bag.  I'm being brave - for years I have been a slave to The Body Shop Africa Spa hand cream but it's time for change.



 

And then and afternoon of cooking.  Today I'm baking banana bread.  Hope it turns out.
Have to go to yoga now....

Later :-)

SSG

Jan 29, 2010

The only girl in the office



Weekends always arrive in the nick of time.  Admittedly it's only been a 4 day working week here but I am drained.  Part of the fatigue has come from the anxiety of starting at a new hospital.  Things are a little different.  Everyone is really lovely but it takes a few weeks to settle in and feel part of the team.  I am one of the only female ATs to have completed the exams in my department which makes things a bit strange in the group dynamic.  I miss the girls.  We are all obsessively organized in our own way and have this inexplicable urge to nest in the office.  There is only one calender, one box of tissues, one jar of hand cream, one pot of lip balm and one tube of disinfecting wipes in the office - and they are all mine.

It's proving to be a bit controversial when we chat socially (it gets busy at times but there is also plenty of chat time).  We often talk of the future, where we plan to work (this is officially our final year of training) and there is pressure to hit private practice, be a staff specialist etc etc.  Which is about the time I come up with my line, 'I'm planning to start a family next year'.  This does little to extend to range of the conversation, I am embarrassed to say.  It's different for R, somehow.  His clients ask about me and it seems perfectly okay to talk about trying for a baby with them.

I miss the small talk, the natural respect for boundaries in conversation.  Bizzare that I should say this at all.  For years (my numerous single years)  I saw myself as 'one of the boys', thinking I was more at home with the boys and their approach to friendship.  Don't know what's happened.  I reckon it's being married.  It's changed me.

The role of parents

There are many things that R has taught me about life and many new experiences that he has shared with me.  One new habit I have picked up from him is a love of news radio. 

Let me explain.  For the last 3 decades (!!) I have been convinced that complete silence and darkness (confession, I gave up my night light a little later than the average child) are the only conditions conducive to good sleep.  R is the opposite.  He likes a bit of light and the radio.  And not just any radio, AM news channels.  So it was an awkward first few months where I struggled to get to sleep with the chatter of news and the rustle and interference of AM transmission.

Over the years though, the frequent exposure has now become a habit.  I now look forward to listening to the news before I sleep.  We listen to ABC, NPR and the BBC.  I appreciate the range of topics and the commentary so much now that I download the podcasts when I can and listen on the bus. 

This long introduction is meant to be a segue into the actual topic of this post.  What it means to be a parent.  A topic I have contemplated for some years now, I am indebted to my parents for their love, sacrifices and effort.  I could not be the person I am today without them.  R and I's plans to start a family have made me think a little deeper about this role.

It so happened that some of the recent BBC radio interviews have been with talented young adults whose parents have been a shaping force in their careers. 

Serena Williams' interview was inspiring.  She spoke of her father's ambition for his daughters and also her mother's equal efforts.  The push of both parents working together to propel the children forward.  However, the push was measured, it was not selfish, it was motivation and direction in a sport these girls wanted to play.  The girls were never pushed into the sometimes deceitful world of the competitive childrens' tennis circuit.  There was also an emphasis in their childhoods on religion, respect and a formal education.  A balanced and holisitic approach.

The second interview was with a South African athlete, Oscar Pistorius who had both his legs ampuated below the knee at a young age.  His parents sheltered him from nothing and he was exposed to the rough and tumble of a 'South African childhood'.  He was always treated the same as his brother and sister and the emphasis was on a 'normal' childhood in a school for 'able bodied' children.  This young man has grown up to be a fine athlete and also a crusader for the provision of limb prostheses in South Africa.

These stories inspire me for our future family and also resonate with the upbringing my parents gave me.  I love you mum and dad.  I owe you everything and wouldn't be here if it weren't for you.

On a lighter note
 
 Our clock radio (with Tigger, taken at some ungodly time on a Saturday morning) - steadfastly AM and no sign of a digital radio.  The occasional static is somewhat comforting.

Jan 28, 2010

The iPad - does it have wings? Is it the Moses tablet?


Apple iPad: A Visual Tour

Posted using ShareThis

Sigh...  With all the bad and questionable news of the past few weeks, the announcement of the iPad was just what I needed.  Definitely a want.  I have my iPhone and my macbook Pro.  Where would this fit?  Well, I could use it on the lounge and the large screen will be so much kinder on my eyes than the screen of my iPhone.  It would also travel rather well.

Still undecided about the name - it has connotations of feminine hygeine products. iLibra, iStayfree anyone?  These are strange times for womankind.  First People Skills Abbott delivers his verdict on virginity and it being a precious gift and now this.  Too much information and too much connotation.  I will leave it at that.

It's going to be a great day.  Bit drained from yesterday but will try and have a calmer day at work today, working on presentations and such.  I have the sneaking suspicion that I will be picking up extra after hours shifts as a colleague has taken unexpected family leave.  But hey, the money will come in handy.  For the iPad, perhaps.

Hope to find a pretty picture for the post when I get home.



Heh, heh.  Found this photo on the Mactalk Forum.  I think they have a point.  The iPad for me would be an around the house kind of appliance.  I'd take my iPhone out with me because of its size and camera.  The iPad could get mighty expensive once you factor in the fees for 3G connection with my beloved Helstra.  however, it would make a pretty groovy ebook reader.  If only the battery life and glare issues were sorted.

Lemming averted, I will not be queing on March 30 or 30 days later for the 3G.

Jan 26, 2010

Date day.

It's bliss having a mid week public holiday.  R and I observed the day in coupledom bliss.  Leisurely start to the day, went for a run together and then spent the morning watching some of my favourite programs, thank you foxtel IQ. 

I am a Keeping Up With The Kardashians junkie.  They're a family who seem to put love and respect for each other above all (eventually) and welcome and accept all the new members of their family.  R was impressed with the number of sporting royalty linked to the family.  I cried during the Khloe wedding special.

Then out for lunch and a movie.  Conveyor belt sushi - my favourite lunch.  Then we saw the new George Clooney movie, Up In The Air.  Not sure if it's Academy Award material, to be honest.  Wittt, observant and close to the bone in these times though.  Very 'of the times' for the US and I can see why the Academy would love it.

Just being out and about with R was lovely.  Made me proud seeing the Australian flag everywhere - on cars, the flag hung outside houses and shops, people wearing the flag on T-shirts.

Chill out time tonight. 

Happy Australia Day!




I am always in awe of the choice of Australian Of The Year.  They are often people who crusade for causes and issues relevant to all Australians.  Not always the 'glamour' causes but those that affect so many of us in many and indirect ways. I am not dismissing breast cancer, genetic research etc but I feel that there is already so much awareness and funding for these causes.

This year's Australian Of The Year is Professor Patrick McGorry a pyschiatrist who campaigns for the mental health of detainees in our detention centres and also for the mental health of young Australians.  Psychiatry in general is poorly funded in our hospitals but there the resources for adolescent mental health are even more deficient.  I hope the recognition of Professor McGorry will help increase awareness and acceptance of mental illness.

Jan 25, 2010

Birkis not Havs

The freedom of wearing my birkis to work. I figure since I was actually at work on Australia's biggest sick day, I was entitled to.


- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Location:Junction St,Gladesville,Australia

When all else fails....


Do a backbend!  I've been a bit stressed and run down of late and I can really feel when I need to do another home practice.  I'm pretty chuffed to come as far as I have in the last year, still have much to do but this backbend without any props was a huge achievement for me.

My goal is to continue 2 classes a week for as long as I can.  Don't know how I'll go when I get pregnant.  Yoga has made me appreciate my body as a remarkable piece of engineering and biology rather than something that needs to be toned, trimmed and deprived to conform to some photoshopped ideal.

Namaste.

Haigh's

I love Haigh's. I went in for a chocolate coated marshmallow and came out with a bag full of samples.




- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Jan 24, 2010

Tadasana - evoking the stillness, strength and stability of the mountains.

I find it so hard to be still. Every waking moment seems to be accounted for in the endless pursuit of ‘getting it all done’. I love the journey but never quite spend enough time savouring the destination.
Case in point. I am in my final year of post graduate training. It was not an easy path for me. Failure seemed to litter my path and it has been slow but steady progress. Along the way immense joys that I could never have predicted also came my way. However, this journey is ending soon and again, it seems, I am looking for the next battle.

How easy it would be if it was just my future that I had to think of. I can no longer be selfish. I have my husband, we want to start a family, the financial implications of my career decisions fall in this context.
At times like this, stillness and contemplation are what I need.





Summer in Sydney


A combination of sun, humidity and good times!  I love daylight saving and the frivolity of being able to hit the beach after work on a Monday and savour the sunset and this view over the baths at Coogee.  Magic.

And speaking of Mondays, another rolls up tomorrow.  I must cast aside my new blogger enthusiasm and get to bed, if only to save the blog world from more of my posts and photos.

Good night and stay tuned.

SSG

The best thing about late shifts on a Saturday


Is driving home and snuggling up with my beloved R.  No, sadly we are not still in Paris.  This photo was taken from the window of our hotel room in Paris, where we went on our honeymoon.

It was spring 2008 and we were new to Sydney as well.  This photo reminds me of the love and magic of those days. 

Our love now is so much stronger because of everything that we have shared - both good and bad.  The magic is sill very much here.

The right time....


I'm now officially vitamin replete, I've passed the rubella test too.

But when to take the plunge and actually try for our baby?

It seems that I still have so much else to do and I'm not getting any younger.

Are you trying to look like a grandmother on purpose?


Asks my beloved husband, who is never backward in coming forward.

Don't ask me how I'm feeling

Could very well be the title of a power ballad Celine Dion would sing. It’s also a question I hate being asked. I just don’t like talking about how I feel. My standard response is ‘it doesn’t matter…’.

The thing about being married though, is that you are meant to talk about your feelings. I get frightened though that the heat of my emotions then cause me to say things I will later regret. Which is why I prefer the ‘time out’ approach - walking out of the room and composing myself for five minutes before responding.

Despite my venting and spray of irrational and selfish thought, the response is always the same, ‘I love you and you have taught me so much about life’.

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