Dec. 31st, 2013 12:07 pm
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I’m feeling singularly uninspired, but would kind of like to recap 2013 – so I have jumped on the meme train.

Did you keep your New Years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I’ve never really been a New Years’ resolutions kind of person. But I was trying to lose weight, and I kept that up.

What would you like to have in 2014 that you lacked in 2013?

What was your biggest achievement of the year?

I cut out drinking soda. With the exception of a few dance weekends and similar, I’ve stuck to it. My consumption used to be up to 1.5l a DAY and now I may occasionally drink 355ml on a weekend, once. I’m quite proud of that.

It’s a chequered achievement, but with my dance partner, created a choreography completely alone and took it to Nationals. I started teaching zouk properly – the free nights at the bar and as a sort of assistant for S&T. Taught the flashmob choreography.

What was your biggest failure?

I lost track of the home/dance/work balance. It swung too far dancewards, and this year I need to get it back into some sort of equilibrium so everyone’s happy.

Did you suffer illness or injury?

Yes, mostly dance related. Feet injuries, shoulder/back/neck strain, more feet issues. Entirely self-inflicted and on the whole I don’t mind. I don’t remember the last time my feet weren’t damaged in some way. My big toenails are a complete mess (thanks, Brisbane), I have blisters, a heel crack, bone bruising. The price I pay for being a dancer.

I got a pretty major lung infection just before Congress, and spent the whole event hopped up on medication. I managed to love it anyway.

I’m also back on dried frog pills. I’m not particularly happy about it, but I’m not too stubborn to admit that antidepressants have helped me before, they’ll help me this time, and if I need the help it’s stupid to refuse it.

What was the best thing you bought?

Probably dance shoes. Or some of the new clothes I now fit.

Whose behaviour merited celebration?

My husband. For all that we’ve had ups and downs this year, he’s worked SO DAMN HARD on the various health issues he’s had/having and he’s made so much progress. There are no words for how proud I am of him.

Where did most of your money go?

My spending money mostly went on dance stuff. Shoes, classes, trips. Household money went on household expenses and trying to shift debt.

What did you get really, really, really excited about?

The trip to Wellington for Congress. The trip to Brisbane for Brazil Central. The trip to Wellington for work, the technical/root cause analysis workshops.

Compared to this time last year, are you:

i. happier or sadder? About the same.

ii. thinner or fatter? Thinner, to the tune of 22kg down.

iii. richer or poorer? About the same.

How did you spend Christmas?

At home with a collection of waifs and strays. I cooked FAR too much food, it was amazing. Excellent company, exactly how I wanted to spend Christmas.

How will you be spending New Year’s Eve?

At a friend’s home, with champagne, watching fireworks.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

I turned 30 this year. I had a “anyone, show up” party at home, which I think was the first time I really tried to combine my dance & non-dance friends, it worked really well and I had an excellent night. It was casual but cheerful and fun.

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2013?

Practical and probably unfashionable. I live in leggings far too often, never at work but definitely at home / the studio.

What kept you sane?

Dancing. No question. It’s my therapy and, yes, probably my obsession too, but it keeps me sane and happy and healthy.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2013.

It’s not a new lesson, but one I always need to remind myself. It’s in our wedding vows, in fact – “I will remember that love means saying ‘I feel differently’ instead of ‘you’re wrong’.” It’s really, really hard for a stubborn person like me to shut up and listen, but it’s important to do. Not just in context of our marriage, but at work, with friends… anywhere that differences arise.

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Xmas is impending, and I’m feeling pretty good about it this year. My inlaws in the UK have presents incoming via the magic of the internet, I’ve purchased all I intend to for my beloved, and on the basis that none of my own family celebrate Xmas, I don’t have to worry about them.

I’m doing my usual mostly-DIY-ish presents for friends. I get a lot of pleasure out of putting little things together, and thankfully none of my social group have great expectations.

It’s also turned into 2013: The JAMening. So far, tomato-bbq sauce & cranberry-orange sauce have been produced; this weekend will also see tamarillo-apple jam and spiced curry orange sauce. Between now and Xmas I intend to do, oh, strawberry and probably normal apple sauce too. It’ll be fun!

I’ve put a “come one, come all” invite out on Facebook for Xmas day/Boxing Day. I’m on call over the silly season this year, so I intend to make ALL the food, and hope that everyone I want to see makes the effort to turn up at some stage. And, well, if they don’t, we have a chest freezer to accommodate leftovers.

I’ve spent today doing laundry, vacuuming, and mopping, so that I can put up the Xmas tree with a clear conscience tonight. I’m looking forward to it.

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I dropped the ball on this whole blogging thing. There’s been a lot going on that I just didn’t want to talk about on the Internet.

I’ve avoided measuring myself too obsessively with this whole weight change thing (or rather, I’ve tried!). However, after yet another throw out of things that don’t fit, I did haul out the tape measure.

Since the last time I took measurements, I’ve lost eight inches off the hips, eight off the stomach, and 6 off the bust. No bloody wonder I had to replace all my pants.

I’ve managed to stay off the soda, with the exception of dance-event-weekends when I need the caffeine to remain conscious.

I’ve been to a load of dance events. Performed. Learned choreography. Performed choreography. Competed in Champs, Open is next weekend. Taught a choreography (an international flashmob).

I don’t remember the last time my feet weren’t damaged in some way. My big toenails are a complete mess (thanks, Brisbane), I have blisters, a heel crack, bone bruising… The price I pay for being a dancer.

I commissioned my friend SPark to make me a Elephant. See, when I was a tiny, I had a beeeeg blue Elephant. I have distinct memories of this elephant, and was quite upset when my parents disposed of if (I’m informed that one too many episodes of baby-sick made it unpleasant as a tenant of the indoors, which seems reasonable enough!)

In January-ish this year, I realised that a) I am a grownup with disposable income b) one of my friends in the States makes plushies, amongst other things, for a living.


We had T’s birthday party a couple of weeks ago. It was lovely – a chilled out evening, bbq, friends. Really nice.

My sister in law and friends visited from the UK. It was amazing to have her here for the first time.

Life goes on?

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I’m feeling pretty loved today.

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Today, I got so happily engrossed in work that I nearly missed my lunchtime leg&eyebrow-wax appointment. I got there about three minutes late, and realised on the way back to work that wearing tight jeans, in midsummer, on the day you get your legs waxed, is a really stupid idea! It was hot and my pores are complaining and my jeans stuck to my legs for the rest of the afternoon. I had a cold bath when I got home to give my poor legs a chance to cool down.

I got complimented on my makeup, which is funny for the following reason: I couldn’t get last night’s eyeliner OFF, so I cut my losses, tidied it up and put some eyeshadow on before I left for work. (Also, I love the Urban Decay palette that I acquired over Xmas, it’s fantastic.)

I went to a bar with workmates to farewell a workmate who’s disappearing to Australia, called my mum while I walked to the bus stop; I am now happily ensconced in the snug with Tigra, a Coke, and my husband has been sent out to acquire dinner.

It’s been a pretty good day.

I’ve started teaching zouk now. I am thrilled by this. See, the social nights I go to at a local bar start with a free beginner class. November-ish last year, I turned up early (ie, in time for the actual class – for hopefully obvious reasons I had been skipping it). The teacher was on his own, so I dived in to help. After that, he asked me to keep teaching with him, and hello YES PLEASE. I love teaching anyway, I love zouk, and this way I can give a little back to the hobby that’s given me so much. It’s basic basic beginner’s stuff, which I can do in my sleep, and I’m thoroughly enjoying teaching.

I suspect that there is another advantage to someone like me teaching. I am not intimidating – I am overweight, I am going to turn thirty this year, I am approachable for most of the women who show up for the first time. (Opposed to the slim twenty year old blonde stereotypical dancer.) I do have gorgeous hair, even if I say so myself.

So, people show up, they laugh at my jokes (all stolen from other dance teachers), they learn the steps, they go “you make it look so eaaaasy” at me, I generally feel good about myself.

As well as Cyclenut’s mum, who puts in regular appearances at the bar – did I mention that Cyclenut’s mum started turning up? She did, and I felt a bit awkward at first and then I got over it – I ran into a manager from my previous job. I got along well with him when I worked there, and we chit-chatted quite a bit last night (which was his first lesson). I even got a hug when he left!

I got some compliments on the class, which is always nice, and more importantly, several people cheerfully told me they’re coming back next week.

It’s been a pretty good week, actually.

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It’s been an interesting year. I spent the last couple of hours of it curled up in the snug, with Tigra and wine, with the other cats periodically checking in to make sure I wasn’t scared of the fireworks. Not a bad way to see in the new year.

I’ve gone for four or five work trips – training users on software, rolling Windows 7, assorted other bits and pieces. I’ve changed roles internally, and moved into a department I’ve wanted to be in ever since I started at this company. So far it’s going well.

I’ve danced, joined a performance group, entered Nationals, gone out socially, started teaching. I am proud of my dance achievements this year.

Operation 2012: Clean/Organise/Tidy All The Things has continued. We’re still not great at keeping the kitchen immaculate, but we’re a lot faster at returning order to the chaos (as the underlying mess isn’t present now). The spare rooms are usable, the garage is mostly free of crap, the usual dumping grounds for junk have remained fairly junk free. It’ll take time, but we’re on the right track.

I haven’t mentioned much of it online – some things just don’t belong on the Internet – but Tobermory’s had ongoing health issues, which created work issues, which he’s dealt with like a champ. It’s a work in progress, but I am damned proud of what he’s achieved personally this year. And I am proud of the way we have worked together as a couple. It’s been hard yards, but we can both be proud of the outcome.

It’s been a complete shit of a year on occasions, and there have been amazing highlights too. I’d like 2013 to be a bit less dramatic; but on balance I’m proud of my 2012. That’s a pretty good way to exit the year.

Originally published at spinneretta

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It’s December 1st. It’s a lovely, lovely, sunny day outside; it’s Saturday, and I made the mistake of going to the mall today. I had lots of sensible reasons (need for new laundry hamper, a couple of small Xmas-y bits and pieces, printing some photos to send to my Mum), but oh my goodness the PEOPLE. I had to walk for nearly a kilometer just to get from where I parked INTO the mall, let alone walk around in it. I mean, I don’t mind walking, but it was just … well, I sent the following text to my beloved.

Love his sense of humour.

We’re not doing anything major for Xmas this year. I’ve posted the Christmas cards to the inlaws, I’ve bought some small bits and pieces for various friends, but all and all, it’s going to be a low-key year for us. I’m quite looking forward to it, actually – T and I both have two weeks off (from the Friday before Giftmas to the first workday after New Years). It will be glorious.

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My friend Tekkie passed away earlier this week – a severe allergic reaction to wasp stings that she never woke up from. She was younger than my mum.

She had a wonderful sense of humour. She was a grandma who was a soundman for ten years. To borrow her own words, “I don’t know how to knit and I don’t say “Oh, dearie me.” But I *do* solder and say “Aw, f*ck.” And bake cookies.” She collected ninjas, and loved her cats.

To me, she was my honorary auntie. She was a friend, a dear one, a wise and sympathetic ear, and she introduced me to my husband.

I will really, really miss her.

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I have a new little resolution. I’m going to make more of an effort to compliment people, if I notice things that are compliment-worthy.

Being winter, I’m back to wearing my Gallery Serpentine Coat of Awesome. This morning, the following has happened:

  • Random guy in Starbucks: “That is a fantastic coat.”

  • Lady standing beside me at traffic lights: “I just love your coat. Where did you get it?”

  • Colleague in elevator: “That is an awesome coat.”

I’ve also had shop assistants in my favourite clothing store demand to know where I bought it – they were quite upset when the answer was “Australia” and thus “not easily accessible”.

Anyway, the upshot of it is that a) compliments are great, and I believe in paying it forward b) this coat was worth every penny of the nearly six hundred dollars I paid for it.

I’m a bit stuck with dance. The zouk and salsa classes that I want to do are both on the same nights – and not only on the same night, in different places, but at the same TIME. As a result, I’ve settled for doing a lower level of salsa class (improvers rather than intermediate), just to have SOMETHING. Somewhat to my surprise, my salsa teacher told me not to bother paying – just show up, practice, and help out the newer dancers.

My zouk teachers aren’t teaching intermediate right now, either. So, in order to have something, I stepped back to their improvers classes (and, you know, I’m still learning/improving/refining the basics). Last night, they told me not to bother paying – just show up, practice, and help out the newer dancers.

I’m really chuffed. It’s nice to feel like I’m competent at something, albeit at a lower level. Really nice.

The dance studio are running a zouk performance course, for the Salsa Ball in August. The routine was created by William and Paloma (the world champs) and I’m going for it. It’s bound to be hard work, but I actually think I’m ready for the challenge.

Originally published at spinneretta.com

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I feel like a mass of contradictions, sometimes. I want to work in IT, but I also like being a homebody who cooks and sews. I want to be a dancer, but I love food, cooking and eating. I like being strong, and being independent, and I want to be at home with my husband, under his protection.

I would like to own a cafe someday. There is a quote from Pratchett that is pretty much the sort of place I’d like to own.

There were plenty of hot-chair eating places like the one Vimes headed for now. It sold plain food for plain men. There wasn’t a menu. You ate what was put in front of you, you ate it quick, and you were glad to get it. If you didn’t like it, there were plenty who did. The dishes had names like Slumgullet, Boiled Eels, Lob Scouse, Wet Nellies, Slumpie and Treacle Billy — good, solid stuff that stuck to the ribs and made it hard to get up out of the seat. They generally had a lot of turnip in, even if they weren’t supposed to.

I’m good at tasty / bulk meals like this, and I’d love a little hole-in-the-wall cafe with bar stools and high benches, a different meal, or maybe two at most, each day. It would have bread rolls and nice solid stoneware dishes and be wildly popular, and a little bit quirky. I would sell jam and sauces and maybe cookies and things to take away for dessert.

Funny thing happened at dance a few weeks ago. In salsa, I spend a lot of time in salsa chanting “1,2,3…5,6,7…” to myself. I’m a musician at heart, so I don’t generally struggle to keep time – I understand what the music is doing. Still, counting under my breath helps me remember what I’m doing right now, especially when learning a new move.

Practicing with a classmate the other week, we were going great guns. After a few double-speed turns, I was running out of breath and gave up the chant, in favour of counting in my head. Suddenly the whole thing fell apart, he lost time, I couldn’t figure out what he was doing, flailwaughstop.

“What happened there?”

“You stopped counting! I was lipreading!”

“I was out of breath, dude! You could… count for yourself?”

“I… I never thought of that.”

Periodically, the company gets reminders from the finance department. It’s X time of year, please remember to do Y, that sort of thing. Usually they’re form emails.

Late last year, someone cocked up. Instead of the usual “dear everyone, please do X, regards, Finance”, we received a little missive from a gentleman to his ladyfriend. He was looking forward to their anniversary, and wished her a very sexy time over the weekend. There were no names, for which we were all thankful.

I’m in the IT department. We all know who was responsible. As such, one of the admins periodically takes delight in asking the author what cost code he should charge sexytimes to…

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It’s Christmas Eve. Well, technically it’s Christmas, as it’s 02:41 on the 25th. We’ve been in the UK nearly a month, and I don’t know what to say about it.

I miss the cats. Not so much home, but I miss my Tigra girl especially.

We’ve just returned from midnight mass. This is a tradition, kept to by Tobermory’s family every year – midnight mass is Not Optional, it is just what you Do when you are here for Christmas. It was uncomfortable and strange. I’ve become unaccustomed to displays of faith, much less displays of a faith I’m unfamiliar with.

I didn’t realise how dependent I was on knowing the words of hymns. Apparently standing up and singing is somehow ingrained in my soul, because it really shook me when I couldn’t sing along. It’s not even that it’s a faith I share, there’s just some … inherent expectation that I will sing along in church. Not knowing the words really upset me, somehow, and I don’t know why. Well, I knew Silent Night and Come, All Ye Faithful, but the other two hymns/carols I didn’t.

I came home and had a very strong rum and coke. I couldn’t think of a better way to deal with the weird, so I drowned it in alcohol.

I’ve enjoyed the trip, I think. We attended a glorious wedding (T’s best man), and it was wonderful. I even convinced my husband to dance with me during the reception, and he wasn’t drunk.

I miss dancing. I didn’t know how much I enjoyed it until I was removed from it for a month. I miss the sense of accomplishment, the sense of pride in my own body. I need to lose some serious weight. Next year’s goal, maybe. Although everyone I know well over here has asked how much weight I’ve lost. Apparently I’ve either lost or relocated some.

The Christmas tree here is two stories tall. The star kisses the ceiling. It’s not exactly subtle. And the pile of gifts is ridiculous and huge. Excepting the inevitable family drama (it’s Christmas after all) tomorrow (today) should be a good day.

I should really sleep. But my husband isn’t in the room yet, and I can’t drop off without his arms around me.

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So, on Saturday night, I decided that the knife belonged in my index finger more than in the butter. We had McCrack for dinner as a result, and Tobermory trotted off to urgent care with me to get it bandaged. The offending knife, which turned out to have had a chip in it (ceramic) has been disposed of.

So, I spent the rest of the long weekend not doing anything particularly requiring dexterity or dirt, and mostly tidying my craft room. Amongst other things, repurposing this knife block (with the aid of the drill) for my paintbrushes. It makes me happy.

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It’s spring now, it’s getting lighter. Skies are nearly blue in the mornings.

I don’t rush my walk from the car to work. I like taking a few moments to collect my thoughts, think about the day. It’s a pleasant amble – carpark, sometimes coffee shop, public square, street, work.

I like people watching.

Council workers, emptying bins, cleaning the square. Setting up for whatever the next show or market is.

Business people in serious suits, heels tapping and clicking on the stones, serious briefcases.

The guy who clearly wants to look retro and stylish, but unfortunately looks like he raided his dad’s wardrobe then pinched grandad’s suitcase. He’s a regular.

The group who practice tai chi. At least, I assume it’s tai chi. Sometimes there are fans, sometimes wooden swords. It’s so graceful, calm and controlled movement. The *clack* as a fan opens, the graceful sweep of an arm and leg into place. Whatever it is, I love watching them.

Lately, there are a group of about six guys. They must be training for something – they’re there stretching, doing pushups or jumping jacks, sprints over one of the grass areas. I’ll admit I like watching them too.

Students shuffling up the hill to uni, sometimes grappling multiple bags, inevitably looking exhausted. I sympathize, I don’t like 8am either.

And me, sometimes gratefully grasping a cup of caffeine, wandering up the hill to work. The lady at Starbucks has stopped asking if I want the usual – these days it’s just “morning, that’ll be $6.90 please!” “Morning, thank you…” I wander over, get my straw, hear the blender whirr. “Mahal?” “Thanks!”

I like being a regular.

Originally published at spinneretta


Aug. 31st, 2011 12:30 pm
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The soundtrack in our home at the moment is the Lurgy Duet; featuring my husband on sinuses, myself on lungs, with special appearance from Ms Candy C Cat singing the Whine Aria.

We bought our tickets for the trip to the UK this December. Hooray, white Christmas?

I still can’t find a home for Candy.

I had a surprise work trip last week.

I’ve nearly finished my current salsa class. Other than some moments of despair to the effect of I’LL NEVER LEARN TO DO DOUBLE SPEED TURNS, it’s going OK. I can’t decide whether to do the next salsa course, pick up zouk at another studio and do salsa on another day (casually), do bachata on a Friday at yet another studio… I have a week to make up my mind.

I went to the first class of a performance routine. I backed out when I realised there were two lifts involved – I’m not about to ask anyone to hold my weight. Dance with, yes, dip and drop and turn, yes, hold entirely? no. I still bought a pair of new dance shoes, and will be selling the ones I’ve had since last year and wore once before I decided they’re intolerably uncomfortable.

I went to Cirque du Soleil by myself, as T had a headache. Poor man. Mum commented that, since I started dancing, I’ve gained confidence. She’s right, too. I don’t mind doing things alone, and I’ve started trying to make friends. With some success, I have a semi-regular dinner arrangement before dance with one of the women in my glass. She’s lovely, and I’m enjoying it.

T’s busy at work. It’s stressful in the right kind of way – he enjoys what he’s doing, and with the inevitable exception (there’s always one), likes his colleagues. It’s nice to have him happy with his work.

Everything changes, everything stays the same.

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I was in the dunny at work yesterday – not my usual office, I was helping out at another site – and heard someone fly in to pay homage to the porcelain gods. I felt quite sorry for her – retching interpersed with “oh, god, argh” type noises.

An older lady offered sympathy and help, but whoever it was (I never saw her) was quite insistent that She Was OK, Thank You (now please go away).

I flushed, went to wash my hands, and had a thought.

“Should I offer congratulations instead of sympathy?”

“… yes.”

“Morning-afternoon-all-day sickness?”

“YES and it SUCKS. Um, do I know you?”

“Probably not! I’m just here for the day. I have an unopened water bottle. Would it help?”

“Not really. But thank you…”

Originally published at spinneretta.com
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It’s funny. I never used to have any particular associations with bells. I mean, I appreciated them as I appreciate most lovely things.

Today, walking across Aotea Square as the 8 am bells rung out from the clock tower, my thoughts swung back to the wedding. Walking out of the old church on Tobermory’s – my husband’s! – arm, the church bells pealing, and unashamedly crying. That was when it first sunk in, I think. This man beside me is my husband, we’ve really done this.

That’s what I think of now when I hear bells. That odd moment of happiness so strange it hurts, on my husband’s arm.

Originally published at spinneretta.com
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I have new shiny cooking equipment. One KitchenAid mixer, with sundry attachments.

Owing to my inability to make appropriate portions, we have had three days worth of home-made pasta meals, including lunch portions. Very tasty pasta, mind you.

I am continuing to learn to salsa. For the first time in years, I am actually enjoying something related to exercise; admittedly I had a bit of a mental paddy with myself tonight, when the instructor tried to walk me through something I hadn’t done before and I got it wrong, but hey! That’s my own mental quirk which I really, really need to deal properly with, because newsflash: people are not expected to be good at things the first time ever. It has been fun every other lesson, and frankly I need to give my WAH I AM NOT PERFECT a good kick up the arse, because hey, not perfect and THAT’S OK.

In other news, I swear to god I am not lying: I got propositioned by a hooker on my way home. (The dance studio is near our red-light district and… I guess my car was parked too close tonight?)

Her: “Hey honey, you want some fun?”

Me: “er, what?” (thinking: don’t you have some original lines?)

Her: “… this is K road. What do you think?”

Me: “Get bent.”

Her: “I already am?”

I wasn’t trying to be funny…

Also, I don’t know why, but some part of me is actually quite insulted. She wasn’t even very attractive.

Originally published at spinneretta.com
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Mum and I sometimes manage to talk about things. Religion, my teenage years, depression. The last time we spoke at any length about those topics, I found out that Mum had absolutely no recollection of what, to me, was a pivotal moment in my teens – the point when I stopped trusting Mum, the point where I stopped confiding in her.

I’d already realised that I wasn’t cut out for her faith. I just couldn’t do it, I wanted other things, I was miserable being forced into the mold young people in the congregation were expected to like, I wanted to be normal. We had an argument, no unusual occurrence for a teenage daughter and menopausal mother, and mid-argument, I finally summoned up the courage to say “but I don’t WANT to be part of the congregation, I don’t WANT to be part of that faith.”

Mum turned around, looked at me, snorted, and said “oh, don’t be silly.”

It was a small moment, really. But I couldn’t believe that she’d called something so IMPORTANT to me silly. I tried to explain a few times, probably failing terribly badly in an overblown emotional teenage fashion, and the moment passed.

From that day forward, I lied to her. I lied about where I was and what I was doing, and who I was doing it with (or to, as the case may be). And I was utterly miserable for, god, I don’t even remember how many years. Teenage blues, yes, but I’ve realised that my stomach problems in uni were stress induced, the varying sleep issues I’ve had over the years are certainly stress-aggravated.

after the jump )

Originally published at spinneretta.com
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I'm certainly not above being a memesheep here - and, really, the last ten years have been full of changes. As you'd expect when you transition from your teens to your twenties, I suppose.

Finished high school. Spent a fairly miserable year as all my school friends were no longer at school (either being a year ahead or having chosen not to do seventh form). Graduated high school with pretty damn good grades, all things considered. Started going out with Cyclenut.

First year of university, studying business. Mum had surgery to remove an ovary. Stressed out about money. Survived.

Made the decision to switch into computing, having realised that I'd stab someone with a letter opener if I stayed in accounting. Started teaching computing.

First year of the computing degree. It was a good choice! Was mostly miserable in my home town, had no local friends (although there were one or two people who I periodically went to movies and such with, they tended to be less than wonderful). Lived for the chances I got to leave and visit Cyclenut, mostly.

Uni uni uni, work work work. Started making Internetfriends, beginning with Colitis I think. Started cycling and swimming, and running more seriously. Originally mostly due to Cyclenut's influence, I enjoyed it. Eventually ended up swimming with a tri training squad, although that may have been in 2005 now I think about it. Started working at my first helldesk role. I enjoyed that job.

One of my worst years, and yet I achieved a hell of a lot. Got Internet access at the maternal abode for the first time. The final project at uni, which was a horrible series of ups and downs and disappointments. I eventually passed, though. Spent my final semester getting burned out and doing too much. Miserable in my home town, was officially Nellie No Friends. Cyclenut and I parted ways. Met Internet friends in real life. Finally sucked it up, went to GP, diagnosed with depression. Did a Special K triathlon. Met Tobermory. Graduated. Made decision to leave childhood faith while planning to leave home. Went out with my workmates for drinks. Went to the Christmas party. Spent time with friends in Auckland and Hamilton. Rhonda the Honda died, and I was obliged to rely on shanks pony or my bike for transport.

Graduation ceremony, did the walk in the silly hats. Worked for the web-dev company, worked for EDS (worst. decision. ever.) Bought my first car. Moved to Auckland, on April Fool's day which I still think is hilarious. Officially left childhood faith. Tobermory moved to New Zealand. Purchased Spinneretta. Dyed my hair (went through a rainbow of atrocious colours, in fact). Purchased various stupidly cheap appliances off Trademe until we could afford non-shitty ones. Had first birthday. The couch attempted to eat Reiver.

Left EDS. Discovered how truly psychologically destructive that place was. Started working for my current workplace. Reconnected with Pstyken. Tobermory was hospitalised for the first time with stomach issues. Candycat moved in from the neighbour's place. Played World of Warcraft. Cooked a lot, had various work / money dramas with Tobermory's revolving contracts. Got continually sick with various lung-infection type bugs owing to shitty damp horrible flat. Survived.

My beloved Sharkie-car died. Bought the Scoobaru and Buzby. Tobermory bought a house! Moved into said house. Lots of drama related to house buying and so on. Tobermory got residency! and much rejoicing was done. Moved into house, bought furniture and various necessaries. Spent several months wondering how the hell we'd survived in the tiny flat of hell. Unoffically promoted internally as trainer of new staff, etc. Parked Buzby under an SUV in an attempt to avoid another accident. HOUSE! Had our first Christmas and New Year's parties here.

Made a lot of jam. Attempted cake decorating. We bought a lawnmower and I became the de facto lawnmower of the family. Met the Tobermory-parents for the first time. Was proposed to in front of said parents, burst into tears even though I more or less knew it was coming. Acquired the Tigra and Boomer cats from the SPCA. Thaqui moved in. Bought a piano. Promoted to team leader. Dramas with the Ford, leading to it's eventual return. Attempted gardening. Adjusted to having an entire house available instead of two very small rooms. Mum had dental surgery, during which the family suddenly realised that I was actually a grownup and capable of looking after my mother instead of the other way around.

It's funny how summing up the events doesn't really cover just how much I've changed from age sixteen to age twenty six. Still, here I am. And I'm happy.

Originally published at Spinneretta.
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emsk: (Default)
It is Queen's Birthday weekend, and I have managed to get all three days of it off work. Hooray!

I gave the kittens a hunk of raw beef this morning. It was absolutely adorable. There were little spats of YOU ARE EATING FOOD IN MY PERSONAL SPACE and killing Rrrrrrrrr!! noises. Tigra killed hers before eating it - the full-on toss meat in air to break it's neck, bat it about the floor, bite down HARD - all while making adorable little GROWLY noises, before she eventually ate it.

We are eating the rest of the meat in a mystery stew - I knew the age of the contents of the freezer, but not exactly what cut all the dead cow in there was. Stew seemed to be the answer.

We have been busy, the last two days. Friday night, we emptied the spa pool and took out the filter for a clean. Tobermory managed to bash his head on the framing of the crawlspace door, and gave himself a concussion so bad I insisted we go to A&E. He turned out to be fine, but the doctor did say that I was right to bring him in. So, that was Friday.

Saturday, with Pstyken and Thaqui (well, fairly obviously Thaqui owing to the fact he lives here), we scrubbed the hell out of the spa with meths, then refilled it. It's actually quite hard work, not to mention that all those alcohol fumes floating around the air aren't much fun.

Tobermory and I also managed to have a rather vicious spat (during which I was a horrible harpy, and subsequently managed to cry so hard that I've burst blood vessels under my eyes, d'oh). I should note we were both in various different ways wrong, and frankly it boils down to the usual couply issue of communication-fail. Such is life.

Today, I committed acts of violence against the front gardens. I had kitten assistance! They were shut inside while we cleaned the spa, so that they didn't decide to drink the chemicals, so of course today they went absolutely bananas outside. Boomer kept standing in the middle of the plants that I was trying to hack, leading to a couple of moments where it was chop, chop, cho-AUGH KITTEN TAIL. He is a lovely affectionate cat, which is wonderful except when he insists on Helping with Everything.

Tigra and Boomer also had several wonderful games of ... you know, I have no idea what it actually was, except it appeared to involve chasing each other up and down trees at opposite sides of the section. Presumably it made sense to them.

It has been a pleasant couple of days, either despite of because of working hard. And I intend to spend the holiday Monday sitting on my backside, doing as little as possible.

Originally published at spinneretta.com.
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emsk: (Default)

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