Monday, December 20, 2010
I'm baking: music note shaped vanilla cookies as per the recipe from the new Junior Masterchef cook book(recipes are so much easier and much more to my liking than anything that would be in the 'adult' Masterchef cookbook) using vanilla extract and not vanilla essence. I ended up making 6 batches of them for all of mother's 30 piano students.
I'm listening to: Glee's new Christmas album. We haven't bought a new Christmas album in a couple of years and have stuck to the collection of carol CDs we already have but I was itching for a new one and I knew the Glee album would not disappoint. All the songs on it new so joyous and truly embody the spirit of Christmas, even with all the new carols on it that I've never heard before and the gospel twist on "Angels We Have Heard On High" was magical.
I'm decorating: my dad's Christmas tree. He's a bit of a scrooge so he only bought his own Christmas tree a couple years ago after I asked him to get one. so him, my brother and I were putting up the ball-balls,tinsel and lights over the weekend and we bought a nice gold, sparkly star to go on top as we couldn't find one in the shops when we looked for one in 2008(we didn't end up putting the tree up in 2009). It's been really nice to celebrate Christmas not only at my mum's house but at my dad's too.
I'm buying: the majority of my gifts online for the family(and even for myself as my mum hasn't quite figured out how to use paypal and online shopping sites)as I can buy more unique and tailor-made gifts for the recipients to enjoy. And as always there are huge discounts usually when buying online.
I'm attending: a Christmas carol concert. My dad, brother and I went to one this weekend at the local park which was much easier than attending one in the city as the parking/walking distance was less of a hassle and as we couldn't stay for long we had no trouble leaving easily. It was really nice to just spend the evening with other families who were getting into the Christmas spirit. They had candles you could buy for $2 but straight away my brother blew it out as well as attempting to blow out the 'big' candle that the organisers were attempting to light all the other smaller ones with to give to people. Luckily we managed to keep the second one alight, even though I did have to put my hand over my brother's mouth every now and then.
I'm loving: the fact that the whole month of December is special if you put in the effort and relish the jolly spirit of the season; not just the 25th.
Have a lovely Christmas all!
P.S. Feel free to use this as a blog tag if you're in a 'jolly spirit'.
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
You know, earlier in the year I really wanted some extra money to come my way for the exchange and I've always been one to try to get a hold of any 'luck' I can so I pulled out my 'trouble dolls' from my dresser. They were a present from my Aunt and Uncle when I was younger from one of their numerous vacations. Here's the little blurb that came on the piece of paper tucked inside the little box:
In the land of Guatemala the Indians tell this old story. They teach that when you have troubles, share them with your dolls. Remove one doll for each problem. Before you go to sleep, tell the doll your trouble. While you are sleeping the dolls will try to solve your troubles. Since there are only six dolls, you are allowed only six troubles a day.
Thursday, December 2, 2010
Stage 1: Shock and denial
I re-read the email several times and just sat looking at the computer screen in complete disbelief- this was my worst nightmare.
Stage 2: Pain and Guilt
Then the tears started flowing and I ran to my favourite crying spot- my mother's ensuite bathroom. Gosh, I was such a mess! At the same time I was also thinking to myself "Why didn't I just do it earlier in the year?!"
Stage 3: Anger
Then the rage flowed through me and went a little like this... 'Stupid EF! They stuffed up once again! It's all their fault! They told me I had until November! RAWRRRRRRRRR!'. Something like that anyway...
Stage 4: Depression
Then I started to feel awful and was in a complete slump and felt like my life was taking a turn for the worse. I'd just had my high school graduation the day before and was already feeling sad that a big part of my high school journey was over and that university is getting closer. This news just made me feel even worse as the exchange was something to distract me from my troubles and instead it just added to them. Plus I felt all my effort was wasted and the quote "if you work hard you will succeed" was a load of balony.
Stage 5: The Upward Turn
The crying stopped.
Stage 6: Reconstruction and Working Through
I knew I had to do something about this whole scholarship thing and since the lady who sent me the email was one of the head staff in charge of EF in Australia I knew I had to go higher so I started searching for other places of contact internationally. I told my mum about it all and she's contacting the head office in Australia about it, although they've yet to return our calls(last time we had a problem with EF we had to phone twice to speak to someone about our issue and it looks like we're going to have to do that again). If we don't get a good response from them we're contacting the US office or even the Swedish office as that is the country the whole program stems from. I am thinking of posting my application to one of those offices to see if they think my application is still worthy.
[I should probably add here that I emailed the Sydney head office earlier in the year about the scholarships as I'd received no further information on the topic since being accepted in the program. One of the staff members said as long as I sent it in before the end of November that it would be fine. I even emailed a couple of weeks ago before I started writing the scholarship to check it was still by the end of November but had no reply. I've still yet to find out when this mystery deadline actually was.]
Stage 7: Acceptance and Hope
I'm starting to feel okay about it all now as I know that all that I can do is contact some of the other EF headquarters that are 'higher up the ranks' than the Australian one and if nothing else make sure that the Australian staff get 'told off' so that this never happens again.
I am still very hopeful that my application will be considered and that I may be lucky enough to get some funding. They are only partial scholarships of up to $2000 but when I need to buy a new laptop, video camera and winter clothing any extra money is going to be of use.
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Thursday, November 18, 2010
2011-spend a year abroad in america to attend high school & become more confident and mature
My mum did buy her first lotto ticket today so maybe if the cards are in my favour she'll win enough money so that I won't have to rely on the government assistance for the university exchange. *Fingers crossed*
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
Monday, November 15, 2010
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
As you know I haven't really been posting on my poor blog for a while and I have some dissapointing news, I won't be doing any more until november 15th. Just thought I'd let you know that I'm not abandoning this blog and that I will be back it's just that I have my final year 12 external exams on next week and there's no time really for me to blog. But I will be back!
Monday, July 26, 2010
I'll be trialling a couple other natural beauty products in the coming weeks so it would be really great if you guys could test out these 'recipes' with me and let me know how they work for you!
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
I've never really expected much from my school, it's not the kind of place where all your high school dreams come true and it's never like it is on television. So I was quite surprised when I received a shiny envelope containing quite an elegant looking invitation. Of course it lacked the personal touch of my name being written on the front of the envelope but we won't focus on the negatives too much.
Friday, March 26, 2010
A letter on its way to New Zealand, whoever could it be for?
And I received an invitation to what endeavors to be one of the most enjoyable evenings of my life!
I can't wait to read everyone's blogs and see what I've been missing in the blogosphere!
Sunday, January 31, 2010
I can be quite a messy person at times(well my mother would probably say all of the time) and I tend to leave any new things I've bought lying around the house, so my mother usually piles it all up and dumps it on my dining chair in the hope that I'll move it when meal time comes around but usually I just pile it all on the floor next to the chair(Sorry Mum!). A couple weeks ago this is what my dining chair looked like(minus the outdoor part), full of beautiful knick-knacks, including: a new Pyjama top and the accompanying adorable little price tag as well as a birthday present for a friend, something recycled, something reusable and something with a dash of blue. That assortment on the chair sums up how I'd like my own house to be in the future, full of beautiful, eco-friendly, kitsch and quirky pieces that will make my house, feel like a home.
That photo was one of the last pictures take with my treasured Pentax Optio S10 digital camera which conked out on me after only a year and a half of use. In the hope it might be fixable we took it to a camera repair shop but it was going to cost more than it was worth to have it mended, luckily though the man serving me was able to offer me a similar Pentax camera that has some new extra features and a slick exterior for the cost price of only $220. One hundred dollars cheaper than the current retail price, only problem is they have to get it shipped over and it's already been two weeks since I ordered it and I've yet to receive the camera.
On another note, remember this summer to-do list I wrote in November? Well unfortunately I didn't finish everything on the list but I am on my way to completing some of the other tasks: I'm about to start piano lessons this week, I've chosen the article I'm going to write, I've written about half of the song, I bought the fabric to make the piece of clothing and purchased some yarn for crocheting. So the list is still a work in progress. Rest assured I didn't spend my summer days doing nothing though, I've been preparing for school and catching up on note-taking and study from '09.
Back to organising everything for the start of a new school year then. Best wishes for anyone else starting back!
P.S. I also want to give a huge thankyou to Blaize for sending this award my way!
P.P.S With my new-found typing skills I touch-typed this whole post!
Friday, January 8, 2010
For the past two weeks we've been caring for an adorable little cat(for a friend of mine while her and her family took a trip to Bali), called Max, who is a girl cat. Being the feminine person that I am I couldn’t fathom calling such a sweet little cat … Max, so I changed her name to Milly as in Maxamillion(Who I think was some Roman/Greek god…? I only recognised it, as it was used in a film I watched recently). She’s been such a pleasure to have around and has really livened up the house, I’m really hoping we can get a cat of our own this year so I’m hopeful this ‘experience’ will persuade my mother.
Even though Milly is very girlie she can be quite mischievous at times, she scampers round the house, skidding on the slippery tiles(and has bashed into the glass back door a couple of times) and I’m pretty sure she's jumped onto almost every surface possible in the house, including:
The linens in the cupboard.
The top of the television cabinet, where she’s knocked down all the Christmas cards on numerous occasions.
The bookshelf and nearly the air conditioning unit.
Plus the piano, washing machine, dining table, kitchen bench(where she liked to drink water out of our glasses, when we had our backs turned), shower and the kitchen hot plates while one was turned on!(Luckily she didn’t touch the hot one and some aluminium foil along the edge stopped her from returning).
Did I mention she’s an indoor cat? So of course we took her for a daily walk with her leash and collar. She looked forward to going outside so much so she would whine and meow in the mornings until we took her out but she tried to do a runner a couple of times as she was able to slink out of the collar. She wanted to chase after bees; something that wouldn’t have ended well.
We did have a bit of a mini disaster occur when I went to go put out the washing once. You see, we have a fairly large gap at the bottom of our flyscreen door(from when we used to have rabbits that nibbled their way outside) and while the cat had been vacationing with us I always made sure the glass door was shut, as I didn’t want to risk her escaping but on this occasion I only left the flyscreen door closed and I started to have a mini heart attack when I noticed it open as I was about to come back inside. My first thought was that the cat had escaped as she’d been following me round the house all day and was desperate to go outside. Before I went into a full-on heart attack I went to go look for her inside the house as I was probably overreacting but even with my mother’s help looking in every nook and cranny we couldn’t find Milly. Back came the mini panic attack as I searched the whole garden, driving the neighbour’s crazy calling out “Miiiiiilllly!”(after a while I was starting to think I was pronouncing it wrong as I’d said it so many times). I peered over the back fences of a couple of the surrounding neighbour’s gardens but no such luck. I was really starting to doubt I’d ever see her again, we have 6 neighbouring gardens that surround our backyard so she could have been in any one of them plus she wouldn’t really recognise anything as she was in a new neighbourhood. Next I went round asking the neighbours to look out for a ginger cat that may or may not respond to either Milly or Max(I got some strange looks there) but no-one had seen her. I was deciding whether or not to cry as I walked back into our house, about to phone the local ranger in case anyone called in saying they’d found a cat, when my mother yelled out saying she’d found her! Milly was fast asleep laying on top of a row on magazines on a bookshelf that was hidden by a sheet(my mother seems to have a phobia of dust and covers everything up). I was so relieved I wouldn’t have to tell my friend I’d lost her cat; one of the happiest moments of my life.
But other than that minor hiccup everything went smoothly, except for my feet which kept getting scratched by the monster under the bed.
Friday, January 1, 2010
It's finally here.
Shame it's not really how the 2000s were depicted in those old futuristic films/tv shows(Think "The Jetsons") But perhaps that was a little too far fetched, I doubt even the 3000's will be like that. I think the closest thing to how I expected the 2000's to be is IKEA. Seems silly how a furniture store could be so advanced but it truly is. I feel they have revolutionised the way people shop and it makes sense. They make the process of shopping simpler and as a 'reward' for shopping there you get cheaper products. And it's the tiniest of details that all add up.
The flat packaging- they save on the decreased cardboard, giving you cheaper prices plus the DIY element of putting the furniture together saves you even more. Not to the mention the adorable and simple picture instructions.
The provided shopping lists, pencils and measuring tapes. Why didn't people think of them before?
The supplied shopping bags and no plastic bag policy; the store short cuts, making it ten times easier to manouvere round the shop; the beautiful children's creche; the "As-Is" section where you buy disouncted IKEA furniture that has been used or that has slight faults(I used to think it read "A5-15" when I was little and could never figure out what an earth it meant); the fact that they have everchanging showrooms where you can test everything out and see how it really looks plus the market hall where you can buy everything you see.
My favourite part of IKEA though would have to be the restaurant, I love how you serve yourself and the array of foods they have available for you to choose from(Did you notice how they even have jars of baby food available?) for just a couple of dollars. They also sell vegetarian and organic food, which gets a big thumbs up from me. Plus they encourage everyone to put away their own trays, which I whole-heartedly support. I really hate when people leave all their leftovers on the tables when it would take them less than 60 seconds to put it away. The cleaners already have plenty to do with cleaning away spills/dropped food and clearing away all the china/glass, plates and cups.
And just to top it all off, you can buy the food they sell at the restaurant and cook it at home yourself. Next time I'm wanting to buy their organic pasta sauce, which for the quantity is far cheaper than the organic versions in the supermarkets.
What I'm trying to get at is that I expected the noughties and the tens(anyone got a better name for the new decade?) to be a bit more innovative, simple and more eco-conscious. I guess I'll be visiting IKEA more often. Perhaps even on an ikea bike?
Several days ago my mum and I visited IKEA just to eat lunch there. That's just how awesome we think it is.