Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Random, Frivolous Things About Me

I've read a number of bloggers sharing random facts about themselves in the last month or so.  I should give you guys credit.  My bad.  I think it's because I'm sitting here knowing of 6 off the top of my head, and, well, I admit it, I'm too lazy right now to go find all those posts. 

Today is the 21st of the month, so let's learn 21 random (mostly frivolous) facts about me:

1.  I love naps.  I can sleep anywhere, anytime.

2.  I had problems with my right ankle all throughout high school.  I sprained it, stretched and tore ligaments, and fractured it.  To this day, my left calf is higher/stronger than my right calf because it had to overcompensate for the right leg injuries.  I'm not making it up.  A doctor actually told me this.

2a.  Taking a picture of your own calves is not an easy task.  I swear that the differential between my calves is more obvious than this picture shows.  Or, now, I'm asking myself "am I just being a weird girl and noticing things about my body parts that no one else notices or cares about?"

3.  When I was a kid, I used to wish that my name was Savannah.  I've actually never met anyone named Savannah.

I'm having a difficult time coming up with random "new" things...things that I haven't already shared in this space before, so I'm going to repeat myself here and there.

4.  I have been a Bon Jovi fan since 1984.  I saw them in concert on the "Slippery When Wet" tour when I was in 8th grade.  I have seen them in the ballpark of 15 times. (see next random fact about me)  I call Jon Bon Jovi "the love of my life", and I have no shame.

5.  I have a vivid memory about some things, and other times, my memory is horrible.  For instance, I'm pretty terrible about remembering when/where/how many times I've seen certain bands in concert that I know I've seen multiple times.

6.  I love all things cheese and all things potato.

7.  I've watched 5 episodes of Big Little Lies.  This is the most I've watched of a dramatic series since Dexter.  Yep, I'm a little behind the times when it comes to television.

8.  Even though I don't watch that much tv, or that many nominated movies, or listen to that much current music, I still really enjoy watch awards shows like the Emmys, the Golden Globes, the Oscars, and the Grammys.

9.  I have 12 tattoos and a wish list for more.

10.  Prior to my current situation, I'd always had full bred dogs from breeders.  Now, I have 5 adopted fur babies who are nowhere near full breeds.

11.  I have been a nail biter my entire life.  I can still hear my grandmother's voice in my head telling me to "stop biting your nails!"  I've tried every bit of advice and product ever given to quit this filthy habit.  Finally, I gave up and decided I will wear fake nails for life.

12.  I adopted this as sort of a life motto after seeing it on pinterest a few years back:
13.  I believe the world would be a happier place if we all sent/received more care packages.

14.  I don't like olives or any of these other foods

15.  I used to think I was a guy's gal.  I had a lot of male friends.  I'd been accused of "thinking like a guy".  Now, I find myself much more in tune with being a woman, supporting other women, and cherishing my female friends. 

16.  I'm a rocker chick at heart, and many of you know this.  When my 9 year old stepkid just handed me his ipod and asked me to put "Monster" by Skillet on it, my rocker heart was very happy.  AC/DC is his favorite band.  No, this isn't a random, frivolous fact about me...but it was still a fun fact to share.

17.  I am a member at 3 different library systems (all of them with multiple locations), and I'm about to join a fourth.  I moved work locations...I need to join the library near my work.  Duh.

18.  I was born feet first. 

19.  I pretty much like cherry-flavored anything.  Cherry Coke.   Cherry candies (Starburst and Jolly Ranchers.)  Jim Beam Black Cherry.  Cherry Pop Tarts.  Cherry pie.  Cherry cough syrup.  Give me all the cherries...fake or real.

20.  I took dance from the ages of 4 to 10, and I was on an organized dance/drill team in junior high, high school, and 2 years in college.  I still remember choreography from random dances to the likes of Billy Idol's Mony, Mony, Whitney Houston's I Wanna Dance With Somebody, Sinead O'Connor's Nothing Compares to You, Johnny Gill's Rub You the Right Way, Van Halen's You Really Got Me...and more...

21.  I've never drank a cup of coffee.  Oh, I've had a couple of sips of one.  Multiple times to see if my taste buds have changed, but they haven't.  I don't like the taste of coffee anything.  Not even coffee ice cream or tiramisu. 

Did you learn anything new about me?  Tell me one random, frivolous thing about you that you don't think I know...

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Sunday's Seven Snapshots vol.114

It's rained most of the week and the dam near my train station was running strong.  I tried to take a picture through the bars...didn't turn out so well.  ha.

Work selfie for my mom ~ she sent about 3 or 4 texts that I didn't answer.  I responded with this saying "busy". 

Remember when I went to the Hunter Valley in December?  I've been reluctant to drink all my good wine, thinking I should save it for a "special occasion".  Nah.  Friday night I decided to open and enjoy a bottle.

My guy suggested that we go to lunch at the Orangeville Meat Co. where they serve flame-grilled burgers, fries, and shakes.  To steal Kathy's term, this is what "fappiness" looks like.

I was so stuffed after lunch, I needed a nap.  Ricky didn't mind.

The weather cleared up in the afternoon, and we took advantage by taking the Destructive Duo for a walk.

This pic...well, it ain't all that exciting.  I agree.  But, it was taken in the midst of me catching him dancing in the grocery store aisle, and I thought that was cute.

How was your week and weekend?  Hope it was a good one!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Stuff & Things vol.10

Jumping right into my random thoughts this Thursday...

  • Adele was here.  I know lots who went.  I like concerts (I mean, I like them a lot), but for some reason, I had no desire to see Adele.  Actually, I think I'd enjoy having some beers with Adele but just wasn't wildly interested in her concert. I mean, if someone gave me a free ticket, I'd have gone.  I'm sure it was spectacular, but I have no feelings of missing out.

  • I've mentioned to Heather and Kathy, so I thought I'd share here....you know how the American president is often called "the leader of the free world"?  I'm in favor of passing that torch to the Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Photo from article: Justin Trudeau's 7 Most Wonderfully Feminist Moments Will Make You Love The Canadian Leader Even More
  • Remember when I decided to offer my books that I'd already read?  Only 4 books remained unclaimed and those were donated.  I was pleased, I enjoyed sending the packages, and will definitely do this again. 

  • I've had some bizarre dreams the last week.  I'm a regularly bizarro-dreamer, but these have been pretty special.  For instance, I had a dream that my mom's guy was lifelong friends with Kenny Rogers.  He ended up visiting them at the same time that I did, and my mom kept cancelling plans with me to hang with Kenny. 

  • Currently, I'm reading The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley.  There is a part with the ashes of a loved one being taken to a special place.  I've decided, if I die I want half my ashes in Texas and half my ashes here in Australia.  If my wishes are expressed on my blog, is that legally binding?  Probably not.  Guess I need to tell the appropriate people.
lajva[g]a kja"R j
ah     <---------- Astro just walked across the keyboard.  I thought I'd keep his "thoughts" in the post for you, just in case you read cat lingo.
  • If you are a rock music fan, this is a "must watch".  This video is just one of those examples that I'm so happy the internet was created, so something this entertaining could be shared.  Watch "Kids React to Guns N' Roses":

Linking..... with  Kristin:
Stuff, Things, etc.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

I show you my books, you show me yours... vol.26

It's Show Us Your Books Day!  The day hosted by Jana & Steph, the day that makes my goodreads "to read" list grow, and the day I interact with a blogging community of readers.  I love this day of the month.

What I've read since last link-up:

1.  How to Talk to a Widower by Jonathon Tropper - This is one of the only authors in yearsssss that I loved so much, I knew that I must read everyone of his books.  I don't binge read, meaning I don't read all the same author at once.  I sprinkled his books in over time, and now I've read all six of Tropper's published books.  With this one, as always, I love the flawed characters.  I love the dysfunctional relationships.  I love the writing style, the pace, the humor mixed with sadness.  A solid 4/5.

2.  Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon - I know.  A lot of other bloggers and readers have already read this book and fell in love with Madeline and Oliver (or Maddy and Olly.)  My goodreads tells me that 21 "friends" have marked it "to read".  Well, get on it.  It's a quick read and a lovely little book with some valuable lessons.  I'm not one to highlight or remember book quotes, but this one jumped off the page and settled into my heart:  "Just because you can't experience everything doesn't mean you shouldn't experience anything."

3.  The Secret River by Kate Grenville - I felt like I'd read a book assigned by a university professor, and I should write a paper analyzing topics such as poverty and crime, the colonization of Australia, class systems, violence and the mob mentality, entitlement by white settlers and the atrocities committed by them towards indigenous people, money does not equal happiness, the fight of indigenous people to keep their land and their culture, and more. This is my first historical fiction book set during the colonization of Australia, and I appreciated its descriptive writing, as I felt it painted a picture of many scenes and settings. Also, some of the horrors that are committed were difficult to read and to stomach because of the authenticity of the descriptive writing. It is not a fast-paced book, but it is vivid and provocative and a well-written story. 4/5

4.  The Murder House by James Patterson and David Ellis - Do you like James Patterson books? Read this one. Do you like thrillers? Read this book. Twists and turns galore. 4.5/5

5.  One Plus One by Jojo Moyes - I liked this book. I didn't love it, but I liked it a lot.   I enjoyed the support characters more than the mains. 3.75/5 because I give crazy review scores like that.

6.  Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult - So much praise has already been given to this book, all justified and deserved. I'm not sure it's possible to read this book and not be uncomfortable in parts. It is thought-provoking and emotion-filled.  Like others, I felt the ending was abrupt.
Something that I will add that I haven't seen others mention, I couldn't help but hearing echoes at times from John Grisham's A Time to Kill. When Carl Lee tells his attorney, Jake, that they aren't friends. That Jake is his "secret weapon" because, like Kennedy, he is well-meaning, yes, but still a privileged white person. Grisham's book was written close to 30 years ago, but here we are with the same themes and prevalent racism. The comparison of the two books leaves me disheartened that we haven't improved more and bettered ourselves as a society, and I appreciate the reminder from Jodi Picoult that there are ways to continue to learn, grow, and evolve. 4/5

7.  Never Knowing by Chevy Stevens - I liked the idea of this book, but I never fully connected to the main character which made me feel like something was lacking.  Still, I enjoyed it enough to continue being a fan of this author.  3/5

I've shown you mine, now you show me yours...

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Sunday's Seven Snapshots vol.113

First week of a new job has been completed.  Feeling good about things so far.

I saw these tiles outside a primary school.  I stopped.  I read.  I thought about these young voices talking about where they live: a street which "has less junkies" and a park that is "full of magpies", another young voice claiming to be a growing family who "came as (r)efugees" from El Salvador, and another whose parents came from India.  I don't know why these young, multi-cultural voices impacted me so much, but they did.

Our big girls absolutely love it when we take them to the duck pond and let them go crazy.

This weekend I went to the Australian Tattoo Expo in Sydney.  I took this picture while waiting for my gal, Melanie to get ready for me.

My super duper artist in action

Three of their favorite animals to represent three of my favorite people on the planet ~ a hippo for niece 1, an ostrich for niece 2, and a penguin for my nephew. They are such amazing humans. They've always owned a part of my heart. Now, they own a thigh too. I think my gal Melanie was just being a show-off this time.  She does such a brilliant job at taking simple ideas in my head and creating pieces that I fall in love with.  This tattoo makes me so happy.

After being poked and stabbed for a few hours, I exited to this view ~ a perfect autumn day in Sydney.

A week filled with work productivity, fur babies, blue skies, pretty art, and impactful words.  That's a good week in my books.  Hope yours was too!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Stuff & Things vol.9

Not complaining, just thinking out loud...

  • New job started, and nothing like a new job to throw the personal routine into a tail spin. 
  • I have two weeks of training at a different location to where I'm actually working.
  • I'm still in retail management, but before, we owned our own business, so I ain't gonna lie, I'd have the laptop open at work and play around in the blog world when no customers were in the store. 
  • Now, I won't be doing that at all while working because I'm working in a much more fast-paced environment (I love that so far!), and I won't be online during work hours.
  • Before, I worked with my guy.  Now, I don't.  So, you know, when I get home, I spend time with him instead of immediately sticking my nose in a book or into the laptop.
  • I have never been a fan of reading or commenting on blogs or answering emails via my phone.  I just find it more comfortable to do it from the laptop.  And I use the google reading list over bloglovin'.
  • Speaking of bloglovin', I only go on there about once a week.  I noticed this week that people can now comment on a blog post through bloglovin'.  That comment doesn't show up UNLESS you go to bloglovin'.  No email notification and no comment on the actual blog post.  Has anyone else noticed this?  Or has it always been this way, and I just don't use bloglovin' enough to know?
  • It's been raining all week, so no walking for me.  But, I'm on my feet all day running around my work, so I'm not sure my legs, feet, and knees could take walking for exercise right now.
  • Which takes me to the fact that I really would like to incorporate yoga into my new routine.  I practiced yoga probably 15 years ago and enjoyed it.  Personally, I think it would be good for my mind and body to start it up again.  Need to research some yoga studios in the area.  My house is just not a place for it.
  • What a boring post this has been just putting my thoughts to words.  Nothing inspirational.  Nothing about International Women's Day.  Nothing funny.  Nothing informative.  Oh well.  It's still me and still real.  Thanks for sticking around (if you're still reading this.) 

Linking..... with  Kristin:

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Sunday's Seven Snapshots vol.112

Buy one - get one free sale - they get me every time!  I needed new sneaks and was happy with this purchase.

I found sweet Ivy Lou napping in the stepkid's bed while he was away.  He loves the fur babies so much that I had to snap this pic for him.

I shared a pic on ig admitting that I buy wine based on how much I like the label.  I should've mentioned how cool the lid was too.  By the way, did you know most Australian wines are screw top?  I didn't until I moved here.

Enjoying the "Take Me to the Grave" Pinot Noir.  The label steered me correctly.  It was tasty.

My sister-in-law had an slumber party for a belated celebration of her birthday, getting a few girlfriends over for wine and laughs.

My mother-in-law sure can grow some pretty roses.  I love the vibrancy of the pink of these ones.

Sunday grub included a pulled pork sandwich plus CRISPY bacon. 

I start a new job which means new routine. I hope blog time doesn't suffer too much. 

Have a great new week to you!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Currently...linking up vol.11

Starting..... a new job on Monday. 

Thinking..... I probably won't talk about work/job stuff here on the blog.  I did before because we owned the business, but now I will be working for a company and just feel like that should remain separate to my blog life.

Celebrating..... that I have a job.

Mourning..... my mini vacation from employment.  I had two full months off from working.  I didn't get nearly as much accomplished around the house that I intended to do. 

Recuperating..... I have been sick on & off throughout January and February ... stupid mono/glandular fever ... who gets this at my age?!  Then, this week, a stomach bug hit me.  I lost 4 pounds, but that's not the way I would choose to lose weight.  (I'm sure I'll gain it back as soon as I eat something.)

Feeling.....  the temptation to watch Real Housewives of Sydney.  I gave up watching all RH series years ago.  I used to watch OC, NY, NJ regularly and dabbled with (as in, I think I've seen one episode of each) ATL, BH, and Melbourne...but somewhere along the way, they lost me.  The Sydney installment has hit the airwaves this week (I think), and the marketing machine is pushing it hard.  I'm tempted.  I might watch one episode then say "nope, not for me" like I did others.  I do not fault anyone for watching these.  Watch what you want.  I don't judge.

Watching.....  Big Little Lies.  So, if you know me, you know I'm not much of a TV gal, but I'm making an effort with Big Little Lies.  Don't worry.  No spoilers from me.  I commented to Kerri how intense and twisted Celeste & Perry's (Nicole Kidman & Alexander Skarsgard) relatationship is? I seriously couldn’t watch the “make up” scene in the closet because I was so disturbed. AND, I’ve read the book, so I know all about the relationship! I think that means that they are acting the shit out of those roles. 

Sharing.....  this post of mine from earlier this week because I don't want any book lovin' bloggers to miss out!  (psssst:  free books!)

Encouraging.....  you to participate in "twelve things to celebrate in march: a scavenger hunt" by quirky pickings; you don't have to do all the things, you don't have to do them in order or on the exact date listed, just do something fun/different/creative that often involves putting a little good out there in the world.

Linking..... with Kristen and Gretchen:
What's New With You

Linking..... with  Kristin:

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

February scavenger hunt recap

Jenn has been hosting these scavenger hunts since December.  I participated in the first one (read about it here), enjoyed it, but skipped January.  I did an alright job completing the February tasks.  Alright, as in, I completed more than half but could've been a little more creative.  But, hey, I did something.  That's better than January's performance.

one. february fourth. thank a mailman day. take some treats to the folks at your local post office or shipping store.

how did I do?  FAILED - I have changed the local post office that I visit after using the same one for years (the one by my old work.)  I should've visited the previous post office to tell them that I missed them.

two. february eighth. kite flying day. go fly a kite. sounds simple enough... but the WIND...

how did I do? COMPLETED (sort of) - So, I didn't actually fly a kite.  But, as I was visiting a LuLaRoe online party, I saw these leggings with kites all over them.  I remembered that it was Kristen's birthday in February, and she and I had discussed that she hadn't tried LLR yet, so Kristen got kite leggings from me for her birthday!

three. february ninth. national pizza day. treat a friend to some pizza. and not the cheap shit. if there's a gino's east, say, in your neck of the woods... it's national pizza day, for crying out loud. PIZZA, a gift from the gods, yall. YUMMY YUMMY GOODNESS.

how did I do? COMPLETED - did you really think I was going to miss out on pizza day?

four. february eleventh. make a friend day. this sounds simple enough, too, right? for geeks like me, it's really, really not.

how did I do? COMPLETED (sort of) - I told y'all that I went to tapings of The Voice Australia, and I went by myself.  While I was there, I made friends with the people that sat next to me in the audience - Jason & Fiona, Yvette, Trish, Courtney - none of us shared contact details, but for that day, we were buddies.
five. february fourteenth. ferris wheel day. go ride a ferris wheel. this, too, sounds simple enough. except if you're scared of heights, then maybe not so much. show of hands... you can't see but both mine were raised pretty high just then.

how did I do?  FAILED - I did ride a ferris wheel in December, but, yeah, that doesn't count.

six. february fifteenth. singles awareness day. all the single ladies... and laddies. so this day started as sort of a joke, but... maybe you've got a single friend who's having a rough go of it lately. take time out of your day to do something to let that person know how much he or she is loved and needed.

how did I do?  COMPLETED - I told y'all about going to Twilight at Taronga and seeing an outdoor concert with my good friend, Kate.  Well, Kate is a single gal, and let me tell you, her woes of dating make me appreciative to have my guy.  I arrived at the show first.  What did I have waiting for Kate when she arrived?  A iced-down bucket of Coronas.  Nothing says "I love you, friend" like a bucket of beer and live music.

seven. february sixteenth. do a grouch a favor day. one could argue that this task could be tied to the previous one... NO. i don't care what you do or how you do it... but find the grouchiest soul you know and put a little light in that person's world. 

how did I do? COMPLETED - I didn't have to go far to find the grouchiest person that I know; he lives with me.  My father-in-law is the king of grouchiness and grumpiness.  And, let me tell you, it's not in an endearing way.  So, this was a tough one because we already do a lot for this man with no gratitude in return.  He has no hobbies.  His only interests are the History Channel and Discovery Channel.  In the past, to be thoughtful, I've bought DVD series from that I thought he'd enjoy from these channels.  Nope.  He can't figure out how to use the DVD player and doesn't want to learn.  Anyways.......this isn't about me venting about his grouchiness.  The one and only thing that I've done for him in the past that I ever remember him showing any genuine appreciation for was filling his car up with gas.  So, I did it again.  And, again, he actually thanked me.

Want to read how Jenn did?  She completed all her tasks.

Which task of these would be the most difficult for you to tackle?  Or which is the easiest?  Why not try to do one of them in March?