Thursday, March 29, 2012

Clodhoppers-Pt 1

Being long-legged and big footed has its advantages, but unfortunately finding footwear for my unruly feet and toes requires detective-like search techniques to be utilized.

Chris and I are headed to the US in May and look forward to the land of big meals, big bodies and big malls to fulfill our every need.  Much to my sister Heidi's dismay, 3-4 days of our visit are spent shopping.  Not at a leisurely designer boutique where you are served tea and crumpets while you try things on, but rather hittin up every Ross, Nordstrom, Marshalls and 'discount barn' in the tri-county area.  Not only do I like a good bargain, but funds are tight, and I like to look at these outings as a sort of "amazing race"/treasure hunt to find what I need...I mean, want.

When it comes down to it however, I am relying to heavily on the serendipity of the situation, hoping that last pair of 'on sale' flats will be in my size.  I can't take those kinds of chances, especially because for some odd reason, everyone in this country seems to either have dwarf-sized feet, or practice Japanese foot binding to the extent that you can barely get anything past a ten.  To me, that's practically a toddler size, so I am forced to turn to the world-wide web for redemption.

Browsing along, there is not shortage of size 11.5 or 12's so I felt my heart race, and emotions run high as I wait for the page to load.  Amazon loads up with a particularly hideous breed of stripper shoe, and I am wondering if Amazon moonlights as the "erotic attic/drag queen warehouse".  Now no disrespect to any of the transsexuals who may be my loyal followers, but seriously?  This one is gold!:

Glad to see that they are taking these hard economic times to heart and offering the economical option for their customers:

Now if stripper shoes don't take your fancy, don't worry there is always a wide array of nude coloured sneakers with the built in perspiration holes if you are looking for the stabler, more comfortable fit.

GEEZ!!  Looks like for $174 dollars they are not even bothering putting heels on anymore:

Anyway, I will continue my hunt but for the meantime, even unsuccessfully it sure beats doing homework!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Just When You Let Your Guard Down...Part Deux

Apparently I left a lot of unanswered questions...a lot of things left unsaid.  When I almost had a coronary swinging around the corner to see my little green kermity frog, I took a few pictures, switched the light off and shut the door.  I pulled the ol avoidant tactic of, close the door and hope it goes away (in my defense last time it was in the toilet I just closed the lid, and I came back and he was gone!).  Here is the progression of what happened:

Came back a little later to get my toothbrush before bed (thank goodness we have a downstairs bathroom!)

 Then every time I'd poke my head in, he was in a different spot!  Reminded me of this video:

I came back in the morning and he was having a swim in the toilet again, so I just shut the lid.  Left him for Chris to deal with.

 But don't worry everyone, he assured me he safely released him back into the wild...that is our yard.

I didn't think that I was THAT much of a baby about touching bugs/critters but living her has made me realise how skiddish I have been come.  A little hair grazes my face and I'm like "haaaa, that was a spider's web!", and I absolutely hate gardening/weeding here...too big of a chance that something could crawl out of it's hole and kill you.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

When in doubt-ask for help

Went to the beach the other day.  Thought I had things under control...sometimes my own independence lets me down...The Australian sun shows now mercy!!

*i know, surprising with my wingspan

Just when you let your guard down...

I feel like the fear gigantic, venomous animals here has taken a bit of a back seat with me lately.  I haven't had any snakes coiled up under the house, or any massive spiders hiding on in our shoes that get left outside.  The only real fright I've had lately was when I went outside last night and a fruit bat swooped out of our front tree.  Not at my head, I don't think...but it was petrifying none the less.  The sound of those wings make it sounds like an albatross flying away!!

Anyway, I came in from a walk with the dogs today and went to the bathroom to wash my hands.  Turn the corner and WHAM, I'm met by this little guy.  Just chillin, hangin out, surveying the scene.  He could have maybe considered a classier perch, but he seems pretty content there.  So much so, that he/she is still kickin back 2.5 hours later.  I just close the door and hope he is gone when I come back.

*who knows, maybe he's potty trained?
*something about that evil little smile scares me.
 A few weeks ago I almost lost my mind when I came in to this:

I swear I am NEVER going to the bathroom in the middle of the night again!!  The funniest part is when you tell these kinds of stories to a fellow Queenslander all bug-eyed with a slight shrill in your voice and all you get is "yeah mate, that's normal".

Monday, February 20, 2012

Hindsight is 20/20...

 We recently bought return tickets to Honolulu on sale with a new airline here, Air Australia.  An existing airline from 2008 had re-branded to Air Australia in November with a huge launch party in Hawaii, and even claiming to announce profits for their first term.  February 17th rolls around, and they have now gone into voluntary administration.  Fan-FREAKIN-tastic.  They have since left 4000 ppl stranded around the world, and have an estimated 100 000 tickets that were sold for the future.

People are rushing around like crazy in a mad dash to recover whatever funds they can.  We are in a dispute with our bank at the moment...and hope there will be some sort of recover from our credit card, but we are not sure if we will be able to go on our trip in May!!! :(  The replacement fares are more than double per ticket than we paid.  Yes the tickets were cheap, but this is out of control!  It was a deal we just couldn't pass up along with all the other gypsy hopefuls craving a little R & R.  Nothin like payin into some crooked dipsh*t's retirement fund all in the name of fun.

Anyway, hopefully there is something positive that will come out of everything as there is apparently class action being taken towards travel agents and the travel ombudsman as tickets were apparently sold while the company was circling the drain.  Pretty sad to read the many stories of people who have spent thousands, and even taken out travel insurance-all to watch their money disappear with their dream vacation.  

We are REALLY hoping that we can still afford the trip, and have I guess learned a hard and valuable lesson: not to take a chance on a smaller airline (despite the fact that most airlines operate in 'the red' these days).  Anyway, we'll keep everyone posted-otherwise we might have to conference skype everyone instead. :( Noooooooooo!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

An eventful few months...

Christmas has come and gone, and I haven't written much since then so this will be my effort in hopefully writing a few necessary posts.

1. I want to say that we bought a jetski, but really I should say that Chris has gained a son.  He has been hounding me for a boat for a while now, and we decided to compromise on a jetski.  It arrived at our house in the afternoon, and when I came home from work I was greeted by Chris, a sponge, the hose and a HUGE smile on his face.  He had already washed it down and was just basking in its presence-beaming with pride.  The Ferris Bueller's Day Off quote came to mind as he reached for the shammy to lovingly dry it off "he never drives it, he just rubs it with a diaper".  Hopefully that won't be true about the driving part though...

We took it out on Australia Day (Jan 26th) and, oh man, can that baby HAUL!  I have heard all the stats from Chris, but this thing is top of the range, "supercharged" with 215 horsepower (same as a motorcycle engine).  Apparently it can pull at least 2 skiers at once, but we have yet to put that to the test.  I guess just ooooooone more reason to entice people over for a visit! hehehe.

kid + candy shop
2. People that have heard my husband's voice know that it is pretty gruff.  I tried to find a good video to post, but most involve us acting like idiots, so preserving our dignity is much more beneficial than illustrating a point.  It never used to be that way, but tackles like this...every game for the past few years have resulted in his vocal chords retreating into hiding.

Originally we thought it was just scarred, and that over time it would go back to normal-but no such luck.  He saw an ear-nose-throat specialist who thought he could make it better.  Chris had surgery at the end of january and wasn't allowed to speak or even WHISPER for 7 days.

We are still hoping that it will improve but haven't had much luck yet.  Hopefully it will just take time.

I have however stumbled across this video which would be excellent practice.  Turns out Ken Tamplin could teach him a few tricks of the trade, as he has quite the range.  Turns out I have now watched this video a baker's dozen times, and still find it hilarious.

Ok so that might be jumping the gun just a bit, but according to Ken, he'll be singing like a songbird by lunch time.  Maybe I'll slow it down and start with something like this:

I love this singing pig!

3.  We have booked a trip back home for a visit in MAY!!!!  We are excited and will spend time in LA, Edmonton, _______maybe another stop, and Honolulu for a week with our aussie friends who are meeting us on the way back.  We are EXCITED and can't wait to see everyone and catch up in person!

4.  We have a new foster pooch.  Meet Ralph.  He is a bull arab, crossed with adorable.  He is huge, and a big love bug.  He was also scheduled for euthanasia which just breaks our hearts.  He is fast becoming close friends with our other fluff ball, and we are loving having 2 dogs.  Makes me feel a tiny bit less guilty when we are at work during the day.  Woomble has been spayed, and Ralphie will go at the end of the month.  We will be relieved when that happens as the RSPCA invests that money in them and then they cannot be destroyed.  Next stop, finding them homes.  Sadly we are falling in love with them by the minute, but we still want to keep fostering to keep such lovely animals from being killed.

this guy has the wisest eyes. i sometimes feel like he understands english and can tell what i'm thinking.    

our little motley crue. we love them.
he's HUGE!

Monday, January 30, 2012

Foster Dog

Chris and I have signed up to foster dogs for our local pound/shelter.  We got a call a few days after, and they had a dog for us.  Apparently some douche-bag in our town decided to murder his step-brother on boxing day...and consequently, he was headed to jail.  Because he didn't have anyone else to look after her, she was picked up by the RSPCA.  She was incredibly malnourished, underweight by about 10 lbs, and had 150-200 ticks on her! :(  I can't seem to understand why, when owning a pet is optional, people choose to get one-and then mistreat it.  Breaks my heart.

This little creature is absolutely adorable.  She is placid, and cute and always minds me.  Here are some pictures when we first got her.

Love her profile and the furhawk between the eyes!!!

I think she looks much happier now.  Now to work on that socialisation...and to teach her how to play....

She was spayed this weekend so she is one step closer to adoption.  Apparently there are a lot of interested families.  I will be SAD to see her go, I love her!!! 

Apparently we are getting a 2nd dog here sometime this week...another guy that needs a loving home. :)

Saturday, January 21, 2012

My Husband-He Is A Fine Specimen

Our filing cabinet has a specific folder labeled "newspaper articles".  For two athletes, being in the newspaper is often a luxury of the job that we've been lucky enough to be privvy to.  Although, here's to always hoping the photographer does NOT get that shot of you waling on a ball, while in the background, your face looks like some kind of crazed, cross-eyed lunatic with lemon juice being squeezed in one eye and lips curled back like a wolf ready to attack. 

Because my husband has been finished rugby for a few months, I thought this newspaper shrine might actually die down a little.  I was wrong.  Since he has started with the firefighters, he has had the following articles, including this one on his very first day on the job!  Some people get all the luck:

That's Chris on the right.

At firefigter school (on the left).  At his first fire on his first day (on the right).
front page!!
Love a man in uniform!!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Christmas Animals

It felt like every second i turned around, there was another critter!  Chris' brother Brendan loves animals and was always catching geckos and frogs.  I tried to have a legend on some of them, because this country breeds freakishly large insects!!  Here are some of our findings:

baby gecko
A green tree frog, who when Brendan turned his head...launched towards me and Rosmary!
There he goes!
The "Christmas Beetle".  This thing is HUGE and normally has a crazy looking horn on the front.  No thanks!!


Christmas this year was great especially since we could factor in the unusual presence of family!  Chris' family came up from the 23rd-30th and we have a lot of fun with them.  From the moment they got off the plane, we pretty much had then harnessed into some manual labor so they could earn their keep.  I had a piano to move, and I needed them to help.  

First of all, let me get a photo on here of this little BEAUT!  
We have a local classified publication, and I found her advertised for $75!!!  I called the lady and was inquiring about it over the phone as she lived at the beach (about 30 mins from us).  The lady selling the piano was named Greta, and she was adorable.  I asked her to play a few notes just to hear the quality of the sound, and the next thing I know I was practically settling in with a blankie and a hot cup of tea for a musical masterpiece!!  It was funny and endearing.  I pretty much committed to buying it over the phone, and then had the HUGE task of figuring out how the heck we were going to move the thing.  This is where Chris' family came in.  Let me just say that 6 adults later, and everyone using their full strength, it was still bloody hard to move it!!  Nonetheless, we got it home and have already enjoyed many duets and tunes on her.  I have missed having a piano in my life, thanks to my mom who has woken me up to this fact!

Christmas Eve was spent getting things ready for the holiday and in the evening spending time making sugar cookies, and making/decorating our homemade candy houses.  I was going to call them 'gingerbread houses', but that ends up implying that I actually baked gingerbread-and that would be a total lie!  We used the budget/large family approach and built our houses with cookies. 
I think it's clear to see who's is the best here....
Here is a picture of our tree.  I was proud that we finally did a somewhat life sized version of a Christmas tree this year.  Total cost=$34 (including decorations!!).  I also find it weird here that they use evergreen trees since they don't grow them here.
For Christmas meal we went to our friends' Luke and Sarah's, and then everyone came to ours the next day for a BBQ and a swim.  I was pretty bad at taking pictures though:

Usually Christmas crackers have a plastic mustache, or maybe a toy car.  Luke's had an electronic book light?!? 

It was so HOT!  Our crowns were sweating to our heads!!
It was a good holiday, and it was fun to have Chris' family up to Rockhampton!