Wednesday, March 22, 2017

This Year Looking Different

This year is looking so different now, I can't even begin to describe how things are going to be for me by the end of the year.

In January, I thought this year was going to be another stressful year of the same old crap that was going on last year.

But no, it's not.

This year, I've torn free of a few people in my life and have found a few new groups of people I want to hang out with, attended some art classes, have looked into an art school and have begun editing a book I'm going to get published by the end of the year.

And by my birthday, I'm hoping to have the living room looking exactly the way I want it to. I'm going to save more money than ever before by not spending it. I know that doesn't sound like me, but really I'm hoping to sell some of my art, work on getting an exhibition at the Logan Artists Association and saving up for a few things while getting rid of other things in my life. 
This is something I just can't wait to do. And while I'm doing this, I'll be learning to paint better, picking up more volunteer work and learning more things at the Logan Artists Association - like pottery. Yes, they have pottery classes! I have always wanted to learn that; and the good thing is that once I start learning, I'll be able to attend a social group an make things for Christmas presents instead of buying things. 

I've been looking at my life as well; in how my house is running, and have sorted out a new way to save money. It's just how I've been working it out - a little tweaking here and there and I'm saving money. Also, I'm looking into second-hand furniture again... I'll keep you posted about this. 

My life is going to take a different turn once this year has finished. I have only a few bags of junk to sort out; and then my place will be finished. I'll have a routine to keep it nice and tidy and it'll always look nice when I come home. I'll be able to have my folks over for dinner and things will begin to happen better for me. Life will be more relaxed.

As Peter Walsh has always said: 'When your home is clean you feel so much better.' or something like that. I always have problems remember his one-liners. Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

World's Greatest Shave

It's on yet again!

Yes! The World's Greatest Shave! 

And yes, I'm taking part in it as I always do every year. 

I joined up for it in January and hoped people would give greatly. However, this year, I didn't raise as much as I had hoped. I only raised $75.00. Such a pity I didn't get over the $100 mark... but that's just how it goes sometimes. 

I have had some big things going on in my life too; but I have been taking the donation boxes with me - leaving one at my local doctor's surgery and have another one to travel with me places. And family promised to donate, but forgot or didn't have the cash. Never mind... I understand things can get on top of them and they may not have the money at this time of year.

Anyway, this year, I went to the Griffith University Campus Heart on Kessel's Road to get my hair coloured. Mum, Dad and I had never been there before; and so we had to trust the good ol' GPS to get us there and back. 
Fortunately for us, we didn't have to walk far, or wait very long. And the best thing is that the university was so pretty, very big and lovely in every way. And seeing I've never attended a university, I never thought it would be like this - you know pretty and nice. 


Once there, I signed in with the organiser - Daniel - and he let me know that the hair-dresser was going to take a break from shaving and they were going to do some colouring again soon. And once she finished to go on a lunch break, I was next up. 

It was great fun! 

One of the students (I think he was a student), coloured my hair all different colours - but used the base colour of green and purple... then added in yellow and pink. Mum was there with my phone, capturing the whole thing for me! It was wonderful.

The best thing was that Daniel asked me about how long I've been doing this, if I'd shaved or coloured before and I said I shaved 2 years ago and had had cancer in our family - touching different members, as well as myself - and this was my way of giving back to society of how much it means to me to be alive still. While I was in the chair getting my hair done, he told everyone over the P.A why I was doing this and what I had told him... it was great! 

Now, I think next year, I may go back to the Griffith University Campus Heart to get my hair done again... it's such a friendly place. And while Mum and I waited for Dad to pick us up, we didn't feel as though we had to move on or anything. We just sat around in the shade of the Campus Heart (which is a huge seated area with a few cafes and restaurants around) and just hung out there. It felt very welcoming and comfortable.

So, that was my day today. Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Today ...

I've been so busy lately that I don't know where to start. Over the past few months, I've been decluttering and so, I thought to clean out the bed and make it nice and fresh last month... this meant getting new pillows. And so, I thought to buy feather pillows.

Little did I know, I'm allergic to feathers; so much so that I break out in hives from them!

So, I took them back to K-Mart today while my laundry was on the line and the bi-carb soda was on the bed - again! - and I bought a new mattress protector (just in case mites from the feather pillows got into the protector; and besides, the old one was looking, well, old). 

Anyway, I thought to pop by my local charity store and I found a whole lot of old gear there! But they had put sticky price tags on things that they weren't supposed to - like the paper 'Phantom' comics they had there which would have been worth a lot of money if they hadn't had the $4.00 sticky tag on it. And now it's worth nothing. The same went for the 1950's Women's Monthly Home Journal... I don't know why some places do this, but it just removes so much of the value on the item.
Then, I walked around and found the best item ever! I found a 'Renoir' easel! It's brand new and hadn't been put together properly... but they wanted $40 for it; even when it had missing parts (like its repair kit of Allan Keys). I talked them down to $30 and scored myself a very cool, brand new easel ... yep, it's never been used! But I knew I just couldn't put my finger on what was wrong with it. So, I dropped into Mum and Dad's and asked them to help me with it. Eventually, we figured it out... and I'll be using my new easel for my paintings in future.

When I returned home, I vacuumed the bed, put the new mattress protector on it, pulled in the laundry, put the pillow protectors (new last week) and made up the bed... it looks lovely. I just hope I don't itch from it all now. 

After a well-earned shower, I'm no longer itchy around my neck from hives; and I'm looking forward to a good-night's rest. Tomorrow, I have to do a few more things before I sleep in on Saturday; and do some decluttering over the weekend and throwing out as well. Then, Monday? Well, Monday is my first art class. I just hope I'm prepared for it. Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Been Busy

I've been meaning to come in here and have a chat with you guys. But every time I want to, something big happens in my life and put it off.

So, here I am, sitting down ready to tell you all what's been going on.

Over the past few weeks, I've been working hard on the Lake Como tapestry, and have gotten far on it. About a quarter of it is completely done since December, but it's the fiddly stuff I'm having problems with, as it's about 30 years old and I really need good natural light to make sure I get the right threads in the right places. Otherwise I'm really pleased with my progress. The main thing is that I'm taking the tapestry to volunteer work at the gallery and to my craft group; and I'm also working on it for about 2 hours a night - every night - to get some of it done. So, this is how I'm getting it done so quickly.

I've been working on my clutter and I'm stoked with how well I'm doing. I've gotten the home office half decluttered and I've paused in cleaning it out so I can catch up with the mess I've accidentally made in the living room. Yeah, moving a box downstairs has backfired into making a mess down there instead of making it tidier. So, I'm saving up money to buy a shredder because there's so many bank statements I need to get rid of that I really can't clean out anymore until I get a new shredder. Tearing them up isn't going to work.

The garden it looking good. The Frangipanni has flowered and I've mowed the lawn, then fed the plants Seasol and watered the lawn heavily; as we're not getting the rain we've been promised over the past week. Such a pity it's been dodging us so much. But at least the plants are going okay. 

I've been learning to bake Apple Tea Cakes. I scored a nice little recipe off Mum and made the mistake of making the whole things in a food processor. Yeah, yeah, stop laughing... I didn't think really. It took the air out of the cake completely; as the recipe did say to 'fold the flour into the mixture', which I didn't read properly. So, next time, I'll read it properly and do it right.
I'm also losing weight - just a little - because the doctors have told me my cholesterol is high. So, out goes the 'Naturals' Chips, high fat things and into the house comes the rice chips and more fruits, a lot more water and less milk-based coffee drinks. I've lost a fair bit of weight throughout the heat wave over Summer, but I am feeling a lot better because of the weight lose I've had to do instead of the weight I've had on over the last few months. I'm also doing weight-based exercises and eating less at night; this is helping me sleep better at night. 

This weekend, I'm taking part in an art opening at the Logan Artists Association at Coral Street, Loganlea. It's called 'Black and White' and it's a collection of art by female artists around Logan City and just in time for International Womens' Day. It starts on 4th, March and the exhibition finishes on 15th, March. I have a piece in it and hope to have a great time on Saturday.
I've also joined the Logan Artists Association this year so I can learn new things in the art world. They have lessons going on how to work with clay - something I've always wanted to know - and art lessons which cost only about $20 or so and lectures from artists from around Logan City.

Anyway, I'm doing well. The heat hasn't done me any favours - as always - and I'm working on a book to get published over the next few months. I hope it works out... there's a lot of editing to be done to it. Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

A Girl's Day Out!

Once in a while, Mum and I have a day out together. We don't really plan it, but it's always fun. Today, I picked her up at her place, piled books in the boot of my car and took off to my place (to grab more books) and then we were on our way.

She was stunned at how terrible my unit complex was. It's been left in such a state by the on-site manager (and he lives here) and yet nothing is being done by the Body Corporate to right the situation. There's a letterbox front that has been stolen, wheelie bins left out after collection day, nothing is tidy, the pool is constantly needing work, none of the trees are clipped, then there's the gardens and the units which look terrible too. But mine is one of the tidier ones - inside and out.

That's what Mum noticed when she came up to my place. Sure, there were leaves in my car port, but once inside the place she saw that my house was a home. It had a feel all of its very own; and she's pleased I've made it into a 1970's haven.

It's such a pity about what's happening outside my door.

Well! Once we were on our way, we headed towards the Logan Artist's Association at Loganlea and totally enjoyed the place. It's bigger than we first expected. there's a pottery place, a kiln area, another area for teaching and a wetlands area where you can go and sit and paint, sketch or just hang out. Then, there's Able Gallery, where you can hang your artworks. I'm hoping to get my work in there next month for the 'Black'n'White' Exhibition for the Female Form - it's for International Women's Day. 
Mum loved the place. I paid my joining fee and handed in my application form; and I've yet to do my bio for the piece (which I can hand in next week anyway) and then I'll see if it's accepted.

Once we were finished there, we drove off to Browns Plains to lunch at the Browns Plains Plaza where we both had spuds... yummo! And then, we also went off to The Really Good Bookstore to exchange some books, but we got our exchange rate for books up instead. Oh well, next time, I'll see what I can buy.

By this time, it was around 4pm! Seeing it was close to peak hour, I thought to drive home the long way around on Chamber's Flat Road and take us to the very end of it - to Kingston Road; right where we had begun our day at Loganlea. It was nice to get there... but man the sun was hot!

Once I dropped Mum off home, I wanted to come home too; so I did and snacked a little, had some water, cleaned up and enjoyed some down time to myself. 
After making some stewed apples with cranberries, I settled in for the night and enjoyed some 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' on dvd tv show; and did some work on my art piece for the exhibition. Yep, it's been a long day! How was yours? Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember I'm always here.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

February and Hot!

The heat is on... as the song goes; but not everyone loves this sticky, tropical heat. I don't and so when it comes down to it, I think it's just a matter of time before other people think it's high time we got some much-needed rain.

Well, over the past month, I've lost 2.5kg in weight; just because I've cut back on ice coffee drinks and started drinking a lot more water. I've also cut back on sugar as well and had a good look at my house... yep, I've been decluttering. And to go with the decluttering, I've started a new blog (yeah, I know, another one!) which works around my journey of decluttering my place. 'A Work In Progress' is my new blog and I'm hoping it takes off into a new direction for me. I talk about decluttering being a very personal journey, a difficult thing to do, and how hoarding isn't something to be ashamed of but to work on making sure you work through. However, having too much stuff can be just as bad as having too little stuff. So, a happy middle ground is best. Anyway, go and have a look at it and see what you think of it.

While I've been working on that, I've also been working the security of my blogs. You see, my Flash Fiction blog has had a stalker on it for the past year; and he's become very political, very much an arsehole and I'm not going let him bother me anymore. So, I'm afraid that the security of the blogs (all of my blogs) have had to be upped on a permanent basis. I'm sorry, guys'n'gals, but to keep this stalker from insulting my good name I've had to do this.

Anyway, I've been out and about doing things to raise funds to The World's Greatest Shave. I've been to my Dad's 70th Birthday and I've been also working on the large tapestry of Lake Como... it's really coming along well! I have also started up craft group again too. 

So, seeing the school year has started again, what's been going on with you all? Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

A Busy Month!

This month has been one long, sticky heat wave of a month - and tomorrow being February and all, it's not going to let up. It's going to get hotter and stickier and we're going to drink more water than we've ever drunk.

But I'm going well. 

I've begun my decluttering of my house - and it's going better than ever! My master bedroom is looking the best it has ever looked. The bathroom has been cleaned out completely! The kitchen is being completely tidy - no thanks to the ants trying to take it over every time I leave anything on the sink (so I have to make sure I wash up no matter how late it is at night). 

The car is running better than it did last month. The battery is going well. I'm saving up money for the rego and everything else that goes with it. And I'm making sure the whole vehicle works well.

My vacuum cleaner blew up on me. But then, when you think of where I live, how long I've had it and how much dirt and dust and crap would be in the filters... well, I'm not surprised it did. And no, I don't trust something blew up once and then works again when somebody else turns it on. Just because it works when it's cooled down doesn't mean it's going to behave itself when it comes back home with me. So, I'm going to save up some money and buy another vacuum cleaner - a bagless one, so I don't have to change bags all the time.

The dashcam is going really well. I didn't know there were so many stupid drivers out there - okay one of them is me sometimes - but really, do people think that they're going to be able to try and shove me out of the lane I'm in just because they're in 'the wrong lane'? And don't get me started on pedestrians... stop looking at your stupid phones and walk down the street normally!

I scored a 3mx3m gazebo for nothing... and I found out why it was free. It had broken and been fixed and when Dad and I fixed it again, it broke again! OMG! I can't believe it did that to me... us! So, I tossed the whole frame and kept the canopy. There's nothing wrong with it. 

Anyway, that's my month. I'm still cleaning out my house. The place is beginning to look good now. I've moved some furniture around and now there's more cleaning out to be done ... yep, more fun to do this year! Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember I'm always here.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Plans For This Year

This year, I'm working on so much already. There's markets next month, and I need a gazebo with walls because it's an outdoor market. I have already sent off a huge haul to the charity store and taken a bag of old bathroom towels to the RSPCA as well. I'm also working on Peter Walsh's 31-Day Challenge; and doing quite well too.

So far, I've cleaned out the bathroom, done something with the entry-way table, thrown out some clothes, started doing weight-training and stopped eating so much sugar. I'm also looking at my budget and working on saving up big for a gazebo for next month's market by backing off on buying so much food... yep, I'm going to budget like I did last year when I had to pay back Dad for the kitchen table. I already have the money for the walls and the waterproofing, now I need to save up big for the gazebo itself. I'll get halfway there and see if Mum or Dad can help me with the rest of it. It's a pop-up one where you can do it on your own. 

Anyway, I'm hoping to go through my wardrobe and toss out clothes that are either too big or too small for me, or clothes I no longer wear. This will take a while, but if I do it bit by bit, I'm sure it'll be something I'll really get into; and it'll be a good way to be able to rework my wardrobe for next year.

This Winter, I'm hoping to buy some big pots for the garden - and I mean good-sized ones to replace smaller ones. Then, I'll use the smaller ones to pot up the other plants in tiny pots... and then I'll start off another season of new plants for next year. And then? I'll start saving up for a whipper-snipper for the garden to keep the lawn looking better. By this time, I'll have an edger (one of those things you run along the edge of the concrete to cut off the stragglers of the lawn) and the garden will have different levels of plants and will really start to look like a bit of a forest. I'll also see if I can get my hands on a couple of statues for the garden to make it really take another step in the right direction.
At Christmas, I'll do up the yard in Christmas lights... not the front garden (they'll get stolen), the backyard. I'll see what I can do with it and make the place look nice. 

By this time, the rest of the house will have been tidied up more and been more organised. I'll be at the markets working my butt off selling things all over Brisbane, and I'll have my little hobby business working well for me. And things will have started to really pick up. 

That's this year I have planned for myself. It's going to be busy. It's going to be difficult on the finances. Most of all, it's going to be fun! So, what are you hopeful plans this year? Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Back At It Again!

It's been about a week and I've been cleaning out my townhouse for the 5th year in a row. You wouldn't believe how much crap I actually do toss out in the bin! 

Then, there's other crap that I give away. But that's stuff I didn't want to part with last year, and have thought it's time to do it this year. I know that sounds weird, but you do have to work through your own problems with your own junk before you part with it. 

This year, I'm hoping to part with more junk, throw out more paper-junk than I did last year. I've already been to Vinnies and given them a huge delivery of junk I don't need anymore and January's not out yet - and my Donation Box has other things starting to fill it up again. So, I'm doing well.

The thing you have to do is be brutal with yourself. Sure, keep the stuff you need: bank details, statements (go paperless if you need to) and work on your wardrobe too. If you collect books, find a way to love them in the same way you used to, but don't let them take over the house. If you love vinyls/records, store them correctly and show them off as well. Art supplies can inundate a house, so make sure you can use them and just as easily put them away.

Storage is a huge thing when it comes to junk. If you have more than one hobby (like I do), make sure you have the room to keep those hobbies under control. I use old suitcases for yarn. I've kept the box for my sewing machine so I can put it away properly and still know what it is. Plastic storage boxes you buy from the cheap stores are great! They are bought for between $5 and $30 and most have wheels so you're not worried about doing your back in while trying to get them down off a shelf - and they're stackable!

I have put all my Christmas decorations into 5 plastic boxes. The first year, it felt weird. That was 2 years ago. But then, I found this year, that there was more room than ever and that was because the top of the tree fitted into the box of where it came from for the first time ever! So, I had more room than I could shake a stick at! I also ditched the boxes that my Gloria Jean Mugs came in and wrapped them all in newspaper - yay! Then, I also started writing on all the boxes of what's inside them with a Sharpie. It's so much easier to know what's inside boxes when you specify what's inside them.

Well, I've also been cleaning too. The kitchen has been kept clean for the past week... two more weeks and it'll turn into a good habit. Then, I turned to another part of the house I'll keep clean and work on that for another month; and keep it up. 

You see, I'm not a good housekeeper. And now I have a little more room to myself - and a lot of things are being sent away to the charities - I'm looking at townhouse where I need to keep it tidy. But there is a lot of paper. 
My brother has told me that I have a place with nice furniture, but I need a bigger house to enjoy that furniture... to give it space to breath. And he's right. I'm living in a quarter of a house - and the longer I live here, the harder it is for me to live here. I see everyone getting houses and splurging on big things to make them into homes. However, I've spent the last 15 years turning my townhouse - the place - into a home; and this place (this home) is getting tiny. 

Cleaning it out is a good thing to do... but moving is better. For one thing my collections are getting too big. I'd like a bigger garden, a craft room (everything has to be put away all the time and that's annoying as it takes me 20 minutes to set up and longer to pull down).

This is another reason to clean out the place. I want to have more room to do my hobbies. Recently, one of my friends told me that I could get models to come to my place and do one part of a project we're working on... exactly how do we do that when I have no room, no privacy and nowhere to do this single part of the project? Yet another reason to clean out is to get myself moved out of here. Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

My 15th Year

This is my fifteenth year here in the unit complex; and things are going to change here. I have changed a lot over the time I've been here, and yet people have been doing the same things to me when I become friends with them.

Lies get swung around. Words are twisted, and then, finally, friendships are wrecked.

I've been here long enough that nothing surprises me anymore - seriously. I've seen all kinds of violence, people screaming at each other, having to call the police in the middle of the night, an other shit going on. And you know what? I've had it.

I hate this place to the point that if anyone wants a friend out of me, they'll have to look somewhere else for it because I'm not going to be it.

I have enough problems in my own life - outside of this place - to take on their problems as well. People here wonder why I don't really want to get involved in their problems when I've seen all of the same thing over and over again. Nothing surprises me anymore.

So, in my 15th year living here, I'm going to be one of the neighbours who say hi to all, but I'm not going to get too close as friends. I've been here too long to have close friends - as an owner, too many times rentals move in, stays for a while, then move away; there's little time to make life-long friendships. 

I've got a car now - whereas when I moved in, didn't have one. My life is totally different than what it used to be. I run my own hobby business, I have a lovely little garden, I'm into the crafts, painting and cook. And if I don't want to get involved in the dramas of what's been going on, it's because I'm simply not interested in getting my head beaten in by the idiots who keep on coming here as visitors and screaming at anyone who goes near them because we've asked them to be quiet, go away or basically to turn off their damned loud music at 3am because they've woken up half the neighbourhood. 

People here don't think I have a life. People here think that because I'm on Disability Pension that I sit and watch television all day and do sweet fuck all. People think that because I don't go out at 5am and work my arse off that I don't do anything with myself... that I don't have days where I feel like shit, where I can't sleep at night (so I feel like crap in the daytime), that I may look okay, but my back hurts, my joints are killing me or I'm just feeling like I'm going to be sick because the heat is really bothering me. 

People around here just don't damned well think of why I'm on a Disability Support Pension - and how damned hard it is to get on that! The government doesn't give it to just anyone... you have to have a bloody good reason to be on it.

In my 15th year here, I'm going to stop explaining myself to people. 

If they don't like me - fine.

If they think I'm a bitch - okay, think that.

If they want me to do something for them - maybe. What's in it for me?

And another thing: I've been here for 15 years. I may not look like it, but I'm hard as nails, won't take shit from anyone and will swear at you as soon as you're an asshole to me (because I'm usually pretty nice to you first off until you insult me). I'm over 40. I don't care what people think of me or what I say anymore... it's my 15th year in a unit complex in Woodridge in Logan City. I'm a hard person. I know that. This is what happens to somebody when you live in an area like this for this long.