Monthly Archives: July 2009





Filed under miscellaneous minutiae

I’ve lost my job

No, I haven’t been sacked from kitchen duties… more’s the pity. And, no, noone’s muscled in on the laundry either.  Or the vacuuming.

Hey Tracey – you were nodding off there for a minute – I think you were dreaming – you had this silly, soporific smile on your face

Um.. where was I?  Yeah.. I seem to have lost my new “job”.  The  paper run. Where I could get paid (peanuts) to, um, exercise!

Well, today Ms 10 is doing it all by herself!

I feel… redundant.

This is essentially only the third week of the job. (The people managing the circulation have big-time communication and organisational issues, and so while I informed them we couldn’t do the first week of the school holidays – because of the short notice since we took up the run, AND the fact that they couldn’t even tell me how much it paid – they managed to stuff it up completely for TWO weeks! Apparently the papers were left outside our house the week we were away, and then last week, when we were back and able to do it..  no papers!)

Turns out it pays $15.90, which is.. OK. Better than $12 – so I accepted the run. But I have this very capable assistant it seems.  And, she wants my job!

Back on the second week, I had left half the run for Ms 10 to do when she got home from school,  and I walked with her for the first bit. She finished it by herself, and was gradually getting the hang of rolling the paper up (even if she then wipes her sweaty face with her inky hands, and comes in looking a bit like a Black and White Minstrel. No close-up photos – she refuses to let me take one. Doesn’t like being laughed at or something…!)

Anyway, she is all keen and enthusiastic to earn herself some money (like her big sisters do) , and as she has a free day today (school goes back tomorrow), she’s out there and at it right now.  Buoyed by success, and the lure of lucre,  she also filled in for her big sisters with their Bigger Local Paper run last Wednesday (she’s going to be rolling in it!)  Once school is back, darkness may prevent her from fitting in the whole run on a Monday afternoon until the days get longer- so I guess I will still do half the run during the morning.

But  I can see that the days of me earning myself  “coffee money” are numbered.  Looks like I’m going to have to find myself another job. And another motivation to exercise!



Filed under it's just another manic mum day, miscellaneous minutiae

“Don’t spend all day on the net.”

Said he, as he finally got off to work this morning. I can’t imagine where he gets the idea that I might do that. (Never mind the fact that we just had two sloth days at home while he was still on leave, and I.. err.. might have spent a bit of time somewhere in this vicinity. Uploading holiday photos and all that, you know…)

But it’s been one crazy start to the day; and I need to sit and chill for a bit. And tell someone about our morning.

I was expecting to get a phone call at some point about what time our new dining room suite would be delivered, but I wasn’t expecting to be woken up with the phone call – sometime around 7.30 I guess it was.  (M. was already up, but in the shower) What? The delivery guys were about to leave town?  That gave us less than 30 minutes to be sorted. I had a quick shower, but before we’d discussed tactics, I looked out the window to see the van pull up.

We hadn’t moved out the old table (hadn’t even cleared off the tablecloth), and we had cars in the driveway that needed to be moved. On top of that, we’d been quoted $90 to have it delivered, but when the guys loaded up this morning they said it would be $110. Because there were 8 chairs, not 6. Not too happy about that one.

When I went out to move the cars, there was the stack of local papers in the way on the footpath. The papers that should have been delivered by 7.30am! (It’s the kids’ paper run – but they have someone else do it every second Wednesday. Said person filled in for their runs while we were away, and has obviously assumed she wasn’t doing it, even though it would normally be her week. But I had asked eldest daughter yesterday afternoon to check that this girl was right to do her normal slot this morning. Darling daughter fiddled around with her phone and said yes. When the delivery hadn’t happened this morning I find out that she hadn‘t actually sent and received a text – she had referred to a message asking the same question from two weeks ago! Teenagers! Don’t start me on a ‘taking responsibility’ and ‘sheer bloody laziness’ rant!).

Said daughter also couldn’t/wouldn’t do the run herself – one, because she had a journo friend of ours coming round at 9.30 to take photos of her shoe painting exploits (but also because she has had a friend from out of town staying the night, so she doesn’t want to go off and do a paper run.) So who has to ring the circulation desk and tell them we’ve had a mix up but it will get delivered sometime today? Manic Mum here, that’s who.

Back to the new table. When it is brought in (the delivery guys abusing one another for not carrying correctly) we find a slight imperfection in the lacquer, and the timber seats aren’t as sculptured as we thought they were from the one we sat on in the shop. So, phone calls to the furniture-makers ensue, and they arrange to come out later this morning to have a look.

Meanwhile Himself hops in his car to leave for work – the car which I started earlier and moved a couple of metres. Arrgh. Dead battery. So we stuff around towing it a few metres and jump starting it, just as the journo friend and photographer arrive. Things are just starting to feel a bit chaotic.

The furniture guys have since been out, and have agreed that there has been some damage, in transit, causing this tiny bubble in the lacquer – and so will come at some point over the next few days to remove the table top, take it away, fix it, and bring it back a day later. And the chairs? They’ll try and get the seats sculpted some more, but there will have to be some sort of compromise, as the woman (previous owner) who took our order originally should have told us that the one we sat on was pine, not hardwood, and it is impossible to achieve the same result with hardwood. They will hopefully take away only two at a time so we are not left short, but we’ll be without the tabletop for a day, and then when it comes back we will have to avoid using it to allow the lacquer to set properly.

It’s going to be an interesting week, no?

Ms 10 meanwhile decided that she will do the paper run, bless her (Ms. 14 is battling a sore throat and isn’t in the mood) and seems to be managing ok. Although a short time ago I got a cry for assistance, and went outside to find the neighbour across the road trying to put the tyre back on the rim for her. She has popped back in a couple of times, and her face is covered in black newspaper ink, but she is resisting attempts for me to take a photo.

I’ve rung the charity place that has collected pre-loved furniture in the past, about whether or not they might want our old suite, but they don’t usually come this far out of town. They really need to look at the old suite first to decide whether it is worthwhile. I said I also had an old cot, but apparently there are rules and regulations and certifications needed for second hand cots these days. I’m considering sticking everything on the footpath with a big FREE sign, and hope that someone takes them.

But, do I get rid of the table yet? We might not have anything to eat off for a few days!

So, after that start to the day, does anyone begrudge me some downtime on the net this morning?   Coffee, anyone?


The new table does look bootiful tho’. Blackbutt. (With the complimentary gift that arrived with it – I had to ask the guys what it was! – A  candle holder.  For tea candles or something.  Not really in the running for any House & Garden awards, am I?)


Filed under it's just another manic mum day, what the???


… I have also been at PowderRoomGraffiti , where I have been embracing my inner dag and suggesting something I think they should invent for mothers everywhere.

I’ve also put up some photos of our tandem trip. (Click on the image to link to it.)


I’ve done the captions for these photos TWICE now – as the first time I managed to lose them. With the map, they give an overview of where we went, and where we stayed, etc. Facebooking them into an album is the quickest way of getting them up on the net to share with a range of people.

Today I’ve also done more washing, which seems to keep coming out of the woodwork. And I keep looking at the vacuum cleaner and the filthy floor and thinking I should be doing something about it all. Maybe I’ll have another cup of coffee and ponder it.

Something more like normal blogging transmission due to resume.. sometime soon.


Filed under click on over, miscellaneous minutiae

Home again

We were only away a week and a half, but it feels longer somehow. (Feels like an eternity in blog-time.)  We had ourselves a jam packed program – three intense days of #2’s netball, followed immediately by our full-on 5 day tandem tour – bookended by the six hour car trip each way.

We didn’t give ourselves any filler days to regroup or relax – our M.O. is to make the most of every day. By the end of it I was pretty well stuffed, and looking forward to my own bed.  (Even though a couple of the beds on our cycle trip were  excellent – queen size, and of a firmness that Goldilocks would have totally approved – it only takes one night in the double at my parents’ for us to be whingeing and missing our own. Four nights was four TOO many… and we won’t mention the trickly shower at their house either – though Ms 16 has attempted to extract promises that we won’t abandon her there again while we go off doing our own thing for a few days. (It’s not us she misses, it’s all about the shower.)

Anyway, we’re home again and one more holiday is relegated to photos and memories.  My legs are still sore, so the memories, at least, are not yet dimmed. And I’m not ready to sit on a bike saddle again just yet. Give me a few more days.


One netballer.


Two cyclists – one bike. About to set off.

Hmmm, I have a few photos to sort through, and cull. (Particularly the ones of myself that I hate!) Maybe a job for tomorrow, in between washing and trying to catch up with domestics.


Filed under miscellaneous minutiae, on yer bike

Trifling with the Elements.

Flirting with Mother Nature and Father Time today.  Why does it have to rain the day before a trip away – a day that I am trying to make sure all clothes are washed and dried in preparation for packing? Shouldn’t be allowed to rain when you’re trying to do that.  It’s one of those really annoying ‘showery’ days (if you can call occasional heavy downpours “showers”) interspersed with blue sky and sunlight.

With one eye on the BOM radar, I snuck out and hung a few things out to dry, and, a couple of hours later pulled them in, just before a total downpour. At least, today I’m managing to stay one step ahead of the Mother.

Meanwhile I’ve been glued to the computer, plotting our bike routes for our tandem trip. I’ve been taking screen shots, and printing them off into small maps that I can look at as we ride.  Most of our chosen route is pretty obvious, but the most time consuming thing has been determining the best route in and out of Newcastle, using bike paths where possible. I’ve used an RTA cycling route map, and got down and dirty with Google Earth satellite view, and Google Street View. I’m going to have such a sense of déjà vu while we are riding.  “Hey wow, this street looks familiar somehow…  Have I been here before?”

I’ve yet to figure out how to attach the maps  to the back of M’s shirt, so I can navigate as we ride. Hope I’ve made them large enough so I can see them without my glasses.  Hope it doesn’t rain while I’m trying to do that. Hope he is patient. (At least he can’t bring “Karen“.)

It’s amazing how time flies when you’re doing all that though. Father Time is now standing there, watch in hand, tapping His foot.  Tick, tick, tick.  “It’s already 2 o’clock! Did you really need to spend ALL morning on that? Are you going to have time to make that banana cake? What are you doing for dinner? Are you seriously thinking of cutting up that pumpkin and making pumpkin soup?  Have you even started packing? Have you done packing lists for the girls?

“Have you really got time to blog?”

Guess not.

I’ll attempt to log in and say hello while we’re still at my parents’ place.  If I can manage to do so without my mother huffing and puffing. We get in trouble there if we talk about computers. Lucky she hasn’t been hanging around here today.


Filed under lost in procrastination

Countdown panic begins… NOW.

We’re heading off (again) on Friday. I do it every time before a trip. “Plenty of time to do this… and that…” then…

… suddenly it’s only two days to go, and the stress is on. Why am I not more organised?

It’s time to make lists of things to pack, and things to do before we go. Time to curse my husband for buying new pants that he needs me to hem. (I’m not quite sure why long pants for a man who is already 6ft are always too long, but it’s always this way. I don’t actively encourage him to buy new pants because I hate hemming them. And he always wants me to do it just before we go away somewhere. Grrr.)

Washing. (Thankfully it’s a good drying day out there.) Need to make sure everyone’s clothes are washed. And sorted.

The house needs a good vacuum.

Eep! I’ve not done all the maps for our bike ride.  I need to look up the train timetables for Ms 16 and I to get to the city on Saturday for the SYTYCD tour show.

*Make note note to remember to pack tickets.*

Tomorrow I have to make a banana cake for #2’s netball team (and coach and manager) to nom nom on at State Age. (And the Husband will be saying “Why are you baking just before we go away?”)

I’m about to take Ms 10 up to school late. She woke up feeling iffy in the tummy – but seems fine now, so she may as well go.

I have to pick up Ms 16 from school at lunchtime, as she doesn’t have Rock Eisteddfod practice during sport time. That’s fine. She can clean her PIGSTY of a room. It’s a pity there is no lock on her door, as I would lock her in there till it’s done. Absolutely DISGUSTING. But that’s blog fodder for another post.

But anyway, I don’t really have time to be blogging, so what am I doing here?

90 minutes later:
It’s just rained on my washing. There is trackwork on the rail line I want to use on Saturday (meaning buses, meaning more travel time, so option B will be to get Hubby to drop us off somewhere else).  And I haven’t hemmed the pants yet.


Filed under lost in procrastination