Saturday, 26 January 2008

Got girt?

Beneath our radiant Southern Cross,

We'll toil with hearts and hands,

To make this Commonwealth of ours

Renowned of all the lands,

For those who've come across the seas

We've boundless plains to share,

With courage let us all combine

To advance Australia fair!

In joyful strains then let us sing,

Advance Australia fair!

Sunday, 20 January 2008

What do they call Brazil Nuts in Brazil?

just nuts?

(I know they're not called almonds - that jar just happened to be empty. As will it be again soon. So yummy. So expensive - damn you certified organic produce and your infinite betterness)

Take that pin and shove it

Euugh. I have just had an uninspiring dress fitting and my self esteem is having what economists call a "correction".

I know there is a complete and whole block of chocolate in the pantry. I'm hoping that my will is strong - after all it has been there almost a week already (which is a miracle around jms) but sadly there is a definite possibility that the little "glass and a half" it may not live to see the days end.

What's worse - I'd just had a really good yoga class and my teacher complemented my practice.

Unfortunately having someone point out every single one of your body's aesthetic faults can be a little soul destroying. It probably doesn't help that I've come home and started listening to this song on repeat. Perhaps I ought to put on something a bit more "$#@& you" perhaps some Tool, Nine Inch Nails or Rammstein. They're not very girl power though, which I feel is my feminist duty in this situation. I don't really have any "get your war on" music. Maybe I'll just put on some techno and let the high bpm stimulate my serotonin levels.

Or I could just eat the chocolate.

Thursday, 17 January 2008

I may look like a dogs breakfast

But I assure you I am delicious.

Indeed I am the answer to the question of what to do with a surfeit of plums (but its too late in the evening to bake a cake or you can't be bothered getting the mixer out to make some pastry for a tart)

Why yes, I am Plum Clafoutis. Pleased to meet you.

Recipe shamelessly lifted from here - accompanied by a delightful poem to boot. In fact their photos are supremely better too.

I might be a tad jealous but fortunately I have bowl full of oozy fragrant joy to console my ego.

(Post Script - without a lie, the left overs ARE excellent for breakfast)

Monday, 14 January 2008

Sweet & Sour

The best thing about enduring the inevitable streak of 40 degree days in January - is the delicious tropical booty to be found at your local market. Peaches, plums, nectarines, and mangoes - by the arm load and all those wacky ones that from the outside suggest there could not possibly be anything delicious contained within.

I could seriously become a fruitarian. But only in summer. Obviously.

My only sour note is the recent passing of a wee friend. Manuel "Fatty" Sanchez was a little golden ball of joy who greeted me every morning with a pert little shuffle and a voracious appetite. Such a happy little soul who had nothing but joy to give. Tireless tank companion to Bernard the grumpy.

Rest in peace little friend.

(Forgive the poxy photo but - he wasn't much of a poser)

Tuesday, 1 January 2008

New leaf resolutions

Welcome 2008 - I'm glad to see you!

The past few years of my life have been pretty challenging - they have been for all of us, everywhere. The irony is that challenge is actually what makes it a life.

I don't usually do New Year's resolutions - why wait for an arbitrary date to reassess and make changes? But this time I want to vocalise and set it out like a contract that I am sure to revisit on Jan 1 2009, and no doubt throughout the next year as homework.

The 31st of December 2007 felt like the closing of a chapter of my life. I finally feel like I am in charge and behind the wheel. As much as we ever can. I have some wonderful things to look forward to in the near future - and they seem like a perfect opportunity to cast off the skin of my past. Let go of the bitterness that plagues my head and my heart. To accept who I am, the great and the grim.
It is a simple list:

1. Watch less TV. I love it and it feeds my mind. It is a happy distraction when I am desolate and overwhelmed. But it is the thief of time. I don't drink, I don't smoke, and I don't do drugs, yet it is my soma. And I am in denial. I can't count the number of times I've said "I don't watch much TV but...". Just because it is HBO or some other high quality production, it is still a creative block.

2. Stop carrying around that chip on my shoulder. It's heavy. Even if I can just leave it at home sometimes for parties. My friends know I have had some crap cards dealt my way. I have taken active steps to protect myself from those that can hurt me. I am more resilient than I give myself credit for. Accepting my past and how it has made me who I am does not equate with playing the victim card. I have also been well enough, for long enough, to know I can actually choose to be positive.

3. Be honest about my illness. Not "Hi my name is Cate and I have depression", But take the ego out of the equation and use the doors that acceptance opens rather than bemoan the ones it closes. Announcing this on my blog is hardly keeping a secret. And I am afraid of the consequences - what if my boss decides to Google me as she has joked? Well screw it. Its true to say that the people that count, don't care, and that the people who care, don't count. Instinct tells me I am strong enough to deal with any fall out. Not to say I'm not scared of what this honesty might bring. Not enough people understand depression to release it from its stigma. Hell most days I don't understand it and I've been living with it for probably 20 years. But life experience has shown me that dishonesty not only creates conflict and unhappiness around you, it also fractures your soul. Confessing each horrible detail of my secrets: the violence, emotional and sexual abuse I have endured were diabolically painful. Each memory working its way to the surface like a splinter. But it has also been the most liberating thing. With each telling my voice gets less choked and it feels less like I am cutting myself open and exposing my my core to harm. Confessing my illness is my last secret to tell. It is part of me so why hide it? It is what makes me my best as well as my worst.

We all endeavour to present the best of ourselves in our on-line persona. Its not necessarily ego - its pragmatic. No one wants to post about having nothing to post. But it doesn't always have to be about sunshine and lollipops. The best writers, they ones we constantly return to, balance the rough with the smooth. It is this honestly that creates the personal connection, represents the whole. The perfectness of imperfection - the wabi sabi if you will.

Oh yeah...

4. Eat less junk food.