Friday, December 31, 2010

I'll Be Happy When...

I received this via email.  It's good to be reminded of this when I find myself wishing my life away.  It's something I hope to take into 2011.  Happy New Year everyone!

We convince ourselves that life will be better after we get married, have a baby, then another. Then we are frustrated that the kids aren't old enough and we'll be more content when they are. After that, we're frustrated that we have teenagers to deal with. We will certainly be happy when they are out of that stage. We tell ourselves that our life will be complete when our spouse gets his or her act together, when we get a nicer car, when we are able to go on a nice vacation or when we retire. The truth is there's no better time to be happy than right now. If not now, when? Your life will always be filled with challenges.

It's best to admit this to yourself and decide to be happy anyway. Happiness is the way. So, treasure every moment that you have and treasure it more because you shared it with someone special, special enough to spend your time with .. and remember that time waits for no one.

So, stop waiting ...
Until your car or home is paid off.
Until you get a new car or home.
Until your kids leave the house.
Until you go back to school.
Until you finish school.
Until you lose 10 lbs.
Until you gain 10 lbs.
Until you get married.
Until you get a divorce.
Until you have kids.
Until you retire.
Until summer..
Until spring.
Until winter.
Until fall.
Until you die.

There is no better time than right now to be happy. Happiness is a journey, not a destination. So work like you don't need money, love like you've never been hurt, and, dance like no one's watching.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Moving Aftermath

A week ago we went from this:

to this:

Fortunately there was no blood (although I saw red plenty of times), but there was lots of sweat (it was hot and humid in both Buntine and Kojonup), and lots of tears from me.

Duncan drove my little Hyundai Accent to Perth a few days before the move, picked up the truck we'd hired, drove it back to Buntine, and loaded it with help from Brad (his now former boss) and three of his fantastic cousins.  On Moving Day we had a our good mate, Barry, offer to come and help with driving and 'driver revival' as we were both pretty stuffed.  Duncan had Ebony in her cage on the front seat of the truck.  I drove the station wagon which carried a heap of junk, Maya the dog, and the six chooks.  We had four hens in one larger box, and Russell Crowe and another hen in a slightly smaller box (Russell is about the size of two hens, after all).  Both boxes had plenty of airholes, and I set the aircon at quite a cold temperature.

On the way down, I started to smell something strange.  At first I dismissed it as roadkill, but the smell continued to linger before eventually waning.  By the time I'd arrived at our new house, Duncan and Barry were already there unloading the truck.  They quickly took the boxes of chooks over to the chookyard, but when Duncan opened the bigger box, he told me to look away.

Eglantine (one of the older girls), Maple and Reebok (two pullets) had not survived the trip.  Whether it was the warm weather or stress that killed them, I'll never know.  Barry let Russell and Princess Layer out of their box and they were absolutely fine.  It still doesn't make sense.  Winnie, who is also an older hen well-known for looking plucked and missing a wattle, was not in a good way.  At first she seemed to be improving, but Duncan eventually had to put her out of her misery.  I took Maya on a walk while Duncan buried my four girls.

I still can't help thinking, If only I'd stopped to check on them.  It really does seem that God doesn't want us to have chooks as this happened almost two years to the day that our last lot of feathered friends were massacred by a fox.  I tried so hard to take such good care of this lot yet I still failed them.  Very few people understand having chooks as pets, but for some people (myself included) who feel isolated and disconnected, they provide the companionship we need.  For that reason, I'm getting more than a bit sick of the roast chicken jokes. :(  That night, sleeping in my sleeping bag on an old mattress in a room away from the chaos, I let myself cry about them.  Roosters are definitely not monogamous birds, and it seems so wrong seeing Russell with only one hen.

Russell and his last remaining Princess.

Every time I move house, I tell myself that this will be the time when I'm super organised, and for a while my plan seemed to be working.  I'd pack the stuff we could live without, clearly label which room it was from, and stack them neatly.  But in our rush to leave, stuff ended up being randomly chucked into boxes, and it became a mission to find things.  On my first night alone in that house, I wanted to find one thing (can't remember what it was now).  After being pretty sure that I'd located the correct box, I tried to rip the tape off, couldn't, and then hunted for scissors.  While hunting for scissors, I found a bottle of sorbolene cream had leaked in another box, so I had to hunt for tissues and rags to clean it up.  By then I'd forgotten what the original thing was I was looking for.  Ah the joys of moving!

My first night in that house was rotten.  I couldn't sleep!  First I discovered that the carpet in the room I was sleeping (camping) in was covered in dead bugs.  So I had to find the dust buster and clean them up.  Then I couldn't sleep because Ebony was exploring the house and I kept hearing her bell.  I called her to come to me, hoping she would settle down and snuggle with me, but she was so restless, she kept wandering and meowing, and I could her scratching around in her litter tray at least three times.  Then I kept worrying whether Maya was all right so I got up early to let her off her chain.  Maya kept running around the house and whimpering, and Ebony heard her so she jumped up on the windowsill, and the two animals pressed their noses against the glass as if they were trying to give each other a kiss.  Ebony seemed so relieved to see Maya.  Normally she avoids her, but this time she was like, "Dogface!  How glad I am to see you!"

I tried to go back to sleep, but was soon awoken by a menagerie of creatures including the sheep in the paddock next door, birds of all kinds, Ebony meowing, Maya whining, and Russell crowing at the top of his lungs.  So I got up and started the daunting task of setting up the kitchen and bathroom.

The most frustrating thing is that the house has been vacant for about a year and desperately needs painting and new carpets so it's pointless to unpack many things.  I began to feel that everything had gone to crap, and that we'd made a bad decision by moving here.  I started to feel resentful towards Duncan because I thought that if we'd just waited a few more weeks, it wouldn't feel like we had to move twice.  He thinks it's better to move now because that puts the pressure on for the house renovations to actually get done.  I might just be a cynic, but I have no faith in tradespeople to turn up when they say they will.  Who knows how long we'll be waiting.  Currently we can only turn our kitchen and laundry taps on and off with a spanner.  After ridding the kitchen and bathroom of countless Daddy Long Legs, I eventually got the kitchen and bathroom in working order.  The unfortunate thing about moving in the country is that there are no takeaway places close by so if you want to eat, the kitchen takes priority.

I'm trying not to sound like the Israelites grumbling in the desert, and instead trying to focus on God's goodness in giving us this house, somewhat derelict as it is, but it feels like we're rattling around it compared to the cottage.  I'm trying to enjoy the journey and not just the destination.  But it's not easy.  I feel like a bird without a nest, and I can't wait until everything is unpacked and just so.

Part of me is exhausted, not just from the move, but the fact that we're starting over.  At least Duncan was already established in Buntine when we got married, and already had many friends and family in the district.  Here, apart from the people on the farm, we don't know a soul.  I already feel daunted about meeting MORE new people and talking small-talk which I really can't be bothered doing.  Coupled with the fact it feels like we rushed off after harvest and didn't get to say proper goodbyes to as many people as we'd like, I think it's this sadness that's getting me down.  I keep wondering what's happening in Buntine and thinking of our little cottage standing empty.  It may have not been the place we wanted to live for the rest of our lives, but, after 2.5 years, at least it was familiar.  Here everything is strange and foreign.

I feel somewhat more rested than I did a few days ago.  I keep having to remind myself to trust God each step of the way.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


Pretty much straight after the Opshopathon, I headed to my friend Sarah's birthday.

The theme was 'Bad Taste' which was easy for me.  I just raided my costume bag, put together a bunch of random garments...and voila!  Hideous!

Reba, Lyndsay and Sarah

Me and the birthday girl.  Another person told her she looked like a cool 1960s mum.

Richard and Jono.  Richard had a real mullet for the occasion.


Corinne and Olivia

Sarah and I

The birthday girl with her cake.

No, she really wasn't turning 60.

Craig and I.

Mick wearing Sarah's wig.  That wig certainly did the rounds.

Monday, December 27, 2010


My good friend and fellow blogger, Amanda, celebrated her birthday a week or so ago, and I decided that this year she was going to do something to celebrate.  So back in August, I suggested we go opshopping for a whole day and Amanda could invite whoever she wanted.

There ended up being five of us so that was great as we could fit in one car.  We hit the opshops around the western suburbs, feeding off the fickle materialistic women of those ritzier areas who chuck out their clothes after two months or something ridiculous.  Their loss was our gain and we got some absolute bargains.

What a GREAT day out.  Amanda also has photos on her blog here.

Of course this was just the inagural opshopathon which implies there will be more.  Can't wait!

Amanda has obviously decided to renew her vows.

In the most hideous attire possible hehe.

Putting the loot into the boot at the end of the day.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Bible Verse of the Day

With one sleep to go until Christmas, let's not forget the reason Christ came to earth.

For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God.
1 Peter 3:18

Thursday, December 23, 2010

If Life Was a Musical

Sometimes I wish people would start singing and dancing in the street - just like in musicals. :)

This has been on several blogs already and it really uplifted me.  I would love to be a part of something like this.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

This is Where We Live

When you read this, I will be in Kojonup.

Yes, scheduled posting (hope it works) is my friend over the next few weeks until we get our internet connection set up again.
Out of sentimentality, I thought I'd post some pics of Buntine.  There's not much there, but it has been my home for the past two and a half years.

My now former workplace where I was one of the admin chicks for just over a year.

Buntine Primary.  It has less than 20 students.

Our little cottage...before it became a mess of boxes, newspaper and packing tape.

Spare room.

Our room.

The farewell party Brad and Hayley very kindly organised for us.

Maya just had to have her photo taken at her very own town (if you'd call it a town).

I'll still be blogging, peoples!  Don't nobody go nowhere!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Opinion Etiquette

I think there must be some reason why rude, opinionated people are gravitated to me, but I still can't figure it out.  Maybe it's because they think that I look stupid enough to listen to their 'advice'?   Ha, I think not!

I remember when I lived in Perth, I was chatting to another person after church, and another member of the congregation approached us.  I assumed they wanted to join our conversation so I was most shocked when all they said was, "Sarah, fisherman's pants were trendy a few years ago," and then walked off, leaving me too bewildered to offer a witty response.  I think it's safe to assume they weren't joking.  I've had a few run-ins with this person and their rather pointed tongue.

On another occasion, I was hanging out with a fellow Christian at uni when she suddenly looked at my clothes and said, "You dress very plain, don't you."  Again, I was too open-mouthed to say anything.

Maybe I shouldn't have been surprised at these two instances.  All my life people seem to have felt it was their right to come up to me and say they don't like my haircut, or I should have cut my hair this way or that way.  I suspect that was why I copped so much flak about our wedding plans not suiting certain selfish individuals.  I obviously look so weak and pathetic that people think they can manipulate me this way.

What people don't seem to realise is that I don't want their outspoken opinions, and that they should learn some manners!  When I want opinions, I'll ask for them.  I happen to like clothes that are little bit different or 'out there', and I don't see why that should bother other people.  In fact, I rarely ask for opinions when clothes shopping because I like what I like, and that's that.  The strange thing is, the two people who so rudely criticised my clothing are no great beauties themselves!  Perhaps putting me down made them feel better about this...perhaps.

There are lots of people who I personally think could do with a darn good makeover.  I would love to take them shopping for a whole new wardrobe or convince them to visit the hairdresser and ask for something OTHER than the same old daggy haircut they've had for the past ten years.  But I don't because what people wear is up to them.  It's none of my business, and my opinion is not gospel.  I believe that people should wear what they enjoy whether it meets other people's tastes or not.

There is a time when people may ask for your opinion, but that is still a time to speak lovingly, and not bluntly.  If I see a Facebook friend has got a haircut which I don't think is that great, I say nothing.  If I see they've got a great haircut, I let them know how good I think it makes them look.  It's better to encourage than tear down.

Of course the most important thing we should be speaking up against is CHARACTER - not appearance.

Then there's the old saying, "If you haven't got anything nice to say, don't say it at all."

If you dislike another's choice,
It doesn't mean you need to voice,
Opinions that just criticise.
Keeping quiet would be more wise.

Unless you're saying something nice,
Holding your tongue will suffice.
They may not look good in pink,
But no-one asked what you think.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Friday Funny

This is freakin' HILARIOUS!  I love Mr Bean :)


If Mr Bean had a baby

 If Mr Bean was in Avatar

 If Mr Bean was Justin Bieber

 If Mr Bean had a daughter

 If Mr Bean was Lady Gaga

 If Mr Bean was Bin Laden (or should that be Bean Laden?)

 If Mr Bean was in Legally Blonde

 If Mr Bean was in Orphan

 If Mr Bean was a pirate

 If Mr Bean was the Pope

 If Mr Bean was Harry Potter

 If Mr Bean was running for President

 If Mr Bean was Tomb Raider
 If Mr Bean was in Twilight

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Lone Ranger Blogger

Have I told you how much I love blogging?  There's nothing quite like getting (what's hopefully) a good post out of your system!

But the longer I blog, I'm more aware that I don't really fit in.  There are mummy blogs, baby blogs, craft blogs, knitting blogs, pastors' blogs, pastors' wives' blogs.....  And in the blogosphere, birds of a feather tend to flock together.  Bloggers get so excited at meeting like-minded souls who are in the same stage of life.  It's nice for them....but kind of alienating for me.

You see, I've tried to define what my blog is about, and I can't.  I just blog about life, and I enjoy 'meeting' bloggers in different stages of life.  Recently I'm enjoying reading the blogs of women who are about 10 or so years older than me.  I find what they say fascinating and I'm learning so much from them.

But here's the problem....I don't want to just take from the blogosphere.  I want to give, but I'm realising I have very little to offer that would interest most bloggers or blog readers.  For those who are ahead of me on life's journey, my blog is probably a bit 'been there, done that'.  I don't fit into any of the cliques, and while I enjoy hearing from bloggers who are unlike me, others probably have different reasons for blogging; maybe they do want to meet others like them?!?  Also, I'm realising that my life is considered so very different and almost weird for some city bloggers.  They have crazy schedules and dodge peak hour traffic.  I drive home and dodge sheep, kangaroos, bobtails, galahs, eagles, owls...and even echidnas.  I don't know any Christian, farm-dwelling, female, married DINK former librarians in their late twenties who are editing their first novel and happen to blog.

This isn't meant to be a sad-sack post, even though it probably sounds like it is.  It's just me coming to a realisation about myself and my blog.  My blog and I don't quite fit in....and the older we both get, the more I am ok with that.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Jen's Retro 30th

Finally...Event #3 of the Crazy Day!

Our friend, Jen, turned 30 and celebrated with an appropriately-themed paaaaartaaaay!  Her dress style is very vintage/op-shop/retro so it made sense to have it as the theme for her big night.  I love this style, and had a tunic and leggings already in my wardrobe.  Duncan was very boring and neglected to wear a costume.

Us with the birthday girl.

With my good friend, Kate.

Jen's speech.

Everyone looked amazing.
Myself, Kate and Kiri.