Monday, August 18, 2014

I bought myself a pineapple

of the white ceramic variety.

I've wanted one for ages just because but wasn't prepared to pay $40 for a pineapple at an artsy home decorations store, then on the weekend when I was killing time while Miss 9 was at dancing, I found one in Kmart for $9.

Sold to the lady with nothing better to do than impulse buy hehe.

Still, this pineapple makes me happy and that's a good thing.

My new found zest for decluttering is not at all zesty.

I've done a kitchen drawer and under the sink and thrown a few things out from the bathroom so far.  It's a start but by no means makes my home look or feel any different.  Bummer.

Yesterday was sunny so I weeded the back garden a little.  I managed to fill our garbage bin and decided that would be enough,  it's not done yet but again it's a start.

My book is keeping me awake at night,  I am working on it a little every night, chipping away.  It's grown by about 9K words so far which I find incredible and there's so much more to do.  It might end up being a novel rather than a novella after all.

OK, well gotta go... domestic duties call

Thanks for popping by.  Will check back in soon.  x o x o

Sunday, August 3, 2014

once upon a time

there was a girl who named her blog clutter-bug.

Given that her aim was to declutter her home & life it seemed a very apt name at the time.

As time went by though, the girl discovered decluttering was not all that fun to be honest and went on to comment on & review all the books, TV shows and movies she was currently reading & watching as well as pepper her blog with the odd rant.

That format for blogging fell flat after a while too, the girl got bored and decided a hiatus was in order... to redirect her writing interests and actually write the book she dreamed of writing.

That was great, writing was slow going (and still is) but she was getting somewhere.  Then the great depression came and things turned to crap for the girl.  She felt down and out for the count.

Help came thankfully in the form of therapy, medication and love and things got better.

She continued to write, though at times she wondered if what she does was any good but all in all it didn't matter as it made her happy.

Having come what might be interpreted as 'full circle', the subject of decluttering arose again.  The girl looked around and saw that though she feels better, her home is not a reflection of this.

So maybe it's time to do something about that?

Sunday, July 20, 2014

lots to tell

Kept meaning to pop in and say hi but lots has happened and little time to post about it.

If you are a reader here, it shouldn't surprise you that I start nearly every post with some sort of excuse about my good intentions of blogging more often and my complete failure to do so.  That is me I'm afraid. LOL

So I am editing my book like mad right now.  Well editing as much as I can, life keeps getting in the way and I'm trying hard to discipline myself to allot even a small amount of time each day to work on it.

I got amazing feedback from the lovely author I wrote about last post.  She read my document and had lots of suggestions of how to improve it.  I am uber grateful to have some constructive criticism.  Now my goal is to fiddle with it until I've got it right.

I haven't got very far yet, I've added scenes and re-written some.  Slowly, slowly it's coming together and feels more well rounded.  I wonder how other authors go, how many re-writes are done before the finished product is released.  Reading some blogs of some of my favourite indi authors, they seem to be able to crank out near perfect work first time. (Jealous much Shish?  Hell yes!) Surely it can't be that easy, but good on you if it is.

Anyway, working on my book is making me happy, though when I find I'm not getting the time... it makes for a very crabby Shish.

My depression has been a bit up an down.  I'm not sure if anyone around here notices but I do.  I think they just put it down to me being cranky but it's not just that.  I do crave solitude, I'm a happier, nicer person to be around if I'm allowed some time to myself.  Of course the dreaded PMT has a part to play as well, some months are better than others... again people see this as grumpiness but it's also insecurity, paranoia and some times thoughts of self harm bubbling beneath the surface in varying degrees.

Despite my need for alone time, sometimes I want attention.  I want to be loved in the way I love.  I want to be the one being looked after, being coddled and cherished.  Hell I don't want to always be the one who has to come looking for a cuddle when I want one.  I want to be  pursued once in a while.  This is where depression really bites me in the ass.  Everything feels so much bigger and worse than it really is.

Don't worry, all is well in the land of Shish, really it is.  Guess every now and then, a rant is all I need.

Ok so onwards...
Last week I made a quick trip with my kids interstate for a funeral.  My aunt on my mother's side.  It was a snap decision, I asked work for the time off and was granted it and felt like it was the right thing to do.  You only get one chance to say goodbye.  My kids don't remember my aunt that well but it was school holidays and a good opportunity for them to meet a lot of my extended family and see their grandparents.

It wasn't a bad trip overall.  My parents (especially my dad) really looked after us.  From picking us up at the airport and taking us back to their house (an 8 hour round trip) to paying for everything while we were there, not letting us lift a finger... my dad even did my laundry! Then they drove us back to the city, stayed with us over night and my dad took us to the airport for the early morning flight home.  I told them we didn't mind staying on our own and catching a cab but dad wouldn't hear of it.

My mum needed the support, she hadn't seen her sister for a little while before she passed away. She'd had a cold she'd not wanted to pass on and then hadn't gotten around to driving to see her once she was well.  She wanted to go to the viewing and no one else wanted to go too so I said I would.  I've been to very few funerals before and never to a viewing, I'd rather remember a loved one the way I last saw them or by a favourite memory rather than seeing their empty shell lying in a coffin.

So it wasn't exactly pleasant for me, for some reason I imagined that the morticians did makeup on the deceased so they looked normal (as in alive) but that's not how my aunty looked.  We only stayed a few minutes, my Mum said her goodbyes and cried and I drove her back to another relatives place where my dad and kids were hanging out until we were done.

It got me thinking about morticians and their jobs (of all things!) When I did my diploma in Beauty Therapy, I remember a girl in the course who wanted to do the makeup at a funeral home.  You know what?  They could really do with some skilled therapists.  I don't mean that the people who do it aren't, maybe there are some who are great at it and the person who worked on my aunt wasn't, unfortunately.  What I mean is that, there could be a lot of things done to improve the whole viewing experience.  Introducing soft lighting and music for example.  The makeup could be a hell of a lot more "life like" if you know what I mean, right down to their hands or any other exposed part of the deceased's skin getting the treatment.  My aunty's hands looked awful.

I don't know, I don't think I'd want a viewing for myself.  I don't want people looking at me dead.  But I really felt that my Aunt could have had better.  So that's me thinking out loud.

Ok so I think I've blathered on long enough, thanks for hanging in there if you've stayed this long.  I appreciate it.

Hope life is good to you, take care x o

Friday, June 13, 2014

Post holiday update

since I've returned home from holiday, things have been a bit off.

I caught a cough / cold thing off a guy who sat next to me on the flight home.  Poor guy, he was clearly unwell but I didn't appreciate having to breathe in his germs.

Anyway, I came home to children who had missed me as much as I had them but were intent on displaying just how much in a very different and confronting way.  I swear my youngest hung off my arm and demanded all of my attention for a good 2 weeks.  I was expecting it but that didn't make it any easier to deal with.

Then 2 days after arriving home, Hubby had to fly north for 12 days for work.  The kids were pissed to say the least.  Our eldest sobbed her little heart out and the youngest simply ignored him for a good week or so when he skyped us.

So all of this was happening while I was sick, it was a major downer. Really.  I took a few days off work, I just didn't have the energy to tackle it as well as how needy the kids were.  SO I chose my kids and stayed home, napping while they were at school and trying hard to "be there" for them when we were all together.

Thankfully, now Hubby is home and the kids have settled ( not completely, Little Miss 5 is still busting my chops but it's drastically improved).

Work has been tricky to get back into.  I just don't have the enthusiasm that I once felt for it.  The bully is still there and while personally I am left alone by her, she targets other people and the vibe in the centre isn't good.  And many staff are now questioning why, instead of dealing with the problem person, is management dealing with the problem by shifting staff around ( like me) and making adjustments so we can all tip toe around the bully.  Incidentally, I heard that the bully was complaining about being bullied!  I'm not sure by who, as far as I know everyone simply avoids her where possible.  I admit, I don't bother to greet her anymore unless I need to speak to her directly.  When I do, I'm polite and to the point... no niceties.

That's the sad thing, my work was once a really fun place to be and everyone got along.  Now everyone is on edge.  It sucks.

With all that, I've caught myself thinking about other career choices in random moments.  To be honest, I don't want to leave my job.  The hours work for me; I go to work, I come home, I get paid.  Simple in theory.  But now I feel like I'm having to create a protective shell around me in order to get through my day. Moral is low and the vibe is eroding away all my happys.

My depression has been up and down too.  Not severe but enough to feel not quite right.  Damn PMT is, as always, playing a huge part in this.  I've been left feeling foggy and at times confused (especially at work when it's really important that I'm not foggy or confused!).  It's like having baby brain but without the baby :(

One upside though is recently I was allowed to read and comment on a fab author's new novel before publishing.  It has been a real thrill to be involved in this small way and I'm extremely excited to see the finished product!  This is what has got me through "work wise".  And to be honest is what I'd much rather be doing but bills need paying so Hi Ho, Hi Ho, off to work I go.

My own writing has taken a bit of a back seat, I've not written anything new since my holiday. A lot of the picture has to develop in my head before I can get it down and it's slowly taking shape.  However, the lovely author (see above ;) has given me some tips and suggestions for my first part of the story and I am working on going through it again to polish it up.  Her advice has been invaluable and so very much appreciated.

And that's me for now.  Hope you're all well and doing what makes you happy. Take care x o  :)

Friday, May 16, 2014

Bali Hi!

I promised I'd post and here it is my last full day in beautiful Bali and I am only just getting around to it.  I thought I'd do a lot of writing and reading posting but really when I haven't been out eating in lovely restaurants or drinking in a bar on the beach or shopping, I've been a potato on the couch, mostly watching Asia's version of channel V which is pretty much Asian pop with the odd western boy or girl band tossed into the mix.  It's been fun I assure you!

So we stayed in a villa, a different, smaller one than last year, in Seminyak.  We're close to shopping (every street has countless market stalls, massage places, restaurants and bars), there are minimarts everywhere for essential supplies and taxis drive by every minute or so.

I'm lucky in that Hubby likes to do a lot of research on places before we go so he has somewhat of a plan of what he wants to do when we get to where we're going.  I don't like to research and I'm happy to go along with what he's found out about places.  He knows what I'll like and so far he's never been too far wrong.

Apart from eating in nice places, my favourite thing to do in Bali is go to day spas.  Last year we found one we really liked, it wasn't dirt cheap like the street massage stores, it was more like the day spas we'd find at home but maybe a quarter of the price.  So I have enjoyed quite a few full body Balinese massages and one day I  had a 5 hour treatment which included a massage, body scrub, flower bath, foot spa, facial and hair treatment.  It was divine.  I floated right out of there and into a taxi home to the villa.

We found a Horror themed restaurant which has recently opened, Frankenstien's Laboratory.  It had a house band, The Monsters and a cabaret show with some very talented dancing Zombies.  It was brilliant!  They served cocktails in IV bags and shooters in large syringes.  It was so much fun :)

I also had a tarot reading in a quaint little restaurant that serves High Tea every afternoon.  Because the reading is only for 15 minutes (and is very difficult to book), the reader explained he wanted me to ask a specific question to get the best result in such a short  time span.  So I asked if I was heading in the right direction for my writing.  The short answer is yes, but to keep it as an enjoyable pastime instead of seeking financial gain from it.  Logically I guess anyone sensible would have told me the same thing and here I was paying someone to tell me commonsense but in the end, he said a few quite insightful things and I walked away happy so all good :)

Now I haven't posted any photos here but I invite you to like my little friend Captain Quack Sparrow, who has been travelling with me and Hubby and has his own facebook page full of our photos.  I will help him put up a little more detail on places etc for interests sake as we get a chance. Sadly we had to take down Captain Quack's page, when I get a chance I will pop up a few photos.

Ok so I might get back to my holiday, grab every scrap of relaxation I can before we head home to routines, screeching kids and work, work, work.

Will catch you later x o

Thursday, April 17, 2014

And a Happy Easter to you

just a quick catch up, I see on my little visitor counter thingy that people are stopping by every now and then which is great.  Thank you! I appreciate the visits and wonder why on Earth you might find me at all interesting.  Whatever the reason, I'll take it :)

Things for the most part are good at the moment.  Aside from a slight hiccup which I'm chalking up to an episode of PMT.  My antidepressants still can't completely take away the craziness that winds me up at "that time of the month".  Sorry, it sounds a bit crude.  I'm amazed at how my body can turn me into a ticking time bomb just by altering a little chemistry.  I will admit the PMT isn't as bad as before, or maybe I'm handling it better? I really don't know but it is better than the pre-antidepressant me.  Everything I used to go through is far more subdued, still there but not nearly as bad.

OK so good things going on for me...

I have lost a little weight.  Yay! I needed to, really I did.  And I will be happy to lose more but slowly.  Right now I'm averaging about 1kg a month.  I tried low calorie shakes and they got me kick started but with my work hours the way they are and family and the fact that I love food made it tricky to keep going like that.  So now I'm just cutting back and thinking about what I'm eating more seriously.  It's working for me and Hubby.

Work is good, the bully is still there but I'm not being affected as I'm in a different section and have been putting all of my training into practice now.  It is challenging but I'm doing ok.

Last weekend I finished the second draft of my book.  I'm starting to wonder if it's not long enough but I felt like I had to finish on a high exciting note that would lead into the next in the series otherwise it was going to be a really long story.  I've sent it to a couple of trusted friends to get their feedback and then I guess it's onto the third draft.  Some days I look at what I've done and think yeah this isn't bad at all then other days I find myself thinking what an amateurish piece of crap.  I hope one day it might be ready to stick on Amazon but I don't know.  It's been fun to write in any case.

So this weekend is Easter.  I love Easter!  More so for the food than anything else.  Chocolate for breakfast! ;)  Good Friday falls on my wedding anniversary this year, most restaurants etc will be closed for the day which is a bummer but Hubby is cooking me a special dinner.  He's a great cook but doesn't cook often anymore.  We have no real plan other than that for the day, the kids are going to their grandparents for the night so we will be free to do whatever we like.  Even if it is just veg out on the couch and catch up on movies.

The rest of the weekend will be spent with family and friends and should be lovely.

Then in a months time, Hubby and I are going to Bali for a grown up holiday.  It's kind of for my 40th birthday.  We've picked out some lovely restaurants and day spas to go to and have booked a private villa to stay in so we can relax by the pool without having to share with anyone else.  This time around I hope to post while I'm over there, even if it's just photos to keep you up to date and show you how nice it is.

And that's me for now, hope the Easter Bunny leaves you a treat x o

Friday, March 21, 2014

keep on truckin'

so, I have continued to go to work and am pleased to say things are bearable for me at the moment.  My boss asked if I was ready to do some training to give me more skills and therefore can work in different areas as need be and I agreed maybe it was time.

So off I went into the city to the training school.  It meant my kids had to stay over at their Grandparents for much of the week.  I didn't want to put them in before school day care by 6:30am every morning and then pick them up late in the day as well.  I am very lucky the grandies are so helpful in that respect. 

The training was overwhelming, so much information to take in and I put a lot of pressure on myself to get it right the first time.  I made the mistake of trying to keep up with the other student in the class, she was straight out of uni and could speed read while absorbing everything and finished everything way before I did.  By the third day, I'd had a little cry in the car before I got there.  My hubby was driving me in every morning which was great, I was a bundle of nerves and wouldn't have coped well on the train.  He kept reminding me that I was being too hard on myself and I am VERY hard on myself.  Wonder Woman I am not!

But I got through and went back to work the following day, they put me on the front counter to practice my new skills and it was great.  So much easier than in the classroom.  And it kept me away from the bully. 

Before I went to training school I started to wear a uniform shirt that one of the girls had given me to try for size.  I had been putting off ordering my uniform for 4 months and felt weird wearing it for the first time but then I realised I was sending the bully a message that I wasn't going anywhere.  That motivated me enough to put my order in and I should have that next week.

So the bully herself doesn't seem to have changed except that the focus isn't solely on me now.  She will not acknowledge me even if we are working side by side, she is aggressive and grumbly to everyone now and though that is not good, I can handle that much better.

The workplace is not the lovely place it once was but I have decided I am not giving in and am NOT giving up my lovely little job because of one person.


In other news, I am almost finished the first draft of my book.  I finally got to a point where I think it can end and then begin again in another volume.  There is a little more I have to add to it, stuff that brings the theme of it together better and more completely.  Then I guess I will run through it for touch ups and hopefully get some people to read it for feedback.  It's pretty exciting and daunting to be this much closer to showing my work to other people.  Only one friend has read any of it so far and she has been great at giving valuable feedback.  Will let you know how it all goes.