Thursday, January 28, 2010

Trip to the podiatrist

This looks more intimidating than it is. Went to the podiatrist and now my feet are "happy as" I've been visiting Glenn for a couple of years now. It is lovely sitting in the quiet, air conditioned room chatting as he works on my feet to keep them fit and healthy.


27th January

After all of the children had gone, the empty lanes leading to the front gate and home...

Day One of the new year

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Australia Day

Panorama shot taken using stitch app on iPhone

Spent the morning on my computer updating my Cybrary BlackBoard VCR then husband and daughter and I drove down to Surfers Paradise for lunch. It was gorgeous and lovely to see so many families out enjoying the Australia Day holiday. Games of cricket, flags flying from cars and tied around people's necks, very patriotic.

We had lunch at Broadbeach SLSC and I took four photos using my iphone. I then pulled them into an app called Autostitch and that pulled them together to make a panorama shot. Not too bad for a phone camera.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Back to school

Today was the second pupil free training day before the children return from summer holidays. It was so hot, I missed my air con! Fortunately my daughter was home and willing to go to our favourite coffee shop for a cold drink.

One long hot day

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Relaxing Sunday driving around Brisbane

Our daughter needed a lift to a gig she was taking photos at in the Valley so my husband and I cruised around in the air con, occasionally parking if we found a shady spot. I have to add a couple of photos today because I want to remember the best ones.


We had a look in at the Mac shop near the Valley, didn't have a lot of stock on display but we could both have spent quite a bit of time and money in there!


Then on to Portside, Hamilton where the cruise ships dock. Had fish and chips there which wasn't the best but a stroll down to the water picked us up.

Cup of tea at The Black Cat in Paddington after we'd mooched around the book shop upstairs. The houses on that side of town are lovely, very narrow but long and amazing back yards.


Then on up Mt Coot-Tha to have a look at the panorama around Brisbane. We found a parking spot right at the top and in the shade, just before a coach load of tourists disembarked.


Thought this might make a good shot for a focus to write about - long straight path into a wooded area - where does it lead, who has gone down there before us ...


23rd January 2010

One of the most contentious statements made during the pupil free day was that we have to wear closed in shoes. It sounded like broken toes are highest on the list of claims for Workplace Health and Safety. It sounded on Facebook like most of us were out scouring the shops for cheap yet acceptable replacements for the sandals we have been wearing. The heat is the major issue for me against the decision. I will not wear tights with these shoes in this hot weather.

Anyway, I was fortunate enough to find some Colorado sandals which may just fit the bill, covered toes but sides cut out. (Note for DFO at Brisbane Airport - better signage is needed for drivers coming in on the new flyover from the Gold Coast direction! I ended up at the Domestic terminal first!)

Covered sandals

22nd January 2010

First day back at school, pupil free day. I was late for the first staff meeting as a friend and I have decided to car pool. We miscalculated how long it would take a. for her to find my house and b. for my granny driving to get us to school! Oh well, our carbon footprint has been halved.

After a hard day going through the Code of Conduct and the school Behaviour Management Policy I trotted on down to the Coffee Club to enjoy a debrief with friends from my previous school. The staff there gave the daughter of one of them balloons from one of the tables and it was gorgeous watching her laughing and interacting with these enormous inanimate objects!


21st January 2010

The last day of the summer holiday. I spent most of the morning chatting with Telstra employess in various parts of the globe about the shocking service I had experienced and bemoaning our transition from Optus. I did end up staying with them because the bill I was complaining about was restored to what it should have been. How bizarre that I was fined $109 for upgrading an internet account over the internet rather than over the phone. Absolutely ridiculous.

Salad season

It is apparently 43 degrees C in the southern states today. It is very humid here, but about 33ish. Summer salads are the go for meals, I have a bowl of salad made up in the fridge that I top up as I need it. The avocado goes first, then the mushrooms and cucumber pieces!

Lovely avocado

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Holidays are drawing to a close...

Oi, get away from my chips!

After a quick visit in to school my husband and I had lunch at Charis Seafood at Southport on the Gold Coast. Beautiful sitting next to the water. The seagulls were funny, they were literally hovering next to us as we ate begging for scraps!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

19th January 2010

Another day in front of the computer, without much to show for it! Daughter and I went to her school to get her senior uniform (which hadn't arrived yet) without success so we packed my husband into the car and dragged him off to Borders so she could get some school shoes from the sports shop next door.

We enjoyed a cuppa and a look around and of course our daughter walked home with the plastic bags, not us!

Out for a coffee

I noticed this sign whilst we were there as well. I always wonder what times the shops are open so this will be a useful reminder for me!

But it's a public holiday...

18th January 2010

I was going to drive to Sydney today to take my son's toolkit back to him. He left it behind. Noone else thought it was a good idea except my daughter who was as keen as I was. I had signed up for the Digital Bootcamp at the Learning Innovation Centre which is at the University of the Sunshine Coast.

Whilst there I was shown a Kindle. My husband is very keen to get his hands on one.

A kindle

One of the tasks we had during the day was to calculate the carbon footprint of our drive to the LIC.

My carbon footprint

January 17th 2010

We had a lovely day sharing mum's 78th birthday. My brother's family, mine and mum & dad were at our house for a BBQ, a swim and a pavlova.

Mum's 78th birthday cake

We commented on the glow from the candles!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

January 16th Hard Yakka in the yard


The smile is masking a thousand pains! I am obviously not someone who seeks outdoor experiences, I would by far prefer to be designing web sites or chatting online. Well the price was paid yesterday when my months/years of sedentary activity were brought to a halt with the need to assist my husband to clear up our front yard. He has been renovating our bathrooms and the pile of rubble had grown to the point where we had to do something about it. A skip was delivered and we have until Wednesday to fill it. We didn't do too bad a job, it's about 3/4 full now and there is even room to throw some other household junk lying around as well.

Today was also the day my son left to return to base for another year of service. We will hopefully see him in twelve months time for Christmas. This is two years in a row we have had him home.

January 15th Breakfast at Sirromets

We had a fine dining experience to start our day. A couple of the girls I meet regularly on a Friday for coffee with, met at Sirromet winery ( It is the most beautiful view and the table service was wonderful. A lovely way to finish off our holidays which end for me on the 22nd when I return to school.


My husband and I both had Egg Benedict, mine was with ham, his was with smoked salmon. The poached eggs were just right, cooked but still a soft centre.


Even the coffee was presented well


Thursday, January 14, 2010

Exactly one week to go...

Time is flying past. Summer holidays are almost over, only one more week until we return to school. One of my goals was to master Sims3, I bought myself a copy because Joanna plays hers all the time.

My creation

Problem was, she was flicking this way and that over the screen and running her characters ragged. My poor old head got dizzy and I actually began to feel queasy. Bit like the motion sickness I experienced when playing virtual worlds during the EQ trial when we were in Active Worlds.

We bought the travel expansion pack but have been disappointed with the lack of features. There are only three countries and the landmarks (e.g. Eiffel Tower) are not there according to my daughter. I still think the original Sims was the best.

My creation

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Cubes Go Big Time!!

During the last holiday I spent way too much importing a couple of Cubes products from Think Geek. They are miniature office workers who bend to your will and do whatever you tell them! I set mine up in a variety of places to attempt some amateur animating. Well of course I had to send holiday snaps to Think Geek and they have uploaded some of them to their site! My Cubes are famous!!

Think Geek makes my Cube boys day

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

It's Complicated...

A group of friends from the previous school I taught at met up today to go to the movies to see "It's Complicated." They came out saying it was well worth the visit. I met them for lunch afterwards as I had an appointment with the doctor, hence the BLT.

It's Complicated...

What a great bunch of girls, we've been friends for years...

Eating - but It's Complicated

Monday, January 11, 2010

Time's flying by

Started off the day chatting with Adrian at the LIC on the Sunshine Coast about Kindles. He has purchased two to trial and shared the pros and cons he has experienced with it so far. It seems to me that it is a bit of a one trick pony, you can download select ebooks and newspapers from overseas. It is black and white display and I wonder if it is capable of video presentation, probably not with only 2GB memory. Adrian and I began to wonder if it would be possible to create any documents of our own to present on it. This site states that it is. Will have to investigate further.

Kindle in perspective

My husband and I are both on holidays at the moment, he has a fortnight to renovate the bathroom and construct an outside area, I have a week left to get myself prepared for the next school year and hopefully a final push to complete my studies for Master of Education Technology. He dragged me away from the computer for some "fresh air" at Mitre 10. I laughed - he puts his hand out to touch everything as he walks past, just like I do at Harvey Norman or a gadget shop.

Touching everything!


The rest of the afternoon I spent tinkering with my Eeepc loading Ubuntu, an open source OS with a wealth of resources available as freeware. This is the cute screen saver. I am curious about the quality of cloud computing possible using this freely available system. It was a simple process and the change of environment is appealing - a lovely chocolate colour, clean desktop, new language to grasp. Enjoying this holiday!

Ubuntu ant screensaver

Sunday, January 10, 2010


What's on the cards? Clearing some of the mess that has accumulated in the hallways as Ian progresses on the bathroom renovations. I am working on him to go to the movies as well, fingers crossed. Photos later!

Photo number 1. Another glorious day out there, just a bit too warm to sit in for very long!
Back yard, not a cloud in sight

38C by the car thermometer. Not as hot as Adelaide though, they have had temps in the 40s for the past week or so! Yuk!!
38C by car thermometer

9th January

Started off miserably, I had a wicked sore throat, goodness knows where I picked it up from. After a morning spent on the computer tweaking my web site and bumping up the balance of my FaceBook zoo (apologies for all of the updates - just click the "hide" button so they don't clog up your stream!) darling daughter and I went on the bus to Brisbane to hunt for The OC, season 2. JB HiFi have a 20% sale on at the moment. The city store is also charging half the price of other stores we have seen it at (Insanity had it for $81 on their shelves!!!)

During the trip I kept my Plurk buddies updated with sunny photos, most of them are in the US and experiencing blizzard conditions so I sent some rays of Brisbane sunshine their way.

Travelling to the city

View across to Brisbane



Looking up Queen Street Mall

My new laptop bag to carry an Eeepc or MacBook around in. The handles on the other one frayed! This one has pockets, zippered compartments for everything and even cute little characters on the zipper tags!

My new laptop bag

8th January

This was probably the best day of the holiday so far! Ian and I had a hot date at the Southport Life Saving Club restaurant and then drove on to hunt for special screws to hinge the new bathroom cupboards to the wall.

Lunch date with my hubby, next stop bathroom accessories

We left a grey, overcast Brisbane and arrived at the Gold Coast where a blazing sun and glorious view awaited across Main Beach. Again the chips dominated our plates but the BLT sandwich was great!


Couple of happy holidaymakers!

Hot date

The iPhone takes reasonably good photos using the Genius app, I like that one because I am able to add a date stamp and location.


Cumulus Nimbus clouds were worth a picture as well...

Clouds in January

7th January

On Thursday 7th I met up with work colleagues for lunch at Helensvale and we had fun recounting our adventures of the past few weeks. School resumes on 22 January and I don't think any of us are quite ready for that yet!


This was a lovely chicken burger, there really was a good portion of avocado under all that sauce although all those chips weren't necessary I suppose!

I had dropped my glasses in at the Optometrists earlier because the arm kept falling off. It was the first time in my life that a no questions asked guarantee had been fulfilled. No argument, the assistant simply took the glasses from me, hunted out a replacement frame and offered to transfer the lenses as I waited. Top marks to SpecSavers at the Hyperdome!


6th January

The days are rushing past now. On the 5th I went with Ian to see the Sherlock Holmes movie, silly me, didn't take any photos though. Missed opportunities and hindsight!

On Wednesday 6th, as we walked into the shops to get a few supplies we were greeted with the bizarre sight of Easter buns. I have a friend who used to work there who said the reason they are out so early is that it is too much bother to move the stock around to fill the gaps after Christmas so they just start the next celebration! Customer demand my foot!

Australia Day is actually the next national event on the 26th January which "has traditionally marked the landing of Captain Arthur Phillip at Port Jackson in present-day Sydney, thereby claiming Australia for the British Empire"

Are you ready for the next celebration?

Monday, January 4, 2010

January 4th 2010

Our cat Chunkmeister was sitting, staring intently out of the window in jungle mode. Occassionally he would mutter to himself as the wood pigeons called out nearby.

We have two inside cats, unfortunately we lost two others under cars hurtling down our street late at night. Lesson learned.

It's a lovely view out of the sliding door into our front yard. We are back from the street a bit so have a degree of privacy, especially being sheltered by so many trees and bushes.

View from my window

There's a bird out there

Outside from Chunky's perspective