30 April 2007

CBCA Awards 2007 Shortlist

I finally looked at the CBCA Awards shortlist today and looked forward to reading the books on the list. I read most of the shortlist last year and totally enjoyed them. It's great to look forward to winter with a list of books to read that are almost guaranteed to be great. I have included a new tag "CBCA Awards" in my blog. I'll have to go back and add it to all the books I read from the list and mentioned on this blog last year. My apologies to readers with feeds who may get these posts reposted.

I have already had the pleasure of reading "Red Spikes" by Margo Lanagan. It is a collection of amazing and wonderful short stories and is my favourite so far! There is a great story 'Under Hell, Over Heaven' in there based on the Catholic concept of Limbo. I wonder if the Pope read this story too as he has recently made some changes.

28 April 2007

The Running Man by Michael Gerard Bauer

I have recently completed 'The Running Man' by Michael Gerard Bauer and found it to be an excellent novel that keeps you wondering throughout. It oozes mystery and keeps the reader curious and wondering until the end. I like the characters and the perception and vulnerability of the main character.
This book was a winner of the Older Readers CBCA Awards in 2005 as well as a list of other awards received around the country. His latest "Don't Call Me Ishmael" (Read Chapter One Here), has been shortlisted for the 2007 CBCA Awards again in the Older Readers catagory.

24 April 2007


I don't know if this happens to others, but I have noticed that sometimes my life just seems to have a big shift and all the old routines and habits stop working as they have always done and I have to make changes. Well this has just happened. Andy is in between jobs having just finished the contract he's had for as long as I've known him and beyond. My parents have acquired a caravan and have taken off for a trial run trip. Pa is home from hospital.

At work things are on the boil also.I want to help out with the school musical this week, I wish I had done more to help to be honest. I have been doing some PD's after work, and loving them. I have to write reports at the end of the term. I am going on camp with my homeroom next month, as well as two separate day excursions. This adds up to a week out of the term. I am trying some new projects which always takes more energy, but makes life more exciting.

Towards the end of the term I am having visitors stay and the room they will be staying in is half way through a renovation project and honestly in a pretty grim state.

All of the above as well as some reorganising of files and cleaning up of lots of spaces has meant that my routines have changed and become unfamiliar. I like it. It feels positively different.

I am glad I have a holiday tomorrow though, because I need to fine tune the changes and I have no commitments for the day.

19 April 2007

Smiling at This Right Now

Today I have felt very tired. It's a bit of a worry, it's only the first week of the term! I found this popular video and it brought a smile to my face and gave me hope for the future, so I have to share it.

17 April 2007

On the Mend

Pa came home from hospital today. He has a lot of medication and still seems a little fragile, yet is so much improved from my last mention, it is unbelievable. He is so motivated. He got up and practised walking as soon as he could.

Each time I visited him he said, 'It's up to me to get out of here'. He takes responsibility for his fitness. I am so relieved and proud of him. I think we can all take that thought on board. I know myself at times I think I can fool goodness knows what by making poor nutritional choices or not exercising.

Since they gave him a date for coming home he mentally improved also. He had began to seem a little flat and bored when I visited and I could see he was feeling caged.
The legend lives on....

16 April 2007

Sluggish Computer

Yesterday Andy cleaned up my computer. It had become really slow and I was beginning to feel frustrated with it. He removed the spyware and the things that I no longer need that were running quietly in the background. I deleted a few things that I had backed up and didn't need to access very often. We defragged and he did other computer type things I have no idea about. It took all day nearly. I was quite irritable by then.
I wonder about people who have no Andy to watch over their computers. I have seen friends computers who are just crawling along, totally laden with all sorts of surplus programs. Less is More.

15 April 2007


Tomorrow I start back at work after the school holidays. This Easter/Autumn/first term break always goes way too quickly. I have achieved some things I set out to do and enjoyed time with my family, but as usual there are always the unfinished things that linger. Tomorrow I will have forgotten them and if they are important, I will squeeze them in during the term at some stage or else they will be there waiting for me in June, when the next holidays begin.

13 April 2007

Films during the Easter 07 holidays

The film '300' was based on a graphic novel. I found that interesting as I brought a pile home from the school library to read. I haven't made much progress with them. There is an interesting one on Chinese Myths that I will use with the year 7's for Imperial China topic. Getting back to the film though, I really enjoyed it. It was a great heroic, action film.

Children of Men was a futuristic look at a bleak reality where no more children can be born. It was a really well done film and is one of the best I've seen lately. Great characters, particularly Jasper, played by Michael Caine.

I finally saw The Prestige on DVD these holidays. I have been longing to see it and will watch it again because it was great. I wanted to see it because of my long term facination with David Bowie and Tesla. It was also a good story with an interesting outcome.

I partially viewed the DVDs The Guardian and Memoirs of a Geisha I couldn't really get into 'The Guardian', even though I am a big fan of Kevin Costner usually. Andy loved it though. 'Memoirs' was ok but I kept getting interupted and only really partially saw it after restarting it three times and now I can't be bothered with it. Not meant to be!

The real dissappointment for the holidays was the Australian film Boytown. It was corny and terrible. I guess it was the subject matter of a boy band that killed it. I usually enjoy Glenn Robbins and Mick Molloy, but think this movie was pushing it a lot of the time.

12 April 2007

Kazakhstan and 'The Zahir'

I have to admit, I had barely heard of Kazakhstan before Borat the film came along. I haven't seen Borat and I don't imagine I will. It doesn't sound like my kind of entertainment. I have noticed though that I have been noticing this place more and more in the streams of information that pass by me.

I have recently read a book that was in part set in Kazakhstan called 'The Zahir' by Paolo Coelho. I totally enjoyed the book. It was about relationships. I love Paolo Coelho's books and have read all bar about three of them. I am contemplating rereading some of them actually because they have so much in them. This latest read was about obsession and love and I enjoyed reading it. There is more I want to learn about it and I have given a lot of thought to many of the ideas in the book.

I recently read this article on one of my favourite blogs:Inhabitat:Norman Foster's Entertainment Centre in Kazakhstan

11 April 2007


Whilst I was in Melbourne, I visited Williamstown for an afternoon. It was busy, yet the landscape and housing are quite different from other areas of inner city Melbourne. This is a little video I took from the point.

10 April 2007


I have just returned last night from a holiday in suburban Melbourne. I stayed with my daughter for a week. I totally enjoyed her company and had a look around the area she is now living. I took her to Monsalvat one day. I used to go there when I lived in the burbs and wanted to feel like I didn't. It has changed in some ways and become more developed. There is a restaurant and you pay to enter. I enjoyed the visit although it was different to the solo trips I once treasured.

There was some great landscapes in the Long Gallery. If you haven't ever been to Montsalvat, you should check out the link. It is Australia's Oldest Artist Community.

There were peacocks there. It seemed the Easter thing to do since I had just been contemplating that.

02 April 2007

Easter Reflection

I learnt this week the peacock was an early christian symbol for eternal life. The legend was that the peacock flesh didn't decay. I like this symbol. I have always found Easter to be a time of letting go of older, worn out ways of being or thinking. I like the theme of regeneration and immortality.
Although I am not religious in practise, I have usually had some kind of insight or renewal of self at this time of the year. Now I look forward to it.
No it's not just all about the hot cross buns and the chocolate, yet I wouldn't be without those either!

01 April 2007

A Social Life

I have had a very social weekend. I even went shopping with my little sister Kate this weekend. I love having Kate around, she's so generous and funny. My friend Rhonda came over yesterday afternoon and we all sat around and laughed till it hurt.

I had two events last night. My twin Auntie and Uncle's 50th Birthday party and a close friends engagement party. I wanted to attend both and managed it. I forgot to take my camera, which was a shame, but there were camera's around so I imagine I will see photo's.

I loved catching up with my family. They are such great fun and I had a few good memories. I saw a photo of my auntie and I, that was taken probably 30 years ago and I immediately remembered how much I idolised her. She was probably 20 and I was probably about 11 or 12. She was heading off to Malaysia with her partner and I was devastated. When she returned after a few years our relationship had changed, I was older, the gap had lessened. I forgot how much I adored her. All my brothers and sister were there and it is always good to catch up with them as well as most of my mum's 7 brothers and sisters and their families. It was great.

At the second party there were people I worked with and some who had left the school had returned for this party and I loved seeing them again. My work mates are a valued part of my life and it was lovely to catch up with those I've missed.

I feel very blessed and happy today. Both my children are home and safe, it is holidays and all is well in my world. I am grateful for the wonderful life I have.