Saturday, November 30, 2019

Last Day of the Month

I haven't been in here very much. But there's been so much going on lately in my life that I havent had time.

This month, I did the National Novel Writing Month; and smashed it by a day... with 8 words to spare. Last year I had 16 words spare. I really know how to cut it fine, don't I?

Anyway, last night, I was watching 'The X-Files' on Viceland, when an 8-legged young Huntsman took a stroll across my living room floor. He was very young because he stopped under my kitchen table and waited there for me to get my shoes on and grab the bug spray... normally something like that knows to hide. But I came back, and he was still there looking at me as though we were going to be friends. Yeah, me? Friends with a spider - I think not! I don't know who was more freaked out, me or him... but he's dead now.

Today, I got in and started cleaning up the house. First place was my art area next to the back door. I pulled out everything and reorganised everything, throwing out 3 big bags of crap, tossing out a box of sprung pegs I was hanging onto 'just in case' I needed them. And I also threw out picture frames I didn't want anymore as well... you see charity stores aren't going to use them, so I'm saving them the trouble of throwing them out. 

Well, the table easels were sorted, the calendars were too, and the blank canvases got a home too... I'm proud to say that the boxes by the door were gone through and I now have 2 plastic boxes and that's it. This took 3 hours to do and I stopped for a drink or two of water and an ice coffee... now I just want to go to sleep after something to eat. 

Anyway, in between all of this, I went out and bought my Christmas present to myself: a pair of Instep shoes. I've been meaning to get a second pair. They're just so darned comfy.  After I got home, I was back into the cleaning out... and I got it all finished. 

Before this was done, I did 3 loads of laundry, washed up some of the dishes and put out 2 other bags of rubbish. And after the clean-out, the bin outside is now full to the brim. What a great day I've had. 

Tomorrow, I'll be doing other things around the home office to clean up, and working on a Christmas present; so it won't be so hectic. Well, until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

East Coast Bush Fires

Okay, by now, you've all heard about the huge bush fires which have been terrorising us up the east coast of Australia from the back of Sydney, up the North Coast of New South Wales and the Gold Coast and around the back of Noosa and around the back of Ipswich, Logan City and further north here in Queensland.

Anyone who knows me personally as a good friend, I'm here to let you know: I'm fine. Stressed out to nothing else, but fine. I hate natural disasters like nobody's business, and get to the point where I lose sleep and suddenly bust into what I call 'stupid tears' but it's a way of dealing with the stress. 

But I'm okay otherwise.

I'm knitting like nothing else. I made a long beanie in 3 1/2 days - and that's fast for me; as it normally takes me 2 weeks. I needed something to do to keep my mind off what was going outside. I've been decluttering day and night so I have tidy house to clunk around in during the smokey and hazy days - which are no fun because I cough during them.

We're going into our 2nd day of smoke haze; which causes Brisbane to have worse air quality than Hong Kong, Tokyo and Beijing. On Monday, I wore a mask while I drove my car. You see, I hate having my window up when I drive because I like to be able to hear the other vehicles around me; and not be locked inside my car by my window and be deaf to the world. So, I wore a mask while I drove and scored a lot of people staring at me - mind you, they were all cocooned in their cars with their windows up and in their air-conditioned comfort. Yeah, good for them, wait until they park that vehicle and have to get out and walk around without a mask on. At least I had that covered.

Am I scared about the bush fires being this close? Yes, I am. I'm as scared about them as I was when we had the Brisbane floods in 2010/11 and the news was banging on about how many roads were cut, how much water there was around the place, how much food there wasn't in shopping centres... how much fuel we should have.. how much... what we should do. Emergency kits. And speaking of, I've even had my mind playing tricks on what I should be packing if we do get told to move (which is most probably never going to happen if it rains tomorrow - which I hope it does). 

Anyway, Just letting you know, I'm okay. The smoke haze is coming back today, and I'll have to close my windows here in my home office so my computer doesn't get stuffed up by it. But you know, I washed my car two weeks ago, and it's got a fine coating of soot on it... I keep washing it off, but it keeps coming back. I'm not washing it again until this is all over! Well, anyone I know out there, I hope you're all well, you're all going okay. Take care in this and keep in touch. Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Thursday, October 31, 2019

This Month of Busyness

Well, I've been meaning to come in here and write - but well, everytime I do, life has just gotten in the way!

Let's start at the beginning, okay? 

My birthday was in the first week, and I drove to my brother's house with all birthday gifts for him and my niece (as they have birthdays two weeks after mine). Anyway, we had a great day and night together, with plenty of laughs and music. Their dog was just a sweetheart and sat my feet and enjoy the doggy treats I bought for her from Mount Tamborine last month. 

Then the following week, I scored a nice, heavy easel from the LAA. They were giving it away; and it was just perfect for the days where I'm going to sit and do detail work on a painting. So, it's a great piece to own. 
During the month, I worked on my garden, and shopped at Bunnings to get myself a good lot of cheap plants and some mix for the garden. I also moved my plants around to make more space for the Tahitian Lime tree; as it needed the room to grow. 

I had moved the office around a little last month, and so I began to shred a lot of paperwork from the filing cabinet and looked into what kind of new desk I'll be getting for my office - as I'm going to be doing that in the new year. However, the front garden and backyard still have a few little things which needed work on. 

My artwork came along well at the Tuesday Art Group. I finished on painting, and continued with a few others. There were two I'm working on; on called 'The South Arm' while the other is called 'The View' - both oil paintings and both nearing their completion. I can't wait finish them both, and move onto new work. I've decided to not only paint landscapes of the Northern Rivers area of Brunswick Heads, but also Brisbane, Sandgate and around Thorneside and Logan City. It'll give for a wider scheme of projects and I'll be able to work on a better lot of places over the next year or so. 

My beanies are finally in their exhibition at the Logan Art Gallery's Pop-Up Store. They're all for sale and I do take on commission works if you wish. Just tell me what style you're looking at, and the colour you'd like, and I'll work on it over the next few weeks. I'm a fast knitter. 

This month has been a wild ride. I've had some sadness just before my niece's birthday, though. My dear friend, Mark Davey, who lived to paint and draw every day, passed away from cancer. He was suffering from another illness, but that wasn't what took him away from us. He was the best man anyone could call a friend. He encouraged me in my work, pushed me to become a financial member of the Logan Artists Association and showed me ways to paint like I've never thought possible. I will miss him dearly as a friend, a fellow artist and a Birthday Buddy as well (as we shared a birthday together). Rest well, Mark. Paint your part of Heaven in the way you did in life - with every colour on your palette; and more you never saw here.  

Saturday, October 19, 2019

A Busy Month

Oh yes, it's been a busy month; and I've finally got time today to tell you all about it.

It's raining. It's Spring and it's raining - finally. The thunder is rolling overhead, which is lovely, and my garden is getting watered without me having to do it. And I've worked on it for most of the year - just little things really - but the plants are going well. 

It's October already and my birthday has been and gone, my brother's birthday is today, and I'm working on cleaning out my home office. I've almost got the black 2-drawer filing cabinet cleaned out, and will be shredding more things from the place today. Along with that, I'll be moving all my stationery into a better place, so it doesn't take up the space on top of Grandpa's desk. I still use this desk for what I need and I'll be cleaning it out for what I want - as it's got so many little things in it from his time (and I love so much in there but it's not of any use for anyone now). 

A lot of what I've been doing lately is preparing for the Pop-Up Store at the Logan Art Gallery. I've made a few beanies and found an old suitcase which I've had in storage for ages. I cleaned it up and cleaned it out and have begun to put things inside it to take to the demonstration day there. I can't wait until that day. It's going to be a good day. 

Otherwise, I've been putting things away, cleaning out and donating items to charity. The garden also got a clean up over Winter and now, just yesterday, I put out some lawn seed and watered it in. And thankfully, it's raining and I don't have to water this afternoon. It'll help with germination of the seed. 

I'm doing National Novel Writing Month next month; and so far, I've been very prepared with everything - from the research to knowing what I want to write about. I've begun a draft of the work too. So, I'll be working on something straight away when it comes around next month; which is great! 

But I'm taking it easy lately, seeing I've got laryngitis. And the doctor told me to chill out and not talk unless I need to; no whispering or singing. No singing? Oh man... but then, I have a cough which sounds like a horn now. I guess it's going away. I just have to make sure to not sing or speak - kinda hard when my phone rings and people keep trying to sell me things all the time or the NBN keeps telling me to join the NBN when I've already done that. Or some body is trying to scam me saying somebody I know is in hospital.... well, how can I not speak? 

Oh well, can't win 'em all, right? 

Anyway, that's my month. It's been busy and weird. We've had a heatwave and freezing cold nights. We've had four seasons in one week - and a day too - and yet, it's still October. Halloween is coming up and I'm looking forward to that as well.  Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here. 

Sunday, October 13, 2019

October

It's the beginning half of my birthday month; and so far it's been so busy, I've barely had time to sit still.

I've spent last weekend at my brother's house for my birthday - where we all swapped gifts. And thank goodness we did that! Because this weekend, I've begun losing my voice. On Thursday last week, I was forever clearing my throat, and just couldn't loosen up the frog from my throat in the morning, and by last night, I simply couldn't raise my voice higher than a whisper. 
This morning, I was coughing and sounded horrible. So, off to the doctors I'm going to see what I've caught. I'm feeling fine, it's just my throat which isn't.

Anyway, this week, I had so much planned to do - like heading back to the gym on a more regular basis - but that will have to be put on hold until this throat clears up. Then, my art group will have to be missed until I'm better (yeah, I'm not going anywhere near there until I'm less contagious). 

I've been decluttering my place in big ways again too. I cleared out a big space in under the stairs and it was great to get rid of things I seriously didn't need anymore and get them off to the charity stores. 

But today, I reorganised my back garden too. My Tahitian Lime Tree needs a new - bigger - pot and so does my Ficus, and I'll be buying a the new pot for the Tahitian Lime first. It's trying to put out fruit, so I'll get some citrus mix for it and then a large pot for it too, and repot it by November. Then I'll do the Ficus before Christmas.

This first half of my birthday month has been great - except for my forced silence of my voice - otherwise, I'm going well. So, how are you all? Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here. 

Monday, September 23, 2019

A Busy Time!

I've been meaning to come here and talk, but every time I do, I feel as though I have to wait and see how something in life works out first.

Now, it's Monday morning. Spring is definitely here in Australia and the birds have eaten every berry off the Moch Orange shrubs in my garden... such cuties they are! And I've finally got time to sit and talk here.

My life has been weird lately.

I'm knitting a lot of beanies - more than I did with the commission for the Logan Art Gallery - because I'm doing a demonstration in a few months there; and need to have enough to show while I'm there in November. But I'm also knitting a lot because it's something to do with my hands at night and I really do enjoy it.

I'm painting still too. But I'm not doing it for profit, I'm painting because I love to paint and make lovely pictures. It doesn't matter what I paint, so long I enjoy my work.

And then there's the garden. I've been working in it a lot lately. There's been herbs to replace, the lawn to work on over the next few weeks (because it's just dirt now) and plants to replace because they've died and need to be replaced with lovely new greenness. 
Otherwise I do enjoy being in my garden; as it's my escape from the outside world.

Speaking of escaping from the world... I'm finally getting into my home office declutter. Yay! Yes, it's been a long time coming and I'm working hard on getting rid of the crap from this particular room. So far, I've won a small shredder and gotten in and shredded 2 rubbish bags of paper from the top drawer of the filing cabinet and they've been tossed in the bin outside! Woah! That's a lot of stuff to get done. And my tall bookcase and Grandpa's Desk have swapped places in the office in the first part of the office make-over. 
I'll be getting rid of the saggy bookcase and the desk I'm currently working on - and replacing the bookcase with a good, sturdy IKEA one to put next to the tall one. The tiny one by the window will go where the old saggy one went and then the old desk will be tossed, and I'll get a plain, ordinary student desk with drawers - nothing exciting. This corner desk is falling apart and wobbles all the time. So, it's getting tossed. The filing cabinet is going to be my Dad's, and everything the office will be moved around... I'll have more floor space and it'll be better in every way because I'll be able to open the other curtain in the daytime. 

So, part one has been done, and I'm looking forward to part two and three happening soon. I'm just working on saving up money to buy the desk and other bookcase. I'll need another shelf for the small bookcase... but that's nothing really. Well, it's a lot of news in a post, right? But, that's what happens when you forget to write. Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here. 

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Zero Tolerance

When you hear that, you know exactly what it means, don't you?

Of course you do! It means: no bullying, no blazing, no putting anyone down in public, at schools, online or offline, over the phone, on Facebook, on Twitter, on Snapchat or any other social media and really exactly why in the hell would you want to?

My question to you is this: would you go and push somebody around face to face if you told them off from the complete and total safety of your keyboard? No, you wouldn't. I wouldn't. It's just not like me to something that backwards and idiotic.

So, why to people who live on the other side of the planet take it upon themselves to come onto my Facebook page and tell me what I can and can't upload onto it? Why do they message me and tell me to take down what I have uploaded - and other people find lovely, sweet and inspiring - and yet they find it's not what they want to see today? Why do they push their crap onto me and make it out to be something I should be taking on when I have enough on my plate in my life as it is? 

I'm not expecting an answer from any of you. But if you want to answer, go ahead. I've already posed this question on Facebook and have gotten these questions answered from one place - it's okay if your up to answering a bunch of questions from me today.

But this person was grieving and he happened to be having a really awful day - as you do when you grieve (and we all grieve in different ways) - and he just wanted to dump his emotional wastebasket all over me. 
However, what he didn't take into mind was that I'm also grieving, but not over just one person (like he was), but I'm grieving over three people that I've lost over the past 18 months. I deal with my grief in such a different way to him that he thinks I don't care - but I do. If I let my grief takeover my life like he has, I'd be a wreck.

I'm doing positive things to help not only myself, but others as well. I'm working on my health, self-worth, self-love and I'm talking to my family. I'm painting, reading, writing, and I'm also creating so much I've got three exhibitions in the next month that artwork is going into! I'm hoping to get all of it sold! 

That's not all. I'm working on my garden, keeping my social contacts active - all my friends know I'm going okay (not great, but okay) - and yes I have my bad days, but I'm working on getting better with my dearly departed friends who meant so much to me. I've been working on my garden, on my car, and decluttering my home office; one bag at a time. I'm planning a road trip, planning on re-arranging my home office and getting another desk and a new bookcase... I'm keeping myself active.

This guy seemed to not care that I'm doing my level best to keep positive about what's going on in my life as I try to help people deal with the crap pouring from the social media and the news stations every day... my Facebook wall is one of those few which is about inspiring others, love and caring for each other. I do talk about what's going on in my life, but it's more often than not an inspirational picture with a quote on it. This isn't just for him to look at, it's for everyone - as it's a public post for the world to see. 

I'm afraid to say that if he doesn't like what he sees, he'll have to just deal with it - as I do when I come across the crap and violence which does come across the newsfeed on Facebook. 

We can't control what happens in the world, but we can control how much we see of it and how it affects us. If you don't like something on Facebook, don't look at it, scroll past it, don't comment on it, don't stalk the uploader and don't tell people what they can and can't upload - that's being an arsehole and a controlling person in their world. 

If you can't deal with your day, don't go online and make it other people's problems. We have no idea how your day is, what your pain is, or how things are going for you, but if you can't deal with what's on your plate, it is time you did go to your local doctor and started talking to them about your pain. Going online is not the way. 

I just had to get this out there because this is how I feel. 

Thursday, August 8, 2019

August Already

July was a busy month for me. 

I got the go-ahead to make as many Crazy Beanies as I could to be put into the 'Pop-Up Store' at the Logan Art Gallery. And now, these are beanies which are my own design; so I'm really stoked about this. Also, they want any baby beanies I have been making too.

Then, I'm taking part in an exhibition at the Logan Artists Association too. There's one painting which I'm due to hand in next month - as I've finished it this week and have to paint 2 more edges on it... and then? Well, that's it! I wait for it to dry completely and it's ready to take in!

Over the next 3 months, I'll be cleaning out my home office and searching for a new desk and a new bookcase for it. The old desk and bookcase (the brown one with the badly sagging shelves) will both be tossed out in the recycling bin and I'll be reorganising the whole room to cater for me. There will be more room as well.

By November, this office will be completed and then I'll have a few things ready on the car too, and the garden as well. I seriously can't wait to get it all done. It's been a long time coming when it comes to this kind of thing too... and I'm also going to look into op-shops and see what kind of desks they have too. So, I'll be driving out to places where they'll have furniture and be able to deliver too. This is going to be a fun thing for me.

Well, the garden is going to get a clean up too... just a little one. I need to get in and spread the lawn seed out, and fertilise it too. And I'll find some garden lights as well. Seeing I got the Agapanthus all split up and organised into bigger pots, I'm sure they'll be flowering this Summer - all purple flowers, how pretty is that?

It sounds like a lot, but it's not really. I'm really just staying home and going through a lot of junk here and throwing out things I no longer need. Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Learning to Slow Down

Over the past year, I've been working hard to forget about the death of my dear friend. I thought if I stopped or slowed down too much, the sheer thought of her passing would bring me to a crashing halt again. 

But that's not true.

A few months back, I landed in the A & E of the Greenslopes Private Hospital and it was because I had almost burnt myself out. The doctor in charge there asked me if I'd been through a huge loss, and I said yes, and he asked if I had been working hard on things all year - and not letting her go. I hadn't really thought about it, but I have been doing a lot of things in the past year to stop myself from thinking about Hannah.

I'm beginning to slow down a little now. I'm working slowly on things, enjoying a movie on Saturday nights again, reading the newspaper on Sunday mornings. Hey, I've even gotten back into reading part of a book before turning out the light again - now I haven't done that since before Hannah died last May. 

At long last, my life is beginning to get back into some kind of normal again. But it's her memory which I'm trying to keep alive as well. I guess this will take time to do with people who knew her.

Things in my life are taking shape though. Hannah did ask me to live a better and more fulfilled life than she did (she did more than I've ever done), so I almost immediately started saving up for a camper after she passed away. I also cleaned up my garden, started cleaning out my house on a major scale and put into work a beanie I've always wanted to design... and I'm well on my way to getting into the type of life I've been only planning. 

The one thing I have to do to get this life plan of mine working properly is to slow down. I have to learn to watch life pass me by a little, relax and enjoy what I've got and what is going on around me more and learn to wait for things. Yep, life is one big lesson on waiting isn't it? Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember, I'm always here.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Family Dinner

I'm an introvert... well, when you live on your own, you kinda become one. And it's something which affects how your house looks. 

I do clean the house, the floors, do my laundry on a regular basis and toss out the rubbish into the bin outside - but I rarely have visitors come to my house for dinner or lunch.

It's just a thing I don't do because I like my privacy and so the house and how it's presented doesn't look like a home you'd see of a normally social person. I don't put things away straight away. I have unusual-looking things in unusual-looking places - and yes I think it's normal. 

Being an artist, I have all my art things within easy reach of where I want them. My knitting box is right next to me so I can access it at night - and it's rarely put away. And when it is, a lot of the times, I can't find it because I have the most rotten memory. 

I never make my bed - unless I have to, like for example, when I go on holidays. Yep, I make my bed then, because there's nothing worse than coming home from a week or so away and you didn't make your bed before you left.

I'm constantly cleaning out the house - there's always something being thrown in the bin or taken to a charity store. I'm always moving things around the place to make the most of the room I have... and yet, I still don't have enough space for anything I have already. 

And this week, I have my parents coming over for dinner... and yes, this is freaking me out. I haven't had them over in so long, that I've spent a few days just cleaning the house, putting things away and tidying up. So far, it's looking good. 
Today, I did the last-minute shop where I got what I needed for the dinner tomorrow night. And this afternoon, I'll be putting away a few things and vacuuming and dusting everything I can. It'll take a few hours, but it'll be worth it. Then, I'll get in and chop up most of the vegetables and put them into a bowl of water for the cannelloni tomorrow night. This saves me chopping them up tomorrow afternoon; and I'll have more time to get in and do more around the place.

I know I should keep the house tidier, but living on your own isn't easy. When you're on your own, you have to do everything - from the cooking and cleaning to the gardening and shopping and paying your own bills. A lot of the times, you can't get on top of everything completely. It takes a long time to have the house completely tidy - and you normally have to put down absolutely everything you're doing in your life and spend weeks cleaning to get it anywhere near what you want your place to look. But keeping it tidy turns out to be too difficult for me. So, the townhouse gets a big clean-up once in a while and I try to keep it tidy for a few months; and fail miserably. 

I really do wish I could do better... does anyone else have this problem? Or am I alone? Until my next post, take care, stay safe and remember I'm always here.