Monday, June 29, 2015

Flatulent unicorns, crazy biatches and reality TV

The weight loss is not going well. My three year old takes much delight in jiggling her hand on my belly and singing, 'Jelly on a plate, jelly on a plate, wibble wobble........". Thanks for nothing play school!

I need to just knuckle down and move my arse. Oh and eat less cake, and biscuits. Oh and ice cream and pork ribs!!! Did I tell you my nephew makes the best ribs? 

How was your weekend? My social calendar was off the chizain.

A nephews birthday, another 'L' plater and reason to stay off the footpaths in Millicent! I entertained on Saturday, and attended a working bee at the community gardens on Sunday.

How's Facebook?! Anyone would think the US passed a fabulous bill, or someone let a blessing of flatulent unicorns lose on the interwebs!

Saturday I submitted my first ever community grant application. It's for a pizza oven communal area for the community garden. It took me six days to draft, crazy. I wish I had have been given a bit more time. I am not getting my hopes up, after all it is my first. But I lie, I have a nervous excitement. Have you joined NABO yet? Please do, I could use your vote, in the case of a divine miracle, we make the final five in the state.

I'll be over the moon if we are considered, if we don't win at least I would have gained some valuable experience and confidence for next time. I am looking for grants to apply for like a craaazy lady.

Speaking on crazy ladies, did you catch Belle Gibson? Someone need to fix the gate, because it's UNHINGED. 

I'm crazy, but not THAT crazy.

It is refreshing to see more reality TV shows being advertised. Spellbound, Restaurant revolution and The hot plate to mention a few. Not that I will be watching with glee, but because it's more fodder for my favourite of favourite reality TV shows, Gogglebox. If that TV series doesn't return for a second season I will be in utterly and suitably outraged (reads, pouting like a spoilt child).

How was your weekend? 
Did you like Gogglebox?
Ever written a grant application?

Monday, June 22, 2015

Five things to start doing NOW to lose weight

A toffee apple driving a ride on lawnmower

It seems, when I am not chowing down on all the wrong foods, I am trying to lose weight. It's a never ending cycle for me, always has been.

After finding out another person in my family has been diagnosed with diabetes (I had gestational diabetes), I need to do something about my widening girth.

Most of the clothes in my cupboards are not fitting me, and quite frankly, I look like a giant toffee apple. A big round top with stick legs! I have to also accept that I am getting older, and the weight seems to creep on much easier and is harder to get rid of.

Here's five things I am now trying to implement to get myself back in my own pants, and some ideas that can help you lose weight too.

1. Drink more water. Get yourself a large bottle to use for water. I have a 1.25 litre bottle on the kitchen bench. I know that I have to drink that whole bottle during the day, at least. 

Having a large bottle makes it easier to measure how much water I have drunk over the course of the day, rather than relying on filling up a smaller bottle several times.

I have a smaller bottle I take with me if I am going to be out of the house for a while, to drink in the car, or to put in my bag.

2. Change habits. When I do put on weight it is because I have let go of any healthy eating and drinking. Yes this means lots of wine, biscuits, cake, chocolate and coffee. I have never been a big coffee drinker, but when I fall of the healthy lifestyle wagon I find I turn to it. My guess is because I am overweight and tired and coffee just seems like the logical answer.

I've stopped drinking coffee, and started drinking my black (no milk) tea. Mostly green and herbal tea.

If you can't get through the day without your coffee, start buying a lower fat milk. You'd be surprised how much of a difference this can make.

3. Plan your meals. It is so easy to make bad food choices when we are rushed, and hungry. Having a plan for meals and doing some forethought helps to keep on a healthy eating track.

Think about what you are consuming through the day. If it's cereal or toast for breakfast, sandwiches or pasta for lunch and meat and veggies (potatoes, a starch) for dinner, you might be having too many carbs.

Opt for a carb breakfast, and stick to protein and veggies or salad, for other meals. Eating a piece of fruit before meals adds to you daily dose of fruit and vegetables, and helps fill you up.

You could have fruit and yogurt for breakfast, or an egg with grilled veggies(mushroom, zucchini, spinach and tomato for example), and have a carb meal for lunch(wraps or pasta), and meat and veggies/salad for dinner.

Knowing what I am going to eat during the day, and when, helps keep me on track, and stops me from impulse eating.]

my downfall

4. Slow your eating. Keeps portion sizes reasonable and take your time when you eat. My husband eats like a bull at a gate, I am forever reminding him to chew his food because his stomach doesn't have teeth.

Chewing your food properly lets you enjoy the taste your food. It aids digestion and improves the absorption of nutrients from the healthy food you are eating.

5. Move. Be realistic about how much exercise you do. If you are sitting most of the day, it makes sense that you would need less food for energy. The highest energy foods are usually the white ones; sugar, bread, pasta, rice and potatoes. If you don't move much, eat less of these foods.

Any exercise will help with your weight loss. If you can't get out for a walk or don't want to join a gym, find some exercise you can do at home. I do like walking for exercise. It doesn't have to be far or fast, just and amble around the block is good enough.

Things that have helped me is stepping. Get yourself a step or find something you already have that you can use as a step. Five or ten minutes in front of the telly and it's done.

I've also had an exercise bike in the lounge room before too. You don't have to go hard, as long as you are moving a little more than you were before.

What changes do you make when your pants start getting tight, or not fitting at all?!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Tony Pasin's stance on same sex marriage

I was so disappointed in our local member of parliament and his stance on same sex marriage. He has every right to his moral choice, being a religious man, I can understand his reluctance to support it.

I do however hope that his Christian faith does not hinder the job he was elected to do as our spokesperson in parliament. Supporting the wishes of his constituents. If it does I think he is the wrong job!

I went to the Australian Marriage Equality website to find out how my local MP stands on marriage equality. I sent my local member, Tony Pasin an email and this is the reply I got.

Dear Mrs O’Brien,

Thank you for contacting me regarding proposed same sex marriage legislative changes.

This is an issue on which decent people can differ and I appreciate that there is a diversity of opinions across the community on this important social issue. I am grateful that all of us are able to express our views in a debate in which to this point has been conducted in a respectful and considerate manner.

Questions such as this are deeply personal and, in my case, informed by my Christian faith.

As I said on radio, an overwhelming majority of people who have approached me on this issue have asked me to confirm the position as the traditional definition.

Before being elected, consistent with my beliefs, I took a clear position to the electorate that I supported the current definition of marriage and as such in any vote before the Parliament I will be voting to support the traditional definition of marriage.

If there are any other issues I can assist you with please feel free to contact me office.  

Yours sincerely

Tony Pasin MP

No worries Tony. I'll be sure to contact ya office.

P.S. Sack your proof reader.

I did share the link to the Australian Marriage Equality website on my personal Facebook page. It was a reminder to my friends, that no matter how much whining they did about the issue on Facebook, nothing would make an impact than actually voicing that opinion on our local member of Parliament.

They say you should never talk politics or religion. But I'm gonna anyway.

I wonder if people are aware Sanitarium products like Weet Bix, are owned by the Seventh Day Adventist church who are known for their anti-gay stance. Is this an organisation they would want their consumer dollars going to?

I have to wonder why someone in a same sex relationship, would send their kids to a Catholic school. When ultimately that school will teach their kids, that their lifestyle is wrong. 

Could you imagine the furore at the end of year formal, when Bill and Ben turn up as prom dates? Old Father Bob would choke on his holy water.

One day all this won't be an issue. Once upon a time it was illegal for a negro man to marry a white woman. Remember that? I don't. I'm not that old. Ancient history.

I hope my children when they are my age, can look back and say they remember when gay marriage was illegal. That they accept and are tolerant of same sex marriage, like it's just the norm to see a gay marriage performed in local gardens and parks. Maybe they'll be guests!

Let's hope they don't have to wait that long.

Did you email your local member to let them you know your views?

Monday, June 15, 2015

French onion potato bake

I remember my sister used to make this when we lived together, a life time ago. She used to cook all sorts of different stuff, and I hardly knew how to cook anything.

She recently came round to borrow my deep fryer and to ask for some advice on making fried chicken. It started with her asking if anyone knew how to make KFC on Facebook.

I don't know anything about making fried chicken, just like KFC, but I do know how to make fried chicken. Having a pressurised deep fryer helps, but I guess they are not a common household appliance.

For eight years I worked in a fish/chicken and chip shop. I learned lots about life and tons about how to fry shit. I learned a lot about how to prepare and make so many things. Pretty basic things but a lot more than I knew how to make before I started work there!

When I first started work there, I hated it. I hated my boss (she was a hard task master) and would dread having to go. Who would have thought that years later, her family would be like my family and I would have learnt so much, from not only the job, but from her. 

I am so grateful for those years. 

I cooked this potato bake for the community gardeners, at one of our recent meetings, it was well received. Baked with spuds from the garden beds.

  • 1 kilogram peeled potatoes, finely sliced
  • 1 onion, finely sliced
  • 1 packet of french onion soup mix
  • 300 mls of cream

  • Layer the sliced potato and onion in a casserole dish.

    Combine the french onion soup mix and cream in a bowl and pour over the potatoes.

    Cover with foil, and bake in a 200 degree oven for one hour.

    Monday, June 8, 2015

    That's a woman on the ten dollar note?

    My place in time #48 - Ten dollars in my currency

    The kindy where Summer goes to playgroup, has a cool poster on the wall, showing the different notes and who are on them. Being a lover of knowledge, I was totally intrigued, casually reading this poster, while I sat on a miniature chair, mindlessly playing with sparkly cinnamon scented playdough.

    Every Australian note denomination features an exceptionally amazing woman on one of their sides, something else that has only just come to my attention. I did not know this.

    Quite frankly I never really had a good look at the money in my wallet, and to tell the truth, they don't stay in my wallet long enough to get a look in. Especially the one hundred dollar note. They are NEVER in my wallet long, if at all! Mind you, five dollars doesn't stay in my wallet long. You can actually buy half decent wine with a five dollar note. Leaning more on the side of half, than decent.

    The ten dollar note depicts famous poet Henry Lawson and fellow writer, journalist and poet, Dame Mary Gilmore. 

    Mary, in her time, was a national literary icon. She was the first female member of the Australian Workers Union, though rumoured to have joined under her brothers name. She wrote for several publications and published many works of wonderful poetry.

    She used her influence to campaign for the rights of aborigines, women's rights, health and pensions. These issues were featured strongly in her writing.

    She died in 1962 at the ripe old age of 97, and was given a state funeral. The first for a writer since Henry Lawson in 1922.

    Her biography reads an amazing life. One I am in awe of. Admiration. Respect.

    The things you learn at kindy, when you're 42!

    Of course the $5 dollars note has the Queen on it. However, the previous paper five dollar note bore the face of Caroline Chisholm. Up until 1993, when the new polymer ten dollar note was introduced, she had been the only other woman, besides the Queen to have been pictured on any Australian currency. Caroline worked tirelessly for better conditions for women in employment and education, and the safe passage of families to Australia.

    The $20 note, issued in 1994,  features Mary Reibey. Mary was sent to Australia in 1792, convicted of stealing a horse, in her teens. After the death of her husband she inherited and grew a successful portfolio of properties and businesses. 

    The $50 dollar note, issued in 1995, has Edith Cowan on one of its faces. She was the first female member of the Australian parliament, being elected into Legislative Assembly in 1921. It would take another 89 years for Australia to have our first female prime minister, in 2010.

    Dame Nellie Melba features on the $100 note. The new polymer note was issued in 1996, twelve years after the first ever one hundred dollar note was introduced. From Melbourne, Melba, born born Helen Porter Mitchell, was an internationally famous soprano, touring Australia and Europe. She was also known for her tireless charitable works during World War 1. 

    All of these amazing Australian women are known for their charitable works, and campaigns for the rights of all citizens.

    $10 worth of change. 

    Just a bit of nostalgia playing with these stamps at kindy. Who remembers the one and two cent pieces?! 

    Ten dollars would mean different things to different people. I know that ten dollars would get me a loaf of cheap bread, a couple cartons of UHT milk and some fruit (or a bottle of wine and a block of chocolate). Others it would be two litres of real milk and a loaf of good bread. Some a cup of coffee and some cake.

    What does ten dollars get you?

    Monday, June 1, 2015

    You know the time when...

    We all have moments in the day, that make us or break us. Some are feel good and leave lasting happy memories, and some, well just plain suck. Here are some amusing moments that have come about in the past months.

    ....You head down the hallway to bed with your arm stretched out in front of you like Superman, feeling like you just conquered the world. But really you just conquered too many wines.

    The reason I look preggers

    ....You've been eating well all day, you've got through the after school whines and are just about to cook dinner, when you just realised you got your period. You just say fuck it, I am going to have ice cream and wine for tea! Of course you continue cooking spag bol for the fam and binge the rest of the night away.

    ....Sad sack binging comes to bite you on the arse, when your uncle asks if you have 'one on the way'. You have to admit that you're just fat. Major reality check. You still go to Maccas for lunch.
    A friend posted this on my FB timeline after the birthday party. Obviously to console me at the face painters
    lack of talent in the portrait department. 

    ....Your husband decides to get his face painted at a birthday party, just for fun. On the off chance, you ask the lady if she knows how to do Channing Tatum, because that will make you really happy.

    ....You just go to bed and you hear your phone notification chime go off. Twice. You spend the next ten minutes convincing yourself not to get up. You spend another ten minutes after that, reminding yourself, not to forget to write this down in a blog post.

    ....You're watching the telly, and all of a sudden you hear your five year old yell from the back door. "I'm just putting the dog out, because he is rooting a toy". That's when you know you're doing this parenting thing right.

    .... Hubby is winning in the parenting stakes too. Yesterday Izzy walks in saying to her sister, "You can't bother Dad in the shed. He's doing something that can make you blind". He was welding of course. It just sounded much worse.

    Kids. My source of amusement, and frustration, all rolled into one.

    Share a moment with me in the comments. Surely I'm not the only one having them.

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