Tag Archives: humour

I wanna take your picture…

I want to tell you a little story. It’s about a woman I know.

This woman is a terrific mother and dedicated keeper of family history. On a big family holiday (the last shall we say before her children all ventured into the big wide world), this woman made it her mission to document every waking moment of the trip.

  • Departure lounge photo – check
  • Hotel arrival photo – check
  • Resort bungalow room by room photos – check
  • Kids by the resort name sign photo – check
  • Kids eating ice-cream photo – check

Well…you get the picture (no pun intended). By the time day two had arrived, no one much felt like saying ‘cheese’ and smiling til their cheeks hurt. But it was this woman’s prerogative to snap snap snap until her fingers bled.

By the time it came to change the roll of film (yeah, we are going back some years), the woman was shocked, appalled and horrified to realise she never put film in the camera in the first place. All those precious family memories lost. That woman is my mother.

I actually thought the whole thing was pretty funny at the time. Especially as we moaned and groaned every time she said, “now stand there and smile”. But she was completely devastated. It wasn’t until I went on a trip to America years later with my friend and ended up losing 5 rolls of film that I understood what she went through. I was totally inconsolable at the time.

So what’s with our fascination in capturing single moments in time? Well for me it has to be that I have the worst memory in the history of remembering things. So I love going back through old photographs reliving  forgotten adventures…sometimes they are a complete surprise to me. “Whaaa, did I really do that??”

I recently wrote a fantastical post about playsuits. The best part of the post was going to be moi in a playsuit circa 1998. But I couldn’t find the photo. My mother diligently helped me go through boxes and boxes of photographs trying to find the one of me posing like John Travolta in a blue pinstripe playsuit wearing my infamous roller skates. We never did find that photo…so I never ended up publishing that post. Shame, I really liked it.

It did make me realise though what a wonderful legacy my mum has left us with her years and years of happy snapping. Especially as sometimes we were less than gracious about it. So this one’s for you mama darling…thank you! xx

Here are some of the activities I have no recollection of doing.

My early start to a modelling career.

Closely followed by an equestrian career.

Which led to a stunt water ski career.

Which finally led me to a fighter pilot career with the Australian Airforce.


Posted by on April 1, 2012 in Charmed, I'm Sure


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Sweat like you mean it…

So…the word is, I’m exercising.

Two days ago I went for my first running interval training session. I got home exhausted and ravenous. I raided the fridge all Nigella-esque midnight feast style and demolished a left-over roast chicken. I’m not sure if that defeated the point of going in the first place.

Tonight I returned home even more exhausted and with aching muscles everywhere. Are you supposed to get sore shoulders when you go jogging? It seems totally ridiculous to me.

Anyway, tonight I resisted the alluring calls of the fridge and sat down to do a quick email check before hitting the showers. Whilst waiting for the inbox icon to tell me if I had any new mail, the most incredible thing happened….I felt a trickle down my back. At first I thought it was just a clothes label tickling me….but oh no peeps, this was a real life sweat trickle. I was sweating like a real-life jogging girl!!!

I worked pretty hard to get that sweat happening….holla!

P to the S… and before you’re all like, whatevs – I sweat when I hang the washing out. I’m simply not a sweaty person. So this, my friends…is big. 


Posted by on March 29, 2012 in Charmed, I'm Sure


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Couch to 5k – Week 1

Whoever coined the phrase “couch potato” must have been talking about me. I have a well defined ass-groove carved into my recliner. It loves me and I love it. It’s a sweet pillowy heaven that hugs my shapely curves.  Have I painted a vivid enough picture yet? Good. Well, very soon my loving recliner is about to feel the icey coldness of my absence. Yes, that’s right. I’m starting an exercise regime!

Throughout my entire existence I have been prone to fits and bursts of enthusiastic exercise obsessions. In my (much) younger days I played netball for quite a few years. I played the Centre position…very fitting as I don’t mind being the centre of attention most of the time. Our team was called the Kitty Kats and after each game, our coaches gave each player a mini Kit Kat chocolate. I won’t lie and say that it wasn’t a large motivation for playing. But what kind of message was that sending a young, impressionable, budding athlete? Exercise like a crazy person and then eat chocolate? I’m telling you it must have stuck because I seem to reward myself the same way these days (minus the exercise).

That's me at the peak of my athletic career...with the big C on my bib.

So the truth is I’m getting older. And my body doesn’t seem to bounce back from eating binges the way it used to. Enter….technology! Today I downloaded the Ease Into 5k app. Its designed to get me from the warm embrace of the couch, to running 5 km’s in just 8 short weeks. I’m going to tell you straight up this body is not the body of a runner. But I won’t let that stop me. Uh ah, no way.

Starting tomorrow…(tonight I have to cook a chocolate cake for my friends birthday and yes I will lick the bowl) I will be lacing up my runners for the first of my runs/walks/panting/hobbling home exercise.

Wait! What’s that I hear? It’s the eye of the tiger, its the thrill of the fight….

Wish me luck blog-o-sphere!


Posted by on March 26, 2012 in Charmed, I'm Sure


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5 Life Lessons I Want My Kids To Learn

Ok….so I don’t have any children. Not yet anyway. But I plan on having a couple someday and there are a few vital life lessons I want to teach them. For all of you who are parents reading this, you’ll probably shake your head and say…that girl should never reproduce. Well you could be right, but remember, you have the wisdom of hindsight.

1. Roller Skates Get Brothers Into Trouble

I was once lucky enough to receive a pair of white roller skates with hot pink wheels. I thought they were the bomb diggity. But the very first time I wore them I had a massive, calamitous fall and not only grazed my knee severely but also scraped my roller skates. Not even a day old and they were ruined.

Subsequently, bad things would happen when I wore them. Once skating around and my Nanna’s house, my younger brother was poking around in the bushes and found a big, wild rat. Not content to leave it alone, it bit him on the hand in the soft fleshy part between your thumb and forefinger. And it didn’t let go. So there was my bro, screaming madly and turning around in a circle trying to shake the rat loose. I was on my roller skates and was flailing around wildly not sure what to do. I had to skate away to find my Nanna. By the time I got to her, the rat was gone and my brother had to go to hospital for a tetanus shot.

Another time, I was happily skating around at home while the same brother was playing around with an ant’s nest and petrol. All of a sudden a big fireball went up and the flames were making a bee-line for my brother holding a petrol can. I had to skate around the front of the house were my parents were to raise the alarm…have you ever tried skating on grass? It doesn’t work so well.

My skates have retired to a box marked – Troublesome Roller Skates (do not wear).

2. Getting Hurt Builds Character

Ok so I’m not advocating you let your kids deliberately get hurt. But hopefully I’ll be able to let my kids be adventurous without fear. Fear is such a disabler.

Given room to fly...

At a very young age we were encouraged to learn how to ride motorbikes, build tree-houses, drive an old beat up mini-moke around the property, water ski, play in the dirt and generally let our imaginations run wild. My brothers once built a homemade skate ramp out of old tin (yes, obligatory eye roll for the danger which lies ahead). It was an accident waiting to happen with its dodgy engineering and razor-sharp edges. I was the one who ran up it, slipped and put a rather large gash in my thigh. I still have the scar to prove it.

My older brother also dislocated both my shoulders whilst trying to show me some karate moves. But that’s a whole other story. (Thanks Karate Kid movies, thanks a lot).

3. Working Hard Isn’t Always About the Money

My parents worked incredibly hard to turn 5 acres of dirt into a wonderful family home. For over 20 years they landscaped the gardens and turned it into a beautiful place full of serenity. A lot of my childhood was spent helping them. We’d pick up rocks (oh the rocks) to make long rambling rock walls. We’d help make garden beds, trim trees, wheel dirt from here to there. At the time I didn’t see the sense in it but when they sold it only 5 years ago, they left behind not just a house but a magic place full of wonderful memories….and thousands of rocks.

We never got paid pocket-money to do that work. We were doing it to contribute to our family environment. Subsequently, I’m leaving some backbreaking work for my kids to do when they eventually come along. I see….in-ground swimming pool – dug by hand. (Encino Man anyone?)

4. No-one Likes a Dry Spring Roll

My parents were dinner party royalty. I have fantastic memories of them hosting glamorous dinner parties in typical 80’s flamboyance. Particularly seafood Mornay served in half seashells. Ooh la la! But they encouraged experimentation in the kitchen and loved to get us involved.

One of my earliest kitchen memories is of me standing on a chair to reach the large wooden chopping block. Me up one end and my mother up the other. It was spring roll making time! Mum would get the spring roll mix together and I would be in charge of keeping those spring roll wrappers moist! It was important job which involved a tea towel and a water spray bottle. Mum and I were a well oiled spring-roll-making-machine! A double act which continued throughout the years.

I contribute my love of cooking and dinner parties to them. Something I will hopefully pass on to my kids.

5. Flat Tyres Are the Least of Your Problems

When I was 17 and got my provisional licence I convinced my parents to let me take my girlfriends on a road trip to the coast. They were hesitant but finally agreed. I asked my father to show me how to change a flat tyre if I got one on the trip. I memorised that procedure like a madwoman.

My first car - 1979 Corolla

Thankfully the road trip produced no flat tyres. It did however, wield a broken starter motor. Which basically meant that turning the key would not start the engine. The entire trip home was spent push-starting the car to get it going. I had to put the car into second gear, hold down the clutch and get my girlfriends to push the car fast enough to let the clutch out which would hopefully bring the engine to life. A complete embarrassment for a bunch of 17-year-old girls. But you know how I knew how to do that? My formative years of being allowed to drive an old beat up car around our property, that’s how.

Yes yes, I know not everyone can learn to drive at age 10…but what I’m saying is, the more I can hopefully expose my children to, the better equipped I hope they are to take on the unexpected challenges that life throws at them.

So, big words coming from a childless woman right? Check back in on me in a few years….we’ll see how my life lessons are panning out. Viva la roller skates!!!


Posted by on March 25, 2012 in Charmed, I'm Sure


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Post Script – Chocolate Fondue

This morning I published a post about my desperate need to consume chocolate laced with more chocolate. It was pure chocolate madness….madness I tell you!

Then at lunch I shared my blog link with my Facebook buddies saying :

I thought the week so far was bad…it has nothing on today. Considering going into a chocolate induced coma… (Who says everything is good in moderation?)

I got my wish.

This afternoon my friend decided to do chocolate fondue for afternoon tea. We decadently dipped banana, raspberries and pineapple into dark and silky molten chocolate. I’d love to say I looked like one of those gorgeous models who makes eating such things look glamorous. Instead I probably looked like a 5-year-old with chocolate smeared all over my face and hands. Mmmmmm….chocolate.

There was so much left over melted chocolate (melted and mixed with cream I forgot to mention) that I couldn’t bear to let it go to waste. So I heated up some milk and placed several large spoonfuls of said luxury into my cup. Mix, drink, gurgle with pleasure.

What was left of my ultra chocolatey gorge-fest.

I hate to say it but I think that sent me over the edge. Now I feel it was less of a fondue and more of a fondon’t. I’m seriously finding it hard to breathe as my dress seems unnaturally tight. My heart is racing from all the sugar, and now, the inevitable is starting to happen. I’m crashing.

It certainly was a wild ride on the cocoa bean express.


Posted by on March 7, 2012 in Fire Up the Rayburn


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And…what about me Rachel?

I generally had a pretty good time at high school.

Of course there are always always the embarrassing stories, this IS me we’re talking about. Like the time it was raining and I ran out of class to save a seat for all my peeps under the awning. And as I came around the corner I tripped on some plastic webbing, did a huge army roll (I wish it was that coordinated) and came crashing down in a crumpled heap. If that wasn’t bad enough, it was all played out in front of the ‘cool’ guys. Die. Amidst the laughing, I picked myself up, dusted the gravel from my knees (yes my pants had torn) and lamely limped over to claim my seat. Meh? It was all forgotten the next day.

So besides having the occasional disagreement with my feet (they always went in a different direction to what my brain was telling them), and saying mildly inappropriate things in public forums, I managed to be friends with pretty much everyone.

But its funny how we see ourselves back then to how others may have seen us. Take this for example. Its 8th Grade…English. Back in those days we sat at desks joined together to make a big U shape. I was at the end of a long table of girls. One of the more popular girls, Rachel (yes I remember you Rachel), sat staring at us with a bemused look on her face. Oh this was going to be good.

Rachel: “It’s funny isn’t it?” She announced loudly.

Me: “What is Rachel?”

Rachel: “Well, I’m just looking at all of you and everyone is like, beautiful in their own way aren’t they?”

What? Could this be a public compliment from Miss Rachel?

Me: “What do you mean?”

Rachel: “Well, Megan has a beautiful smile. Natalie has beautiful eyes. Kristy has beautiful hair….” she sounded off down the line for each of the girls.

She stopped when she reached me.

Me: “And….what about me Rachel?”

Silence. Paused for thought.

Rachel: “Well….you’re really funny Jen.”

Back then I felt wounded and embarrassed that I was the only one who wasn’t recognised for having beautiful physical feature. I was just considered funny. But now I’m actually grateful to Rachel. Besides her recognising a trait in me I adore in other people, she gave me excellent material for this post.

So thanks Rach…you have a beautiful way of giving backhanded compliments.


Posted by on February 23, 2012 in Charmed, I'm Sure


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It’s alive! Weird Science that is.

Continuing on with my nostalgic trip down 80’s pop culture lane, this week I bring you – Weird Science (1985).

If you can get past the fact that two adolescent boys actually create a ‘perfect’ woman from a Barbie doll and magazine pictures fed into a computer (how do you even feed a computer?) then you’ll be fine. If you can’t, then don’t bother watching this film.

This was the time when seemingly implausible plots were the norm. And they didn’t feel the need to provide an explaination in any way. Something which I quite like. Of course its perfectly normal that two geeks create a woman with super human powers and a rockin’ body from nothing but a bit of plastic and a seriously underwhelming computer (I guess they did hack into a government mainframe for extra power).

Its stars Anthony Michael Hall as Gary Wallace. Michael Hall also starred in Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club (Breakfast Club yes please, Sixteen Candles not so much).

The perfect woman they create is played by Kelly LeBrock (model/actress). I guess she certainly looks the part. I mean, get a load of those lips people….and this was before Botox.

So why do I like this movie? If you’re waiting for an amazing insight….you’re probably reading the wrong blog. I’ll only ever disappoint you. I like this movie because I watched it at a time in my life which was all about fun. And this movie is fun. I’m pretty sure I also had a crush on Michael Hall, probably cause he was the weird one. I did watch him several years ago in The Dead Zone as a real life grown up man, and yes, this time the crush was real.

If you’re looking for a bit of escapism and fun, why not give this movie a go? What have you got to lose besides 94 minutes of your life?


Posted by on February 22, 2012 in Tune In...


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When you realise cheese is evil.

I actually feel sorry for cheese. On one hand it’s so delicious, no one can resist it. On the other hand, it tries to kill you. I’m sure it feels torn between delighting you and murdering you.

I’m a self-confessed lover of cheese….love it. However I’ve been told dairy does NOT agree with my blood type. (Huh?) I’m sure when I look at a piece of cheese it’s not saying…

“Hey fellas, look! That chick has A positive blood. Wait until she takes a bite, then we’ll exact our revenge. Mwahhahahaaa!” 

Last night I was making dinner. (Monday night’s dinner is hardly exciting.) And as I was rushing around, I dumped a huge lot of grated cheese into my dish. “So?” I hear you saying. Well it happens my usual happy, let me delight you cheese had turned on me. It was peppered with tiny spores of destruction.

Don’t get me wrong, during my very poor London living days, I was known for scraping off tiny spots of mould on my bread to have some toast. And it didn’t kill me. But I figured I couldn’t really justify mixing it into my dish when I had a perfectly good fresh bag of cheese in the fridge. So I managed to remove said murderous plot from our dinner.

Despite its continual attempts at making me sick, grossing me out and letting me down, I still love you cheese. You will never turn my love for you.


Posted by on February 21, 2012 in Charmed, I'm Sure, Fire Up the Rayburn


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Its Blackberry Hunting Season.

Today is Sunday.

When I woke up this morning, I opened the door and the air smelled impossibly sweet. Its times like that which make me wonder if I’ve ever really smelt the air before. And if I did, I’m sure it never smelt that good. It made me believe I could achieve anything.

Fast forward 5 hours and husband and I are lying on the couch in a boredom coma. So much for impossibly sweet-smelling high-achieving air! So we headed out to a friend’s place to pick blackberries for my jam. Now…here’s the lowdown on blackberry picking. Do not attempt if you are afraid of the following:-

  • Getting cut, scratched or embedded with prickles;
  • Spiders;
  • Long grass;
  • Long grass with the possibility of running into a snake;
  • Flying blackberries (Dan); and
  • Stained fingers.

If not, then you’re good to go.

Now everyone has their own jam recipe. This is my fourth attempt at jam making and each time my recipe has been different. It also depends on the fruit your using. And as some of my friends and I will be entering our jams in an upcoming show, I can’t give too many secrets away. But, I try to stick to natural ingredients (no sugar setting or artificial pectin), I use lemon pips in muslin, skim the scum as it rises during the cooking process and use the best quality fruit you can find (or buy).

If you really would like a recipe, email me and I’ll send you one.

In the end, it took us about an hour to pick 2.5kg of fruit. And then maybe a lazy hour of making the jam. I find skimming the scum very therapeutic.

My favourite part…putting little material hats on the jars at the end. They look too cute. Oh, and the eating the jam bit. Once you’ve made your own, the store-bought stuff just doesn’t cut it. If you’ve ever wanted to try making your own, give it a go. Its heaps easier than you think and your tummy will thank you for it!


Posted by on February 19, 2012 in Fire Up the Rayburn


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Say my name, Jelly.

Ever had someone call you by the wrong name? Happens all the time to me. Mostly on the phone though when people mistake me for a Jan, not Jen. I solved that problem by always saying…”Its Jennifer speaking…”

Do I look like jelly?

When I was a kid I got Jenny a lot. I hated it. For a while I changed the spelling to “Jenni” because I thought it looked cooler. But it never changed the fact that it reminded me of jelly.

  1. I absolutely can’t stand the look, feel or taste of jelly; and
  2. Who wants to be likened to a big blobby, wobbly dessert? Not me.

So its either Jen or Jennifer. (Jennifer when I’m in trouble and/or on the phone).

In London I used to work with a guy that insisted on calling me Jill. He’d bring work out to me and say “Oh hi Jill, can you just type this up for me? Thanks Jill, that’s great.” Um, its Jen. Its Jen!!! Nup, for some reason I was immortally burnt into his brain as a Jill. Sheesh. In the end I thought two can play this game and started calling him Derk. His name was Derek. The thing was, he didn’t seem to mind. Maybe names aren’t really his thing. Whatever. Just don’t call me Jelly.

Here is an actual extract from my London journal dated 16 August 1999:-

What is more disturbing? That I actually thought this was worth journaling? Or that I knew exactly where to find it in my journal?

This post is dedicated to Christine. Or is that Kristy? Thanks my love. 


Posted by on February 17, 2012 in Charmed, I'm Sure


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