Thursday, November 30, 2006

Another reason to eat chocolate

Researchers in Germany recently found that women who drank an antioxidant-rich brand of hot cocoa for three months developed smoother, better-hydrated skin that was less vulnerable to sunburn.

Worth investigating further, I think! A couple of weeks ago I bought some very high-quality Dutch cocoa and I have been experimenting a bit. You just use cocoa, sugar and hot water. I am still trying to figure out the best proportions, but this will vary depending on the cocoa and sugar you use, anyway. I find that the texture improves if you let it stand a while too.


Happy first day of summer everyone!
I think we may have a white Christmas yet....

(I have this theory that New Zealand has been drifting closer and closer to Antarctica. That would explain the icebergs, and the 4 degree wind chill!)

Yay, seeing Hilaire tonight!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

1 Baudelaire...

In my new flat, with my new shiny broadband internet! Will do a proper update soon.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

also, I'm having these urges to make a big Amazon order... but weirdly I can't think of any knitting books I'm really coveting. Any ideas?


Life has had its ups and downs lately. I think I'll feel a lot better after I move this weekend. My last moving experience was about as stressful as you can imagine, and moving's supposed to be the third most stressful thing after death of a loved one and a breakup, and oh I've had one of those too. It wasn't a bad one as far as breakups go, but a breakup's a breakup, right?

Internet at home is almost nonexistent thanks to a fault with my modem. It works if I unscrew my case, unscrew my modem, take it out, put it back in, and screw everything back together again. Then I can use it for about half an hour (if I'm lucky) until the whole thing conks out again. Not really worth it. Hooray for having broadband in my new flat! Hopefully we will set up a wireless network so I can use my laptop in my room.

I'm also very much looking forward to gardening again. I hope the weather's good on Sunday!

Knitting has pretty much ground to a halt. I started knitting Dad's socks but haven't made much progress. The shop only had metal needles in the size I needed and they really make my hands and wrists hurt. Maybe I should just abandon them and buy him something for Christmas. He's actually one of the easiest to buy for too - you just get him music or a biography. Maybe I should push on with the cardigan as I do want to wear it to my friend's wedding in January.

Work is work. Accelerating rapidly towards Christmas - clients who have been thinking about getting things done all year suddenly call and want everything done at once!

Dancing is great. The university classes I teach are over for the year, and there are only two weeks left of my night school classes - tonight and next week. Numbers have dropped in the night school classes thanks to torrential rain the week before last (and if they skip one class they don't tend to come back..) but the ones who are left are really enjoying it. They're all going to come out dancing one night next week! I really need to figure out what I'm going to teach them tonight....

Also, I'm in a dance troupe and our first performance is next week! The practices have really become the highlight of my week. It's a great group and we all leave buzzing. Incredibly good for fitness too - I am the incredible shrinking woman at the moment and my abs are probably better than they were when I was 18 and didn't need to make an effort!

So, no pictures sorry because whenever I try to upload them I get booted off the internet. But I did manage to put some up on Flickr I think so head over there if you like.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

So my weekly schedule at the moment looks something like this:

Monday: Dance practice
Tuesday: Me time (only negotiable if I can swap it with another night)
Wednesday: Teaching
Thursday: Dancing at the Hog (also dance class if I can be bothered)
Friday: Out dancing or something else if there's anything more interesting happening
Saturday: Dance practice and up until recently teacher training (thankgodthat'sover)
Sunday: REST!

Only last week I missed out on the me time on Tuesday because I was busy looking at flats. Then on Saturday I had my work bonding day, which was stressful and had been stressing me out for half of the week but I can't be bothered going into why right now.

So: no me time and only half a weekend. Combine that with various other stress factors like people getting grumpy at me for things that are not my fault, moving house, my computer not working properly, ex boyfriend being a dick, plans for this weekend not working out, not being able to find my bag of cds for my class tonight and worrying that I threw it out in a rather manic clean-up I had after work on Saturday, and of course work (kinda goes without saying) I guess it's no wonder I'm feeling a bit strung out.

I did finish a Baudelaire sock though. Although I'm not comfortable enough with sock knitting yet for that to be a relaxing exercise. And of course there's still a whole 'nother sock to go...

Someone tell me to pull myself together!

Oh, and by the way, Mainland Banner lost badly! But my other horse, It's Ella, came in third. Maybe I ought to get that Lotto ticket after all.

Monday, November 13, 2006


Last week I won the office sweep for the Melbourne Cup. With $2 of my winnings I bought an instant kiwi (scratchie) ticket and won on that too, then bought another and won on that too (small prizes but good all the same!).

Now I just drew the favourite in the New Zealand Cup office sweep! If I win this I am definitely buying a Lotto ticket. C'mon Mainland Banner! You won last year so I know you can do it!

eta: my horoscope's also been telling me lucky money stars are on the way for weeks! I wish Crazy Aunt Purl had done horoscopes this month. Maybe she could have thrown some light on the love life as well because the other horoscope I read has been very strange on that. More or less accurate, but strange...

Oh well, me 'n Antonio are still good! (apart from that one small problem...)

Thursday, November 09, 2006

The new flat

I'm not sure if I've mentioned this here at all. In two weeks' time I will be moving flats. I've experienced the whole inner city apartment thing now, the pool, the gym, my car being vandalised multiple times, the neighbours' parties, etc etc etc. The whole flat dynamic was not really going all that well either. My flatmate was very much in charge and I guess that's fair enough if she wants to run it that way, but that's not how I want to live. Maybe she can find other flatmates who don't mind that at all, but I want to live in a place that feels like MY home again. And what with summer coming, I want to have a garden again! And some outdoor space.

I have found all that and more. Hilaire, you remember the day you moved in and we stayed up really late talking, and that was the point that we knew we were going to be great flatmates and friends? Well that's how I feel about the new flat and I haven't felt like that in ages! The new flatmates are as excited as I am.

There's Ian, a 27 year-old musician (not drums! he plays in a string quartet. how cultured!), Emily, a 22 year-old youth social worker who runs outdoor programs and also dances, and Mikkeline, a nearly 24 year-old flight attendant who is very cheerful and cool, albeit not home very often as she's on the international circuit. They're all either vegetarian or vegan.

They have a little vegetable garden and plans to expand (oh, I can help there!), a study where everyone's computers are hooked up to broadband (with plans to get wireless), HUGE living spaces, a lovely kitchen with gas cooking and yes I am in LOVE. The bedroom is smaller than my current room but there's plenty of storage etc in other parts of the house so I'll fit in fine!

It's in Dallington, which is one of the eastern suburbs, making it a part of town that I'm not overly familiar with as I'm a snobby west-side girl, but it's actually quite lovely. Tree-lined streets, middle class, seems to be a high propotion of owner occupancy as the houses and gardens all look well cared for. And it's not too far from town. Plus the rent's heaps cheaper!

Monday, November 06, 2006


I started posting this this morning but then my flatmate disconnected me from the internet.

Does anyone know of a pattern for left and right socks? You know, shaped differently for left and right feet? My Dad's best friend has a lot of money and only wears left and right socks. I thought it would be nice if Dad had some custom made left and right socks, just to one-up him a bit! (since I can't afford a Porsche which is what he's asked for for Christmas - his friend has two).

Friday, November 03, 2006

See, I do still knit! That's the back of Martha, the hard part is over.

If you're wondering why I was up insanely early this morning, it's because my stomach woke me up. I ate fish and chips at work last night and now I feel very ill. I promise I will be a good vegetarian from now on! Rabbit food is looking pretty good right now.

The knitting needle jinx

I'm knitting Martha on 3mm needles. The only 3mm needles I had in my collection were metal, and I didn't think my wrists could handle knitting a whole cardigan on 3mm metal needles, so I went out and bought some plastic ones.

Then I took my knitting to Wellington, and managed to leave one of the needles there. The weather turned wintery so I abandoned Martha for a few days and finished the heels of the Baudelaire socks instead. After the weather warmed up again I went out one lunch time and bought a new pair of 3mm needles. Not wanting to carry them back to work only to carry them back to my car again, I left them in my car. MISTAKE.

It's only spring too - it's not as though it's all that warm!!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Public Service Announcement

Me and Antonio are back together.

For anyone who doesn't know, Antonio was my dance partner, until I dumped him. Which was a stupid move, since Antonio is perfect. He never, EVER steps on my feet, he's suave, sexy, an incredible dancer, tall, dark, handsome, 3 inches taller than me, and oh DID I MENTION those abs? He is the perfect gentleman and gives great compliments, and is ever so polite to all of my friends. And he has the sexy latino accent!

Of course, he is also a wonderful lover. And gives fantastic massages for those tired dancer's limbs. Although he never gets tired himself!

I don't mind it when he dances with other girls since he always comes back to me (especially when we're dancing Rueda!). He's perfect in almost every way.

Almost every way. There's only one small problem with Antonio, which is the reason I dumped him in the first place. We had our first fight ever. I told him to "get real" and "be a man" and he said I was being "completely unrealistic" and "living in a dream world". We never really did sort things out but I'm willing to give it another go regardless. It may not work out.

But for now, me and Antonio are happy.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

No, no...

THIS Luke!


I think the most important job a lawyer can do is to write someone's will.

I used to think free wills were a good thing, because it is very important that people have wills so as a service to society we should include wills with other work we do for clients. However, I have come to think that giving free wills makes the actual value of them seem less to both the client and the lawyer. It is an extremely important document and what we do end up charging for them compared to its actual value is still pretty low, when you think about it.

One of the scariest things I do in my job is to draft wills that I know are going to be used, and probably some time soon. I am working on one will in particular that is not only going to be used in New Zealand, but will probably see the inside of courtrooms all over the place since the guy has assets everywhere. That many judges looking at my work freaks me out. Not to mention the whole people dying thing (don't worry, I don't say this stuff to the widows. Other, more compassionate members of this firm deal with the actual estates!).

It's times like this that I keep in mind a mantra a very good lawyer told me once:

At least we're not doctors.

At least we're not doctors.

At least we're not doctors....