It IS a small world after all!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Hubs and I went out on Saturday night with some friends and got completely lost on the way there, and when we finally made it to our destination, who should be walking out as we were walking in? One of my cousins who lives in Queensland who I hadn't seen in months! And to think, if we had been 5 minutes earlier or 5 minutes later, we would have missed each other. He was down here for a few days on business and was heading back on the Sunday.

AND, one of the girls in Hub's course used to be a waitress at the R.E. (our local in Toowong) when we used to go there all the time! We wouldn't have recognised her though, as we never actually ate there (we just drank!)

I'm sure there will be more small world stories that come out of our adventures down here!!

Oh, you got lay-yers?...

Sunday, July 27, 2008

I'm wearing so many layers at the moment I feel like an onion!

I used to pride myself on being able to get ready quickly, but that has gone out the window since moving to Melbourne, and I'm recalling I had the same issues when I lived in Scotland. It's not like you only have to choose 2 items anymore - top + bottom - nnnnooooooo. Now you have to look outside and determine what sort of day it is and decide how many layers are going underneath your shirt (do you wear a singlet AND a thermal, or just an undershirt?) then you decide on your top, then you look outside again and realise it's started to rain, so you add another layer, then you choose between leggings, stockings, or long socks to wear under your skirt/trousers/jeans, then you pick either skirt/trousers/jeans, then you realise the rain has stopped, the sun has come out, but the wind has dropped the temperature by about 5 degrees, so you add ANOTHER layer underneath! THEN you have to decide on a jacket - do you take the waterproof one just in case it starts raining again? Or the one with the hood? Or the super-dooper warm one that you might end up taking off and carrying around for most of the day?

But we're not done yet! We now have to choose accessories! I start with the shoes - do I need closed-in boots for the cold? Or waterproof shoes for the wet weather? Do I take a scarf? (yes... ALWAYS take a scarf) and do I then top it off with my Barret to protect my poor little ears from the wind? (again, the answer is usually a resounding YES!!) And then we're ready to go!

No wait, I have to go to the toilet first.... this could take a while.... :-)

College Life

Saturday, July 26, 2008

We have been living on college for 10 days now, and if you had asked me yesterday how it was going, then I would have said "pretty good" but today I would say it's going really well! We had our first SCR (Senior Common Room) dinner last night and it was really great. We now feel like we're a part of a community, instead of being the newbies. Our room is starting to feel more like a home since we've found places for most of our stuff.

Here's what the place looked like before we unpacked:

And this was during the unpacking: (eeeeeeeek!)

And these was taken Saturday after lunch. Home sweet Home!

We are quite comfortable in our 2 rooms plus bathroom. The meals are all eaten in "The Dome" and we are yet to have our first formal dinner, which take place Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Apparently it's quite la-di-da! Hubsband has to wear a suit and tie and I can wear pretty much anything except jeans, as long as it looks classy! And we have our first Black Tie dinner and welcoming Mass next Friday which should be heaps of fun too.

There are quite a few people around our age and a few are in the same course as Hubs. I seem to be the odd one out, not currently adding to a HECS debt (I already have one!!) so I feel a bit out of the loop in some ways, but everyone is making us feel very welcome.

I'll leave you all with the view we have every morning when we step out of our front door. We will be attending our first Mass tomorrow evening and we're a little nervous about not knowing all the moves (Catholic services always feel like a carefully choreographed sequence, and I forgot to turn up to rehearsals!) Apparently the messages are very good though. We'll keep you posted!

The Chapel


Thursday, July 24, 2008

I've decided that since we're in one of the most well-known restaurant/cafe cities in Australia, I'm going to start reviewing the places we have been to for dinner and drinks. Tonight we're going to look at a FANTASTIC Italian restaurant on Lygon street that we went to with some friends who are visiting from Brisbane. The restaurant is called Papa Gino's and it is in the heart of the Italian Restaurant precinct of Melbourne.

We were treated to excellent service, nice ambiance, and FABULOUS Italian food. I couldn't decide between the pasta and the pizza, so the waiter kindly suggested that I order an entree size of both! So I did! And what a great decision that was. The food was excellent value for money both in quality and quantity. We were not left wanting (and I'm still totally full an hour and a half later!)

Hubsband and our friend shared a calzone and a bolognaise pizza (I sampled both of those dishes too - yummmmmm!) and our other friend and I had the ravioli/tortellini with chicken and spinach in a tomato cream sauce. Oh.... my.... gawsh.... it was all just so good. We brought along some wine we had bought from the Yarra Valley (I still haven't posted about that yet!!) and to top it off, we weren't charged corkage. Now THAT'S my kind of place!

All in all a fantastic night out. I give it 4 stars out of 5.

Pain in the neck

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A Whine

For the last 4 years or so, whenever I get stressed, I put my neck out. This was something I could manage as it used to go away once the stress was relieved. But now it's more of a constant problem, and is exacerbated by stress. I feel like I've tried everything; massage, chiropractic, acupuncture, heat, sports massage (deep tissue) and pain killers. But nothing has had a long-term affect on the pain, and it's getting worse. Does that mean I'm more stressed or that the problem has embedded itself into my life and I'm just going to be sore all the time?

I have had to miss work on quite a few occasions, as when it's really bad, my range of movement is limited. And not only do I miss out on the income, but the treatments cost a fair bit too. I've lost count of the amount I have spent on treating my neck over the last few years and am getting a little sick of it. And now that I'm in Melbourne, I don't have my regular masseuse or acupuncturist to go to when I need it.

I do have my dear Hubsband who gives me massages, so I am grateful for that. But this is an ongoing problem that I really wish I could get rid of. If anyone has any amazing treatments I can try down in Melbs, I would love to hear about them.

That's the end of my Whine.

First Days

Monday, July 21, 2008

It's been such an eventful week that it's hard to know where to start, so I'll begin with our "First Days" of uni and work. Hubsband started his 2 week bridging course for Medicine last Monday and had a pretty full week. He has met lots of new friends ranging in age from 23 to over 30. They had a pub session on Friday that started around 2pm and ended with last drinks at 10pm! I joined them at around 6pm after work (someone's gotta earn the beer money! They seem like a lot of fun and I'm sure he'll enjoy getting to know them over the next few years.

Here is a picture of Hubsband on his first day:

So now it's my turn. I registered with a recruitment agency and immediately found a job they were advertising that I thought would be great. So while I was there for my interview, I mentioned the job to my recruiter and she arranged for me to meet the person in charge of filling that position. That was on the Monday. I then had an interview for the job on Thursday at 2pm and the job was offered to me at 5:30pm! It's permanent part-time as the Memberships Administrator for Chemical Engineers in Australia and I'll be working 5 days a fortnight (Thurs, Fri and every 2nd Wed).

I had my first day there last Thursday and very soon realised that I was going to be working with the most difficult database known to mankind! The lady whose job I was taking over did 2 days of training with me which was really great but it's SERIOUSLY complex. She could tell that I was having a little freak-out on Friday morning and said to me that when she first started it took her quite a few weeks to feel comfortable with it and not to worry if it wasn't making sense just yet. That made me feel a bit better. I just hope I remember everything when I go back on Wednesday!!

Here's me on my first day of work:

So all in all, we both had successful first weeks in our new positions. I'll be looking for another part-time job to help pay for the beers (and the wines we just bought at the Yarra Valley this weekend, but that's another post to come!) so until then we'll just be drinking cask wine... AS IF!!!!

The REAL Lyrics #2

Sunday, July 20, 2008

You think Jimmy Barnes says
"Cheap wine and a three day growth"
but what he REALLY says is
"She's crying like a three-legged goat"

How red is YOUR face?

Nerdy McNerd

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

I got in touch with my inner-nerd last week and attended "Game On" with Hubsband; "Melbourne's must-see exhibition of 2008 - the action-packed celebration of games culture that has thrilled over one million players of all ages around the world. Game On tracks the development of videogames from the first computer game to arcade-era hits and the very latest from today's billion dollar industry." Make that one million and two players!

I was a little skeptical at first, thinking it was going to be another nerd convention like SupaNova but I was pleasantly surprised at the number of normal people there! (Ha ha. Sorry honey. Just cos you're a nerd, doesn't mean you're not normal.) But seriously, there were children, girlfriends, wifeys, mothers (mostly carrying around jackets and sitting around waiting for hubsbands and kids to get tired) and everyone in between. And the games! We got to play quite a few different games including:

Mario Cart
Star Wars (the arcade game with the vector images)
Tron arcade game
Puzzle Bubble
Donkey Kong (game and watch)
Indy 500
Adventure on the Atari

... just to name a few! There were quite a few people there but there were also quite a few games to play so there was always something to do. We even ran into Yahtzee, but we almost didn't recognise him cos he wasn't wearing his trademark hat.

We also checked out the game consoles that had been made over the last 36 years which was actually quite interesting. We finished off with about half an hour in the theatre watching the "Machinima Showcase" which is a "new kind of filmmaking that uses computer games technology to 'shoot' film." Yeah, I found it boring too but Hubs enjoyed it. It gave me a chance to have a rest, so I was happy.

We were there for 3 hours, then I decided it was time to go home. I was all nerded out for one day!

Hubsband playing Populous

Wifey posing with Lara Croft. Yeah, I think I'm heaps better looking too...

The REAL Lyrics #1

Saturday, July 12, 2008

In 'She Bop', you think Cyndi Lauper says
"I won't worry, and I won't fret" (ain't no law against it yeah)
but what she REALLY says is
"I want a rabbit, and I want a ferret" (ain't no law against it YET)

How silly do YOU feel?

I miss Southbank Cinemas

A Whine

One of our favourite things to do in Brisvegas was to go to the movies at Southbank. Among other things, it has the cheapest tickets in town. Their normal prices are $7.90 for adults and $5.90 for students. Which meant Hubs and I could go to the movies for a mere $13.80. AND the parking was FREE!! And if we decided to get some munchies, they were cheap as chips as well. I really can't fathom why anyone would pay $14 per ticket to see a movie at the other places.

The other amazing things about Southbank is that they have all the latest movies, and you can see all the new releases on the IMAX screen. And don't even get me started on cheap Tuesday - then the tickets drop down in price even more.

*sigh* In Melbournia, it would cost me $15.50 and Hubs $12.50 to see a movie. There are a few movies we really want to see, but at that price, plus train tickets, we might as well just get a couple of bottles of wine, hire a DVD and have a great night in! This doesn't solve our problem of wanting to see movies like Hancock, Get Smart and The Dark Knight, without having to promise our first born to Village Cinemas.

We are on the look out for cheap cinemas down here, so if you know of any, please let us know! Otherwise we'll just save our pocket money and we might get to see 1 movie every 6 months. *sigh* My life is so hard :-)

The Hickey. Friend or foe?

Friday, July 11, 2008

The thing about being married to a 22 year old (or someone who's 27 who still THINKS he's 22) is that every now and then Hubs thinks it's HILARIOUS to give me a hickey. When we first started going out, I was mortified by this, however I soon got in to the spirit of things and started giving as good as I got:

I was actually pretty good at it! This was one I gave him for his birthday last year just before we were leaders on a kid's camp! (Actually, I think there are 2 hickeys there!!! Yeah!)

And here's Hub's most recent handy work at our going away party in June:

But I reckon he's losing his touch. (Can you even see it?) Although that might mean he'll want some more practice. I know I'll probably regret saying this, but hickeys don't really bother me that much anymore, as long as I don't have an interview or a special occasion coming up. Plus Hubs gave them to me so often at one stage that it was normal to see Wifey sporting a new hickey at church each week!

So thank you, dear Hubsband, for keeping us young and completely unclassy!

(To learn how to remove hickeys, click here, though I've never bothered with anything other than make up!)

One day I went a-walking

Thursday, July 10, 2008

I went for a wee walk the other day to post a letter to my Nanny and came across a rather odd sight on the footpath:

At first glance I thought they'd taken the advertising for the new X-Files movie to the suburbs, but after a closer look I realised it was just a jelly-fish! After some investigating (i.e. looking into the yard that it was sitting outside of) I noticed a fishing boat and came to the conclusion that Jerry the Jelly Fish was a stowaway, looking for greener pastures. Unfortunately for Jerry, the grass was not greener on the other side.

And the next day, all that remained of Jerry was a puddle. Perhaps this is a case for Mulder and Scully after all...

Dread Head

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

One of my goals this year was to learn some new skills. Some things I had in mind were to do a sign language course, to get back in to some sewing, and to perhaps try my hand at a new sport. What I DIDN'T have in mind was learning how to give someone dreadlocks.

Hubsband: Honey, I've wanted dread locks for a while now, can I get them?
Wifey: Sure, how much are they?
Hubsband: $500 to get them done at the salon....
Wifey: $500??????????
Hubsband: or $150 for a DIY kit that you can buy on-line which means you could dread my hair! Wouldn't that be tee-yodally awesome?
Wifey: Ummmmmmmmmmmmm..... sure, okay....

So the kit was ordered, and on ANZAC Day 2008 (a Friday) we began.
Before we begin: Say goodbye to Hubsband's beautiful, untangled, luscious hair (sniff)

Step One: Section off the hair in to 1 inch squares and put them in rubber bands. I made 70 sections, a perfect 35 on each side. (2 hours)

Step Two: Spray the hair with Locking Accelerator - stuff that knots your hair up good and proper (5 minutes)

Step Three: Backcombing. Now on the instructional DVD, it takes about 5 minutes to explain this process, but takes a lot longer to do. Basically it's teasing the hair, but in a gradual way so as not to create big messy clumps of hair. It takes about 100 strokes per inch of dread, and some of Hub's hair was 14 inches long!! I managed to get it to about 20 minutes per dread which I was quite happy with. Here are some of Hub's first dreads:

Now before I go on to Step 4, let me give you an insight into our "dread week":
Friday: 12noon til 9:30pm - Sectioning, backcombing, finished 14 dreads (my hands were like claws when I went to bed - I could hardly move them. But they were okay on Saturday)
Saturday: 8:00am (Hubs made me a cooked brekky to start the day off) til 3:00pm - 15 Dreadlocks. Then I went to a hen's night!
Sunday: 7:30pm (late start) til 10:30pm - 7 Dreadlocks
So by this stage Hubs had half a head of dreads. AND he had to go to work on Monday morning! Tee hee! We really thought I'd be finished by now, but we were only half way through.
Monday: 4:00pm til 10:30pm - 17 Dreadlocks (and Wifey was getting a little tired of this by now!)
Tuesday: 5:00pm til 10:30pm - 14 Dreadlocks. I only had 3 to go but just couldn't do it that night
Wednesday: BLISS!! Finished the last 3!! Or so I thought....

Step Four: Waxing the little friggers. Each dread had to be waxed and rolled which took about an hour. Then they had to be blow dried so the wax really soaks in. That took another half an hour. And low and behold, Wednesday night my Hubs had dreads. Total time physically working on them (excluding breaks): 33 hours.

And since then he's had heaps of comments on how awesome they are (not just from me!) They do look really great actually. And because all the hair gets caught in them (eew) it doesn't fall out all over the place! Hooray! I must admit that I feel a sense of pride when Hubs tells people that I did his hair for him. It's certainly a new skill that I've learnt! Oh, and I NEVER want to do it again!

You look good in my genes...

Saturday, July 5, 2008

For all those Miles From Nowhere fans out there (I know there's a few of you!) no, I'm not talking about a comeback tour (rats). I'm talking about the denim variety of the gene... er... jean. Up until a year ago, jeans and I didn't get along. In fact, there had been NO jeans-lovin' since I was about 11 years old and hadn't yet developed hips. (They came at 11 and a half and the jeans were put in the back of the wardrobe)

I was really okay with this arrangement to be honest, as I got along famously with skirts and three-quarters. Even when I lived in Scotland for a year, I survived without jeans. Instead opting for the "pant" or "trouser" to keep me warm, as well as a few under-layers of course.

And then along came my Hubsband-to-be. He couldn't understand why anyone wouldn't wear jeans. Nay, would HATE jeans and not even consider wearing them. The thing is, I had TRIED to buy jeans at places like Just Jeans, Jeans West, Jay Jays etc (alliteration is huge in the Jean industry) but I ended up with pint-sized sales assistants insisting that I couldn't POSSIBLY need a size that big and handing me a few pairs of jeans that would barely fit over my calves. So really it's their fault that I was scared away from this super-versatile item of clothing for so long.

Enter a friend from church who also had a few curves. She suggested this shop at Chermers where she buys all her jeans. And 8 months later, my sister-in-law-to-be, along with a bit of courage, went shopping and voila! Wifey's first pair of jeans in a lonnnnnnng time!

Not bad hey? Now I'm not saying I put these bad boys on and all of a sudden I was a convert. It did take me a few more weeks before I wore them in public. Funnily enough Hubs-to-be didn't even notice the first time I wore them! After a couple of months however, I became very attached and we have now been going strong for 12 months. I even bought my second pair a few days ago in Melbourne (from the same chain as my first ones) and I like them even BETTER!

Hooray for jeans!


Friday, July 4, 2008

Question: What is a trebuchet?
Answer: A medieval military catapult for hurling heavy stones

Up until a few months ago, I had no idea what a trebuchet was until a good friend of my Hubsband's (who should have known better and shall remain nameless) emailed around an ad advertising a trebuchet that was for sale. He did this as a bit of a joke, but Hubs thought it would be a GREAT idea to get a few mates to pitch in and buy the thing. Why? To fling stuff in the park behind our house of course!!

So the planning began and after a few false starts, a trip was made by one of Hubsband's other crazy friends to pick the thing up. Upon arrival however, they saw how HUGE this contraption was and realised they had bitten of more treb than they could chew. Now when I say huge, I mean huge:

Click here for more information
The dimensions are:
Width: 2m
Length: 2.2m
Height: 5m (including the "throwing arm")

After some negotiations, crazy friend instead purchased the prototype that the guy used to build the larger one which was much more manageable:

By around 2pm on that lovely Sunday afternoon, about 20 blokes (not including the original nameless friend who saw the ad in the first place!) in various medieval get-up had descended upon our back yard and were keen to fling! We headed to the park and proceeded to set up the treb as well as a target to hit. It has a range of about 30 meters so that was a bit less scary than the original 100m range of the larger model.

A fun time was had by all, and once the beer and bbq had wrapped up and the light was fading, of course it was decided to set fire to things and fling them!

Thankfully the police remained blissfully unaware of the event and the trebuchet is sitting quietly in Hubsband's Mum's garage.

Til we fling again....

The flingers

Spoilt rotten

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Since arriving in Melbourne, Hubs and I have been staying with a family friend and have been treated to home cooking every night. Here's what we've had so far:

Saturday: home made curry (delicious!)
Sunday: roast lamb (gotta love the Sunday roast)
Monday: lamb shanks done in the slow cooker (oh my gosh it was SO GOOD!!)
Tuesday: beef stroganoff (the beef melted in our mouths)
Wednesday: chicken with taties and veges (with gravy left from the lamb shanks)

And don't even get me started on the desserts! I think I've found a replacement for Nanny's.

I've only been a Wifey for 7 months, but I have to agree with other longer term wifeys and mothers when they say that the best meals they have are the ones cooked for them. We really have been spoilt and it's been nice having time with each other while we settle in to this wild city.


Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Now don't get me wrong. I like Ugg-boots just as much as the next bevan, but come on people! Ugg boots are an INSIDE boot, not an outside boot. This fact seems to escape a LOT of people in our new home town.

Now I know residents of Brisvegas are guilty of wearing their Uggies outside the comfort of their own homes as well. In fact, I find it quite hilarious that it's not cold enough in Queensland to wear Ugg boots with warm clothes as well, so people wear the Ugg in public with shorts and singlets! And the number of outside-Uggers increases, the further north you go!

But I have to admit, the number of outside Ugg-wearers I've seen since we touched down in Melbourne 4 days ago has astounded me. I can't help but point and laugh.

I've seen Uggs over jeans, Uggs with stockings and skirts, Uggs popping out from underneath trousers, and of course, Uggs teamed with trackie-dacks. What a sight!

Now as I mentioned earlier, I AM a fan of the boot. I even had my parents ship my old Uggies over to Edinburgh when my little tootsies were freezing off in the Scottish winter. And boy they did the job. I had to retire them that winter after 11 years of service. And Hubsband (pictured) has Uggs that he has barely taken off since we arrived in Melbourne, except when he goes outside... (okay. So there was ONE time where he was caught out, but it was only brief and only witnessed by one person who swore never to speak of the incident.)

So if you are Ugg-lovers as we are, please respect the Ugg-rules and keep your Uggs indoors, where they belong.

Our life fits in a Kombi

Hubsband and I have been talking about starting a Blog for a while now, so here it is! Exciting, I know! We have just moved from sunny Queensland down to windy... rainy... sunny... windy... (etc) Melbourne so Hubsband can begin his course in Medicine.

We managed to cram everything we need to live off in the family Kombi which was unbelievable and exciting! I took a look at what we had to fit in and said to Hubsband "honey, there's no way it's all going to fit!" To which he replied "dearest Wifey, trust me!" So I did and boy was I impressed! We had an excellent 5 day road trip down and thanks to everyone who let us crash in their spare bedrooms. We are now looking for somewhere to nest in Melbourne so we can unload the car and get on with our new lives down here.

Of course I am going to try and write a couple of times a week so feel free to give me a few tips if you're an experienced blogger! (or if you're just a smarty-pants know-it-all!)

Let the blogging begin!