My favourite thing to do

I feel very lucky in my life, I have the bestest family in the world, great cousins who are my BFF’s and people who when I ask them to help say yes. Today being a Friday I have woken with a sore neck, did a 6km run to try to warm it up – it worked but I am sitting in my home office with a scarf around my neck to try to keep it warm. I felt it was tightening up yesterday but trying to move my arms this morning was a chore. I don’t look as silly as I sound, it still is cold in Australia and my office does not have heating or cooling yet.

I am also under a deadline to get a couple of emails off to people, one to a CEO whom I told I had called his company 13 times and no one responded, but I have had to inform him I only have written records of 9 calls. I don’t feel right about doing this as I feel it ‘dobs’ people in. For those unaware of what dobbing is.. it is telling someone, other people did the wrong thing and name them. But he assured me it is to improve the service, I explained to him yesterday, his front office girls were great and referred me on but I could not ever get in touch with who they suggested I needed to talk with. All is resolved now but still the email was done.

I also have to do a work report, which I have till lunch time to get in, it’s halfway done but the other end wants names and numbers sigh, sometimes this is just too difficult to do. I have realized this week I have travelled over 1500 kms and that is probably why my neck is still. I also have the pleasure of taking Huz to a ram / sheep sale this afternoon where after the auction drinking and bbq’s are the norm. Guess who will be driving.

I am also thinking it’s this time fo the year I start thinking and planning the Keith Hospital High Tea, I have done it for the last 2 years and we have had great guest speakers, Anne Wills ‘Willsy’ and Amanda Blair who have entertained us and helped keep the target fund-raising money going. So at the beginning of this week, I thought of a lady and went about contacting her to ask if she would do it. I know I get in early so if they ask a speakers fee, it gives me time to raise the money. I have only had to do this once Amanda Blair donated her time and my next years guest speaker has confirmed this morning she will do it and ‘no rates or fees’ her end.

The generosity of these people always makes me catch my breath, it brings us all to a level playing field. We are all volunteers in some capacity and Australians are known for their generosity and kindness for worthy causes. The Keith Hospital is a worthy cause and the community has worked hard to keep it moving along. In the signing of the agreement with the Government it brings with it a new model and opportunity to work to grow the business. I believe the least I can do it run a function a year and I love the support I get for the High tea. The Arkaba Hotel always donates the room, cost of staff and food is at cost. I have great supporters in bubbles and red wine donations and silent Auction prizes and enough helping hands to run it.

Before I could publish this post the guest speaker has been guessed it is in-fact Monique Bowley from The Great Australian Bake Off. If you want to reserve your tickets for Saturday 5th April 12 till 4, contact me as well

High Tea

 

Hump day

We are back here again, hump day, I said this to my Huz the other day and he had never heard the term. I explained it was the day that was the middle of the working week, the one you know you HAVE to get through to do the downward run to the weekend. It’s the day I run my business in the Bordertown pharmacy and I do enjoy it. I do laser IPL hair removal whilst the other girls do pigmentation, veins, spots, acne and mirco-hydro-dermabrasion. They have a beautiful set up and I am thrilled to be part of it.

I am struggling this hump day and wonder if it has anything to do with the full moon from the previous couple of days. Huz was up early as he is travelling to Victoria with a mate to purchase a car hoist, so this means we are all up, cats, dogs and sleeping me. He is not the quietest of people and puts the light on to look for stuff, though a good planner her fails to get most things ready the night before, by this I mean clothes, shoes, backpack so it’s a dig it out of the cupboard whilst in a hurry to leave.

As it’s also getting lighter and warmer at 530am in the morning, this morning I chose not to lie in, I was over it by 615am so put my gear on and did a 6.5km jog on the treadmill. It took me just on an hour, which I am thrilled about as it displays to me I am getting fitter. Pete the golden likes to lie in the doorway on the carpet watching me (actually he sleeps facing the room) the cats all settle back down and ignore me, so the iPod goes on and off I go. Every time I get on it I promise myself it will become a daily ritual, one that I am yet to do, with TAFE, work and other things I sometimes get time in the afternoon but lack enthusiasm to do it.

Hump day is like that, though most people start things on a Monday (the most popular day to start anything new), Wednesday is the next most popular day for people to commence diets & exercise programs. I used Dr google for this information. Don’t ever start on a Friday unless you have more willpower than most as most people can dream about as, it’s the day before the weekend and can be stressful and the option here is to cancel plans and start the next week.

Anyway I am on the downward stretch to the end of the working day. Hope your hump day isn’t taking as long as mine.

Offending the partner

The farmer in the house my Husband, Huz as I sometime refer to him, reads my blog and got soooo offended that I commented on the fact he left the dishwasher un-emptied, he has been at great pains to tell me what HE did do last week, not what he didn’t. Firstly I must mention when he went to unload the dishwasher it was dirty (I didn’t have the heart to tell him I never set it going when I left) so where he is thinking he ran it through twice I suspect it was only once. Then we have a carving fork which is from an era long ago that I know is no silver as it rusts when in the dishwasher. I try not to place it in there and when I went to unload it the prongs of this fork were sticking out of the bottom of the cutlery basket thus blocking the bottom rotating washer hence getting dirty dishes.

Whilst I am away he does everything, he is fantastic at keeping a daily diary of the things he does on the farm so this was shown to me with emphasis on the daily activities. He has done 16km of fencing  on his own and enormous achievement in any mans (persons) activities. he checks all of the stock daily, feeds out hay, moves them from one paddock to another and cares for the house pets, (I mean shed cats), of which Pete the Golden Retriever is one. Pete is time-consuming on his own, he requires 2 feeds a day now, half in the morning half at night with half a cup of milk in each feed along with his thyroxine tablets and coat to go to bed with if cold. He does work and he did do his own dishes, they were left on the dish rack (as evidence?) as he did not have time to put them away.. perhaps.

Today he has asked me to go around with him and check the cattle for bloat – this takes a good part of an hour, but I have opted to stay in and clean the fridge as nobody (somebody – NOT him) apparently has knocked over the pickle jar and the juice has spread all over the fridge and leaked out under the door. Couldn’t understand why he didn’t offer to clean it. I never inferred he did no work, but that was lost on him, he was indignant about the dishwasher, really the jetsons have a lot to answer for, surely by now we have appliances that unload themselves. Huz is also proud of the fact he has unloaded the dishwasher 3 times and put it on 3 times, if this is wrong he will tell me.

Enjoy your Sunday everyone, I’ll head out to the farmers market at Keith Hospital after I have done the fridge. It is too beautiful day to stay inside and finish my assignment.

What the…

I have started traveling for work, I have taken been given the opportunity to be an agent for a start-up medical company and this being an exciting opportunity have decided to take it. Part of this is the fact that I can now travel again, visiting hospitals, procurement managers and Departments of health in other states.

This is something I know as I did it for nearly 20 years for pure financial reasons. As a nurse and single mum, (no child maintenance) I wanted to afford my child the same opportunity I had which was catholic schooling and working as a nurse you are financially restricted by your boss, in my case the Government, as I worked in a public system. Even doing shift work, it became hard to manage a mortgage, life style and school fees, so once given the opportunity to become a medical representative I did.

After nearly 7 years away from it I have gone back, though traveling to the those that don’t it looks and sounds glamorous it is for the first couple of days then it becomes a chore, everything you eat is paid for out of you own money and is expensive, no matter where you go.  Changing hotel rooms is hard as everything needs to be packed up and put into your suit case, even hiring a car is a necessity and an expense. Most employers if they have staff that travel are generous with these allowances, my motto always has been “if I am not prepared to pay it for myself I certainly wouldn’t as my employer” this always helps when Dr’s or nurses want you to have an open tab at the bar. My rule of thumb is 3 drinks is enough, then I will close the tab.

Now all of these expenses are mine, it is even easier to say no, but luckily there has been a shift in everybody to stop the “your company pays” mentality “I’ll drink myself under the table and order 4 courses”. As I use to say to people, you are actually paying for it, it is built into the price of the goods. It is rather pleasant to travel and sit in a restaurant or café and have a meal with people it opens the dialogue to talk things other than work. I don’t know if my week was successful yet but I enjoyed it and I got to stay with a great girlfriend for one night who though we talk regularly on the phone it is fantastic to share a couple and sit and chat.

Excited I was to also be heading home, you have to be on your best behavior when you travel, not that I sweat the small stuff often, but you are representing yourself or a company so one must be nice and informative most of the time. After landing I have a 3 hour drive home, which is not too bad, but having to stop and shop prior to heading up the freeway can add an hour to this trip.

It is nice to be home but what I don’t like is the fact that there are dishes (washed) in the dishwasher that I put in there last Sunday. Today is Saturday, and yes it is a small thing but it is also annoying as you know that the day after you arrive home or even the day (I got in at 915pm) you need to spend doing house chores, washing clothes etc, so yes it irked me that I have to do the dishes AS WELL.. Nothing more can I say about this to the women that travel, you will understand, to the men that travel, I bet it’s something that you do not think about… and there in lies the problem. Yes this may be a generalization about the sexes but hey ho.

 

a sunday post

It’s still cold on the farm, Pete the dog still doesn’t get up till late and then he slowly meanders outside and comes back in to the warmth of his bed. We have had to change his feeding times of late due to ‘wind’ issues. He is now being fed morning and night and it appears to be working, it is reducing the 3am light on, open doors and being turfed outside. This was unsettling as it was distressing, everybody being woken from a deep sleep (including Pete), cats then went outside with him to offer comfort and then climbs the security screen when everyone wants to come back in, by then farmer in the house fast asleep leaving city wife to deal with the fall out.

This though normal, Pete is a 16 yr. old Golden Retriever who needs his aged care comforts. He is still my most loyal friend and companion and it is nice to see my experiment with his food is working. I think perhaps like humans dogs can go into starvation mode, he is use to being fed at night only, now he looks better, less bloated and certainly less offensive wind during the night. So it all a matter of timing.

One of my loveliest friends made the hard decision to put her beautiful cat to sleep yesterday after years of love and loyalty. I have had the pleasure of Star sitting on my lap during visits and know how this loss will be felt. Love to you Kate & Pete xxx. Kate
Swaffer
 who writes a fantastic blog and is an advocate for Dementia.

Things in life all happen for a reason, sometimes we don’t know understand this and perhaps become so self-absorbed that we internalize things that are minor and make them major issues. I have been offered an opportunity to become an agent for a medical consumable company and this in itself is throwing up numerous challenges, I have now gone back to calling people who, don’t return your call, tell you they are too busy to talk or worse still tell you off for calling during audits, meetings etc. This I find quite amazing because it sounds like I am meant to KNOW the stresses of their daily lives.

Why have I taken this opportunity? I still work for myself so my goals and achievements are measured by myself and I can work at my own pace whilst still studying and I am ready to head back into the crazy world of medical sales despite the phone calls, I am not deterred and most importantly companies don’t offer opportunities to country residents, so this was one we talked over and I have taken. Being a city girl, even after 10 years I still miss it, whenever I drive to the city to see family and friends it feels like home, something that my Huz still doesn’t understand. I am preparing to travel to the Northern Territory this week and I realize how nice it will be to get out of the cold and into warmth.  See Timing

Cooking!! there is no glamour in this chore

It this really busy world where women and men are out working, being parents, playing sports, being on committees and numerous other roles unmentioned in this blog. There is always that nagging feeling when coming to the end of the working day, even if you do not work in paid employment after a day working, it comes to about 4pm and your mind starts thinking about the dreaded chore of preparing the evening meal. Remember the ‘frustrated Chef‘ from ‘Sesame Street’ well cooking daily makes me feel like this

There is no speech by your parents when you grow up about how laborious this chore is, yes they talk about sex, making babies, financial responsibilities and school and growing up but my mother never told me how this could be the worst chore ever invented and how necessary it is to daily functions. My mother also never told me how frustrating it is when you ask people in the house what do they want to dinner and have responses like “anything as long as I’m with you” as nice as it sounds it’s a cop-out. In Australian language that means I have no idea and I’m not prepared to offer any suggestions, this is frustrating to say the least, or what would be nice occasionally is to have someone say, “I know” and get up and prepare it and present it themselves.

We sit and watch shows like ‘Masterchef‘, ‘My Restaurant Rules‘, Huey’s kitchen and every other ‘lifestyle’ program has a cooking segment on it and we (pardon the pun) devour these shows, in my case I love some of the dishes and want to see who wins, that’s the competitive nature in me coming out there. But sometimes these dishes they don’t relate to normal life do they? Who really has the time (other than paid contestants) to spend 5 hours preparing meals? Not me I could not think of anything more boring. Preparing and presenting a perfectly cooked meal, consuming it and then CLEANING up.

There are some days when I think, can’t I just go and buy dinner? I live where there is no identifiable (no golden arches) fast food places within 150kms or in American terms 93.20 miles so when I do feel like this I rely on the trusty freezer, to have meat, oven fires and frozen vegetables and normally use this opportunity to do a mixed grill, rump, fillet or lamb chops which I will crumb, eggs from our chooks, sausages either our beef or lamb, then bread cooked in our bread maker and frozen oven fries cooked in the oven. This really is our choice, I don’t keep frozen ‘fast foods‘ like hash browns or others, these can be high in fat and salt.

But sometimes just sometimes I would love someone to come in and cook and clean. The last time farmer was out for dinner I cooked a microwave bag of popcorn and ate that, nothing else but white wine with it. When we travel to the city to see family and friends it normally is for a celebration so food is part of this shared experience, I have a family of cookers, they bring salads, hot vegetables, desserts and we cook either a leg of lamb or roast some of our beef. There is nothing nicer, but if we dine out, I note farmer goes for the seafood or steak, I normally go the steak option, it is just nice to have food prepared and presented to you. We also like Asian foods which I also cook when I feel I have time, but overall home cooking is always much more flavor some and healthy for you than ‘fast foods’ but for the convenience fast foods will win this mental trauma every time and this is back by the statistics, people would rather drive through than shop in.

My advice, find a great fresh home delivery company that will bring fresh fruit, produce and meat to your door, plan your meals so that you only order what you know you are going to eat. This will help reduce the high calories intake and save you from opening your purse. Put that money towards a long desired holiday where, when you get it you can PAY someone to cook what you want and clean up.

frustrated chef