New Resolutions?

New Resolutions Did you make any? are you saying no I haven’t made any and yet secretly made them in your head (like me) and have started that journal in your head or putting things in a diary already? or have you done something different like write a bucket list to find the things that make you feel better about you? or did you recycle the ones from last year that you promised yourself you would achieve before the year was out?

Should we voice our resolutions, by putting them out there are we enlisting the help of others or setting ourselves up to fail?

Have you taken a standard normal route or have you taken the digital reduction route?  Making them is the easy part we can all put things up we need, i.e. more exercise, less girth, less gluttony, less liver damage and so on. In simple terms that stock standard, get fitter, lose weight, eat less and drink less to assist the first 3 to occur. No more notifications on the phone, turning the phone off for a period of time, reducing our availability to our social media and putting this time back into family and friends, like the real ones we (should) interact with.

Which did you go down or have you done both? I stopped the notifications on my phone a while ago as the temptation to check everything when I heard the ting lead to longer trips (pulling over to check) time loss and disappointment. I say disappointment as most of the time it’s not any thing directly related to me.

The amount of times I pulled over to check into social media to read all the inspiration sayings many put up, read the minions sayings many follow and to look at coffee pictures and animal rescue pictures will amount to at least 2 to 3 more trips to Adelaide and back (6 hour round trip). After finding myself shaking my head at some of the crap and yes I would have others shaking their heads at some of my crap, I turned it all off.

I made a comment of twitter on New Years Eve about the quality of a TV broadcast and whilst it got lots of support it also brought me a couple of seasoned trolls. The first one (years back) was a nasty piece of work who argued the point on every thing I did for a certain hospital all the while proclaiming God’s love and goodness in her life. One of my new ones, was trying to start something so I retweeted her and agreed, she was correct instead of complaining I could in fact change the channel  but not in a nice way and I still don’t know how I could turn it off with the remote in a place where one would need medical extraction. Luckily there is blocking and I am a firm advocate of switch me off if you don’t like what you read.

I have unfollowed a few of my face book friends for the fact they put up stuff ALL the time.For the unaware you don’t have to unfriend people you unfollow and it doesn’t highlight the fact you are no longer not following them. It could become awkward though if they direct message you to ask if or why you didn’t respond at the time they posted something but oh well.

How do all these things relate back to resolutions on 2nd January do you ask yourself: will I complete them? or will I slowly over time move on from them? should they be resolving, once achieved another takes it’s place? Does one start the diet on the day or leave it to day 2 just to give the body recovery from the night before? I suspect if you have arrived into Day 2 and have not answered these questions then you would be searching for a reason (perhaps) to start or to move them along.

The farmer has walked past and asked me when did I find time to make resolutions and I replied with who says I have? Writing about them is not living them, putting it on paper is not necessarily the beginning of a newer version of me, what ever that is supposed to be. It is meant to be a time where one reflects back and sends all the previous years bad things to live in the past and bring forward all the good things and expands them.

Start small I say, do up a list and tick them off when you feel you have completed them. Make your resolutions realistic things you know your capable of, enhance them by inviting others to join you should you wish. I intend to keep mine to myself and slowly move towards getting them done. I’ll keep you posted as I move them along, now I must go take down Christmas – I was meant to do it yesterday.




Tears, Drinking, Coping, Drought

I know this is a hard subject to talk about and understand, never alone live through one. As a city girl growing up I watched the TV showing pictures of drought and gave it a passing glance. I have family that grew up and live on the land in QLD and to hear them talk about drought was only in passing conversation. I never understood it and they never expanded upon their lives living it. It is easy to sympathise and empathise but it’s not easy to grasp.

How many stories do we see that we skim over with the title drought, people who have not seen rain in 5 or 10 years or more, looking to the skies for a better season, waiting for a break to put in seed to grow crop, then it doesn’t rain again, bring back livestock that have been moved off or sold for years, but do we understand it?

I don’t think we do, most TV stories concentrate on the farmer, his livestock, livelihood and lack of opportunity to provide for his family but do we really see the impact of the women who live with these men and drought? The pictures on the TV show dry land, farmer looking to the skies a couple of dead animals or a skull, skeleton of an animal but they never illustrate the real toll drought takes.

When do we know it’s a drought, us women behind the scenes? swearing is not a good barometer as farmers swear a lot, at animals, machinery, weather and things but once the land dries up, the bank account shrinks and animals start gathering at fences when they hear cars, utes, trucks and voices the swearing escalates, paddocks look like sandpits this is drought.

Talking to some of my girlfriends today I asked how one is doing, she grimaced and said “Oh my god the swearing, I’m sick of it already, every time he comes in I try to go out. I have asked to increase my days working to earn more money to help get us through.” She is waiting on her boss to give her an answer it looks like her eldest won’t be going off to boarding school as planned next year unless things turn around quickly. She is one of the lucky ones, she works close to her home, has an income and escapes for 3 days per week.

I say I understand, we are buying in feed, her husband has been buying it in for the last 3 months and it is really expensive so they are now de-stocking. For those that don’t know de-stocking means selling or moving every bit of stock off the property either into the market for money or onto another person’s property for agistment (which is also expensive option). Some keep only a small amount of breeders hoping that when it rains it won’t be so expensive to get a bull or ram to impregnate the stock left. If pregnant then there is a time lapse of up to 18 months before the new born can be sold. Imagine how do you live without an income for 18 months or more?

What happens to women in drought? one of the things they do is try to get work off farm, families still have to eat and food costs money. I know of another of my girlfriends who walked into a shopping centre in a capital city and has sat at a coffee table and cried. She cried as she looked around and knew no one would understand her life in that moment, how her troubles were so much on her and everybody else looked fresh and happy. She noticed people looked away from her.

She felt naked, she knew the pants she had on she had sown up the inner legs for the third time, her knickers had holes in them and her top was dated by 3 years. She tugged at her hair and wondered if she had enough money for a hair cut, a colour was way out of her price range, so the greys will keep coming through unchecked. She couldn’t remember the last time she bought herself clothing of any kind. She stirred her real cup of coffee and at $4.80 a cup she felt she was cheating her family, and knew she wouldn’t buying lunch for herself that day but also that $4.80 could have also bought her much wanted knickers and she asked me “one didn’t go into the shopping centres to walk out with just knickers do they?”

I couldn’t answer her as I was thinking No they don’t in times of drought, the farm comes first, children’s needs second, husbands third and if there was anything left over it was the woman’s turn. Having a cup of coffee is normal and I would have chosen to look normal rather than feel abnormal by buying much needed knickers and walking out.

Women work hard to appear ‘normal’ and keep things ‘normal’ while inside they may be feeling anxious, no one sees them walking the house in the dark – it is not insomnia, it is pure stress. Another girlfriend said she walked so much one night around and around the house cleaning that the dog  who faithfully slept on the couch got up and went outside to get away from her, as she found herself talking to it.

She told me it was the only time she felt less stress, as from daylight when the farmer got up in the morning he was rubbing his head and trying to work out what to do for the day. She went to discuss the finances with him once and he said he wasn’t interested so a fight occurred as she made him listen, she didn’t want him at any stage to turn around and say “I wasn’t aware, I didn’t know or WTF?” as things were going from bad to worse. They came to a resolution, she spoke, he listened and things went back to her feeling the full brunt of the declining back account, no solution to the problem so she went to the local town and started cleaning motel rooms.

Women rally, but they do get to a point where they feel they can’t cope but who do they tell? They won’t tell already stressed husbands, if they mention anything to girlfriends in the city, they look sympathic and move on which is not helpful and after a while most women don’t mention it more than once. One said “it is a problem that never goes away and won’t until it rains, stock comes back and farmers are working. How do my city friends even begin to grasp that?” I have no answers either so I listen.

“For me talking about it I feel disloyal to my husband, the farm, my parents in law and all of those hard working people who stay on farm during droughts” said another girlfriend today “so I say nothing but at night after the kids have gone to bed I drink, he hates it but I need to in order to cope.” “I feel so alone in this I can’t tell anyone” said another (as) ” I know once I start talking about it I won’t stop and it will become too real” I say to her “one day at a time” her response “please don’t be another one of those For sure it will rain, we know it will but when no one can answer that.”

I looked at her and said “the one I dislike “it is what it is, I know it is but it doesn’t help me.” She laughed and as we were standing there looking at each other she thanked me for listening and for understanding as she left I said “it will get better, I have another girlfriend who makes sure when she cries she does it in the shower, puts the radio on so no one can hear her and lets the water wash her face and tears away at the same time, when she stops gets out and puts her make up on and starts her day”. She asked me if she knew this person I said it’s all of us, we cope how we can and no one judges us harder than we do ourselves.”

Next time you see that lady sitting in the shopping centre alone, smile at her, assure her she is ‘normal’. She doesn’t need your sympathy or money to buy knickers, she would love money to buy feed, a bale of hay, seed to prepare for cropping, pellets for chooks all of that is foremost on her mind, but she wouldn’t accept it, she would feel rich sitting in nice company drinking her expensive coffee. She would love you to say hello and move on as if she didn’t have a care in the world, but if it’s me, stop and talk.

If you are reading this and need help call lifeline Australia 13 11 14









First Day 2015

Well it’s the first day of 2015 are you hung over? tired? full of energy? where are you placed today?. me I am doing fine, had a sleep in though, saw the New Year in with the TV & 4 cats. The cats only stayed till I started dancing around the lounge to some of the music from the Sydney Fireworks. We are lucky / unlucky with satellite TV we are 30 minutes ahead so we get it live on channel 2.

Cats and my dancing, I am taking no criticism from them for the fact that they ran out of the cat flap, almost at the same time, they had to line up and go one after the other. Phfftt I say, farmer on the other hand was asleep on the couch so he got up just on Sydney time midnight 1130pm here and went to bed to wake up at 3am (I think) to go back to sleep at 6am. Pete the dog also seemed to have slept through the noise of TV & snoring so he looks fine this morning also going into his 17th year.

I want to thank some of my face book friends for affirming that dancing on ones own does not mean I should be scorned by the cats, it is in fact relatively ok, no one mentioned the word sad, so that’s great. I perhaps taking cue from the cats need to improve my dance style to a cats ignored me or I need to do it more often so it doesn’t freak the bejesus out of them and all I see is bottoms as they run out the flap.

Perhaps needing to have a party – this year may be the year, there are people in my house who are turning 50 as are some really close friends (according to face book Guess your age quiz) I am turning 37 this year so I am young enough to party. We hope to celebrate all our friends good health, and many more celebrations not yet thought of. It is exciting to plan things and I like being organized so am planning on a few trips around Australia to see friends and family.

I hope you all had fun, held those you love a little closer, laughed loudly – I did when I saw the cats flee and woke up feeling happy to be alive and well. For those out there doing it tough, know that there is someone somewhere thinking about you and wishing for you nothing but the best. If you feel you need to be close to some one call them, even if it is a 5 minute conversation, say hi, doing ok, speak soon.

Happy New Years first day people, I’ll try to be more consistent with my blog this year, thanks to those people who have commented on it, written to me to tell me you enjoy it and those that read it and ignore it after that. As for the rude cats, sleeping dogs & husband I hope all of you are with me next year !!!OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Gatsby looking relaxed today after his midnight dance fest scare !!



Today is brought to you by the letter i

We have one on our property as do many to help drought proof and grow crop, leaving things to the elements is difficult when living on the land. It’s too hot, it’s too cold but it’s never too rainy we could have rain everyday of the week. I must admit I prefer winter to summer, not a fan of anything over 32 degree Celsius. We worry about our animals when it gets too hot, though we plant trees and isolate areas for them to get under the shade and for roughage, it is quite a thing to see trees ring barked from cattle.

A couple of years ago the farmer had his name in the ballot for a water allocation after over 10 years or so (before my time this commenced) it was awarded. Then it came to building the pivot so we can irrigate that was also another process. Now we have it I call it the “big sprinkler” and it works well to keep the ground watered and the cattle will follow it around drinking out of the sprinklers while the irrigation runs.

One thing the irrigation does though is hum and as there is no noise in the country at night so we can hear it from 4 kms away. This can add to his tinnitus (ringing in his ears) and adds to his insomnia. He sleeps with either the radio or TV on and gives all of us in the bedroom broken sleep. I still wake quite quickly and readily, I hear the cats crunching if they bring things into eat. One night I heard all four cats growling and hissing and in the midst of it was something else spitting. I hate the light going on so I now sleep with a torch, turned it on and there in the middle of a coven of cats was a frill neck lizard warding them all off. I was so annoyed I bent down picked it up so it wouldn’t bite me and put it outside. The cats watched and went off to their beds without further interruptions.

Pete the dog is in my opinion showing signs of disorientation at night and as I live in constant state of “will he or won’t he” (poop) every move has me jumping out of bed with torch ready to shove him outside, guide him to his water bowl in bathroom (prevent him getting on the treadmill) or have to go outside to get the pooper scooper to clean it up after he has been. It annoys me when he doesn’t even wake up and I’m inside, outside and cleaning up. Matilda the cat will sleep next to him on the mattress, she is not fussy which end of the dog is pointed her way, she jumps up and down when I get up and down as she is a flighty cat, the only night she never came back was the night she was at the wrong end of the dog and he pooped on her. Matilda will not sleep with anybody other than Pete or on her own.

We also have a parade of cats that wish to sleep with the farmer. Frankie loves to sleep up between our pillows and the minute he touches her she starts purring loudly, I have to push her away from me and closer to him so I can get back to sleep, Rita, Frankie sister loves to sleep on him, between his legs, lying full length alongside him and every time he rolls over or moves she jumps off and then back on, she will even run or jump on me to get height get back on and off. Now there is Gatsby the ring in, he loves to climb onto me and sleep at my feet, if they all happen to be there at the same time we have hissing at each other.

We have had a plethora of creatures and insects that come in and out of our bedroom uninvited, some alive but mostly dead (see cats in the above paragraph) bunnies, hares, moths, beetles and bats that survived as they were able to fly up and hide behind the curtains, birds to be honest fifty / fifty alive or dead here, mice and lizards that survive and mostly at night. Pete will wander about 3 times per night and then if I have a cat land on the bladder then I have to get up for myself. We hear cars, trucks and animal noises at night and will occasionally have to get up to yell at the dogs to shut up if they are barking at the frogs or other animals at night. Then when one is ready to go back to sleep the rooster announces the dawn at 430am.

I don’t have insomnia unless I am stressed as I can easily go back to sleep where as he can’t. Some nights I wish he would leave the bedroom, nothing more annoying than question time in parliament house at the early hours of the morning, or a really bad D grade western or musical film. Some nights I wish I would leave the bedroom and then think about the fact the spare bed is not made up. Some mornings I will get up and glare at all of the cats sleeping as though they have not done anything all night, Pete will lift his head and look surprised that daylight is here and sometimes, not often I will leave him to lay in bed, he normally gets up before me.

Light Hearted Fluff – TV Medical Dramas

I’m an avid medical drama watcher, the nurse in me wants to watch them when they are on TV no matter how corny or unbelievable they are, they bring me back to my nursing days where I felt part of a team of people doing good work. I loved ER, Dr. Mark Greene was the thinking girls heart-throb to those that don’t know it is Anthony Edwards or “goose” from Top Gun, wasn’t a big Clooney fan, he seemed to have been stuck on the same facial look, Dr. Doug Ross was “Dr McDreamy” or Dr. Derek Shepherd played by Patrick Dempsey from Grey’s Anatomy and Noah Wyle who played Dr. John Carter III really was ‘Dr. McSteamy”. or Dr. Mark Sloan played by Eric Dane in Grey’s Anatomy. (you will be pleased to know I had to ask Dr. google to help me with these names).

I like the medical dramas, I like looking at the medical equipment and guessing which company it came from, if it was a product I was selling I use to capitalise on this. Working in the operating theatre there were many shows that became the talk of the ‘table’ so to speak, this will show my age; starting with Melrose Place, ER and then Grey’s Anatomy.

We all use to talk about the opening scene of ER as all of the Dr’s wearing scrubs (operating theatre attire) with their white gowns on (flowing gowns) walking together through the automatic sliding doors, I can think of at least 3 Dr’s (male) who adopted this look and despite how good-looking they were, they were laughed at.

So it was with great anticipation Grey’s Anatomy is back on TV and play double episodes. I know this will shock you all it’s unrealistic, never have I seen a Dr. or nurse walking the corridors of a hospital on her wedding day with hair rollers, I have seen however brides coming in prior or after to show loved ones how beautiful they looked.

There’s always a moral story, an emergency that requires extreme expertise, an operation and inter-hospital relationships that are imploding upon each other and to wrap it up a better way to treat the people who you love and how to pay it forward. It a tried but true formula one which the farmer heads off to bed and leaves me too it. Weddings TV weddings are always filled with drama, brides or grooms not turning up, ‘sex and the city’ didn’t start the trend, there is the jilted lover waiting for the minister to ask whether anyone objects, then there is the family and friends who will do all they can to change the outcome.

Now we are left with will she or won’t she go through with the wedding with the groom or the person who stood to tell her that he loved her before the vows.. We have a whole week to wait to see it. I could do a spoiler and download the episode but then what would I do next Monday night.

I know how fluffy this is but it’s a good way to get back into blogging .Do people really go through this much angst? I think they do, life can be hard, situations call for help if you ask for it, relationships can be really tricky to juggle with work commitments as well as friendships and honesty. TV & Film writers seem to be able to wrap many aspects of human nature into 8 main characters and get us intrigued.





Finishing to start anew

I was told last week I needed to finish things up so that new opportunities could come my way. I have been procrastinating for many months – doing things, putting off things and finishing things became low on the priority list. So off I have set to finish things up, I drew myself up a list, double checked it to see if I had put all the things on it I needed to and as we know with most jobs or tasks it is not until someone reminds you, you do leave things off it.

Start how you mean to finish is one of my sisters favorite sayings and it works well for work life balance. Balance includes making sure you begin a task and then you complete it. I have avoided many over the years and the worst one – being my taxes. I am sure that should my accountant read this she will be saying, stop writing and get me the information I need, well I am about to complete this task. It is number 1, 2 and 3 on my priority list to do. I have slowly worked on this but only after I had done my husbands books, daughters taxes and then run right out of time to complete them. I say run out fo time to myself to justify this but actually it is through not be organised with my own book work that has me failing to complete this task.

I also have a couple of things hanging to do for the Keith Hospital, I have completed 2 of them but the Government grant has taken the urgency out of things for a while so I have let it lapse. I have 1 thing left to complete so will do this by the middle of June before I commence on the next list of projects. This is the cookbook, it has recipes from celebrities, chefs and local residents all whom have contributed a recipe, a bio or a picture, it will be beautiful.

I am also working on fundraising for my mothers choir, they are an Adelaide choir who have been invited to sing in Carnegie Hall next year. I have completed a submission to Qantas for sponsorship and letters that are currently being edited to go to major companies and TV stations for assistance and promotion.This will be my next thing I concentrate on, only between my taxes, during all this I will be job hunting.