Saturday, April 28, 2007

Arriving at work... a little less exciting. A monstrosity built in the seventies (I think). It's pretty crap inside as well.My entrance is in through the Lower basement - where the buses are parked.
It's dark and, as you can see, I walk past trash to enter my office.
The office is overrun with books - not too surprising, I suppose :-) And can you see the pipe running across the top? It drains some slight plumbing problem, further up the building, and when it rains you'd think there was a stream running through the place - or maybe a urinal?

Friday, April 27, 2007

Walking to work

These are a few of the buildings that I walk past every day on my way to work. I have a ten-minute drive and then a ten-minute walk, right through the centre of Dunedin. It was a misty, chilly, autumn morning this morning. Coats required, but not hats and gloves yet.
Law Courts
Railway Station
St Paul's Cathedral
Town Hall

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

How high can you piss up a wall?

I have been in this house for seventeen years. My second son, Jed, was born a few months after moving in. This is our inbuilt height chart. The marks are ground into the wood with ball-point pen. I stopped letting the kids record me when they noticed a slight decrease in height – uh uhh I worked hard to get to my lofty 5’ 5 1/2”.
Jed has just topped 6” and is inordinately proud of it. So much so that he wound some insulation tape around the beam, and called it ‘The Jed Line’. I found this quite funny. Jed’s stepfather did not and was annoyed by it. He tops six foot too, so it wasn’t an inferiority thing. He thought it might ‘damage the wood’ and ‘make it hard to paint’. We all burst into hysterical laughter at this statement, seeing that it is ruined already and it NEVER gets painted. He was not amused.Jed, being the most amenable member of this family, asks Seán if he wants him to take it down - this after me arguing for 5 minutes (on his behalf) that it should stay. Seán say 'Yes please' and Jed calmly unwinds it and puts in in the bin. This boy should join the UN.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Rise and shiny

Is this reality blogging? Thanks to Jessica, Karl, and Hilly, et al.

Interesting idea for some inane reason - let's not do our navels next , huh?

This morning - 9.30am - school holiday sleep-in - woken by mad father wanting a new library book - I don't wanna get up!

Friday, April 20, 2007


Librarian by Haunted Love

This music video was shot in my library stack area and we were invited to its release a few weeks ago.

I have no qualms about being stereotyped when the result is as quirky as this.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Me Big Hunter Man!

Off all the times to have a mouse invasion, let’s wait for guests to arrive.

We always get about four mice a year, as the autumn weather turns chilly. The beasts annoy us for a couple of nights while we are in bed and then the traps come out. Four mice later and no more are seen.

But this year we can’t stop catching the wee buggers! Worse they are being seen in the daytime! Zipping under the fridge or the TV, crawling up the fire surround and darting across the woodpile. All this while we are entertaining guests. I felt like this was a third world country and our house was somehow attracting vast hoards of mice. I explained several times how this only occurs for about a week every year, but I don’t think they believed me.

The other odd thing is that Seán has taken such an active roll in the catching of them. It has usually been my job to catch and dispose of them. Especially the ones that get caught at night and aren’t quite dead yet. But this year Seán is setting the traps avidly and discussing bait and strategy with my son. He proudly shows each catch off and has piled up the corpses! Why? What’s wrong with the wheelie-bin? Get rid of them please….

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Julie visits Dunedin!

The lovely Julie came to visit us in Dunedin. A whistle-stop tour of 20 hours!Larent, Pablo, Sophie, Julie, Melissa

I first met Julie last year via her blog southpacificsojourn. Seán and I were heading to New Caledonia for a holiday and on discovering Julie's blog, I asked her a few questions about what to expect in her Pacific wonderland. Once in Noumea we met up with Julie; husband Laurent, baby Pablo and daughter Sophie. We lunched (tuna steak :-)) on their balcony – feasting our eyes on this beautiful view.

Six months later they arrive, along with friend Melissa from LA, for 7 days in New Zealand. Dunedin was their last stop before flying home to the tropics. I think they may have underestimated how far south we really are down here, and were taken back with the chilly weather.

We picked them up from the airport about 10.30am and whisked them home for some lunch. Pablo had a nap, Julie relaxed with me (and a roaring fire), while Seán, Jack, Sophie, Laurent and Melissa went on a Cadbury chocolate factory tour and hit some shops for those last minute souvenirs.

We then zoomed around the Otago peninsula - our favourite playground. Unfortunately we were in the middle of a cold snap, so beach walks, penguin and seal spotting were all off the menu. We ended up at Tairoa head – the only mainland albatross breeding area in the world. The wind was howling, (along with Pablo who has never experienced cold before!) but no albatross were flying. They have a nifty web cam link to a chick that hatched this year. Not much happens, but I keep looking hoping to spot the parents feeding it.

Back home for lamb chops, roast potatoes, etc, and then Seán took them all down to his museum for one of his special ‘behind the scenes’ tours. I stayed home and babysat a sleeping Pablo. Dessert/supper (including New Zealand’s iconic Pavlova) was served when they got home from the museum. A bit more of a chat and then everyone headed to bed.

They had three flights today to get them back to their wee slice of paradise. Laurent was apparently planning to be up at 5am tomorrow to go for a run!

It was lovely to have them here – my third ‘blogger’ friend to stay in our house! Just a shame the weather didn’t cooperate with our plans.Delicious Pablo

Friday, April 13, 2007

Days or dates?

We were actually married Easter Sunday 2004 which was April 11th. I now have two anniversary dates each year!

Darling Seán likes to celebrate our marriage on Easter Sunday, but I feel like there is enough going on that day; church, school holidays, etc and want to stick to the 'real' date.

So we have compromised, as one does, a meal with the family (kids) Easter Sunday and a meal out (the two of us) on the 11th.

April 11th won't fall on Easter Sunday again until 2066, I'll be 104 all going well :-)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Jack as Jesus

This is Jack in his school presentation of the Easter story. He was Jesus for the second year running – they must think he dies well.

Shocking photos. But it’s a record. It may be the very last time he ever gets to play Jesus – something I have never done :-)

'Snot so bad

I read that last post and it sounds so depressing. Life is, actually, not that bad. In fact 87% of the time it is great and I love my life. That's a pass isn't it? An A+ pass, in fact. So, it is a little annoying (to myself and everyone around me) that I allow the 13% of shitty times to infiltrate and taint the good bits.

As I have been told many times - build a bridge and get over it.

Seán, who no longer reads my blog, is such a lovely man. He is kind and gentle, honest and caring, he has a generosity of spirit that is unbelievable (he's very clever too and I like that in a man) - the shit that he has to put up with from me is amazing and yet he does. he forgives me my sins over, and over, and over, and over. I forget this at times.

I'm always looking back and thinking how I would have liked to have married him first and had a family together that would have avoided that 13% of conflict - which is mainly about differing parenting styles and standards. But it’s probably not true, and we would still have had arguments over sex and money and children - as you do. And, of course, my darling children would not be the wonderful people they are...

So, this year I resolve to enjoy my wedding anniversary - not treat it casually and as though it is nothing more than just another day. We had a fabulous wedding day - full of fun and laughter and such a lot of good wishes. It's time to let the past be the past, stop regretting choices made and remember that this is my life now and this is what I have and it is good.

"All shall be well, and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well"

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Wicked Step Mother

I exist in one of those ghastly 'blended' families. It all began about three years ago when My Darling begged me to marry him. We had been in a relationship for over seven years and, by then, had had a child but still lived in separate houses. I ummed and ahhhed a bit - quite a bit - and then agreed. This meant that I gained three stepchildren. Grrr.

So, seven kids originally, the steps are here six days a fortnight, my three go to their dad’s every second weekend and darling Jack lives here all the time. We are down to five kids at home now; Sean’s eldest son is in Stuttgart having his OE (overseas experience) while my eldest went to live with his dad last year and is now in his second year at university.

So, Easter this year five are here and I will probably go slightly mad (again and again and again); too much chocolate, too much noise, just too, too, too much all together. Oh, and they all have two weeks of school holidays as of Good Friday -joy, oh, bloody joy…Double oh, I have a wedding anniversary to enjoy next week as well :-)

“Regrets, I have a few, but then again, too few to mention” (ha, ha, ha)

Monday, April 02, 2007

Good old Timmers

I seem to be busy these days; no time to post, no time to blog – plenty of time (in Jo’s weird time scheme) to read and eat, however J

We are just back from a lovely weekend in Timaru visiting Seán’s parents. I love them dearly. I wish they were mine and it would, I think, be nice to grow up and be them. Perfect people, really.

Meet up with three of Seán’s four sisters, one brother-in-law and a couple of nephews as well. As is always the case there are a couple of ‘awkward’ bodies amongst this lot. More awkward than me (I think and hope?), which is saying something! But the good way out weighs the bad in this family. It makes my family look like cardboard cutouts and after visiting I always wonder how I would have turned out if I had been a child in that house?

My father is still battling his depression, or rather sinking further into the mire. It’s so hard to remain positive in the face of his overwhelming helplessness and childlike behaviour. I am tired of him.

I am also tired of my sore knee. I had thought it was coming right, but the last few days it has been achy and has sharp pains in it. I haven’t run for a week and am not inclined to, but need to for my base fitness. Karate grading is at the end of April – 4 weeks! Must run, must run!