Sunday Stealing, July 15 2012

Ugh.

Today my mother held a high tea for fun (and partly for her birthday during the week)… we also had a Red Velvet Cupcake cook-off… I don’t know who won but everyone loved the food. Me especially. Ate WAY too much and my stomach hurts. It was nice meeting some of mum’s friends though. They’re a bunch of lovely people. Not to mention that one of them brought along a pair of four month-old twins to show off. OMG, I am not the maternal type (yet) but their big blue eyes were so gorgeous. Ugh, adorableness to the extreeeeeeeme.

Anyway, it’s time for another…

Movie Meme!

1. What is your all-time favorite movie costume?
Oh goodness, there are so many great costumes. I guess, at a pinch, I’d have to say Eowyn’s green velvet dress from Lord of the Rings; Two Towers would have to be a favourite in the “girly” category for me. But then, mostly any beautiful gown in any period or fantasy movie takes my breath away.

2. What classic film would you nominate for a remake?
I wouldn’t! There’s a fucking reason why they are CLASSICS!!!! *breathing hellfire and brimstone*

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Ren + Craft = ??? (Part 1)

Ok, so my last “Oh How Pinteresting” link-up made me curious about the little projects that I’ve pulled out and had displayed on the shelves in my craft room. This is stuff I’ve bought over many years of attending various craft fairs with my mother as an annual (or whenever there happens to be one) mother-daughter pilgrimage.

I always have highfalutin and fanciful ideas that I can do crafty stuff when I’m in that environment.  It must be the whole surrounded by the OMGSOPRETTYCOOLSQUEEEEEEness of it all.

But, see… I have trouble with that sort of thing.  The whole sewing thing.   Particularly stuff that involves the cutting and the needles and the threading and the stitching…

You’re looking at a girl who failed her first attempt at getting a sewing machine licence in her high school textiles class.

(Yes, we had sewing machine licences. We had to prove that we weren’t going to play funny buggers with the equipment. You do not need to know about the horror of the destroyed bobbin on my first attempt.)

(Yes. I am deadly serious.)

(It was a massacre.)

(I also broke the foot thingy.)

(Not the needle foot thingy, the accelerator thingy – the bit that makes it go…)

(Don’t ask.)

Anyway, so in my delusional state of HOWHARDCOULDITBE? I ended up coming home with a little boxed project from a lovely artist by the name of Claire of Craft Schmaft who sells sock toy patterns and kits.

SOCK TOYS.  How could you not instantly love that?

When I saw the Sock Toy Owl mobile hanging in her stall, I was in love. Hopelessly in love. I wanted to have that owl’s baby-sock owl chicks.

Hm. Maybe a bit gross but it gets the point across – I loved them.

And I bought a kit.

This was three years ago, at least, because we’ve been in this house for three years now.  That’s how enthusiastic I was about putting them together when I got home.  I sort of looked at them and thought to myself, “Ren, what on earth were you on when you bought that?”

Don’t get me wrong, I still loved them (love them now, even) but once sense returned, I realised that it would be a cold day in Hell before I sewed even one little owlette together.

Well… looks like Satan is skating to work these days because I grabbed that box and opened it for the first time this morning.

 

Craft Schaft - Ren's attempt at stitchery

I love the packaging. It’s so simply done, yet effective.

 

Craft Schaft - Ren's attempt at stitchery

Ooo, ooo, ooo! Look, the first peek inside and an idea of what the owls are supposed to look like.

 

Craft Schaft - Ren's attempt at stitchery

Now this – THIS was cool.  Totally unexpected; a little tin that had the extra bits and pieces and probably where I could hide the evidence of sock murder I am about to commit later if things don’t turn out well.

 

Craft Schaft - Ren's attempt at stitchery

This is everything in the kit, sans stuffing which I don’t think anyone needs to see.  Some very cute socks-soon-to-be-owls, a few contrasting bits of patterned material, threads AND a needle. Clair thought of everything.  Really, all I need to do is provide the scissors.

 

Craft Schaft - Ren's attempt at stitchery

And that’s the pattern book.  Don’t the owls just look precious?

Stay tuned for the next installment of Ren + Craft = ???.

Will she succeed?

Will she fail?

Will she end up stitching a sock to her shirt?

Eh, that last one is probably the most likely.

 
SixSistersStuff.com

High Five for Friday, July 13, 2012

Ooooh, it’s Friday the 13th!

That one crept up on me.

I remember when Friday the 13th was heralded in with warnings about not going under ladders or letting a black cat cross your path…

Oh dear…

Dugite, the cat - Renlish.com

“Hellooooooooo…”

I am totally fucked.  Ha!

My unlucky Friday 13th cat, Dugite is, contrary to popular belief, a little sweety.  She’s been extra cute this week seeing as I’ve been home and in a little bit of a funk these past few days.  She’s always nearby for a cuddle. Particularly if I am eating yoghurt at the time.

Bindi, the cat - Renlish.com

“Deeerrrrp…”

Not so scary, or menacing, or… smart… is Bindi, who like her sister, is doing a very good job of keeping me company. When I’m in bed. Trying to read on my laptop.

Bronagh, the Aussie Bulldog - Renlish.com

“Nomnomnom!”

My dog Bronagh has also been a help this week, whether or not she knows it. We have a tense relationship. I love her to death, she doesn’t quite love me. It’s a sticking point. There has been lots of walking and pats and cuddles which she not-so-patiently puts up with.

Husband - Renlish.com

Husband, mine. No, not the bloody cat!

Even though you will NEVER see a picture of him on this blog in his entirety (he hates photographs – probably for the same reasons I used to hate them), the manbeast has been an unwavering and excessively patient person this last…well, 10 or so years and particularly this past six months and more acutely this week.  He doesn’t read my blog but if he decides to (or a friend points him in this direction)… I love you, manbeast.

Lastly, and I don’t have a picture of her, but I’ve got to give a massive shout out to Kerry (you know who you are) from Weight Watchers who gave me a call today out of the blue. She’s been sending me awesome text messages, especially last week as the countdown to the end of my employment happened and she’s become a lovely friend through the WW community.  Anyone doing WW on their own through the online subscription should totally get involved with the community there.

And that’s my…
Photobucket

The Skinny on Gettin’ Skinny

At little pre-warning – this is a long post. If you don’t like long posts, go read the paper, or something. ;)

 

Ever heard the term “fat and happy”?  I’m sure you would have.  I’d say you’d have to be living under a rock to not have heard that term at least once in your life.

The fact of the matter is “fat and happy” simply does not exist and anyone – ANYONE – trying to tell themselves or anyone else that it does is lying.

That is not to say that I don’t believe in curves.  I actually really detest the hard-bodied look on women but I think there is an achievable balance between the gentle peaks and valleys of Nigella Lawson and the rippling, washboard plains of Michelle Bridges.

 

Source: google.com via Erin on Pinterest

 

 

“Curvy and healthy” is more of a truth than “fat and happy” in any case.

To that end, I wanted to lose weight. I was sad and very unhealthy and I wanted to fix both of those things.  Now I am not quite as sad and I’m moderately healthier.

Having lost as much weight as I have, especially now that it’s very obvious, more and more people I know are pulling me over for a quiet chat.

“What are you doing?”

“How are you doing it?”

“What’s your secret?”

And the most frustrating one, “Lap band?”

They look at me, all hopeful-like, expecting me to tell them about this wonder drug that I take that makes you skinny in hardly any time at all.  And I feel so sad for them because I remember asking those same questions, hoping against hope that the person I was talking to would tell me that their doctor put them on this wondrous medication that made you lose weight really quickly and had no awful side effects.  Knowing that other people feel that same desperation really upsets me.  It’s horrible to know that it’s just so common.

There is no such thing as fat and happy.  Everyone who asks me proves it, time and time again.

How am I losing my weight?

This is my answer:

With determination.

With effort.

With education.

With practice.

With guidance.

With support.

With patience.

And it sucks.

If this shit were easy, everyone would be rake thin and gorgeously fit. It’s heart-achingly hard work. But! It’s paying off slowly.

Weight Watchers is not an easy program to follow compared to Lite n’ Easy, Jenny Craig, Tony Ferguson and the rest.  Nothing is done for you.  There’s no meals no meals and menus. No meal replacement shakes.  You’re given your limitations – you’re allocated set of points per day and you have to stick to those points. That is the only hard and fast rule.  You have to work out the balance within those points.  Just to make it more difficult, you’re also given a weekly allocation of points to use as you see fit which can be for things like surprise morning teas at work where you just can’t say no to a slice or cake. Or a birthday celebration and need to factor in that extra glass of wine (or five).  The point is you have to educate yourself.  I’ve spent the past 18 months educating myself.

Yes, it takes THAT LONG.

And, frustratingly, it may take even longer.

For those of you who have read this far and are in it for the long-haul, this is the email that my lovely friend Janet (my WW guru and bestie who has lost 40-odd kg too) sent me when I first sent her that cry for help in November, 2010.

It has all the information anyone would need in order to achieve success and these are wise words I constantly refer back to.

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Oh How Pinteresting, July 11, 2012

As I’m home and doing nothing for a while (due to being jobless, did I not say that before?) I thought I would peruse Pinterest for crafty things to do to fill up some hours.

Nevermind the fact that I’ve got several boxed projects waiting to be opened up and put together.  One day I’ll blog about ‘em.

In the interim, Pinterest is a never-ceasing ideas smorgasbord…

A handy-dandy home-make planner/calendar made with paint chips and a picture frame. Genius!

 

 

It’s Winter and therefore we all need some pocket warmers. I’d never actually seen these thingies before but considering my hands are constantly cold, I think I am going to HAVE to make some.

Source: etsy.com via Erin on Pinterest

 

 

A puppet horse out of sticks.  Why the heck not?!

Source: 365slojd.se via Erin on Pinterest

 

 

If you have a look at my Crafty DIY board on Pinterest, you can see a few different pins of various fairy gardens. I am enraptured by the cuteness and my inner fantasy geek is going SQUEE! all over the place.

 

 

This has got to be my most popular pin out of everything I’ve ever pinned.  A squirrel made out of an old glove. Serious cuteness right here.

Lurking in Melbourne

I love Melbourne.  It’s my home town. It’s gritty, fast, not quite safe and full of surprises.

Melbourne at night is slightly noirish. Be dazzled by the bright lights and you miss seeing (sometimes to your detriment) what’s lurking in the shadows.

One night I played the lurker…

Melbourne at Night - Peeking in, by Renlish.com

 

Melbourne at Night - Peeking in, by Renlish.com

 

Melbourne at Night - Peeking in, by Renlish.com

 

Melbourne at Night - Peeking in, by Renlish.com

 

Melbourne at Night - Peeking in, by Renlish.com

 

Melbourne at Night - Peeking in, by Renlish.com

Yes, that’s a sheep. No, I don’t know why.

 

Sunday Stealing, July 8 2012

Welcome to the official I am no longer employed edition of Sunday Stealing.

Not that it makes a difference to anything, of course, but it has been busy and I’ve been a little too distracted to blog for the past couple days. That’ll change. I’ve got some wicked photos to put up and the usual whinings to write.

 
181. What’s the BEST rock band that you have seen live?
I do have to admit, I don’t get to go to many concerts. I do enjoy the concert atmosphere but my taste in music is such that it can often be hard to find someone who wants to spend the money and take the time to go with me. He probably doesn’t count much as a “band” but I’ve loved seeing John Fogerty every time he’s traveled out to Australia these past couple years. He’s starting to sound a little jagged around the edges and he can’t quite hit the high notes the same as he could, but he puts on a great show.

And seriously, who doesn’t like a little Creedence?

182. Could you image being in a situation where you would run from the police?
Not unless said police were flesh-eating zombies…

183. Have you ever been asked for an autograph?
Nah. Maybe one day!

184. What would you change about your living room?
EVERYTHING. I need new armchairs and a couch, I want to put down a rug, I want to get a whopper of a big-screen TV, I want to paint the walls something a little warmer than Primer White.

185. Do you drink out of glass or plastic most of the time at home?
Eh? I’m an adult, therefore I use glass. Only people shorter than 4 feet get to use plastic in my house. Obvious exception is midgets.

186. Last hug?
The manbeast.

187. Have you ever had to make up your mind?
I do that every day. I make up my mind to get out of bed. I make up my mind to have a shower. I make up my mind to ignore the housework…

188. What is on top of your refrigerator?
Dust bunnies.

189. Did it work out for you in terms of kids? (Meaning how did it work out & are you happy. In other words, from “Have none, wanted none” to “8 kids & 3 grandkids)
Have none… not exactly how I wanted it to work out, but them’s the breaks.

190. Are you afraid of the dark?
The dark, no. Zombies that walk around in the dark trying to eat people, yes.

191. What if you had three wishes – what would you wish for?
First wish would be that our mortgage was paid off and we had a bit of money in the bank. Second wish would be that my back and hip problems would be fixed so I could lose weight more effectively. Third wish? Eh, world peace.

192. Do you feel sad often?
Yes.

193. Have you ever been in lust for an extended period of time?
Yes.

194. Do you shower daily?
No. Don’t get me wrong. I clean myself daily but sometimes I just can’t be assed having a full-on shower.

195. Have you ever prank called someone?
Seriously, who hasn’t?

196. If you have a garage, is it cluttered?
Surprisingly, our garage is mostly uncluttered. Probably due to the fact it has to house my car and the manbeast’s motorbike. There’s not a lot of room for clutter though we do have some junk in there that could use a little re-sorting and throwing out/putting away.

197. You are about to die. What do you do with your worldly possessions?
I’m about to die, I really don’t give two hoots about my worldly possessions. Not like I can take them with me.

198. Tell us about the first time that you bought a car.
Technically, my second (and current) car was first car that I bought. My first car my mother bought for me for the great price of $3000. It was a 1978 Datsun 120Y Coupe. Mustard coloured. It still had to be started with a choke.

199. What is your favorite type of music?
I’m rather eclectic, I don’t really have a favourite type. I listen to anything from Alice Cooper to Mike Oldfield.

200. What’s your family like?
My mother is a lovable, yet reliable dodderer. My sister is obnoxious. My husband is adoring.

 
And just because I like Sunday Stealing so much, I am going to do the July 4th edition as well…

141. What’s the difference between Stealing and other memes that you do?
I actually enjoy most of the questions and the blogs that join in are very different. I love perusing other people’s answers.

142. Best cartoon show ever?
Warner Bros Looney Tunes – the original ones.

143. Does it matter to you if your significant other smokes?
Yep. I’m asthmatic. It means I die if he does. But he doesn’t, so no fear there.

144. Do you ever use your full name?
No, because when I do, people call me Erin-Marie. My name is not Erin-Marie. It’s Erin.

145. Do you get annoyed easily?
Just writing the answer to 144 annoyed me. So… yes.

146. Indecent proposal: Would you sleep with an attractive billionaire for millions of $?
Yes. Sorry, manbeast.

147. Where do you draw the line?
Depends on the issue at hand.

148. Have you ever been on a road trip?
Yep, several. All over the place.

149. What’s your favorite drink?
To be honest, chocolate milk.

150. Which is better, amazing eyes or an amazing smile? Why?
An amazing smile lights up the whole face. What’s the point of having pretty eyes if the smile doesn’t reach them?

151. What was your first thought this morning?
“Feck, it’s cold and I have to let the dog out…”

152. Have you ever wanted to go to sleep and not wake up?
Very occasionally. But I always wake up.

153. Would you try to take over the world?
Nah, too much pressure. I’m not that organised.

154. What is the most romantic thing someone of the preferred sex has done for you?
Made out with me for hours. I love kissing.

155. Have you ever been asked to do something disgusting?
I can’t say that I have…

156. How much cash do you have right now?
My redundancy payout… which is kinda huge, but considering we’re paying off a mortgage, it will only last a few months.

157. Tell us something totally random about yourself.
I broke my wrist during a “running backwards” race when I was 11.

158. What really turns you off?
Arrogance.

159. Has anyone ever said you looked like a celebrity?
I get told I look like Adele all the time these days. I’m not seein’ it!

160. You’re having a bad day. Who do you want to talk to?
Anyone who will listen.

161. Have you ever studied the Bible?
Yes. I went to a Catholic primary school and then a Catholic high school. We sorta had to pay attention to The Book.

162. What really turns you off?
Repetitive questions.

163. What’s a goal that you’d like to achieve?
Find a job I can be happy doing for a few years.

164. Name one celebrity you hate, and why.
Lara fecking Bingle. Waste of air and perfectly good vital organs.

165. What’s your favorite store?
Sugar Station. Oh, fudgey goodness…

166. What’s one goal you’d like to achieve this year?
Get to double digits on the scales before my birthday. Hopefully get to 94kg before my birthday but that might be reaching a little too far. But I really want to achieve my “94 by 34″ goal.

167. What’s the first thing you notice about your preferred sex?
Shoulders.

168. Who is your oldest friend? How long have you known them?
All of my friends are relatively new these days. I’d have to say Rae and Tony are my oldest friends, really. Known for a few years now and we met through one of my other blogs.

169. Do you like photography?
Does Mick Jagger have lips? Do bears crap in the woods? Is the Pope Catholic?

170. Pain or no gain?
For me… definitely pain.

171. What’s something people say that you generally find annoying?
“Just sayin’”. It’s an excuse for people to say awful things.

172. How often do you change your myspace/facebook/etc profile?
Maybe once every few months. It’s really not that important to me.

173. Do you ever cook?
I like to bake more than I like to cook real meals. The manbeast cooks beautifully.

174. Have you ever been on a boat?

Rosencrantz: Do you think Death could possibly be a boat?
Guildenstern: No, no, no… death is not. Death isn’t. Take my meaning? Death is the ultimate negative. Not-being. You can’t not be on a boat.
Rosencrantz: I’ve frequently not been on boats.
Guildenstern: No, no… what you’ve been is not on boats.

Therefore I am frequently not on boats. (Though I am not Death, unless you’ve had the salmon mousse…)

175. What do you do most when you’re bored?
Play online.

176. What is your favorite musical instrument?
Piano. Though I can’t play it.

177. What’s your phone ringtone?
Stock standard “RING, RING”.

178. Have you ever been in a movie? (Either amateur of professional.)
Nah. I don’t like being in front of the camera.

179. Describe your life currently in five words.
Completely ordinary in every way.

180. Where did you last fly to and why?
Last flew out to Western Australia for the manbeast’s father’s special 70th birthday celebrations.

Oh How Pinteresting! July 4th 2012

Ok, happy 4th to my American friends!  I hope you are all having a SPLENDIFEROUS holiday and celebration.

Unfortunately being an Aussie, I don’t really prescribe to the whole Independence Day thing (unless it’s Jeff Goldblum walking towards me a la Independence Day) so I can’t really do a July 4th inspired OHP this week.

That being said, with my impending redundancy which comes into effect this coming Friday (boo! hiss!) comes a new adventure in house redecoration planning.  “Within reason,” says the manbeast.  Meaning money should be carefully watched and he should be consulted on colour choices… nevermind the fact that I’ll ignore everything he says anyway…

Ahem.

So today I am going to play MONEY IS NO OBJECT and show you stuff that I would luuuurve in my dream home.

 

 

Starting from the outside… a beautiful, dreamy garden. Complete with garden fairies, of course.

 

 

Source: tumblr.com via Erin on Pinterest

 

My dream house would have a massive room I could use as a glamour/boudoir studio with windows like THAT… OMG.

 

 

 

I would definitely have a kitchen like that.

 

 

Source: tumblr.com via Erin on Pinterest

 

And a bathroom like that. (Only no toilet in the bathroom.)

 

 

Source: walyou.com via Erin on Pinterest

 

My WC would look like this… BECAUSE I AM THAT GEEKY.

 

 

Source: houzz.com via Erin on Pinterest

 

And there would be a mini library in my WC because, well, seriously, I come from a LONG line of throne readers.

 

 

 

My home office would look like that.

 

 

Source: shelterness.com via Erin on Pinterest

 

My craft room would look just like that! Imagine all the beads everywhere… lordy, lordy… *luff*

 

 

 

And I would have the most beautiful reading nook, just like this one.

The rest of the rooms… I’m still thinking about those ones!

Blog Star (I wish)

Hiya all!

There’s not much folks don’t know about me anymore. I’m out there… *waving hands around*… in the websphere… all over the place!

I’m a missus, a mother of three slightly demented fur babies (two cats and a dog), a photographer (and desperately want to start my own boudoir/glamour business), a gamer, a writer, a reader, a driver of a crappy car, a soon-to-be-unemployed-in-three days senior administration officer for a finance company, a walker, a Weight Watcher, a lover of aqua aerobics, a nail polish addict, a make-up addict, a big sister, an aunty, a daughter, a lover of awful music (according to the manbeast), an artist, a bad cook, a good friend (I like to think), a dreamer of big dreams, a wisher of income through blogging, a jewelry-designer, a hopeful lotto ticket buyer.

My greatest achievement in recent times is losing 45kg.

And before you ask – NO, I did not have any sort of surgery.

You would not believe how often I get asked that question.

I’m following the Weight Watchers ProPoints plan and getting some exercise.

Before WW:

That’s me, the day after my wedding day in 2008, just two days shy of turning 30. I was 138kg.

By January 1st, 2011, I had ballooned to 152kg.  I joined Weight Watchers that day.

This is me today:

 

(Ugh, sorry for the bad quality of the pictures, they were taken by my sister this evening on her phone.)

A little over 18 months, I am 45kg lighter and 107kg.  I still have a long way to go but 77kg is my WW goal. 72kg is my personal goal.

I’m living proof that even someone with terrible eating habits, very bad degenerative back and hip problems (problems which, ironically, have come to the surface as I’ve been losing weight) and a natural aversion to movement of any kind can lose weight.

I won’t be running marathons any time in the near OR distant future, but I will live a heck of a lot longer than I might have otherwise done.

Plus, you know… sexy clothes… totally worth it for them.

Written for Mrs Monologues  BLOG STAR link-up!

 

Mrs. Monologues