Am I Ok? R U OK?

RUOK DayThis finding a new job stuff is tough. The hours you put into writing resumes and cover letters may as well be a full-time job all on it’s own.

I’ve been unemployed for a touch over two months now and I will confess it worries me. The money I got from my redundancy will not last forever and there’s been a few rather costly situations come up which has resulted in the money lasting even less time than expected. I had plans for much of it. I had hoped to be employed again by now so I could take advantage of those plans but unfortunately it’s not happening for me. I simply cannot find anything I would like to do or when I do find something I invariably end up being not the right candidate for the job – for whatever lame reason the prospective employer can think up.

I want to change careers but it’s difficult to do so when you’re boxed in by previous experience. My first job was an accident that evolved into something that I just settled into for seven years – that being dealing with lawyers and their passive aggressive PAs on the phone, assisting them with obtaining the necessary documents for property conveyancing …or realty, as it might be called in the states, if I have that right… please correct me if not.

When I was made redundant from that job, I had the good fortune of having a contact who put me in touch with a recruitment lady who had dealt with a lot of folk from the office and she placed with me with my next job, as an administration officer working for a superannuation company. I got that because they were willing to let a newbie have a go. Of course that role grew and evolved with the years and I managed a pretty sweet deal for myself in terms of pay – but not experience. I could say that I was a senior administrator in the end but really, I was just the lackey of the team leaders. I wasn’t allowed to be a senior because they wouldn’t let go enough to let me do what the job entailed. I missed out on a lot of promised training that never eventuated as well and only barely managed to get the standard qualification that’s necessary to work in finance these days in time before my end date came along.

In the time that I was with that company, I had also done a graphic design course which was, frankly, abysmal and I still feel like I don’t have the skills to do anything with it.

This is where I am lost at the moment. I know just enough of a lot to be knowledgeable but not actually useful in any particular profession.

I don’t know where to go from here. I really don’t. I’d love to get out of the bloody awful, dry office environment. If I could do admin stuff from home I most happily would because then I’d have the company of my cats and dog and not a bunch of people I have to resign myself to putting up with. I’d love to do something new. Childcare was and still is an interest of mine. But then so is being a make-up artist.

I was told by a nice lady that I was only 33, “still a baby trying to figure out what you’re going to be when you grow up” and yes, while I do indeed feel that way… I know that I am a 33 year-old who still needs to get a job.

Am I ok?

Yes. For the moment. It gets me down but it’s not soul destroying. My husband and family are there for me. There is nothing that can happen to us that we can’t build ourselves back up from.

But some people have it tougher than I…

So now maybe it might be time to ask someone you know going through some trouble…


Conversations in a Hospital

Admin Nurse:  “What’s your full name?”

Me: Ren Guest

Admin Nurse:  “What are you having done today?”

Me: “I’m having my wisdom teeth out.”

Admin Nurse: “How many?”

Me: “Three. I’m special.”

Admin Nurse:


Theatre Nurse:  “What’s your full name?”

Me: Ren Guest

Theatre Nurse:  “What are you having done today?”

Me: “I’m having three wisdom teeth out.”

Theatre Nurse:  “Great!”

Me:  “What do I get for winning?!”

Theatre Nurse: *deadpan*


Surgeon:  “What’s your full name?”

Me: Ren Guest

Surgeon:  “What are you having done today?”

Me: “I’m having three wisdom teeth out.”

Surgeon: “Great, see you on the other side.”

Me: “Do I keep going towards the light when I see it?”

Surgeon: *deadpan*


Anesthetist:  “What’s your full name?”

Me: Ren Guest

Anesthetist:  “What are you having done today?”

Me: “I’m having a vasectomy and two toes removed!”

Anesthetist: *deadpan*

Me: “OFFS.  I’m having three wisdom teeth removed. Two on the bottom one on the top.”

Anesthetist: “Thank you.”

Me: *sigh*


Me, upon waking up: “Don’t put the clothes peg on the shark fin…”

Recovery Nurse:  o.O

bellabox – August box review

Seems I’m doing lots of reviews lately, and I know that I am. I just like talking about stuff that I like and occasionally I get asked to check something out.

Don’t worry, I’ve got some good ol’ fashioned bloggy posts coming up soon, plus some more images of Melbourne which I’ve been dying to share.

But today I’m finally putting up a review of the August bellabox.

For those of you who aren’t in the know, bellabox is an Aussie version of the UK “Glossy Box” and the American “Birchbox” and “Glam Box”… and I am sure there are oooooodles of others. bellabox seemed to be a good price for some pretty nifty samples. At $15 a month (that includes postage, fyi), you get at least five samples of some pretty exclusive products. From my observation of the first box I’ve received and comments from others, it’s pretty worthwhile as they throw in the occasional full-size samples, the value of which can totally make up for the cost of the box.

Anyhoo… This is what the box looks like:

bellabox, August -
Innit cute??!

I must admit, the packaging is rock-solid. No flimsy wrapping at all. The Bella Box comes in another postage box so it’s a solid little parcel that arrives.

Here’s how everything’s wrapped:

bellabox, August -
Petite “bb” sticker… awww….

Before you even open the tissue paper, you get to read the card which gives you the theme of the box as well as a breakdown of what’s inside. Kinda cool.

And this is everything inside the box!

bellabox, August -
The gory innards!

Ok, onto the good stuff…

Click the linkydink to read more – there’s lots of pictures and writing!

Read more

Blog Star – The Ren

Mrs. Monologues
Ren, aka Erin, is a photography enthusiast studying to become a who is a qualified graphic designer – not that she’ll ever use that qualification for anything important. She’s also qualified to work in the world of finance, too, but that’s boring.

When she’s not working her regular job or drawing pretty pictures for school fun, she’s often found crouched over her kitchen table making jewelry, taking photographs of pretty girls, chatting online or writing The Great Australian Novel.

Or, y’know, blogging.

She swears.  A lot. She’s trying her best to curb this habit but it occasionally slips out into her writing, especially when she’s frustrated.

She has two small cats called Bindi (“bin-dee”) and Dugite (“dew-gyte”), who are otherwise known as Spewkitty and Miss McChuckup.

You can figure out why.

She also has an Australian Bulldog called Bronagh (“bro-nah”) who eats everything. Logs, electrical cable, every doggy bed she’s ever been bought…

Oh yeah, and she’s married to the manbeast, otherwise known as The Hubby, otherwise known as Himself. But mostly just the manbeast.

There is no photo of the manbeast.

She also LOVES taking photos of pretty ladies and is an aspiring boudoir/glamour photographer.

Boudoir - Janet


Captivating Kaz
She also thinks it’s kinda weird that she’s talking about herself in third person.


The Ren. Photograph by!

Review: Golden Circle Healthy Life – Probiotic Juicy Goodness!

A short while ago I was chosen to review Golden Circle’s new Healthy Life range of probiotic juices.  Nuffnang (see the linkidink in “Featuring” over there on the right) were kind enough to send me not only means to obtain the juice but I also got an awesome cooler bag which will be perfect for when I return to work.  Yay for cool, healthy lunches!


Golden Circle Healthy Life™ Fruit Juice with Probiotic Cultures
Golden Circle Healthy Life™ Fruit Juice with Probiotic Cultures

{Product Talk by Nuffnang!}

Let’s just say that any fruit juice in Casa del Ren is pretty much adored by both myself and the manbeast so I was as pleased as… a very happy thing… as was the manbeast, to have the opportunity to take some new juices for a test run.  It took me a little while to find them as it seems that they are already pretty popular (and rightly so) as I had to go to two different supermarkets to find them! (Thanks Woollies in Wyndham Vale!)

Here’s the blurb from Golden Circle:

“Introducing Golden Circle Healthy Life™ Fruit Juice with Probiotic Cultures – your dairy-free daily serve of probiotic goodness. The first of their kind in Australia, our delicious chilled juices with probiotic cultures have no added sugar and no artificial colours or flavours. The goodness of fruit juice and the unique combination of probiotics, clinically shown to support your body’s natural immune defences.”

There’s two juices in the range; the Breakfast Juice which is made from orange, apple, pineapple, passion fruit and banana… (Good lord, can we say “NOM!” yet??!) and my personal favourite, Apple Mango which is… apple and mango – I kid you not. Yum! The manbeast has also tried the juices and really liked them. I can already tell that there’s going to be none of the Breakfast Juice left by tomorrow morning.

The great thing about these is that unlike many bottled juices, it doesn’t have that slightly bitter reconstituted after-taste. You know the one – particularly if you’re a fan of bottled orange juice. It just doesn’t taste right and it feels like you’ve been chewing on old orange peel. Fortunately with these juices there’s none of that, so that was a plus for me. Secondly, they are quite sweet so my inner sugar fiend is satisfied but I’m not bouncing off the walls. You don’t get that cloying sticky mouth or feel like you need to have a glass of water afterwards to kill the sweetness. That’s because there’s no added sugar. It’s all juice!

For those amongst us who are unable to eat dairy, this may be a great alternative way to get those probiotic goodnesses in ya tum without making yourself sick.

For those of us doing Weight Watchers, a 200ml serve of Apple Mango is a mere 3 ProPoints and the Breakfast Juice is just 2 ProPoints for the same serve size! EEEE!!!!  Not bad odds at all!  As someone who has undergone a major lifestyle change, maintaining and getting the balance right between the things that are good for me and the things that I actually like is very important. Juice is usually fairly high when it comes to our ProPoints budgets so having something we could easily work into our day for minimal points is a good thing! Maybe the coffee drinkers amongst us can swap a caffeine hit for a juice hit instead? (It’s better for you anyway… *wheedle*)

Anyway, Golden Circle Healthy Life™ Fruit Juice with Probiotic Cultures is available in Coles, Safeway/Woolworths and IGA stores across Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland and is available in both 1 Litre and 300ml bottles. You can find out more about these juices on the Golden Circle Healthy Life website.

(Postscript – as great as these juices are, sadly they have not cured my raging tooth decay and I still need to go have my wisdom teeth surgically removed on Monday afternoon next week. BOO-HISS!)

Sunday Stealing, August 26, 2012

And welcome to another edition of Sunday Stealing…

1. What type questions do you hate on a meme?
I dislike repetitive questions. Also questions that deal with touchy subjects in an insensitive way.

2. If you married the last person you texted, what would your last name be?

Um… I’m sorta-kinda already married to him. Though technically I haven’t changed my name as yet (and we’ve been married over three years, oops)… but if I did, it would be King.

3. Were you happy when you woke up today?
I was sore when I woke up today, actually. My busted wisdom tooth has finally decided to play a card in the painful stakes. Need to see someone, stat.

4. When were you on the phone last? And with who?

I was on the phone with my sister last night.

5. Who are you excited for?
That’s a random question… I’m excited for my mum who is holidaying in Bali right now.

7. Honestly, who was the last person to tell you they love you?
My husband.

8. What’s the last thing you put in your mouth?

Anzac cookies made by the manbeast specifically for me. Awwwwwwwww.

9. Have a best friend?
I have a bunch of close friends, all of whom I would consider my best friends.

10. Were you ever or are you scared to fall in love?
Always. It takes a heck of a lot of bravery to open yourself up to possible hurt that loving someone can bring.  Fortunately it worked out for me.

11. Do you think teenagers can be in love?
Of course they can!

12. Last person you wanted to punch in the face?
Hah… um, stupid people who shall not be mentioned in this blog.

13. What time is it right this second?

14. What do you want right now?
Breakfast. Eggs on toast would be lovely.

15. Who was the last person you took a picture with?
The last picture I took was of me, myself and I.

16. Are you single/taken/heartbroken/or confused?
Married! And always confused. ;)

17. When was the last time you cried?
A couple days ago, I was really, really, REALLY stressed out over a job interview.

18. Do you have a good relationship with your parents?
I have a close bond with my mum.  I love my dad but our relationship has been strained for a decade. It’s not likely to change.

19. Do you find it hard to trust others?
I try to trust people as much as possible… though sometimes it just isn’t possible at all.  You can only be hurt or disappointed by the same people over and over again and obviously that carries over into relationships with others.

20. How fast does your mind change?

21. I bet you miss somebody right now. Who is it?
Not tellin’!

22. Can you honestly say you’re okay right now?
I have a really sore mouth, so no…. not really okay.  I’m also jobless and starting to feel the stress of worrying about my future prospects.  I’m dealing, though.


Review: Slender

Ren while playing Slender:

“Ooooh, this is scary. Not. Kinda boring. Is something going to jump out at me? What is this Slender man thing anyway? Oooh, there is a page…. hang on, why am I hearing heavy breathing? That’s not my heartbeat… what? WHAT? The screen’s going all funny… What? WHAT? Wha-GYAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!!!!!!!!”


It’s a simple concept. Collect eight pages of a document that supposedly shows you all about the Slender Man… without being caught by said Slender Man. In the game, you run about in the dark, armed only with a flash light and you have to get those pages and not be caught. The music and sound effects is what really makes it chilling, particularly if you’re playing on your own… at night… in the dark… with no one else at home.

Watch 11 drunk frat boys play slender. I had to watch this to un-scare myself. And I nearly busted a rib laughing.

Warning: This is NSFW and there’s lots of swearing and politically incorrect phrases so chase your kids out of the room if they’re under-age.

From my observations, hysterical fright has been a common theme amongst most players.


Download it here.
(You can also watch a number of reaction videos on the same site. Enjoy!)

Living with an Obese Partner

Note: I am fairly certain this Layla is not my WW friend Layla. Because my friend Layla has way more class.

This came through as a comment I received overnight. Whilst the person posting is a long-loved gutless troll of my blog, it’s a valid question which brings up an interesting topic.

“Okay, so after all your tooting about weight loss, I just want to know one thing. Is Steve still morbidly obese?” — Layla

Yep. He is. I try not to give him stress about it as best as I can but yes, it’s a worry.

Just because I am married to an obese person does not mean that I have the right to give him grief over being fat. We all know how well teasing, bullying and constant nagging works on fat folk. Pushing someone into doing something they don’t really want to do is completely counterproductive. If they don’t really have the desire to do something then heels will dig in and the entire process will be made that much harder. It can actually make the problem worse.

Steve (aka, the manbeast) not at a point where he feels his weight is holding him back and that’s entirely his prerogative, Layla. Sure, it may annoy him sometimes, it may even upset him occasionally but neither of these things can be enough to trigger that light bulb moment that’s needed to inspire a lifestyle change. I needed to be mentally ready to lose weight – I had to be at that point where I realised it was affecting my life in extremely negative ways well beyond the health ramifications, though they were bad enough on their own.

Steve is yet to reach that point. He knows he has to do something but unlike me there is no pressing urgency. He may never get to that point. Hell, he may very well up and have a heart attack next week…

Oooh, thanks for the reminder, I must check the TPD insurance policy on his super.

The fact of the matter is you cannot MAKE anyone do anything they don’t want to do. The fact that I am married to the man does not give me any special powers and I will not lower myself to give him ultimatums over his weight. I will occasionally point out that a portion size is too much or that he needs to eat more vegetables and that he should come with me to the gym but that’s as far as it goes. He knows I love him, his weight does not affect my feelings for him. I want what’s best for him but this is not something I have any level of control over.

Sure, it disappoints me a lot that he decided that this was MY journey and not OUR journey. It saddens me that I don’t have that sort of support from him but I understand it nonetheless.

I won’t push because all pushing did for me was get me up to 152kg.

He was there when I was ready, I’ll be there when he is ready and even better, I will possess the knowledge and understanding of weight loss to be able to help him properly.

Until then I’ll just hope that my ever-increasing sexy-hotness inspires him to change his ways.

My First Youtube

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a huge Youtube addict. There are several channels I watch… mostly cooking and cosmetics… I rarely watch actual television because anything that I find vaguely interesting I can actually find on Youtube.

Hello Ghost Adventures, Zak Bagins, I love you and want to have your muscly, slightly overly dramatic babies.

Just sayin’.

Anyway, out of curiosity, I went looking back through my favourites. And then even more curiously, I went and looked up what the very first thing I put into my favourites list because I’ve never actually edited anything out save for the occasional video that was made private by the owner or deleted by the YT copyright police…

Yes. A kitten video.

Thank god for kittens on Youtube.

What was your first ever faved clip from Youtube? Do you have it? Do you still remember it? Post me a link, I want to see.

Dealing with Trolls…

All bloggers will eventually get trolls. I know my blogs have inspired more than a few over the years but my heroes, Wil Wheaton and Felicia Day have good advice in dealing with them…

Just remember that trolls are people too. They need love and affection and reassurance that they’re every bit as good as the next person.

And then they need to be hit up the back of the head with a shovel.