Tag Archives: conversation


18 Sep

These last couple of weeks my laptop has been “out of order”. It is amazing how when you are used to something and then it is not there, you do things differently. I use the laptop most of the time for my blog. I find it easier to write with it on my lap and that is why I haven’t written much the last couple of weeks. When I thought about writing and that I would have to sit at the desk, I just didn’t feel it.

Today I have it back. Something so simple as the lights went out. Yes, the backlight of the screen blew and no they cannot be replaced, a new screen is required.

The benefit or silver lining to this is that I have found two people with whom I have had great conversations about apple vs pc, laptop vs tablet and versions of cell phones. It was great. I love talking technology and picking the brains of those who actually know something and maybe being able to give them some food for thought too.

The upside is that now I do not need to buy a new computer device and can get the new phone I want instead. My current one is now 6 years old and feeling the wear so my only decision is which one? Ah the joy of going out and looking at gadgets!


Cooking and a busy life

7 Aug

I have been thinking about all those who have the busy lifestyle of today and how to fit in cooking with the demands of work and school. Many people find it easier to have fast food meals these days and as we know these are not the best for a healthy diet.

The simple recipes I include here don’t necessarily solve those problems so I have had an idea on how that can be done.

In order to attack childhood obesity children need to be involved in cooking and learning how it can be fun to experiment with flavour without necessarily complicating the process.

My thought is that the cooking probably does not want to be done on a weekday night. So let’s do it on the weekend when there are actually three night to choose from, Friday being one.

It doesn’t require cooking three nights. Even if you choose one and cook two or three dishes. Get the children to help, preparing vegetables, trimming meat, choosing flavourings, collecting fresh herbs etc, even choosing recipes.

Getting the children involved also allows for educating them in money and budget issues.

With everyone pitching in it is an opportunity for a family chat to catch up on the week and prepare for the one coming. These times are important and you may not be having it at present. This is a way to introduce it without pressure.

To decide how much to cook you just take the number of people in the family and multiply by 7, being the number of evenings per week. This is how many serves you need, so given that each of my recipes will give 5 serves, you can choose either two or three dishes, using different cuts of meat and you will have 10-15 serves for the week. With one serve each out for cooking night and  the rest in the freezer, you are ready for the week.

It doesn’t matter if there are more than you need for the week, having extras can be a bonus if something unexpected comes up.

When you are putting these meals in the freezer, there are two options; put all single serves in or in larger containers put daily serves. Tupperware heat n eat come in larger sizes too. The thing to be careful with in the second option is that someone may not turn up for that meal and once defrosted it cannot be frozen again and I would also be cautious about keeping it for the next day.

I hope this idea has some appeal for you.

Family and organ recipients

29 Jul

I have become aware of the impact of organ donation on the recipients family. We all know it is a small positive for the donor family in their loss but how it extends widely for the recipient side is really something.

I have posted here about my friend whose brother received a kidney transplant and how she and I felt about it. Since then the impact for the family has become obvious.

The brother (I will call him Dan) is a grandfather, the latest child arriving three weeks after the operation. Dan has gained an extension on watching them grow up. As much as he will appreciate this, his children and their spouses are grateful too.

Dan’s parents have been quite emotional, they were caught unawares when the whole thing occurred and are now hopeful that they might actually out live him. It is a new thing for them but everyone is excited that Dan is no longer tied to the dialysis machine every alternate day.

His three siblings have been a bit quieter about the whole thing. One, who was considering a live kidney donation is relieved it won’t be required. The others are just happy Dan has received a life extension and they are no longer carrying the guilt of not wanting to do a live donation.

Dan is a popular member of the community and many people have been visiting him since the operation, so much so that he is struggling to get the rest he requires to recover from the operation. This has practically chased him from his home in an effort to get some peace and quiet. His sister (my friend) is quite angry about this. “Why can’t people have more consideration?” It is like the morbid who visit hospitals and sit bedside of non relatives for hours, leaving the patient exhausted.

His sister is now wondering how to get all these visitors to show more consideration for all he has been through. He needs to toughen up a bit I think. Tell visitors he has had enough please go, or just don’t answer the door. I have approached doors with signs on them, ‘no visitors today’. Anyone who truly cares will respect this and make an appointment.

In this fast pace life of instant gratification, respect for others is becoming lost as everyone want to get the scoop. It leaves me thinking how I enjoy my privacy. I hope Dan will start to get some peace and quiet soon.


16 Jun

Sometimes I give really good advice. This is usually when my brain is working in beta, the only problem with that is that my beta brain seems to have no link to my memory. I know at the time that the advice is really good but later I cannot remember what I said.

My brother once asked me to meet him for lunch. This was the only time this had ever occurred, so was special. It turned out he wanted my advice. I am divorced and he was asking me about it, whether I was glad, happy or regretful. I talked about the things that I did regret being having no one who knew my history, to share stories with, who understands you better than anyone else and how you  need to compare this with what you might have after. Also, how will it affect your relationship with your children? They might end up living with the other parent and you might never see them. They might be angry at you for leaving.

Passion is not the emotion to base this decision on. Do you like each other? Being friends is the most important thing. Passion comes and goes and comes again. If you can continue to talk to each other, share experiences etc, maybe use the children as a buffer if you are struggling to communicate then passion will return from time to time. I believe the important thing is to evaluate your relationship with these factors in mind, then decide what you really want.


1 Jun

There is a family birthday party this week. These things are usually good fun and require very little thought. Not this time, there is a Christening the same day. The only issue I have with it is this: the Christening is as lunch time at the church they married in. This church is 40 minutes drive for me (into the country) and then the party is at 6pm, another 30 minutes drive further on. What am I supposed to do in the mean time? And after, I will have an hour to drive home. I won’t be the only one.

While I can understand that they thought it was clever to arrange it like this for themselves, it is very inconvenient. I come from a family of dairy farmers and there are cows to milk in the evening (not me). I have thought about sharing the trip only I find myself wanting to be able to escape so want to take myself. This then has me thinking about skipping the Christening. I am only a great auntie and will not have a role or be in any photos, so why go at some inconvenience to myself?

The party is at their home and it is going to be cold, cold, cold. I don’t like being in the cold for any length of time and so would be keen to leave early for this reason as well as remembering wanting to leave the last of these but not having my own transport.

The in between has one solution which is acceptable. There is family near the church who are willing to provide coffee and shelter prior to going on. I am happy to do this.

My issue is that I am ambivalent about going. I expect that I will not enjoy myself as it will be sitting around doing nothing much. I am not a great conversationalist, especially among these people with whom I share little common ground. I am on a health kick as you know, so there will be little food to console me and I cannot drink as I will be driving.

It is family so I should want to go but I feel the urge to run again. My regular readers will know that I am a runner. My mindset is at get me away from where I am uncomfortable and feeling unwanted.

I recently, unbeknownst to me, missed a cousins party. She apologised to me last week for sending the invitation to the wrong address. My reaction was thank goodness as I would not have wanted to go anyway. My parents brothers get invited to all these things and go regardless, just to complain about it after, I would rather not go.

This is why I stayed away so long and also why I should have either stayed or returned much sooner. But I am programmed to run and deprogramming is hard. So, I will give it a try.


31 May

Isn’t is interesting how we claim to be experiencing ennui when we just don’t feel like doing anything. It is not lazy or bored any more.

I am feeling a bit bored actually. This is one reason I started writing, it is a distraction and it also allows me to express my opinion on matters that would normally be dinner table conversation.

Sometimes I am invited to share a meal and then I get to partake in conversation but usually I am alone with the TV, watching the news and talking to it. It is not rewarding and often frustrating.

Since I started writing I have found that I am a calmer, happier person because all that frustration is being let out. Being able to express my opinion to whomever is reading it has been liberating.

So, no more ennui and more structure to my day. I have established quite a routine and all it needs added to it are 12-15 hours of work, you know, three days per week, 4-5 hours a day. I have started a volunteer job that is 3 hours per week, if I could get paid for something like that it would be great.

Anyway, there is now more in my week so less time for boredom. Now, what is for dinner?


24 May

It has often come to my attention that the weather is a large part of our lives. It is a conversation starter and in some instances the main topic. I have lived in the cold of Scotland and the heat of Darwin but have spent most of my life in more temperate climes. Since returning home I am often asked how I am coping with the cold. When I think about it I realise I love it.

It gets hot here too but I am enjoying Autumn/Winter like never before. To be warm and cosy in bed then get up into the cold to dress. Those few minutes when my skin cools off feel great. Of course it is also great knowing that it is only a few minutes. I am going to be warm again as soon as I get the heater going.

This leads me to thinking about those who do not have the heater for whatever reason. With the rising cost of living today many cannot afford heat or even electricity. Then there are the homeless, those who for many reasons are living on the streets. Winter is very tough when you have no access to heat but when you think about it, access to instant heat is a very recent convenience.

When I am cooling off in the morning I sometimes think about this and how even as a child getting access to heat meant getting to the kitchen fire. Our house was heated with fire much like 200 years ago. I do appreciate all the “luxuries” we have now, many of which are to counter the effects of the weather.

Until I was living solo, having the heat I wanted was a battle. Not having control of the household finances meant limiting spending on heat supply. Once I was in full control I vowed I would never again be cold in my home. I would pay for heat and go without other things if necessary.

So, I appreciate the weather and am grateful to be able to control it in my home. I feel greatly for those who cannot do so for whatever reason and continue to wonder at any authority that prevents it.

Now, I just want some more rain.