Friday, 31 August 2007

YAY for Gold Coast Show Day

Due to a holiday on the Gold Coast for Show Day (something a bit like the Royal Show) we have the day off today which meant a short week and you can never say no to those - what a pity we don't get more of them !!!!

During the week I decided that today would be the day for me to do our tax returns - something which isn't (normally) that hard to do - it is just a pain and so I keep on putting it off. But, they need to be done before we leave for Spain so said I would do them this morning. Not so fast Linda, a few things have happened this year which have made them a little tricky so, while I have got most of them done, I haven't finished them as I will have to have some outside help - bugger !!!!! Never mind - at least they are mostly done.

Al has spent the day outside moving sand (see pics from Mid Renovations 2007) from the front garden to the back and then leveling the front garden. And he has also been helping the next door neighbour put in a GPS and depth finder on his boat. Kaitlin has been working on her assignments and doing her chores around the house. All in all a good day to get a jump start on what we want to do over the weekend. I think we need to revise our list of what still needs to be done - there are so many 'chain reaction' jobs I am starting to wonder where to start - we need to move the plants to sort out the garden - can't do that until I have sealed the pavers - can't do that until Al has finished moving the soil as the wheel barrow is making marks on the pavers which will have to be washed before I seal - and that is just one of the chain reactions on the go at the moment !!!!! I am trying to be patient with all of this - I know it will get done eventually - I really just want it all finished NOW so that we can sit back and enjoy it !!!!!

Last weekend the orientation day at Griffith was great - except for the rain !!!! I am so much happier about the decision to let her move now. The principal sounds very motivated and so passionate about what she does. Then I found out that she worked at a school up the road from us where the Dean of Students is the lady who trained Kaitlin for South Coast schools softball side so I spoke to her about the principal. Sharon could not speak highly enough of her - it was so good to hear that our perceptions of her from Saturday were right. She was sooooo excited that Kaitlin had been offered a position at QA. She said that about 720 kids wrote the exams and they are only going to be starting up with about 220 - 250 students so she has done extremely well to have been offered a position there. They are building the school across the road from Griffith University (for those who know - on the other side of Smith St where the hospital was going to go) - it is a $40million dollar facility with state of the art everything. The whole place will be wireless and the classes will be paperless classes - EVERYTHING will be done on a laptop / slate / tablet. All textbooks will be digitised and pre-loaded onto your device - I cannot imagine studying without having a book open in front of my but apparently that is the way the students of today are going. In the textbooks there are options to put sticky notes, underline, highlight and make notes in the margins !!!!! Give me a book or a piece of paper anytime - if I have to read more than a page on the PC I print it out and read it !!!!!

Tomorrow Kaitlin will be working as 'the muffin girl' at Muffin Break - we will be going for our (lapsed) customary Saturday morning muffin before hitting the shops doing some Father's Day shopping. Plus we need to look at getting new runners as Al and I have both been getting home from Coles and complaining that our feet are sore. AMart All Sports are having a sale at the moment so will try to get there to see if we can find anything suitable. I found a really good pair last week except they only had 1 shoe and couldn't find the other !!!!! I rang around to the other stores but nobody had the right size. Maybe I will try some others on tomorrow. We did manage to get Kaitlin a new pair of runners on sale so that was good.

Sunday is Father's Day over here so we are going to go to the lovely little place at the sailing school around the corner from us for breakfast and then in the evening my folks are coming over for dinner - not sure what we will have yet - will depend on whether Al wants to cook or not - if he does it will probably be a BBQ and if not, it will be something else !!! Will have to check what he would like for dessert - maybe something from the Cheesecake Shop ?????

Well it is time for me to go and see what I am going to organise for dinner tonight - will have to see what I can scrounge out of the freezer as I know that the fridge looks like Old Mother Hubbard's cupboard - bare as !!!!! We will probably have to fit in a visit to Coles tomorrow otherwise the state of the fridge will not change.

Take care everyone and have a fantastic weekend !

This is the link to the latest photos of the renovations

Friday, 24 August 2007


Thank goodness today is Friday and there isn't another working day in this week - I don't think I would have survived. It has been a hectic two weeks at work with things not looking to improve between now and when we leave for Spain. Roll on 16th Sept when I step onto that plane and can sit down and relax !!!

We have had the most incredible weather here over the past 6 days - we haven't seen the sun once !!!! Now I know why I wouldn't be able to live in England or NZ - while I am not able to sunbake like I used to, I certainly like to see it in the morning when I get up and when I look out the window at work. It has been raining since Sunday !!! We have had winds gusting up to 90kph at times since Monday - it seems that it has been raining and windy forever !!! Normally we may have a windy morning or afternoon but never like this - for days on end. It hasn't been raining non-stop and certainly not enough to end the drought but at least our pool is full, all 4 water tanks are full and the garden has had the best soaking in what seems like forever.

Last Saturday saw us moving closer to getting things finished - Al was busy running the wires for the sound system he is putting in his pub and I continued on with sanding the outdoor furniture. The problem with the furniture is that while it was easy in some ways to sand while made up, there were places I couldn't get to with the sander so Al took the furniture apart but the pieces are too big to clamp in anywhere so I am using the belt sander on wood which isn't secured and, at times, tends to shoot off the table into the garden. All fun and games as usual - the main thing is that it is getting done.

I was looking at the garage door the other day and think it would look better with another coat of paint so - if the weather is fine on Sunday - when we get home from softball I think I will give the garage door another coat of paint and then try to finish at least one coat on the front wall. Well I can't finish the whole wall as Al still has a HUGE pile of stones which have to be moved into the front garden but he can't do that until he has moved the excess soil from there - bit a chain reaction thing happening around the garden at the moment and we aren't sure where to start !!!!!

Kaitlin is enjoying her time at Muffin Break - they offered her muffins to bring home last week - thank goodness the little darling declined to bring them home - quite possibly the thought of a warmed up muffin would have been too tempting for me and seeing as I am (once again) trying to lose some weight before we leave for Spain - it wouldn't be the best thing she could bring home !!!!! This coming week will see her working two shifts (9.5hrs) for the week so it will be interesting to see how she goes - especially as on Saturday she is 'the muffin girl' who gets to put all the delicious toppings on the muffins (hope she doesn't eat too much of it and run out of topping for the muffins !!!!).

Tomorrow we are off to Griffith University for the orientation and information day. This is where Kaitlin will be studying next year although I am starting to wonder if we are doing the right thing. I guess at the end of the day we can re-evaluate after the first semester and if it isn't what we thought it would be or she isn't getting out of it what she thought she would - we can always change back to private schooling without too much trouble. Well it will be a little difficult because they study a completely different syllabus but, given what a smart cookie she is, I am sure we would be able to sort something out for her.

This is a link to some photos of our 'little baby' - I was talking to someone today and mentioned that she is able to get her learners licence next year and thought - geez, I really am getting old - this time next year my little baby will be driving us to school and back every day !!!!

Take care everyone, have a fantastic weekend and look after yourselves !

Monday, 13 August 2007

Less than 4 weeks to go

Well, as the title says - less than 4 weeks to go until we leave for Spain. At this stage I am still a little disorganised - haven't booked the car hire or the 6 nights accommodation which we need before and after our time share weeks - at least they are booked which is the bulk of our accommodation.

Alan and Kaitlin haven't been feeling well the past couple of days - sore throats, stuffy noses. We took Al off to the dr on Saturday - just the viral thing going around which EVERYONE is getting. At this stage no need for anti-biotics but we need to keep an eye on his chest. He has been using the nebuliser which does seem to help.

Kaitlin has been for some training for a new job with Muffin Break - she seems quite keen on it. They sell muffins, cookies, wraps and make cappuccino's, lattes etc so that will be good for her to learn - maybe a great barista in the making !!!! She played softball yesterday and then was asked to play up in the Res A side - she had such a great game and spent most of the game with a grin from ear to ear. She did get a lovely roasty on her knee when she had to slide into home which isn't so good. Wednesday will see my folks collecting her from school to take her to her Inter-school Athletics carnival where she is representing Saint Stephen's in the 100m and 100m relay.

The renovations at home are coming along - too slowly for my liking. The trouble is that there are only so many workable hours each weekend and there never seems to be enough of those. This past weekend we had a skip (big waste bin) delivered and got rid of lots of things which have been horded in the shed and garage - I'm sure some of what we have got rid of we will need in a few months' time - but at least for now we have some space in both the shed and the garage which is great. Next weekend we will be busy getting the front garden sorted out and then the following weekend we are off to an orientation and information day at Griffith University where Kaitlin is going to be going to school next year. We are really looking forward to that.

Well, had better be on my way - need to shower and get ready to go to work. Monday nights are a pain as we only start work at 10pm and it is all I can do to stay awake until we have to go into work. Take care everyone and have a great week !

Friday, 3 August 2007

Access to more photos

I think I have found a way to load photos onto an album in gmail and then post a link here so I don't have to load the photos 5 at a time which takes forever and you don't get to see many photos. This way you can see heaps more (if it works) and it is so much quicker and easier.

Below please find links to the albums (would love to hear from anyone who tries them if they work or not - thanks !!!) If you hold your mouse over the photo you will get to see the whole caption. - these are photos from our long weekend away in Noosa in January this year - these are a lot of the photos taken during the outside renovations - these are of the pavers on the driveway (haven't worked out how to add photos to albums already existing when uploading from the camera so there will be more renovation albums coming out in the future - these are of the frame on Al's leg - definitely not for the feint hearted although when you see them (photos) or it (the frame on his leg) for long enough you do get used to it. My stomach turned I don't know how many somersaults when I first saw it and towards the end I was cleaning the pin sites and doing what needed to be done if Kaitlin wasn't around to do it !!!!!

Have a great weekend everyone and take care. Go safely and look after yourselves. Will post an update in the next couple of weeks.