Saturday, December 29, 2007
I have to admit I wasn't particularly into Christmas this year - most likely due to the stress of starting a new job two weeks before Christmas and a few other things that were going on at the time.
But I did get to catch up with a few of the girls pre-Christmas - got to hang out with Jess after work one night and have a gossip. Plus Jess gave me two of my favourite sorts of present - a handmade present and a present for me to craft with! Jess made me a wee bracelet which was very cute and also a badge making kit - excellent:)
Ange also came over for a catch up one night and dropped over a Christmas cake and drank tea with us and discussed the merits of "Deal or no Deal"(although Ange says we have some classy ladies on our version of the show compared to the women on the Aussie version).
I also managed to catch up with Celia and Simon for drinks and gossip on my last night in Wellington.
I headed to New Plymouth via plane on the 21st and when I got to New Plymouth it was SO hot! Carolyn came and picked me up at the airport and after lunch I filled in the afternoon by looking around town (I have to say New Plymouth is getting better all the time - some very cool shops there now).
In the evening I was Carolyn's "date" for her work function which was held in a Taranaki institution "Andre's'' - to start with I was a bit worried about going there as it's a "fine dining" kind of place so I thought it may all be duck liver pate and other vegetarian unfriendly type meals. But when the meal was served it was a smorgasbord and as well as being a whole bunch of meat there was also vege's a plenty and they were all so fresh and just fantastic!
On the Saturday my mum came over from Stratford to pick me up and take me home - and my little brothers look was one of happily surprised disbelief when I arrived home, very cute.
On the Sunday I had my first "Christmas"of 2007 with my family which was great fun - but as always I ate too much and felt stuffed **meh**
When it was time for my Bro and Dad to take off and milk the cows (oh the joys of the farming life) my mum and I went on a bit of a tiki tour and caught up with a few of mum's friends.
On Monday (Christmas eve) it was time for a bit of a North Island Odyssey for me - I left New Plymouth at about 7:50 am on a bus heading for Hamilton, I arrived at Hamilton at 11:45 am and then hung about the bus terminal until 12:30 when the bus left for Tauranga. The bus to Tauranga wasn't much fun WAY too packed and I got stuck sitting next to an overly talkative elderly woman, but I figure I may have made her day by actually listening to her.
So since Christmas eve I've been at Rich's parents place doing the whanau thing and eating and drinking way too much - we've even managed a trip to the Morton Estate Winery....now the only people left at the whare are Rich and I and we are taking off with Jo and Andre tomorrow for a bit of a tiki tour and then heading over to Hamilton for New Years.
So that was Christmas 2007 - bring on 2008!!
Happy Birthday Marth!
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Some beeswax candles I made - some for Rich's parents and some for my mum.
For some of my friends - scrabble necklaces! I really like these:)
Of course I will be sharing the love with fimo and barbie bling a plenty!
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
The Craft 2.0 markets were pretty darn cool when we got there - although we ended up being REALLY hot as we we stuck in a spot in the court yard of the New Dowse with no shade what so ever! But we seemed to escape the day with only the smallest amount on sunburn (due to the fact that Rich was smart enough to bring sunscreen).
There were a lot of really cool stalls at Craft 2.0 and I could have spend HEAPS of money - but I was quite restrained. I bought a soy candle making kit, which I haven't had a chance to use yet and I guess it will stay unused till after Christmas at this stage **sigh**.
Monday, December 17, 2007
Well - in the spirit of "you can't beat Wellington on a good day" (and there's been good days a plenty recently) here's some pretty amazing photo's Rich took from our deck last night.
I finally bought an MP3 player!! You would have thought I would have bought one years ago - I am the sort of person that MP3 players are designed for after all. I'm an urban dweller who walks everywhere, I go to the gym regulary and I'm a music nut (Rich and I own about 300 plus CD's).
But I just didn't seem to get around to buying one - it seemed like a lot of money to spend at once on something I didn't need (yes I am PATHETIC!).
But over the last few weeks I decided it was really time I got one - there's only so many times a girl can listen to pathetic top twenty hits and even more pathetic morning DJ "chat" first thing in the morning.
So now I have a little Philips MP3 player that holds up to 450 songs - not enough for my entire album collection but still more than enough to keep me happy:)
Rich has even loaded a few albums on it for me by bands that I actually like that actually have talent - so when I walk to work or go to the gym I can rock out to Iggy and the Stooges, Modest Mouse or TV on the Radio and this is only the beginning.
Only question now is which CD's get loaded onto the MP3 player and which get left in the cold?
Friday, December 14, 2007
Revenge of the nerds: Geeks take over
Outsiders no longer, brainy, bashful, obsessive geeks are now the dominant force in popular culture. John Bailey and Melissa Kent report on the evolution of the nerd.
Not so long ago, experts considered The Geek an endangered species.
Their lack of natural defensive abilities made them easy prey for jocks, toughs and alpha males, and their lack of social skills reduced their reproductive opportunities.
Surely they were doomed to extinction. But somehow, the geeks have inherited the Earth.
They're running our corporations (take Microsoft's Bill Gates), gracing our glossies (musician Ben Lee), and dominating the ratings (TV's Rove McManus).
In fact, it's not "them" any more. In our tech-dependent, fantasy-loving, trivia-generating world, geeks are us.
Even fashion is full of geeks: Balenciaga's Nicholas Ghesquiere is inspired by robots, Miuccia Prada dressed this year's models in woolly knee socks and granny glasses, and Marc Jacobs found his new muse in Pixar's animation feature The Incredibles.
So what is a geek, exactly? Definitions vary. Some suggest that a geek is anyone smart who isn't ashamed of it. Others add a lack of social grace, or an over-enthusiasm for a particular obsession - say, Battlestar Gallactica or Nancy Drew.
You can subdivide the overall category infinitely: the film geek is a different breed to the maths whiz or the gamer.
But how did geeks come to influence all aspects of pop culture? From rock stars in nice cardigans to the world's hottest nerds, we're full of geek pride. Not convinced?
Take a look at Australia's new Prime Minister. Kevin Rudd's "Computers for all" and "Let's upgrade our broadband!" catchcries are both daggy and endearing - and what other world leader would celebrate election victory with Iced Vovos and a nice cup of tea?
The negative stereotype of the geek can largely be traced to teen flicks of the '70s and '80s. No image of a high school or college campus was complete without a resident bespectacled dweeb ready to be flushed down a toilet.
The epitome of this demonisation came with 1984's Revenge of the Nerds, justly reviled but somehow spawning sequels into the next decade.
At the same time, however, geeks were taking over behind the camera. Steven Spielberg and George Lucas drew on the geek lore of their adolescence to create blockbuster hits inspired by comic books and sci-fi stories - seducing a whole generation with power fantasies about lonely dreamers destined to save the universe.
In the '90s, the film geek gained ascendancy. Quentin Tarantino appeared on the scene as the Man Who Knew Too Much (about obscure cult movies), populating his hugely successful films with loving footnotes of pop-trivia scholarship.
There is no shortage of role models for the aspiring geek these days.
Wes Anderson's 1998 film Rushmore quickly gained cult status with anyone who had ever felt themselves the underrated individual in high school, and the director's 2001 follow-up flick, The Royal Tenenbaums, furnished us with a whole family of eccentric obsessives and genius outcasts.
Now he's inspired a whole wave of arch, dweeby indie filmmakers who know how to light a cardigan.
Napoleon Dynamite (2004) raised the bar higher, with a central character so unapologetically dorky that he instantly became a T-shirt, an action doll and a role model for the next generation of shy boys. Ladies, you have been warned.
Meanwhile, the Hollywood power producer/director/writer Judd Apatow - creator of successive box-office hits The 40 Year Old Virgin, Knocked Up and Superbad - has proven that the geeks now rule Tinseltown. And just consider where his troupe got their start: short-lived late-'90s TV show Freaks and Geeks.
Now? We're all geeks now. Monty Python's Broadway hit, Spamalot, just opened a Melbourne franchise.
Hip-hop sex-god Pharrell Williams proudly names his musical side project N.E.R.D.
And where are the geeks heading now? Into the nightclubs, if reports from urban cool epicentres such as Brooklyn can be believed.
More than 50 science clubs have formed across the US to unite physics and partying, according to The New York Times, performing science experiments in bars while DJs set the beat.
She's as familiar with solariums as her boyfriend is with gyms. Her clothes are second-hand, customised, or hand-knitted.
She blogs about the books she's been reading but sniggers at Facebook's emphasis on friends. If she sounds like you, you might just be a geek girl.
The geek girl's rise has been as steady as her male counterpart.
Buffy finally gave the geek girl a heroine of her own, but it was as likely to be the vampire slayer's library-loving bestie, Willow, as the high-kicking blonde.
And there's a new girl on the block - Kristen Bell's Veronica Mars is the modern-day Nancy Drew (another girl geek icon), a wise-cracking brainiac proficient in the latest spyware. And if there were any doubt about her credentials, the Geek Magazine covergirl has just become one of the mainstays of Channel Seven's surprise hit, the geekfest Heroes.
Maybe Enid Coleslaw - the cynical brat of the movement's lodestone film, Ghost World - sums up our geek girl's philosophy best. When she describes the film's socially inept record-collecting dork, Seymour, it's like a motto for the movement: "I kind of like him. He's the exact opposite of everything I really hate. In a way, he's such a clueless dork, he's almost kind of cool."
When New Woman magazine surveyed 10,000 women last year to find the world's sexiest man, the latest Doctor Who, David Tennant, outranked Justin Timberlake, Colin Firth and Hugh Grant. The weedy Tennant may demur, describing himself as "the least sexy man on the planet", but even Kylie's spending quality time with the Doctor this Christmas.
Geeks have never had it so good with girls: in film, overweight, unshaven Seth Rogen played Katherine Heigl's love interest in box-office hit Knocked Up; on TV, the ratings battle was won by music nerds (Spicks and Specks), political pranksters (The Chaser boys) and manga fanboys (Heroes); and in music, a barefoot nerd called Gotye won a swag of ARIAs.
But it's the comics who really brought sexy back to geekdom, such as surrealist Demetri Martin and four-eyed storyteller Daniel Kitson.
WHAT GEEK IS THAT? A NERD-SPOTTER'S GUIDE
Gamers With the advent of online games in which players share massive virtual worlds, gamers can fend off accusations of antisocial behaviour by pointing to the incredibly gregarious avatar they've designed for Second Life.
Gearheads Like a walking copy of Wired magazine, gearheads show off their latest tech acquisition before you've even heard of it. And they're willing to explain - at length - why it's already obsolete.
Otaku In Japan, "otaku" denotes someone with an obsession so fanatical - with videogames, for example - that they seldom leave their bedroom. In the West, however, it's more often a positive self-description for hardcore fans of Japanese anime and manga.
Cyberpunks Combining enthusiasm for high-tech gadgets with a rough and dirty punk aesthetic, cyberpunk fans envision a future where we are all cyborgs - internet-enabled, prosthetically enhanced, and ready to rumble.
Cardy Rockers From the retro-geek rock of '90s-era Weezer through to today's Brunettes, Concretes, and Shins, the easy-listening sounds of neatly dressed, baby-faced bands have become the soundtrack to a new generation of dress-alike fans.
Librarians For some, books aren't just collections of words - they're faithful companions, though each comes with its own needs and wants. If a friend fobs off your drinking plans in favour of a secret rendezvous with a new novel, you might be dealing with a librarian.
Boffins Plenty of people are smart, but only some wear their brain on their sleeve. Usually possessing prodigious knowledge on obscure and, sometimes, completely useless topics, a boffin should never - ever - be corrected on a point of fact.
Hogwarts Alumni For a generation who've grown up with the series, the adventures of Harry, Hermione and Ron are today's answer to Luke, Leia and Han. Expect similar lifelong dedication.
Film Tragics Some buffs take the study of favourite films, directors and movements to new levels of obsession. And like a friend with a new partner, they'll find ways to relate any conversation back to their true love - even if it's Italian slasher movies of the late '70s.
Saturday, December 08, 2007
I couldn't really look it much when Rich and I were stuck in the dark ages with dial up but now we have broadband I'm a craftster junkie.
What is craftster - you may ask? It's a crafty online community - people can network, arrange swaps and the like. But my favourite thing about craftser is that people can post photo's of what they have made and other people can comment on what they have made.
I'd been thinking about posting a picture of some of my work for a while but I kept on chickening out - but then I decided maybe I should post a picture of the beads I made Jess for her birthday on there as I was particulary stoked with them.
Today I got a post from someone who said "That is one mad cool necklace".
Yah! Feeling the love for my craft:)
I can't believe how busy yesterday was at work and how much "stuff" I'd accumulated over 2 years! My drawers seemed to be packed with draft documents which should have been sent to the recycling bin some time ago.
So I spend most of the day going through my drawers, filling in "I'm leaving" forms and taking down stuff from my walls (I had a lot of stuff on my walls!).
I got the good old giant leaving card yesterday - but I was rather bummed at how many people spelt my name with an "h" but stoked one person said I was the "best dressed person in the office" excellent:)
I was equally stoked with my leaving present - a $100 voucher for Illicit Clothing:)
Last night I went down for drinks at the Dog and Bone with my work mates which was pretty fun but a bit sad as there are a couple of people I'll be sad not to be working with anymore:(
A few non-work friends came down as well so I was feeling much love.
So now it's time to relax and chill for one weekend - before I start at my new job on Monday.
Friday, December 07, 2007
I admit that the list was primarily for Rich but if anyone else out there feels like being generous I won't object :)
1) Brass Finger Cymbals - you can get them from Indeja (My bellydancing teachers shop)
2) A book of how to make bellydance costumes or a pattern of how to make bellydance costumes - try trademe? The internet?
3) A "Blythe" Doll - you can get them from Iko Iko :)
4) A nice notebook with nice white pages that I can write down/sketch all the ideas I have for crafty projects - small enough to fit in my hangbag so I can have it with me all the time for when I am suddenly hit by inspiration
5) A felting kit (I'm not sure where you get one - I've seen them online on American Website but you can get them on trade me I am sure)
6) A Living Dead Doll - to keep my zombie doll company! They sell them at that comic book shop by Rex Royale
7) The Beauty Myth by Naomi Klein - I really should have read this by now!!
8) Stuff that smells nice from Lush
This morning I have to hand over all my work and clear away all the stuff in my desk - last night I bought home some of the toys I had on my desk - which was a bit sad.
Today I'll have to pull down my photo's a posters and everything else.
It does feel a bit sad to be leaving behind the friends I've made at work - but at the same time I'm really excited about my new job because it's such a great opportunity and I'm sure I'll meet lots more great people at my new work.
But still I am a little sad but at the same time it's time to move onwards and upwards!!
Monday, December 03, 2007
Although the walk up was REALLY steep I'm so glad we did the walk - as we had the most amazing views of the city from the top of Johnstone Hill.
Sunday, December 02, 2007
Unfortunately none of the photos I took at Flying Burrito Brothers seemed to be particular good of anyone so they were deleted from my camera! How strange that I the "crazy camera lady" shouldn't be able to take a photo - it seems very strange? Maybe it was the lighting? Or the "electric lemonade" cocktail I had?
After hanging out a Jess' birthday for a while it was time to take off to my next "Event" (I'm like sooo popular).
Ange, Rich, Ross and I headed over to Kat's place for her cocktail evening - which was really cool. Kat's landlord had FINALLY cleared out her back garden and given it a decent mow and tidy up.
Kat and her flattie JP had dragged her old shop counter into the garden and were using it as a bar - and JP was a legend at making the cocktails seen as he was a bartender in town. Other features of the garden for the evening included sparklers (I missed out but Rich and Ross got one!), and a mannequin in the garden as well as an open fire.
Friday, November 23, 2007
I want to get to the stage where I can perform at one of the Hafla next year - because I basically got into bellydancing because I liked the performance aspect.
I've had trouble getting to two classes a week though just because I have so much else one - so I decided I will do two classes - one after the other - on Thursday night.
Last night was my first double bellydance class - and I am still exhaused the next day! Both classes were so full on!
But I did get to start to learn finger cymbals in the second class which was so much fun - even at this stage I have a pair of REALLY budget ones - but Rich has been asking what I would like for Christmas. A pair of nice brass finger cymbals are now officially on the list:)
Thursday, November 22, 2007
Then once we have done shopping we have to wait around for a taxi because we don't have a car - the whole things is just painful.
But our problems may now be solved - the other day whilst surfing the net Rich happened to check out the Foodtown site and it turns out that to get groceries delivered is about the same cost as the taxi we normally get home from New World.
Humm so lets see pay $15 and NOT go to the supermarket and shop online OR pay $15 and go to the supermarket get annoyed at everyone and everything and go home grumpy. It's not too hard a choice really.
I do feel slightly weird about getting groceries delivered - in some ways it seems like something that should be reserved for the elderly or people with disabilities.
But that weirdness quickly passed, when I realised I don't have to go to the supermarket this week!!
Our groceries are going to be delivered tonight between 6pm and 8pm - excellent.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Monday, November 19, 2007
Anyways - here's the current crop of Barbie Bling!
I'd heard of these markets before but I had never been - they are very very cool! Much like Craft 2.0 - lots of cool local people creating lots of interesting things.
I bought these really cool watermelon earrings.
It was a bit annoying actually as a lot of people I know or at least have seen around at other markets had stalls there - but Rich and I never heard about a shout out for stalls so we weren't able to have one:(
Oh well - there's always Knack markets and Craft 2.0 plus the day was mostly to hang out with the lovely Jo.
Sunday, November 18, 2007
How cool is this? It's like a rock and roll bedspread! Now I am the first to admit that the Black Crows and the doors aren't my thing. But with the right t-shirts I think I could make one that was pretty cool.
My vision is for a throw for our couch though rather than a bedspread - as after only two years our couch is looking a bit naff (my mum did warn me about buying burgundy coloured furniture and said it would show up every little stain and be hard to keep clean, but I wouldn't listen. Now I have a couch that shows up every little stain and is hard to keep clean!).
I'm not sure how many t-shirts I would need - but Rich has already volunteered three of his that are past their used by date (due to wear - not due to lack of being awesome) - so I already have Placebo, The Hives and Shihad for my t-shirt throw (I may also have Iggy Pop but Rich isn't sure if he can let Iggy go just yet).
I have had a look on trade me for music t-shirts but that was pretty slim pickings - they all seemed to be new t-shirts that people wanted to sell for around $25 a piece! Doesn't really work with my DIY dream!
So I think over the next few months I shall be checking out as many second hand shops as I can for band t-shirts worthy of our couch throw.
But if any of my dear friends out there have old band t-shirt of bands I may like - feel free to send them my way *hint hint*
For more information about the band bedspread above check out this blog -
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
Monday, November 12, 2007
There's something about creating something with your hands which just makes life better (especially when your day job is an office job where sometimes it feels like all you create is paper).
Some people laugh when I say I like craft, but they usually change camps when I show them the sort of craft I'm into - which is the alternative/DIY school of craft opposed to the crochet toilet roll holder school (not that I'm bringing crochet down! I have a crochet "how to" book I'm taking away with me on my Christmas trip).
Anyways - thus far I've bought some cool alt craft books and also searched the Internet extensively for alternative craft ideas. But the one thing I've been lacking is a decent craft magazine!
The other week I was waiting for a friend at Midlands Park and decided I'd check out Magnetix whilst I was there - as usually I avoided the "women's interest" section (what an oxymoron - a bunch of magazines made to make women feel insecure cannot be in our interest!) and checked out the Craft section thinking maybe I will find an interesting idea or two in the "Nana craft" magazines.
However, I came across an American craft magazine called "Craftzine" - the name was ALREADY a good start! Craftzine is my new favourite thing about crafting. It's a mix of stories about other crafters and "How to" for a variety of different projects:) I am looking forward to making the Japanese Candy Box purse.
Anyways - I loved it so much - I decided I needed more, more, MORE! So I have now subscribed to the magazine and have been kind of obsessively looking at their website over this weekend (so many many cool ideas for refashioned clothes!).
Here's the link for the magazine if any other alt crafters out there are feeling like they need some inspiration!
Sunday, November 11, 2007
During the day mum would help me and my brothers make a Guy to burn (although when I was older and found out WHY we burnt a Guy I was kind of creeped out by it - but it was all good fun in the days of my innocent youth), then we'd help Dad collect wood and build up a bon fire and when it finally go dark Dad would like the fireworks and us kids would have sparklers.
The anticipation of each firework being lit was almost too much the handle - the joy when they lit up crazy colours and the surprise when it was one of those screaming ones and the disappointment when one of the fireworks was what Dad referred to as a "Fizzer" (put on a bit of a poor show or just didn't work).
But over the years the number of fireworks have diminished - when I was really young they banned double happy's. I remember this well as Dad bought up large and kept a pretty big stash in his writing desk which we gradually used up.
Next it was our friends the sky rockets - which I loved - especially when Dad would light a whole bunch at once.
I think other sorts have also been banned - sadly I haven't lit a firework in many years. Since moving in with Rich we have been confined to small units and apartments with no gardens or room for fireworks. But we are lucky enough to live in Wellington where the council does put on a beautiful fireworks display.
Public displays are all good - but they aren't the same as getting the whole family together in the back garden.
For years and years I've been against the idea of banning all fireworks. Not only is it a good chance for families to get together and have a laugh it's one of the few celebrations that hark back to my English (ok actually Cornish but close enough) roots.
Most other celebrations have been nicked from someone else but Guy Fawkes - even though it's kind of creepy in some ways - was mine! A celebration of my history! Of where I came from! It hadn't been commercialised and made tacky - it was just about the family getting together and lighting some fireworks in the back garden.
I was against the banning of Guy Fawkes because I refused to believe that as a country we were actually needed to have fireworks taken away from us - I mean - surely we're not that irresponsible?
But in the words of many a primary school teacher "One person's silliness will ruin this for everyone"!
On Friday night Rich and I were walking past the Mill Liquor Save - one of the flats at the top were having a party - nothing too unusual there...then we realised they were firing a Roman candle out of the window of the flat and down onto the street and the road. I'm not talking about silly 12 year olds here - I'm talking about people in their 20's who know that they are being MORONS!
Anyways, as we are walking along and thinking that this whole thing isn't too flash - they start aiming the fireworks on the foot path where we are walking. I'm going to give these moron's the benefit of the doubt and assume they were not trying to hit us directly and only trying to scare us. But either way - it's an incredibly stupid thing to do.
It was at that moment I realised that as a nation - we are too stupid to have fireworks and yes the government should take them away. We obviously can't be trusted. It's a pretty sad conclusion to come too after all these years of having a love affair with fireworks.
I can't believe how many men there are around with mo's and there is a good wack of guys around growing the old school handle bar mo.
This year Rich is getting into to act as well and decided to grow a mo of his own - perhaps I'll be able to blog some photos of my "Mo man" at the end of the month.
If you have no idea what I am talking about you must be blind - or not living in NZ. Either way - if you want to know more about Mo-vember check out the link and you'll find out that this explosion of facial hair is all in the name of a good cause.
Both Kat and I want to go travelling next year (to different parts of the world for different reasons) however, Kat and I are both clothes horses (I'm sure she won't be offended by my saying she's a clothes horse) which usually means spending a fair wack of money!
Recently Kat has been teaching me to sew and I have also been getting into the idea of altering stuff I already own and cheap and choice finds from the second hand stores into new stuff - great way to save some pingers and also to reduce my "carbon footprint".
Anyways Kat and I decided a good way to increase the time we spend crafting and decrease the amount of cash we spend on clothes was to make a vow of "no new clothes for the next 6 months".
This shall be tricky, and no doubt there will be slip ups along the way - but I think we can do it!
Here's my list of rules for "No new clothes" -
1. For the course of the 6 months I may buy fabric, second hand clothes (including second hand clothes from trade me), clothes from clothes swap parties - but no new clothes!
2. The exception to the first rule is I may buy new underwear, hoisery, togs and shoes (if they are a necessity - like if my gym shoes break)
3. Teresa and Kat shall have a regular sewing night!
4. At the end of the 6 months - we will much more fabulous, more personalised wardrobes than we have ever had before!
Let the games begin - as always - creations will be posted on my blog.
Saturday, November 10, 2007
After hanging at Luna Park for a while Boggy and Alaina took me on a bit of a drive around Melbourne and pointed out some of the flasher areas with Amazing houses.