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  1. Rainy Nights
    Oh my goodness. Could the Terri Irwin interview have been any more heart-wrenching? And then having Eva Cassidy singing “Time after Time” into and out of all the commercial breaks. Ugh.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  2. Open Letter to the Guy on the Train
    Dear Sir:

    If it was some sort of tough-guy persona you were trying to create with your oversized sports jersey, baggy pants, untied shoes, and attitude-y slouch, perhaps you’d like to consider turning the volume down on your iPod when Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” comes up on your playlist.

    Still giggling,

    Don’t Getcha Hopes Up Just Yet
    Mom doesn’t know yet, but we determined that it might be cheaper to fly to America than it will be to air-condition our house this summer. For the people who have free passes, are there any non-blackout dates at Universal in January-ish? 🙂

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

    Tagged with .

  3. Time Killers
    On Friday night, we debated renting a movie. After breezing around the perimeter of the video store, we determined neither of us were capable of making decisions until after our blood-sugar levels were back to normal. So we went home and had a look at what was on television.

    We settled on a disaster movie called Category 6: Day of Destruction. Even though it was destined to be a bit campy, we wanted to see the special effects. And, I mean, it starred Nancy McKeehan. “Jo” can’t do no wrong, right?

    Well, what we didn’t know was that when it originally aired in the States, it was a two-part mini-series. Here? It was three hours of our lives that we will never get back. At about 11:30, I decided I really didn’t care if everybody died. I just wanted to go to bed. Somehow we suffered through the whole thing, but dang. It was painful.

    Those Who Play Together Stay Together
    Another time killer this weekend has been Lego Star Wars. Hans got the joysticks to work on his pc, and we’ve been so addicted to kicking butt in 2-player mode. It’s so hilarious the way they’ve converted episodes iv-vi to Lego. I just want everyone to love it.

    From a Land Down Under
    Tell me, how could you possibly walk past a construction sign like this and NOT take a picture?


    Yes, I’ve seen Save the Last Dance and You Got Served. So you know I’m totally going to see Step Up!

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  4. One Year in Australia: The Facts

    • I arrived in Brisbane on September 21, 2005.
    • I’ve resided on the North side and the Southwest side.
    • I’ve spent 15 days in New Zealand.
    • jkhuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu
    • That last entry was from my inherited cat Chucky trying to walk across my lap.
    • I ride a train into the city about four times a week. (My only prior public transport experience was on the Metro in Washington D.C. back in 1994.)
    • While I hate talking on the phone, in the last year I have gotten less than 20 phonecalls from someone other than my husband. Three of those were from people in the States.
    • Most curious people ask if I am from Canada instead of the States.
    • I see kangaroos at least three days a week, but I have only seen one koala in the wild.
    • I have learned to love Thai food to an almost scary degree. Red curry, yellow curry, green curry. Mmm.
    • I’m MARRIED.
    • My man and I can swing dance.
    • Some days I have to remind my self to “think“…. instead of “reckon”.
    • I’ve learned that culture shock is very real and very sucky.
    • I still haven’t been to Tiger Island, to my dismay.
    • I cry less now, but I still get incredibly homesick.
    • I had better intentions for sending packages back to the States than actually happened. Instead I keep adding presents to a gigantic box that is going to have to be sent eventually.
    • My first stops when I get back to Iowa will be: see my family, go to my chiropractor, and then Pizza Ranch.
    • My goal for this next year is to learn to be able to eyeball things in metric.
    • I’ve made some really nice friends, and I even like my in-laws.
    • I’m anxious to go back to the States, but I am really starting to like it here.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  5. Someone Steal This Idea
    While I take lots of photos, I don’t necessarily consider myself to be a “photographer”. But if I were, I would want to do a collection of photos of hardened, “scary looking” men with their perfectly petite little daughters.

    Last night I was coming out of a restroom, and waiting in the hallway was this bouncy little blonde dressed head-to-toe in pink holding on to the finger of a suntanned, pierced, tattoed man with sunglasses and a mohawk. And the way he talked to her, you could tell that the little pixie had that tough guy completely enamored. It was a really sweet moment.

    Indexed. (via Joshua)

    What the…
    My mom just sent me this conversion chart from US Standard to Australian Measurements. Maybe this is my problem. Actually, my real problem is that I can’t remember if I brought my measuring cups/spoons from home or if I bought these here. I’m pretty sure they were mine. How can a CUP not be a CUP?? Who decides these things? I’m writing a letter!

    And Just for Fun
    Take a Whiff… dont’ ask me how I find these things.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  6. Weekend Recap
    * Went on a date this afternoon to see Lady in the Water, which I really enjoyed, save for the heart attack I had at that one point.

    * Sister-in-law took some decent Ikea cupboards out of the kitchen of their new house and gave them to us since we have no storage whatsoever. Hung two in the kitchen nook yesterday and put one on top of a dresser. Oh the joy of filling them up with our clutter!

    * Went to the markets yesterday morning despite the rain. Got lots more veggies. Hans also bought me some pretty flowers, because having flowers in the house makes me feel happy.


    I don’t remember what they are, but I think they’re gorgeous. Plus there are a bunch of buds that I hope will bloom over the next week or two.

    At the market, we were meeting his folks for coffee, so Hans staked a claim on a table while I went to find them. This table happened to be across from a booth where a gentleman was doing caricatures. About halfway through our coffee, the man’s wife brought a picture over to our table and said that it was a freebie. Hans was pretty embarrassed, but I think it’s adorable.

    * Speaking of adorable, I got breakfast in bed this morning. It was food-magazine-cover worthy with a slice of wholegrain toast stacked with fluffy scrambled eggs, two slices of crisp bacon and two fresh spinach leaves. The on the side were baked beans (an Aussie breakfast tradition) and some sauteed mushrooms. He opened the doors to the veranda, and we sat in bed listening to the birds and eating our brekkie. It was lovely.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  7. How to Make Me Teary
    Be my nephew and send me this IM:
    do you know when you are coming home?

    Immigration Trivia
    So once this application goes through I should (fingers-crossed) have my temporary spouse visa, which is good for two years. Then our case gets reviewed again to make sure we still, in fact, have a genuine relationship. (Seriously people, if you’re trying to scam the system, there have GOT to be easier and cheaper ways to do it than to ACT like you are in a relationship with someone.)

    For the next two years we need to continue to keep evidence of this relationship including plane tickets for joint travel, major joint purchases, etc. Apparently having children in the next two years is another good sign, but all y’all can get off our backs about that.

    However, I also read that magazine subscriptions in your married name are another good sign. Hello! I’m a-subscribin’. How often does a magazine lover get an excuse like that?? “But babe, it’s for our FUTURE.

    These are on my wishlist:
    Notebook:: Ideas for Living
    Inside Out: the magazine to live in
    Real Living: My Real Simple Substitute… though I swear I saw a Real Simple at the newsagent last month.
    and PC User: Because I’ll be nice and share

    A Tired Conversation
    Between me and my husband, the heater.
    Me: You’re like one of those things you get in the hunting department of Walmart where it starts out cold, but then you bend it and it pops and gets super hot but then is just warm enough to put in your socks so that your toes don’t freeze and crack off while you’re ice-fishing. Do you even know what I’m talking about?
    Him: Yes.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  8. My, My, What Have We Here?
    Check out the hot couple in the “Weddings” section of this amazing photographer’s site. 🙂

    American Treatsies
    The box from my mom came yesterday. Wheee. We’re both wearing our shiny new Threadless tees today. We also got some OCPs, Wheat Thins, a can of black beans (black gold to me) and some Almond Joys for Hans.

    Incidentally, we’re coming up on my one-year-in-Australia anniversary. It’s a week from tomorrow. Weird.

    Jane in America!
    I also thought I’d let you know that the animated show I mentioned earlier, Jane and the Dragon, just started airing in the States last weekend on NBC. I think it’s around noonish on Saturdays. (Just after Veggietales.) So you all can enjoy my latest happiness… especially those of you who live with my goddaughter. *Ahem* (You can tell Rachel that Jane looks just like Aunt Danielle.)

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  9. Challenge Question:
    Name one single, solitary movie about the life of a musician that doesn’t involve him cheating on his wife, doing drugs and generally being a total bastard.

    (We watched Ray yesterday. Seriously. After Walk the Line earlier this year, I think I’m bastard-musician-ed out.)

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  10. One Last Steve Post
    We went to the Australia Zoo yesterday with my brother- & sister-in-law. I mentioned earlier in the week that I wanted to go, just because it’s rare to have the opportunity to pay tribute in person when the world is mourning the loss of someone. Lisa runs a childcare centre, so she had her kids make cards as well. And we took them all out to hang up on the fence outside the entrance.





    We had to park at the “Australia Zoo 400m” sign, and other cars were pulling in behind us. There were probably 100 people there outside the entrance reading the signs and cards. There were a few children that I saw, but most of the people were adults. The zoo staff had khaki shirts on a table that people could sign. There was a sea of flowers on both sides of the entrance. It was really touching.






    It was an indescribable feeling. I’ll reluctantly admit that I cried as I was going to sleep last night. Just thinking of Terri and the children… and having a weird empathy. It suddenly hit home — I’m all the way over here, and if anything ever happened to Hans… I have no idea what I would do or how I could possibly cope.


    There are more of my Australia Zoo pictures here.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  11. Crikey, it’s Khaki
    Have y’all heard about International Khaki Day? We only just heard about it yesterday. And while I don’t really have much in the way of khaki, I did wear my tan skirt today.

    Lost in Translation: Pronounciation Edition
    n. a light-brownish color

    American Pronounciation: rhymes with “wacky”
    Australian Pronounciation: rhymes with “car key”

    I laugh a little bit inside every time I hear it.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

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  12. More Steve
    The Queensland government is putting together a condolence book to be given to Steve’s family. You can contribute here.

    I don’t know why I have such a heartache over this. Maybe it’s because I’m here.

    Also, lots of people are putting a turtle in front of their IM names as a tribute to Steve. On MSN it’s achieved by putting this: (tu)

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  13. Shocking Yet Not Completely Surpring
    We just had a mad scramble to determine whether it was a joke or not, but it turns out that Steve Irwin really did just die. Sad.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  14. Veg Out
    Today we went to the Brisbane Market with Hans’s parents. We heard you could get some bargains on fresh produce there, so we thought we’d see how much we could save. I think we spent $35 and now we have more fresh food than I know what to do with. Seriously.

    We’ve got:
    • a huge sack of potatoes
    • a head of broccoli
    • a bag of brussel sprouts (I know! They’re not bad, actually.)
    • a bag of carrots
    • three bunches of asparagus
    • a gigantic head of napa cabbage
    • half a produce bag of beans
    • half a produce bag of snow peas
    • half dozen yellow onions
    • a bunch of green onions
    • a couple stems of red grapes
    • four gorgeous big red tomatoes
    • a butternut squash
    • six avocados
    • two zucchini
    • two cucumbers
    • four little yellow squashes
    • a bag of baby spinach
    • a bag of rocket (I’d never heard of it called that until I got here, but it’s a lettuce-type of thing that’s shaped kind of like dandelion leaves. Sort of.)
    • three cobs of corn
    • six apples
    • 250g bag of slivered almonds
    • and I bought a PLANT!

    That’s right. If you know anything about me, you know that I kill plants. Not because I don’t love them. Mostly because I don’t really water them. But the guy said that this one doesn’t really need water in the winter and can live without much in the summer. It’s called a desert rose.

    That picture is from one that was four years old. (And $50.) But we got a little sprout bulb-like one for $5, and I’ve got my fingers crossed that it lives to flower.

    Unconscious Mutterings
    1. Wiggle :: Fruit Salad, Yummy, Yummy
    2. Face :: plate
    3. Adjustable :: strap
    4. Room :: Rooms to Go
    5. Easy :: Peasy
    6. Store :: Walmart
    7. Maid :: Maid-Rite
    8. 9 pm :: Uhh…
    9. Challenge :: space shuttle
    10. Debt :: Collector

    If there’s one thing that can be said about Brisbanites, it is that they sure are FESTIVE. Yet another festival has begun here, and this time it is the River Festival… uhh, celebrating the Brisbane River? I dont’ know.

    But anyway, Saturday night I was getting dinner before the show in the Valley. We thought we might be able to see some of the fireworks from Riverfire over the buildings. Lisa also reminded us that there was going to be a jet flyover with a burn-out thing. Okay fine.

    So we’re just sitting down to eat, and all of a sudden there’s firetrucks with their sirens blaring coming down the street. Next thing we know there was a loud explosion-type sound, and the sky lit up. It was a bit scary, and I think there was a collective crapping-in-the-pants by everyone who was outside. Even though we all knew it was coming, the jets still startled us. I heard more than one person reference 9|11 in conversations afterwards. We were under an awning and couldn’t really see it, but there have been some great reader photos sent in to the newspaper.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  15. New Rule
    “If I can put my hand through the hole in your sock, I reserve the right to throw it away without question.”

    Veg Out
    We’re going to the markets. We’re going to the markets. We’re going to the markets, hey, hey, hey, hey. I’m a-gonna get me a fridge full of perishables and cook up a storm. Or fill up that compost bin in about two weeks, one of the two.

    Happy Birthday
    To my little cutie-patootie niece who is FIVE today. Which also means it’s my blogiversary… 5 years attempting to share my blather.

    Gig tonight. Rock out. Whatever.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.

  16. I <3 This Computer
    Why? It has a television tuner, so we can use it as a tivo. My life has changed. Well, not that there’s a lot I am commited to watching anyway, but I am strangely addicted to Australian Idol. Their judges are so much easier to stomach than Simon, Paula & the other guy. And I know several other people who were glued to their sets this week, so I don’t feel so bad about it.

    I also called all the finalists voted in, except for Joseph, who I couldn’t stand… if only because he was singing a song that went “let me be the one to.. [something R&B; blah]” and while singing “one”, he held up one finger, and when he sang “to”, he held up two fingers. That’s when the hating began, I’d say.

    One of the guys in the wild card is in a band called Soul Frame, who have played at AGMF and Sonfest and the like. I was surprised to hear a Switchfoot song on Idol until I read that.

    Hey Now, Hey Now Now
    I LOVE this cartoon that’s on in the mornings called Jane and the Dragon! It is so cute. I don’t know if it’s on anywhere in the States, because it’s made by a Canadian company. Oh, and they’re working with Peter Jackson’s Weta Workshop. I love how it looks really sketchy but also real videogamey. (Hans likes it because the heroine is a redhead.) I’m totally tivo-ing it now!

    And I’m going to make him apply for a job. I could stand to be in Wellington now that Spring is here.

    Posted in Nothing in Particular.