Wednesday, December 29, 2010

holiday nothingness

What has Fflur been doing, I hear you ask? Well not a lot is the short answer to that, but that would be a boring post wouldn't it?
I have been doing what most teachers do during this time. I have been celebrating Christmas (you don't have to be a teacher to do this one actually) I have been spending quality time with my son (playing table tennis, watching him swim and timing how long he can hold his breath under water, going biking with him, doing running races with him, playing tennis etc etc)
I have also been spending time with my Mum, sisters, aunt, uncle, cousins etc - playing board games, drinking G&Ts and chatting about everything and nothing.
I have also spent some time alone, watching loads of dvds and reading books. I wish I could report that I have read something amazing but I haven't, they have all been hoilday worthy books (ones that don't make me think too much) I have watched a lot of dvds, most of them are what would be called chick flicks, why do woman like these types of movies so much? I don't really know, they are so predicatable and really unrealistic but I just love them.
And that, ladies and gentleman is all Fflur has been up to since her last post. Not a lot. A lot of nothing, but that is quite nice for a holiday. In about 9 days we head to the South Island and then I may have more to post about.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Have you missed me?

Probably not - cause as Richard likes to point out I do not post as frequently as others. I like to think this is kind of like Christmas. Let me elborate; if I only post once in a while, it is special, exciting, giving to others, merry - just like Christmas. If I post every day it is tedious, expected, onerous - just like being at work. Would you not rather have Christmas?
Well lucky you, here is Christmas; you can unwrap me if you like.
I am at home with my mother, drinking gin and tonic - it is very merry, just like Christmas is meant to be.
I hope you are all having a very merry christmas season, and you enjoy me very thoughful gift of a new post this christmas.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Too much time on my hands...

The title of this post may be a little misleading, as I don't mind having all this time, in fact I even think I deserve it! But obviously I am used to being busy and with Bennett still at school, my housework all done and most of my Christmas shopping complete, I decided to embark on a baking frenzy. Please peruse the results at your pleasure and make lovely comments about my efforts which will boost my ego.

Monday, December 13, 2010

End of year

Dear Santa,

Thank you for Christmas. As you know I am a big fan of the season, even though I only get 2 presents (no matter how good I have been!) I love all the food we get at Christmas time because deep down I am a gluttonous pig. I love to eat until I feel like I am going to vomit, at which point I usually lie down for the mandatory Christmas day sleep. However, this year Santa since I have been extra, extra good could you please deliver me one of these for Christmas

It does not have to be this particular variety, although something close would be gratefully accepted. In fact I am not feeling particularly fussy at all at this time of year Santa, anything will do.

Yours gratefully,

Fflur (the very good girl who deserves a reward)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

fingers crossed

I say fingers crossed cause I am not sure I have embeded this properly, but if I have this is a very poor quality video of the staff stage challenge. (probably filmed on a cellphone) There was a better filming of it and photos which I will add later - but I know you have been waiting with bated breath. I am the first one to come on in the gaga dance and the last one to leave if you are looking for me. It will give you a good idea of why my ears were ringing after wards, and why I felt like a superstar.

Monday, December 6, 2010


Setting: outside house, 5:40pm, 20mins before Bennett attends Year 8 leavers dinner. Bennett is anxious to get to resturant on time, Mother is wanting to capture an important moment/milestone in her son's life.

Mother: Smile
Bennett: groan
Mother snaps one photo where Bennett has perfected the art of the stanch rugby boy look.

Mother: tring to coax him into a smile: Think about something happy - like Loki maybe? (the cat, whom Bennett adores and never fails to raise a smile on Bennett's dial)
Bennett: hurry up!
Bennett runs to car and tries to get in, avoiding mothers photo snapping

Mother: One more
Bennett: It's not important!
Mother: (with a tear in her eye and a breaking heart pleads) It's important to me.
Bennett: groans
Mother snaps another couple of shots where Bennett looks annoyed. These look remarkably like Bennett's first day of school photos which mother can not scan to show anyone on her blogspot.

Bennett: Let's go, we will be late.
Mother: One more, with a smile?
Bennett: No

Mother and Bennett get into car where they have a mostly quiet journey to restaurant. Mother thinks how sad it is that her son has grown up so much. Bennett probably thinking about food.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Reclaiming my youth?

Last night I went to see Bon Jovi live in concert - the last time I went to see them live in concert was 21 years ago, so it is fair to say it was a very different experience this time. I remember 21 years ago, being in absolute awe at seeing a famous person in the flesh, loving the songs and being pushed and jostled around until my Dad hoisted me on his shoulders for a while. I am not the only one that was a lot older this time around, the crowd was mostly (but not all) older and the band themselves were a lot older (although Jon Bonjovi has a much better plastic surgeon than his guitarist Richie Sambora)
I thought I might not like it as much as I did when I was young, but I was wrong. I danced, sang, clapped, cheered and hollered like I a teen with no inhibitions. I thought I would not like that there were allocated seats (even though I stood for the entire performance) But I did. I loved that I was not pushed, pulled, yanked, stepped on, or burned by cigarettes and covered in someones beer. I had an amazing seat, right in the middle about 15 rows back and I could see the band clearly all night.
It made me feel young again while I danced and sang. It made me feel mature that I liked the civilized nature of it. And it made me feel old when I could hardly move at the end because of cramping up muscles, and that I couldn't be bothered going to town afterward, but headed home to bed. I am not the rock chick I once used to be. Is it the sign of being older when you would rather be at home than out partying? If so, I am happy to be older and I have no desire to reclaim my youth, but don't mind visiting it once in awhile.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Oh the pain!

I was determined not to look foolish come Wednesday when we perform our staff stage challenge - so along with my new exercycle/walking exercise regime I have added 30mins of practising my dance to my nights for the past three nights. I woke at 4am this morning and briefly wondered why I was awake, before it dawned on me that I was in immense pain. A muscle in my dodgy back was reminding me why I have become the non-toned, unfit creature that stands before me in the mirror. I rolled around in bed trying in vain to get comfortable until the alarm went of at 6:40 and I painfully pulled and pushed my way out of bed. I struggled through the day (and another dance practice at school, cause we had to learn the finale dance) and then promptly took myself to the chemist to get some better anti-inflammatory medication. I have spent the last couple of hours with medication lying on the couch, dozing. On the plus side, I have nailed the dance!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Getting my Gaga on

At the end of the year it is tradition(this is a word you become very familiar with at East) for the teachers to do a stage challenge dance. This year we are doing an x factor slash American idol type thing. There are 3 dances, one is a Susan Boyle/Pussycat dolls mix, another features the horrid Beiber and the last one is Lady Gaga. I am in the Gaga dance and I have been trying to get in touch with my inner Gaga for the past week. It seems I can do the choreographed dance moves when there is no music playing, but as soon as I put the music on and try it, it all turns to rubbish! it would seem my body just wants to do some weird freestyle/acting/nerdy dance moves. I just wanna get my groove on and my groove is just not the Gaga groove. I am getting REALLY frustrated! I do not want to go on and not have it nailed, I would never want to go on stage if I didn't feel confident about a drama performance and it is the same for dance. Sadly I think me and Gaga will never become one. When the dance goes on youtube - which will be approximately 5 mins after we have performed it at school I will post the link and you can see the disaster for yourself.

This is the inspiration for my outfit - I will post photos of the finished product after the event.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Nobody puts Baby in the corner

I have aspirations to be Baby Houseman - for those of you who are over 50 or under 20 Baby is the main character in Dirty Dancing.

It is not the being swept off my feet and falling in love with a hot dance instructor that I aspire to have (although that is a nice little fantasy tucked away in the back of my head, but that is where it will stay) I aspire to be a dancer, a good one, not just a drunk bar top dancer. I worked damn hard last night to learn the steps for the cha cha and I have the blisters to prove it! I could insert a photo here of my blisters but maybe that is too much. I am going back for my second lesson tomorrow night.
I have to say Dirty Dancing prepared me well for my first lesson, cause although the dance instructor was not as hot as Patrick Swayze, he did tell me to keep my frame straight and not look down. Next I expect him to take me to a lake to practise our lift - I wonder if I have to wear all white for this experience like Baby did?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

once I won a dancing competition... was not a competition with any criteria that I was aware of, I didn't have to officially practise for it (although to be fair I had been practising for it, albeit in a completely unaware state for many drunken, pub dancing years)
This competition did not have that many other participates (about 6) but still I am the proud winner of a table top dancing competition held at a backpackers bar on Wakefield St; the prize (apart from the obvious adulation) was a 50 dollar bar tab - at the time I was very happy with that.
Why this anecdote? Well it is my segway into telling you all about my dance lessons. Tomorrow night I am starting to take official dance lessons - not as the teacher but the student! I am going to learn the salsa, the cha cha and some other dances they dance on Dancing with the Stars. It is not Dancing with the stars that has inspired me, but taking dance classes (as the teacher) which is the cause. I love dance class, but apart from dancing on tables there is not a lot of depth to my knowledge.
I am beginning with dancing for beginners but hopefully, if all goes to plan I may end up doing this

Bennett was not so sure about me achieving this. He is very concerned about me going, he said with a very concerned/disbelieving look, "I am worried you will fail" like it would some how be a reflection on him. I don't think I will fail, and even if I did, I intend to have fun doing it.

Saturday, November 13, 2010


I shouldn't be this tired at this time of year. Things are winding down, the seniors have left, I am having a fun time focussing on and teaching my juniors (my year 9 English class and me are in the midst of devising a cupcake unit - which involves working cupcakes into anything we learn) and it is not far till the 10th of December when all lessons end for the year, hooray!
But today I am very, very tired, and it is all to do with children. Not the children I teach but the children in my lovely family.
It may have escaped your notice but I have a 13 year old child. There are things you can moan about when you have a 13 year old child and you are a full time working single mother - and sometimes I do. But there are lots of things that you should be grateful for when you have a 13 year old child and last night I was reminded of the wonderful qualities he has now acquired.
Last night my nephews, aged 8 and 5, came to stay the night. Feeding them dessert and letting them play on the computer was fine. I loved having a full dinner table and listening to their conversations; and listening to their squeals of delight as they played games on the computer. Everything was absolutely delightful until bedtime.
Following is a rundown of events that made me tired and grateful for a 13 year old.
7:30 Luka (5 year old) cried because his brother had two pairs of boxers packed and he couldn't find his anywhere (tears about such a mundane thing should have been a foreshadowing to me of the night to come)
8:00 Stories read,teeth brushed and children tucked in bed. Mission done...
8:01 Noah out of bed "can you please stop walking around, I can't sleep"
8:05 Noah out of bed "I want my mummy" Cries. Cuddle and back to bed
8:08 Noah out of bed "the bed is too uncomfortable, I want my bed" Cries. Cuddle and we watch some Guns n Roses on youtube together - we dance, he goes back to bed
8:30 Noah out of bed "I miss my mummy, can you text her?" Take Noah to bed and lie there with him until he falls asleep.
9:00 Crawl out of bed without waking Noah and go upstairs for some me time.
10:00 Decide I better go to be because they will probably wake me early in the morning.
10:01 - 11:30 Luka sound asleep in my room makes the following noises "cough, splutter, slurp, snore, cough, snore, splutter, cough, snore, drool, chew on tongue, cough, snort, cough, cough, COUGH, cough up a lung, snore....etc"
11:30 Noah wakes up "I have a sore throat" Cries "can you call mummy?"
11:35 Luka wakes up "I need to blow my nose" Cries - not sure why.
11:35 - 12:30 I am up and down getting drinks of water, tissues, and looking in vain for liquid panadol.
Around 12:40 I manage to block out the constant stream of noises coming from Luka and drift off into a restless sleep which is disrupted all night by weird dreams and coughing noises.
6am - both boys awake and wanting cereal. Breakfast is followed by them asking me for more food at 15 min intervals, after an hour of this I ask "do you have worms or what?" blank looks are returned from both boys "I'm hungry" Noah states.
Nice to meet you hungry, I'm tired. I lamely think but wisely do not say.
It occurs to me after they left that perhaps it is strange that I want more children, even though it would mean I would have to go back to this sort of life, which is one Bennett grew out of a long time ago. But I do, for all their foibles, they are wonderful.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

domestic goddess

Some days I feel like a real domestic goddess, I feel like this when I am busy pottering around the house all day and I really enjoy it instead of thinking about how annoying it is to be doing all these mundane housework jobs. Today was one of the days I really enjoyed it. I cleaned the house, did 4 loads of laundry and made 26 amazing cupcakes to give to my form class tomorrow since it is our last form class for the year - well actually last form class ever, as at East your form class is a class you teach so you don't have the same form class the next year.
Here is one of my wonderful domestic goddess cupcakes

John-Paul may think these look familiar and that is because I saw them once on one of his blog entries and remembered them.
I am immensely proud of these little creations.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Rhythm is a dancer

On Thursday after school we had our dance afternoon extravaganza which we called "Rhythm is a dancer" This was the final assessment for our Year 11, 12 and 13 Drama classes and our year 11 Dance class. It was also an opportunity for our junior drama/dance classes to show off to the paying public, one of the dances they had created throughout the year. East has a sensational performing arts department, and by that I not only mean the staff who run it (although obviously we are awesome) but the girls who attend our classes. I am in awe of them and they inspire me, with their openness, determination, drive and passion. I often feel incredibly proud to be their facilitator. I sat back and watched them perform an amazing show; with dance after dance that made me smile, swell with pride and feel that little flutter you get inside you when you watch something that 'talks' to you. I love watching people perform, and I love performing myself. my performances may not be out in the public putting on stage productions (I know from past experience how much time that takes and as a single mother my son must take precedence at this stage) But everyday I perform for my classes. I have done dances, improvisations, skits, round offs, handstands, and told multiple jokes and stories. I could not get through a day without doing this because it makes me happy to perform. Everyone of the girls that performed on Thursday feels the same. It showed when they performed and it filled my heart. This may sound cheesy and make some people feel a little sick, but I don't give a damn! It seems not many people value teachers and all they try to do and achieve, sometimes that hurts. But some days I feel so fantastic about my job that I don't care what they say. Next year we have even more drama and dance classes, so we must be doing something right.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Walks of Wellington - the next adventure

Like all sequels this was not as good as the first, even though it was full of promise with its "canopy walkway". We had a lot of the same elements as the first outing, we had the same cast, and some of the features of the genre were becoming very apparent, such as, the kids who complain at the start but then enjoy it. In this sequel it was not that the nature that was bad. It was stunning in that "wow, when I really stop and look at this nature business, instead of walking past it in a hustle and bustle of everyday life and not notice it, it really is quite special" kind of way. And it is not that the company was bad, I really like going walking with my sister and her boys. We get to chat and they get to play. It was the disparity between the maps, the sign posts and the paths that was not so great. The maps seemed to be missing a vast number of the paths that we stumbled across, meaning we did a lot of stumbling and returning down paths already beaten.
The second thing that I did not like so much in this sequel was the intrusions of modern life in my 'nature' walk. Such as the native growing pylons amongst the ferns, or the manhole covers that were like stepping stones or dropped bread crumbs showing you the way along one path (why do you need manholes in a nature reserve?) Along the path with the modern day breadcrumbs there were multiple bits of metal sticking out through the mud. It was like it used to be a rubbish dump and the rubbish is slowly clawing its way back up to the surface. Saddled up nonchalantly to the rocks in the stream, desperately trying to be part of its natural surroundings, was a space saver tyre. It seemed to want to shed its bright orange rim, change its identity and become something natural and not man made. Even though we made jokes about the non natural things we saw as we went along, I must say I did find it disappointing, I went on this walk to escape such things. But maybe it is a good reminder of how we need to treat our natural settings with much more care.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Walks of Wellington

Apparently there are lots of walks you can do around Wellington; nature walks, city walks, historical walks, and some other walks I don't know about or can't care to remember. I want to get back outdoors now that the weather has brightened so I looked for a walk that Bennett, me, my sister and her two boys could do together. We (my sister and I) wanted a short walk to start us off, so we chose one in Seatoun that went through bush and along the shore line and also had old, crumbling gun turrets to amuse the young boys who follow us everywhere.

You may be able to tell from the slumped over figure of my 8 year old nephew Noah that we did not have fully excited and enthusiastic participates at the start of this walk. However, Bennett demonstrates he is not all teen as he lets his Aunty hug him in public.
The mood of our walking companions improved with time and the appearance of "caves" (there were some bigger ones than this but I like how excited they were by just the smallest of gaps)

and banks to climb and steps that started nowhere and went nowhere - I guess these steps were there for a reason at some point?

All in all it was a wonderful way to spend the afternoon, and it cost nothing! Hooray for cheap family bonding! here I am at the end of the walk - all victorious.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

it's just a stage

I would never want to be a teenager ever again, you couldn't pay me enough money to turn back the clock (although I would accept the wrinkle free face, the lack of grey hairs, and the thighs without cellulite without much complaint)
But I do really like teenagers, they are fascinating creatures. There are a lot of complaints about the teenagers of today, but really it is the same re-hashed complaint that has been around since the term teenager was coined. There is nothing new about teenagers, except they can carry their music collection around with them in their pocket. Teenagers can be very predictable; show them a segment of South Pacific because you are studying musical theatre and they will predictably groan at the idea of expanding their viewing sphere, ask them to read a book that isn't Twilight and they will expel a loud groan at the mere idea of broadening their minds. Tell them they are having a day off and they will whoop and holler, give them pizza and they will inhale it faster than a fast thing. I sometimes (like most adults) find some of their behaviour tedious and exasperating but on the other hand I also find it really reassuring. It shows that they are normal human beings, progressing just as they should be through an awkward and confusing stage.
But sometimes they are not predictable and this is the thing I like the most, I love it when they step outside the boundaries we have set for them and they wow us. These are sometimes little things and sometimes they are pretty big. A couple of weeks ago four girls at East shaved their heads to raise money for cancer, they raised around $4000. I don't know about you but you could not pay me that much to shave mine right now, and to think that a teenage GIRL could do that astounds me. That is a pretty big thing.
Sometimes they surprise in small ways. Like the 5 Coll boys who pushed an East teacher's car into the school car park after it had broken down on the road, or Bennett when he gave up his TV programme so that the little girl my sister was babysitting could watch kiddie programmes. These things might me small, but they are just as good. These are the things I like to think about when it comes to teenagers.
Some days I just love my job, being surrounded by these strange creatures all day. At one point today I was almost moved to tears by how special my Year 10 drama class are, when they created a funny and original musical number from a small 30sec non-musical script I had given them. I can only hope that I step outside my boring, predictable adult 'stage' sometimes and wow them too.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Why do we love dolphins?

It is revision time at East - For my Year 12 English class this means they have to spend two weeks looking at unfamiliar texts. I try (mostly in vain) to find something that might be somewhat interesting to them - sometimes I fail at this because there is a gulf between what I find interesting and what they find interesting. It should be noted that sometimes I fail at this on purpose as I don't want to just give them stuff that they would be drawn to themselves, I want to expand their horizons even if they don't want them expanded. I may have never read Shakespeare if my Year 12 teacher had not made me, and I may not have even read Janet Evanovich if my sister had not bought it for me for my birthday - sometimes we need pushing.
Anyway today I had run out of articles/poems/speeches etc and in a last minute decision got an article from a ESA workbook. This article was one that made you see the silly things we do as humans in a new or enlightening way, and it engaged some students who are over revision during last period on a Friday. This article was all about how as silly humans idolise dolphins and whales above almost all other mammals. It asked why these mammals are so special?

"How is it that we can stare at a paddock full of cows, who communicate with each other with sounds just as dolphins do, an dnot swoon at the lyric wonder of it? ...Sheep are friendly and curious souls, just like dolphins but people don't want to graze along side them as a meaningful experience"

I must admit I love the picture this last comment made me visualise - I want to see people rolling in paddocks having a one on one experience with a flock of sheep - and not in a dodgy New Zealand/Australian sheep shagger kind of way. Maybe I like this idea because I have never been one to be fascinated by dolphins or whales and so this equally ridiculous idea which is making a mockery of the fools who think it is meaningful experience tickles my funny bone; or maybe the idea of some hippy tree lover rolling in paddocks communing with sheep just makes me laugh. What ever it is it sure made me and my students laugh today...but not as much as a bit of toilet humour.

Another section of the article questioned why we made trinkets, china ornaments and even toilet paper depicting dolphins and this descended into being able to have personalised toilet paper with a picture of someone you didn't like too much on it, so you could have the pleasure of wiping your butt with it (much mirth was had at this thought) I must admit I would feel a bit funny about wiping any of my bits with someones face, even someone I don't like - I wouldn't want them getting that close... but it does make you wonder...who would you choose or maybe you would just stick with dolphins?

Monday, October 11, 2010

Fist pumping for life

Tuesday night is my favourite night of TV. There is a lot on TV that I just can't stand these days; like The News (so depressing and full of smarmy, smirky politicians) and like a billion crime scene investigation shows (the only show in this genre that I don't hate is Bones, but anything with David Boreanaz in it is mighty fine by me)

Mmmmmmm he makes crime drama worth watching...

But tonight! Tonight is the best TV night. First I get to watch dancing. Dance movies are go to when I am feeling sad, they never fail to make me happy even though they are completely predicable - they are my not so guilty pleasure. Because of my love of dance I love the show about the New Zealand Ballet company - I have dreams of being a dancer and meeting a boy from the wrong side of the tracks who dances a different style of dance but we seamlessly combine our dance styles and create a dance that wows the crowds and makes us fall in love (this all happens in my head while I watch this dance show)
After that I support more New Zealand made television by watching Outrageous Fortune. THE best characters on TV and some pretty inventive swears and curses make this an absolute delight. I have read before that people think we connect to this show as NZers because they are real characters with real emotions and real situations; that we all have someone in our family like them. I have to say no, I know no one like any of these people, but I kinda wish I did. The real highlight of my night, the moment when I get really excited, the moment of absolute pleasure which I should probably keep to myself comes at 9:30! This is when the absolutely crazy, stupid, weird, stupid, mental, unbelievably stupid people from Jersey Shore grace my TV screen. I am not ashamed to say, although I probably should be, that I LOVE THIS SHOW! I am not sure what it says about me that I love this kind of crap, but don't we all have something that is not particularly high brow? Or even medium brow? I find it odd that I will watch Jersey Shore tonight then I will go to be and read Pride and Prejudice, which I am re reading for the hundredth time. Maybe Pride and Prejudice was really the Jersey Shore of its day.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

smelly plants and 'smelly' people

Yesterday me and my sister took our children to see the devil's tongue. The devil's tongue is a flower that only flowers approximately once every decade, and as if that is not enough to make it special and make you want to go and see it, it also smells like decaying bodies, yummy! I thought the boys would like to go for the ewww factor and I am just a curious wee lass and needed no extra encouragement to go. This is what the flower looked like:

Now I know there are a few flowers in this picture, but considering we were at the Botanical Gardens what can you expect? It is the big purply one that looks like the devil's tongue, or what the devil's tongue might look like if he actually existed. (sorry I did have a better picture but I can't seem to rotate it up the right way to put on the blog) It was smelly and entertaining. However, this was not the bit of the day that really stuck in my mind. At the Botanical Garden Cafe I experienced the worst ever customer service, it was so bad I was forced to write and send my first ever complaint letter. I am not usually one to complain but never before have I been yelled at to place an order, or told to pick up my food and move out the way after paying. What happened to the customer is always right? or even good manners? Please and Thank you would not go amiss. After dealing with the world's worst customer service representative we went on to have a fine afternoon, fest your eyes on our fun if you please. Thank you for reading my blog. (see it's easy!)

Bennett tiptoed through the tulips

and slid down the slide (never too old for playground fun, I still enjoy swinging on a swing)

Mucked around with his cousins

Found true love

and generally just behaved like a kid, as he should.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Hello Teenager

Yesterday Bennett turned 13. It has felt like he has been a teen for quite sometime to me because his hormones would just not wait for the 18th of September to be officially recognised. Although his hormones and his teenage self have made themselves at home for quite sometime, yesterday it was official - I was now the mother of a teenager. This strangely didn't make me feel really old, or sad that my baby had grown up, I have been through these emotions already. It actually made me feel really close to him and full of love for him. I wonder if this feeling of closeness is just me trying desperately to hang on to him before he grows up so much that he moves away and only come to visit me when he has run out of food in his flat, wants money, wants to do his washing, or wants all three things at once.
Yesterday we did the things Bennett loves to do - we ate chocolate, had cake, watched rugby on TV and live, we had pizza and his friend stayed the night so they could stay up late playing computer games. I am so glad the things he loves doing are still things I can be involved in and do not involve girls - this will be the next hellish stage.

Friday, September 17, 2010

rhythm is a dancer

This year I have become a dance teacher. I LOVE to dance, I always have, but teaching dance is a whole other beast (as I usually enjoy dancing the most when I am drunk, and teaching drunk is not advised)
I LOVE teaching dance. In particular I LOVE teaching dance to my wonderful, amazing, creative, unique and fabulous Year 10 Dance and Drama class. (is that enough adjectives to explain how much I love them?) Give these girls a piece of music, some equipment to play the music on and an hour of class time and they will astound you with their focus, creativity and total willingness to give anything a go. Sure there are a few that struggle but I have never once heard one of them complain.
Today during period four all of the Year 9 and 10's came and watched the three Year 10 Dance and Drama classes perform their cultural dances. At the end of period four not only was I bursting with pride at their amazingness, but they were also beaming.
Some days it is really hard being a teacher, and some days it is the best job in the world. This week I have had the pleasure of not only watching my classes perform but also the year 12 and 13 classes and it has been an absolute joy. But a big shout out must go to my year 10 class for making me love teaching dance and making me love my job today.

Check out our website to see some of the cool stuff that has been happening for the arts festival:

This sounds like an advertisement for my school, I apologise.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Turning 34

the 15th of September sounds like a really great date for a birthday I think. It may be because this has been the date of my birthday for the last 34 years....34 YEARS!!!!! That sounds like a lot of years to me. I realise in as little as 5 years time this will sound young to me, and that when I am as old as Richard or TSB then 34 will sound practically in utero. But right now, in this present moment it sounds positively ancient. I suspect some of this has to do with the fact that I am single and my eggs are shriveling up at a rate of knots, even as I type these very words they are collapsing and dying...I often imagine my eggs as little cartoon like creatures with eyes, and little arms and legs and they are walking around on little crutches because although I am not hurtling toward my old age, they are. This thought sometimes makes me sad because I never imagined that I would only have one child, I always liked the idea of a big, extended family. These are the thoughts that often haunt me at birthday time because I see the time running out. But on the plus side, I have a job I love, a son I adore and my life is pretty darn good. So tomorrow instead of walking to parliament for the strike, or lying in my bed crying over my elderly eggs I will be going out for lunch with friends and buying myself something frivolous and pretty because it is better to be aging that to be dead.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

interviews and zombies

I have an interview at school this morning - I really hate interviews as my mind goes blank when I am there. I wish my mind would go blank the night before the interview so I could get a good nights sleep. I dreamt about the interview twice last night and both times I had not finished getting dressed and my hair was still dripping wet from the shower. The second dream ended with me chasing zombies and killing them by continuously shooting water into their mouths - premonition?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

A blog about nothing

Under Richard's fine tutelage I have decided to write a post about nothing in particular. When writing about nothing it is hard to find the place to start, but I have read many posts by Richard (of RBB) and this given me some considerable grounding on writing about nothing. I awoke early to the sound of a cat screeching at my door (not Fluffy of RBB) but Lokie (of TCC) This is not how I like to start my Sunday mornings as I am sure Richard can understand. Bennett being the unconditional cat lover got up to feed Lokie and I decided since I was awake that I would continue my reading of everything Bryson. I am not sure why I started reading Bill Bryson and I am especially unsure as to why I continue to do so, he does not write the type of book I generally enjoy but I do enjoy his dry sense of humour and the feeling that I have acquired some new information when I have finished reading. At present I am reading his book on Shakespeare. Because I am a lover of the Bard I am finding this my most enjoyable read yet, even though I do already know much of the information from my time as a student at Victoria University.
I am somewhat bored of writing about nothing now, as I am sure you are of reading it, so I shall finish my peppermint tea and Vogels toast and thrust myself out into the world - which seems quite delightfully spring like today. Tomorrow I am off to enjoy all things Pacifica, where I will not only get to see the East poly girls perform but will also get to see the the Wainui Poly group perform - there must be a blog about something in that experience...

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Being absent

Sometimes I need to go AWOL. I need moments where I disconnect from things otherwise I either get bored or feel overwhelmed. This characteristic doesn't work well when you are in a relationship - guess that is why I am single. It seems it doesn't work well when you have a blog either, its like being in a relationship, people pester you to engage again.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

12 - neither teen nor child

Some ways to identify your 12 year old is almost a teen:
1. Body odour is beginning to make its presence felt
2. Your child no longer does the naked dance when he gets out of the shower (phew)
3. Pimples start to appear overnight onto your child's once silky smooth skin.
4. Small hairs around the corner of your child's mouth start to turn a darker colour (please note this only happens if your child is a boy, at least I hope so)
5. You suddenly become the embodiment of embarrassment if you are within 12 meters of your child in public
6. Your child's friends opinions carry a lot more weight than your own, even if their opinions are downright farcical

Some ways to tell your 12 year old is still a child:
1. They still come in for a cuddle in the morning
2. They still talk to the cat in a baby voice
3. They are not smart enough yet to lie or deceive you with any conviction

Case in point - Bennett was banned from the computer this weekend. I thought he was being remarkably mature about it all as he had not complained once about having nothing to do (in fact his kind of annoyed me as I thought if he was not suffering it could not be a decent punishment) However, this morning when I got out of the shower I then went to the computer to have a little look at my facebook, and there in black and white was evidence that my son is not yet smart enough to trick me - he had been on the computer while I was in the shower and had "liked" a page on facebook, not thinking about how this would pop up on my newsfeed (now for people like Richard who do not understand facebook talk all this means is he was just not smart or deceitful enough yet to be a teen -for which I am truly thankful (and he is not because now he has a extra day of being banned)

Monday, August 16, 2010

The set up...

There may be something written across my forehead that says "please set me up with any single men" I have never seen it there when I look in the mirror, but it seems there is something about me that makes people want to set me it the stench of desperation? I hope not. I have been on some remarkably bad set ups. One of my friends likes to set me up a lot - I have only taken her up on two suggestions and they were both awful. The first one was the set up where you go to a party and there amongst the real party goers is the set up....(please say dah dah dah dah dahhhhhhh in a scary way here)......lurking by the table of dips and other delights is the a tall, gangly, pimply, man that resembles a pencil to me and this is the amazing guy with the overwhelmingly awesome personality that your 'friend' wants to be your next bf. I use the quotation marks around friend here for obvious reasons - I am questioning her friendship here, not so much because she wants to set me up with the pencil but because what does she really know about me if that is what she wants to set me up with? Aren't friends meant to know you well? I didn't take a lot of time conversing with the pencil, I knew that I was not destined to date stationary. The next time my friend decided to set me she gave my phone number to her friend - these friends are always described as "he is such a nice guy, really caring etc etc...." the etc etc is where I tune out cause I know how to translate what she has said "he is ugly" I don't want to sound shallow here, but hell maybe I am. After he had sent me texts and emails I thought he sounded somewhat normal so I went on a date with him. I soon as I spotted him my gaydar started to blink, and by time I had seen his house (immacualte) tasted his wine, seen his clothes and heard him talk my gardar was beeping so loud I couldn't hear myself say "get out of here Fflur!"
I tell you about these bad set ups in the hope that the man Miss Charlie Lee is trying to set me up with is no where near as bad, and that he does not just become more blogging fodder...

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

That's a good guess but not quite what I was looking for

Today my student teacher sat at the back of the class reading something that was not related to the class I was teaching and didn't once get up and talk to the students or offer them any help, even though there were tons of girls with their hands waving in the air waiting for me - where is the initiative I ask you?! I won't be worrying a dot about what she writes about me now. Went to have a word with her after the lesson but she took off while I was talking to a student. Must have a word with her tomorrow.
Funniest teaching moment happened in my year 9 English class today. We are learning about debating for our year 9 debating competition. We did a brainstorm about what they knew already - it seemed they knew quite a bit so I asked them what the statement that the teams argue is called (the moot) They threw out some good guesses but no one seemed to know. Then one very sweet but not so smart girl, called out very earnestly "I know, I's master-bating" The rest of the class depleted the classroom of oxygen as they took a collective intake of air before bursting into uncontrollable and raucous laughter, me included. I had tears coming out of my eyes as I tried to get the class back on task. I thanked the girl for not only the highlight of my day but one of the funniest teaching moments I have had in a long time.

Monday, August 9, 2010

The trainee

Today I got a trainee teacher. Oh joy! Today she sat in my year 12 English class taking notes as I told the class what we were doing today. I wondered what she wrote "asks class to be quiet" or was it something scathing, pulling apart my teaching style. Was she taking notes and then making points on what she wouldn't do. She is a lot older than me and on of the first questions she asked me was "how long have you been teaching?" I decoded this to mean "you are not old enough to teach, what could you possible teach me" I could be wrong of course maybe she was just making polite conversation. She asked me as we left my year 12 English class "how many of them will complete that homework overnight" to which I replied "maybe half" she wanted to know what I would do about that, I replied that if I didn't have them before interval or lunch tomorrow that there would be very little I would do about that except remind them that it was their chances of success that they were screwing up. She did not look impressed. I could see she wanted me to run a detention, then run aonther one the next day for the girls that didn't turn up to the first one, then run another one the next day for the girls that didn't turn up to either, then phone home and so on. (yes you still have these problems in an all girls so called good school) Turns out I do have them before interval tomorrow so I will be able to keep them in. What this will actually teach them I don't really know. I don't think it will make them do it next time. I don't think it will make them appreciate what we are learning. But at least I may have gained one small point with my student teacher. I am looking forward to her teaching my class, and me taking notes...

Saturday, August 7, 2010


In my last picture I look very grumpy or serious or intelligent or cool or something. Here is one of me looking perky (in fact I look so perky someone may have just stuck something up my bottom and given me a fright)

This is at a friends 30th birthday party. Considering I will be turning 34 soon I am not sure why I look so perky (although it may have had something to do with the lovely punch or the sex on the beach cocktail)
Last birthday I felt really sad, and didn't even want to celebrate turning 33 because I felt like nothing had changed in my life for the past 3 years and taking that into consideration what did I have to celebrate? I am trying not to think this way this year but it is a challenge. There are many positive things to celebrate and I must try and remember that so I look this perky when I turn 34.
Like I can now make more than 5 different dishes for dinner - Last night I made Green Curry with fish in it. Wow! Now there is something to celebrate!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Look how serious I am

Amazing how getting glasses can make one look so much more intelligent and serious. We have obviously been told so often that geeks/nerds/brainy types wear glasses that when we see someone wearing them we think they seem smarter.
I tell you who does not seem all that smart to me, Jennifer Love Hewitt. This article about her made me laugh and then I have to say made me quite sad to be a woman. Why do woman feel the need to do this kind of stuff? I personally think Brazilians are going to far, this is sad and ridiculous.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Growing babies

Some people I know are growing babies in their tummys, and that is all well and good but its bloody easy to do! My baby is growing on the outside and it is a lot harder once they get out into the real world and start causing real problems. Soon my baby is going to reach an important milestone. Well two actually. I got to thinking about how big my baby has grown because this weekend one of my nephews turned 5. Five is a big milestone and I remember it well. When Bennett was five he still seemed little, cute, sweet and innocent. Today I took Bennett's applications in so he can enroll in high school! As I drove out of the school parking lot after dropping it off I felt all overcome with emotion, I felt a few tears pricking at the corners of my eyes. My baby will soon turn 13 and he will go to the big bad world of high school! These are BIG milestones. This is much harder to deal with than growing a baby in your tummy or taking your baby to school on the first day. I really feel like the umbilical cord is breaking now, and sometimes that is hard to deal with. He is however, wonderfully unique, weird, interesting, funny, engaging, caring, non communicative, messy, smelly, an amazing story teller and loving - maybe the progression away from small, cute and innocent isn't so bad.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

How to make a cake...

Step one: put all the ingredients on the counter so you can take a photo for your blog.

Step two: Don't notice that you have got the wrong Betty Crocker packet out of your pantry (you have picked up the brownie one instead) and just go ahead and pour the packet into the bowl.
Step three: question why there is brown and white chocolate drops in a cake mix.
Step four: Look at packet and give yourself a mental headslap.
Step five: Get other Betty Crocker packet out of pantry and exclaim how alike they look, and how anyone could get them confused. Betty really should do something to make them not look so alike.
Step six: Decide to write Betty a letter to let her know of your excellent ideas about product packaging.
Step seven: Cook brownies because mix is already in the bowl.
Step eight: Empty right packet into bowl and mix with ingredients you had to forage and put together yourself (ones that didn't come in the packet!!!, perhaps another letter to Betty?) Dear Betty, is it really that hard to put an egg or two in the packet...
Step Nine: talk to sister and mother on the phone while your cake is cooking and get two sets of advice. Sister "take out after 40mins, or at least check cause my oven cooks quicker than says on packet" Mother "don't open oven until the time it says, peeking is not good for cake" Cakes must be shy of their cooking process.
Step Ten: Go with sisters advice. Open oven after 40 mins to discover it is well and truly cooked and well and truly sunken in the middle.

Step eleven: Cry. Say to self "see this is why you don't cook, you are always a failure, even with Betty's help"
Step twelve: devise cunning plan to ice the cake upside down so that the top looks perfect. Also decide to put on sprinkles to distract the eater from the burnt bottom(previously known as burnt top)

Step thirteen: Feel pleased with self at cunning deception.
Step fourteen: Feed to students, who are all very pleased. Then clever Amanda sees through my deceptive ways and says "is this a Betty Crocker cake Miss?"

Friday, July 23, 2010

Dinner from some other world

Last night I went to Logan Brown for dinner. For someone that does not love creating culinary experiences (good or bad ones) I sure do LOVE eating them! It was like I had been transported to some new world last night. One where good, exciting food and flavours are abundant, one where people take pleasure in creating food. I wish I could be like that but you can't change who you are. I tried but my desire to create new dishes was a brief tumultuous affair which only left me more aware of what I was lacking; as did last nights delicious meal.
A side note; the best part of my meal last night was seeing Bennett's face each time a meal was brought out. He exclaimed in wonderment and delight, with eyes as wide as saucers, when they brought us our bread at the start "Has this just been baked?" to which I replied "Yes Bennett, not all bread comes in a plastic bag"

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The drama cake or cake drama.

Sometimes you have these moments when you are teaching when you feel like everything is going right. The lesson is going smoothly, you are loving the students(in the good, platonic way), everyone is engaged(even you) and you can actually see the students learning something. My day is not full of moments like this, but this week I feel like it has been heavily swaying this way. I have been so excited by my Year 11 Drama class (they are my undisputed favourites) that I have told them I would make them a cake for class on Monday. What the hell was I thinking!!! I have never baked a cake in my whole 33 years on this earth. I was so pleased with their enthusiasm about their scripted scenes (they are doing parts from Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Nights Dream, A Woman of no Importance, and The Importance of Being Ernest) and their acceptance of doing revision once a week for their Drama exam, that I foolishly said I would make them a Drama cake. The Drama cake is a living, edible metaphor for the Drama techniques, elements, conventions and technologies - which they have to revise for their exam. I think my Drama cake may be such a disaster that it will be a cake drama.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

So long holidays...

I am putting off going to bed tonight because that makes it seem like the morning comes quicker. I am only dreading the early morning get up tomorrow, apart from that painful experience I am really looking forward to going back to work tomorrow. Sure I have not done all the work that I should have done in the holidays, sure I will have to drag myself out of bed at 6:50 every morning, sure I will have to eat at set times instead of grazing all day. But I have missed my students and I am really looking forward to seeing them again, and I am really excited about seeing my year 11 Drama class and getting to work with them on their scripted scenes; I am so excited to see what they will do with them because they are an amazingly positive and creative bunch of lovelies (they are also my form class, so I may be a little biased about how lovely they are, you can't help but love your form class)
I also really love the 3 other amazing people in the performing arts department. Sam is amazingly organised, motivated, motivating and inspiring. Renata always sees the positive side of things and makes me want to be a nicer person. Brent is crazy funny and always makes me laugh. I get to sit next to the best people. This is a bit gushy isn't it? I will return to my non gushy self soon, I promise.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Day two of trademen

Today is the day the new fire should be installed. I was woken bright and early by the ringing of the door bell. My goodness, I thought as I jumped out of bed and tried to make my hair presentable, the tradesmen are here well before they said they would arrive! Oh ye of little faith! But never fear fellow readers your faith in tradesmen and their uselessness will soon be restored. It was in fact a delivery man, delivering a package for the tradesmen, who turned up when he said he would and not a minute sooner.
What does one do when tradesmen are working away in your house? (apart from blogging of course) How much small talk does one have to engage in? Does one have to offer tea and cookies like you are a hostess? Or should I just offer to show him where my panty drawer is?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Keeping your undies safe

Today was a very trying day for me. The people who have come to replace our broken fireplace arrived to finally fix it today. Let me start by saying it was an incredible mission to get someone here to replace the fire, tradesmen it seems deserve their reputation for being useless (I won't bore you with a thorough detailing of their uselessness, as that would make this a very long post) Anyway, the told me they would arrive today between 9 and 10 and when they did arrive at 9:58 I guess they were technically correct. I had planned to go out at some point today (leaving my undies to fend for themselves in my drawers against the tradesmen, who we all know, thanks to Target, are prone to a little undie caressing Sitting at home all day is the kind of thing that sends me a little loopy, I become like a caged animal, pacing backwards and forwards with no real purpose in life. Sadly this was not to be. Firstly I had to help the gas/fireman repairer find the gas meter (is that not your job I asked myself? shall I ask him to do a bit of my marking?) Then he told me there was a major leak in my main gas pipe, said with much raised eye brows and sense of dread in voice. "oh dear" I meekly replied. So the rest of the day was dedicated to him fixing the leak in my gas pipe and not the fire. At one point he marched into the house with the removed broken gas pipe to show it to me. "This was your pipe" he said, again with the serious voice and and sense of dread. I think I was meant to apologise for the state of my pipes or something...Anyway the joyus end to this story is that because he spent the day fixing the pipe the fire, which is in parts all over my lounge is not installed and will have to wait until tomorrow...another day of protecting my undies from the undesirable tradesmen...

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


I don't consider myself a particularly lazy person. I am a working, single mother whose house is always clean, so I can't be too bad. However, today I found that I was only getting around to eating my breakfast at 12 noon. Is that the act of a lazy person? I will admit holidays do bring out a certain lazy, can't be bothered attitude in me, is that lazy? or am I simply doing what holidays were designed for? This morning I didn't wake until 9:30; in less than a week that will be during first period (or spell, if you are Wainui inclined) After waking at this lazy hour I spent the next hour and a half reading, still cuddled up under my duvet. I then arose for a leisurely shower, not the rushed kind I have on a school day, and then slowly ate breakfast. All of this may not sound excessively lazy, but to someone that is used to rushing around like a blue arsed fly it feels it. The other small thing that makes me feel like I am being really lazy is that I have a mountain of marking to do. Is it lazy not to do it during the holidays? Is is really a holiday if I have to do work?
Before I leave you to ponder this deep and thought provoking question I will leave you with two things. First, feel free to check out my son's blog which I have only just discovered (it is a secret which I happened upon, it is called okatoONLINE) and here are some pics from my recent holiday...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

New Post

I really have been very lazy. Holidays are time for laziness. I have been indulging in utter laziness this week.(and perhaps some past weeks if Richard and Douglas's posts are anything to go by) Next week when I am back in Welly it will be time to indulge in marking and planning...perhaps indulge is not the right word here,more like wallow sadly in marking and planning.
This is going to be the end of my post today as I am sitting in the sun after a day spent at the beach and I am feeling very sleepy...

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Trampoline fun

I like to spend a bit of time perusing Stuff (the website) at work. I do this partly because it is really the only website of any interest that I can actually access and because I like to challenge Renata, Sam and Brent to the quiz each day. Today while perusing I found an article entitled "Teen sexual disease rates worry schools" now because I am a frequent visitor to a school with teens, this interested me. I opened it up and the first word that draws my attention is Taranaki (ahh, my home province, doesn't it make you proud!) The articles opening statement was... "The rate of sexually transmitted infections is through the roof in Taranaki because of younger teenagers engaging in regular sex." Really? they are having sex, and this is how they are getting sexually transmitted diseases? Gee I am glad you cleared that up for me, I was a little confused as to how it was happening. After clearing that up I started to remember my teen years in the good old Naki and I have to say, things have not really changed. That kinda makes it sound like I may have had a sexually transmitted disease, but rest assured blog followers this is not the case, I was really quite virtuous back then. The one time I remember taking a condom to a party I gave it to my best friend and lets just say the rest of the story involved her, a not too lovely young man and a trampoline, enough said. It was this party that sprung to mind because 3 of my best friends lost their virginity that night and there was only one condom at that party. I think the only thing that has changed in Taranaki, or anywhere in New Zealand for that matter is the complete saturation the media has on our lives. All these terrible things teens do these days were done before, teens are not coming up with anything new, they just have new toys to do it with (note, don't mean sexual toys here, but who knows they may have some new toys in that area as well) What we do have is a media franchise that loves to tell us everything. I bet there are teens involved in trampoline fun all over the country, and good luck to them I say, just wear a bloody condom!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

bad blogger

I have been a very bad blogger of late, getting too caught up in the business of everyday life to write about it. I have been reprimanded, and now this ashamed little blogger will try and think of something to write about. Maybe the problem is that I have not baked or cooked anything, I have not been on any disastrous dates and indeed have not done anything even remotely interesting for weeks. However, this is a mere trifling little detail in Richard's world, he never lets it stop him from posting when he has done nothing of interest. I will take a page out of Richard's book, or Richard's bass bag and tell you what I have done today.

I will start my post by naming it after the day, I like how Richard does this, he is always thinking of others and reminding them what day it is in case they forgot. So....
Sunday, the day before Monday and following Saturday
Today I have to mark a my year 12's creative writing - this will be very tiresome as I have read and re-read these stories for 2 weeks and am totally sick of hearing about someone 'well known' to them, which is the task. Then to top off all this exciting reading of creative writing, I have to proof read my form classes reports and put lovely little post it notes on it, telling people where to put commas etc (like I know!?)
Yesterday (which was Saturday, the day following Friday of the teacher's only day) I watched Avatar - this was quite possibly 4 hours of my life completely wasted. I watched it to be a good mum, and now he really owes me when I am old and senile.
Well that is all for me on this fine Sunday; look forward to Monday's post - all about my exciting activities on the day set aside to celebrate the Queen's birth.

Monday, May 24, 2010

This is what procrastination looks like

At school you sometimes do this thing (the name of the thing escapes me at the moment) where you write up three titles (done in a y shape) The titles are "looks like" "sounds like" and "feels like" Well this is what procrastination looks, sounds and feels like to me when I should be writing reports. (Note: I was home today because Bennett has weak lungs that suck up all my sick time, I thought I should get some report writing done) It looks like: a clean bathroom - toilet, shower, sink floor all cleaned, it also looks like a tray of cupcakes all iced and decorated with sprinkles, and 2 loads of washing cleaned, dried and folded. It sounds like the tapping of my fingers on a keyboard (only I am online and not writing reports), it sounds like bacon and scrambled eggs cooking for brunch, and a child whinging and being placated with medicine and food. It also sounds like Oprah telling me how to live my life. It feels like a warm bed until 9:30 in the morning, but also pacing up and down the stairs all day with the vacuum cleaner and mop. It feels like a warm house and a full belly all day long, but mostly it feels like there is this nagging little creature following me around all day telling me quietly at first to write reports. He gets a little louder with each passing hour - until he is almost deafening and I finally relent. I have written half a class now and he has gone back to a whisper, but he sees me writing this post and is getting ready to pounce.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Turns out I am a mingle-tard

I am in a state of despair. It used to be that I was very good at the mingling. I now find that this skill has run away from me faster than a very fast thing. I am now a mingle-tard. This is a term I coined last night, please feel free to use it at your pleasure. I tried in vain last night to mingle and the party I may or may not have been invited to, but I just don't like small talk very much and mingling requires a lot of this. As the night wore on (and the vodka kicked in) I found it a little easier. I didn't start liking small talk all of a sudden, it was that I would just jump in at the deep end of the conversation. Sadly all this partying and mingling did not lead to any disastrous stories; and I only attracted the attention of one freak (very good going for a freak magnet)

Friday, May 21, 2010

The Budget!

This post is not really going to be about the budget - although I do feel like John Key has personally said to me "run out and buy yourself something pretty young lady" with the whole 14 dollars extra a week he has given me. But I guess with the added GST on the something pretty it will all be something pretty disappointing.
I may not really want to talk about the budget, but I do want to talk about the dangers of facebook, and to be precise the invitation aspect of facebook.
Tomorrow night I am going to a engagement party that I don't think I am really invited to. I was invited via facebook - and I gladly said yes, because quite frankly there were some rather dishy young men who had also said they were going; and as I may be turning into a cougar I thought I should go and practise my prowling skills. Here is the part of the story that reveals I may not have meant to be invited, but was just an accidental slip of the button on facebook. I bumped into the female half of the engaged couple as she was out shopping for, and I quote "shoes to wear to an engagement party" I replied, "How handy, you could also wear them to your own" she then said "if we have time to have one" Hmmmmmmm, I thought, that is awfully strange because according to your facebook page you have already booked out part of The Southern Cross and invited lots of guests (me included) and many people have said yes (also, me included) Are you telling me that you are now going to facebook them all and tell them that you actually don't have the time, even though you do have the shoes?? Nope, I don't think that is what she meant at all, I actually think she did not go through a process of selection on her facebook page and now she has a whole bunch of people coming who she does not really want to see (me included)
Oh well, never mind, I will just go a prowlin' in a pretty little outfit which will only cost me 14 dollars. Thanks again John.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Cougars - grotesque?

I am not sure what actually defines a cougar (not the animal) but I was pretty sure it was not this
"women pretending to be younger than they are...going out with unsuitably young things with whom they can barely communicate" As stated by Jane Clifton in her review of the new show Cougar Town. There are many things I disagree with Jane about, but lets start with the first two. One, I don't think the definition of cougar has to include "pretending to be younger" Correct me if I am really off the mark but most young, virile men don't care too much about the age of a woman (I am not talking 80 here) if she is willing to go to bed with him, so why pretend to be a different age? Secondly, why would the women care if they can communicate with them or not? I presume they don't want a serious relationship with this young guy, they are out for a good time - not much need to communicate past "get naked now"

Jane goes on to say about Courtney Cox in the lead "cougar" role:

"It simply defies all credibility that women this good-looking and financially savvy could be the slightest bit desperate about the things they are represented as being desperate about - in this case, getting a decent bloke."

What is she saying? Only ugly, poor woman can possibly be desperate to find a "decent" man? Yes Jane, it is just the ugly and poor that are left on the shelf - thanks for that morale booster!
Maybe I am big headed, but I don't think I am dog ugly, or really poor, yet I am quite desperate to find a decent man. I think the key word here is "decent" - Yes Courtney in her 40's could easily find a guy to date her, as could, and indeed have I. But NONE of them have been decent! Also most men my age, and my dear friend Courtney's are attached and have been for quite some years. Maybe young men are our only option for a bit of light hearted fun? Does that make us "grotesque" as Jane states? If so then bring on the grotesque! I am thinking of following Courtney's lead...

Monday, May 17, 2010

Making lemonade

I have been trying hard to make lemonade out of lemons that life keeps throwing at me, and when you are a full time working mother, life does tend to throw a few. At the moment I feel like the lemon tree of life is producing lemons at a faster rate than I can make lemonade. I find when this happens I do most things badly. Mostly I feel like no one is on my team, there is no one else to help pick up the lemons that are falling and rotting on the ground. Bennett is getting better at being a lemon gatherer but there are a few years to go before he can really help.
This may sound very negative, but I have been working hard on feeling positive all through new school, new house, sister with lump in breast (final results coming this week, fingers crossed), other sister with brain scans showing a funny lump (still no idea what that is), a huge rise in my panic attacks, feeling unwell, Bennett being sick etc etc has just come to a head. I want to get off for a breather.

Friday, May 14, 2010

sleeping to a symphony

Last night I went to sleep listening to a symphony. This sounds pleasant, but not when I tell you it was a symphony of drips coming through my window and ceiling into strategically placed buckets and icecream containers. All night long there was a constant drip, drip, drip. Ice cream containers make a different sound to buckets when filling with water. The bucket was catching three drips at once, so had a much fuller sound, the lazy ice cream containers only catching one drip had a loud echoy pling to them. I finally drifted off to sleep when I had become some what accustomed to the sound only to be awoken later to a different sound. Water hitting wood and carpet - this added a new tune to the orchestra in my bedroom. Sadly the wood it was hitting was my bookcase. So at 2.30 in the morning I found myself drying books. The mental pain I felt at this point is not something I can describe.
Here I would like to draw your attention to the tv show, I Shouldn't Be Alive because I am feeling somewhat akin with them. On this show you often wonder, things could not get worse for these people, only to find it does (hence the title of the show I guess). Here I sat in my room drying books, thinking innocently and probably somewhat naively that things could not get worse. It was as I was drying the books that i noticed that the water that had dripped onto them had a horrible odour to it. I thought it was maybe the smell of the inner dust etc of the wall but later when the rain subsided a bit and the dripping ceased, some creatures started moving around in the wall. Yep, rats. They were obviously just as upset as me that their home had been flooded and they were setting about making it ok by gnawing, chewing and moving. It was at this moment I realised the smelly water coming through the ceiling was probably filled with rat feces. Excellent. When will the rescuers come and rescue me like they do on the end of I Shouldn't Be Alive? Or are things still going to get worse?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

prodical mother

Tonight I feel like a very good mum. Yesterday I cooked a brand new meal for tea. These two statements may not seem like they are related but they are! To feel like a good mum I have to have a pretty good run(not physical run, since I am obviously allergic to exercise) but a good run at mothering. It is impossible to feel like a really good mum if I just do one nice thing, I have to do multiple things in a row without any bad things interrupting the flow. The flow of the last 24 hours started with dinner last night. I cooked a new meal; this always goes down well with Bennett (who likes to think of himself as some Michelin star chef although he had never even raised a cutting knife; except when unloading the dishwasher) There were no real compliments from Bennett as he ate my Thai green curry, but he did do his judges at Masterchef impersonation, which he only does when he is eating something he enjoys. Tick one to Mum. Later that night we read the 7th chapter of Tomorrow When The War Began together. He loves it when I read to him and I love it when I can ask him recall and inference questions. Tick two to Mum and Teacher. This morning I got Bennett into the shower without complaint, picture my amazed face here! Tick three to Mum. Tonight I baked two batches of brownies, always a winner. Tick four to Mum and Betty Crocker. Also, tonight we got through Maths homework with only one argument, this is actually a miracle on par with a statue of Jesus crying. Tick five to Mum (no thanks to stupid schools that give pointless homework) Feeling very smug. Will now go and tell Bennett it is bed time and hope that it does not ruin the dream run.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Mother's day

"Smile Bennett, make it look like you love me"

I do love this boy a lot, and I am very glad that I am his mother. Mother's day however is not really a day when I get to celebrate it, or even sit back and relax reaping in pressies while I contemplate the joys of motherhood.
Unlike some 12 year old boys, or children in general, my son does not have a father that goes out and buys a gift and then gets the child to give it to the mother, nor does he have a father who can remind him it is mother's day and get him to make breakfast in bed for the joyus mother. 12 year old boys do not think to do these things themselves. So my mother's day was the true, gritty kind. My friend suggested that we meet for brunch; I told Bennett this would be his Mother's day gift to me (him coming with me for brunch)His response was something along the lines of "WHAT!?!(said in loud, whiney voice) I would rather eat my own sock" Ok, he didn't really say he would rather eat his own sock, he said something a little harsher, but for the record eating his sock would be an excruciating punishment, since smelling his socks is something the Chinese could have used as an alternative to water torture. Anyway after much threatening to take away internet and TV privileges he decided he could indeed force himself to come with me. So in the end my Mother's day ended up with me pushing my son out the door to come and eat with me, me buying him a hearty a delicious brunch of French toast, then me taking him out clothes shopping. And he needed those clothes thanks to a very large growth spurt, and we did indeed have a good time, I can't help feeling like I landed in some strange parallel universe where it was Mothers spoil your child day.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


I have two things that are rather bothersome to me at the moment, and since I love to share...
The first bothersome thing is something(or things to be more accurate) that I have been inflicted with for years. Insomnia - sometimes I get mild patches where I lose a couple of hours sleep a night. Although this is annoying, it is manageable. Then I get the real bad kind, where i get about 2 or if I am lucky 3 hours sleep a night. This worse variety causes the second something - panic attacks. I first started getting these when I started going to University and I was suffering from lack of sleep due to writing essays in the middle of the night. The first time I had one I thought I was dying, I thought there was no way your heart could race that fast without some serious damage (plus I had no idea it was a panic attack or even what they were) I usually get these in the middle of the night when I am suffering from lack of sleep - they are scary, even though I know what they are, and sometimes I still feel like I could die (this is mostly cause adrenaline is pumping around my body at a phenomenal rate and it does not make my brain think clearly) I hate when this happens cause I get worried another one will happen and then it becomes a viscous circle. I need distraction right up until the moment I fall asleep otherwise my stupid little brain can work itself up into one.
One thing that has been distracting me lately, and is perhaps something I should have been thinking about at night instead of panic attacks, is the mysterious smell in my car. I have been on the hunt for this mysterious smell for days. I thought I had located it once when I found a container with some dodgy looking food in it. Happily I discarded it thinking I would finally have a car that didn't want to make me vomit when I hopped in, no longer would I have to wind down the windows on a freezing morning while I drove to work in a vain attempt at breathing non stench laden air. But alas, you see where this story is going, it turned out not to be the source of the smell. Then I was momentarily happy again when I found a stain on a mat, but that also turned out to be nothing but a harmless non-odourous mark. Then tonight as I was driving home, windows down, plug in air freshner on full blast I glanced over the back and saw a very thick, brown ominous stain on a blanket that had been brought into the car just over a week ago. I wanted to sing, dance and puke when I got home to discover it was cat poo(or possibly vomit, hard to tell)Mystery solved! Now I only wonder how long the smell will hang around, how much of it has forever permeated its way into the seat coverings?

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Good morning - is it?

I woke up with a strange feeling today - I didn't want to go to school. I don't feel like teaching today even though I have a fairly easy day ahead of me. I just don't feel like conversing, explaining things and answering questions (vital teaching tools, AWOL today) What I feel like doing is staying in bed all day, without any interruptions from anyone, and watching dvds on my laptop. I hate those days when even saying good morning in fake cheeriness is a struggle.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Pigeon hole action

Sometimes weird little things happen in my life. Like once I found a bunch of flowers on my mailbox - no note, no nothing - I just thought they may have got left there by mistake - but, maybe not! Today I received a parcel in my pigeon hole at work, I was kinda excited cause how often do you get something nice, or something not worth throwing the in the nearest available bin in your pigeon hole? In my experience of pigeon hole action at both schools, there is usually nothing worth keeping. There have been some notable exceptions. For example, the pigeon hole fairy who once left a small chocolate bar in everyone's pigeon hole at Wainui, and the secret Easter bunny at East but more often than not all you get is junk. Anyway, back to the parcel - I was on my way to class when I noticed it sitting innocently in my pigeon hole, but of course I delayed my journey to educate the minds of our future to open the mystery parcel. I needed to see what it was and who it was from (they had mysteriously left their name off the back of the parcel even though it was sent through the post) After finding some scissors to open those tricky pre-paid plastic parcels from post shop (oh the alliteration!) I found inside some rather nice stockings with a little note on it saying "Fflur, you'll look stunning in these, maybe catch you sometime :)" NO NAME!!!! FREAK ALERT!
So many questions here for my over analysing mind - 1. who sends something without their name? Not really endearing, only creepy. 2. how presumptuous to think I will look stunning in them, note to weirdo, I will not be wearing them! 3. "maybe catch you sometime?" - catch me and kill me? or catch up? if you want us to catch up here is a little tip for you - put your name on the parcel, can hardly catch someone I don't know. 4. putting a smiley face at the end of a message without a name does not make me think kind thoughts toward you, in fact it is just even that much more creepy.
All said and done, next time I get a parcel in my pigeon hole I won't be so excited, in fact I may not even open it.