Sunday, November 16, 2008


On Friday while listening to my local ABC radio station, I heard that a Trappist Monk was in town teaching Contemplative Meditation. WOW!, this is exactly what I have been searching for! Well I tell a lie really, because if I think of myself I know that I am as deep as the froth on a flat white... (this is not a new concept to my pals) but... contemplative meditation this could be the thing to transport me to real depth...authentic meaning.
So...I ditched my gym appointment (too frothy) I was on a quest for meaning! I arrived at St Benedict's exactly on time, surrendered myself to the task ahead. A quick glance around showed that I was the third youngest participant looking for deeper meaning. In fact my age 45 plus the two obviously younger members 20 somethings - gee they were attaining enlightenment at an early age...(they still had zits!) 120 people in the audience all with the average age of 82 & 1/2 plus us three 'youngies' that was a total average age of 81 years. I asked myself 'WHY is it just the oldies looking to contemplate meditatively?"
But failed to answer that question...
It was reasonably interesting but really I could have learned all I came for in the last hour and a half...I had been there since 10am and listen to this kindly contemplative rabbit on...

Then it happened! Right after lunch! Well more like 45 minutes after the lunch break it was time for our own 20 minutes of contemplative meditation.

I steeled myself..someone had switched my chair in the break and my feet no longer touched the floor (could have been the Nun beside me..but I didn't want to be all accusatory), I was at a Christian function afterall. I sat forward so my feet touched the floor...grounding me (this wasn't a part of it but I thought I would be more comfortable. OK so straight back, good posture feet grounded I was ready. I repeated my word over and over again n my mind - it was meant to be a 1 syllable work but I could only think of two words four syllables. I hoped this would work regardless. The idea was to say the word over and over again radiating God's love and then receiiving. I kept repeating my word over and over. A passing truck distracted back to the words, I thought I needed a pee, back to the words...then I think I got in the zone. After 14 or so minutes I think I got it and then had enough. Good work Father...You taught me something! There was a rhythmic... noise very melodical, it was disturbing my enlghtened state. The words weren't working anymore. I gingerly opened one wasn't time yet but I was enlightened. I looked around all the oldies were still doing it...God on them and the noise was growing louder and louder, it seemed amplified. I cocked my head to one side and caught a glimpse of the Enlightened Father...he was slumped forward toward the microphone and seemed to be...snoring! I grimaced OH NO! This was not the place to laugh innapropriately, I sort of caught the ye of the girl next to the Nun next to me...we smiled...we made motions at each other trying not to disturb those at peace around us...It just got louder and louder, by this stage we could no longer make eye contact or I was going to lose it completely. At the 35th minute the Father woke with a hUrmmph and started saying the Our Father...very funny!
I am feeling a little deeper.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Life is GRAND!

The plan was that this blog was going to keep me honest about diet and exercise. Well somehow its not working....I have been to the gym once last Thursday, it is now Tuesday and I haven't even contemplated going. But I also am trying to go green and recycle recycle recycle. So far my big change has been not to purchase bottled water, but to carry around a refillable container. This week I am really working on the rubbish situation...we produce soooooo much rubbish in our house. The worm farm is on the cards to get back in business and I am composting wherever possible. Really we have the scorched earth policy happening here so there is no valid reason we can't be composting! Look out La Familiglia there are changes to be made.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Lemon syrup disaster

Today is the day of The Princess' baby shower. I thought it would be simple whip my amazing Greek Lemon Syrup Cake and WOW! 'em. Unfortunately I haven't made it for quite a while and I failed to double the quantities of the recipe but somehow doubled the quantitiy of the lemon syrup you pour on the cake when cooked...The result is sticky lemon syrup awash all over my kitchen, om my phone, in my fruit bowl all over my glad wrap and a sorry example of a cake swimming in syrup looking like a used sponge. I used to be good at this entertaining malarky! I think it is just me and syrup 'cause yesterday I cooled the sugar syrup mix I needed to make the portugese tarts and made a whole pot of toffee. Searching the 'net for a recipe for scone pinwheels I found a recipe for savoury saveloys EEEWWWW! Scarpettta has just called with her tales of blue iced cupcakes going horribly wrong...or looking like sea anenomes. Still thinking positive that this small soiree for 30 or so will go off deliciously and without a hitch...second thoughts I think we should hit the champagne early!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Momentus Day for the whole world!

Today is a momentus occasion and I cannot let it pass without taking some time to ponder the enormity. We have a black President in the White House...a man with a new vision, a man who brings to this highest office.... HOPE . It feels kinda great to be proud of Americans (for a change). As my pal Scarpetta said..."This must be what it felt like when peace was announced after the war". She is right! This is history in the making! This is the beginning of a new era.

I trust you are excited as me.

This is just an excerpt from Obama's accecptance speech...if you haven't yet I encourage you to read the whole transcript.

"So let us summon a new spirit of patriotism; of service and responsibility where each of us resolves to pitch in and work harder and look after not only ourselves, but each other. Let us remember that if this financial crisis taught us anything, it's that we cannot have a thriving Wall Street while Main Street suffers, in this country, we rise or fall as one nation; as one people.

Let us resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship and pettiness and immaturity that has poisoned our politics for so long. Let us remember that it was a man from this state who first carried the banner of the Republican Party to the White House, a party founded on the values of self-reliance, individual liberty, and national unity. Those are values we all share, and while the Democratic Party has won a great victory tonight, we do so with a measure of humility and determination to heal the divides that have held back our progress. As Lincoln said to a nation far more divided than ours, "We are not enemies, but friends, though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection." And to those Americans whose support I have yet to earn; I may not have won your vote, but I hear your voices, I need your help, and I will be your President too.

And to all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and palaces to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of our world, our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of American leadership is at hand. To those who would tear this world down, we will defeat you. To those who seek peace and security, we support you. And to all those who have wondered if America's beacon still burns as bright, tonight we proved once more that the true strength of our nation comes not from our the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals: democracy, liberty, opportunity, and unyielding hope.

For that is the true genius of America, that America can change. Our union can be perfected. And what we have already achieved gives us hope for what we can and must achieve tomorrow.
America, we have come so far. We have seen so much. But there is so much more to do. So tonight, let us ask ourselves, if our children should live to see the next century; if my daughters should be so lucky to live as long as Ann Nixon Cooper, what change will they see? What progress will we have made?

This is our chance to answer that call. This is our moment. This is our time, to put our people back to work and open doors of opportunity for our kids; to restore prosperity and promote the cause of peace; to reclaim the American Dream and reaffirm that fundamental truth, that out of many, we are one; that while we breathe, we hope, and where we are met with cynicism, and doubt, and those who tell us that we can't, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people:
Yes We Can. Thank you, God bless you, and may God Bless the United States of America.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Day 2 - Day 1 was a moderate success

Hurrah! I have made it to Day 2 of the new me and I am even contemplating the gym. Yesterday I managed to eat healthily but not is all about correcting that imbalance.
Well I made it to the gym...a whole hour and a half! twenty minutes on the cycle, twenty miniutes on the eliptical trainer a combined twenty on the treadmill and then 5 mnutes...16 floors on the of course a circuit til my muscles hurt.
Unfortunately there is no time for the gym tomorrow as I am having breakky with my good mates Scarpetta, Farthing and Pete. I am also attending the Canberra Theatre Centre launch of the 2009 Season, very exciting!
I am cooking a healthy pasta for dinner with a tomato base, a few olives, anchovies (for taste), I will try to limit my pasta as I don't really want to carb load.
Today is Melbourne Cup Day and we had a public holiday. How lucky are we! I love a holiday that is a welcome intrusion into the working week! I certainly didn't pick the winner but I was wearing a fabulous fascinator...a little blue feathered number. Next year I am going to make something grand.
This afternoon I went off to visit Craftie and Red Cross. Craftie is called Craftie not because her eyes are too close together and she always rips us off but because she is the craft queen! And my mate Red Cross because she is always there in an emergency. We have a Christmas craft group and make interesting things to get us in the spirit of we made christmas trees from craftwood and covered them with lovely christmassy scrapbooking papers. I just have a little bit of glueng to go and then...a completed project. Henny will be so excited! I can hear his drycomments...'Where ya gunna put that dust collector?'
It is a very busy life being a diva!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Day 1 of the rest of my life

OKAY I have said it before BUT today is the day...or more importantly tomorrow is the day. The 1st day of the rest of my life. I need to make a couple of changes...only a few...bit more exercise, good diet and only thnking happy thoughts. And tomorrow is the day. I am going to be kind to myself and in turn the environment. I am going to walk part the way to work 3 times a week and work out at the gym at least 3 times also.
Monday I am getting off my larger than is comfortable bottom and doing something for myself.
To be Continued...

Lazy Sunday afternoon

It's Sunday 2 November 2008. How did it ever get to be November. The year has almost passed and there has been so much happen. I started a new job, it didn't really fit so then I found a new job. I am working in the 'green' sector and finding it fascinating, so I may add a few tips to save our world along the way.
I am cooking a huge roast dinner for our mates The Princess and The Gas Man. The prinecesses father is out from Old Blighty, I am hoping he has seen a Kangaroo since he has been in Australia, otherwise our first task will be to go for a walk to see some 'roos.
Today I had a breakfast date with one of my favourite friends Ginny. She is the sort of friend that you can see and it feels like it has been just yesterday since you last saw her. Ginny is very special to our family. She has picked me up several times - WHAT A FRIEND!