Thursday, July 31, 2008

Big bad runner

God! Im in such a bad mood. Im not sure why exactly, but my patience with the noisy children is measured in nano seconds. It is 5.23pm and I have let them, no, forced them to turn the dumb box on so I can have some peace. They are zombied out to the simpsons.

Earlier this afternoon, I dropped Paloma off at kindy and went for an angry run in the rain. I was unenthusiastic but did it anyway. I should have been satisfied and felt a teeny touch of pride that I was out running-but NO!. I was angry that I wasnt fast/happy/comfortable enough.

I ran for 40 minutes. I stomped up our stairs and had a hot shower (I couldnt find anything to grump about that). I dressed and coated up, grabbed the bent umbrella and walked to Vanita's. A 20 minute chat, hot drink later and I picked Paloma up and tried to beat the kids home from school,(not successful).

As for my 'raw food' fling, well! This morning for break fast I demolished a small fruit salad, then a piece of toast and honey,(not raw). Lunch was two pieces of toast with promite (not raw). Dinner will be home made-not-raw pizza. So tis not going fabulously but it is something to smile about.

That was yesterday and today held the promise of a new day and a better mood. So my raw food diet thus far has consisted of cooked porridge for breakfast, two black coffees, followed by a salad sandwhich for lunch, on bread (baked), no butter. Then, for my three O'clock sugar rush, i had 4 peices of a carob bar..(not good) and two peices of soft licorice. Its a laugh really.
The mood is a tad better.

Monday, July 28, 2008

raw food, chicken wings, rain.

I have read a few good blogs regarding raw food, and although I know myself well enough to know I don't want to give up lentils with hot chili sauce, chickpea and roast pumpkin salad with balsamic-sun dried tomato dressing, mashed potatoes with peas squished into them (when in need of comfort), cooked mushrooms drizzled with truffle oil ETC; I understand how the raw way of eating would be good for my health and energy levels. That being so; I am munching on a piece of raw sprouted bread with organic wild bush honey. Tastes great, feels good. I am also drinking herbal tea, (jasmine).

Last night we had friends for dinner. I, not wanting to force my newly found raw food ideals on them, made Asian chicken wings (except I couldn't find organic wings so they were actually drumsticks). The drumsticks were marinated in coconut cream blended with fish sauce, sambal orlak, spring onion, and a wee bit o' sugar. That was served with ginger rice -which was basmati chucked into a pot where onion, garlic and fresh ginger had been cooked till soft, chicken stock thrown in, lid on and left to do it's thing. Very tasty...

I don't eat meat however, so I also made some tomato lentils for me and chickpea and roast pumpkin salad which is so delicious I will give you the recipe. Its really simple and even the fussy young ones like it.

Roast Pumpkin and Chickpea Salad with sun dried tomato dressing.


  • half a medium crown pumpkin peeled and cubed.

  • olive oil.

  • chickpeas, 1-2 cans or 1 cup soaked overnight.

  • 2 Tblsp finely shredded coriander or mint.

  • Dressing.

  • half cup sun dried tomatoes.

  • quarter cup red wine vinegar.

  • 3 cloves garlic.

  • 1 Tblsp balsamic vinegar.

  • half cup olive oil

  • 1 tsp sugar

  • s & p

  • Preheat oven to 190c.

  • Toss pumpkin cubes in a little oil and roast for 35-40mins.

  • cool.

  • Drain chickpeas from soaking water and rinse.

  • Place into a large saucepan and cover with fresh water.

  • Boil for 40-50mins or until tender. OR:

  • Open cans of chickpeas an rinse.

  • Heat red wine vinegar and sundried tomatoes together, allow tomatoes to soak in the hot vinegar to soften.

  • Place all dressing ingredients into the bowl of a food processor, and combine.

  • Toss Pumpkin and chick peas in dressing. Garnish with mint or coriander.

  • Eat.

I had also baked fresh organic rye fougasse which everyone ate practically hot from the oven. The house smelt yummy. Our guests had made a wonderful cake, full of dates and other moist stuff- god knows what the hell it was , but it was my downfall. I ate mine, then I finished off Deanes.

I am now (nearly) intent on following the raw food diet. I dont like the word 'diet'. It brings back memories of my younger self starving - on yet another false promise of eternal 'thin-ness' then blowing it all on the promise of a 'good time' in the form of chocolate, chocolate alias sugar/fat.

Anyhoo! Tonight for dinner I had brown rice (not raw-boohoo), greek salad and lots of raw red onion. So Im not there yet but 'raw' is in my head. will happen.

Weather wise; we have had so much rain even I am looking forward to summer. The kids soccor practice and games have been cancelled continuously for about four weeks because the city sports grounds turn to mud.

roll on raw food. roll on summer.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Mama Mia; mountain running; adidas; the wedding...

V and I went to see Mama Mia!. She didnt enjoy it, (actually a bit scathing of it). I really got into it. But then I have always rocked to Abba! (yes..I know...label it as you will. I like what I like..). V thought it a bit over the top or shallow or something which is all true. It was Fun, bright and made me want to skip off to a Grecian Island and buy a building- singing all the while.

Deane and I got a babysitter on Sunday and went for our first off road run together since the Coast to Coast! We walked/ran/crawled/slid through the bush, up the creek that had turned into a small fast river that flooded over the track, and up the steep mudslide they call a hill. At the top we were pelted with bullets of sideways rain. Love it. The force of the wind held me ( in seconds) when I balanced on the top rock, made like a starfish, and leaned into it. Gotta love it! Its only just over a twelve k run there and back but took us two hours.

Covered in mud, soaked and shivering, we sloshed into Mojo cafe in cuba street. A Ficelle and long black later, I was feeling good. Dirty good. We strolled filthly to a sports shop where I got new road running shoes (Adidas my favourites..). I got a new running jacket -Adidas clima365- which is technical fabric, light, windproof and looks cool. Very important!.

(As Im writing this I am realizing that Adidas does it for me. Over long years of running experience, that particular brand really works for me...from sunglasses to shoes).

I went to Les Mills yesterday(now school hols are over I can go! Yay!). Paloma happily attended the creche and I very happily did a good weights work out-and then snatched a half hour of coffee and reading trash at Dixon st deli.
I have organised our wedding a bit more and even booked The Pines!. So, all going to plan, we will be married on October 12th, this year. Wow. The thing with planning our own wedding, as I am discovering, is, it is important to be true to yourself. People can get insistant as to what is considered the "norm" ( or whatever...) . I found myself planning and stressing about an idea of what a wedding 'should' be till I pulled myself up and realized that it wasnt ours. Our wedding is pretty much stress free, (at this point).
Will keep all my avid readers out there up to date on the wedding.

Monday, July 14, 2008

mid-winter fishing

Yesterday, it was such a beautiful day, Deane moved to take the Ngaparata (a forty foot, forty ton cement trawler), out for a bit of fishing on the bay. I declined-(my fear-hesitancy-lack of faith in weather-diesel motors-kids at sea speaking). The kids also refused to go.

They were moping around, passive-aggressively cleaning bedrooms etc.

I looked at the pile of washing (haphazard on the treadstoopidmill), the dishes (lazing around grimy on the bench), more washing on the clothesline and general mayhem of five bored kids.

I decided that we also would go 'fishing'.

Deane was happy-the kids were not.

(Me-I'd prefer to go to my studio (oops...haven't got one) and paint all day).

The kids scrap their way to the car. We drive to the boat.

Rose is already in tears, repeatedly exclaiming," oh no! I'm going to die." and, "this is it! this is my night-mare". I tried to soothe her, for she was speaking of my undercurrent feeling.

The sky was blue, the gentle southerly was barely causing a ripple so the fear was irrational.

A friend and his two kids arrived, we all clambered on and motored out.

We 'motored' as only a boat of that size will do. I call it a truck.

We anchored and started fishing, kids throwing bait-stinking lines over, reeling them in too soon, and complaining about the lack of fish. Drew caught the first spotty -to applause. It was soon cut for bait while the eight year old boy gleefully practiced fish surgery with his dads filleting knife.

Boys laugh at blood and seem to enjoy poking fish eye-balls.

The first spotty was soon followed by two more. One was returned to its mother.

Our friend then caught 'the catch of the day'- a big kahawai. It was really, really impressive. Deane showed him how to kill and fillet it.

The few hours we were out was filled with lots of fish gut, excited buzzing kids. Paloma peed her pants and ate fish smelling nutella sandwiches. Rose calmed herself enough to engage in a bit of line dangling followed by playing.

Even I may have slightly enjoyed it, but don't tell anyone.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

scowling again

..that's me..scowling. I woke peacefully being school holidays an' all! I barefooted it into the kitchen to put the kettle on for the first bliss'd coffee. ..And there it was.
The much maligned space wasting-peace guzzling treadmill was fighting for space along with an overfull basket of washing, a tricycle, a vacuum cleaner and two dolls, in my so called studio- my work area. I flashed anger-scowled to myself and made a pot of coffee (multitaskingly making three different breakfasts for three little girls).
I scowled myself back to bed and picked up my book-'How to see Yourself as you really are' by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. I was reading through it attempting to calm myself and understand within myself that a treadmill in the 'studio' is a small thing and I can make of it what I wish. I read on and quickly realised that who i really was-at that moment- was a bitch. An irate one at that.
Decisively I get out of my warm rumpled Egyptian cotton. My forty year old feet meet - middle-of-winter floorboards. I band my hair back -clip the fly-aways down and dressed, I start the day.
I open the studio side doors so I can push the easel out onto the deck, followed by the second easel and the trestle table and paintings on hardwood. I replace them with the treadmill, put my paints and pencils in their tool boxes and put everything away.
I have realised that labelling the area as 'my studio' does not make it so. I cannot get there to paint (sounds ridiculous). It is a great source of frustration to me. The fact that I cannot cede even the fifteen minutes i need to get into the 'flow'-generates anger. And I don't want to be angry (it turns me into a screechy unreasonable bitch-Mother) There fore the dismantling of the 'studio' is a good idea. Its for 'the good of the family'.

After the discombobulating of said studio, I whisked the kids into the car and to Palmer's garden center cafe where they swallowed three 'bratz' fruit juices, and three gaudy coloured, heavily festooned chocolate cupcakes. I had a soy chai latte, (twenty three dollars later...not kidding).
On sending them to the centers playground, I wandered around looking and trying to remember exactly what it was the garden-in-waiting needed. Hmmmm. So. I bought one ten kilo bag of organic gypsum, one ten kilo bag of lucern and peat pellets for conditioning the soil, a pair of gardening gloves,four packets of sweet pea's (the kids chose). Then swiftly to the hardware shop where i bought a spade (!!), then to commonsense-organics where i spent one hundred dollars on canned tomatoes, chocolate, salt, a sprouter, sprouts-to-be, milk, olive oil, peanut butter, honey etc. Homeward bound. I rather quickly built a new no-dig-garden. A layer of newspaper, water, a layer of compost, newspaper, a layer of lucern pellets, water, cardboard, water, composted leaves. I built this up to the height of two bricks, in the rough shape of a circle. I will leave it till spring. By then it will be beautiful soil, and I will then plant it out to feed my family real food...

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Yesterday, Izzy was off school, cuddling up to her bucket, languidly staring the television down. Today, Paloma is lying on the couch like the sick baby she is. It means yet another day at home for me. At least today the winter sun is showing itself. I can hang washing out (like the good house wife I am).
Paloma and I usually go to creche, Les Mills, Kindergarten, visit friends, and shop at the supermarket during the mornings. In the afternoons, we come home, she sleeps and I paint till a) she wakes, or b) the kids arrive home.

These 'sick' days point out (with flippin' big accusing fingers)the housework that calls for me from distant corners.
I want a real job!.
No, actually, I want a real studio, where I can focus and work. It must have a high stud and wooden floor boards. I need to paint in uninterrupted blocks of time. (There-if I keep saying it-it shall be). I am so- over- painting in the dining area of our house, amongst the baskets of washing, dishes that need to be done, toys that need to be picked up and constant bleating from loved ones that interrupt my train of thought and flow of brush. (The image above is 'my studio'. It can be seen behind the kids who are munching at the kitchen bench last summer).
I am in the midst of organising our wedding. Its not as easy as it seemed nor as hard as people tell me it is. The kids are all very excited about it and have visions of big churches and fluffy dresses and ring-bearing cushions and black suits. (what are they watching on T.V?)
My idea is a tad more relaxed of course. Moulin rouge themed, with the Scottish edge (that being Deane, Reuben and Harry in kilts). I am thinking, opulent red dress, splits to thigh, crystal, too many flowers, candles, fairy lights, food,food, food and of course good music-drum beats. The next day, Deane and I will go for a celebratory 20k run up and around the Belmont regional park.
Sounds good.