101 things about me

Sunday, 30 December 2007

Good-bye 2007, helloooo 2008...

I promised myself 2007 was to be my year of living more creatively. Instead of just letting things happen, I decided 2007 was the year to consciously make creativity a priority in my life. It has been an eventful year and as 2008 begins, the results of 2007 are set to continue and grow.

This is the year that was...
I did a writing course in January, a road trip of over 2000kms for a week of intense tuition. Bellingen magic. I love to write and whilst the course wasn't quite what I was expecting, it was both stimulating and thought provoking.

I met up with Mal in Sydney on the southbound journey and we travelled home via NSW and VIC. On the way we visited a beautiful straw bale house that inspired us both and the visit confirmed it is another thing I would like to do in the future.

I did a one week calligraphy course in June and renewed my love of the art and later in the year I introduced myself to book-binding, feeding my love of paper and books. I set up my blog and entered the world of technology. At the same time, I organised a business name, with the long term goal of working in a more creative arena.

I applied for, and was accepted into, an arts course that starts in February 2008. I put together a portfolio of work for the application which covered a range of creative examples including painting, sewing, drawing and calligraphy. It will give me the chance to develop skills and meet lots of like-minded people. The course will challenge me and hopefully give me some indication as to my creative potential. It is a fantastic opportunity to stretch my skills and grow artistically. I find the more creative I become, the more it motivates and drives me, so I am looking forward to emersing myself in more and more creative pursuits..

Amongst these things, in 2007 I continued my studies in practical philosophy, in October I turned 40 and in August I started jogging and ran my first ever funrun... an incredible 10kms in December!

So if 2007 gave me a taste for a more creative lifestyle, 2008 promises to be even better. Excellent in fact. There are so many exciting things on the horizon.
Roll on 2008! Bring it on!
Happy New Year every-one!

Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Happy Christmas...

Season's Greetings and best wishes to you.
May your day be filled with love and laughter.

Tuesday, 18 December 2007

Exercise for the right side of the brain...

After you find the guy - it's so obvious. Once you find him, you think, "Why didn't I see him immediately?"

Doctors have concluded that if you find the man in the coffee beans in 3 seconds, the right half of your brain is better developed than most people. If you find the man between 3 seconds and 1 minute, the right half of the brain is developed normally. If you find the man between 1 minute and 3 minutes, then the right half of your brain is functioning slowly and you need to eat more protein. If you have not found the man after 3 minutes, the advice is to look for more of this type of exercise to make that part of the brain stronger!
And, yes, the man is really there!!!

Monday, 17 December 2007

I'd rather be here...

It's just over a week until Christmas.
I had a great week-end.
It's Monday morning. I'm at work.
I'd rather be on the beach...

This is the back beach of the town where I grew up. I am lucky as my parents still live there. I call it my week-ender. In one week I will be there. Christmas Eve. I can't wait. In the meantime, I can check out the webcam and see what the tides are doing... what the surf is like... imagine the salt air on my face.

...you can look too: Point Lonsdale Webcam There are 3 other views to look at - all taken from the Point Lonsdale Lighthouse.

Have a good week people.
'Tis the Season for joy and goodwill.
Be nice.

Friday, 14 December 2007

Musical Mystery

This was sent to me ages ago. Its a musical challenge... find as many different groups/individuals in this image as you can. I can't remember the total amount, but there are certainly more than 50. Guns and Roses, Mathcbox 20, Queen and the Rolling Stones are all there. How many can you see? Some are easy, many more are a little more problematic. Once you start, you'll be hooked. Friends will be intrigued. It's good fun.

So enjoy. Have a bit of fun. It is Friday afterall!

Let me know how you go... How many did you find? Which one was the most obscure?

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Bathtub test

It doesn't hurt to take a hard look at yourself from time to time, and this should help get you started.

During a visit to the mental asylum, a visitor asked the Director what the criterion was which defined whether or not a patient should be institutionalized.

"Well," said the Director, "we fill up a bathtub, then we offer a teaspoon, a teacup and a bucket to the patient and ask him or her to empty the bathtub."

"Oh, I understand," said the visitor. "A normal person would use the bucket because it's bigger than the spoon or the teacup."

"No." said the Director, "A normal person would pull the plug. Do you want a bed near the window?"


Sunday, 9 December 2007

The fine art of relaxation...

This week-end Mal and I headed to Point Lonsdale for a couple of days. After a few months of non-stop activity, I was under strict instructions I had to relax. When I asked what we were going to do, the immediate answer was "absolutely nothing".

Difficult as it may seem, absolutely nothing is no easy feat. Certainly I have been focused on 2 major things for the last month or so (my funrun and my interview for entry into the Arts course I am now going to do next year) and whilst these two things are now behind me, a growing list of projects remains. I was intructed to leave it at home.

I am happy to say, for (most of) the entire week-end, I did as instructed. I read a couple of magazines and caught up with the week-end papers. I sat on the front verandah and warmed myself in the morning sun. Along with a little bit of shopping, a lot of sleeping and a large amount of eating, I managed to slow down and be still for a while. It was the perfect tonic... along with a couple of scones with jam and cream of course!

Friday, 7 December 2007

Light at the end of the tunnel...

It's Friday.
There is light at the end of the tunnel.

Have a great week-end everyone.

Thursday, 6 December 2007

Where's my satchel?

As you all know, I had an interview on Tuesday to get into an arts course next year. It included the showing of a portfolio. It was a nerve-wracking experience. People had been asking me what I had thought about the interview, but without having anything to measure to, I honestly could not have said either way. The interviewers told me I would know by the end of the week, and then added "probably by Thursday", and so it was on my mind all morning.

As luck would have it, they called when I was away from my desk.

I was nervous as I returned the call. I had convinced myself a number of times during the course of the morning that I had missed out on a place. 40 applicants for 16 places. No chance. Thankfully I was wrong.

Once they told me the news, I was all smiles. The celebrations began immediately. Sms messages, a couple of excited phonecalls, popcorn courtesy of Ames! (I was at work, it was hardly the opportunity to pop open a bottle of bubbly). I could barely concentrate for the rest of the day, so I did what I had to and then left work on the dot of 5.

As if you couldn't tell, I am VERY excited. I expect all those around me (especially Mal) are relieved.

And so, as of next February, I will be a student again. At 40, I am packing my satchel and heading back to the classroom. Crazy huh? In an amazing, incredible, beam like a child on Christmas morning sort of way.

Quote of the day...

Tuesday, 4 December 2007

The storm before the calm...

It has been pretty crazy here for the last few months. Work has been busy, home has been busy, I have been busy. Finding time has been difficult. I have been trying to write, trying to exercise, trying to draw, trying to blog, AND trying to spend time with family and friends along the way. First there was the 40th birthday, then the fun run and now the interview.

The interview is for a course I want to do next year. It is an entry level arts course - fine arts and contemporary craft to be exact. It is two days a week for 16 weeks (2 terms) and will mean I have to go part time at work for that time (no complaints by me, and work have agreed to release me for that period). If I get in, it will be an opportunity to immerse myself in the arts and have intensive training in both drawing and painting and supplementary lessons in sculpture and print-making amongst other things.

Entry is by application, interview and presentation of a portfolio of work. This is completely new to me. It is a confronting experience to hand over your work, for strangers to evaluate. With no experience of this situation I have been trying to work out what they might be looking for - hoping that my art is up to scratch.

The preparation has been daunting. Where to start? What to include? What to discard? And then, just to complicate things, they pushed the interview forward a week earlier than I had expected and so there was the additional time frame pressures. I find it really hard to judge my own work and I also believe that perceptions of one's own work can be miles from reality. One only has to watch a show like Australian (or American) Idol to realise that! My inner critic is well known to me (we meet regularly) and quite vocal! I needed some feedback. Thankfully over the last couple of weeks I had a chance to show some work to a few people and the response has been good.

Last night I was lucky enough to get some guidance from my friend Angela who helped me organise all my pieces into a logical order (and we agreed to remove a couple of pieces) and we talked about the sort of thing that might come up in the interview. It was invaluable. Not only did she help me with the folio, she also gave me a boost in confidence and sent me off feeling more comfortable with the whole process.

Anyway, the interview was today.

All went well. They were friendly and interested in my work and listened to my answers. I have no idea if I will get in. They said I am the sort of person they are looking for, but that they have 40 candidates for 16 places. They did say they liked some of my pieces, but didn't comment on everything. They made particular (positive) comment on some of my observational drawings, so that was good. They flicked through the folio as we talked.

All interviews are today and tomorrow, so I should know by the end of the week. As they said, with 40 applicants, they have no idea the range of work that will walk through the door in the next 2 days, so there are no guarantees.

Did I introduce you to my inner critic? She's right here - say hi!

For now, the storm is over and it's time to relax a little.
Thanks to everyone for your patience, your enthusiasm and your love and support.

Fingers Crossed!
I will let you know as soon as I do.

Sunday, 2 December 2007

Blisters and pride...

This morning I completed my first fun run ever with my friend Heather (that's me on the right and Heather on the left). It was a major achievement for both of us. We are both novice runners and fun run virgins. It was tough. It was. And whilst we both had moments of desperately wanting to walk and allow the legs to recover, I am unashamedly proud to say we ran EVERY STEP OF THE WAY.

ALL 10 K I L O M E T R E S.

Not that long ago another friend Amy convinced me I could run 5kms and I didn't believe her. I said I would never make a runner and that these legs were not built to carry this body at more than walking pace. Inside, I wanted to give it a go and it didn't take much convincing for me to accept her challenge. Once I was 'up and running' (excuse the pun) I convinced Heather, that if I could do it, so could she, and so she joined us.

Within weeks (as promised) Amy had me running 5kms and was saying 10kms was definitely within reach. I listened and nodded with a mixture of enthusiasm and the glazed belief of one newly converted. That very week-end with her words still ringing in my head, I came across a flyer for the Sussans' Women's Classic and before I could think about it for too long, I had registered for the 10km run. By that evening Heather was also registered. Since that date, I have often wondered at why I committed to the 10km run and didn't go for the 5km option, but I guess for me there had to be an element of pushing outside the comfort zone.

If I was hoping for out of the comfort zone, I was not disappointed. As expected, the run was exhausting. It was forecast to be a hot day of 31 degrees and the overnight temp was only 19. By the time we arrived for the 8am start the mercury was on the rise, already hitting 21. The sun was out, and on open streets, there was little protection from the rays. It was a stunning setting along Beaconsfield Parade in Melbourne along the waterfront, but the seaside wind buffeted us nearly every step of the way. Despite the heat and the wind and the inexperience, we did it.

I am proud and amazed and relieved and yes, a little sore. It wasn't pretty, it wasn't glamorous. I have large blisters on both big toes and my face has only just returned to a normal shade 12 hours later. For me it was a major achievement and it has left me feeling somewhat lightheaded. I continue to question the use of Fun and Run in the same phrase, but it was an experience I will never forget.

My official time was 1 hour, 15 minutes and 27 seconds.