So, those were my 20s.

Tomorrow is my thirtieth birthday.

That is absolutely ridiculous. There is no way I should be thirty. Thirty implies so much, and I’m just a slightly more capable version of my teenage self. Maybe your twenties are more of a state of mind?

I don’t think anyone likes having regrets, and I certainly never wanted any. Are there things I’d do differently since I graduated high school? Oh yeah. But I think that most of it, I’d try to keep the same. I’m about to graduate from a degree I enjoyed 90% of. I’ve made some wonderful friends (oh boy, was I due!) I’m still a mental health disaster, but that can be worked on.

I hate the way I stress over my birthday – over incomplete goals, or the idea that something is less than perfect, when a birthday shouldn’t be stressful. I suppose I stress over everything though – anything that can be considered a ‘deadline’, and I freak out.

So how did I spend the last day of my twenties? Cleaning my apartment  :yum: It’s a mental thing, having a perfectly tidy and clean apartment on my birthday. The gift I give myself. I have no idea how I managed to wrangle it, but it took 6 hours, and it’s so tidy!

Tomorrow, I’m spending the day with my sister – mini-golf and then to the movies to finally see the new Thor film. Oh, and I’m dragging her to see ‘Christmas land’ in both Myer and David Jones, because I love Christmas decorating.

It’s going to be a good day. And whilst my twenties weren’t the laugh-riot I hoped for, or anything resembling anyone elses’, they were mine, and that thought is actually kind of comforting.

“Have you considered any of the other major religions? They’re all pretty much the same.”

So, I turned 29.

And I finished my last Semester 2 as an undergrad.

I’m not sure which makes me more nervous, to be completely honest. :shock: The last assessment for my first semester project nearly killed me, I swear. I think, all up, it had to be 30,000 words, and took me until 3am to finalise. And then 10 minutes before I was going to present? I got an approval for an extension due to illness. I went ahead and did it anyway, because no. I did not want to wait another week with it hanging over my head.

I think I left my body during it, actually. But it’s done. And I can’t have screwed it up too badly. I don’t think. :ohwell:

My birthday was on November 7th, and a very quiet day. Mum came down and we had an amazing lunch, and Mum brought me some small gifts. The rest of my gifts (most of which are books! :geek: ) and my official birthday cake will occur when Mum and I can coordinate (pizza, salad, champagne and cake!)

Right now, I’m taking ten days off to relax – something I sorely need to do. Maybe write some bad fan fiction, and do some bad fanart? Something with no academic or profitable value ;)

“Just like the gypsy woman said!”

So that was 28. Tomorrow I’m 29. And I feel all of twelve. Maybe thirteen.

That’s probably why so many people have crises about their age: they never feel what they really are. I’ve managed to elude conventional adulthood for so long, and now I feel the time to girl-up and be a grown-up is upon me.

No wonder I need a medication adjustment  :lol:

So here’s to 29. May you bring good things.

NaBloPoMo: Twenty-Five

It was my birthday today! I’m twenty five, as of seven forty-five tonight.

I had a very quiet but lovely day. My sister and mother went to so much trouble!

Definitely more tomorrow, but I’ll leave you with a photo, taken by my sister, of the amazing cat and bunny cupcakes they made me (chocolate cake with either raspberries or cherries in the middle. I ate, like, three! XD

(PS: To every American who voted for Barack Obama today, thank you. There were a few moments there, I thought maybe the Republicans had won; I really cannot get behind the principles and policies that they were touting, and am thrilled that President Obama  has an opportunity to actually enact his ideas and principles rather than just clean up the mess left behind by the previous administration.)

NaBloPoMo: Good Bye 24

Today was my last day as a twenty-four year old.

That is crazy. I feel exactly the same as I did at twenty-two. God, twenty-five. I feel old and like I’m running out of time but I’m only twenty-five. Is this how everyone feels? That they turn around one day and BAM, feel like time has just evaporated? That all those mundane things you do every single day add up to years and  years?

That’s about as philosophical as I get. Sometimes it’s hard to distinguish between feelings and thoughts that are totally normal and feelings and thoughts that are because of my anxiety. Mostly it’s just plain noisy in my head.

I was actually very productive for my last day as twenty-four year old. Perhaps I’ve finally evolved to be fastidious and neat? A shame I still seem to be a complete paper hoarder. Seriously, I refuse to throw out even the tiniest or oldest drawing. But a massive spring clean was in order for the day – one enormous bag of garbage, and everything has been dusted, organised. It’s… actually kind of creepy.

I also got another 2,000 words of my Nanowrimo done. I’m hoping to get at least another 1,000 words done tonight. Other than that, I’ve got an episode of Criminal Minds and some art to upload to Deviantart. I’m hardcore, aren’t I?

I feel like I should write something deep, to remember twenty-four when I’m reading this blog in years to come. Twenty four: the year before you went to Sydney. After being sick for four months and two hospital visits, you’re okay with no real reason. Er, it might be because your father lived at home all year. Mia finished uni. You lost Dominic and Molly. Mia got Mabel. You love, love, loved The Legend of Korra. Your art sucked less this year than ever before. You started your giant directory of future book ideas. You read a lot of books – good ones, bad ones and offensive ones. You start cooking lessons. You loved Marissa Meyer’s Cinder, Kendare Blake’s Anna Dressed in Blood and Girl from Nightmares, Laini Taylor’s Daughter of Smoke and Bone, and you finally finished Lemony Snicket’s Series of Unfortunate Events.

 So long, twenty-four. I liked you okay and I’m sorry you have to go. You taught me stuff that’s useful but some things happened that… well, sucked. Put a good word in for me with twenty-five, okay?

NanoWrimo Word Count: 12,077/50,000

Camp Nanowrimo is Kicking My Butt

A flying entry today, because I am seirously sick and seriously tired. I got some bug bites on the back of one of my legs last week – I mean, it’s winter here, I didn’t think I had to worry about biting bugs in the cold. But they got me, and got me good. And unfortunately, they got seriously, seriously infected. The leprosy jokes were all fun and games -_- , as were the natural bite balms but they got worse and now I am seriously ill. Mum was even talking about going up to the hospital earlier, but I am positive I can hold out until tomorrow, when I can see my GP.

And I’ve been chipping away at my Nanowrimo work. I’m trying so hard to stay ahead, since I’m hoping to go to Sydney this Friday until Sunday, and I doubt I’ll get much writing done whilst I’m there, so I’m determined. I’m meeting my personal word count goals so far, but honestly, tonight it was like getting blood from a stone. I hope that’s not a sign that my plot is too thin, or that the rest of the month is going to be a struggle. And to think, I’m planning to do three rounds of Nanowrimo this year – June, August and November :dead:

To top everything off, it was my delightful, wonderful, funny mother’s birthday today and I was too sick to do anything! And her present hasn’t arrived! I did, however, manage to get the pizza guys to write ‘happy birthday’ on the box, and put a sparkler in our dessert tart, so maybe it wasn’t a total fail. And since Mum has a cold (what a birthday!), when we’re both better, we’re going out to lunch and I’ll shower Mum with all the love and gifts I had intended to give her today.

Now, my fingers are going kind of numb from all the typing I’ve done today, so I am off to load a book on the iPad and curl up in bed. Hope everyone is particularly snuggly in bed tonight :love:

Mothering Sunday

Since I have a bedroom that is completely trashed, spent half an hour dealing with the appalling design of the Open Universities Australia website and their incompetent, patronising and sexist telephone monkeys (and discovered a $600+ refund on my account! Plus, got my enrollment in with 29 minutes to spare, boo yeah!) and am totally lacking in medication, I shall make this short.

My best wishes and love for all the mothers out there, no matter how sanctimonious, idiotic or ridiculous you seem to the rest of the internet slash western world. We salute you and will resume mocking you behind your back in roughly eleven minutes.  :love:

Back To Your Regularly Scheduled Program …

It seems that April has snuck up on me. 2012 seems to be happening on fast-forward, honestly.  I turn around and eleven days of April are already gone. We’ll call it an unscheduled blogging break and keep going from here, okay?  -_-*

Life is kind of strange at the moment. I went to Sydney with my mother, overnight, and stayed in my sister’s apartment whilst she stayed here and held down the fort. We had a great time – at least, I did. I wrote a list of all the things I needed to do in Sydney, from looking at the new shoes to picking up a new Sims 3 expansion. Easter passed with a slightly lower level of dysfunction that normally plagues my family, thank god.

And now winter has hit. It’s currently absolutely pouring rain, a dark sky made darker with rain clouds and freezing – my ugg boots came out of ‘storage’ (read: out from under my chair) last night. Winter is finally here and I’m not exactly jumping for joy. I prefer cold but not rainy to all-out downpour. But since it is raining, I bought myself a gorgeous new umbrella

A Jonathan Adler umbrella, and I love it – it should arrive tomorrow, at which point it will stop raining because Life enjoys mocking me in that way. I just love the pattern – it reminds me of fish scales and that beautiful Japanese paper I get at the art shop. There is nothing more awesome than a brightly coloured umbrella during a rainy day.

Another thing bugging me at the moment is our neighbours. They are a very loud family – loud as in the seven year old girl and mother think screaming tantrums are perfectly acceptable at any time of the day or night, and the four year old boy is joining in as well. Which means I get woken up anywhere from 4:30am onwards from two tantrum throwing kids who need a good kick and a mother who chooses to scream back at them. It means I have to do most of my sleeping when the 7 year old is in school, which is not healthy. I think I’m going to have to say something to them, because the amount of murderous screaming that goes on is disturbing the entire street. (The next time I hear that girl screaming, ‘NO NO NO’, I’m going to hang out the bathroom window and scream, “Yes, YES, YES!!’ back at her. Then we’ll see what happens. :evil:)

I’ve also been spending a lot of time over on Goodreads – I’ll link to my profile later. I’ve also started a 50 (New) Books in 2012 challenge, and am 16 books in, which is crazy, since I only started in March. Out of those 16 books, only one of them sucked beyond all measure, so I think that’s a pretty good ‘awesome book’ percentage.

I’m also been working on my newest project – turning Written-Word.Org into a writing slash YA novel review site. Honestly, coding WordPress themes hasn’t quite clicked yet. I can code HTML and even a little PHP and CSS in my sleep, but WordPress eludes me. I guess that means I need more practice. So it will take longer to set up than I anticipated but that also gives me more time to come up with content. I also need to get my ass into gear and get my professional site and a business card designed and ready to go. I’ve got until late May before university classes start back up, which should be plenty of time.

Now I have a big bowl of udon and some allergy pills waiting for me; I know, I know, it’s a drunken whirligig of fun here tonight  XD

Easter Plans

So, the Great Festival of Chocolate – also known as Easter – falls on April 6 to 9 this year. It seems both super late this year but it also seems to have come upon me quite quickly. I’m planning on drawing my mother a portrait of a bunny and maybe a nice box of chocolates.

Mia (my sister) told Mum today that her friend Kayla might be coming to stay for Easter. Which is cool, of course, but strange – we don’t have guests very often. Since we’ve lived in this house, I’ve only had one friend stay over. Mia did have one boarding school friend I’ll call S, who stayed for awhile. She was… a piece of work. Very spoilt, she was kind of pushy and rude – she’d barge into my room without knocking, she’d demand to play my computer games whilst I was playing them and argh! Manners really are important – a simple ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ goes a long way.

But Kayla’s nice, I’ve met her. I just hope we can practice family harmony whilst she is here – which translates loosely into ‘I hope my father behaves like a human being rather than a spectacular douchebag’. If nothing else, it will make for some interesting blogging.

I’m also hoping to see my grandmother over Easter Weekend – I’m hoping to make her some cupcakes, and convince my Mum to make her delicious chocolate cake with raspberries and cream, and decorated with tiny chocolate eggs (my grandmother loves sweets, it’s funny to see how excited when we bring lollies). The problem is that if we take lunch and dessert to my grandmother’s and my aunt and uncle show up, they’ll help themselves and probably take most of it home with them, which I find infinitely rude.

But that’s a rant for another day. I just hope my family can suck it up and behave like humans for Easter. That would be nice.

Christmas Eve 2011

(Wow is this late. It’s been one of those weeks and, quite frankly, I was hoping I’d have my DSLR by now  :idea: But alas, not until next weekend. If I get time over the next few days, I’ll take my pictures with my Lumix.)

Anyway, Christmas Eve was chaotic, as you could probably tell from my Christmas To Do List. I got two batches of cupcakes made, only because I was being conservative with the eggs and butter, as well as the cupcake liners. my cupcake recipe takes four eggs and 225g of butter per batch. I get 20+ cupcakes from the recipe depending on how big they are, so I made the decision to just do two, and ended up with almost sixty cupcakes. When I went to ice the cakes, though, I found out we had very little icing sugar. I iced a few and then had to wait… resulting in the fact that the majority of the cupcakes were never iced.  :ohno:

I made a glorious attempt to make star-shaped ornaments/gift tags for my grandmothers out of Fimo but I used FimoAir, and it sort of turned styrofoam-y and the silver paint highlighted all the unevenness, so that was put aside. I’ll try again next year, with oven-baked Fimo. I also really want one of those alphabet stamp kits, because I think that would look much nicer than hand-writing in black pen on an ornament. I’ve actually wanted one for years and never knew where to look until I found a lady selling them on Etsy.

Ahem, I also managed to finish my Christmas cards, clean the bedroom, wrap my gifts… plus Mum and I had to pick up sushi for tea, the traditional Christmas flowers, wrap even more gifts and finish off the gingerbread house. It wasn’t complete and assembled until New Year’s Eve (the gingerbread house deserves a post of it’s own. It is hilarious and awe-inspiring.)

We also got the news that my paternal grandparents couldn’t see us until Boxing Day, and my aunt managed to rig it so that we couldn’t see my maternal grandmother until the 27th of December, so we had Christmas Day at home together. On one hand, we were so tired it seemed like a god-send, on the other it was a bit of a let down. As a family, we have a lot of issues and having all four of us under the same roof on a holiday with some much build up is a recipe for disaster. I’m more agitated about my mother’s side of the family, and the way they continually disrespect her. But I digress.

I also added a few last minute decorations to the tree – I love our tree. When I was a child, Australians really didn’t use real trees. It was pretend all the way. My parents had this medium-sized white one that was yellowed by the time we replaced it with the huge pine one that is still as glorious today as it was fourteen years ago. And with all our decorations and lights on it, I swear it looks far better than any real tree ever could. (I should also point out for anyone getting their hackles up, that we did try a real tree when I was roughly 6 – and promptly that December in Australia is no place for a real tree and the heat just speeds up decomposition. I was extremely distressed that year at the sight of our Christmas tree dying.)

Hmm, I might do a separate Christmas tree post.

But the night wrapped up with my father arriving home from picking my sister up in Sydney (and promptly consuming my mother’s share of dinner  :angry:), a few last minute gifts being wrapped (my father is so lazy and arrogant that he had a gift for my mother in one of the bags of gifts I asked him to pick up for me and he simply expected me to notice it and wrap it without saying a word. I threw it out and when he mentioned it, had to go through my bin.  :cranky:) and ventured into the debate of what time to get up for presents the next morning (my sister never grew out of the Oh-My-God-It’s-Christmas! excitement :lol:)…

Well, that was Christmas…

… and I was sick again by Boxing Day. Abdominal pain is terribly debilitating :ohno: . Luckily, I have two specialists that I’m seeing (one on January 4th) that should help solve this problem. I was sick for most of 2011, and it’s so frustrating and exhausting, waking up every morning still miserable. 2012 has to be better!

But anyway, Christmas was lovely with a few minor irritants that I’ll get into tomorrow – I finally found my Lumix’s charger, so I’ll take some photos of our lovely tree (we have the most interesting collection of decorations) and my gifts. I cannot wait until I get my DSLR!

But anyway, I hope everyone had a lovely holiday.

My Christmas Eve Eve To Do List

When I was a kid, one of my friends coined the term ‘Christmas Eve Eve’. And that’s how I always think of the 23rd of December. Christmas Eve Eve. The last day of pre-preparations before the Last Day Before Christmas.

My family has a list of things that have to be done that is a mile long, and I’m already exhausted, having had a very long week. I’ve also discovered that roughly four scheduled posts haven’t been posted, so I have to had a fiddle with WordPress.

But by Christmas Eve night, I have to have…

  • Made Christmas cards for my mother, father and sister, as well as my maternal grandmother and paternal grandparents.
  • Cut out, spray-painted, written on and glazed handmade ornaments for both my grandmothers. (Huffah, I cut them all out and am now waiting for them to dry, which takes about a day.)
  • Wrapped all my gifts and some of my mother’s.
  • Made sure my bedroom, and possibly the lounge and dining rooms are utterly spotless for guests.
  • Add some last minute decorations to the tree.
  • Bake three batches (err, roughly 72) cupcakes (my vanilla cupcake recipe is to die for – like tiny clouds) and iced them.
I also need to…
  • Test one of the gifts for Mum
  • Find my camera and my camera charger (that sounds terrible; I’m positive my camera is in my drawer but haven’t had time to check.)
  • Charge my DSi (I’m getting Professor Layton!)
  • Order some of my Christmas gifts (a few things on my list aren’t available in Australia, so I’ll be grabbing them online – my mother’s not particularly au fait with online shopping. I’m not bothered that they won’t arrive until January – a gift is a gift and just as heartfelt two weeks after Christmas as it was Christmas Day. I think a lot of people forget that in the holiday crush.)

And as well as that, on Saturday Mum and I have to…

  • Head to the Fish Markets at 4am to pick up prawns for Christmas
  • Bake gingerbread
  • Ice gingerbread
  • Decorate and assemble a gingerbread house (the house itself is made, thankfully!)
  • Do the second round of Christmas groceries
  • Pick up a sushi platter
  • Pick up flowers
  • Make rocky road
  • Make chocolate cake
  • Finish an ice cream layer cake
  • Pack up and tidy my sister’s room
  • Move all the boxes on the verandah back into my sister’s room
  • Pick up my poor, sick rabbit Harriet from the vet (more on that in another post).
  • Pick up medication.
  • Prepare platters
  • Pick up my Xmas/Boxing Day shirt (I found this awesome top I really want to wear, but I needed a different size. Luckily, the shop is in the same complex as the supermarket, so I can just run upstairs and grab it.)

I just know I’m forgetting something. I’m so tired and everything has gone wrong for us today. I hope Christmas turns out well.

I hope I’m awake long enough to enjoy it.

Christmas Shopping

I officially started my Christmas shopping today. November 27th. I am completely horrified.  -_-*

To be fair, they’re technically gifts my mother is giving. We picked up two super cool gifts for my sister and I (can’t say what they are in case my sister is reading) and I tracked down my Nintendo 3DS in pink. I managed to find it for under $190 in Australia, which is like a magic trick. I can’t wait.

And to top off the early-Christmas spirit around here, the Church next door had their Carols By Candlelight. We weren’t around for last year’s, but we heard they had some major preaching, which made many attendees (along with the minister) very unhappy, and they weren’t present this year. It was all about the kids – they even sang Miley Cyrus’ The Climb, which was fun.  :good:

It feels much closer to Christmas than it should, or it is.  :lol:

The Birthday Girl

I finally turned twenty-four. Gosh that feels old. I spend half my time feeling far too old, and half my time feeling about sixteen. And all my time feeling nervous. The age of twenty-three has kind of sucked. I’ve been sick since the end of February, and only now am I seeing a light at the end of the tunnel regarding my health, which is scary and sad.

But on to my birthday! XD I had an appointment with my trainer at 8am (!) which was completely unfair ;) After the gym, Mum treated me to one of my favourite breakfasts (I’ll add the recipe here one day) of yoghurt with honey, berries and yoghurt. It sounds kind of boring, but it’s delicious – like dessert for breakfast. Plus it is super healthy. Mum also treated me to the most delicious drink – a mango and blood orange frappe.

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Birthday Eve

I turn twenty-four tomorrow! I still love my birthdays like I did when I was a little kid, thought with significantly more patience. I’m not very impressed with this new awareness of how old I’m getting these days, though. But more maudlin talk of age tomorrow!

Since last year I was spoilt rotten with gorgeous and very expensive gifts plus a trip to a very expensive restaurant, I decided to go low-key this year. And since my father works in a small, rural town during the week, and my sister is busy in Sydney with university (her graduation gallery show opens next week, oh my gosh!) I chose to go to Sydney for the day, the day before my birthday, and to have lunch at Doyle’s Seafood at the Sydney Fish Markets. We had my sister’s birthday at Doyle’s Bistro at Watson’s Bay back in March, so there was a nice parallel!

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First Birthday!

Well, as I reflect on the year back, I feel like I’ve been tumbling down the rabbit hole, much like Alice. Or Carmen and Juni in “Spy Kids 2.” But wow, what a year. A year ago, I was at Angelfire. A year ago, it was do-or-die Dark Angel. Incredible, huh? I’m now fifteen, I’m in Year 10 and wow.

Yes, we’ve been around for a whole year (technically tomorrow, but I thought an early birthday celebration was in order.) Wow. So, so many people to thank. First of all, my parents, who finance T-L.Com, and all the collective sites, and the software I use. To Ariella, for all our site escapades. For Jacey for everything. Nicky for totally unbiased site critism (and for being one of the only people I can talk serious Matrix and Buffy/Angel with.) Bob and Lloyd for crowning me HTML Goddess. To Leila, who let me steal her source codes and helped me fix up the first few version of DoB, even though she’s totally AWOL this year.

Also, to my fantastic affiliates, you guys rock! To the girls at the Hardline, you inspired this layout. To Alina for letting me use the screen cap, even though she doesn’t know yet. And to MTS, who made the screen cap in the first place.

It’s been a great year and, I present a new layout featuring Neo and Trinity, and entitled “Feel”.

Happy Days

I am renaming this blog. Any ideas? Two of my ideas so far are ‘digital diva’ or ‘dream’. Any suggestions or comments on either of these names – tag me!

I got my braces off! How very extremely COOL! Well, only the top ones so far, but all is well! Ceramics was totally cool, we met a really sweet grade 8 girl (really cool, too) named Olivia. And there’s a new section of T-L.Com going up called “Dee’s World.” Dee is one of my 3 minions…more content up tonight, I swear!

Um, what else?…Sixteen days til exams! Eeep!