Xmas Playlist

My Xmas playlist on YouTube. I hope you enjoy the music and that you have a safe and happy holiday. Continue reading

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Top Ten Xmas Movies For Kids

A Happy Christmas Infant Flowers Victorian Xmas Card

Xmas is a time for family, yes, but when you add children to the mix, it becomes extra special. Nothing can build holiday excitement faster than seeing the wonder on small faces as they watch the Xmas lights or visit Santa at the store.

One way to build your children’s anticipation is to sit down with them and drink a delicious hot chocolate while watching a much-loved holiday movie. Continue reading

Top Ten Xmas Movies

 

 

Vintage Sign Old Car with Christmas Tree 700px

The holidays are almost upon us. As they approach, we will engage in many pastimes peculiar to the season. We will shop for gifts, sing Xmas carols, decorate our home and indulge in the treats we might normally deny ourselves.

One of my favourite activities in the lead up to the holidays is relaxing with my family in front of the television, with a glass of Xmas cheer, and enjoying a good Xmas movie. Continue reading

Dear Jesus

As an apology for not posting anything last Monday, I am giving you a second post today. This post is to promote a website I came across, called Christmas Day. They have loads of information about Xmas, decorations and celebrations around the world. Best of all, they have some pretty funny Xmas jokes.

Here is one of them: Continue reading

Coconut Ice

‘Tis the season to indulge, and what better way to do so than with a classic Xmas treat, Coconut Ice. Pleasing to the eye, and containing enough sugar to satisfy even the sweetest tooth, this is a holiday snack your kids will love to make. I haven’t made my first batch of the season yet, so I don’t have a picture to share, but as soon as I do, I’ll post it here. Makes approximately 18 squares.

Continue reading

Tree

I got to help Dad pick the tree this year. The one I chose took up the whole backseat. I didn’t mind. It meant I got to sit in the front with Dad. Still, we drove home slowly, ‘cos the trunk was sticking out the window. We’re lucky there weren’t any cops around to give Dad a fine. When we got home, my brother helped Dad carry the tree inside and put it in a bucket. I held it up while he and Dad filled the bucket with dirt from the garden. Continue reading

Gifted

You close your eyes and take a deep, shuddering breath. Your ears strain as you try to convince yourself that the house is empty. A low moan sounds from beneath the tree, causing your breath to hitch. Slowly, softly, you caress the brightly wrapped gift as you gently remove the paper an inch at a time. Continue reading

Top Ten Things I Hate About Renting

For Rent Sign on Beach, Pixabay, Raven_C, CC0 Creative Commons

With more and more people being locked out of the housing market, renting is on the rise. For those who chose to rent rather than buy, renting does have some advantages.

Renting can often be cheaper than buying, allowing renters to live in areas they can’t afford to buy. For example, the current loan repayment on a three bedroom home in Penrith¹ is $570 per week², while the rent on such a home is $400, and that isn’t taking into account such costs as rates, maintenance and insurance.

Renting is more flexible for those who need or want to be able to move quickly. If you are transferred at work, for example, you don’t have to wait for your home to sell. The fact that renting doesn’t require a long term commitment is a positive aspect for people who like a constant change of pace.

However, for those of us who rent out of necessity, rather than by choice, renting does have many disadvantages. Therefore, without further ado, here is my personal top ten list of things I hate about renting, from ten to one: Continue reading

Questions From Donna Revisited

 

1. WERE YOU NAMED AFTER ANYONE? No. I was originally meant to be Rebecca but my cousin used it for her bub and Mum didn’t want it anymore.

 

2. WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU CRIED? Yesterday.

 

3. DO YOU LIKE YOUR HANDWRITING? No.

 

4. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE LUNCH MEAT? Silverside.

 

5. DO YOU HAVE KIDS? Yes.

 

6. IF YOU WERE ANOTHER PERSON WOULD YOU BE FRIENDS WITH YOU? Maybe?

 

7. DO YOU USE SARCASM A LOT? Yes.

 

8.. DO YOU STILL HAVE YOUR TONSILS? Yeppers.

 

9. WOULD YOU BUNGEE JUMP? Oh HELL no.

 

10. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE CEREAL? I don’t eat a lot of cereal, but I like Coco-Pops, Rice Bubbles and Corn Flakes. I only eat Kellogg’s brand for all three, and lots of sugar for the rice bubbles and corn flakes, which is why I hardly ever eat it.

 

11. DO YOU UNTIE YOUR SHOES WHEN YOU TAKE THEM OFF? Nope.

 

12. DO YOU THINK YOU ARE STRONG? No.

 

13. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ICE CREAM? Homer Hudson Chocolate Rock, though nobody sells it anymore 😦 . I also love Coles brand Macadamia & Caramel ice cream. It tastes like maple syrup. 🙂

 

14. WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU NOTICE ABOUT PEOPLE? Personality.

 

15. RED OR PINK? Purple. Or Black.

 

16. WHAT IS THE WEATHER LIKE OUTSIDE? Time: 8.00pm, Conditions: Partly cloudy, Temp: 20°C, Dew Point: 13.2°C, Relative Humidity: 65%, Wind Speed: 9 km/h (4.9 kt), Wind Gusts: 15 km/h (8.1 kt), Wind Direction: ESE, Pressure: 1024.7 hPa, Rain Since 9am: 0.4 mm, Fire Danger 3.2 (Moderate), Today’s high/low: 26°C – 15°C.

 

17. WHO DO YOU MISS THE MOST? Mum.

 

18. DO YOU WANT EVERYONE TO SEND THIS BACK TO YOU? I don’t really care.

 

19. WHAT COLOUR SHOES ARE YOU WEARING? Shoes????

 

20. WHAT WAS THE LAST THING YOU ATE? Red Velvet flavoured ice cream.

 

21. WHAT ARE YOU LISTENING TO RIGHT NOW? Leah, Otherworld.

 

22. IF YOU WERE A CRAYON, WHAT COLOUR WOULD YOU BE? Royal Purple.

 

23. FAVOURITE SMELLS? Freshly baked bread, rain, chocolate.

 

24.WHO WAS THE LAST PERSON YOU TALKED TO ON THE PHONE? My Mother in Law.

 

25. DO YOU LIKE THE PERSON WHO SENT THIS TO YOU? Yes.

 

26. FAVOURITE SPORTS TO WATCH? I don’t really watch sports, though jousting and quidditch can be fairly exciting.

 

27. Hair Colour? Brown

 

28. EYE COLOUR? Blue

 

29.. DO YOU WEAR CONTACTS? No.

 

30. FAVOURITE FOOD? Sushi

 

31. SCARY MOVIES OR HAPPY ENDINGS? Scary movies.

 

32. LAST MOVIE YOU WATCHED? Tangled.

 

33. WHAT COLOUR SHIRT ARE YOU WEARING? Green T-Shirt.

 

34. SUMMER OR WINTER? Summer

35. HUGS OR KISSES? Hugs

 

36. Car or truck ? Car

 

37. MOST LIKELY TO RESPOND? N/A as I’m not sending this to anybody.

 

38. LEAST LIKELY TO RESPOND? N/A as I’m not sending this to anybody.

 

39. WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW? ‘The World Without Me’ a Harry Potter fanfiction by Eternal Cosmos.

 

40. WHAT IS ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? My mouse.

 

41. WHAT DID YOU WATCH ON TV LAST NIGHT? ‘Monsters and Mysteries’, ‘Untold Stories of the ER’ and a documentary about ‘War of the Worlds’.

 

42. FAVOURITE SOUND? My children laughing, magpies, currawongs, kookaburras, whipbirds.

 

43. ROLLING STONES OR BEATLES? Beatles.

 

44. WHERE DO YOU WANT TO GO TO NEXT? Anywhere but here. Visiting my brother in Switzerland might be nice.

 

45. DO YOU HAVE A SPECIAL TALENT? I think I’m a fair writer.

 

46. WHERE WERE YOU BORN? Blacktown.

 

47. WHOSE ANSWERS ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO GETTING BACK? No-one as I’m not tagging anybody.

Getting to Know Me Revisited

Nurture dressed s a businessman for halloween

This is an old picture, but I don’t have anything more recent.

Name: Nurture
Age: 40
Gender: Female
Marital status: Married
Romance: is wonderful.
Hair colour: Browny
Eye colour: Blue
Long or short hair: Just past my shoulders
Favourite thing to eat: Sushi
Favourite thing to wear: Leggings
Favourite perfume/cologne: Musk. It reminds me of my Great Grandmother.
Favourite food: Sushi
Favourite drink: Wine
Favourite colour: Deep Purple or Forest Green
Favourite music: Aurelio Voltaire, The Indelicates, Buddy Holly, Karliene, The Cog is Dead, Damh the Bard, Sara Storer, Elton John & a bunch of others that can be found on my playlists.
Favourite movie: He Died With a Felafel In His Hand, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, The Road to El Dorado, Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, pretty much anything by Studio Ghibli.
Favourite TV show: I’m not really sure. I don’t watch a lot of television. I do enjoy crime shows like NCIS or Law & Order. Orange is the New Black is also good, as is Doctor Who. I don’t mind a good documentary series like Conspiracy, Haunting Australia or Chef’s Table. I don’t think I’d describe any of these as favourites, though.
Favourite pastime: Reading
Favourite place to eat: My previous answer to this was Sizzler. Damn, I miss Sizzler. Oh well, these days, I guess, Sushi Hub.

Most memorable moment: The birth of my children
Most embarrassing moment: Way too many to pick.
If you could kiss anyone, who would it be?: I actually can’t think of anybody I’d like to kiss right now. Unless fictional characters count?
What makes you smile?: My kids
What makes you smile?: Baby animals
Will you post this on your blog?: Yes

Planet X Sneak Peak

I have been so busy concentrating on NaNoWriMo this week, that I completely forgot to write something for today’s Fiction Friday. Instead I have decided to give you a sneak peek at one of the earlier scenes from Planet X, the novel I am currently working on.

If you decide to read it, please bear in mind that, besides a basic spell-check, this is completely unedited, un-revised, un-refined and un-beta’d. You read this at your own risk. Continue reading

Top Ten Stephen King Films

 

 

stephen_king

Photo Credit: Shane Leonard

I am a huge fan of Stephen King and one of the things I love most about his writing is his ability to populate his worlds. Every character, no matter how minor, has a role. Every character, no matter how minor, has a back story. Where other authors will simply refer to ‘the cashier’ or ‘the truck driver’, King will give these people a name and a family. He’ll tell us a little about their lives and how their day has been so far.

In many cases he even links them to characters in other novels or stories that he has written. A character mentioned in passing in one story may play a pivotal role in another. A favourite character in the novel you read yesterday may be briefly mentioned in the short story you read today.

It is for this reason that I have always been a proponent of King’s books over their movie adaptations. There is a depth to his novels that just doesn’t seem to carry over into film.

That said, not being as good as the novel, does not necessarily translate as ‘bad’. There are plenty of enjoyable films based on works by Stephen King, some of which have a place on my mental list of favourite films. Continue reading

A Series of Unrelated Snippets

Butterfly and Annie have been watching an anime called Food Wars recently. Since I have been reading and writing in the same room as the television, I have caught several glimpses of the anime. The food on this show looks divine. I mean, anime food always looks particularly delicious, but anime devoted to food, such as Yumeiro Patissiere or Food Wars take it to a whole other level. I would dearly love to try some of the dishes I’ve seen in these two shows. I wonder if there is an English language cookbook featuring the recipes from the show available? Continue reading

Living

The worst part about the apocalypse isn’t the zombies. Continue reading

Top Ten YouTube Channels I Discovered This Year

With billions of visitors daily, YouTube is one of the most well-known and popular video streaming sites on the internet. With millions of channels on the site, and more being added every day, there is always something new to discover.

Sometimes the channels we discover are brand new, with only a handful of videos available. At other times we may discover for ourselves, channels that have been producing content for years, with thousands of subscribers having found them before us.

This is definitely the case when it comes to myself. Due to the fact that I don’t watch YouTube nearly as often as some, I am often a latecomer when it comes to the discovery of channels. Many of the channels I discovered this year are neither new or unknown. They were, however, new to me. Continue reading

Dreams by Nurture Waratah

Image by George Hodan

Dreams

I dream.
I dream of his face.
I dream of the blood
That trickled in his eyes.
I dream of the crowd,
The way they cried
For his destruction.
I dream of my own
Reluctance to disagree
With the mob.
I dream.
I dream of my hands.
I dream of the bowl
That contains the water
Of my sins.
I never emptied that bowl.
My dreams are filled.
Filled with certainty.
His life was not the only
Life I washed away
That day.
My decision killed him.
I killed him.
My life is forfeit.
Perhaps also my soul.
Perhaps he will forgive.
It was all
Part of his Plan.
What choice, then, did I have?
Perhaps he will forgive.
My sleep is fitful now.
Never peaceful.
I am dying.
Remember me Lord,
As I remember you,
And forgive.

— Nurture Waratah

Double Standards

I am starting to get exceedingly irritated with a commonly expressed internet opinion with regards to Islam. I’m sure you’ve seen the point of view I’m referring to. It is generally some variation of the following statement:

“If the majority of Muslims are really not terrorists, why do they not speak out against terrorism? They must truly support it. Ban all Muslims!” Continue reading

Memoriae

The room is cluttered with memories of a well-spent life. The wall-to-wall bookcase is filled with leather-bound books. An urn, brimming with scrolls, stands in the corner. On the walls is a portrait of a beautiful, dark-haired woman, holding a child. The large mahogany desk holds an intricately carved cigar case, a small globe and a glass box containing a lock of blonde hair and a tooth. The spirit of the former occupant pervades the room.

3453-illustration-of-berries-on-a-vine-pv

This is another creative writing assignment from 2005. We were given the sentence “The room contained a desk and a shelf full of books” and told to add atmosphere.

 

 

X53Za Update

I just want to take this opportunity to apologise to those people who were looking forward to part 2 of X53Za. There is not going to be a part 2 to this short story. Before you all mob me, let me explain. Continue reading

Top Ten Sites & Tools I Found Helpful in Prepping for NaNoWriMo

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Image courtesy of National Novel Writing Month

Those of you who follow my blog will know that this is my first time participating in NaNoWriMo, or National November Writing Month. As this is also the first time I have written anything longer than around 1500 words, I was understandably feeling overwhelmed.

Thankfully, writers on twitter and in the NaNoWriMo forums, are incredibly kind and helpful. They give loads of encouragement, share plenty of resources and are always willing to point newbies in the right direction. Continue reading

Read you in December

I have just finished clearing out my email and found a backlog of likes and follows for my blog. Normally, I like to check out any WordPress blogs that follow me or like one of my posts. Unfortunately, with NaNoWriMo beginning on Wednesday, I won’t have the time to do this right away.

I just want to let everyone know that I am not ignoring you. I will begin working through my backlog as soon as NaNoWriMo is over. There are quite a lot, though, so if I don’t get to you right away, I do apologise. I won’t be playing favourites. I’ll be going through them in chronological order.

For those who follow me on twitter, I also won’t be tweeting much during November. I just can’t see myself as having the time to do so.

Thank you, everyone, for your patience.

X53Za Part 1

The footpath was teeming with commuters, pressed so tightly that Sam was carried along with the crowd. He sighed. This would add at least an hour to his travel time and he was already exhausted. By the time he finally manoeuvred his way out of the crowd, his feet ached and his head throbbed with each step he took.

As he turned back the way he had come, he noticed a large booth he had never seen before. Inside was an average looking woman, dark hair framing her smiling face. She was well-dressed, though not in a ‘flaunting her wealth’ kind of way. In fact, she looked like one of those government flunkies you always see surrounding the politicians on the television.

What really caught Sam’s eye. though, was the posters plastered all over the woman’s booth. ‘Explore the frontier’, the brightly coloured letters proclaimed above pictures of pilgrims and cowboys and wagon trains, ‘Your ancestors did it, Why not you?’. He paused for a moment, undecided. Today’s air was particularly thin and his lungs felt tight and unresponsive. Couple that with his headache, and he wanted nothing more than to go home to his oxygenated apartment, swallow a tablet and relax in a steaming shower. Continue reading

Top Ten Books I Rated 10/10

Flowery Number 10 Free Public Domain Image bloemrijk-paars-getal-10I haven’t read a lot of books lately. I’ve been concentrating mainly on Harry Potter fan fiction. I did read a lot in the past, however, and I intend to read a lot more in the future.

Over the past few days, in between researching the seventeenth century in preparation for NaNoWriMo, I have been editing my BookCrossing profile. One of the features I added to my profile page is a drop down menu showing all the books I have rated ten out of ten, since I began keeping track of such things.

Going through this list caused me to remember a lot of good books that I read in the past so, when I saw the time and realised I haven’t gotten around to blogging yet, I thought, why not kill two birds with one stone and use those memories as inspiration for today’s Top Ten Tuesday? Continue reading