December 2017 Archives

2017 Year in Review

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Wow this has certainly been a busy year, and a very very social one. I left writing up the friends and family section til last because it just seemed to go on forever and ever!

Our year began at home, with Ben and EffanC over for nibbles and a small party. Annie and the family came over the next day for chaos and Turkish food. Saw Scott and Kerry and the kids on the first day back at work before they went home.

We had one holiday this year - a cruise on the Queen Mary 2 out of Hong Kong (with a couple of days in Macau beforehand). I was super excited about it, and it lived up to expectations. Although I felt like we didn't quite belong there, on account of not being retired highly paid executives. We never made it to Queensland this year - things were just too *complicated*. I did do two day trips to Sydney to inspect my flat. And there was a work trip to Melbourne for two days.

At work I swapped teams after not quite fitting in with the old team (I'm too dumb for that team!). Still doing much the same work, but with different technology. The project I joined had been going for about two years, and I figure I have about two years of work to clean up the mess that has been made! I had a little bit of weekend work doing upgrades to various things and monitoring of some events. The majority of my new section is in Melbourne, so we went down in September for a two-day planning session. The highlight of the trip was the amazing flight down, and catching up with David twice. We ran a trivia night in March. Unfortunately the winning table weren't going to be around to run the next one, so we asked the second-place getters if they'd do it. They said yes, but never did it. So I'll probably run another one in February or March. We had a whiskey night in June which was a bit of fun. I went with the sweetie to SplunkLive! and I'm *still* bitter that a big data company couldn't get the distribution of tshirt sizes right. We had a DAIS video night in August, as it had been way too long since the last one. Finally, I ran our annual floor barbeque at the lake for forty people and everyone seemed to enjoy it.

I was pretty healthy this year. I had a bit of a cold in February, and then another one picked up on the Queen Mary 2 (it was going around the entire ship), but after that I didn't get any more colds all year. The other thing we got on the way home from our holiday was a bout of gastro, which hit Stu just after we got home, and me a day or so later (although I seemed to only get a fairly mild case of it). I went to the dentist after one year instead of twenty and will probably keep going regularly now. I did battle with insomnia quite a few times during the year. Usually for no apparent reason, although it tended to be associated with a sore spine and/or a brain that wouldn't shut up. I rage-quit on Stu's bed earlier in the year and more often than not sleep in the spare room. That room has the bed Yvonne gave me in 2005 which has a much firmer mattress than Stu's. I don't get a sore spine *as much* in that bed, and my restless legs don't play up nearly as much there either (don't know why that is - different fabrics??). We've been meaning to go shopping for a new king size bed, but we just haven't gotten around to it yet.

We saw a lot of F&C (EffanC) this year which was really nice. Went to their place a number times and had them over here as well. Also saw Scott with them a few times. We saw quite a lot of Kit, with various combinations of Serena, Ben, Sarah, Anita and Pete. David came to stay in January, April, August and December, and Mum came to visit in February and August. Only saw a little bit of Annie the family - they came over for a Turkish feast in January, we went to their place for dinner in March, had them over here in April, their place for cake for Noah's birthday, and them here for Christmas dessert. Saw even less of Potty and the family - seeing them at the beginning of the year before they went home, Kerry brought over sick kids in July, then everyone came at Christmas (twice). We met Chrissie's new boyfriend in January, and by July they were living together with a baby on the way. I've gotten to go to a few of the ultrasounds which has been pretty cool. They came over for our first hanami party, and we had Zac come and stay in December so Chris and Mike could celebrate their anniversary. Nat and Andrew came over for our second hanami party, but sadly that was the only time we saw them all year. We had Damien and Amanda over for dinner in May, and went with them to Olive at Hawker in July, and saw just Damien for drinks in August. James and Rachel came down for a cake decorating course in May and they stayed with us which was nice. James also came down for work in November and we caught up for dinner at Bella Vista. We met up with Jenn at Chong Co in January, and had Jenn and Nick over in June for dinner. Jenn was getting set for a foodie trip to Mexico, which she went on later in the year and we got copies of her travelogue which was pretty cool. Had dinner with Luc and Cynthia and the boys when they came down in January, had @Chrispycon and Anne over for dinner in June, went to a barbeque at @CLBradley's in June, had dinner with Luc when he was down for work in September, and went over to Lachie's for darts (which I was crap at) and Jenga (which I didn't lose at) in November.

At "the club" we went to a couple of swim nights, and several socials at the club. One of them we did pea and ham soup, and another we did Christmas in July for forty people.

Pretty quiet year for the fish. I got some more danios for the two foot, and a couple of bristlenose catfish for my big tank and the two foot. We did get another tank from Chrissie as well which is quite a nice little tank. In the big angel tank is the angel, two big (probably female) danios, a cory, the bristlenose I bought, and a big bristlenose I got off Chris. In the upstairs two foot there's five danios, four rummy nose tetras and a bristlenose. In the little tank from Chris are her two clown loaches. They're really too big for that tank but haven't decided where to put them yet. It could really use a bristlenose as well, as the tank gets direct sunlight so there's lots of algae starting to grow. Downstairs there's four danios and the platy I got off Chris two years ago. Stu has two guppies in the little tank on his desk, and heaps of fish in his four foot. We bought expensive LED lights for two of the tanks instead of regular fluoros, but one of them died after only eight months which is very disappointing. Hoping the other one we bought doesn't die as quickly.

I didn't get any new Lego this year, although I did get a Nanoblocks Empire State Building for Christmas. I did a bunch of jigsaws throughout the year including a very cool 3D one of the Sydney Opera House. I finally assembled the 24000 piece "Life" jigsaw, because I figured I *had* to before I could get going on the 40320 piece "Memorable Moments" Disney jigsaw! I had fun with papercraft as well, making some Villarceau circles, completing a geodesic dodecahedron and two geodesic octahedra (or hexahedra), making a four frequency geodesic icosahedron which is pretty spectacular (and I had this hanging from the roof at work for a while which is probably how they noticed ceiling cat), and an icosidodecahedron and a geodesic icosidodecahedron.

For some reason I always mention the weather in my year in review posts. This year seemed quite cold in winter, but the pool only froze over a couple of times. We had hail and snow on the same day in August which was pretty exciting. October seemed like a very cold month, and as per usual December had its fair share of cold days as well. Not that I'm complaining, I'd prefer it to be cold than hot. Our evaporative cooler works very well, although I swear last summer was the most humid summer in Canberra ever (the evaporative cooler doesn't work very well when it's humid). This summer we've used it a little and it's quite lovely. I'm even noticing a temperature inversion now - often it's cooler upstairs than downstairs! But the best part is being able to use it on fan only to simply bring cool air into the house once it's cooler outside than in. In the past it could be quite cool outside, but still hot inside simply because the air is so still and there's no crossflow ventilation. Having the fan bring it in is wonderful.

At the end of last year I was considering getting a backpack vacuum cleaner because I *hate* dragging a barrel vacuum cleaner around. David suggested we get a cordless one instead. I was a bit reluctant because they are essentially glorified dustbusters, and all the ones we saw had rollers that just tangle up hair. But we ended up getting one anyway. It sat unused for probably six months, but I've finally gotten into the habit of doing a room or two per day, and now the house is actually getting fully vacuumed every week. Amazing! Our Cisco switch died while we were on holidays in March. And we never did get the NAS working again with it - it's still going through a little old 100Mb switch. Our home internet has always been bad here, and getting steadily worse. When we got back from holidays it was completely unusable. We called Internode to have a look. They got Telstra to have a look, and confirmed a problem with the line something like 400m away. They fixed this and things did improve somewhat, but our internet is still painfully slow (2Mb down). Netflix seems to buffer relatively well but Stan is abysmal. We're hoping NBN will improve things a little, but given that our node is like a kilometre away I doubt it's going to be amazing. My blog and hosting/email was offline for a few days while we were on holidays. Possibly a DOS, but don't know if it was ever explained. Then Vic sold everything off and retired. I'm wondering how long it takes them to figure out this hosting is a freebie and either shut it down or make me start paying for it. I really really need to move this blog off, but it's such a huge beast it's going to be very difficult. Even backing up the site via FTP takes a couple of days. I might have more luck tarring up the whole thing into one file which would transfer more quickly and efficiently, but I'm hampered by not having any shell access. And I couldn't find the perl script I used to have which lets you run commands interactively via the website (yes I know - super dangerous, which is why it's not online, and hence I can't find it). We had dramas with our dvd players. The video on my old dvd recorder kept dropping out, and it was getting worse. The PS3 dvd part stopped working years ago. I even had issues with my old Toshiba. So in the end we spent $80 on a new player that will play everything including media on usb stick. The remote is faulty - any time you press a button it fires off the action multiple times. But we got it working with our Harmony remote, so in the end didn't bother to swap it (especially since JB HiFi price matched it with Big W). The old Android of Stu's that I used for Ingress got so old that the Play Store wouldn't work anymore, which meant I couldn't update Ingress, so the thing essentially became a brick. Maybe I could still use it as a media player, since my phone doesn't have space for that sort of thing. I upgraded my five year old iPhone to 10.3.3 without any dramas. It's faster after unlocking than iOS 9 was which is pretty cool.

Around the house, we discovered our shower was leaking, probably from old cracked grout in the corner. We scraped it back (mostly) but still haven't regrouted/siliconed. It's on the todo list for our staycation! The snifter valve exploded on our hot water system, but I still haven't gotten around to calling up Aquamax. It's on the todo list for our staycation! We had a heap of pool dramas this year. At the beginning of the year there was way too much stabiliser (sunscreen) which meant the chlorine didn't work at all. Got that under control with a bunch of water changes (dear Adelaide: you're welcome), but then this summer the pool has been unbuffered and unstable and keeps going green, even with adding plenty of chlorine. Sad times. Possibly the pH has been too high, so have adjusted that, vacuumed the last batch of algae to waste, raised the total alkalinity and added a bunch of chlorine and *hopefully* it'll settle down now. The tenants of my flat in Sydney moved out after seven years, and the place needed to be fully renovated, costing me something like $16000 :( Did two trips to see the before and after. Good news is it's getting a lot more rent now that it's all shiny again.

We didn't eat out too much this year, and when we did it was generally when meeting up with other people. We did go to Bella Vista a few times - for our anniversary, for my birthday, and when James came to visit. We only went to Dumpling Inn a couple of times because they were closed for much of the year. Both times were with Chris, Mike and Zac. We also tried The Scholar in Dickson with them, but I wasn't impressed with the very slow service. Also wasn't impressed with Chinese Inn at Kippax where we went for Sarah's birthday. Went to Hero Sushi in the city a couple of times, the first experience a lot better than the second. Went to Malaysian Chapter with Cath and Scott for Stu's birthday, and Chong Co with Jenn. Only had brunch out a couple of times this year, once at Market St Eats at Belconnen markets and once at Gus' Place. We often have lunch at Saigon Streetfood when doing our food shopping, or sometimes Ali Baba or more recently Alaska Seafood. We did get to try out a few new places too - The Courtyard Restaurant at Mercure with Luc and Cynthia when they were in town, Olive at Hawker with Damien and Amanda, and Black Fire in Braddon with Luc. We tried out Mills and Grills pizzas this year which are pretty good, and Stu loves the karaage chicken pizza from Pizza Capers. And finally I went with Neil to the Brokenwood Wine dinner at Monster Kitchen and Bar in Hotel Hotel.

I tried a few new recipes this year. Lemon ginger chicken from a Coles magazine was very nice, beef cheeks from Not Quite Nigella was also pretty good, and Jamie's five ingredient Asian fishcakes were simple but nice. Stu cooked Scotch eggs a couple of times, and pork larb a few times. I had a go at fondue, but didn't follow a recipe so the cheese split. Chrissie gave me a book of fondue recipes, and I got a proper fondue set, but we've yet to have another go at it. Kit and Serena's gardens provided an excess of produce that we happily used up, and we got to eat some young roosters that Kit had raised and processed. I made Anzac biscuits on Anzac Day, caramel slice at least three times, a mint rocky road and a cheesecake.

Didn't see any theatre or shows or exhibitions this year.

The only movie we saw at a cinema was Silence - in Hong Kong!

Stu likes to watch tv while we eat dinner. I feel like being forced to sit in one place for three quarters of an hour is pretty stressful, especially on weekday evenings. Having said that, some shows are better than others and with some shows it didn't feel so much of a burden.

  • Sherlock - season four
  • Fuller House - season two
  • Star Trek: The Original Series - finishing up what we started last year
  • Star Trek: Voyager - the entire thing, which took most of the year and was the most stressful to have to watch
  • Homeland - season five
  • Black Adder Goes Forth - borrowed off Annie years ago but hadn't gotten around to finishing, watched this on my computer
  • Monty Python - season four - borrowed off DC years ago but hadn't gotten around to finishing, watched this on my computer
  • Air Crash Investigations - various episodes watched online while doing other things on my computer
  • Australian Survivor - season two of the current incarnation - the only commercial tv we watched all year
  • Fuller House - season three (in two parts)
  • Dad's documentaries - stuff he'd taped off tv over the years. I've been working my way through them while I do jigsaws downstairs in the summer months
  • The Good Place - season one and the first half of season two
  • Rake - season four

Books Read

  • Tales of Two Cities, various short stories
  • Bones Never Lie, by Kathy Reichs
  • Uncle John's 24-Karat Gold Bathroom Reader
  • The Barefoot Investor, by Scott Pape
  • ET: The Book of the Green Planet, by William Kotzwinkle
  • One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nets, by Ken Kesey
  • No Place to Hide, by Glenn Greenwald

Other stuff

  • Kit had baby bunnies but Vicki killed them by "playing" with them
  • Neil won Ali Baba's "Chance to win $1000000" - but that's all it was - a chance to win. He didn't actually win the $1000000.
  • Went to the Multicultural Festival with Chrissie for beer and meat (and potatoes) on a stick, while remembering Dad from three years earlier
  • Had to do some actual clothes shopping for formal and other nice clothes for the cruise. Material Pleasures was awful, City Chic was much more successful, then again so was Vinnies and it was a lot cheaper
  • Went to the farmers markets in April but I find it too stressful and it's too early for Stu so we don't really like going
  • Stopped going to Coles at Jamison for the most part, because Jamison couldn't be arsed putting in enough trolley return bays around the car park
  • Made a classic 80s space guy costume for Kit's 30th birthday party
  • Had a brief play with IMosaic
  • Setup a blog for the Queen Mary 2 with photos of the ship
  • Went to Shepherd's Lookout and down to the river with Kit
  • Paid off our mortgage
  • Went to Hall Markets with Kit and Pete
  • Got access to my old CIA mailbox and downloaded seven years of mail
  • Setup a blog to compare Canberra between 1986 and 2016, sent it to the RiotACT but they didn't link to it. Johnboy would have.  Just sayin'.
  • Had to be official photographer for Roz's 60th at The Abbey which I found very stressful
  • Saw some of Kit's chicks hatching
  • Kit had more baby bunnies but they died, we don't know why
  • Had my democracy sausage photo feature in Atlas Obscura 
  • Got long service leave
  • Accidentally bought Twisties that make your tongue turn blue. I couldn't eat them. Ewww. Stu said it wasn't the only thing that turned blue..!

The End of the Year

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Saturday 23.12.17

Dropped into Chrissie's to pick up keys and instructions for animal feeding, then did our food shopping for the week.  

Sunday 24.12.17 - Christmas Eve

Spent pretty much the entire afternoon cooking.  I cooked up a Christmas caramel slice (flavoured with a little ginger and spice), a cherry/raspberry white chocolate cheesecake that looked like crap, whoops, and then a 2.8kg piece of roast pork, as well as potato bake and roast veggies.  In the evening we had our Christmas Eve feast and watched new episodes of Fuller House, and started watching season four of Rake.

Pork and potato feast

Pork and potato feast

The fridge is choc-a-block full!

Full fridge

Monday 25.12.17 - Christmas Day

Had a relaxing and quiet morning because I didn't need to do any cooking.  I did clean up the kitchen, the bathroom, and the vomit some animal had left on our front patio - gross!!!  The sweetie and I went out and did a little pokegressing, then dropped into Chrissie's to feed the animals.  Came home and did a final bit of house tidying (and found out both families were coming for dessert, not just one).  After lunch (I had leftover pork and potato - yum!) Annie and the kids came over for dessert, and a little while later Scott and the family came over as well.  There was so. much. dessert.  And I'm not even a big dessert person.  My teeth hurt just looking at all the sugar!

Christmas caramel slice

Christmas desserts

By the time everyone left the sweetie and I were completely exhausted from *people*.  I cooked up the section of crackling that had been under the roast and so not crackled, and had that for dinner.  In the evening just Fuller House and Rake.

Tuesday 26.12.17 - Boxing Day

Did a bit of decluttering in the spare room - pulled out a pile of clothes to give/throw away, and started separating some of the stuff in the entrance way of what to Green Shed/Freecycle/eBay.  Cleaned the kitchen and family room window sills and trimmed the thyme which had been going a little crazy and tidied up all the herbs.  Did a bit of jigsawing, and worked on my new Nanoblocks building.  In the evening we went to Kit's as she and Pete were having a barbeque and a bunch of their friends came.  Stayed up probably a little too late, but it was a nice night.

Kit boxing day party

Wednesday 27.12.17

Had a bit of a slow start.  Did a water change in the angel tank.  We'd been planning to meet up with Potty etc to see a movie, but in between deciding which movie/session to see and actually booking it, they sold out.  We met up with them at the mall anyway for lunch (I also needed a few things at the shops so did that first).  Then everyone came back to our place for dessert take 2 (and the kids had a swim as well).  So I had to put away all the stuff that I'd spread out on the lounge room floor back into the spare room, where it's now out of sight out of mind :(  We put on the animated live action The Jungle Book to watch in the afternoon.  I say animated because just about the only thing that was real in the entire movie was the kid.  Still, it wasn't too bad.  I did the edge for the World's Most Difficult Jigsaw while watching.  By the time everyone left the sweetie and I were completely exhausted from *people*.  That and an entire day gone with pretty much nothing to show for it.

Thursday 28.12.17

Alternated between fifteen minutes at a time doing some deep cleaning in the bathroom, and doing the big jigsaw.  In the evening (it was Thursday after all), the sweetie ordered an epic pizza from Dominos.  It was nice enough, but it was sorely lacking in pepperoni, which was pretty disappointing.

Epic pizza

We watched The Space Between Us, which was nice enough, but some of the problems with it annoyed me (spoilers!!) - like being able to have online chats in real time - don't you know there's a three to twenty-four minute delay each way on comms (depending on position in orbits)??  Or what are they going to feed the kid?  I'm sure they didn't send any baby formula on the mission!  And I did call out the father very early on.

Friday 29.12.17

Just a few bits and pieces in the morning, including testing the dead LED fish tank light in the fitting downstairs.  I bought the LED light in April, but it died a week or so ago.  I'm pretty pissed off about that because the light was twice the price of a regular fluoro light, but it only lasted half as long.  I'm also pretty pissed that we don't have a receipt, because the sweetie doesn't tend to keep receipts.  Going to have to make a point of always getting him to give me receipts when we go shopping.  I know exactly when we bought it, and it should be in the sweetie's credit card statements, so going to try our luck getting a refund or replacement.  Moral of the story:  AquaOne is evil, and their products are crappy (always have been).  We bought another LED light in October that's still working, but we don't have a receipt for it either, so can guarantee it's going to die shortly too :(

Went into Belco to get our pool water tested.  Good news is our sunscreen levels are now down to the correct levels after last summer's dramas.  Bad news is there's no buffering (total alkalinity), which means it's all a bit unstable.  And even though our test kits say there's plenty of chlorine, the pool shop testing says there's none.  *sigh*

Went into the city for doctor stuff and lunch.  We went to Hero Sushi which is usually crowded and pretty good, but it was half empty and all the hot food was cold which wasn't much fun. Mostly just sorted pairs of pieces in the little jigsaw in the afternoon.  Had a swim then added a bunch of pool chemicals.

Saturday 30.12.17

Finished The World's Most Difficult jigsaw (it's not) fairly quickly in the morning, then finished the Nanoblocks Empire State Building.

Nanoblocks Empire State Building

Worked on the big jigsaw for a while in the afternoon so could finish it by the end of the year.  Serena came over after seeing Kit, and had a quick swim.  We watched Coyote Ugly in the evening which I first saw on the plane to the USA in 2000.  I didn't realise I'd seen it again back in 2003.  

Sunday 31.12.17 - New Years Eve

Was awake from dentist time to about 5:30am, then only managed about another two hours sleep after that.  So pretty tired and a very slow morning.  Watched Cinderella while finishing off that section of the jigsaw.  It's a pretty lame movie actually.  I don't think I've seen it since I was a kid.  There's a whole heap of just slapstick, and the "love" story is pathetic.  How do you fall in love with someone without them even saying a word??  Sure you can get a bit of a crush, but that's not really enough to live "happily ever after". 

Went out for lunch at the markets and to do our food shopping.  We didn't do much shopping as none of the butchers were open, I was super tired so couldn't even think about vegetables (and Tom's was very depleted on stock anyway).  We did pick up a huge pile of fish for $19/kg though, gave some to Kit, froze some, and will have it as a couple of meals in the next few days. 

This afternoon has just been catching up on this blog, and I've still got to finish my year in review post.  I started off well this year, taking notes for most of the year at the beginning of December.  But then everything just went crazy before Christmas and I kept putting it off.  It's probably half done so need to do that if there's nothing else I do before tonight.  We have no plans yet for New Years.  I'll be lucky to stay awake!

Three Random Things

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Someone strung up trapezes between powerlines for a few days a little while back.  I have no idea why..

Power line trapeze

This was one of the expensive LED lights my brother put in in the front entrance way.  We were just sitting around when we heard this bang coming from the front entrance way.  Went to have a look and found the light shattered on the ground.  Either the fitting broke and it popped out, or it wasn't in properly to begin with.  Sad times.

Exploded light

And found this guy out in the back yard one morning recently

Praying mantis

Praying mantis

Didn't do too many jigsaws this quarter because the behemoth arrived in October.

This was the one that I had going before it arrived, a birthday present from David.

Liffey Falls jigsaw

And this was a Christmas present from him.  This is another in the series "World's Most Difficult Jigsaws" - Fishing Edition.  Soooo NOT the world's most difficult jigsaw :)  With this one you couldn't tell from the printing which was one side and which was the other.  But I paired up all the pieces while watching tv, then put it together very quickly yesterday morning by picking up a pair of pieces and putting them into the right spot.  Then they all started joining up and then I could flip the pair over into the corresponding position on the other side.

World's Most Difficult Jigsaw - Fishing Edition

From mid October to mid November I worked on the first section of the Disney Memorable Moments jigsaw.  I just picked out a bag at random and it happened to be Beauty and the Beast.

Beauty and the Beast Disney Memorable Moments Jigsaw

Beauty and the Beast Disney Memorable Moments Jigsaw

From mid November to today I worked on Cinderella, also picked at random.  This was somewhat more difficult as there wasn't as much differentiation in piece colours and a lot of dark green.

Cinderella Disney Memorable Moments Jigsaw

Cinderella Disney Memorable Moments Jigsaw

This Disney puzzle has certainly been challenging.  Each section of 4032 pieces is quite large, and that's a *lot* of pieces to sort out, and lots of big areas of mostly the same colour.  The only saving grace is that each section is split into two identical sections, meaning each piece has a twin and this makes it a lot easier to work on a hard section if an easy section on the other side has already been done - you know exactly what shaped piece you're looking for.  Interestingly, while the sections are split into two sections that are identical, the sections aren't quite the same as each other.  So the piece shape for Beauty and the Beast and for Cinderella was generally mostly the same, but just not quite.  The little tail pieces sometimes went a different direction.  And sometimes the piece wasn't actually the same shape at all!  This is a section of Cinderella on top of the same section of Beauty and the Beast showing the difference in the cut of the pieces.

Piece comparison

Two down, eight to go!  I'm going to have a little break now though, because it's very distracting and I have a lot of things I want to get done in the next two weeks :)

Spring Flowers

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These are most (but not all) the flowers that bloom around our house every spring ..

Red fresias

Blue periwinkle

Some random blue flower


Golden fresias

Climbing roses


Miniature daisies

Light pink azaleas




Random white flowers





Daises redux



Mystery white flowers

Ceiling Cat

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This little guy was first put up on the ceiling at work in April 2009.  He moved in August 2010 when I moved desks.  Even though I moved desks several times after that, ceiling cat stayed in the same position.  So he'd been there over seven before the property nazis *finally* noticed him and made us take him down.  He had a pretty decent run up there!

Ceiling cat 2009

Ceiling cat 2010

Ceiling cat

Space Warp 5000

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This was one of my birthday presents this year.  It was second hand so sadly missing a couple of the metal balls.  I wanted to get my hands on some marbles to see lots of balls going at once, but I still haven't gotten around to finding any...  I've also got some video of it going.  It's pretty cool, but I haven't gotten the videos online..

Space Warp 5000

Villarceau Circles

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Way back in January, a guy at work sent me a link to some nets for making Villarceau Circles.  So I made a couple of the 16 piece ones.  One day I should try the 24 piece one.

Villarceau Circles

Villarceau Circles

Villarceau Circles

Light Play

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Just a few photos I took playing with light nearly a year ago..

Light play

Light play

Light play


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Last Christmas (actually the one before now), part of Jake's Christmas present was a "microscope" attachment for his phone.  It worked so well I went and got myself one.  It was a lot of fun:

Micro phone attachment

Micro phone attachment

Micro phone attachment

Micro phone attachment

Micro phone attachment

Micro phone attachment

Jingle All The Way

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Wednesday was my ex-section Christmas party, which is actually more like a floor party, which I run every year (for the past five years anyway).  This year I put the price up a little because I could barely get enough of everything last year, and last year I also got quite a few bags of free ice.  So this year for $715 I put on a barbeque for nearly forty people.  A good chunk of that money went on beer but I also got a lot more chili sausages from Bonzer Bangers which were very much appreciated.  So pretty much everything I took got eaten except a couple of bags of lettuce leaves, a loaf or so of bread, some beer and softdrink and quite a bit of water (it wasn't a hot day - in fact in rained a fair bit, but it only rained heavily while we were all eating lunch).  Everyone seemed to have a good time which was good :)


Friday night I made the sweetie watch Love Actually, because, Christmas.

Yesterday was pretty quiet, just doing bit of house work and jigsaw.  In the evening I was going to watch Carols in the Domain, which are always on the last Saturday before Christmas.  Except this year they did them a week ago.  Sad times.  So then tried to find a Christmas movie to watch.  A couple of weeks ago at work we were discussing best Christmas movies.  General consensus was Die Hard, but ChrisT and I both said Love Actually as well.  Connor's contributions were Jingle All the Way, and The Santa Clause (neither of which I'd seen).  So Netflix had Jingle All the Way, so we watched that last night.  OMFG one of the stoopidest movies ever!  Oh dear!

Another Tuesday

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Where were we?

Tuesday we went over to wish Noah a happy birthday.  Really don't see enough of those guys.

Noah's 16th birthday cake

Thursday night we got invited over to EffanC's for dinner.  This time Kate P was there which was quite nice.

Friday was the second big work party which was all very pleasant, although I wasn't game enough to ask for leftovers this time haha.  In the evening David came up and we went out to Ikea so he could get some bookshelves.  Hint: going to Ikea on a Friday night is *much* more civilised than going on the weekend!  Went to Shane and Jessica's new place in Queanbeyan afterwards and had pizza for dinner.

Saturday Serena and Ben and Sarah came over for a Christmas pool party.  Which was good but all morning was doing food prep and all afternoon was in the pool and all evening was pool and watching Life of Brian.  So it was a nice day but did take up half the weekend.

Sunday morning David went home fairly early to get home in time for a thing in Wagga Wagga.  We had a bit of a lazy morning, went out for lunch and to do some food shopping.  Then Chris, Mike and Zac came over for a while.  And suddenly it was dinner time and my entire weekend was gone.

Last two days have been winding down somewhat at work which is kinda nice, except for when you find yourself with nothing much interesting to do and resort to clearing out your inbox...

So another week drifts by.  Had awful insomnia last Monday night - couldn't get to sleep forever then woke up really early.  Dunno if I was too hot or too cold or what.  Rest of the week was pretty uneventful.

Thursday night I made a mint-leaf rocky road which was pretty awesome.

Mint rocky road

Mint rocky road

Friday night we had Scott and EffanC over for lots of cheese and finger food, and gave Scott a bit of a whiskey tasting since he'll be missing out in January.


Saturday morning was fairly productive Getting Things Done.  Mostly just jigsaw in the afternoon.  Later in the afternoon Zac came over to stay.  We watched both Die Hards.  As you do.

Sunday wasn't super productive.  After dinner (the sweetie needed pizza) we found the internet pretty much unusable thanks to a cut in the Perth to Singapore fibre which meant it pretty late before we were going to put on a movie.  So decided not to.  I went down to do the jigsaw then the little brother called me to tell me to watch the Lego Brickumentary on SBS.  So ended up staying up just as late anyway.  Whoops.

Yesterday was the first of the work Christmas parties, which was actually pretty chillaxed and we had a pretty good time.  I even came home with a bunch of leftovers! W00t!  Just watched some The Good Place in the evening.  It's all a bit silly but a bit of fun.


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Ok not literally.  But I did need to put a jumper on today.  And I feel like I may need an extra doona tonight.  Yipe.

Where were we?

Wednesday James was in town for work so we caught up at Bella Vista for dinner.

James at Bella Vista

Bella Vista pork

Bella Vista cheesecake

Bella Vista Profiteroles

Friday night we watched a bit of tv, then I put up our Christmas tree.

Christmas tree 2017

Christmas tree 2017 - marble

Saturday was pretty much all just house stuff and food shopping.  Didn't have time to do any of my jigsaw but did fully dismantle the Life jigsaw back into baggies (we only dismantled it enough to get into bags on assembly day). 

Life jigsaw in baggies

In the evening Anita came over and she talked all night.  Did a super yummy pork belly for dinner and got plenty of leftovers.  (I did burn the top slightly when grilling it at the end).

Pork belly

Oh did I mention I had insomnia *again* on Friday night?  This time I woke up at 3:30am and never got back to sleep.  After getting up a couple of times to eat something because I was hungry, I finally gave up around 6am.  So I had a relatively early night Saturday night because I was exhausted.

Sunday was a bit of house stuff and a fair bit of jigsaw.  I also went cherry picking.  This is the biggest crop of cherries I've ever gotten off our tree.  They don't taste super great, and the dark purple juice will stain your whole mouth purple, but hey, phytochemicals!

Cherry picking

In the evening we went over to EffanC's for cheese for dinner (yumm ;) ) and to watch The Room.  Yes, that one.  Ok I'd never heard of it, but everyone said it was supposed to be like one of the worst films ever made.  They certainly weren't wrong.  It was terrible.  It was so terrible it was *hilarious*.  Fun times :)

Kazza's "Boring Life Of a Geek" aka BLOG

IT geek, originally from Sydney, moved to Canberra in 2007. Married to "the sweetie", aka Stu. Prolific photographer, Lego junkie and tropical fish keeper.

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