Back at school
October 16, 2008, 11:15 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

I made a decision to enjoy this term, and, so far, so good.

I met my class for the first time yesterday. It seems that the teacher they had was a little laissez faire. Translation: they came in climbing the walls. Eating in class, moving desks around, doing their own thing. By the end of the day, I think they were wishing they had their old teacher back. It’ll probably take a week to whip (not literally; we don’t allow whipping in public schools) them into shape, but I know that I’ll be happier, they’ll be happier and we’ll all learn a lot more.

One sweet thing happened. I have in my class one of my old students from the beginners’ class. She was delighted to see me, and said, “Now we can live again!”

“What?”, I said.

“We were dead before, now we can live again!”

I didn’t actually realise that I am the Messiah, but you learn something new every day. Let me know if you need any miracles. Raising from the dead appears to be my speciality.


Look what’s coming!
October 10, 2008, 10:05 am
Filed under: seasons

Saturday     Fine.                                  Min 9      Max 21
Sunday       Morning shower or two.                 Min 11     Max 20
Monday       Fine.                                  Min 7      Max 22
Tuesday      Fine.                                  Min 9      Max 27
Wednesday    Fine.                                  Min 12     Max 31
Thursday     Fine.                                  Min 13     Max 27

Hair cut!
October 9, 2008, 11:00 am
Filed under: me

I’ve had long (ish) hair for about ten years. I got sick of it. Yesterday, I had it all cut off! Not short-short, but in a kind of a layered bob. I can feel the air on my neck – weird! I’ll try to post a pic very soon, because I don’t think it will last long. My husband is a long hair man, and he is not too sure about this look!

October 9, 2008, 10:58 am
Filed under: exercise and health

I am aching in every muscle.

Yesterday I attended a Pi1ates class for the first time. I am trying to build up to running again (I got so fit before we married!) and thought that the stretching and core muscle work would help build up strength in my abdomen and lower back, which gets sore when I run.

It is interesting, because we spent a lot of time with either legs or butts in the air, doing these little rotations, and I only got a bit warm. There were a couple of moments where I was quivering like a jelly, supporting myself doing a push-up, for example, but on the whole it was just a lot of stretching and controlled breathing. As we left, I could feel the stretch in every muscle. It hurt even to drive! This morning, every muscle aches in every part of my body.

I am going to keep on going, if only to get to the level of every other woman in the class, all of whom were a good fifteen years older than me, and could maintain a postion twice as long. Ouch.

Holding on
October 7, 2008, 11:24 am
Filed under: God thoughts, school

Winter is gasping its last, dying breath and I find myself holding onto its pleasant chill, knowing the the searing, invasive days of summer are looming close. The sun is out today, but there have been several days of grey clouds, gusts of wind and rain about which have invited me to curl up deliciously inside, not feeling guilty about snuggly up with a movie in the afternoon, or sipping hot drinks while the storm rages outside. I love walking in the cold, too, with the wind nipping my cheeks, and invigorating my mind. I am holding onto these days.

I wonder, though, if that is necessarily a good thing? Should we hold onto that which is slipping through our fingers, looking back nostalgically to the sweet days of the past? Do I loathe the coming season, or do I embrace it, living it fully and with gusto, rather than wishing for the seemingly more pleasant past? Life seems to move so quickly, with sweet blossom one day and branches covered in leaves the next. I know these days of rich, verdant scents and bright floral colours spread exultantly everywhere will soon give way to long days of shimmering heat where everything, including me, seems to wilt. Should I look ahead beyond this delightful spring, past summer, to the pleasant days of autumn, and miss living fully in the current season? Am I seizing the day, pausing to stop and imbibe the pleasant moments each day brings?

A change of season always brings a kind of longing in me, a wistfulness for I know not what. I stop to examine the days and spend too much time longing for what I don’t yet have, and not enough time being thankful for the current joys. In five days, I’ll be back at school and I won’t have time to loll about, pleasing myself, but that is ok. I intend to grasp hold of this next season with both hands, giving myself fully while I can to the students. I will embrace them and enjoy those moments for what they are, not longing to be elsewhere. I’ll trust Him to make all things beautiful in His time, not mine. I’ll embrace His time, knowing that it is best.

Feasting on a Friday
October 3, 2008, 1:23 pm
Filed under: food, marriage

While I spend a lot of time pleasing myself, my husband does not. He is working very, very hard at the moment, and comes home spent each evening. I know that for him the days can seem like one blur of waking, getting ready, going to work, coming home, eating dinner, collapsing on the couch for an hour then crashing into bed. In an attempt to break the monotony of the working week, I came up with a cool idea to make each Friday night ‘Friday Feast’ time. We will cook together, sampling and trying new and interesting recipes. Dinner will be eaten sitting on the sofas, chatting, or in front of a movie. Some kind of nice wine will be consumed as well. I think in a marriage one has to come up with fun little traditions such as date-night or special couple time. As we don’t have children, we can do our Friday night thing at home, and it is better than going out at this stage.

As things normally go, the moment I planned this, we had two church events on consecutive Fridays. We have had two subsequently, though, and it has been a lot of fun. We made the foray into deep-fried food (I have never deep-fried anything in my LIFE!) with tempura prawns and other vegetables the first night. I set out some interesting little dipping sauces and we enjoyed this immensely.

Last Friday I set out a platter with some home-made dips, veggies and crackers, along with a couple of nice cheeses. I also tried out fried onion strings (a la The Pioneer Women – too lazy to link!) which were great. I’m gonna have to watch this frying business, though! We had a delicious N.Z. Sauvignon Blanc with it all, and watched a movie together.

We have a hair appointment this afternoon, and she usually doesn’t finish until 6.30 or so, so tonight I am taking some dahl out of the freezer, grilling some roti bread and I am also planning to make this little chickpea flour patties if I have time. I bought some chickpea flour from the healthfood shop, and will mix it with some garam masala (a spice mix) extra cummin (love this spice!), buttermilk and some grated carrots and chopped green beans. I’ll fry these (again with the frying!) in little patties, and serve with some tomato kausandi. I’ll let you know how it goes!

Geeking on a Saturday night
September 27, 2008, 9:27 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I’m sure all the exciting people are out and about doing exciting things on this Spring-Saturday evening, but we are at home, both with laptops poised on our laps and the tv going in the background. My husband set up wireless internet today, and it is nice being in here playing online together. We’re kind of watching Cars, and waiting for The Bill tonight (a leftover love from my time in London). Each of us has a bowl of vanilla rice pudding (this great Donna Hay recipe – about a thousand calories a bite, but oh-so-good).

You know what?

We love this kind of thing. Chilling, enjoying each other, some nice food and the quiet and peace of home. This is one of our favourite places to be. There is a delightful sense of peace, too, in the fact that this is a long weekend, and we have three days off together. Nice.

This morning we drove up into the hills with my mother, and hiked along the Bibu1m@n Track for three or four hours, so I’m sure the effects of the pudding have been negated. The flowers were blooming like crazy, as they are wont to do in the springtime, and the air was fresh and clean. I feel pleasantly weary. We capped off the day with a BBQ by the river, with mum and my nephews in tow.

It occurs to me that these sweet, uncomplicated days are the best. Taking time to enjoy the beauty of the natural world, some good, hard exercise, a lot of sunshine, good food and quiet activities to end the evening. Finding joy in simplicity makes happiness less complicated.

Another bowl of that that pudding won’t go astray, either.