Time to celebrate

7 08 2012

So despite the fact that I’ve spent four hours of the working day in meetings and have been assisting on other people’s titles (can I help if I’m efficient & eager to help out? I like keeping busy), I’m feeling very much like this LOLcat:

And why might that be, you ask? Well, perhaps it has something to do with the fact that I wrote my learners licence test this morning and passed with 100% 😀

Now there’s just the matter of buying myself a small car and (re-)learning how to drive… oh, and getting over my overwhelming FEAR of driving, of course. Really big hurdle, that. Just thinking about it causes my palms to sweat a little bit *nervous twitch* I would strongly advise you to reconsider ever getting into a vehicle with me when I’m the driver… unless you don’t place great value on your life/ mental health… or if you’re a thrill seeker who enjoys life-threatening events 😉

In all earnest, though, I’m rather excited at the prospect of being independent. When in the unfortunate situation of being caught in traffic, it’ll present me with a sort of ‘window of opportunity’ to channel any anger/frustration I may have experienced that day while also providing a ‘safe space’ where I can timeously contemplate my murders… There’s an upside to everything, right?! Perspective sure is a refreshing thing…

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Thinking my happy thoughts…

29 06 2012

…and trying not to contemplate murder.

Hint: it hasn’t really been working. And I apologize in advance for the ‘rant’.

There’s something people need to understand: if you mess with my cat, even in the smallest way, you most definitely mess with me. Thus far I’ve been controlling my emotions (and immense desire to retaliate) quite well, but I don’t know how much longer I can stand it.

*breathe* Okay, here’s the story:

Last Friday, I arrived home to find a letter from the complex’s representative stating that (1) it had been brought to their attention that there are animals in the complex; (2) it is in actual fact a pet-free complex, (3) we need to indicate who gave us permission to have our pets, providing written proof of this; (4) pets should be neutered/spayed; et cetera. This immediately put me in a foul mood since we received a notice last year February that only the three apartments listed therein had permission to own cats (thank the Gods for my obsessive-compulsive hoarding instinct that kicked in and made me keep that notice!)

If they’re going to complain about the cats (and there aren’t that many anymore, though now there are two dogs), I want to provide a counter argument complaint about the g*ddamn kiddies that live here:

(1) They run around everywhere; (2) they scream at each other while standing side by side, and it sounds like they are being murdered – I’m not sure whether to be concerned about a true injury or annoyed about the obvious attention-seeking gesture; (3) they have a blatant disregard for cars coming in and out of the gate, instead deciding that that’s a good place to hang around and then getting petulant/sulky when you ask them to move; (4) they don’t seem to have been taught that you leave other people’s pets alone and shouldn’t agitate/chase/pick them up or take them into your apartment – why do you think they run away or, in a different scenario, scratch you for grabbing at them. Sometimes animals cannot help what they do, but you as a parent are raising that child and obviously not doing the best of jobs… Trust me, I could go on and on about the little hooligans.

And I now, again*, have good reason to.

[*I say again because while we were on honeymoon they managed to let the cat out of our apartment and have my older sister in a flat spin looking for Smudgy only to hear one of the apartment doors opening and seeing her running from that direction.]

While I was reading the letter on Friday, Smudgy came to sit on the countertop. I immediately noticed that she wasn’t her usual self: she didn’t meow at me, wasn’t curious about what I was eating, wouldn’t respond when I talked to her and instead just sat there looking frightened/alert while staring at the window. I noticed that her tail was a droopy, and initially assumed she was merely feeling a bit ‘off’… until I told my mum about it on the phone a few minutes later. Her opinion? That Smudgy’s tail might be broken.

Cue mild panic attack and protective anxiety over my beloved kitty!

I could see she was in a great deal of pain, struggling to sit/lie down comfortably and sort of holding her backside in the air. Upon taking her to the vet, it was confirmed that her tail was either broken or dislocated, they he suspected (and I hoped for) the latter. I had to leave her there overnight so that she could go for x-rays the following morning. It turned out that her tail had been dislocated, but that she would be fine as long as there were no internal problems (nerve endings not working properly being the main concern). I had to closely monitor Smudgy’s sandbox habits – not being able to urinate or pass stool could mean complications and a possible operation. Defensive human mommy that I am, I worked from home on Monday just so that I could be close to her.

It seems like Smudgy was pursued by someone/something and, when she jumped into our window to escape, digging her nails in for purchase to drag herself out of harm’s way, aforementioned someone/something yanked on her tail – thus causing the dislocation. I don’t believe another cat could have done it. If it were a car, Smudgy’s tail would have been broken, not dislocated, and she knows to stay away from moving vehicles (she makes herself scarce when one starts up). The only logical thing that springs to mind is that the kiddies were (again) running up and down the stairs, playing in front of the various apartments, and then were chasing her and trying to grab onto her when she jumped inside. The school holidays started last Friday, after all, and I’ve seen them harassing cats before…

Oh, and when we were finally able to let Smudgy outside again on Tuesday, she was only gone for a short while before she leapt with great swiftness through the window again. A few seconds later, I heard the children passing by our window and running down the stairs to their respective homes, deterring me from seeing whose delinquents had been after her.

*rage rage RAGE*

Anyway: Smudgy’s tail is still a bit droopy, but other than that, the vet has confirmed that she’s fine and should make a speedy recovery. I just wish that she didn’t have to go through that pain 😦 I’ve tried not thinking about it too much. Instead, I’ve been thankful that the damage didn’t necessitate surgery and that she’s been giving me more cuddle time and affection.

Perhaps I should take up a personal mantra: Keep calm and don’t kill the kiddies… yet.

Stretching out across my lap before coming in for a cuddle

Completely contented kitty 🙂





Change is a good thing… right?

4 06 2012

So what’s been going on in my life since the last time I blogged, you ask?

I’ve read eight books, done freelance work, gone for a job interview, celebrated Mother’s Day and my father’s birthday, found out I got the job, taken lots of photos of Smudgy, baked goodies for a colleague’s birthday, been to the emergency room with my Significant Other, watched a lot of Mythbusters, started using Herbalife products, gone on leave, joined a gym (or “health club”, if you want to get all fancy about it), obsessively cleaned the kitchen from top to bottom… you know, just your run-of-the-mill kind of stuff. Nothing major.

I am extremely excited about my new job as an Editor at OUPSA! At the moment it’s pretty much the same as my old Project Management position, but I am now permanently employed at such a phenomenal publishing house, thus it only seems logical to take pride in that (while, honestly, feeling a bit flattered as well).  ‘Editor’ sounds far more impressive/ fancy/ sophisticated/ important than Project Manager, right? Now it’s a whole new role for people to misunderstand! [I’ve already been asked, “oh, so you just sit and read books all day?” In schools publishing? Honestly? *sigh*]

The big change that’ll greatly affect my life is our Wellness Routine. I’m doing the shake thing in the morning for breakfast to support my Significant Other, who has to take a shake for breakfast, a shake for lunch, and then cut out carbs for supper (i.e. no bread, potatoes, rice, pasta, pizza, etc.) We had a Herbalife representative come talk to us and do an assessment nearly two weeks ago because my Significant Other generally hasn’t been feeling well. An improved diet to reactivate his metabolism plus partaking in exercise at least two to four times a week will help him to lose some of the weight he gained after he stopped smoking while also making him feel more energized.

And I, ever the good wife, have joined him in his quest for better wellness…

…which is how I ended up doing something I never thought I would: joining a gym. Tonight I get to make a fool of myself when we attend an aqua aerobics class. If I don’t die from embarrassment (in my one-piece and swimming cap), I might end up drowning myself in the pool. Not sure which one would be preferable.

Thus far things have been going great for my Significant Other. He says that, after just over a week, he already feels much better and can definitely get up easier in the morning (great relief for me, who has to struggle for 20 minutes to get Mr Grumpy-Pants out of bed, or at least awake enough to drink his coffee). I suppose I’m doing all right, as well. The only thing that bugs me is that my morning ‘shake’ – actually fat free plain yoghurt with raspberries, honey, mixed seeds and the vanilla shake powder – makes me ravenous. Not just hungry: all-out STARVING. And I am not someone who gets hungry often (if ever)!!

Another thing I’ve been wondering about is whether or not the shake powder is intensifying my headaches… it could be that or the yoghurt, since I’m not big on dairy products… I’m going to see how things go for a month, though I suspect I should just buckle down and go to the neurologist/headache clinic already. Except for the shake, my diet hasn’t really changed, which leads me to think that the increase in headache severity isn’t because of a detox effect on my body (note: I could be wrong).

At least the Wellness Routine gives me something new to be obsessive-compulsive about… except cats… and books… and cleaning… and and and 😉

Have a great week, everyone!





I’m too busy thinking of… other things… to come up with a better title

10 01 2012

My dearest blog readers!

I trust that most of you are back at work already (if you’re not, enjoy it while it lasts…)

I started working again last Thursday (I’ll admit that I checked & responded to e-mails a few days in advance, obsessive-compulsive and all that), and so far, things are… well… crazy. That’s as good a word as any.

I’m not entirely sure if that’s crazy in a good or bad way, sometimes it’s actually both, but it is kuh-raaaaay-zee nonetheless.

As ever, I have many figurative face-palm moments when dealing with people who come across as incompetent, stupid, petulant… the list goes on and on. You try staying all helpful and happy while explaining to someone how to find and apply styles in Word, saying the same things over and over and over again – perhaps there is something to that old saying that patience is a virtue!!

It’s all right, though. I manage to stay very calm during the day, addressing problems as they arise (the ‘joys’ *cough* of Project Management) and working for (more than) my money’s worth. Then I get home after a long day and prepare supper – some ‘quiet time’ while my Significant Other is busy working… a good time for contemplation…

Those 50s housewives had the right idea

Yip, nothing nicer than taking your aggression out on whatever you’re busy whisking/ stirring/ whatever and finding your centre as you think about the things you’d like to say to other people (or, yes, the murder you want to commit – we’re all mad here…) A kitchen is as good a place for thoughts of malice as any, don’t you think? I’ll start brewing a storm in a teacup and see where things go from there…

So if you see me on an extremely crazy-busy day, and I’m calm & ‘relaxed’ & smiling (vacant, borderline-psychotic expression optional), you know what I’ll be thinking of that night!

[That’s probably also why I enjoy baking and have taken many treats to the office – a sort of, “here you go, enjoy, I imagined your face as I was beating those g*ddamn eggs into what could possibly be termed a stupor”, the grin never leaving my face… If I ever take the time to bake you some treats, you’ll have to decide what my intentions were for yourself.]





Anger Management

2 11 2011

What do people mean with ‘anger management’, anyway?

Is it about getting yourself to calm down; finding a sort of inner peace with the world and centring your chi; learning to accept that everyone gets angry but not allowing it to get the better of you?

Screw that.

I don’t want to manage my anger (it’s enough that I’m a Project Manager at work!)

I want to harness that anger, to let it stew and mould it and then tap into it when the time is right and use it as a driving force in my day-to-day life. Instead of getting an irate outburst, I want to use all my frustration and ‘hatred’ to fuel my productiveness. Sometimes the best work is done when you’re angry/ brooding…

Okay, so perhaps the above sounds like managing my anger, since I don’t let it get the better of me and cause me to make a scene. But that doesn’t mean that I’m not angry. I’ll just be channelling the anger into a more dynamic state.

I don’t get angry often. It takes a lot to get me angry/ frustrated to the point that I start ‘scaring’ people – to the point, in fact, that I post a short ranting status on Facebook, using stars to replace letters in offensive words. After all, I’m supposed to be sophisticated and proper, daaahling 😉

But perhaps we’ve all got it wrong. Perhaps ‘anger management’ isn’t about managing your anger – it’s about managing to get angry! Some people never seem to get angry, almost as if they are emotionless, so in that sense, the fact that you as an individual actually have the capacity to get angry makes you more normal, more human (if there is such a thing)… Am I making sense? Who cares; it’s Whensday/ Hump-Day, and I’m so tired that I simply cannot wait for the working week to be over.

One thing about me being incredibly angry: I tend to want to tell people how I feel about them and their behaviour (cue many ‘Oh snap’ moments), though I never do. I just get a sort of sick satisfaction thinking the things that won’t pass my lips. Some people deserve to be brought down to earth and given a proverbial b*tch-slap, yet it’s not my place to do so (no matter how tempting it is).

If I’m still angry/ get angry again by the time I go home tonight, I’ll just have to start obsessively cleaning *laugh* Though I’ll try being faux positive today. It’s the best you’re going to get out of me.

So, how do YOU deal with anger?

[NOTE: the way I deal with anger is not limited to the blog entry above… though this is how I felt after my utterly crappy, infuriatingly vexing, rage-filled Tuesday.]





Sunday lunch for the Parentals

11 10 2011

I love doing special things for other people – especially when it comes to my parentals.

My Significant Other and I (i.e. little old me) decided to invite the parentals for lunch/ dinner at our apartment last weekend. We initially had it set for Sunday evening, but due to ‘scheduling’, we moved it out to Sunday afternoon.

Cue myself worrying about what to serve… I’m obsessive-compulsive like that *laugh*

You have to understand: until a few months ago, we didn’t have (a) decent couches or, more importantly, (b) a dining room table. The parentals recently bought themselves a new car – did I ever tell you how some stupid girl rammed into their old car, wrecked it, and that they didn’t get much out of it? – so the fact that they now had their own transport made it even more ‘necessary’ for us to finally have them over for a meal.

The weather has been a bit strange over here. It’s supposed to be Spring, yet it’s only starting to warm up now – venturing between cold (about 15 degrees Celsius) for a few days, then uncomfortably hot (for me, at least, at 32 degrees Celsius) the next. This weekend was sunny, with the heat making me feel exceptionally headachy, and not really helping to keep the apartment at an acceptable temperature since I was busy cookin’ in the kitchen… But I survived. The fan helped to cool things off a bit… And at the end of the meal I ditched the dress I was wearing in favour of short shorts and a t-shirt 😉

We had a great afternoon, with plenty of feel good moments and happiness all around!

So, here’s what was on the menu – it wasn’t a five-star meal (definitely not the most impressive dishes), but it was very nice:

STARTER

– Pastry ‘bowls’ with sautéed mushrooms (my mum doesn’t eat mushrooms, so I made hers with a cherry tomato, bacon & yellow pepper filling instead)

MAIN COURSE

– Homemade rolls

– Roasted green beans

– Marinated chicken breasts

– Garden salad (incl. baby potatoes + bacon)

DESSERT

– Fruit cocktail

– Jelly (made in silicone cupcake moulds)

– Mini, star-shaped vanilla sponge cakes

– Chocolate mousse with sliced strawberries

[I made/ baked the pastry ‘bowls’, rolls and mini cakes myself!]

Pretty flowers to brighten up the table - my Significant Other bought them for me

The 'spread', excluding dessert

Starter: pastry bowl with sautéed mushrooms

Starter: pastry bowl with cherry tomatoes, bacon + yellow pepper

Homemade rolls... which had more of a scone-like consistency... oh well

A nice salad 🙂 My Significant Other's contribution to preparing the entire meal? De-shelling the hardboiled eggs...

Roasted green beans. Sorry the pic's a bit blurry

Grilled chicken breasts & baby potatoes

Desssert: fruit cocktail, jelly, choc mousse & strawberries. I forgot to add the star cakes to the plates...

This is how the dessert was supposed to look -- I took this pic yesterday

My Significant Other & my mum

My dad! ...and me, of course...





Wanted: some rest and relaxation

12 09 2011

I think I need a vacation… or a long weekend… or something, at least.

After a crappy day at work on Friday, my overall mood became a bit bleak/ despondent. Work surely played a part, but I just had this ‘off’ feeling in general. It felt like nothing could make me feel better (and my Significant Other didn’t even try).

So what did I do to lift my spirits a bit?

I baked. And I cleaned.

How could you have guessed anything else?

Yesterday morning saw me cleaning both the toilets, the bath, the dishes, my clothes… plus I did a lot of sweeping. And last night, I put on an animated Scooby-Doo movie, got my apron and ingredients ready, then baked (1) a chocolate cake, and (2) green & yellow (‘gold’) cupcakes. I might not like or watch rugby, but since I wanted to bake anyway, I thought I could ‘fake it’ and bring in a bit of team support. While the cupcakes were in the oven, I waited for the cake to cool down so that I could decorate it with caramel and sprinkles.

Nyummy chocolate cake (already has a section gone!) and colourful cupcakes

Oh, and did I mention that I went to take some of the treats to our downstairs neighbours (at 8PM) while still wearing my apron… and my slippers?!

Green and 'gold' 🙂

I’m not sure why cleaning and baking helps me to relax. It’s probably just my obsessive compulsive side. Even though I still think about what’s bothering me – or wonder why the hell I’m feeling so icky, anyway – while I’m busy (it’s not like I can really switch off), cleaning or whisking the sh*t out of something seems soothing *laugh* It’s the same with exercising. I’ve been doing 15 minutes on the elliptical trainer for two weeks now, selecting upbeat tunes for background music to ensure that I get worth out of the exercise, and by the end of it I feel sweaty and thirsty and strangely refreshed.

[Like cleaning and whisking, it comes down to pedalling the sh*t out of my body even though I’m tired after a long day.]

In all seriousness, though, I think I should take a Friday or Monday off and have a long weekend to unwind. Go for those tests at the neurologist. Lie in front of the television playing games until my fingers are numb or watching movies/ episodes until my eyes can’t take it anymore. Take a long walk. Edit my poems and short stories, then load them on Lulu and sell them. Anything in a small attempt to get my head straight, not think of work, and love my life (and self) a bit more. I’m so incredibly tired.

Mind if I join you, Smudgy? I could use a kitty nap (i.e. long and uninterrupted)

A little bit of rest and relaxation isn’t too much to ask for, is it…? (Greek Gods, I hope not!)

Luckily I always have my Significant Other for support – he truly is my Everything ❤