Out of the habit

Christmas Dinner

Is Christmas really over?

I’m out of the habit of blogging regularly and finding it hard to get inspiration… so I thought I’d do that old trick of just typing away – stream of consciousness like – and see what happens.

I love hosting Christmas but I also love my house back to normal the day after Christmas after all the empties have been taken out to the recycling and the dishes finally done, extra tables hidden away and the crunchy floor cleaned.

In the days since we’ve been chilling out the back lolling on the couches under the patio we built last year, occasionally jumping in the pool to bring down the core body temp (it is over 40 every day for the next four), lighting the candles in the evening and enjoying the odd glass of wine.

It’s been lovely having my brother and his family to stay too.  Their little one is uber-cute.  Just the cutest 3-year-old ever.  And even though I know I’m going to be approached again and again to play animal matches, or go for a swim, or watch the spelling game stars I don’t care because she is so adorable.

They’ve gone down south for a few days now and the house seems strangely empty.

This year we did a couple of things to encourage “groupness”.

Groupness is a term I picked up from a facilitation course this year.  Basically when you have a new grouping of people it’s important to get them to interact quickly and share.  Sharing is more likely if the peeps feel part of a group.

Groupness can be created in any number of ways…

For example… name tags… not really appropriate for family dinner…

This year we did souvenir holiday teeshirts designed by my artist brother

Me modelling the holiday tee

And a dancing video.

If you’ve seen Where the Hell is Matt? you will know the inspiration.

I asked my invited guests and extended family that weren’t coming to the evening to send in snippets of video of themselves so that I could mash them into a video to play on the night.

That way peeps who couldn’t come would still be part of the group… and those who were there would feel part of the group – having gone through the shared experience (pain and humiliation?) of dancing in public.

I guess I’m an extrovert because I loved doing the dancing videos, others felt it wasn’t such a cool thing, but everyone sent something in.

Unfortunately I ran out of time but I delegated (another management technique) to my niece (not the 3-year old) and the video was lovely.

Even the too-cool-for-school teens admitted it was fun in the end and I think – should I ask them to participate in one of my crazy groupness exercises next time – they might find it easier to say yes, lets!

UPDATE: Here is the link to the video. 🙂

OMG.  I’m at the end of a post and I had something to say after all.

Maybe the habit is stronger than I thought…



So the conference is over and a better organised conference I don’t think I’ve been to.

This btw is really a holding post.

Written from my phone.

Today my plan is to catch a ferry to greenwich to stay with a friend.

Then tomorrow catching up with a few work friends before heading back to perth in time for the first night of the women’s teams.

Bridge of course.

And it’s raining in sydney town!

Remember rain perthites?

I love not being hot so much I am not even going to take a taxi to circular quay.

I certainly won’t look hot after that.

More on the bloggers conference when I get to a computer but for now love to my new bloggy friends.

You are amazing.


New Year’s Eve toga special

So first thing Friday morning I get a text from my friend who has just read her emails more carefully and has realised where we’re going that night for New Year’s Eve…

Okay, I’ve calmed down a bit now… Just looked at The Court website to see we are attending (breathe breathe) a gay and lesbian toga frat party extravaganza??!! Is that correct? Or did I wake up this morning and fall out of bed into a parallel universe where I’m still hot enough to wear a toga among teenagers without looking like a sad old bag lady who just stumbled in off the street!?! Please explain.

We laughed.

Yes that’s where we went and after a Vodka and Red Bull my friend danced her arse off!

On the dancefloor!
I was wearing a dress which had a suggestion of toga about it.
The four old people at the party
This girl and her (boy) friend really got into it. They were covered with signatures.

The boys were beautiful and the girls were less beautiful.

It was a perfect warm evening and the streets of Northbridge relatively quiet. 

Of course that might be because the nightclub is right next door to the police station.

And we weren’t the oldest there.

Happy New Year!

The best present

I got some lovely presents this year but I must confess this is my favourite.

A vintage working telephone.

The markings underneath point to it being a PMG (Post Master General) 400 series.

And my (limited) internet research suggests that it was probably released in 1958.

The 58 is stamped on the back and it is consistant with the markings on a 1957 version from the Powerhouse Museum.

The only fly in the ointment is that while it works when we plug it in, if we do we sacrifice 2009 connectivity.

That’s right.

No internet.

So until I work it out, my lovely flashback to 1958 is but an ornament.

What do I love about it?

The handset is heavy and amplifies your voice when you speak into it.

The dial makes a satisfying click click click as it swings around.

I love the directions for dialing – perhaps necessary in this day and age…

And it works even when there is a power outage (take that modern equivalents!).

Oh, and when you put the handset back in place it makes a little ‘ding’ sound.

So you rock little brother!

Thank you.

And merry Christmas to you all!