by Cellobella on Thursday, August 15, 2013

I fear I have become boring.

Really boring.

Apart from Groover who is not backward in coming forward with jokes about how long it’s taken me to bring up the ‘R’ word, most people humour me and to them especially I apologise.

It’s just that… I think I might be in love… with rowing.

That’s a bit sad no?

Well of course it’s not just rowing.

I love being part of a sporting club, wearing the ugly uniform, hanging out with people who don’t think I’m weird for getting up at 5am in the middle of winter to get wet on the river.

I love the kit… the cute light for the bow, the special waterproof socks (hopefully to arrive any day now), the thermals, the custom made zootie I wear at training, the polo fleece headband, the videos on good technique…

I like the feeling of getting fit – of not needed to reach for a puffer at the end of a race.  Of feeling the oar grip the full length of the stroke (doesn’t happen that often).

I love the coaching tips – really the first time I’ve been coached since I did ballet in my pre-teen days.

Sure.  It might wane.

With my record…. will wane.*

The honeymoon will soon be over.

Until then, I apologise.

I will try not to bore you with rowing tales.

And family – thank you for your patience.

In the meantime – funzies with imovie trailers:

And this is one of my races… turn your volume down!

*Exhibit A

Rice salad and not drinking

by Cellobella on Sunday, July 28, 2013 · 2 comments

Rice Salad

First of all, can I just say that by following this recipe you will enjoy the best rice salad you’ve ever tasted.


Justine’s Rice Salad

  • 1 cup brown rice (that’s one cup uncooked but obviously you cook it, then let cool)
  • 6 spring onions
  • 1 capsicum, chopped
  • 1/2 cup of cashews (I am generous with my half a cup)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup of currents (I usually go the half cup)
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1 cup celery
  • big bunch of flat leaf parsley


  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (or less)
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic crushed

We had this salad with The Best Beef Casserole last night and they work well as a combination.

Both taste great as leftovers.

So what news?

Well the boy is in Seattle to go to a gaming championship.

The girl is back in school, play a success, studying hard.

Groover is doing manly things like working.

And I am still obsessed by rowing – getting on the water as much as I can.

I fear I have become very dull indeed.

And the not drinking is probably not helping.

I’m doing Dry July this month.

I thought it would be harder.  There were a few moments when I thought I really wanted a glass of cold sav blanc, but water in my wine glass seemed to stave that off.

And you never know, a month off alcohol could be just what I need to cut back long term.

I have been waking up much earlier and much easier.

Although that could also be my rowing obsession.

You can take it with you

by Cellobella on Sunday, June 16, 2013 · 3 comments

So I’m driving back from rowing this morning behind a bus which has an ad for Just Cremations

Just cremations.

“No fuss” is the tag line and I thought THAT might be the best ever funeral ad I’ve ever seen.

I can imagine it appealing to a lot of people… especially tight-arses like me who can’t bear the thought of paying a stupid amount for a party I’m not going to see.

Or a coffin that’s going to be worn once and then destroyed – or maybe buried until it rots.

To me that is a ridiculous WASTE OF MONEY.

Family – please spend the money on something else.  Booze for the wake.  A holiday somewhere warm.  A new fridge.  Whatever, don’t spend money on a coffin.

(actually if you are buying a new fridge – just use the box)

Because coffins are STUPIDLY EXPENSIVE.

The cheapest coffin at Just Cremations is a Peel Basic at $1190 – does that include GST?

That will do for me – unless you can get something cheaper.

The most expensive over $11 grand.  That’s one way to take your money with you.

*boggling eyes*

Here’s a tip.  A cheap coffin does NOT mean you didn’t love the person you are putting in it.

Measure your love in other ways – not a frigging wooden (or chipboard) box.

(a small aqua box with a white ribbon – while I’m still alive – is a nice way for instance)

In my research for this post today I did come across another kind of funeral which sounds interesting – a natural burial.

Not that I want to be buried mind you, that film The Vanishing cured me of that.

I like the idea of a biodegradable burial though I wonder what they do if you have fake boobs (not that I have) – do you remove them?

Otherwise or that will be left is a bunch of bones and two silicone fillets…

I digress.

The point is – just get me the cheapest funeral on the menu.


In other news… and in an effort to stave off the impending funeral… my exercise this week has been “fair”.

  • Sunday – social row
  • Monday – ergs with the lovely Evelyn
  • Tuesday – training
  • Wednesday – day off
  • Thursday – more ergs with Evelyn
  • Friday – training
  • Saturday – social row

Next week I head to Karratha and Broome.  I hope they have a rowing machine at the Karratha International!

Okay now this is getting weird

by Cellobella on Thursday, May 2, 2013 · 1 comment

Last night (or rather early this morning) I dreamed my thumb was cut off.

Then there was a lot of faffing about to get to a hospital eventually ending up in Charlie Gardiners with a very reluctant plastic surgeon who tried to be unavailable to sew my thumb back on.

Meantime I’d stuck my thumb onto the stump and it had kind of stuck.

When we got to the hospital the surgeon went into this room with an enormous screen and looked up a diagram of the human body – presumably to make a plan on reattaching veins etc.

Then I woke up.

Everything I have read today about the meaning of thumbs in dreams freaks. me. out. eg: scroll down to thumbs

Why can’t I dream of something nice?

Like puppies.

Stress dreams

by Cellobella on Monday, April 29, 2013 · 3 comments

Do you ever have stress dreams?

Apparently a common one is not being able to find your locker/classroom at school which relates to feeling uncertain about your career… apparently.

I’ve worked in radio for a long time and usually my stress dream goes like this…

I get into the studio and I have to present a program and I have nothing to say.

No interview to go to.

There are no CDs in the system.

Our electronic playout system doesn’t work.

I just have to talk and I have nothing.

Well I had a new stress dream Saturday night. The night before our race.

I dreamed I couldn’t find my white singlet.

All I could find was a frilly white shirt. Clearly not very sporty.

Frilly white top

It was very stressful in the dream but in the cold light of day… a little tragic.

But I wonder what it means…

Making room for something new

by Cellobella on Wednesday, January 2, 2013 · 1 comment

Taken on the iPhone

2012 wasn’t too bad for me. I had some great opportunities at work and in my personal life discovered rowing – which I love.

But I don’t want to repeat it.

Sure it would be lovely to watch season 3 of Downton Abbey again as if for the first time but hey – maybe there’ll be season 4.

But how do you change your life when you’re so busy with work and family and the hobbies you do have and the obligations you make?

See the thing is I’m not really sure how I want my life to change.

But I know I have to make space in my life for it to happen.

Last year I played less bridge and took up rowing – no regrets there although my bridge is slipping a bit.

I think my family life is pretty much in balance.

And work is going well – bloody hell – 25th anniversary coming up in October!

So really – I don’t want to change much.

Things I have on my activity wish list for 2013 include:

  • Learning how to screenprint
  • Training for masters rowing – maybe going to Turin (maybe not)
  • Getting a team together for the Lord Mayor’s Cup
  • Maybe some ukulele lessons
  • Get my medal for 25 years at the ABC – corny I know but now I’m so close!
  • Do the 3 second video thing everyday!
  • Hang out more on our decking with family and friends.
  • Host more parties (as we only held one this year… not a stretch target)
  • Go down south more often.
  • Visit Ennuin

Gawd – what will I drop to fit all that in?

The drop list:

  • solitaire on my ipad  (better delete now while I’m feeling strong)
  • 50% less TV
  • 30% less bridge
  • less live storytelling?  Not that I did much this year…

Not a very long list…

The other thing you can do is say no to stuff.

I feel I can say no if I’ve tried/done something 3 times.

So this is my last year of doing the bridge club posters for a while.  Just saying.

What will you change in 2013?

The secret signs of cleaners

by Cellobella on Thursday, May 17, 2012

So I am in Brisbane at the moment.

My last night in fact and tonight, when I got back to my room and headed straight for the bathroom I sighed with contentment when I noticed the message from the cleaner:

The sign of attention to detail

Whenever I see the little folded triangles it’s like the cleaner has left a little sign for me.

See, they are saying, I have cleaned your room.

And I, as the temporary occupant think, yes. My room is clean.

Indeed, the dirty dishes I left soaking on the sink have been cleaned thoroughly and put away.

Perhaps I would feel that my room was clean even if the only thing touched was the toilet paper… it’s possible.

I have myself utilised the secret sign of cleaners to indicate a clean house in my own home.

It made me feel better although I am not sure the other occupants of my domicile noticed.


I don’t think the secret sign necessarily means attention to detail.


That is a pillow

Just sayin’

A jack of all trades, master of none

by Cellobella on Wednesday, November 2, 2011 · 1 comment

Me getting into the whole archeology thing

So you know I’ve recently bought a ukulele – “oh I so admire how you throw yourself at things” a friend observed.


Well I do try things… but do I stick to them… not so much.

(well apart from the organisation I work for… 22 years!)

Here’s the list of short courses/hobbies that I can remember starting in the last say 17 years:

  • Ukulele - started this week – have sore fingertips through practice!
  • Cello – started when son was 3.  No formal lessons. I can’t play it
  • Italian – did lessons back in 1989, then CDs in 2005.  Can’t speak Italian except for swear words.
  • French – went to Alliance Francais once or twice.  Still crap at French.
  • Horseriding – did this for about 6 months at Claremont Showgrounds.  Still have jodphurs.  Lost my helmet.
  • Teddy bear making – have made two teddy bears.
  • Sewing - have a big pile of fabric that I will one day make into something… maybe.
  • Knitting – made jumpers and hats for kids when they were tiny. 
  • Belly dancing – have still got the jangly outfits.
  • Ballet – needed to work on my pelvic floor post children for this to continue.
  • Ballroom dancing – Mr Cha Cha’s ballroom at Perth Festival back in 2005.
  • Shorthand – thought it would be useful – managed 2 weeks of course
  • Religious studies (through Open University) – thought it would be interesting – didn’t hand any assignments in
  • Archeology- went on a dig - thought about doing a post grad.
  • Theatresports – great fun last year with Spontaneous Insanity
  • Zumba – oh yeah I went a few times – I was going every week.  And then they closed the hall.
  • Storytelling - started in January with Barefaced  - love it.
  • Guitar – I was six months pregnant – it was hard to reach
  • Script writing – a short course I did in Bunbury a long time ago
  • Painting with pastels – did this a few summers ago with UWA summer school
  • Bridge.  Started in 1992 and still going (with a 10 year hiatus for kids) – good to see I stick at something.

Hmmm maybe I’ve just worked out why I don’t stick at going to the gym and dieting…

This wasn’t supposed to be a meme but what about you?

What’s your list of things you’ve tried/are trying?

Why I’m a good daughter

by Cellobella on Wednesday, March 16, 2011

This is what happens if the door is left ever so slightly open

Oh I know darlings!

Enough said right?

I mean I don’t even defrost my OWN fridge so what the hell am I doing, the floors strewn with towels, trying to dislodge the wedged in drawers of my parents’ fridge?

Good daughter things.

That’s what I’m doing.

Luckily it is quite warm so the fridge is defrosting quickly, I am after all only here in Dunsborough one night before heading back to Perth to catch my plane to Sydney on Friday - exciting club!

It’s very quiet.

Weird being here on my own.

I bought Indian takeaway (too much) and a few beers, although I’ve only drunk one (they were on special).

(Sure I hear you say… well they were $18 for 6, which is better than $6.50 for one – so what’s a girl to do)

And life feels pretty mellow.

A beer and a view of Geographe Bay

Nudie Rudie

by Cellobella on Friday, January 21, 2011

Generic beach shot because taking out a camera at the nude beach is probably not the done thing

I am doing a storytelling course (Barefaced Stories) at The Blue Room Theatre with Margot Leitman (check out one of her stories on The Moth).

Eight sessions and at the end we will have a polished story.

Each session we have homework.

The first assignment – “do something outside your comfort zone”.

This required some deep thought.

Then I remembered the time Groover and I  - in our 20s when we had hot (ish) bods – stripped off and drove naked down West Coast Highway – at least until the adreniline wore off and we thought about all the what ifs… what if we broke down? What if we get pulled over by a cop? And we quickly scuttled back home.

So I thought okay, let’s up the ante and go for a swim at Perth’s favourite nude beach – luckily not far away – Swanborne – public nudity.

First question… what does one wear to Swanborne because clearly you can’t rock up nude – does one wear bathers?

I decided to wear my bikini, as it seemed appropriate, and with towel and sunblock in hand casually strolled down the beach.

OMG!  There are naked people there!!

First thing I saw from a distance was the silhouette of a man and let me tell you he was hung.

Second question… where do I sit?

I don’t want to sit too close to anyone else but I do want to get the Swanborne experience so I don’t want to sit completely on my own and I don’t want to sit up by the dunes as I figure the creepy guys hang out there perving, so I plonk my stuff down in the middle and undress.

Well that feels a bit weird and as I slide my bikini bottoms off I’m thinking some trimming might have been in order but it’s too late now.

Lying on the beach I’m conscious of what everyone is doing.

People are moving between groups chatting, there’s a very tanned girl to my right doing a job interview on her iPhone, and there are people – clothed people – walking by all the time.

But I can’t lie on the beach forever – for one thing I can’t stay out in the sun too long and for another – well a swim is part of the challenge.

So choosing my moment I stand up and walk into the surf.

The water is cool, the surf a bit dumpy but this is no time to get into the water gingerly.

Before long I am enjoying my swim and getting chatted up by a tanned fellow in his mid forties who turns out to be the pilot of our flight home last Sunday – I kid you not.

Anyway I go back to my towel and air dry.

I notice that I’m possibly one of the younger women on the beach – hard to tell as all the women have VERY dark tans – and also, I’m not that uncomfortable.

And I notice the men – it’s hard not to.

One guy I swear has more metalwork “down there” than the Bunnings tool section.

Another guy has tats all over his body – except “down there” and frankly who can blame him.

There are men of all sizes – and that’s when I realise that actually there are way more men than women.

Why did that surprise me?

I get dressed and get up to go and as I’m leaving the pilot starts chatting to me.

Now that feels a bit weird… chatting to a completely naked man while fully dressed on the beach.

Anyway we chat for a bit and I’m thinking well this will make a great addition to my story when…

Groover walks by!

OMG and I’m chatting to a naked man!

Anyway it takes me a while to catch up with the groovy one because by the time I noticed him he was about 20 metres away and the wind is whipping away my voice and hey, I’m not that fit so running in sand isn’t very fast but eventually I catch up with him and we walk back  and I tell him about my experience and he remembers the pilot’s name and I suggest that he might like to go in for a quick dip.

He (surprisingly) agrees and we have a little swim and then start to get dressed.

Do you want to meet the pilot I ask?

The pilot is now under his umbrella – still nuded up of course – but Groover says no.

I guess meeting a naked man on the beach is outside his comfort zone.

So this is the story I tell at my storytelling class and it goes down quite well.

The next day I decide to go back to the beach – because it was fun, there was quite a nice community feel to it and I was still on a high from the day before but it’s different.

For one thing it is much windier so there are fewer people and there are only two other women.

That friendly community atmosphere has blown away with the wind and what is left feels somewhat seedy.

The pilot is there and comes over to chat but it all feels a bit wrong.

I go home after about 20 minutes and shower.

If I go back – I won’t go alone.

Besides – I had my next assignment to do – ” to stray from my routine”.

Ah but that is another story.