Friday, July 22, 2011

Friday morning

I love a friday morning, even in the rain. Alex (the dog) and I head off to the beach for a morning walk. Alex has been part of our family for over a year now. We collected him from the pound when he was just over one in age. His first visit to the beach was an experience. The sand was strange to him and the sea was scary. Obviously he had not been taken to the beach before. Now he runs like mad, chasing the sea gulls in eternal hope he may catch one. So far the sea gulls are winning and Alex is staying fit. We had the beach entirely to ourselves today. The sea was wild and the rain mild. Beach dune erosion was making those great walls that kids adore jumping off.

Friday morning is market morning at home. I go each week to buy our vegies off the local growers. I love knowing where our food comes from and who grew it. The farmers share stories about their farm such as the green houses being destroyed in the recent winds and the trick of actually feeding the vegies nutrients to make them so superb. My home grown vegies never look as good as theirs.

I walk back into the home at 8am all relaxed having seen the sea, chatted to the food providers and breathed fresh air only to be greeted by the school morning crazies. It took no time to start bellowing stop fighting over the footy cards or I'm throwing them in the bin!, have you brushed your teeth, go make your bed, where is your homework folder... Then the bus arrives, it takes the little monkeys away then its just Alex and I. Alex sits by my side as I try to muster up the motivation to sit at this computer and work on the PhD. Luckily the house is such a mess from the morning chaos I give my self an hour to feed the chooks, have brekky, clean the kitchen, pop on the clothes washing, bring in a load, have a tea and check the emails/facebook/blogs.

Alex is now fast asleep, its time to study, no more procrastination excuses (except maybe hang the washing on the line).

On My Mind: A Friday home photo initiative of Down To Earth.  Check it out.

Monday, July 18, 2011

New Dress

Retail therapy has been a theme this holiday. I escaped to the camping shop one afternoon to purchase hiking boots, a new backpack and a polar fleece. My sister in-law enjoyed pointing out my warped view on retail therapy compared to lipsticks, handbags or jewellery. My boots were at the end of their life. Last time my boots died was during field work in Adelaide tramping up and down the burnt loose slopes. I'm missing the field work component of study. Conferences are bringing on a new dimension to shopping requirements.  Its not OK to attend a conference in ugg boots and an old sloppy jo. Actually the annual fire conference has been a great incentive to actually buy some new clothes. The last conference was with a bunch of geographers. Slightly simpler dress requirements. Sandals with socks were fine ; )

Its the last day of school holidays today so I need to find a new procrastination excuse. Actually the scholarship funding runs out in a week, I'm really fed up with the whole PhD so hopefully this will encourage me to get a MOVE ALONG! and finish. A great job came up a few weeks ago. I weighed up the choice between balancing work family versus the cram as much into life as possible approach. I decided for a blend of the two. I did not apply for the job. So many PhD advice books suggest not starting a new  job until the PhD is finished.  So back to the old mantra
Family, self-care, thesis, friends

Monday, July 11, 2011


Last week I was at the Institute of Geography conference. In an experimental mood, I tried a newish sofware package called Prezi. It's a bit like powerpoint but involves zooming. I'm guessing its what Hungry Beast used in their TV show. Prezi has real potential to give the audience sea sickness. In case I stuffed up with the software I also wrote my talk out. A written talk is not my style and resulted in a nervous delivery. I'm going back to the safe one page dot points accompanied with simple, photo rich, reliable powerpoint. I'll  leave the zooming and whirling for motivational speakers.  

You are welcomed to have a look at the prezi I made. Its shows various photos and computer modelling I do as part of the PhD research

Prezi was easier for uploading videos compared to powerpoint. This video below is a model of the eroded slope after the Mount Bold wildfire. We captured this data using terrestrial laser scanners in Feb then again in May. Red is erosion, blue is deposition.

There is a chicken at my back door demanding to be fed. Better get on with the day. Hanging out washing, feeding the chooks, writing a thesis, a bit of stats, home-cooking and lots of mothering.

Friday, July 1, 2011

School holidays

Holidays are here. Last day of school for over two weeks. Hmmm what to do with the lion cubs. So far there is a sports camp for a day, soccer camp for three mornings, local production of Peter Pan, some play dates, Bastille party with cousins. I reckon that's enough for two weeks. The big question is whether to squeeze in uni work, clean out the house cupboards or just play with the kids.  I'm facing some serious sorting of the clothes, time for the hand-me-downs to trickle down the line. I guess you can see one of my time saving methods. Clothes are not exactly folded very well.

We've been using the family fun day Sunday $2.50 all you can travel on public transport lately. Geez its great. Sunny days at Manly, aquariums and lego shows in Sydney, BBQ at Neutral Bay. Life is so much easier now the kids are getting older.

Messy cupboard photo is dedicated to Down to Earth On My Mind   a lovely idea to share our homes and lives. Am I too honest about the mess of boys?
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