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I’ve got to go on a work trip tomorrow, to do some training.  I don’t mind training; even though it’s tiring, it’s rewarding.  The fact I train on stuff that is close to my heart (equal opportunity legislation and bullying) is a bonus.  I really enjoy watching people’s minds almost visibly broadening.  Particularly in the regions, where men are men and women are babymakers.  I am going regional tomorrow, so I get to see the looks on their faces through my training session.  It’s always interesting, to say the least 😉

However, I’m not travelling alone.  Nor am I travelling with my darling husband.  No, I’m travelling with a work colleague, a guy I’ll call Sleazoid, primarily because he is.  A sleaze, that is.  He’s about ten years older than me, in his mid-forties, and he thinks he’s all that.  And look, he probably was cute about fifteen years ago, but now he’s just a broken down middle-aged man who has the archaic view that all women are, is a life support system for a vagina.  He accordingly propositions any female who is between 16 and 65 who is vaguely attractive.

We were having a discussion last week and he actually tried to convince me that he is primarily attracted by women’s ‘characters’.  Yeah, if their ‘characters’ are at least a size D.  It bugs me even more that he thinks he can palm this crap off on to me, while looking at my boobs, and thinking I’m not going to notice.  I can’t decide if he’s blind or stupid.  Or both, maybe.

Anyhow, I’m going to try to avoid him as much as possible, and enjoy the good parts of my trip.  Wish me luck.  And him, he might need it if he wants to make it back alive.


I’m so proud of C and me.  We weeded all Sunday afternoon, then last night for an hour, then tonight for an hour.  Not bad for two slobs who normally come home and sleep and play on the computer respectively.  And the garden’s looking SO much better – only one garden bed is left out the front to finish, and a larger one out the back, and we’re done.

This is handy, as we’ll have to have our properties valued shortly.  The buyer of our apartment was approved for finance on Monday, so the sale will now be happening no matter what.  This means, in turn, that our purchase of another apartment will be going ahead (part of our offer was conditional that we sold our property).  So for the bank to work out our financial position, our properties will all need to be valued.  We’ve learned from experience that a neat garden, even if it’s not exactly the Versailles, makes a big difference to the price of a property.  (And trust me, ours isn’t.  We’re not devoted gardeners, by any means.  It pretty much stops at weed-pulling.)

It’s been a busy week at work already.  I had to give videotaped evidence today on a disciplinary matter.  I’d been involved with it very early on, then realised how serious it was, and passed it to the correct section to handle.  As a result, I was an interviewee rather than an interviewer.  It was bizarre, especially when the interviewer contacted me and requested a video of some of what I had to say as well.  I’d love to think this guy could be done on criminal charges but it’s not very likely.  I was so glad when it was over, I hate being recorded, the voice recording during the initial interview was bad enough.  It doesn’t help that I’m so far from photogenic that it’s not funny.  The camera actively hates me.  This only made me more nervous.  Still, it’s over now.  Hopefully I’ll sleep better tonight (I woke up last night, probably from stressing about the videotaping).

It’s been a good day.  Despite my ongoing anxiety issues, I’ve managed to get a few things done, which has been great.  We had to inspect one of our properties this morning, which was okay.  Not pristine, but okay.  Definitely a hell of a lot better than it was two weeks ago, so that’s the main thing I guess.  After that, we did the food shopping, together.  Without arguments/getting stressed.  This sounds minor, but trust me it’s not.  Neither of us like crowds, or food shopping for that matter.  But we seem to be getting better at it, finally.

I had a great nap (about three hours) and then got up and cooked roast beef and vegies for dinner, which was really good.  C was very impressed.  He loves it when I cook.  Unfortunately that’s about once or twice a week.  I work on the premise that the scarcity of my cooking increases its perceived value.  C has done nothing so far to disprove this 😉

In other news, we put an offer in on a property this week, which was accepted.  We met with our adorable finance broker to look at the finances, and he confirmed that finance won’t be a problem.  Yay!  All we have to do now is hope our sale goes through okay.  Finance is supposed to be approved by Monday, and as of Friday afternoon it hadn’t been, so we may have to do an extension of contract.  Not really sure how to do that, but hopefully I’ll work it out, otherwise the contract is null and void.

If tomorrow’s fine, we may get out in the garden.  We’ve done a bit of work in it over the last month or so, and now there’s only a couple of garden beds that need weeding.  The only thing is, it’s getting COLD out there.  This is a major disincentive to doing outside work, I can tell you.  Still, if good intentions count for anything, we’ve already earned some brownie points 😉

Well, today has been really all over the place.  It started badly, with high anxiety, and two confronting discussions with my boss and boss’s boss respectively.  I actually took 20mg of buspirone (Buspar), 10mg before 9am and another 10mg at around 2pm, just to get through the day.  While it’s been prescribed for me, my psychiatrist has said it’s better to only take it when I need to, and to try other stuff first.  Well, today I needed it.  (Just to give you some idea, I usually go weeks between taking single 10mg tablets.)

Anyhow, I was so relieved to leave work.  I’d felt like a cat on a hot tin roof all day, and couldn’t wait to get out of there.  I could feel myself relaxing on the way home, and then I had a shower and a sleep and felt indescribably better.  We even did the dance of the seven veils 😉  And now I’m sitting here, feeling like a different person.

I wish I could manage my stress/anxiety levels better.  And my depression, of course.  But they are very different in how they manifest.  The depression is much more of an ongoing thing – I’m generally more tired and have less energy and resilience than I used to.  The anxiety, on the other hand, is an acutely felt response, and very difficult to live with, as it spikes occasionally to ridiculous levels, like it did today.  I guess because of its nature, I just don’t have the same chance to learn to live with it, the way I have with depression.

The good news, of course, is that the day ended well.  I thank the powers that be that it did.  Otherwise, this was going to be an extremely long week.

It’s been a full-on week.  Work has been ridiculous, and there’s been so much happening with the apartment we’re selling, and the two (yes, two) we’re looking at buying – just incredibly busy.  I’ve been sleeping badly as a result.  One thing about my mental health – it affects my sleep.  If there’s lots going on, it disrupts my sleep.  I end up waking up and thinking about stuff for hours on end in the middle of the night.  This has been happening all week, so it’s been a tiring few days, as well as busy.

Still, things are going well.  We have new tenants moving into one of our units tomorrow, and everything is under control there.  I even managed to slap a fresh coat of paint over all the walls.  It makes such a difference, it looks so fresh and clean.  One of these days we might even try this in our own home. <rolls eyes at self>

I had a very long nap today, nearly four hours, but have woken up and feel a bit better.  I’ve even baked my famous carrot cake recipe.  I made it with gluten-free flour, so we can give it to my father in law, who has coeliac.  I just did a straight swap of the normal self-raising flour with gluten-free SR flour, which I haven’t tried before, so I’m hoping it works out okay.  I guess we’ll find out tomorrow when we try it.  My FIL is miserable since he was diagnosed with coeliac, and it makes his day whenever I cook something he can eat.

I even have plans to make buttermilk pancakes for dinner tonight.  Yes, that’s right – dinner.  I won’t have the time tomorrow morning to make them and cook them, so tonight it is.  And as I explained to C, I have to use up the buttermilk, it would be a terrible waste just to throw it out 😉

Apart from issues with a couple of tenants, we’ve also had one of our places on the market.  Basically, we’re looking to buy bigger properties, they have better capital growth and also better rental return, and so we’ve made the decision to divest ourselves of one of our one-bedroom apartments.  Well, I got up this morning to an email asking that I ‘contact them ASAP’ re: the apartment and, to cut a longish story short – we’ve got a fully signed and sealed contract for it!

While I’ve bought a few properties now (six, at last count, over the years) I’ve never sold one before by myself.  It was therefore pretty stressful making sure all the docs were correct, properly signed/witnessed etc.  I came home afterwards and crashed face-first into bed for a much-needed sleep.  But hey, now it’s done!  And this means we can go ahead and make an offer on a place we’ve already spied as a nice little doer-upper.  😀  Yes, I am a glutton for punishment.  And so is C, apparently – he suggested we put in an offer today, which I’ve emailed to the agent.  We’ll see what happens now (apart from having to fit a nervous breakdown into the upcoming weekend, of course).

One of our apartments is vacant as of last weekend.  We already have tenants lined up for it, but they don’t move in until next Sunday, so we’ve been taking the opportunity to do some stuff.

‘Doing some stuff’ has turned out to take a fair bit of time and energy.  We redid the whole bathroom/laundry last year (retiled, new cupboards, etc etc), but there has been a leak from the shower, so I organised a guy to come out and seal it.  The good news is, it comes with a 15-year guarantee, and the pressure is fine, meaning there isn’t a leak from the plumbing.  The bad news is, it cost nearly $500.  C choked on his cereal when I told him that this morning.

We’ve also had significant paint peeling from the walls and ceiling in the bathroom.  This is annoying, as we only painted about nine months ago.  As a result, I’ve spent the last 48 hours sanding, skim filling, sanding again, and sealing all the dodgy bits.  All that’s left now is to actually slap on a couple of coats of paint, and it’ll be done.

On top of this, we’ve also been doing the more usual mundane stuff – washing all linen, washing pots and pans that weren’t properly washed by the tenants (always a pleasant job), vacuuming behind furniture, washing windows.  The place looks great, C and I look haggard. 😉

We’re also having some problems with other tenants of ours.  Basically, they’re living like pigs.  C has been trying to get the internet put on for them, and so has had to go to their place a couple of times.  They’re putting food scraps straight in the bin without using a liner, and leaving dirty pots and pans lying around.  C also said there were ants in the kitchen.  We’ve never had ants there before.  So today I served them with a formal notice of breach of tenancy, specifying what is expected re: cleanliness etc, and letting them know we will be doing an inspection in two weeks’ time.  I guess it’s all part of the fun of self-managing rentals.

For those of you who followed me from my last blog, welcome!  For people who have just found me, I hope that I won’t bore you too quickly.

We’ve been on leave for a bit, just doing stuff around the house.  It’s been good, actually.  I’ve been wanting to go travelling for a while, so much so that I didn’t really care where to, really.  I just had itchy feet.  But this holiday at home has been satisfying for a few reasons.  We’ve done some much-needed housework, and we’ve also hit the garden.  Both of these are good things 🙂  We’re not really keen gardeners, and every few months I start to feel like the neighbours are starting up a petition to run us out of our suburb.

We originally bought our house a few years back, when the market was booming and we realised we needed to upgrade from C’s villa to a real house.  At the time, we were thinking/anticipating having kid/s, so it made sense to get a 4×2.  Four years on, my mental health hasn’t been particularly good, and we’re starting to realise that maybe kids aren’t the automatic fallback option for us.  However, we still have a large 4×2 that requires cleaning and general maintenance.  While we both like our house, in retrospect it probably wasn’t the best decision to buy it.  C’s villa was the ideal size for the two of us, both inside and outside.

Still, our neighbourhood is lovely, and we do like where we live.  It’s a great spot, and we can walk to the local shops, which we’ve been doing the last few days, as the weather has been great, particularly for winter.  (Yes, we’re in the southern hemisphere – Australia, to be precise 😉 )

Anyhow, we’re both thoroughly enjoying our holiday at home, plus we’ve done a few much needed things about the place, so it’s all good so far.

A life lived in fear is a life half lived – Strictly Ballroom

Okay, it may be a hokey line from a hokey movie, but it’s appropriate.  I’m a 34 year old government worker who suffers from depression and anxiety.  Hence, the above line.  Trust me, it fits.  I’m lucky enough to be married to my adorable (if occasionally frustrating) hubs C, who also works for the government.  Favourite pastimes include sleeping and property – we have our house, plus four investment properties that we completely self-manage, from cleaning through to leasing and doing all maintenance and repairs.  This is both interesting and time-consuming.

I have previously blogged but my paranoia has reasserted itself, hence the new one.  I found I was censoring myself heavily, which I’m not planning on doing in this blog – any dodgy posts will be protected.  Hee hee!  That way I can vent to my heart’s content, particularly about my job, the general nature of which is confidential.  (No, sorry, I don’t work for the FBI or MI5 – nothing that interesting, unfortunately.  I wish.)