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Five years ago today, C and I got married.  I didn’t know it at the time but I was about to be diagnosed with clinical depression, which would follow my life for at least the next half-decade.  That said, I can honestly say that the day we got married was definitely one of the best days of my life.

We don’t do anything special for our wedding anniversaries; all we’ll do tonight is kick back and have some takeaway squid with salad for dinner.  Then we’ll probably cuddle on the couch and watch some episodes of True Blood.  Simple, but perfect 🙂

I’m nearly at the end of week two of my new exercise/eating plan regime.  It’s been pretty easy, to be honest.  I love my zumba classes and never need to motivate myself to go to them, so that aspect is so simple.  The food part is a bit harder, and takes a bit more effort, just in terms of recording it all, and being mindful of what I eat.  I’m also premenstrual so have had some significant sugar cravings for the last day or so.  I’ve bought some diet desserts (creme caramel and chocolate mousse) so that if I do break down, there’s something ‘permissible’ but still naughty that I can indulge in.  So far I’m holding out though, which is good.

I had a meeting with my old boss yesterday.  Basically she wants to lure me to work with her.   The description of the job sounds fantastic, and she’s the best boss I’ve ever had, so I told her that if she could arrange it, I’d love to work with her.  Plus it would effectively get me out of my substantive role, which I’m well and truly looking to do.


And what a week it was.  I decided last Saturday that on top of going to zumba 3-4 times a week, it would be helpful if I also started watching what I eat.  Basically the ‘rules’ of my new ‘eating plan’ are as follows: 2,000 calories or less per day, less than 50g fat per day, eat 5-6 times a day (breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner, optional snack), and at least one piece of fruit and/or veg per day.  All in all, it sounds pretty prescriptive, but I’ve found it relatively easy to fit it into my lifestyle.  This of course means it’s sustainable, which is important for the medium to long term with anything like this.

Anyhow, I hopped on the scales this morning.  What with going to 4x zumba classes and my new ‘eating plan’, I lost two kilos exactly in the first week.  This amazed me.  I’m only a touch overweight for my height (BMI of 26.6) so it’s not like I had a huge amount to drop off or anything.  And yet, I lost 2kgs.  This makes me a happy girl!  Plus, it’s on top of a blowout last night – we went to our friends’ place (G and V) for dinner, where I ate three pieces of brie with biscuits, just to start with, and had three (alcoholic) drinks.  Needless to say, this great result has only encouraged me to stick with it.

In other ‘friends’ news, we caught up with my friend L and her hubby M today for brunch.  They brought along their little cutie pie of a daughter, A, who is five months and just completely adorable.  She’s obviously a very placid baby and is good as gold.  L and M are loving parenthood and are completely enraptured with A.  So cute 😀

We had a new tenant move in to one of the properties today.  Fortunately the previous tenants moved out on Thursday, which gave me a chance to get it all ready, despite our busy social weekend.  He seems very nice and appreciative, which is lovely.  Now all he needs to do is pay the rent on time and leave the property neat at the end of the tenancy, and he’ll be a perfect tenant.  Fingers crossed 😉

My gorgeous friend M got married a year ago, and I was one of her bridesmaids.  She and her husband C live in another state, but they came over (with their new baby daughter) just for this weekend, to catch up (briefly) with family and friends.  All M’s friends live here, and all C’s family and friends, so there was a lot of catching up scheduled.

A large group of us from her wedding had dinner last night in Fremantle.  I think it was originally intended to just be the bridal party plus their partners, but it ended up being pretty much everybody who came to the wedding (minus M’s parents, who are from Victoria).  So it was a big group, lots of kids ranging from 8 months to 13 years old, and heaps of talking.

It was great to see M, and of course C and the baby.  The baby is adorable – M has four children, and all of them are very very cute.  She has a big shock of medium brown hair and the most beautiful skin you’ve ever seen.  She was so good, too, not a peep out of her from 6:30pm until 10pm, when I left.  Despite going from being a single guy to a dad with four kids in one fell swoop, C was also looking just the same as he did a year ago, which is good – the shock hasn’t killed him yet, so I think he’s going to make it 😉  I asked M how it was going with him and the kids and she said they just adore him, which is wonderful.  I asked C how he was going, and he said really good, that it had its challenges, but it was good.  Overall I think it’s all working out fantastically well, and I’m so so glad for M, who really deserves an easier life than she’s had, firstly married to her first (pig of a) husband, then being a single mum to three very small kids.

The only thing that worried me was M’s health.  She’s had a chequered past in terms of physical health – at 17 she was diagnosed with three brain tumours, two of which were inoperable.  In the last year these seem to have almost disappeared and all her tests are coming back great.  That said, she is waaaaay too skinny – 47 kilos – and for the first time ever, she’s looking quite lined and old.  I really got a shock when I saw her last night, she basically looked worse than I’ve ever seen her look before.  When I asked her about her health she admitted that she seems to have some kind of thyroid problem, but they can’t pin down exactly what it is – most of her levels are fine, other indicators aren’t showing anything, etc.  But she can’t keep any weight on (she eats like a horse, and C is a chef who does all the family meals) and she’s exhausted all the time.

So yes, while it was fantastic to see them, I am worried about M.  I know there’s nothing I can do, and that fretting won’t achieve anything, but I can’t get the image of her poor little face out of my mind. 😦

Not a huge amount going on to report here.  Still keeping up with the zumba classes, still doing the usual – work, sleep, properties, etc.

I’m going to visit my mum this morning.  She and J got back from their European trip last weekend but we couldn’t organise a time to meet before now, so today it is.  She managed to hurt her ankle – not quite sure what she’s done to it at this stage, but 1) it isn’t broken, and 2) it seems worse than a sprain.  She has to have a CT scan on it, her physio thinks she may have pulled some tendon away from the bone.  YOUCH.

I caught up with a girlfriend from my previous workplace last week, and I’m doing the same with a couple more in the next two weeks.  I used to try to get them all to the same lunch but found it didn’t really work – we all like talking, but an hour with three other people isn’t really quality time, so I’ve started organising to see them all separately.  I loved seeing A and I know seeing T and G will be just as good.

I’ve been so slack, not keeping up with my blog.  Naughty me.  To be honest there’s been so much going on, I’ve been spending a lot of time sleeping.  (big surprise there, I’m sure!)  All the properties are going well – nice tenants who pay on time and look after them – so they’re all okay for the moment.  My new job is great, I’m settling in really well and very happy.  I’m hoping they’ll want to extend my contract or maybe even offer permanency, so fingers crossed.  I just cannot imagine ever getting stressed doing this kind of work.  C has noticed that I’m a lot happier too, which has made him happier as a bonus side effect.

Speaking of C, he’s been called in to work tonight.  Lots of important stuff going on and they decided they HAD to have him in.  He got the call early afternoon, and I just spoke to him – he should be home in an hour or so.  That’s about seven hours of overtime.  Looks like somebody will be able to make an extra mortgage payment this week 🙂

I’m slowly reconnecting with friends.  Even though I’m tired after work, I still have more energy and inclination to see people I haven’t seen for a while, including some of my good friends from high school.  That’s been really nice so far.

I’ve had a falling out with my mother.  She rang me up and berated me for being a horrible daughter, the day after she had us over for my birthday dinner.  I didn’t know what to say (and in fact I still don’t) and when I recounted the conversation to C, he couldn’t believe it.  So I’m basically not worrying about keeping in touch.  It’s not like ‘Oh, I’m not speaking to her’, it’s just that when she gets like this anything I say makes it worse, so I’m basically just laying low and not calling or emailing her voluntarily.  Much less stressful that way.  It’ll all sort itself out eventually.

So, it’s 2011.  What wonderful and amazing things will this brave new world present to us?   If I had my way, one of them would be an ironing lady or man.  I’m not fussy about the gender, just how well they can iron C’s work shirts. 😉

My birthday was on the 30th.  It seems hard to believe I’m 34 and still getting pimples.  Surely that can’t be right?!  C spoiled me by making me breakfast in bed – real coffee and crumpets with golden syrup.  Yum, my favourite. 😀  He gave me a fitness program thingy for my wii, which is a lot of fun and very addictive.  He also got me a couple of mangoes, my absolute favourite thing in the whole world.  There’s been floods recently in mango growing areas of Australia (especially Queensland and the north of Western Australia) so the prices have gone to astronomical heights, so he spared no expense for his middle aged wife.  Now that’s true love.  Stuff diamonds.  You can’t eat jewellery, and besides, I have heaps that I just don’t wear.  I’m so not a jewellery or makeup girl, much to my mother’s disappointment.

We spent New Year’s Eve with our friends G and V, who were the only guests we invited to our wedding.  We had a thoroughly good time, very sedate (although champagne was drunk), and managed to get home by around 2am.  For some bizarre reason I woke up at 6:30am, so I got up, fed the cat and gave her some pats, did a couple of things in the kitchen, then fell back into bed. 

When I resurfaced I ended up going to our latest vacant apartment to do some work.  There’s some leaking in the shower which is coming through to the hallway wall (the other side) which has made the paint bubble and peel.  C has said he’s not doing any more renos this year, so we’re going to get the shower sealed.  This is expensive, but worth it.  So other than scraping the peeling paint off the wall (and looking horrified at the mould) I scrubbed down the stove and the kitchen cupboard next to the stove.  There were four bachelor guys living in the property, and while they did clean it, it’s not in a fit state to just hand over to the next lot of tenants.  We will have to paint throughout, for example.  Still, it’s all fairly manageable, given our next tenants are due to arrive on 26 January.

Wow.  Busy weekend.  My darling friend got married on Saturday.  As I was in the bridal party, I was up at 7am, and didn’t get to relax until after midnight.  That is a loooong day for a girl who likes her sleep.  However, it was lovely, it all went very well, and it was fantastic to see the happy couple so, well, happy. 😀  Plus, I made up for it by sleeping about 20 hours out of 24 the next day.

In other (unrelated) news, C and I have this week off.  When I say ‘off’ I should really say ‘off from paid work’.  As per usual, we’re renovating.  The bathroom/laundry is now finished, apart from the shower screen installation, so that’s all finalised pretty much.  We painted half of the unit today, and will hopefully finish off tomorrow.  C will then need to change all the lights and power switches, and paint the skirting boards etc.  We’re also getting the floorboards repolished on Thursday; then we’ll need to move the furniture in.  I’m hoping (fingers crossed!) that it’ll be ready to have a home open this coming Sunday, but really, anything could happen.

It’s been a while since I mentioned my mental health.  Generally, it’s going well.  After the very long and tiring day I had on Saturday, I was pretty much incapable of doing anything but sleeping.  Which I did.  And today, while I’m tired, it’s manageable.  I think I’ve finally learned how to listen to my body a bit.  Now, need sleep = get sleep.  If I’m tired, I just check out and hit the sack.  So far, it seems to work fairly well.

Hoo boy. The month of hell has come to an end.  After the two weeks of flat out work stuff, the non-work stuff – namely, my mum getting married – is also finished.  It all went very well.  She was stressing out big time before the ceremony, so I cracked a bottle of champagne and gave her half a glass.  It was just enough to take the edge off, thank goodness. 

The wedding was beautiful, aided by my flute playing before and after the ceremony, and my witnessing the happy union.  The reception also went well, aided by my speech (with one of J’s kids) to the bride and groom.  J also wanted me to do a reading during the wedding but I persuaded him that I already featured plenty in the program, and to spread it around his kids a bit.  I feel like if I’d been a guy, I would’ve conducted the wedding as well.  My brother got off fairly lightly, as he only had to give Mum away.  Good for him.  I was tempted to say in my speech that we didn’t want her back, but in the spirit of a relaxed family gathering I let it go.  Good for a few cheap laughs, but probably not worth the fallout.

The reception was great, very relaxed with lovely food, at a local bed and breakfast.  C and I had a room with an ensuite, with stunning views to the ocean and the forest.  It was just beautiful.  I spent some time sitting outside on the balcony, just taking in the scenery.  It was so peaceful and relaxing.  Both mornings there was a fantastic continental and cooked breakfast, where I managed to restrain myself to a croissant, while C splurged out on the big breakfast.

The day after the wedding, C and I, together with my brother and his fiance, went exploring.  We started off in Dunsborough, getting some much-needed petrol, plus supplies for the cold I developed overnight (strepsils, tissues, cold and flu tablets etc).  Then we went to the Margaret River Chocolate Factory, where C and I spent far too much on lots of goodies.  Some of the stuff we did buy for his dad and stepmum, it wasn’t all for us!  We also sat down in the cafe for a bit and had hot chocolate drinks.  After that, we went on to Olio Bello, where we sampled various goodies and also had lunch.  I bought one of my work friends some marinaded olives, which I hope she’ll like – she’s a savoury person not a sweet person, and she’s always buying me little treats, so I wanted to bring something back for her.

After that, we went back to the B&B and all had a nap.  Dinner that night was a family affair, consisting of woodfired pizzas cooked by Carlo, one of the owners of the B&B.  By this stage my cold had set in and I felt like crap, but I did manage to eat a bit and enjoy talking to different people.

The next morning we all had breakfast, then headed off back to Perth.  I dozed most of the way home, then had a decent nap in the afternoon.  I guess the cold took it out of me.

C was back at work today, but fortunately I had organised to have the day off.  I spent it fairly productively, doing some food shopping and also picking up my bridesmaid dress for my friend M’s wedding on 13 November.  Plus of course, I had a nap.  It’s not a day off if I don’t have a sleep 😉

Well, a lot can happen in a week.

C’s stepgranddad passed away.  The funeral will be on Monday, at 11:30am, right in the middle of our work day.  D’oh!  This probably sounds heartless, but C has never had any time for his stepgranddad, who always gave C’s granny a hard time.  It’s sad, but no-one will really miss him.

We did end up putting in an offer on the property C found, too.  Went along, had a look, thought about it, and started negotiating.  It needs a lick of paint but otherwise just need furniture and it’ll be ready to go.  As a result of putting an offer in on this one, we’ve decided to sell our last remaining single-bedroom unit.  So at this point in time, we’re selling one single-bed unit (settling this coming Tuesday); in the throes of buying a two-bedroom unit (finance needs to be approved by end of this month, valuations for it happened today); just put an offer in on another two-bed unit, and just put our final single-bed unit on the market for sale.  That’s a lot of real estate stuff going on, especially as we’ve sold the two one-bedroom units ourselves.  This has saved heaps of money and I’ve found it to be really satisfying (I’ve been the one dealing with paperwork, viewings etc).

Yes, so lots is happening.  Of course, this has almost inevitably led to me coming down with a bug.  I woke up today with a sore throat and headache, so I called in sick.  Yeah I know, I’m not a hero.  But it was horrible weather, and I felt like shite, and I was glad I didn’t go in.  Hopefully I’ll be feeling more sprightly by Sunday, as we’re supposed to be seeing a movie with our friends G and V (who we had over to dinner last weekend).  We don’t see enough of them and I’d love to catch up again.

Well, the trip went okay.  Sleazoid behaved himself, which was a wise choice.  And I came home to a husband who had cleaned up the house and was cooking dinner for me.  Doesn’t get much better, does it? Maybe I should go away more often 😉

We had a flat-out day yesterday.  Friends of ours were coming over for dinner, so we cleaned the house really thoroughly.  Around midday we actually had a break, and went to look at a home open.  We own a couple of units in the same apartment complex, and C noticed the other day that another one was on the market.  Anyhow, we went along and had a good look.  At this stage it looks like we may put an offer in on it, but we’ll see. 

That took a bit of time out of our cleaning schedule, but we got lunch as well while we were out, so it was a multi-purpose break.  Then when we got back, I had a bit of a snooze, then got up to start the cooking side of things.  I did roasted chicken breasts with rosemary and proscuitto, and steamed vegies.  For dessert, I made individual lemon puddings.  I’d never made these before, and fortunately they worked, and as a bonus, tasted fantastic.  Phew!  Our friends G and V are foodies, so while they would have been very forgiving if the food hadn’t been all that great, I do prefer to serve up something that is really nice, and the dinner worked out well.

We had a fantastic night, lots of wine, laughter and discussion.  When G and V left, C and I actually did the dishes (we don’t have a dishwasher, so this is usually a lengthy process).  When I got up this morning, the kitchen was spotless, and so was the rest of the house.  I think we should have people over every weekend if it’s going to motivate us like this to clean.

One thing I did notice was that my mental health was good.  In the past, something like having friends over for dinner has caused a lot of stress and anxiety.  Is the house clean enough?  Will the food be okay?  But last night (and all of yesterday) I just felt excited that we were going to see G and V.  It’s such a good feeling.