Tuesday, April 27, 2010
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Without warning and as if it was scripted, I felt the back draft from a wing as a seagull passed over my left shoulder just as the three women in front turned around. It all happened so fast I barely had time to register what had happened until I looked down at my non-existent kebab and empty wrapper.
I turned to the two women on my right, who had been deep in conversation and facing the other way, and saw they were now captivated by all the commotion. I gave them a scrambled recap (because you can chat to strangers if you have something in common - like the weather or an act of bravado from a renegade seabird) and their eyes widened as they suddenly became very aware of the encroaching seagull population. Their lunch was now being stalked. Eat fast ladies! It wasn't quite the icebreaker I was thinking of but it was highly effective.
Me: "Did someone just call?"
Mr P: "Yep, it was your sister..." (silence and walking away) And......? Nothing.
What gets to me the most is that he's oblivious. When I finally confront him (incidentally, my tone can sometimes be interpreted as a little 'snippy' by this stage depending on the time elapsed since the first misdemeanor), he has no idea why I've got attitude. That ticks me off even more - hypothetically!
Thursday, April 15, 2010
Diet is a Four Letter Word
So here is a recipe to get you started. With some meal planning and smart shopping you can have the whole family looking forward to dinner time. Enjoy. Philippa x0
This recipe has been requested ever since I put it as my status update on Face Book.
Cube steak (beef) rump/blade/chuck and roll in 1tsp each of turmeric, cumin, paprika and a good pinch of white pepper. Light spray of olive oil in a fry pan and sear meat until it gets a little brown.
NB. The photo is from a spring lamb recipe in The Sydney Morning Herald ( http://www.smh.com.au/) There is also a gorgeous slow cooked roast lamb recipe worth checking out.
Remember portion sizes. Just because it's yummy doesn't mean you should eat more of it. Go for 1Cup couscous/2/3Cup rice/1 Cup mashed potato and 1Cup Moroccan mix. If you need more food opt for a side salad to help fill you up. Low fat dressings, squeeze of lemon juice (my favourite) or naked salad is also very 'in'. Enjoy the flavours. Try it and tell me what you think.
Sunday, April 11, 2010
It was something Alicia had wanted to do for a long time and turning thirty brought it to the forefront of her mind and right up to the top of her priority list. With the arrival of overseas friends, the wheels were suddenly set in motion. It wasn't long and she was climbing through the clouds above the breathtaking Great Dividing Range. What makes an intelligent person take such a risk?
The thrill of the free-fall. Hold that thought...
Ever since Jaws, I've been spooked by dark, deep water. The underwater shots of legs frantically treading water would send my brainwaves into back flips, gluing me to shallow water as I mentally calculated how many centimetres of water a shark would physically need to survive in, near the shoreline. Dumb, I know. As I grew older I ventured out further but I was always ready to bolt (like the cartoon characters do above the ground before taking off,) back to the beach if required. So when we went swimming as a family yesterday at the broadwater on the Gold Coast, little did I know that my bravery or rather, the resident fear I'd accommodated all these years, was about to be challenged.
The Moment of Reckoning
There are shark nets situated around our tranquil swimming spot for the simple fact that sharks have often been spotted in the area. Way out past the middle is a pontoon where swimmers dive or lay out in the sun to dry. Because of the whole Jaws scenario, I was never remotely interested in venturing out that far, though my two older boys often did without any kind of issue - until yesterday...
Climbing onto my back, he stuck to me like a limpet as we paddled over. Every time he started talking about seeing shark fins near us (yikes!) I calmly distracted him with the Sea World helicopter flying overhead and the jet boats doing spins out on the broadwater. We made it safely and without any panic attacks (from either of us) and it wasn't long and he was bomb-diving off the pontoon and swimming back to the beach unassisted. (Incidentally, I did not wish to bomb-dive but surprisingly, I wasn't scared either.)
That's when I thought about Alicia and the courage that was present to enable her to do what she really wanted to do. Here are some absolute gems she discovered through her adventure:
- Looking out the window she was certain they were high enough to do the jump but it was only 2,000 ft. They were heading for 14,000ft. If she'd jumped when she thought it was right - she would've died. Don't let your dream die just because your timing was off. LISTEN TO THOSE WHO HAVE EXPERIENCE.
- While WAITING to jump, the crew did a fantastic job of keeping the atmosphere electric with excitement and positivity. THE ATTITUDE OF THOSE AROUND YOU MATTERS.
- It's the tandem's responsibility to engage the parachute and ensure you land safely. YOUR RESPONSIBILITY IS TO JUMP! Stop trying to figure everything out. Learn as you go.
- Once you've jumped, OPEN YOUR EYES AND ENJOY THE VIEW!
I didn't love it out on the pontoon, but my son did. Swimming out to the pontoon was his free-fall moment but I had to address the fear I had, to enable him to experience the thrill awaiting him. He knew it would be good, that's why he waited and then help arrived. It may not have been quite the same as Alicia plummeting to earth at 200km/hr but it was just as important.
Don't let your life become a slogan for what might've been. Evaluate the risk, seek advice and support from those with experience, take the first step and open your eyes and enjoy the view!
copyright 2010 Philippa Vette