Apr 29, 2011

OMG She's here!

So my friend Anne has arrived for a 10 day sojourn in the Florida sunshine... If you don't know her you can become acquainted at her blog (The Day After Yesterday), if you can't be bothered let me give you a few details to introduce her to you

1. Anne is a gadget geek... she has to have the latest phone, laptop, camera etc and always the best available for the money... however Anne is absolutely rubbish at taking care of her gadgets.. she gets drunk and loses her cameras, she's on her third iPhone after dropping one at least in the toilet and one in the fire (doh). She's destroyed three laptops, one by wine, one by coffee.. one a friend shattered a screen (so she says!) ..

Today her latest $2000 laptop has been shutting itself down and overheating. She has been beyond traumatized..  we've been emailing Sony, and coincidentally 500,000 of her model type were recalled ... it wasn't looking good...

'When did you last clean it?'

Blank stare

'Are you telling me you've never cleaned it?'

Blank stare

I whipped out my bottle of

Whats that?

'Anne you use it to spray the dust out of your fans'

She sheepishly lifted her laptop up and I gave the fan vent a quick spray. When the dust settled we listened, the fan had stopped whirring and the laptop purred contentedly... amazing me..

2. Anne is in love with all things American for breakfast..

I don't need to say more

3. I have to effectively coddle her to make sure she gets to the airport in time and has all the items she needs in her hand luggage actually in her hand luggage! (This is what happened last time she came)
I check her in online and fill her online visa in for her... I even send pictures of which shoes are still here from last time so she can pack light...
If she doesn't take them back this time I'm garage sale'ng them

She made it without any trauma this time.. thanks to my planning and attention to details - I'm anal like that!!!!

Lastly something you all should know if you are one of Anne's blog followers...



Apr 28, 2011

Puppies everywhere....

Last weekend we went to see our niece who is pregnant with twins. She has been placed on bed rest and she and her husband have moved back with my husbands sister so that she can completely relax and would be closer to her doctor.

Anyway, it was great to see her, even if she was prone for the whole visit.. keep you fingers crossed for her...

Keeping her company are all the doggies, Frodo, a 3lb ball of hair, their new pup Pip, our other niece's dog Jack Jack and the fluff ball that is Precious..we didn't take Gary as he tries to put the smack down on them all.. Frodo tried to out-stare Gary last time and Gary swatted him across the wood floor.. amusing but not exactly relaxing for our niece!
Niece and her husband with Frodo and their previous dog, Stewie
Enjoy the pics... tomorrow the start of Anne's holiday with me and laptop trauma (hers, not mine)...argggggh

Jack Jack.. trying to blend into the floor

beautiful Pip... 

This girl rules the house, Precious

Pip is a stunner.. although pees all the time when excited!

It's love

Frodo, keeping his mummies babies warm

Gary, sulking because he didn't get to go!

Apr 26, 2011

Happy Birthday Alfie

Happy Birthday to my friends super cute doggie, Alfie... Now Alfie is spoilt so you don't have to make him cake or buy him a bone... but if you hop on over to his Daddy's blog to say Happy Birthday, he will donate $1 for each Birthday comment to the Humane Society... so go and say Happy Birthday.. he's nearly as cute as Gary!

Click on Alfie's face!!


Apr 24, 2011

Loose stools.. eat a carrot (well if you have fur!)

Gary loves carrot.. and if I'm cooking and he sees them he won't leave me alone until he gets some a whole carrot...

Thought it was best to see if its actually ok to give your dog carrot, and that I wasn't killing him slowly by carrot...

Seems I'm fine though.. just no onions, chocolate and grapes though (not an exhaustive list!) apparently it will help with loose stools too!

Ok Gary you can have your carrot!

P.S I was chopping carrot for Hot Italian Giardiniera which I made this morning for hubster... he is obssesed.. you can get the recipe over at my food blog here

Hot Italian Giardiniera


Apr 19, 2011

Hello Verizon.. goodbye T-mobile

So for the last 2 1/2 years I have been a Blackberry owner.. and I've been very happy.. but I've found myself having phone envy recently with all of the smartphones with gorgeous big screens and super apps...

Anyway, contract up and trackball defunct and I have been trying to decide what to do... I can't have AT&T or Sprint as the service around here is rubbish.. so it was my current carrier T-mobile or Verizon...

I would have been happy to have another Blackberry or whatever else really, so I went first to check on what I could have as an upgrade...

I thought I could rock one of these..cute and the latest OS6.. its pretty quick and I know Blackberry... and of course T-mobile having about $2500 from me in the last 2+ years, I bet it would be free......


$180 after a $50 mail in rebate (yeah, hate those).. I nearly spat at the screen!

Hmmm maybe I should change type and go for a touchscreen.. T-mobiles has the Samsung Galaxy, which is supposed to be a pretty good Android phone...wonder what sort of deal they would do...

$280 after mail in rebate...... NO!!!
Seems T-mobile do not want my continued monthly payments...

So I hopped over to Wirefly and found an awesome deal on a Verizon Droid2 Global (I need my phone to work in Australia too) and the best bit.. it has a keyboard too!

The awesome deal : FREE, no shipping, no connection, nothing!

Who needs an iPhone? LOL

So now I'll be sporting a sleek white one of these... an T-mobile can go whistle!..
Can't wait for my new gadget!!


Apr 14, 2011

Couponing ...it's my new addiction.....

Those of you in the UK will not understand this at all as Coupons went out, as my Mom said earlier, with the war! Whilst you collect your Tesco club points or swipe your Nectar for you free shopping or air miles, over this side of the pond you collect coupons.. (too be fair I mostly used my Tesco Club Card for scraping ice off the car!)

I have lived here five years already and at no point have I ever collected coupons... until I watched a bit of 'Extreme Couponing' on TLC.

Hubby was snoozing on the sofa one night, I was working and this program came on in the background..

..'I saved 98% on my shopping bill'..

Well that's enough to make anyone look up!

I watched as these crazy couponers stockpiled toothpaste, soup and diapers. I thought.. I don't even eat canned soup!!.. but a little flame was lit..

Since February I have been learning how to shop to save money.. and with gas the way it is, I thought it would offset some of extra bills we are getting...

Well I have been completely shocked... and I'm starting to become a little obsessive about saving money (that's a good thing though right!?)

I look up the ads for my stores I go to each week, and see what is one sale, BO GO etc and then I decide what I can use.. I mean I don't have babies, so I not diaper shopping, no matter how cheap they are... and then I buy the Sunday paper for the coupons and order coupons from a clipping service for all the items that I want to buy.
The Sunday papers over here have 'inserts' jammed packed with coupons! for all sorts of things...

I'm no stockpiler, I'm only interested in things we are going to eat or use in the next few months, but I even have a little wallet that stays in my purse that goes to the store with me!

I then (because I'm sad) create an excel spreadsheet of what something will cost, how many coupons I'll need etc and then put the coupons in order (I'm sounding anal aren't I?)

Then I'm ready to shop...

At first I was a novice.. only using one coupon when I could have done two, not planning etc

Now I'm a intermediate couponer... I understand about the planning and doubling...

Will I ever be a Pro or Extreme couponer.. NO.. anyway hubby has banned stockpiles!... but its certainly a buzz to see your shipping bill halved...!!!

Best deals so far...

Husbands regular razors.. normally $4.99  - $6.99 for 3

On sale for BO GO free $4.99 (so 2.50 each)  and I had coupon for $3.00 off each.. you can use two coupons...they paid me!!!! If only you could double up in Florida LOL .. I did stockpile a little here.. we now have razors for about 5 months!!! LOL

Gary's food.. $17.99 - $10 coupon.. $7.99..!!! 2 11lb bags.. Gary will be having a boring diet for the next 3 months!

So how much am I saving.. I spent $180 in the supermarket on Monday, and paid $89... that suits me just fine and I'm kicking myself for not doing it sooner...

Will I become a dumpster diving coupon lady buying 200 toothpastes? no... or the strange man who bought 1000 boxes of cereal...weird.. it will go off before you can eat it all!.. No I wont.. but will I continue to try and save some money.. absolutely...it's money for nothing apart from a bit of time.

So if you are in line behind me and I get my stack of coupons out.. sorry....


Apr 12, 2011

Vampire Obsession.. well sorta

So recently I joined Seeded Buzz..

I joined it to get my readership up and get more posts 'out there' into blogging land....

How does it work.. you either plant seeds or respond to them. You give the community a post that you'd like other people to blog about..or you blog about something someone else has suggested...

You or they link back to your original blog and so on and so forth.. it sounds more complicated than it really is.

Anyway today is my first response back to a 'seed' on vampires... and the fact that Germany has real ones!!
(word of warning this is so going to be a gratuitous photo fest for the ladies.. gents may want to retrieve sick bag now!)


My current obsession is with all things Vampiric.

Is it the fangs and the desire to drink blood?... err nope

Is it the desire to sleep during the day and play all night?... err as nice as sleeping through the day sounds I like the sun

Do I feel the need to develop a goth like complexion? .. err it's April, I live in Florida and I'm already brown as a berry...

Has the 'Twilight Effect' convinced me that I can live forever if I start sucking blood and had Edward on my arm.. ? err nope.. its just a movie right?

So no actual desire to be a vamp...

No.. I just want a vamp all to myself....

I just love it all.. Twilight, True Blood, Vampire Diaries, reading, watching, imagining! 

I was reading on Richmond.com's blog something... and she eloquently summed up what happened to me...

'In my opinion Twilight Mania turned into a nationwide Vampire Obsession when we Gen-X and Gen-Y women wrenched the books out of our younger sisters’ hands, devoured the teen drama, and then went searching for more.
At least that’s how it happened for me.
I blew through the "Twilight" books over the course of a long weekend, periodically surfacing for air when my boyfriend asked me some inane question like; do you want something to eat? Or are you ever going to get some sleep? 
Then I went through what I like to call the Twilight Hangover. That’s those first days or weeks, after you finish all of the books, when you sort of walk dreamlike through your life, wondering why you have to do ridiculous things like report to work and shop for groceries.
The Twilight Hangover is really a withdrawal of sorts. The books become an addiction and the best way to treat it, in my opinion, is to find another fix.
And that’s when I found something better than "Twilight." That’s right, I said better. I’m talking about Sookie Stackhouse.
The Sookie Stackhouse books, also called "The Southern Vampire Series," by Charlaine Harris, are exactly like "Twilight" in the sense that they’re about vampire romance, but better because no mother in her right mind would let her tween daughter pick up a copy.
The Sookie books are for us, they’re for Gen-X and Gen-Y women. They’re what I like to call, Vampire Porn.'
My current obsession is that vampire porn. "True Blood" originally aired on HBO (which we don't have), and I'm catching up on Netflix

Anna Paquin (Sookie)  must have been bitten by the Vampire bug too, cause she married her vampire in real life.!! 

My new DVDs should arrive from Netflix today, and I'll have all three episodes finished and back in the mail box for my next ones tomorrow! 

Seriously, you should watch it.. its Twilight on crack!

And my top Vamps I'd take home with me.. in no particular order....

 'Damon Salvatore'. Vampire Diaries. don't tell hubby..but I so would!

'Bill Compton' True Blood... yes please

Edward Cullen... a bit of an English fop, but he'll do!
Steffan Salvatore... them there is two good looking brothers!

Eric Northam... has that 'Kurt Cobain' look going on 

OK.. I know this is six.. but Angel was the start of my Vampire obsession.. and I still would!

Ladies.. who's your favourite Vampire..? 
Gents.. does you wife / girlfriend have a special place in her heart for Vamps too?


Apr 10, 2011

Wish it was still Sunday...apart from the murder!

Well technically it still is, unless you are in England..when it's now Monday and has been half a day already in Australia... but you know what I mean

My Sunday was gorgeous..Hubby wasn't working so we went to a farmers market this morning. Its not the biggest market in the world and I suspect the bananas are not grown locally, however we met a nice man representing an organic meat company and we bought some pricey sausage... it was however delicious so we might splash out again...

The best find however was the English Fish & Chip van, who sell proper Cod & Chips...a bit early for that this morning..although I did see some Americans partaking !...and.. wait for it... BACON BUTTYS... with real bacon... oh the delight.. I was in heaven!!!

Anyway the rest of the day was just 'chillaxing' and Gary and I took in some rays out by the pool...

View from the sun bed

Keeping cool by the pool

My view.. 

My hairy feet!
Gary looking for lizards by the tomatoes

The dead lizard... I moved him next to yesterdays, away from Gary's jaws..
If you are a bit squeamish don't watch the video as there are scenes of killing and spilled guts...



Apr 8, 2011

STD, Drug Addict, Nazi or Terrorist?

Then you can’t come in..

What are you going on about Clare...?

I was helping my friend do her online visa application for the US the other day and quite frankly was amazed at the questions..you used to fill a green card in to get here.. now the US government like to see who is coming before they are on the plane...
Its called an ESTA (Electronic System for Travel and at the request of the Spanish government, the name of the requirement was changed from ETA (Electronic Travel Authorization) to ESTA because of concerns about the Basque separatist group which also goes by the initials "ETA". 

Let’s take a quiz and see how many you’d answer yes to..

1. Do you have a communicable disease; physical or mental disorder; or are you a drug abuser or addict?

A bit much to lump STDs in with mental health disorders.. or the other way around…

Definition of communicable disease

• Chancroid
• Gonorrhea
Granuloma inguinale (do you even know what this is.. … click the link.. it’s a bit scary!)
• Leprosy, infectious
• Lymphogranuloma venereum (nope didn’t know this one either)
• Syphilis, infectious stage
• Tuberculosis, active
• And others as determined by the Department of Health and Human Services
(so that could be anything then!)
Do I need a trip down the local clinic for a clean bill of health before I answer this ?

Drug Abusers and Drug Addicts

Under United States law persons may not be admissible if they have been determined to be a drug abuser or drug addict.

What do you mean I look different to my passport photo?

Does smoking a bit of pot at college count..? ‘cause none of you are coming in if that’s the case…

2. Have you ever been arrested or convicted for an offense or crime involving moral turpitude or a violation related to a controlled substance; or have been arrested or convicted for two or more offenses for which the aggregate sentence to confinement was five years or more; or have been a controlled substance trafficker; or are you seeking entry to engage in criminal or immoral activities?

So I’m a drug trafficker and I’m going to answer yes to this?

Please check my suitcase officer, I have 50lbs of Cocaine

Apparently the concept of moral turpitude escapes precise definition but has been described as an "act of baseness, vileness or depravity in the private and social duties which a man owes to his fellowmen, or to society in general, contrary to the accepted and customary rule of right and duty between man and man." The specific acts that such a concept includes inevitably change over time, as general public acceptance or abhorrence of issues alters; for example, until recent times, a man engaged in homosexual behavior was still considered as engaging in "criminal behavior involving moral turpitude." Basically ‘no gays allowed then’… hmmmm interesting…. This was in effect until 1990!!! WOW behind the times or what!

C) Have you ever been or are you now involved in espionage or sabotage; or in terrorist activities; or genocide; or between 1933 and 1945 were you involved, in any way, in persecutions associated with Nazi Germany or its allies?

My favorite… yes sir.. I’m a spy and I’m coming to steal your secrets… Errrrr…or I thought I'd try and re-enact 9/11 whilst I was on vacation in Orlando... errrrr

And if I worked with the Nazi’s in 1933 I’d be the approaching 100.. and so am a complete threat to National security!
That's me in the middle

There’s a few more that actually make more sense… you know, have been denied a visa before? ( you know when you answered yes to above last time D'OH) Are you seeking work?… but none of which you are ever going to answer yes to if you ever wanted a VISA to come in… cause if you have been previously denied you better have a new passport number these days as your passport would be flagged automatically… I watched someone deported at Orlando once for trying to come in on a passport that was previously denied.. she had been barred 8 years ago and they still got her.. She was on next plane back to UK ..arggghhh.. Its another story as to why I was sat in immigration being Nellie Big Ears .....


Apr 7, 2011

Welcome to my world.. flora, fauna and dead armadillos

Thought you'd like to steal a little piece of me..so I thought I'd take you for a walk yesterday with Gary.. I drew some strange looks taking pictures of weeds and dead patches of grass on our walking route and not finding too much too exciting I took some pictures of my flowers.. it seems that around me I just see the same weed all the time and some green grass and blue skies.. not that exciting... until you see a dead armadillo.. and I saw two yesterday whoohooo.. I called them Fred and Andy... Fred was very shook up..like in pieces... and Andy was all shell, his innards having been ripped away.. poor Fred and Andy.. although a big hawk was enjoying the last bits of Fred when we walked up and scared the crap out of me when it flew directly up into my path!


View at start of walk.. look at that sky

The boy

Wrong way you little bugger

This is a weed, the man in the last house thinks I'm weird


I know.. you all have trees.. but look at the green /  blue contrast.. well I thought it was beautiful

another weed...bring on the armadillos..

Hold on ... did we transport to Arizona?

Poor Fred.. there wasn't much left

Poor Andy.. someone had sucked his insides out!

Gary squirrel hunting

Mexican petunias,....Ruellia brittoniana  - highly invasive you need to keep it under control

Mexican heather...Cuphea hyssopifolia

The only flower left on my Rose after the storms

1st flower of season on my big lilly plant.. and no I dont remember name!


These are fantastic.. I think a type of Rain Lily. might not be though!

First Bougainvillea of year

Hello Mr Toad - rescued from Gary patting him to death last night

Entrance to my house at night!
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