catchmyfancy: (escher)
Action today:

1. LMusA
  • the lovely Anna found me the sheet music for From Rosy Bowers (Purcell).  Have printed it out and found a recording I like.

4. Geoffrey Parsons award:  
  • Tom has settled on Schlagende Herzen (Strauss) and Von ewiger Liebe (Brahms) for our two audition pieces. 
  • I went and found the soprano version of the Brahms (but the recording I love most is by a mezzo, Anne Sofie van Otter, go figure); gave it to Tom before he went away for a week (and also loaned him my shiny new Gerald Moore book, he better not lose it in the wilds of Hamilton that's all I can say; or use it to fend off the young lasses - and possibly young lads - of said township, who will no doubt think their eisteddfod accompanist surpassing fair and overly talented and thus eminently pursuable - poor Tom!); and broke the back of it tonight so I can start digging into it in my lesson tomorrow.
  • is it weird to say I'm terribly excited by the Brahms?  Not just because it's a glorious, difficult piece; but because FINALLY I have a piece that trips me up on every.single.thing I think is missing/wrong/undeveloped in my singing, the things that keep me a talented amateur instead of letting me advance to be a professional contender.  It's an excellent diagnostic tool as well as being a masterwork.
5. Stash wars: found the yellow gingham for Josie's apron, and also the interfacing for tracing the pattern onto.

6. Stuff wars: cleared out my cupboard and the one in the front room of all the plastic hangers I have ever bought, methinks.  Have made a date with Melinda to drive her home on Wednesday, which means I can deposit all the hangers into the charity bin in the church next door to her house.

8. Make the better decision:
  • had breakfast this morning, and chose fresh-squeezed vegie juice and a chicken-and-dark-leaves-in-mountain-bread roll for lunch. 
  • Had dinner at Mary and Melinda's house and got chickpea and chorizo and tomato something plus salad and more flatbread. 
  • Went and bought vegies and fruit and general Stuff tonight - spent $47, but I have everything I need for the rest of the week foodwise. 
  • DID NOT GO TO GYM, but then was not breathing overly well for most of the day, so: swings and roundabouts. 
  • Got 16 minutes before bed! (outside limit of midnight).
catchmyfancy: (escher)
A week or so ago I was meandering through old entries trying to find a recipe I posted a couple of years ago. 

Which is like going to look up just one small thing in the encyclopedia and coming to about two hours later sitting on the floor surrounded by open volumes.  I guess the internets equivalent is getting sucked into the TV Tropes vortex.  (Click on link at your own time-management peril).

I ended up reading the first six months of entries wherein I came to grips with physical training (and my vocal injury), and I realised a couple of things:
(a) I really suck at tag management and will now have to go back and re-tag everything
(b) posting little and often and using the blog as, ooh I don't know, an online diary or something really actually worked.  I liked being able to type the words "just back from the gym", so I tended to BE just back from the gym.

I've been updating on Facecrack, but that just dissolves into....somewhere and nowhere.  You can't go back a couple of months easily, never mind a couple of years.

These days I have multiple projects on, so instead of just one multifaceted project (like [personal profile] etfb 's Project Apple - and hey - that one worked!) I bring you THE LIST (dun dun duuuuun!)

Here they all are:

1. LMusA practical singing exam - 40 minute recital with bonus viva voce from the examiners -  Deadline: mid-Sept

2. Musicianship 6th grade (basically the written component of (1): aka just cos you can sing pretty doesn't mean you're allowed to be all iggerant and not know a relative minor should one bite you on the arse)(and believe me, in the past they have)  Deadline: mid-August

3.  Lyrebird music society recital: 5th September at 2.30pm DO come and bring all your friends 80 minute recital (or two 40-minute halves - if ever I was losing my junior journeyman status and heading towards senior in the bizarre ricocheting journey that is my musical career where I'm either an earlier-spent-force-regathered or a very late bloomer - pick one -  and looking ahead to the dim, daunting peaks of mastery, September will be the month to KNOW.)

4. Geoffrey Parsons award: 28th June in Ajuloide.  Me and Tom throwing down in the city of churches.

5. Stash wars: who will win - the fabric stash or me?  In this challenge I attempt to ignore the screams of the fabric as I cut into it and actually turn it INTO something and get it out the door, or in use around the house. Deadline: end of 2010, it's gone, it's made, or it's earmarked.

6. Stuff wars (a slightly snappier title than "jesus mary joseph and ethel merman, I am drowning in STUFF and it must go before I turn into someone who has to clear a path into the rooms they want to use...").  Deadline: right bloody NOW.

7. Garden: needs to be looked after better.  Deadline: so it's pretty in the Spring.

8. Gym, fitness, sleeping, eating - I'm giving this one no deadline, but I'll go with: make the better decision.  Every time.  It helps to have perspective: one of my singing teacher's other students came for her lesson and we were chatting about staying well and looking after yourself and all I could hear was whine-whine-whinge (yeah, she's young and fairly ridiculous, just like looking in the retrospectoscope for me) and when she said "I'll try", I have to admit I lost my temper a little and my parting line was: "as Yoda says: Do.  or Do Not.  There is no 'Try'."  It is a fabulous exit line.  But as I dodged trams across Royal Parade, I had to admit: good advice for me too.  I either make the right decision (going to bed at 11pm not 2am; going to the gym instead of sitting hunched at my desk; cooking real food instead of eating whatever) or I don't.  And no whining about the consequences.  (not the warmest and fluffiest of places to be sitting, but at least it's honest).

And that should keep me going for a while, I reckon...
catchmyfancy: (determined)
For those of you who came in late:

1. I put on weight and the gym habit suffered

2. I re-dedicated myself to the effort, using the logic that as I organise 20,000 people a year I can certainly sort myself (who is just one person and one who I happen to know pretty well) out with some minimal mental application

3. It's been working!  Am about to begin week four and I've lost weight, am feeling 40,000 times fitter and stronger, and, most importantly: I have got myself into a routine at home to keep things going, as it turns out that my instinct was correct: using my powers of sorting-things-the-fuck-out for my own benefit (for once ) to establish infrastructure has made it easier for me to sustain the effort.

Or in lay-person's terms: if you make it easy, and remove all the coulda-shoulda-wouldas, then it gets done. 

Anyway, as we head into week four, I've noticed the odd little ripple of cause-and-effect around me.  It appears if you make changes, unashamedly, confining them only to yourself, neutrally discussing the challenges and changes with others, and not needing other people to say "well done you" (and despite the diva tag I get labelled with about every other day, I really don't need that much approval) then you also open up the possibility of change to the people around you

One of them is Melinda sometimes deciding she does not want cake with her morning latte.  But then, she is getting into the home routine thing herself, so I think "being a supportive friend" is her way of sneaking her own self-improvement project under the radar.

Now, I like to be able to keep count of what I've done; and because it is faster and easier to do same on Facecrack (and because one half of the Management Committee is on Facecrack) then I've been doing updates after most of my workouts and after seeing Mike the Personal Trainer.  Some of the comments have been "yay go you!" and some have been a little...conflicted. 

Anyway, this is a long-winded way of saying that one of the things arising from being dedicated and organised is thinking: what ELSE have I not been doing just because of coulda-shoulda-woulda?

Which has led to a huge decluttering of the clothes and the wardrobe. 

And now I have turned my attention to the spare room, which has always been very uninspired in terms of decor.  This is probably because it is the visible proof of my Faustian Bargain with the parental units - it cannot be changed (apparently) and nobody can move in because that room is the pied-a-terre for the family, and I pay reduced rent because of it.  So it sits and is a Spare Room.  Until last week when I decided that camping out in my own house was Not To Be Borne, and dammit, just because it is a Spare Room doesn't mean it can't be nice.  

I had Ingrid and Kindi go in and work out where to hang some pictures last week.  And while I was in Spotlight the other day I decided to upgade the bed linen (which is kind of blergy and not my thing AT ALL) and wandered around the linen section till I found a doona cover I liked, and bought it, and showed Elley and she immediately hauled out a quilt which matched and promptly gave it to me to put at the foot of the bed,  which made her feel like a decluttering queen, and me feel like it was all meant to be and made both of us feel actually pretty clever. 

So it has been washed and is ready to go on the bed, but then I was not sure about the sheet situation.  So now I have hauled all my bed linen and blankets and quilts etc into the front room to do the Big Sort through and declutter some more.  I only have one head, so there's a limit to the number of pillowcases I actually need.  I have one double and one single bed for guests.  And they have (on the whole) a limited number of heads also.  

Finally, they have been exhorting us on Flylady (this may have been a while ago actually, but what the hell) to start using the food in our fridges, freezers and cupboards before buying more, so this is my thing this week: to see how long it takes before I need to buy more stuff.  I've been more than a little annoyed at how often I have to throw out food that just sat there until it went off.

So, have just made a Leftover Sad Vegetables and Beef casserole (this will be for lunches during the week and I'll be using up the seed bread loaf that's been lurking in the cupboard as the accompanying carbs); and tonight's dinner was four potatoes I found at the bottom of the vegetable crisper, steamed in the microwave rice cooker and mashed with some parmesan cheese, sea salt, pepper and seed mustard. 
catchmyfancy: (destiny)
As a true blend of the parental units (up to and including my voice: Mum's clear soprano tone blended with Dad's Bass-baritonal oomph) I occasionally have these bizarre, bi-polar moments.

Socialising is a big one: Dad is hail-fellow-well-met and the maternal unit is pull-up-the-drawbridge-and-prepare-to-repel-invaders.  Which means I can go nuts having people in or going out every night for about a week and then I have to go have some alone-time before I pick up a knife and carve my way into forensic history.

In terms of house management, for about 90% of the time I apparently take after neither parent and live in comfortable cluttered mess with (I cannot deny it) some playing-fast-and-loose with the Approved frequency of shower-scrubbing and dish-washing. This continues until someone comes to visit......or my genetics rear up and bite me on the arse and I spend most of a day or week cleaning, sorting and filing until I fall exhausted into the rubble that was my happy mess.

After yesterday's brainstorm I now have a mostly-empty bathroom cabinet and my earrings are sorted into two little plastic containers - one for hooks and one for stud earrings.  My rings in another box.  And necklaces all draped nicely over my dressing table mirror stand, dear god.

But I managed to leave a small mess in the kitchen and not immediately go in and clean it up last night, so it is possible sanity is returning...
catchmyfancy: (Default)

Kitchenage update

After cooking two big batches of proteinaceous food-for-several-lunches-and-dinners last night, I couldn't face the laundry cupboard, it's a Big One.

(If you never visited my hoose, I should explain: It's not a cupboard in the laundry.  It is a laundry in a cupboard.  Well, two cupboards, actually, but the one with the washing machine in it doesn't hold much else, so the decluttering potential is pretty low).  

Instead I turned my attention to easier prey: the 2nd (misc kitchen implements) and 3rd (spices and other little oddments) drawers down.    

The only problem was I had the Tripod song running on a continuous loop in my head.  Ah well - I can think of worse things to have playing on the Obsesssion Channel. 

Many many many things were either:
- chucked, (yes, because I don't think spices "mature" over five years, I think they just go off really; also, exactly how many egg cups can a person need?); or
- put into a little pile of things I am passing onto Tom the Baby Accompanist and his housemates seeing as they are Poor Students and much of this stuff I had from when I was a poor student, eg a bottle opener and lots and lots of old knives.

Some things I am keeping - Nan and Pa's carving set, my rolling pin, my swift-whip beaters, my super-duper Tupperware cheese knife - traditional stuff for the second drawer down.  No rhino horn or guns though.

Once I clean out five years' worth of accumulated gunge, the tea-towels are going in the third drawer down.

Tonight, we're hunting rogue buckets, wild plastic bags and cleaning products from the dawn o' time.

kitchenage

Apr. 30th, 2007 01:20 pm
catchmyfancy: (Default)

In a bid to stop the Black Plague spontaneously evolving in my kitchen, I hit it like a moderately-spinning dervish last week.

Washed all the crockery, put things away, left the cutlery soaking.

As there was almost nothing in the cutlery drawer, I thought "hell, bung it all into the water and maybe wipe down the whole thing".  

(Which I duly did - and incidentally, I am giving up collecting teaspoons if it means I have to wash and dry every single one of them ever again - took me a good 15 minutes just to get them all nice...)

Then the reason why one should NEVER spot-clean one's carpet kicked in: ie, you now have one shiny clean spot in amongst all the grunge and it is completely and utterly unbearable and you need to go put on your rubber gloves and grab the bleach because now YOU MUST CLEAN IT ALL!  ALL OF IT! BUWAHAHAHAHAHAHAAAA!!!! 

(who me? obsessive?  Nah.  Only when I have the energy).

One full recycling bin and one full rubbish bin later, I feel like I could even cook a meal for another person and not be worried they would spend the next day in gastrointestinal agony.  

One major stumbling block was that when I moved in, my mother gave me lots and lots of big glass jars to store flour and rice and devestated coconut &etc in.  Lovely thought, best of intentions, but a 180-degrees-from-good idea for my kitchen where it is all high and/or deep shelves and cupboards and this is exactly the sort of sitch where  you don't want to be wrangling huge heavy jars one-handed.   Once they were all in the recycling bin, I felt much more betterer and proceeded to move stuff around to my satisfaction.  

All the tea and coffee and assorted accoutrements now live in the cupboard above the stove.  It turns out I have one coffee plunger and FOUR (count 'em!) four teapots in various sizes and settings just in the kitchen.  

Found another one (and matching sugar bowl) hiding behind the big tupperware under the sink.  But it's a way cute teapot (it has the seaside on it) and besides which my sister gave it to me when we were both students and she was the St Kilda Markets Maven so it shall stay with me forever AFAIC.  It can be for special occasions and continue to nestle unregarded behind the lettuce crisper.

I have three unopened twinings loose tea leaves packets; four different herbal teas; chocolate tea, mango tea, bog-standard tea and decaf tea.   Plus quite a few of the Twinings tins, both full (of which tea is what we wants to know precious, yes we does) and empty.  And my personal favourite, sugar swizzle sticks from Harrods which someone brought me back from the UK about five years ago.   How VERY.

We shall draw a discreet veil over the Fridge De-Icking.  Suffice it to say: (1) I didn't know capsicums could do that and (2) if you find five egg-cartons in a fridge...how on EARTH did I fit all that other crap in there?

Tonight: Get out yer pith helmets - we're off into deepest darkest Laundry Cupboard.

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