November 24, 2009


As it's getting hotter down under, I though there might some folks out there who would appreciate this.

This has been my fave breakfast for a few months now and I'm sure it will be even more appreciated in warm weather (and if it's cold where you are, you can nuke it for a little bit to have it warm apparently!)

Mel's Bircher Muesli (adapted from a Weight Watcher recipe somewhere)
2 serves (you do the math for more)

1/2 cup natural yoghurt (I use low fat, choose your poison)
1 small apple or half a large apple, peeled and grated (I prefer a sweeter apple like Golden Delicious or Royal Gala or Sundowners. If you like things a bit tangier, use a Granny Smith)
3/4 cup uncooked rolled oats
5/8 cup apple juice
1/2 cup fresh or frozen fruit (berries or whatever you like)


Some slivered almonds (or other nuts and seeds of your choice but remember, the more of these, the higher the calorie count, again your choice. Ditto chopped dried fruit)
Ground cinnamon (I love cinnamon and put lots in. You could use nutmeg or mixed spice I guess if you wanted).
Splash of lemon juice (I don't usually do this as I've never had an issue with the apple browning)

If using frozen fruit, then simply put everything in a an airtight container, mix it all together, seal it and whack it in the fridge overnight. It keeps fine for two days, I've never tried keeping it longer than that. It will be a bit watery but just stir before serving. (NB if you add any dried fruit you might want to add a little more yoghurt or juice for more moisture either when serving or initially).

If using fresh fruit, then mix everything else together in the airtight container and refrigerate over night and then serve with the fresh fruit on top.

Yummers as Bertie and Oliver would say. Also, pretty darn healthy!

Over there

Blogging over at Nobody Writes It Better today about suspension of disbelief....come check it out!

In other news, revision continues, book gets longer and hopefully better. I hope I'm close to half way in actual final page count now or this will offically be the longest book I've ever written!

November 22, 2009

Up the hill

Well, I've gotten through four chapters of revision this weekend. Detailed layering and re-writing revision. Plus lots of language tweaking seeing this is not a modern time setting. Slow work, so I'm happy with four chapters. Each chapter has grown though not yet enough to compensate from the sudden loss of page count when I discovered the formatting had borked and I only had 24 lines per page. Sadness.

Still, there are definitely whole new scenes to be added and I've been adding four or five pages a scene just in the layering and tweaking, so the final page count will be at least 400. All good and on track to send off to the lovely Miriam next month.

Sadly today's rain put paid to my plan for more gardening though niggly shoulder is probably grateful for that fact given it's decided to suddenly return to the realms of niggliness after a couple of weeks of seeming to progress on the mending front.

Nothing else of note to report. If you want to hear about the Sashiko class go the crafty blog. Tonight it's the excitement of dinner, dishes and then some telly before back to the day job tomorrow. Could've done with the four day weekend this weekend but I'll just have to wait until next week for that one.

November 20, 2009

I got nothin'

Not the most scintillating week. It can be summed up as hot and busy with a side of the return of Mel's stupid allergy that makes her itch. Phooey.

However, we have plunged into the joy (oh hear the sarcasm) of revising and so far have staggered through the first six chapters. So about a third down. I want to get this book to Miriam by mid December at the latest and the rest of the book needs a lot more work than what I've done so far, so it's head down and type type type for the next few weeks.

Tomorrow morning though, I'll be doing this as a bit of a mental break. So hopefully that will fire up the girls!

November 14, 2009

A few hours later

Well, we have partial WIKTORY over the lavender behemoth.

It is pruned, if somewhat inelegantly.

Which only leaves the problem of what to do with the pruned bits which have somehow expanded to take up about five times more space than they did on the bushes.....

I could fill up my green waste bin about six weeks in a row with this little lot. Hmm, wonder if I know anyone with a mulcher.....then there'll only be the fun of getting out of my backyard thanks to the design genius who designed a backyard with no entrance except for THROUGH THE FRAKKING HOUSE!

And now I must go shower to stop as much of the itching as possible. As well as being allergic to mould there's some nasty sticky weed thing with little burrs in my grass that scratches you to let the mould in even better. We hates it, stupid weedses.

PS. Trust me, this counts as exercise for the day.


2009 has been a year of feeling like there are too many balls in the air and not many of them staying up there very long.

Writing has been up and down but seems to be smoothing out again (knock wood, cross fingers). Crafting has been mostly up which is good but kind of added another ball to the mix.

Exercise has been a downhill slide all year. I did pretty well until about April then got sick but was still managing pilates and Nia mostly (and got sick again on my holiday in August when I was going to reboot everything). Then I changed my work days so my group pilates day didn't work any more and my Nia class got cancelled so the last few months have been very sporadic on the exercise front. My pants do not thank me for this, so we're starting operation reverse the trend this weekend. Yes, it's hot but I have an elliptical and an air conditioner, so I'm going to start again with baby steps (sigh, I wish I could find the way to keep my mental exercise switch on!).

Last night I went to dinner at a friend's and we ate outside in their little backyard under the trees and it was lovely. And I came home and looked at my own little backyard which is currently a wilderness of long grass, overgrown flowerbeds and a giant lavender bush (the lavender has thrived at least) that is attempting to eat my clothes line and decided it was time to do something about that too. Last summer it was too damn hot to garden and it's hot this weekend too but I'm going to at least do a bit in the cooler parts of the days so I can then get a little man to come in and slash/mow the grass and clean my gutters. I don't have the money to do what I really want to do with the space right now but I figure I can at least reclaim it so I can have an umbrella and sit outside now and then. Plus, gardening burns calories! The orange cat won't be happy to lose his "I'm a tiger" long grass to stalk through but bad luck. So to keep me on the straight and narrow, I shall report back on progress on both goals

PS Not kidding about the lavender bush....

I keep expecting it to start saying "Feed me, Seymour...." but I have secateurs and am prepared to use them!

November 08, 2009


No, that's not the noise one's brain makes just after finishing a book (that's more like zzzzzzzzzzzschnfargl), but today I found out that one of my photos has been included in Schmap's guide to Brisbane.

Check it out.

Mine's the pic of the lighthouse on the right. See, you never know what can happen on the big wide internets.

November 07, 2009


Numfar (well, mostly me but Numfar in my mind) is doing the dance of joy. Because we can hereby declare draft zero done! Woot!

Those of you reading along will no that it's been a long sloggy writing year for me and there were times where I felt like I'd never finish another book. So to anyone feeling like that, I say, hang in there, keep writing, do whatever else you can to feed the muse and the words will turn up one day!

Progress - Lily

New pages - Twelve
Intriguing things - The ending made me cry. In a good way.
Annoyances - Can't be annoyed because it's DONE!
Linear/non-linear - Linear
Music - Angels - John Farnham
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - Soon to do exercises.
Muse food - Sewing. About to nap/read. Then dinner with the lovely lulus.

PS Doesn't that progress meter look nice at 100%? Excuse me while I stare at it awhile. And not as short as the last draft zero though I have a feeling it has a lot of growing to do yet. But that's a worry for another day : )

November 06, 2009

Almost there

Good writing day today. 23 pages in about two hours of writing (aka four half hour Write or Die sprints). I only have some sketchy bits about aftermath and then the final scene (which I've kind of had in my head all along) to write. So this baby might be done with tomorrow barring life intervening or that final scene turning out to be way longer than I think it is.

Fingers crossed!

Progress - Lily

New pages - Twenty three
Intriguing things - Final confrontations going a whole 'nother way.
Annoyances - Can't really type more today.
Linear/non-linear - Linear
Music - Soundtrack
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - Walk. Stretching after this.
Muse food - Nap. Burn Notice.

November 05, 2009

Anyone gotta spare arm or two?

First of all a big WOOT! to the fabulous Keri, because her latest book is gonna be number six on the NYT next week. Let there be rejoicing throughout the land!!!

Hopefully I might have some rejoicing of my own in a few more days...closing in on this draft now. Right now it's tempting to pull out the caffeine and power through but I shall be sensible Mel. My shoulder and hands won't thank me if I push it too much.

Progress - Lily

New pages - Eleven
Intriguing things - Sometimes you gotta ask for help. And 'fess up your deep dark secrets.
Annoyances - Minimal
Linear/non-linear - Linear
Music - Soundtrack
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - Physio.
Muse food - Soon there will be Glee. And sleep

November 04, 2009

The light at the end of the tunnel might not be a train after all

To misquote Josh Lyman horribly "I think we've got the big mo, baby".
Passed the three hundred mark tonight. And I basically know what happens for the rest of the book. About four big scenes and some mopping up. So if I do the big push over the weekend, I might just be able to finish it (fingers crossed, knock wood, throw salt etc etc etc). It will need a lot of work in the revision but hallelujah, it looks like I might just finish a book this year after all. Given it's been a long hard winter of discontent writing wise for much of this year, all I can say is WOOT and all praise to the great god Letitsuk!!!! (and again cross fingers, knock wood, turn widdershins three times etc etc etc so as not to jinx oneself.)

Progress - Lily

New pages - Thirteen
Intriguing things - Angry sex
Annoyances - Minimal
Linear/non-linear - Non
Music - Kings of Leon
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - Chiro. And soon blissful back stretches
Muse food - Not much so far. Need some TV or a good book

November 03, 2009

Closing in

La book is approaching the three hundred page mark. Traditionally this is about the point where things pick up speed and I get to the end fairly quickly. I'd like to be done by the middle of the month, so fingers crossed.

But for tonight, I'm done and given it's back to the day job tomorrow after a lovely five day weekend it's off to bed before I lose all willpower and give in and watch Private Practice instead of recording it.

Progress - Lily

New pages - Eleven
Intriguing things - Villain attacks
Annoyances - Minimal
Linear/non-linear - Linear
Music - Soundtrack
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - Physio.
Muse food - Lazy lunching, lazing around in general apart from writing pages

November 02, 2009

Drive by updating

Nice lazy Monday. Wrote pages, went to see Whip It (fun move and those roller derby girls are very cool if somewhat nuts lol), napped, wrote more and then new Big Bang and Star Trek. What more could you want?

Progress - Lily

New pages - Eleven
Intriguing things - Failed plans
Annoyances - Minimal
Linear/non-linear - Non-linear
Music - Soundtrack
Location - Write or Die and Think.
Taking care of Mel - Nap. Physio.
Muse food - Whip It and Star Trek