Growing Stuff

A couple of weeks ago, one of my friends gifted me some Yellow Lemon Drop chillies that she grew from seed. She’s a big fan of the chilli, in all forms. In fact, one might call her a chilli connoisseur. But she now has more than she knows what to do with and can’t give them away fast enough.


I do like the odd chilli here and there, but I don’t eat a lot of them. They don’t feature in my cooking every day, at least. Now, with this in mind it would make sense for me to wait for her to have another bumper crop and hold out my cupped hands in a hopeful manner in case she has any more surplus. But I had so many seeds left over and didn’t want to waste them, so I thought I’d try growing some for myself.

Apparently, these bad boys are prolific. But instead of planting maybe one or two seeds, I’ve gone completely overboard (so unlike me!) and planted a whole tray.


If all seeds are successful, I’ll have about 30-35 plants. If, say, only half survive to adulthood, I’ll still have 15 or so plants. And if all these plants produce as many chillies as my friend’s one plant produces, I won’t have any idea what to do with them all.

The half batch of chilli sauce that I made last weekend will keep me going for quite some time. There’s only me that eats it and believe me, while delicious, it is capital H hot!

But I’m probably getting ahead of myself, since so far only two little plants have emerged. Stay tuned.


In other gardening news, I bought some Italian parsley, mint, lemon thyme and salad burnet seedlings from the farmers markets last Wednesday and already they’ve just about doubled in size thanks to all the rain we’ve had.



My Christmas Inconsistencies

Christmas: special time of the year? Perhaps for some. Maybe not for everyone.

I often wonder where I was and what I was doing when they were passing around the Christmas genes. I think I picked up some but clearly not others. For example –

Things about Christmas I loathe with a fiery passion:

  • Christmas carols
  • Secret Santa (work edition)
  • Christmas decorations (especially tinsel)
  • Navigating shopping centres, searching for gifts
  • Large parties or gatherings where my dietary choices are loudly called into question. And judged.

But I love, love, love:

  • Christmas movies (I can and often will watch them year-round)
  • Secret Santa (online friends edition)
  • Online shopping for gifts
  • Christmas lights (my exception to the no Christmas decorations rule)
  • Champagne for breakfast (my own personal Christmas tradition)

So basically, as a way of coping with Christmas this year, I’ll be the one walking around in public with my noise-cancelling headphones on to drown out the Christmas carols that are playing everywhere and carrying an EpiPen in case I accidentally touch tinsel. And then rushing home so I can watch Love Actually for the millionth time.

I’d be excited about the Christmas season ending if it didn’t send a signal to the Powers That Be that it’s now time to stock the grocery stores with hot cross buns.


Last Week of NaNoWriMo – Thoughts

Soooo…I’m not going to make it, okay.

I deliberately took the last Friday of November off work so that I could spend a solid long weekend finishing this challenge early, and basking in the glory of the NaNo parade, sipping champagne from my NaNo mug while I finally get to indulge in Stranger Things, etc., etc.

But when I sat down yesterday morning to write, it suddenly became a case of “crap, now I have to write 25,000 words in the space of three days”. This didn’t sound like fun to me. In fact, it reminded me way too much of how my Honours thesis panned out a few years ago. And that certainly wasn’t fun in any way. I still have nightmares.

And so, I’ve decided to hang up my NaNo Hat for 2017. I’m not quitting writing this project I’m working on – which, in the NaNo frenzy has worked itself into an unrecognisable messy beast of words – but I will be stepping back, maybe pulling the story apart, picking out what I like about it and tossing the rest away. And then I’ll continue writing.

Congrats to all who made it to 50,000!!

I did it two years ago, so I know I can do it. But just not this year. And that’s okay.


Random thoughts on my first week of NaNoWriMo 2017

Kind of in order:

  • So far, so good. Not exactly hitting the recommended daily word count in the first three days. But hey, that’s what weekends are for, right? They’re for catching up.
  • Last time I did NaNo it took me three days to even start any writing. Don’t panic at this early stage.
  • Let’s see how my one and only writing buddy on NaNo is doing. OMG! How has she written over 9,000 words already? Doesn’t she work? Like at a full time job?
  • It’s Saturday! Writing vs Stranger Things = Writing won the first round. Excellent self control! Very uncharacteristic of me.
  • Writing vs Housework = Housework won. Still, word count increased a little bit.
  • Sunday is here, gonna set myself a personal goal of 4,000 words today. High fiving myself in advance like a true dork.
  • Nano writing buddy is approaching 10,000 words.
  • Just relax ok? Don’t panic. And stop comparing myself to others, I’m doing fine.
  • Have caught up and can probably sneak in a ep of ST later in the afternoon. (Or maybe not, I know what I’m like when I start watching a series I love. It’ll be 3am before I’ve finished ‘that one ep’, aka the whole season).
  • Jeez, she’s over 10,000 words now.
  • Stop looking at what someone else is doing and focus on my own writing. Not sure this ‘writing buddy’ thing is a good idea.
  • And the final word count for today is 4,043. Well done me.
  • Glass of wine. Maybe two.
  • Cheers.

Tanks for the Rain

I’m currently house and cat sitting for one of my friends who lives in a beautiful house in the beautiful mountains. There’s lots of beautiful birds everywhere, and the solitude is really beautiful.

But, her sole source of water is tank water. Now, I live in Brisbane and I was around when the big drought of 2007 was on. Or was it 2008? I can’t remember. Anyway, every household was issued with a suction cap 4 minute shower timer and we all had to limit our daily water usage to 140 litres or else the Water Police would fine you. Since then, I don’t think I’m one of those people who wastes water willy nilly.

However, I had a conundrum today about using the dishwasher. Do I use it or do I hand wash? It seems a bit wasteful when it’s just me, even though there are dishes in there from yesterday. In my household, I am the dishwasher, so it’s always a treat when I can press a button and a machine does this chore for me. But I didn’t want to waste water.

Having said that, it’s raining up here at the moment. Quite a lot and it has been for about a day. And I wondered how much rain it takes to actually fill a tank. I’m confident the tank isn’t 100% empty, otherwise last night’s shower was a mirage. So I turned to google.

I selected the very first search result. I’m a busy girl and I have no time for complicated water-related research. The good people from gave me the following information in their FAQ’s section:

Screen Shot 2017-10-21 at 12.34.27 pm.jpg

This means absolutely nothing to me when I have no idea how big the tank is or what the surface area of the roof is. And I have no way of measuring the volume of rainfall. So I’m just going to trust that the tank is already pretty full and today’s rain is just topping things up.

And I used the dishwasher.