Microblog Monday – crafty thoughts

I went to the craft fair this weekend.  G came along as well, but was too tired to last long. So I was by myself for a while.  I went to two presentations that made me think.  The first was a show about repurposing and mending to create vintage looks.  It was about how people didn’t used to have a lot of clothes, and there were tricks to stretch the use and update looks.  An interesting meditation on how wasteful fast fashion is.

The second was a class on “boro boro” stitching.  This is a Japanese concept, basically sewing together scraps of cloth with running stich to create padded and quilted clothing out of remnants of cloth. Another way to reuse old things.  It was a rural technique that went dcidely out of fashion as modern clothes became available and there isn’t much left.  There was a small exhibit of boro boro pieces at the show, and I took a class to make some coasters in that style.  Yes I am aware of the irony there, that someone has cut up scraps deliberately,  but it is a useful technique for using the little fabric scraps that accrue.

And this has made me think about my crafting in general.  In the last few years I have been trying to make things that are at least somewhat functional- turning stitched pieces into pincushions, or coasters etc.  I still have a lot of kits to make cross stitched pictures, but I would like to think about alternative uses.

The other thing I did this weekend was finish off a Mollie makes cover kit.  It was a tiny weaving kit.  It was interesting to complete, but I can’t help feeling it is a bit useless.

I have nowhere to hang it, I don’t actually like wall hangings much and well why? I can kind of understand having these sorts of kits around so the idea of weaving is not lost (because at some point civilisation is going to need to know this) but I am not going to be weaving anything useful any time soon.

And so much of crafting seems to be of this type- a useful technique used in a way that seems incredibly wasteful and indulgent.

Hmm, not so micro!

Insert swear word here

Dear government agency,

When I complained last year about the decision to no longer offer opening hours outside 8:30-4:30 weekdays ( the time many taxpayers such as myself are working) you told me that this was because your digital was superior.  It’s not.  It can’t cope with the complex claims I used to take in to the office. I don’t care about the simple claims, those are easy.


And after a conversation about this with the feedback hotline, it’s because your phone app (only available to those in the population with smartphones)does. Nowhere on the website is this indicated. Possibly because your Comms people are smart enough to know this is not a good indicator of how you view your clientele- either they are free enough during the week to go in in person (not adequately employed) or they have enough money to have a smart phone.

Still a cranky customer.


Things I like about traveling

  • On an airplane, once it has taken off, looking down at the land.
  • On an airplane, just sitting in my chair and chilling out, it’s a chance to just relax
  • Travelling by train
  • The chance to walk around a neighbourhood, looking at the supermarket and the daily living things. Seeing how universal some things are, and how many meetings other universal needs can differ.  Last year in the USA we had the opportunity to do this in New York and Chicago (a point for air BnB) and also in Northampton. This year we did the same in Tokyo, and to some degree in Kyoto and Osaka. Supermarkets in other countries are always different in surprising ways.
  • Spending time in a cafe, reading a book
  • Sharing something new with my husband
  • Being able to show whoever I am travelling with (usually my husband) something I liked/thought was good
  • Trying new food
  • Going to art museums
  • Going to history museums/social history museums
  • Going to outdoor building museums
  • Walking outside, especially in environments that don’t exist in Australia!
  • Shopping for crafty stuff
  • Food/drink I can’t get at home
  • Onsens
  • Riding on trains, looking at the city
  • Participating in local events
  • Watching baseball
  • Disney!
  • Overseas home stores/electronics shops. Furniture and white goods vary by country.
  • Planning the trip
  • Unplanned moments of serendipity
  • Getting to the airport early enough to have a coffee and relax, starting the trip in a mellow frame of mind
  • Leaving home
  • Coming home

Things I don’t like about traveling

  • Going through security and passport control at the airport
  • Checking in for the flight
  • Waiting for luggage to arrive
  • Wearing the same clothes I wore on the plane
  • Take off and landing
  • Airplane bathrooms
  • Tourist/backpacker bars
  • Trying to catch specific train links
  • Travelling by bus.
  • Travelling a long time on overcrowded trains (20 minutes max)
  • Bad food where there is no other option
  • Going over the weight limit 
  • More than a limited period of time in Akihabara/electronic stores.  I don’t have a specific known time limit, but I know it isn’t as long as my husband’s. 
  • Places with no public seating (looking at you Japan)
  • Not eating lunch/breakfast on time.  This means cranky.
  • Booking hotels on the phone. 
  • Almost missing a flight through no fault of your own but because traffic/trains/buses broke down
  • Running through an airport
  • Lost luggage
  • Long and slow check-in queues

I would like to add pictures for these…

Cafe, new food (ice cream in those macaroons), time with my husband
Cafe, new food (ice cream in those macaroons), time with my husband
Fireworks in Japan
Fireworks in Japan
River festival in rocky
River festival in rocky
New food in a cafe in Ueno
New food in a cafe in Ueno
Asakusa Temple forecourt
Asakusa Temple forecourt
The street crowds watching fireworks in Tokyo.
The street crowds watching fireworks in Tokyo.
At the handmade festival
At the handmade festival
Art museum in Hakone
Art museum in Hakone
More Hakone art
More Hakone art

Microblog Monday…

I have these thoughts, but when I sit to write my blog posts they are gone.

So random statuses.

I went back to work mid-last week. Very tiring the first few days, but movement helped.  I did discover walking around the block at work was too far for me.

G has been sick since I was in the hospital- a double whammy of pneumonia and the flu.  Plus a newly discovered allergy to dust mites.  So it’s been interesting- I can’t do much and he can’t do much either.

Lots and lots of sleeping happening.

I did watch the first half of friends the first season.  Was the original actress playing Ross’s ex-wife replaced?  I think I see the appeal now- young single adults in the city- in a way I didn’t quite get my first years of Uni.

I also finished a small cross stitch project and worked on one of my rag rugs.

Things I wish I had done before my surgery

Some thoughts

1. Taken a belly selfie.  One of the side effects is some swelling/ bloating.  I can’t tell what is last few years weight gain and what is surgery puffery.  Plus I could have done a whole series of belly selfies on FB!

2. Done a temporary tattoo of a dashed line and a little pair of scissors on my lower belly.  There’s a business opportunity there.

3. Dyed my map of tassie* a spectacular colour, or cut it in an amusing shape.  Given the number of people who saw it over the days at the hospital, it would have been entertaining.

Anything else I should have done?

* Australian slang for the patch of hair found in one’s nether regions.  I am trying to thwart certain search terms.


Was discharged from hospital on Saturday. Spent the weekend doing little.  But my husband, who needs to be the one doing the heavy work, is sick. So not awesome. I feel guilty for having to ask him to do things I could normally do.

And J still has the attitude.  I don’t know what to do there except point out that if he is really unhappy he does have the option (somewhat) of leaving. He is legally an adult. An unemployed one with the survival skills of a baby chick, but the law doesn’t care about that.  At the end of the day, he can choose to leave, and if continues to be rude to us, then there are things were do not have to do for him (allow him to drive is at the top of that list).

So today, I worked from home, G was sick at home and J stayed home and looked for work(?). It turns out that four hours of sitting isn’t good for me, even when it is comfortable. Then we went grocery shopping.  So I am in bed at 7:30. I hate working from home, it just doesn’t work for me.  Which my boss knows.  So, when I say I have to do it again, she’ll know I am still struggling.

bright side, I have been reading and I watched the first 10 episodes of season one of friends.  

Observations from a hospital bed

Firstly, I wasn’t expecting to still be here.  The original plan (as I understood) was that I have the surgery Thursday morning, stay overnight and be discharged Friday morning.  

So, the surgery happened earlyish Thursday morning, a laparotomy, so I will have a larger scar.  I spent most of the day dozing and medicated. One of those pain med on-demand things plus a fair amount of pain when I moved.  A lovely diet of clear fluids.

Then this morning my catheter came out and I failed to need to wee for some time ( I had to wee twice and have a scan before I could leave). It hurt to move much. I struggled to eat breakfast and was sad. G came in and sat in my room.  We did not see my surgeon.

Physio came and made me walk. Ow.  I sat in a chair. Ow. I agreed to shower and managed a wee.  Yay.  I felt sick, so on the oxygen, but no more painkiller on demand. Then the surgeon showed up- the fibroid is gone. It was a big one.  Yay. But staying the night again. 

I napped, managed a wee and the scan and all good.  Amazing what a couple of hours will do.

Thoughts- especially early- this really hurts, and if I do get pregnant I will require a c section, which I imagine is similarly painful.  Not sure about that. Being allergic to orange juice is odd, and yet doesn’t prevent me from being served at breakfast.

Still Around

Stressed at work- a project due date got moved from end of September to September 4. With a week to,complete it.  Done now, or at least that part but brain fried.

Stressed at home.  J is 19 and has attitude to match. I lack the patience on this. He seems to be angry all the time.  No dude, being asked to empty and fill the dishwasher once a day is not onerous, especially when you create half of the dirty dishes.  Being required to put your shoes on the shoe rack is not a ridiculous requirement. 

Health stress.  Booked in for a fibroid removal next week.  It’s not cheap.  I am not sure of the recovery time, but I am stressed if I am looking forward to the enforced bed rest.

Money. Not too terrible, but the op will not help. Plus there are a couple of exhibitions in Melbourne G and I want to see.  They end in November. A weekend there, flights and hotel is probably at least $1500. That’s about the same cost of moving j’s stuff up from tassie.  I am pretty much nope on the moving of stuff ( my life experience of having to move and live somewhere with just a suitcase more than once makes me less sympathetic to someone who didn’t plan very well). But how can I justify spending that much on a weekend away then!  And also, don’t really want to bring J along.  I am still not very happy about his behaviour when we went to Rocky.  I am not inclined to provide an all expenses paid trip somewhere nice to someone who acts like I am a problem in their life and that I can be treated rudely.  

Games I play

I wrote about distractions, and then failed to elaborate.  I have found that I have a maximum of about three different games I can play on a given device.  

So, on my personal iPad I have Family Guy:the quest for stuff.  I am conflicted about this game because I don’t like family guy very much, I don’t like the creator very much and I don’t like the game developer very much.  I find family guy to be not very positive about women (well about people) and I don’t really want to support that attitude. Yes it may be funny, but funny in that way isn’t good for society. And tinyco (game developer) is a developer that has made games I have played in the past.  I have enjoyed those games but they fall on the premium end of freemium games and are a little bit too eager to monetise.  But this game is addictive.  You rebuild the town, building shops and gaining characters.  The playing challenges are interesting enough it keeps me sucked in. But every so often it is a little bit too much about monetising and I drop it for a while.  

If you like those kind of gradual town/village games (I imagine FarmVille is similar but I never played) you may like this.  I played tiny village and tiny zoo- the same developer and they were similar.  You can register you FB Account and visit friends who also play.  I find this disappointing because on the other tiny co games you could also visit and “friend” random accounts as well- no real-life connection, just the game name.

I also have clash of clans.  Actually I have a different clash clans village on my work iPad, my personal. iPad, my phone and the old iPhone (now our travel phone).  I don’t have a lot of motivation towards getting involved in clan wars, I just like building my villages.

At a certain point you need a lot of resources, but they take a while and raids keep depleting them, so again, a bit too much of the pay us more money vibe.

I don’t currently have a third game- I was playing a Japanese cat collecting game (fairly undemanding and calming) and I have a solitaire game compendium I play occasionally. 

With the cat game, you leave toys and food in the yard and cats visit. Sometimes you just get the message that they visited (the bubble at the bottom) and sometimes they are playing in the garden!

On my phone, I play clash of clans and threes.  I really like threes- but I am not very good at it.  Just slide the little numbers around.

But I also have two 3ds consoles.  One I have had for a while, verrrry slowly playing Fire Emblem Awakening (I have been playing it for two years).  The other is a recently acquired Japanese 3ds.  It’s all in Japanese, so that will be educational, as I try to kick start my rusty Japanese. On that, I am mostly just playing the built-in street pass games.

So yeah, my distraction is largely due to these many game options.  Most, however, are not meant to be played for hours.

And yes, I do have a lot of tech devices. Some from work though, and I have a preference for handheld consoles (game boy type) over TV consoles.

Bad news Thursday

Not a good day.

I saw the GP a few weeks ago about the excessive bleeding I was having with my period.  Apparently the technical term is flooding.  So off I went for an ultrasound. And today I found out I have a 7.1 cm fibroid.  Which is causing some issues with my uterus.  Surgery is the answer.  The problem is their may be issues with fertility.  And the surgeon she recommends is apparently very good, but I also need to consider whether I want to involve my fertility specialist who is also a decent surgeon.  Decisions to make.

And then I went and collected the mail.  You may have read a few months ago that I was applying for a new job.  Today I got the official rejection letter.  I was ambivalent about the job- it sounded fascinating and challenging, but I also had potential ethical issues.  I also  would have been required to do a lot more running around for documents, so that is a relief.  But a bit sad that I didn’t get further.

Not a great day.