5 things I liked this week 6/1/18- 12/1/18

It has been an interesting week. Things that i like


1. Being home. We arrived home on Saturday and it is nice to sleep in our own bed, with soft pillows. Japanese hotel pillows are not plentiful and tend to be on the hard side, often with large beads/ beans on one side.

2. Monday night crafting with QCWA. A chance to relax and catch up. What i was working on

3.  I finalised the AVETMISS reporting at work. It is an annual obligation, with a due date of the end of feb (the training industry struggles with reporting?) and i sorted ours out so early!

4. I tried a new gym class. It has been a bit hard to get to the gym this week, but there was a convenient class at the branch nearish to my work. It is a pilates reformer class using additional props, i havent tried it before and it was pretty good.  Given my lack of gym for the last month, the fact i finished is also good.

5. Animal crossing pocket camp. It is a mobile phone game based on the popular nintendo game (i have one on my 3ds). Non competitive, wandering around collecting resources and exchanging them for other resources. 


Its January, and i don’t feel too busy, but i was so frazzled yesterday i forgot to write a post. I was talking about my commitments last year and they commented how did i fit it all in?  I don’t think i am that busy.

I work full time- office job, all about the thinky.

I am a member of QCWA (queensland country womens association) and am one of the vice presidents in my branch, which means that i do a bit of work. Theres is a branch meeting each month, a committee meeting and a knitting and crochet night.  Sometimes there are extra things, but no this month.

I am volunteering at the 2018 commonwealth games on the gold coast.  At the moment this doesnt require much. I had to do some online training and have an in person training at the beginning of February. I will be pretty busy during though!

I belong to a book club.  We meet irregularly (next meeting is the same day as comm games training). Its mostly a lunch and chat thing.

I play touch footy once a week (touch version of a rugby variant) it is mostly a social thing, we are in the bottom rung of the comp.  first game this year is next week.

I also belong to the good intentions book club, which has not met since its founding in 2014…

I go to the gym a couple of times a week

I also like to catch up with friends not in any of those groups and i have a husband who seems to think i should spend time with him 😉


Thats not so much? But i feel a bit frazzled at the moment.  I think that is more coming back to work after three weeks off, and still being a bit off due to the ongoing cough


I bought my desk calendar tonight.  I don’t usually leave it this late, but i generally wait until they are on half price. The choices were poor- a live life better, a to do list (every day was a different format of a blank to do list), sudoku, crosswords, a things to do in a boring job, a paper airplane every day and an origami every day.  I ended up with the origami. 

I like having a desk calendar, but i rarely do the activity they hold (last years calendar is a Johanna basford colouring in one – i have coloured in about 4 pictures and given away about 10). 

I already have a to do list notepad and i have an undated weekly desk calendar- i didn’t use it for several months last year.  I do have electronic calendars, but for some things paper is better. But i have noticed fewer people have and use paper now, which limits the number being sold and therefor my options.

Microblog Monday- thoughts

A collection of thoughts

I have been doing a lot of reading about minimalism. It is an interesting idea, but i think the ability to be a minimalist requires an immense amount of privilege and resources. I have a lot of thoughts about what living a minimalist life entails, so this may come back.

Its a shock to the system going from 3 degrees to 34 (celsius).

Still trying to get my head around the idea that it is 2018.  

I finished one rainbow and started another


Looking for some new books/authors.  I read several harlequin presents on holiday, i think i have reached a surfeit.  



Japan trip- 7 days in Kyoto-part 1

On christmas morning we woke up early, checked out of the hotel and headed for Kyoto. Its about a 40 minute – 1 hour trip by train (depends on the train, line and destination). I was still coughing a lot, so i wore one of the face masks.

Once at kyoto we stuck our backpacks etc in a locker at the train station (suitcases were sent ahead from the hotel) and headed for the market.  The 25th of the month is a flea market day at a particular buddhist sects temples across japan.  The one in December tends to be big as people clear their houses in advance of New Year.

The market was pretty good. Last time round i found it a bit too touristy, this time it still had a lot to appeal to tourists but there was also a lot of interesting stuff.  There were also a few stallholders i recognised from osaka!

We found a different drip coffee stall and had some freshly roasted coffee.

After wandering the market for a couple of hours we went to Kinkakuji- the golden temple.  This is in the same area as the temple where the flea market was.  Kinkakuji was originally a residence for a noble, then was turned into a temple. At some point the villa was covered in gold leaf.

I was still feeling not so great at this point, so we headed back to Kyoto Station to pick up the bags, have lunch and then to the hotel.  It turned out the hotel was essentially next to a bus stop, so it was pretty easy.  I crashed for the rest of the day while G and M went out exploring.

As i was so sick, we looked at the planned activities and rejigged. On the 26th G and M went to Kobe without me.  Kobe had been a maybe day for the last few days in Kyoto, primarily to go to a Brazilian BBQ restaurant that we like.  Thats pretty much what they did while i stayed at the hotel and slept.

On the 27th we went somewhere new!  In all the times we have been to kyoto we have never gone to the the Fushimi Inari shrine. Thats the the one with all of the orange torii gates up the mountain.  It was snowing when we got there, and very crowded with tourists. No serene pictures of torii gates!

M decided to walk along the path. I opted not to (still sick), so G and i looked at the stalls and shops in the area, and i ended up in a coffee shop.

Following the shrine we headed a couple of stops further and went to the Gekkeikan sake factory.  The factory was interesting and offered some tastings as well.

Sake barrels at the local train station

Then we took a train back to Gion, had lunch and looked around the shops.

I then went to Misayubari- a tiny needle shop

Its down this passage

Sitting in a tiny garden is this tiny shop

As well as needles and scissors they also sold these handmade pins.  They are tiny.

The next day we had a wander from Kiyomizudera down to Gion.

Kiyomizudera is another temple complex, this one was famous for holy water (its not officially holy anymore).its main temple is a wooden structure with a huge deck that is popular for photos as there is the wooded hillside below and the city of kyoto in the distance.

The temple was constructed without nails and is currently being rebuilt/repaired.  The rebuilding of temples is very common in  japan and is actually part of the process with some shinto shrines.

The covered over area is usually an open deck.  There was only one section open this time.

Access to the temple is on foot- the bus stops at the bottom of the hill and we walked up the streets (cars still come up the streets, so i suppose we could have grabbed a taxi…)

The temple grounds are extensive and we wandered around on the paths

After we had our fill we walked down a different street, this one was lined with shops selling stuff to tourists (both japanese and overseas).

This we took a sharp right, down a flight of steps

A lot of shops along here too

There are a lot of shops and cafes along the way- we stopped at Inoda coffee which has a lovely garden outside.  We also visited a couple of my favourite temples.  These were noble residences that were then turned into temples.

One of these is kodai-ji which is my favourite temple, in part due to the garden, but i was feeling cold and not so well by this point, so i sat in the tea room and had matcha and a japanese sweet.

At this point we were pretty tired, so we headed back to the main shopping area for lunch and back to the hotel.

We did a lot of walking on these days, drank a lot of coffee.  Some of our dinners were just convenience store food, heated up at the shop and taken to our room(s).

Stay tuned for part two!







It was not a good flight back.  As of two weeks ago, the flight was half empty.  It was a full flight. Completely full, unexpectedly at the last moment. We landed at cairns at 5 am, and our flight from there to brisbane was leaving at 10. Not a good time to sit around a tiny airport.

Next time we go to japan, i think we may be looking at other options.  The budget airline we used is appealing because it has the most flights there, but the need to go through cairns is rough.  

Its nice to be home- my own bed, my own pillows.  The heat at home is not great- we have gone from chilly winter to heatwave summer.

I will write up our further trip adventures, but so tired right now…



Reading challenge fail

I signed up for a reading challenge on Goodreads last year- 100 books.  That should have been easy- i read so much, or so i thought. I ended the year at 75 books or so.  Some of this is the fact that i don’t instinctively track on good reads, but maybe i am not reading as much.

So this year, i will try again, but i will also try to track my reading here.  Maybe that will help? I have already read a number of books- vacation plus train travel does that. Maybe a post for tomorrow.