Money Issues

No, we’re ok financially. It’s learning to adjust to the cost of living here. At least things might be going in our favor. The American dollar is finally holding its own against the Australian dollar. The only familiar breakfast cereal available that MBD likes at our grocer is Fruit Loops. I should say the only familiar and edible in her opinion. It comes in one size: Large. At under 18 oz/box, it costs $7.79 AUD. The Australian produce is even expensive. I bought a normal size seedless watermelon the other day and it cost $25 AUD. The price broke down to 7.2 kg @ $3.48/kg AUD. A case of diet coke in cans costs $27 AUD. And please, don’t get me started on ironing boards. Pictures don’t lie. (Click the picture to enlarge)

No, you do not need glasses. Or at least I hope you don’t and can make out the prices in the picture: $92.96, $106 and $108. There is not a single thing different in these boards than those at your local WalMart. Oh and if you’re trying to be smart, the iron is NOT included! Ironically the boards in the picture were available from the Big W here in Manly which is the equivalent of the US Walmart. Go figure….

The kittens are now 6 months old and the loves of our lives! Hard to believe. They are the most lovable and affectionate animals I have come in contact with in my life. They also piss me off and sometimes barely make it through to see the light of the next day. They play in forgotten water cups spilling the contents on whatever is underneath. The last fiasco was tipping over the cat litter bag and peeing half in the bag and half on the floor. Thanks so much for that, Thumper. Here are some updated pictures. Mickie is the black one and Thumper is truly asleep on my chest – his favorite place to take a nap 10 times a day

Well, I hope all is well with everyone. I have an appointment with the ADHD specialist on Monday at 17:30. I’ll let you know how it goes.

The word of the day is….


Have you hooned today? Most adults and definitely LOTS of teenagers have been guilty of hooning.

What is hooning you ask? Well I am sitting at the same cafe as yesterday during my FOUR DAYS OF FREEDOM reading The Daily Telegraph. I came across a brief article entitled “‘Jealous’ cop tails Tomic.” The picture is of a very handsome young man who turns out to be “Australia’s top-ranked male tennis player.” (how come his name does not sound familiar to me? Oh that’s right, Sam Stosur is AUSTRALIA’S TOP-RANKED TENNIS PLAYER PERIOD!) Anyway, the article states that young Tomic is “claiming police harassment after being pulled over for allegedly hooning in his $150,000 luxury sports car.” The article also talks about alleged traffic breaches. What the hell???? I cannot for the life of me deduce what the spoiled rotten tennis player is guilty of. So I went to my bread of life at the moment: Lovely….

So here’s what I’ve found:
The word “hooning” comes from Down Under, basically describes doing burnouts, sliding sideways through corners, and any other general mucking about in a car. Otherwise known as having fun :]
Well alrighty then. Add that one to your pocket dictionary.

For your daily enjoyment, here is a picture from UNDER the Harbour Bridge. Just to understand the mammoth size of this structure, look for the fully grown actual size man in the lower left corner. The Opera House looks like a dog house compared to the bridge.


Good morning….

Good Wednesday morning, Australia and Good Tuesday afternoon, America!

As some of you know, my family has slept with a “sound machine” since MBD was a baby. In fact, our original STILL WORKING 11 year old Conair Sound Machine is at my parents’ home in TX as I grudgingly write this post. Why did we leave such a classic piece of machinery, you ask????

Welcome to my world of 240V electronics. You would be amazed at what is and is not usable with 240V. Some of the 120V items we left in the states include hairdryer, expensive flat iron, all clock radios, small kitchen appliances (think toaster, hand mixer, etc,) my beloved Vornado fan (bought in Chicago BEFORE I was married,) and practically anything else that plugs into an electrical outlet. Computers, cell phone, iPads, iPhones and such, you ask? All will work here with a $12.78 adapter. But hold on there buddy, you DON’T HAVE CELL SERVICE HERE!!!! Cellphones are called a mobiles here, pronounced mo-BILE.

I especially miss my favorite coffee maker….AND they don’t make American coffee makers in 240V!! This instant coffee thing is for the birds. I can’t gripe too much about the coffee tho since I haven’t explored other avenues. Anyone have any comments on a coffee press? How does the dang thing work? It looks to me like you end up with coffee grounds in every cup.

What DOES work here, you wonder? Outside of computers, cell phones and iPads, the only electric appliance I brought that works is a tiny (think 2 inches here) cheap flat iron I bought at TJ Max for MBD’s bangs. Go figure. It has become such a “joy” to flat iron her entire head of long to the middle of her back hair with a 2 inch iron. Lovely.

So as you move about your afternoon today, stop and take a look at each electrical item you use to see if you can bring it with you when you come to visit us. (hint, hint) Converters you ask? Absolutely, we have them here and they will convert your 120V appliance to 240V for the low bargain price of more than $700 AUD. It makes you put things into perspective – I KNOW that is our favorite and most beloved sound machine but I think I paid $29.99 US for it back in 2000.

I do believe I have found a solution tho. Last night MBD slept for almost 12 hours! There are TONS of “white noise” apps on the iPad and iPhone. I downloaded an app called Sleep Pillow onto the iPad, plugged it in (with the adapter no doubt) and turned on some rain for the night. Worked like a charm….just like when she was a baby!

Have a fabulous afternoon!