March 28, 2010

What she did this week

This week I:
  • saw Josie Long's new show at the comedy festival. Lovely and funny and uplifting, as always.*
  • hung out with lovely friends visiting (all too briefly) from Sydney and Adelaide
  • ate an amazing marron risotto at the Station Hotel, with aforementioned lovely friend from Adelaide
  • read The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian by Sherman Alexie (who won the PEN/Faulkner Award this week), and it was every bit as good as everyone says it is
  • bade farewell to the restumpers and put out the welcome mat for the plumber (who didn't turn up, hmph)
  • went shopping for kitchen door handles. And found the perfect ones, hurrah!

March 22, 2010

Five faves

Hat-tip to Pip at Meet Me at Mike's.

My five favourite things last week:
  1. This video about why we should feel optimistic about the future of publishing (and reading).
  2. Getting into our little vegie patch and planting peas, cabbages and lettuce. This is our third try with both peas and lettuce; hopefully this lot won't be devoured by birds before it has a chance to establish.
  3. Sitting on the couch (temporarily; the tradies kindly put the floorboards down in the living room on Saturday so that we could use it on the weekend).
  4. Watching (500) Days of Summer (4.1 On the couch. 4.2 With Mr Fantapants.)
  5. Mr Fantapants's homemade pizza (leftovers = this morning's brekkie )

March 18, 2010

Peaceful gestures

Ms Persnickety Snark (aka Adele) is visiting the Peace Memorial Museum in Hiroshima this weekend and has made a very generous offer to include the details of bloggers from all over the world on some of the cranes she is leaving at the memorial, as an expression of "hope for peace and memorialising all the children that have been lost to conflict". I think it's a lovely thing to do. If you'd like to be included, leave your details on the Persnickety Snark blog by Friday morning US time.

In less peaceful news, the builders are in the final stages of levelling our house (apparently the concrete mixer arrives today, w00t!), which means more ominous creaking and cracking. Big Ginger Cat has tucked himself safely away under the bed. I'm tempted to join him.

March 15, 2010

What she did last week

It's hard to think what's been happening chez Fantapants other than the ubiquitous restumping, but when I made a list we managed to fit in quite a few outings (although most of them were to avoid sitting amongst the rubble that is our living room at the moment).

Last week I:
  • started uni! And realised just how far removed academic writing is from the plain language I've been espousing in online writing for the past decade or so - it's going to take some getting used to.
  • dropped a uni subject, which feels a bit like failing before I even started, but it inly took me one week's worth of readings (and the fact that both major assignments were due on exactly the same days as the major assignments for my other really damanding subject) to realise that I can't give Origins in Children's Literature the attention it deserves right now. I'm going to stick with the straight literary theory subject this semester and will hopefully be much better equipped to tackle Origins next year. If I stick to three subjects a semester instead of the full study load of four it'll take me an extra semester to finish, but I figure an extra 6 months is not huge and, given the debt I'm racking up, I might as well get all I can out of my subjects.
  • read Burger Wuss by MT Anderson and started Red Spikes by Margo Lanagan.
  • watched Men Who Stare at Goats (not a book well suited to being fictionalised, IMO) and IT Crowd and Peep Show on iView as the telly is covered in a sheet and there's a big hole and an associated pile of floorboards in front of it.
  • saw the Ron Mueck exhibition with friends visiting from Sydders. I was actually really disappointed with the exhibition - there weren't enough works to justify the hype about it being a 'the most comprehensive' exhibition of Mueck's works ever, and while I really like the pieces that played with scale and expression, I found some of the more recent ones a bit bland by comparison.
Apparently the restumping will be finished by the end of the week. Then we can start on the associated to-do list of fixing floors, plastering cracks and rehanging doors that no longer fit properly. Ho hum.

March 11, 2010

News

Good news: according to an author quoted in the LA Times, this is the "golden age of young adult literature".  Now if I could just spot more people on my bus reading Markus Zusak than Stephanie Meyer, I might start to believe it...

Bad news: Corey Haim is dead. I was never a fan of the Coreys, but it's a memento mori when teen heartthrobs of your youth start popping off. Still, it may not be all bad news; the reflected attention might just resurrect Corey Feldman's career.

In other not-necessarly-good news, the Great Restumping of 2010 continues. We now have a trough running from the living room to the front door and another running the length of the dining room and kitchen, which Big Orange Cat spends all day cautiously climbing into, running out of and generally eyeing suspiciously. This morning, the corner of the house I'm sitting in is being jacked up. There are cracks appearing in the walls. They make a craaaack-ing noise as they appear. The builder assures me they will not fall down. I want to believe him.

March 9, 2010

In a word, lovely

What a weekend! Mr Fantapants and I missed all of the crazy weather on Saturday due to being in the cozy downstairs lobby of the Sun Theatre for the official launch of Finding Freia Lockhart.

While Melbourne was whipped by torrential rain, gale force winds and hail the size of golf balls, I was pacing nervously and sweating quite a bit (which was silly, really, because it was my lovely agent, Sophie, who had to do all the hard work speechmaking and reading a bit from the book and convincing people it was worth parting with their hard earned dosh for).

The lovelylovely Sun Bookshop put on such a nice do for us and lots of my lovely friends came, and also some very lovely people I hadn't met before, which was, there's only on word for it, lovely. Ordinarily, I'd rather lick an armpit than be the centre of attention, but my writer's ego must have emerged on Saturday because I loved every moment. I even enjoyed signing books (ahem, apologies to those who cannot make out what I wrote in their books, I did my best to keep it legible but penmanship has never been my strong point).

I really didn't think the weekend could get any better but then I received a lovely comment from Steph (which wasn't the slightest bit weird or awkward!) letting me know she'd posted a review of Freia on her blog, My Girl Friday. I was supremely chuffed by the review, especially coming from someone who's such an avid YA reader and a writer herself, and even more chuffed (chuffeder?) that Steph made Freia's brownies! And took photos of them!

Thanks everyone, for making this one of my Best Weekends Ever. It was lovely.

March 4, 2010

(re)stumped

It's a frabjous day chez Fantapants as the Great Restumping of 2010 has commenced! It's taken two and a hald years and a couple fo false starts, but I can report that as I type the front of my house is being jacked up and tradesmen types are circling the perimeter cshaking their heads and muttering about recharging powertools.

In a twist on the old adage that the bus you've been waiting 20 minutes in the rain for will pull up the moment you light a cigarette (not that I'd know anything about that), the moment I'd applied bright pink nailpolish to precisely 7 of my fingernails the tradies arrived.

Fingers crossed, this time a couple of weeks from now it will all be over!

March 1, 2010

What she did last week

The biggest thing I did last week was finish my full-time job! Was given a lovely send off by my lovely colleagues (luckily they've already invited me back to do some casual work, otherwise I'd be very sad not to be working with them any more).

Last week I:
  • read When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead (breathtaking and well-deserving of all the awards it's bagged) and Whip It (aka Derby Girl) by Shauna Cross
  • watched Where the Wild Things Are and Fantastic Mr Fox, both of which I'm glad to have seen but neither was as good as the book
  • had farewell drinks at Little Peninsula with my lovely workmates
  • finished knitting forget-me-nots for my superlovely teammates and got back to work on the lairy pink legwarmers (it's already chilly chez Fantapants!)
  • had a delicious vego thali at Maharaja's Haveli (583 Barkly St, West Footscray) for vindaloo against violence day
  • went to a university study day for off-campus students...and realised it's been a loooong time since I last wrote an academic essay
  • went to a friend's shoe party (like a Tupperware party but much, much better) and came home with a pair of black patent mary jane heels. Score!
I'm having this week off to prepare for uni/house restumping/the big launch. Am somehow already behind in my schedule...