Sentence a Day – July

July started in Melbourne and ended up somewhere very different. In between were work and writing and all the usual stuff of life. Some sun, some rain, some cold, some warm…no time to be bored. Anyways, here’s the month that was – in one (or more) sentences a day.

1. In Melbourne but heading home today. In other news, due to some over-eating of the truffle and dairy kind (not together) my tummy is complaining.

2. Thai Boat Noodle soup for lunch – it was medicinal.

3. Dolphins at play this morning – just splashes in the distance with the light catching their shiny backs. I don’t want to jinx it, but I think the rain has stopped.

4. Swedish Death Cleaning – Dostadning – is a thing…so, apparently, is work.

Random fact: Swedish Death Cleaning is about gradually getting rid of your stuff. The idea is to minimise the amount of clutter that you leave behind for others to deal with some day. According to the idea of dostadning (try saying that ten times in a row) your treasures will be a burden to someone else someday.

5. Beat the rain with a walk – some really cool cloud action to start a busy work day.

6. Friday and usually my day off the day job. Today, however, instead of writing words as I go through the usual monthly de-greying regime, I’m still doing corporate stuff. Don’t ask.

7. Inspired by Masterchef this week I’m doing Rick Stein’s butter chicken for dinner.  As an aside, beetroot powder is a thing – and it’s a fabulous colour.

8. My brother and his family arrive this afternoon. Decision bowl lunch was at Uptown Gastro Pub in Maroochydore – food was good, but service slow.

9. Blue skies, fish and chips on the beach with the Lyons Den for lunch, and slow cooked 5 spice lamb for dinner. Other than that? Work…of course.

10. Walk to Alex, work, and the Lyons Den leave on stage 2 of their holiday.

11. Road trip itinerary nailed. In other news, it was flipping freezing – yes, even in Queensland.

Random whine: When trying to book a double room in one country town that will remain unnamed, I hover over the fine print to see that the 2nd person in the room will cost an extra $20 a night. Yes folks, the 2nd person. The one sharing the same bed. Not a 3rd person who would need extra bedding, that would be fair enough, but the 2nd person. Essentially that makes it $20 for the 2nd towel. Now I’ve seen everything. As an aside, I booked the other motel in town. Rant over.

12. Rainy start to the day – not that it mattered, I was stuck inside working.

13. Ms T off to Yandina for house-sitting, and some words written in the best office in the world.

14. Markets early on a cold morning, an afternoon walk on the beach, tried the new gelateria at Mooloolaba Wharf, and a Bastille Day menu. And pelicans at the boat ramp…I love pelicans.

15. Corbins was drawn out of the decision bowl but closed today, so La Canteena and beers in a bucket for lunch instead. Five coronas for $25, we couldn’t say no.

16. Another cracker of a day, hubby to Bribie Island to farewell Uncle T as he heads back to England. I, on the other hand, didn’t leave my desk.

Random thought of the day: Never in the history of calming down has someone calmed down by being told to calm down. Just saying.

17. Cold start for our walk, blue skies, stuck at my desk for the rest of the day.

18. I was a guest judge at the Brisbane Office bake-off comp – a tough job, but someone had to do it. The three winning entries are below.

19. Blue skies and work…that’s all. Fires up around Peregian painted the sky tonight.

20. Sunshine Coast Velothon this morning so roads closed and unable to get to the beach for our walk. Instead, we walked a different route – from Currimundi to Shelly Beach…8kms return.

21. Saturday morning beach walk and a cruise ship moored just off Mooloolaba Beach – Mooloolaba certainly dressed in her fancy pants for the occasion. Back down at lunchtime for prawns in the park. In other news, the white chocolate cheesecake I made was pretty fantabulous. You’ll find the recipe here.

22. Mad Mex Cantina drawn out of the Decision Bowl for Sunday lunch – Ms 20 is ecstatic, me not so.

23. A blue sky start to Monday. Walk, work, and a rainforest walk at lunchtime – complete with a catbird that sounds like a baby crying.

Random fact: the pink and yellow flowers are lantana – which is a noxious weed…it’s also pretty.

24. Take yesterday and repeat – without the rainforest and the catbird.

25. In between work we started putting together pantry pack for Eucumbene.  Yes, we really are taking paella rice, saffron and chipotle peppers in adobo sauce on a “camping” trip. The culinary competition is real folks.

26. There was a dolphin playing metres away from us this morning. A pink sky and dolphins – the day can’t get off to a better start than that.

27. Even though it’s Friday and my day off, I worked.

28. Got up early to watch the Mars and Moon show in the sky – it’s not every day you have a total eclipse under skies that clear. As for the rest of the day? Packing and cleaning – I can’t stand going away with a dirty house or any dirty clothes in the laundry.

29. Off on our road trip. Tonight’s scheduled stop is Narrabri in North Western NSW – and 666 kms away. The verdict? Narrabri is a lovely town – a very comfortable stop – but I can’t get over just how dry the country is…it’s heartbreaking.

somewhere between Moree and Narrabri

30. A lot of nothing for much of this morning’s drive. With a huge observatory at Coonabarabran, they’re a tad space-obsessed along this stretch of the Newell Highway.

at Gilgandra

We called in at The Dish just outside of Parkes. The last time I was here I think was back in about 1976 or 77. It hasn’t changed that much – but the visitor’s centre is very impressive.

Tonight’s stop is Cootamundra – 582km from Narrabri.

31. Tumbarumba. Even though I’ve never lived here if anyone ever asks me where my roots are it’s in this town – despite having been born in Sydney. It’s where my father was born and where his parents were born, lived their lives and died. The history of this town and the history of my family are so closely intertwined. Anyways, I’ll tell you more about that later.

Sugar Pine walk – about 20kms out of Tumba

What I watched:

  • Secret City (Netflix) – OMG this had me hooked.
  • Nanette (Netflix) – because everyone else was watching it.
  • Jack Irish (ABC)
  • Doc Martin (ABC) – I’m very late to the Doc Martin party
  • Masterchef…of course

I started watching the latest series of Poldark and am ashamed to say that I’m a tad over it. Not that I’m over Aidan Turner or the random shots of him emerging from the sea…no sirree…but I’m getting a tad tired of the story. Don’t throw anything.

What I listened to:

Other than my usuals, new podcasts for this month:

The Washing Up – a rundown of reality food programs with a heavy leaning to Masterchef at the moment. Don’t listen if you haven’t watched the episodes.

Wrong Skin – a podcast put out by Fairfax. Man, this is confronting and interesting. It’s an investigation into an unsolved death and a missing person in the outback, with themes of traditional law and relationships banned under those laws.

What I read:

I read 9 books over the month. My favourite reads were:

The Marmalade Files, by Chris Uhlman – political satire at its best and the basis of Secret City.

April in Paris 1921, by Tessa Lunney

The Hidden Cottage, Erica James

The Comfort Cafe series (I devoured them all – pun intended – over the month) by Debbie Johnson.

I’m on a road-trip at the moment and am blissfully wi-fi and cell-phone reception free – yes, those places do exist. I’ll respond to any comments when I’m back online.

It’s Lovin’ Life Linky time…

It’s Thursday, so it’s time to look for our happy and share it about a bit. The Lovin’ Life Linky is brought to you by Team Lovin’ Life: Deep Fried Fruit, DebbishSeize the Day ProjectWrite of the Middle50 Shades of Age,  and, of course, me.

17 Replies to “Sentence a Day – July”

  1. Looks like you had a good July. Beautiful photos, Jo. Your home location seems so nice with the beaches, wildlife, and restaurants. Gotta not to repeat day 27 unless it’s for your book. Have a fantastic road trip!

  2. I didn’t know death cleaning was a thing but I do know that for a few years before she passed away my Nana used to give away her treasures so she could “guarantee who got them”! As a child it did seem a bit morbid to me at the time but now it makes more sense.

  3. So much to comment on Jo!!
    First, I need to get my mom into that Swedish Death cleansing, although I know I have about as much chance as ice in hell…just sayin’
    Then I’ve seen that second person thing at hotels…it’s an interesting way to get more money, I guess. Then again, the luggage fee when flying isn’t any better.
    Your “calm down” thing made me laugh. Because you’re so right!!

  4. Thanks to you, Jo, I’ve started A Sentence (Or Two) A Day. It’s been great fun to distil the day into one sentence.

    The Death Packing concept while confronting is very practical.

    SSG xxx

  5. Hi Jo, what a lovely July you have had. I had to chuckle at the country hotel charging an extra $20 for the second person. You gotta lovely country Australia. What a shame you couldn’t meet up with Deb from Deb’s World while you were in Tumbarumba. I’ve been thinking about doing some Swedish Death Cleaning. No, I don’t intend to die any time soon but I also don’t want to leave my kids with lots of stuff. I’ve learned that from my MIL she has kept everything from her 92 years!!!!! So much stuff to clear out now that she is in an aged care home.

  6. I love your office! Cannot believe that motel/hotel charging for a 2nd person in a double room. How ridiculous! Your trip so far is looking all kinds of fabulous. So jelly! I crave a getaway! Enjoy! #TeamLovinLife

  7. Jo you have such an interesting life! How does someone become a judge in an office bake off? I could seriously take that role on 🙂 Loved all your scenic pics and the food ones always make me hungry. Enjoy that road trip and now I want cake!

  8. I must watch Secret City! I’ve seen it advertised and need some TV time.

    I love that you still go on your walks and continue to be envious of your food and scenery pics but know my own lack thereof is because I’m bloody lazy and don’t get out and about!

    Hope you’re enjoying the trip!

  9. You are one busy lady. I think you need to read my post for today! I like that you keep a journal and photos of exactly what you do each day of the week. I would have no idea. I only keep a journal when I travel. I love those tall trees in Sugar Pine walk.

  10. Jo, it seems like you’ve had a very busy July – but a very fun and nice one! You’ve been doing a lot of things; been working, been on a road trip and much more – and on top of that you’ve read nine books! I don’t understand how you manage, how you have time for everything. I really do envy your energy!!

    Where have you heard about the Swedish Death Cleaning/Döstädning!?!? I guess I’ll need a Döstädning myself… I’ve lots of clutter (treasures!) but, as you say, they’ll sure be a burden to someone else someday…

    Thanks for sharing your lovely pictures and sentences. You’re a great inspiration!!

    Anna Karin

  11. Loving the nature photos! So beautiful. Being a judge at a baking comp must be tough! I’m oh-so-envious of your ‘office’ sometimes. 😀 Road trip seems amazing…been following your pictures on Insta and loving it.

    1. Judging the bake-off was a tough job – but someone had to do it. I’m fortunate to work from home – other than when I need to go to the Brissie or Sydney offices. My deal with my boss is I can’t work at the beach when I’m working for him – that office is for when I’m doing my work ie writing…

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