10 things.

This is a chain-blog-post that I was inspired by from News With Nipples at  http://newswithnipples.com/
 tell you 10 things that I love, and all my legions, nay hordes of regular commenters may even tell me ten things, or one thing, or whatever, that YOU love.

1. Books. I just love books way too much. I read when I feed the kids – I read when I watch tv – I read while I mend things (I’m quite good at holding books open with my toes). I have a book on a bookstand in the kitchen, and look up and read a paragraph here and there while I’m doing something easy, or a sentence here and there in between chopping!
I get a massive buzz finding a book I like in an op-shop. My first date with my husband was to a second-hand bookshop. I cannot go anywhere without a book in my handbag. I don’t even buy handbags without making sure that they will take a trade-paperback or hardcover.

2. I love food. I love reading about it (natch) and cooking. I like mixing spices. I like the smell of frying onions. I like the slipperiness of roasted capsicum. I like punching down dough for pizzas. However I am stupidly picky, so I try to be adventurous in my limited range. I like feeding people and seeing them go back for seconds. (Or, you know, feeling perfectly satisfied with firsts.)
I like writing recipes in the most ridiculously verbose and purple way that I can.

3.*Warning – Self-Pity Alert*
I love silly in-jokes that go on way past their use-by date, although that partly comes from feelings of always being a tag-along and not ever part of a ‘gang’…so in-jokes kind of make me feel like part of one. *sigh*

4. I love looking at my kids when they are asleep, they look so sweet and calm, with their thick eyelashes fanning over their round cheeks, and their hands curled up. And they are so lovely and quiet then, and not making a mess. Does that make me sound as though my ideal kids would be ones in some sort of museum display?

5. I love listening to my kids singing and humming along to songs. Especially when they are singing along to things like Bruce Molsky or Mumford and Sons in the car. So cute! “Oh, Man is a Guinea-Pig’ is a superb example of their versions of songs.

6. I love telling people my brother was asked to do an audition for Circus Oz. It makes up for all the brothers and sisters who regularly get public service jobs. (Of COURSE I am proud of you all too. REALLY.)

7. I love compliments. I like being told I am a good cook, or a good singer, or a good writer, or like the one I got today…
“Don’t even try to come up against Rhiannon in a head-to-head piratical eloquence showdown.”
How good a compliment is THAT.
I like giving compliments too. People should be appreciated!

8.I love the fact that my husband can fix nearly everything. (As in, repair, not ‘I’ll fix YOU.” kind of fixing.) Him too. I mean, I love my husband too, not just his fixing abilities.

9. I love watching birds. I don’t go anywhere specifically to see them, but if I am in Woy Woy and I see some pelicans on lightposts, or cormorants and darters and egrets on the waterfront, or swarms of ducks –  (Yes – it may not be the correct collective noun, but you try eating a pie on the waterfront, and you will see what I mean) it makes me happy. I was pretty stoked once when I was crossing the footbridge on the road into Woy2 and I looked down to see a cormorant diving – I got to watch it swimming around and nosing into weeds and rocks, underwater, directly below me. Awesome!
I like hanging out clothes on my deck and seeing sea eagles soaring past. I like hearing whipbirds and butcher birds. I even love hearing Koels at 2 am on sultry summer nights.
I live visiting Canberra again and seeing crimson rosellas and grass parrots.
I don’t actually like birds indoors though – they smell funny and get tangled in people’s hair and poo everywhere.

10. I like houses, inside and out, and towns and cities in which not everything is new and shiny. I like seeing old painted ads, old sandstone churches reflected in giant shiny glass skyscrapers. I like cast iron lace and wide skirting boards. I like shabbiness. I like waterfronts that look a bit rough and tarry. I like furniture that looks as though a few generations have used it and battered it a bit in the process. I like verdigris’d copper roofs. I like lichened tiles.

What about you?



4 responses to “10 things.

  1. Maree Robertson

    A Response to Rhainnon’s Ten Things:
    Ok, you got me, too many things to tempt me here to NOT respond. Not comprehensively, or from my own *scratch * I’m not in THAT mood today, but just in part response to yours, as is appropriate here I hope…

    1. I love that you posted a list of things you love, & that you had to squeeze lots of *likes* in there to fit many more than ten things in, I imagine that must mean you’re having a *good day*, which seem to have been few & far between of late, so that makes me feel happy, for you 🙂

    I can’t even imagine being as in love with books as you are, I have regularly whittled my entire book collection down to less than a dozen or so *life-keepers*, but that’s mostly cos I’ve moved more times in my life than I am aged (& that’s 47!)…books are HEAVY! I do have an extensive collection of hundreds of CDs (in folders sans plastic covers, so they ALL fit in one BOX), tho even that I’ve culled multiple times. If I was to make a comparison, I think what I LOVE is *seeing a new (to me) musician with songs with lyrics I find affirming & true for me, & then buying their CD & listening to it LOTS, until I move on to another new *find*; OR getting turned onto their recorded music by a friend, & THEN seeing them live. Most recent examples of this passion are: Rosabella Gregory (Love The Man), The Weepies, Penny Larkins & Carl Pannuzzo’s The Cradle; Michael Kennedy. Check them out.

    1b. I love opshops, in general, but especially the ones that haven’t been corporatised & cleaned up & narrowed down & priced up. I’m ok with the occasional stained clothing item, for the satisfaction of the accidental miracle. Most of my fave clothes, & many of my fave possessions, have been found in op shops. I love it if I’m on holidays or passing thru a small country town & have time to trawl thru at least one of the op shops. (I recommend Tenterfield). I do however, have a passionately compulsive desire to look at EVERYTHING, just in case the magically perfect item I don’t know I’m looking for, is there around the corner on the next shelf. This can take TIME.

    1c. I love a good handbag (preferably found in an opshop), large enough for an A4 folder, that has LOTS of pockets for * filing* the stuff I like to have handy, so I can find it easily & without thinking about it. One of the main things I’m missing while being on the walking frame post ankle break & surgery. Those kind of bags don’t usually have the long strap I currently need, so for now, billums it is.

    2. Food. Yes. Definitely. In varying forms, but most satisfyingly, tangy/tasty/saucy/ stuff from anywhere in the swathe of the world between SE Asia & the Middle East. I could write a list of ten things I love that was JUST the names of the countries from which this food originates: (Morocco; India: Malaysia; Tibet; Indonesia; Turkey; Lebanon; Thailand; Spain; Italy) Your recipe postings regularly make me drool. Especially cos my current life has too little food of my favourite, exotic, type. Fortunately it does contain a lot of my SECOND favourite type, old fashioned meat&three veg…providing those 3 veg includes broccoli (and sweet potato/brussels sprouts/green beans in regular profusion).

    3. Nup, I don’t much like * in-jokes * anymore, cos I actually DON’T like the sense that they inevitably * leave * out someone…. I used to have a propensity for word-wit, but after a difficult triangular interaction involving two other people who tended toward choosing wit over warmth, I made a conscious decision to abandon the former in favour of the latter. I’ve never regretted it, except when I’m in the presence of a group of folks who are * out-witting * each other, & then I feel *stupid *, which is, frankly, ridiculous, cos that, indeed, I’m not. I love instead the first of the Four Agreements: Be Impeccable With Your Word.

    4. I love almost ALL kids, awake or asleep, especially cos I almost always give them back after a few days or so, just the right amount of time to stay impressed with them J There are some kids I am scared of, if they’re rough. I also love kids’ movies, especially if they’re G rated, and the story arc doesn’t contain too much violence or harsh noise. I am VERY sensitive to harsh noise. Two of my fave family movies are Toy Story 2 & Wall E.

    Re your museum reference: I wonder if you would like your kids best if you had them stuffed? J instead of YOU being stuffed, by them, daily….. (see, I told you I gave up wit 😉

    5. I love singing songs in the car with my great-niece Hani, we have a repertoire of 6/7 songs, our most recent is * Truly Scrumptious * , I love how she sings * presumpshus * J I’m missing seeing her now I can’t drive… maybe I need to remedy that, somehow, thanks for the inspiration. I love that she made a *Mondegreen* of the song Hey Soul Sister, & got quite annoyed, when I didn’t immediately understand her, when she demanded we sing *Hazel’s Sister*…(Hazel is my dog’s name).

    5b. Hazel, my 12yo collie/kelpie cross dog, who I’ve had with me since I saw her born & named her after the rabbit leader in Watership Down, not knowing she would end up being mine. She stalked me while I camped on the property owned by her mother’s owners (the vision of a puppy splayed on a tent side at sunrise is one I will always remember, the other puppies always moved on, but Hazel would sit & wait for me to get up & gather her). Watership Down, there’s a BOOK I love.

    6. I love that I’ve had lots of worthwhile, interesting jobs, as well as a few * respectable * ones (& a couple that were both). I love that I’ve been involved in more community organisations than I can count, & on the management committees of more than I can recall. I love knowing that I * have* made a difference. I love that I wrote & produced * Barking Mad -The Musical * , & that it’s still having a life, ten years later. I appreciate that I’ve paid enough tax in my life to justify now receiving govt support, which I know is because our culture is a coalmine in which I have been a canary. I know I shouldn’t have to feel that justification is necessary…but I still do feel this way. I wish for you Rhiannon the sure knowledge that what you have * done* in your life so far, * job * or not, has been just as worthwhile & important as most of what others get paid for.
    (Which reminds me of my fave compliment, from Eva Cox, at a workshop on homelessness, after I asked an astute & challenging question of the panel, she said “is anyone paying you for what you do?”)

    7. I love showing gratitude & appreciation & reminding people of their innate worthiness. I like The Dalai Lama’s advice re being * wisely selfish * by giving to others, which magnifies happiness exponentially. I love that so many of my friends live passionately by this creed as well, it makes for a beautiful open-hearted community, even if these days it’s more on-line than in 3D. You know who you are, thanks J

    8. Yup, my mate can fix things, & I love it. Its amazing, how quickly & easily he seems to manage it, once he gets involved. I’ve learned (slowly) how to ask him though, so it becomes a small act of heroism, under his own steam. I love him, a lot, even when it’s really hard, like it is now.

    9. Yup, birds, me too. Too many kinds to name: fairy wrens, magpies, butcher birds, willy wagtails, bower birds, eagles, owls, (& hummingbirds, even though they’re not native here). I have a tattoo of a hummingbird on my right shoulderblade, not least of which because they can survive extreme conditions & * resurrect * from near-death. I will always stop & watch a bird that appears in my vision. I think it was Marg Fagan who posited once that birds gather & sing at the site of human desecration, like freeways. I often wonder if that might be true.

    9b. I used to love Otters more than any other animal, I still admire many of their qualities, disturbingly including the sheer voraciousness with which they bite the heads off small creatures like mice. There’s a part of me that would love the chance to do that, at least once, in some way, if you get my drift.

    10. I have a surprising fetish for * architectural design * given that I have never, & likely will never, have a home of my own building or purchase. I love Grand Designs on ABC TV, especially the more left-of-centre spaces/houses. I love * alternative * housing styles, straw-bale especially (my friends’ home-built Frogknot is the house I most love that is still standing). Many of the houses I’ve lived in have since been demolished, I would still have chosen to live in most of them (even the one with the INDOOR, occasional, waterfall in my BEDROOM), over ANY new, fancy, box.
    I love Rhainnon’s house, & remember it very clearly, even though I think I’ve only been there twice, almost a decade ago. It’s a beautiful house, even with all its * problems * as narrated on Fb. I’m sure she loves it too, deep down J

    I love old furniture, of many kinds, & have owned & lost to life’s vagaries a few items I still mourn the loss of (a shipping trunk, an Edwardian chair, a dressing table), I have only managed to hang onto a small bedside table, & recently, a small secretaire that I love a lot. If it doesn’t fit inside my (sedan) car, & can’t be lifted by me & one other ordinary sized person, I don’t own it. When I move, I have two small suitcases FULL of *momentoes * of my life & loves, these items are what I would rescue in a disaster, plus my photos of mostly happy times richly lived.

    I love anything built from * earth * elements: wood, stone. But I’m much more drawn to anything NOT built by ANY human, but rather by nature. Trees especially. & waterfalls. and cliffs. & mountains. On my first trip overseas, to the UK, it was clear my companion was most keen to visit * human * history, I wanted to see the natural beauty. Stone circles, we agreed on. Stonehenge is ok, but Avebury is gorgeous. Castlerigg Stone Circle as well. Oh yes.

    Ok, so now I have an 11. tho not strictly a * thing* Travel. To places of natural beauty. So far I’ve been to places in England (Lakes District), Wales (Ystradfelte), Ireland (Sleive League, Donegal), & Scotland (loved all of it, even some of the cities like Edinburgh). California (Redwood Forest near Soquel, San Francisco) Canada (British Columbia, Vancouver), New Zealand (Paikakariki, and recently, Vanuatu (Mele Cascades & Lollilima Falls) ). I’d love to get to: Asturias in northern Spain (home of Felpeyu, RIP Igor & Carlos); and parts of the USA (Kings Canyon, & the mountains of North Carolina from whence DLM & family hail).

    And Australia: any/all national parks, of which I’ve visited many, but hardly any of the whole. Tasmania, west coast, Murchisons Falls. & in my own backyard, the Green Mountains, in which is my very favourite item of all creation dwells: Nothofagus Cunninghamii I think its officially called. The Antarctic Beech Tree. As evoked in the ENTS of Lord of the Rings, just magnificent, and lovely, all at once.

    Lucky this is a list of THINGS, not PEOPLE, or my list would be MUCH longer. I have a list of personal HEROES, I think it numbers 50 or more. Another Note, another time.

    Thanks for the inspiration Rhiannon, I feel decidedly better than I did (which is, sadly, not saying a lot, but you get that).

    Love & Peace,

    • Thank you Maree, for that heartfelt response.
      (I do actually like explaining and bringing other people ‘in’ to in-jokes…they aren’t really funny unless everyone is laughing.)

    • Maree Robertson, I also love and regularly cull books and cds. My theory is that if I didn’t enjoy it, why would I keep it on display in my home? It’s just taking up space for something I’ll love. Plus, I live in a flat. Plus plus, culling means I can buy more!

  2. I love it when I have made something or found something for a child and that child loves it. (this does not happen often) I love it when I have successfully taught a child something. I love seeing that wonderful sight of a child glowing with self-esteem and self-confidence that happens when they have done something for them selves, by themselves. I loved it when, a person that I cared for when he/she was child, comes to me and thanks me. I love craft, I suck at it but I love it. And I love it when I teach a child a craft and they become really good at it (as in better than me, this has happen many times) and I, of course love my friends! My friends mean so much to me, I would do anything for them.

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