We’re goin’ a Feudin’

worse than this

So it’s war. Little Big Sister and Big Brother are going head to head in a battle of wills in a contest that is shaping up to be bigger than Ben Hur, and I am not even kidding. The past couple of days has been an emotional roller coaster that has no harness, no emergency brakes and a complex network of rails that come to numerous dead ends that will send you flying to your death in a blazing trail of carnival music and cotton candy. Essentially, it is not a good season to be alive if you’re dabbling about in my gene pool. My family tree is about to be hacked down, made into sawdust and shipped to pet stores all over the country to collect mice droppings.

I’m not exactly wanting to hang all our dirty washing all over the blogosphere. The ammunition used by both sides is not PG and thus, unsuitable for publication. Needless to say, my esteemed family is not above the odd low blow and they are coming hard and fast in this death match.

So if I am not at liberty to discuss this online then why oh why am I mentioning it at all? My blogging has been sporadic at best lately, why start with this unsavory bit of family headline? Well Dear Readers, I am doing this because, I am stuck smack bang right in the middle of it. As the only member of my family that is unbiased and coherent at the moment, I have been wrangled into position as impromptu mediator between these warring factions.

Yep, it's this bad

So far there has been no bloodshed (touch wood) but apart from that we are entering into a no holds barred Clash of the Titans and no-one knows just how this chapter is going to end. If anyone happens to be in possession of plate armour please be a chum and send it on over to Mumsy’s house and I’ll be eternally grateful.

In other news, I’ve finally booked my semester one classes. If anyone is interested to know more about them please ask. I didn’t want to bore the rest of you with details.

Well I’m off to try and trick myself into going to sleep. Pleasant dreams 🙂

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Moving home

Never enter into a battle of wits with an automated program… you will come off second best. Today I had the happy news that I was offered a place at Griffith University on the Gold Coast studying a Bachelor of Communication. DRINKS ALL AROUND!

Student Concession Prices!! BOOYAH

I was a jubilant character for the next half hour until I decided that I was going to go ahead and enrol in my classes for first semester. You need a flippin’ degree just to sort out your timetable. Two phone a friends, one busted screen and several words that I am not at liberty to publish later and I still have a hole in my schedule… and while I am sure I will need the spare time to catch up on reading or whatever uni students do while not being uni students, I’m thinking that missing an entire subject is probably not a fabulous idea. Tomorrow I will make some very heated phone calls… stay tuned.

In other news… guess who is moving back home. BINGO. I am packing all my worldly possessions, along with my independence and my dignity into several large boxes and moving everything back to Mumsy’s house. That woman should really be in sales because when it came to selling her product (the spare rooms) she really made it hard to say no.

Roughly this is what it looked like:-

Are you tired of bills? Sick of wondering how you’re going to pay your rent? Don’t you just wish that there was some way to avoid all those hassles and just get on with living your life? Well here at Mumsy Inc. we believe that we’ve found the answer to all your problems. Move back home. This charming package comes with the large back bedroom next to the kitchen. The fridge being less than 10 steps from your bedroom door makes midnight snacking times even easier. But that’s not all folks. Move in before the end of the month and we will throw in the main bathroom, the other spare room for a study and all rights to the kitchen. Call now and we’ll waive the curfew and throw in free taxi service.

Clare: SOLD! Where do I sign.

But seriously, Im really going to miss my antics with my housemate. We really do make a lovely team. I am consoled however because I’m thinking of the amazing blog fodder living with Mumsy is going to provide. It’s going to be epic.

So I’m going back to school and back home all in the same month… wish me luck

Egor… Fetch me my Bum-Bag

Good morning dear readers, seeming as I am a horrible blogger and no doubt you have all fled to greener pastures (blogs that are updated less sporadically) I will post anyway and cross all my fingers and toes that there are still people in the world who care about me and my mundane life.

Update: So you already know that I quit my job (confetti explosion), and that I have applied for a university course in mass communication (trumpet fanfare). I am currently completely out of money, contemplating a possible relocation to Chateau de la Mumsy and waiting rather impatiently for the next round of Uni offers which will decide my fate for the next few years. In other news since joining the ranks of the unemployed I have been spending oodles of time with Little Big Sister and her husband, and my inbuilt instinct to be where the free food is has also thrown me into spending oodles of time with Dear Mumsy.

 Those of you who have already been introduced to the maternal donor of half my genetics will roll their eyes and wonder what on earth the poor woman has done this time to grant a mention in my fabulous blog. Well, hold onto your hats bucko for I am about to spill the beans as it were.

A few weeks ago Mumsy and I were out and about having coffee (Mumsy’s shout) and lunch (Mumsy’s shout) which was all rather pleasant untill it came time to pay. Now the money side of things was no trouble to my revered mother, instead, the item from which the funds emerged had sparked my immense disapproval.

Mumsy, to my horror, is in the habit of going about her business with a bum bag. Indeed you have read correctly. Now this is no ordinary run of the mill bum bag that can be worn discreetly around the waist without the general public being made glaringly aware of it. It is a behemoth of grotesque proportions that she endeavors to hide under her blouse worn at the back and making it look like she has either a monumental derrière or some sort of Quasimodo-esk hump going on. Needless to say it is not a good look.

Now for all of you who are fans of the bum bag and are right now phrasing in your brain-space how you are going to word your rebuttal in refuting my claims on the evils of the device, I am speaking only of the bum bag worn by my Mumsy. You have to look at the full picture, of all the is Mumsy if I may. Picture now if you will, a tiny little lady, about 5 foot tall, with crocs, mum jeans, an oversized multi-hued blouse, pig-tails and the bum bag from hell. It is not a good look.

My revered siblings and myself have all campaigned both individually and en mass to stop this luggage menace to no avail. The bum bag lives on, blighting the landscape which is Mumsy and spitting in the eye of every fashion conscious person who crosses her path.

 I will soldier on in my mission to rid the world of this present evil, wish me luck.

Laugh Kookaburra Laugh

I stayed at Mumsy’s house last night, which is always an adventure in itself. Last night I had music practice which is just around the corner from where I used to live with Sister Dear. Since Sister Dear decided to relocate to the beach, I have lost my place to crash and my guaranteed breakfast the next morning. Mumsy, who providentially lives just around the corner from Sister Dear’s old house, has offered me the use of her pull out sofa bed for whenever I have need.

Given how smashingly Mumsy and I get on, you would be surprised to find out that this arrangement, while handy, is rather lacking in certain desirable features.

The Pantry at Chattel de la Mumsy is a sad excuse for a celestial larder. Mumsy is convinced that she is lactose intolerant, and gluten intolerant which means her victual stores look a whole lot like some sick and twisted health food shop wherein people force feed you lentils, polenta and freaky things floating in  purple coloured goop. After numerous raids into the depths of her freezer I finally returned with a packet of frozen veggies and some meat I hope came from a cow. Huzzah!

Secondly, Conversation isn’t exactly one of my strong points. I can Facebook chat with the best of them and MSN until the cows come home. However the bitter truth of the matter is that I prefer my own company and with the exception of a few people, I find it a tad onerous to carry on a fully fledged conversation for any length of time. Sister Dear and I had a fabulous arrangement. If we wanted to spend some quality time together, we would put on a movie and watch it together. We talked if we wanted to and when we didn’t want to, we didn’t. Mumsy does not understand this. In a bid to force us into conversation she sold the television so we have no choice but to sit there and exchange niceties about the weather. Gah

Thirdly, I am all for getting out of bed nice and early but Mumsy is taking early bird to a whole new level. I was camping out on her couch, blissfully unaware that anything existed outside of the land of sweet dreams and cotton candy. I was in that limbo, post sleep / pre wake place where you’re sort of aware of what’s going on but still semi sleeping, when into the living room shuffles Mumsy in her noisy slippers. I squidge open one eye and look at my watch. 4:30am?! I close my eye hoping Mumsy will see her sleeping daughter and, having pity on her, will shuffle right back into her room, shut the door and stay there until a more reasonable hour. No. The shuffling continues into the bathroom, followed by the sounds of showering.

By this time I have the blanket pulled up over my head and am trying to burrow my way into the couch. Devil Birds who live in a cage on the patio wake up and start squawking away. Mumsy emerges from the bathroom and shuffles into the kitchen where she turns on the noisiest kettle in the history of kitchen appliances. Cups rattle, every piece of cutlery is emptied onto the bench, tossed around the room and then one spoon is selected to clatter against the side of the mug a few times. The patio door is opened and Devil Birds are let out, the door closes and Mumsy shuffles back in. By this time I am wide awake and glaring at a spot on the ceiling waiting for Mumsy to come around the corner before I let lose the full force of my crippling gaze.

“Morning Sweetie”, she says all cheerily
*Growl*
“Did you sleep well?”
*Another Growl*
“Would you like some breakfast?”

At this point I sit up, hair looking like I’ve stabbed a paper clip into the power socket and pillow imprints all over my face and say rather forcefully, “It’s not even 5 o’clock in the morning! I should be sleeping! And for the love of God could you please shuffle softly!”
*Stunned Silence* From Mumsy

After this I flop back down onto the couch and pull the blankets up over my head. I peak out and see Mumsy trying her hardest to shuffle quietly back into her bedroom, tea in hand.

Last but not least we come to Little Brother. The greasy haired cretin inhabits the back bedroom. Seeing as Monday night was his Formal and after formal party, I suspect that the boy was suffering from something akin to a hangover. *Rubs hands together gleefully*
Mumsy shuffled into his bedroom at 6am and calls out all sweet like that the time has come for him to get out of bed. There is nothing but silence and boy smell coming from the depths of his bedroom. Since I had been awake since 4:30am and was in something of an unpleasant mood I took it upon myself to extract said person from his bed. Anyone who hasn’t tried getting a seventeen year old boy out of bed when he is inclined to sleep until noon has no idea of the epic effort that this was.

On a brighter note, I was walking across the car park toward the office this morning when I saw a Kookaburra sitting on a lamp post teaching its baby how to laugh. It kind of made my morning.

Another one bites the dust

And so we come as we inevitably must to Little Brother’s graduation. Last night, Little Big Sister, Big Brother, Mumsy and I all got our formal freak on and journeyed down to the Gold Coast to watch the kick off of our youngest’s Grade 12 Formal.

Observation 1:
Invitations should not say hors d’oeuvre will be available if there are no hors d’oeuvre to be had. I did my hair and makeup, squished myself into a dress and heels and braved the throngs of glittered seventeen year olds under the impression that I would at least be treated to sub par finger food, and all that was to be had was orange juice with too many pips, apple juice, lemonade and Pepsi. Who even drinks Pepsi anymore?

Observation 2:
High Heels should not be worn if the wearer is unable to walk in them. During the 45 minutes I was there, I witnessed no less than 5 girls who were teetering about precariously in fickle footwear while negotiation the perils of hooped skirts in the confined of a cluttered dining hall. I had to restrain manic laughter every time I saw a girl grab at the nearest chair back/passer-by in an effort to remain upright when her shoes upset her motor skills.

Observation 3:
I don’t care how much Hollywood Tape you’re using. Dresses need more than an Iron Will to stay in place.  To the girl in the silver strap-less dress with the train that stretches a meter behind you. Someone is going to step on your dress and when that happens, I sincerely hope your dress stays where you put it.

Observation 4:
Teenage boys are hilarious. I was standing in line with Little Brother and various family members waiting for our photo to be taken and overheard the boys talking about their suits and exclaiming over the awesomeness of the inside pocket. Obviously for most of these young men, this was their first encounter with ‘The Suit’ and despite their best efforts to appear all nonchalant and sophisticated, they all looked rather a lot like kids playing with their cool new toy.

Observation 5:
Elevators are potential death traps. For some reason unknown to me, this particular formal committee felt the need to have their formal at the top of an 80 story hotel. Which meant that my family and I, along with 5 or 6 other formal going strangers, were stuck in a small box, hurtling up and down an elevator shaft at speeds previously not experienced in elevators during my lifetime. I’ve never been one to be afraid of heights, but it turns out that this particular elevator gives me the heebie jeebies something fierce.

Observation 6:
Strangeness runs in my family. I have realised that I am not the only odd ball in my gene pool.

Behold... Little Brother

Little Brother it appears either has some sort of repressed fetish for Kermit the Frog or he wanted to look like a Leprechaun on Acid. He pulled it off splendidly and turned more than a few heads. No-one even seemed to care that with the exception of one abominable dress, he had the brightest outfit there.

Friday is his official graduation ceremony *I am not crying… I have something in my eye* and then he’s initiated into the real world. He is going to be in for the shock of his life.

Furnishing Fury

If all my career aspirations come to naught, I can rest easy in the knowledge that I would make a jim dandy furniture removalist.

see my bulging biceps

Sister Dear’s Husband is about to start a new chapter in his career, which involves them relocating in Noosa in a few weeks time. They are planning on renting out their HUGE 5 bedroom house and rent a smaller 3 or 4 bedroom place up closer to his new job. This is all well and good, except now they face the predicament of too much furniture to cram into an itty-bitty house.

When I was living with them up until a few weeks ago, I was using their old bedroom suite which I love, and which I have been missing fiercely since I moved out 2 weeks ago. So when I got a call asking if I wanted to take it off their hands, I was only too happy to agree. Saturday morning saw Housemate toddle off to work and me, armed with a screw driver and an allen key taking apart the futon that I’d been sleeping on. I was doing spiffingly until I got to the actual taking apart when I realised that the tools that I had access to were un suited to doing the job that I was faced with.

harbinger of doom

Not to be foiled by lack of tools, I took apart what I could and then proceeded to try to wriggle the monstrous contraption out of my bedroom, into the bathroom, back into my bedroom, around into Housemate’s bedroom, halfway over the balustrade, back into the bathroom, then finally up on its end, over the balustrade, down the stairs and out the front door all by myself. FUN!

Cue Little Brother and Sister Dear’s Husband arriving with the bedroom suite. Now I don’t brag at having an over abundance of muscle mass. While on the slightly taller side of average and in no way willowy, I am still sadly lacking in anything that can be seen as brawn. So Brother in law who has shoulders like an ox and Little Brother who cycles around the country in his spare time were lovely enough to carry my queen size mattress and the bed base up the stairs and into my room for me. I waited for them to continue with the rest of the furniture until I realised that chivalry was dead and buried and my strapping relations had no intention of taking the rest of the furniture any further than the entryway.

Any sane, muscle lacking female would wait for someone else to get home to help with the carting of heavy furniture upstairs. Not me. If there is something that I want done now, I can’t sit about watching Saturday daytime television while it needs doing. I cart the rest of the bed upstairs, take up my trusty allen key and 45 minutes later, a bedraggled, sweaty and unhappy Clare sits looking at a bed. Phase 1 of bedroom set up is complete.

Clare post-bed building

Next on the agenda is the chest of drawers and the dressing table. I carry the empty drawers up the stairs and pile them haphazardly in the bathtub, then go back for the rest of it. I must say it was not one of my finer moments and I am so thankful that no-one was there to witness my efforts. I grab hold of the end of the bloomin’ thing, shinny it around to the base of the stair case and then sitting on the step above, haul it up a step. Then I shuffle up another step and haul again, and again and again and again, untill I reach the top, over the balustrade and into the bedroom.

The dressing table was not so big as the drawers but sports a whopping big mirror. I managed to wrangle the darn thing off with a screwdriver and a hatchet and then repeated the sit and haul technique untill the dresser was in place as well. Screw what was left of the mirror back on and she’s apples.

After that it was only 20 more trips with odds and ends and bed side tables and I was done. All of this done all on me onesie without leaving any structural damage to either myself, the house or the furniture (excluding the hatchet mirror). I am in a world of hurt at the moment. I can’t move my arms or feel my legs but the next time I see my good for nothing brother and brother-in-law I am going to give them several prickly pieces of my mind. Consider yourselves warned boys.

Like Mother Like Daughter

Sister Dear’s Husband and I are currently engaged in a battle of wills. He claims that I am turning into my mother and I claim that my weirdness is totally unique to me. If I am turning batty it is on my own merit and has nothing to do with Mumsy, thank you very much. Coincidence, dear readers, is what it all boils down to. Just because Mumsy and I share a hat fetish, a book fetish, and the tendency to burst into tears at any given moment for no apparent reason is no reason to assume that I am morphing into a Mumsy replica. Pish posh I say.

 Yes I will admit (albeit begrudgingly) that Mumsy and I do have similarities. We are splashing about in the same gene pool so some traits were bound to be passed along. I just don’t see how two people who are supposedly so similar can repel each other as forcefully as Mumsy and I tend to do. I can’t spend an afternoon with the woman without day dreaming about stuffing her into a sardine can. No-one can rub me up the wrong way quite like Mumsy and if I was stuck on a desert island with her I would try my luck with sharks, and I’m not even kidding.

 Maybe it’s because we don’t really know each other very well. Between the ages 12 and 18 I didn’t see Mumsy more than 3 or 4 times. I went to live with Dad and his wife and for those teenage years Dad’s wife was my Mum. There are people who are not going to like hearing this but in many ways, my step mother is more a Mum to me than the woman who gave birth to me. I may be living closer to Mumsy now and spending time with her, but as far as the Mother/Daughter relationship goes, we will always be missing some key… something.

It’s not like we can even really talk about it because every time I try to bring it up in conversation she looks at me like I broke her heart. We’re stuck in this hurting guilty vortex that neither one of us can get out of. I refuse to take the blame in the situation. We didn’t have a functional relationship to start with. Those last months with Mumsy before I left were hell. She was so caught up in her own issues, real and imagined, that she couldn’t or wouldn’t see her children falling apart around her. While her older children got into all kinds of activities of questionable legality Little Brother and I were left to fend for ourselves.

 Well this isn’t where I imagined this post going at all. I am going to hit publish before I think better of it and promise to be jolly next time.

Sister 2

Good morning dear readers and can I just say a very happy Monday to you all. I hope your weekend was very enjoyable and if it wasn’t my very deepest sympathies. moving on.

Yesterday was my Father’s birthday. He turned 58, which means that he is still a spring chicken. So I did my daughterly duty and called him up last night to do the HAPPY BIRTHDAY routine and before I hung up he said he had a favour to ask of me. Seeming as it was his birthday I couldnt’ exactly refuse but the nature of the favour is a little unsettling.

Father Bear asked me to be the Power of Attorney on his will, which is an honor seeming as I am second youngest in a brood of five, not to mention his vast collection of step children. I must say though that the thought of him making preparations for his death is not what I was expecting on the day which is supposed to be a celebration of his birth.

As my brain was tripping around all these melancholy thoughts, I got to thinking of my sister. Not Sister Dear who we all know and love, but my other sister who I’ve never seen fit to introduce you to because of a slight that I am not big enough to put behind me. My big sister whose room I shared for years on end and who taught me the finer arts of escaping the strap when our cunning plans backfired and roused Dad’s wrath. I idolised my big sister in that way that only little sisters can, and now, because of various circumstances I can’t even add her on my list of family members on a blog that she will probably never read.

Needless to say I am feeling a little ashamed of myself. So, I am going to swallow my pride and a huge slice of humble pie and introduce to you all another branch of my family tree.

Little Big Sister – My five foot nothing ‘big sister’ (24)
Big Foot – Little Big Sister’s husband who’s close to seven-foot tall (28)
Pippin – Little Big Sister’s eldest boy who is about to start prep (5)
Bub – The newest addition to the family, Little Big Sister’s baby girl (almost 1)

And there you have it.

Nappies as far as the eye can see

I wrote this while Sister Dear and Sister Dear’s husband were still on their cross cultural journey. I thought I would let you see what I went through while my sweet sibling was off getting a fabulous tan.

—————————————————————————————–

 Sister Dear and Sister Dear’s Husband are on the last leg of their journey, sailing somewhere around Hawaii and as such I have been getting my Maternal freak on for the past few days. Nappies to be changed, noses to wipe, jammed fingers to kiss better and food to shovel into unwilling mouths when least expected.

Rhyno who is well and truly into his terrible twos thinks he is both indestructible and beyond reproach because he is forever finding things to jump off of and usually lands on either myself or Chubbling. Chubbling who is rapidly approaching his first birthday seems to have mistaken me for his mother and now has a meltdown every time I move out of his direct line of sight, which sets off Rhyno  who then throws himself crying inconsolably into my arms for no particular reason and leaving me with two crying toddlers to content with.

Added to this us Chubbling’s new-found walking abilities, and in a house with a sunken lounge and split levels this is really no laughing matter. In an attempt to stop him from cracking his head open I’ve started putting piles of cushions at the bottom of every step so at least if he does fall he will have a soft landing. The last thing I want is for Sister Dear to arrive home to a child in a coma.

I have lost count of the number of nappies I’ve changed. Rhyno, who seems to have forgotten that he was toilet trained has re-discovered the joys having a portable toilet firmly secured to his rear end. I am sorry but as much as I love my nephews, I draw the line at scrubbing ‘little accidents’ out of the living room rug while Rhyno skips merrily about his business doing his business on whichever surface tickles his fancy.

She'd outpester any pest

All single mothers out there, I heartily take my hat off to you all. After one week with two children I’m just about ready to give up on the whole institution of parenthood. I’m sure I will change my mind eventually but right now I am almost decided to join a convent at the next available opportunity. I’m sure I would look rather dashing in a Maria-esk get up. Captain Von Trapp eat your heart out.

“Get thee to a Nunnery”

To infinity and beyond

Righto readers. Under pain of death I have been told to let you all know what is going on in the world according to Clare. Sorry about my lack of blogging, I have been pre-occupied *snicker*.

The time has come it would seem for one Miss Clare to spread her wings and sally forth into the great unknown (aka the real world). While I love living with Sister Dear and her family, it has been decided that the time has come to move on. Now officially a member of the twenty-something crew, and still living more or less at home is nothing to gloat over and so without further ado, I’M MOVING OUT!!

Someone warn my new neighbors; they are about to be assailed with the joint bonkersness of not only the current occupant but by my own fabulous self as well. Cherrytree lane will have nothing on the residence that I am soon to share with my lovely chumly Marley. Separate we are dazzling enough but with our forces combined we are nothing short of epic fabulousness in human form.

So gird your loins readers for stories, tales and frightful renditions of the adventures that are soon to be had. You should all be very excited.

In other news, I am back at work this week after a 2 week break. As much as I enjoyed the time off I am starting to regret it. The next time someone comes to me asking where something is at or whether something or other has arrived in the mail I am going to beat them repeatedly over the head with a steel re-inforced pool noodle. What part of ‘I haven’t been here for the past 2 weeks’ is so hard for people to comprehend. They have been here and I have not so maybe try looking where you last had it instead of asking someone who already has a pile of things to do as tall as herself in 5 inch heels.

Lastly and then I will leave you alone to enjoy your lives. Can you please all ask your respective deities to please withhold rain in Brisbane for a weekend so that I can get some washing done. I am down to my last pair of everything.