Sunday, February 24

Australia smashes into Tri Nation Finals

Australia has again stated it's dominance as a force to be reckoned with in world cricket.

While the Indian team fought a tough battle, they were unable to with stand the Aussie onslaught. With the entire team in form tonight they showed just why they are the number one team in the world.

In a game that went down to the wire, Brett Lee snared the final wicket on the first ball of the last over. Finishing with outstanding results of 5/58 the Australian fast bowl showed just how much he is worth to the game. In light of recent bids at the Indian Premier League auctions a players value can now be seen in monetary terms


Captain Ricky Ponting found himself at the crease a little earlier than planned, with crowd favourite Adam Gilchirst making a quick fire 16 before being given out. The early arrival however gave Ponting plenty of time to reach a total of 124.

Along with Andrew Symonds (59 off 49 balls) and Matthew Hayden (54 off 62) Ponting displayed form not seen much in recent matches among more than a single player.

While it looked like Ponting was there for the duration, the final overs saw India's bowlers break through. Taking a spate of quick wickets. Even if it was a case of too little to late.

Australia finished 50 overs with a total of 7/317. The highest score for this tri nation series. One that has been plagued by rain and all round weak performances.

India's openers started shakily with Sachin Tendulkar falling after only facing three balls. After a few more quick wickets it appeared as if India was without a chance.

However thanks to a strong middle order and some massive baseball style hits, they were able to recover and the win was again within reach of the Indian team. Expensive overs from Michael Clark had the Indians knocking on the door of victory.

In a bid to achieve the big shots necessary to reach the target the Indian batsmen paid the price of taking on the Australian fielders. Eventually losing their final wicket 18 runs short with five balls remaining.

With only two games before the finals Australia is a assured of a place. Their opponents are yet to be decided and are dependent upon upcoming games in the week.

Sri Lanka must win over both India and Australia in order to play in the finals, otherwise India will go through.

Saturday, February 23

Update

I know you must be wondering what has caused the delay in my posting. I assure you, I have a very worth explanation for my absence.

I have had nothing to say. I have tried a few times to sit and share and write but I was unable to create anything but garble so I thought I would spare you the pain.

When I was younger and experienced this, I would ban myself from writing as I thought it was a waste of paper. Being a bit of a greeny I could not fathom the thought I wasting a single sheet with garble, so until my words would be great my pen lay still. (Luckily back then I had a lot of thinking time so it all worked well)

I know that today it is difficult to use such an excuse. The Internet is full of garble at times so why not add mine? Also there are no trees losing their lives to make paper for my garble to be written upon. I am able for it to be sucked up into cyber space and locked away forever, safely stored on my hard drive.

However, I still feel in the interest of public sanity, if I can't find anything decent to write then it is best if I don't write. I also believe this ideology should be made compulsory for all writers! So that is why ladies and gentlemen I have been absent of late. (That and the fact I have been really busy!)


Monday, February 18

Signs are everywhere

Last week, after I was busy mourning my lack of a strong long term friendship club I received an email from an old high school friend!

If that isn't a sign of some sort then I don't know what is.

I have always held some thought that there are greater forces in the world than what most of us are really able to understand. I have never really been able to pin point exactly what they are or how and why they work, but I just know they are generally working in my favour.

I am really appreciative of this sign that was sent to me.

Unfortunately for me though I am not always able to interpret signs that these forces are trying to alert me to.

Take today for example.

I woke this morning from a bad dream about my youngest daughter. She had injured
her elbow. It was not overly serious, just very gruesome to look at. Anyway tonight she fell off of a stool. It was probably about a one meter drop and she landed on slate tiles.

There is no worse sound to a parent than that of their child's head and body against a hard floor. It shakes through to the soul.

Thankfully it appears as if other than a bruise and a bump she should be fine, though thankful is only a small part of how I feel at present. Part of me is angry that I did not see the sign in my dream. Even though the injuries and incidents were different the message was still the same.

Both my dream and reality were avoidable accidents.

I think perhaps I will whip up a quick article on child safety!

Friday, February 15

Friendships


Today proved to be a very interesting day for me. One that I am yet to fully comprehend, understand and translate.

I was invited to lunch by one of my neighbours to celebrate her birthday. She did not mention it to me at the time, but I had a feeling it was for her fortieth. (As it turned out I was right)


When she invited me last week it went a little like this...


Her : If you are not doing anything next week would you like to come to lunch with me for my birthday?

Me : Sure that sounds great

Her : Fantastic, don't take it the wrong way but I don't have many friends here and it would be nice to have a few people with me on the day

Now while some may have been taken aback by this last comment, I was not. I actually replied with "that's ok neither do I and my birthday is coming soon too"

So...

When I arrived at the venue for lunch today I was relieved to find that I had arrived before the guest of honour. However I was horrified to discover that her loving husband had managed to organise her four best friends from interstate to fly up and celebrate with her. Yep, he's a keeper.

Needless to say, unbeknown to my neighbour my presence was not really needed. None the less I stayed. Why I am not sure. I guess self punishment is needed by us all at times. Well, that and the fact it is not like I go out to lunch all the time. I was dressed, hair brushed and there seemed silly to just go home, especially when I was hungry and all.

As it turned out being surrounded by people I didn't know, who hadn't seen each other for years wasn't as bad as I expected. All in all actually, the whole ordeal turned out to be ok. Sure I forgot the present and card and my bankcard wouldn't work and did I mention all the people I didn't know.

They were nice friendly people though, and in the end I managed to transfer some money so I could pay my share without anyone being aware I had difficulties. Not only that there was another lady that lived locally that my neighbour had invited so I wasn't alone in my discomfort amongst all the besties. Actually as it turns out the local lady was a gorgeous fashion designer that I got along with quite well.

However, the entire time I sat there, smiling at their fond memories they shared, pretending to be having a great time with a bunch of complete strangers that weren't really interested in me, I couldn't help but be overcome with jealousy.

These women had been friends for around 20 years. They had shared amazing (and terrible) times together. They had watched each other change and develop. There was not much they did not know about each other. It was amazing to see the bond that they shared.

It was heartbreaking to know I have nothing similar and probably never will.

Why this is I do not know, but for some reason friends just don't stick to me like they do others. Maybe it is me, maybe it is them, I have no idea. All I know is no one ever stays long in RhiannaLand.

Generally speaking I am fine with this agreement. I have never really felt the need to be surrounded by people. I find that most people are not what they seem and while it may seem harsh, not worth the effort.

I believe that I give myself to people openly and honestly yet rarely is it returned. I do acknowledge a special intimate circle of friends, but it is very small in size. Which usually causes me no concern.

People can be cruel and sometimes it is best to limit experiences with them. A belief I have always held without any true justification.

I know how selective I can be. I realise that reasons for limitations on my friendships are self imposed and I blame no one but my self. That doesn't mean I don't get lonely sometimes.

Even though these women all have at least ten years experience on me, I seriously doubt that when I turn forty, my husband will be able to organise an event such as the one I attended today. Nothing against his skills, I just question where he will find the people to invite!

Monday, February 11

Success!

Last week turned out to be one full of success and joy (well at least in RhiannaLand it was). While I revel in the glory of being crowned a Channel Champion at Helium, there are many around me who are suffering through sadness and sorrow.

No I am not talking about the famine and droughts which plague the world, or the atrocity of poverty and war. These global pains are now just taken for granted and no longer need attention. What I am actually referring to is much more local.

Almost everyone I spoke to last week was having a bad week in some form or another. This was particularly true for those in my immediate circles (ie anyone who I wanted to share my joy with)
Thankfully I have discovered a very friendly community who were only to happy to pat my back as needed. I also have no ill feelings to those who were to busy, I know eventually you will get there and that is all that counts!

In particular I have one friend who is being forced to endure an enormous amount sorrow at present and my whole heart goes out to her. I wish I could share magic in her life but for some reason she at times seems immune. In many ways her life has been greatly blessed, but in others , her whole life seems to be nothing more than a series of bad events.

That is not to say that the sun never shines but, if something is able to go awry, then it will.

There is no simplicity or lack of drama in her life. There always seems to be worries and concerns, I wonder how she can possibly cope?

At times I commend her for her resilience. It is just amazing how much one person can subject themselves to or rather be subjected to.

Thursday, February 7

Rainbow Mountain

As I finished my previous post (all of 2 minutes ago) I thought how fitting a photo of a bath tub or plug may be. In fact I thought it such a great idea that I went straight to stock.xchng to try and find one.

However before I even got close to what I was looking for I stumbled across this beautiful shot.

It's beauty left me speechless and compelled me to share it with you.

Our lives can be full of heart ache and sorrow at times, we can easily forget that such beauty can be found.

A big thank you to Christie Thomas for sharing this shot.

Where is the plug?

I am feeling rather drained at present.

The Helium contest I entered recently closed this morning. It is such a roller coaster ride of emotions. Currently I am at the better end of the leader board. While this is promising, the rating system can be rather fickle at times.

Apparently me just thinking it is a fantastic article is simply not enough. My fate lays in the hands of the beloved raters. Of which I am a member, though obviously I am unable to rate my own work.

Back to the point.

After the effort of producing enough quality work to enable me to have any chance of winning the contest, combined with the emotional torture of having my work constantly under rating scrutiny and seeing my points go up and down faster than a yo-yo, I am temporarily out of creative juices!

So I am off to find 'my plug' and refill my bath!

Wednesday, February 6

Featured Writer at Helium

I just received a letter from Helium to congratulate me on my featured article!!!

And sure enough there on their homepage about halfway down is an article I have written about modern women It is an article that I have carried around with me for quite some time (nearly four years) and in some ways very close to my heart.

This is all very symbolic in my mind. I see this is as a huge boost to my writing career. Yes to some this is only small, when you started where I did this can be huge! It is like recognition that yes I do have some ability to mold words into feelings that effect others. Which is just what my inner writer needs.

While it now looks very different from the original, I still have how it started and can clearly remember the night that I wrote it. It was a very important time in my life. I was busily preparing for major change. (Getting married)

At the time I just wrote for the sake of writing. There was something inside me that needed to be released, so I released it.

When I first started writing for Helium, back in August 2007, I tried submitting a version of this article. To my utter devastation it was rejected. I was shattered. Thousands of little bits of me tumbled to the ground.

I questioned why I even bothered with the silly notion of being a writer. Naturally I ceased writing (though not for long). I managed to pick myself up and try again. With another version under my belt I submitted again. To my elation it was accepted.

Now it is a feature! Who would have thought? I guess hard work really does pay off in the end hey?

In case you want the link here it is again

Anyway I just wanted to share my joy and excitement here.

Monday, February 4

Disappointing Game

Australia and India's first match in the Triseries match turned out to be a white wash and I am very disappointed!

Being a huge cricket fan I was all geared up for the big game. The first half of the Indians innings was living up to my every expectation and the excitement was almost overwhelming.

Then the rain came.

Thankfully it went but not for good.

At least it gave me a chance to do some writing! Check out what I wrote for Helium

Sunday, February 3

Dirt and Worms

Meal times are often a battle for many parents. Convincing children to eat a well balanced diet is not always easy but it is not impossible either.

The key to happy eating is to provide children with interesting yet simple meals that are appealing to a child's mind.

Recently as my daughter sat down to eat her spaghetti she termed a new name for this old favorite. It was so ingenious yet simple I have decided to share the recipe here with you.

Worms and DirtIngredients
500 grams premium minced beef
4 slices of diced bacon rashers
2 grated carrots
1 grated zucchini

1 diced onion
2 cloves of garlic grated or crushed
2-3 400 gram tins crushed tomatoes
Grated cheese to serve
Worms (aka Spaghetti pasta) (make sure you leave this nice and long)
Method
Brown mince in large pan, there is no need to add oil
Remove mince from pan and leave to drain any excess fat
Fry onion and bacon in the same pan
Add grated zucchini and carrot, stir well to ensure even cooking
Place meat back in pan and mix in well
Add tinned tomatoes
Leave to simmer on a low heat

Cook pasta according to directions on packet, alternatively I have found you can place pasta in a large microwave container with adequate water and microwave on high for around 15 minutes

Place pasta in bowl and cover with meat sauce. Top with a little grated cheese (optional)
Serve and watch as your children delight in searching through the dirt for their worms!

Friday, February 1

T20 Victory

After a stunning performance in tonight's T20 game, Australia's stand in captain Michael Clark led his team to a solid victory against India at the MCG. In an effort that clearly earned him the man of the match award 'The Pup' showed he was more than ready for the challenges of captaincy.

With regular captain Ricky Ponting out due to 'back pain' twenty 26 year old Michael Clark shone in the leadership role. Using strong bold field placements the Australians quickly bowled out the Indians for only 74 runs.

In his international debut, 30 year David Hussey, younger brother to 'Mr Cricket' (Michael Hussey), found himself on the edge of a hat trick as the Australian bowlers breezed through the Indian batsmen.

Retiring wicket keeper and opening batsman Adam Gilchrist, shared the glory with Clarke as they quickly set about attaining the required total. Together the pair accumulated the better half of the required score with each providing spectators with magnificent sixes.

Where India struggled to find the long boundaries Australia's batsmen repeatedly struck the ball with force and determination. While the 85,000 crowd members were forced to endure two bat breaks due to Australia's power there were no complaints with the brilliant batting display.

The only real disappointment in this fast paced enthralling match were the final overs of Australia's innings. While there was a spectacular catch from a Gilchrist high ball the Indians seemed to have lost all fielding abilities.

Poor communication due to excessive crowd noise saw a collisions between players resulting in a dropped chance. To top it all off the current T20 champions gave the winning run away with a wide.

Despite this is it was a highly enjoyable game proving that cricket is alive and well. The opening one day series game on Sunday should prove to be as equally exciting.