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Happy birthday!

  • 10th Feb, 2016 at 9:31 PM
me with cat and wine
... to 2 Ks: kernezelda and katriona_s!

Wishing you a great day, and many more of them!

Star Wars Aftermath by Chuck Wendig

  • 31st Jan, 2016 at 11:14 AM
This sounded good so I went on the waiting list for it at a the library. I picked it up yesterday.


Crap style. Seriously bad writer. Short sentences. Choppy and disconnected. Many with no verbs. Present tense is OK for good writers. But not bad ones.

Did this guy have an editor? I ask myself.

Can't cope. Giving up.

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.


Trope Bingo card

  • 5th Jan, 2016 at 10:08 AM
I signed up for [community profile] trope_bingo again because I need to get back to writing and fandom because that will also mean more posts. (I've come to the conclusion that only posting about real life means hardly any.)

My card:








What amuses me is how many tropes I've already written in these challenges. This card contains nine. However it also has several I've never had a go at, and I think the right two columns look good, each having three new tropes. Or the third row with four new ones. Let's see what ideas pop up before I decide.

Unless you have any thoughts. :-)

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.


The return of my Sherlock speculation

  • 2nd Jan, 2016 at 10:41 PM
sherlock and john
We just watched the Sherlock special and it was as superb as I expected. Excellent stuff!

And it's led me to reanimate an old idea.

SpoilersCollapse )

Not that I'll know till 2017 apparently. But I'd love to know what others think (so comments may well be spoilery).

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.


Happy new year!

  • 1st Jan, 2016 at 2:35 PM
xmas, party
It's already the afternoon of the 1st here, but for most of you it'll be much earlier. So I wish you all a great 2016!

The champagne is cooling in the fridge for tonight - we didn't have it last night as Greg had to go to Christchurch yesterday for a family friend's funeral and got back very late.

Happy birthday!

  • 22nd Dec, 2015 at 6:50 PM
me with cat and wine
To aralias and jaxomsride!

Have a good one! I hope you get both birthday and Christmas presents. :-)

The Force Awakens

  • 17th Dec, 2015 at 4:05 PM

Just as fun and exciting as Episode IV which it references more than a few times. Though I really loved seeing old friends (especially Han Solo and Chewbacca - and even Admiral Ackbar and others!) the new characters are so likeable and interesting. I hope they explore their backstories in future films - and bring 'em on!

Right, I'm going back in the holidays to see it in 3D with imhilien. :-D

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.

Star Wars tonight!

  • 16th Dec, 2015 at 11:18 PM
We're off to Star Wars shortly for the 12:30am (yes, am) showing, and I'm ready with my new Rebel Alliance pendant. :-D Once again this will be at the Lux (luxury cinema with recliner seats and snacks and coffee delivered to said seats). Because: no kids, no kicking of seats, no babies!

I know I haven't posted for ages and didn't even take part in the November picowrimo, but Things have been going on. I will explain soon.

But in the meantime, STAR WARS!

Sherlock Special trailer

  • 10th Oct, 2015 at 10:26 AM
sherlock and john
Ooh, this looks interesting! As are some of the comments: will there be a TARDIS in the background, will Sherlock see movement out of the corner of his eye while passing a graveyard with stone angels...

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.


Happy birthday!

  • 18th Sep, 2015 at 11:17 PM
Have a great day, jhall1!

Happy birthday!

  • 16th Sep, 2015 at 10:39 PM
me with cat and wine
Happy birthday, nautile26!

Have a good one!

Oamaru, here we come (eventually)!

  • 1st Sep, 2015 at 6:58 PM
nikau (NZ!)
Oamaru is a great place: a fraction of the rain here, great weather, beautiful Victorian limestone buildings, friendly people, excellent amenities, and there are no mosquitoes and flies in summer. Or insane traffic. I can't wait to move there!

Our offer on this house is about to go unconditional, though we won't be moving for a few months yet as we have to do some alterations here (kitchen and bathroom) and sell our current place. It was built in 1927 of the beautiful Oamaru limestone and looks out over the Oamaru Gardens and sea, and you can even see the snow on the alps in the other direction. We'll rent it out till we move down; apparently there's a shortage of rental places there. Once we do, there's some work to be done, but it's worth it.

I have some cool photos (incl. the Steampunk Museum) but I lack the energy to edit and post them. Oh, and all the streets are named after British rivers. Our new place is in Stour Street (which rhymes with "tour", not "sour"). For B7 fans, Avon Street is on a hill with magnificent views (I took a photo) with a B&B called Federation House a couple of blocks down the hill. :-) We considered staying there, but instead chose a much smaller place, and this worked out well as we made friends with the owner who is also a builder; we'll be hiring him to do some work.

In unrelated news, I bought something called ginger nuts from the supermarket last week. No, not the dunky biscuits, but nuts coated in ginger, and they were so yummy I polished the whole lot off this afternoon.

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.


Happy birthday!

  • 11th Aug, 2015 at 9:33 PM
me with cat and wine
Happy birthday to she_of_emeralds. I hope it's a great day full of good things!

Delayed by accident

  • 8th Aug, 2015 at 12:46 PM
own goal
We had to cancel the trip as early Wednesday morning I tripped over in the dark and cut my head open, stunning myself. I was taken to hospital where I had stitches, an MRI scan and X-rays, neither of which showed any problems but they kept me in for two days for observation.

Man, I had cabin fever after a few hours; I'm so glad Greg brought my Kindle in.

Do we'll be going down in 2 or three weeks to look around. Yeah, I'm so pissed off at myself for being such a stupid klutz.

I heard it might be snowing down there! I haven't lived anywhere it snowed since Germany, and having four seasons will be wonderful, not to mention a LOT less rain.

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.


A belated update

  • 4th Aug, 2015 at 6:26 PM
nikau (NZ!)
I realised that I haven't posted for a shockingly long time though I've been reading and commenting. I also haven't taken part in the two months of picowrimo, nor am I doing the current month of naarmamo. OK, three months of daily posts (and loads of commenting on everyone else's work) is a bit much in the miserable depths of winter, but I've also been very distracted.

We've decided to move to Oamaru, a small coastal town in the South Island. Why? Because Auckland is incredibly expensive, moving is a way of actually having money to spend, I've had my hours cut back, Greg and a partner (a guy we've both worked with) are starting up a new venture I'll be able to work for along with my current work, and besides, Oamaru has a lovely climate and is already set up for fibre - we'll need fast internet to work from home.

Tomorrow we're flying down to look at properties and other stuff we'll need to know about. The move isn't going to happen right away, but if we find a house we like, we can rent it out while we put this old place into slightly better order to sell. It's a lovely place with beautiful private grounds and I'll miss it, but the tired (original) kitchen and bathrooms need a bit done to be acceptable. That was something we'd been intending ever since moving in but were never able to manage.

What else? Sebastian had an injured leg and had to wear the Cone of Shame and Jasmin had her 7th birthday last week. I'll post photos when we get back next week; I've got some accumulated.

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.


Happy birthday!

  • 28th May, 2015 at 8:57 PM
Feliz cumpleaños a quabazaa! Espero que usted está teniendo un gran día con buena compañía y sabrosa comida.

Happy birthday!

  • 24th May, 2015 at 4:09 PM
me with cat and wine
Happy birthday to sallymn!

I hope it's full of good company and good food!

Happy birthday!

  • 14th May, 2015 at 9:13 PM
Happy birthday to lost_spook!

I hope it's an excellent one!

Fic: Vilanix and the Magic Potion

  • 9th May, 2015 at 1:39 PM
comic relief
This is my latest intoabar story.

Title: Vilanix and the Magic Potion
Prompt: Vila Restal goes into a bar and meets... Dogmatix!
Fandoms: Blake's 7, Asterix the Gaul
Word count: 3,712
Rating/Contents: General audiences

The Asterix the Gaul comic-book series is brilliant, trust me. If you don't know it, this page about the first book is a good start.

Vilanix and the Magic Potion (on AO3)

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.

Ashley is 7

  • 4th May, 2015 at 9:22 PM
We celebrated Ashley's observed birthday on Friday 1 May - she's now seven. She still seems like a teenager, with her smallness (she weighs just over 3kg) and her kitten squeak.

Three photosCollapse )


Happy birthday!

  • 29th Apr, 2015 at 10:01 PM
Happy birthday, vjezkova! I hope you are having a wonderful day.

Let there be cake for the hedgehogs! (Yes, a little Czech joke.)

Happy birthday!

  • 17th Apr, 2015 at 10:38 PM
Happy birthday, imhilien!

I'm sure there was chocolate. :-)

Studio Ghibli cosplays

  • 9th Apr, 2015 at 9:44 PM
For fans of Studio Ghibli anime, and I know at least one big one, here are 16 impressive cosplays. My personal favourites are the Porco Rosso - he's perfect! - and the tabby kitten bus. Arrietty's excellent too; her accessories are perfect.


April Fools Day at ThinkGeek

  • 3rd Apr, 2015 at 11:46 AM
loose cannon
Once again ThinkGeek have done themselves proud. And you never know - some of their joke products have become real ones like the Tauntaun sleeping bag.

Steam-powered gaming cabinet. Well, it's really the controller I lust after.
Wearable interactive quest thingy. Look, this one could a possible future real thing.
Voltron cat condo. Just YES, YES, YES!
StarTrek Enterprise frisbee. This one actually shows as being in stock and according to the videos does fly. Hmmm.
Rosetta Stone Learn Klingon.  Qapla'!

NERF nuke. Mutually assured destruction is right. Do you want to play a game? How about thermoNERFlear war? Fun video!
Eye of Sauron desk lamp. Maybe for a colleague or two.

360° selfie rig. Nuff said. Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.


Planes, trains, automobiles, and ferries

  • 8th Mar, 2015 at 2:44 PM
holiday vila
We're off for our first holiday away from home in three years tomorrow. Greg was given two free nights in a lake-front hotel in Queenstown along with flights and a rental car for being 10 years at his company, so we're basing our holiday around that. After that it's a night in Christchurch (staying with Greg's mother who has Alzheimer's so that'll be hard going) and an early start the next day to catch the wonderful Coastal Pacific to Picton. A ferry will then take us to Wellington because, sigh, Greg has to work there on Friday while I meander about the city, probably spending most of the day at the Te Papa national museum.

So not a particularly restful holiday, and I'm a bit nervous about driving around the Queenstown area as tourists who can't handle the roads in the area have been having or causing fatal crashes there recently. One of Greg's colleagues who was there a couple of weeks ago (on the same deal) said tourists kept stopping in the middle of the road to take photos. :-( We plan to visit the Clyde dam (probably not a tourist attraction, I hope) because I like dams and bridges and all large engineering projects and maybe Alexandra which might be dicier as it's a pretty place overseas visitors might go for. Plus there's a steamboat trip on the lake. :-D

I'm just sorry we won't be in Christchurch long enough to see the new cheetah cubs at Orana Park, but hey.

We have to put the cats in the cattery in an hour or so which always upsets me. It's the worst part of going away and the best part of coming back.

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.


Pity this person wasn't one

  • 20th Feb, 2015 at 9:17 PM
I went to look at the national SF and Fantasy convention's site, only to find this in the first paragraph:
With a heavy emphasis on Steam Punk and Cosplay, the Convention never the less caiter's for the professional writers of Science Fiction.


And I'll now vent about the highly paid new marketing person at work who puts apostrophes in all her plurals. All of them. So far I'm biting my tongue but I'm going to have to tell her at some point that I'll have to proof-read anything she wants to send outside the office. I'm just not sure how to go about that.

At least she's not doing it to verbs - so far.

Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.

nikau (NZ!)
A naive soul posted this question on Reddit. The answers are hilarious and, um, mostly untrue; I spent half an hour laughing like a maniac at them. Brilliant, wonderful stuff, and it'll give you a good idea of our sense of humour, culture, and what those childhood summer holidays were like.

This totally made my day.
Also posted on Dreamwidth, with comment count unavailable comments.

Happy birthday to two Ks!

  • 9th Feb, 2015 at 9:46 PM
Happy birthday to katriona_s and kernezelda!

Spring flowers and cats about to spring

  • 20th Jan, 2015 at 10:53 PM
spring (kowhai)
Our bedroom is 26C, even with the windows wide open since I get home, and too hot to sleep in right now so I decided to do the first of my planned picspams in the hopes that it'll cool down.

These photos were taken in late October/early November so yes, they've been languishing on my HD waiting to be cropped and resized etc. I am slack.

10 springy photosCollapse )

Next up: the airshow. Maybe even this week.

LJ, DW, and a weird pancake meal

  • 11th Jan, 2015 at 7:02 PM
I saw this on FaceBook: 10 signs you were obsessed with LiveJournal. Only numbers 1 (You bought a premium account just so you could have more icons), 8 (You had a love/hate relationship with image hosting sites), and 10 (Your LJ friends became real friends - YESSS!) really applied to me. #8 still does apply to Dreamwidth. Having to resize, upload, then link photos is a right pain and one of the reasons I keep putting it off, so I've decided I'll restrict pic-heavy posts to LJ because of sheer galloping laziness. Even though it will store said pics on LJ's execrable Crapbook.

In other news it's back to work tomorrow and this is very depressing, also because the offices aren't air-conditioned and it's very hot very early in summer; usually this sort of heat is February weather. Plus my work laptop's solid state drive went belly up just before the break, Greg thinks because of the heat, but surely they're used in hotter countries than this. Anyway, it'll take me a while to get the rebuilt laptop back to the way I like it. At least I had a daily backup.


imhilien and I went to see The Hobbit: Battle of 5 Armies in 3D this morning, me for the second time. Not enough Bilbo but I have to say I love the 3D. Afterwards we went for lunch and decided to have pancakes. "But I don't want eggs or bacon," I said, regarding the listing with misgivings:

From memory: Pancakes with scrambled eggs, bacons (sic), banana, maple syrup, ice cream, cream.
Most of the brunch items had bacons. :-P

imhilien was sure they were just options, but nope. I asked for banana with no bacon, and got the puzzled question, didn't I want the scrambled eggs? In the end we got our sweet pancakes plus some nice boysenberry preserve, but seriously, who would eat such a strange taste mishmash?


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