The psychobabbling food-loving seamstress.

Merry Christmas / Ruumsaid juulup / Prieci’gus Ziemsve’tkus un Laimi’gu Jauno Gadu!

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on December 12, 2010

So this year, I want to do something a little bit different with my family, I want to inject some of our Estonian / Latvian roots into our Christmas cheer…

We usually make Pirag, which is a sweet dough with a bacon and onion mix in it, and they taste DIVINE!  I am going to make some next weekend, and take a whole heap to work with me, as I’ve been talking about them non-stop.. 🙂

Legend has it that the first Decorated Christmas Tree was actually put up in the Medieval Square in Riga, Latvia in 1510.  This tradition has been kept for 350 years.   People from all around go to see the decoration of the Christmas Tree in Medieval Square to this day.

There are two stories that are told about the first Christmas Tree;

The first is of three men in black hats, who went into the forest, and decorated a tree, then burnt it down after they performed pagan rituals.

The second is of Martin Luther, which is actually said to be set in Northern Germany, in which he lit candles on the tree.

The lighting of the candles on the tree, is akin to the countdown and advent of Christmas.  The lights also symbolise the lighting of candles to encourage Mitras (the pagan God of Sun) to reappear next year.  Mistletoe was also seen as a sacred plant in pagan rituals, and kissing under the mistletoe began as a fertility ritual.

One of the hardest things to fathom (and also makes me thankful that my Nanna and Grandad settled in Australia) is that during the 50 years of Soviet Occupation of the three Baltic States is that Christmas was actually banned.  They were not allowed to celebrate their Christmas traditions.

To be continued…

Blackout

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on December 6, 2010

So kids, I’m going on a social media blackout for a few days.
Need to breathe. Need to find Amber again…
I’ll be back before Christmas… And hopefully with a script, and a few actors to make what’s in my head a reality.

Food first…

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on December 2, 2010

Food first… emotion later… mebbe…

So tonight, armed with the knowledge that I really needed red meat, and after checking out the Minus the Boombah blog by the divine and gorgeous comedienne/writer/actress/mother/etc etc etc Mrs Jane Kennedy, I decided on Eye Fillet…
I took part of Jane’s fast  and fancy steak and added what I would call a LOT of boombah… In my defence, I have an incredibly high metabolism (and yes, I realise I’m screwed when it stops), and I’ve been feeling deflated, so red meat and carbs (potatoe two ways (bolied and fried), garlic mushrooms, and balsamic asparagus)… mmmmm

The steak was a little over done, but I’m still learning to perfect the medium-rare thing…

See the pics below….

The Evolution of MY Online Social Network…

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on November 2, 2010

So it’s safe to say I’ve grown up in an online world.
When I was younger, it was an infantile industry, with movies like War Games, Electric Dreams, and Tron having us hoping, wishing and praying we could one day interact with computers, or even better another person in real-time via computer.

My first interaction with a computer of any kind was an old Commodore 64 that my parents bought home from America in 1983 (it was quite a few years after that, that I used to sit and play on it for hours on end), I was (and still am) a sucker for what is now known as interactive fiction (choose your own adventure, for those more book inclined), Zork was my downfall, and also had addictions to a variety of sports based games(Summer Games, Winter Games, California Games) in which we ended up breaking the joystick and keyboard as we were playing too hard (oops).

Then years and years after this, my family bought our first PC (I’m omitting the various kinds of Nintendo’s we had up until that time)… I vaguely remember playing the ill-fated Zork Nemesis on it, before losing interest.

After that, for quite awhile, my attention to computers was solely based on when I had to use them, school, okay… so not much other than school.

Then there are three defining nerdy moments in my life (maybe four).

The first is the first time I ever used the internet.  I for all senses and purposes of explaining this, I was and still am a geek/nerd, and not in a cool way.  I was just a strange kid (spent my afternoons in the local library, as opposed to playing outside), and now I’m an obviously awkward and equally as strange adult (How did that happen again? The adult part I mean, the awkward and strange part was a given.).
I digress, reiterating the nerd part, my first interaction with the internet was at my local library.  When I asked the Librarian what “the internet” was.  She sat me down at a computer, bought up “Netscape” (that was a web page browser back in my day), and she typed in what she described to me as a “web page address” for this thing called a “search engine”.  This search engine was called Altavista (I think?), she then told me to search for anything on any topic that came to mind…  I’m not sure why but I typed in “Star Trek”, and it came up with a list of “links” to “webpages”. I looked at one (which had stars for the back ground and the Star Trek logo, then one long diatribe about how and why Star Trek is amazing. This was also before the advent of .gifs, so you can imagine how pre-historic it was), then promptly decided I was bored…

Quite awhile after my first encounter with “the internet”, I decided to give it another try, this time by typing something very different into the “search engine”, “The Late Show D-Generation”.  The first two results, were the ones which caught my eye, one was run by two girls who had posted up the transcripts from various D-Gen and Late Show Sketches they loved, and also if I remember correctly, they had also scanned (yes we had scanners by this stage) and posted up letters they used to send each other in class, which were mostly based around how gorgeous Santo Cilauro (Snato Guilro for those in the know) was, and yeah, we’ll leave that there.  The other page was much the same, except it may have had a guestbook, so it meant that people were able to interact with each other.
This obsession evolved, and I discovered I could search for actors, and bands that I loved.
I had my own web page for awhile, which focussed on anything that caught my eye at the time; Leonardo Dicaprio, The Royal Melbourne Show, Bands I loved, and finally that little web page was laid to rest as a tribute to my ever adoring love for “The Living End” in 1999.
http://www.geocities.com/SunsetStrip/Mezzanine/7599  If you want to try and find it…

This obsession with looking up things I loved evolved into talking to people about things I loved (and as was my real life social anxiety, doing it online was easier).  Way way back when, it started with mIRC, and chatting to random people on the DALnet server, in the #melbourne chatroom.  I never met any of the people I chatted to on there.
After this I had a friend from school, who I discovered used to chat with people she worked with at the local Supermarket (and conveniently we both had a crush on one of the boys that she worked with (but wasn’t part of that little chat group), she won that one, by having sex with him years later at a music festival.  I was shattered.), so I knew her, but never met any of the boys she worked with.
The other logical step was message boards, which have figured largely in my life, from bands, to music websites, to what ever tickled my fancy at the time.
I’ve fought passionately on message boards, I’ve laid my heart out on blogs.  One of the best feelings ever (and I know how sad this sounds) is to have someone wholeheartedly agree with you, or to win a message board fire-fight (again sad but hey?)…
This all also became an outlet to get to know various people, and to chat live on ICQ.  I have friends I’ve known from message boards since I was 16, that I still love and adore, and first started chating to on ICQ with those first formidable characters… a/s/l?

After that point, our online lives started to amalgamate… I’ll give you MY Social Networking time-line, as at after becoming a message board and ICQ junkie…

Diaryland – This was the first version of Live-Jornal, you could blog, and read other peoples blogs…
Live-Journal –  An advanced version of Diary Land, now you could add emotions, add friends, and check what people were up-to everyday…
My Space – You could leave short snippets of what you were thinking, add your fav bands, blog, and write on your friends walls, all in one convenient location.  Oh and also ensure your My Space page reflected exactly who you were in digital form…
Facebook – Well, if you don’t know how facebook works, then why are you reading this?
Twitter – 140 characters of short note goodness… This is more a news service for me, rather than anything else…

Where will we be tomorrow, who knows?

So… we meet again my friend…

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on October 4, 2010

I’m starting to have my annoying weird stress sleep patterns, falling asleep at 8, waking up at 12, and not being able to get back to sleep until whenever… uh oh…

I will try to change this by writing tomorrow (today)…

Sewing, writing, and I think I need to bake something… mmmm food.

Also getting to the not wanting to leave the house stage, which is a bit of a concern…

Will go for a walk today… Will be productive… Will get a job… Will not stress too much….

This, that, here and there…

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on October 1, 2010

It’s nearly 2am…

So I thought I’d write to my ever loving and faithful readers, all 2 of you!

So Septembers come and gone, I was working for 3 weeks, but it didn’t work out so well.

I’m missing the uni.  A few jobs have come up, so I’ll write fabulous applications for them, and hopefully, something will come of them.  Although in between now and then, I need to keep temping, which I don’t mind, when there is work.

I need to refocus though, get my first assignment done for Psych, and sew again, I made a gorgeous red wrap dress, now I’ve got the urge to sew again, and with summer coming up, I’ll need some more clothes.  Speaking of sewing, I’m currently in love with Elegant Musings by Casey Brown.  Her dresses and design are amazing!  I love love love it!

I need cash, and more fabric, everyone cross your fingers for me that I’ll be working for at least some of the week next week!

More when I’m not so tired…

A

Self Respect… or my lack thereof…

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on August 23, 2010

“So after an absolutely incredible evening with the EUM (emotionally unavailable male), and reading Baggage Claim tonight, I’m angry with myself for not having enough self respect, and valuing myself enough to realise just how bad this “relationship”  is.
What I hate the most is that he IS actually a nice guy, just not to me, and that’s what is ripping my heart out at the moment.
I think the worst part at the moment is I know how angry I am, and I keep saying to myself I’m not angry at him, he laid it down on the table, I accepted the terms, I have to live with that.  But do I really?  How about I walk away with the respect I deserve?  I’m of ten minds about this, which means I don’t deserve to get hurt, and it’s time to walk away even though it’s going to hurt and I really don’t want to…”

I wrote the above about 3 months ago…  A few days after I saw the EUM the very last time…

It took me a few months, I’m not completely over it, but I’m getting there…

Hoping there’s other fish out in the sea, cause I haven’t met anyone stimulating in a really long time…

Bring on a) a new job and b) September…

Some thoughts (unenthused political rant within)…

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on August 16, 2010

I’m frustrated at the moment, and now wide awake in the midst of my frustration.

…and no it has nothing to do with tonights (last nights) episode of #qanda, I didn’t watch it.  There’s seemingly no use in the age of technological enlightenment.  I can get play by plays on twitter without even having to switch the television on.

I’m frustrated with my lack of enthusiasm for this election, last election I was in heaven.  I was so excited about the prospect of this thoughtful, intelligent, and slightly nerdy looking man becoming our new leader (and his smart, strong wife beside him!).
So maybe I’m a little put out with his ousting, I was not at all excited about Julia G becoming our first female prime minister the way she did.
I was in Brisbane on election night 07, I cried as the election was called for Rudd (and also when he made his victory speech), but then again, I had buried a family member that day, so tears had been flowing all day.
I really like Rudd, I think he is a man of great integrity, and also a man who had(has) our best interests as a country at heart.
This election has been boring, not trashy enough, and the thought that this time next week we could be looking at Tony Abbott as Prime Minister, my stomach turns.  Bye bye Q and A, bye bye any kind of thought provoking satire…

Its the policies that are being contested in this election that are making me angry and ill.
The policies are tedious and inconsequential, they do nothing to better this country, if anything they make us look like uneducated hacks.
The policies of a “Sustainable Australia”, “Keep the boats out”, etc etc etc…
These policies are not what our nation was built on.  I’m confused that Julia Gillard can stand by a choir who sing the second verse to Advance Australia Fair; “For those who’ve come across the seas, we’ve boundless plains to share” in particular, while promoting a “Sustainable Australia”.

Maybe I’m taking this all too personally.  Not something I can help, come to think of it.
My Dad’s side of the family are of English and Scottish origin (which I need to investigate more thoroughly), my Mum’s side are Estonian and Latvian (which I’ve talked about at length on the blog previously).  Things I haven’t said anything about, my uncle was born overseas, my mother was born in an Immigration Holding camp in QLD.  I’m guessing the conditions were not fantastic, but considering what Nanna and Granddad had been though before residing in Australia, it may have been more comfortable.
Nanna didn’t love it here, she longed for home, the place that the was snatched from her in her late teens.  Once they had settled in Australia, she stayed, and looked after her family.  They integrated into Australian life (with a strong eastern European flavour of course!), and were laid to rest here too.

I just don’t see how we can, or have the right to treat people who are genuine asylum seekers like trash.
I agree, they must integrate, but we also must give them the space they need to live the way they would like, while being given the chances that all Australians deserve.  The right to a good eduction, the right to believe and think what they want, and the right to practice their beliefs as they would like.  Now I understand if their beliefs are impinging on the rights of another, or other human beings, then they must be treated the same way that any other person who breaks our laws is treated.  I just don’t believe they should be made to feel strange for wearing an article of clothing, or looking different.  They never banned body piercings or tattoos at the height of their rage, did they?

I’m wondering where this is all heading.  I’m not sure I want either leader heading our government.  I wish for the days of Rudd again, at least then we’d see a strong fight.

Too much wet newspaper, not enough anger and passion.

All that being said, I know It’ll be a very interesting night watching election coverage and Don’s Party (someone better play it, its an election day institution!)… Save Our Souls….

…and sometimes there is a ray of hope…

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on May 31, 2010

I am very distinctly proud to be able to say that I know at least one of the names on the list at the bottom of the Open Letter in the Guardian in regards to Judge Garzon’s suspension from the Spanish Courts.

An Open Letter: International law and Judge Garzon

There are moments when I cheer, as I just did then.

There are also other times when I giggle wickedly, as I did when reading the reply from Judge Bruno Simma to this post on Opinio Juris!

I had to balance it out… Frustrated and thoroughly proud and happy to see people standing up for the correct things in this world.

I’m sick and tired of this illiogical world…

Posted in Uncategorized by Ambs on May 31, 2010

I’ve been trying to concentrate on my assignment, but with recent developments coming from Gaza (…and the Korean peninsula, if we really want to go there)… I’m utterly disgusted…

Attacking Humanitarian Aid ships?  In international waters at that…

I’m trawling through IHL treaties and conventions, trying to find something, anything that could explain how very wrong and against the law this whole attack is.
Rule 31 and 32 of International Humaintarian Law – Customary Law seems a good start in this instance;

Humanitarian Relief Personnel and Objects

Rule 31. Humanitarian relief personnel must be respected and protected. [IAC/NIAC]

Rule 32. Objects used for humanitarian relief operations must be respected and protected. [IAC/NIAC]

I think the one thing that is the most utterly disturbing of all is the belligerent, constant, and utterly horrifying conditions the Israeli government is putting the Palestinians in Gaza through.  The hardest is the fact that Isreal are proving to be the victims turned to aggressors, and it’s completely horrifying to watch.

I’m hoping for an end, but it seems but years away, and this will only prove to escalate tensions in an already fragile society.

More parts of IHL : Customary Law

Starvation and Access to Humanitarian Relief

Rule 53. The use of starvation of the civilian population as a method of warfare is prohibited. [IAC/NIAC]

Rule 54. Attacking, destroying, removing or rendering useless objects indispensable to the survival of the civilian population is prohibited. [IAC/NIAC]

Rule 55. The parties to the conflict must allow and facilitate rapid and unimpeded passage of humanitarian relief for civilians in need, which is impartial in character and conducted without any adverse distinction, subject to their right of control. [IAC/NIAC]

Rule 56. The parties to the conflict must ensure the freedom of movement of authorised humanitarian relief personnel essential to the exercise of their functions. Only in case of imperative military necessity may their movements be temporarily restricted. [IAC/NIAC]

So much to take in, so very frustrated, I’m hoping something real is done by the UN about this, as opposed to tip-toeing around the situation as they usually do.

Investigate now, not in 5 months time thanks…