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Sweethard's Journal

My Word Document filled with website updates, journal entries and other random crap



Sunday 22 November 2020: This weekend is a fairly laidback one after the last few hectic weekends - and a horribly eventful week - so it is a welcome change. Earlier this week I made friends at the gym (well, she had invited me to coffee after class on Saturday) after noticing we go to some of the same classes, which was so kind and inclusive of her! So yesterday morning after my gym class I had coffee with S and her hubby, along with some other friends of theirs from the gym. It was really nice :') I was definitely the youngest one there though, but that was fine. I suppose I'm pretty used to interacting with middle-aged people now because of work - I feel like I've got the required small talk down lol. Plus, I'm not too far off being middle-aged myself! Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

After the gym, I did a few chores around the house before going ten pin bowling (I won hehe) and hanging out at the arcade. My friend T is moving interstate so I caught up with them for the last time last night with his brother and partner. We had some cocktails by the pool and as we're all Polish we (well... they) cooked up a mound of pierogi (Polish dumplings) which we all devoured.

Today's plans are relaxing, a bit of cleaning, and writing up another job application. I think I have a friend visiting next weekend so I want to knock this application over mostly today but throughout the week too - as I doubt I'll have much time next weekend to work on it properly. I also have a few gigs coming up - just private parties - and I am trying to organise a live radio mix, so I've got a few sets to prepare!

Thursday 19 November 2020: 7:05pm♥

I like poor quality webcam pics

Thursday 19 November 2020: Just uploading some film pics I've received from S that she took on Halloween, and I that he took the other week at the Boathouse gig I played at ♥

Me, being a totally way cool DJ on Halloween

   
Another snap of me being a totally cool DJ, and me waiting for S to arrive at the Boathouse gig the other week hehe

Friday 6 November 2020: Ahh been so busy this week! Monday night I met up with the rollerskating goddess I met at Sunday's party and a couple of her friends for a skate! We had a jam (well, I attempted to at least) on the top-story of a multi-level carpark where the concrete was soooo smooth! We then had a cheeky roll at the skate park. It was a really fun night, I felt like a total hooligan skating through the city lol.

Then on Tuesday S and I went to the arcade of course, and had a major sweat session on DDR. It's very rare that I go to DDR with someone lol, but whenever I do, I make sure to always get a lil snap.

      
A polaroid of me and my backpack bear, and me and S!

The rest of the week has been pretty uneventful... I have been trying to keep up my attendance at the gym, and have also been working on a job application that is due on Monday night. I have an extremely slim chance of getting it since it is not completely related to what I do now or what my quals are in, but you never know if you don't try!!

Sunday 1 November 2020: Holy shiz, what a weekend! I ended up DJing at 3 parties!! I am buzzing from the weekend I have had, but I am so incredibly tired, I'm annoyed about having to go to work this week... I honestly just wanna sleep lol.

My weekend started on Friday night, where I went with Z to A's party. I was actually so nervous, since I literally only knew Z and A... Every single other person was a complete stranger, and I had almost felt like I'd forgotten how to socialise with new people. I remember arriving and just feeling so fucking awkward, but I was able to push myself as I realised people aren't gonna randomnly come up to me and start talking - I gotta be the one to make the first move.

   
My costume for the night/weekend

I didn't really feel like spending any money on a costume I wouldn't wear again for a couple of years, so I just threw together this costume, reusing the wig I bought for last year's Halloween and only purchasing some fake blood which I had poured accross my neck and wrists. And plz don't shoot, but I wore the same exact outfit on Saturday night for S's Halloween party lol.

Me, and 60% of the Mystery Gang lmao

I had an absolute ball, meeting new people, talking shit with new friends, and of course DJing for a bit over an hour. As I had drove there, I stopped drinking a couple of hours before I left, which meant I ended up getting home around 4am... I was absolutely spent... Only to get up the next morning to do it all again.

Saturday night was a party with the usual crowd who I'm used to, so it was definitely nowhere near as nervewracking rocking up to that one!! It was actually really nice to see some familiar faces after months of social distancing and hermitting. I played a really fun set, filled with spooky Halloween treats like remixes of the Ghostbusters theme song, and the Banana Boat Song from that famous scene in Beetlejuice!

   
Hehe me DJing and being a dickhead on Saturday night

   
Me n S bein super cute!!!!!

Then rolled around Sunday, where I was feeling dusty af; it was quite apt that it was a Halloween weekend because I felt like a bloody zombie shuffling around on something like 7 hours sleep in total over 3 days. But I was super excited to play this Boathouse gig since it was another entirely new crowd, and a party where I knew only 1 or 2 people...

It was such a vibe!! I had invited my friend S and it was so good to catch up with her and have a little boogie! The party started in the afternoon and finished around 10pm and as a Covid-safe gig, there were only about 100 people there - but it was really intimate and was so much fun!! Sometimes bigger isn't better!! Unfortunately the original location - the abandoned boathouse and jetty d-floor - had been blocked off for demolition, so they held the gig at an ampitheatre by the lake which turned out to be a spectacular spot to watch the sunset.

The ampitheatre and sunset

There's just something about having renegade parties in public... It adds an element of mischief and by default makes it about a million times more fun.

The vibe during my set!

I'm hoping this works, let me know if it doesn't... I'm gonna embed a lil 10 secound YouTube vid below of me being a totally cool DJ lmao... It was really pumping for a bit, ugh I love doing it so much!

Also!!! Omg, there was this girl at this party who was dancing on roller skates!!!! We exchanged instagram handles and we are gonna go for a skate!!! It honestly makes me so happy to find some other rollerskaters!! And she's gonna teach me how to jam and boogie on skates, I'm super excited!! I have had such an awesome weekend, and am feeling so good!!! I will enjoy this warm fuzzy feeling while it lasts ♥

Monday 26 October 2020: Spent all yesterday coding up a Myspace profile - check it out here! I keep looking at it wishing it was real... I have fond memories of rushing home after school and connecting the family computer to internet via dial up just to chat on MSN, browse Myspace and download music through Limewire. It's mostly likely due to my age at the time, but the internet seemed so much more innocent then. I suspect it's more to do with me becoming more aware of humanity's ugly side as I grow older.

Besides this, I have had a pretty down week so I'm taking it quite easy. I will be spending most of my evenings prepping for a couple of (houseparty) gigs I have on this weekend. It's Halloween so it'll be fun to play some spooky tunes! Last Halloween I threw a huge party, which I obviously haven't been able to do this year cos of COVID so I'm feeling pretty bummed about that to be honest. I've had people ask me if I'm doing it this year... It's just too much of a pain in the ass rn because of restrictions on event numbers. Oh well, hopefully next year things will be back to normal!

   
Some of the crowd at last year's rave

   
Me DJing!

Thursday 22 October 2020: So I started cleaning up my guestbook page but after playing with a few different ideas I decided that I hated all of them lol. Using a free guestbook, there really isn't much in the way for customisation unfortunately, so I though it might be the perfect opportunity to make my own little gif header! If you haven't noticed, I kinda love customising things and making things my own lol - it's something I do both online and offline. I'm actually pretty chuffed with what I came up with today, so I decided to add it to my About me and Blingee pages as well. You can check out my guestbook with brand-spanking-new header and aesthetics here (don't forget to say 'hi' while you're there ♥ hehe).

My Nokia 3310-inspired Guestbook button

Wednesday 21 October 2020: Yoooooo okay now THIS sounds like so much fun wtf... My friend G put me in touch with B who caught the last 10 mins of my DJ set the other Friday. B's asked if I wanna play at this low-key party he's throwing at an abandoned boathouse near the city - with the dancefloor on the actual jetty. WTF I think that sounds so fucking cool and I immediately said yes!!

Flyer for the event

What also makes this event amazing is that there's no social media presence for it - there's just a link going around where you fill in your details, and you're sent the location an hour before the event begins. It's so underground, I love it.

Tuesday 20 October 2020: I got his film back from the photos he took at the gig I played at a couple Fridays ago. He captured me in one of my elements: behind the camera lol.

Camcorder footage just hits different...

Monday 19 October 2020: Finally back and unpacked from my week up the coast! It was beautiful weather and I loved getting to see my family again, as it does get hard living in a cold city so far away and without the comfort of your family nearby. Overall, I had such a really relaxing time. I did pack my computer up and was going to bring it, but I made a split-second decision right before I left to leave it... I saw it as an opportunity to unplug and spend my afternoons away from the screen - which I now know was the right choice.

I split my time up either staying with my Mum or my brother, A. A lives right by the beach, so we spent a couple afternoons roller skating (and him blading) along the foreshore and chilling down on the warm sand in the sun.

   
A cute vid A got of me skating, and him tying up the laces of his blades

I actually love staying with him so much. Every morning before logging into my work laptop, I'd stroll along the beach and head back upstairs to do a bit of work, only to return after a couple of hours for my morning coffee break. The silver lining to COVID has been the increased flexibility in the workplace and my bosses being open to the idea of working from "home".

   
Beach Bro and the view from my coffee breaks

We went out for wings one night, and I went out to drink with some of A's friends another night, before spending the last couple of days with my mum. We did a massive hike that leads from the rainforest and out past a lagoon and onto the beach. It's so beautiful - I treasure both the landscape and the time spent with my mum on these hikes.

   
Some of the views along the lagoon walk

Also I miss my kitty. His name is Pussy lol. He always sleeps with me when I visit which makes me really happy ♥ He's getting quite old now actually... I'll be happy if he's still here by Christmas... T-T

Pussy curled up and sleeping with me

Sunday 11 October 2020: Surprise surprise, the inner-city rave I was playing at got shut down lol. During my set too! That is the second time this year where I have been in the middle of DJing a set when the cops have shown up to shut the party down. Though this time the cops seemed a bit more hardlined as they were saying anyone who hung around was getting arrested.... Needless to say, that dispersed the crowd pretty quickly. I hope the organisers invite me back to play at their next party so I can finish what I started!

Anyways, two days in a row of late nights and poor quality sleep means that I am taking today real easy. I spent some time just before hanging out with Harlem in the backyard while eating lunch, and I'll spend the next hour or so packing some things as I'm spending the next week up in Newcastle with my family. It will be really good to see them again, it's been a while. I won't be taking my computer with me - it might be good to get a bit of a holiday from the screen - but I might continue making updates to my journal here via my phone. I'll see how I go.

   
A ridiculous photo I just took of Harlem lol and a normal, cute photo

Saturday morning 10 October 2020: Omg, first post-COVID-19 gig done and dusted! It was so much fun!!!! I opened and warmed up the crowd with some classic bootleg tracks (think Destiny's Child, Missy Elliot, t.A.T.u, Ciara etc. ontop of some house and garage beats). I was low key extremely nervous as it was the first gig back at a proper venue since February... But I had a lot of compliments after (including from my DJ friends) so I can relax knowing that I did a good job :~)

   
A little gif of me doin ma thing my friend got of me, and my top-half outfit ♥

Neko Pink - as always - were so amazing I honestly love their music so much. The event was as pre-release show for their next single FOOL4YA which they ended the show with. It's perfect, and I'll be linking it here once it's released. A is a goddess on stage I couldnt stop watching her! And her partner G is such a talented musician, they make such a great duo.

A poor quality polaroid of Neko Pink's A and I

Got asked to play at a rave on the inner-city mountain tonight too, so I am currently putting together a set for that, and will probably spend the rest of the day practicing! I also desperately need to fit in a nap since I got home so late last night and woke up early today for the gym.

Monday 5 October 2020: As mentioned in my previous post, I had my friend's house party on Friday which was a lot of fun! I DJ'd for an hour and a half but I felt really rusty as I haven't been practicing much since I did my livestream back in June. But house parties are good because usually everyone is so messy and definitely not judging the technicalities of my mixing lol. However H later told me that during my set, he literally though "I wish I could mix as good as this". That made me so happy when he told me that cos I am honestly so self-critical. I hung around to watch my friends' sets and ended up at the back of the room chillin on the couch just people watching, and dancing occassionally, which was a vibe.

I slept in on Saturday and spent the day with H by the lake with some fish and chips. It was surprisingly warm weather which is why we thought it would be nice to have our little picnic - only problem is that half of Canberra had the same idea... It was so busy we had to wait 45 mins for our lunch but that place is always soooooo good, so it's kinda worth the wait. Later that day it was R's birthday party and he was throwing a little 90's-style rave in the bush and had invited me to come and DJ. I always love a good chance to dress up!

Space buns, hot pink foil jacket, tribal bodysuit, camo wideleg pants and my big black Buffalos... Pretty 90's rave if you ask me!

Oh man, the set I played though... Pretty much all of my worst nightmares came true lol... I accidentally stopped the music, so that was fucking awkward. But rolled with it and yelled out "I meant to do that"..... Ughhhh... Hahahaha.... And it was the first time ever that I haven't meticulously pre-planned a set, so I was just playing whatever I wanted - which was fun but also a little stressful, because there were a couple of times my beatmatching was off. And there were so many seasoned DJs at this event, oh god, I cringe everytime I think about it. But you know, I've just gotta roll with it, and accept that it wasn't my best set ever. Maybe use it as a bit of motivation to practice even if I don't have any gigs coming up (though it was hard throughout COVID to find that motivation). Oh well, I'm just trying to not be so hard on myself with it all. HOly shit, literally just now R text me saying how good my set was, and how there were so many people saying how much they loved it and how "it went down a treat" T-T omg that makes me so happy. God what is wrong with me, I think being self-critical is good to an extent because it pushes you to be better, but my self-critical voice is debilitating. Give me a break, brain!

Thursday 1 October 2020: October already... Where has the year gone? I've had a fairly busy week as I've been going to the gym everyday and preparing for 2 gigs I have coming up, one of which is this Friday - tomorrow actually lol - and another next Friday supporting my friend's dreamy pop band. They are honestly my favourite band out of Canberra - so talented and on-point with their aesthetic. The poster for the event is super cute too:

Cute-ass poster for next week's gig

I have linked a couple of my favourite tunes of theirs above - check them out! Honestly, it's going to be a bit weird... It's a COVID-safe gig so everyone will be seated and - I assume - socially distanced. I'm kind of freaking out because it's been months since I've DJ'd in front of a proper crowd lol but I'm super grateful they asked me to support them ♥. I suppose tomorrow night will be good practice (although it's a little different as a house party).

Sunday 27 September 2020: Ha ha social anxiety update: everything's fine and it's always fine. I finally mustered up the courage to go to the party and of course - as always - it was super fun and so totally worth it! Ugh when will my brain learn...

Me and my beary good friend last night... His cuddle gave me strength

I'm also really enjoying driving to parties and having only 1 or 2 drinks the entire night. Waking up this morning without a hangover and remembering the night and the people I met is pure bliss.

Saturday night 26 September 2020: Ha ha it's me on da computer right naow

Trying to leave the computer to go to this party... Social anxiety sux

Saturday 26 September 2020: Had a peek inside an antique store this morning... Really makes me wish I had the money to deck out on, well, my own house to begin with lol, but also the dosh to splash on mid-century-styled furniture... There's honesty something so endearing about the 1950's 'spage age' design with the bright block colours and the use of metallics. But then a part of me also wants the rooms in my house filled with vintage chaise lounges and heavy cedar oak furniture, with patterened wallpaper not clashing with, but complimenting, the knick knacks I have on display... Oh a girl can dream. I am currently on the hunt for some religious decor - whether paintings, scupltures, figurines, or anything else that may catch my eye. I have some issues with religion... Something which I am still exploring and trying to articulate... However I like the symbolism and ritualism of it. Humans love their rituals and I just find that in itself so fascinating. I saw these paintings in the shop today, however it was $295 for the pair... A bit over my price range but they were beautiful originals from the 1940-50s. Maybe I'll make the trip back in a couple of months and if they are still there I will take that as a sign that they should be in my life.

Originals from the 1940-50s framed in a gorgeous dark pine... The more I look at them the more I want them

In other news, yesterday my supervisor told me that he'll be leaving the team which I am a little sad about. He's been my supervisor for the last few years and has basically been my unofficial mentor (at least that's how I see him), guiding me through unwritten rules and etiquette in our workplace. I have really learnt so much from him and I don't think he knows how much I look up to and respect him, so I'm a bit down to see him go - but also happy that he has lined up a new and exciting opportunity for himself. I'll play it by ear, but if I'm feeling like doing so, I was thinking of asking him to be more of an official unofficial mentor lol... idk... That also makes me feel like a bit of an ass... We'll see...

The gig I had planned for next weekend was cancelled which is a bit of a bummer, but there is a houseparty I'll be playing at instead, and my friend has asked me to open up for their band in 2 weeks so 1 gig turned into 0, and then into 2 lol. I feel a bit nervous though since it's been so long since I have played infront of people! I'm also a bit nervous for this other houseparty E invited me to tonight... It feels like it's been so long since I've done socialising on the energy-draining level of 'houseparty'... Paticularly since I only know the 4 other people I'm going with... Should be interesting and I hope the art of conversation comes back to me easily lol.

Wednesday 23 September 2020: Hi journal. This has been the first time since getting back from camping on the weekend where I've had time to sit at the computer to type! We left on Friday night and drove around 3 hours to R's property where we set up camp in the dark under S's massive floodlight. This was the first time taking my Subaru Forester off-road - which was an exhilarating (and scary) experience!

   
My trusty Foz ♥ And the view from my tent on Saturday morning

Waking up on Saturday morning, I could finally appreciate the landscape where we were camping since it was now daytime. We were situated amongst gorgeous Australian grassland that was looking incredibly green since we've received a bit of rainfall this month. We started off the morning with some freshly brewed coffee and some amazing breakfast burritos cooked over the campfire, with a yoga session afterwards to get us all limber for the day. We then went on a large walk around the property to view some endangered flora, and returned back to the bar for an afternoon of wine tastings which S and I were hosting, complete with matching aprons and little hats lol! I also remember at this point someone saying that they had just seen a giant black snake a few hundred metres from the campsite, so I was hyper vigilant for the rest of my bathroom breaks lol. The last thing I wanted was a snake to bite my butt out in the middle of nowhere...

   
The bar in question, and a photo of my boots and I relaxing around the campfire.

As night approached so did the rain, so we all huddled in the bar for a while as I mixed a couple tunes on the DJ decks that we had set up. After dinner and a few more drinks, we returned back to sit around the campfire to talk a bit of shit as the rain had now left, but as I felt exhausted from being on my feet most of the day, I decided to head back to the tent and call it a night. Unfortunately I had a pretty hectic bout of anxiety, along with a thunderstorm who's rain was pelting so loudly on my tent that I had only 2 or 3 hours sleep all up. Despite Saturday night's rough sleep, I had such a great time. It's so nice to finally have some friends who enjoy wholesome activities and camping - without the need for getting totally wasted to enjoy themselves. I am feeling thankful for the people I've surrounded myself with. Anyways, I hope I get to go out camping again soon!

Photo of the valley below

Tuesday 22 September 2020: I noticed these cute lil flowers along the entire footpath home today! Fun fact: they are part of the sunflower family.

Capeweed or 'Arctotheca calendula'

Friday 18 September 2020: Okay, yes I know it's terribly capitalist and materialistic... But please join me in admiring these super cute Buffalo leopard prints I just bought! I got them for 40% off (still cost a though...)

Pink leopard print... I am in lovvvvvvve ♥

I've been wearing Buffalo shoes for years... But have mosly bought them second-hand just because of how expensive they are. I've been saving a bit of money lately, and with the sale they came down in price too much for me to ignore. The thing about Buffalos is that they are impeccable quality - I have a second-hand pair from Y2K and they're still kicking. They also serve as a simple way to level up your outfit without even trying. I can't wait for these babies to arrive!

Going camping this weekend so will be offline for a few days - it will be so nice to go somewhere without reception and surrounded by nature! I will hopefully update the journal with my experience over the weekend once I return :^)

Tuesday 15 September 2020: It's been a funny couple of months. Through the COVID quiet, I've been doing a lot of introspection and have rediscovered myself. I used to be a nerdy care-free loner, always trying new things and always learning stuff. As each week rolls around, I realise that I am becoming more and more like that, more in touch with my true self, and that realisation helps me get through. I'm keeping busy by upcycling furniture, I'm learning Polish and have also signed up for Korean lanuage classes that start up in October, I'm working on my little website and have just signed up to a beautiful new gym with a sauna, spa and pool (to finally take my fitness seriously)! I also have a gig coming up in a couple of weeks which I am also putting together some visuals for! The first one since April that isn't live-streamed... It's an actual IRL event! Hmm that's only 3 weeks away, I really need to get cracking on that...

Friday 11 September 2020: A medium-sized update to my website with the addition of my Blingee pages! And also gave my Windows 95-styled navigation menus a bit of a freshen up... I think it looks sooooooo much better! I made it pink and changed all the icons over, so it looks a lot cleaner now.

   
The left one is what they used to look like... The new pink one looks so cute and fresh now! ♥

Tuesday 8 September 2020: Oh my gosh it has been a hectic week. We have had a housemate move out so we have been super busy giving the house a huge spring clean with multiple trips to the tip. But in good news, I have finished my wardrobe and I am so happy with it!

   
From a F*cebook Marketplace find... to an absolute treasure! ♥

It's come out so much better than I thought it would, and I am very happy I decided to use cow-print (or as I like to call it, 'moo cow') fabric, instead of cutting out stencils and painting the pattern on (which sounds like a pain in the proverbial). I love anything fluffy so this really is the perfect piece of furniture for me. I have one more little set of drawers I'd like to upcycle, which I keep underneath my desk. I am actually thinking of making it entirely fluffy this time... Perhaps with just fluffy moo cow and leopard print material! I will have to go and visit my local sewing store to see what kinds of fabric they have in stock.

Tuesday 1 September 2020: Just uploading some cute digital photos that were taken by H last week for my beanies I had made and embroided for Raveyard. I made a simple Instagram post about them to my friends and I have already sold 5 of them (even my ex's mum bought one xD)! Which I thought was pretty good considering I didn't explicitly say they were for sale lol. I'm sending one overseas as well to my friend A in Poland along with a care package filled with some Aussie chocolates and snacks! So I have spent the afternoon shopping for Australian snacks and souvenirs, and have started arranging it all in a parcel for him.

      
Some more pics from the underpass

I also spent a couple hours last night and tonight making some blingees for when I eventually add that page to my website. I really like making them so I'll also be offering to make them for other Neocities users lol ♥

Weekend of 29-30 August 2020: This Saturday I continued on one of my little DIY projects which involved sanding down and painting old tallboys and bedside tables! A few weeks back I purchased a couple of wardrobes from F*cebook marketplace (arguably the only good feature about the social media platform) and spent a weekend in the shed sanding down the wood and applying the first couple layers of white paint.

      
Progress...

Due to cold and wet weather over the last few weeks I wasn't able to apply my coloured coats, as you can only use spray paints when it's not too cold or too humid. So this weekend I thought I would finish it off! With the tallboy - as there is so much surface area for me to cover - I am going to have to apply a few more coats so I get a solid baby pink. The front panels for the drawers are much smaller hence I was able to get those bright colours with only 2-3 coats! Same with my little bedside drawers - I love how vibrant the colours have come out!

      
Progress on my tallboy and my finished bedside drawers!

After a pretty physical day, I went out for some Indian for dinner and practically rolled home because of how full I was I then tied off the evening with a few episodes from season 1 of Buffy the Vampire Slayer! I think I have rediscovered my love for her and the series, and remembered why I loved the show so much as a teen. Which has led me to the conclusion that I absolutely need to add a shrine to her somewhere on my webpage lol. It must be done.

Sunday was spent rollerskating around the lake with JJ (since it was finally warm enough and not raining!) and making some bear earrings. A very wholesome end to a very wholesome weekend.

My beary cute earrings

Wednesday 26 August 2020: Met up with H and asked if they wouldn't mind taking some pictures of me and my beanies that I had embroidered for my little events company. Last Halloween I threw and DJ'd at a party held in a dirty, dingy little underpass just outside the city (the same place where the first photo below was taken!). Obviously with COVID I don't think I'll be able to do it again this year... or I mean I could, but it wouldn't be the same... So figured I'd get some beanies made up just to keep the ball rolling with the event name. I think they turned out really really good! I actually kept 2 for myself lol. I then dragged H off to the arcade for a couple of DDR games which, as always, was super fun I tried out a couple of new songs today, including Cruel Moon from Gensoko Voyage 6 and Call Me Maybe from the arcade's miscellaneous list. I liked them a lot so I will be adding them to my regular rotation of tracks!

      
Some polaroids from the underpass and arcade

Also side note, I'm also really enjoying this journaling experience. It takes me a couple of goes to get the wording right, but I know I'll appreciate looking back on this in the future - and it is a great excuse to take some photos of an otherwise normal activity!

Weekend of 22-23 August 2020: This past weekend I had a wonderful getaway to a sleepy, coastal town called Kiama which is located on the NSW South Coast about 120kms from Sydney. First of all, the drive there was absolutely amazing. I drove through rolling green hills, fertile farmland with families of cute cows and baby calves meandering through the fields, and quaint little country towns. Perhaps the most fun part of the drive is what's called the Macquarie Pass - an 8km section of highway that descends an escarpment via an extremely thin and incredibly steep roadway. With hairpin bends and at times only single-lane sections, I felt like a bit of a rally driver, using the racing line to get me through the road bends and testing the limits of my car's suspension and brakes (safely, of course!).

Kiama Post Office

Upon arriving in Kiama, I was welcomed by classic Federation architectural-styled buildings typical of Australian country towns and the distant view of the blue ocean. With the whole day ahead of us, we went straight to the wineries for some lunch, cheese boards and wine tastings (very adult of me, I know). Stand outs were the dessert wines - as I have a serious sweet tooth - which came in flavours like macadamia, Christmas cake and fig (and yes, I bought a bottle of each!). Unfortunately with an Antarctic air cold front along the east coast of Australia, the weather was cold and extremely gusty, so instead of being able to stand on the ridges after lunch and view the vineyards below, we made our way back to Kiama through a cute little town called Berry.

Views of the South Pacific Ocean

Me being me, I instinctively hunt down the Berry opshop... Small country opshops have always been the source of my greatest thrifting finds and treasures, so I go out of my way to explore them when I get the chance. In this case I acquired a great little haul - including 2 skirts, pants, a bear pin, and boxes with angels and bears on them. Last but not least, were these cute little teddy bear figurines. Wanting to add to my little 'Teddy Bear Corner' at home, and with them being a steal at only 50 cents each, I walked up to the counter with a huge grin on my face feeling chuffed at what I had just found in a tucked away corner of the shop. Making some small chat with the older lady behind the counter, I exclaimed at how cute the figurines were as I placed them on the counter. With a smile and a small chuckle she said to me "You know these are meant for 5 years olds...". In a bit of disbelief of what I had just heard, I smiled and nodded my head as I paid, while thinking "screw you, lady"... Judging her smile and delivery I assume she said it only in jest, but this is why I try to think before I say something to someone, even if I think it's funny or if it is with the intent of telling a joke. Those small, offhanded comments can really stick with people. But anyway, I'm sticking to my guns and I'm building my little teddy bear's corner; I'm going to love it and I don't care what anyone says.

My "beary" cute figurines, pin and box

Now getting close to dinner time, we all decided to stop off at a charming little pub between Berry and Kiama. From the outside, it looked like your typical country pub with its second story architecture reminiscent of the Tudor style housing you see in England. Passing through the heavy wooden front doors and walking inside we were instantly bombarded with sporting (mostly soccer) memorabilia plastered on the walls - even the ceiling! Literally every inch of wall and ceiling space was adorned with something - newspaper clippings, sporting badges and medals, trophies, ribbons, posters, scarfs, framed and signed jerseys, and photographs both of sporting persons, teams and clubs. With every step there was something new to see and some new trinket to read, either hanging on the walls, perched on shelves or arranged in glass display cabinets. While some of the merchandise and memorabilia looked a bit faded from years of sunlight and were collecting a few layers of dust, you could feel the passion and character oozing out of this establishment. Visiting this little pub really made me want to travel around Australia to see other little country pubs. Ones with character - and characters who frequent. Ones with years of stories and loved by locals and travelers alike.

Kiama Coast Walk

After a night's rest we ventured out for an early morning walk along the coast to see some of the natural sites Kiama had to offer. We stood on what felt like the edge of the world, peering into the crystal clear sea waters as the waves lapped the rocks we stood on. We made our way across soft and golden sandy beaches and past some impressive rock formations to the site of an old sea-side quarry, where the power and the strength of the ocean's swell could be seen (and almost felt) in all its glory.

Kiama Rock Pool

After a 30 minute drive through the coastal countryside, we then arrived at Minnamurra Rainforest for a hike. I'm low-key obsessed with waterfalls, so I was very happy when the others expressed their enthusiasm to do the 'Falls Walk' too, which the Information Centre estimated to be a 2 hour return hike! Thinking that the rangers normally overestimate hiking times, we began our walk by wandering along the elevated walkways over the trickling creeks and crystal-clear streams of water, moss-covered rocks and green leafy ferns that lived below. There were a couple of suspension bridges we crossed made only of wood and rope which swayed from side to side with each step. I briefly paused on the bridge and peered down below to a pool of crystalline water that was also reflecting a brilliant shade of emerald green. I gazed up, appreciating the warm sunlight that was threading its way through the leafy canopy and glistening on the gently rippling water below. I tried taking some photos but my phone's camera was not doing the scenery any justice, so I gave up trying to take any photos from that point on.

   

We soldiered on through the steep sections of the walkway to arrive at the viewing platforms that had spectacular views over the misty rainforest canopy and canyon at the Minnamurra Waterfalls. The upper viewing platform was actually blocked off with a bit of construction material and a huge sign saying Construction site do not enter. But everyone else had the same idea as us - there was no way we weren't getting on that platform after the enormous and incredibly steep hike we just endured to get here. We had to make it all worth it! So we slipped through the metal barricades and stood at the edge of platform, taking a few moments to watch the water cascade down and over the jagged rocks, splashing into the pool below.

Minnamurra Waterfall

After a comparatively pleasant (and mostly downhill) return hike, we journeyed back to Kiama where we stopped off to get an icecream (1 licorice scoop in a waffle cone) before wandering to the Kiama Blowhole. I stood at the closest viewing platform and watched with awe as the water was forced high up into the air with a thundering woosh that trembled the very rock I stood on.

It was a really nice weekend and it was so good to get out of the house (and city!) for a bit. With the prospect of international travel off the table until at least July next year, I really hope that I can take a few trips in my own backyard. I would really love to go to Queensland to see the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest for a start!

Thursday 20 August 2020: Newest website update includes a brand new page for my chatroom! Which is really just the third-party application Cbox in the middle of the page lol. But I've styled the webpage to look like a Windows desktop with MSN messenger open! I had previously created both the MSN conversation and buddy list images for one of my livestream scenes, so I was able to easily add those in (after a few cosmetic edits) but I also plan on adding some MSN notifications that pop up (similar to the ones on my homepage). I do plan on adding a few more things to busy up the desktop a bit. I also have some MSN sounds autoplaying which I know is terrible user design but... f*ck it... That's not what I'm going for lol! I'm going for organised chaos. I also edited some of my Windows start menu navigation areas to include a link to the chatroom. Take a look and leave a message if you wish! :^)
This weekend I'm heading to the coast for a bit of a getaway, so not sure if I'll really get too much done over the next week or so (website-wise). But who knows... I seem to always find time to work on something for it!

Tuesday 18 August 2020: You may have already seen the Windows start menu navigation areas I've created and put on a couple of my website pages... Actually, you most definitely would have, since at the moment I am only linking this page from those lol! But anyway, this evening I just went around to each of them and updated the image map links (which also included editing and re-uploading the images themselves, as I had to make room for my 'Notes and updates' navigation menu item). I also added a link map to the image behind this text, so you can easily navigate to other areas of my site! (By the way, I used this site to create my image maps). I still have quite a few additions and changes to make, but that's what I love about this whole experience... It's something I can perpetually work on and build! This page in particular will help me remember just how far I've come, and how much work I've put in to my lil website 8-)

Sunday 16 August 2020: Added this page along with Word favicon! I still need to define an image map for the Word Document image that is behind this text so that it also functions as a navigation menu and would like to add some more things to this 'desktop', similar to my About the site page. I also need to add a link to this page from all of my other navigation menus.
I have so many ideas and plans for this website... I actually carry around a little pink pocket-sized notebook to add ideas into when I'm out, that's how obsessed I am right now! I know my site is super basic but I have way too much fun with it, and I am really enjoying the dopamine hit I get everytime I update or add something to it lmao. There are also quite a few issues I gotta fix and code to clean up (I just hope no-one is F12ing my ass lolll).