Thursday, December 24, 2015

Let The Feasting Begin

This year, I have been a terrible blogger. Sporadic, lazy and frankly some incredibly dull content. I doubt I'll be much better in 2016.

Tomorrow - as I'm sure you are all well aware - is Christmas. I'm less about the gifts this year, and all about the food and champagne. Tomorrow I'll be kicking things off with blueberry pancakes and croissants with Handsome Hubby.

After some gift unwrapping and probably some mildly panicked cooking, we're heading to my brother's place for Christmas lunch and all the mayhem that goes with 3 and 5 year old girls being lavished with gifts, love and loads of sugar.

Following that will be Christmas dinner with Hubby's family. Hubby's mother is basically a chef without a restaurant. She has never cooked the same meal twice, and her skill and generosity in the kitchen is unrivalled. Trust me when I say that when you bring a plate to her house, it is quite the stressful experience and one should not be offended if your plate is untouched. Even after surviving breast cancer treatment this year, she has managed to never complain (even when Hubby's dad cooked which was a challenge for all of us) and always been her caring self even when you could see it was all a bit much.

After seeing some of my very good friends lose their Dad to cancer this year, we know how lucky we are to have Hubby's mum still with us. Irrespective of the challenges we deal with, Christmas is probably the best time to count our blessings - be it family, friends, great prospects for the future, a Chanel handbag or simply the greatest blessing of good health and life. I hope you have a really gorgeous Christmas. Let your plate and cup runneth over.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Last Minute Gift Ideas

Are you organised? Have you bought everyone on your list what you expect will be their favourite present over all other gifts this Christmas Day? No pressure. This year I am leaning toward utility  - tickets to tennis grand finals, shoes that demand to be worn on the daily, chocolate, gourmet pasta and pasta sauce sets etc. I have been finding "stuff" so abhorrent of late, that I find it difficult to purchase gifts when I know all the people in my life have basically everything they really need, and that anything I give them will just sit with all that other dusty, semi-useful, irregularly used stuff, that it makes me feel a little sick to my stomach. Better that it be food, experiences and creators of memories in my opinion... Sarah Wilson's, too.

It reminds of a Charles Bukowski line, which I think I've mentioned previously:
The less I needed, 
The better I felt.

Of course, this rule against stuff doesn't apply to tiny nieces, for they are just at the beginning of their stuff-collecting, and tiaras, tutus and adorable swimsuits are just the ticket from a doting Aunt.

However, if there is a man in your life who is attached to his phone, doesn't carry a man-bag, and likes a pocket square, then I think J.Crew and Jimmy Fallon have come up with the perfect, utilitarian gift: the Pocket Dial.

Hilarious. Purchase it here.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Innovations for the Film/Podcast/TV Series Tragic

Inadvertently telling someone the ending of a film or TV series, or giving away a major twist in a storyline is one of those things that, depending on your friend's demeanour, can spark either fuming, flame-spitting rage or (worse) mortally wounded you-stole-a-baby's-lolly, puppy-dog faces - possibly even tears depending on how attached to the narrative they are. Sometimes it's intentional (and evil) when you drop spoilers out there, other times it is a genuine mistake.

Last night, Handsome Hubby went to the midnight screening of Star Wars (geek alert) along with not only 20 of his closest mates, but also most of Australia it would seem based on social media, TV and radio this morning. He mentioned that one of his mates in the Northern hemisphere had made a semi-cryptic Star Wars reference on Facebook that part-way through the film made sense and was also something of a spoiler which, as Hubby commented, was almost a "de-friending offence". WOAH. That's serious.

But then I thought about that time I made a comment about Will Gardiner's fate at the end of a season finale The Good Wife episode, and the vitriol that came spewing at me from one particular friend, and I realised that you are skating on the edges of friendship when you make such pronouncements on social forums of any kind (including the oldest forum of all, in-person) - no matter how cryptic you think your statement is! And let's face it, there's always going to be a friend who makes a non-cryptic comment against your cryptic post, and it blows the storyline wide open and before you know it, friends are at war.

General thoughts on people who take pleasure in issuing spoilers via social media

Today I am issuing an edict to Zuckerberg and his Facebook-coding illuminati to go out there and resolve this first-world crisis and devise a filter which enables you to filter out stories and status updates regarding [insert guilty pleasure / TV, film, podcast addiction] so you may never have an ending spoilt again. In this age of NetFlix and binge TV series watching - where no one is really watching at the same time as anyone else, this invention must be developed. The sooner the better!

It was so hard on my poor little thumb as I furiously scrolled through Facebook in April this year to not see Mad Men spoilers before I had the opportunity to lock down access to that final season* (thank you, Qantas in-flight entertainment). More immediately, I am currently listening to the second Serial podcast, and finding it very hard to not read all those damn articles about Bowe Bergdahl that keep popping up in my newsfeed.

By the by, I believe this ingenious filter I have devised (that I'm sure no one has ever conceived of before), could also be used for blocking stories and photos certain people in your life you would prefer not to know a dang thing about but whom politeness dictates you cannot defriend (I know there is an Unfollow filter, but does that block photos of them with your friends? NO). This is so ingenious, I can't believe it doesn't already exist.

You may have a newborn baby and generous paternity leave to attend to Zuckerberg, but I think this is far more deserving of your attention. After all, friendships are at stake here.

* It was excellent, harrowing, beautiful. Please watch.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Shoesday Foxes Den

No longer just the domain of Eskimos and Mongolians (this is a very big assumption I'm making here), fox fur shoes are making an appearance on New York's city streets. Logic dictates that if it happens on New York's fashion scene, it will happen elsewhere (we learned this very important lesson in The Devil Wears Prada).

In particular, Jimmy Choo has released a number of fox-fur pom-pom bedazzled shoes just in time for Christmas, which are perfect for your back-up singers at the annual Christmas carol event.

OMG are these shoes cerulean? Segway alert!
Not to be outdone, slippers are also featuring what I can only assume is this super warm, super soft new material which is likely to enrage animal activists globally. After all, when we say "fox" in this context we are most certainly not saying "faux".

Slippers courtesy of Brother Vellies

Just one last pair, in case you weren't convinced.

If you don't like fox on your feet, there is also the foxy fox fur coat to consider.

Perhaps don't wear your fox coat with your fox shoes lest you be confused for, well, a fox. 

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Breaking News

In somewhat dubious fashion news, it can be reported that the Ugly Christmas Rashie - Australia's answer to the ugly Christmas jumper (infamous thanks to Colin Firth's reindeer jumper in Bridget Jones' Diary is:

  1. A thing; and
  2. Sold out.
For those who love themselves a tragic rashie for their wardrobe, it will be available again next Christmas. Better get on that waiting list.

Tis the season

Suffice to say, Colin wore it better.