Still sober after 13 days – now with extra fox


Hi Frog-Lovers, how are you all?

Thirteen days of Febfast have gone by, and here I am, still sober. It started pretty easily, but this week has tested me. Bugger sitting on the edge of that cocktail glass with my amphibian lips delicately dipping into the liquid, alcoholic deliciousness – some nights I’ve wanted to dive in and do a bit of backstroke.

Yet here I am. Sober.

Amazeovaries, I know.

This blog post is really not a blog post at all, but an excuse to beg you for more money. Please, please sponsor me. I set myself the goal of $1,000 and I’m not even 50% there yet. This suffering has to amount to something (and if that something was $1,000 to a worthy charity, then that really would be something).

Please, if you can spare $10, Torture the Frog Here.

In return, I give you my continued sobriety, and a very happy fox.

See you around the pond, Frog-Lovers.

PS Watch this space for an upcoming announcement about an exciting project, and a charity auction for all you Game of Thrones/Ripper Street fans.


Tired head image

Appearance of actual frog may vary

Those of you who have been reading me for a long time know that from time-to-time I have relapses of anxiety and/or depression. This has been going on all my adult life so it’s really not a big deal. I manage myself as best I can, take a low dose of meds constantly, and look out for triggers and warning signs. Signs that I’m heading down that slippery slope again.

Last year was a huge work year for me and at the end of last year I was very, very tired. I was so tired that each night before a work commitment, I prayed that it would be cancelled.

I still had so many urgent things on my to-do list by the day before Christmas, that I wanted to cry. Most of those are still there – in fact the list is growing daily.

The sense of despair I felt just before Christmas was my first warning. Overwhelming, bone-crushing fatigue was another.

My finger nails have started to split and peel in layers. My mouth is filled with ulcers.

The idea of having to start work again in January made me teary and filled me with anger and resentment.

My system was trying to tell me something.

It was something absurdly mundane that finally made me pay attention. It’s three-quarters through January, and my Christmas tree is still up. I’m not someone who rushes to get the tree down the moment January 6 arrives, but having it still up at this point is unusual, even for me. I keep looking at it, registering that it needs to come down. Anxiety and exhaustion grip my chest and so I walk past it. Tomorrow. Or the next day. I’ve stopped turning the tree lights on. Isn’t that enough?

I had a much-needed holiday in early January, so I know how ungrateful I sound. That holiday was not enough. Having another break is not an option (did I mention my to-do-list?)

Here I am, at the start of the year, already struggling; already barely dragging myself from week to week. Fatigue is the biggest trigger for anxiety for me and I’m well-and-truly heading for a crash.

What to do?

Right now I’m doing as little work as possible, given my workload, and spacing it out. I’m trying to get more sleep. I’m setting myself one small thing to do each day. I’m taking iron and Vitamin C.

There’s another part of me, though, that is screaming. Not only is it looking at my to-do list and having an aneurysm, it’s telling me countless other things as well. It’s telling me I have to stop doing superannuation work, because that’s not why I set up my own company. It’s telling me I have to write my own training material and market that. It’s telling me to get that stand-up routine organised. It’s telling me I have three books to write, a blog to run, a comedy blog link-up to organise. A speaking career to investigate. It’s telling me I don’t spend enough time with my son. It’s telling me I’ve neglected my creative side. It’s telling me it’s time for a new career (again).

My brain is yelling at me to take action while my body is telling me to slow down.

I suspect I’ve seen the signs that I was on that slippery slope a bit too late, and I’ve already got my toes in that craptacular depression/anxiety pool. Time will tell.

I’m off now to try – again – to take down the Christmas tree. It won’t matter if it’s still up in February, right?

How have you started 2014?


The Cupcake Whisperer and freaks of nature

Triplets, anyone?

Triplets, anyone?

Hi Frog-Lovers. I hope you’ve all been fantastic since I last chatted here with you. I’ve been a very busy frog wearing my non-writing hat and I know I’ve been neglecting you. So between now and Christmas I’m hosting some wonderful and funny writers here on the Lily Pad, while I get some amphibious rest. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I do. 

The first of these guests is my BFF* Bec Pobjie. I call Bec The Cupcake Whisperer because she haz the mad baking skillz. She also likes to defame birds and would really like people to stop talking to her, as you’ll see in the piece below where she gives a score to the experience of finding out that her family was about to get a little bit bigger than she’d anticipated.

When Michaela asked me to write a guest blog post I was honoured, surprised and suspicious that maybe she knew something I didn’t, like I was dying, but mostly I was honoured. I asked if there were any requirements and all I got was “funny” which you know, NO PRESSURE. So then I had to put my thinking cap on as to what topic I would take. I thought about writing about RSVPing to events because people who don’t RSVP really fucking get on my wick, and then I thought maybe I would write about birds because birds, what the fuck are they good for? (Besides eating of course).

*Shakes fist angrily at birds*

You’ve all seen The Birds right? They are so going to take over one day, you mark my words. But then I thought I’d write about the funniest thing that has ever happened to me, which was of course having twins, because that was totally hilarious. I’m sure most people that know me know that I have four year old twin girls. For those that don’t, I have four year old twin girls. They were naturally conceived and total freaks of nature, there are no twins anywhere in our families, which is what makes it so hilarious.

I’ll never forget the day we found out we were having twins. It was my 12 week ultrasound. We decided to take our son with us and make it an all-round family experience. All was going well, the sonographer was doing her thing and then she uttered a phrase that no one wants to hear about anything:

“Well this is going to be interesting”.

No, no, you don’t describe good things as “interesting”, so of course I panic. She goes quiet for what seems like an hour but I’m sure it was just a minute or so, and then she says “I’m seeing double”. Hahahahaha what? I was hoping she was just having a funny turn or something, because the other alternative I was not prepared for, but of course it was the alternative and it was lucky I was lying down. Cut to the end of the ultrasound (which was a very quiet experience as you can imagine because we were both quite shocked) and to me totally freaking out. We had no room really for two babies, our car wasn’t big enough for 2 babies, AND FUCKING HELL TWO BABIES, TWO!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Aaaaanyway, lah de dah, we had two babies, at the same time, as one does when they have twins. And having twins brings out all the hilarity and stupid questions and having strangers talk to you even though you hate talking to people so much and of course every second person you come across has twins, or is a twin, or their second cousin twice removed only related to you by marriage has twins. Whenever we go out there is never a time where someone doesn’t say something about the twins, either to us or out loud to whoever they are with, for example:

“Awwww twins”

“Look! Two twins”

“Are they twins?”

“What lovely twins”

“Two girls?” (when babies whilst dressed in pink and purple).

“A boy and a girl?” (when babies whilst dressed in pink and purple).

I really should have attached labels, colours can be so confusing. And clearly should have set up my own freak show and started charging money. And thankfully we don’t get the last two questions anymore.

And of course so many people say “awwwww twins, I’d have loved to have had twins” or “aaaawwww twins I’d love to have twins”. No, no you don’t. No one that has had twins would ever want to have twins. Of course you’d never change the fact that you had them once they’re here but in planning, nooooooooooooooooooooooooo.  And people that have children close together that say “oh mine are so close it’s almost like twins” ah no, no it’s not and you need to stop saying that. STOP SAYING THAT.

So in closing, having twins is hilarious in so many ways, horrible in others and great in the leftover ways. A+ but would not do again.


The Cupcake Whisperer

The Cupcake Whisperer

Bec Pobjie describes herself as:
“33 years old married to Ben Pobjie. Mumma to three great kids, twin girls and a boy. Love baking but have no idea WTF to be when I grow up. Swears a lot, idiot.”

I can attest, your Honour, that all these things are true, except the idiot bit (although maybe Bec is calling US all idiots so that could also be true). Bec is the Cupcake Whisperer and makes amazing things to put in your face-hole.

You can read her ranty blog of rants here, connect with her on Twitter here, and view her amazing baking skills here. I recommend her baking services for all your face-hole needs.**

* Bloody Fabulous Female
** Makes a note to re-phrase that.

The night is dark and full of the sound of me cackling

GoT Heading

Are you desperate for the new season of Game of Thrones?

Are you hanging out for a Tyrion fix?

Is the night dark and full of terrors, especially when you remember that we have to wait until March next year for Season 4?


Then go have a quick toilet break, and come back and click on the video below. It had me cackling out loud on public transport (COLOPT).

My only question is WHERE IS BRONN?

You’re welcome. And remember, while you’re waiting, trust toothpaste, keep working on that gravity belt, beware tube socks and remember to eat shrimps when you meet the Evil Studmuffin. Don’t be a lazy farmer and for god’s sake DON’T EAT THE KITTEN MEAT.

Conversations with my brain – ain’t nobody got time for that


My brain is a mental arsehole, and I ain’t got time for that.

Brain:      SHIT!
Me:         What?!
Brain:      I can’t remember whether I left the oven on.
Me:         I’m sure I turned it off.
Brain:      How can you be sure?!
Me:         I always turn it off.

Me:         Wow she’s great. I wish I was her. As I was saying, I’m sure I did turn it off… I think.

Me:         Shit.
Brain:      See? You’re not sure. YOU LEFT THE OVEN ON AND NOW THE HOUSE WILL BURN DOWN AND WE’RE ALL GOING TO DIE! Or maybe get bronchitis.
Me:         It’s 2am and I don’t want to get out of bed.
Brain:      What part of ALL GOING TO DIE don’t you understand?
Me:         Damnit. It’s cold. And it’s dark.
Brain:      ALL. GOING. TO. DIE.
Me:         I won’t be able to go back to sleep.
Brain:      ALL… GOING…
Me:         OK, OK, I’m getting up. Fascist.

Me:         I was right. It’s 2am, cold and dark and I didn’t leave the oven on.
Brain:      Really?
Me:         Yes.
Brain:      Are you sure?
Me:         Yes. I think so. I just checked.
Brain:      Were you paying attention when you did it, or were you thinking about how cold and dark it was instead?
Me:         I’m pretty sure I checked it.
Brain:      ALL… GOING… TO…
Me:         I hate you.
Brain:      …DIE.

I wish I was more like Sweet Brown. Her brain wouldn’t dare be an arsehole.

Is your brain an arsehole?

Why I punched Thursday in the whole of its face

Untitled2Hi Thursday. I guess you saw my tweet and are wondering why I wanted to punch you in the whole of your face. Well, I wrote that tweet with a heavy heart. For many years, you’ve been one of my favourite days of the week. You’ve provided the welcome respite from “Hump” Day, and you’ve teased me gently into the subtle pleasures of Friday. Alas, I feel, this week, our hitherto amiable relationship has withered and died.

Oh Thursday, how could you have let me down like this?

I woke to you yesterday after a night of sleep broken by nightmares, a child calling for me and feelings of general discomfort. Normally you would sooth me with a gentle schedule of work and domestic duties, made easier with the promise of the Friday to come.

What happened, Thursday? Did I do something revenge-worthy to you last week?

I woke thinking my partner was doing the morning child ritual of breakfast, clothes, teeth brushing and school drop off. I was rudely disabused of this notion and so had to drag my exhausted carcass out of bed to take part in what I suspect is the national team sport of all mothers: Olympic Nagging.

Yes, Thursday, I could have nagged for Australia. Get dressed eat your breakfast get dressed turn off YouTube eat brush your teeth turn off YouTube put your shoes on we’re going now no you can’t take five minutes when I’m almost out the door to find lollies to put in your bag you should have planned ahead instead of sitting in front of YouTube for twenty minutes TURN OFF YOUTUBE BEFORE I KILL YOU.

The school drop-off was executed in sullen silence without even a goodbye, despite my normal haveagooddayIloveyou speech.

When I came home I decided to tackle a task that I’d been putting off for a week; updating my iPhone. While I was there, I thought I might also fix the issues I’d had with iTunes and get everything synced up.

Three hours later I was ordering a new Samsung Galaxy Note 3 because iTunes is the work of Satan and needs to die in a fire.

While fighting with iTunes, two days of work were cancelled by a client.

Then the child was home and it was homework time. We both did our best and struggled through over an hour of writing effort with only three meltdowns (and only one of them was mine).

Then we ran out of milk and as I was heading out in the rain to buy some, I found a sodden dead rat on the lawn. I brought a certain rodent-deposing charm to the neighbourhood as I walked out onto the street holding a dead rat by the tail so I could drop it into the bin that had already been placed out for collection.

Of course in the process of disposing of said soggy rodent I discovered that some of the washing I’d put under the car port had fallen down onto the dirtiest part of the ground so will need to be rewashed.

Then I found out that Jerome Flynn is in Australia next month but not coming to Melbourne. I’ve already used up all my gifts this year and into the next and I can’t justify the expense of the flights and accommodation, let alone the $700 it would cost to meet him and have photos taken and why are you tormenting me this way, Thursday?

On top of this horror, you robbed me of the gift of coherent speech. I tried to explain to my partner that the convention Jerome’s attending, SupaNova, isn’t coming to Melbourne until April next year; except I didn’t say that.

I said “SupaNova isn’t in Melbourne until Adelaide.”

Each time I tried to correct Adelaide to April it came out… Adelaide.

Then the cat farted on me. I went to bed, slept badly again, and have woken up with conjunctivitis and my monthly book club.

And that is why I wanted to punch you in the whole of your face, Thursday.

Have you ever wanted to punch a day in the face?

P.S. The amazing Kelly Exeter has moved and redesigned my blog and she is AMAZING and has saved Friday.