Friday, December 07, 2012

Brighter at night

While I was up in Forster, I took a handful of starry photos. These two variations on a theme worked the best:

12 min

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Not really, but I have to renew interest in this much neglected blog somehow...

Just finished picking up and placing back in order every one of my TV show DVDs (all 300-odd of them), as the shelf they were on fell over, scattering them across the whole lounge room, thankfully missing my brand new housemates, and seemingly leaving no damage to the discs or cases themselves. Very lucky escape all round, and an impressive demo of DVD resilience!

That's what passes for excitement in my life, happy for it to remain a rarity :)

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

June stats

Halfway through my year off already!

Yesterday sadly broke my 132 day walking streak, but today I jumped right back on the horse (or sneakers, as it were).

Distance walked - 65km
Drawings - 12
Books read - 6
DVDs watched - 18

The shift from books to DVDs was largely due to the bathroom construction at the reading room end of my house for much of the month, as well as my CFS flaring the past couple of weeks, making concentration difficult.

Sunday, July 01, 2012

So close

Hopefully this week will see the end of my house being a construction zone!

Ensuite tiling done:

All done bar the painting:

Friday, June 08, 2012

Bathrooms - Again

Bathroom 1 is all done, bar the painting:

Ensuite deconstruction has begun:

along with reconstruction:

Tuesday, June 05, 2012


A near miss with my phone today. As I started off on my walk, I put it through my waterproof pants pocket, seemingly into my normal 3/4 pants pocket. Half an hour later, got back to the car and went to stop Runkeeper and the phone was gone. Gasp! Luckily one of our dogs sniffed it out in some tanbark next to the car, and it was no worse for 30 minutes sitting in the rain. Phew!

Monday, June 04, 2012

Friday, June 01, 2012

May stats

Distance walked - 102km
Drawings done - 1
Books read - 16 (58 for the year)
Photos taken - 380

In short, I found the right walking balance, neglected my drawing, and did lots of reading. I've had to spend a lot of time at home as my bathroom renovations have begun, being available to make sporadic decisions. That will continue for the next month, and then I aim to venture forth a little more aggressively :)

Thursday, May 31, 2012


Yesterday I went for a walk... for the 100th day in a row! It also marked 100km for the month, for the first time since March 2008 (and only the second time ever).

Admittedly the conditions have been quite kind during that time, but I have had the occasional day of crazy wind and rain, plus some very fatigued mornings. Overall during that time I've done 121 separate walks, covering about 260km. Sometimes I've pushed too hard, but I now at least have quiet confidence that a 20-30 minute walk every day is sustainable even when my CFS isn't dormant (well, plus not having to work at all...).

Onwards towards 200, winter be damned!

Sunday, May 27, 2012


A lovely, autumnal day out at the Cotter today, perfect for some snapping with Liv...

Construction continues...

but nature remains...

More on Flickr

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Bathrooms - The beginning

So, why am I getting my bathrooms renovated? I think the duct tape says it all!

It's entirely possible that this shower is older than me, and has "survived" more than 15 housemates just since I moved in.

The vanity and WC aren't exactly pictures of 21st century style either...

Step 1 - Remove all the asbestos, leaving little else behind:

Step 2 - What's under the shower?

Step 3 - New bath in place

Which takes us up to the present. Next time I'll hopefully have something pretty to show, as things fall into place.

Saturday, May 05, 2012


Another big walking day today, already taking the month's tally above 30km. Photography is really acting as quite the exercise motivator!

Friday, May 04, 2012


Made the most of a beautiful day to go for a 6km photo walk (adding to the 17km I've already covered this month). The photos themselves were largely disappointing, but I enjoyed the outdoors nonetheless :) It was even nice enough for me take my shoes and socks off as I forded a stream, and walk a brief distance barefoot!

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

April stats

Distance walked - 75km
Drawings done - ahem... 4
Books read - 9 (42 for the year)
Photos taken - 550

I've now got an unbroken walking streak of 70 days (Feb 20 was my last day off), and have covered nearly 250km for the year. Obviously photography had a boost with my new camera, and I totally lost focus on drawing. My reading slowed, as a 2-week head cold hugely reduced my concentration.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Photo studio

Using the instructions here, requiring only items I already had (except for the white poster board), I created a little photo studio, allowing me to capture things like these: Light box 1
plus a couple of Bender product shots: Bender
And just for the novelty of it, I took a photo of my new camera via my iPhone: Canon EOS 550D
Even with the white balance adjustment, I may need to get some stronger lamp bulbs, or replace the baking paper with tracing paper, to get brighter whites. Still, kinda fun to play around with :)

Saturday, April 14, 2012


Since I spent money on a new camera, I felt I shouldn't rely on good weather or subjects coming my way. Since it's cold and cloudy outside, above is some indoor practice - manually playing with depth of field, not just relying on auto.

Exciting? No. Just another step, building on the knowledge gained getting these star pics, which probably belong on this blog not my other one...

Saturday, March 31, 2012

March stats

Distance walked - 64km (across 34 walks, not missing a single day)
Drawings done - 20
Books read - 12 (now up to 33 for the year)
Photos taken - 300

Walking and reading have remained a focus (if you can call my holiday so far focused at all!) with a slowly improving set of drawings.

I've been enjoying taking photos in the outdoors, and may actually pursue that a little more seriously before the year is done. Astrophotography is something which is peaking my interest right now.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Feb stats

Books read - 11
DVD boxsets watched - 7
Distance walked - 50km (spread over 24 walks)
Drawings done - 12

After around 3 weeks of mostly bedrest either side of the Jan-Feb transition, I've been rebuilding strength via a daily dog-walking excursion with my parents. This has been 2km at about two-thirds pace, and seems to be exactly what my body can handle. The one time I pushed myself a bit harder my fatigue hit back, but still feels like progress.

Over the past few days I've even found a sleep routine that has me waking rested, rather than exhausted, without taking up my whole day (hopefully it'll persist!). This leads to both a better mood and some of the concentration needed to draw again, which I've been enjoying.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Originally uploaded by bertiemabootoo

This video doesn't really do it justice, but during my walk this morning the sky was filled with sparrows, crazily flying all over. It was a really amazing sight!

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

January stats

Books read - 10
DVD movies watched - 27
Distance walked - 60km
Drawings done - 0

I've been monitoring my action count since October 2006, but only last month realised that it wasn't very useful to measure without setting targets. So last month I identified the actions I wanted to emphasise, and ended up achieving 92% of my overall target (147/160). While I didn't draw as planned, I did more reading and walking, which balanced things out.

I've upped my drawing target for Feb to keep me looking at that as something needing more focus. I'm still far from settled on the right mix of walking to resting, as the second half of Jan was quite the fatigue-y struggle, and today has been far from encouraging. Oh well, 11 months left to work things out :)

Saturday, January 21, 2012


After buying some new walking shoes on Thu, finally got a chance to christen them this morning, with immediate positive results. Actually got my walking speed back up over 6kph (for a 3k walk) after it'd been hovering at 5.6kph (must've been walking kinda dainty). And my knees and ankles feel fine! Surely this can only help maintain my walking enthusiasm :)

Sunday, January 15, 2012


The fruits of my labours so far, records for all my walking metrics :) And I'm less than halfway through the month! Of course I have to spend the remainder of my days resting, so hopefully it'll take a smaller percentage of my energy to maintain this over time...

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


My focus the past week or so has been almost exclusively on building up my walking capacity, which has paid off nicely. 12 walks in the last 14 days including a couple of full hour-long efforts. While I've been sore, I haven't been fatigued, so must be doing something right :)

Another week or so of this and I can start to shift my attention to something else on my long todo list, with a base of strength to build from!