About Me

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I am a full-time mama with a passion for writing and talking to fascinating people. I live in a one horse town with a Cowboy and my son. Thank Lord for cyberspace! I lived a colourful life in Sydney for a number of years. Working in advertising and journalism for FPC and the Sydney Morning Herald. During my time in Sydney I competed in a Dragon Boat race, choreographed a dragshow, used the Share Accomodation advertisements as a way to meet men and was told by Noiseworks frontrunner Jon Stevens that I was a bitch! Then came the decision to move back to country for 3 months to help out my Father with newspaper business while he was having treatment. Convinced I was a city girl I was caught by surprise when I fell in love with a farmer (and no, he didn't want a wife... still doesn't it seems!) convinced him that we needed to see the world, popped off to Vietnam to teach english in Saigon - before realising that the "food" in Nam didn't agree with me... turned out to be Monte - my son who is now with the Cowboy and I back in country NSW! I am in a wonderful stage of my life where I am focusing on the things that really make me tick. Including writing these chronicles.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

TAGGED: 10 things

I've been TAGGED by Woah Mama 

which means I have to divulge 10 things that make me happy then 10 ten others to jump on the happiness bandwagon...

At least it stops the Jon Stevens story you thought would never end hahahaha

Ok 10 things that make me happy.....

1) It's a Monte thing: I have come up with my own technique for teaching Monte words - I make up a song "The Duck says Quack " repeat it about 10 times then play fill in the blanks "The duck says..." his eyes go all coy, he does the most massive dimpled grin and then lets out a "Quack" (or close enough version to word) and puts it in the appropriate gap. Oh it fills me with joy!!! He has mastered "I'll take you driving in the.....
"CAR" and Hickory Dickory Dock the mouse ran up the.... "CLOCK" oh it makes me do a little twirl when he fills in the gap....

2) When I get emails from people that make me laugh. In the OHT 3D people are few and far between (interesting ones anyway) when I receive news from Cyber people - I do a little twirl.

3) Fresh flowers in the house. Who'd have thunk it - but since having our house renovated, despite it upsetting our German Ghost - Fritz, a lovely vibe is starting to emerge - I like to celebrate the new fresh feel with fresh florals... doesn't make me twirl, but sneeze? Sure

4) When I get a full nights sleep. Oh, this is so rare that if I get to sleep all the way through to 5.30am - I get up and break dance in the loungeroom. I used to arrive home at 5.30am after breakdancing*.... how time has changed.

5) I know happiness comes from within, but everything within me twirls when I eat Christmas Pudding smothered in brandy sauce. (then when I think everyone is occupied outside, sneak into the kitchen and have a sly second helping only to get caught inhaling a plum pudding like a maniac by my fashionista niece!)

6) When I see 3D friends. One of my old time friends from UNI passed through the OHT yesterday en route to Sydney - I was SO EXCITED - it makes me so happy to cavort, and laugh with 3D friends.

7) OH OH OH! How could I forget! The Cowboy and I bought two Kayaks yesterday! THE OHT has a great river running through it and we paddled our way around it yesterday! MY GOD! It was AMAZING, a workout - close to nature and ... well it had everything.

We really had our Kayak and ate it too!

8) Did I mention when I get a sleep?

9) When ideas are flowing..... when I get on a roll, excited and the universe rolls with me and opportunities start happening.... I love it when that happens.

10) When people comment on my blog! Sure, it brings happiness! Thanks

Now I have to tag ten of you!!!

But I can't be bothered with 10 , so I"ll do.... 1 hahahaha (sorry no sleep)

I have a friend new to blogging so you should check her out anyway -- irish gal, singer / mama

Acting the Maggot

Let me clarify actually, I have NEVER actually literally done "Break Dancing" just like the term

Star Struck in Excess - The ending (or just the beginning?)

I realise that this story has had more parts than Eddie Murphy in Coming to America so I thought I would finish it up here... congratulations if you are still with me!!

So after all the drama that was my first interview with a rockstar.

It went to print, I was paid, I got some kudos from my peers, I learned a hell of a lot from this experience (in hindsight)

A few weeks after it went to print I noticed Jon Stevens was playing at The Basement in Sydney and decided I'd like to go and check out the gig.

I went along with a friend.

It was a great show - he really does have a unique stage presence and excellent voice.

 He sang all of his hits and some covers.

I had a few (many) drinks during it.

After the gig Jon approached the bar and I was standing nearby, so without thinking I approached him.

"Great gig" I said

"Thanks" he replied

" I hope you were OK with the story, I'm Sharni  I interviewed you a few weeks ago?"


Pin drops.

He turns to me "Oh yes, I remember you. You are that Bitch from the Herald."

He says with flashes of venom dripping from his mouth.

My heart drops.

Tears well.

I start explaining what happened, like an idiot.

Pleading that I wasn't a hardarsed journalist ... but it wasn't to be....

Why, I bothered, I don't know...

He just walked away.

In his leather pants....

So much for "reach out and touch somebody...."

One of his band members saw me standing there and was kind enough to say Hello.

I told him what happened.

"Don't worry, he's an arse to us to sometimes" he said sympathetically.

I then joined the boys for a game of pool. Minus JS.

Three years have passed.

Late this year Jon Stevens had a close call and was rushed to hospital - he has just had open heart surgery for some major blockages. He is in recovery now and doing well.

I contacted his Manager a couple of weeks ago - told him who I was, including that I was the person Jon referred to as "that bitch from the Herald", explained that it was my first EVER interview, that I am now an online writer out in the 'sticks' and that I would love to have the chance to talk to him again.

Guess what?

He said YES!!!

I m doing an interview with Jon Stevens in 2 weeks over the phone...

Oh my.......

Oh I do love to give myself a seat of my pants scary arsed challenge...


Sunday, December 27, 2009

Tough Lessons -

Part 6 -Tough Lessons - Discovering  I'm no Molly Meldrum.....
(two parts left)
Star Struck In Excess ( to read complete series click on Jon Stevens in key words to the side then scroll to the bottom and read to the top! )

By now I am feeling like the biggest failure that graced the Century Tavern.
Believe me, I think a few have graced those floors.
The come-down was hard, maybe I didn't have what it took to cut it as a rock-star journalist.
I had pissed off all and sundry.
The Editor of Metro took it into his hands. I rewrote the article a little, but it was good to see he was taking my side a little more.
He had called JS' manager.
He reported the outcome back to me.
"He is just annoyed that the article focuses on why Steven's left INXS and not about his new album," the Editor said "Screw them, who cares about his new album" he said.
I gulped.
This whole thing was starting to make me feel uncomfortable.
I thought I'd interview Jon Stevens and we'd be friends for life after that.
Really didn't want to piss anyone off.
Maybe I didn't have what it took to be a journalist after all?
 I submitted what I had to the Editor and he must have reworked it a fair bit - because in the end we had a shared by-line - but that was cool. I got my by-line - my first EVER rockstar interview - filled and filled with drama....

oh and if you wanted to read the finished product you can check it out here......

don't sit there sighing like this ending was a bit of an anti-climax

 - the story is still not over....

Journalism 101

(If you want to read all of this story Star Struck In Excess - just follow the start from the Archives Section December - too many and too confusing to link to sorry!! Think this is being followed by a small loyal bunch so this is for you..... ;-)

Part 5 -

After the hangover settled and I came to terms with my day of rock n roll - reality set in once again.

The "work" part.

Now, I had to make a story out of my conversation with Jon Stevens.

My first ever interview based piece of journalism (had previously written features: to clarify).

It was like how I felt at the start!

Woo-Hoo I get to interview a rockstar!

Let me revel in that for a while and avoid actually thinking up the questions...

Now it was Woo-Hoo I have interviewed a rockstar! (and sat in the studio while he personally serenaded me - alongside thousands of Triple M listeners) and I wanted to revel in that and not have to actually sit down and write a Sydney Morning Herald standard piece from it.


And of course a steep deadline was involved, of ... tomorrow.

God damn.

So another day spent guising as an "advertising account manager" i was at my desk trying to write the story - sneakily putting the dictaphone to my ear when the boss left her desk,  to relive our conversation, cringing at the sound of my voice and my occasional over laughing.

Where did I start?

How did I structure this?

Oh good God. Why didn't I complete my Communications degree?

 I might have some idea how to go about this!!

I thought I was a writer, but when it came to the nuts and bolts of it - I didn't know where to start.

I spoke to my Dad who was the owner of local newspaper in the One Horse Town - he was the Sports Editor there and had lots of years writing under his belt.

Sure it wasn't for the SMH but for other varied sporting publications.

His advice was pure and simple "Get Jon's email address and email it to him before it goes to print"
(Hindsight lesson: Ask Dad for advice or the Editor? Next time - Editor - but love you Dad all the same) 

Editor told me he wanted the dirt on why Stevens left INXS - as this was the time JD Fortune was making the news as the new lead singer.

So that was where I began, I wrote along these lines, with many flattering parts about Jon's solo album - his presence, his live performance.

I emailed it to Jon.

I received an email 5 minutes later from Steven's manager:


Yes it was in shouting letters like that.


I forwarded this to the Editor.

He was a moody guy I discovered.

He immediately called me up and said "Why the f*** did you send Stevens the story?"

If I was any greener I would have been environmentally friendly.

"I er... I'm sorry, I thought... ah ..:" stammer, stammer, - "I'm really sorry"

The Editor was audibly pissed with me.

So desperate I was to "please everybody" that no-one was pleased.

 Least of all myself.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

We interrupt the Jon Stevens story for...

 a pictorial of Christmas in the One Horse Town.
I am too stuffed to write anything, forgive me.
Hope everyone has had a chance to do some chillin' with their homies
I will continue the epic series of Jon Stevens soon... oh and those bored with that already, promise its nearly over and then there will be lots of Sharnanigans...

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

part four : how very rock n roll

previous chapter of Starstruck In Excess go here  and it will lead you to the start...

So many phone interruputions later - I interviewed him - and it was pretty non-eventful actually.

What did you expect?


Well the interview itself was pretty uneventful, I asked him questions about the Noiseworks days, I asked him about when Michael Hutchence died and he took over as the lead singer of INXS as a while, I asked him about his current album and what he was up to these days, I asked him what inspired him, who inspired him - and what the future held.

He was OK to interview, I found once I complimented him - he was a little easier to talk with.

Aren't we all?

So after the interview, his manager came over.

He was lovely.

He invited me over to Triple M radio studios where Jon was to be interviewed and then would perform on the roof of the studios.

By now it was about 1pm - and thoughts started to drift back to... work.

My boss must have been starting to get suspicious.

Really, I should do the responsible thing now and go back to work.

By now you should know what kind of a character I am.

Work? Triple M studios with Jon Stevens and band?

Work? Triple M Studios with Jon Stevens and band?

Yep, another drink later - I joined Jon and the band and headed over the road to.... Triple M studios.

It was here I was in the 'studio' where I zipped my lip - but was present for his on air interview.

Jon then did a live acoustic version of his song "Touch"

You know the one "reach out and..reach out and... reach out and touch somebody"

I must admit, the arrogance and phone interruptions of earlier dissolved quicker than you could say "leather pants" and I found standing in that studio live to this awesome voice - gave me goosebumps and a tear in my eye.

Jon even looked over at me while he was singing it and smiled - this was a magic moment and I felt, my reward for the gruelling 24 hours I had just sat through.

We then headed up to the rooftops of Triple M  where other media types were hanging and drinks and food ahoy.

Oh good God.

Surely I shouldn't indulge in another bevvie?

Oh what the heck.

So a couple of wines later - I am then witnessing Jon and his band playing live on the roof overlooking the Sydney CBD.

It was about now the guilts really kicked in and I made a sly and sudden exit, hailed a taxi and drunkenly headed back to work.

I was so excited about what had just gone down (and so borderline drunk)  the reality of what my boss might be thinking hadn't overwhelmed me yet.

When I looked at my watch and noticed it was nearly 5pm when the cab pulled up at the front of my work place and I realised I had pretty much skipped the entire day at work drinking and mixing it up with rockstars I felt a bit scared, bit naughty, but a whole lot rock'n' roll!!!

I was so excited about what had happened, I didn't really mind what went down when I got inside.

And guess what.

The funniest thing of all went down.

My boss was oblivious to it.

Good to see she missed me!! hahaha

She spoke to me about something or other and then announced (and this was MOST out of character for my straight laced boss)

"Guys, drinks over at the Shelbourne - my shout!"

So as soon as I returned to work from a DAY of drinking - what happened?

My whole advertising team got to go to the pub for some drinks on my boss - who didn't even notice how blind drunk I was after one drink she shouted me.

Oh the things I got away with.

So rock n roll

But my friends... the Jon Stevens story doesn't end there.... oh not by a long shot....

Jesus Christ, arrogant Superstar

Although I am supposed to be planning a bbq and I have a screaming baby in the background... I am going to write part 4 of Star Struck In Excess........ 
To read proceding parts go here 
if you are a new reader I apologise, I do not normally do mini-series posts but this one has a life of its own, if you go to part three - it will lead you to the beginning, if you are that way inclined...

......... although he had reached his prime well over a decade ago, Jon Stevens entered a room - and his energy screamed ROCKSTAR.

Dressed in a cool cotton white top, just open enough to reveal a little cleavage, and black leather pants (think my memory is distorted, surely not? Maybe jeans, but definitely white open shirt)

He had a  presence that unnerved an already unnerved me.

He walked up to the table where I was sitting with his band members and continued talking on his mobile phone -- he then hung up and - started chatting to his other band members.

Yes, please act as though I don't exist. 

Then he turned to me, sunglasses still on.

"Sorry, I'm late - I'm Jon."

He offered me his hand - I stood up and shook it, and introduced myself - I think, I don't know, can't remember this moment.

It is forever archived in the 'I am frozen with nerves' compartment.

He then returned to his conversation with the band members, before his phone rang again.

Please, don't let me interrupt you. My time is of no essence here, I thought as I seemingly blended into the furniture of the Century Tavern.

Not having any idea how to take charge of such a situation, I asked one of the band members (as they were a hell of a lot more approachable)
"So are you guys going to be part of this interview?"
Turned out this was the correct thing to say, it prompted the band members to flee to the next table, and Jon sat down with me, albeit on the phone, and I patiently awaited my first  interview.

As he continued blabbering on his phone, I nervously checked my papers for the first question.

I was beginnning to get annoyed at how rude he was being.

He was about 20 minutes late as it was and he seemed to have no respect for me, the lowly interviewer from the Herald.

Had the man known what the last 24 hours had been like for me, or the fact that I had an entirely new outfit purchased specifically for this occassion, maybe just maybe he would have got off the phone and at least faked some sort of manners.

Just because you were once a rockstar, doesn't give you the luxury of acting as though you are more important than ..... well, me.

Eventually, he hung up the phone.

He gave me a insincere apology.

I over-smiled, told him how fine it was , introduced myself - checked my notes, tried to adopt a confident seating position, took a deep breath ready to fire off my first question.

"So, Jon" I began, being sure to make the right eye contact, sit in an authoritarian, I'm leading the show here kind've way...

"Back in the days of Noiseworks....."

And wouldn't you know it...

There went his bloody phone.

Without a second thought he answered it.


"Jesus Christ, Superstar" I thought to myself.

Was this interview EVER going to happen?

(and shut-up, don't ask me that same question hahahaha)

Monday, December 21, 2009


Just a little one to say I know, I know you are all hanging on the edges of your seats waiting to meet Jon Stevens, just writing a disclaimer in case I don't get to it - you know how this time of year is...

I will try to do it today, but I may not in between hairdressers (don't ask) , Monte's 1st birthday and arrivals of people...

will do my best though

oh and little update

I will very soon be moving to my own domain name...... sharnanigans.com

it is very exciting, I hope you will come with me - I have some giveaways planned to bribe you if you don't....

Merry Christmas if I don't see you before, but hoping the star of Jesus Christ Superstar will be able to make an appearance on my blog before his big day

I don't operate properly if I don't blog...

(Jon Stevens was in that musical in case you missed that...)

btw - I am still testdriving some things that I will be running on my website.... any feedback to what you like / don't like about my blog would be welcome....

that is all for now - must attend to smeared banana

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Waiting for a rockstar - Part 3

Part Three

Part three: Starstruck in Excess
click here for part one
click here for part two

I arrived at the pub with my notepad and made my way up the spiralling stairs.

 Note to self - do not consume much more, those stairs spiralled in a way that was non-conducive with drinking.

 Must not fall arse over head in front of JS.

I had entered a numb state where I was just not even allowing nerves to enter because they could cause my demise.

As I walked into the pub, I scanned the room but there were no rockstars within it.

Just a couple of hardcore Metallica fans playing pool to the sounds of Enter Sandman.

I made my way to the bar, I remember at this moment an air of arrogance briefly swept over me, notepad in hand thinking 'i wonder if they realise who I am meeting with here today".

In my mind at this moment I could have been meeting with Michael Jackson (RIP), the sense of who I was meeting was completely inflated - but all the same an air of arrogance, whether warranted or not, was a step up from the cannot breathe, talk or think of a question gal I had been only 2 or 3 vodkas earlier.

So, I ordered a non-alcoholic beverage and sat down with my little dictaphone and notepad, and just... well... waited for Jon Stevens to arrive.

I stared at the door, he was already 15 minutes late.

Late is never good because it invites all sorts of over-analysis.

'How should I sit, what should I do when he walks in' you know the drill.

A little while later figures appeared at the door, I adjusted my hair.

It was two cool looking guys.

They looked over at me and seemed to be coming my way.

"Are you Sharni?" the tall one asked.

"Yes" I replied.

"I'm Simon - and this is Geoff, we are in the band with Jon Stevens."

Oh what the hell?

It wasn't one on one, I was interviewing his entire band?

Just when I was getting more comfortable with the idea of having a chat with Jon, these two intimidatingly cool guys joined me at the table.

Luckily, they were  very easy to talk to down to Earth guys and they had no worries chatting with me about themselves and Jon -

I told them it was my first ever interview and they were kind and reassured me that Jon would be easy-going and 'cool.'

Just then our conversation was cut short.

A loud kiwi voice echoed from the stairwell.

A bright sunbeam cut through the doorway

Then he appeared.

A gleaming figure in white, with huge aviator rockstar sunglasses and a mobile phone attached to his ear ...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Part Two : The morning of the interview

.... for those of you who missed part one of STARSTRUCK IN EXCESS please read here. first.

..................... I wake up from my short slumber, oh hell it was morning!  I was too excited to sleep properly am buggered and braindead.

On top of that I realise I have to go to work as an 'advertising account manager' and yet somehow.... sneak off to interview Jon Stevens.

I hadn't even begun plotting how I was going to pull that one off.

As if it wasn't challenging enough  that my interview was at 11.30 AM and I had ZERO questions prepared, but I had to tottle into work and attempt to convince my boss I was doing my job!
I hope my old boss is not reading this.

 If you are, I would like to tell you how fantastic you are,  best boss I have ever had - and I thank-you for my future glowing references that you will give me :-)

I know I'm a bit naughty. But I am ambitious and sometimes that requires me to be deviant.

So morning of.

No questions, no plan how to sneak off to the Century Tavern bar in George St to meet up with Jon Stevens.

It is safe to say I was absolutely freaking out.

I am not exaggerating.

I actually had full fledged panic attacks that morning.

I was completely frozen.

Not only had I not slept from the buzz of it all - but I could not think of a damn question - I was too overwhelmed with the reality of who I was going to meet and what I was meant to produce.

I had both the fear of talking to a rockstar, and the fear that this was my chance to prove something as a wannabe journalist - and I was ill prepared.

So I am trying to write questions down at work, and of course , my phone won't stop ringing

Typically, the slowest most annoying talkers in all of the Country decide to ring me this day with 1000 questions that make me want to throw the phone at the wall.

"How much does it cost for a little ad the size of the one on page 45?" a little old lady asks me at snails pace with my boss sitting behind me so I can't just fob her off.


Bother someone who cares!

I am trying to channel Molly Meldrum you tightarse!

Wow, I am really beginning to relive the stress of it all as I write!

So freaking. Freaking and now annoying people wasting my precious time.

Next, I did something  that I am not proud of, nor advocate.

Something that I hope you will understand, under the circumstances was my ONLY option.

 I snuck off from work and.... did what any civilised crazy who had no questions prepared to ask a rockstar and was hyperventilating at her desk would do.

I went to the pub.

I couldn't relax enough to think of questions, there was no way in hell that I would be able to have actually interviewed JS if I didn't calm the hell down.

I am not usually an AM drinker. Well I can drink into the AM - but I don't usually start then.

It was a one-off.

A couple of Vodkas later (hey I had to act a little rockstar-ish to get into character)

I had thought up a few questions and thank the heavens, relaxed.

But then .... the manic in me worried that I had become too relaxed.

Anyway to stop the thinking I made my way to the Century Tavern to await Jon.

I had my little pad full of questions, but as I was relaxed now felt I could wing it a bit. You know, being the seasoned journalist and all.

My advertising exec at work who was also one of my besties had me covered for the boss. She knew how important this was for me.

When asked I was out seeing an advertising client.

Little did my boss know I had knocked back a couple of vodkas and was on my way to the Century Tavern to interview the lead singer of Noiseworks.


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Star Struck In Excess

(I realise this story has a few Aussie terms in it so I will explain as I go for non-Australian readers) 

Part One 

A few years ago when I was an Advertising Account Manager at the Sydney Morning Herald - I received an amazing opportunity to interview a rockstar, Jon Stevens.

Well to me, he was a rockstar.

He peaked probably in the 90's but pretty iconic Australian Rockstar all the same.

If you don't know him you can view one of his legendary songs here

He was the lead singer of Noiseworks and these days does some solo stuff.
When Michael Hutchence died, he fronted INXS for a time.

My job at the SMH had many perks - one of them being the chance to go to the ARIA awards and VIP Party afterwards. (music industries night of nights )

Well you could go if you happened to sell a $20,000 advertisement into the guide.

As a star struck music lover - there was no way I was going to miss the opportunity to rub shoulders with the the leaders of the Australian Music Industry.

So even though I was on HOLIDAYS (yes I was nutty!!)  I made cold calls to all sorts of businesses pitching the ARIA GUIDE - and finally sealed the deal with fashion house  Bardot,

I rang my boss from my hotel room in Melbourne to let her know the news.

 She was dumbfounded.

She was hard up getting me to do work at work - so she nearly fell off her chair when I told her I had sold $20K to a new business whilst holidaying!!!

 She assured me I had tickets to the VIP party and the event.


As luck would have it, Bardot even sent me dresses to wear - complete red carpet treatment eh?

The ARIAS party is another story in itself, which I will write if anyone wants to know it (comes complete with lots of drunken conversations with well knowns in the music industry and tears at the end of the night because the proof of this on my AUNTY"S CAMERA was lost)

anyway back to the focus...

With a little dutch courage and an introduction to the editor of the Entertainment section at the Herald, suddenly this little Advertising A.M was in his ear about HOW much I loved INXS - how much I liked JD Fortune the new lead singer (yes embarrassed about this now, I do believe he has since left band and lives in his car) , and could I puhhhlease interview him if the opportunity came up.

I droned on and on about how keen I was to burst into the journalism scene and how good a job I would do and blah de blah de blah.

Would you believe it the next week at work, thinking this poor editor dude would not have remembered any of our conversation, let alone my name- called me up at work and said:'

"I've got an interview for you"

I am nearly dying here thinking he had JD lined up.

 -- He said "It's not JD - but he did sing for INXS after Michael Hutchence died"

"Jon Stevens?" I asked.


My heart skipped a couple of beats.

"Yes I'll do it" I said.

"Great, I'll send you his managers details and call him up to organise it for tomorrow."



I can still feel the nervousness now as I type this.

Please understand that it was my  DREAM to interview rockstars - but people, I was the most star struck person on the planet, I had NEVER interviewed anyone I was an advertising sales gal - and it was exciting - but TOMORROW?????

I agreed to do it. I knew it was the opportunity of a lifetime.


When I left work that night I rang everybody I knew to gloat about it, as you do- -

Midnight came around and still , I had no questions for the lead singer of Noiseworks......

pic from here 

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Just being

This time - its Impersonal

Don't like having a whinge on here because I want my blog to be happy and funny and inspiring - so forgive me for the onslaught... tomorrow is a new day with a whole load of leg lifting potential.)

I was getting buff.
Now I am puffed again.
You may have noticed all my hoopla about how wonderful personal training was suddenly just.... left the blog.
I am feeling a little down on myself because even though I am happy - I wish I could have every ball spinning at once.
I feel like I have things going great guns in one area, but then it as the expense of another.
(perhaps this is the human condition? I don't know- allow me to speak of it as though I was the first on Earth to feel it - )

Yeah , yeah I know - we can't be super people..... but maybe a little balance would help me, a little discipline....
Anyway, personal training...
About three weeks ago, I stopped.
Cold turkey.
In fairness to myself the trainer was no good.
We rocked up one night and he had the one horse town entire rugby league team there ready to go in our 'personal' time slot.
PT said to Cowboy - "You join the boys - Sharni, personal tonight" -
So what happens?
He is totally immersed in training the football team that I could have been sitting down doing tapestry for all he knew.
Occasionally he would pop over and tell me to do something unimaginative like - 20 step ups and I only do it half arsed because he is not even watching me (the whole reason he was hired, so I would do things full arsed - well I've got the full arse now but it is no thanks to him)
Every now and then would give me a patronising "Doing well, darling" (and then I do nothing for 10 minutes as he excitedly works with the football team) WHICH mind you, is completely embarrassing being the only girl within coo-ee working out next to a pack of blokes doing leg lifts at the fence and cursing the fact that I wore shorts that they might be able to see up.
Anyway at the end of our supposed "personal training' session where I had NO personal training whatsoever - old mate asks me for $20.
Well - piss off.... ( I paid him) but I cannot believe how badly and IMPERSONALLY he treated me - so I decided I would show him and didn't go back.
Not only did I show him - but I showed me.
Anyway old goody two shoes Cowboy has continued and I have done Nada.
So he is as buff as they come and I am fattening up to be served on a plate with an apple in my mouth at Christmas!!
All the good work I was achieving - has instantly and almost freakishly converted straight back into jelly. And, I have eaten lollies like the world would end if I didn't guzzle a packet of Retro Party Mix a day.
I was quite ripped while I was being impersonally trained.
- 4 weeks later. I am back to square one.
I am sad about it and I don't know what to do.
I have lost my exercise mojo.
Cowboy is running around the block as we speak - and I am so jealous that he is so motivated.
At least my fingers are toned from all this typing.

cartoon blatantly taken from here

(ps - cowboy read this and then ordered me onto the treadmill - just ran uphill for 1.2 km and am pooped. but at least it was personal.)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Hierophant in Heels : My tarot reading

any interpreter of sacred mysteries or esoteric principles

A little while back I interviewed Alice Grist, Author of the book taking the UK by storm ( I predict Australia is next... ) the High Heeled Guide to Enlightenment .

As a cheeky side note after the interview I joked that she could read my tarot cards.

And bless her, she did!

In her reading, Alice covered my past, my present and my future.

Alice is in England - so she shuffled the cards while thinking of me and the cards and the insights that she produced were very interesting!

I will now share with you some of the highlights - what she said and how it relates to current situation.

You have found your ideal future and now just need to adapt things to make it happen -

I have and yes I am trying

Trust in your intuition

I do, I do and more all the time

You will move away from negative feelings and fears and will embrace your inner strength and talents

This is true - negative stuff that used to bother me and concerns about what others think in particular - have left the building -- and they used to rule the roost!!

I am now so focused on what makes me tick that there is no room for the negative stuff.

A person who represents a spiritual advisor / guru will enter your life

OOOH I joked that maybe this was Alice - the card that indicated this is called the Hierophant (pictured) and I think that Alice could be my Hierophant in a pair of heels - !

She plucked out the King of Pentacles which revealed things about Cowboy.

She said "he is a key person in your life - reliable and supportive - a stable force and very practical - whether you realise it or not he is a rock for you."

Not a truer word typed.
Cowboy is certainly all that - and I feel will continue to be.

She predicted I will live in traditional ways but will also find the time and space to be true to my spiritual self

This is a massive challenge for me - I have a side of me that is definitely attracted to all things spiritual (hope that doesn't sound wanky - I have a hard time explaining this one - but I have a definite gravitation towards certain ideas / ways of living.. which is why I can't wait to read Alice's book)
and because I have this nagging side to me - I worry about how I can raise Monte with my 'ideas' when my family are more traditional.
This indicates best of both worlds so makes me happy.

Number of choices and opportunities coming my way

Excellent Smithers

The world is opening up to me quickly

Likin' that pace, likin' that pace

Embrace this energy and take swift action

I am!

Things will develop quickly

Good because patience ain't no virtue of mine

Competition and minor setbacks

oh well, to be expected I guess

Period of being unsettled....

hmmmm comes with the territory??

Internal struggles partner, child and work

oh no hope its not too bad...

This situation will give you a taste of your abilities ambition and own strength!

Oh I hope I like the taste!

Things will smooth themselves out - natural side effect of change


Outcome and future --

You will emerge victorious, ambitious and a force to be reckoned with. You will be charging forth into your future with great courage, compassion and confidence!

Brilliant! I am charging towards my future in this way already.

Thanks Alice for your reading.... it made sense to me - greatly - I will let you know if life unravels along these lines.

To receive your own reading from my High Heeled Hierophant (aka Alice Grist) you can visit her here

Oh and I am anxiously awaiting my copy of her book that I ordered through Booktopia.... I will review it here when I am done

What do you make of tarot readings and psychics? Have you had an accurate reading before? What did it predict?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Q & A with Miscellaneous Mum

Karen from Miscellaneous Adventures of an Aussie Mum kindly agreed to a Q&A with me on all things 'bloggy.'

According to her twitter profile Karen is an:
"author, publisher, flagrant book whore, semi-reformed misanthrope and certified pinball wizard."

According to me, she is a blogger that has reached dizzying heights including 'top of the pops' when it comes to blogging popularity.

I am pleased to present a Q&A with Karen Andrews and I hope you might get some helpful tips as it did me.

This is what she had to say:

What would your advice be to somebody hoping to make an impressive dent in the Blogopshere?

If by dent you mean attracting lots of traffic and generally 'being seen' I would first do some background reading as to how the blogosphere 'works'.
Learning about SEO (or at least what it is), how to get Google to love you, how to craft a post, how to start-up with social medias, how to use your blogging software properly
Then I would simply say, write well and write often, or at least semi-often.
Read other blogs that are in your niche (or decide if you want to be a niche blog).

What is the most powerful way to attract readers?

Write something that either informs, entertains, inspires or provokes a personal response ("Oh, I feel like that too!")

What do you think are the most important considerations when building a personal brand?

Perhaps the most important thing is at the start.
So think about what name you give your blog, then follow that line.
Can it be registered as its own custom domain name?
If you don't get first choice, can you get second?
Then once you have it, then when you comment on blogs use it.
I sign in comments "Karen (miscmum)" but that's also because there are a lot of Karen's out there!
Basically the more you put yourself out there, the more it'll become known.

The Blogosphere is choc-a-bloc with mama blogs, what are your secrets to standing out?

Well, honestly, I think it helps to take a nice photo.
I know this because I am a wannabe, frustrated photographer with a plain old point-and-shoot camera and I aesthetically appreciate blogs which display nice photos (this isn't restricted to mum blogs!)
So when I post up a photo, I think to myself a) Is this a nice one or b) in what way does this serve the post?
I've seen blogs where fuzzy, out of focus, shots are whacked up and I wonder why have they done that?
It seems pointless.
If you're telling a story just be as true and authentic as you can be.
Readers can spot a fake from miles away.

What do you know about blogging now that you wish someone had of told you when you started?

That people's definition of 'success' varies and not to get sucked in to all the 'best of' lists and 'top whatever' lists there are.
They serve their purpose, don't get me wrong, and they're lovely to be on, but focusing on that side alone can be distracting.

Great advice - thank-you Karen.

Did you find this helpful? What bloggy wisdom do you have?

Blogger: The Great Unclogger

I am in a writers group online called Writers Rising - one of the contributors, Ramona, from Alone in the Holy Land ,wrote a piece describing how 'blogging has unclogged' her writing arteries.

This description really struck a chord with me - because it has done just that for me too.

I have captured that ever so elegantly with the accompanying pic have I not?


I have always been somebody who has claimed to 'love writing' but prior starting this blog - there wasn't a lot of it happening.

Writing was just something I attached myself to when people asked what it was that I did.

Even though I didn't.

It is interesting the journey that I have been taken on now that I have started blogging.

The first month or so it was like doing a detox.

All of the stuff that had been clogging up my life starting oozing out of my fingers.

Stories about howI felt when I had found out I was pregnant, when I met the Cowboy - moving from Sydney to a One horse town , my ambitions, my goals, my lists .... it really was the unclogging.

Now that I have all of that out of my system I feel cleansed.

Like I have had a cyber colonoscopy.

Don't feel I have to get anything out of the system, or write my to-do list anymore. I feel like I have surged into the present and finally kicked the past to the curb.

I feel I have emptied my head and my heart onto the page of all the stuff that was just sitting there and not allowing anything new in - I have now made space for the new to enter.

And it is entering!

Not just into my head for my blog - but for my life in general.

I have discovered that for me writing is something spiritual, magical, meditation like.

I am elated and rejoicing in the world of opportunity I am now in, the wonderful people I am meeting and the contentment I am feeling.

I am not sure where my writing journey is going to take me now I am unclogged.

But I am just taking it one day at a time and enjoying the ride - I am kind've trusting that it is where I am meant to be.

Has anyone else had this sort of experience from blogging? Or am I a freak of nature? (don't answer the last bit)

pic not mine from here

Monday, December 7, 2009

Melissa Hoyer : HIRED!

I am so chuffed that media personality and fashion expert Melissa Hoyer agreed to an interview!

A woman whose extensive media career has the ability to turn one as ambitious as myself every stylish shade of green with envy!

I have only recently discovered Melissa's blog and straight up I knew I had to talk to her.

When she sent me her CV (I wanted to write a bio as a prequel to the interview) I wrote back to inform her she had the job ...!!!

I only wish I had one to offer her


Highlights include:

* Fashion and style director and columnist on News Limited's Daily and Sunday Telegraph

* Creator, executive producer and presenter of Fox Fashion the first locally produced fashion show on Australian screens - then co-hosting a similar show with Hugh Jackman.

*Hosted Arena Style on Foxtel's Arena, a series she co-hosted with Australian designer Jodhi Meares and has been guest judge on Foxtel fashion reality shows like Project Runway and Australia's Next Top Model.

With her free-air-television and cable TV work, Melissa has interviewed the likes of Elle Macpherson, Naomi Campbell, Cate Blanchett, Mischa Barton, Paris Hilton, Nicole Kidman, Linda Evangelista, Sarah O'Hare and Megan Gale, all for Foxtel, while she was the number one style commentator for the subscription network.

Melissa has also interviewed popular culture figures as diverse as Ian Thorpe, Jennifer Aniston, Tommy Hilfiger, Rachel Zoe, Sarah Ferguson, Russell Crowe, Collette Dinnigan, Helena Christensen, Naomi Watts, Jennifer Hawkins, Jade Jagger, Marc Newson, Kylie Minogue, Sophie Dahl.

These were just some of the standouts from her CV - by no means her entire CV - I didn't have enough room!

What credentials!

As I always say (well twice now) - being interviewed here was her next logical step ;-)

Included in the interview with Melissa are the questions readers suggested - thank you.

So here is the interview with Melissa Hoyer proving that Australian Women in the Media are not only incredible movers and shakers but they are extremely down to earth!

What was the riskiest move that you have made in your career to date?

Does it pay to take risks?

Guess the riskiest was leaving the comfort of being an employee for 20 years to going out on my own as a freelance journalist and commentator, early in 2008.

So far, it has been a fantastic career move, opening up so many more opportunities where I can use the ‘brand’ I built for myself in many other avenues.

Online, ambassadorial roles, working for a string of magazines, on more TV shows, as a consultant, the opportunities are now totally endless.

I feel more in control of my life, and am a million times happier not to have to work or deal with people who only want to hammer you!

For somebody to get to your level in the media - what traits should one possess?

You need to be resilient (yep, Teflon-like) and GO WITH WHAT YOU BELIEVE. You cannot be a puppet for an employer, a PR company or a brand as that, in the long run, earns you no respect whatsoever.

You also need to really love what you do and in my case, be extremely open to the ever-changing landscape of the media.

Realise that things changing is so important, so always be prepared to embrace change. It also makes working life interesting, as complacency can set in very easily. I adore diversity and that is exactly what I have now.

Who is Australia's up and coming Style Icon?

In Australia, the chick with the potential X-style factor would have to be the actress Abbie Cornish or the designer Camilla Freeman (of Camilla and Marc fame)

Whose style do you admire most?

I look at those who never try too hard, as those who I admire.
Some who spring to mind are the two Ms Hepburn’s (Audrey and Katharine)’; Australian marie claire style director Jane Roarty; Oz Harper’s Bazaar editor Edwina McCann; French Vogue’s Carine Roitfeld; Pink; actors Sienna Miller, Cate Blanchett and Meryl Streep and the film director Jane Campion.

Why is fashion so important to you? Does it really matter what somebody wears?

Fashion, as a tentacle of the popular culture octopus is what I like observing.
I do not give a rats (!) about WHAT someone is wearing (whether it is high, low, cheap, chic) but enjoy seeing how someone puts their own look together.

How we ALL look is a reflection of how we think about ourselves and the older you get the more confident, and therefore more at ease I have certainly become with my own wardrobe choices.

What makes someone stylish?

Style is totally innate.
It’s all about how we put together our own look and not about being a slave to too many fads, top-to-toe designer looks and only expensive labels.

Readers questions:

Do you think it is time Madonna hung up her fishnets? (thanks Paula!)

You know what? No. Sure, there are times when we would all like to say, ‘just cover those arms up Madge’, but you’ve got to admire the dedication she has to retaining a youthful persona even if it is, at times, verging on mutton . . . Let Madonna go on until she’s a hundred I say!

What is 'in' for Mum's this year? (this one is for you Sharna!)

I don’t think we should differentiate ‘mums’ from ‘non-mums’ when it comes to fashion and style. Because a woman has a child or children, doesn’t automatically put her in the uncool basket, but if she isn’t comfortable with, say her arms or a post-babe tummy, cover them up and don’t feel obligated to wear shoestring straps or low-rise jeans because they are decreed to be cool!

Who is the biggest "a-hole" (readers words not mine) you have ever interviewed and why? (this one is yours Quixy)

There was band called Australian Crawl and the lead singer, James Reyne, was hideous when I interviewed him.

He was a smart-arse; condescending and patronising to the point I fled the interviewed, jumped in my car and cried.

The fact I (along with most other 80s teens) used to really fancy him probably had something to do with me not coping with his attitude.

Anyway, since then we have kissed and made-up. Not in the biblical sense, but we bumped it each other at a bar and he admitted how average he had been that particular day.

What is the most ridiculous fashion trend?

Still find a balloon skirt a hard one to take . . . even though I bought a Miu Miu one a few years ago . . .

How have you found a balance (if you have) between motherhood and your career? (all yours Heather)

By not taking everything, or anything, too seriously. Also going out on my own in a career sense has given me a much better perspective on what matters in life. It re-iterated that NONE of us are our jobs. We sit in a seat that is a job title, but you don’t ever take that job ‘title’ with you. It was the most cathartic and wise thing to learn.

I read somewhere that becoming a mother is the 'realest' thing you have ever done. What was the most fake - and what is so real about motherhood?

Motherhood put everything into perspective even though it took me a while. When I first had my son, Connor, I did wrestle with the ‘social’ aspect of my career – the going-out, the parties, the late nights but I got into a workable rhythm and that has pretty much stood the test of time.
As for ‘fakes’, I still indulge in ‘fake’ things every day, from sometimes having eyelash extensions or wearing hair pieces or painting my nails or having my hair collared or having a wax . . but if these are the 'fakest' part of my life, then I am pretty happy!
As far as fake people are concerned, I allowed them in for awhile but certainly don’t let them into my life anymore.

What would your advice be for a no-name writer trying to build a name for themselves?

Offer to write for every magazine, newspaper or website you can, for nothing (initially) and develop a blog and get onto Twitter, pronto. It will be a tough slog but you will get there if you are passionate and keen enough on your subject matter.

and finally... the question on every body's lips....

How hot is Hugh Jackman really? (Quixy - hope this will put an end to your sleepless nights)

I love Huge to death, but HOT I have never found him. Ok, so kill me now!
Because we worked so closely on a fashion series at Foxtel, he, his wife Deborra-lee and I got on so well and I never ever allowed myself to get hooked into the ‘hot’ factor.
To me Hugh was just a great guy who is so genuine, with no agenda or ulterior motives. A real gem!

Another inspirational Australian Media icon - and down to earth Mother - love how this fashion expert really couldn't give a rats!!!


Cheers Melissa -

(ps - I did have the cheek to ask Melissa , after she had already so kindly, answered these questions - what her expert take was on the Cowboy and I's miserable Fashions on the Field attempt.... I'll let you know if she plays along )

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Don't suppose you know how to pose?

You mightn't think it to look at my banner (haha) but I hate having my photo taken.

I know - it is not many that do - well maybe those who are blessed with perfectos genes don't mind it.

I wouldn't either, if that were the case.

You see we are working on my upcoming website... Sharnanigans (exciting!!!) .... and Olena, my designer, needs a pic!

Well roll me over and call me Rhonda - it has been a saga!

I sent her some from recent times but none of them made the cut.

I want my website to look professional - to show me in a natural light.

ie - not with a forced smile, silly pout or sideways glances.

I have to be still, not halfway through a dramatic statement or making any grand gesticulations.

This is hard for me because I do a lot of this, particularly when I become nervous when I know someone is trying to take a photo.

I think the best photos are taken when I am drunk

(which sadly, I haven't been for a long time)

because you lose the braincells responsible for overthinking your poses and you get something more natural, albeit with slightly bloodshot eyes.

So last night I asked Cowboy if he would do a photoshoot for me.

I whipped on a couple of different outfits and stood in front of a white wall awaiting direction.
It didnt come.

Cowboy said - "Well smile"

"I can't just smile on cue" I snapped

He held the camera up at me and I had nothing.

"You have to direct me" I directed

"I don't know how to direct you" he said "I'm not a photographer!"

"Well I'm not a photographer either, but I would know how to direct you" I said

("I bet you would" he probably thought)

" You have to make me laugh, smile - try different poses"

" I'm trying" he said

"No you are not!" I barked

"Well sorry I have been painting our house all day"


I don't really think we were going to elicit a natural, 'me in my happy glory photo' in these circumstances now were we?

So we decide to hit the bottle.

We get out a bottle of Sav Blanc and I suggest we just sit and have a few drinks and if he sees me laughing or coming to life then for the love of God , snap me!

Oh the pressure I put on Cowboy.

Of course -we sit down to do this and things start rolling, we are talking and then laughter prevails!!

Cowboy happily reaches for his glass to pour another drink.

"What are you doing pouring a drink?" I exclaimed

" I was laughing!! You missed it!"

Biting his tounge Cowboy rolled his eyes and guzzled a badly needed gulp.

He decided then to sit there with the camera pointed on me waiting for the laughter.

"Well I'm not going to start laughing now" I snarled

Ok, you get the idea - the poor Cowboy wasn't going to win.

He got a few snaps - but then I had issues with them including orange tinge in hair (hence the sepia coloured photos)

The stress of it all and the silliness of it all did lead to a funny night (of sorts)

The results? Pictured - still have not made the cut. arrrrrrgh...

Olena has sent me some examples of different poses that work well so I am going to limber up and try and call on my inner model....

We are going to have another crack it tonight (Cowboy doesn't know this yet...)

I have stocked up the fridge in anticipation.

Oh and laugh it up.

That one of me straddled over the red chair is SO not my style plus I have never worn a white collared shirt in my life!!!!

So does anyone have any suggestions for me, oh afraid of the camera?
How the hell am I going to get the shot?
How should I pose?
How should Cowboy direct it?
Or should I just not worry about a photo???
Or should we just run with these gesticulating non smiling funny looking ones? Probably a truer indication of what I'm like!!!

(So many ors I could just row away!)

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Blog This Challenge : My Unique Talent

Wow this is my 200th post!

To celebrate I am going to enter my first Blog This challenge

For the uninitiated Blog This is an Australian blogging network and they have regular blogging challenges - very supportive and fun place to visit....

the challenge is:

to reveal a secret talent or something people might not know about you...

Mine is (ahem... was) .... my ability to find unique ways to meet men.... and that it became a Cover Story in Radar in Sydney Morning Herald (cover pictured )

I'll explain...

When I was single and lived in Sydney I worked in the world of advertising but always wanted to be a journalist.

I was never sure how to break through the advertising world through to journalism.

The two seemed to be at odds with each other.

The opportunity beckoned at a most unsuspecting moment.

One of my besties asked me to accompany him on his search for shared accommodation.

I helped him scour the houses of inner Sydney abodes to suss out the vibe and the flatmate potential within.

After we left an apartment, and analysed the potential flattie we had just met in detail (from the aromas in the kitchen to the books on his coffee table) - a light bulb appeared before me, just like in the cartoons.

I stopped dead in my tracks.

My friend looked at me as though I was mad - "What are you doing?"

"I've got it!" I said

"Got what?"

" I have the perfect idea to meet a man in Sydney!"

" I am going to answer the share accommodation ads! How better to to do it? "

"I will be able to cut to the chase, see how the man REALLY lives - what his tastes are like, how he keeps the house - if you answer the ads you save yourself the steps of meeting him at a bar and thinking he is wonderful only to go home and find he has a bedroom covered in teddy bears or the like..."

This was one of those moments where I felt completely sure of my idea.

Convinced, I approached one of the Editors at the Sydney Morning Herald and told him my idea.

He loved it!

He also organised for someone to come along with me and film it (embarrassing times a thousand, but fun )

So then... I just had to go out and actually do it!

It was great fun -- felt a bit naughty though.

Certainly got some controverisal comments on the SMH website

To me this is my greatest 'career' achievement to date - and oh so much fun - if you have a read you will feel the spookiness of it all as at the I make mention of an 'elusive Cowboy'

Those who know my blog (or who don't can get the jist in the above: about me bit) will know I am now very happily in love with a Cowboy - who thankfully I met through more honourable means.

You can read the story here (just checked and link to the video doesn't work - leads to something else, oh well - kind've good in a way - was pretty embarrassing!! )

My next unique effort of meeting men was to give Sydney the flick and move out to the sticks... and there, without even having to scour the newspaper of the one-horse town for potential flatmates I met him.
In the good old fashioned way.
At the pub.

Radar pic taken from here

Award Time

Fantasia times.
I love the support of people you get in the bloggy world.
Lovely Kathy from Lessons from the Monk I married and Writers Rising has awarded me not one but two blog awards.

I have seen on some people's blogs things like:
"I do not accept awards- please don't give me one" - why in the hell not?
It is hard in life at times to feel validated in what we do - little praises like this are the kind've thing that mean the world to me. Cheers Kathy!

I have recently awarded some folks who I love awards... so I am going to share the love and not double up.
I am going to make up my own category about what these awards are for...
I am going to give these two awards to 3 blogs and these are for blogs that inspire me to be a better person.....
Kathy, I could easily give this award back to you ...

Three very deserving inspiring bloggers and blogs:

1) Consumption Rebel - to the lovely Eilleen who although recently lost her bojo - continues to inspire through her integrity in living a life true to her self - and bringing awareness to others without being a preachy type.

2) Ranting and Rolling - to the lovely Laura in England (but is Canadian) who inspires me greatly through her dedication to her daughter Ella! She is very imaginative when it comes to raising her daughter who is only a little older than Monte - and because she is childcare and Montessori qualified I find her ways to be very inspiring - whether she knows it or not, I hope she now does!

3) The wonderfully supportive Heather from Heather Conroy's Verbal Report - I met Heather on She Writes and her blog always contains something thought provoking, I ALWAYS learn something new when I visit Heather's blog and she has become a wonderfully supportive friend also!

Thanks Kathy for the award, thanks to the gals above for inspiring me - and thanks to my parents, my son... my..

ok you get the idea

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Mommy Nani Booboo Guest Post!

I am pleased to introduce you to Mommy Nani Booboo (not her real name... seriously) a blogger whose work I have admired since entering the scene...

Not only do I like her because she is a fine writer with an excellent sense of humour - but she is a genuine gal!

I had a little 'bitch' the other day about some of the big guns of blogging who are too cool to answer me... but Mommy Jenn (yes note - I call them Mommy because she is from LA and Mums are Moms over there...) has answered my every request including "How do I change fonts?" or something equally as ridiculous!
Instant respect!
She even forgave me when I made her post - post of the week and then cut and paste it on here instead of linking it to hers (and then left it on here because I couldn't figure out how to delete it) hahaha - I live and learn...

It is my honour to present to you the guest post that I assigned : How is parenting like acting
Do me a favour and drop by her blog and if you love it as much as I do & become her disciple.

Without further ado.....

Here it is....

The Show Must Go On

Sharni asked me to write a guest post on her blog.
I blushed and said okay.
She said I could pick a subject, or she could give me one.
I figured with the way my life has been going lately, I would probably write about poop or vomit… so I wisely suggested she give me a topic.

Do you know what the crazy Aussie gave me? “How is acting like parenting?”
My first response was- uh… it’s not.
As I started thinking about this post, my brain was bombarded by examples of how my present life and past life are on opposite ends of the spectrum, really.
So, I decided to roll with that.
My present job is being a full time mommy.
My previous job was as an actor, both on screen and on stage.
Soooooo not similar!
Allow me to elaborate:

There is no hair and makeup team!
When I wake up in the morning, I do not enjoy a cup of coffee as a talkative gay man puts my hair in rollers, while regaling me with tales of his love life.
If I get a little “shiny” from working too hard, there is no lady with a big powder poof to blot my T-zone.
There is no one to hide my blemishes, enhance my lashes, conceal the bags under my eyes, and dust on a naturally rosy/sun kissed glow.
I don’t even wear makeup nowadays.
My hair lives bunched up in a clip at the back of my head, and I don’t shower unless I have to. Sometimes, I can’t even remember if I’ve brushed my teeth- my toddler doesn’t care, and my dogs actually prefer things that stink.

There is no Craft Service
“Craft Service “ is a term that loosely translates to: oasis of food, and people who are present simply to serve you food, warm your food, or keep it chilled, and make sure you never, ever go hungry.
There are meals at mealtime, snacks all day- ALL DAY, coffee, tea, and pretty much whatever you please.
I am actually getting a little weepy writing this, because I am a mother who loves food, but was cursed with a great aversion to cooking.
Oh, I do it- because I’m responsible for keeping my family healthy. Yup… that’s pretty much the only reason I do it.

There are no stand-ins
This doesn’t so much exist in the Theatre, but when doing TV or film, you get what is called a stand-in.
Focusing of lights and camera angles, etc, can take a long time, and instead of standing there for hours while they focus lights on you- they bring in your stand-in.
This lovely person is generally your height/weight, skin coloring, and hair coloring.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been in the waiting room of the doctor’s office, with a toddler who’s missed his nap, and really wants to dump the potted plant out onto the floor, or eat some lady’s purse sitting next to us, because we’ve been waiting for over an hour … I can’t tell you, how many times… in those moments… in the back of my head… I’m screaming for my stand-in. The stand in that never comes! Never freakin’ comes.

She doesn’t exist

There is no stand-in for mommy.

There is no script.
I don’t know how everything is going to play out. I am not guaranteed a happy ending.
No one has given me the right things to say.
I was always very good at learning my lines… where are my lines?

On the other hand…

There is no script.
I don’t know how everything is going to play out.
It’s all a big surprise!
I can make up and say whatever I want.
I walk around the house talking to inanimate objects all the time (like you don’t).
And I’m MOM, so what I say goes.
Even if I just pulled it out of my ass!
Who cares?
It’s called improvisation- it’s an art form.
You most definitely will “grow a sandbox in your tummy if you eat any more sand!”

I’m not memorizing it, I’m living it.

Now that I’ve had a chance to vent a little, there’s some breathing room in my head to see the brilliance of Sharni’s question.

Maybe acting and motherhood are not alike in the superficial ways.

But there are some fundamental things about acting, not the glitz and glamour, the real things, the things I love about it, the things that make it noble- these are the things that have followed me into parenthood.

Every actor is addicted to the applause.
It means you’ve moved people into clapping for you.
You’ve made them laugh, cry, think, something- you’ve done something to make them respond in a way so primal, as to take two parts of their body and slap them together to make a joyous noise.
That’s cool.

Every parent is also addicted to this applause.
Hot Nerd (my husband) would stand on his head, wiggling his toes, while meowing like a cat, if it would make my son clap with glee.
I puff my cheeks and cross my eyes a million times a day because it makes him squeal with delight. I am his dancing monkey, and I don’t mind one bit.
I gotta tell ya- I never thought any sound would make me feel as good, as several hundred pairs of hands clapping for me as I take my bow, until I heard the sound of just one… one pair of itty bitty hands…

Perhaps the biggest and most real way that acting is like parenting for me, can be summed up in a phrase I’m sure you’ve heard before:

“The show must go on.”
I remember once, years ago, as I was walking down a dirty Chicago street, I somehow got a thin metal rod stuck in my big toe.
I KNOW! How does something like that happen?
Anyway, it looked like some sort of unraveled, wire coat hanger, and it attacked my foot by completely bypassing my sandal, and firmly lodging itself in my big toe.
It was seriously in there- sticking way out the other side and everything.
Now, I had a theatre performance of A Mid Summer Night’s Dream in about 2 ½ hours that I wasn’t about to miss.
I was a main character, with no understudy, and well, you just don’t leave your cast, and a theatre full of people, hangin the breeze.
It’s just not done.
It’s the same with TV and Film.
Time is money- literally thousands and thousands of dollars.
And for the most part, actors subscribe to an unspoken, sense of duty.
The show must always go on.
So, back to the story: I couldn’t walk, what with 6 inches of metal sticking out of the bottom of my toe and 12 inches out the top.
So, I parked my butt on the sidewalk, and slowly started wiggling that metal rod.
I then started tugging at it a bit, took a deep breath… and slowly pulled it all the way through, and out, of my toe.
I walked my bloody self home, had a friend take me to the ER, got some x-rays, told the doc I had a show to do, got a tetanus shot, and made it to the theatre 20 minutes before show time.
I gobbled some painkillers, changed my bandage between scenes, and had a great show. There was never a question of not being able to perform.
Actors will perform with broken bones, and broken hearts. It has to be done-it’s for the greater good.

Parents subscribe to this same philosophy: the show must go on.
In fact, the show never stops.
Doesn’t matter if you sprain your ankle, have a fever, or are just plain exhausted- you are the star of the show and it’s your job to entertain!
I have thoroughly surprised myself with my ability to carry on, no matter the circumstances. You could have a fever of 105, or be feeling crushed by stress, or tending to your own very broken heart- but when you’re needed, you put on a brave front, you smile to let your little one know everything’s okay, and you dance a little jig to elicit a squeal from him or her.
It’s only backstage, in the “wings”, or in your dressing room, that you allow yourself to feel crippled by life.

Because you’re the parent- you have no understudy, no stand-in. That’s the hard part… and also… the best part… because you’re the star… you’re… IRREPLACEABLE.

So, I tip my old, slightly withered hat to you, my fellow parents. Because whether you took Drama class in school, starred in your high school play, been paid the big bucks on a movie set, or never took an acting class a day in your life- if you’re a mom or dad, you know the real meaning of “The show must go on.”

I applaud you.
Take a bow.

I am bowing as I type this - thanks for an enlightening and impressive list of similarities - knew you'd come up with the goods!
Love the bit about the applauding from one set of hands.
Love your work.
Seriously !