Wednesday, 28 October 2009

By request...

I tweeted about this risotto as I was eating it the other night, because it was the most surprisingly yummy thing EVER. Delicious, I tell you.

A couple of people asked for the recipe, so here it is. It's from the Australian Women's Weekly (in the 1000 Best-Ever Recipes book)

Beetroot Risotto with rocket

2 medium beetroot (350g) peeled, grated coarsely
3 cups (750ml) vegetable stock
3 cups (750ml) water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large brown onion (200g), chopped finely
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 1/2 cups (300g) arborio rice
1/4 cup (20g) coarsely grated parmesan cheese
50g baby rocket leaves
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1. Bring beetroot, stock and the water in large saucepan to the boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered.
2. Meanwhile, heat oil in large saucepan; cook onion and garlic, stirring, until onion softens. Add rice; stir rice to coat in onion mixture. Stir in 1 cup simmering beetroot mixture; cook, stirring, over low heat until liquid is absorbed. Continue adding beetroot mixture, in 1-cup batches, stirring, until liquid is absorbed after each addition. Total cooking time should be about 35 minutes or until rice is just tender; gently stir in cheese.
3. Serve risotto topped with combined rocket and parsley.

YUMMY. That is all. :)

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

I rented this strange film on the weekend, having wanted to see it for a while now. I say strange because, well, it doesn't seem like a story that should work as a film. It's not much of a story at all actually, just "a single premise" as a friend of mine described it.

It does work, though, I think. The characters, led by 8-year-olds Bruno and Shmuel are compelling enough that one really wants to find out more.

We see the events from Bruno's point of view, and so only get small glimpses of what is actually going on, which is that the family moves to the country for his father's new role as Commandant of a camp in World War II. Bruno goes exploring, finds the camp fence and makes friends with Shmuel. They become friends, make plans... and I won't tell you the ending.

I thought all of the acting was wonderful. I can't think of a single performance that wasn't up to scratch. But Asa Butterfiled and Jack Scanlon, as the two boys, were outstanding. They're so young, and it's such a difficult concept. It would have been easy to expect such young boys to play it melodramatically, but they were both natural, compelling actors. I also loved David Hayman as Pavel, the Jewish kitchen-hand/servant.

Definitely one worth watching. Just be prepared for quite an emotional ride.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

I feel quite shaken

... by this whole Roman Polanski episode.

I didn't even know about his rape conviction until the recent arrest. I'm sure many people didn't. In case you still don't - the film director Roman Polanski was charged in 1977 with statutory rape, after drugging and raping a 13-year-old girl. A deal was struck and he pleaded guilty to a different charge - something like "unlawful sexual conduct"... but in between then and the sentencing he fled the US and set up camp in France. Since then he has made lots of films, married, had children, won an Oscar and carefully not entered the US or the UK.

He was recently arrested when entering Switzerland for a film festival being held in his honour. Switzerland has an extradition treaty with the US so the idea is that he will be sent back to the US to be sentenced and serve his time. He did, after all, admit to raping a child and then fled the country.

Now comes the shocking part. Hundreds of film industry names (these names) have been signing a petition to free Polanski (to allow him to remain freely in Europe), which states that the arrest takes away the freedom of an artist of international renown.

Maybe I shouldn't be shocked at this. Maybe I should have realised that rich and famous people usually think they're better than everyone else. That very talented people sometimes start to think that their own talent is more important than truth, or justice, or integrity.

But I am shocked. I honestly believed that most of the people in the film industry, even the great big famous ones, still knew that they are people just like everyone else. I thought that the self-centred, up-on-a-pedestal ones were really very rare. According to that list of names, I was pretty wrong. People I admire are on that list - Harrison Ford, Tilda Swinton, Terry Gilliam, Guillermo del Toro....

I have to admit I searched frantically through the names and was very relieved not to see Johnny Depp, or Geoffery Rush, or Kate Winslet (though, disappointingly, her husband, Sam Mendes, is there). I love my favourite actors for their own character as much as for their abilities so at least I still have that measure of sanity to cling to.

Disappointing, "Hollywood", so disappointing.

I'm going to bed, hoping that someone with as much integrity as money & fame stands up and speaks the truth - simply that a convicted criminal should face his past and serve his time.

Friday, 25 September 2009

United States of Tara

So, if you haven't watched the United States of Tara yet, go watch it! Here, it's on the ABC at 9.30 Wednesday nights. No, Thursday. Oh bugger, one of the two. Look it up! Go watch it.

Toni Collette plays Tara, wonderfully (of course, she won an Emmy for it!). She's a wife and mother of two, with multiple personality disorder. Her "alters" take over sometimes, and the alters have their own names, habits, whole personalities. It would be such a fabulous role to play - because it's four roles in one!

The story and situations are built really well - the two children (teenagers) are very real, interesting people. Going through all the usual teenage stuff as well as dealing with their mom being not at all a normal mom. I particularly love the son. He's gay, and has a head-over-heels crush on his new friend, a good Christian church boy. They kissed the other night (woo!) and it was such a typically weird, awkward, very memorable teenage moment. The daughter goes through weird relationship stuff, too, and seems to be the one who can't quite cope with Tara's issues all that well.

Anyway. It's the first TV show I've been really into for a long time. Excellent characters. Fabulous acting. Believable stories, which is sadly so rare these days! (yes, I'm a moany old woman, shut up)

I'm off to eat chocolate and fold my laundry in front of whatever crap's on the TV tonight. I'm a Friday Night Loser alright!

Monday, 21 September 2009

Wow, look at that...

It's been so long since I've posted in here that the 2nd-last post is a Panic at the Disco picture post! This is hilarious because that band split into two almost 3 months ago. So, for what it's worth, Brendon and Spencer are now Panic! at the Disco, and Jon and Ryan have run along to do their own thing and called themselves The Young Veins.

This was all very traumatic at the time, and is still actually quite sad - all of their close friendship and interconnectedness was a big reason for my loving them! Plus, Ryan-Spencer-best-friends-from-childhood! Oh shoosh you don't understand! But hey, it's all good. They seem to all be still friends and both bands are doing what they love, what more could you ask for, huh?

Don't answer that question.


So did I even post in here about Public Enemies? Woah. I was so ridiculously excited about that film and then didn't even come here and rant about it! But you may have seen my faily mini-reviews on Twitter.

In summary: Johnny Depp is awesome and completely owns my acting heart. But you already knew that. The film was... meh. Nice enough but could've been better.


What other films have I seen? Hmmm. Oh yeah, NONE. lol. I've watched a few on DVD I suppose. The Boat That Rocked. Which rocked. Loved it. Ummm...

Oh I dunno.


Work-wise, I'm going to be stage managing a concert in December. That will at least be some very handy Christmas money. Ha, my working life is so packed that my only busy moment is 3 months away! Woo. Of course I don't actually mind that. It's not like I'm sitting around here twiddling my thumbs. I'm busy eating ice cream and surfing the net, of course.

Why would anyone twiddle their thumbs anyway? That is one of MANY sayings I just don't get.


I just realised I missed the deadline for next year's Showcast directory. I hadn't decided what to do, it's $130 and I probably needed a new photo, so.... well, that's that. I think I can join up on the website anytime if I decide I want to. Which I don't think I do. Maybe. *shrug*


How about a new regular segment (yes, let's pretend I'm a TV show!) - lyrics at the end of a post. Quick, someone think up a catchy name for it!

from Northern Downpour by Panic! at the Disco:

If all the world is but a dream...
fantastic posing greed,
then we should feed our jewelery to the sea.
For diamonds do appear to be
just like broken glass to me.

Thursday, 30 April 2009

You know what's ridiculous?

What's ridiculous is that I haven't seen the following films. Adding them to my to-watch list...

~ Casablanca
~ Gone With the Wind
~ When Harry Met Sally
~ The Ninth Gate
~ Before Night Falls
~ Cry-Baby

Monday, 27 April 2009

Promised Pics of Panic......

... At The Disco. Not panic in general. No pics of fleeing villagers or burning buildings, I promise.

Here are Spencer Smith and Ryan Ross. They were best friends since forever (aged 4 or 5).

spence and ryan lollipop

They started the band when they were around, I dunno, 15? Spence is the drummer:

spencer white shirt

Ryan the guitarist and lyricist (and orginally lead singer):

Ryan guitar. belt.

and their friend Brent was the bass player. Then Brent brought his friend Brendon Urie....

Brendon rock star

to play guitar as well. They discovered that Brendon has an awesome voice, so he became lead singer.


They were signed by Pete Wentz (of Fall Out Boy) to his record label. After they recorded their first album, A Fever You Can't Sweat Out (this was in 2005/06 I think) Brent lost interest in the band and was replaced with Jon Walker on bass...

Jon noodling no shoes

... who toured with them and even allowed himself to be dressed up in the crazy garb in which they liked to perform and be photgraphed:

Panic young dressed up

For their first few tours they did fabulous things like take a circus dance troupe with them.

Brendon NRWC dancing

Ryan, especially, who is half playful child and half eccentric old man, wore amazing make up and vintage clothes. He and Brendon seem to love all things theatrical (one of the big reasons I love them).


In 2008 the 2nd album, Pretty. Odd., was released. It was less punky and outrageous, more lyrical and hippy-esque. Still the same thoughtful-but-self-indulgent lyrics, original beats and eclectic tunes, but more, well......


Let's just say you can really see their love for the Beatles.

I'm kinda kicking myself that I only discovered them recently, too late for their latest tour to Australia (despite the best intentions of a darling friend of mine who, obviously, did get through to me eventually). However I will definitely be snaffling up some tickets next time they're here. And I will have to keep it a big secret from my 4-yr-old Beryl, who is completely and utterly in love with these guys.

Can't blame her, really.

Word on the grapevine (uh... the twitter-vine?) is that new songs are on their way, so hopefully that means a new album sometime soon...

Okay, enough fangirling from me. I was going to try to link to some more Panic music, but really this was just a good excuse to post pictures of pretty boys, so.... go search YouTube, if you like.

Sunday, 26 April 2009

Talk about depressing!

Noel and I watched Uwe Boll's Tunnel Rats last night.

It was the most depressing Vietnam War film I've ever seen. And that is saying a lot, yes? Because depression is a pretty vital requirement of a Vietnam War movie.

Unfortunately not much of the acting was very good (the only female cast member, Jane Le, being one exception), and some of the effects were very ordinary, which let down a fairly compelling story. There was a complete and utter lack of progress, story-wise, but I guess the point of it was to show a moment in time. Less than 24 hours in the Vietnam Jungle.

If you know anything about the Cu Chi tunnels in Vietnam, you'll know what went on in those suffocating underground hell holes. Noel's been there himself, crawled through one tunnel - so he wasn't as shocked as I was at some of the horrible violence.

Scary, sad, shocking, ultimately thought-provoking. All of the terrifying things that happened to those characters actually happened to real soldiers. That makes it so much more wrenching than it would be otherwise.

Friday, 24 April 2009

Despite all evidence to the contrary...

I actually do want to blog. So here's a bunch of stuff I've been into lately.....

Johnny is currently in San Juan, Puerto Rico, filming The Rum Diary, a film based on the book of the same name by Hunter S Thompson. Here he is on set.

photo by Ramon Zayas. Thanks to Emma from

Looking forward to that! Although before we get excited about Rum Diary, there's Public Enemies to be released in (I think) July. Which looks amazing and I can't wait. (Except that, obviously, I can.)


A bit of crazy stress here lately with Noel losing his job about a month ago. All is well now, though - he got a job this morning and will be back terrorising the highways in no time (he is a very good truck driver, I promise!)

Also in home news, we're in the first couple of weeks of a preservative-free, low salicylate diet here. It's also dairy-free for Talitha, who seems to be affected in her emotions, behaviour and sleep patterns, by dairy and food chemicals. We're hoping it will help both girls with all those things. I was trying to stick to dairy-free also, in the hope that it would help Charlie (who's still breastfeeding) with his sleep, too... but... I kinda fail at avoiding dairy. It's just so good.


I've been meaning to rave at you about Panic at the Disco. Because I love them. Here's their myspace where you can hear some of their songs, or you can watch a couple of performances here and here.

(Sorry, I'm really hopeless at finding good links. The really fabulous things are their video clips, which have recently been taken down from YouTube because of copyright claims. Ugh. GO AWAY evil corporations!)

Basically, they are four pretty young guys (22 ish now, and made their first album at 16/17) and their music is somehow a lot of crazy fun and very mature at the same time. For one tour they took circus dancers as part of the show. Their first album was a kinda caberet-esque punk-rock-pop type thing, their 2nd was very Beatles-ish. A lot of people seem to criticise them for being "self-indulgent", but that doesn't even bother me. It's music. It's art. To me, self-indulgence is almost one of the main reasons for art.

I'll be back with some lovely pics of the Panic boys when I can be bothered resizing some.


Have been doing a bit of sewing lately. I made four little drawstring bags for my darling friend Lusi 's children. Sweet baby Z was born last week so they all NEEDED homemade pretties. I also made a little cloth doll for the bubba-girl. It was looking rather scary at first but turned out pretty well. I should have taken some photos but eh, sometimes life can just go on without photos, huh?

After I'd done four bags, I experimented with another, and refined the best way to get it done. I was quite impressed with the last couple and it got me thinking... might be a bit of a plan in there, involving crafty goodness AND handy income, all in one great idea. We'll see.


Ah, okay, that's enough of a rambly winding blog post for one day!

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

A meme

The fabulous Maggie at (don't know why I can't make links atm, it just won't let me do html...) tagged ME for this meme... so, in the interests of reviving my slack-arse blogging career...

1. Are you a male or female: If you don't know that already, then I just don't know what to do with you....

2. Describe yourself: Layered. Like an onion.

3. How do you feel about yourself: Increasingly comfortable with my own body and my own personality. Enjoying figuring myself out.

4. Describe your parents: Gosh. That's actually quite hard. My dad's one of those men with a very successful and respected work life but a topsy-turvy personal life. H's always been the one to suuport me 110% no matter what. My mum, scarily, enough, is a lot like me, and I'm aiming to not turn out like her (isn't that what most young women aim for? How many succeed?). She also always supports me, but the support comes with an air of just-doing-my-duty a lot of the time.

5. Describe your ex boyfriend/girlfriends: Gosh. I keep answering this and deleting because it's too much detail, or not enough detail, or just weird.
Um. Adam in year 7 was a ery good looking, genuine guy with cool-group peer pressure issues. Chris in year 12 was an amazingly caring young guy who, as far as I know, just suddenly stopped loving me but we actually stayed great friends. Different Chris was a snobby North Shore boy who I think was really just a rebound guy and I dumped him on New Year's Day. MEAN.

6. Describe your current boy/girl situation: Married. It's good. It's life. It's up and down.

7. Describe your current location: Next to my back window, in western Sydney. Inside my coolish townhouse under a fresh blue cloudy sky. The ugly blocks of flats next door spoil it.

8. Describe where you want to be: Oh, any place will do, if it's near my family and there are lots of opportunities around.

9. Your best friend(s) is/are: wise, loving, searching for something.

10. Your favorite color is: sky blue (gazes out the window...)

11. You know that: mostly, people are good.

12. If your life was a television show what would it be called: How Did We Get Here?

13. What is life to you: My children, and my dreams.

14. What is the best advice you have to give: Be brave. Be honest. Be yourself.

Be Tagged, if you wish!

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Oh, China...

Random fact: Noel and I (and a gaggle of others from our church) spent 10 days in China in 1999. We visited pretty remote mountain villages and small cities in the south-west of the country. Gosh, I love that place. The cities (though I only know a couple of small ones) are crazy, hectic, warm places, and the villages are just amazing. Simply beautiful. I'm tempted to say that all the people are friendly and welcoming and lovely, but i'm sure that's not really true. They are human, after all! We certainly met a whole lot of fabulous locals, though. We hope to take our kids there one day.

Anyway. I've been thinking about all this lately after watching Children of the Silk Road.

As you'll see in that link, the film's official title is Children of Huang Shi, with "...Silk Road" being the Australian title. Strange, considering it was an Australin Film Comission film and released first here. Why did we get an alternate title I wonder?

Apart from reminding me of the gorgeous nation of China and its wonderful people, the film really caught me. The acting performances were spot-on. Chow Yun-Fat, in particular, impressed me, as did Radha Mitchell. Johnathan Rhys Meyers was the hero, though, and he did it so well.

Not to mention all those children! What talented young things!

My thoughts are a little sketchy this evening, sorry. In short, definitely one to see. It's one of those films that really makes you feel blessed to live in a safe, prosperous place... and also makes you wish you were the one on screen... oh is that just me? Hmmm.

Saturday, 7 March 2009

When You're Strange...

Oh yes, I'm all Johnny, all the time, lately. (Except for when I'm all Panic at the Disco, but more on that another time...)

This isn't actually new news, but I forgot to blog about it the other week, and then today I found more info.

In news that pretty much makes my brain explode and the rest of my body go jittery, Johnny's signed up to narrate a new documentary by director Tom DiCillo about The Doors, called When You're Strange. That 2nd link is to a review of the film on DiCillo's website (the doco is all done and has screened already, but with DiCillo narrating), which declares it a fabulous doco, authentic and truthful about those brilliant-but-very-troubled young men.


The Doors have been one of my favourite bands for as long as I can remember. My dad loves them so I grew up with them, knew all the songs and everything about them. The fact that Jim Morrison's death was 10 years before I was born was completely irrelevant. I adored him and spent long hours daydreaming of being alive in the 60s and 70s, getting up to all sorts of shenanigans with Jim and his ilk.


So, to combine Jim's singing and Robbie, John and Ray's amazing music with Johnny Depp's voice? Oh yes. Heaven on a stick.



Latest report is that they're having trouble getting time in Johnny's schedule to do the recording before the film is due to screen at the SXSW Film Festival on March 15. Bugger! I'm crossing my fingers that they can get it sorted.

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Can you see me squirming with excitement?

New Johnny film. Finally we have a trailer.

Can't talk. Go watch:

Public Enemies Trailer


Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Nice to see...

I was watching NCIS last night, and for a few brief moments there was a face I recognised, and an Australian accent. At first I thought it might've been someone I knew from college or met at a drama class somewhere. So I looked up the episode and discovered it was Sharni Vinson. No, I've never met her, but I did used to be rather obsessed with Home and Away (oh shush, most people are at some stage!) so I guess that's why I thought I had.

Anyway, it was lovely to see her pop up like that. It makes me proud in some kind of weird disconnected way, to see the young Aussies doing well over in the big scary exciting USA. Also makes part of me very envious, but hey, you get that.

There's Isla Fisher, Tammin Sursok, Isabel Lucas, all Home and Away girls. And then there's Simon Baker and Jesse Spencer.

And then there's the however-many others over there, living the dream (or attempting to) in LA. Bit parts in TV shows and commercials, endless cattle-calls and extra work and working as a waitress......

So, well done, talented Australians. I think you're doing great.

Monday, 2 March 2009


Of Blue Skies Falling.

Why can I not see your blog? Why is there some kind of real esate / vacation / online dating / pretty blonde student thing going on when I try to see your site?

Please make it stop!

Sunday, 1 March 2009

The best of Chocolat

I watched Chocolat last night.

Ok, I will be honest and I say I made judicious use of the fast-forward button and only watched the best bits.

~ The bit where Anouk comes home all upset and asks about going to church and says "Why can't you wear black shoes like all the other mothers?".

~ And when the cute old man, whose name I can't remember (they're difficult French names ok?), the one who owns Charlie the dog, is confessing to Pere Henri about his lustful thoughts for Madame Audel.

~ And Roux's first appearance, noodling around on his guitar and looking up with that lovely face.

~ Serge dressing up like he's joining the circus, to apologise, and Josephine firmly telling him it's over.

~ Everything about the party for Armande. Especially the food and the music.

~ "I'll come round sometime and get that squeak outta your door", with that LOOK on his face. I promise I didn't rewind that part 4 times to watch it over and over.


Okay, maybe I did.

Saturday, 28 February 2009

I feel bad now.

Sorry, Patrick Warburton, for picking on you. You are a very talented man with a unique voice. It's not your fault that all my girls' favourite films are the ones you're in.

Talitha and Beryl love skipping, too....


Friday, 27 February 2009

I used to love Patrick Warburton's voice...

Anyone who has small kids, or a dorky husband, or just loves animated films, will understand my pain when I say I am so very sick of the voice of Patrick Warburton. Jeez, that guy is in EVERYTHING these days.

I just want to be able to get on with the housework, or surf the net, without hearing constant KRONK in the background. Go away, Kronk, stop invading every other animated world.....

He's actually quite good in live action, I think. What's that TV show he's in?

Thursday, 26 February 2009

Random pic!


Johnny once described himself as a failed musician, which makes me rather sad for him. Not too sad really... seeing as he seems to have done quite nicely for himself in other areas... but still, a little sad, because look at him with that guitar. He just adores playing live music.

And I rather fancy watching him.

Tuesday, 24 February 2009


Last night I watched the film Enchanted with my girls. The girls loved it, and you know what? So did I! Oh my goodness, it is just the sweetest thing. Really truly, there should be more movies where pretty girls and handsome boys just start singing to each other in the middle of New York City. And chipmunks and bumbling princes and ugly manservants come leaping out of drains to pursue the princess.

Really! It had me grinning like a Disney-crazed fool. And when I go to New York one day, I am so going to sing and dance in Central Park.


So, I promised a few people I would start posting again properly. I've been itching to write about movies and acting and music. I've turned into a bit of a band fangirl lately, with several crushes on several lead singers, and lots of lyrics floating through my head. I've lost track a bit of the film-industry-world but I can always talk about the movies I've been watching. I've always got opinions, oh yes I do!

And, you know what I've decided? I don't care whether or not people are impressed with my writing. Sure, I'd love more readers, but I've tried sounding like an impressive wordsmith before. I probably just sounded like a goose, and it didn't get me any more readers!

To be honest, I've been having a bit of a flail at myself. Remember way back when I started this blog? The plan was to document my foray into an acting career. Auditions, classes, small parts, small films, bigger things.... and, ta-da! A career! Almost three years later, what have I achieved? A few small student things. One casting call for paid work. Zero actual paid work.

I'm not forgetting that I have three beautiful children, for whom I would give up the world, but I would be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed at the lack of entries on my acting CV. I guess it is a little more impossible than I thought to get into this industry while mothering little ones.

Anyway, life goes on. It really does! :-)

Friday, 16 January 2009

So, obviously, I'm not posting in here again, am I? Nope, don't appear to be.

To be honest, I just can't decide what I want to write about. Lately this has turned into a kind of very amateur food blog, which I don't want it to be. And I'm not doing any acting. And I just don't feel that my writing on films is knowledgeable enough to make it worth anyone's time.

So, meh. I'm sorry, if you were hoping to hear more from me.I might even start a new blog sometime, and if I do I'll come pimp it on the blogs I read.

Hey, meanwhile, go to youtube or somewhere and check out my current obsession, the band Panic at the Disco. Fun, theatrical, retro, sexy.

Off you go then...