lego minifigures series 12

Sunday, July 27, 2014

lego minifigures - series 12
I've been waiting for this image to drop for several weeks now and finally, after teasing almost half the figures in other places, the official group shot for Lego Minifigures Series 12 has arrived!
  • Video Game Guy
  • Prospector
  • Rock Star
  • Swashbuckler
  • Jester
  • Fairy Tale Princess
  • Spooky Girl
  • Pizza Delivery Man
  • Hun Warrior
  • Genie Girl
  • Lifeguard
  • Wizard
  • Dino Tracker
  • Space Miner
  • Battle Goddess
  • Pig Suit Guy
They're definitely back to full power with these sets, because I'm loving this series to bits. Particular favourites are the Video Game Guy (aka Gamer... I imagine I'll be getting at least one extra version of him), the Spooky Girl (especially the Goth teddy bear), the Battle Goddess, the Lifesaver (because, Lego abs), the Pig Suit Guy (there will have to be an extra one for Ma because she's born in the Year of the Pig), the Hun Warrior, the Jester (LOVE those playing card tiles) and the Genie Girl.

I also love that they've gone for a very Ramones vibe for the Rock Star rather than something more generic.

I'm a little so-so about the Dino Hunter (aka Lara Croft/Katniss hybrid), but I think that's mostly about her hair. The Prospector is cute, but the Space Miner is a bit ho-hum. I'm also not that bothered about the colour choices on the Pizza Guy and the Fairytale Princess. The Swashbuckler should have been right up my alley, but that open shirt is just TOO open. I think I'll need to wait until I see both him and the Wizard in person (or at least until I see the review from WhiteFang over at Eurobrick forums).

But overall I'm one very happy AFOL... Roll on October!

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ghibli inspired saturday art and shopping

Saturday, July 26, 2014

spirited by espionage gallery - art railspirited by espionage gallery - totoro's umbrella
Today has been an excellent day... an excellent, art filled, revisiting kind of day.

Today was the day for Spirited, a Studio Ghibli inspired art exhibition masterminded by my friend Josh from Espionage Gallery and hosted with help from the fine people at Splash Adelaide.

And this morning couldn't have been any more perfect for a Ghibli exhibition... when I jumped out of bed I discovered that a thick mist had settled in over everything... I could only see about a block... and the city, which usually dominates the skyline from my bedroom window was completely gone!

spirited by espionage gallery - misty branchesspirited by espionage gallery - zen lines
So in the spirit of the day, I threw on my Lego Castle Forestman logo shirt and my fluffy green scarf and off we went.

We perhaps got a little more overexcited than usual at the supermarket, at least the total came out slightly higher than usual. But because we were working to a timeframe we kept our wandering to the bare minimum and headed straight back here.

Then we took ourselves off to the Himeji Gardens in the Southern Parklands.

spirited by espionage gallery - himeji gardensspirited by espionage gallery - kodama spirits
We arrived literally just before they opened the doors and were amongst the first few inside the gardens after a quick chat with Josh.

It was a fantastic location for an art show... with pieces hidden all around the gardens and hanging from trees. Even if they did have to wrap them in Gladwrap to keep the moisture out.

In addition there were a number of Ghibli characters dotted around the gardens... Totoro, Ponyo, Kiki's cat Jiji, the Kodama forest spirits... and they all looked brilliant, especially the umbrella toting Totoro (the one in the image at the top of the post) welcoming visitors just outside the gates.

spirited by espionage gallery - rock fountainspirited by espionage gallery - truth by nicole tattersall
I've been squirreling away whatever leftover cash I've had at the end of the week since I started working again, and once I knew this exhibition was coming it became my "art fund"... at least in part.

I also had a little mental caveat in place that I was going to specifically looking for anything Porco Rosso related (which is my favourite Ghibli movie) or else anything that I fell completely in love with.

Sadly there was only one Porco piece and to be honest it wasn't that great... however I did see and fall in love with two pieces inspired by Princess Mononoke.

spirited by espionage gallery - forest gods live here by little hawkspirited by espionage gallery - pine bloom
There was less variety than I was perhaps expecting... there were a large number of Mononoke pieces, a fair few Spirited Away pieces, but only two pieces from Howl's Moving Castle (although one of those, the feather piece in the previous set of images was very loosely themed), one from Ponyo and only a couple from some of the other movies.

Ma, who is a much bigger fan of the movies than I am, bought herself a Spirited Away print and the aforementioned feather print, so I'll go and pick them all up from Josh tomorrow.

After we came out I picked up a couple of blindbox vinyl toys left over from the physical gallery days and we bought some Nutella, peanut butter and chocolate chunk cookies. They were great cookies, unfortunately it was three for $2.50, and Ma and I had one each... but accidentally left the third one on one of the Splash Adelaide tables. Whoops.

spirited by espionage gallery - red berriesspirited by espionage gallery - ponyo the goldfish princess
From there we headed into the city and after a couple of missed opportunities we happened to find a car park literally outside of the Museum.

Which was great, because we were headed off to see The Waterhouse Natural Science Art Prize for the eighth year running.

waterhouse natural science art prize - maureen prichard, crystal stubbs, lesley barrett, scott hartshorne, chris stubbs
Every year we swear that we shouldn't go on the opening weekend, and every year we do... but to be honest, as aggravating as it can be I'm not sure it would get any better later in the run.

This year was something of a mid-range showing... there were some very good artworks and some really sub standard ones, but not very much with a major WOW factor.

And once again I really couldn't understand why some of the pieces had gotten "Highly Commended" prizes whereas far superior (at least in my estimations) seemed to be overlooked.

My personal favourite was Thoughts on the Frailty of Life II by Maureen Prichard so that was an easy choice for the People's Choice Award, whereas trying to chose a piece for the other prize, Dr Wendy Wickes Memoriam Prize, which needed to "communicated the most significant scientific message", which was a much harder decision.

Actually it makes more sense now that I read the blurb about it on the website, but with only the above phrase to go on it was a tough choice.

And we won't even hear about overhearing some monumentally stupid conversations going on between people wandering around in the exhibition.

spirited by espionage gallery - zen elementsspirited by espionage gallery - teto lantern
Afterwards we had a brief wander over to the Mall, I poked around the Apple store to see how much an iPad Mini would set me back (short answer, more than I'm willing to pay at present), had a brief yet unsuccessful hunt for some colourful yet cheap nail polish for Ma and then decided to head back to the Himeji Gardens to grab some lunch from whatever food trucks had shown up.

The trucks in question turned out to be Hot Mumma's Curries and Chimichurri Grill, so we hit Hot Mumma and I had the Korma Roll, Ma had the chicken wrap and then we split a serve of Chimichurri fries, because to be honest, they make the BEST fries of all the food trucks!

And then we headed back into the Gardens for another look at the exhibition now that the sun had (mostly) come out.

spirited by espionage gallery - umehara flute performancespirited by espionage gallery - kiki's cat jiji
We arrived just in time for the Umehara bamboo flute performance... which was really lovely. And I just wanted to adopt the amazing old Japanese man playing the flute (in that whole, "please be my grandpa and tell me stories about the old country" kind of way).

He was so sweet, especially when he was telling the crowd about the tradition of the performances and being generally adorable.

And he had his (I'm guessing anyway) son playing the drums with him, and while he never did that whole "drumsticks over his head" style of dramatic Japanese drumming, he was also brilliant... not to mention as cute as a button.

spirited by espionage gallery - blue sky branchesspirited by espionage gallery - umehara drumming
Ma, along with a large chunk of the crowd, also got to be part of the performance when they handed out a bunch of cute traditional Japanese instruments, whistles and things to make the "sounds of the forest".

Technically it should have been a total cacophonous disaster since everyone was just playing whatever they felt like, whenever they felt like it, but somehow it all came together.

Then, after helping Josh out with sticking "sold" stickers on a couple of pieces, we called it a day.

spirited by espionage gallery - dj madame dragonflyspirited by espionage gallery - camellia bud
Well, we would have called it a total day, had Ma not turned the car in the direction of Haighs.

Neither of us went especially overboard, but it's hard to resist their "seconds". It was a nice end to the day though, nothing like a good bit of chocolate to round out an excellent day.

So that was our very arty, inspired and all around enjoyable day.

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photo friday: petals

Friday, July 25, 2014

yellow petalspurple dancer

pale thistlespiky leaves

yellow banksiapink fronds
This has been a tough week. Of course all things are relative and it's not like I had to defuse nuclear weapons, conduct a symphony or conduct international espionage or anything, but relatively speaking, it's been tough.

Last Sunday was, in equal measure, a day well spent and a day completely wasted.

I had a rental inspection on Tuesday morning, so I spent the first five hours of Sunday cleaning the kitchen, scrubbing the toilet, vacuuming the carpet and doing all the other things that I've put off doing around the house since I tweaked my back (and, to be honest, a few other things that I've been putting off just because they didn't really need to be done, but since I was already in the zone, I figured I may as well do them).

I also discovered that there was a tiny amount of water running down the brick wall by the door... related, one can only assume, to the water that had been dripping from above the door a few months back but not quite so dramatic. So that was something else to go on the short list of issues to leave for my land agent.

Another issue was the fact that my smoke alarm started bleeping on a regular basis on Sunday morning. I say regular, but what I really mean is it did it twice and I took it down off the ceiling and took the battery out. Interestingly since the battery was replaced on Tuesday it hasn't been going off at the proverbial drop of a hat and I've cooked meat in my frying pan twice now (that was usually what set it off).

But back to the cleaning... I gave the apartment a good going over and it all looks fresh and tidy and lovely... which is always nice!

The remainder of Sunday was spent laying on my bed watching RuPaul's Drag Race, because I figured that I'd earned it by that point.

The great thing was that at no point on Sunday was my back a major drama. Yes, I was careful and aware of it, even though there was a fair degree of careful bending, but I felt generally fine.

Cue Monday morning... yeah, not so much.

At various points during the week I've been in somewhat varying degrees of pain throughout the day, which never makes me all sunshine and rainbows to be around. And this is really where most of the toughness has happened during this week. I think I probably stressed the muscles in my lower back out a little since that's what's really been more and more achey as the week has progressed. Thankfully I had a chiro appointment this afternoon at lunch time, so my ever lovely chiro was able to wrangle my back into a more appropriate configuration.

After the inspection on Tuesday I got home to find that my lovely land agent had replaced the battery in my smoke alarm as well as returning it to the ceiling and put some graphite powder in my locks as I'd mentioned one of them was becoming incredibly hard to turn. Yay for efficient rental personnel. However I also walked in to find that there was water dripping from over the door again.

And I also discovered that I'd paid an old gas account number instead of the correct account number, so there was an overdue notice waiting for me in the letterbox.

Le sigh.

Fortunately that was easily fixed thanks to the awesome Amy who I called the following morning at the gas company.

The dripping thing is less easy as it's a strata/outside issue, so it's not controlled by my land agent, hence I'm still waiting for something to happen. But on the up side, the water has stopped dripping from over the door and returned to running down the wall periodically. And I'd be more concerned about that if it wasn't disappearing once it gets to the floor and not doing anything to the carpet, at least as far as I can tell.

Just to round out some general whinging about stuff, there's either a new dog in the neighbourhood or a dog that has recently lost its mind because it keeps continually barking. In fact, it's doing it right now while I type this. Thankfully it's not really close, but it’s close enough that I can hear it from the bedroom window, but it's too far away to work out where the hell it actually is. Shut up dog, seriously, you're bat shit crazy and barking at NOTHING!

Also work has been a little bit mental... I spend the majority of Tuesday making a spreadsheet full of survey data sit up and beg. I'll be honest, I was annoyed at the beginning of the day because I knew how long it was going to take, but by the end of the day I was loving myself sick because it's seriously one of my favourite things to do... I love taking a bunch of data and turning it into a chart producing machine. I think I've said it before, but while I'm in no way, shape or form a numbers person, I fucking LOVE putting together a great spreadsheet that calculates things and counts them and has formulas and shit.

Then yesterday I didn't feel like I had a chance to catch my breath for most of the day... but as I keep reminding myself, it's better than the alternative.

Today was better, and since I had the chiro appointment I even went out at lunch time which I don't usually do. I even stopped by JB HiFi to take advantage of their TV sale (Dollhouse and Teen Wolf).

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random cb hotness

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Every now and again there's a Random Hotness who is just so damn gorgeous and capable of so many variations on his look that I get lost in a Google image search...

Clark Bockelman is definitely one of those guys. That's why there ended up being so many pairs of images... each set was better than the last (especially the outdoor shots) that I couldn't resist supersizing this Hotness.

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do-over saturday shopping

Saturday, July 19, 2014

doing the vintage shop
It's not often in life you get a re-do... but this Saturday has been the good version of last Saturday.

Plus it's after 6pm and I'm still awake, so that's an added bonus.

And because it was a do-over kind of day, I managed to get my sixth sense back regarding when Ma arrives downstairs.

The supermarket portion of the day was fairly average... I did go a little nuts with come cheap goodies to hide in my desk at work to stop me from visiting the overpriced goody boxes in the office.

Like last week we really didn't have any kind of a plan about what to do with the rest of the day, but Ma was still looking for a clock, and I didn't want to do too much sitting in the car, so like last week we headed into the city.

And like last week we found an easy park on Rundle Street, easier in fact as we didn't have to do a loop of the block first.

We stopped off at Bimbo, just to have a look, and Ma ended up finding the perfect clock for her purposes there... so, you know, pretty much job done within the first ten minutes.

But we kept on wandering down the Mall. I wanted to have a poke around in Dymocks, mostly at possible books for when Tink's baby is born. I keep meaning to ask people (like you good reading people) what their favourite picture books were when they were kids, everybody has one that holds a special place in their heart and/or memory, and I'm looking for ideas outside of books I know.

Anyway, we poked around the kid's book section, I found How To Be A Viking by Cressida Cowell, the author of the How To Train Your Dragon book series. Weirdly the book seems to be called "Hiccup the Viking Who Was Seasick" everywhere else in the world. And if it turns out Tink isn't have a boy, then there are enough boys in our extended network that it won't go to waste.

I also rediscovered a book I haven't thought about in years and years... in fact I have absolutely no idea what happened to my original copy, but standing there in the shop reading it, I got all teary eyed.

Which is all kinds of weird because the book in question is The Clown of God by Tomie de Paola, and a fairly religious book at that. But I've always loved the illustrations and I think it was at least in part a reaction to finding an old friend in book form. I don't know if it's the kind of book that I can really give to anyone I know since they're mostly a godless lot (and I like them that way), but I also couldn't leave it there, so joining Hiccup in the bag is Giovanni the juggler, and I'm sure I'll work out something to do with it.

Upstairs in the grown-up section, I found a picture book for myself, the third New 52 Batman graphic novel, Death of the Family. Speaking of falling in love with the illustrations, I do love Greg Capullo's artwork, it has that slight manga look to it, but gets down and dirty when it needs to.

As we were walking past Kmart I saw a girl coming out carrying a bright yellow ceramic parrot. So I had to go and take a look (short version of the story, I didn't buy one, but I was tempted for a minute or so). I did end up picking up a couple of cheap sweaters that I can wear at work. I'm still on the hunt for some kind of grown-up type of jacket, in the leather or faux leather oeuvre... but with no luck.

One thing that I do enjoy about self serve check outs is that there's nobody there to tell you that you can't take the coathangers... so I did.

We wandered the length of the Mall, observing the stray young people who had wandered away from, or were wandering in the direction of, AVCON. One day, if somebody has a couple of spare free tickets to that I wouldn't mind going along, if only because it's always in the Convention Centre and I haven't really been to anything there. Plus, freaky young people in odd costumes.

Probably the stand out for weird costumes (more so because of the juxtaposition), other than the plethora of Pikachu onesies, was the girls from Frozen with a young man in an apron carrying a ladle (I have no fucking clue what that was about) and another young man in far too much black. Weird, just weird.

We made a brief visit to Haighs (mmmm toasted marshmallow, I loves you), then wandered somewhat aimless and pointlessly around the Myer Centre and had a poke around Harris Scarfes where I picked up a new money box for cheap before heading back up the Mall and going to lunch at Fancy Burger.

They still do excellent chips, and the tomato relish is still tasty. And because I had already been disappointed by their burgers once before, so I tried the chicken burger instead. I should have know from the fact that they all came as standard with avocado that was going to be problematic. Fortunately substituting something else in place of the avo was easy... but the burger was still a little... average.

That was pretty much it really, other than a quick stop off at T2 to pick up my free sample of tea they don't officially launch for a while.... yay for exclusive freebies.

So, yes, a much better Saturday... no grumpies, no pre-emptive sleepies.

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photo friday: winter huts

Friday, July 18, 2014

umbrella timebeach hut clouds

twenty one spiresandy doorstep
The wheels fell off this week some time around Thursday... and then the week seemed to take forever to finally finish.

The week has definitely had it's ups and downs.

After last Saturday's post I crawled into bed around 4pm to watch some stuff on the laptop and within an hour I was fast asleep. I woke up a couple of hours later long enough close the laptop and then went right back to sleep. The downside was that I woke up around midnight feeling like I'd had my usual night's worth of sleep, so the rest of my night was a little patchy, but in the end I slept for around fourteen hours.

Then on Sunday I finished The Lizzie Bennet Diaries novel... I laughed, I cried, I squeeeeed... sometimes all at the same time. And today during Bernie Su's Reddit AMA there came the first news of a sequel, centered around Lydia Bennet coming in 2015... Oh the feels!

My Tuesday got a million times better with the release of Weird Al Yankovic's new song, Tacky, based on the Pharrell Williams’s song Happy. The original song makes me very happy, but this version with it's Aisha Tyler, Margaret Cho, Eric Stonestreet, Kristen Schaal and Jack Black video just gave me the happys.

Also his take on Blurred Lines, Word Crimes from the following day, also gave me happys.

Tuesday continued to be a good day when I came home to find the two Classic Lego Castle themed teeshirts I ordered from RedBubble waiting for me in the mailbox.

Wednesday was Haircut Day... possibly the last one for a while, well possibly just a week or two longer than normal since I was the very last haircut Tink did before the baby's due. And boy oh boy was it showing... she's normally a tiny little thing, but she was soooooooo very pregnant. I look forward to meeting the new baby though.

The hair, as usual, is shorter and blonder, and looks much tidier... we did the usual chatting thing but I left earlier than usual so Tink could go and rest, and to be honest, so could I.

Thursday there was too much food, too much sugar, too much insanity. Also, too much rain raining on me just before I got home.

We had a post World Cup lunch with food from "around the world" or at least as around the world as the World Cup teams came from. And I ate food from every nation except for France. Sometimes more than once. It's always bad when there's "free" food just laying there, I can't resist it... so I ate waaaaaaay too much.

As I so eloquently put it that afternoon, I felt like I wanted to "make throw-up".

It didn't help that Thursday was a little mental work-wise, and the sugar/carb highs didn't help.

That's why there wasn't a Hotness post last night... I ended up just giving up and going to bed early.

Today was also a little mental, more so this morning where everybody seemed to want everything at once and things were just slightly falling on their head.

I also finally got to see my original chiro this afternoon after work... which was something of a relief. Although I did miss the other chiro's more forceful style of adjustment a little bit.

So, yeah... that's about it really...

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