26 August 2013

About turn

After posting a link to last night's blog post on Facebook, one of my friends (the guy who recognised me at Kurri Kurri) asked what IMATS was.

I went to the IMATS web site to get the URL to copy to Facebook, and for some reason clicked through to ticket prices. In spite of saying that the price should have gone up on Thursday, the the early pre-sale prices were still showing.

I asked my wife for her opinion, and she said it was up to me.

After realising that it wanted me to log into the site to pay for the ticket, I realised that the password for my account was not on my Android tablet or the computer I use in the house, so I decided that if the price was still down when I got into the office in the morning, I'd buy a ticket.

You guessed it. The price was still down when I got into the office, so I've bought myself a one-day (Saturday) ticket. One way or another, I'm going to IMATS. :)

In response to my time to decide post, GlossQueen suggested that I go in boy mode. At the time, my answer to that was that I'd prefer not to go than to go in boy mode. I've moderated my position a little now that I've bought the ticket. I'm planning on being there no matter what, and boy mode is my worst case fall-back.

I'm yet to decide how I'll be dressing for IMATS. It'll probably be a drive to Wahroonga, catch a train to Town Hall, walk to Darling Harbour deal again like last year. I'm tempted to wear a retro (1950s) outfit with full petticoat, but that's probably not going to be practical for pushing through crowds or sitting at presentations...

25 August 2013


Sometimes you have to rearrange your priorities. The past week has involved a temporary change in priorities that ended my plan to challenge myself to get out en femme before the price of IMATS tickets went up.

As expected, we had a meeting with our architect on Wednesday morning, meaning that I had no chance of getting to my nail appointment en femme. As it turns out, the architect made a suggestion that should make our plans considerably cheaper and faster to build, and I also had a brief but productive meeting with a work client between finishing with the architect and going to the nail appointment, so I was fairly happy with the day overall. Oh, and I've gone with orange nails again this time. ;)

By elimination, that meant that the only day that I could possibly have got out en femme before the IMATS deadline was last Sunday.

To explain what happened on Sunday, I have to first explain my work circumstances. In spite of having described a typical work day back in 2009, I don't think that I've ever actually mentioned that I'm self employed. Instead of paying into superannuation, my wife and I bought an investment property back in 2008. The place was badly overgrown and under maintained when we bought it, and we spent several months getting it up to a rent-able condition. That's where the conversation about eyeliner happened in January 2009. After the work involved in fixing the place up, my wife said that if we ever bought another property, it had to be one that didn't need work!

More recently, the money that we had saved up in an offset account to do our planned house extensions and renovations had reached the point that our investment property was no longer negatively geared, meaning that it was actually making my income tax worse rather than better.

As strange as it might sound, I've been working too much (because the demand won't decrease) and we now need to either get stuck into the house extensions (which we can't do until the plans are approved by council) or we need to buy another investment property so that we owe more money!

This led to a discussion last year with one of my wife's relatives about the idea that we would buy a house in the area of Sydney that they live in, for them to rent from us. They and we have been looking at potential houses since December, but we hadn't found anything suitable.

Last Saturday, I got a message to say that, for the first time, they had looked at a house that they really liked. I had two phone calls from a real estate agent at about 10:30 Sunday morning and ended up organising to go to look at the house on Sunday afternoon! It was a case of drop everything and go, and plans for an outing en femme went by the wayside. We went, we saw, we made an offer. Afterwards, we stopped at the relatives' place for a while, and by the time we left, the offer had been accepted.

So for the past week, between work, I've been organising all the things that have to be done to buy a house. It's mostly in place now, but we'll have several days wait for the loan approval. As long as it is approved, we'll have a few more hours here and there of running around organising things over about 7 weeks, then it will be just the occasional few minutes here and there.

We're still trying to get the plans for our house sorted out as well, and if it all falls into place, the money spent on buying the investment property will mean that we'll probably be building a bit more slowly than originally planned, but we're planning on staging the work, and once we complete stage 1, we'll be able to move into it and slow down or possibly completely stop work for a while.

So, unless someone gives me an IMATS ticket, I'm not planning on going this year. My head is still spinning too much with all of the other things that are happening for me to work out how I feel about that...

17 August 2013

A decision being made for me

It seems that my challenging myself might not work all that well. It's as if the decision is being made for me...

We have been having intermittent trouble with the electricity that comes into our house since at least 2007. There's an autotransformer near us, and it plays up quite badly from time to time. The current problem with it is that sometimes when it steps to adjust the voltage as the load varies on one phase, it arcs and causes a spike. It just so happens that some of our computers are on that phase, and the batteries in two UPSes had failed (without any error to indicate that there was a problem!), meaning that those computers, including the file server, crashed every day for the past few days. Today, it happened mid morning.

Obviously there was no point trying to work if the server was likely to crash and lose whatever work had been done, so I went and bought new batteries for one UPS, so that I could check if it really was a battery problem before buying batteries for the other one. After installing the new batteries, I tested it by plugging 2 spotlights into the output then turning off the power point powering the UPS. Having satisfied myself that the UPS was in fact going to work properly again, I moved it back into place, shut the computers down and moved them across to that UPS. By the time all of that was done I was exhausted and had a headache.

At this point, I doubt very much that I'll get the work done that I was aiming to do today, so I'll probably spend tomorrow working on it...

Monday is work, then dinner with the inlaws.

Tuesday is work then a work related meeting in the evening.

Wednesday is looking like being a meeting with the architect to work on the revised plans for our house extensions and renovations in the morning before my nail appointment. I don't think that I want to do makeup before that meeting, and that's the only way I'd be able to get to my nail appointment en femme!

So, unless the weather improves, my headache clears and I get out tomorrow, it looks as if the decision on whether or not I go to IMATS will be made by tomorrow night.

16 August 2013

Time to decide about IMATS

As I said last week, the price of IMATS Sydney tickets goes up next Thursday. I've decided that I have to make a decision before that, but as I continue to be drowned in work, I know that it's simply not going to be possible to go for both days.

The decision now is whether to go on the Saturday or not. I've come up with a way to help myself decide ~ if I can't get out between now and Wednesday, then what hope do I have of getting to IMATS even if I buy the ticket?

So I've set myself a challenge. If I can manage to get out en femme between now and Wednesday, I'll buy myself a ticket to IMATS. If I don't manage to get out, then I would probably not make it to IMATS either.

It occurred to me that if I somehow manage to get out twice between now and Wednesday, I should buy a 2-day ticket to IMATS, but I'm not likely to organise accommodation in Sydney, and I really don't think that I could do 4am starts (to travel to Sydney and back) both days then head back to work on Monday morning!

After I post this, I'm off to have a lie down until dinner. It's been a long week and I'm exhausted. Even if I manage to do all the preparations that I need to do tonight, I'm not likely to be up early enough tomorrow to go out, and I'll be working Monday and Tuesday, so Sunday and my nail appointment on Wednesday are really the only chances I've got. The odds aren't good, but they're not zero ~ yet.

11 August 2013

Antipodean Beauties: My Favourite Lipstick

I wasn't sure if I'd get to do this, but today is the last day and I've decided to ignore the paperwork that has to be done before 11pm tonight (!) and do this first. :-)

As I mentioned a few days ago, this is part of a makeup challenge. It was started by Omega, from Fashion Adjacent, who I chatted with briefly at IMATS last year after she complimented me on my shoes. It's a small world!

Anyway, moving right along, the first theme is My favourite lipstick. For me, the choice of type of lipstick was easy, but I had to stop and think about my favourite colour.

Over the years, I've tried all sorts of lipsticks. I found very early on that I prefer long lasting lipsticks, because the need to add moisturiser over colour occasionally is far less of an inconvenience to me than having to re-apply colour every few hours. The best long lasting lipsticks that I've found are the Procter & Gamble twins, Max Factor LipFinity and Covergirl Outlast. Surprisingly, in spite of considerable difference in retail price, these are actually just different shades of the same product in similar but different packaging.

When I thought about my favourite colour, I first thought of the several brown and orange shades that I wear with most of my normal clothes, then realised that no, none of them are my favourite. Without a doubt, my favourite is a colour that is part of the whole Retro 1950s style that I love to wear, but wear far too rarely.

So the answer is, Covergirl Lipfinity in 507, ever red-dy.

Here's the blog hop to the other bloggers who took part in this week's challenge (note that you need Javascript enabled for this to work).

08 August 2013


Things have been rather hectic for me recently, particularly with work. Add in having the flu for over a week, replacing my office computer, and using a toner that has turned my face into a peeling mess, and I haven't had any opportunity to even do a makeup trial to see if I can make contouring and highlighting using foundation work for me.

I'm actually starting to wonder if I've lost the confidence I used to have in my makeup skills. I'm not sure whether things are really getting in my way as much as they seem, or whether I'm letting opportunities go by when I could have ignored the apparent needs of others and made the time to practice my makeup.

I now have less than a fortnight to decide whether I am going to IMATS, and if so, whether I'm going for one day or both. After last year, I really wanted to go both days, but with how things have been over the last year or so, I don't even know if I'll get there at all now. The ticket prices go up on 22nd August, so unless I want to pay extra for my indecision, I need to make a decision very soon! In a lot of ways I'd like to do the 2 days, travel down Friday night, stay in the city and come home Sunday evening but I don't know if I'm up to sorting out accommodation and doing my hair and makeup away from home, let alone the time that I'd lose being away from home and work!

Also, I've recently been invited to join in a makeup blogging challenge, which involves posting makeup posts on pre-determined themes. There's a theme every week, and the idea is to post on the Monday. It's not compulsory to post every week, but I suspect that many of the participants will do so. I'm not sure yet, but I might manage to do this week's challenge in the next day or two (okay, it's a long way past Monday but I figure in the first week of the challenge, if I do it at all it's better late than never. :-)