Monday, 28 October 2013

A Blessing in Disguise.

 So Benn's work situation. It has been crappy for months, even though this job loss will be stressful money wise, it was a relief more then anything. He was so, so unhappy there. 

There were three people there who gave him hell and I will change their names for the purposes of this explanation. Dave, the owner/head boss, John - floor supervisor & Ted - Benn's "area" boss/supervisor
His boss, Ted never did anything. Just sat around giving orders. Then when the supervisor came around (John), Ted would blame the lack of work on Benn.  Now if Benn wanted to report this, he was to go to the supervisor (John), however John and Ted are brothers, so it was their word against Benn's, so you can guess how well that went down (not well). And if he went higher, to Dave, that wouldn't work either because Dave and John have been mates since way back. So basically Benn was hating on life, because his work situation was so shitty and there was nothing he could do.

Dave has had it in for Benn for weeks. So much that when Benn rang him last Thursday to let him know that our house may burn down due to the fires and therefore he would be late to work on Friday (he wasn't even calling to say he wouldn't come in, just that he may be late), Dave then said that if he didn't show up then he would be fired. Apparently Benn shouldn't have gone home to save his dogs and house, according to his boss, because they were behind at work. Oh okay then. Luckily, our house was fine and he was able to go into work on Friday.

However, Monday came around and Dave walked around checking on all the areas just before lunch. Benn got told to put his mask on, which he replied that he accidentally left it at home. Dave did not like this and Benn explained that if he was to leave it at work then other people would tamper with it and since it was the mask that is allocated to him, he didn't think it mattered. Apparently it did. Dave then said that because he (Benn) took something of "his", off his premises, without written permission from himself, then that is theft. 

Fired. That's it. Benn rang me and I picked him up at 2pm

What. A. Joke. 

This is what Benn had to deal with everyday and frankly, we are better off without the stress. He has already found a few days work here and there, and I finish Uni in 3 weeks. We still work three nights a week cleaning, so although it's not quite enough, it is enough to tie us over - along with some savings. Plus our boss has already given us three extra shifts in the past week with more to come. Even if we have to survive off centrelink for a month or so before we find full time jobs and get back on top, we will be fine. We actually only have $150 less in the bank each week with both of us on centrelink and Benn not working full time. So, apart from losing small luxuries and not adding to savings, we won't feel it too badly. Especially when quality of life will be 150x better without Benn working at that crappy place.

We truly believe it is a blessing in disguise. Now lets see how it plays out.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Creative Cooking | Roast Pumpkin and Spinach Lasange.

Photo from The Healthy Chef
Amazing. Delisious. We will most deffinatley be cooking this again.
Benn highly approved, which is always a massive tick in my books. 
The recpie came from Teresa Cutter, from the The Healthy and you can find the receipe here.
True to myself, I added many extras (which i have written below), but I'm sure it would taste just as amazing if you followed the directions only.

I highly reccomend.

My Alterations;
Sauce: added chicken, basial, oregano, corriander, worcheisteir sauce and flour (to thicken)
Pumpkin: Spinkled extra cinnomin and small ammount of brown sugar.
Base: I used puff pastry (the recepie had no "base")

Time to Prepare.

(Not My Photo) Newcastle Airport.
Approxx 40minutes from my house.

Thursday the 17th of October started out like any other normal, hot Australia Spring day. A humid, hot, 33 Degrees, not unlikely for our crazy Aussie weather. The Thursday before it got up to about 38 Degrees, however, the winds were not nearly as strong the week before.
On the way home from Uni and work Benn and I were driving home hearing about a fire in the suburb next to our home. There was another fire in the same area about 4 weeks before hand, so were not expecting (and hoping) for it to be as close as we thought. We were wrong.

Upon driving up to the street to my suburb (it's a one way in, one way out kind of place), it was blocked by fire engines and police cars. No way through. Covered in black smoke. Now I am all for waiting things out and staying safe, but my babies were on the other end of that street and there was no way were were staying to watch them possibly burn along with our house. Benn saw a gap and we went. Driving through black smoke and authorities telling us to stop, was not something I'd like to do again, but arriving at home with tears in my eyes seeing my babies unharmed was worth it more then anything.

We were lucky to find that the fire had not yet hit the houses in our suburb, only all of the bush surrounding. We were told to be ready to evacuate if the wind changed the direction of the fire. We were expecting 80k/h winds to come. The only way out for everyone in our suburb (about 100 houses), was the lake. The next three hours were a mixture of panic, worry, talking to neighbours, packing the car, packing the boat and calling family and checking updates on the Nsw Fire Service website.

To say we were not prepared would be an understatement. The first thing I did was fill up as many bottles of water I could find, pack a bag of clothes, pack the photo albums and hard drive, and some food/dog food. Benn took all packed bags down to the car. It's weird packing up your life in the space of 20 minutes. What do you take? What do you not take? It really makes you think about what you have.

This whole ordeal has really made us think about being ready next time. We plan over the next month, to use savings money to get two hiking bags packed and ready to go with necessities if this were to happen again. And a bag for the babies too of coarse. Growing up, I was apart of the Latter-Day Saint faith and we were always taught about "72-Hour Kit's". The importance of that for me has never been stronger now, so I have spoken with Benn and we will be following this link to pack our bags. 

The following photos are views of the fire/smoke from our front lawn;

 View from our bathroom window, looking out the back (our house is on stilts);
The Sky on Thursday night.
The Entrance to our suburb.
The end of our street.

 The video below is from the Pacific Highway, about a 3 minute drive from my house.
It is incredible to see how fast the fire moves.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Monthly Memories | September

 1. Dress ups with Petal.
2. Chloe finding strange places to sleep.
3. Mum's 50th Birthday, little brother, Carl and Mother.
4. Visiting Koala's for a Univserity assingment.
5. I am obsessed with organge and poppyseed muffins. I make a batch per week.
6. Trying to start up a new habit of Yoga.
7. Petal and Stallone's first experience on the boat - they loved it!
8. Cuddles with Stallone. He is the sweetest little guy.
9. Lookout at Wingham NSW, I love the Country!
10. Visiting Benn's family farm in Wingham for his Pa's funeral.

Find me on Instagram. @neivelouise