Friday, June 7, 2013

Blog to book!

I have a little secret.


No, I did not just burp electronically. has created the software BookSmart which I am using to create my very own blog book!  It's actually very, very fun although checking for typos and re-sizing fonts can get a little tiresome.
Maybe that's just because I've tried to multi-task by editing while babysitting.  There are a lot of smudgy fingerprints on my screen right now.

The idea of having the Mouse Files in hard copy on our coffee table is exciting.  But it's also a little sad in a way because it means I have reached the end of one of my projects.

When I started the Mouse Files I always intended it to become a blog book one day, so I could have an interesting record of a few years of my life.  And because I thought Blurb was a really cool website and I couldn't wait to create a book.

Years later, it's time to say goodbye to the Mouse Files for a while.  Don't worry, I'm not deleting or closing anything!  (No way!)
I'm just seeing this as one of my very last Mouse Files posts.

I want to keep blogging though.  Cooking With Nonna is an ongoing project.  And for the last few months I've had all kinds of interesting blog/social networking ideas bubbling in my brain threatening to boil over into all kinds of bizarre and creative projects.

This is one project that has come to an end, though.

Thank you for reading and commenting.  You have all been so lovely and funny and supportive.  I'm blessed to know most of you personally and know I'll see you all soon :)

Ye olde title banner 2010

Improvement on ye olde title banner

And then I stopped lying on the ground to take photos


Saturday, April 20, 2013

What does CWN stand for?

Capable Winter Nanny?

Can Write Novels?

Clownish Word Nonsense?

The title of my new blog.

Which you can visit at

I didn't really plan to start another official blog when The Mouse Files is so fun to have on its own (and since it's so neglected - I think logic says don't have another blog).

But since Cooking With Nonna is a project, and since it involves lots of photos and lots of hard work, I thought a blog might be just the thing to keep me going.

If you've read through some of my past posts you'll probably have noticed Nonna and her cooking have featured on The Mouse Files occasionally.

We once made lasagna.  And also some pumpkin gnocchi.

So if you like cooking, and even more importantly, if you like food (and large photos of food), you had better become familiar with what CWN stands for.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Hello Home

It's nice to be back on good, old, dusty and often-dry Australian soil.  Where the gumtrees shed their red bark, and the chocolate lillies grow.  That same soil where the kangaroos leave their compostable deposits, and the bull ants build invisible nests... just in the place where I'm about to stop and stand... barefoot in my thongs... looking through a camera lens rather than at the ground... 

Yeah, I love Australia.

But New Zealand was pretty awesome too.

I have grandparents over there!  And there are no snakes!  What more could you ask for?

By the way, the mysterious and disturbing photo was taken in the Auckland Art Gallery.  I guess you could say I'm standing in the middle of a piece of art.  My Grandad is in that shot too, except I've only captured his reflections - the first of about 50 billion that is.

It was a trippy piece of art!

I took 991 photos and right now I'm deciding which ones will go in the album.

Here are a few which won't be getting printed or immortalised in my photo album.

A photo of New Zealand's first ever McDonalds (and just to make the picture even cooler, there's my Grandad's ear on the right).

Here is an excellent action shot of an ant bungee jumping off Sky Tower right in the middle of Auckland.  I considered trying it myself ... for all of three seconds (and then I found better things to do, like walking through the art gallery and watching paint peel).

Here is a photo of part of my favourite painting in the gallery - I like to call it 'The Expression On His Face Is A Masterpiece".

Here is another photo which won't be in the album.  No matter how many ways there are to look at this shot, I will always think that my foot is coming out of my head.  It was a pretty amazing lake though.

And then there is the Ambitious Shot in which I try to stand in the same place Peter, Edmond, Susan and Lucy stood when the train station disappeared and Narnia was suddenly there (Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian).

I promise, that mysterious shadow is me.

He, he.

No matter how many photos I cram into the album, I won't be able to capture everything New Zealand showed me... the awe I felt when I stood in front of God's own natural masterpieces, the fun of exploring new cities, the joy of being spoilt by grandparents you've missed, and then that feeling you get when you walk back into your old bedroom with a new sense of how blessed you really are.


Saturday, March 16, 2013

It's been a while... [a squeak from overseas]

I was tempted to get right on with my next post like I hadn't stopped blogging for several months.  But that would ruin the flow of my future blog book (which was apparently one of the first reasons I started blogging in the first place.  I recall that another reason was to keep myself writing, and another was to keep my camera snapping.)

Here is a snap from the mysterious location I'm in at the moment.  Clue:  It's not Australia.

Actually the location of that photo is definitely too mysterious and disturbing, so maybe I'll try again?

I'm in a place where...

The trees hug the rocks (it's a friendly place).

The sand is black (it's an explosive place).

The bicycles are parked (it's a cheeky place).

The sheep like to chill on the beach (there are a lot of sheep).

Pools of boiling water seem to occur naturally (watch your step).

Sometimes the tunnels seem to lead into a place which looks like Narnia.

And I guess the horizons could be a little crooked.

Blogging is not the only thing I've been taking a break from lately.  My degree is finished, I'm a BA like Anne of Green Gables, I'm still run around after small children and I still take a crazy amount of photos and write creative things on small bits of paper.  But for the first part of this year I'm letting my brain recharge, giving myself time to smell the roses and the sea air and try new things or pull out old hobbies and interests which have been collecting dust over the last three years.

I have an exciting new project on my mind at the moment which includes a whole new blog and lots of cooking, and plenty of Nonna appearances.  (I know, you're thinking 'she's going to try keep ANOTHER blog going?').

Yes ;)

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