Change

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They say change is as good as a holiday. I am going this change is better.

Yesterday I made the change from Telstra to Optus for my mobile. I have been a Telstra customer for nearly 10 years and have never got any benefit from them at all for my years of loyalty. Thousands and thousands of dollars have been spent with them over the years and they still only offer the same shitty deals as if I had just signed up.

I walked into the optus shop at Raymond Terrace while I was away and realised how much better their plans were and just had to go for it.

$59 a month gets me unlimited text messages and MMS, free calls to Optus mobiles, unlimited Facebook, Twitter, Myspace and Foursquare. 2GB of data and $450 of credit per month for everything else.

I also got this snazzy new phone too. The Samsung Galaxy S. An iPhone challenger and it is petty damn good. Plenty of apps to download,  there is usually an android version of popular iPhone apps or a copy-cat version to do the same thing.

When I asked Telstra about upgrading they were going to charge me $110 to cancel my current plan even though I was happy to upgrade with them to get the same phone I got with Optus. I figured if Telstra were going to charge me the same to upgrade or cancel I might as well go with Optus and their awesome plan. When I told Optus that I was sick of Telstra after 10 years they threw in $50 to go towards cancellation fees through Telstra. That’s better service than I ever got through Telstra.

Let’s hope it is as good for the next 24 months as I am stuck with them now!

Friends and Pizza

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Last night Amanda and Ian came over for some drinks and pizza.
I made the dough from scratch and the girls made the pizzas.
They turned out really well.

Here’s the recipe we used:

Pizza Dough

Ingredients
400ml lukewarm water
7g sachet of dried yeast
15g caster sugar
700g bread flour, plus extra for dusting
30g table salt
60ml extra virgin olive oil
50ml milk

Method
Step 1: Add 2 tablespoons of the water to the yeast and mix until combined. Add the remaining water and the sugar and stir again.

Step 2: Tip flour and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer with the dough hook attached. Turn mixer onto low speed and add yeast mixture. Let it mix for 2 minutes until the dough comes together. Add oil and milk and mix for another 4 minutes until smooth and elastic.

Step 3: Lightly dust a clean work surface with flour. Remove dough from the mixer, scraping the dough hooks. Knead the dough for a couple of minutes, dusting with more flour when necessary. Shape the dough into a ball.

Step 4: Lightly dust a clean chopping board with flour. Place the dough on the board and cover with a clean tea towel and leave in a warm, draught-free place to prove for 20 minutes.

Step 7: Cook for 7-10 minutes.

Step 5: Cut the dough into 8 x 150g portions and roll into balls. Cover with the tea towel and set aside on the floured board to rise for a further 60 minutes or doubled in size.

Step 6: Pre-heat the oven to 250C with the pizza stone in from cold. Dust the back of a clean baking sheet with a mix of flour and polenta and place the base on top.  Make the pizza and slide it swiftly from the baking sheet to the pizza stone.

Step 7: Cook for 7-10 minutes.

Family History

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Family
noun
A group of persons sharing common ancestry.

History
noun
The past events relating to a particular thing.

My mother sent me a text message the other day asking for the information that I recovered a couple of years back about our ancestry so today I will be looking through all my notes and trying to make some sense of it all again.  Once I have worked that out I will have to try to find a way to post 9 generations of family tree through to her.  When I did my family history I didn’t stop at my pedigree ancestors, I got as much information about their siblings as possible too, sometimes tracking their children too.  Should be a big job.

Winter

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Winter
noun
The usually coldest season of the year, occurring between autumn and spring.

It would appear winter has arrived a touch early this year.
We woke to a severe frost.  It is still hanging around and it is 1030.
Not only was there frost but any patches of water have frozen over as well.  The dogs water bucket had a 5mm layer of ice over the top and down the sides, the chickens water has frozen in the container too and the hose is full of ice.
Better get out there and start working again.

Interested

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Interested
adjective
Having or showing curiosity, fascination, or concern.

I’m interested to see who is reading.  Post a comment here if you have been regularly reading my blog and also let me know how you would like to be notified of new posts.  Submit your votes to my poll below.  You can select more than one answer as well.

Blister

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Blister
noun
A local swelling of the skin that contains watery fluid and is caused by burning, friction or irritation.

Blisters.  I really hate them.  They come every time you actually decide to get off your arse and do some hard work instead of sitting on the couch doing nothing at all.  Today it was while I was putting the garden edging in place and trying to hammer a lot of pieces of reinforcing rod through the timber to keep it in place.  I had drilled 10mm holes but probably needed a 12mm drill bit.  I got half of them done but now have a blister which is causing problems with completing said task.  I will attempt it again tomorrow.

It would be nice to be able to get some hard work done without my basically-a-secretary hands being pummelled.  I’m not made for that kind of work any more.

After I got the blister, Courtney and I started pulling clumps of grass and weeds from along the fence line where we are putting the limestone gravel so that it has a neat edge and no lumps.  We got a fair bit done and put gravel along all the edges of the weed mat where we had cleared the weeds to anchor it down and stop the wind from getting it any more.  The plan is to get wheelbarrows going on Saturday with the help of Steve, Jill’s partner.

Again I ask that luck be wished.  Thanks.

Smashing

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Smashing
adjective — informal
Extraordinarily impressive or fine; wonderful.

“I have had a wonderful day today.”
It must be the first time in a while I have been able to say that on a work night, but I genuinely can tonight.
This morning was spent with my wife getting ready to do some landscaping and this afternoon/night was spent with some great friends at work, joking and laughing between calls.  The night seemed to fly by.
Giles showed me a Frequent Flyer number for a passenger that one of our colleagues received a call from the other day and it was for a Mr Guy Pounding…  I couldn’t believe it.
I hope that tomorrow brings just as much fun and frivolity, hoping to get some more work done on the landscaping front and another night at work.

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