It’s the 4th of May, and I’m only just writing this blog post now.
Usually I try to write my monthly reviews as things happen, but April kicked my ass so now we get my attempt at remembering everything that happened… Strap in!
First up; Easter! My mum came down from Melbourne to surprise me and my sister, which was looovely!
My friends Kyta and Jack also popped in to visit! We hadn’t seen each other in like 6 years but it felt like literally no time had passed at all. We showed them the new house (they’re gonna come live with us eventually which I’m SO excited for) and had a pub dinner.
There were also burn offs near my place, which meant we essentially got to drive through a controlled bush fire. Super eerie and cool; really nailed home why our fire plan is “evacuate early” too.
Once Easter was over, it was back to work! I had several work days out at the new house, for a change of scenery.
I just grabbed my old laptop, packed a lunch and headed out to my very own retreat.
Speaking of the house, work continues!
A huuuge shoutout to my housemate Bilv, who has truly done the majority of the painting.
I trapped a nerve in my good arm mid-April, which meant painting was not an option for me.
With carpets being installed early May (literally today, as I’m writing this lmao), it was important that we got as much done as possible!
We now have a yellow room, a teal room and a pink room. They still need a few more coats (we shall have to be very careful now, with the new carpet), but the good news is the three downstairs bedrooms are nearly complete!
I also organised a handyman to assess the work that needs to be done on the gutters and water tanks, plus finishing off some of the interior with quad to make the house look properly completed. Work on that will start mid-May, which I’m hyped for!
With so much happening, it was important I took time for myself so as not to burnout or trigger a flare up. This involved copious amounts of tea, and a fair bit of op shopping!
As an aside, my boss also drew my darling cat, Mikasa. And it was so on point I nearly cried. Truly, this cat owns my entire soul, and she knows it too.
April was also the month I decided a massive Autumnal clean was in order.
I felt like I hadn’t properly cleaned our current house in so long (like, deep clean + go through my stuff; we obviously keep the house tidy!).
I spent about 7 hours really, really getting rooms fully organised and cleaned. Floors were mopped, skirting boards were washed, windowsills were dusted… The whole shebang.
It was, in a word; satisfying. And also back destroying. It set off my sciatica and oh my LORD to have my left arm with a trapped nerve, my right arm with CRPS and my back with sciatica truly was horrendous.
Again, Bilv was my knight in shining armour. I lost count of the number of times he massaged my arms + back whilst I grappled with the pain, but it was the difference between a simple chiro visit vs. a full blown ER visit. 🙏🏼
Eventually, the sciatica and left arm nerve pain subsided, which was excellent timing, since I was about to head to Melbourne for a 5 day mini-break!
However, since my life is rarely without dramatics of some sort, the train hadn’t even left the station before a video from Bilv came through…
That’s right! My shower exploded!!!
Do we know why? No!!! Isn’t that fun?
I’m still finding bits of glass in the bathroom, so it gets a vacuum a couple times a day. New shower door coming some time this month.
But after that little hiccup, I arrived in Melbourne late Wednesday evening and went back to mum’s house!
Thursday was our exploring day – just mum and I, which was really nice!
We headed out to Warburton after breakfast to visit the sequoias that are out there, then on to Noojee to explore an old railway trestle bridge and have a pub lunch!
It was a really lovely day and the weather held out too!
I had forgotten how much I love the Yarra Valley and outer Melbourne suburbs!
Next up; Friday! This was exciting for three reasons!
- Breakfast with my friend Bec!
- Dinner with my friend Kirby!
Bec and I met up in Glenferrie, which was also where I was getting my tattoos.
We went out for breakfast at the cuuutest little crepe cafe and talked all things life and art.
Bec’s a super talented artist who’s focusing on their vinyl business right now!
After breakfast and a little bit of shopping (there was an art shop practically next door, what do you expect from us?), Bec headed home and I wandered down to the tattoo parlour.
I was feeling VERY excited – three new tattoos in one day was gonna be a lot but I was so ready.
My artist was Ruby Black; she was an absolute delight and did just the most fabulous job. The tattoos are still healing obviously, but here’s what I got!
They’re all on my left arm and I’m so in love with all of them. I haven’t had a new tattoo in a couple of years, so this hit the spot perfectly.
It took about 5 hours all up and once they were done, I booked it into the city to meet up with my friend Kirby (who also has tattoos from Ruby and is how I heard about her in the first place)!
Kirby and I went to Grill’d on Southbank, overlooking the river and it was so, so nice. We talked about where we want to travel to together next. We’re both keen on Iceland, although Kirby was (rightfully) nervous about me being near active volcanoes.
I just really love volcanoes a lot. Have you seen lava? Amazing. I wanna touch it.
You see why Kirby’s nervous?
Once dinner was done, I headed back to mum’s feeling quite tired but super happy with how the day had gone!
I think I conked out pretty much as soon as I got home, as I had another big day scheduled.
In the morning I caught up with my friend Thyda for breakfast. We went to this cute cafe next to the State Library and had truly delicious food.
I also picked up a cute cardigan + jumper, Pokemon Snap on Switch, these glittery heart earrings + a funky green pair of blocky earrings.
It was then time to jump on a train out to Collingwood to meet my friends Pat and Paul! We were going for lunch at the Stomping Ground; a brewery which my mother swears I’ve been to before but have no recollection of.
Regardless, it was a gorgeous place! Filled with plants and also dog friendly. Paul brought his sweet greyhound Duke with him. I didn’t get a photo but I did get to give Duke a treat. So heckin’ cute.
After lunch (which was a Margherita pizza and a lemon lime bitters), Pat and I headed off to Smith St on Paul’s suggestion, whilst he took Duke home.
I didn’t get any photos of the shops we visited, but omg it’s a very cool street. We visited a shop called Vintage Garage and holy shit.
It was so glittery and sparkly and fabulous. A collection of vintage clothing, memorabilia, jewellery, accessories and so much more. I think my eyes were the size of dinner plates as we walked around.
We also visited one of the op shops and I found an old milk jug from the discontinued collection that my plates + bowls are from.
So overall the day was a huge success.
Pat and Paul dropped me home, and unfortunately by this time the exhaustion had started to set in.
I fell into a significant amount of pain which lasted for the next couple of days.
Thankfully I was able to have a quiet afternoon + evening in. Mum and I ordered Japanese for dinner and watched many episodes of Ambulance (medical docos are our passion, okay?)
The next morning, mum and I popped out for breakfast and then she drove me to Southern Cross where I trudged onto the dreaded V/Line train to come home.
I was still in a large amount of pain, and that train is my mortal enemy. Just the most uncomfortable experience, 0/10 would not recommend.
But that was my Melbourne trip! An overall fantastic mini-break that was much needed.
It was so, so nice to catch up with everyone!
That’s it for April, really!
I’ll quickly list the books I read and then I think we’ll be doneskies!
- Into Thin Air: A Personal Account of the Mount Everest Disaster – Jon Krakauer ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ This was a super interesting read, that really highlighted a) how dangerous Everest can be and b) how ridiculous human beings can be. Some parts left me feeling increasingly frustrated at some of the decisions made, whilst others delivered emotional blows that made cry.
- The Ritual – Adam Nevill ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Four friends take a shortcut through an ancient Scandinavian forest, but they’re not the only ones in there. I watched the movie version of this book with my friend Elle, and it was really good. I started the book after watching the film, and whilst it differs slightly regarding some plot points, the atmosphere of dread and cold remains the same in both iterations.
- The Thursday Murder Club – Richard Osman ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Four seniors investigate a murder case.This is one of the standout books I read this month. Funny, heartbreaking + a touch of ridiculousness. I laughed out loud in every chapter but the book pulls no punches when it comes to the tragedies of life and ageing.
- Kwaidan: Stories and Studies of Strange Things – Lafcadio Hearn ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ A collection of Japanese ghost tales from the beginning of the 20th century. Absolutely thrilling, plus fascinating to learn about the different tropes used in Japanese storytelling, especially horror.
- The Twisted Tree – Rachel Burge ⭐⭐⭐⭐ I so thoroughly enjoyed this book, but the ending felt like it happened a bit too quickly and left me wishing it had been drawn out. The story is absolutely fabulous and had me on the edge of my seat. Teenager Martha goes to visit her Grandmother in Norway (without her parents knowing) and finds out her Grandmother has died. There’s a very frightening creature in the forest outside her Grandmother’s house and Martha has a spooky power that she’s yet to understand. If you like Nordic mythology, you’ll probably like this book!
- Everything Under – Daisy Johnson ⭐⭐⭐⭐ This book chewed me up and spat me out. 4 stars purely because it made so goddamn uncomfortable, but it’s a brilliant book. A genderfluid retelling of the Oedipus story (is my discomfort starting to make sense now?), this one made me feel like I was gasping for air by the end.
- Things We Say in the Dark – Kirsty Logan ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ This one really freaked me out. Another intense collection of short dark stories, I had to read this with all the lights on and my feet well and truly under the covers. Every story, no matter how it starts, has an overbearing feeling of menace that sent chills down my spine every time.
I think I need to read lighter, happier novels in May 😂
So that’s it! I hope your April was exactly what you needed it to be.