Thursday, March 29, 2007

First sleepover, second birthday.

Gypsy Dog had his best friend, Groucho stay over in the weekend. Together, they are a bundle of mischief and full of energy! They got up to their usual antics of play fighting and tug of war when inside and playing tag when outside!

...At the Greens: I think I found a scent!...

...and it's a race!...

...woah! Look at me go!...

...We're pooped, no more photos till we get home please...

In 3 days, Gypsy Dog turns 2! In doggie years, he will be 14. It's amazing how much calmer he is since we got him. He's really growing up! We plan to get him a new fluffy toy and a big bone for his birthday on Sunday.

...can we have a treat now?...

...I love having my buddy over...

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Finally, an iPod!

The LCD display on my old Sony stereo has given way for the third time in about as many years. I picked up this little baby from Tokyo's 'Electronic City', Akihabara, during the summer holidays of my first year of university while on my travels in Japan. At the time, the model was pre-world release (test market for Japan only), and I still remember asking myself if I'd gone mad while I lugged the box along with my suitcase along the subways of Tokyo during the last leg of my trip.

...My old faithful...

Now - almost ten years later! - I can say that it's served me well and apart from the display, it's still in excellent working condition. However, instead of sending it off to get fixed again, we decided it's about time we invested in a new sound system for our bedroom.

...our new iPod and Jamo docking station...

We didn't want anything big or bulky and decided that an iPod would be perfect for our needs!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Warm Fuzzies.

I just received a really nice phone call from one of the lead editors of the publishing company I just completed a job for. I know it's been absolutely frantic at that office as they have five new travel guides going to print this week, and she still took the time to call me and give me feedback on my work.

I usually make it a point to ask for feedback after a job completed, as I think it's a valuable learning opportunity - even if it's just learning the preference in working style of an individual. Anyway before I'd even asked, the feedback I got today was all positive, in fact it's the nicest feedback I've received [work-related] in a long time.

*Sigh* It really made me want to go back to working full-time again.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Independent study.

This time last week, I was attending my last Arabic Language for Beginners class. It was an 8-week (16-hour) course, but I managed to miss 3 weeks of classes due to enrolling a week late, being sick, and work commitments.

The aspects of the course I really enjoyed were learning the language, the interaction between tutor and students, and the opportunity to ask questions about Arabic culture or about the different regional variations affecting the language. I found more similarities Arabic shares with Bahasa Malaysia (Malay) than I was expecting and being able to speak Malay, this helped a lot.

This week, some of the students have made a private arrangement with the tutor to continue on as a group in one of their homes. As much as I'd like to advance in learning the language, I didn't find the tutor's language teaching method effective for me. So, in the weekend while browsing in the Virgin Megastore at the mall, I bought an Arabic Language Kit complete with workbooks, CDs and cassette tapes!

It's been some time since I studied a language on my own, and I'm really looking forward to making a start on it. I think it's going to be a far cry from the pressure and self-discipline I faced studying Te Reo Maori (the language of the natives of NZ) by correspondence for Bursary University Entrance level at school. I'll keep you posted with how I go!

Monday, March 19, 2007

Doggy Date.

Gypsy Dog had his best friend Groucho over for the day, and like all the other times he has a doggy date with little Groucho, he is beside himself with excitement!

About half an hour before Groucho was due to arrive, I told Gypsy Dog "Groucho is coming!". Upon hearing this he darted from the comforts of the cushion in his room to the front door, tail wagging, then proceeded to sniff under the door. He then settled to wait for Groucho's arrival by the coffee table, never taking his eyes off the front door.

He didn't have to wait long, and both doggies played their hearts out. It's a bit like having two small children (boys of course!) in the house, with occasional time-out enforced when one gets a little too feisty when play fighting, resorting to treats for distraction, or confiscation of bones when one doesn't want to share!

It's the cutest thing though to see the both of them playing together or sleeping side by side. Groucho is the most adorable little white Westhighland Terrier. Unfortunately I didn't take any photos from today, but you can check out Groucho on his very own website here.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

I'm baa-ack!

Ok, so I know I've been AWOL from blogging over the last 6 weeks or so, but I've had a valid excuse. I've been feeling very under the weather over the last month, and I'm still not quite over it.

Nevertheless, while I've not been snug under the covers in bed (or veg-ed out on the couch) feeling like absolute hell, I've been pretty busy. So here is an update of what's been happening in a Gypsy Girl's world:

1. Completed Arabic Language Course for beginners
2. Worked from home on proofing some exciting new travel guides soon to be realeased!
3. Finally got an iPod
4. Found out some very, very exciting news

More on all of this later...