Can you look at a brain, and tell how a person thinks?

And do we choose our actions? Or are our actions determined by something other than our conscious mind?

This made my brain explode.

Then I watched this.

And then Mark sent me this.

So to sum up. Your brain can signal that you have made a decision (and which decision you made) up to SIX FULL SECONDS before you are conscious that you have made a decision.

And if you vote conservatively, you are likely to have an enlarged amygdala (the fear centre of the brain). If you are more socially progressive, your brain shows more growth in the area that seeks out new and novel experiences. So, correlation doesn’t show cause and effect, but it does go a long way towards explaining Alan Jones.

*For our overseas readers, swap Alan Jones for Rush Limbaugh. Or any other appalling aging white man with a microphone and an agenda to frighten and alienate.

Mama, how do girls pee if they haven’t got a penis?

You’d be surprised at the vast array of things girls can do without a penis my darling….

Perhaps it’s to early to be discussing sexism and the other horrors of the world? I’ve told him that Libyans are getting killed because they don’t like their boss, that Japan got a big owie and it might get a lot bigger, and that having a morals clause on permanent residency is just plain mean, but I am not sure that feminism is going to sink in, since he is still not exactly sure what the difference between girls and boys is.



We’re off on Tuesday the 26th, and back on the 5th of May. We all have passports, and apparently I will be able to travel on my ticket despite the fact that my passport is still in my old name. We have Fiji dollars, we have sunscreen, and we have a small budget (Mark’s company will reimburse us for “expenses”, but I don’t want to bankrupt them with my daiquiri bill!).

Inigo asks every day, “are we going to Fiji today mama?”, and Bev and Ted have been showing him pictures of his father in Fiji at a similar age.

I’m not excited yet, because I still feel like it’s not real. It’s too amazing, and generous, and crazy, and I suppose I am still a little out of touch with reality.

I went to the neonatal loss support group at SIDS & Kids today, and consequently was a bit of a mess this afternoon. But there were women (and a man) there whose losses were a lot more recent than mine, so it was a positive experience to reflect on the rawness of their grief, and to realise that I really have come a long way in a short space of time.

Archie would have been six months old the day after we get back from Fiji. I’d be getting info about when to start solids for his adjusted age, and watching his gross motor skills develop in leaps and bounds. His curly hair would be doing its thing, and I’d be watching him get fatter and fatter week by week as I breastfed him, and breathed in his scent as he fell asleep in my arms.

Of course, if we had Aubrey too, the fantasy has a few more vomit stained tracksuits and a lot more screaming, but hey, it’s my fantasy…


We used up the last of Mark’s Birthday movie tickets last night (thanks Bev & Ted for babysitting), and saw “Suckerpunch” in Gold Class.

I had seen a few posters, involving chicks with guns, but beyond that I was clueless. Perhaps I should have taken a hint from the fact that we were the only ones in the cinema?

As we walked out, I said to Mark, “Well, the last time I saw a movie that incomprehensible, I think it was 12 Monkeys. But I enjoyed 12 Monkeys”.

In its defence, it did have great art direction. And the costumes were awesome, as long as you have no problem with the objectification of women.

As to the violence, much of it was implicit, and when we got home, we discovered that the film has a PG 13 rating. Far out. There is loads of violence against cartoon like characters, but all of the “real” violence is not shown on screen – just implied. Still not something I’d want my 13 year old to see.

Well, let’s be honest, I wouldn’t want my 13 year old to be watching anything so objectifying, unless it was to illustrate a point being made by Andrea Dworkin….

I won a mars bar!


So yeah. A mars bar. Big deal.

Except. I am thrilled. Crazy happy.

The lecturer asked a question about what “type” of research each of the studies we are looking at for our essay question, and the winner was going to get a mars bar.

I had a stab at the question, got it wrong, and then used the work of another student as “shoulders”, did some more reading, and I got it right!

So yes, I won the mars bar, but more, I have the glory of getting the answer right, and the other 900 odd students didn’t.

I am still a child 😉

Bread. Yes, again.

I first posted about the bread here.

Then here after I refined the recipe a little.

But now I’ve done a final re-jig to make the recipe work for me. I buy flour in 2kg bags, so I asked my maths man to do the numbers so I didn’t have to measure 13 cups of flour each time.

So now I use 2kg of flour, 4 tablespoons of bakers yeast, 2 tablespoons of salt, and 1.6 litres of warm water. Mix, and dump into a tub that will go into the fridge.

What I have found is that I can just throw a lump of dough into a bread pan lined with baking paper and it makes a nice dense, almost sourdough like loaf. If you like, you can also brush it with milk and scatter sesame seeds, caraway seeds, poppy seeds, or my favourite, nigella seeds on top before baking.

Or, you can work the dough a little, and leave it in the pan to warm up to room temperature before baking for a lighter loaf.

You can also use wholemeal flour, with exactly the same recipe.

And it makes wonderful french toast, and after a day, fantastic dippers for your baked brie. Recipe to come one day….