Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Today, I learnt that...

...letting overexcited-by-Christmas-approaching six-year-olds use loose glitter, in various colours, and gluesticks to decorate Christmas tree pictures IS VERY VERY MESSY. I have glitter in my hair. I have glitter in my shoes. I have glitter in my ears, no joke. The classroom floor looked like something from a strange Christmas-themed 80's disco. How the glitter spread across the entire room, when the students were confined to the art tables, is a mystery. I spent the better part of 45 minutes after school wiping glitter from chair legs and every flat surface, and am hoping the cleaner is still talking to me tomorrow morning after he spends what will probably be a long, long time vaccuuming the classroom.

On the plus side, the kids had a great afternoon and loved making their trees. Christmas excitement was definitely in the air at school today, it being the first of December and all. One little girl delightedly informed me that "Today is the first of Christmas!"

Well, they say you should learn a lesson every day. I have learnt my lesson with the loose glitter, that's for sure. I'm sticking to glitter paint from here. Now, to try and get this glitter out of my ears...

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

At the Movies with Bebb...Part One

Welcome to At the Movies with Bebb, which will be a regular Wednesday blog (unless I get lazy/go camping/am lying on a beach somewhere...). I don't pretend to be Margaret and David, (though I like to think I have better dress sense) but I still love writing movie reviews. Movies are one of my passions. In At the Movies with Bebb I'll discuss all sorts of movies...any new releases I've seen at the cinema, as well as movies that I've rented and old favourites from my collection. To get us started....

'Angel Baby' (1995)

  I love a good Australian movie. This one has been around for a while but is well worth checking out. 'Angel Baby' scooped 7 Australian Film Awards in 1995, for Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director, Best Film, Best Original Screenplay, Best Editing and Best Cinematography. Not bad!
Harry (John Lynch, who you may remember as Gwyneth Paltrow's cheating boyfriend in Sliding Doors) and Kate (Jacqueline Mackenzie) are two schizophrenics who meet at their therapy centre. They quickly fall into a passionate love affair and move in together, to the consternation of Harry's brother Morris (Colin Friels, who almost but not quite nails an English accent) and Morris's wife Louise (Deborra-Lee Furness, in her pre-Hugh Jackman days). Kate believes she is guided by her guardian angel, Astral, who Kate is convinced sends her messages- through the answers on 'Wheel of Fortune', which she diligently watches every day. Everything seems to be going well for the exuberant couple, with Harry securing a full-time job and Kate enjoying her housewife role, until Kate falls pregnant and they decide to stop taking their medication...
Watching this film, it is easy to understand why it won all the 'big' AFI awards. The leads are believable and throw themselves into their roles completely. I love the use of light, darkness and colour- it truly is a visually stunning film. The support cast, mainly Colin Friels and Deborra-Lee Furness, do an accurate job of depicting family members who have dealt with a loved one's mental illness for years, though as I mentioned Colin Friels doesn't quite have a handle on the British accent which can be slightly distracting at times. The script is well-crafted and it's very easy to lose yourself in the plot. The director, Michael Rymer, has created a beautiful yet heartbreaking love story that sheds light on a mental illness that is suffered by many yet is rarely discussed so openly in the movie world. It is a very sad movie and the ending is quite ambiguous. I watched it twice after renting it a few weeks ago and had a different conclusion to the ending both times.
I highly recommend this movie if you like a character-driven, thought provoking movie and appreciate a good Aussie film.
My rating- 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Comment Away

As I know I have some friends reading along who do not have Blogspot/Google accounts, I've enabled comments from everyone, not just registered users, in case you have something to say. However, comments will be moderated. If you leave a comment, click "Name/URL" under "Comment as" and type in your name so I know who you are!

The C Word

I run a lunchtime library program at my school for kids to play board games/read/draw during lunch. It's aimed at some higher needs kids who need a bit of time out from the busy playground but is open to all. Invariably I get a lot of grade 1 and 2 girls, some that I teach and some from other classes, who just come in to chat to me, or try to entice me to play their own version of Uno (which has rules I still haven't figured out). A few weeks ago, several girls were chatting to me about this, that and the other when one of them suddenly burst out with,
"Ms S, do you know the C word?" brain frantically ran through appropriate responses, everything from flat-out denial to hysterical laughter. While I stalled, she went on,
"It's this's a special word...Our teacher said she doesn't want to hear it any more. We aren't allowed to say it or even write it until December."
Slowly dawning realisation...
"Do you mean...."
"Yes!" (leaning in, whispering.) "It's Christmas!"
Clearly, I need to get my mind out of the gutter.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Meet a Bub

This is Johnny.
He looks like the kind of dog that would be at home on a velvet cushion with little bows in his hair, right? In other words, a wuss.
But this is him after having the most fun of his life (and providing amusement to many other people at the dog park).
Yeah, bathing him that afternoon was an experience I'd like to forget. Mr Bebb was at work and there was a moment during which I remember thinking, "This is never going to come off...I no longer have a white dog." Whereas Johnny's fellow canine  Jack, who looks like a scruffy mud-loving dog, delicately tiptoed around the huge puddle full of liquid mud and didn't get so much as a toe in. 

One more shot of the filth-wizard...

The sting in the adder's tail for bookworms... lack of sleep due to not being able to stop reading a good book.
Case in point: last Sunday night I couldn't bring myself to stop reading until at least 12.30am. And then the book was swirling in my brain until at least 2am. This would be all well and good if my job didn't involve getting up at 6.30am in order to be at work by 8am, ready for a day of teaching six and seven year olds who a) have a lot of energy b) are noisy and c) aren't afraid to bellow "You look so tired Ms S!"
Unfortunately I can't offer my favourite Bridget Jones's Diary (the book, not the movie) quote to children...
"There's nothing worse than people telling you you looked tired. They might as well have done with it and say you look like five kinds of s***."
The Book That Must Be Blamed for my foggy Monday last week is Delirium, by Lauren Oliver. I've been wanting to read it ever since I devoured her first book, Before I Fall, in its entireity on a plane from Queensland to Melbourne to Tasmania in February. Delirium is set in an unspecified future, a future in which love has been identified as a disease and all citizens must undergo a process to 'cure' them of this emotion once they reach 18. Very thought-provoking and un-put-downable. It's the first in a trilogy and I am now eager for March 2012 so I can find out what happens next....
Anyway, welcome to my new blog. I've had other blogs in the past but the least said about those overblown and youthful exercises in being dramatic the better. Therefore we can move right along. Here I'll be talking about my life, my work, my pets, my love, my crafting and creating, my friends, as well as two of my passions, books and movies. Thanks for stopping by.