Showing posts from February, 2010


I thought I would be crafty this weekend and try something I saw on another blog Aboundingtreasures - I love butterflies and I thought the idea on Dallas's blog was excellent (she found the idea from another website!!).  I made two - one is black and red (below) and the second is pastel purple and cream on a background of butterflies.  I was very pleased with the results - they were easy to make, I just followed the instruction from Dallas.  She has some other great ideas that are worth checking out. And this is where I have placed them.  I love using books (and these are old small books) as extra "shelving".  The lamp was a gift from my girlfriends for my last birthday - isn't it beautiful - I love Art Nouveau - even if it isn't the real thing!! * * * * Good bye to Summer Today is the last day and I must say I am glad we are moving onto Autumn. * * * *
I Need Thee Every Hour (By Annie Sharwood Hawks) I need Thee every hour, most gracious Lord;
 No tender voice like Thine can peace afford. Refrain I need Thee, O I need Thee;
 Every hour I need Thee;
 O bless me now, my Saviour,
 I come to Thee. I need Thee every hour, stay Thou nearby;
 Temptations lose their power when Thou art nigh. Refrain I need Thee every hour, in joy or pain; Come quickly and abide, or life is in vain. Refrain I need Thee every hour; teach me Thy will;
 And Thy rich promises in me fulfill. Refrain I need Thee every hour, most Holy One; O make me Thine indeed, Thou blessed Son. Refrain Annie Sharwood Hawks was born on the 28th May 1836 and died on January 3rd in 1981. She married Charles H. Hawks in 1857. They lived in Brooklyn, New York, and attended the Hanson Place Baptist Church. When her husband died in 1888, she moved to Bennington, Vermont to live with her daughter and son-in-law. She wrote 400 hymns in he

Help needed?

HELP LADIES ..... those from the USA.  I need some help with the recipe attached ( Perfect Pound Cake) .  The recipe asks for 3 sticks of butter - how much is that in weight eg in grams??  We don't have sticks of butter in Australia. Looks delicious!!!!

It's Friday

FRIDAY is here .......what else can I say ........ I have had such a busy week, but I concluded that even though it was busy and challenging, the time buzzed by quickly and I met all my deadlines.  As a result I feel like I have achieved something. I try and learn something new every day - this week I most certainly did.  I can now read Government budget papers (ok, a bit dull and not something I really would do for pleasure), and I  know more about gun related crimes (they are on the decline but still being used far to often).   Ok not riveting stuff but it keeps my brain active. Warning : To those of you who are not cat people, the following photos may not be of interest.....   We no longer need to use fly spray in the house  - we now have an environmental solution - Ruby - she is a great fly catcher - this is her trying to catch on the window.  I sometimes find wings and bodies separated, but I don't think she does that on purpose - I hope not. Next I will teach her to roun

The etiquette of queuing.

I queue all the time and I rarely meet another person who is rude in queues.  However in Britain it appears that new immigrants need to be taught - it isn't a skill that all countries are taught from birth.  The art of queuing is to be made part of the citizenship test for immigrants to Britain, unveiled recently.  Foreigners applying to settle in Britain will have to learn about the practice of forming a line for everything from buses to sandwiches. So in case you don't know the correct queuing etiquette I have listed them below.  They will be useful if you ever immigration to the UK. Be patient. Remember that everyone is in the same boat, so avoid displays of exasperation or aggression. Be aware of other people's personal space and don't stand too close to the person in front of you. Even in the most disorganised of queues, there will still be an unspoken order. Where there is one queue for multiple till points, pay attention; don't hold up the queue by fa

Something funny

During a recent PASSWORD AUDIT at the Bank of Ireland it was found that Paddy O'Toole was using the following password:                           MickeyMinniePlutoHueyLouieDeweyDonaldGoofyDublin When Paddy was asked why he had such a long password: he replied                                                                                      “I was told me password had to be at least 8 characters long and include one capital''

Monday Musings: The work of Ansel Adams

Tonight I thought I would share some of my favourite photographers - Ansel Adams, born in 1902 and died in 1984.  I love black and white photography and I think that Adams is one of the best.  Aren't these just beautiful examples of his work - I particularly like Oak Tree-Sunset City, California. (Oak Tree Snowstorm, Yosemite National Park 1948 Evening McDonald Lake Glacier National Park, 1942)   (Tenaya Creek, 1941)   (Oak Tree-Sunset City, California, 1932)
What a friend we have in Jesus ( by Joseph Scriven) What a friend we have in Jesus, 
All our sins and griefs to bear! 
What a privilege to carry
 Everything to God in prayer! 
Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
 Oh, what needless pain we bear,
 All because we do not carry
 Everything to God in prayer! Have we trials and temptations? 
Is there trouble anywhere?
 We should never be discouraged— 
Take it to the Lord in prayer. 
Can we find a friend so faithful,
 Who will all our sorrows share?
 Jesus knows our every weakness;
 Take it to the Lord in prayer. Are we weak and heavy-laden,
 Cumbered with a load of care?
 Precious Savior, still our refuge— 
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
 Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
 Take it to the Lord in prayer!
 In His arms He’ll take and shield thee,
 Thou wilt find a solace there. Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised
 Thou wilt all our burdens bear;
 May we ever, Lord, be bringing 
All to Thee in earnest prayer.
 Soon in glory bright, unclouded

Random photos

The 2 photos below where taken last Sunday after we had received 130mm of rain.  This is quite a small creek normally, but as you can see it is very full and overflowing.  It took a day to reduce back to its normal size.   You may wonder why I took a photo of my food cupboard - its the sardines I was sharing with you. We buy LOTS of sardines - but non of us eat them!!  Horrible smelly things!!  They are bought for the dogs - they have 2 cans a day - it helps improve their skin and fur.  They are now so use to the fish that when we run out they complain about eating their dinner.  The sales person in the supermarket can't usually help themselves and want to know who is eating all that fish!!   I love this photo - it wasn't set up at all - I had finished reading the book and a little while later I found Ruby lying next to it. 

Part 2: Ash Wednesday

The 16 th of February 1983 started off like any other day (like most February ’ s I can remember, it was a very hot dry day [over 40C) with very low humidity .  It was a school day and I was pretty excited as I was about to go on a school camp.   I kissed my parents goodbye and off I went to camp.  The morning at our campsite was full of fun and excitement , but this changed by lunchtime when it became very smoky – bushfire smoke and it was decided that we should evacuate to   the local town about 20kms away ( 50 girls, 5 teachers and 6 cars – we broke all the road rules getting out – we thought this was a bit exciting) .    Once in town we watch the TV new reports – 180 fires burning out of control in 2 states (South Australia and Victoria) – lose of life and housing .  At no stage did I ever think my parents were in danger. So what happened to our farm.  My mum went off to school as normal, but finished early when they heard the reports of fire

A story....Part 1

(Looking down towards the farm house and sheds - where I grew up) Instead of my usual photos on Monday, I am doing something different. I would like to tell you a story , with the first part tonight and the second part tomorrow.     I grew up in country South Australia (a state of Australia) – in a beautiful long thin valley with a pine forest on one side and the family farm on the other. A creek ran along the narrow valley next to a gravel road.  My dad grew fruit (apples, pears, peaches, plums etc) and my mum taught at the local school.  It wa s an idyllic life style – we had freedom to wander anywhere on the farm and off I would go off and let my imagination run wild. When my brothers were old enoug h they worked on the farm picking fruit during the summer months – I avoided this being the only girl , something I was very pleased about, as I hated getting hot and dirty (ok   I was a bit of a princess).   In the winter months

Valentines Day

Before you ask - no not a thing -  Valentines Day has now come and gone and nothing:( My husband doesn't believe in all that commercial rubbish I asked my son if he did anything for his girlfriend he told me he didn't believe in all the commercial rubbish. Father like son. Tristan and his girlfriend did "hang out" together and watch movies. I enjoyed a lovely lunch with 2 girlfriends!! And the best gift of all - just over 100mm of rain in 36 hours (ok, not everyones idea of a gift, but haven't seen so much rain in years - well, since 2002) 

Movie review: Julia & Julia

I finally watched the movie "Julie & Julia" on DVD last night and thoroughly enjoyed it - a nice, non violent movie with a few laughs. I had read the book by Julia Powell (who wrote Julie & Julia: 365days and 524 recipes ) who, as a huge fan of Julie Childs, author of the book Art of French Cooking, decided to dedicate a year to cooking the entire french cook book ie 524 recipes in 365 days (not all goes well, in particular the cooking of the lobster). The book is worth reading on its own. The movie was a combination of both Julie Childs (Julia_Child) life as a cook and the blogging of Julia (a New Yorker) and switches between the two characters (and not in an annoying way) and the eras they lived in.  However I am not a huge fan of Meryl Streep (except in Mama Mia) and at times she was a little annoying  - and over the top but maybe Julia Childs was a little like this. This is quite amusing  After watching this movie I was tempered to cook one of the dishes -
  SO GLAD FRIDAY IS FINISHED and looking forward to "sleep-in Saturday" I LOVE sleeping in and feel no guilt about rising late (8:30am instead of my usual 6:00am) Steven has bought hot cross buns for tomorrows breakfast  sitting up in bed eating toasted hot cross buns with butter and jam and a hot mug of tea THE SIMPLE THINGS IN LIFE ARE ALWAYS THE BEST!! With a kitten jumping all over me!!

Random thoughts

Now that school has returned, there is one thing I must do every morning - wake up a 17 year old - he is soooo grumpy first thing in the morning.  This is an impossible task and one I don't enjoy.  He groans and looks like he is awake, but the moment I turn my back he is asleep again.  I have started phoning him once I get to work to make sure he is awake - this morning however he had slept in - and guess what  - he missed the bus and was late for school. We had pork spare ribs for dinner (with salad - which contained freshly cooked beetroot which I just love and radishes also very yummy).  To go with the ribs I added caramelised onions (as an condiment)  which I bought from a gourmet deli - it was divine - the jar was called "caramelised onions marmalade" -  and would be excellent on cooked lamb or beef.   Stephen, now I can make that recipe by Nigella! **** Another food discovery was chick peas - I have eaten chick peas in soups and hummus etc.. but never as a snack -

Monday Musings: sunsets

Driving home the other night after picking up Caius we stopped off and I took these photos.  It was a very beautiful sunset over the mountain rangers.             This last one is my youngest son waiting patiently for me to finish. 
God is there... When the sky is dark He is there When you are all alone He is there When nothing goes your way He is there When you are in pain He is there When people are against you He is there When you are frightened or worried He is there When those you love are in crisis He is there When you feel as if God is far away He is there When doubt and confusion weigh you down He is there When you are about to breathe you last He is there And where God is, there is always hope. * * *  In remembrance to the 173 people who died 7th of February 2009 Black Saturday Fires Victoria, Australia Do not fear for I am with you   Isaiah 41:10

An update

I am half asleep and in need of a hot cup of Jasmine tea - but I wanted to write this blog tonight before I settle into my comfy chair with the tea, mint chocolate and a DVD (The Proposal). My husband has gone to bed and the children are out with girlfriends. Tristan started his new job today - thought it was great - covered in ink as he learnt to fill cartridges (the sort that go into printers and photo copies).   Caius has finished his first week at school - he is feeling very happy - therefore I am feeling very happy.   Steven spent a week with his parents - his mother has gone home from the hospice - she looks very sad and frail but so glad to see her son.  She only has weeks to live.  At least she is going home to heaven which is such a comfort. Me - had a good week at work - being researching the statistical limitations of suicide statistics (under counting) in case you were wondering.   The dogs have been wonderful while Steven was away - they knew they had to be good for me

Just wondering

This is a photo of my mum (front) and her older sister Joan, taken in the later half of the 1940's.  Mum was in her mid teens (the youngest of 6 children). * Questions * 1. Would you prefer to be a teenager in the 1940's or today - why? 2. If you were transported back to the 1940's - what items of modern times would have take back - things you couldn't live without?  

Amazing cat called Oscar

I found a beautiful (but sad) article in the newspaper yesterday and I just had to share it.  It is about a cat called Oscar who lives in a Nursing Home (which contains mostly dementia patients).  Oscar has a special ability - he knows when the elderly patients are going to die and lays next to them until they have passed away. At first the hospital didn't believe this was possible "After a year, the staff noticed that Oscar would spend his days pacing from room to room. He sniffed and looked at the patients but rarely spent much time with anyone - except when they had just hours to live. He's accurate enough that the staff - including Dr Dosa - know it's time to call family members when Oscar stretches beside a patient, who is generally too ill to notice his presence. If kept outside the room of a dying patient, he'll scratch at doors and walls, trying to get in. Nurses once placed Oscar in the bed of a patient they thought gravely ill."  " Oscar would

Monday Musings: Garden flowers

  Tonight's group of photos are flowers from my garden.  With summer two months in, plants are beginning to look rather sad - desperate for a good shower of rain - we may get something on Thursday or Friday as a result of Cyclone Olga up north - otherwise I will keep on watering and they will hold on until the heat reduces and Autumn rains arrive. Rain would be very welcome to us humans to - we haven't see much this summer and everything is looking very dry and dusty. The top photo is of the hydrangea which has just finished flowering - they hate the heat and need to be watered every night - but considering all that this particular shrub flowered very well.  The next 2 photos are of a Cosmos flower - in full bloom and at the end of its life.  Even in death it still has some beauty.   This last flower is from the agapanthu - all my agapanthu have done very well this year with heaps of bloom - last year they hardly flowered for some reason.  This was taken after I had finished