Thursday, 27 September 2007

G'Day, I took some pictures to share of our newest family members.
Above. Mummy ring neck dove on the first day her babies hatched.
Two days old, look how full their crops are. I reckon they about doubled in size from when they first hatched.
Mum and her babies, just short of 2 weeks old.Their feathers have fluffed out and are thicker now than when this pic was taken
This is the larger of the two babies. I sat it in the feed dish to look at and get a closer picture.

My baby daughter, being 18, almost 19 is back in Wagga tonight asserting her independence as 18 year old daughters rightly may wish to do, so, I get a turn on the puter for a change.
I worked today, under difficulty as I have done something nasty to my neck, it hurts. The only thing I can remember is twisting it around when trying to reverse my car on Wednesday morning. It annoyed me all night and I had to get up twice to take more painkillers. So this morning I felt pretty dopey and stiff and sore and I gave in to the anti inflammatorys. I have managed to take a break of 2 weeks from them. Ah well, as we get older....... Thing is I don't think I will be able to hold out until I turn 60 when I will be able to collect on my superannuation scheme savings for which the govt. has set an age limit.
Please say a prayer for baby Kate. She is the youngest child of an acquaintance of mine in our town. She is just 10 months old and has a malignant tumor on her kidney and has been rushed to Sydney for treatment, which will involve surgery and chemotherapy. Good thing is she will have no memory of the trauma when she hopefully gets well in a few years time. Not so her poor Mum and Dad.
Last night I went to the lead lighting class and my first piece is now together. I just have to finish the soldering and clean it up. The next thing I have to do is work out a design for a mirror and surround. Not easy I imagine.
The baby ring neck doves have grown amazingly quickly. They are now covered in white feathers except for their head which is still baldy. Their beaks are out of proportion to the rest or their body. They seem to have been born with full size beaks and are waiting for the rest of their body to grow and catch up to them. They are 3 weeks old today. They are very placid birds and don't seem to mind being handled. The adult birds are quite tame as well. When I caught them and put them in the cage I caught them by hand easily. Mummy bird is still feeding them, I have seen her feeding them both at once. One baby is bigger than the other. I don"t know if that is because of its sex or because it is the bossier of the 2 at feed time.
The baby english blackbird we tried to rescue didn"t survive learning to fly and I found it dead on the other side of the yard to where its nest was. Rotten Rufus most likely got it after all.

Thursday, 20 September 2007

Look what I found!

I was sticky beaking around tonight and found a great page with stories that I wanted to share. it is about sulphur crested cockatoos, like my cocky, Jack. I wrote about Jack in an earlier post, on 4th feb. 07 titled my pets. I hope I am not breaking anyone's rules but here tis'. I reckon the male cocky must be an escapee from a cage in his past life. It's late Good night.
Love Linda.

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

sore throat, birds, fishes,pots.

I have strained my throat. Screaming at Rufus, my naughty Jack Russell pup who had the baby English blackbird chick in his mouth. He dropped it and it scuttled into the back corner of the shed. I had to practically unpack the garden shed to get up in the corner to rescue it, with much swooping and panicking from it's mummy bird. It didn't look very old to be out of the nest so Pete climbed the ladder to return it. To get it back into the nest we had to cut back a lot of the prickly climbing rose that is up in the tree. Anyway after two tries we gave up because it just kept jumping back out and falling to the ground again. So Rufus and Boo, my cat, are confined to the house for a couple of days to give it a chance to learn to fly properly. Let's hope. It is down under the foliage beneath the tree and mummy bird is still feeding it so it must be O.K.
Yesterday I spent the morning cleaning and refilling the fish pond out the back. I had seen what I thought was about 7 fish left after the heron's visit during the winter but when I counted them when I returned them to the pond there were 11 of them. So that was better than I thought. The heron got less than half of them. The pond looks great at the moment, the water is clear as crystal. The fish look great, and as if they are suspended effortlessly in air. The water version of birds except even more graceful. From my backyard observations there is a leader fish. It grows bigger than the rest of the fish and leads them around the pond. The general. In the past I have observed that if the leader fish dies another fish grows bigger than the rest and takes over the leaders position. All of my fish were born at the same time. The heron took their parents a few years ago and the eggs in the pond were able to develop without being cannibalized. I don't feed my fish they have their own little ecosystem going where they live on insects and algae. I do occasionally give them a bit of dry dog food. The round brown bits float and the fishies entertain me by nibbling on it and as they nibble, it moves the bit of dog food around the pond and the fish follow it. I call it playing soccer. Looks funny. Maybe it's me that's funny. Funny ha ha, or funny strange?
Today I also made a slab pot, I decorated the slab with a sea theme. Then I did two platters in a square mold with the same decoration. I used the clay I got recently from Canberra . It is called Walker's stoneware no.2. It is groggy and should fire to a mid brown with specks. The sample of fired clay I saw had a nice shino glaze on it. I had a play with shino glaze a while back as the effects you can get appeal to me. It came out a thick glossy white without the orange showing through. Nice but not what I wanted it to do. Any suggestions appreciated. I will do some other recipe tests.
I went to the stained glass class last night and my first panel is coming together nicely. The colors I chose work well. All the bits are fitting nicely. Maybe next week I will get up to the bit where I melt the bits together. I am going to try a mirror with stained glass around it next. If I design it myself I can work with the antique glass samples that my old friend Betty gave me about a year ago. I promised her that I would use them for something nice and not just waste them. I also have in my shed a few good bits of mirror to use, from when we renovated our bathroom a few years ago. Should save me some money.
The person who was annoying me at work seems to have settled down. She is going on holidays for a week and I won't have to see her for a while. Bloody good timing I reckon!
Tat's about all. Bye Love Linda.

Thursday, 13 September 2007

Today was a beautiful spring day. I sat in the sun quite a bit, my face is a bit pinkish, which is naughty of me considering my past history with sun cancers. I took some pictures around my yard. Spring brings a new awakening in my garden and a result for the work I have done, or not done during the year. The first picture is of one of my Hellebores.
A pretty pest. One that is the most anoying weed in my world. Oxalis. When I did spinning years ago, I dyed some wool with this and it turned bright orange, when everyone else's turned green. Mine was different because it was boiled in a cast iron pot. A bit blurry huh?
I don't know what this is called but it is a succulent and there is a big pot of it out the front.
Another pesky weed, cape weed. It is from Africa and when we were kids we made daisy chains out of them. We called them pee the beds.
A daffodil.
This is a pretty little daisy in a big pot out the back.
Mum's pansies.
Madam Butterfly, snapdragons. This is their second season even though they are annuals.
Theses are the last of the apricot blossoms.

These little daisies are fever few.
These are the flowers from my coriander, it has gone mad this year and is now beginning to go to seed.
Mum tending her pansies.
Weathered wood , just because I love the texture and patterns in it.
More of Mum's Pansies.
Shhhh..... I have a secret! My 2 eggs hatched today. One in the morning one after lunch.
This is one of the 3 ring neck doves that next door's let out to go feral and I caught them and put them back in a cage.
I was enthusiastically scolded today in the back yard as there is a pair of english blackbirds nesting in the old almond tree. Mummy bird thought I shouldn't be out there and let me know about it while collecting numerous mouthfuls of worms and other tasty morsels from underneath my mulch. I bet they have very fat babies. I tried to get a pic of her but she wouldn't let me close enough. They must take turns of sitting on the nest. The nest is quite close to my shed door and she protests noisily when she sees me going in and out. They nest here every year but the dogs get the babies when they are learning to fly.
Pretty perennial wallflowers.
And the varigated version of wallflowers.
Little spring stars. Pretty but stink like onions.This is another of my hellebores. Growing under the shelter of the Lily Pilly tree out the back. It is a good value plant as it spills seed which comes up easily and helps to fill in this difficult to grow in spot.
Tonight I went over to Wagga to the civic theater for a presentation for grant recipients from Wagga city Council. Wagga potters got 2, one for a workshop and the other for sanding and resealing the gallery floor. I am quite pleased with myself as I did the applications. My birthday buddy, Kath and I went. I also saw one of my old school friends there with her hubby who got a grant for a sprinkler system for one of the football grounds. I had not had more than a passing greeting with them for years so it was nice to catch up with them. I will be back in the theater next month as I bought tickets to see a ballet. Men in tutus, should be a laugh. I had a junk food, take away tea afterwards, it wasn't very nice.
Kath gave me an clay extruder that came from my old potting pal Betty who died recently. Something else to remember her by.
I have not got the kiln I bought connected yet. I was naughty and bought a beautiful handmade red gum lazy Susan for my kitchen table that John made, so the kiln has to wait. I fired the big chook I made today, it is a Christmas present I made for someone. All went well from what I could see, and the kiln has not run out of gas yet as I had been expecting it to. The proof will be in the glaze firing. The chook is about 20 inches tall. I will take a pic when it is finished.
Bye Love Linda.

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

What makes you smile?

Good morning. What makes you smile? If you read this give me an answer.
This morning while sitting at the kitchen table eating my morning toast I looked down and there was Rufus with a hopeful look on his face and his lead draped over his shoulders and in his mouth. Some days you need to look for something simple to make you smile, don't you. I forgot to hang up his lead yesterday and first thing he did when he came inside was remember and drag it over to me. He is so cute. Animals (except Humans) are beautifully innocent and without guile and give back unconditional love for very little in return.
At work... I am pissed off at someone and had a bit of a meltdown that had been building up for weeks, maybe longer. I have written a letter and put it in my locker, but will hold off on presenting it and see how things develop. I write very effective letters when I am angry. I was ready to walk out on Sunday and am seriously thinking of applying for a transfer to another site. I don't have to go back there until next Saturday, thank god, or I probably would have lost my temper and been sorry for it. If I loose my temper I always go too far. I don't want to leave the job but I am not willing to put up with the situation. I have never in my life been sacked from a job, but I have walked out on a few.
O.K. that is enough about that!
Rufus is now sitting on the mat near the door with his face on his paws and when I move he looks up pathetically to check I'm not ready to take him for his walk yet.
I have a bisque in the kiln at the moment, it contains about a dozen bowls that I have decorated with black slip sponge designs and some raku clay chooks. I think the gas will run out soon and I will have to change the bottles over, which is a pain. I got 2 names from the Christmas list that we do at work. They both like chooks and I thought "that's easy, I can do that". We have 2 Christmas parties at work. One where we just go 0ut for tea with the domestic staff and another with the whole hospital staff, so there are 2 lists. You pick a name out of a bucket (or whatever) and buy that person a present up to $30. The big party we have with everyone is a bit um! A lot of the nurses go out with the expressed intention of getting as drunk as they can in front of each other so they can laugh about it later and compare notes on who did what. Not really my style. I am not a total wowser though. I know how much I can drink to relax and get merry without wiping myself out and being sick the next day. I just choose not to. In fact the Christmas party is one of the few times during the year that I drink at all. Without getting on my soap box too much on the subject... I think we have in this country, a culture of over indulgence with alcohol that drinkers are very proud of... to their own detriment.
Rufus is now trying to eat his lead.
Mum and I went in to Wagga yesterday to get my great niece Ivory a birthday present. Mum goes in to sensory overload in the shops which is really annoying. We came back with enough presents for Christmas and birthday for Ivory. But mum enjoyed it. My poor old Mum has never had a lot of disposable income before and for the first time ever is able to enjoy spending her money on things other than household bills and supplies. I am sure the shop sales people think I am horrible and domineering when I tell her that we don't want or need something she wants, she gets upset with me though. Never mind, if they are lucky they will get their turn of looking after an elderly parent and having roles reversed on them. We had a beautiful fresh lunch at "Cache" cafe. She had fresh, light, toasty Turkish bread filled with turkey & cranberry sauce with different salad leaves. I had the same bread with bacon, avocado, tomato and leaves. Simple and beautiful. Nothing I couldn't do at home but all the nicer because I did not have to make it.
Rufus is now standing with his paws on my leg, and looking even more pathetic. I better go. I also have to get some tablets from the chemist that I forgot yesterday.
Bye Love Linda.

Monday, 3 September 2007

Folow up on museum day.

The museum day went very well and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. It started at 10.00 and there was a steady stream of people through the doors all day until it closed at 4.00. Well a steady stream for a town our size anyway. The raku firing was really good. The little kiln that June let us use, on the condition that her hubby Ian controlled it, was able to fire a small load of pots in just 20 mins after getting warmed up. There were no breakages. It was made from a half 44 gallon drum lined with ceramic fiber and is much faster than our Potter's club one. We had it going all day. The glazes went well. Probably because of the good melt June's little kiln did on them. If anything the pots were reducing a bit too much, some of the iron base glazes actually reduced to glossy black. Or was that a mistake in measuring out the glaze?
A man from town had a kick wheel so I had a play on it. I made a couple of things on it. I had not had a turn of one before and had a bit of trouble balancing , standing and kicking at the same time so Brian did the hard work for me and kicked while I threw. I reckon I'm glad to have my electric wheel.
There wasn't many people interested in the come and try table . I guided 3 women who made a molded ball vase and a trapped air pinch pot that one lady made in to a turkey and another lady made a duck. I made a chook. It was fun though, and we had quite an audience at one stage. There was another man there who had his first try on the wheel and made 2 quite good little pots by himself. More talent or skill than I, or most people, could manage on a first try. It's funny how you occasionally find someone like that. I wonder what they might have done in a past life?
I didn't have time to take photos but Sharon said she would give me hers on a disk as she took lots and she has a nice fancy camera and knows how to work it.
I spent the day running between the Raku kiln and the come and try table, I didn't sit down all day.
I also had a turn on Brian's shaving horse. Brian does bush woodwork and makes great creative chairs, all handmade using no power other than his own hand tools. He calls himself a chair bodger. Look it up. He was the woodwork teacher for many years at the high school. He was also the entertainment as he holds sing-a-longs and plays his ukulele, mouth organ or accordion with another lady (don't know her name) who accompanies him on the fiddle. It gave a really nice atmosphere. We have some interesting people in our little town.
A sad bit was, my potting friend Lyn is leaving on her traveling adventure with her husband Pat in the next few days and the museum day will be the last I see of her for a long time. They are intending to travel in their caravan for 3 years, health permitting. We might see her though, when she drops back in and out of the area to see family, and to check on her dearly beloved grandchildren.
On Sunday I was exhausted, not just tired. Poor Peter had to put up with me being whingie and falling asleep on and off all day, and it was Father's day here. He wanted a watch, so I bought him one. He also got his favorite dinner. Silverside, cooked to perfection, because I put it on to cook and went back to bed for a few hours. I felt o.k. today though. I went to work and managed to keep everything on track and on time. I have 3 days off now. Pretty good job eh! I only get paid for what I work though, so the coming fortnight's pay might be a bit lean.
Tomorrow I clean house! Bye.
Love Linda.