Wednesday, 30 December 2009

The Season.

This is sort of a diary entry about what I have been up to over the past week or so. I have had a busy time and have been loving it........ mostly.
My Mum was here for about 2 months and returned to Queensland on the 23rd. She has decided to stay at my sister Ellen's house in Biloela, she likes it up there and I think maybe my sister handles her better than I do so.... I took the week off work. On the same day my other sister Thelma came here in the afternoon to spend a few days with us for Christmas, and my two younger children, David and Annie brat, came during he evening and stayed a few days as well. So we had a nice Christmas. I think there were a few less prezzies under the tree than some other years. The budget has been a bit harsher since moving to Canberra, but that is o.k. Christmas isn't just about how many presents you can give, it is about being together.
Other stuff I did during the break were;
Thelma and I went to the national gallery and saw the "Masterpieces from Paris" exhibition. Van Gogh, Gauguin, Cezanne and beyond. Cool eh! I stood in front of "Starry Night" and the words and music from that old song ran through my head, I saw into Vinnie's bedroom and his self portrait. I saw the little ballerina paintings by Degas, I used to have my bedroom curtains and quilt in that pattern when I was a little girl. Aw pretty. I gawked at the beautiful lady with the sunshade umbrella by Cezanne. Gauguin's Polynesian ladies. I don't remember the proper names but those were pretty special paintings and very well known ones.
We also had a guided tour of the Australian artists gallery and got to chatter on with the guide about them. T'was also good because when I have gone there before with other people they are impatient with my dawdling and gawking and want to leave before I do. I still love the Aussie paintings best, the stuff from the Heidelberg school especially. Not really into a lot of the more modern stuff.
On Christmas eve we sat with our feet in the lake and skipped stones across the water at Yarralumla. It was so hot that day.
We had a half hearted look at the boxing day sales in Woden. I got a pair of shorts and a shirt, Annie go some clothes. Today if I have time I want to go into the city and see what I can find to love from the T2 shop, I love getting in there.It is a specialty shop devoted to tea and the things used to drink/serve it. Dave got me a gift voucher from there, and I got another gift voucher from Michael from another home wares type shop in Kingston. Should be fun.
Then there was that impromptu trip down the coast. A bit sad though, at one of the places we visited, Pebbly beach, there was a nasty accident just a few hours after we passed through. A petrol tanker hit a car and exploded. The truck driver was killed and the family in the car was decimated, the two little girls died and their parents are fighting for their lives in hospital.
Yesterday I took Peter to the emergency department at the Canberra Hospital. He was having some very nasty pain and cramping after his gall bladder removal last week and I thought it needed checking out. We ended up being there from a bit before 4.00 until 1.00 that night. But everything worked out and he is o.k, just needed some better pain killers.
Also yesterday I went to spotlight and got some netting material and fabric to match to make a cover for the futon/swing Pete and I got for Christmas. It is in the garage at the moment and I didn't want to put it out in the back yard unprotected so will make a cover for it. I also got some new Christmas decorations for next year. I always look for them after christmas at the sales. They were 75% off. A nice little bargain. Things are getting a bit lean in the bank balance and I don't get any work for another week or so, but that is o.k. I have done it before and will no doubt do it again.
Today, after lunch, I want to meet up with an old friend, Barb, who is in Canberra visiting her children who live here. She is down at the lake today skiing. Should be good. I haven't seen her for a few years now. She lives at Ariah park on a farm and they have been feeling the effects of the drought badly for many years. A tough life.
Better get moving.
Love Linda.

Monday, 28 December 2009

Sunday scribblings "Delicious"

Well it is all over for another year. Merry Christmas. Such a lot of fun and a lot of money spent for just one special day of the year that is a special birthday, celebrated on the wrong day. But... I do love Christmas.
Sunday Scribblings has given us the word prompt "Delicious" to write on this week.

Yesterday we drove down the mountain, running away from home for just a short break. Sometimes, just sometimes we have the opportunity to quench our cravings.
The craving for the sea, the spectacular scenery of the unspoiled bush, those smells and colors, ahhhh yes. Delicious.
Down the Clyde mountain turning north away from Bateman's Bay and the worst of the holiday crowds and mad traffic. We found accommodation easily which was lucky for this time of year when there is a mass exodus from the city to the coast. We drove to South Durras, to a van park set between the lake and the sea, an eco tourism park where there are Roos and birds everywhere. Just a few meters across the sand dune and you are on the beach.
I love it.
To the hot sun warming your back and the salty fresh smell of the Tasman sea as waves send mist back across the beach filling the senses with smell, sound, colour.
That fantastic transparent pale aqua blue, deepening to clear green, graduating to blue green and in the distance dark dark navy blue gray. The magic curl as waves crest then tumble, frothy white as they break and rush towards the edge of the land.
I walk down through the soft foot mark pocked sand. Down to the edge where the waves change the color of the sand and it becomes cool on my bare feet and firm to walk on, then onwards.
Just a few feet more. Here it comes, here, closer, closer then... the delicious cool rush of the sea water as it reaches my feet. That first touch catches my breath and puts a smile a mile wide across my face. Then the waves dizzying rush back to rejoin the sea and I have to stand still for a moment, face the water and watch to regain my balance.
We sit down and absorb it all for a while with Pete's head resting on my lap, his shirt pulled up to get the warm sun to heal his scars. I make him a back rest out of sand and he sleeps for a while until a friendly black dog runs up to check on him and see if he is o.k. and he is woken with a start.
I wander and I dare each breaking wave to reach me, until my feet don't feel hot and the water doesn't feel cold anymore.
The sea and the beach making children of the best of us.
I see a pretty young woman playing as if nobody can see her, alone, kicking the sand , marching, kicking her legs high through the tumbling water, until she looks up and notices me then she walks on embarrassed, sensible, self conscious again. Parents playing with their children laughing with them, children again.
Looking at the seaweed washing up in small clumps, looking at the tiny shells along the line where the rushing waves change the color of the sand with their wetness. Exploring the flotsam and jetsam, a blue bottle, a jelly blubber a bit of wood here, an old thong, feathers, seed pods.
South Durras is a big open beach, not a tiny bay beach and I walk along to see if the entrance to the lake is open to the sea, it was several years ago and it was so deep I couldn't walk across it, but it is now closed by a sand bank and the lake has dwindled away to a series of shallow ponds.
There is a man here playing with his airfoil kite, probably his christmas present. He makes it dip and swoop low then high up into the sky again, he has quite an audience. You can see his kite above the beach from one end to the other. Flying like a big blue series of curved, air filled pillows joined together.
There are families returning to their cars. It is starting to get late as they take the children back to their accommodation to feed and bathe and put them to bed. They straggle slowly, reluctantly, back along the waterline. Adults carrying an assortment of fishing rods, towels, boards, toys. The children still running and exploring along the way. Picking up sticks and throwing them back into the water, drawing with their feet and fingers in the sand then running to catch up to the adults. A little girl is grizzling, in the hope that her Dad will pick her up and carry her across his hip, or better still, sling her across his shoulders to save her tired little legs from going any further.
The sky is partly clad in light wispy clouds and back towards the mountains heavier more threatening gray cloud is approaching. Out over the sea the setting sun is coloring some light clouds with pink and orange. So pretty, and the sea is beginning to darken towards night. Cyclone Laurence far, far to the north of the continent is sending magic. Much traveled, much needed rain, to wash our world clean and cool the summer heated air in our southern states. Keep it coming Laurie. In the north of the state there are floods, but not here. We want the cool rain to water the earth and fill the dams.
We leave the beach and walk the short distance back to the cabin we have rented for the night. Our legs tired and dragging through the heavy soft sand that covers the dune. There is a small mob of Roos in the park now, grazing on the short cropped grass, they don't take much notice of us as we pass by, they are used to being around people and know they will not be harmed here. The cheeky, colorful little rainbow lorikeets are coming into the trees around us to roost for the night and are fluttering noisily before settling. A whip bird is calling somewhere but I can't spot him. Wattle birds, crimson rosellas, top knot pigeons, king parrots, currawongs, magpies. There is a family of wood ducks and later I see a possum near the amenities block on my way to the showers. Some children are still zipping around the park in the half dark, on their scooters and bikes. Some young teens have a meeting near the camp kitchen, talking loud, giggling and flirting, showing off for each other. And the world turns.
We drove home today, north, along the coast road, exploring some of the little side roads along the way. Forests, cliffs, light houses, beaches. Then up through the escarpment into the Kangaroo valley where we dawdled through the little craft shops and assorted galleries, real touristy stuff. We drove through wet misty clouds near Cambewarra mountain. The rain forest. Beautiful, green and lush. Then back to the Hume highway, onto the federal highway and back here to Canberra. A delicious round trip. To quench our cravings for little while.
And....I forgot my camera.
Love Linda.

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Sunday Scribblings "Dare"

For some reason unbeknown to me this computer is working again so here I am.

It is Christmas time, I dare you to have a slice of that Pavlova
or an extra serving of that delicious looking creamy pasta salad,
here have some more ham, turkey another barbecued marinated steak.
How would you like some more or that wine or another beer.
C'mon I dare you, it is Christmas time, the one day of the year that
breaking the promise and beating your addiction won't hurt you.
Aunt Joan makes the best Christmas pudding you ever tasted.
Look at all those chocolates and candy canes, what else are they there for?
Smash that diet... I dare you!
Fix it next month!


The picture of the little vases at the top of this post are the ones I made for Christmas presents this year. I can't reposition it so it still at the top. There is one vase missing because I already wrapped it. I also made a large serving bowl for a present from terracotta with a white glaze and a footprint type pattern in bright colors, it is wrapped up too. Silly me, before I took a pic of it. It is in the blue wrapping paper in the other picture though. Hahahaha.

Merry Christmas

Love Linda.

Friday, 18 December 2009

Catching Up

I finally worked out how to get back on here and the old puter is actually letting me get back on line tonight so I can catch up with putting on some of the pictures I have been talking about and show them all off.
First up I wanted to show off some of the summer flowers I have been enjoying around my yard.
The top picture of the apricot coloured rose is one I have bben keeping in a large pot for several years now, it is called a patio rose and has been flowering prolifically for weeks with more buds coming out all the time. The next one is of course a pink dianthus, they are good value plants but this one has finished it's flowering this season already. I think it's name is Doris.
There are 4 or 5 of these white, red and pink oleander plants around this yard. These are good tough plants to grow, and will take the frost or the extreme heat that we get here in the summer and still flower happily. It was so hot here for the past 2 days with temps above the old 100 Fahrenheit mark. Ouch, too hot to work in...but I did, I wanna get paid. Really bad bushfire weather with the heat followed by blast furnace hot high winds. There are several bushfires happening around N.S.W. including one just across the border, south of Canberra, where there were 3 houses lost at Michelago. Not a good christmas present. 6 houses were lost in a fire burning near Albury. Luckily no lives lost in the fires. Not so lucky..... the christmas season road toll. The mad... or the silly season on the roads. UGH!

The next picture is of one of my day lilies. I have a couple of other colors but they have not flowered as yet. What a pretty girl she is.
Next picture is of my cane begonia. I thought I had lost this plant a year ago but she has fought back with some TLC and is showing me how tough she is giving me some nice new shoots.
I would be very upset if I did lose this plant as she has special sentimental value. It came from a plant originally belonging to my maternal grand mother who died when I was 5 years old and I have kept it going ever since I was first married, 29 years ago. Special.
Speaking of family heirlooms. Last weekend I went to Griffith for my Aunty Joan's 80th birthday party. We stayed at my Uncle Bill's house and he gave me a piece of begonia, different from this one, that actually came from a plant originally belonging to my great grand mother Collis who died long before I was born. I must look after that one eh!

The picture above is of 4 generations of the Hearn family with my Aunty Joan, the matriarch, in the middle covered with kids. The bloke with his arms crossed and very little hair is my terrible twin, Joe. I have told stories about him in my blog before. We were given a birthday cake together at my Aunty's party for our 50th, the first one we have shared together since we were 16. This family just keeps growing and there were kids scooting everywhere, I love it.
This is a picture of my cousins daughter, M'Liss, I can't believe she is 38 yrs old. She is lovely and when she was a baby I adored her, she was my own real life baby doll to play with. I got to spend lots of time with her then. My Aunty Peg is in the back ground, Uncle Bill's wife.
My mob. At Annie's 21st birthday party. Can you tell my boys don't like getting their photo taken? My baby does not look like she is 21, nah! she can't be can she?
O.K caught up.
Love Linda.

Monday, 7 December 2009

Test of trust.

Over the last week I have had some stuff, good and bad.
Firstly, sadly, my blue tongue Lizard, Lizzy was run over by my son and is dead. Poor lizzy, I was quite upset. I came home from work on friday evening to find him/her squished in the driveway of our house. My son had been parked there during the day and had left without seeing Lizzy and the poor thing had no chance. I thought Lizzy was pretty special because it was just about the biggest one I had seen and that meant it had lived here in suburbia for quite a long time and that is a special feat in itself. Secondly that it had the freedom and supposedly the knowledge, or would that more rightly be the luck, to have lived and roamed amongst humans and their introduced dogs and cats who would have been a threat to it. Lizzy was a member of the skink family and the largest member of that species. It was completely harmless and a bonus to have in the garden because it ate slugs and snails. Lizzy must have survived by doing the rounds of ours and some neighbours yards because it had dissapeared until recently and one of the neigbours said it used to live in her yard. Where it was killed in our driveway it would have been coming from her side of the yard across and back to us.
On the good side, or scary which ever you choose to interpret it as:
I have had a life long fear of motor bikes.Pete my hubby has had several of them and loves them, he has always taken it as a challenge to try to convert me. I don't know why I have always been scared of them because I was scared of them long before I ever knew any of the people that I know who were killed or hurt off them but.....Yesterday I gave in. Pete took me on the back of the bike for a short ride. My very first ever. At the age of 50 no less. Hehe.We probably went for about 5 km, just around the block and back again. It wasn't that bad . I held on tightly to the bar thingy on the back and was feeling pretty shaky and insecure, I guess that is the nature of the machine. I didn't think it would make any difference holding on to Pete because if he fell so would I , irrational but, if the bike fell over, it would have made no difference how I was holding on would it. I took some skin off my nose trying to put the helmet on over my glasses, hehe, but I did it. I got on the bike. I beat it, well, not really, I am still scared of bikes but I had my first ride. BTW, did you know how bloody awkward those things are to try to cock your leg up over when you are 50 years old. Hehe.
The third thing: I managed to turn on the burglar alarms at the schools where I clean all by myself without setting them off and scaring the hell out of myself. Small achievement, but an achievement just the same. I always make Michael do it for me, but he wasn't there, so I had to do it myself. I just hope when I go back there this afternoon they don't tell me it wasn't on properly and I did it wrong.
Small fish are sweet.
On Saturday I took Mum and Pete and Rufus, our doggie, across to watch/ hear a Christmas carol thingy . It was only a blocks walk away and held on a vacant block of land across from a local church. I really love Christmas carols, but the best part is seeing everybody else enjoying them, especially the children of all ages having fun and socializing with each other. I love to watch their energy and excitement. Great stuff. Rufus was naughty , as he usually is. He was a bit nervous of all the people and snapped at a little boy who came over and wanted to pat him, and of course there were a few other doggies there who he was most interested in but couldn't get at because they were all on the lead ,as was Rufus. T'was nice though. I enjoyed it.
I have not taken part in the Friday Fertilizer prompt for the last few weeks because even though I took pictures of flowers around my yard this Friday, my puter is playing up, I could load them on to it but am blogging on my hubby's laptop and I don't know how to get the pics from one puter to another. But I have not given up, I still want to participate. When I can do it myself or con someone to do it for me I will be back!
Bye agin"
Love Linda.

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Sunday Scribblings "Weird"

The Sunday Scribblings prompt for this week is "Weird".
Yes I am! To other people I am. People like to categorize each other don't they.
One thing I have learned since starting my blog and reading other 's writing from all around the world, is that where ever we come from , what ever our upbringing there are similarities that we have with one another that make us the same. Human, people from all around the world. I reckon that is really cool. We are all different but we are all the same.
We should recognize that, subject to different tastes in fashion, food, behavior, income or what ever else we have learned in our own personal upbringing, we are all the same. Calling someone weird is our strange way of saying "you are different from me, and I want to be recognized as an individual", or "I think I am better than you".
I remember once when I was on holiday with my sister and our children. We were in Sydney and had taken a ferry ride across to Manly. The kids were playing in the water beside the wharf in their clothes because we hadn't been prepared for them to swim. I was itching to play in the water with them, but being a bigger girl and not wanting to be seen in swim wear as well as not having any with me anyway it was really killing me not being able join in the fun. My sister encouraged me to just do it anyway, and so I got in the water in my clothes and had a lovely time playing with the kids. When we went back inside the wharf to catch the ferry back to the quay my clothes were still wet and I must have looked a terrible sight. There were two young women sitting at a table at one of the cafes inside. Both well coiffed, in fashion and enjoying flaunting their status. They stared at me and whispered behind their hands to each other with horrified looks on their faces, turning and watching my every step. I was so so tempted to walk up to their table and shake my hair across them. If I was more game, it would have been a great joke and delicious payback to their bitchiness. But I did not do it. Yes to them I was weird and horrible, a real live bogan to marvel at. I cringed under their criticism and they enjoyed it. Bugger em! They did not know me. They did not know the person I am or my philosophy, but in their nastiness they showed me what they were about didn't they.
My point exactly.
Yes I am weird, in other peoples eyes. I am not pretty enough, or smart enough or fashionable enough or rich enough, but I know that everyone all around the world has felt like that at some time and that I should not let that get to me. My Mum used to say when I was growing up , you are as good as any and better than most. Yes I am! Subjective to your vision. Hehe.
Love Linda.

Monday, 30 November 2009

Sunday Scribblings "Game"

Sunday Scribblings on a Monday, oh well. That speaks of the game I played over the weekend.
The prompt word for this week is "game".
I can think of this word taking me in many different directions .
Us Aussies use the word game to mean brave. As in "are you Game? Do you want to have a go? "type of meaning. I don't know if it is used or understood in that context in other parts of the world. Maybe you can enlighten me.
I am not usually that game. But if you challenge me......
One night when I was out with some of my work mates in Junee they challenged me to go Gnome Knapping. We pulled up outside Kerrie's house and I snuck up to her front veranda and took the Gnome that her mother in law had given her for a present. She hated Gnomes. Then we took it and placed it at the front door to the Dr surgery where she worked so that when she came to work in the morning it was standing , proud and ridiculous, stupidly waiting to greet her. She thought that was a great joke. I love playing tricks on people. While on the subject of gnomes. Another friend who lives in Wagga, had a son who joined the navy and took a stolen gnome around the world with him. Then sent photos of the gnome, anonymously, back to the person who it belonged to, which were taken in well known tourist spots around the world. Funny, I love it.
The primary school that my children attended in Junee while growing up, had for their motto, "Play the Game". Good advice. We should all try to do that and put aside the silly idea that we need to go against advice or authority to get what we want and always be true to ourselves. I know that does not always apply, but for every day stuff, not the big stuff that matters, it really does not hurt you to play along to get results you want. Play along with the people that you don't like and you know don't like you just for the sake of peace and harmony. It doesn't hurt to follow the rules a bit, that is what they are there for ... isn't it? You need to do that to fit in. I played that game with my hubby's sister's in law on the weekend, hehe.
My sister recently introduced me to a game called sequence. It is a cross between a board game and a card game. You have to place buttons on a board as you turn up cards and get them in a sequence of 5 cards, while the other players try to block your moves. I almost never win board games. I find it strange to be in a position of attack and defense at the same time with them.
That same night we moved on to a game of euchre. I always get annoyed when I play that because my Mum loves to haggle over each card played and that drives me nuts. I don't know why she does that and I hate playing cards with her because any game with her becomes slow moving and is dragged out to last 3 times longer than it needs to. I am a bad and impatient daughter. Other than that I play spider solitaire on the puter. Mindlessly, over and over again. It is a way to waste time and block out what is going on around me I guess, like the rubbish they try to feed us on the T.V.

I just had the most lovely weekend. My daughter had her 21st birthday party. Her birthday is actually next week but she changed the date for her party to fit in with others being able to attend it.
Pictures will follow.
I got my hair done, we went together. Now you can't see the gray hairs that were showing around my hairline, he he. We stayed in a nice motel, ate out, went shopping, met up with family and friends. Lovely. The weekend also saw me take my Mum to her home town, Griffith, to another party. It was my uncle Bill's 60Th wedding anniversary. 60 years wow! Anyway as a consequence I got to see some of my cousins. I love those girls. I fit right in with them. Plus I saw a couple of my favorite Aunts and Uncle. It was quite a bit of driving but that is O.K. I don't mind that. And when Pete is driving I get to snooze, he he. It is my Aunty Joan's 80th birthday on 12th December so I will get to see them all again, together. All being well, I should be able to get to that. When we got home home last night we were just in time to go back out again to the Tuggeranong community festival and watch a freebie Ian Moss concert. It was a biggie because it was the 21st one. Also at the festival we enjoyed watching children play and dance in front of the stage to a west African drumming troupe. Cool, lots of fun. And then there were the fire works. They seemed to go on for ages. And.... and.... and.... a group of kids doing circus stuff with hoops, stilts, balls, fire and acrobats etc. Clever kids. The best part was watching the faces and reactions of the toddlers to the entertainment.
For the last 4 days we have returned to cooler wet weather. At the moment I am wearing a cardigan again. It is just a couple of days away from the official start of summer. Wet weather; I am not complaining as an urban gardener.... but....all the way in the car on the weekend I was seeing grain crops ready to strip being spoiled by the rain. The farmers had half finished stripping some paddocks and had to abandon their work. They will be watching and cursing the skies while their much awaited crops are being ruined. I reckon that Aussie farmers are the greatest gamblers in the world. If the conditions are not just right their years work is lost. If the grain gets wet at harvest time it can drop or be shot and sprung, which means it starts to sprout from the moisture and is ruined, or if they can't get their equipment into the paddock because it is too wet they lose it anyway. Not to mention the risk of spontaneous combustion if they strip wet. The only thing they can do with it is let their stock in to eat what they can of it. There are machines they can get to help dry it but they cost money and the quality is reduced. I guess there is a romantic image of life on the land that we long to have but it is not an easy way to learn a living.
I have done part of my christmas shopping. There is more to do yet. Have not sent any cards as yet, must get on to that. Pete is to have his gall badder removed on 21st December. So it will be a quiet Chrissy season this year. As far as the operation is concerned the sooner the better I guess but it is not a good time of year to have to go through that.
O.K. that is all my news and stuff this week.
Love Linda.

Sunday, 22 November 2009


The Sunday Scribblings prompt for this week is "Beauty".
What is that?
It is everywhere.

Beauty is....
In watching, the curve of a soft fine cheek, as your loved one sleeps,
and you watch their steady peaceful breathing.
Your baby's fingers reaching out to discover the marvelous word he has become a part of,
To learn and explore and wonder at.
The newness of their beginning.

Beauty is....
The eye of the beholder, we all see something different,
The face or body or aroma or characteristic that appeals to one may not appeal to another.
Mother nature's assurance that we are all different and those differences are meant to be.

Beauty is....
Beauty of form and function.
The curve of that pot you just made,
The taste of that food,
The smell and sight of that....
Which appeals to you personally.

Beauty is....
All the senses that were given to us to use.
Sight, sound, taste, hearing, smell.
The things that each of our senses bring us within their sub groups.
Color. Color. More color.In all its shades.

Beauty is....
I know I am always on this subject but.....
The world around us.
The flora and fauna,
The form of the land.
Natural and man made.

Beauty is....
Everywhere and in everything.

Beauty is...
your journey through life.
Don't miss a minute of it.

Love Linda.

Happy Birthday to us.

Here are a couple of photos I took during the week that was.
The first is my mum, blowing out the candles on her birthday cake. She turned 88 on the 16th of November. Happy Birthday Nan.
The picture above is of the flowers she bought me for my birthday yesterday. I am including them as my entry into the Friday Fertilizer prompt for this week. You should smell the perfume of those Asiatic lilies. Mmmm Mm.
I also got some more of one of my favorite perfumes and a little mp3 player which I am using right now. I just have to learn how to do the other stuff that ti tells me it is capable to do. I wanted one to take to work with me. Now I just have to find out how to delete all the stuff on it that I don't like from Pete's collection. Technophobe!
So Happy Birthday to me. I am now 50, over the hill. There was a thing on the news during the week saying that 50 is the new 40 for women. Must have been written by a baby boomer,the era of which I came into being, towards the end. Hehehe.
Yeah well.
It is just another number.
I get better in some ways as I age than when I was younger.
It is just another step on the journey isn't it.
The journey of being me.

That is all. Time got away from me again and it is already Sunday. So I am going to go across to Sunday Scribblings to see what is happening over there and add my 2 bobs worth for that.
Love Linda.
Living, loving, learning
along the way.

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Sunday scribblings "Oracle"

Sunday again. Another week rushes by too quickly. I had a visit from my sister who lives in central Queensland. She bought my Mum back but she has decided that she wants to live up there in Queensland with my sister so she will be returning there soon.
It is my Uncle and Aunt's 60th wedding anniversary in a few weeks and she will be here until after that. Unfortunately I can't go to it as it is also my daughter's 21st birthday on the same night. My little miss Braticus informs me she is going to get me drunk on her birthday. Hahaha. Not happening. Last time I did that was at a christmas party 3 years ago and I never lived that down. The time before that was about 20 years earlier. Alcohol is no oracle.


I searched for an oracle
For a moment of clarity
What I found was a man
Who told me the oracle
Is inside me
It always was there
You just need to find it
To use it.

This morning is a bright sunny morning and I have been outside dead heading roses and pottering around the garden. I have missed doing that so much, but now in this house I can do it all again. I emptied the worm juice from my worm farm, watered it down and spread it amongst the roses in the front yard and watered some of the potted plants with it as well. Later today it will be hot again. There has been some unseasonably hot weather in Australia for the last week or so. Ah yes global warming , don't you love it? Not!
I try to do my bit in my own small way.
Think local, act global.
That phrase is one from an advertising campaign that was around a few years ago. I always liked it.
My own little bit of gardening oracle advice.
Feed the earth with that which comes from it. Organically.
Use less water, keep it clean and preserve what you have.
Choose plants with their particular water needs in mind.
Do not try to plant things just so you can prove that you can succeed with them even though you know they are not suitable to your area. Yes I know my last post on the Botanic gardens here in Canberra I contradicted that. He he. But for home gardens I reckon it applies, leave the other stuff to the experts, and enjoy public gardens for what they provide us.
Love the earth and look after it in your own special way.
She is your mother.
Love Linda.

Friday, 13 November 2009

Friday Fertilizer

Here is my entry this week for the Friday Fertilizer prompt.
On remembrance day I took my sister and Mum to show off one of my favorite places in Canberra. The National Botanical Gardens. I go there every few months to see what is happening and in what is in flower and I am never disappointed.
The gardens are quite new as far as gardens go but they have made a wonderful job of developing them for such a short time. They are set out in areas representing different botanical regions of Australia and all of the plants there are native to Australia.
I might not get all the plant names right but will list them as I know them. There are many species belonging to each genus that are similar except for differences of colour or region they come from.
The first picture above is one of the callistemons, or bottle brushes.

This to my mind, is one of the most spectacular plants there ever were. I love this. It is a Gymea Lily or properly known as Doryanthes Excelsior. It looks like something that would have been around in the age of the dinosaurs. It is huge but is very specialized in the area it grows. Namely along the eastern coast of N.S.W. and in a few small areas north into southern Queensland.
This is a close up of the Gymea lily flower head. I was lucky to be able to get this pic by climbing up on some rocks for a close up. It is about the size of 2 basketballs. Years ago I used to know this plant as black fellas spears but of course now that is very politically incorrect. Lots of these plants can be found, in their natural habitat, through the Royal National Park just south of Sydney.
The plant in the picture above is a Kangaroo paw. Now they are bred in different colors and with a fungus resistant rootstock for the home garden and have become a popular garden plant. Years ago they were not easy to grow in the eastern states and there were many disappointments, but now they are better. They are a western Australian native and floral emblem.

This is one of the Waratah family. Telopea, but not the famous one from around Sydney. I think this is the Dorrigo plateau version.
Close up of flower from above shrub.Waratah.
The tiny white flower above is (I think) one of the tea tree family. I don't know its proper name but it is in full flower at the moment.
Large everlasting daisy. Don't know its proper name but I know it as that. Might be called sunray.
Tiny delicate rock orchid.
Another of the many types of everlasting daisy. So called because the petals are dry and papery and if you dry out the flowers they last for ages, years even.
The picture above is of my elder sister Ellen. She is walking through a gully that is representative of the rain forests in the Macpherson Ranges area of southern Queensland. Magic eh. Amazing that the botanists who built the gardens in Canberra, where we have cold frosty winters and dry hot summers, have managed to create this giant, green, damp, semi tropical garden here. Who would guess from this picture that you were in Canberra Australia's capital city.
Twas funny, Ellen's sandals broke a short time into our walk and as my feet are tougher than hers, I gave her my shoes to wear and I wandered about with no shoes. Must have looked good. It was a bit hot on the feet too. But better than missing out.
Pink everlastings. Again I do not know their proper name. I tried to grow these a couple of times, unsuccessfully. They are so pretty.
One of the many grevilleas.
Yellow thingy? Flower heads 5 or 6 cm across.
I think this is a Geralton wax plant but they are normally pink to white so..? Another of the western Australian natives.
Tea Tree.
Native hibiscus, I think....... maybe. See the tiny beetle. Please correct me if you know better.

A potted display just outside the office and shop at the gardens. If you enlarge this, that big fluffy flower at the back is called a nulla nulla. The front one with the purple/pink tips is very similar but I don't know what it is. Pretty huh. Hope you like my selection from the gardens best in flower at the moment.
I am still having computer troubles. The phone line keeps dropping out and I keep loosing the connection, so in my frustration I have not been visiting other people via my blog lately. Please forgive me. I have not forgotten my blog mates, just finding it difficult at the moment to follow up on puter stuff. Please don't go away and desert me. Since moving house we have had a lot of trouble with this and when the contract with our current Internet provider expires in a few weeks we will be changing it over to a more reliable company. Welllll....hopefully more reliable.
When things hopefully improve I will get back to reading and commenting again.
Love Linda.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

Sunday scribblings "Interview" Watching you watching me.

Interviews. I hate them. I hate being interviewed for employment. Hate it. There is nothing worse than being put in front of a panel of people whose job it is to judge you. I am not that strong that I can take that as a challenge, I find it completely intimidating. I know others love it though.
Last time I went for a job interview I was interviewed by two women who actually made me feel quasi comfortable. That is until I said that I had the occasional back ache. The faces went blank to me and they glanced at each other and I knew that was the end. Ah well, I knew I could have done the job, enjoyed it and done well at it. Their loss. That was about 14 months ago and I have not tried again since. I had a job, I still have a job and I am doing o.k. I know the quality of my work is very good and am told so . Ah this is making me sound so lame isn't it. Let me try another tack.
Interview. Um.
I do an interview each time I meet a new person. I have been doing a bit of this of late, meeting my new neighbors. (They seem like nice friendly normal people.) It is not just a verbal interview but a visual assessment as well. We all do it. We all check each other over to form some idea what sort of person we are dealing with. We look at physical features and facial expression then we search our memory for similarities with other characters we have known to help us make that assessment. We do this, consciously or not. Watching you watching me scenario. Some of us thrive on doing this others cringe from it.
I have learned however that my first ideas of a person is not always correct. The people who come across on first meeting as vibrant and exciting and whom I like instantly are often not the people I like later and visa verse. I like to try to reserve my judgment for later. Maybe that is my natural reticence when meeting new people and the self protective instinct kicking in.
Facial expressions are so important. I like to think I can read faces, especially when I get to know some one a little better.
Maybe that is a case of just being more tuned in to their wave length.
Maybe I am wrong and just a bloody idiot and my assessment of other people is warped beyond repair.
I shouldn't be writing tonight.
But I am gonna post it anyway.
Another piece of blog drivel on the WWW.
Written by some silly old woman who hates interviews.
Love Linda.

Friday, 6 November 2009

Friday fertilizer.

G'Day ,
I am back to put in my two bobs worth at the Friday Fertilizer prompt that is run by 'Tootsie time". You can find her on my side bar. I am even posting on Friday. Howzat.
Oh looky looky what I got. I didn't plant these or prune them but I have watered them and fed them, does that count? They are wonderful aren't they? And as my friend Merle said the garden is mine while I am living here. Thanks Merle. I had been missing having my garden in Junee for so long. Merle, you helped me by saying that.
I can do this and cut them to admire and scent the inside of my house again. LOVE it. And I love this old antique ceramic vase, I think by the style of it, it is from the 1940's.
See, not all my vases are pottery. I did make some more this week at the pottery society Thursday drop in session though. Hehe, just in case I should ever run out.
Hey, side story, I am so dumb. Yesterday when I was there I weighed the candle thingy I made and went to pay for it. The price for firing and glazing the piece came to $37+ dollars. Cleaned out my wallet. I nearly died and was thinking I really will have to cut back on making bigger things. Anyway on the way home I realised that I had weighed the candle thingy on a pounds scale not a kilograms scale and had paid for the Kg weight. That made it over 2.2 times the price I should have paid. Bright eh!

I know the pics are not the brightest but it is cooler and threatening rain this morning. This rose is by the front steps. It is great, and has been open and holding its shape and colour for about 4 days now. Don't know the proper name.
This is a hybrid tea rose I think and if you could see it you might comment , like I did, wow, could this be any redder! Love red.
Bush rose out the front side fence.
One word. Delicate.
My Mum used to have this rose out the front of her house years ago. The color always reminded me of old fashioned lipstick so I used to call it the lipstick rose.
when I cleaned one of the house I do on Wednesday I couldn't resist cutting one of her roses and putting it inside her house. I wrote a little verse beside it for her.

A touch of
spring's perfection
A long stemmed
Red red rose.

Corny aren't I. I hope she didn't mind me cutting her rose.
Then I thought I might pick one of the beautiful red edged, white, double delight roses and leave another one, they have one of the best perfumes of any rose as well.

Red rose for love
Purity is white
A mix of the two is
A double delight.

I better go do some house work instead of playing in here. My sister and Mum are coming here today as a surprise for my birthday. Early because it is not for a few weeks yet but they were coming in this direction god 50. I found out about the surprise last night by over hearing a phone call I wasn't supposed to. Oops.

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Friday Fertilizer

G'Day again,
Two posts in one day. While I was sticky beaking around the blogosphere a while ago I came across this lady in Canada who has a prompt called "Friday Fertilizer". Hmmm I like that. So here are some pictures I took to celebrate spring here in Canberra around my garden.
I hope you enjoy them. The first one is out the front beside the drive way. It is Snow in Summer.
You know what these are. Even non gardeners can recognize a rose. There are quite a few around the yard all starting to break out in bloom at the moment. Lovely.

Above is a gorgeous Iris, behind that is Granny's Bonnets and in the pot behind that is a rhododendron. A friend gave me the Granny's Bonnet seeds years ago, she had been experimenting with cross pollinating them. They are also known as aquilegia and columbines. These purple ones are the plain ones, the crossed ones didn't come up this year as well as the purples. I want to divide the iris and spread them around the garden beds and get them out of these pots. I have russet red iris, a white and a blue ruffled one as well. An old man (Keith) who volunteered at Junee hospital when I worked there gave them to me and I bought them to Canberra with me.
I love these pretty perfumed dianthus. They are in good sized clumps around the front garden beds. Also known as clove pinks, from the same family as carnations. I have some double ones in pots but they are not flowering yet.
White Azalea in the driveway.
Million Bells and English daisies in a hanging pot out the back yard. Tough little fellas.
O.k, I hope I can follow the rules and stay with this one. Thanks for the opportunity. i will have a look at what others have put in this prompt. Should be good!
Bye Again.
Love Linda.

Sunday Scribblings "Adventure"

The prompt this week from Sunday Scribblings is "Adventure".
Well, your whole life is an adventure.
From start to finish.
The different stages we pass through on our journeys
all provide different adventures.
Learning along the way is its own adventure.

Yesterday afternoon I saw something horrible, very upsetting. I have been waiting to hear the news to confirm what I saw but nothing has been on as yet.
Over our house, almost every day, we see sky divers jumping out of planes. A bit before 5 yesterday afternoon I was out in the back yard when I heard a plane flying over and stopped to watch. Three parachutes came out of the plane. Two of them opened the third did not. I watched in horror as it fell picking up speed along the way. I think it would have landed near the oval on the other side of this suburb. I listened for ages but there were no sirens afterward so maybe it was not I person I saw falling. I could not actually see an outline of a person ( but then you don't from here) just the parachute falling with something underneath it. I so hope it was not a person I saw fall.
A few days earlier I was watching three others sky dive overhead and I actually heard a woman's voice screaming Whooo Hooo and I thought that was great. Not something I would ever attempt, but great fun I guess, if you are an adventurer of that kind. Peter's sister has done this many times. She reckons it is great.
Adventure comes to me in different , more gentle forms. I would never be brave enough to pursue such physical types of adventure.
When I was a child my cousin Joe and I were good mates and were always up to something together. We were called the terrible twins as he is just three weeks older than me. It is actually his birthday tomorrow. We will be 50. OMG. When we got together we had adventures. We did things that were probably thought of by our adult carers as dangerous, but we were just kids pushing and playing with the boundaries. We had heaps of fun together. Swimming in the canals around Griffith N.S.W. Joe trying to prove that you can't ride a horse past a camel at the show grounds without getting thrown off, eating fruit off the trees in the orchards until someone chased us, getting stuck in the middle of bindi patches without our shoes. When we were in our teens we used to go swimming in lake Albert every afternoon when Joe was staying at our place. He had his license then and we would burn around in Mum's old car. It didn't go very fast but we used to see how fast we could get out to Oura beach and try to knock a few minutes off the time each trip. They we would spin around on the river flats and have a great time. We always washed the car each afternoon so Mum would not know we had been playing in the mud/dirt. Mum thought that it was lovely that Joe was looking after her car so well. Hehehehe. God it is a wonder we are still here!
Yabbies are little crayfish that live in dams. Australian natives, fun for kids to catch and very tasty too, I reckon they taste better than prawns, but ouch if they nip you. One day (We were 9yrs old) we decided we would go Yabbying. Joe took some raw meat out of the freezer and put it on the roof of the shed in the sun the day before so it would go nice and smelly because the yabbies like it that way. We made our nets from old wire coat hangers and some chicken wire and took a roll of cotton from the sewing machine.
To catch yabbies you get a few feet of cotton, tie the smelly meat on one end and a stick on the other end. You throw the meat on the string into the dam where it is shallow an poke the stick into the mud at the edge of the dam. Then you watch for the string to get tugged. You slowly, slowly pull the string in until you can see the yabbie holding on to the meat, then you scoop the net underneath and get the yabbie in the net. Or if you are good you can slowly pull in the yabbie until it is at the edge of the water and then flick hard on the string and the yabbie flies through the air and up on the bank where you grab it quick before it gets back into the water and away. Sometimes you have 3 or 4 on the line. Lots of fun. I used to like doing it the second way because it was more exciting. Even more fun if someone was behind you and the flying yabby hit them and made them squeal. Anyway.
Next morning we took off early before the other kids were out of bed because we didn't want them tagging along, and besides Joe was annoyed at his older brother Denny for something, I can't remember what, and didn't want to include him. We left at dawn with our fishing gear in two buckets and walked for miles to a dam Joe knew had some Yabbies in it up near Scenic hill. We got a great haul and our two buckets were full and very heavy to carry back to Joe's house on the other side of town, but we did it, with lots of rest stops along the way. On the way home there was a black and white kitten that had been dumped outside a shop. We stopped at to buy a bottle of drink and asked the lady in the shop and she said the kitten had been there for a few days. Being kids we couldn't just leave it there could we? Joe carried it home with us inside his shirt, getting lots of flea bites on him along the way. He sent me inside first to butter up my Aunty Joan about the kitten. Hehehe. He had that cat for years. Then we boiled up a big pot of water and cooked our Yabbies and didn't give Denny, my older cousin, one of them.
Then there was the time we caught frogs in our gum boots to scare the girls with, I didn't consider myself a silly squealing girl but had fun teasing the ones who were. We also used to pinch petrol because it used to lay inside the hose from the pump in the back yard of my grandparents house. Then we would get some money and go down the shops and buy a box of matches and write things in the dirt and set them alight. We had a fascination for fire. I still do, pottery has earth, water and fire, my favorite things. I didn't think we were being dangerous because to our 9 year old minds we knew what we were doing. I don't think as an adult I would approve of kids wandering around at will like we were able to do in that country town years ago. Now days parents are paranoid about letting their kids loose. Which of course I understand as a parent when you read and hear on the news of the horrors that can happen. My own kids were a little in between these two extremes in their upbringing. They did have the pleasure of some freedom because they lived in a small town but were not left to wander as much as I was able to do just a few years earlier.
I think that kids adventures are important because they are a great learning experience. You can't learn the same from a T.V. screen or a computer game played safely inside your own lounge room, they are get no physical exercise from that.
But as a parent you think of all the what if's in letting your kids out to play without adult supervision.
Love Linda.

Sunday, 25 October 2009

Sunday Scribblings "Shame"

Lizzy home and friend.
You can just see in the second picture Lizzy running for cover into it's home in the rocks.

The Sunday Scribblings prompt this week is shame.
I thought about it last night and again laying in bed this morning.
Shame is;
Having influence on the ideas and ideals of others and not using it kindly or correctly.
Bought about by not living up to the norms that are enforced on us by others, self or the media.
Enhancing or giving the truth with a twist.
Not recognizing the last comment or lying to yourself about it.
Failing to follow the personal credo you have given yourself to live by.
Remembering a time when you didn't do the above.
Something that others give to you to keep you under their control.
Not being in control and facing the consequences.
Lots more than this too......
I could give examples for each of the points above and more from my own life experience and my observations of others.
The very first time I can remember feeling shame was when I was probably 4 years old. The boy who lived next door to us was a little monster who constantly pinched and poked and hit me when ever no one was looking. One day I lost my temper with him and picked up a plank of wood then hit him in the head with it. Boy did I get in trouble for that one. I couldn't understand that he was allowed to treat me that way but I was not allowed to loose my temper back at him. As a 4 yr old I didn't separate the ideas of anger payback and self control.
Other things I am ashamed of are that I yelled and screamed at my kids when they were little. My second 2 kids would do what they were told and were reasonably easy to get along with but my eldest was a challenge. He would stand up and yell right back in my face and never give an inch. Wonder where he got that from? Hehehehe. Stubbornness may be a bit of a family trait. I never did that to my parents though. My eldest is now probably the closest of my children to me. I guess all that boils down to me admitting that my temper is the personality trait I am most ashamed of. Throughout my whole life I have completely lost my temper, enough times to count on one hand. At the time you are quite pleased that you stood up for yourself, but then later you are not. You know when you have gone too far, then you have to take the consequences. It takes a long time for me to work up to that state but when I do , people move. Basically I am a wimp, about confrontation, well, most of the time anyway. But, I won't be pushed or bullied for long before I crack. I do lots of dumb things I am ashamed of myself for doing later, but seem quite reasonable in the heat of the moment.
This subject seems to be expanding as I write and I want to add more anecdotes as I remember them.
Like the time when I was in primary school and the teacher was bullying a student who could not spell a simple word. She asked me to go next door to the class of younger pupils and get one of them to come in and show this kid how to spell the word. I was so proud she had asked me to do a message, I felt important. Then I did the message and on the way back to the classroom I told the younger kid how to spell the word. I got in trouble for that. Foiled the cruel game by the teacher though.
Or the time when I bought home a eastern long necked turtle on one of my wanderings that I had found in a dam. The lady next door went crook on me for taking it out of the wild. I felt so bad and returned it. A lesson learned by a young animal lover.
In conclusion...............Maybe shame is a trait given us to teach us a lesson......................... Yes.

Yesterday Pete and I went to Wagga. Pete continued on to the aviation museum at Temora as they were having a flying day and he loves that stuff. I stayed in Wagga to do some gardening at (my parents) my old family home where my son and daughter are now living. My second son now thinks of the house as his. He has been living there for about 4 years now and is in the process of designing and installing a new kitchen. We went down the street and bought a great gas oven. It was originally $5,500 worth of goods but we got it for less than half price . It included the cook top, oven, range hood and a stainless steel cabinet for it to go into. Cool eh! It was the last of its kind and reduced down to get rid of it.
I also broke up the soil, fertilized mulched and replanted the garden bed along the front fence, then moved a few other plants around the yard. Should be good, if he bloody well remembers to water it this time and doesn't let it all die. When we were younger and living there, my Mum had a reasonable garden growing. Most of that had been let go. I tried to choose tough plants that don't need much care once they are established. Lets hope.
Out the front yard here where we are living now I discovered a big termite nest. I think it is a termite nest. I was weeding in the front garden bed this morning when I noticed the old prunus tree was rotten looking in the middle. I tapped it and a bit of wood broke away to reveal a hole below the tree. I put the hose in it and it took probably 10 minutes for the water to come to the top and then it started running out through some small holes that I thought were ant holes further down the yard, about 6 ft away. Oh oh.
We have a house inspection on Tuesday so I will show the real estate people when they come here. The poor owner is not going to like me, because if it is a termite nest it will cost him money to get it attended to. I hope they are not eating the house as well. Apart from that the curtains in the house are so old that they are starting to disintegrate when you touch them. Nope! my new land lord is really not going to like me.
We also have a friend here. There is a good size blue tongue lizard living in the garden edging in the front garden bed. I have not seen many this big so it must be fairly old and living here for a long time. The pictures up the top of this post show his/ her home and a close up of it having a sunbath. Isn't it a lovely critter. This one is about 14 inches top to tail. Cool. What should I name her/ him. Larry, Lizzy, Lorne or Lucy? Hehehehehehe. Love it.
I hope if the hole at the bottom of the tree out the front is a termite hole that the treatment it needs doesn't harm my lizard friend.
Blue tongues are harmless, they do have a dark blue tongue, hence the name, they eat snails and slugs and bugs so they are good to have in the garden, they puff themselves up like the one in the picture above is doing to make themselves look bigger and more fierce when they are scared. Lots of people keep them in tanks as exotic pets but you have to have a license to keep them. We have to keep an eye out for it and make sure Rufus does not discover it when he goes out the front yard.
Love Linda.