Sometimes on the way to your dream,

you get lost and find a better one.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Breaking News

from Channel Seven News: Australia now has 33 Billionaires. Thirty-three!
Sadly I am not one of them.

also from Channel Seven News: we had a fantastic lightning show in our skies last night.
I had no idea, my doors and windows were closed against the heat. If I'd known I would have stepped outside for a look-see. 

from Today Tonight, a current affairs show right after the news, possibly more news that might help find the Beaumont children, Jayne, age 9, Arna, age 7, and Grant, age 4 missing since 1966.
Probes in the area of a possible grave have exposed what appears to be a soil disturbance below ground in a spot where someone was hired years ago, to dig what he thought at the time was a very large grave.
The weekend papers will be full of this story. I hope. And I hope with all my heart this mystery may finally be solved

from my table right here: eating sticky, messy, hot and delicious finger food, devilled chicken wings, is not a good idea when reading blogs and leaving comments.

How has your day been?

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Sunday Selections

I've lost track of the numbers, for me this is #357, others are ahead since I missed a few weeks.

Begun way back in the mist of time by Kim of Frog Ponds Rock and now continued by me, with a drastic relaxation of rules.
Originally meant for showcasing old photos lost on your files, never seeing the light of day, the meme has morphed into photos of your choice, new or old, good or not-so-good, anything you please, but nothing rude please.
If you are participating, please leave me a comment so I can buzz along and have a look.
Elephant's Child always participates, and her pictures are always worth seeing.

in the weeks before Christmas, I made several batches of snickerdoodles. As you can see, they didn't all keep their intended shape. I named this one fishducky.

my neighbour K gave me a catmint plant which had outgrown its pot, I trimmed it, replanted it and gave the trimmed bits to Lola. She loved it! Chewed the leaves, rubbed her face on the crushed stems, (crushed to release the oils and fragrance), she spread it around a little and rolled around in it.

several people have helped themselves to cuttings from my Gollum, you can see the stem is bare, so I did the same. Took pieces from the tips,

and replanted them in separate pots. They seem to be doing well in spite of our heat 42.2C Friday(108F, second day over 40C), today is a little cooler, so I will get out there and water after the sun begins to go down. 
I've started watering my patch of lawn too, the grounds have an extensive watering system in place, but no one has turned it on for a couple of summers now and my once lush green lawn is now too short and looking very brown. The lawnmower person has his blades set too low. I know I'm going to have to pay for the extra water used, but I think it will be worth it.

my Philodendron Xanadu is recovering now that I've moved it to a shadier spot, I really like these and plan on buying a few more, when fully grown they are dense and deep green and quite big. They will help to shade other things. 

Christmas Cactus cuttings, a gift from a valued friend, are all showing new babies and I'll have to get the pots hung soon after the summer of course, so they can hang over and show off their flowers when that happens. I'll need to get some sort of frame to hang the pots on, the thin branches of the plum trees won't be strong enough, perhaps a few "shepherd's crook" hanging supports such as Joanne uses will be the way to go.

My rhubarb is still looking very tiny, but has sent out 'runners' and made new plants, if you look closely you'll see 5 small clumps where there was once only one.

I'm hopeful of being able to cut and use homegrown rhubarb next winter. Apple and rhubarb crumble, yum!

this brown pot of aeoniums was on the porch and not doing so well, so I moved it down into the garden with others that I had planted in the ground. The ones in the pot are now doing much better, while the ones in the ground have developed brown leaves around the green centres.

this last image may be of interest to Lee. I was reading a story based in Alaska and got out my enormous, falling apart, 45 years old, huge Times Atlas, to look up the general area depicted in the story. Imagine my surprise to find Alaska also has a Hinchinbrook Island! Lee often writes about her time on Australia's own Hinchinbrook Island, running the Resort there. I hope I got her link correct.
If you enlarge the image, you'll see Alaska's Hinchinbrook just below and to the left of Cordova.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

OMG Facts for today

One of these belongs to yesterday and the other I found under a pile of newspapers on my table.

I imagine a sudden whisper in your ear might just break the concentration a little.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Wednesday's Words on a Friday

The original Words for Wednesday was begun by Delores and eventually taken over by a moveable feast of participants when Delores had computer troubles.

The aim of the words is to encourage us to write, a story, a poem, whatever comes to mind.
If you are posting an entry on your own blog, please let us know so we can come along and read it.

This month the words are supplied by Cindi and can be found here.

This week's words are:

1. birthday
2. robbery
3. earthquake
4. execution
5. Pooh
6. Paris


1. Hepburn
2. ferry
3. murder
4. rolling
5. ledger
6. Tobruk

Here is my story:

As a child I learned from my mother that I had been named Audrey because I had been born on May 4th, the same day as Audrey Hepburn, the actress. After learning that her mother was an actual Baroness, I always imagined Audrey Hepburn as a princess, so by that reasoning, I was too, since I shared the name and birthdate.

Looking back now, I see how silly I was, but four year olds are always fanciful aren't they?
I remember the year my 6th birthday party had a "Breakfast at Tiffany's" theme, with mother asking that all birthday gifts be wrapped in pale blue paper, just like Tiffany's famous "blue boxes". 

There was outrage at the bakery however, when mother ordered a pale blue cake and was informed of the cost. "Highway robbery!" she exclaimed, "I could fly to Paris and back for that cost!"
Which probably wasn't true, but she did calm down and pay for the cake, much to my relief, because the other option was having mother make a cake herself and we all remembered that disaster! 
Raspberry jam and red icing all over the kitchen, prompting my Grandfather to ask had there been a murder while he was out. 

He went out once a week, my Grandfather, on the Manly Ferry, rolling to and fro on the waves as it made its way across the bay. In vain I tried to tell Grandfather it was a Harbor, but he insisted it was a Bay until the day he died.

Every week, he would take his ledger in his briefcase and have lunch with his old mates from the war. The Rats of Tobruk, he claimed they'd been, but there was never any proof apart from his stories. I suppose they could have been true.

The ledger contained notes on all the lunches, who had attended, who had died since the last one, who was there in place of a father or grandfather. The execution of these 'minutes' as he called them was very precise.
No detail was left out and the pages often featured small pencil drawings of the mates and the food too.

I still have it somewhere. The ledger I mean. It was one of the things I managed to save during an earthquake years later, after I'd moved to New Zealand with my mother after Grandfather died.

She wanted to be near her own family again for some reason. I'd never even known about them until she mentioned moving there.
Apparently there'd been some sort of trouble and she had run away with my dad when I made it clear I was definitely "on the way". 

When we arrived in New Zealand, my Grandma, mother's mother, presented me with a small 'Winnie the Pooh' bear, saying it had been my mother's and was now to be mine.
I still have that too, but very little else. The earthquake took almost everything.....

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

OMG fact for the day

well, two of them actually, I forgot to post the other one last week.

These are from a tear-off OMG Facts calendar that I received for Christmas, from my niece G.

1. January 10th
So far, man has survived on earth for 2 million years. The dinosaurs lasted 150 million years.

2. January 17th
McDonald's daily customer traffic is 62 million - that's more than the population of Great Britain.

Not all of the facts are worthy of sharing, but I'll put up the ones that I think are.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Sunday Selections #?

Welcome to my Sunday Selections. 

I can't say this will be a regular thing, my camera has been gathering dust in a drawer, I haven't felt much like going out and taking photos, but I was looking through some really old stuff looking for a particular photo, which of course I couldn't find :( and thought you might like to see a bit of my past.

I may have shown some of these before, but here goes:

After having to sell a house for the second time, (same reason as having to sell the first one), we moved back into renting and found an enormous house with room for everybody, 6 of us, plus a son-in-law to be and a baby grand daughter.

this is the front of the house which may look smallish, but that's distance, I was across the street with an old film style camera.

this is the driveway side, taken about halfway down. The shed at the end was the owner's garage, (locked with some of his possessions in it) and beyond that was a huge garden.

this is the hallway leading down to the kitchen. See all the vine leaves on the walls? That's not wallpaper, it is hand painted stencils and it was in almost every room, in differing colours.

this was my (stencilled but not vine leaves), bedroom, at the front of the house in what was probably the original living room, with double doors, with glass panes that I put curtains on to for privacy.

the business side of the kitchen, messy of course. There was a lot of family life happening here, with working adults and four teenagers, three of whom were also working and the soon to be son-in-law, also working.  I hated those brown veneer cabinets, but there were plenty of them, about 500% more storage than I have now.

the other side of the kitchen had a dining room, separated by the arch you see here, with the fridge in the kitchen and the matching freezer in the dining room, because there just wasn't room to have them side by side in the kitchen.

the dining room, with our enormous extension table that measured about seven feet long when fully extended, although I remember having it that way only once. The matching buffet and hutch on the left there survived several house moves without a single scratch. I miss those pieces of furniture quite a lot. 

the front room, which is a closed in section that used to be a front porch. Hubby and I were living "separately" by then, I had the bedroom and the rest of the house, he spent 99% of his time in here when he wasn't at work or other places. You can see he had the good furniture in there, since all the other rooms became bedrooms.

the back 'porch' right outside the kitchen had a huge grapevine with sweet sultana grapes. The yellow box structure you see there is a concrete base that used to hold a rainwater tank, long gone by the time we moved in. Just back from that was the laundry, part of the house, but with a lower roof, which we used to climb onto to watch the fireworks back in the days when "Skyshow" was still an annual event.

the only section of (uncut) lawn we had was there too, with the washing line and a mandarin tree. This is me coming in to get a second load for hanging out.

looking from the kitchen door aaaall the way back to the fence you can just see if you squint. Maybe. That tiny grey rectangle almost dead centre.

and the opposite photo: I was standing at that back fence, inside what used to be a chicken run, with the roosting/laying shed on the left behind the wire that is holding up an impressive stand of asparagus. On the right, just outside the chook run was a huge fig tree. 

looking at the fruit trees section that was behind the owner's shed/garage.The huge tree on the right is an old nectarine tree, to the left of that, that smaller tree was peaches and a bit further along, the even smaller tree was also peaches. A bit further back and behind those was a big old apricot tree. The greenery running the whole length behind the trees was grape vines. The bare patch front left was newly planted with several hundred carrot seeds. As they grew we thinned them by pulling out baby carrots leaving room for the rest to mature. The green stuff, front centre is mint in several varieties, already there when we moved in.

the veggie gardens, mostly not planted at this stage, behind the carrot/mint sections, behind the uncut lawn. The soil in this entire yard was so rich ad easy to work. The bushy green in the far right corner of the veggie patch was a zucchini plant which grew so much zucchini I was passing baskets of it to family members and taking bucketfuls to work as well. The low greenery front left was bush beans, with weekly harvests enough to feed all of us and freeze some. All those tall stakes had baby tomato plants interspersed with capsicums (bell peppers) and way down the back you can see onions about to flower. Those onions were there when we moved in.

Here is J setting up his basketball hoop, taking a break from spreading straw mulch.

this is me and hubby, pretending to (be together) discuss the garden, at my mum's insistence, she wanted a photo. The dark hair is not my natural colour.


Friday, January 12, 2018

Wednesday's Words on a Friday

The original Words for Wednesday was begun by Delores and eventually taken over by a moveable feast of participants when Delores had computer troubles.

The aim of the words is to encourage us to write, a story, a poem, whatever comes to mind.
If you are posting an entry on your own blog, please let us know so we can come along and read it.

This month the words are supplied by Cindi and can be found here.

This week's words are:

1. King
2. avalanche
3. canyon
4. pianist
5. Wyatt
6. marriage


1. supreme
2. packers
3. pie
4. jazz
5. crash
6. farewell

here is my story, which links back to the Jimmy Raven chapters from long ago:

1988   Alaska

While the siren whooped loudly throughout the town, Wyatt King, owner and manager of King's Snow Rescue, called in his team. Several were already on the way, having heard the siren from the first whoop. Ted Jansen, who lived way out near the canyon was the last to arrive and speedily began donning his gear as Wyatt told of the location of the avalanche.

Mount Katano, favoured site of many mountain climbing training schools, had inexplicably dropped several tons of snow and debris down its northern side. Several rescue huts were dotted around the area and the paths to those needed clearing as quickly as possible.

More importantly, Jake Raven had been on the roster for checking and restocking supplies at those rescue huts along with Simon Goldberg and there had been no reply to the latest radio message sent just before the siren started its whooping.

As they set off, some of the men tried lightening the somber atmosphere by joking with Harry Burke about his romance with the new jazz pianist, Claire Kovick, who was preparing to put on a concert at the town's solstice celebration. "Marriage on the cards?" joked Ted.  Harry blushed and changed the subject, asking if anyone knew which hut Jake and Si were likely to be at.

Wyatt replied their last communication had been from hut three, where they had restocked with supplies from the new company Supreme Packers, and were now headed towards hut four. "Right in the path of the avalanche," he said.

Moods immediately became more serious and all the men checked their equipment one last time, then began the arduous climb towards the plateau where hut four was. Or had been.

Reaching their destination a few hours later, Wyatt reported back to the base camp at the lower levels that the plateau was now a good deal smaller, most of it now lying somewhere at the base of the mountain, while the rescue hut was buried under quite a bit of snow and rocks.

The men were quiet as they shovelled away snow and rolled away the smaller boulders, exposing the crushed timbers of hut four. Carefully moving those aside,  they uncovered the bodies of Simon and Jake. Hearts were heavy as they surveyed the damage of the crashing avalanche, realising they must now say farewell to their mates.

Wyatt in particular was saddened to know it would be his job to break the news to Molly Raven and young Jimmy. Simon had been a bachelor and an orphan, there would be no family to inform.

**** I don't know the names of any Alaskan mountains prone to avalanches, so if any of you can hep me out with a name I would be grateful. Or perhaps suggest an imaginary name? Thank you.  

Edit: mountain has been named Mount Katano