Sometimes on the way to your dream,

you get lost and find a better one.

Monday, April 30, 2012

sooner or later, this winning streak has to end

But in the meantime, how fabulous is this horse? 
20 consecutive races, 20 consecutive wins.

Black Caviar.

Yesterday's newspaper was full of stories and pictures of her.

Now if I was a gambling type, I might consider putting money on Black Caviar in her next race.
But the odds don't look too inviting, the paper says I'd have to put down $100 just to win $5, not a good deal in my opinion.
Luckily I'm not the gambling type, except for Lotto mega-draws.
I'm lucky in other ways.....I have a job, a home, skin that hasn't wrinkled hardly at all yet....
but when it comes to winning money.......I'm a loser.

None of which is important.

This post is to show you the pictures I photographed from the front pages of the paper.

Don't tell me horses don't smile! Black Caviar on the left, unknown horse on the right.


Here she is getting a well-earned drink and splash down. Look at that smile!
This has to be the happiest horse I've ever seen.


Black Caviar, still smiling, cruising home 4 1/2 lengths in front of her competitors.
Clearly this horse just loves to run. And win.


Here's that smile again, just in case you missed it the first time.

When Black Caviar retires from racing, I'd say her owners will reap another fortune from the breeding circles.


Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sunday Selections # 67

It's Sunday Selections time again!

Time to post photos that have been languishing in your files.
Bring them out and let them shine!

Sunday Selections is brought to us by Kim, of Frog Ponds Rock, who wanted to share some of the older photos of the many thousands that she takes.
I thought it was a great idea, so I jumped on board, as have quite a few others.

I often choose a theme for my photos and this week I bring you  the only cat in the flats that hasn't immediately run away from me.

The Cat. 

I turned onto this path just as she was coming along it, so I stopped to see if she would come to me.

Instead, she chose the rose garden, weaving in and out of the irises......


climbing up and down one of the rose bushes.....


returning to the irises, staying just out of reach, only occasionally looking straight at me.



she has such pretty markings, and tufted ears, reminding me a little of a lynx.


She eventually chose a spot to sit and contemplate her morning, so I turned my attention to the rose bushes, which were covered in a froth of white as they gave their final burst of autumn flowers.


This is not the rose garden closest to my flat, this one is further around, belonging to someone who clearly knows what they're doing when it comes to roses.


To join in with Sunday Selections, simply post your photos under the Sunday Selections title, link back to Kim, then  go to Frog Ponds Rock and add your name to the linky list before leaving Kim a comment.





Saturday, April 28, 2012

pears

.....three.....

.....two.....
.....one.....


.....none.

No fruit! 
This will never do!
So I went shopping.
For more fruit of course.


apples and bananas this time...so of course I needed the bigger bowl.
Luckily I'd just washed the dust out of it.

Friday, April 27, 2012

it took a while....

....but autumn is finally here in Adelaide.

Skies that were still light at 8pm a month ago, are now dark at 6.30pm.
Mornings are chilly, nights that were comfortably cool for sleeping are now becoming cold.

Dressing gowns are being brought out of hibernation, slippers are being dusted off, fleecy tops are being washed ready to wear.

And the trees are finally changing their clothes.
After wearing nothing but green for the past six months we now see them in greens and golds, greens and bronze, greens and browns, golds and reds.

Here are a few photos taken in my street last Sunday.


gold amongst the green.

green, gold and bronze.

I love this red/orange shade.
footpaths are carpeted in colour.


fences are edged with crisp dry leaves that have a sweet tea fragrance. sadly, this fragrance doesn't last long, once the leaves have been rained on a few times the sweet smell is gone.
not all fallen leaves have this fragrance, these particular trees do,  liquid ambar and maple trees also smell like tea when the leaves fall.

these "paper lanterns" that were soft and pink all spring and summer are now crisp and dry, opening to drop their seeds.....



....and now seen in shades of copper,


and brown.


the low-growing, wide-spreading "flower carpet" roses that cover much of the footpath are also dying off now, but we know they'll be back next spring.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

I have this award...

which was presented to me by The Elephant's Child, thank you so much EC.




Liebster is a German word that translates to; dearest, beloved or in this case favorite. The idea of the Liebster Award is to give it to an up and coming blog with fewer than 200 followers. – in order to create new connections, and bring attention to their wonderful blogs.



I've had awards in the past and frequently forget to acknowledge them here on the blog, although I do usually thank the presenter in their comment sections, or by email.


Here are the conditions that go along with accepting the award;


1. Thank the Liebster Blog Award presenter on your blog.  (that would be me)

2. Link back to the blogger who presented you the award. (again, me)

3. Copy and paste the Liebster Blog Award on your blog.  (don't lose it in amongst your documents and spend hours searching for it)

4. Present the award to 5 bloggers who have a following 200 or less, who you feel deserve it.

5. Let them know they have been chosen by leaving a comment on their blog.



I had a hard time finding 5 bloggers to give this to. I have so many favourite people out there....but I've narrowed it down to these lovely people.


1. Kath at Blurb from the Burbs.
Kath's was the first blog I ever read and she was among the first few who encouraged me to start my own blog. She's funny, she's real and is currently living in Geneva!

2. Andrew at High Riser.
Andrew is a quiet man who posts bits of this, bits of that, stories about his family and interesting little snippets of history too.

3. Jayne at Our Great Southern Land.
Jayne's blog delves into historical facts about our country that I know nothing about, despite having lived here since I was 9 months old.

4. Joanne at Cup On The Bus.
Joanne has been leaving lovely comments for me for a while now, but I've only recently been reading her blog and I find I'm enjoying it  quite a bit.

5. Dave at The Plastic Mancunian.
Dave lives in England, Manchester I believe, but he travels the world for his work and has wonderful tales to tell of other countries, as well as tales of his home life.

Now, I have to follow the rules and let these people know they have an award waiting for them.

If it was up to me, I'd choose so many more people, but the rules say 5...........

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Whimsical Wednesday #20

Whimsical Wednesday is your weekly dose of giggles, brought to you by googled images, via Drifting Through Life.

Today is ANZAC day here in Australia, and there may be a few sad thoughts around, so I'm hoping to spread at least a little cheer here.

So that's how the water gets in!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Hope Chest

 Hope Chests

Anyone remember those?

Of course you do. 

Way back in those "Days of Yore", young women learned at any early age how to screw up their noses, squint their little eyes, and stab their little fingers, while stitching away laboriously at cotton or linen items for their "Hope Chest".
By candlelight.
Antimacassars, doilies, table napkins, silk handkerchiefs, nightgowns, all were hemmed by hand and embroidered, some daintily, others heavily covered in hand stitched designs, then packed away in a large trunk or chest or some other kind of cabinet, waiting for the day when these girls would marry and use these lovingly (?) prepared items in their own homes.

I had never given any thought to getting married, certainly not to collecting stuff to furnish a home, but when I was sixteen I went to live with my mother, whose one mission in life seemed to be getting me safely married off.

She began giving me gifts at Christmas and birthdays that would go into my "Hope Chest".
Keep an eye on the younger kids (step siblings) for a day?
Rewarded with teatowels.

Bath towels, hand towels, face washers, either individual items or matched sets, dish towels, sheets and pillow cases, even a bedspread one year for Christmas.

She encouraged me to spend a little of my wages each week to buy something for my future home.

(Geez, I'd only been there three months and she wanted me to move out already?)

So I bought a kitchen utensil set, a set of knives, a set of saucepans, some wooden spoons.

As far as I could see, that would do. I had sheets, towels, (almost enough to stock the linen department at Myer), saucepans. What more could I possibly want?

Yes, ignorance was my middle name.

Then at work one day, I was listening in at lunch while a girl about my age was telling us about everything she had collected and the latest addition to her Hope Chest. A sturdy set of machine-bottomed saucepans. (Huh? What? A pan is a pan is a pan, right?)

She'd been working almost three years and had begun collecting items from the very first pay packet. Her bedroom was stacked full from floor to ceiling and she had boxes of things lining one side of her parents hallway. Half the backyard shed was filled with her stuff. (I wondered where she put herself at night). She had enough of everything to last her at least 10 years of marriage. Including canned foods, toilet paper, even baby clothes and nappies.

I was gobsmacked!

I didn't even have a boyfriend, wasn't thinking about my own future home yet.

But I went shopping the next payday and bought a half dozen teatowels.
After that I pretty much decided I'd wait until I had that future home and then buy whatever I was missing.
Later, I received a lot of useful stuff as wedding gifts, which was great.

This is all that's left.


The smallest of the set of five saucepans. They had bright copper coloured lids.

Bakelite handles sturdily rivetted on, there's no way those were ever coming loose or off.
Not like today's handles which need to be screwed in again every so often, especially on frypans.


The surface, inside and out, is much pitted now and the inside has a calcium patina from many years of boiling eggs.
This is the only thing I use it for now, it holds four eggs easily and since I don't use it for anyhting else, I rarely scrub it, just emptying the cooking water and giving it a quick rinse.


Even after 42 years, the machined grooves on the bottom of the pan are still not worn off, the base is completely level, except for those little dents caused by someone using the pan as a hammer for small headed nails.
Sturdy, long lasting pots, made from aluminium, which is supposed to be bad for you, but nobody knew that then.


Monday, April 23, 2012

Robin Hood - Men In Tights

Robin hood - Men In Tights


I own a few (dozen) movies on DVD and I have a typed list of them in a folder in a drawer somewhere.

When I look at the viewing choices available on TV for any particular day,
(AFL Game Day, Footy Flashbacks, UEFA Europa League Highlights, World of Free Sports....pfft!),
 I'm often disappointed and decide to watch a DVD instead.

The choices there are easier because I've only collected things that I like to watch, things that I don't mind watching over and over. (NO SPORTS)

Like the Big Bang Theory, Criminal Minds and Bones.

(And Fringe; Warehouse 13; MacGyver; Dexter; Eureka; Stargate; Farscape and Firefly.........)

Along with the movies I've collected.

But even then, sometimes I can't decide.

So I get out the list, shuffle the pages with my eyes closed and randomly stab at a title.

Yesterday afternoon, I watched Robin Hood - Men In Tights.

Have you seen it??

It's hilarious.
(Mel Brooks was involved in the making, how could it not be funny?)


I laughed my.......well, I was going to say I  LMAO, but that fatty boombah is still swaying along behind me with every step I take , so clearly I didn't, but I did laugh a lot.

I'm not going to tell you anything about the movie, I suck at reviews, but there's a little singing, a little dancing, a little mayhem......

If you haven't seen it, find a copy and watch it.
If you're anything like me, you'll laugh.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Sunday Selections #66

It's Sunday Selections time again!

Time to post photos that have been languishing away in your files, photos that you may have forgotten about.

This concept comes to us via Kim of Frog Ponds Rock fame and it's been going for over a year now!
Won't you join us?

The rules are easy, just post your photos on a Sunday, link back to Kim somewhere in your post. then head on over to Frog Ponds Rock and add your name to the linky list before leaving Kim a comment.
While you're there have a look at what others have posted for  their selections.

This week I bring you a few more beach photos.

This is BILL, a miniature steam train that runs paying passengers between the Semaphore Foreshore and Fort Glanville Conservation Park at Semaphore Park during the summer months.

Once he gets to Fort Glanville there is a short break while the train is turned around for the reverse trip and passengers are allowed to get off and stretch their legs.
I don't remember much about Fort Glanville. I'll have to research some information and post about that some other time.

The newish Lifeguard Tower that wasn't there when I lived at Semaphore.


Castles left in the sand for the tide to wash away.


Standing on the jetty, looking back towards the shore.


Rows of seaweed and a few puddles.

These oddly shaped branches are a little further along the foreshore, right on the edge of the sand next to the low stone dividing wall.
It appears to be a popular spot with older persons, judging by the amount of debris left around there, which I didn't photograph of course.
Because nobody wants to see empty beer cans and crumpled fast food wrappers.


BILL again, cooling off and getting a wash before his next trip.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

The awning! She is up!

My lovely striped awning was installed yesterday morning.

A phone call began the process with a lovely voice stating that his name was Nick and he'd be there in about forty minutes.
He arrived right on time, that's a good sign.

He wasted no time, getting started immediately and the work was done surprisingly quickly.
In no time at all, the awning was up and Nick was showing me how to work it.
Then he filled out the paperwork, I paid him, he handed me the warranty and was gone.



This is my front window with the "eyelash" awning, you can see it does nothing at all to shade the window and the amount of heat that gets in is far too much.

The new canvas awning fits neatly under the eyelash, the boys who did the measuring were spot on.


I chose a scalloped edge because all the other awnings have it too, but I chose stripes instead of plain, because now, I stand out as an individual.
Ha Ha.
I chose the federation green because the outside walls are a pale green, the terracotta because the lower three courses of bricks and the windowsill, are the same terracotta colour.
The cream stripes are to lighten it up a little. I'm eventually going to paint my front door and the porch railings in  federation green also, if I'm allowed to. 

Here is my awning doing the job it was made for.
Shading the glass, preventing heat transference, and looking pretty.

Friday, April 20, 2012

the curtains!

My curtains have been up since last Sunday and I'm very happy to have them there, but the job isn't finished just yet.

They've been folded up and stashed in a corner of the wardrobe since I moved here eight months ago and now that they're up I realise they've collected quite a bit of dust.

This is not at all good for my hayfever/asthma, so when the awning is finally up on Friday, I'll be taking the curtains down and giving them a good wash.

The weather is supposed to be cooler on Friday, so the awning should take care of any heat trying to get in my window.

living room  150cm wide


bedroom  120cm wide

My Semaphore window was closer to 4 metres wide and the Maylands one was 3 metres and floor length.

As you can see, the curtains have rod pockets, but my new rods are fractionally larger than the ones I used to have, so sliding the curtains open and closed is not as easy as it used to be, I have to climb up there and push them or just tie them back to each side.
Since tying them back is much easier, that's what I've been doing.

But I have sets of rings that came with the rods and after I wash the curtains, I'll spend the time necessary to sew them on, to make opening and closing the curtains much easier.

I'll also be cutting off some of the length and the cut off strips will be used to make tie backs to replace the bits of ribbon that I'm currently using.

Of course the tie backs will have to wait until I get the sewing machine fixed....it's on my list, but not a priority.

When I first put up the curtains in my last place, I had a length of fabric left over, I'd had four lengths hanging in Semaphore, but only needed three in Maylands, so with the extra piece, I made a couple of cushion covers.

They're a little faded after many washings, but still cheerful.

The rest of that length is stashed away somewhere, probably in the pile of tablecloths up in the top of the wardrobe and I have a use for that too.
There's a couple of small windows by the front door, one on each side, that have slim venetians but they don't quite fit right**, so the glare and heat get in around the edges a bit. I'm going to make a panel of fabric covered cardboard and wedge it up against the glass.
I've done this before, to block out the sun on the glass panel of my back door at Maylands and it worked really well. I just need to get some sturdy cardboard that I can cut to size.

**the smaller venetians were too small and the next size up was way too wide and just to make things more awkward each of those small windows is a different width.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

I'm not the intellectual type

I don't read deep and meaningful books that will help me psychoanalyse myself,
I don't spend my days asking "why am I here?"
I don't do a lot of soul searching for the reason I was placed here on this earth at this time.
I know the answer to that one.
I am here to enjoy my years in this life and to give birth to my four children, two of whom have now had their own children and the world is a better place for it.
I certainly don't spend hours/days/months gazing at my navel* contemplating the meaning of life.
There is no meaning, life just is.

Instead, I read books that draw me into the story so deeply I feel as if I'm there, I also read books that make me laugh.

Here's a few passages that I hope will make you laugh too.

"Sunday was jelly doughnut day. It was like taking communion. I'm a Catholic by birth, but in my own personal religion, the Trinity will forever be the Father, the Son and the Holy Jelly Doughnut."

"I watched him angle out of the car and cross the street. I enjoyed the view until he was out of sight...."

"She was discreetly dressed in poison-green spandex pants and a shocking pink faux-fur jacket.You could stand her on a corner, in a fog, at midnight, and she'd be visible for three miles. 
 'Nice outfit, I said'.
'I wanted to look hot in case I got arrested. You know how they take your picture and all."

"When we were kids Valerie was vanilla pudding, good grades and clean white sneakers. and I was chocolate cake, the dog ate my homework and skinned knees.
Valerie was married right out of college and immediately got pregnant. I got married and immediately got divorced."

"I heaved myself out of my chair and went into the kitchen and got the cake. As soon as it hit the table the crying stopped. If we pay attention to anything in this family....it's dessert."

" The sky was overcast, threatening rain. No surprise there. Rain is de rigeur for Jersey in April. Steady grey drizzle that encourages state-wide bad hair and couch potato mentality. In school they used to teach us that April showers bring May flowers. April showers also bring twelve car pile-ups on the Jersey Turnpike..."

"I was half-asleep, contemplating the nutritional value of a creme-filled cupcake for breakfast.............stumbled into the kitchen and ate the package of cupcakes. I told myself it was okay to eat the cupcakes because it was a celebration. I got my car back. Calories don't count if they're connected to a celebration. Everyone knows this. Coffee would taste good, but it seemed like a lot of work this morning.......Better to go back to bed."

"His brain probably looked like those lumps of coral you buy in the pet store to put in aquariums. He opened his eyes and ambled across the sidewalk, pulling up his sagging pants."

The above passages are all from an assortment of books about Stephanie Plum, bounty hunter.
Written by Janet Evanovich.

* If you happen to catch me gazing at my navel, I've probably fallen asleep.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

whimsical wednesday

Whimsical Wednesday # 19

Time for the weekly googled image giggle to help you get through the week.

This must be the happiest tomato I've ever seen.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

it was so nice....

We all know I've been waiting to have an awning installed on my front window...well, I got fed up with waiting and called the company and asked how much longer I might have to wait?
They had said about three weeks and it's been much longer. (About two months so far).
The awning is being installed next Friday. Yay!!

Meanwhile, the sun coming in through the front window has been making the lounge room very warm, even with keeping the blind drawn down.
And at this time of year I've been noticing the cold coming in at night too.

So when my son-in-law and grandson arrived on Sunday to install my curtain rods I was very glad to see them!
They'd meant to come sooner, but they'd been busy...

Anyway, they arrived with the big toolbox and the new cordless drill and set to work.

The lounge room rod went up first and I got my old thermal lined curtains out of storage (stuffed into a corner of the wardrobe) and put them up, drawing them closed to shut out the sun.
Within 5 minutes (truly!!) the lounge room was noticeably cooler and much more comfortable.
It was so nice!
I notice also that the cold isn't creeping in around the edges anymore either.
I'm not so worried about the winter now.

The bedroom curtains were next, then they put up all my framed pictures and finally my lounge room is truly looking like home.

And guess what! The grandson was doing the driving!

He's 16, has his learner's permit and appears to be a natural driver.
He's such a talented young man, also winning medals in his chosen school sport.

Monday, April 16, 2012

banana walnut loaf (sugar free)




My friend Delores is taking part in the April  A-Z blogging challenge and she has chosen foods that she and her husband are able to eat. They are both on restricted diets, so finding foods from A-Z is quite a challenge!

I'm very curious about the letter X!
For B, Delores posted the recipe for her Banana Walnut Loaf.
Now I'm a big fan of bananas and I love walnuts too, so I wrote down her recipe and gave it a try last Saturday.

For me, this was a challenge in itself, since this loaf has honey instead of sugar and oil instead of butter.
Very different from my usual style.
But it turned out very well.
Great in fact!
So I'm sharing this recipe now with you, I know Delores won't mind at all.

Ingredients:
3 bananas, smooshed, still a little lumpy


2 cups plain flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

 half a cup of chopped walnuts.

beat together:
1 egg
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil (I like crisco the best)
6 teaspoons honey
(I used a whisk)

Step 1

Set your oven for 180*C
Grease 2 loaf tins

Step 2
sift the dry ingredients, then stir in the walnuts

Step 3
mix the combined wet ingredients into the smooshed bananas

Step 4
mix the banana combination into the dry ingredients, mixture should stay a little lumpy.

Step 5
divide the mixture between the two loaf pans and bake until done.
Timing depends on your oven.
Mine is fan-forced and baking took about 45 minutes with both pans in at once.



The texture is lovely, slightly crumbly, with chunks of walnut and banana clearly visible.
Because this loaf contains no sugar, the taste of banana and walnuts shines through, where a loaf made with sugar would be more sweet.

I really like this and will have a go at adapting other cake/loaf recipes to the oil-honey substitutes.
And I'll definitely be making this one again!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Sunday Selections # 65

I had this scheduled for 5am this morning, but when I checked in 5 minutes ago it wasn't here, so I checked the edit posts page and there it was listed as a draft. When I finished this last night it was listed as scheduled......

It's Sunday Selections time again!

Time to post old photos that have been languishing in your files, photos that you may have completely forgotten about.

This idea was brought to us by Kim of Frog Ponds Rock who realised that she takes many,  many photos that never see the light of day and wanted to share them with us.

To join in with us, just post your photos, (new or old, doesn't really matter), under the Sunday Selections title, link back to Kim and add your name to the linky list at her site, before leaving her a comment.

It's not necessary to do a theme with your photos, although I often do.

This week I have a mixed bag of stuff taken while wandering around Semaphore a few weeks ago.


chimney pots for Jayne.


green oranges.


this looks like interesting food.


wash it down with a beer from here.


the old water tower, which has been converted for living in....



has an interesting doorway with an etching on the glass above.


It's an old sailing ship!
When I stepped close to the gate for the photo...


I was warned off quite vigorously by this gorgeous little chap.

So I moved on...

to this abandoned building.
Ravaged by time and neglect, a sad vision of what was probably someone's home. :(

If I remember correctly (I could be wrong) this building is for sale. It will probably go for land value only and some developer will put up a block of flats...