Sometimes on the way to your dream,

you get lost and find a better one.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Musical Monday # 102

Musical Monday

I was introduced to Musical Monday by Delores who copied the meme from another site.

I think it’s a fun way to show off some of the music we like and brighten up our Mondays at the same time. 

I’ll be finding my clips on you tube, so will simply credit that site since there are often so many versions of everything and I wouldn’t want to accidentally credit the wrong artist.

Today’s clip is: Tina Turner

Nutbush City Limits

Who doesn't remember this?

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Sunday Selections # 278

Welcome back to Sunday Selections!

This once-a- week-meme was originally begun by Kim of Frog Ponds Rock, as a way to showcase some of the many photos we all take, but don't get around to showing on our blogs.

The rules are very simple:-
1. post photos of your choice, old or new, under the Sunday Selections title
2. link back to me, River, somewhere in your post
3. leave me a comment so that I know you've joined in and can come over and see what you've posted.
4. hop on over to Elephant’s Child to see more of her wonderful photos.
I usually go with a theme for my Sunday Selections and this week we're taking a look at my garden. Again.

everything has grown since the weather cooled down a bit, I'll need to turn this pot again so a different side grows towards the sun.

the dwarf blue chalk sticks has grown so much faster than the regular one down in the garden. If you look at just one of the stems here, that's the size it was when I planted it. Now it almost fills the pot. The one in the garden is supposed to spread to a two metre ground cover. I'll believe that when it happens.

red velvet and gold centred french marigolds. I've been breaking off the dried seed heads as they form and sprinkling them in other pots for hopefully a good show next spring.

this ruffled echeveria has developed two long flower stems similar to the giant variety out in the garden near the front fence of the grounds here. You may remember seeing photos that I took of it a few years ago. I had no idea this little ruffly thing I planted was the same in miniature.

I'm hoping to see the flowers once they open,

unless these are just seed pods without flowers. Each of these stems is about two feet long.

I don't remember what this one is called,

but I've got two of them, each now with six or seven heads where in the beginning they each had just one. They sat in their spots seemingly forever not growing at all, now they are about twenty centimetres from one end to the other.

this tiny little sedum is a groundcover, each tiny head no bigger than one centimetre, it's supposed to eventually spread and form a mound. It didn't. It disappeared altogether until just recently when these few heads popped up again. The label says hardy and fast growing, but I've come to realise the labels all refer to ideal conditions, which I certainly don't have here.

the northern birdbath, notice the empty spot in the front section? I keep putting cuttings of things there and they keep vanishing without a trace. 

this aeonium was about eight centimetres across when I planted it, now it's the size of a large dinner plate.

the jades have all put on a growth spurt since the cooler days and rains began; (rain!) this is the tallest one, 45 cm all summer, now 65cm and quite a bit wider than it was.  By this time next year, I hope the jades will have formed a nice protective hedge, so the things behind it won't get so badly dried out.

strappy, floppy Ixia stems, I can hardly wait for these pretties to flower again. This is their third year.

Sparaxis, although not as many as I hoped for.

a forest of Freesias, and there are more in three pots at the far end of the garden.

one lonely Ranunculus bulb is all I have left of them, maybe next year there will be two? Do they multiply as daffodils do?

have you been wondering about the rings of white stones? there are three of them and in each I have planted 9 apricot stones. We'll see what happens. I'd love to end up with three mini-groves of small apricot trees. There are two varieties within each circle, one the plain bright orange apricot, the other the red-blush apricot.

this Black Prince echeveria has faded to dark grey,

and developed a flower stem. I didn't know they did that.

some of the buds are showing pink, others are black and probably dead or dying. If the buds open into flowers I'll take another photo.

Anenomes are popping up around the base of the southern end birdbath, I'd forgotten just where they were when the birdbath got plonked into place, so probably the ones under it won't grow. It's way too heavy for me to be shifting it now.

these Aeoniums, two varieties, Black Rose with pinkish centres and short black with greenish centres were all single heads when planted. You can see I have some in pots and some in the ground.

now they all have multiple heads as you see here; as they develop, each head will grow a stem and the plants will become many branched as they grow. I'll have a forest of Aeoniums!

here is my baby fur seal wearing a Santa Hat. I don't know what he is made of, it looks like plaster, but is very lightweight like plastic.

the two Coprosmas have turned out to be very slow growing, this is the taller of the two and is only 50-60 cm high. The eventual height is supposed to be one and a half metres by a metre wide, at this rate it will be another six years before they reach their full potential.

the ivy geranium, rescued from P's front porch, is beginning to grow again; I'll have to get some sort of frame for it to climb on by springtime.

another rescue, this was a tiny, tiny, piece found on a footpath, now wider across than my hand from wrist to fingertip.

P's philodendron which almost died when she did, has made a lovely comeback, now has roots almost a metre long spiralling out from the bottom of its pot. I'll repot it in the spring. These grow really large, I had several in my previous home, in the carport, shaded from the sun.

my red sage looks dead, I'll wait and see if it comes good in spring.

the green sage is also not looking so good, I think they've had too much water, but if I move them out of the rain, they won't get any sun. Another wait and see one.

the mint is looking a bit scrappy too, it grew well after the last trimming, but now all new leaves are quite small. I'll cut it back after the winter and see what happens.

Overall, not doing too badly. There's been disappointments along with surprises and I've decided not to plant anything new for a couple of seasons. I'll wait and see what thrives, what just survives, before making further plans.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Wednesday's Words on a Friday

On Wednesdays, assorted people have been taking monthly turns at putting up a selection of six (or twelve) words which is called “Words for Wednesday”.

We have taken over this meme from Delores, who had been having computer problems.
This month the meme continues here, supplied by Mark Koopmans.

Next month, June, the words can be found here, on my blog.
Essentially the aim is to encourage us to write.   

Each week we are given a choice of prompts: which can be words, phrases, music or images.   What we do with those prompts is up to us:  a short story, prose, a song, a poem, or treating them with ignore...

Some of us put our creation in comments on the post, and others post on their own blog.  We would really like it if as many people as possible joined in with this fun meme.
If you are posting on your own blog - let us know so that we can come along and read your masterpiece. 
I’m hopeless at poetry so I always do a story.

It’s a fun challenge…why not join in?

This week's words are:

1. espionage
2. charger
3. sheep
4. u-bend
5. dent
6. fluoride


1. Heisenberg
2. ceiling
3. orchard
4. velcro
5. plentitude
6. squiggle

Here is my story, with most of the words:

Things had taken a turn for the better. The Government of the day had decided that the Child Endowment (now known as Family Allowance) was to be raised, and boy did they raise it! Previously the amount had been just a few dollars per fortnight, now it was enough to actually make a difference. 

Times had been hard with Dad often away looking for work, there was none to be had in town, so Dad had been walking around the local farms doing odd jobs here and there, getting paid most often in produce, a bag of vegetables from a farm's home garden, once from an orchard, a box of apples that weren't 'pretty' enough to be sold in the shops. We didn't care what they looked like and they tasted just the same.

The best time was last winter when Dad had helped with the butchering of the family pigs; the meat had been cut with some being hung in the smokehouse to become ham, a lot of the pig had been put through the grinder to become sausage. it was delivered to the kitchen in huge enamel bowls, where the farmer's wife and mother were waiting to add the spices and other seasonings before feeding the minced meat into the sausage maker; they'd spent the morning washing the sausage casings. 

At the end of that week, Dad had come home in the farmer's truck, with two pounds of breakfast sausages and a half leg of ham as payment. Mum practically fainted away at the sight of all that meat; she'd sent the twins to check the block of ice in the cooler to make sure it was big enough to store the ham without spoiling while we ate our way through the sausages over the next couple of days.
We stood in the road waving goodbye to the farmer after Dad had finished making arrangements to do the same job next year.

As a teenager, Dad had spent time on a **sheep station up north, as a Jackeroo. He'd learned a fair bit about butchering from the station's own butcher, famously known far and wide as "Cut-throat Jimmy". We'd loved hearing the stories of when they'd round up the sheep for shearing, spending a night or two camping in the field, with the sky at night a big, beautiful, starlit ceiling.

Now, with the extra money from the Government, Mum said we'd finally be able to make a fair dent in the bills waiting to be paid as well as buying the luxuries we'd had to do without. Toothpaste for example, we'd been brushing our teeth with just water, now Mum said we could finally buy toothpaste if we promised to use just a tiny bit each, she thought she might try the new "fluoride" type, in hopes of saving our teeth. "Just a little squiggle of paste, okay?". We agreed of course, there were seven of us and the paste had to last at least until the next payment. 

Dad often called us his "Seven Little Australians" and would tell us again the story of the book of that name, written by Ethel Turner. It was a sad story and Bill, my oldest brother, always said he'd rather read books about spies and secret agents. "Those books, those types of stories, are called Espionage," said Dad, and Bill practised that word for weeks after. Marion, the dreamer among us, preferred stories about princesses being rescued by knights on white chargers. Me? I read everything I could lay my hands on, even if I didn't understand it.

As time passed, Mum used the extra money carefully, first paying off the bills, then buying a half dozen laying hens so we could have eggs to eat and maybe some to sell. She put some of the money away safely in a small lockbox she found in a secondhand store; it didn't lock anymore, but we all knew it should never be touched by anyone but Mum. 

By the time I finished school, Mum and Dad had managed to pay off our small house, (and buy a proper fridge) my older brothers had found work, one in the city, one had gone north to replicate Dad's experiences as a Jackeroo. We did not yet live in plentitude, but we had enough.

(**working on a sheep station in the late 1960s was something I did for a short while, but I remember it well.)

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Thursday Thoughts # 89

from Waging War by April White:
"It is as though my purpose for living was just torn out of the book and I don't know what happens next."

"We take what happened and we make ourselves into people we can look at in mirrors without flinching."

from Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor:

"Perhaps Fate laid out your life for you like a dress on a bed, and you could either wear it or go naked."

from Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor:

"And he could catch her hand across the table just to hold it, and they could talk, and discover each other layer by layer."

Today's Thought:

discover each other layer by layer.

This is something I've only ever read about in books. 
Someone meets their soulmate or the love of their life or maybe they just grow up with their best friend and they know everything there is to know about each other. 
They talk and tell their secrets and fears, their hopes and dreams. 
They talk, listen, understand. Laugh together, cry together, grow together. Inseparable.

For me, this is a frightening thought.
I don't know anyone so well that I know all about them; certainly no one knows everything there is to know about me.

Do I even have layers? Or is each layer discarded and forgotten as I grow past it?
If there are layers, do I want to open them up?
Why would I want to open them up? 

Surely things I thought and did when I was five, ten, fifteen, couldn't possibly be worth telling about? Even if I could remember those days properly. 

I've seen families who are close; even if they are states/countries apart, the connection is there. 
Friends too, who grew up together, went their own ways, yet stayed in touch and remain steadfast friends no matter what. Always there for each other.
Sometimes I envy them. Most of the time I'm just happy for them, but knowing that I don't need that closeness. 
But if I don't need it, why the occasional envy?