Sunday, December 31, 2006

Cockle train

Once more I was being a tourist in my own town and while we were having coffee after a walk along the foreshore the cockle train was about to leave.
I was a bit surprised that we actually had the steam train due to the dry weather, it has been known to start a fire with sparks before today.
Any way there it was in all its glory and I really was going to take a photo of it passing the gates and I forgot to turn the camera on and it had gone before I realised. What a bummer!!
Came home to a very sick foal and had to get the vet out, expensive after hours call of course. She was drenched with oil as she had a tummy ache and I was up about every 2 hours checking her all night. Seems fine this morning thank goodness.
We also had another colt foal born, the last I think for this season. Our ratio of colts to fillies is not good. He is rather sweet though.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Old Wife

This rather beautiful fish goes under the name of "Old Wife" I am not sure why and as I am an old wife it pleases me.
I sketched this on Kangaroo Island from a photo as I didnt have the fish in front of me. They are found around jetties in schools and we used to occasionally get one when we were diving, I think they are found around all but the tropical areas of Australia according to the book I have.
I felt I would like to put up a sketch instead of a photo and I am still knitting my second sock and taking ages over it so that wont do and I am trying to finish up some tags for a tag swap but they are not finished either.
This time between Christmas and New Year is always a bit messy I think, people coming and going the excitement is over but mundane things must be done.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Deserted beach Kangaroo Island

This is Antechamber bay on the one sunny day we had on the Island. The sea here is always this incredible colour. There was no one there and we walked almost from one end of the beach to the other.
You can see the mainland on the right, this is a very short stretch of water known as Backstairs Passage (interesting names!) and can be as calm as calm and really rough and treacherous at other times.
I always think there could be a white pointer shark patrolling off this beach for unwary swimmers.
There are very few shells on this beach and this time with the drought the Chapman River which normally flows out to sea here was dry quite a long way back. A popular camping spot now taken over from the Council by the National Parks people, a bit of controversy about this as more rules and regulations and camping permits. The locals are not happy.
John used to spend many happy evenings fishing for brim in the river.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Boxing day

This was a collection of friends watching the boxing day cricket match on the beach at Pt Willunga. The remains of the old jetty are to be seen in the background. I took dozens of photos it was such a fun thing, a bit grey and overcast again.
We went up to the 80th last night and it was a lovely night full of old friends and good food and wine. Stayed with other friends ovenight and am now home. Looked at my waistline in the mirror this morning and nearly had a fit. some sort of diet will have to be in place and lots more walking, hard walking not dithering around drawing!!
Australia post has been particularly slow as Christmas cards are still dribbling in and they have a holiday tomorrow!!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Home from Kangaroo Island

I hope everyone has had a lovely Christmas break.
This is a part of the Penneshaw beach that I walked every morning while we were on the I sland. This was Christmas morning, cold and damp and lovely!
We had a wonderful few days, lots of relaxing, walked everyday sometimes twice a day, got up late, went to bed early and ate great food. Caught up with friends and had a terrific time. I hate coming home, and after having some old and new friends for drinks on Christmas afternoon it was sad to pack up and leave next morning.
It was 13 degrees on the Cape jervis wharf when we arrived and i had sat outside, as I always do in case of sea sickness and I was frozen even if I did have about 3 layers of clothes on.
We headed up to Pt Willunga for lunch with friends and cricket with the children on the beach. Had to pick the cat up around four so home and then unpacking all over again. I think we were in bed by 8!!
Tonight is a friends 80th Birthday so we go to Mclaren Vale to celebrate, his one of those we go fishing at Coffin Bay with and a well known wine maker. We will stay with the other friends, also wine makers who come fishing with us. Should be a good night.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Aftermath of a bush fire

This fire was lit by joy riders who illegally entered a locked gate into a National park and got bogged and the exhaust of their car lit a fire that went onto ajoining farm land and burnt out most of the park.
I drove past it today, less than a week afer it had happened. No where near as bad as the fires in the Eastern states have been but a grim reminder of what can happen. Not sure how good these photos are but this was taken from the side of the road where the full effects would not have been felt
The ground is just a carpet of grey ash. The last time this was burnt was in 1982 and then there was nothing left at all. I would imagine that in Autumn/ winter a lot of these trees may sprout from the bottom again. I hope so.
I am learning not to go any where without my camera.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Christmas pudding

This was supposed to be a photo of John and I holding a Christmas pudding a friend had made, instead I came home tired from hot and horrid Adelaide, had half a glass more of wine than normal and deleted all the photos in my camera!
So sorry Paddy but here is a sketch of it instead, and it looked a magnificent pud as well. I used to make them but these days John is the only one who eats one so I buy one instead.
A hot day delivering presents to family and friends, first my mother, we took her out for coffee and a chocolate biscuit, then my younger sister, a friend and my older sister, home via the post office, dogs fed, us fed, no watering done, perhaps early tomorrow morning, a day up and back is tiring, tomorrow will be even busier.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Tiny Christmas Teddy

My older sister has a Christmas tree adorned with small teddy bears, mostly made by me. I didnt think I had time to make her one this year but found some faux suede in my stash and a small pattern and spent most of today making him. I hate making tiny teds but this one was remarkably easy, his nose is a bit gross but hey I havent made one for 2 years.
I am supposed to be a doll maker, embellisher embroiderer etc but she wont let me bead or embroider her bears, frustrating.
Any way I made another bracelet, biscotti for John for us to take away and the bear so my day was fairly well filled considering I tried to take the top off my little finger before I did anything. I actually havent seen how much damage I did I just wrapped it up in cotton wool and wrapped about 3 band aids around it. I dont want to look! Typing has been interesting, I keep making typos.
John wenr fishing and came home with fish, I am pleased and so is Oscar.

Saturday, December 16, 2006


On my other blog I have been sketching gates, amongs other things and when I took my camera out the other day I took this collection of gates.The one infront is the one I open every day to feed one of the stallions who is by himself in one of the spring fed dams. You can just see the nose of my Toyota tray top in the corner. Things look quite green here, that is because it is a cleared swamp so we have some minor springs and heavier soil which keeps in the moisture.
I tried to take a photo of the trees dying on the hills but the angle was wrong, this morning of course I didnt have the camera and there are even more dying trees, so I will see what I can do tomorrow.
I am trying to hand sew a tiny bear for my sister before Monday, it may get done but we are off to the Christmas pageant tonight and then dinner at the pub with friends shortly.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Drying dam

This is one of the dams on our property which is gradually drying up, despite yesterdays bit of rain. It has a very small spring in it and is at the bottom of a swamp so some of the grass around is still green but the poor ducks wont be there for much longer, there is just a sI will be making them, only a few days before we go to Kangaroo island so such a lot to do

Thursday, December 14, 2006

This morning

I took the camera out with me while i fed the ponies and took some photos. This shows the dry paddocls and a doe (female) kangaroo and her joey, I hope you can click on the picture to have a better view.
I dont know how many kangaroos i saw this morning, a lot. You can see how dry the paddocks look.
I have spent all day cooking, savory biscuits and sweet ones. I have also put up the tree and a few special decorations out, but I am not doing the whole house thing as I sometimes do.
It has rained here for most of the day, very light and very gentle, but rain! Probably not a lot but it has washed the plants clean of all the dust and the smell of everything is wonderful. The birds all went mad when it started.
Always a down side with rain, paddock feed will go off, but I hope we got some water in the rain water tanks, even if it probably is a bit dirty.
Oh and the strange looking trees in the centre of this photo are what we call blackboys or grass trees. I love them but unfortunatly so do stock who will eventually kill them, luckily we have some in the scrub on the hills, although even there this morning there are signs of large areas of quite big gum trees dying.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Coffee table

Sitting wondering what to do and there in front of me was the coffee table with a stack of books and magazines and the tv remote. I think that somehow I have got my proportions wrong but this is todays sketch.
A bush fire is being reported from near where I was today, had lunch with my friend Wendy and we talked about all sorts of things, reported on the death of a friends mother, what we hoped to do next year, saw the beginings of a wonderful leafy sea dragon quilt she is doing with others, looked at ideas in various textile publications and what we might do together. So I hope that the fire is further away than is being rather badly reported. Sounds a bit like a deliberatly lit fire, in other words a fire bug, the scourge of those of us who live in the country, especially when at the moment both Victoria and Tasmania have devastating fires raging over 100's of kilometres with in Tasmania many many houses being lost.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

EDM Challenge, a gift

I think that was the latest challenge, any way these little fabric frogs are one of my most precious presents, I have a very special 80 year old friend who every year sends me either tiny fabric people or these wonderful frogs, made out of wild fabrics and beads and trims, they have wire in their legs so they bend and this collection are all trying to find their way out of a glass vase I have. Done in rather a hurry using the inktense pencils

Monday, December 11, 2006

Dry paddocks

This is Rivington Nell and her filly foal, she is a Welsh Section B. I am really pleased with the way they look, really this was to show how dry and brown the paddocks are although this one has some dry feed, we had been keeping it for the mares and foals. Normally at this time of the year this would be green and growing.
My back has been killing me for days so I am probably not in the mood for anything much, I cleaned the house right through as the last few days had left it so dusty and awful, and I dont like house cleaning at the best of times. I was going to get the Christmas decorations up but after my massive clean I think it may get done tomorrow.
Too tired to sketch.
I think I have Tabbys' girls on Sunday which will be great as I havent seen them for a while.
At least it was cooler and more pleasant today.
I have just finished reading an interesting book set mostly in Burma called The Glass Palace by Amitav Ghosh. I picked it up In Penneshaw at their book exchange for $3. Done from an Indian point of view about the British Raj amongst other things.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Angel ornament

I rather liked the silly expression on this angel who is a companion for the fat little father Christmas. Not as hot today but very humid so not really much better.
I finished off my 3/4 pants I am making, I havent made anything for me for years, these are a crazy pink fatigue looking cotton drill that cost me very little and although they make me look even more like a mad short round elderly person they are very comfortable, I dont think they will be used except around the house.
Much cooler in Victor this afternoon and just as hot when we got back as it had been when we left about 10 degrees difference, went in for a walk along the beach, lovely to get the sand between my toes, and then a coffee.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Christmas Ornament

I buy myself a new ornament every year and this funny little fellow was this years buy, actually I bought two there is an angel as well.
I was going to set up the Christmas stuff today but it has been so hot I have given it a miss and tiedied up things in my work room and on the dining room table, where a tree normally goes but at the moment is covered in John's agendas and my Christmas cards still to do.
It was 37 degrees before 9 am today, I hate to think what it got to, I havent bothered to look at the gauge as I really didnt want to know.Thought I had better draw something but we are going in to Victor for drinks tonight and have animals to feed before I go. Watering cant be done until much later anyway.
We are supposed to have a slight cool change, I hope it is better than slight but I doubt it.
Tony F thanks for all your messages, feel rather an imposter as my drawing is pretty awful really. I have this blog set up for emails to tell me when new messages come in and while the computer was with the computer man he was intrieuged(sp!!) by the number of emails I got! Cant e mail you personally.

Friday, December 08, 2006

The Dentist

We have been off line while John got this new laptop, I get the old computer, if I can find somewhere to put it! I have dreadful trouble typing on a flat base, and we have been having a few teathing problems getting it all up and going, havent got the wireless connection yet so this is the one to play with.
today was over 40 degrees awfull hot, too hot and it still is and the garden looks a mess, still too hot to water anything and tomorrow sounds even worse 41 in Adelaide, 39 for Victor Probably about 41 out here as we are always hotter.
Yesterday we went to Adelaide, to see my mother, she looked remarkably well for all that she has gone through, we took her for a coffee, I think getting out is what she craves, although it was rather warm for her. Then we had to go to the dreaded dentist, I really am not comfortable with peope in my mouth and attacking my teeth but it wasnt as bad as I thought, the first visit to our old dentists son. I now have another intsrument of torture to try to remember to put between my teeth.
I keep hitting something on this that moves what I have just typed, I guess I will get used to it.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Playing with an embellisher

This is what I did yesterday playing with the Janome embellisher, only a few minutes work and it was such fun. I have now ordered one.
What I did here was lay down some wool tops, some knitting wool and some glitz onto some felt, Then go to it with the needles on the machine. Lots more could be done.
Today was another very hot and windy day, bushfires close to our friends in the McLaren Vale area.
John had meetings in town all day and I had to take the poor old toyota tray top into Victor, all dressed up to go to the Womens and Childrens auxhillary lunch. The lunch was fine, lots of people and father Christmas gave us all a gift. Driving home was very hot and uncomfortable, shows how much I rely on an airconditioned car these days.
I have been scanning the skies here fro smoke but all so far is ok.
I am getting the Christmas cards done, I cant remember who I send to and who I dont.

Monday, December 04, 2006

EDM Challenge, A card

This is a little rough but I quite liked it. I had wondered about not having a star but the sun but in the heat we are having and in those heavy clothes and boots the poor old chap would melt away. I dont really think I would like to ride an emu.
I have finally written up the Christmas letter, now to find time to get to the cards and address them.
I had fun this morning trying out the Janome Xpression felting embellisher and was most impressed. I had a lot of fun with it so yes I am going to buy one. Not all the money will come from the bracelets that were sold in Victoria but at least part of it.
Of course I need to have time to play with it, but after Christmas I hope things will slow down a bit.

Sunday, December 03, 2006


This is Maggie, my little pug bitch who disapeared for 9 days only to be found down the deep hole in the shed used to work under cars. Amazingly she came out without a scratch and still quite fat. Today unfortunatly she is even fatter and due to go on a diet.
She is a lovely girl but has a bit of a floppy tail, not good for pugs who should have tight curled ones. Trying to take her photo was impossible., she just wanted to be next to me.
Today was cooler and I did some cutting back in the garden, we went to a pre Christmas lunch which was fun and full of old friends, came home for a sleep. At least Sarah is now home so I only had to do the morning feeds.
Of course nothing productive got done, and probably wont for the next few days, although I go to try the embellisher tomorrow.

Across the railway tracks

Yesterday I couldnt access my blogger photos but some one kindly told me to clear my cache in firefox so that done they seemed to come back, I have no idea what else I cleared.
Yesterday we had a wander around Victor Harbor and a coffee and I took a few photos and this was one of across the railway tracks and looking up to Adaire which is one of the old stately houses that is now a holiday camp for children. We still have a couple left. You will find a sketch I did of the same place in my other blog, the boots and sketchbook in my links.
A long and tiring day, I had to organise Harry again and two late nights in a row is a bit much for me these days.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Waiting at the hairdressers

While waiting at the hair dressers I saw this very strange edifice, made out of plastic and loaded with everything one could want in the way of hair care.
An interesting thing to say the least.
Today was cooler but blowing madly all day and tonight the air is full of dust and dirt, filthy and so drying, the paddocks are crumbling to dust in front of our eyes. I do so want some rain.
I have just fed us and Harry and taken him in to work at Woolworths, probably until about 2 am when he will ring me to get him. The next two days will be tiring I think.
I havent heard from Sarah as to how they went today so I imagine we didnt do at all well.
I still havent had time to get to the computer when John isnt using it to write my Christmas letter. Somehow I dont think I want to know about it so I am not doing it!

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Christmas decorations

I am making these little doo dads to give to people for Christmas, I usually give the beading group something small and add these onto my presents as an extra. This year this is what I have come up with, simple and easy and bright.
Very hot and windy today. I have started cutting out a pair of pants as I bought some bright and jazzy material yesterday to make a pair of 3/4 pants we sill see what they look like and what size I really am!
Hope my backside doesnt look too big.
Sarah rang to say she has had some orders for the bracelets I sent over with her to Werribee so I hope there is some money when she gets home. I need it!
Especially if I want to buy this new embellisher. John has just organised to get a notebook to back up the pc so we will see how all that works. More things I have to remember how they work. With any luck this will actually bring down our bills for the computer as we can go onto the new high powered connection with I think wireless. (Dont ask me I am not all that gadget literate.)
Cooler weather tonight but my garden is wilting quicker, I am just having to turn a blind eye to it. I am trying to use only 2 hoses at a time and then only in the morning and evening.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Christmas bauble

For some reason this came out very dark but I think you can get the idea of what it looks like. Much easier than some that they were doing at beading and just as effective. I think it looks better on the red one tho but I will think about that for a while.
Today I did all the feeds that Sarah normally does and had a fit at the amount of hay we are going through.
Then I headed up to Colonnades which is a shopping centre this side of Adelaide to get some Christmas shopping done. Passed a rolled car with attendant ambulences and fire crews just out of Victor on my way up. It was still all blocked off when I came home about 4 hours later, some one was killed but it didnt seem to stop the idiots on our road who do 80ks in a 100 area and then speed up to 100 when they get to a passing lane and you cant get past. No wonder people take stupid risks, coming home was much better as I had the road to myself and put the car on cruise control.
I have collected Harry off the bus and done the evening feeds and am tired. I dont know if I have to cook dinner or not tonight as I was going out with John but now I have Harry I thought a gourmet pizza might be nice but I dont think they are open on Wednesday night. Oh poo!!!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Finished one sock

Here is one sock, now to get on with the other one and see if I can make it match!
I have today made three bracelets, finished off the beaded bauble that I will give my mother so she has something small instead of a Christmas tree and I worked out how to graft the toe of this sock.
I am also trying to work out how to make something small and quick to go on a Christmas tree, usually I make angels but I dont think this year I have time so I am fiddling around trying out something different.
Sarah and family are going to Werribee for the National Horse Show this weekend and my little Victoria is going to help wave the flag for South Australia, having now been leading rein pony at Champion of Champions and the Horse of the Year show here. Interesting to see how well we do.
They will be camping in the truck and keep rushing over to borrow stuff. How often did we camp in the float or in a locker when we were coming over with ponies. I had it all down to a fine art, but we never had a big horse truck with sleeping areas like they do. Many a Welsh Pony Show do I remember at either Melbourne Showgrounds, and a few at Geelong, now they are up at Tatura, so far to go and so hot I rarely get to them. Seems such a shame but new people, younger faces.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Westbury foal

I rather liked the look of this foal while we were in Victoria and have set in train the possibilities of buying him at weaning. So hard to find a colt whose bloodlines tie in with ours but are not too close. Not of course a good time to be thinking of buying, who knows where we will be in 6 months.
I am frantically trying to finish off some Christmas presents, so my back is aching and other things are not getting done.
I have nearly finished a Christmas bauble that I am beading, much easier than I thought it would be. Only the last step to do.
John has gone off to meetings today so I have been left to my own devises. I really would have liked to have had a sleep but good sense prevailed, not that any house work apart from dishes and sweeping got done. There is always tomorrow!
I went to ask about the new Janome Xpression, an embellisher that is being advertised far cheaper than the other ones, my local dealer here in town has one which she has said I can play with, what fun. I am seriously trying to find the money for it. Much cheaper as I told John than all the others.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Paint, xandaprint, heat, textile stuff

Today we were going to do something interesting but John's knuckles had blown up, part of his strange gout problem probably brought on by his bronchitis and temperatures and not being well. So I played with all this textile stuff, Xandaprint on a sandwich of painted tissue paper and felt and then the xandaprint stamped or put on through a stencil then painted and puffed with heat and on the fleur de lis some red embossing powder. There are a couple of others but they need some stitching done on them. Fun but I do think I need to get a respirator.
John fiddled around and didnt do very much. I walked around all the mares and foals. I really cant believe what the paddocks look like, more like February than November.
Weather was relatively cool but with a strong wind blowing again, drying things out even more.

Saturday, November 25, 2006


Teri C said I should draw my silkworms as she hadnt seen any. Well they start off as tiny little threads of caterpillar's and grow to at least 2 to 21/2 inches long. I have some almost white ones and some with distinct stripes. Last year I got white and yellow cocoons and I wondered if the stripey ones had yellow cocoons but this year they both have white ones. My sketch of the cocoon looks pretty strange and not much like what it should. Really they are large caterpillars who spin silk.
While I was in Japan I went to the silk museum in Yokohama and they had a lot of different silk spinning caterpillars. Not just the two varieties that we have in Australia. They live on mulberry leaves and I am wondering how many leaves I will have left on the tree. I have made these a bit brown mostly so they would show up they really are a grey. I am leaving my cocoons to hatch out into moths in the hope that enough hatch at the same time to lay eggs for next year. I can still get a bit of silk off the cocoons if I want to.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Kingscote Jetty

I dont think I have posted this before, I did it on Kangaroo Island with the land across the bay. I seem to be into a black and white mode at the moment, probably becuause I have been so tired I havent had the energy to get out the colour, be it pencils or paint.
It has got hotter again today, and I decided I couldnt stand the house any longer so it got a thorough clean, as well as sheets washed and changed. Harry my middle grand son will be staying for a few days next week so I thought I had better get my act together.
The silkworms are in varying stages of growth, some have gone into cocoons and others are eating huge amounts of mulberry leaves.
I need to clean out somewhere to put all the succulents that have been in the sun room all winter as it is getting too hot for them in there.
Maybe tomorrow, although also maybe I will get on with doing some jewellery for Christmas presents.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Strange plants

I took this photo in the Ballarat Botanical Gardens because I didnt know what these plants were. I still dont. They were quite spectacular in a corner with grasses and strappy leaved plants.
My back and knees have ached all day so apart from doing the weeks shopping I havent done a great deal.
Repaired a necklace for Sarah and fixed Isabelle's dress she is wearing to a wedding on Saturday.
I have walked the dogs and watered the pots and have hoses on my dryest areas but I am being very careful where I water even tho we have got the springs, with a year like this we have no idea if they will suddenly run out.
So both John and I have been very flat today and not wanting to do much. I hope I have more enthusiasm to do things tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Pages for Gail

I am sorry these are not the right way up, I forgot I hadnt turned them before I did them. These were done for my friend Gail in California who has been going through a very rough time, several of us got together and made set size pages and sent them off. I dont think Gail knew what they were for but does now.
Mine were all done with paper which is unusual for me but I think they worked out reasonably well. The theme of course was Friends. I had a lot of fun doing them any way.
Today was Adelaide and I was so tired I really didnt want to go but felt I had to see my mother, of course when I got there I found she had a gastric wog and was quarantined, so I left my flowers and went to collect John who had come too to have his hair done. He is still full of bronchitis but is now feeling a bit better, just tired now he has got some thing to attack the secondary infections.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Looking out over Ballarat

I am home from Victoria safe and sound although extremely tired. A day of driving and then we walked in the botanical Gardens there, lovely but a worry with the water restrictions they are having. Then the day judging at the Ballarat and Central highlands Welsh Youngstock show. The ground was very bare and dry, lovely big oaks around the grounds for the competitors to get under but very hot out in the ring for judges.
I think we did a good job, although neither Robyn or I could agree on our yearling champion and had to get someone else in to do it.
We then went out to Bunyong to Stephen and Jane Wiltshire's property to see his ponies and have dinner, not organised until the finish of the show as Stephen was going home! This is the view they see from actually a bit lower down than their house site. Ponies down the hill and then the plains and Ballarat far below. They had snow a few days ago. They have some lovely ponies.
We had a great night and then had to find our way back to the motel in the dark. Thank goodness the door we couldnt open after we had locked it in the morning had been opened for us so we could get in as it was well after 10.30 by the time we got back.
Yesterday was a long but uneventful drive home but it was tremendously hot, and fires around. I couldnt believe Victor because when I got there it was 20 degrees and at home it was 30 and very windy but we had gone through 38 in some places. The house was stinking hot as John has not been at all well and of course the cover was still on the airconditioner on the roof and poor man he had to get up to organise it. I dont think he knew what temperature he was but I couldnt bear it. I actually met him in Victor having just been to the Dr to get some antibiotics and he is definetly not at all well so was actually very pleased to have me home. Trouble is my feet after being on them all day on Sunday are killing me.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Gate Posts

This is all that remains of a rather imposing front gate on a lovely old house on top of the hill with magnificent views in Kingscote on Kangaroo Island, I just had to sketch it while I was waiting for John to finish his conference while we were there.
He has come home with some awful bronchial wog which is never good for him so I am hoping that all will be well while I am away. Always such a worry, and this is when I realise that he is getting older.
I probably wont get back to this until Tuesday.
I am having fun knitting my very stripey socks, I really should be doing all sorts of other things but at the moment I want to see if I can manage the heel etc and it is taking a while to get down the leg part, especially as I keep forgetting where I am up to.
The new foal is begining to straighten out and look a bit more respectable, the girls are calling him little Apache because of all the white on him.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Bay of Shoals, Kangaroo Island

I did this little painting while wandering around Kingscote on Kangaroo Island, we had been to the winery which is the bright green splash of green the night before for a dinnerand I was interested to see how close to the sea the vineyard was. Bay of Sholas is what it is called, a very shallow bay with lots of sea birds and sandy shoals in it, lovely colour in the sea which I havent captured very well and so brown for this time of the year.
We did have some rain yesterday, but with it freezing gale force winds.
I drove to Adelaide to see my mother who looked very well much better than when I last saw her so that was good. I virtually drove up and home again, although a friend kindly gave me some lunch as I badly needed some "normal" company. John is feeling "off" so I hope he isnt going to get worse.
We had a poor little foal born this morning who wasnt sure which mare was his mother, but we moved them and they have now become inseperable. Another blasted colt, and I had sent the mare out to a different stallion in the hopes of a filly.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Kangaroo Island, American Beach

YOu can see how brown the Island was from this photo, there is a sandy beach over the sandhills and one year, many years ago we were dropped on this beach, two families, a pregnant pug, 5 children, two of them just walking and we camped there for several days and ate what ever the fellows caught out of the sea. Some one dropped off bread and milk every couple of days.
Magic and foolish! High summer and hot.
It is raining at the moment, lovely sound, after being so dry. I dont know how much we will get but too late for most people as far as crops and feed is concerned but will put water in the tanks.
I went to beading last night and am well on the way with the latest bracelet now, they are all making Christmas baubles, so I think that may be the next thing to do. What with beading and my knitted socks Playways is on hold for a week or so.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Mary Beckwith Memorial

This wonderful memorial was to Mary Beckwith who joined NIcolas Baudin's boat in Sydney and was there when he went to Kangaroo Island. It sits by the sea on a fairly lonely beach, a few shacks around and not much else. I went there to sketch and a thunderstorm was out to sea with thunder and lightening.
We had a wonderful few days on the Island, although John came home tired after a 2 day conference and then a 2 day poetry workshop which he thoroughly enjoyed.
While I was there I caught up on a lot of sketching, reading and began my knitted striped socks which need some thought as I have never knitted socks before.
In Kingscote I wandered around the area as usually we only go in for a few hours so I had two days and a wonderful hotel room right on the front.
In Penneshaw we stayed with friends and had an equally relaxing time. So nice after the hustle and bustle of the last week.
While that was going on the results of the Local Government elections were announced and we now have a new young female Mayor who has never been on council, I dont envy her as it will be a steep learning curve I think, and several new councillors, but looks as though it will work. On the Island we went to a party for their Mayor who was re- elected with out much fuss and one of her new councillors, We had met Jayne (the Mayor) before, all these celebrations accompanied by a violent thunderstorm and very little rain and two lightening strikes which started fires. I have never seen the Island look so dry so that is the next big worry, fires as well as drought.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Rivington Victoria

I am afraid this photo is a little fuzzy but this is my little Welsh Mountain mare winning champion leading rein/first ridden at our South Australian All Welsh show. I think some ont took this photo on my digital and it wasnt on the correct setting but at least it is a photo, we were all so busy over the two days of show that hardly any photos got taken. I am quickly checking in as I am packed and ready for a few days away on Kangaroo Island. I took my two Welsh judges up to their plane yesterday for another round of judging in Perth, they were so tired when they got to me they really didnt want to do much at all, but were absolutely charming and I now have a bed in Wales if I can just get there.
We had never met these men before and we had a brilliant show, Supreme Welsh A with the stallion Rivington Spring rain, who then went on to be Best Led in Show, Supreme with my Section B Welsh mare Rivington Sunday and Best foal with her foal and the girls did very well under saddle. Poor fellows as they didnt know who they were staying with were very pleased that they had liked our ponies. Some years we do well some years we dont, depends on what the judges like. I dont mind I take them home and hopefully give them time to see a bit of Australian life.

Friday, November 03, 2006

A mixed day

I received this book in the post yesterday, got through Amazon and supposedly 2nd hand although it doesnt look it. I am so pleased as it is out of print and only cost me under A $26. I love this book and was so pleased to find it and it arrived in record time.
I heard this morning that a very dear friend of mine had died last night after a battle with a brain tumour, I felt desperatly sad but have spent most of the day thinking of all the lovely memories I have of her. She was much younger than I am and wonder how her family is going to cope. We had hoped to see her next week when we went over to Kangaroo Island but it wasnt to be. She always reminded me of a small elegant sprite.
On top of that yesterday I had been to Adelaide to the craft fair, met a friend there and we had such fun, spent some money but not huge amounts and got home last night to a phone call saying I had won some more yarn at the wonderful Threads and More stall there where I had bought some recycled sari yarn to knit.
I called in and saw my mother who was tired but cheerful but on the way out met a fairly elderly woman who was obviously upset who told me her husband of 52 years had alzheimers and she had been visiting him, but how much things were weighing on her as she had no children and was left with everything to sort out on her own, I felt so sorry for her and not a mite depressed about the whole old age thing. Especially as I suppose I could be termed elderly myself, although I dont admit it.
So on the way home I called into one of the major hardware stores and bought myself a dremel which I have been puting off buying for ages, so now I can play with a light weight power tool.
This morning saw the birth of another foal, a little Welsh Mountain colt who I hope is destined for big things, we have been looking for another colt and he is one we could use.
So all in all a very mixed day for me.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Great pot

I think I have drawn this pot before but not perhaps in colour, they are magnificent pots in a favorite coffee place in McLaren Vale.
Because I missed out on my week end coffee we went over to the Vale, about 3/4 hour away to have a coffee and catch up on some art exhibitions.
David Dridan had a lovely one of some of his retrospective stuff, he is a friend and I would dearly love one of his paintings but never have the money. From there we went to one of the wineries that was holding a 25 th anniversay exhibition (of his death) of another favorite of mine. Max Ragless, I have one of his paintings but I would have loved one that was there in oil, mine is pen and wash. He was a friend of my parents.
On Friday evening we go to the opening of the Fleurieu Peninsula Biennale which is the richest landscape prize in Australia, always a huge highlight and we are going to be pushed to fit in all the exhibitions that will be held around it.
Normally we are not doing much and I can mange but this year!

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

African daisies

I rather like these bright daisies that dont mind the dry conditions at the side of the track leading up to the house.
Cold nights, dry days and the paddocks have bleached out more and more, and yet when I walk to see the mares and foals there is still clover there and some green grass if only we would have some rain. It seems unbelievable that this weather continues at this time of the year. Well actually at this time of the year I suppose we should expect it but not dry for so long, the thought of going from now until April or May with little rain is very depressing and very worrying.
I actually felt much better yesterday as I got the house cleaned and tidy, washing done and beds remade so felt very virtuous! I really hate doing the house work.
My knees continue to be a worry during these cold nights and the problem is I hurt the next morning. I dont really want to go to the Doctor again as all he will say is its arthritis and they are not bad enough to do anything about. Moan moan!!
On a more cheerful note I think I have managed to beat right angle weave in a braclet I am making, if it got unpicked once it must have been a dozen times. I quite like the way it is coming together.

Monday, October 30, 2006


This is another textile piece I have been playing with for Playways and hoping that I have interpreted it correctly. This was a sandwich of felt and tissue, dipped in tea, then xandaprint splodged on top, a comb made out of an old credit card wiped through it, heated and raised, painted with two colours and then chiffon over the top, stitched in the hollows and then a bit of contrasting stitching done going over the bumps. I think maybe I was supposed to do this on the machine but I rather liked quietly hand sewing it. It sort of reminds me of a dark dark wood.
I did manage to finish a few things that had been hanging over me, like my tassel for the playways tassel exchange, I dont think I scanned it before it went, a page for a friend, and I dont much like paper stuff but I ran out of time to do it in fabric. I have also now done 3 bracelets (beaded) and need to start another. I still have stuff to do but with those out of the way I think I can breath a bit more easily.
If you really want to know what a horrid day I had yesterday go and see my other blog! (in the links).
Both blogger and all my favorites wouldnt come up yesterday, dont know if it was blogger or our lousy computer line. Amazing how these days one wants it instantly.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Oscar in the window

I thought it was about time I put up another photo of Oscar as he is such a big part of our lives. He likes to sit in the bedroom window and look out, sometimes at the birds in the callistemon but sometimes just waiting for us to come home, at night I can see his eyes reflected in the car lights as we come up the drive. I think if you click on the photo it will show a better picture.
It has been freezing cold here, snow in Tasmania so I hear, and no fire so it gets cold here at night, I insisted on a heater the other night as my knees are back to aching again.
We had another foal last night, all seems well although I couldnt get near enough to see if it is a colt or filly.
We actually had 2 mm of rain yesterday, which has ruined our lowest for October record but it didnt do any good, infact you cant see any difference in the ground.
I am trying to work out what I am doing for Christmas presents this year, usually make about 20 odd small things and have no thoughts at all, maybe it wont happen, sometimes I wonder if people really are pleased to get what I do or not. I think really it is for my own satisfaction but this year time is running out fast.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

My mother's 94th Birthday

Probably not the best photo of the ones we took but at least it has her three daughters with her. Rosemary my older sister on the right and my younger sister Felicity next to her, Mummy and myself.
We had a very happy day, with Mummy reliving it every few minutes as she wasnt sure who had given her what. I think the funniest bit was when we got her back to her room in the nursing home there was a card from her friend who is in the next room and when the friend came in she admired it and said what a lovely card, who was it from! We all had a laugh over that one. All my children had at least sent flowers and cards to her so her room looked overflowing.
Oh dear it was a very busy day and I came home tired and then couldnt sleep. I had walked around Stirling which is a town in the hills behind Adelaide for a couple of hours while John had a meeting, did some sketching and took photos. It was actually a bit damp up there and very cold. I ended up in an organic shop and cafe for a coffee and had fun sketching the various containers for olives. On my other blog see the links.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

MoreTextile fun

I spent some of yesterday doing a bit more of my Playways stuff. This was using tyvek on a background of pieced and stitched fabric and then attacking it with the heat gun. Fun. The dangly bits were more tyvek plaited and then wire wound around. Just playing to see what I could do.
I also beaded a tassel, drew a sketch, did mundane house worky things and walked the dogs.
I thought it was time I put up another bit of textile stuff as I have been doing other things for a while.
Cold horrible wind today. No rain in sight.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Mares and foals

Not at all agood photo but it does give an impression of our drying grass and two of the mares and foals, the one in front is my Multi Supreme Champion Wesh Section B mare with her colt foal and at the back a part arab pony mare with her filly. Looking towards the sheds and dairy.
John is worrying about the amount of water going on the garden.
Yesterday the Government extened some drought areas but not us, unfortunatly we are normally a secure area but I dont think they have any idea how devastating for us it is with absolutely no spring rain, especially as we dont expect to get summer rains. This follows on from about 5 difficult years. I probably shouldnt keep going on about this but it is so depressing to go out and see grass dying and to have no rain forecast in sight and all our reserves almost used up. October normally has an average of 55 mm we have had just over 3. Every day you hope for something. I know the cropping areas are hard hit too but they get years like this far more often than we do and we have cows to feed. The price of them is so low as well as people are destocking every where. I think that by the time the powers that be realise what a mess we are in it will be too late for a lot of dairyfarmers.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

House and garden

I couldnt resist doing a few photos of the garden and house as it wont look like this for long, as it is the one of the back garden shows the brown of the dam bank behind. This is a very new bit of garden where all sorts of bits and pieces that were in pots went in and I love it except that the stinging nettles also love it.
The other is the front of the house artistically framed in trees. Up close it looks a bit tired and worn.
We have had 4 foals in the last few days, 2 colts and 2 fillies, I will take photos in a few days when thay have filled out a bit.
Warming up again and thank goodness we have finally managed to replace two of the old water timers on the taps so I dont forget to turn off the hoses. Although as we have our own water supply we dont have to abide by restrictions, I do to a point that the water may not be there for ever either. In Adelaide and all towns that are supplied by the River Murray there is no watering on Mondays and only on alternate days between 8 pm and 8 am (which is causing no end of consternation.) No washing of cars, or filling swimming pools or childrens paddling pools.
My day just gets longer as I tend to turn hoses on early in the morning and in the evening and have to water the pots.