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.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Buttons an EDM Cchallenge

My not very good drawing of my vintage Czech glass buttons is a EDM challenge from last week.
I couldnt get anything up on the computer yesterday as it was all so slow.
John went fishing and had a great day, he came back with some lovely big whiting.
I went walking this morning with my camera and had took some interesting shots which may get translated into paint further down the track.
We are having very cold nights still, a light frost this morning but the days are getting warmer. Just dry which is what happens when we have frosts.
I saw a small black snake in the old budgie house yesterday and couldnt work out how he had got in but when I put the hose on him he went out between the galvanised iron, only a young snake could get in there. Now of course I am worried about where I will see him next. That is the problem with years like this as around the house is green and I am watering out in the paddocks it is brown and dry so they come for the water.
I finished my mothers necklace finally and am quite pleased with the way it looks. Goes well with the shirt.
We went to see the Devil wears Prada last night and thoroughly enjoyed it. Not often we go to the pictures but at least the local theatre has early times we can sometimes fit in with. Smoked salmon take away pizza afterwards.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Another beaded bracelet

I have been trying to find time to bead lately, twice today I strung a necklace for my mother to go with the shirt I have bought her and twice the last crimp hasnt held so I have left it to try again tomorrow.
This bracelet was fun to make but I am going to try and make a wider one.
Very cold today and two more foals, a colt to Amanda, Welsh Mountain and a palomino filly to Sundew who is a Welsh B. Sunny had hers just before lunch and I watched her have it from a distance. All well with both of them. So far the colts are outnumbering the filles.
I have been trying to find time to paint but no such luck, I keep on being interrupted by family, which is nice in its way but when I have set out a day to do something, well its just a bit annoying when it doesnt happen.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Native cymbidium

This lovely tiny orchid is a native cymbidium that we have, they are very hard to grow and flower so I only hope we have luck with this one, at least it flowered for us. John has been so pleased with it.
We had a bit of rain today, lovely misty soft stuff, about a mm but it didnt last for very long and then it blew again, negating all the good it might have done. Really cold tonight too. This weather is crazy, really hot and then frosts at night. The rain situation is becoming even scarier and here there is talk of possibly not milking at all to save money, but we will see, lots of sums to be looked at but with extra people to pay it might be the only option we have. I have had to pump water up to the dam behind the house as it had only a puddle in it today. Goes to show how little run off we have had.
Shopping was a pain today, lots of people I have never seen before aimlessly wandering the aisles in the suopermarket. Actually aimlessly wandering the roads as well and doing stupid things. I was glad to get home.
I am trying to sort out a beaded bracelet pattern and think I have finally worked it out.
Painted a rose bush on my fence, not very well for my other blog. That I think was my day.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Iris and bird of paradise flowers

We had a fun dinner party last night with much younger friends. I actually got out the best china and silver as they havent had an airing for ages, we did the dishes this morning (no dishwasher) and it didnt take long at all, and tonights dinner is in the fridge already!
I picked a huge bunch of lovely roses but really liked this vase of Bird of Paradise flowers and un opened iris buds, a few opened before people came and I was so organised I had a few minutes so I painted them, not particularly well but at least I did something.
Tired today, raced over to my friend Wendy's place and had lunch and collected my beautiful Birthday present from her, a painted cloth angel, she is lovely as Wendy is a brilliant decorative artist.
Home and raced around feeding the animals, we had 1 mm of rain on Tuesday night, and then it blew so still as dry as dry. There is now a real worry that dams will dry up and not only will we have no feed but no water either. The price of cattle has dropped but interestingly not in the supermarket.
I wonder what will happen if we start to run out of milk, import it I suppose like we are doing with vegetables, bought some Home Brand frozen beans the other day only to find they were from China, in tiny little print at the bottom of the pack.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Quick sketch

This very odd bird was my birthday present from Tabby and the girls, he is a garden lamp I think but at the moment is residing in the sun room. I think he is great, so silly and yet a rather fun design. Made in China of course.
Hot and windy today, not too bad this morning when I pulled more forget me nots out of the garden that leads into the house area and I also pulled out a heap of watsonia leaves to dry, possibly baskets in the future.
Hoses have been on again. Although it is supposed to rain tonight but I am not holding my breath.
I suddenly remembered that I hadnt washed the floors so they got done today as well as a major tidy up in my work room as everything tended to get dumped there after my week in town and I havent had time to look since.
Tonight I go to beading and John is going to the meet the candidates night for the Council elections, with 20 councillor candidates and 3 for Mayor it could be a long night.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Adelaide at night

I am having problems trying to get two sketches done a day so my boots and sketchbook blog will have more while this one will prbably have more photos and other stuff. I took this photo of the Post Office clock and King William Street from the Town Hall balcony, some how it must have been between lights as there are no cars!
A busy day cleaning the house and doing a miriad things that needed doing and I havent had time to do.
I am trying to weed, tidy up things as we have 4 friends coming for dinner on Wednesday night, must have the house looking a bit better than it has, so much dust with these hot northerlys.
Boring but tiring.
No rain for 3 weeks, not a lot in sight either and hot again tomorrow.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Back lane

I rather liked these garages in one of the back lanes in Adelaide, all sorts of colours on the garages and weeds and roses climbing up some of the fences. Peeling paint on doors and a general air of genteel neglect.
The photo is taken at the flower stall in the central Adelaide Market yesterday morning after we had had met and had coffee with Anne and John Forbes from Brisbane, Anne is another one doing Playways on the Net, she kept saying she wished she could take the market back to Brisbane with her it is such a fun vibrant place. We had never met Anne or John but such nice people and hope we may catch up when we go to Queensland next year.
Today was a visit to the first cheese fair at McLaren Vale, we bought the cheeses I couldnt find at the Market yesterday and had a lovely wander around, then in to our favorite place in Victor for a salad and coffee overlooking the bay and home to weed the garden, feels as if I will never get it all done. At least today was lovely at the Vale and pleasantly cool here. Still no rain though.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

S.A. Museum 150 celebrations

Well last nightwas incredible, we had organised as members of the Waterhouse Club, which raises money for the South Australian Museum to go to their Glala celebrations at the Adelaide Town hall. My camera wasnt being particularly good but I hope these will be ok. First there is a photo of John and I all dressed up and looking nothing like our usual farm persona. Oh and we seem to be holding a lot of glasses, they were the photographers as well as ours! Taken on the balcony of the Town Hall. The next one is of the lovely organ which is in the room the dinner etc was held, of course the orchestra had just gone when I took this and I have cropped out everything else so you can see it. Sounds magnificent. The third and rather odd bit is my drawing which I did through a speech by only man of the whole night who couldnt be heard, so the top is a bit of the cornice around the main door and the other is a lamp, there were other bigger ones as you can see in the photo of the organ but this was the one near us.
The Gala was to be as if a minor Royal was visiting in 1856 so medals were to be worn, evening dress and the ladies were supposed to be spectacular! The food was from the odd (possum pie and wombat) to reasonably normal, Mock turtle soup, quail, chicken and lamb.
All ladies recieved a gift, a small peice of polished malachite from a local mine which was the first donation to the museum. All in all a great night and we spent the night in the old treasury building which is now a lush hotel next door to the town hall and was lovely, although walking back this cinderella fell out of her (very high, very minimal) sparkly silver slippers! Actually I got one caught in a hole in the pavement.
Now back to reality again.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

An old school friend lived here

More of my notalgic looks around my old school. My friend Jane Gosse used to live here and I have lost touch with her. she was in my class at school. I remember it as a large rambling place with a huge garden, now it has been cut up into some smaller blocks and a house built almost on top of it but at least the main house is still there and some one is doing it up. So many of these mansions were built along the foothills of Adelaide, usually on creeks and a lot of them have been torn down so it is lovely when you come across one that is still standing. I think there were a lot of problems with salt damp as of course no proper foundations were put in. This and the original Girton building were unusually close. I leapt out of the car at 8 am and photographed it and then was asked by a couple who were walking if I knew its history. I could only say that I knew it as the Gosse house. After all I left school 50 years ago!!

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

EDM Challenge blow

This is what my pergola looked like today, with the hanging pots hanging on for dear life and all my flowers wilting and blowing in the very high winds we have had today. Hot, windy, awful I have been full of hay fever and stuffed up and miserable all day.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

My old school

This used to be the boarding house upstairs and the library and I dont know what else downstairs, I have no idea what it is now but it looks lovely, not at all as I remember it! I couldnt get over how small the original buildings looked, but you have to remember that I started in 1944 and left in 1956 so a huge change in that time.
I had a lovely time taking photos of buildings and houses that were typical but fast disapearing to be replaced by so called "Tuscan" houses with no overhangs so stupid in our climate. Big blocks being cut up so no more the back yard chooks, the vegetables and fruit trees. No rainwater tanks either.
We are heading into an unprecedented dry with temperatures heading into the thirties for the next few days, hot and high winds and fire alerts, and this is still early October.
I came home today after a lovely lunch with daughter Tabby and the girls, Gaby and Celina for my birthday, (I like these long birthday weeks!) with an incredible iron bird, must sketch it. To find John saying we had an echidna in the pots near the back door and Jake (the dog) having a great time trying to show it off and to his disgust it refused to budge. I sketched and photographed it, the sketch is on my other blog (see links). I dont think I have ever had one as close to the house as this before.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Working at Forum

I have no idea if the sketch to go with this is up or not, its not where I can see it!
This is a sketch of the rather uncomfortable conditions I worked in at Forum class, on a high stool at a high desk in the science lab! At least we had room to spread and it was light.
Today was busy, as usual, I had forgotten I had a Womens and Childrens AGM to go to for the local auxilliary, I am still their patron. Very interesting guest speaker, but I was still tired after my busy few days. Home for a sleep!! Well a 10 minute zizz and then back in to the Doctors and he is always late, and finally home. Walked to look at the foals and exercise the dogs and am about to make a salad for dinner. Not very exciting.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Back from Forum

Well I am back from a wonderful few days in Adelaide at Forum South. I took a design course with Jae Maries and it was the most incredible few days. I have taken a photo of what I did and was up on the wall for display on the last day. A couple of samples, cutting up photos and paper to make a design. my "work in progress" which is the sea scape, still a way to go on that and another smaller work in progress under it, trying to do buildings. We will see how or if they get finished, but I am pleased with what I have done so far. Of course there were lots more samples than this in my work book.
Of course I was very tired, had my yikes!!67 th birthday on the Wednesday, one of the girls in the class brought in a wonderful apple cake for it which was lovely and then gave us all the recipe.
I celebrated with my friend Kate her 80th birthday on Thursday, although hers is today we and a few friends had a lovely lunch together, although it was a bit rushed as we all raced off to the Heathen Bazaar at the school to buy all sorts of wonderful things.
My friend Paddy looked after me incredibly well even tho I think I was a bit of a let down to her as I was so tired at night, but we drank champagne and had take away chinese on my birthday night.
I saw my mother the next day as we had a more or less day off. I drove home last night feeling very weary as I had been up early and packed the car and we had most of a day to work in.
Lovely to get home to John and my own bed!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Goolwa street Fair

Yesterday was busy, no drawing, I am off to Adelaide for my textile class in a few minutes.
I will not be on line until about next Sunday or Monday.
We went over to Goolwa, the river port town on the Murray River about 1/2 hour from home as they were having a street fair, lots of people, lots of fun. Lovely old buildings which Vicor Harbor unfortunatly doesnt have.
We then went on to lunch for an early celebration of my Birthday which is on Wednesday, 67 oh boy! Went to our favorite eating house and sat outside and enjoyed the view and had champagne and lovely food and came home and had a sleep! (too much wine I fear).
So today I have far more to do than I had hoped.