Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Native orchids

Not terribly good photos but if you enlarge they may be better. The blue is a blue sun orchid and the other is a donkey orchid. No time to look for their names, they keep changing them any way.
We are packed and I have the house ready for the sitter and we are almost packed.
May or may not be able to post but I think I can read stuff.
B e prepared for a zillion photos when I get home in late October.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Waitpinga and Parsons Beach

We have had such rough weather for the last few days and the surf report was for at least 4 meter waves down here so this afternoon John and I went to see what it all looked like.
Normally this is a favorite walking spot but I am still being careful of my knee and the walk down is a few hundred feet.
First this is a treacherous bit of coast, people have drowned been taken by sharks and as this fellow was, a big sea came in and took him from the rocks as he was fishing.
I think just by looking at these photos you will get some idea of how treacherous it is, but the surfers love it for all that.
It is in national park so the surrounding scrub is always interesting.
The first few photos were facing the east and the last ones facing west, so two gorgeous and untamed bits of beach within 20 minutes of home.
I took more photos and they may go up tomorrow as I am house cleaning, the suitcase is sort of packed, there seems to be a Govt warning for Aussies going to Germany, all this excitement is probably not good for us but who cares. If your time is up your time is up!
I quite like this quote by Luc de Clapiers
"To achieve great things
we must live as though we were
never going to die."

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Oscar and some Rosella Parrots

Bother I meant to load these the other way around.
I walked out last night and there was a rosella, one of the older lovely red ones at the bird feeder, I dont have much luck taking bird photos but these were sort of ok.
Then this morning I walked out, we had had torrential rain all night and the sun was out and Oscar was outside and sitting in the sun for a few minutes, he doesnt like the wet.
My geranium maderense is still flowering madly, I love this plant, it is a biennial and flowers in its second year, seeds just enough and then dies off.
The Japanese wisteria is just beginning to flower by the bedroom door at the top of the flowering prunus.
I am trying to sort out clothes and put things in mt suitcase and then take them out, I have no idea what the weather is going to do to me.
I dont want to take too much but then I need something for a few different occasions.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Around Ashbourne South Australia

While driving back from visiting a friend at Ashbourne and after lunch I stopped by the side of the road on the short cut I take and took some photos. This is red gum country and quite different to our area although at the most about 3/4 of an hours drive away.
There was a bit of sun shining on the distant hill, the yellow may be a fine crop of dandelion but it looked pretty and then a wonderful crop of I think triticale growing in a paddock by the road, I havnt seen crops like this in this area for ages.
Looking back along the dirt road where there was a ford but I think they lifted the road and put a pipe under it so it is now not a worry if it rains going along this road.
The next two were taken off the Ashbourne road and shows the new spring leaves on the trees just showing up, this area has good deep soils too and is used for orchards and vegetables, although the big white cockatoos became such a menace that my friends pulled out their orchard, a shame as we used to have fun coming over to pick apples and pears and they looked beautiful when in full flower.
An overcast misty sort of day and now we are having possible snow for cast for the higher ranges tomorrow, we do get snow but only very occasionally. I must say today is wet and windy and cold and it was not easy finding a park to do my morning shopping.
I might add that they are re doing our shopping center and every time I go there seem to be less parking spaces available, I will be so glad when it has finished and hope it will before the massive increas in the number of summer tourists.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Lino cut owl

This little owl was printed onto rusted fabric using black acrylic paint mixed with textile medium and then hand sewn. I have put him onto a piece of black felt.
We went to Adelaide yesterday, John had a meeting in the hills so I dropped him off and then went down to see my mother who was fine.
Going through the hills everything looks wonderful, all the dams are full and the grass is about knee high, I havent seen it like that for a few years.
Today I had lunch with a friend about 3/4 hour away from us and as I drove over through the back roads there were crops up to the top of the fences already and looking magnificent.
So I have been pretty busy and with only a few days before we leave I am feeling a bit as though I am running out of time.
I wonder of this quote by Napoleon Bonaparte has any significence? Probably not but here it is.
"My downfall raises me
to great heights."

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

After the rain

Well its not quite after the rain as it is raining again at the moment, and cold. Typical Spring but this year so much nicer with rain and not like last year when everything stopped at the end of August, it makes for a very long summer.
I walked this morning before it got wet and took some of these photos, the first two in the garden and then along the old road, reflections in puddles and a blurry blue wren, they are on the move the whole time and are impossible to get close to with my little camera.
I sort of wish I had a larger camera but then again I dont want the weight and I like something I can tuck into my pocket.
I am off to make a chicken pie for dinner, we are eating our way through the freezer so I can defrost it before we go so we are eating all sorts of odd things and there seems a lot of chicken in there and John is not very partial to it so I have to disguise it.
To nights quote is by Aristotle

"The roots of education are bitter,
but the fruit is sweet."

Monday, September 21, 2009

Silage making

It has rained heavily for a lot of the day here so thank goodness these paddocks were finished on Friday night when I took these photos, well it was late afternoon as you can see by the shadows.
These are in slightly the wrong order, first one showing the still to be picked up grass as is the last one but looking across and down the valley and then them on the stack and finally the third photo in of the grass being put into the truck, it is interesting to see them all driving along at a reasonable speed.
We used to put them into plastic covered rolls, then into long plastic tubes and now we are back to making a stack, things go around in circles, but I think it is more cost efficient these days to do this.
I suppose this seems strange to those in the northern hemisphere that we make our silage in early Spring, but there would be nothing left if we did it in autumn.
We make very little if any hay these days, it is better to buy it in with all the right levels of sustenance for the cows already done by some one else.
So much has changed on the farm, and so many more little paddocks so we get the most out of the grown feed, I am glad I dont go out feeding the ponies these days, far too many gates to open.
We were lucky today as we had very little wind while other parts of the state were almost blown away, nor did we have the bad thunderstorms but when it rained, it really came down and it was so dark, luckily the power only went on and off a couple of times.
Other areas were not so lucky and I believe lots of trees are down and a lot of damage. We seem to have had a lot more wind than normal this year, but at least with it has come the rain.

" Worries go down better with soup than without"

A Jewish proverb.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Walking around the base of the Bluff

I needed a walk today so on with the dreaded knee support and off we went around the dirt road by the sea and at the base of the Bluff, a few cars but not too many and at least it is reasonably flat with no holes.
The first photo shows the new boat launching facility's breakwater which there was a huge outcry about and personally I think it blends in with all the other rocks very well.
This is the view from the cafe at Whalers where we had a coffee when we had finished walking. I know I put this photo up every so often but it is never really the same and I think it is a stunning view to have so close to home.
Then a pair of Pacific Gulls who were mooching around on a rock and not doing much at all,
I just love the little bits of rocky inlets along here, in our skin diving days I spent many happy hours fossicking in and around these rocks looking for sea squirts and abalone and pheasant shells amongst other things.
The final one is at the end of the road and where we used to dive, I have never been so scared as when a huge school of king fish swam past, they made such a noise I didnt know what it was, I was about 5 months pregnant at the time and peacefully sitting on the bottom and of course no one else was in sight, I tended to get left behind.
I think that was my last dive before I had my last baby,( many afterwards though), as I found I got very tummy heavy and had problems getting out of the water with a tank on my back.

John Ruskin said

"Curiosity is a gift, a capacity for pleasure in knowing,
which if you destroy, you make yourselves cold and dull."

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Flowers and lace

I cant remember if I have posted this lovely orchid, probably but I put it in as we went to a native orchid show in Adelaide today and saw many like this and some of stunning two tone colours. I did buy another one that I didnt have.
The little bag is made from a pattern in an English Stitch magazine and I thought it would be fun to try so here is my offering, took me a while but I was quite pleased with the way it turned out in the end.
I am reading a new and fascinating book called "In a Unicorn's Garden". I have written a bit about this in my other blog here.
The peacocks are calling, the males all have their long tails and the females are being a bit silly about where they nest, I am sure one is up behind the house somewhere and I am afraid a fox will get her. The males love chasing each other on the roof and they sound as if they have hob nailed boots on at times.
James Russell Lowell said
"The wise man travels to discover himself"

Friday, September 18, 2009

A busy day

The tree Begonia that lives in the hall by the front door is looking really pretty at the moment, it flowers almost all year round and I suppose one day I will lose it but so far it grows to the ceiling and I cut it back and off it goes again. No good outside as it doesnt like the cold in winter or the heat in summer.
I have been finishing off a few more things, here is a little amulet I have made, quite complicated but I rather like it. It is basically felt with gel medium and then paint and then stitched and sewn.
Last night I went to see one of our grand daughters, well actually two of them gain prizes at the Junior netball presentations, but Celina won the one for the most best and fairest on court nominations which is great for one of her age. I didnt have a camera that was good enough and I am waiting on a photo from one of the girls.
Spent time with another grand daughter, Gaby and Mason today and then took them out to her mother and really Mason and Millie are a hoot together.
My knee needs some fine tuning which is a nuisance but I am getting there (I hope!) 10 days before we goI rather like this quote from Mark Twain

"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry
and narrow- mindedness."

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Miss Millie

Here is Millie after dinner the other night, taking an interest in a very strange doll made out of a flower pot that the girls gave me a few years ago.
She was wearing her new T shirt with the horse on the front that her cousin and aunt had given her from the show.
I have been back to the physio to day as my knee has progressively got more uncomfortable and yes it is swollen and I need at least another appointment before we leave, not much time left now, we go on the 29th and I have to organise the house so people can stay to feed and do the pots.
This evening we are out to the netball final presentations and I think two of my grand daughters get awards.
To nights quote is by William Hazlitt

"Give me the clear blue sky over my head,
and the green turf beneath my feet,
a winding road before me,
and a three hours' march to dinner."

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


I have had fun playing with this little kimono with scraps of material and beads and trim. All based on felt I found this in a quiliting arts I think, obviously filed it away as something I would like to try.
I have had a busy day, in Adelaide to have a hair cut and see my mother who is out of the wheel chair and walking again, I think they do it on purpose, try to stop them walking and then say they need to go into the high care area of the nursing home.
It is raining tonight and I have a zillion things to do, some late phone calls so no dinner organised and I feel hungry.
Another quote from The Worlds Love Poetry, from the French section;
" There is only one kind of love, but there are a thousand different copies."

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

flora and fauna

I think it should be the other way round. In the first photo there is a bird, one of our New Holland honey eaters, they are very badly behaved and like to chase the other smaller honey eaters away. My little camera doesnt take good photos but I think if you click on the photo you can see him.
Then along the side of the road as I walked tonight lots of grasses and weeds, not sure if this is wheat or barley but we feed both to the cows so it could be either.
Finally the Japanese Tamarisk is bursting into flower, love that delicate pink and they do remarkably well here. Next to it is the pomegranite just coming into leaf. Behind is an olive.
I feel terribly achy tonight, walking is not helped by my knee which doesnt want to know me.
I shopped this morning and cleaned the house as I have Tabby and John and Millie coming for dinner tonight.
Braised lemon lamb shanks, mashed potato with parmesan cheese and broccoli, we may finish with baked apple.
I have a very odd collection of poems and found this book called The world's love poetry and here is a small piece called

A Charm at Parting

"In well-cool hollow walk your way,
in bee-soft bower sleep you.
In drift, in dream, drink fresh, breathe free:
in dream, in home, love keep you"

Mary Phelps

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Seals and whales in the Bay

A really exciting day, it was another terribly windy day and I really didnt think we would see any whales but we counted at least eight possibly more, and a couple of seals lazing around in the water by the rocks.
The great gout of water is all I managed to get of a huge whale who was breaching about 2 to 3 kms away, I have never seen them do this before, I suddenly saw what looked like something the size of a bus emerge from the water and come down with a heck of a splash, they say that our Southern rights dont breach but this one had most of his body out of the water, not just his head.
The trouble with the digital camera is the time lag and usually I got sea tried desperately to get a tail out and didnt manage that either.
If you try this, if I can copy it correctly you may learn more about them.
The whale in the third photo is how I have normally seen them but with so many whales around maybe there was a female in season and the others were showing off, I dont know but it was the best I have seen in many years of whale watching down here.
The walk around the end of Bashams Beach near Pt Elliott is lovely and here is a photo of the native clematis or old man's beard that was in full flower and the little bay before you get to the point. All rocks and curves and lovely sea.
I havent walked by this bit of beach for ages and it was well worth a slightly aching knee to do it.

Judith Wright from Counting in Sevens.

"Seven nines are sixty- three; seven tens are seventy.
Who would that old woman be?
She will remember being me,
but what she is I cannot see."

Saturday, September 12, 2009

My friend Jake

If you click on this photo you can just see Jake going about the business of the day, checking every thing out.
He hates it when I walk late and he is shut up and at the moment, fed and in his cage he is whingeing that it is too early and he should be out.
Here on farms all dogs are shut up at night in case they chase and kill the neighbours sheep, we have lost dogs in the past when they have been shot, we had one wily old bitch who every time we had new young dog would take them over to the neighbours, she never got shot but many of the young ones did until we realised what she was doing.
Another terribly windy day and we watched a grand daughter win her finals and become best on court but I came home feeling terrible.
Supposed to be a cool change tonight and possibly some rain, I had to water the pots for the first time for ages tonight.
Another bit of Judith Wright.

"Spring, impatient, thunders at the doors of iron,
we have no songs left. Let our boughs be silent.
Hold back your fires that would sear us into flower again,
and your insistent bees, the messengers of generation.
Our bodies are old as winter and would remain in winter.
So the old trees plead, clinging to the edge of darkness."

from The Cedars.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Walking the old road

Some one had cut out a piece of a fallen tree and left this wonderful orange scar with all the trees life lines.
Further along this gum was shedding its bark and looking decidedly tattered.
If you look carefully you will see a pair of wood duck by this duck pond.
Further on the neighbour's poplars are still in their winter dress but I dont think with this hot weather that their leaves will be far off.
This is the old road where we used to get stuck if the creek came up in flood and where we went through so very carefully the night before Nick was born to get into the hospital, the creek was rising and it was pouring with rain and in those days it was the only way in to the town.
Now we can get out of the valley several different ways.
Finally home and coming up the orchard this ash tree, no I dont think it is an ash and I cant remember what it is, I know I grew it from seed, any way it is decked out in its spring flowers.
I am still enjoying Judith Wrights poetry and here is another little bit,

"It is wise in the young
to let heart go racing heart,
to believe that the earth
is young and safe and sweet;

and the message we should send
from age back to youth
is that every kiss and glance
is truer than the truth."