Wednesday, March 28, 2012

ticking off the shopping list

we've just spent two days in the city, visiting dentists (LAST VISIT until next routine checkup time, thank goodness!) optometrists (someone in this household needs reading glasses, and it certainly isn't me, as I am MUCH younger than him!), getting our backs pummelled and manipulated, ticking items off the permanent list of Things To Get In Town, and Grocery Shopping.

Of course, no visit to the city would be complete without a visit to Bunnings (known in our house as BUNNY'S! said just like that, with exclamation point) and where else would you need to telephone your spouse to find out just where in that big shed he is and did you remember to get a new torch, when you yourself is having a lovely time wandering through the pot plants and testing the outdoor furniture. (more on that topic next post!)

One thing that I ticked off the list for home was new drinking glasses. I didn't find exactly what I wanted (of course, what I saw on the shelf last time was no longer there, story of my life) but these will do. Probably won't float the husbands boat, but I can now drink my water or soda stream in elegance. (he can have the old daggy chipped glasses instead!)

IMG044 And because they are from Kmart and not Bohemien crystal.... I drink peace (incidentally, these are the biggest bucket holding wine glasses I have ever seen! perfect for you soaks wine lovers out there :-)


mind you, with an engagement party to attend this weekend, I am thinking I should have gotten TWO boxes of these so I could give one away. Oh well, they will just have to make do with the rather nice steak knives, tea towels and cute cheese board  I got them instead. I'm not giving them up.

Easter holidays are but two days away from starting here, and whilst there has been talk of camping and carting bits and bobs to the camper trailer, there has also been much talk of mustering, shifting steers and trucking cattle, whilst in the midst of it all a wedding to attend. I am not sure that The Husband has his time management plan in action, to be fitting all of that in as well as the promised camping.

Righto, back to the grocery and shopping putting away....I seem to be getting easily distracted....

Sunday, March 25, 2012

he has been watching too much MKR

My Kitchen Rules that is. Husband was housebound the past few days from the rain, and rather than sweep the floor or clean the loo, he has been ratting around in the freezer and kitchen, following me around, looking over my shoulder, reading every email that pings in the inbox, generally annoying the crappers out of me. (why are you doing that? this how you spend your day?......what is there to eat?.......what are we having for tea?.......)

ANYHOW, he went off in search of smoko and of course there wasn't much yummy stuff to be had (for good reason, I am the one that generally eats it!) so I gave him the microwave in a cup chocolate cake recipe to try out. It wasn't half bad, but one serve could easily do two adults. When the kids came home from school, he made one again for them, split three ways.

IMG_0455needless to say, the kids were VERY pleased by this turn of events!

IMG_0457and look at how delicious they look....

IMG_0458although we decided it would be easier to eat tipped out on the plate. I think Georgie is particularly thrilled by the treat of a warm cake on a cool, wet afternoon.

So was the dog. The dog that isn't allowed inside.

IMG_0459Waiting for the inevitable crumbs to fall. At least I didn't have to sweep the floor!

(and notice the husbands overflowing collection of newspapers in the sideboard? - the Qld Country Life and the NQ Register....that is one thing he could have done on a rainy day, clean them out!)

Anyhow have issues with bored husbands on rainy days?  I forsee an expensive shed building operation in our future (we don't have a Shed at home, and it was too wet to get to the any of the sheds on any of the properties.....)

While I love the rain, all I can say is thank goodness the sun is out today. I just need a couple of days to myself again, and then it can rain again! :-)

Saturday, March 24, 2012


a quick little project made on one of the rainy days we've had this week. As much as I love the rain, I am pleased to see the sun out today (GORGEOUS day!) but not so much the mildew that is appearing e v e r y where.

This little project didn't take much time to complete, and involved a hot glue gun, and I am pleased to report my fingertips survived intact.

IMG_0452 A pin cushion/container from a canning jar (should be able to get them from spotlight or kitchen store - the ones with the two piece lid).  Finally a safer place for my pins to live! considering their home has been like this....

IMG_0454for way too long, resulting in many a spill, much swearing and getting kids to pick them back up with a magnet, I think it was about time that I did this!

Love it when my crafting attempts actually are successful!

now off to hang some washing in the sun, and to think about the mildew. Who knows, I might even wipe some of it off.

Wait, its Saturday! Slave labour shall be enforced (evil laugh!)......

Friday, March 23, 2012

spreading the word

OK, so if you are not interested in scrapbooking and artsy-fartsy stuff, step away from the computer now.

My sister in law hasn't been convinced that she could "do" simple scrapbooking. Not that she was an over the top, puts lots on a page scrapbooker, but she is a perfectionist, and she doesn't mind fiddly. Like fussy-cutting, stitching by hand on a page type fiddly. Cutting her own felt lettered title. (I have called her a crazy woman in the past)

She very proudly emailed me to tell me she had done some simple pages, and I have permission to share.

IMG_2469She did fussy cut those flowers, but it is indeed a simple page.

IMG_2470(the photos on this page are printed on normal paper as she didn't have them printed properly, but she wanted to do the page. They are temporarily adhered until she gets them printed.) I really like this one...more fussy cutting too, of the birdy at the top, but still look how effective it can be.

Sister in law still not convinced though, she feels like maybe, just maybe, they need something more. :-) I couldn't disagree more! 

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


I really don't think we'll be heading east

that ripple in the water is the road bridge....


a quick page

A quick digi page that I plan to print, add a number 4 thicker to that empty space, stick the whole lot on some cardstock and call it done. Love it.


Its been raining up here in the north, nothing of biblical proportions in my area, but some big flooded rivers between me and the city, for which we are meant to be departing before 7am tomorrow for the FINAL (please god) round of dental appointments. However, I have a feeling that I might be cancelling those appointments later on this afternoon, as I can't see this being down by then...

542896_414921788524376_196048033745087_1886366_84647973_n[1]there is a bridge 2.8 metres UNDER that water (you can JUST see the other side).

Such is wet season in the north!

Sunday, March 18, 2012


For a long time, we've been wanting to do some work on our small front verandah, lest one day an unsuspecting visitor get slapped on the face when they stand on one of the several loose floorboards. Finally, our local builder man paid a visit with tape measure and pencil (the live in builder-man declaring he was too busy) looked underneath things and poked at timber with a critical eye, not unlike a surgeon decided which diseased bits need to be taken out.

While he is here fixing the floor, I have also asked that he close in the open wall of the verandah, which in wet weather is a real pain in the bum.

IMG_1779You can see the open side above, the rug on the floor covering some pokie-out nails that refuse to bed down (an indication of the state of things down below)

Today I've had out the yellow pages and done some googling, sending off a few emails to get prices on shutters to fill that space above, so we can close them when it rains, but have them open for light and breeze, when its not. Not is about 80% of the year.

I've settled on aluminium, as they aren't as 60's/70's looking as I had in my head.....

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         161109sc-072080 

  slideshow-shutters-3 So now I just have to sit back and wait to be shocked by the prices that hopefully I will be getting tomorrow.... edited to add: if anyone wants to know what I find out, just drop me a line, I am finding out all sorts of interesting things!

Of course, it will never look as polished or charming as any of the pictures that I dredge up from around the www, but at least my precious pillows won't be getting wet every time we get a vigorous shower of rain.

Mind you, the knowledge that internet does not = reality, doesn't stop me from thinking, with eyes half shut and rose coloured glasses firmly in place, that my garden could easily look like this with just but a little tweak (and a chaff bag of $$) here and there....

Thesunhouse_com_Mango_Tree_Gardenthe husband will be thrilled about my paving plans, I can hear him groaning about his back already :-) (I do wonder how they keep the lawn and pavers so pretty?!)

Saturday, March 17, 2012

clever use of words

I came across a link to a blog post, which I share below. I LOVE clever use of words, without needing to get the dictionary in order to understand what's been written. Nothing like a well written insult too!

These glorious insults are from an era before the English language got boiled down to 4-letter words.                                                                                                                                                                                   
“He had delusions of adequacy.” – Walter Kerr

“He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire.” – Winston Churchill

“I have never killed a man, but I have read many obituaries with great pleasure.” Clarence Darrow

“He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary.” – William Faulkner (about Ernest Hemingway).

“Thank you for sending me a copy of your book; I’ll waste no time reading it.” – Moses Hadas

“I didn’t attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it.” – Mark Twain

“He has no enemies, but is intensely disliked by his friends..” – Oscar Wilde

“I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a friend, if you have one.” – George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill

“Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second …. if there is one.” – Winston Churchill, in response.

“I feel so miserable without you; it’s almost like having you here.” – Stephen Bishop

“He is a self-made man and worships his creator.” – John Bright

“I’ve just learned about his illness. Let’s hope it’s nothing trivial.” – Irvin S. Cobb

“He is not only dull himself; he is the cause of dullness in others.” – Samuel Johnson

“He is simply a shiver looking for a spine to run up.” – Paul Keating

“In order to avoid being called a flirt, she always yielded easily.” – Charles, Count Talleyrand

“He loves nature in spite of what it did to him.” – Forrest Tucker

“Why do you sit there looking like an envelope without any address on it?” – Mark Twain

“His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork.” – Mae West

“Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go.” – Oscar Wilde

“He uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp-posts… for support rather than illumination.” – Andrew Lang (1844-1912)

“He has Van Gogh’s ear for music.” – Billy Wilder

“I’ve had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn’t it.” – Groucho Marx

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

this makes me laugh

Pinned Image

And if you don't say that in your head in Sean Connery's are a stronger person than me! (a poor choice of photo though, wasn't he one suave individual in his James Bond days?!)

Who else could you listen to all day?

Monday, March 12, 2012

not exactly cinderella

but to the ball I did go, on Saturday night. Without The Husband, who was devastatedly disappointed that we had no babysitter and he had to stay home with the kids, as he loves wearing his suit and bow tie so very much.

I am on the committee (albeit a very poor one, having not been to one meeting in the past twelve months) that organises the ball, so I donned my frock (such a great word to drop into a converstation!) bling and trotted off to help out. Before I left, I allowed myself to be photographed - badly - by the husband. The six year old has better photography skills than he does.

IMG_0431I will not add commentary as of course one always can find fault with ones own image (hello white flabby arms, why did I not get a dress with sleeves?!)  I will say that I decided to put a rinse in my hair that morning, having been told with delight by kids and spouse of the grey hairs on my head. It turned out a little darker than expected. And after having my hair straightened and fluffed with the other girls in town who were attending the ball, I wasn't sure that I liked it but didn't have time to do anything else with it.

The hall was all decorated:

IMG_0434(It didn't look as empty as this in real life!) and those big roller doors on the left opened up onto a lovely deck, overlooking the river.

IMG_0435the table decor was very cool in the low light

IMG_0437And the rest of the ladies from my little town scrubbed up alright as well, all out for a Girls Night Out.

That is all that made it onto my camera, however there was a newspaper reporter snapping away so if I made the newsprint I will be sure to share :-)  

Friday, March 9, 2012

run, don't walk

a little consumerism here today, you know how deep and meaningful makes my head hurt....

I picked these two things up at woolies the other day, needing some new lip balm and wanting some face sunscreen I could put on each morning without feeling like I was covered in thick stuff.

IMG_0415I LOVE IT! of course its not 30 SPF (I haven't found a nice light, tinted one yet) but this is just gorgeous. I would even go so far to say as I would use it as a nice light foundation. It really does even out the complexion!

IMG_0416I was heading for the lipbalm section when I spied this, and being on sale I decided to try it. Again, I LOVE IT! It really doesn't have a great amount of colour, but feels great, seems to moisturise and have some sun protection at the same time, but doesn't have the sunscreeny taste that some do. I like this one so much that I am going to get another to keep in my bag.

Lastly, these, the food of the devil, or the gods, depending on your perspective. I didn't realise that I had a thing for chocolate and peanuts until I had one of these....

IMG_0417The Husband did some grocery shopping for me as he came through the Towers the other day, and brought home a bag of these "fun sized" beauties. Let us just day that there are none left now and I may have had more than my fair share...

I wonder why my pants are feeling a bit tight today.

Run, don't walk, folks and try some of these for yourself, today!  

Thursday, March 8, 2012

dreadfully neglected

As I have been leaving little hints here and there around the bloggy world recently about wanting to see more of their gardens, I thought I should put my money where my mouth is. Trouble is, while I love gardens, my own hasn't been feeling that love lately, and in fact has been dreadfully neglected.  A recent sortie with a full poison bottle of over-strength brew has started to restore some order, the battle that that my nemesis Couch Grass has won over the past twelve months has taken a step back in my favour.

Anyhow, I thought I would share one little part of my neglected garden. I am not sure what to call this area, its not a green house, just a bit of no mans land between laundry and garden sheds and the back of the donga (my office area). A while back, with little husbandly assistance (which may explain the state of my back today) I laid down the pavers and carted many wheelbarrow loads of gravel to go around the pavers.

IMG_0402As you can see, I need to attack the couch grass here again, its looking far too cheerful, this should be a grass free zone (the gravel could probably do with a top up as well)

IMG_0403Pot plants have been toppled, there have been deaths, and vigoursly growing plants have escaped their pots and thrown babies into the gravelled area. Not exactly tidy and ordered!

IMG_0404Quite a bit of tidying and arranging needing to happen....and ever one to re-use and recycle, this "bench" came home from the rubbish dump, it had a former existence as the "dog box" on an old cattle crate, flipped over it makes quite a handy plant stand.

IMG_0407This area being covered and where the more delicate and shade loving plants are meant to live, it was quite a bit tidier than this until the porky pig came along and had a whale of a time...the succulent stand has been rescued and re-stood, but not put back where it should be....along with everything else needing a good tidy up.

IMG_0408Love those colourful little glazed pots, I pick them up at Bunnings or discounts stores when I see them on sale. And the steel mesh topped bench in the background, the husband won himself some brownie points the day he brought that home unexpectedly!  (the fact that he didn't make it himself, our man that runs our business did, doesn't really matter!) Its meant to be a potting/work bench, but of course at this moment holds all sorts of garden junk.

IMG_0412 And one last one, looking around the corner from where I stood to take the above photo (at the end of the pathway)

IMG_0413more overgrown pots (btw, did you know hibiscus seem to grow very happily in a pot? Dug up and dumped in a pot as a "temporary" home, this one has flourished here for a v e r y long time. I see no need to move it now, just give it a haircut, and seeing as it is doing well, may just find it some hibicusy friends to fill some other empty pots.

So, I've shown you mine...or part of I best get that round up out again and start phase two of the couch grass attack.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

in the news

CLX-3180_20120306_15180301Evidently my children weren't all that excited to be photographed with some North Queensland Cowboys players (can't say I blame them, really :-) waddya say to that, Di) I would have to say, I could walk past a footy player of any sort in the street, and not recognise them, maybe with the possible exception of Alfie Langer, maybe Shane Webke (only because HE turns up in the Country Life from time to time, and reads the news!) or the blokes off the Footy Show.

I was informed of my kids stardom by my sister in law, who had been telephoned by her dad to tell her they were in the Townsville Bulletin.

The page has been torn out and saved for posterity. Not sure why, maybe it will mean something one day if the Cowboys ever win something! ;-)

Monday, March 5, 2012

new in equestrian fashion

IMG_0400Do you think it will catch on? (complete with some sort of dirt all over my face)

Yesterday the girls wanted to ride, so we walked over to the horse paddock, saddled up their ponies and they went for a little ride around me, while I stood and watched.  Then our lovely old mate Ben (above) got progressively naughtier as Kate was trying to get him to do things, so Mum had to step in. Luckily my saddle was in the shed, so I quickly threw it on, jumped on in my crocs, 3/4 cotton pants, town hat and tshirt....doesn't everyone wear such attire when riding?!!

Ben was then reminded that he was NOT in fact the boss of me or any other little humans. I think he will be MUCH happier to have (very much lighter) Kate back on his back after huffing and puffing whilst we cantered around in circles.

Just quietly, as I don't get to ride much these days, I *may* have been slightly out of breath myself, and I *may* have been reminded of a few core muscles that I had forgotten about, until this morning that is!

IMG_0395IMG_0398Gosh Georgie loves her old pony. He is a bit of a con artist though, and she lets him get away with it...

IMG_0399 Kids too this photo, not sure how, but its quite amusing!

Speaking of fashion....granny made the boy some sock protectors "just like dad's!" as requested. He thinks he is SO cool and wears them at every opportunity - but only with work boots of course. :-)

IMG_0393And so ends this random snapshot of our Sunday afternoon, as I keep finding ways to avoid vacuuming the floor...but procrastinating over, I shall sustain myself with a chocolate frog and go to have a little chat with Dyson, bless his floor cleaning little socks.....

Saturday, March 3, 2012

using Amy's sketch

Over at Simple Aussie Girls we've started taking turns at having Saturday Sketches, where we introduce a sketch or similar (think magazine layout etc).  This is my take on Amy's from a few weeks ago.
FEB SAG Sketch 2aand my interpretation, resized to fit...
The photo felt a bit ordinary, so I ran a quick action on it (I think it may have been PW Seventies?) to warm it up and give a bit more oomph.

I think the size of my text is too big, oh well, must remember for next time!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

well I'll be....

Some time last year, during one of our swimming-at-the-creek excursions, Georgie caught a yabbie crossing the causeway. It was terribly exciting at the time, we put it in a container in the back of the car and continued swimming. It escaped, we found it again and this time put a lid on it, took it home and put it in the horse trough in the back paddock.

After inspecting the trough a few days later, no yabbie could be sighted so we assumed it had died, swum out or a bird had eaten it.

Fast forward to a couple of days ago, when I was inspecting the trough, for a bit of a head count on the little guppies I had released there before Christmas. The water was crystal clear and the little fishies were swimming happily, when I noticed something a little odd at the bottom of the trough.

I found a stick, poked about in the bottom (which is quite silty and easily disturbed) and from the gloom of the mucked up water appeared one very LARGE yabby!

I was very excited. Rang The Husband. I could hear him rolling his eyes through the phone. His excitement levels were less. Non the less, the family trooped over that afternoon with our specialised yabbie catching equipment - a stick, a colander, and a bucket, to have a closer look at the crustacean.

IMG_0353Let me tell you this: he is a LOT bigger than when I first let him go (which was about 1/4 of the size he is now). The Husband tells me this is a native yabbie, not the introduced Red Claw which are the ones that are REALLY good to eat. I wouldn't know, I have no intention of ever eating one, I am just excited about having one living in my trough!

IMG_0354 We let him go again, and its no wonder I've not seen him before, as he quickly settled himself in the inch of slime in the bottom of the trough (obviously it could do with a good clean, but now there is livestock living IN the water its not going to happen, besides, what else would they eat?!)

I may just have to see if we can catch some more to keep him company. The Husband tells me that they won't eat my little fishes which are too fast for a yabbie to catch, so I hope that is true!

And yes, it truly is a zoo around here most days....

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