Welcome to my blog. Here you will find my adventures with my family and friends. Thanks so much for stopping by.

I'm so enjoying this wonderful world of blogging where I have met and made so many new friends.

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Sunday, August 30, 2015


Many days have passed since I last typed a post here.
It seems that I have "done it all before".
The rhythms of my life go round and round and seem to be more of the same and I can't keep repeating myself here.

We are almost finished with Winter - a season that I love - and it has been quite a cold one especially the nights which are still below 10 degrees C most nights but the days are sunny and warm and there's not much to complain about ( except the lack of rain !).

The wattles are blooming everywhere and so are the grevilleas so there is a hint of Spring in the air.
Most likely we will just jump straight into Summer and forget about Spring. The heat will just hit like a sledge hammer with no time to prepare ourselves.

We are off overseas for a holiday in France in a few days.
Not the usual time for us to go but the wedding in March and visiting rellies from Texas and Wales gave us plenty to do in April and May. It's lovely to connect with family who live so far away and so important to keep those family ties strong. Much easier in these days of Face Book too !

So we are off on Sunday leaving three elderly parents behind with some trepidation.
Five weeks can be a long time when you are 93 , 93 and 94 but they are all doing OK at the moment and we can't put our lives on hold. We too are watching the years pass and know that these overseas jaunts will become more and more difficult and more and more expensive as we stretch our retirement funds !

Three weeks in the South of France !
I was a little concerned that it would be HOT and I hate HOT !
(We get plenty of that here !)
However looking at the temperatures there now, they seem to be cooling down quite quickly
 and 24 -26 C sounds pretty perfect to me.
It seems to an observer from Downunder that the seasons move quite rapidly from one to the next in countries where four distinct seasons are the norm. Here we often seem to jump from Winter to Summer with little in between and I guess when you don't have leaves falling to signify the change, Autumn just means you turn the airconditioning off !

One week in Sarlat-le-Caneda and a final week in Paris.
Sounds great doesn't it ?

Perhaps that will give me something new to post about !!!


Tuesday, July 28, 2015


Whale season is about to start in Hervey Bay.

The good news is that the numbers have increased mightily since these wonderful creatures are no longer hunted.

They seem to be very inquisitive and often come up close to the boats to eyeball the people watching them.

Thanks for the wonderful photos Australia.com

Monday, July 6, 2015


This is my little Lemonade tree 
Or rather this WAS my little Lemonade tree last year before I harvested its first crop of lemonade fruit.

Here it is today, doing very well in its pot.

I've just removed most of this years crop

24 lemonades so far 
With a few left on the tree.

They are just beginning to colour up but I couldn't leave them on the poor little tree any longer as they were about to break the branches off with their weight. 
When I've taken all the fruit off I'll prune the branches right back as I did last year and give it a dose of fertiliser.

Now I have a new supply of lovely lemony juice for my Helsie's Downfall cocktail.

All that vitamin C must be good for you in this chilly Wintery weather !


Saturday, June 20, 2015


It's ages since I posted about cooking.
In fact I'm struggling to find topics to post about these days at all
but this week I have tried a new recipe with some success so here it is.
I like the idea of a savoury muffin and as we had an early start to Sally's place on Saturday I thought they would be an ideal breakfast-in-the-car-as-you-go-along idea.
In the past I've tasted some of these and not been too impressed but I liked the sound of these ingredients so I gave them a go.
Hot out of the oven they weren't so impressive and they stuck to the muffin paper cases leaving half the muffin behind!
Not  good !
But next morning the cases peeled off quite easily.....
 ( you could peel them all off before offering them around, saves a bit of mess and looking for somewhere to put the discarded paper )
and like many savoury things the flavour had developed more and they were just the thing trundling along the highway in the Ute ( work to be done at Sally's place ) with my travel cup of tea in the other hand !!

Savoury Mighty Muffins

  • 1 1/2 cups self-raising flour
  • 2 cups grated tasty cheese
  • 2 or 3 bacon rashes, chopped quite small
  • 1 zucchini, grated
  • I small onion finely chopped
  • 125g tin of corn kernels
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup fruit chutney
* Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease a 6 x 3/4-cup capacity Texas muffin pan. Line bases of holes with baking paper.
     * Sift flour into a large bowl. Add cheese, bacon, zucchini, onion and corn. ( Maybe next time I might cook the bacon and onion a bit first to bring out more flavour ?) Whisk milk, egg and chutney in a jug until well combined. Make a well in centre of dry ingredients. Pour in milk mixture. Using a large metal spoon, gently mix until just combined. ( Mixture will be very thick and stiff – a dash more milk might be necessary )
            Spoon into muffin holes.
     * Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Stand in pan for 3 minutes. Turn onto a wire rack to cool. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
                               recipe and photo from www.taste.com.au

Saturday, June 13, 2015


June 6th is Queensland Day.
We celebrate the separation from New South Wales to become an independent state in 1859.
June is a lovely time of year in Brisbane.
Cooler weather and bright sunny days just make being outside so delightful.
On this lovely sunny Queensland Day ( which also happened to co-inside with the Queen's Birthday Long Weekend holiday) the Governor of Queensland threw open his lovely house and grounds to the public allowing them access to some of the rooms in the house and the freedom to picnic in the lovely grounds.
We've never been before and always wanted to have a look. You can't see much of the house from the road as it is situated on top of a rather steep hill with several acres of bushland surrounding it, even though it is right in the heart of an inner city suburb. 

We joined the throng of people at the bottom gate and began the climb when the gates opened at midday.
Before the climb bottled water, Queensland flags and an information sheet were distributed to anyone who wanted them!!

The path climbed very steeply up through the bush till we reached a levelled out section on one side where there was a tennis court, a swimming pool and a very nice modern pavilion.

We stopped for a breather and to have a look inside the lovely pavilion and were greeted by kitchen staff handing out Lamingtons. If you've never heard of Lamingtons look here. They have become an Australian icon along with Vegemite and Iced VoVos.

Another chef was filling tiny cherry tomatoes with goats cheese which were also handed out.

After this generous snack we were fortified to finish the climb to the house,

arriving at the side of the house. The house faces the city from the top of the hill so the view is lovely from the side veranda.

Round the front people were queuing to enter the house so we joined the line and we were very surprised to see the Governor himself moving down the line greeting and talking to the waiting crowd.

He worked his way down the line apologising for the long wait to get inside till it was my turn to shake hands and chat briefly. I was very impressed by his warmth and friendliness and total lack of formality. Just another Aussie !!

 There was very little visible security  - Just the Deputy Police Commissioner and another elderly fellow in a police dress uniform and the whole feel was relaxed and friendly.

Before long it was our turn to enter the house.
No photos allowed inside which I find hard to understand.
There were only a couple of rooms open to see but what we saw was very nice - stylish but comfortable . It is not a very big house and these days important guests usually stay in the big city hotels where they can take up whole floors of the buildings but Prince William was a recent exception to this and I'm sure he would have enjoyed his stay where he could swim or stroll around the grounds in the fresh air without prying eyes.
Immediately in front of the house is a lovely lawned area where seats were scattered for the use of families who chose to picnic there under the huge trees
and many were making themselves quite at home there.

By now the line had filled with lots of people and snaked down to the front entrance.

When we emerged from the house on the far side at the back there were a few stalls selling mementos and Tony bought a couple of nice crystal wine glasses so we can be very posh when we next cook a roast on the BBQ......
.......and there was the Governor and his wife again ! Strolling around chatting and mingling with the citizens on a lovely June day ! 

We live in a very lucky country

Monday, June 8, 2015

WOMAN IN GOLD - Film review

I'm a great fan of Helen Mirren.
So when I heard she was starring in this movie about the epic struggle of  Maria Altmann to regain possession of the painting of her aunt Adele Bloch-Bauer by the artist Gustav Klimt which had been stolen by the Nazis, I was keen to see it.

After the war the painting was exhibited by the Austrian Government in the Belvedere Gallery in Vienna which claimed ownership of it.

The painting is quite dazzling.

The resemblance to Adele is quite striking.

Maria Altmann fought for eight years to regain possession of the painting.

Helen Mirren was BRILLIANT, perhaps her best movie ever. 
We loved the movie, the best we've seen for quite a while.
Look out Oscars !

Go and see it if you can!


Tuesday, May 26, 2015


Here in sunny Brisbane we've suddenly been plunged into Autumn.
Autumn Brissy style that is !
Warm, sunny days that hover around 24 degrees C
and cool nights that plunge down to 12 degrees C !
Lovely !

There is a new river walkway that has not long been opened to the public.
It's a brand new structure to replace the multi-million dollar one that was swept away in the terrible floods of 2011. With other more important things to repair and much thought about replacing the old one with a much more robust construction, it has taken some time but it has finally been finished.

On Sunday we decided to inspect it ourselves for the first time.

To get to our starting point we caught the City Cat river ferry from the University and rode it right past South Bank and the city, under the Story Bridge and alighted not far from the beginning of the walkway.

The plan then was to walk back under the bridge towards the city  - about 4 kilometres.

Not far from the newly constructed ferry terminal ( they were all damaged by the floods too !) we joined the pathway that leads to the river walk. These paths are shared with bike riders so you need to keep your wits about you and listen for their approach from behind and keep over to the left as much as possible.

You can see the beginning of the walkway ahead as it swings out into the river.

There are designated sections for walkers and bike riders clearly defined.

The walkway has to swing out into the river as houses are built right on the water's edge and many have little jetties for their boats .

Of course, because it is so close to the city it is a very popular area for multi-storey unit living.....

and look at this lovely colonial design house. Isn't it lovely?

But oh so close to that dangerous river! I don't know how it went in the floods but it can't have escaped I have to think.

We are nearly at the end of the walkway now. Looking back you can see how it zigzags along.

On Sunday it wasn't too hot - about 24 degrees - but in Summer it would be pretty hot walking as there are only small patches of shade every now and then.( You can see one on the bend )

It wasn't long before we left the walkway and walked on past very old, disused wharves........

then under the bridge itself.

On the other side of the bridge we joined another section of walkway that snakes along the river bank towards the city flanked by lovely high -rise apartments and swish hotels.

It wasn't long before we were seated in a nice coffee shop gazing back at the way we had come.
You can see the old wharves running along under the bridge. They are probably heritage listed and seem to withstand the floods without being washed away.

Then it was time to hop back on the ferry and head for home.
Autumn is lovely in Brisbane !