Saturday, March 30, 2013

A-Z #14 (N)

N is for NOTHING because I couldn't think of anything but also for NOBODY and NONSENSE

Here's just a wee bit of nonsense about nobody.  A poem which I am sure you've all heard many times.

The other night upon the stair I met a man who wasn't there
He wasn't there again today; oh how I wish he'd go away.
When I came home last night at three the man was waiting there for me
But when I looked around the hall I couldn't see him there at all
Go away! Oh go away and don't come back any more
Go away! Oh go away and please don't slam the door (slam!)
The other night upon the stair I met a man who wasn't there
He wasn't there again today; oh how I wish he'd go away.

It's always good to have a bit of nonsense in our lives; something to laugh about.  Life then is never dull  or full of nothingness.  To have nothing in our lives would be dreadful.

Speaking of which this story comes to mind.  There is a chap that my other half worked with many years ago at the State Housing Commission.  Gerard calls in to see us every Christmas and presents us with a bottle of wine.  This week he popped in for a cuppa (he is now with the Mines Dept and was out on work business near us so this was his tea break) and kindly left us a box of Roses chocolates for Easter.  MOH tells how Gerard would suddenly jump onto his desk in the office, raise his arms and ask "WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?"  He's like that is avid reader and a very deep thinker who I feel sees many of us going about our daily lives without ever questioning why we do it.  When I visualise him doing that it really does make me laugh.   Just a bit more delightful nonsense from a dear friend of ours but when you really think about it, it's a very valid question.

Friday, March 29, 2013

A-Z #13 (M)


I love the moon.  I know the sun brings us life on this planet but I feel much more fond of the moon.  The sun makes me too hot most of the year and of late it stings during the day much more than it once did and you can feel that effect even in winter now.  I guess that has something to do with the hole in the ozone of which nobody seems to speak of much these days but it is still there and I believe larger than ever.

The moon is our only natural satellite and is the 5th largest satellite in our solar system.  The moon's gravitational influence as we know produces the ocean tides.  It definitely has influence on the behaviour of certain animals and it is said more baby animals are born during a full moon.  I often think it affects the behaviour of some people as well.  I wonder if you think that too.

Of course the moon has always been associated with romance:  "honeymoon"; "moon in June"; "moonstruck"; "mooning over a lost love"; "over the moon".  and I just love those two cats who are obviously moonstruck and much in love.

MOTHERS....I had 2 mothers, I am a mother of two, my daughter is a mother of 4 and I have two granddaughters who are mothers.  There is not a lot I can add about mothers except I am sure that nearly all mothers care about and do all they can to give their children as good a life as possible.  I hereby salute all mothers and wish them well.

MONEY.....I wonder what people outside Australia think of our colourful notes.  Do let me know.  Aren't they just so pretty!!'

They say money is the root of all evil and I am sure this is true in many cases but unfortunately it is also a very necessary evil if we are to at least maintain a good, simple lifestyle.  We are both on an aged pension so we are certainly not, by any stretch of the imagination, rich but we have each other and we live carefully and not being ambitious folk we have no need of a flash car or a big house.

Thursday, March 28, 2013


Oh, the beauty of daffodils in spring (and yellow is my favourite colour too).   We are of course in autumn here in Australia but I imagine in other parts of the world the bulbs will soon be coming through and there will be glorious colours all over.

I am simply here right now to wish all my dear blogging friends (and those that visit that I don't know about 'cos they don't leave a trace of being here) a very peaceful, happy and safe Easter.

Whether you are sharing Easter with friends or family, at home, or visiting, or away on holiday, from my other half and myself...... we hope you will be happy with lots of love and laughter in all your lives.

And remember, always watch out for that cheeky Easter bunny!!

A-Z #12 (L)

L is for LOVE and LAUGHTER which I feel usually go hand in hand, or at least they should.

We hear "love makes the world go around"; "Ain't love grand"; "Laughter is the best medicine"; "Laugh and the world laughs with you; cry and you cry alone"; "Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all."

There are many clever sayings about both love and laughter and many of them are spot on.  I have been 'in love' several times during my lifetime some of which has been returned and sometimes not.  We can't always prevent ourselves from 'falling' for someone when we are young and even as we age someone just happens along that is the right one.  If love is unreturned it can be a sad moment in our lives but we live on and love again.

I probably did love my first husband (I know for sure that at one time he did love me because his mother told me he did) but events happen in our lives that can turn love cold and once that happens it is very unlikely any warmth will return.  I had to call it a day for my sake and the sake of at least one of my children but we won't go into that here.

I think I fell in love with MOH when I first met him in 1966 and I love him still.  He truly is my other half and we tell each other quite often that we cannot imagine being alone without the other although, sadly, this of course will happen one day and the one left will cope with it, somehow.

I LOVE TO LAUGH.   I may sometimes laugh when I should remain quiet but little things will tickle my fancy and laughter comes so readily to me.  I used to so much enjoy the wonderful comedy shows, firstly on radio, and in later years on TV (mainly from the UK but there were a couple of good ones from the US too) but these days it seems to be all violence and sex.....or COOKING....and there is no laughter to be found in any of that unless a cook accidentally makes a silly mistake.  Then the question arises; should one laugh at other's misfortunes?

I remember my dad telling me when I was a youngster that if you saw someone slip on a banana skin the first thing you would do was laugh as it looked so funny and then ask that person if they were OK.  That sounds dreadful I know but I understand what dad was trying to say and I agree with him.  He used to love to see Charlie Chaplin pictures (oh sorry you call them movies these days don't you?) and I can remember sitting beside him in the theatre and he would laugh his head off.  He had a great sense of humour and I like to think I have inherited his humour and love of laughter.

I feel there is not enough love nor laughter in the world of today.  It must be very difficult to laugh when you live in a country that seems to be at war with itself and one is perhaps being persecuted.  I feel saddened when I read of the suffering going on around the globe and helpless to do one damned thing about it.  I am so fortunate to live in this wonderful country of ours which makes it difficult for me to actually understand the hardships of others.  If only there could be more love and laughter in their lives it would be fantastic.  Oh, to have a magic wand and the ability to bring more happiness into the lives of others less fortunate.

I'm hoping my family and friends will find lots of love and laughter over this coming Easter weekend.  I send everyone heaps of love and hope you will laugh along with me at some of my silly posts.  I'm laughing now just re-reading what I've written 'cos I'm sure I do write some quite weird things at times.  Some of it serious of course but some of it just unserious (if there is such a word).  *_*

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


My other half and I, partly for health reason, eat quite simple meals and although neither of us enjoy watching cooking programmes on television you can't help seeing bits and pieces in their promotional advertising (don't we get so sick and tired of those constant ads?).

We are often amazed at the way they pile bits on top of each other and surround them with drizzles of different substances on the outer edge of the plate and wonder why they do it.  I remember a couple of years back ordering grilled fish with a sauce plus chips and a salad.   When it arrived the chips were underneath the fish and the sauce which had been poured on the fish had made the chips horribly soggy.  Yuk.

Anyway, to try and cut a long story short (which I often fail to do) we then began talking about what we ate when we were children way back then...1930s, 1940s 1950s.  I lived at home until I was 21 so ate whatever mum cooked for dad and me.

I don't think meat has changed much as there is still beef, lamb and mutton, pork, chicken and fish.  Rabbit was also very popular and mum would sometimes roast it or bake a rabbit stew....very tasty.
We did eat offal which in those days was cheap although mum and dad wouldn't eat tripe.  I liked tripe so if I was working back at the office occasionally mum would have a lovely big plate of trip and onions ready for me when I arrived home and boy, did she know how to cook it really well.

Vegetables are a different matter though. All year we had cooked vegies which were mainly potato, pumpkin, beans, peas, cabbage, silver beet and cauliflower.  In stews you would have onions, celery, carrots, parsnip, turnips and swede.  We never had broccoli, broad beans, brussel sprouts, capsicum, sweet potato or any Asian greens or anything of that kind.

Most Sundays we would have a roast dinner of lamb or beef (sometimes pork but seldom chicken) with roast potato and pumpkin and probably peas and beans.  Of course back then there were no frozen vegetables and I don't remember any in tins.  The housewife (I don't like that term as the thought of being married to a house appals me) cut up the beans, podded the peas and always pealed the potatoes.

Before mum made the gravy in the baking pan she would pour out most of the fat into an old cup which would be allowed to set and we would have bread and dripping through the week.  Oh, I remember that beautiful jelly that was in the bottom of the cup.  It was so delicious but terribly bad for us, of that I am sure although, as I've said before, we did so much more exercise back then.

On Sunday evenings it was usually cold meat and salad and if my brother and his wife were coming to tea mum would put a saucer upside down in the bottom of the crystal salad bowl and chop up lettuce and then layer cucumber, tomato and egg on top.  She would cook beetroot earlier in the day and that would be sliced with sugar and vinegar and placed in a crystal beetroot bowl.  Dad even had his own beetroot slice to lift the beetroot onto the plates.  She would also sometimes slice onion and put it in a dish with vinegar and perhaps add cucumber to it as well. We also had radishes and spring onions. Mum made her own delicious salad dressing which I know contained Rawleighs mustard.

We nearly always had sweets (dad could always eat his sweets even if he was too full to finish his dinner) which were usually apple pies, jam tarts or turnovers, rice pudding, bread and butter puddings (oh, I used to love them) and of course stewed apples or rhubarb with custard.

When I think of the variety of different vegetables and fruit now available and how many different recipes there are from other lands it does make the diet we had when I was a child sound so simple but it was all very delicious and I do at times yearn for that simplicity.

A-Z #11 (K)


There are probably many words that K can stand for but I think that kindness is one of the most important.

We may live in a different looking place to this one but this picture reminds me so much of my hubby and me as he is always helping me up and down steps.  This is what I call the epitome of kindness in our lives.  It shows he cares without a word being spoken.

There are many facets of kindness...teaching little children about life and how to live it well; helping people who are less fortunate than we are; always making sure any animals in our lives our loved and well cared for; helping people we don't know really if they need our help.

I am not a religious person but I try to live my life treating others as I would have them treat me.  I need people to be kind to me so I in turn must and will be kind to them.

Today I am hearing more and more in the media about people being less kind and considerate to each other.  Some tend to think simple words like please, thank you, excuse me etc., are perhaps not cool.  This saddens me so much and makes me wonder what type of world my grandchildren and great-children are facing.  They are being taught to be kind but inevitably they will come up against others that haven't been taught that or just choose to ignore it anyway and go their own merry way regardless of any harm or hurt they cause others.

I've always felt that kindness results in kindness in return and politeness works the same way.  The following is an example of what I am talking about:

Many years ago (back in the 1967-74) I worked as a telephonist.  There was a country branch and when I started this job I was warned that the boss in Northam was a very rude man.  I discovered this was so when I first had to deal with him.  He wanted to talk to my boss who happened to be on the telephone.  This chap from Northam rudely told me to get a message to him quickly and to have him ring back straight away.  I replied that it was not my place to tell Mr B to get off the phone but would have him ring ASAP.  This occurred a couple of times until in the end I decided enough was enough.  I spoke as politely as I could and told the Northam chap that of course I would have Mr B phone back as soon as I could and then went on to ask him how he was today and what was the weather like up in Northam that day.  For a moment he seemed quite nonplussed but then answered me in a polite manner.  After that he was always very polite and we got on like a house on fire and would often have a little chat for a few seconds when he rang.  If others had taken the time to behave in a kind manner I am sure they would also have found he wasn't such a bad chap after all.  I am not sure that would work today as everyone is in such a rush but one can always hope.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

A-Z #10 (J)


I have always enjoyed jelly and yet I seldom make it these days.  I must remedy that.  I did make myself an orange jelly when I had that day of having only fluids recently and I enjoyed it so much.  You can buy the low sugar jellies now....(note to some jelly).

I have never been fond of junket but my dad loved it.  He was the only one of the three of us that did  so mum would make up junket especially for him.  Jelly I love but

I remember the packets of rennet tablets in the kitchen cupboard.  I suppose you can still buy them but I won't be bothering to do so.  I enjoy nearly all foods but junket is definitely not one of them.

My mum used to make the best shortcrust pastry ever.  Of course back then people used lard in their cooking which perhaps made the pastry so great.  She would make delicious apple pies, jam tarts and jam turnovers.  We would eat that type of food back then without putting on weight as we all got so much more exercise than folk do today.

Her apple pies would be made in an oblong enamel baking dish and she would put a china eggcup upside down in the middle of the dish before adding the apple and then the crust.  She never put a bottom crust on the pie and they were so fantastic I can almost taste one right now.  She was a lady that didn't like housework all that much (our home was always clean and tidy though) and yet she was a very good cook although the food we ate back then was simpler than that of today.

Jellybeans are one thing a diabetic is told to have with them at all times and should one detect a 'low' coming on then we should eat about 6 jellybeans followed by some carbohydrate if necessary.  I have never really liked very sweet foodstuffs so am not a fan of jellybeans but my other half does like them, especially the black ones.  One thing I will say about jellybeans they are very colourful and I wonder how many food colourings are used that are perhaps not so good for us.  Just saying.

A-Z #9 (I)

I is for ????????  I was totally stumped on this one so decided there are some beautiful creatures and flowers that begin with I so here goes.  I am now wondering about J as well but hopefully I will come up with something.  I know there is an A-Z challenge that takes place in blogging land but this is a challenge to myself so see if I can make it work right through from A to Z.

I love irises.  My first mother-in-law of whom I was very fond, grew beautiful irises in her garden in North Perth.  When I see an iris I always think of her.

Ixias are a flower you seldom see these days.  We sometimes have them pop up in our front garden and also spraxias (do you remember them as well?)

Impatiens are a flower I've always loved.  We used to grow them all the time but haven't had much luck with them of late.  I think the old type were much easier to grow than the modern varieties.

I never fail to be amazed at the leaping power and the grace of the impala.  What beautiful animals they are. The impala is a medium-sized African antelope and the name comes from the Zulu language meaning "gazelle".  When in flight they are capable of jumping distances of more than 10m (33ft) and 3m (9ft) into the air.  it can reach a running speed in a zig-zag of about 60km/hr (37m/ph) to escape predators.

The alpine ibex is endemic to Europe, where its native range is the Alps of France, Switzerland, Austria, Germany and northern Italy.  The ibex was driven very close to extinction in the early 19th century and current populations originate from re-introductions or introductions.

The iguana is a genus of herbivorous liards native to tropical areas of Mexico, Central America. several islands in Polynesia such as Fiji and Tonga, and the Caribbean.  The word Iguana is derived from a Spanish form of the original Taino name for the species, Iwana.  I have one that sits on the back of our lounge but of course it isn't real.  I find they are fascinating the way they can change colour to blend in with their surroundings.  Our pretend one is the same colour as the one above and our lounge is dark green so even the toy is very clever.  lol

How elegant is the ibis?  We often see them flying around the suburbs as they move from lake to lake. .  The ibis is associated with the Egyptian god Thoth who is often shown in human form with the head of an ibis or may even appear as an ibis.

Well, that is my contribution as far as the letter I is concerned.  I love nearly all creatures, great and small as well as most plants so thought this a worthwhile contribution to my A-Z.   Hope you will agree with me.

Monday, March 25, 2013

A-Z #8 (H)

I had so many problems putting up all the garden pics yesterday it made me a day late with my A-Z programme.  I am so inept at doing all those things.  I think perhaps when she has time I will have to have kakka give me some tuition on how to manage the blog properly.  I guess it's a problem as I didn't even begin to use a computer until in my 70s so still just feeling my way.

(husband: n. a married man, esp. when considered in relation to his wife)
(home: n. the place where one's domestic affections are centres)
(happiness: n. contentedness, delight, enjoyment, satisfaction)

As you know my first marriage failed quite miserably but my second marriage has proved the old adage that the second time around is best.  The first one lasted 13 years and produced two wonderful children but this second one, although unfortunately childless, has now lasted for going on 46 years.  Yes, there have been ups and downs a few times as there is with most marriages but it has never stayed down for long and is these days very stable.

Taken after enjoying lunch together at the Kwinana Hotel (which has since been demolished much to our disgust).  ca 2011 (One glass of red wine and my cheeks bloom!!).

At a restaurant in Baldivis.  July, 2012.  We had been having lunch with kakka as it was her birthday.

We have been living in our home in Hamilton Hill since May, 1974 so nearly 39 years now.  Compared to the houses being built today ours would be called a simple cottage as we have no family room, theatre room or alfresco dining area as such.  We are content with our little house although it could do with some TLC to brighten it up a wee bit.   So could we probably.  We don't need lots of space as we seldom entertain (I just can't cope with that these days).  I have my workroom/storage room here where I spend too much time on my computer and our living room is comfortable where MOH can sit and enjoy his books and classical music.  We watch TV together each evening for a couple of hours usually in company with our cat.

Happiness is low key these days and that is how we like it.   No more highs or lows but just constant companionship.   My hubby is my carer in more ways than one.  He does the weekly shopping, hangs out the washing and brings it in for me to fold and put away, does as much as he can in the garden now I am unable to.  If I have appointments he drives me and patiently waits for me till it's time to go home.  (I do keep my driving licence current just in case, but I don't drive these days because I feel my arthritis would possibly prevent me from acting quickly enough should there be an emergency).  What would I do without him?  I simply cannot answer that question and hope I don't have to.

All in all I feel content with my husband who I love so very much, my little home in the west and my life in general.  I am disappointed I can't get out more and do the things I once did but I am still here so no real complaints.   I always remember the saying "I cried because I had no shoes until I saw a man who had no feet".   I have two legs, arms, eyes etc.  They may not work as they once did but.....what do I have to grizzle about?  Nothing really.

A-Z #7 (G)

G is for GARDEN (n. a plot of ground, usually near a house, where flowers, vegetables or herbs are cultivated)

I've mentioned over past months that our poor garden is somewhat degraded these days as I can do practically nothing out there now and at 83 my other half is limited in the hours he can spend there.  I went out today and realised our front garden still looks quite respectable as it is mostly trees and shrubs and has a lawn that is reviving now after an inch of rain a couple of weeks back.  You can water the lawn twice a week (as allowed under water restrictions) and yet one good rain and it responds so well.

Anyway, while outside I took a few snaps when I realised there are parts of the garden that are still looking quite good with some pretty colours.  I am doing this to partly reassure myself that it is not all doom and gloom out there and if I can get Ron here in a week or two I know lots of wayward grass etc.  will soon be tidied up.

A couple of colourful patches first and then some individual pics of different plants.  Nothing exotic but still quite pretty.  These are in the back garden:

                                                              another bougainvillia

and in the front garden:

                                                                   Mexican rose
                                                                  White plumbago                                                                  
                                                                   Blue plumbago

                                                        My chameleon roses (in pots)

This is my piece de resistance.  In various places in both the front and back gardens we have for years had Sansevieria trifasciata (we call it Mother-in-law's tongue and others call it snake plant).  I guess a rose by any other name and all, that but this is the second time in about 30 years that one of the plants has flowered.  A quite insignificant flower compared with so many other glorious flowers but when it happens so seldom it is well worth writing home about (or in this case popping it on my blog for all to see).

Saturday, March 23, 2013

A~Z #6 (F)

F is for FRIENDSHIP (n. friendly feeling or disposition)

PROLOGUE:  Having been brought up as an only child and living on a farm for almost the first six years of my life and not having an extended family I am by nature quite a solitary person.  We also moved 9 times from when I was 6 to 20 (when dad and mum built their own home) so I really never had time to become close friends with children in the neighbourhoods where we lived.  I had friends at both schools but none of us lived close to each other and during the war years we didn't travel a great deal between suburbs.  Unfortunately when I left school at 15 I lost touch with everyone I'd been to school except for one girl (Judy).

In my teens my friends were Wilma, June, Val, Gaynor and Judy.  I lost touch with Gaynor after a few years but remained friends with the other 4 girls.  Wilma, June and I often went dancing together and stayed at each other's homes occasionally.  Judy and I lived quite close and saw each other quite a lot and sometimes went to football matches together and we both belonged to the Young Libs.  I was her bridesmaid when she married in 1950 and godmother to her only daughter. 

Val was my matron of honour and Wilma my bridesmaid when I married in 1953 and for some reason I had lost touch with June while I was away in Melbourne working in 1950-51.  We did however meet up again in 1987 when  realised it was 40 years since I began working in the office with June, Wilma and Val and I called them up and we met for lunch in a restaurant in Kings Park.  We had a most enjoyable few hours and then met at each other's homes a few times over the next year or two.

Wilma (1989), Val (1998) and Judy (2009) have now all left this mortal coil and I miss them all so very much.  June and her husband live about 50km from our home so it is birthday and Christmas cards now and a very occasional 'phone call.

After my marriage I became great friends with Del (her real name was Dolores) but after my separation from my first husband we lived some distance apart so again it was mainly cards for birthdays and Christmas and just a very occasional visit or 'phone call.  I was sad to learn that Del had died in 2003 after a long illness.

I had 3 friends that I worked with at the Forests Department....Lois, Val and Ellen....and we kept in touch and met for lunch about 3-4 times a year but Ellen (2007) has now left us and Lois lives a distance away so no more lunches.  Lois and I keep in touch via email most of the time and Val and I once again with cards and notes about what we've been up to.

Those are/were my really close friends I had over the years and I valued their friendship very much and I hope they did mine as well.  I have given up driving because of my arthritis being so bad (I do keep a current licence case of emergencies) so don't have the ability to get out and visit people.  We have some great friends at our exercise group and we enjoy time with them every week but they are newer friends so not quite like those you have known for years.

There are a few more people I still keep in touch with one of whom we are hoping to have lunch with soon.  Colleen (she too worked at the Forests Dept) and Greg live up in our hills (the Darling Range) (and we are on the coast so we will try and find somewhere in between so neither couple has to travel very far.

I still have two very close and dear friends who are part of my life all the time and they are my other half who is just so good to me and my daughter who is always there for me (even though she gives me cheek at times).  Without those two my life would be rather empty.

I am sorry if that was long-winded but through this post I have had pleasure in reliving the pleasure I had knowing these friends of mine and, after all, I guess this is as much for me as for blogging friends who may pass this way to see what I've been on about for the letter F.

Friday, March 22, 2013


E is for ELVIS

No, not that fellow that used to sing all those rock and roll songs and drive the females wild.  Although I enjoy lots of his work and in particular his ballads I am speaking of the ELVIS family of which I became a part back in 1967 when I married my other half.

Yes, our surname is ELVIS and in Australia it is quite unusual although I have now found two in Victoria and one in Queensland.  Whether they are related I have no idea.  MOH emigrated from England in 1960 and brought the surname with him.  It is a surname you can find all around the world and it is not at all uncommon.

We don't know where the name originated but there was a St Elvis who came to England from Ireland many centuries ago so who knows.  We have asked those people who find the origins of name but so far none of them seem to be able to come up with concrete answers about where it originated.

When Elvis Presley was very popular our name would bring howls of pleasure when going through checkouts etc.  The young girls were delighted to be handling a card with that name on it.  We even had several telephone calls late in the night from apparently drunken teenagers asking to speak to Elvis.  Consequently we had our telephone number made ex-directory for some years.  We are back in the book now and fortunately the name no longer draws attention to itself.  Peace once again reigns supreme thank goodness.

I used to go to a hairdresser in our local shopping centre and I would tell her constantly to call me by my first name but no, not she.  She told me she just loved to be able to call me Mrs Elvis and did I mind if she did that.  What could I say but "yes, that's fine".

"What's in a name?"  That is a good question.  Some names go unnoticed but some, like ours, can be a bit of a problem at times.   I am sure there are other names that people find a bit of a burden at times too.  We still have people make comment about our surname but just remarking it is unusual (well it is here in Australia).

Incidentally, unlike me MOH does not like rock and roll and is a fan of classical music, particularly Beethoven, so I think the comments about the name annoyed him more than they did me although for a few years there even I got a bit tired of it as it was so constant.

                                                    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

E is for EASTER.  This is a time when our family get together and exchange eggs and maybe enjoy a hot cross bun or two.  This year I have had to come up with something different as we are trying to cut down on foods like chocolates.  Instead for our two eldest great-granddaughter I've bought Easter mugs and small eggs with a pretty pair of earrings for the 16 y.o. and two nice little sticker books for the 5.yo.  I know the youngest GGD (nearly a year old now) can't have chocolate (at least not yet) so have bought her a wee blue fluffy rabbit which I hope she will love.  MOH has a couple of squares of dark chocolate each evening so for him it's a dark chocolate (small) rabbit and for the few remaining adults normal medium size eggs.  For my daughter I have come up with an idea that I hope she will appreciated and also enjoy.  I can't tell you what that is as I know she checks out my blog even though she doesn't always comment.  lol



Thursday, March 21, 2013


On Tuesday my other half and I had our annual 'flu shots.  He is fortunate in not having any ill effects but unfortunately for some reason I develop a quite sore arm with a large lump and a slight feeling of unwellness.

We have been having these shots for years now and several years back one of the doctors decided I should just have a half dose two years running and I think I felt better when that happened.  However, the past few years I bit the bullet and thought "I am older now and I do have diabetes and there are lots of nasty strains of 'flu going the rounds so best I have the complete dose".  Yes,  I've had the sore arm and felt a bit squiffy for a day or two but this time I really feel as though I am developing the 'flu which of course I am not.

I know this will pass but I could do without feeling this way....slightly warmish with a head full of cotton wool.  I feel that is perhaps why my blood glucose has been higher the past couple of days too.  I think I just need some TLC and I will feel loads better.

Am I looking for sympathy from my friends out there in blogland?  Of course I am so how about it?   The poor old chook needs lots of good wishes.   Joking, of course, as I will be fine by the weekend, of that I am sure. 

Incidentally the results of pathology from when I had my colonoscopy (which was clear) and endoscopy (biopsies were taken) are all good.  No helicobacter or signs of coeliac disease and the little 'polyps' were apparently nothing whatsoever.  It's always great to get good news so I would think no more of that type of test ever again.  Big sigh of relief!!


D is for DAUGHTER of which I have just the one.  I feel the above really says it all.  My daughter is so very precious to me and even though we don't say it often enough I know we love each other very, very much.  I am proud of her, I respect her and have always tried to be there for her as she has for me.   Thank you kakka for being you.  xxx

D is also for DOG

Although I am by nature a true cat lover I also enjoy the company of a dog but am probably fussy as to the type of dog.  My first hubby and I had a beautiful golden labrador (Jenny) and I missed her when he and I separated.   My other half and I have owned and loved 3 beautiful dogs, all different but wonderful friends.

First there was Princess, a white bull terrier, who was loved not only by our family but also the neighbours and it was not unusual for passing children to stop at the gate and ask how Princess was.  She died of a heart attack staying at our vet's rooms while we were on holidays so we didn't get to say goodbye.  We have some fun pictures of 'Prinny' which I always enjoy having a laugh at.

The second dog was Emma, a beautiful golden retriever, who came to us when she was 7 years old as her owner was returning to the UK.  Emma was with us until she was 12 and we enjoyed those 5 years with her until ill health determined she had to be put to sleep.  She was so gentle and we missed her very much when she was gone.

The third dog was a golden cocker spaniel, Winston.  He was about 2 years old when we found him languishing in a dog's home.  He was very thin, had kennel cough and, we discovered when we got him home, a large lump under his right 'arm'.  We took him to see our vet who soon had him on the road to good health.  Winston was a real trick and as with all cocker spaniels seemingly always hungry so we had to watch his weight.  Eventually Winnie had to be put to sleep as he developed incurable cancer.  We have his ashes in a little urn on our bookcase.

These 3 dogs were of course thoroughbreds but I have known some 'mongrels' friends have owned who have also been great pets and friends to their owners. 

MOH always wanted another dog but I felt in our 70s we were too old to have a dog as we would not be able to care for it as we should....take it for regular walks etc.  We prefer larger dogs so a small one was not even in our thoughts.  Our Precious is dog-like in some ways (she follows us around a lot) and she and MOH get on very well so he is reasonably content.

While still living at home our daughter bought herself a beautiful cream-coloured labrador (Dinky) who grew into a really lovely dog but unfortunately who succumbed, through we think a mistake on the part of the vet,  and died of distemper.  We were all devastated when this happened but I guess these things do happen and we have to learn to put it behind us.  She has never though been forgotten.

I have listed the dogs in our lives and couldn't do that with the cats as there were too many of them.  Many of the cats were individuals and stories could be told but it would take far too long.  Does that mean the dogs have won out?  NO, I don't think so.  We will have to call it 50-50 I think.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

A-Z #3 (C)

C is for CAT

I love cats (yes, I do like dogs too).  It is difficult for me to remember a time in my life when there was not a cat in our home.  I remember we had one down on the farm and than a break of a couple of years when we were living in rooms when we came to Perth. The first house we rented enabled us to get a cat and from then on I doubt we were without a feline friend.

Looking back I remember Molly, Fluffy, Timmy, Angel, Charlie Brown, Itsy and Bitsy, Tiki, Whitey, Pumpkin, Koko, Gus, Pip, Soot, Henry and with us now is Precious who is eleven and a half years old and still going strong.  There were others whose names escape me right now but I do know we loved them all and were always very sad when sometimes their lives were cut off too soon.

I only have to see a picture of a kitten/cat and my heart melts.

C is for CANARY

About 8-10 years ago I noticed this little bird hopping around on our front lawn and realised it was a canary.  It was foraging in the grass looking for food and it couldn't fly.  There were several cats in our area and I was concerned for the bird's safety.  Even then I was not terribly mobile so I asked my other half to try and catch the canary.  It proved quite evasive even though unable to fly and fluttered into some nearby bushes.   I grabbed an old net curtain and MOH was able to catch him without much trouble.

We popped this beautiful bird into the large cage with our finches and he lived there happily until last year when one day we found him dead on the floor of the cage.   The finches are always very skittish but the canary seemed unafraid of humans and if I poked grass etc., through the wire he would come over and nibble at it.   We actually sort of carried on a conversation with each other....mainly chirping sounds.  He had the most beautiful song and that is something we miss so much.  We are both so glad we gave this little bird a chance of a reasonably happy life and being in such a large cage he gradually regained the use of his wings and would enjoy flying from one end to the other.  I think he had been kept in one of those horrible small cages which was why he was unable to fly when we first found him.  He bossed the finches around without hurting them and occasionally they would rebel and let him know he wasn't the boss all the time.  We do miss our little yellow friend.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013


This has quite possibly been done by others before me and will probably be done by others after me.  It was just an idea that came to me today so here goes.  I will go through the alphabet letter by letter and try to think of 'things' beginning with each letter which are, or have been, important in my life.

A is for APPLE.

As we know it is said an apple a day keeps the doctor away.  Recently I heard that research has shown that TWO apples a day is even better.  Best times to eat them are at 10a.m. and 4p.m. (depending I guess on what time of the day you have breakfast and your other meals) so there's a tip to keep you healthy and remember when buying apples always make sure the stalks are a greenish colour and not brown and dry.  You will know then that they are this season's apples.

A is also for AJ, our much loved third great-granddaughter who is nearly a year old.  Had to include her as she is such an important part of our life.

B is for BIRD

I love birds and so envy the way they can fly so easily, except perhaps for the emu and ostrich.  These two galahs are so beautiful.  They are cheeky birds and can be so much fun to watch swinging on branches and generally being clowns.  There was a pair breeding in a tree near our local post office a year or two back but I've not seen them this past year so perhaps they have moved on to pastures greener.

There are so many beautiful birds around the world and some of our Australian birds are very colourful although perhaps not so gifted with song as are their European cousins.

We have a large cage with about 30 finches of different colours ranging from white to brown/grey.  They have all been born in captivity and seem to be quite happy in their little world.  We get a few babies now and again so the number remains quite constant all the time.

B is also for BROTHER of which I had one half-brother (Len) who was born in 1911 (20 years my senior) and a half-brother (Darrell) that I only discovered in the 1990s.  He was born in 1946 so is 14 years my junior.  Len was wonderful to me when I was a youngster and I was sad when he died in 1986 and Darrell has been good to me but unfortunately I see very little of him as he lives in the country.

Sunday, March 17, 2013


Today I was thinking a lot about my adopted half-brother Len who was born in London on this day 102 years ago.  He was born nearly 21 before me and was wonderful to me when I was young. This got me chatting to my other half about people we had known and still remembered quite well and how long ago they had been born.

The furtherest back I could go would by my first husband's grandfather (George) who was born in Sydney in 1872 and was aged 88 when he died in 1961.  His wife Alice was born in 1880 in Perth so she would I imagine be the next person I remember well who was born so long ago.  She was 94 when she died in 1974.  I knew both of them very well and spent many happy hours in their home in North Perth.

My adopted dad Henry was born in London in 1885 and my adopted mum Gwin in 1897, also in London.  I think they are probably the only other people I can remember really well who were born in the 19th century except for two English friends of theirs (Jim and Annie Dakin) (who I do remember quite well) who were born in 1877 and 1879 respectively.  There are many I have known that were born in the early 20th century all of whom have now left this mortal coil but I often delight in thinking about all of them.

MOH then put on his thinking cap and is sure that his grandfather would be the furtherest back he could go. His granddad (Charles) was born in England in 1858 and died in Coventry, Warks in 1947 at the age of 89.  When he was very young Charles was with the British Army fighting in the Afghan War (1878-1882) which makes you realise just how long ago that was.  There were other family members of his also born in the 19th century including his other grandparents who were born in 1880 and 1881.

When I look back on what I have written I realise that the majority of these people were born in England which shows just how many British people immigrated to Australia through the years.  The only two people I know of not born in Britain that belong to my extended family were my maternal great-grandparents who had emigrated from Denmark to Queensland in the 19th century.  Great-grandma remarried when her husband died and she and her 3 children then came over to Perth.

I hope this will give you something to ponder far back can you go when thinking of someone you knew (family or friend) who was born WAY BACK THEN?

Saturday, March 16, 2013


I just love this photo and had to share it with you.  I guess there are days when all of us feel a little like this although perhaps we don't necessarily think we are owls.

I just laugh so much whenever I look at this picture and hope it brings mirth to you as well.  Please do let me know if you like it too.  Just a couple of words will suffice.  I know folk do visit here without commenting but it's always so nice to know you've popped in.  Thank you and then I will know I'm not alone.  : )