Tuesday 30 April 2013

Road trip....

On Monday morning I was up early ... really early ... and I headed off to Dorrigo ... for Auntie Nell's funeral.

Dorrigo ... the town where I was born ... is approximately 460 kms up the road.

I made the trip all on my lonesome .. for some reason the kids couldn't be persuaded to come with me ... something to do with it being a five and a half hour drive just to go to church ... and neither could Hubby.

I met my sister and her partner at the pub ... which is where we were staying ... and off we went to the funeral.

They had the flag at half mast for Auntie Nell.

There is one thing that can be said for Dorrigo ... it does Autumn well.

This morning I was up ... not quite as early ... for the drive all the way back home again.

Fast forward 5 hours and 20 minutes and I was there.

On my arrival I was greeted by;

  • Master 13 requesting a cooked lunch.
  • The cold shoulder from Buster ... who apparently lapsed into a depression when I didn't return last night ... and who is now punishing me for my crime.
  • Master 15 ... who didn't even say "Hi" but immediately started using me as a footstool ...just his way of saying I missed you ... I'm sure.
  • And after 8 years of nagging a step at my laundry door ... I should go away more often.

Sunday 28 April 2013


"A portrait of our children, once a week, every week in 2013"

Master 15:  Feeling poorly with a headache

Master 13:  Fun in the sun.

Another week has come and been,
We're wrapping up Week Seventeen.

Joining in with Jodi

Friday 26 April 2013

A star is born...or not....

Master 15 fancies himself as a bit of a singer.

In fact he is considering auditioning for the next season of The Voice.

Words fail me ... what do you think?

Quality time....

On Wednesday Hubby took the day off work.

It would be great if he had done that in order to spend some quality time with the kids and I during the holidays.

But I have a strong and well founded suspicion that was not the case.

Hubby took the day off work ... and took us out for lunch ...

... and for a little frolic by the water ...

... because he has a big fat guilty conscience.

Hubby spent a little time with us ...well not Master 15 because he is 15 and therefore couldn't be bothered to come.  Hubby spent a little time with us on Wednesday because on Thursday he was doing something so utterly ridiculous ... horrifyingly excessive ... incredibly self indulgent ... that he was trying to make up for it ... before he even did it!

Yesterday, with his bags packed and his passport in his pocket, he went flying across the Tasman Sea to New Zealand.  And for what?  You may ask.  Was it something noble ... considering it was Anzac Day and all?  Pfftt ... NO!  He flew ... at great expense ... to New Zealand ...to watch FOOTBALL!

Like he doesn't already watch enough football.

His plans were to fly in on Thursday morning ... go to the football Thursday night ... recover Friday ...and fly home Saturday!

International air travel for the sake of the Sydney Swans!

And how will I spend the time he is away?  Making lists ... lots of lists ... long lists ... of all the ways in which he can make it up to me.

Starting with Master 15's 6.00am Sunday morning drop off at Maccas ... aaahhh ... revenge will be sweet.

Thursday 25 April 2013

Anzac Day...

This is my Uncle Clifton ...

He lost his life on the 7th June, 1917...at the age of twenty.  He was fighting for his country in the battlefields of France, during World War One.

World War 1? Uncle? UNCLE? ... you may ask.  Is that even possible?  Just how old is she? 92?

Well in order to prove that it is indeed possible...what's more, entirely true ... I will give you a brief ... abbreviated version of my family history.

My father was the youngest of 11 children.  His eldest brother ... Clifton ... was in France, defending our country at the time that Dad was born.  A 20 year age gap between oldest and youngest.  Tragically they would never get the chance to meet.

My father didn't marry until he was almost 32.  The norm these days ... but I guess at the time he'd probably been pegged as a "confirmed bachelor".

My parents ... after a brief honeymoon period ... went on to produce 6 children ... over a twenty year period.  Again a gap of 20 years between oldest and youngest...with myself being the youngest this time around.  Dad was in his 50's by the time I came along.

I wrote only yesterday of how Dad's final surviving sibling had passed away on Tuesday.  But none of the family ever forgot their brother and his sacrifice ... not even those that never met him.  He was remembered fondly ... always ... and still is.

They shall not grow old, as we that are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning.
We will remember them.

Lest we forget.

Wednesday 24 April 2013

Bye bye Auntie Nell...

My sister rang me last night to let me know that our Auntie Nell had passed away.

It was very sad news...but not entirely unexpected....she was 101.

But with her passing any connection to my Dad's family passes too.

Sure there are cousins...lots and lots of cousins....but most of them I wouldn't recognise if I ran into them in the street....which is also sad.

It's the closing chapter to a family story...the end of an era...rest in peace Auntie Nell.

Tuesday 23 April 2013

I am so clever....and a little bit smug.....

I am slowly....ever so slowly....teaching myself how to do a few different things on Photoshop...besides trying to make myself look younger.

And of course...as I learn...I will not be able to resist boring you with my results....sorry!

So last night I entered into the amazing world of Graphics Interchange Format...or GIFs...as us tech savvy folk call them.

I'm pretty sure that once upon a time they would have simply been called animations...but then everybody would know what was being talked about....and we simply can't have that now can we.  You see....now that I am becoming a fully fledged computer nerd....(please note that my tongue is firmly in my cheek)....I too feel superior when I can use terms that nobody else understands.

Anyhoo...I decided that I would put my new found knowledge and creative genius to good use and came up with these little gems....

The boys frolicking in Central Park, New York..... last November.

I love them....but you can't watch for too long or you start feeling a little motion sick....oooh someone pass the Travacalm.....please.

Monday 22 April 2013

Good evening Mother Nature.....

It's been a slow and uneventful day here today.....and there was really nothing post worthy going on.

Until this afternoon...when right on sunset I wandered outside to the backyard.  I took one look at the sky and rushed back inside to grab my camera.

That's Mother Nature at her best....and not a single tweak from photoshop required.

Sunday 21 April 2013


"A portrait of our children, once a week, every week in 2013"

Master 15:  Scary!!

Master 13:  Caught playing with his food.

So very fierce or so they seem,
They should be sweet in Week Sixteen.

Linking up with Jodi as usual.

Saturday 20 April 2013

Friday football for the fanatics....and me.....

The Sydney Swans were playing The Geelong Cats in a game of AFL last night at the Sydney Cricket Ground.  So, as is our usual custom....we were making the trip down to watch.

The weather was looking particularly threatening...

....and I ummed and ahhed about whether to make the trip all the way down the freeway or whether to stay home and snuggle up on the lounge in my pj's to watch the game instead.

The pj's were looking particularly attractive....well not attractive, but comfortable certainly....but I gave into peer pressure...and joined the family....plus an extra....for the outing.

The Sydney Cricket Ground was looking good...but there was a strong southerly buster blowing and we were all feeling the cold.  

Farewell summer.....there was a definite wintry chill in the air....and the overcoat got it's first workout for the season and the year.  (On a high point I discovered a pair of gloves I thought I may have lost in America in the pocket...so it wasn't all bad).

The game was a sell out....and the stands were full....

There were high expectations held for a Sydney win....as they were so far undefeated this season and the reigning premiers......but.....despite the heavenly aura on the field.....

....the night was not to be theirs....and as a result not ours either.

Throughout the entire evening I waited nonchalantly in the stand for the crowd of over 31000 to notice the celebrities in their midst....you may remember this.....

........surprisingly I was not approached for a single autograph....I can't imagine why...I guess they were all a little in awe and overcome with shyness....maybe next game ;0P

Thursday 18 April 2013

I've discovered the fountain of youth....it's called photoshop.....

Master 13 has been as grouchy as a bear with a sore head all morning.

And what you may ask, is so terrible in his life that he has developed a chip the size of a Smiths Factory on his shoulder?

Well that would be the fact that Master 15 has gone out for the day with his mates...to Luna Park!  And Master 13 ...not being his mate....only his younger brother....didn't score an invite.

Not that I blame Master 15....I remember being 15 and 16....and a 13 year old was not an accessory you wanted hanging around.

I reminded Master 13.....gently......that he too would get older and then be allowed to embark on such adventures.  But in the throes of his misery...he just can't see it.

"His friends parents won't let them go to Luna Park and most of them are too scared to go on the rides".

I reminded him...a little less gently....that by the time he is old enough to go on such an outing...his friends will also be older....and braver....and allowed to do things they can't do now.

By this time...he was wallowing in the unfairness of life and how everyone else does what they want and he NEVER gets to do anything he wants.  At this stage I pointed out...with no gentleness at all....that he gets and does plenty and he'd better quit the moaning....or I'd make him clean his room and then he'd really have something to moan about.

Meanwhile, I have been playing a little more with my new toy Photoshop....although I have the feeling I could be getting a little carried away with the age defying, flaw banishing magic it creates.  I took this quick shot of Master 13....

....and decided I would tweak it just a little....

What do you think.....maybe a tweak too far??

Wednesday 17 April 2013

I want it...I need it...now what do I do with it?

So yesterday I made a bit of a purchase using some birthday money.

You know when you think you want something......you're almost certain you need it....you're pretty sure you will find many, many uses for it...but you really don't know the first thing about it?!?

Well that's me....yesterday I bought Photoshop.

For my birthday last year, Hubby gave me an SLR camera....I haven't worked out how to make the most out of that yet...but it seemed like a good idea to confuse myself even further by getting some decent photo editing software.

Now I know that I will be able to do all manner of things with it...I just need to figure out what those things are....and how to do them....right about now that all seems a bit overwhelming.

What I really need is a Dummies Beginners Guide to Photoshop....and some handy advice....sounds like a visit to my good friend Google may be required.

Of course.....I made sure I got the really important things sorted straight away.  Like how to turn myself from a wrinkly old bag to a fresh faced 20 something...in the click of a few buttons....

...and lets face it....that's what I REALLY bought it for.....wasn't it??

Tuesday 16 April 2013

Slipping on some slippers.....

The unseasonal warm spell came to a sudden and abrupt end today......it's really not particularly cold....but if you look out the window at the dull and overcast sky....it looks cold.

It inspired me to dig out my winter slippers for the very first time this year.....

Buster was keen to welcome their arrival as well....and so begins the long game of seek and destroy that will be played all winter long......

I had a virtually indestructible pair of slippers for many, many years...I bought them with one of my very first pay packets when I was 14.

They refused to wear out and survived everything life and I could throw at them....until the day they met Buster....

....and that was that!

Monday 15 April 2013

And so the holidays begin.....

Term One has ended and the school holidays have officially begun.

This morning as I woke up it was a relief to think...no school lunches...no getting up early....time to laze around a little and watch the golf on the TV.  Huh??? What the?? I never watch golf on the TV...or anywhere else for that matter....but this morning an Aussie was winning something major....and who can resist an Aussie winning something major???

Pic from here
For the record Adam Scott won the US Masters this morning...something no other Australian has ever managed to do.

School holidays have changed for me....it used to be a time of having the kids underfoot....trying to come up with ways to occupy them....activities to plan....play dates to organise.  Oh...the endless games of Memory or Uno or whatever took their fancy...that had to be played and played until I thought I would scream. The "Mum...I'm bored" or even worse...the fighting...you wouldn't believe how two boys confined within the same house can fight.

But times have moved on...and now holidays are a stark reminder of how grown up my boys are getting.   How it really won't be long until they both fly the coop and leave me a sad little empty nester.

Master 15 was up early...getting a ride with Hubby....to begin a nine hour shift at the Golden Arches.

Master 13 slept in....and then spends his days pottering.  He plays a bit of PlayStation....researches something about whatever he finds interesting....kicks the football around....jumps on the trampoline...whatever he fancies.  He is a potterer from way back...happy to just be at home....needing no particular attention from me...until it's time to eat.

I watch them not needing me....and I catch my breath....it's almost over....this motherhood caper.  But then Master 13 will give me a hug....or Master 15 will want to tell me about his day....and I can breath again.  It might be changing.....but I'm still Mum and they still need their Mum.....oh and they still fight....boy do those boys fight!!!