Thursday, September 30, 2010


This morning I'm marking & moderating assignments at my desk in the sunroom. Our local figbird comes for a chat, hanging out on the frangipani to see what I'm doing and to sling insults at Sunny the cat (who is asleep on my desk). Nice...

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Eye of the storm

Guess where we live :-)) Yup, just about right *there* ...
Rain and hail pelting down sideways, thunder and lightning... the lot.
House is holding up extremely well (for all it's an antique). Bits of trees flying past though ... Horses are OK, they're hiding among the rainforest trees on the western side, and in the sheds. Dog is unconcerned, asleep on the rug. Yarrow's worried about the cats though I assure her they're sensible enough to find safety.

Monday, September 27, 2010

A month old

By popular demand, here are some updated photos of our sweet new foal Romany Ruby Smudge. For the equine geneticists among you, or simply those interested in the family networks of our herd, she is the daughter of Nova, granddaughter of Duchess, niece of Rascal and Elara, half-sister (through sire) of Promise.

She's looking a little dark here because she's wet from lying down in the soft morning grass.

Front view ...

Rear view :-)
Nova's a placid, gentle and tolerant Mum who is caring without being over-protective. As a result, Ruby Smudge is learning to come when called and can already be touched and stroked all over. She's quite friendly and curious and is quite simply a delight for us to behold ...

Spring flowers :-)

"Yesterday, today and tomorrow" bush
These flowers are very close to the house ...  

This orchid lives in the old frangipani tree

John's new bike

(I don't know why this photo won't stand up ... weird)

Coming down the driveway 1st day
John used to have a great 850cc Yamaha sports bike that went like a scalded cat, but was very difficult for a pillion passenger (knees up to ears and so behind the centre of gravity that if the bike scooted forward, you had to cling for dear life not to come off the back). Very magnanimously, John sold his beloved Yamaha and instead researched which bikes were better for pillion passengers. He settled on the Trumph Sprint, a 1050cc sports tourer. After scouring many ads and sites, he bought a written-off Triumph from the saleyard auctions. The bike, though sporting what I'd consider minor scratches on the right side fairings has no mechanical defects at all and had only done 9000 km. Makes me wonder: though I understand the financial reasoning behind insurance dealings, still, how can such a valuable machine be declared a write-off? Crazy ...   Still, we got a bargain :-)

And it's a lovely bike to go on rides on ... heaps of fun!!! Very comfortable and stable for the pillion passenger.

Peter n Bronwyn's party

Morning cups of tea at the campfire
Earlier in September my brother-in-law Peter (John's brother) and his wife Bronwyn put on a wonderful party to celebrate Peter's 50th birthday (and also Bronwyn's birthday too), at their property in Kandanga, near Gympie, QLD. I very much enjoy going to their place because I find Peter and Bronwyn to be lovely, kind, interesting people with terrific (shared) values and ideas, and they have such a great eclectic group of friends with whom one can have such genuinely interesting conversations. Peter and Bronwyn breed and train horses on their property too, which of course I am much interested in.

John and I drove up there in the Hilux, cruising for four/five hours up the highway in the sunshine, sharing interesting newspaper snippets or listening to good radio and music. We arrived in the early afternoon and caught up with family and friends (new and old), shared stories and campfire, ate, drank, philosophised (during which of course we solved most of the world's problems), danced and made merry till late;  and eventually retired to sleep in the loft of the barn/shed in our swag, snug in each other's arms. The next morning Peter and Bronwyn treated us all to a scrumptious bbq'ed breakfast with fresh eggs and bacon and crusty bread, lashings of hot tea and fresh juices and more campfire.

Alas we had to leave early afternoon on Sunday. On the way we detoured to Tony and Tuffy's (= John's mum's) where we picked up a welder very kindly donated by Tony who alas, sadly, has to downsize his workshop activities due to ongoing health problems.

Briony and Nelson = Yin and Yang

Claudia's kelpie Gidgee demonstrating the technique of "mesmerising the bacon"
I had a wonderful time: thank you Peter and Browyn, and my newly discovered family and friends!

Way behind

SCU campus Lismore, looking towards Y block
I'm way behind with blogging because it's been so busy at university: end of semester assignments coming in, academic units to renegotiate and redevelop with partner institutions, lots of writing to do for the CHED (Communication in Hospitals Emergency Departments) research project. I'm not complaining, as it's very interesting work, but its been edging more and more into the weekends of late.
And the reason it edges into the weekends is because I don't structure my time during the week well enough!!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Fifteen years of smiles :-)

Our bonny merry daughter Tess turned 15 today. And in keeping with family tradition, she was treated to sisters, presents and birthday cake in bed at the crack of dawn.

Happy birthday darling lovely loving Tess. I'm delighted to be your Mum. You make me very happy.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Tess wears a 1940s Vogue dress

Tess (now nearly 15) & Yarrow (13) went to visit Nimbin with Hans and Niki just before they (H&N) went back to Portugal. They had a lovely day and visited a beaut retro/antiques shop where Tess tried on this lovely 1940s Vogue dress. It was well over her budget ($450!) but great to try on and get a photo. Tess then did some neat photoshopping with the photo for this result.

Stunning, hey ...

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Body art on live canvas

I asked Briony to ask her boyfriend Nelson whether I was allowed to post this beautiful photo on our blog and Briony says Lord Nelson says it's OK :-)

Briony had been practising her body art on his willing canvas.

It's so lovely when daughters have good, loving, amenable boyfriends. Nelson is good company, he is charitable and supportive and it's a delight to have him visit. And he makes our Briony happy :-)

Monday, September 6, 2010

Learning to run

Here's a movie clip of the new foal, Romany Ruby Smudge, (1 week old now) practising running. I mean, as a horse, you've got to practise these very important skills, right? Also, trying to catch a magpie. That's a good skill too ;-)

Friday, September 3, 2010

A lovely buckskin pony for sale ...

A hard decision to make but this *is* a farm and if I fancy myself as a bit of a horse breeder, well, then I have to sell some. So, Elara's for sale, and her ad appears in tomorrow's paper, the Northern Star.

Fingers crossed that some good buyers turn up and I hope she goes to a really kind and knowledgeable home!