Thursday, 25 November 2010

More from New Zealand

This incredible bridge is outside Kaikoura on the east coast of the South Island, it was only opened in June this year. 

I must have about 20 photos taken from every different angle imaginable - my engineering husband wanted to record every detail!  It forms part of a long walking track around the Kaikoura township, just stunning.

This blue penguin and the yellow eyed penguin below are on their nests.  I was over 20 metres away from them, although they look so close.  Do click on the photos to enlarge them.

The yellow flowers around this nest look so pretty and are the most appalling pest - broom introduced by the British to make hedge fences in the early days.  The Scots brought out gorze and the two plants have covered miles of hillside - anywhere where the soil has been disturbed has been taken over.  While it is flowering the yellow landscape is very pretty, but devastating to the local wildlife.

This looks much better enlarged - a Spalvin's albatross, which our guide said is very rare in the waters around Dunedin, so we were priveleged, even more so when it took off a few minutes later.

I am so tired, I still haven't caught up with all the paperwork, though it has diminished.  I have another eye injection tomorrow morning, then I hope to be able to do some sewing tomorrow afternoon.  Time is passing and I have commitments which I don't want to be late with. I have various ideas in my head, just have to make them work.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

November fabric pages

These are two views of the fabric page I sent to Barbara in Germany for November.  Her chosen theme is 'view through an open window'.  The picture is a TAP image of a photo of a lovely garden we saw in Richmond in Tasmania last year.

Claudia sent me this love.y, delicate page in my theme of nature.  That can lead to so many variations, I didn't know much about what I was supposed to be choosing when I selected that theme at the beginning of the year, but I am so glad I chose it.

Here is a picture of the United nations family of ours in Auckland!  My brother's widow is on the bottom left.  We had so much fun meeting everyone.  They are still allowed to have fireworks for Guy Fawkes night there and Peter (top left) had bought a huge arsenal to let off in the back garden after this photo was taken.  We haven't been allowed to set of fireworks ourselves in Queensland for decades, so this was a novel experience.

I was trying to load some photos of the penguins we saw nesting and two photos of a Spalvin's albatross, one on the water and then it taking off - they are so majestic.  Blogger rejected  the lot tonight so I shall try again tomorrow.  Dale from The Thread Studio gave me a link to a site where I can upload a video effect, but I haven't even edited many photos yet.  Maybe tomorrow!

Monday, 22 November 2010

Home at last

We are home again after a fabulous holiday in new Zealand.  It was very exciting to meet all the relatives in Auckland, then we took the sun with us everywhere we went.  The bad weather was ahead or behind us all the way - just a little rain the last afternoon in Dunedin and also in Christchurch as we were leaving.  How lucky can you be.
I will post more photos overthe next few days, but this photo above is the view of Mt. Egmont (now Mt. Taranaki) which we saw from the front door of the cottage where we stayed in Kaikoura.

This baby seal really knew how to play to an audience.  There were two small boys on the rocks nearby and he came right up to the edge and posed for photos!!

This is where we had morning smoko at Lake Pukaki, with Mt. Cook in the background.  All the photos will enlarge if you click on them.

These seals were having a wonderful time on some rocks just north of Dunedin.  We were fascinated by the fur seals all along the coast.  We saw some penguins nexting and some albatross on the wing, as well as taking off from the water.  I just have to edit more photos - I took over 700, but I have deleted quite a lot!!
Back to a very soggy Mackay - over 400mm rain has fallen here while we have been away, and the wet season is not supposed to have even started yet.  Bill and I both came home with severe hay fever, not something I normally suffer from.  I also lost a very large filling from a tooth while I was away, so I spent an hour or so at the dentist today, with forecast of much money changing hands in the next couple of months!  It all has to be fitted in around the injections for my eyes, I seem to be constantly sorting appointments.
I haven't made it into the workroom yet, other than to dump some purchases on the table, but I have received another lovely fabric page.  I will take a photo tomorrow and post it then.  Now it is time to go to bed, I need a good sleep to tackle some of the paper work tomorrow.  Somehow that seems to multiply exponentially when you go away!  I threatened Bill with death if he dared to instal the updated version of Quicken, our accounting software, before I have finished the current account keeping.  There is always a very steep learning curve when a new version of that comes along, and sometimes I don't like the changes one little bit.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

The Cup is over

Today is a very important day for most Australians - Melbourne Cup Day - a public holiday in Melbourne and not much work is done in the  rest of the country anyway - luncheons and sweeps and all sorts of shenanigans go on.  Even those who have to work get dressed up.  I had to go to the eye doctor this morning for a checkup after my latest injection - here are the girls in the front office all dolled up with their fascinators etc.  Later when I was in the local pharmacy mearly all the staff there were in very dressy clothes with their fascinators as well!  Somebody is making a mint from selling fascinators.

Bill and I treat ourselves to prawns for lunch and a glass or two of wine to go with them, while we watch the race on TV.  Jock was just as fascinated and I actually had the camera within reach.  He is really funny when the football is on, had his front feet right up on the stand trying to work it all out - but of course I never have the camera at the ready!

This chest came back to us yesterday after being restored.  I forgot to take a photo before it went away, but it was stained a very dark colour and had a very shiny finish.  I love the patina of this finish and the colours and grain of the cedar really show up.  It is not an antique - well, not in the true sense of the
word - our grandkids probably think it is, as Bill's mother bought it in the late 1950s and that is forever ago as far as they are concerned!
Blogger is doing funny things and moving me to places where I didn't really want to be, but I think I have managed to get the printing in between the right photos now.  This delicate white orchid is a Christmas Orchid (Calanthe triplicate) flowering in the Shade Garden at the Botanic Gardens.  It is  a native of Central Queensland, but I must confess I have never seen it in the wild.  I love the fact that we can see so many native flowers here which we would never normally see.
Two more sleeps and we will be off to catch up with all the New Zealand family.  Thw weather Melbourne is having now - cold and wet - will unfortunately be following us over the ditch, but we have pulled out all our winter woollies so hopefully we won't freeze.