Friday, 28 January 2011

Final two birthday cards and a small miracle

Angelique made this card for me and was getting quite worried as it took a long time to arrive from France.  It was worth the wait though.

Helga B sent me this interesting card.

I sent this card to Helga F

and this one to Peggy in USA

This one shuld have gone to Helga F, but I mistakenly sent it to Hanna in Austria, having misread the list - silly of me.  However Hanna likes it so that is okay.
I have received 15 lovely cards and they are all so different.  Next I shall make a box to contain them all, so they can be on display.
We have had a small, or maybe large miracle happen here.  I spent ages cleaning my oven - a job I absolutely detest.  Then I cooked a roast in it and found the oven was smoking badly and everything was overcooked, and I needed to clean the oven again the next morning - I said a few unprintable words about that!  Turned out the thermostat had given up.  The oven is 19 years old and in this throwaway society I thought there would be no hope of buying a replacement.  Imagine our amazement when bill went to the appliance spares shop to discover that not only was the part available, but there was one in stock!!!!
We are having the roast pork tonight that we planned to have on Australia Day and I can breathe easily about what I shall cook for my DIL's birthday dinner next week.

Friday, 21 January 2011

Fibre Fever January page and some pigeons

This is my January page from Yoke in The Netherlands for the Fibre Fever swap.  She has hand and machine felted a snow bell hoping to persuade Spring to arrive at her cold home.  It is beautiful.

This birthday card for me from Peggy in USA had a sojurn in the Customs Department before arriving here - Peggy was getting quite worried that it had been lost.  The Customs officer added a pamphlet telling me what could and could not be imported into Australia.  I hope he enjoyed looking at the harmless fabric card!

Bill had been pruning the Congea vine, but had to be very patient and careful at this end - a pigeon had a nest with two babies in it.  We could see them from the kitchen window, especially as they grew big and were almost ready to fly.

This one is still in the nest - but flew away a few hours later.

The second one made it to the trestle at the other end of the creeper, but was not anxious to move from there.  Several hours later Bill decided he really had to move the trestle so gave it a good shake, then started to lower it.  that moved the pigeon, who could fly quite well after all and disappeared over the back fence and far away. As always, click on the photos for a better look.
Time for a walk with Jock.  We are having some very hot sticky weather, but at least there is a strong breeze this afternoon so that should make walking a little more pleasant.  Cheers.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

More birthday cards

Today I received some more cards from the Fibre Fever ladies all of them lovely.  The top one is from Anne in Germany

This fascinating card and the bird are from Marja in The Netherlands.  The houses look very like the row where Marja lives.

I can't tell you who made the top one - I have thrown out the envelope and I can't read the pale yellow writing on the back of it - very frustrating!  The lower one is made by Monika in Bavaria.  All the cards are so different.

Sunday, 16 January 2011

Birthday cards and food

I have had a birthday and look what I received from the Fibre fever swap group:  the first three are from Maureen in Australia, Helina in Finland and Janny in The Netherlands.

This group are from Ati in Norway, Birgit in Germany and Ritva in Finland.  they are all so lovely - thank you so much.

My grandson Christopher shares my birthday so we celebrated together on Friday night.  He wanted achicken dish but chicken is completely sold out in Mackay till the shelves are restocked now that the roads have finally opened again.  We had a very nice chocolate cake though.  On Saturday night Bill and I feasted on
this mud crab

and these (he does not like them so more for me!

and these.  There was even enough left over for prawn sandwiches for lunch today.
What more could I ask for?

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Queensland floods

This is just a quick post to ask everyone to say a prayer for all the poor souls in Southern Queensland where the flood crisis is getting completely desperate.  There was a wall of water came through the main street of Toowoomba yesterday afternoon, then down the range and through the Lockyer Valley below.  There are at least 8 people dead and another 72 missing.  the rain continues to pour down, with major flloding expected throughout the south east of the state.  The Brisbane river has already broken its banks and parts of the CBD of the State capital are being evacuated.  The worst of the flooding is not due for at least another 24 hours so this is not good.

For us here in Mackay it is very hard to imagine as we have warm, sunny weather and no sign of any storms yet.  Our supermarket shelves will be even emptier, but that is nothing, we can live through that.

Doreen's blog has a link to Gumtree designers who are oranising an appeal for all of us to help provide kits for the flood victims after the floods have subsided. These would be sewing kits and I think it is a wonderful idea.  If you can help, please follow the link.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

What's flowering in our garden

Our Euodia tree is flowering now and is full of shrieking lorikeets, which are amazingly hard to see, even with their bright colour!

I managed to get a snap of this one.  The flowers are very pretty and they are followed by clusters of black seed pods which the birds and the possums like  too..  I hope the vitamin content of the flowers has recovered.  We had a lorikeet fall out of the tree about a week ago, unable to fly.  The wildlife carer who collected the bird said lots of the birds were falling out of the trees as the nutrition in the flowers was inadequate from all the rain we have had.  I wonder how all the wildlife is faring in the flood zones all round Queensland and New South Wales.

I must have taken about 20 photos trying to get a picture of this Ulysses butterfly which feeds on the flowers of the Euodia.  It is a large butterfly with a wingspan of about 5 1/2 inches and flies very fast.  When it does land and closes its wings you can't see it as the underside of the wings is black and dark brown.  The upper side of the wings is the most magnificent electric blue and sometimes there are several flying around.  This picture is an image from wickipedia, I never did manage to get a photo

We planted two Pandorea jasminoides creepers on a trellis in the back garden to replace the things which were destroyed last year.  Look at it now, flowering beautifully, and even the lovely glossy green leaves look attractive.

This is not a very good shot of the allamander vine and the thunbergia mysorensis vine, both putting on a very colourful show.

The honey eaters love this creeper, which keeps putting out new buds on the end of the stem, so that eventually it hangs almost two feet from the first flower.
The rain has stopped for the time being.  We didn't quite make it to twice our annual average last year - we had 2975 mm - more than enough for any of us.  Of course, the wet season is only just starting so there will be lots more rain yet before the end of the summer.......uggggh!