02 November, 2010

Time Wasters

I've been a bit distracted .... for a couple of months. I'm not too sure where the time went but I know I've be busy doing .... errr ... something.

Today is the day I get back into studying. It's not only my blog which had been left neglected. I haven't look at the books for six weeks and I'm starting to get "are you still alive?" emails from my tutor.  I'm having trouble concentrating and I've found myself doing all sorts of stupid things today to avoid the books.  I have listed 10 of my best distractions for today:-

1. Read the newspaper...
Today is a very important day to know what is going on in the world ... or more specifically, Melbourne.
   Who is the current favourite for the Melbourne Cup?
      Is it raining?
         Have there been any late scratchings?
                Are the frocks spectacular?
All vital information for someone contemplating a wager on the nags. Sadly I'm not going to place any bets this year because    I HAVE TO CONCENTRATE AND DO SOME STUDY!

2. Check Facebook
Only a small number of my friends still bother posting anything to Facebook anymore but you never know when some gem of wisdom will be unleashed on the world. I certainly don't want to be the one who misses it.
    .... Nothing new on Facebook today. Just as well, because I should be studying.

3. Ring my mother
I haven't spoken to my mother for a while so I though I should do the good daughter thing and give her a call. She wasn't home.  Now I think about it, I recall she was planning a holiday to Europe. Bugger, I hate it when parents leave the country and don't tell you. Mum probably didn't want to phone and disturb me while I was studying.

4. Find the missing grey pen
I have a set of a dozen brightly coloured pens that I use to take notes with when I'm studying. I lined them all up neatly so I could use them in the correct sequence and to my horror ... the grey pen is missing. I can't possibly do any work with only eleven brightly coloured pens. Turn the house upside down until it is found. Just between you and me, I don't really like the grey pen and when I find it I probably won't use it.

5. Put flea killer on the cats
This is not a job to be taken lightly. The first cat is easy, she's asleep and never sees you coming. It's the second cat which is the problem. She has been woken by the banshee wail and the sound of the first cat and I rolling around on the floor while I try to hold her long enough to get the tiny drop of flea stuff behind her head. Second cat is not dumb and she heads for the hills. Ahhh, but I am smarter than that - all exits have already been sealed. Now if I could take some of those smarts and apply them to my assignment ....

6. Check Facebook again
I have this theory that sooner or later someone will be in desperate need of help and the only way they can reach anybody is via Facebook. It is a civic duty for me to check frequently to ensure there isn't anybody out there crying out for my assistance.
So far, so good. Nobody needing to be rescued today.

7. Have pointless conversation with someone on FaceBook
Since nobody had posted anything thing interesting on Facebook today it was up to me to post my status. Happily for me this triggered a pointless conversation with my nephew about ethics, Pamplona and yellowcake uranium. My nephew should also be studying. Misery love company.

8. Learn to play a song which I don't really like.
I play the guitar [very badly] and sometimes it can help me to focus if I play a few songs. I'm still learning so my choice of songs is somewhat limited. Generally songs which are easy are not the songs I like. Puff the Magic Dragon is a song I loathe. Even as a child I hated it. It makes me gag. Today I spent an hour learning to play Puff the Magic Dragon.

9. Catch up on the blog-a-sphere

Not only has my own blog been neglected, I've fallen behin in reading about everybody else out there. Bad Vicki. Time to catch up with everybodys blogs.

Only 715 posts to go. Good grief, you lot are prolific.

10. Dust of the blog and tell the world about my day.
I concede defeat. Studying is not going to happen today. I was gallant in my attempts but sadly I failed dismally but it seems I can find the time to tell you all about it.

Maybe I'll have a better day tomorrow.  I wonder what is on telly?

15 September, 2010

Watery Wednesday: Theseus slaying a Minotaur

The Archibald Fountain is located in Hyde Park in the centre of Sydney.  Theseus is one of the classical figures and represents sacrifice for the good of humanity.  Rain was teeming down when this photo was taken and the water on the bronze made it shine.

Archibald Fountain

13 September, 2010

Macro Monday: Jonquils

Happy Macro Monday!  I took this photo about a month ago when my bulbs were all coming to life.  I didn't like the photo but when I looked at it again this week I had a change of heart.  There had been a frost overnight.  The ice had melted leaving tiny drops of water on the flowers.


Visit Macro Monday at Lisa's Chaos for more close-up photography.

12 September, 2010

Sundays In My City: Festival of the Winds

At the beginning of spring every year the Festival of the Winds kite festival is held at Bondi Beach.   This year hundreds of kites ranging from tiny home-made paper kites to huge flying octopus battled for air space on a beautiful spring day.

Everywhere I looked were kids running along the beach trying to get there kites to fly. So many dads were reluctant to give up control of their kite to the kids once they had finally managed to get them airborne.  Seems is wasn't just a day for the kids.

Flying Octopus
Giant kites dominated the air.

Dueling Kites
Two kites dances in the sky in tandem.

Felix the Cat
Felix the cat struggled to get in the air.

Kite Fail
Some kites were not so successful.

Bondi Sunset
Bondi Beach sunset.

Have a look at the great posts at Sundays in my City.

08 September, 2010

Help me Chuck Norris!

Have you ever needed to disappear for a while? Life went a little nuts for me in August and I found myself circling the wagons.  Nothing bad, but I was busy ... ridiculously busy.  I've needed Chuck Norris to come to my rescue. 

August was always going to be crazy.  There were several trips away and some major birthdays to deal with.  Add to this the surprise and unwelcome news that the course I am currently studying is being phased out and replaced by another course. 

The timing of this truly sucks.  I can't transfer over to the new course without having to repeat many of the subjects I have already done.  My only option is to complete the old course as quickly as possible while still in the transition period and hope for transfer credits on the completed work. 

So that has been my life for the last few weeks.  Endless assignments, research and handing in sub-standard work in the hope that nobody will notice I was too tired to run a spell check.

Speaking of Chuck Norris, I want you all to go to Google and type in Search for Chuck Norris in the search thingy and have a look at the first result.

I know, it's an old joke but it still always cracks me up!

02 August, 2010

Macro Monday: Feather

Macro Monday

Somewhere in Sydney there's a cockatoo flying around missing a few feathers.  I found this one lying on the edge of the river near home.  Something a bit different from the flowers I've been posting lately.


31 July, 2010

Scenic Sunday: Woronora River

Dear Winter,
I'm through with you.  Please go away.

Not so kind regards,


I got sick of waiting for a clear day to take some photos, so I decided to try capturing the river near my house as it was covered in fog.  The fog was starting to clear as I arrived so I probably missed the best shots, but it was cold and I didn't want to get out of bed.

Woronora Bridge
Woronora Bridge disappearing into the fog.

Woronora River
Woronora River as the sun breaks through the fog.
Have a wonderful Scenic Sunday
I'm off to watch the rugby.  GO WALLABIES!

19 July, 2010

Macro Monday: Zygocactus

I'm having a bit of a run with flower macro photos at the moment.
I couldn't resist posting a shot of my zygocactus which burst into
flower this week.  It always surprises me when it flowers,
probably because the poor plant is so neglected.  It surprises me
it's still alive.


Visit more macro shots at Lisa's Chaos.

18 July, 2010

Sunday In My City: Rainbow Lorikeet

Sunday In My City comes from home today.  I don't have to move off the deck to enjoy a wonderful Sunday in Sydney. 

Sunday mornings are my favourite time of the week.  Breakfast on the deck in the sun (even in winter), enjoying lots of coffee and reading the newspaper. It's my ideal way to start the week. 

Occasionally we are joined on the deck by a few lorikeets looking for a free meal.  I don't feed them often as they develop a dependency but a few bits of apple once in a while won't hurt.

Rainbow Lorikeet

As beautiful as they are, they're very messy eaters.

Rainbow Lorikeet

and how do the great furry hunters which also live in the house react when we are visited by the lorikeets? 

Yep, possibly the laziest cats on the planet.  Which is good for the birds.

It's time to visit Sunday around the world with Sunday In My City.

14 July, 2010

Watery Wednesday: Lion Fountain

Welcome to Watery Wednesday.  This photo was taken in the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney.  We were staying in a wonderful guest house and the fountain was hidden away in the gardens.

Visit to Watery Wednesday for more photos.

12 July, 2010

Challenge #51: Small Change

The good folks at Blog This have thrown up a photography challenge which I couldn't resist.  The theme is change and it's something very close to my heart. 

Every day my beloved comes home from a hard day in the salt mines and empties all the change out of his pockets into a jar.  When the jar is full, he gets another jar and starts again.  This, dear friends, drives me nuts.   There is enough coins in jars around the house to end poverty .... or buy shoes. (yes, I'm shallow, I don't know how I live with myself)


The jar in this photo is special.  These are the coins he emptied out of his pockets while he was a smelly backpacker travelling the world.

It was only while I laying on the floor taking the photo I realised the double meaning of change these coins represent.  Many of these coins don't exist anymore.  They are pre-Euro and have been phased out of the economy.  Other coins are from Eastern European countries which are now very different from those which existed in the 1980's.  This jar holds our own little piece of history.  I guess I won't be buying shoes with this lot.

Note:  while lying on the floor taking the photo I also noticed how grubby the carpet is.  Thankfully I managed to edit out the worst bits.

Macro Monday: Winter Garden

Lisa's Chaos
Enough complaining about the winter weather.  It happens every year so I shouldn't be surprised that it is cold.  One of the great things about winter in Australia is this is when many of the native plants flower so it's a great time for macro shots.

I went for a walk through my garden this morning to see what has started to flower.  It's still a little early and I can see lots of buds that will look great in a couple weeks.  My grevillea never stops flowering so I know I can always get a photo of them and the Kangaroo Paw has been going strong for a few weeks now.

Kangaroo Paw
Kangaroo Paw


Grevillea 'Superb'
Enjoy Macro Monday and don't forget to visit Lisa's Chaos to see what other little stuff was posted this week

11 July, 2010

Scenic Sunday: Botany Bay

I'm having a few technical difficulties with my new camera so I haven't had many respectable photos to post for a couple of weeks.  The new camera is great if I can ignore the fact that everything is a beautiful shade of blue.  I've been using it on manual settings so I have to work out which setting I've got wrong.

Today's photos are views of Botany Bay looking south towards the area of Sydney where I live.  These were taken with my old camera while it was still working.
Botany Bay
Botany Bay at sunset.

I don't see many monks around Sydney so it's always nice to see them visiting the sites like any other tourist.

It's winter here so I can understand the socks.
Happy Scenic Sunday.  Enjoy some great photos by visiting here.

04 July, 2010

Scenic Sunday: Waverley Cemetery

It may be a little ghoulish, but I love cemeteries.  Cemeteries are a  great place to take photos since nothing much moves there (hopefully).

Waverly Cemetery sits above the cliff looking east over the ocean in the suburb of Bronte.  It's a beautiful location and it always amazes me that this prime piece of real estate has not been used for expensive housing. It's comforting to know that beautiful views can be saved for the deceased.

Waverley Cemetery
Sunset at Waverley Cemetery

This photo was taken before dawn with a 30 second exposure.  It was still dark and I had to use a torch to get enough light to focus the camera. 

RIP William Barclay
RIP William Barclay

Visit Scenic Sunday for photos from around the world.

30 June, 2010

Watery Wednesday: Coogee Beach

I still have 5 minutes of Wednesday left to do a Watery Wednesday posting.  I'm cutting it a bit fine today.

The weather has been lousy for taking photos over the last two weeks but I went to Coogee Beach to try my luck.  It was too grey and overcast to get anything spectacular but I liked this shot of a wave breaking over the edge of the ocean pool.


There are some great shots this week at Watery Wednesday

Warm Buzzy Happy Feelings

Hmmm, it's been a while since I was here last.  As I sit here at my desk drinking possibly the greatest coffee ever, I realised I have a choice today:  I could do some study and catch up on the course work which has also been badly neglected or I could blow some dust off the old blog.  Obvious choice, and here I am once more.

Before I launch into the "I have been so busy and I haven't had time to blog" spiel, let me tell you about the coffee I'm drinking at the moment.  I made it myself and it's gooooood!  I'm getting that warm, happy buzz which is going right through me from an offensively strong espresso. 

Back in the dark days when I had a job, I was a complete coffee junkie.  If I didn't have at least 3 macchiatos before lunch I was unable to function.  A couple more shots of caffeine in the afternoon and I could face the rest of the day.  Didn't sleep well last night?  No worries, a cup of coffee first thing in the morning will sort that out quick smart.

My work colleagues knew that getting between me and my coffee in the morning was a career threatening move.  One of the younger members of my team made the fatal mistake of bouncing up to my desk full of youthful excitement and enthusiasm. I had just arrived at work clutching my coffee cup with the lid still unopened.  He only made this mistake once but he still trembles with fear when he recalls my response. 

After I left my job I went cold turkey off the coffee.  Not pretty.  Since then I have only had the occasional cup ... until yesterday.

It's not like I haven't had the opportunity to have good coffee at home. Taking up a ridiculous amount of bench space in my kitchen is the mother of all espresso machines. It's all shiny with lots of knobs, dials and pokie-out bits and I am absolutely terrified of it. I'm convinced that if I press the wrong switch, it will explode and I will go down in the statistics as Australia's only coffee machine fatality.  Yesterday I remembered I liked coffee a lot so I swallowed my fear and managed to produce a weak, sad little espresso . It wasn't earth shattering but it was progress.

Today I was feeling very brave. I doubled the amount of beans and crammed so much ground coffee into the coffee-filter-thingy (technical coffee term) that I may have created a couple of diamonds. I have no idea if this is the right way to make an espresso … but the result was good. Really good. Curl your toes with joy type of good. Ooohhhh,  I'm really happy now.

As for my excuses for not having time to blog, I think I will save them for tomorrow.

Time for another coffee?

Oh, if you insist.

06 June, 2010

Scenic Sunday: Waterfall in Flood

It's still raining here so today's photos are of a flooded waterfall near where I grew up.  Apsley Falls is located near the town of Walcha in the northern part of New South Wales.  As a kid I was never interested in visiting the falls.  Now I have moved away I love any chance I can get to see them again. 

Apsley Falls
Apsley Falls in flood
Apsley Falls
This part of NSW has been suffering drought for years so it's nice to see the rain.

Apsley Falls
This shot was taken from the top of the falls.
Apsley Falls
The mist from the waterfall stops this from being a very clear photo but it gives some scale with the people on the left side of the shot.