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29 November 2013


I've got a busy day ahead of me.  I'm trying to sort things out and begin packing.  And I've got lots of bookwork to organise and get out, and to finalise things here and there.  There are things to be booked, and things to be done.

Does hoping, and hoping, get you somewhere every now and again???   Maybe it does??  Temperature drop for the start of my photo shoot in Murrurundi...  I can only keep hoping.  As one does.


Close Precis
Forecast issued at 4:25 am EDT on Friday 29 November 2013.
Detailed Scone Forecast

Fri. 29 NovSat. 30 NovSun. 1 DecMon. 2 DecTue. 3 DecWed. 4 DecThu. 5 Dec
Summary Rain, a few storms developing. Possible shower. Partly cloudy. Mostly sunny. Sunny. Mostly sunny. A few showers.
Max. Temperature28 °C24 °C26 °C31 °C34 °C36 °C28 °C
Min. Temperature
11 °C9 °C9 °C11 °C14 °C16 °C

28 November 2013

Oh dear...

Ok, at this point, I am just about begging for a cool change to hit the Hunter Valley on Wednesday night..  My poor Dan..  travelling all that way in 37 degrees.  It will remind me, disgustingly, of our trip back to Canberra in January of this year in 44 degree heat.  


Oh..  and here's a little bit of trivia for you.  In biting my lip and worrying about the state of my car, when I glanced at his fuel gauge sitting again right on empty, I thought to myself "I can't remember the last time I checked his oil and water" (please don't ask about the tyres....).  So I ran the risk of running late to work (justifying it on the basis that if he either ran out of petrol or oil I'd be far later) and swung by the service station.  Oil didn't even register on his dippy stick thing.  Bloody hell, what's happening to us Dan????  Began muttering abject apologies to him, patted his bonnet, grabbed 2 thingies of oil, paid, put them both in, patted him again and after also topping up his water (which hurrah wasn't as dire as his oil) set off on our way again.  I'm so sorry Dan.. 

And just in case you thought I'd forgotten to count, today is 38 (and I'm not talking about the temperature).....


Close Precis
Forecast issued at 4:25 am EDT on Thursday 28 November 2013.
Detailed Scone Forecast

Thu. 28 NovFri. 29 NovSat. 30 NovSun. 1 DecMon. 2 DecTue. 3 DecWed. 4 Dec
Summary Sunny. Rain, chance storm. Shower or two clearing. Mostly sunny. Partly cloudy. Mostly sunny. Mostly sunny.
Max. Temperature35 °C26 °C22 °C26 °C31 °C35 °C37 °C
Min. Temperature
18 °C12 °C9 °C9 °C14 °C16 °C

27 November 2013

Big breaths, and Very Big Steps

Yes, I'm still counting.  We're up to 39, and technically, because the day is almost gone, it's quite close to being able to say that sleep 39 is done and that we're at 38.  I have a habit of counting down the sleeps to an event that excites or is important to me.  Some are well aware of this.  Plus if I don't keep count, this will sneak up on me, and I'll be in strife!

This is a time for taking big breaths, and BIG STEPS.  Today I informed my current landlords that we are leavning.  They've been pretty terrific, and have looked after us well.  They said they are sorry to see me go.  My neighbours are sad too.  So the landlords are commencing Vacating the Premises process.  It all sounds so formal, doesn't it?  I guess it will become less daunting as we go. 

And the other big step was signing the lease on our Melbourne house and sending off the bank cheques for the bond and the 1st month's rent.  And I also finally booked our flights so that the kids can attend the Step-Up Day at their new school on 19th December, which is when we'll go and check out the new house properly and work out what will go where when the removalists drop things off.

I've also had a phone call from Emirates Park, to begin firming up the details of the 2 day photoshoot next week in Murrurundi.  


Random thoughts from this morning...  Heath has gotten ready nice and early this morning. Jessica is another matter.

I've been checking the long range forecast for Scone. As a result, I'm growing gloomier and gloomier by the minute.  Goodness I hate the heat...

I am wondering whether perhaps I had already put detergent in my washing machine???  Surprised??  Sigh...

My website and email both ended up going down yesterday.  Name Server names, ARecords, CName records..  This stuff might as well be written in a whole different language.  However the hosting people finally helped me with it. Touch wood it's all ok. The website is back up. And my emails are working. This is a very good thing. There are important documents to work on and things to be done.

Go little plant!!!  So tough!!! 

26 November 2013

40 Days.... And 40 Nights

Ok. So I counted them. Are you surprised?  We have 40 sleeps to go. My phone has run a little hot. And there's been lots of messages coming in.  I like that..... 

Right now, I'm trying to work out an order to do things in, while I sit on my bucket next to Freelance while she eats breakfast. The flies are bugging her. The little toads. It was cool last night so I gave in and put a warm rug on her.

What would you do?  How would you organise all of this??  I've never moved interstate. There are so many unknowns. People ask what will I do?  How are you going to do this, or that? And to be truthful, I answer a bit of it at the moment with "I don't know.."  I suppose I am ok at flying by the seat of my pants, and that the unknown doesn't daunt me as much as it might others. But still...

Freelance is nearly finished. Again, that's my queue to vanish.

25 November 2013

All I want for Christmas is........ to be a Melbourne Girl at last

Today I got the phone call we have been desperately waiting to receive, which was to tell me that we've got a house in Melbourne.  We won't be living right in Melbourne of course, we will be in a lovely tranquil environment, with a lovely drive up the freeway into Melbourne itself.

I've been looking for houses since July.  First I'd hoped to buy, but things didn't move quickly enough for this.  So we are renting for a short while longer, and that is ok.  Our new house is lovely.  It is new.  It has the biggest, and newest looking kitchen.  And oh goodness me, it has a dishwasher!!!!  For those who know the kitchen we've had these past 12 months is ordinary.  And that's being kind.  And we'll have 2 PROPER bathrooms, like really nice bathrooms too.

The removalist trucks will arrive here in Canberra on 4th January, with delivery to the Peninsula on the 5th.  I can't begin to say how much this means to us.  I have to admit that I am suddenly feeling like I am turning around and around in circles, looking and wondering "How on earth do I do this?  What first.  What next, in what order do I do this??"  And it's natural to want to share this information with family, and good friends....  What was it I read about important friendships this weekend??  I guess it can't feel truer than it does this evening.

But while I try to get my head around the enormity of the task at hand, all I can think about is that I am going to be a Melbourne Girl at last, with a real (03) phone number, and the kids are going to go to a truly wonderful school and grow up in a really gorgeous area.

As a side, my website seems to definitely be down at present, which is really annoying.  Humble pleading and abject apologies.  The hosting people are, it would appear, crap..  Changes may well be afoot on that front I suspect as well.

Let the whirlwind commence....

24 November 2013

Baking Queen and a Birthday Day..

Today was Heath's birthday.  He arrived back home just after midday.  My brother and I had combined to buy him a pretty cool present, plus I bought the usual Doctor Who and Lego culprits (ok, ok, stop shaking the head, I know we already have STACKS of Lego.....). 

In some ways Heath's birthday felt strange.  Ok, partly because I'm still not used to it when he doesn't wake up here.  But there are a few other reasons too.  And there aren't any easy answers.  We went to see Day of the Doctor.  Talon came too.  It was amazing and it was a great thing to do on his birthday.  Then dinner at my house, where I had all the balls in the air, baking cakes, cooking dinner, making icing...  Depending on when we need to book the removalist truck, this could well have been our very last birthday in this tiny house.  And yes, these are the famous front steps.  I get lots of image ideas sitting on my steps, and many thoughts flood my mind..

Baking Queen
I had a tear in my eye when he came on..  oh goodness..

23 November 2013

Keeping Control

I'm not sure how I should feel about this...  It is always a nicer feeling when you are asked about this sort of use and agree to a fee up front, rather than stumble across it by accident (not to mention have it credited).  Having said that, they are a nice group at the Sunday Tele, and I truly like the Editor who seems to be a great person and the new Pic Ed also seems good, so I'm sure it won't be an issue, but still.....

For sale as a Page Print from the News Ltd Photo Shop

50 Years...

I'm sitting outside again, on my front step, with my laptop, my cup of tea and Maxie.  Today is Saturday 23 November 2013.  In America today, it's still the 22nd of November.  This weekend marks the anniversaries of two events that occurred before I was born.  

The first even is one that I have always felt fascinated and sad about.  It makes me reflect on an era in American and world politics that was game changing, and life changing for many.  And importantly for me, it was an era where the power of the still image has never more apparent.  Today marks the  50th anniversary of the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kenndy (or JFK as he is often referred to).

I have some books on JFK, including one that is precious to me, by his personal photographer, Jacques Lowe.  It's called "Remembering Jack".  It is a great book to read while curled up on the lounge with a glass of red wine.  It reminds us that great photography will always have a place in society.   I think his work inspired me, long ago, to want to be a photographer.  I have always held a little ambition to want to work in the White House as a photographer.  I'm sure it's something that I'll never realise, but it doesn't stop me from thinking about the enormous importance of creating a library such as the Kennedy archives.  It really was a very special achievement by some amazing photographers.

This is a link to ABC Online's coverage.  There's some lovely material in it, a gallery, and even condolence letters written to Jackie Kennedy:

This one has some good material too, with clips from the day it happened:

The other event is of course one that we are wildly excited about, and it's gripping the world in a little bit of Time Lord Fever.  It's of course the 50th anniversary of the screening of the very first episode of Doctor Who.  An event which, 50 years, was of course completely overshadowed by the terrible events in America.  As I wrote yesterday, even Google has caught Time Lord Fever. 

And of the other matters happening in our lives?  Fortunately I phoned two of the real estate agents who are managing the houses we are applying for to check how things were going, and to my dismay the emails I'd sent on Wednesday with our applications hadn't arrived.  My heart dropped, but the nice thing is that they actually seem very keen to get them, and have been waiting on them, and I liked that a lot.  With one actually saying 'we're very keen to get your application'.  So it involved a last minute trip to the Post Office to use the old method of faxing.  Stupidly expensive it would appear, but necessary.  And my lovely post officer man, who tells me I am his favourite customer, said 'but I won't see you anymore', to which I replied that I would be back and forth a bit to bring the kids back on visits and to see my brother and nephews, and on route to visiting my Mum in Sydney, etc.  And when I said it was nice to get comments like I had from the real estate agent, due to my worries about how we will rank with me being self employed and on my own with 2 young children, he pointed to me and said 'oh, hello, FAMOUS!!!', which made me laugh..  I'm not very famous, but my name is closely associated with a very famous and fabulous horse, and that's enough for me...

From Jacques Lowe's book "Remembering Jack".

22 November 2013

Doctor WHO?????

Oh!!!!  Stop what you are doing, right now...  Go onto Google...  now!!!!  There is nothing like when society at large gets behind an event.  It makes me genuinely excited.  Specially when it's a super cool and ace event, not something stupid like "Who Care Who Big Brother Says Goodbye Too..."..  

Doctor Who is turning 50...  Ok, ok..  The raised on the ABC/BBC highbrow girl is raising her head again. I can see you shaking that head, smiling slightly again....  But we are feeling a little bit consumed by this..  I grew up on Doctor Who!  Tom Baker was my hero..  As was K9!  And what girl didn't want to dress like Leela and look like her when she grew up????? She was so tough, and so savage, and so cool! 

Heath's birthday is on Sunday.  He's turning 12.  It's been a really tough year.  But I hope next year will be full of surprises and delights.  As part of his birthday present I've but us movie tickets to "Day of the Doctor" on Sunday, because goodness, me, it screens on his birthday.  We're taking Talon too..  He has a pair of Dalek pyjamas and a sonic screw driver tshirt to open as well.  And my wonderful sister has bought him a new sonic screwdriver as well...  And as our "Oh goodness me, we live in Melbourne now!!" present, I've bought us tickets to the Doctor Who Symphonic Spectaular concert/show, thing, at the beginning of February. 

I wish Heath was here right now so I could show him the Google thing..  The world is turning Doctor Who...  We love it..  

21 November 2013

(Almost) Summer Storms

I'm home from work, and from feeding Freelance.  I called in to the shops, and bought some stuff for dinner.  And again forgot to buy Maxie some food and me some laundry powder.  Darn it..  Domestics..  Never my strong suit.  I had to come the long way around from the paddock.  It's actually literally just up the road from me, but they are doing all these bloody awful roadworks, right on our doorstep it feels, because of the huge new sub-development that they are putting in.  It's changed the character of the area, but, as I keep telling myself and the kids, we're not here for much longer.

In a sudden surge of inspiration, I decided I would try to cook Risotto tonight, or Gluggy Rice as my attempts have been called before.  I can see that smiling creeping on to your face, yet again.  My sister can cook some pretty ace ones.  And I should try to lift my act a little bit. Before I begin this tricky little task though, I poured myself a glass of wine, and joined Maxie, who's on his little harness, on my front step.  

The storm that's been threatening all afternoon, is just hitting us.  He's a bit confused, and doesn't know what to make of it.  He's left the front step/porch, and is now on the window sill.  He's still under cover, and is trying to make sense of the smells of the summer (almost) rain, and the sounds of thunder.  Birds get noiser in a storm.  I love them.  I love sitting outside under cover, as I am now and just watchng them.  Just as I love lying in bed listening to the rain.  I like photographing in the rain far less, apart, that is, from the truly speccy rain/sun storm that hit Pierro as he won the Canterbury Stakes.  

The rain is getting harder.  Maxie's concerned, and he backs back along the window ledge.  He's stopped his constant little purr he runs when he's outside, and has a worried look on his face.  It's hard to tell whether the storm is skirting around us, or is about to whack us head on.  My little house has heated up, as it does, with only 3 days of warmish weather.  Not long, not long, not long, I tell myself..  I'm trying to get my head around the specifics of my Hunter Valley shoot.  December.  Not my favourite time in the Hunter.  Last year I got away with it, with tops of between 29 - 34 degrees.  Yes, as you know, hot days are not my friend.  I just have to hope for the best for this year's shoot, because I hate photographing in the heat, and so do 'My Boys'. 

20 November 2013


It's Wednesday night.  Maxie spent time outside both this morning before we left for school and work, and this afternoon after we got home.  My house is quiet.  I've put a DVD on to break the silence. Ok...  You're right.  The DVD is a horse one..  Not surprised???  I guess not.  It's "The Horse Whisperer".  I am not averse to watching movies over and over.  And I do like this movie.  My regulars readers will know that I've written previously about a hot January evening in Carlton where I was bought a ticket to the premiere of the film documentary "Buck", who was actually there for a question and answer session when the movie finished.  He's the cowboy this film is based on.  I like the film a lot, particularly after that evening..  I like the line in it "I didn't love her because it was right..  I just loved her"..

Today I finished our applications for the other 2 houses my friend has seen on our behalf.  And now it's a waiting game.  I know which one I want for us.  Last night (back to bad habits, I know) I stayed up till after midnight working on pictures that I am behind on.

I'm also trying to finalise the details of my final trip for 2013 to the Hunter Valley.  I have 2 days at Emirates Park, and a day at Arrowfield, and potentially I hope to catch up with another horse.  I'd like that......  Ironic, isn't it..  Same dates in the Hunter as last year..  As was the case almost with my September visit. 

I bite my lip, and wonder if Dan will make it.  His exhaust pipe grows noisier, and I must try to get it fixed before we leave.  He probably needs another service too, but I am absolutely bleeding money at the moment, and am not sure that I can afford it.  I will try to remember to get his windscreen replaced, because the crack is long and annoying.

I do mathematical calculations in my head, trying to work out what I have to pay, and in what order.  The money is going out, out, out., and it will continue to do this until at least January..  And it's slow to come in.  The issue with the Mint and ESP continues to perplex and trouble me.  It makes me cross, but in lots of ways I dislike thinking about it.  I don't know what to do... 

This afternoon I had a friend request come through on Facebook, from a person without a photo, with a name I didn't recognise.  At first I accepted it, but then got worried, thinking "I don't know who this is!!!!!!", so I reversed it.  My friend's account got hacked awhile ago, so I guess you have to be careful with things like this.  I did my usual burning of my dinner tonight, trying to do 2 things at once.  I shouldn't try to attempt to do anything other than cooking when I'm cooking..  I give the leftovers to Maxie, and then exclaim somewhat indignantly "It's not THAT bad" when he walks off with his nose in the air..

Buffering.  No Famous Pony, but a good little horse, and it was a great result for Mossman at Vinery Stud.
Dothraki - another winner for Mossman.

Girl Gone Rockin' - 'my boy' Redoute's gets another winner
Longport.  A great day for Vinery boys.  He's by my 'new boy' Casino Prince.

Fiorente - swimming before winning the Cup.

My little plant..  Is there any chance you think it is even more stubborn than me??  It's still breathing, despite the punishment I hand out to it...