Tuesday, 30 June 2015

lazy days

After a few rainy days there was some blue sky today. It is nice to feel some warmth from the sun. The days are passing by - walking, surfing, shopping, sitting, talking, catching up with friends and eating. We have been visiting some of our usual haunts; Bangalow for breakfast yesterday and Brunswick Heads for lunch today. In between Colin heads to the water for his daily surf, he is being quite restrained only going in once a day, perhaps he is pacing himself! We have missed having the kids up here but it is hard not to enjoy this place.

I am missing using my camera. I forgot to bring the battery charger so have been saving it to use for something 'special'. In the past there has been the occasional spectacular sunset, I am hopeful we might get lucky again. In the meantime I have been using my little point and shoot, it is just not the same though.

Sunday, 28 June 2015


This is our seventh consecutive year at Byron Bay. Each year the beach is subtly different; sand moves from one place to another, rocks are exposed and covered, the dunes regress and reappear. This year the beach erosion is the worst we have seen, metres of sand dunes have been washed away. The stairs from the deck leading down to the beach have been battered and the dunes are no more, in their place a sandy cliff edge. Access to the beach is no longer possible at this spot. Despite the destruction it is still as beautiful as ever and for the surfing enthusiasts the waves continue to roll in, line after line.

And even when there is no 'sunset' to speak off there are reflections in the still water...

Saturday, 27 June 2015

byron bay

Spent a few days in Melbourne helping Rachel move house - packing, moving and cleaning. It was good to be around to lend a helping hand.

Flew to Brisbane this morning, had the lovely Robert's family meet us at the airport with 'Pat' (a very big thank you), two hours driving and here we are. No caravan means no setting up! After saying hello to friends and backing someone else's caravan into their spot, Colin wasted no time getting down to the beach. He is one happy boy...

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

escaping winter

For the last 6 years we have spent the winter school holidays (plus some) at Byron Bay. We are heading north again, but for a shorter time and minus the caravan. This time we will stay in the relative luxury of a cabin, our caravan having sold a few weeks ago. Same caravan park, same familiar faces and places but different this time, especially with none of the kids along. I'm not sure what it will be like when everything is so familiar and yet so different at the same time.

We left 'Pat' in Brisbane when we moved to Tassie, parked in a friends back yard. We'll fly up and drive back, taking a detour to Canberra to see Zac and Jan on the way home. The next few weeks will be piecemeal; here and there, flying and driving, four states and hopefully no sub zero temperatures! As I contemplate packing tonight it seems so strange to put in shorts and tshirts. Maybe in the three and a half weeks I am away winter will loosen its grip and upon my return there will be the hope of spring just around the corner...

Saturday, 20 June 2015


-3 this morning. I was tempted out with the camera by a layer of glittering white.

I did say to Colin that I refused  to go to the market til it warmed up to at least zero, which is a non sensical statement! I relented at -1 and 9am, more than ready for some breakfast and a hot chocolate. Our Saturday morning ritual continues, thank goodness for Tasmanian winter woolies...

Thursday, 18 June 2015

by the river

Late afternoon and the sun creates golden reeds..

A little closer, shadows and highlights...

And last of all, shooting into the sun...

Monday, 15 June 2015


We had a trifecta this morning, cold, wet and then foggy. 

Yesterday we had a maximum of a whole 7 degrees, it was still around 2 degrees at 2pm. I don’t think we had sub zero temperatures overnight but we often do. 

It is taking some getting used to. In Caloundra the lows are presently around 15 and during the day it’s a balmy 23! Why are we here, hmmm we are asking ourselves the same question lately. Actually the main reason we are here was evident this weekend – family. As a birthday present and a thank you present for my one of my sisters, we volunteered for kids and pets duty while she and her husband had a couple of days away. It has been a while since we have had three primary school aged kids to care for, add in two dogs and a cat, multiple sport and extra curricula activities and it makes for a busy weekend. Funny how long the day feels when it starts before the sun comes up.

Sunday morning, 9.30am, finds us at the dog park suitably wrapped up for 1.5 degrees; jackets, beanies, gloves and scarves, that is Colin and I, my nephews are made of hardier stuff. My niece has already been dropped off at a theatre production rehearsal, two nephews are in tow along with Eddie. Eddie is a border collie and needs to run, a lot, and multiple times a day. Amazingly, there are actually other people at the dog park too and lucky for Eddie (and us) there’s a few big dogs who love to run as much as he does. You have to keep moving to stay warm though. Your breath is white vapour dissipating into cold nothingness. Jo finds a large slither of ice in the dog’s water bowl and proceeds to hold it in bare hands watching the drips as it slowly melts. Some entertainment for the nephews is required while Eddie does his running thing. Colin enters fully into the nephew conversation about which greek god you would choose to be, he can’t believe they haven’t heard of fartius, the god of wind. You get the picture and can imagine the conversation for the next half hour. I do believe burpius and poopius got a bit of a mention too…

Friday, 12 June 2015

change of address

No, we are not moving, but our various personal blog sites are. We are doing a bit of spring (actually winter) cleaning, consolidating and simplifying blogs that are multiplying over time. So if you have a shortcut or bookmark you will need to update the address. There's a list here.

We've decided to move everything to blogspot. It is basic but it is free and you don't end up having to pay a yearly subscription to maintain old sites and to ensure no advertising. We've moved all the latest and easiest blogs, our yurting site is a bit more difficult and will take longer to migrate, lots of links that are creating a bit of a headache.

Ah well, all this cold weather is conducive to sitting in front of a computer, nice and warm inside. The mornings are particularly cold, usually frosty, but every now and then the fog rolls in just for something different.

Thursday, 11 June 2015


Today I made a big pot of minestrone, a very big pot, enough to share with family..

Monday, 8 June 2015


Miserable weather is just the right kind of weather for staying inside and cooking and once you have cooked sharing a meal with your family is a wonderful thing. Had my mother and my sisters and their families around for lunch, can't think of a better way to spend a day when it's cold, wet and wildly windy...

home made sausage rolls to start

moroccan lamb and chick pea soup

mulled cider, inspired by our visit to Hobart
Colin had a go making his own

And there was apple and plum crumble for dessert, but none left and no photo!

Sunday, 7 June 2015


Colin and I met here at uni in '85, some thirty years ago. Not surprisingly when we return we remember times from years ago. It feels like another life back then, we are not the same people and yet we are - the mystery of years lived and lives changed. As always, we are conscious of how fortunate we have been and so thankful for the journey so far.

Not long after we arrived Colin took this photo of a poster in a shop window (Kathmandu), it has been our motto the last couple of days; everything from icy wind and a smattering of snow on Mount Wellington to sitting outside rugged up drinking mulled cider and wine - darn cold but a lot of fun...

selfie at the top of Mount Wellington

hot drinks to warm you on the inside and the outside

based ourselves in Salamanca

the iconic Salamanca market
and Mount Wellington in the background

along the Huon Trail

some hardy souls at a caravan park in Gordon
 (along the Huon Trail)