Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Boxing Day

Well - we all woke up on December 22nd and knew the Mayans were wrong, eh?

Today is "Boxing Day" - on which (traditionally) servants and tradespeople are given gifts of appreciation by their employers. I'm wondering if I should explain this tradition to Laka and George - as I often joke that I'm a "bird slave" perhaps they'd be kind and give me something really nice - like, maybe, a day without screeching. (Yeah. I know. I'm dreaming.)

And. of course, here in Australia, just as in the US, the stores have fabulous sales on. I went to the mall about 10 days ago and ohhh... what a crowd! Finding a parking space was more than slightly difficult and boy, inside the mall it was elbow to elbow, especially near the exits. I'm sure there'll be loads of things on sale and the prices will be fabulous, but I think I'll give it a miss.

Happy Boxing Day to you, however - and if you check out the sales, hope you find something divine!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

All the Delights of December

We're only a couple of days from the much-discussed "end of the world, according to the Mayans." I can't say it worries me much, but I have been thinking that I should celebrate the day in some way. Maybe I'll make something special for dinner, kind of a "what would you want for your last meal" thing. Maybe a bottle of something sparkling to wash it down.

And Christmas is almost here - of course!  We're all set. The tree is up, the cookies baked and prezzies bought and wrapped. I've got a special Christmas project underway; I'm making a queen-size quilt with Christmas fabrics - quite the project, that! I've been writing about the project on my quilting blog.

For several years now, Stephen and I have made our own Christmas cards. They always have a bird theme. The picture below is from our 2008 card - "Three Wise Birds", created with one of Stephen's photos and a little Photoshop Elements magic.

"...and then there came three wise birds from the Land Down Under..."

From our perch to yours:
Best Wishes for a Very Happy Christmas!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Pictures from the Book: Page 25

The feeding trays which used to be attached to the deck rail have long been taken down, but we still have visitors. I love the Crimson Rosellas. They are cheeky and friendly - but I have to admit I've not appreciated it much when they "help" me with the potted plants I've been keeping. Every so often they take a liking to something (or maybe it's a dislike?) and I'll find the plant has been thoroughly chewed. They never do enough damage to actually kill it (unlike the cockatoos, which have completely destroyed several things), but the plants end up looking maimed all the same.

At the moment I've got a handful of portulaca plants in a pot just outside the kitchen door. The rosellas have been nipping at them - snipping off an inch here and half an inch there. They don't actually EAT the plants, so I'm mystified as to what the point of this is. Maybe they are sampling it and deciding it's not "tasty". A few days ago I bought a small basil plant and temporarily set the pot in the planter between the portulaca plants. Since then there have been no more nibbles taken off. Hm.. is basil an effective "rosella repellant"? We'll see...

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Crazy Melbourne Weather

A week ago (Weds Nov 28), the temperature high was about 25 C (upper 70's). Thursday it jumped to 38 C (about 100), then it cooled back down to the upper teens again. Last night it got down to 7C here on Mount Dandenong (mid 40's) and it was cool and rainy all day. It won't last, however, as we're heading back to the upper 30's Saturday.


The weather projection for the summer is "hot and dry". So far we're seeing that only in spurts, which is a GOOD THING!

But will we be able to turn off the furnace at any point this summer? At this rate, probably not!