This blog is just about stuff I do , stuff I see here and there … just stuff.

Knitted some cute dolls .. This is Obi, he likes Autumn trees ¬†and … licorice

Then I decided I like ‘steampunk’ so did some:


Steampunk Goth … or … Gothic Steampunk whichever you prefer. They all have to have wings and a tail … why? because I said so. ūüôā

I have so much art and craft ‘stuff’ in my house. Thought I would seek out another residence …

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Perfect except the rent was far too high … never mind. Decided to go shopping instead; that retail therapy thingy we do.

It is amazing who comes along when you are feeling a little down (I so wanted that house). All it takes is a look and ones spirit lifts … thank you friend …

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What other stuff is there? … mmmmm … oh yes …

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Build a Bear shop. Wandered in there still feeling cheered, felt better still when I saw this cutie but then … oh dear …

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Poor empty Ted. Saggy … baggy … Ted. No stuffing … no stuff! I felt like taking him over and asking them to give him some life until I saw how they get ‘born’ oh oh, whooooosh up you know where … no thanks … gave him a pat and told him to stay where he was, even hide if he can.

o.k. rambled on about stuff so from a new found friend 20160115_134727 (Copy)and myself I say, happiness and fun to you all. I have no idea what he is supposed to be … but … who cares, fun is fun …Adios …




Been away … again

Been with the grandchildren … learned (learnt?) a lot. Homework isn’t what it used to be … their’s is from some strange planet … couldn’t understand the language … Google did.

I learnt … again … to tie a tie. Iron pleats into tunics and sing silly songs … that was fun. We walked in the sunshine … the rain … the freezing cold. We camped out in the lounge room … cos we could. Watched movies and ate lollies. I was introduced to ‘sours’ … who on earth invented them? We held hands … hugged and laughed some more.

For breakfast please Nana … Dark rye bread and marinated goats cheese … Turkish bread with smoked salmon (expensive tastes for so young) … well … I am proud they choose healthy.

Memories are fresh … smiles are a constant … life is a little richer …

Updated 365 Face a day page

Hi everyone,

Floating in and out of here. I have managed to put my 365 Face a day challenges into one page. Did a lovely job of the first lot, now the second lot have uploaded willy nilly. I would love to have the time to l-e-a-r-n about everything but it¬†not possible as I like too many things and don’t know how to choose which to drop so I can concentrate on just a few things and get them right … however … if I did¬†¬†that ¬†I would not be me … so let’s do some ‘randoming’ …


I picked up ¬†a little dinky book ¬†from a Book Crossing meet. ( The book is a ‘Reader’s Digest’ Titled ‘Idiomatically Speaking’ ¬†– ‘IDIOMATIC=¬†Peculiar¬†to¬†or¬†characteristic¬†of¬†a¬†given¬†language.

Here is a little from the book: Some amazing origins of some of our most common idioms.

‘Hair of the dog’ –¬†Many people claim the best cure for a hangover is a quick morning-after drink – known idiomatically as ‘a hair of the dog that bit you’.¬†In the days when superstition and medical science were one. It was believed that the bite from a mad dog could be cured by putting some of its hair on the wound. The expression occurs as early as 1546.

‘Gild the lily’¬†– ¬†To gild refined gold, to paint the lily is wasteful and a ridiculous excess says Shakespeare in ‘King John’ of the monarch who attempted to ‘improve’ his royalty by having himself crowned a second time. Gold, already the purest of metals cannot be improved by gilt; nor can the lily, symbol in Christian art of purity, be made more perfect by paint. As the phrase became an English idiom through usage it was corrupted so that the lily, not the gold was being gilded when someone attempted to make something already good appear to be even better.

‘Hobson’s choice’¬†– Back in the 16th century. Thomas Hobson kept a stable in Cambridge. Customers wanting to hire a horse were given Hobson’s choice: they had to take the one nearest the door – or go without a mount.

‘High Jinks”¬†– Now synonymous with unrestrained merrymaking, high jinks was once a popular game. In his novel ‘Guy Mannering (1815), Sir Walter Scott refers to ‘the ancient and now forgotten pastime of¬†high jinks – which was played in several different ways. Most frequently the dice is thrown by the company, and those upon whom the lot fell were obliged to assume and maintain for a time, a certain fictitious character, or to repeat a certain number of fescennine verses in a particular order. If they departed from the characters assigned … they incurred forfeits.

‘Not enough room to swing a cat’¬†– Until 1875, a whip known as the cat-o’-nine-tails (usually abbreviated to ‘cat’) was used to punish sailors on board Royal Navy ships, which were not noted for an abundance of space. Novelist Tobias Smollett (1721-71), who spent considerable time at sea, was one of the first to use the phrase to describe a confined space.


Another little book I picked up is another Reader’s Digest call ‘Oddities in words, picture and figures. Here are some of the tongue twisters compiled in an anthology by Mr. Ken Parkin, A British music examiner.

The sixth sick sheik’s sixth sheep’s sick

A bloke’s back brake-block broke

A dozen double damask dinner napkins

A fat-thighed freak fries thick fish

A truly rural frugal ruler’s mural

A soft shot-silk sash shop

Freddy Thrush flies through thick fog

And now some ‘Strine’ – Australian slang.

Goodbye, must hit the frog and toad (Goodbye , I am going up the road)

Well, take a Captain Cook (Well, take a look)

What’s the curry and rice? (What’s the price?)

He has just gone around the Johnny Horner (round the the corner)

I am all on my Pat Malone (on my own)

I need to wear me bag o fruit (wear my suit)

No, this is not how we speak but I do remember one of my uncles many years ago when I was a child (many years ago … ) he would quote this strine often, I was fascinated.

There is controversy to the origins of these sayings. Possibly from the original convicts that settled here or maybe the turn of the century. It was generally only used by men. A lady would not talk like that in those days. Well, not in public anyways.

It consists of a couple of words or syllables which rhymes with the word for which it is substituted.


Last but not least a little History about Australia … well … some unusual bits …

* Swimming – In 1838 it was declared illegal to swim at public beaches during the day due to morality grounds. This law was enforced until 1902. (It is hard to believe that that is only 112 years ago, swimming in a beach seems such a normal and obvious thing to do).

* Female vote – Australia was the second country to give women the vote.

* In 1932, Francis De Groot, a retired cavalry officer, managed to get himself selected as part of the honour guard at the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. When the ribbon was about to be cut, he galloped forward on his horse and slashed the ribbon with his sword, declaring the bridge open in the name of ‘the decent citizens of New South Wales’. The ribbon was then tied back together and the ceremony continued. De Groot was carried off to a mental hospital, declared insane and later fined for the replacement cost of one ribbon.

* Independence for WA- In April 1933, 68 per cent of West Australians voted in favour of seceding from the Commonwealth of Australia. However, they needed permission from the British Parliament before they could officially become a new country. Meanwhile, Australia’s Federal Parliament was arguing that Britain should not interfere in Australian politics. The end result was that Britain never made a decision. Consequently, Western Australian remained part of the Commonwealth.

* Yowie sighting РIn 1987, the Alice Springs police station received a call from a frightened family. The family had stopped for a cup of tea after a morning of rabbit hunting. Then a huge ape like creature, two meters tall and covered in hair, leapt out of an empty water tank and began walking towards them. The family fled to their truck and the creature ran after them before disappearing into the bush. The man,Frank Burns believed it was a man however the women, Phyllis Kenny, told the press she could tell the difference between man and beast and this was definitely a beast. The following day police searched the area and found a man, 203 centimetres tall weighing a estimated 127-159 kg sitting naked by the roadside. The man was then taken to a local mental hospital.

*Australia day – January 26, Australia day, is the anniversary of ships arriving in Sydney carrying a load of Convicts.

*Australia was the 3rd country, after the US and Russia, to launch a satellite into orbit. It was for the British, using a ‘Blue Streak’ rocket

Be weird. Be random. Be who you are. Because you never know who would love the person you hide.




The action of delaying or postponing something. Dithering, delaying tactics, dilatoriness (slowness as a consequence of not getting around to it). Stalling, temporizing (avoid making a decision or committing oneself in order to gain time). hesitation, vacillation (the inability to decide between different opinions or actions; indecision). Humming and hawing, dallying and shilly-shallying. I am surprised to see how many words define me at the moment.

If this blog doesn’t make sense I apologize right now but if I do not make a move to post something I feel I will be lost forever.

I haven’t been feeling great the last few weeks and the mood has taken on this. ‘Oh, I am excited. I am going to…to…to… yes, knit something new. Out I go, buy the wool etc. and start.

A new mixed magazine arrives¬†from my subscription. ‘Oh, I am excited. I am going to do one thing from each page … yaaaaa!

Drop the knitting – start the mixed media

OH OH! Must remember to keep up with the face a day, maybe I will leave the mixed media till I finish the face a day – only 232 days to go but I better get onto the knitting because winter will be over by then.


Whilst I am resting I will worry about the world’s past, present and future problems and wonder what I can do to fix it all.

Ok, this is no good at all must get on to posting on my blog but in this mood I don’t feel like I have anything intelligent to say, nothing profound, nothing exciting to tell my friends. Their blogs are full of inspiration and creativity and cleverness and funny and and and … Resting is no good, better get up and do something … I know, there is this site on the web about ‘abandoning your art for happiness to others’. I would love to do that. I will join and put all my little pieces out there. OH DEAR! What could I do, what could I draw, write or make? OH DAMN! THINK I WILL GET ON WITH THE KNITTING AND FORGET EVERYTHING FOR AWHILE, I HAVE A HEADACHE!

Round and round like a merry-go-round

merry go round


3 hours after writing the above … finally. I sorted the 365 Face a day challenge and made a separate page (I think it worked). At least that is a start.

Thank you to everyone who has left likes and I hope I have kept up with answering the comments. Am I back in the grooooove? We shall see.

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The wise old tree said …

Madelaine Victorian Day June 2014

A picture of beauty – my beautiful Madelaine on Victorian Day

Poppies for Nana

Wearing poppies for Nana (Bianca (left and Madelaine right)

Peek a boo

Peek a boo (my little Owen)

The three fencers Nic, Mad, and Bianca

My three amazing muskateeers (scary eyes)

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Aaaah … places for peace and tranquility



New computer, loss of photos … AGAIN … settling back in and catching up with friends left me no time for my blog. Tonight I have decided to get something up and running.

Lost my photos¬†again but I have a feeling it was the old computer. I put the camera card into the old computer and began loading the photos into whatever program I chose. It was¬†not long before an error came¬†up and nothing loaded. I put the camera card back into the camera and it says it needs formatting.¬†I tried my recovery program on the ¬†this new computer and I have retrieved some, enough I guess, to feel it is better than nothing although I have lost all the videos. Unless of course it is the camera? Anyways, not to worry …

I stayed in¬†Leidschendam where my Daughter is; ¬†which ¬†is a town and former municipality in the province of South Holland of the Netherlands. Along with Voorburg and Stompwijk, it is part of the municipality Leidschendam-Voorburg. Very near Den Haag (The Haig) Late spring brings nature to life so let me start with ‘Mother’s and their babies’. I couldn’t believe how many photos I took of ducks!

Mum watching from a distance

Mum watching from a distance

She feeds them close to the edge so she can hide them quickly.

She feeds them close to the edge so she can hide them quickly.

She felt safe on the other side of the canal

She felt safe on the other side of the canal

I think this is an Egyptian Goose. She is beautiful and her babies are striking

I think this is an Egyptian Goose. She is beautiful and her babies are striking

Residents of the mote surrounding our house

Residents of the mote surrounding our house

I love my tickles

I love my tickles


FACES: I managed to continue on with my faces. This journey of faces is turning into something amazing. For a start each one has its own story (for writing as some stage). ¬†Being away and being with my lovely grand girls who were very interested in the process and are budding artists themselves of course wanted to help Nana with the drawing. At first I thought ‘no’ then I realised that this is a special time and it is liking itself to a ‘diary’ so we all enjoyed input, either with some drawing or naming. Each face whether it is good or a complete disaster has a memory and a story of where I was, how I was feeling etc. ¬†Here are a few and trust me many of these are complete disasters but they can be ‘notes to self’ of what I can do better and also a jumping off point if I wish to take a particular face and story further.


91:Wilma Wall Art Blue Paper Mate Biro

91:Wilma Wall Art
Blue Paper Mate Biro

92: Serena Mermaid Blue Paper Mate Biro and 93: Sam (not his real name) sat next to me on the plane. Went to sleep short hair, clean shaven and woke up like this. Well that is what it seemed like :)

92: Serena Mermaid
Blue Paper Mate Biro
and 93: Sam (not his real name) sat next to me on the plane. Went to sleep short hair, clean shaven and woke up like this. Well that is what it seemed like ūüôā

94: Polly and Molly (Black and Blue Paper Mate Biro  ... and ... 95: Tinga, carved from a single block of wood.

94: Polly and Molly (Black and Blue Paper Mate Biro … and … 95: Tinga, carved from a single block of wood.

96: Blob Arly Whirley (named by the granchildren) Black Biro and coloured pencil ... and ... 97: Violet Ginger Holly (also named by the grandchildren)  Staedtler Mars micro .5

96: Blob Arly Whirley (named by the grandchildren) Black Biro and coloured pencil … and … 97: Violet Ginger Holly (also named by the grandchildren) Staedtler Mars micro .5

98: Ming Oxie (named by he grandchildren) Staedtler Mars micro .5 ... and ... 99: Fashion Fiona (named by the grandchildren) Staedtler mars micro .05

98: Ming Oxie (named by he grandchildren) Staedtler Mars micro .5 … and …
99: Fashion Fiona (named by the grandchildren) Staedtler mars micro .05


Nothing is lost when we create only wonders are found. Let you creativity free and the joy of your inner self will glow.

365 – Face A Day (continued)

I cannot believe I have completed 65 days of faces. Some are disasters either through being in a hurry, tired or just plain crappy work. The thing I am pleased about is that someone does come each day. Strange, amazing people. Sitting with coffee in hand I choose a pencil of some description (can only use pencil or biro on these very thin pages). There is no rhyme nor reason what I start with. I am not looking to draw a perfect face I am looking to see who appears and what story they have to tell. If I try too hard then their story doesn’t come and it is just an exercise in drawing-I don’t want that. I want surprise and fun. Here are my people to date (or from where I left off before my story telling posts).

365 Face a Day - Andre and Hamish

365 Face a Day - Hamish and Morgan

365 Face a Day - George, Renae and Brian and Patchwork Sally

365 Face a Day - Serious Sweet Sally and Nadia

365 Face A Day - Gerome Gearhead and Nonsense Poetry pairs

365 Face a Day - Damien and Shamba

An active line on a walk, moving freely, without goal. A walk for a walk’s sake.¬†
Paul Klee

BRUNO’S GARDEN, Marysville, Victoria, Australia

Bruno’s garden is another piece of heaven on this earth. I was going to tell the story of Bruno, his amazing work, the devastation of the horrific fire that ripped through his heaven on 7th February, 2009 and the strength of mind, body and soul that Bruno possesses to rebuild all over again.

I visited his gardens a couple of weeks ago. I cannot begin to describe the joy and tears of seeing it redone. I took over one hundred pictures but then decided to just give you the website of Bruno and his garden so you can understand the beauty and the devastation and the beauty that has risen from the ashes.

Here are a few of my pictures to whet your appetite….

Bruno's Garden, Marysville

Bruno’s Garden, Marysville

 Bruno's garden

Bruno’s garden

Bruno's Garden

Bruno’s Garden

Bruno's garden, all new growth

Bruno’s garden, all new growth

Bruno's garden

Bruno’s garden

Bruno's garden

Bruno’s garden

Bruno's garden

Bruno’s garden

Bruno's garden

Bruno’s garden

Bruno's garden

Bruno’s garden

Bruno's garden

Bruno’s garden

Visiting his site is the story of Bruno and his garden. Not only is he a brilliant artist he is one of the lovelies people I have ever met.

More photos of my friends garden


Along the purple path

Along the purple path


Magic Mound

Magic Mound


Nature's painting

Nature’s painting

very long gum leaves

very long gum leaves

Old man gnome

Old man gnome

Old man gnome has lost the sun

Old man gnome has lost the sun

Fairy has found the sun

Fairy has found the sun

Wombat gone shopping

Wombat gone shopping

Wombat apartments for rent

Wombat apartments for rent

Kangaroo meeting


Kangaroo watching

I am friendly kitty kat...are you?

I am friendly kitty kat…are you?

I said I am friendly...

I said I am friendly… This was a funny shot. Kitty kat was sunning herself under the bush looking beautiful as she rightfully is. I wanted to get a close up of her beautiful face peeking out at me but her curiosity brought her ¬†out to check out the camera just as I took the shot, hence one scary little ¬†kitty kat.¬†

Two days of pickling from their veggie garden

Two days of pickling from their veggie garden

Still coming and still more on the vines and we haven't even started on the zucchini, egg plants, corn, raspberries and many other vegetables and fruits

Many different varieties of tomatoes and still more on the vines and we haven’t even started on the zucchini, egg plants, corn, raspberries and many other vegetables and fruits

Getting ready for winter

Getting ready for winter

That is the end of this series of my friends beautiful garden. They have planted thousands of trees to bring the cattle land back to nature and nature’s wildlife has come in their droves. Many species of birds enjoy the bird baths scattered around the gardens. Kangaroos resting peacefully or keeping watch, wombats allowed to make their homes and rent them out if they want. Ehidnas, ducks, frogs and of course deadly snakes. The snakes are a part of natures plan but as long as they stay outside they are safe although one thought he was guarding the back door not so long ago and wasn’t letting anyone in or out. Little kitty kat was brave and would have tackled him but she would have been no match so snake so she was¬†contained and snake had to learn to stay away from doors. Huntsman spiders¬†and others are¬†warned¬†to stay outdoors but they don’t always listen. They¬†are removed peacefully. I just run. Snakes I can deal with, huntsmen spiders…no way.

I hope you have enjoyed this beautiful haven my friends have created.

Does the bowl in the garden mock nature when night after night green frogs gather to prove it a pool? Who says you cannot make a pond out of a bowl?

Han Yu