Monday, 31 December 2012


stayed with anne and dennis in torquay after the wedding and left on sunday morning to drive straight up to wentworth.
these gorgeous succulents are on their back verandah

bye bye (boo hoo) to the sisters, sorry about the bright sun susan.     see you in march/april  xxx

on the way home - i love these hay bales, this huge field was covered in them,
  freshly rolled and a beautiful sight


On Saturday afternoon our dear friends janet and bevan were married after being together for almost thirty years i think.  we all gathered in the gallery for a lovely casual ceremony and drinks and nibbles with sun streaming in the windows from the balcony.


now what do we call them,
mr and mrs?
  hubby and wife?
the old cheeses? 
them indoors?  
nana and pop?


maybe just
janet and bevan

CONGRATULATIONS you twoand thanks for a lovely day

Saturday, 29 December 2012


WHAA DA. . . a big morning with all the torquay buddies, coffee, xmas goodies and talk talk talk  :0)

sean, sister susan, moi, anne and den, gail, sister jen and freddie with the adorable mockie
jenny has the cutest array of xmas decos, this tiny little fella
travels round and round on a circular music box

this snowman is a little kit with a white sculpting clay, you
make your own snowman shape then decorate him with
the plastic bits,  then he slowly melts.

below - this is what he looked like half melted minus the
bits - pretty evil eh?


anne lambert's pretty
little mini puddings

we all transferred ourselves down to the front beach cafe
for a glass of wine then i had a lovely hour of having my hair cut,  lots of shampooing and massaging,   aaah, i could sit there all day

RENE and SAYAKA arrived in the afternoon - we all had a bbq tea - it's been such a great
time with family and friends today, ren and sayaka stayed the night and freddie's made me up my own little bedroom in the back of the van, complete with rug and chairs outside in case anyone drops in . . .  to the garage   :0)

my son . . . and father to be rene

sayaka, gorgeous girl, with sean     it's his birthday tomorrow

this is a page of sayaka's writing, figuring out possible baby names taking into account the sound of the word and how it translates into kanji -  japanese characters.   beautiful writing


Friday, 28 December 2012


YESTERDAY i arrived down at torquay loaded with towels from the target xmas sale.  no photos, just an afternoon lying on the beach with the crew, getting sunburned and eating out at the pub. a good day.

time to get up :0)


COMING into geelong  -   corio bay sparkling in the sun

i visited dear leigh hobbs and dmetri on the way to geelong – staying with denise tonight,  bbq today at nina's, it's always good to catch up with her son lee on
his trips home from the UK -  that smile!


denise cooking up a storm in nina's backyard

thursday  it’s morning at denise’s – she’s still asleep. i’m thinking i might go to the after-christmas sales on the way to torquay today.  staying with the sisters  :0)    susan and sean and jenny and freddie,  some beach time coming up i imagine.


goodbye to the dalton clan – what a lovely family night we had.   kris came back to melbourne with me so the drive was a talkfest all the way, great to have
that time with her.

I had vicki’s lovely house to stay in christmas night, and had planned for sunny, rene and sayaka and i to have a picnic in the gardens but it was pretty breezy so we just stayed in and opened up the doors to the courtyard.  wonderful to have the kids with me,  it’s been a year since i’ve seen them all together.





being introduced to rene and sayaka's two kittens via the
phone photos

sayaka -  in good shape :0)
i splashed out on baby clothes at the mildura baby shop - 
closing down so big discounts.  very cute goodies

Tuesday, 25 December 2012


I'm driving krissy down to melbourne for her flight home this morning, then rene and sayaka and sunny are coming over to vicki's, hopefully the weather will be warm enough for us to take our christmas food down to the st kilda botanical gardens.

a gift from don - beautiful poppy heads to grow - when the watering system is working


PHEW  it's cooled right down.  after a day of holing up with the aircon at helen and don's the weather has completely changed.  yesterday was a great day here at sierra vista, with the extended dalton family, three generations celebrating patriarch john's 86th and christmas eve.  no words needed


bon and em do the pistachios

brave jen's given herself the onorous task of christmas eve dinner, christmas dinner and food for em's 30th on the 27th

the gorgeous
sisters, dressed for dinner

bon and dave
-recently engaged

ah yes, the party started later . . .

Monday, 24 December 2012


WHAT A RELIEF  it's cool here in the grampians after a hot hot night. left home
yesterday with next door's hoses thumbing their noses at me, me with a broken pump.
i'm glad to leave it all behind for a week.

loaded up the esky with ice, yabbies and fresh fruit for xmas and drove non stop to helen and don's.  sadly the heat beat my esky, and the yabbies are going to be turfed out, hope there are some prawns left at the supermarket today.

i'm having trouble uploading photos on this computer, will try later

Sunday, 23 December 2012

happily in-stawell-ed

UP AT 5.30 to do a lot of watering only discover - yes, after brendan's efforts yesterday and a whole evening of ecstatically watching the sprinklers, this morning i watched the water pressure slowly die away again. left a message with brendan and drove away.
anyway, after a day of driving, from 8.30 till about 3,  i'm here at helen and don's, a few gin and tonics under the belt and having escaped a 40 deg day by being safely encased in the air conditioned comfort of my toyota.   don had a  chilled g and t waiting, and helen and i spent the afternoon playing scrabble.  now it's off to bed.  photos tomorrow, i have to organise getting them onto the blog from the computer here. 


I'M HITTING THE ROAD today to visit helen and don in the grampians, jenny and rob in stawell, then rene and sayaka and sunny in melbourne on christmas day.  high fire danger and 40 plus temperatures today so i'm leaving early. 

i'm leaving with the pump still not working, brendan was here again yesterday and it was glorious last night to watch all the sprinklers in action, but this morning the pressure's died away again.  i'm outta here, it'll have to survive as well as it can.

Friday, 21 December 2012

end of the week

look at these little fellas - the beautiful grass parrots that are here almost every day - they're the most beautiful iridescent shades of lime and turquoise on the back with a flash of orange when they fly.

 i went for an early morning walk up to the thegoa lagoon and discovered another section of water - full of egrets, spoonbills and herons. it really is lovely up there, i'm only starting to explore the area, there are great places to go in all directions.

the trees along the river are amazing -  huge beautiful old redgums

it was weird this evening - about two million corellas came and settled in the trees all around the house, every so often they'd all take off, wheel around and settle again, very alfred hitchcock.

and of course there was the daily water drama
the pressure disappeared again, hardly any water pumping out of the river, brendan came again, it was fine when he left and now, at 9.30p.m.  i've realised the automatic system hasn't come on - boy am i sick of this.   and it's nearly christmas, probably can't get anything done now so everything will dry out while i'm down south for a week.


I guess i just have to get used to the idea that i'll be dealing with water issues every day for as long as i live here. the whole place is all about water and heat.  
THE PUMP stopped yesterday so the previous night's automatic watering hadn't happened.
another visit from brendan to lift the pipe into the river off the riverbed where it had
settled and gathered sediment from the bottom.  

he managed to stay dry - very agile :o)


LAST NIGHT i attended an opening at stefano's gallery 25 in deakin avenue.    photographs by frank zaetta, a mildura institution who'd taken portraits of just about everyone in town in his life here as a professional photographer and larger than life character.    

Julia Zaetta, frank's daughter painted a colourful picture of her father as she described his life as photographer, migrant, family man, musician, blasphemer (in the grand italian style) and local eccentric - a very affectionate and funny opening speech

when i heard julie mention doreen civelli as a relative, i remembered that i'd met
zaettas before in melbourne with my dear friend denise civelli - turns out julia is
denise's cousin - small world

Thursday, 20 December 2012


How's this for a healthy looking bub-to-be.
MIA photographed at the art vault, i can't believe she still has two months to go.