I just love the way the afternoon light coming in from the hallway highlighted it.
Monday, January 31, 2011
I just love the way the afternoon light coming in from the hallway highlighted it.
Sunday, January 30, 2011
The prickly purple thistle was adopted as the Emblem of Scotland during the rein of Alexander III (1249 -1286). Legend has it that an Army of King Haakon of Norway, intent on conquering the Scots landed at the Coast of Largs at night to surprise the sleeping Scottish Clansmen. In order to move more stealthily under the cover of darkness the Norsemen removed their footwear.
As they drew near to the Scots it wasn't the only thing hiding under the cover of darkness. For one of Haakon's men unfortunately stood on one of these spiny little defenders and shrieked out in pain, alerting the Clansmen of the advancing Norsemen. Needless to say the Scots who won the day.
We wish you luck...." GO ANDY......."
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
On Australia Day the nation comes together to celebrate what's great about Australia and being Australian. It's the day to reflect on what's been achieved and what Australian's can be proud of. Its the day for people to re-commit to making Australia an even better place for the future.
Kangaroos are good swimmers, and will sometimes escape a threat by going into water if it is nearby.
Kangaroos feed in the late afternoon and early morning, spending the day resting in shade. In hot weather they scrape the ground with their front paws and lie in the cooler earth they have exposed. Kangaroos do not sweat, so in the heat they lick their front paws and rub the moisture onto their chests to cool down).
The koala is the only mammal, other than the Greater Glider and Ringtail Possum, which can survive on a diet of eucalyptus leaves).
Australia Day, 26 January, is the anniversary of the arrival of the First Fleet of 11 convict ships from Great Britain, and the raising of the Union Jack at Sydney Cove by its commander Captain Arthur Phillip, in 1788.
(Echidnas also known as spiny anteaters, belong to the family Tachyglossidae in the monotreme order of egg-laying mammals )
Though 26 January marks this specific event, today Australia Day celebrations reflect contemporary Australia: the diverse society and landscape, remarkable achievements and bright future. It also is an opportunity to reflect on the nation's history, and to consider how to make Australia an even better place in future.
One of the most beautiful Australian cockatoos, plumaged in delicate tints of pink and white with a display of fiery colour when the crest is raised; colour most effective in flight, showing pink underwings, or at landing, when the wings are lifted and the crest is spread to show the colour bands. Shallow, quick, erratic wingbeat action is interrupted by brief glides. Usually travels by brief low flights, often landing in trees to break the journey into shorter stages. In pairs, small family parties, rarely large flocks; at times intermingles with Galahs or Little Corellas).
On Australia Day, over half of the nation’s population of 21 million attend either an organised community event, or get together with family and friends with the intention of celebrating their national day. Many more spend the public holiday relaxing with family and friends.
(Tawny Frogmouth Scientific name: Podargus strigoides
An Australian variety of frogmouth, a type of bird found throughout the Australian mainland, Tasmania and southern New Guinea. The Tawny Frogmouth is often thought to be an owl but its neither an Owl or a Frogmouth, the Australian Owlet is in acutal fact a " Nightjar")
So whatever you are doing today.....have a great time.
(Kookaburras (genus Dacelo) are large to very large (total length 28–42 cm/11–17 in) terrestrial kingfishers native to Australia Kookaburras are best known for their unmistakable call, which sounds uncannily like loud, echoing human laughter — good-natured, but rather hysterical, merriment in the case of the renowned Laughing Kookaburra (Dacelo novaeguineae); and maniacal cackling in the case of the slightly smaller Blue-winged Kookaburra (D. leachii). They are generally not closely associated with water, and can be found in habitats ranging from humid forest to arid savanna, but also in suburban and residential areas near running water and where food can be searched for easily).
I'm away to enjoy the day, and this evening we're off to the Australian Tennis Open!
How cool is that?
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Friday, January 21, 2011
The drive was perfect and it was so great to get out of the city to the open countryside.
As soon as I arrived my friend and another girlfriend were standing out to greet me. I was flattered that they were so excited to see me until I realised it wasn't just me arriving. They pointed up into the tree above my car and look who was there.....
This was all within the first five minutes of arriving and was worth the drive alone....
Fantastic weather, beautiful beaches, clear cool water, good company - what more could you want?
With hindsight maybe I shouldn't have told you where this beach was situated.....
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Every afternoon he visits my bird bath, loudly chirping his arrival and you can bet as soon as I reach for my camera, he's away....
This has gone on for months...
But today I got him!
It took stealth-like athleticism to reach the decking door, without detection before he took flight.
Numerous times I've just given up, but I never like to lose a challenge and I just couldn't ignore this one.
I have such renewed appreciation for all the wildlife photographers out there, that can spend days, weeks, months and even years to obtain that particular shot. I just wish my photographs were of their calibre
A quick splash.....
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
They certainly put my little tree into the shade.....
Monday, January 17, 2011
Hedgeley Dene Gardens ticked all the boxes for me, right from my first meanderings. Beautifully kept gardens, trees, flowers, wildlife and manicured lawns, stretching invitingly before you and all within an easy stroll from coffee shops and cafes. What more could you want?
Each time I visit, there's always something new to see and admire.
The bridge gave shelter from the hot sun to a mother and her four ducklings......
Friday, January 14, 2011
These photo's were taken of the creek near our home. Hearing the fast flowing water and seeing it rise and fall so quickly just doesn't compare but it is a reminder of what people are having to suffering in Queensland at the moment.
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
I've been wanting one for quite a while, but held back because like her, we both love the physicality of books. But I have to say I'm really finding it fascinating. It's so exciting.....
I chose a book and hit the button and within a minute up it popped on my kindle.
If your a book fanatic and love to read then I can recommend you give it a try.
My favourite author at the moment is Ken Follett. I adored his 'Pillars of the Earth' and 'World without End' and am about to start 'Fall of Giants'.
If you have any book recommendations then I'd love to hear from you.
I just can't resist having a slice fresh from the oven - it smells and tastes devine.
I remember when I worked in the Middle East and took this cake into the office for our tea breaks, it was a big hit. Which, when you consider the different cultures, tastes and preferences between the staff was quite a feat. They all enjoyed it so much, that upon leaving, I had to pass on the recipe plus a whole loaf each!
Well, if your wanting a healthy start to 2011 aren't walnuts and dates are good for you....?
Sit back and enjoy - perfect for afternoon tea
It also goes well with coffee.
6oz (175g) Self Raising Flour
4oz (110g) Butter
4oz (110g) Sugar
5oz (150g) Dates
4oz (110g) shelled Walnuts
A little milk
1. Preheat oven to 180C.
2. Place softened butter and sugar into a mixing bowl and cream together.
3. Add egg.
4. Sift flour a little at a time into the mixture.
5. Add dates and walnuts. A little milk can be added at this stage until the mixture is a creamy consistancy. It shouldn't need too much milk.
6. Place mixture in a greased floured baking loaf tin.
7.Place in pre-heated oven for 40 to 45 mins depending on oven.
When the cake is golden and firm to the touch in the centre of the tin, its ready.