Thursday, June 30, 2011


All it takes is a 'pop' of colour and a rather plain room transforms into 'just gorgeous'.
I'm obsessed with yellow at the moment. Nothing says 'happy' more than yellow, I reckon.

Good morning! Coffee is on. Another lazy school holiday morning. My big boy has been so sick but he is over the worst of it. Took him to hospital yesterday just to be sure. Little one was wringing his hands, "I don't want my brother to die", rabbiting on about swine flu and Hendra virus (I need to temper his news bulletin viewing). He is just so grateful his big brother got the all clear. He is currently lying in his big brother's bed, rubbing his back for him. Heartstrings.

Have a great day.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Virtual Gardens

Well, this is it for me, when it comes to having a garden/foliage, now that we live in an apartment.... weekly cheapies from Coles. I am rather drawn to yellow these days. 

No, I lie. I do have this rather bedraggled orchid in the corner of my balcony. 
But that's it. That's the extent of my garden these days.

Thank goodness, some of my most favourite blogs happen to have some of the most beautiful gardens ever. I thought I'd share them with you today. These are the 'virtual gardens' that I delight in daily.
My future garden is out there, somewhere..... being 'minded for me' I'm sure..... until I have the time to love it and tend to it.

Enjoy! (links under each photo)

Deep sigh.... click on all these beauties and I guarantee your blood pressure will drop at least 20mmHg.

For now though, while I sip my morning coffee, I will just bury my head in my yellow lillies.

Happy Wednesday!


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Oh Dear....

Katrina and Amie's House

... did you see the state of the houses the contestants moved into on 'The Block' last night!!!!!

I did not imagine they would be that bad. And they only have 8 weeks to renovate them.

Images Courtesy Katrina's lovely publicist (yes, she has a publicist!)

"If only you could smell these images" .....the title of the email in which I received these photos! 

Kudos to Katrina and Amie for removing those floor coverings without gloves. I would have had a Norsca towelette shoved up my nose and at least 4 pairs of gloves on. 

Katrina and Amie are so entertaining to watch and come out with some absolute 'pearlers':

"Smells nice. It's nice, it's unusual, it's different"
"Is that... like.... poo?
"It's freezing" 
"No, no, no"
"This is a thousand times worse than I ever imagined"
"I mean, there's no walls"
"Where's the... umm.... bathroom?" Ok, where am I going to brush my teeth?"
"There's a shower head?!"
"What about the toilet?!!!"
"Ohhhh, yippee, yi, yey"
"I'm back at a B and S"
"Are my earrings ok, should I change them or do they match?"
"This is a shithole"
"I kept thinking last night, how can I get out of this"
"You need your Mum to sign you a note to say you're sick"
"If I was doing this at home, I have a husband..... I'd say pick it up and he'd carry it"
"We're country chicks but not country hicks"
"'Treens' doesn't know how to cook, she doesn't even know what a sifter is"
"At the end of the day, we're just normal Australian chicks"
"Inconspicuous. It's a good word. You sound really smart when you say it" 

Makes for absolutely GREAT viewing. That's it... this family is now officially.... totally.... addicted.

See last nights episode HERE. 


Monday, June 27, 2011

A Rummage

Had a rummage in the shed on the weekend, as you do..... and despite my plans to keep my life boxed up, in storage, ready to move (for I don't know what)... I caved and dragged a few things home.

This little number is now at my front door entrance, near the piano, positioned where the power points are.... so I can use the lights.

There it sat, in the corner, weighed down with 'plonk'.
Look PAMELA, there's your gorgeous cushions. I still have them and love them to bits.

The stand used to the be in 'The House' study holding 'the grog' and the lights and urns were on the hall commode, which stayed with the house.

Where are they now? 
Commode and mirror stayed with the house, orchid died a slow death, tray sits on my breakfast table, lights I kept, urns, no-one would buy at my 'bloggy house contents sale' (they bought everything else except those damn urns) and that darling little pewter box was bought by a bloggy friend at the sale.

Look! ... and in the time it took for me to take these photos, 
little one had dumped his violin case near big one's guitar, hung up my umbrella and straightened a book. 
He's goin' places that kid.

I prettied it up a bit with the old 'instagram' so it didn't look so stark. It's nice. The boys keep saying how pretty the lights are. Hmmm, should I unpack some more goodies? I might get too settled. I sort of like living only with what I need (plus a few pretties!).... although it has been a year now. Can you believe it. I have been living boxed up for a year! Shows you what you really don't need in your life doesn't it.
I do miss my teacups but they are way at the back of 'ye old shed', under lots of heavy boxes.

Soon :)

Happy Monday folks. Hopefully we are going to get some rain here this week.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

6 Months On

Yep, there's a lot of this going on in my suburb, following the floods, 6 months ago.

Remember chirpy, optimistic Karen?... 'Oh it only went 1 metre up the walls this time. In the '74 flood, it was right up to the picture rails Karen'? ... well the council finally gave her permission to raise her 100 year old (literally falling down) house higher. Her exterior walls had a very scary lean to them. I think she might be getting new walls! I ran past the other day. It's all happening. The garden has been cleared and the diggers are in! Yay.

Karen's porch 6 months ago...

... and her yard. 
See that green wall in the background? I had my eye on that during the river rising. There were time action photos of the water rising up it on flickr during the flood. I was extrapolating from the green wall to my ground floor apartment next door to the left as there was no footage of our place available. We were all guessing and calculating. Centimetres. Within centimetres.

Karen's place - now a lot higher than this picture!

Remember Sharon's shop? after the water receded?

Well she's back.

All good. 
But business is slow.There are less customers as the walk by ferry traffic does not exist anymore. 
Hurry up with the ferry terminal please, Brisbane City Council. 

Sharon has her flood photos up on the wall of the shop.
This year's flood....

... and 74's flood. See the Billy Tea sign? Just? To the left of the dinghy.

Sharon used to live here. Next to the shop. 
She lost absolutely every belonging she ever had. She's too traumatised to move back in... just in case. So she tells me she now lives "on a hill". 

More house raising.
There's one street near Sharon's shop that has a workman's ute out the front of every house.
You cannot think.... the construction noise is so loud. I run fast down that street, especially on Thursdays (bin day)... double whammy.... bins and noise!

There's lots of this too.

Haven't gotten around to putting those sandbags away yet....

....or the dinghy.

Oh and there is still a massive bun fight trying to extract funds out of the 'Premier's Flood Relief Appeal'. Millions of dollars (of your generous donations) are still tied up and thousands of flood victims are still waiting for funds from 'The Premier'. Ken included! 6 months on. Millions of dollars. 

Speaking of Ken, I am taking my boys down to see him next week, during the school holidays. Will show you his new kitchen and some of his new walls. It's all moving too slow for his liking but he is in better spirits. If it wasn't for YOU, and your generous donations, he wouldn't have a new kitchen or any walls..... as he hasn't received a cracker from the government yet. 6 months on!

James is good. See him most weeks. He's at the bus stop as there is still no ferry terminal/business. Some weeks he's not there as business is slow without the ferry passengers anymore.

Today, you'd never know there had been a flood from where I am sitting at the moment. The river banks are green as the grass has grown over the mud. 

It's a beautiful day. 

Have a great weekend!

Friday, June 24, 2011

When Good Things Happen To Great People

THEY WON!!!!!!

Images Courtesy Channel 9

So proud!
Congratulations Katrina and Amie on winning your elimination round on 'The Block'.
We can't wait to see you renovate your scary looking house!
PS Oh and guess what was trending at number one on Twitter here in Brisbane during the show?
..... @katrinas_tweets. How's that for a fan club! Go girls!

PPS ... and Katrina, if you don't get an accolade of some sort for 'BEST USE OF A HAIR TIE', I will eat my hat!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

'The Block' Sisters

Image Courtesy Channel 9
Katrina and Amie on the right, Scott Cam (host) middle, Emily and Laura left.

Right, tonight's the night when our 'blog sister', Katrina, and her sister Amie, go up against 'the twins' in their elimination round in 'The Block'. If they get through, they get to choose one of the 4 houses to renovate. C'mon girls.

Lets hope:

1. They don't leave their paint at the store.

2. There are minimal furniture 'flatpacks' involved. Great for the budget, bad for the stress levels.

3. We get to hear more of Katrina's singing. It's becoming 'The Block War Cry' around town, twitter, even the local shops here in Brisbane.... I kid you not. "It goes, awn and awn and awn".

'The Block'
7pm tonight
Channel 9

Go Katrina and Amie!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

'The Block' Ponderings

Image Courtesy Channel Nine

Oh boy, am I going to learn heaps from this show, especially since I have been considering a reno rather than a build next time. I found myself asking 'WWID' (What Would I Do) questions all the way through the first elimination round.


1. If given only 24 hours in which to totally create a room (not that I could ever imagine only having 24 hours in which to do so) would I shop first or paint? Considering the shops close at night and one is on a deadline, could I cope with the stress of last minute shopping. OMG she was buying things in the last 30 minutes of the challenge. I would be beside myself with stress and probably lose consciousness.

2. Would I paint the skirting boards before nailing them on? Not the best technique... but I didn't see the judges on their hands and knees examining the paint job. I think I would have gotten away with painting first. That's difficult for me to admit... considering you all know how I feel about dodgy paint jobs. Lets not go there.

3. If my adversary lost his tape measure, would I share mine with him? .... considering that if I gave him help, he could win and I could lose the only chance I had to progress to the next round, i.e., like to actually get onto the actual show and get to renovate a house. The sharing of the tape measure was touching.

4. Considering the limited budget, would I purchase and then attempt to assemble flat pack furniture? This for me was the most distressing thing to watch...... oh the time required to put that stuff together. I could feel myself losing consciousness with anxiety just watching the whole thing.

5. What sales techniques would I use (from the many damn pharmaceutical rep 'role plays' that I had to suffer through all those years ago) to sweet talk the retailers into giving me discounts to keep within the budget? Correct me if I am wrong but the contestants weren't allowed any freebies.

6. Would I find the whole experience so stressful that I would leave the actual tin of paint I purchased in the shop and not realise it until I was back on set looking for the paint? Oh dear. I can't imagine.

Katrina, I can't wait for your elimination round on Thursday, you brave thing! Good luck! We might have to have a serious 'post elimination discussion' here on Friday morning.
PS My boys are joyous... they have TV viewing rights every night now. We all sat and giggled, covered our eyes (when the flat pack stuff didn't work out)  and yelled our opinions at the TV. This is going to be 'healing' for them. I am sure there is some psychological damage there from all the days I made them sit for hours in camp chairs in the garage of the house build (the only safe place on site) while Mummy had meetings with tradespeople. Good way to get back on the 'building horse'. Boys, how do you feel about doing a reno next time?!

CLICK HERE for link to 'The Block' website.

PPS Go Katrina!