over hill, over dale, we hit the boozy trail

lunch duo

Friend and I had a boozy lunch, if one glass of wine can be called a boozy lunch. Then we set to fixing the ills of the world. If you were sitting at the table next to us, we would have sounded like two grumpy old ladies, as we sorted politics, society’s meanness to others, childrearing, religion, dietary habits… oh, world peace and harmony in general, according to us!

After the caffeine of our  meal’s end coffee wore off, I realised how incredibly tired I felt. No doubt a combination of being nice for too long and righting the world’s wrongs.

I thought of many intelligent and witty comments to write as I drove home, but now that I am here with laptop and fresh tea I can think of none of them.

One thing has resurfaced – how much I love living in the country. To reach our rendezvous at restaurant in nearby village, I merely had to turn left out of our driveway, drive to the end of the road, turn right into the main street, waiting for three car to pass, then a left turn and follow my nose through the countryside to the restaurant, parking right outside the door. 7.4km – less than 10 minutes at a lovely country speed.

Dolce Far Niente.


Laying low


Last day of term commenced with Mass, then a joint morning tea where everyone, students and teachers, brought food to share. I have never seen so many packets of potato crisps in one place in my entire life (we call them “chips”; we also call fried fresh fries “chips”. It is a hangover from our colonial days!) After morning tea there was a “blow up” carnival – amusements all built on blow ups or inflatables – gladiators played in a bouncy air ring with balloon batons, a bouncy castle, a bouncy surf slide, bouncy boxing and … a rocking bull!

I must have finally lost all semblance of youth, for during my half hour of duty minding the students undertaking bouncy boxing and watching them hand the inflated gloves and head gear form student to student was “oh my, the head lice, and hand germs!” It almost made me ill just watching the communal gear…ugh. The high point was standing there and wishing and hoping that some of the more “challenging” students got a good biffo, even if it was with an inflated glove!

A group of students and teachers formed an impromptu group and jammed for the last hour which gave everyone time to chill out and then the bell rang, and I was no longer a Flamingo Dancer but a giselle racing to my car. I was in my favourite chair at home by 4.30!

car bye

Saturday morning, I farewelled Mr FD and his sister on a trip to visit an old family member with a milestone birthday. I have stayed home to spring clean and chill out. I just couldn’t face a nine hour drive  only the day after the end of term.

So, instead I made a huge dish of fruit salad to share with Son. We had strawberries, blueberries, pear, apple, mandarine, banana and black grapes. Delicious. I have also baked a classic chocolate coconut slice, the recipe I was given in year 8 at school, to have with coffee when Son’s mate visits this afternoon.


Augie and I are about to take an afternoon nap which is now my prerogative for the next few days.

Living the good life.

Season change


I spent the morning sorting winter clothes and washing the heavier items to put away until next year. Once again I wished that the gorgeous spring day would stay just as it was with its lovely temperate weather and blue skies. The birds were in full song and it was an absolutely perfect day in our country paradise.

We have been in our country abode for almost two years now and in recent weeks Son has been assisting me in reorganising the furniture in some rooms. If you have moved you will all know that flurry of initial placing of furniture that only time teaches you really doesn’t work, and so some reorganisation takes place.


We have been prompted a little by the knowledge that Daughter1, Mr Boy and Petite Fille are moving out of their house for a few months while renovation takes place and will be alternating between Mr Boy’s mother’s house and ours (ours will be weekend respite to give his Mum a break, as she lives in a small city house). Knowing that they will want to spend nights here means accommodating a small child and early nights as well as a house of adults and an Augie Dog!

So, the house is a mess on the way to becoming a thing of organisation and serenity. Then we shall all rest on our laurels in paradise!

Saturday in the country

open window

In an odd state of mind tonight.

Today would have been my Dad’s 90th birthday, so I have been thinking of him throughout the day. I don’t think I will ever stop missing him. Thinking of Dad leads me to thinking of BIL as the first anniversary of his death is not all that many weeks away. I guess mortality is on my mind.

I have more reasons to love my new doctor; for when I returned to have the stitches removed from where the mole was removed he informed me that the report stated that it was well on its way to turning into a melanoma. My new doctor may have just saved my life!

My body loves to make crazy cells : eye tumours, cancer cells and time bomb moles. I guess I have a fairly good idea what my end entails! But not tonight, dear…

minerva birthday

First Saturday in a couple of weeks that I felt half human so I dragged the mixing bowl from its cupboard and baked a batch of savoury muffins and cooked some vegetable fritters to restock the freezer with my school lunches. I also made some cherry and dried fruit muffins for a surprise morning tea we are going to have for Minerva’s birthday this week. The best thing is that we will close the library for one break to party! I think the closing of the library will be more exciting for Minerva than the food, as the students do try her patience some days.

I tell her that the way we deal with the issue is often the issue, but she hasn’t taken the hint. Then again, she has been there 10 years and I expect I may feel exactly the same in another seven years time. Every year there is a group that we are so pleased are graduating, but alas, there is always another troublesome group to take their place.

I sent six of my year 11 students to to work with another teacher in another building yesterday. All they had to do was walk from A to B, easy. It was only minutes later that I looked out of the window to see one of the boys being walked down to the detention room by the deputy head. What could he have done in just minutes to get into trouble, I have no idea, but then again that particular boy I am sure will either have his head kicked in or end up in jail once he is on his own.

Goodness me, I really am on a downer tonight. On the up side, only three weeks until September break. Spring is coming and they have predicted a 29C day on Tuesday! Today was glorious, about 25C with clear blue skies. I threw all the windows open to air the house and wished that it would stay just like this all year round. I am sure that somewhere it does, but we will be dry and oh so hot before we know up. They say air conditioning has been approved for the Library work areas… I hope it is not a cruel trick.  Too many of those already.


love at first sight

sick bed 1

I think I am in love.

I know I am in love.

We only met today, but I know that I am totally besotted.

I told Mr FD as soon as I returned home.

“I found the perfect – doctor!”

Since we moved to the Village we have struggled with finding a suitable family doctor. We tried one local clinic and though they bulk billed (no cost to patient) they were very militant about only giving you ten minutes and not a nanosecond more. The one doctor that we had been recommended rarely made eye contact and had no interest in creating any relationship or hearing past medical history. He wears a bad toupee and the few times I was there I came nearer and nearer to telling him he looked pathetic.

So, whenever possible I have been driving back to the City to see my doctor there, but that is an hour away. Not quite the best solution when I am really sick.

So when a colleague suggested a doctor at a nearby clinic I was quite eager to try. She told me that there was a female doctor who she visited and was impressed with.

I was a little disappointed this morning when I phoned to make an appointment and was told that she was fully booked – what, it was only a Monday in the busy flu season! There was another doctor I could see though.

And that is how we met.

As it was my first visit, he took a full medical history and checked all my “vital signs”; all without insulting my intelligence, and with a sense of humour! He was very thorough, perhaps a little too – he insisted on removing two moles before I left. I must have been with him for over an hour before I left with four stitches and a song in my heart. A doctor who cares!

He must have the right touch as when he took my blood pressure, the usual white coat syndrome didn’t click in and my blood pressure was absolutely normal. Proof he is the doctor for me!

And he bulk bills too!


[On the health front, I have been given antibiotics and another day off work. High temp and rattle in the chest clinched the deal. Last night the only way I could sleep was to sit up!  Poor Mr FD and Augie Dog suffered all night along with my hacking cough]

sick bed

Toast eating dogs and mulch covered trees are a few of our favourite things

FD topiary


Brisbane had its coldest winter morning in over 100 years this morning. Our Village is always colder than Brisbane in winter and usually hotter in summer. Lucky us. I didn’t peep my nose out form under the blankets until 9am and then only because I knewI needed to clean floors for Petite Fille’s visit tomorrow. Nothing like a visiting floor dwelling toddler to get floors cleaned!

Augie Dog appeared to me miss while I was away, and has been over excited ever since I returned yesterday. He can be quite enthusiastic in his love, and may I add that having a 40kg golden retriever land on my cold, bare foot is not one of my favourite experiences. He still garnered a slice of peanut butter toast for breakfast though. It is that GR face, and his all encompassing love!

Son pruned the shrubs at the front of the house during my absence. Some of them had grown to roof level and do provide some nice shade in summer, but as this is the dead of winter it is a good time to cut back and allow the afternoon sun to warm the living room. Our house is double brick walls, and we are finding that there is usually an 8 degree difference between interior and outside, which is something to be thankful for in winter!

The shrub branches were mulched and spread under the fruit trees, which were fertilised as well. Spring should be fruitful! Our lime, orange, mandarin and lemon trees are all doing well, and hopefully will grow to good fruiting size this season. It is wonderful when Son is on a break from university as he spends his time in the garden. I suspect that in another life he may have been a landscape gardener, but for now IT is his career path.

get well

Mr FD is still suffering post wisdom tooth discomfort and it must be over a month now, but I am happy, ecstatic! to say that the pain is lessening, and he is slowly improving, though it had been a long haul, especially for me! It is a year since his knee surgery and we appear to have done little except sort out niggling health issues for him ever since. A high maintenance Mr FD!

Another frosty night forecast, so I need to encourage MR FD into bringing in some wood for the fire…