I live in one of the most beautiful places in Australia – according to ME. I have a job I love (most of the time), 3 beautiful girls, who are old enough now to be independent…but still need their Mummy. #1 is nearly 21, lives with BF, #2 is nearly 18, saving hard for a gap year in the UK and # 3 is 14, loves One Direction and the Hunger Games. Hubby and I have been married 21 years and I don’t know what I would do with out him.

I spend far too much time on the computer – often pretending to work, so when all my words with friend’s games are played and the gossip and news of the world read, I will BLOG.

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Quiet lazy day

Today has been a lazy day doing not much of anything, I have the mind of a guppy. I have start something, get distracted then forget what I was doing. I am still in my PJ's at 4pm. I even broke my rule of not leaving the house unless dressed properly....in my defense I took #2 to work and never got out of the car.

I did do a load of washing - does it count if it is still in the machine? I washed the brekky dishes - they are still draining. I started to read a book - boring can't get interested. I tried to watch a photoshop tutorial - her voice drove me mental. I helped HWMBO for a few minutes (he has started renovating the veranda upstairs), I was so useless he sent me away after 10mins.

The good news is I haven't been eating all day, usually when I am bored or out of sorts I eat like it is my last chance. I even have lots of food in the house, I finally went shopping and stocked the fridge, freezer and pantry yesterday. Maybe I have a shopping hangover!

I am not a fan of celebrating Halloween, I think it is over commercialized, over rated and should stay in America...I know that the holiday is not American...but they gave it the bullshit tradition we know today. Seriously why do parents let their children knock on strangers doors and ask for candy? 

Anyway I will hope off that soapbox and get on with the I am not a fan but....  I do like to dress up, I like to make costumes, I like the parties. This year there is NONE. So today I used a program called picmonkey to ghoul up some photos, I asked #3 and a friend to pose yesterday with the plan to 'Halloween' their photos today....I am so annoyed. I turned off auto focus for some stupid reason so all the photos I took are out of focus. I save a few and this is the result of 6 hours work (with lots of side trips in to the wonderful world that is my mind) 

I have used this for my Facebook profile pic...I love it, I used picmonkey  for the blood and the gashes , then added a few textures with Photoshop...still my preferred editing program

This turned out really well, I had talked to #3 about taking her to  the old house dressed in white to be a ghost. I achieved the same thing with out leaving the house (which is good because I am in my pj's still)

over editied I should have quit while I was ahead....PS crashed when  I left to do something else so I lost the original before I saved it.....rooky mistake!

Daughter #3 getting murdered by her Zombie best friend. this was fun to set up..... how do you get teenage girls not to smile :) 

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Boobs and iPads

I am not sure what was worse yesterday, getting my breasts handled by a stranger or setting my mum up with an iPad….

It was time for my biannual mammogram, not something I look forward to, yet it is something I endue. Having a stranger manipulate my boobs, then squish them in a cold machine is not my idea of a good time. What I find most annoying is the mindless chatter…I get that you are trying to put me at ease and make me relaxed…  HELLLLOOO you are squeezing my boob, I am not going to relax anytime soon, I really don’t care about your day/kids/dog.
Lucky it is a quick procedure now over for another 2 years.  For any male or person under 40 who reads this blog, this is what happens (obviously this is not me in the photo, it is a random picture I got of the web)

The ipad set up for Mum was a lot longer and more mentally painful, a few weeks ago she brought a Samsung Galaxy tablet, wanting to read books and surf the internet, stupidly the only way to get books on the Samsung was to buy them through the apps. This didn’t work for us as I already have a heap of books on my PC that Mum hasn’t read. After 3 weeks of reading on line forums and articles, going back to the shop and asking for advice it was not possible to add books to this tablet without purchasing them (or downloading the free ones most of which we have already read over the years)

We took the Samsung back to JB HIFI, expecting to get a bit of grief about  not being able to exchange for another product because we changed our minds…I will say that I went with a bad attitude because I expected the worst. I was pleasantly surprised to find that all the staff were helpful, understanding and happy to help, it was funny when I started to explain why I wasn’t happy with the Samsung, I was stopped while the cashier called for someone from ‘tablets’, someone from ‘IT’ and a manager. He then explained that I would not have to waste time explaining it again and again. What a smart move.

The Samsung was swapped for an iPad with the only question being asked ‘Do we want black or white?’

I was silly not to get the iPad for Mum in the first place, it is a much easier device to use, once the passwords and email were set up and I showed her how to down load apps (I didn’t attach her credit card so she can’t do anything silly) all was good and she wanted me to leave so she could play her games.

It has been almost 24hours since she started to play with the iPad and I have not had a phone call asking how to do something…..this is a good thing.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Old Farm house

I had the most amazing day exploring an old farm house last week. I have seen this house a few times in my travels to Kenilworth for bird photos and Kitfox has mentioned that he would love to explore inside one day…

The one day came, we jumped the fence and made our way cautiously through the house, the termites have been busy and most of the floor was paper thin, I found the best way to move around was close to the walls.

I was amazed at how much was left in this abandoned house there was a fridge, TV, cassette player, cutlery, even toothbrushes. It looks like the owners just walked away. A few people I have shown photos to say there must have been squatters using the house…I wonder about that, the TV and fridge need power and running water for the bath and sink. There is no water on the property that I could see and a free camp ground less than 2km up the road next to a creek and toilets. I still think the owners walked away, leaving the telly, fridge, cupboards and anything else that was unimportant to them, perhaps there has been squatters and trespassers who took other things that were left…who knows.

What I do know is I went back on Sunday with RaRa and someone had moved things. ***funny story, RaRa was a bit freaked out being in the house, every time a car went past she froze thinking it would be the owners or the police, we didn’t stay long because she was freaked, however she got worse when we returned to the fence to climb over, on the way into the property she stood on a log (like fire wood), when we came out it was gone. She was so worried because someone came while we were inside. Me I thought perhaps the other people who came  between my visits, saw my car and thought I was the owner and they had better move their log as it showed where they climbed the fence***

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Teacher's Pet

I have been called the teachers pet twice lately. Once by the teacher himself and once by Kitfox when he found out Andrew called about a secret spot for wrens.

The good thing is I know they are both joking, but it got me thinking how this is the first time I have ever been the teachers pet or even a favourite. At school I did my work (mostly) hung out with my friends and tried not to get in too much trouble. I am very out spoken and often loud mouthed, so when I go to training courses and workshops I try to keep to myself and not question everything. (I have been known to leave halfway through training courses rather than speak up because the trainer was an idiot who didn’t know what he was talking about). I get a little buzz when I think of it.

Actually when I think about it, Andrew didn’t so much call me teacher’s pet, he implied if I wanted to be teacher’s pet, I needed to edit his fat gut out of this photo

When Andrew told me about his secret spot for variegated wrens, he gave me a detailed map and told me he left an arrow out of wood pointing to the bush he though they were nesting in, having spent years in scouts and bush walking I expected a few twigs on the ground discreetly pointing to a bush…. This is what I found. Serious case of LOL!

Kitfox and I had been out trespassing before visiting with Andrew, there is an abandoned farm house at Obi Obi that we have talked about exploring so decided to actually do it. What an amazing place, the floors were paper thin where the termites have been at work, the kitchen still has the old wooden stove and cutlery on the sink. There is an old TV, fridge with rotten food inside, a mop and an old cassette player. I have not got any photos ready to show yet here is a link to one Kitfox took. I didn’t want to rush the editing of these photos. 

Andrew and I went to the secret (Lake Barron) spot to look for his wrens late yesterday afternoon. NOT a wren to be seen….I got the blame for this, because every time I go out the Andrew I cause the birds to fly away, the clouds to disappear on a sunset and third world poverty.

I did capture a beautiful pale headed rosella and a beautiful silhouette of a kookaburra with 2 noisy miners. No photo shop at all in this image.

I did put another one on FB, I had been too heavy handed with the editing, lucky this was pointed out to me with in minutes of posting and I could remove it…I would hate for the Photoshop police to get me…..funny how those that say they are against Photoshop and editing photos always like my photos where the photo shop is obvious, like my self portrait one and this one of #2.

I am slowly getting used to being back at work and have almost caught up on my back log (this would happen faster if I didn’t spend so much time on blogs, facebook and flickr)  

A few weeks ago I took some photos of my colleagues daughter and gave him a copy of the 10 I thought were the best at the time, he knew I took 100’s of photos so ask for more, when I looked at the originals I was pleased to see how many more were worth editing…it helped that she loves the camera and is beautiful and friendly.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Windy Day

A day off today and the wind is blowing a gale...no photography  opportunities today. I want to look at some photos for editing...I want to read a book....I want to watch a movie...I want to go shopping...I can't be bothered do doing anything....I am procrastinating.
If you have no dead lines or agenda, if no one knows what you have planned is is still procrastinating?
I am easily distracted today, I guess the wind is playing it games on me today...I am sure any school teacher/child carer can tell you that windy days are the worse days for behavior. When my girls were young they used to go silly on windy days...driving me to distraction. Today I have a puppy and a cat doing the same thing, they have been tormenting each other running around like they are possessed. Although puppy has just collapsed next to my feet and will sleep for hours now.
The posty has just opened the gate....goody this means stuff that wont fit in the letter box = ebay goodies. No ebay goodies even better, presents from the UK. I have got a box of sweets (although I think I am supposed to  share), there is soft toys for the girls mascots from the Olympic Games 2012. 

I had sad news at work yesterday - one of my boys (casual staff) is leaving to move to Melbourne in December. He is my favorite and if I was 18 I would be "crushing" on him. (don't get all weird and think I am a dirty old woman - I don't see him like that now). When I asked him if his lady would be going with him...he told me there is no Lady. This explains why he is moving, a few months ago he was telling me of his plan to go to Venice next year and propose, then have a pre wedding honeymoon in the UK. I am selfish enough to hope they work it out so he will stay and keep working for me. I wish I could get the courage to ask him to pose for me before he leaves, he has some awesome tattoos, a nice body and I need a nude model for a photography challenge. It won't happen...I am his boss and this would cross the line and be really creepy. (even from my point of view). 

I am suffering photoshop block...I want to edit photos for the challenge and the photo 5 competition, I am happy with nothing!
This is my thought for filling the frame - the October challenge - this is a iris center. I thought a flower would be easy for this challenge....nu ua. I might have to use one of my girls or Lilly.

Monday, 8 October 2012

Back to work

Back at work today…. Mega sad face

I hated leaving my puppy knowing it would be 10 hours before I get to see her again. ***last night she slept down stairs, by herself. I took her to our bed room like normal but she wanted to be on her own – what! Do I snore?***

While I have been away, they played with my stuff, I thought I was getting a new computer...NO they upgraded the ram in the one I have and changed the network. I have been unable to access any of my programs, files or the printer most of today. When I rang the geniuses in the IT department I was told to try restarting my computer 3 times – apparently this would help the upgrade. HEY guess what? It didn’t work…

I did get a new printer...I am keen to see what how my photos print. 

4 hours later a tech came down and tweaked a few things that tech people do and hey presto, I have my computer and files back. I know in theory I should be catching up on all the work not done while I was on leave but I think as I have done nothing yet, why start now.

I deliberately came back to work on a Tuesday so I wouldn’t have to work a full week. Imagine my surprise to find out I have Friday off as well. Nothing like easing back into work slowly, the sucky part about it is I have to work on Sunday then work a 7 day week.  Oh well. I did get a letter from HR telling me I need to book more holidays before the end of the year or I will be on leave from the first week back at work. Another opportunity to book a month off next year – when I go to Chile…

Funny how some thing don’t change no matter how long you are away… and I am not sure why I expected differently. All the invoices that have come in during my time away are stacked up beside my desk to be processed. FFS these companies want to be paid! No staff have been booked for additional work and there are fricken dishes in the sink...some still there from before I went on leave. (I cleaned up the day before I left)

I didn’t think I would have a photo to share today, then remembered #2 got a onesie yesterday, she thinks it will keep her warm in the UK next year….I think she is fooling herself. It will just be the top layer of many clothes.

Most people who have seen this photo aske WHY? easy answer - coz she can.

I am very lucky to have beautiful daughters, even luckier that I can use them for modelling practise. One day soon I am going to get a few of #2’s friends to practise on at the beach or somewhere not my backyard.

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Last Day of Holidays

How did this happen!

I have to go back to work tomorrow! I have been enjoying my time so much I could get used to this staying at home capper. It has been so good to do what suits me, when it suits me. 

I have packed as much as possible into the last few days (except today I have to pick up #1 and BF from the airport, what she doesn't know is she is taking me to lunch after).

Early morning bird shooting with Kitfox on Friday resulted in so good photos of my favorite birds. He has shown me a great spot with lots of wrens. I am not sure I am keen enough to go out on my own though. I don't really have a lot of patience to sit and wait for the birds to come to me....I also have the attention span of a puppy. (and I am just as easily distracted). Lucky I have good friends who will help when I am after bird photos.

I have had a photo shoot with a very talented friend of #2's, she is studying dress design at TAFE and has created some very nice dresses. 

HWMBO and I went out for dinner going to our favorite Japanese restaurant on the sunshine coast. it is a small cafe type place that has great service and great food. The price is also very reasonable.

Saturday I 'worked' for Andrew (the guru). It is so not like working, I get to tell people how to use the dials on their camera for 40 mins, spend a few hours taking photos or doing what ever I want before meeting the group to work on the practical side of taking photos. This takes place at the Maleny Showgrounds - purposely chosen for its boringness. However on Saturday we had a visit from a red belly black snake. Half of my group ran to take its photo and the other half hung back scared. I wish I had my camera with me. I love snakes....the snake was actually a good learning tool for those who chose photos. NONE of them checked their settings so all the photos were over exposed.
I got a few flower photos...none I am really happy with. Wrong time of day for photos and not a great spot for variety.

Saturday night was spent drinking red wine with the neighbors until very late in the night. Always a good time.

With Bathurst on the telly all day I decided to take my non hangover to the last session of Andrews workshop at Baroon Pocket Dam. I was hoping for a magic sunset to get an awarding winning photo to finish my holidays...no such luck. I did get a few I was happy with.

My time will not be my own soon...I am going to miss my camera, my laptop and photoshop. I wish I could think of a reason I need it installed at work.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012


This morning I heard that the scammers who ring pretending to be Microsoft and hack your computer have been stopped. While I am happy that they have been caught, I wonder who am I going to mess with now.

As our number is a business number and we cannot go on the 'Do Not Call Register', we get heaps and heaps of telemarketers, most of the time we will just hang up (we don't answer if the id is 'Overseas Caller' our friends will leave a message). But there are times when I like to mess with the telemarketers.

Not so long ago I got a call from the Microsoft people, I had been home by myself and was a bit bored, so I kept talking to him pretending not to understand what he wanted me to do, I told him I had to get the computer out of it bag, then we waited for me to turn it on ***I am preparing dinner while talking*** I then got confused about which buttons he wanted me to press, this went on for about 15 mins when I asked if it mattered that my computer was an iMac. He hung up on me.

I took a call yesterday asking for the business owner - when I asked what the call was regarding she mumbled something I didn't hear, when I asked her to repeat what she said she started mimicking me. I hung up. Stupid woman rang back and very professionally asked for the business owner. I said that there was a bad line and I was not hearing her clearly, she then started the mimicking me again. I didn't even hang up, I put the phone down and walked away.

It made me wonder do telemarketers hate their jobs as much as we hate getting the calls? How desperate for work must you be to take a job where you get abused, hung up on and paid pittance? I also think and lot of these jobs are paid on commission the more people you get to sign up the more money you get.

Not a job I could do.

No photos today, I have taken heaps for the Photo 5 competition, I now have to edit them...

I had a slight mishap today while taking photos for Photo 5, I was so full of ideas I wanted to do them all..... I learnt the hard way sparklers and tissue paper do not mix. I had a minor fire in the study today...there may or may not be a slight scorch mark on the carpet. The good thing with tissue it burns quickly.

Of to look at and edit some photos - I just need to find my motivation first. I think I have chocolate hidden in my car...

yep Freddo frogs this will help for a bit.

Monday, 1 October 2012

Friends with kids

The first photo required for the EOS photo5 competition is spaghetti portrait...I had the brilliant idea of using my co worker's 3 year old daughter, I pictured her sitting a a table outside with a bowl of cooked spaghetti making a face ***read portrait***, I would get a beautiful photo of a sweet little girl making a portrait with spaghetti. Well that was the plan...what I got was a sweet little girl scooping up and playing with the spaghetti, then throwing it at her brother. Oh and it was raining so the photo shoot happened inside.

I was a lot of fun and while I didn't get the photo I imagined, I did get some nice ones for CW and his fiance. 

This is the photo I am gong to use for the comp. It may not be the best, it may not be the most original. But I still like it and I am out of ideas. 

I made the most of the morning and took a few photos of Baby Girl and Brother, I sent copies to CW for printing if he wants.

Baby Girl told me she has three rules

# 1 Do what Mummy and Daddy tell me.
# 2 Be nice to everyone
# 3 Use your manners

If more people behaved like this 3 year old we would live in a much nicer world. 

I had to laugh when Baby girl said 'I want a biscuit' her Mum replied with 'I want a million dollars'. Baby Girl looked bashful and said ' Please Mummy can I have a biscuit'. This must be a game they play, it works Baby girl doesn't need to be told to use her manners, she gets a little nudge in the right direction and it works.

I posted my challenge topic for October and got an email from the guru telling me it was a good idea. (and reminding me to correct the day)

Now I need to come up with a sunflare photos. i have an idea, I just need to work out how I can do it. I am still struggling with the other 3 competition photos, little people to scale, tissue paper and fishing line. Fishing line I hope is taken care of #2 has a friend who has made a dress using fishing net and line. I will take some photos for her website in exchange for using the dress for the competition. This will take place on Thursday.

Tomorrow I am shopping with #3 and Mother...it will be a long and tiring day with nothing achieved for myself. 

Riverfire and family gatherings

Saturday night #2 &#3 and I braved the crowds to go to our first ever Riverfire  fireworks night. If you believe the TV reports so did 500,000 other people. I almost believe, I don't think I have seen that many people in one spot EVER.

LG (Lighting Guy) was the one who suggested we meet up and take some more photos (after the success of the laser night)...he stood us up, something about a better offer with less people.

We got to Southbank about 5pm ***three hours too late to get a good spot*** the black hawk helicopters where hovering either side of Victoria Bridge this looked like a good place to be. We pushed our way through the crowd managing to get a space for one person on the rail of the bridge looking directly at the lighting barge. As soon as the Black Hawks left so did half the people -I could have told them there was no room at southbank....I didn't I set up my tripod and spread out in my prime position. 

We waited two hours for 20mins of fireworks... was it worth it? Hell yes. I got some great photos, the music was loud, the crowd was in awe. Will I do it again? Maybe not. 

Southbank before the show

It took an hour to get back to the car, basically we just moved with the flow of the people until we got to the train station, where we were crammed in like sardines. I am sure this was quicker than if we had parked closed to the city... 

Daughter # 1 asked me to take her and BF to the airport early this morning, meaning a sleep over last night. Sister wanted to come and meet Lilly (my baby Golden Retriever), other family friends wanted to catch up before school started back. So we had 17 people for a BBQ yesterday. 

It was a spontaneous get together that turned into a great night.  I often find the less notice you give people when planning a night out or get together, the best chance you have of getting them to attend - no time to think of a reason not to if you already commit. No time for a better offer to come up. ***Don't get me wrong I am a big planner and would prefer everything organised weeks in advance, I have come to an understanding of how social events work after a few fails*** 

Lots of food was cooked and consumed, I was pretty spot on with my salads this time, only had a small amount of lettuce and stuff left. 

I am not really feeling chatty now so I will come back tomorrow with photos of a beautiful 3 year old who helped me with my spaghetti challenge photos.

Oh I have to pick the challenge for the Flickr group winners challenge this month.
I have an idea, I doubt I will be able to get an entry in as it is not my thing. A lot of the other members will like it and it is a good chance for me to get out and experiment

Natural light/sun flare. (I was going to do night photography, decided not to as this is a favorite of mine and everyone knows it)

Till tomorrow Bye