31 December, 2007

Bali UNFCCC 2007

Well, we are finally back, and finally getting a new post up, sorry about that, but a 'little' event got in the way that made it difficult to do any posting!
Rather than try and post a lot of photos, I discovered a great little widget thingy over at Flickr to put them into a slideshow for you to watch. We hope you enjoy it.

Created with Admarket's flickrSLiDR.

20 December, 2007

Bali Botanic Gardens

I know that I have been neglecting this blog for a little bit now, but I have spent two weeks in New Zealand and a week in Bali!!!
Here is a couple of shots from the Bali Botanic Gardens!

Drops on Lilly Pad

Water Lilly

TT # 11 Merry Christmas

Thirteen Funny things about Christmas Cartoons!


Santa Architecture




Santa Milk


Reindeer flat


Christmas Tree Ball balls


Reindeer interview


Santa Shot


Snow dogs


Snow Woman


Snowman Baby Making


Snowman Ice cream


Snowman smoking


Reindeer Shooter

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

06 December, 2007

TT # 10: random finds and crafty goodness from our trip to new zealand

New Zealand 2007 TT Mosaic

1. The Fabric Room, 2. The Fabric Room Shopfront, 3. Dept of Doing, 4. Napier, 5. Napier, 6. Napier, 7. Arahura First Class, 8. The Store, 9. The Painted Room, 10. Seals posing, 11. Roadside Diner, 12. Roadside Diner, 13. Lobster Lunch, 14. The Dyslexia Foundation, Christchurch, 15. Mackenzie Thorpe Statue, 16. Mackenzie Thorpe, Falling Heart, 17. The Dyslexia Foundation, 18. The Cupboard, 19. The Cupboard, 20. Zebrano, Wellington

Thirteen Things about:

random finds and crafty goodness from our trip to new zealand

1…. The Fabric Room, in Parnell is fabulous. I have brought home with me a handful of swatches of velvets in an amazing range of shades of pink, and one called bourbon, that I do not have a project in mind for, but I am just taken by the colour. They also had a wool mix felt in cornflower that I think I shall just have to get, again no specific project in mind but that is a minor detail really. The velvet is for backing on a cushion, I finished a tapestry a couple of years ago of a trout (Elizabeth Bradley), and haven't got around to, or found the right coloured/priced velvet for the cushion to be made up in. I did find some velvet earlier in the year but had to buy a metre minimum, and it was something like $180 per metre and I was prepared to pay that much. The Fabric Room was about 1/6th of this and the sample 'pink lady' looks like it will fit the project perfectly. Now all I need is for someone to make the cushion up.

2…. La Cigale, Parnell, for the best cheeses, and bread sticks. I wish we had found this last year when we were staying in Parnell, we would have had cheese and bread just about every night for dinner this time round whilst in this part of town. The cheeses imported from France are amazing, at around $90 per kg they were still worth every cent. This store is worth visiting, with an interesting collection of vintage furniture and accessories, clothing, and of course the food. An organic fruit and vegetable market is held on Wednesdays, and we got some fabulously sweet tomatoes and a cucumber, as well as a chook for dinner that night.

3…. Hamburgers from Riba Fish 'n' Chips Cafe, in Devonport are a must. We accidentally stumbled on this Fish and Chips takeaway, and we all agreed that these were the best hamburgers ever.

4…. The Department of Doing! Not really sure what this was about at first, but when we saw that they were selling cans of 'Inspiration' it all sort of fell into place...

5….Napier! for art deco architecture, we unfortunately were only driving through, but a couple of days here would have been a good idea.

6…. Interisland Ferry, I could just ride the ferry all day, back and forth between the islands. The three hour trip was so enjoyable, with the most beautiful scenery. It was the perfect way to recharge the batteries mid holiday.

7….Nelson, simply a must when you reach the south island. Instead of travelling straight on to Blenheim, do yourself a favour and take the detour to Nelson. Recommended by one of mum's friends I am so glad we spent a couple of days here. It is a bit of an art and craft hub for glass, ceramics, jewellery and art in general, and is just really pretty. We visited the Hoglund glass showroom which put a dint in the bank balance, and the MacMillans Ceramics showroom. There is also a good range of antique shops.

8…. The Store, Fantastic view and really great food. This place was about 40minutes out of Blenheim (my tip about Blenheim keep driving) or Kaikoura depending on the direction you are driving. We stopped here and just took in the amazing view, dipped our feet in the water and followed some birds.

9…. Strangely Familiar! Vintage wares in Wellington near the Wellington Botanic Gardens (which are well worth a visit), I got myself some crocheted dishcloths and something for B for Christmas, naturally I can't say any more about this now. Another shop again for fun vintage finds, as well as interesting couture is The Painted Room, in Christchurch, plenty of ideas gathered here. It was a pity we were over our baggage limits by this stage.

10…. Seals! Coming into Kaikoura, along the highway, we were simply driving along and we came across this 'family' of seals along the rocky shoreline. We have never seen seals in the wild before, at least, not like this!

11….Roadside Lobster! Kaikoura has a quirky little roadside diner, sort of... You see, it looks as though the owners simply parked on the side of the road in the middle of nowhere, and set up shop! Items include, Whitebait sandwich, Garlic Mussels & Garlic Scallops! We had to go back the following day to get a lobster for lunch, YUMM!!

12…. The Dyslexia Foundation, Christchurch in particular the Mackenzie Thorpe monumental bronze, is so emotive. It is fantastic what has been achieved with the building, garden and sculptures. The talking chairs give you a real appreciation for those who suffer from dyslexia. It is truly inspirational.

13…. Clothes! T'da, an old favourite and a must stop at (either on the way from the airport or to it) in Auckland. The Cupboard, in Parnell and opposite where we were staying, simply beautiful clothes and not so beautiful prices! Zebrano, and Untouched World both in Wellington's CBD, had some stunning clothes. Even taking into account of the exchange rate, it was still quite expensive!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

05 December, 2007

Nice Flower

Flower close up

Flower macro
Same flower, except that the second shot is with a macro lens!

Wordless Wednesday # 16 Auckland by day & night

Auckland by day

Auckland by night

02 December, 2007

New Zealand 2007

Well, as we did not really have a solid internet connection (or the time to really hook up onto the net with the ‘in-laws’ travelling with us (oh, before you ask, we had a lovely holiday with them. It just meant packing more into the day!!!!)), here is the first of probably around 14 ‘trip reports from our trip to New Zealand.

We were travelling again to New Zealand on Emirates, the same as last year. This year however, the flight was FULL. Not a spare seat was to be had. It was also the first time for the Father in law (FIL) to go overseas, and he was looking forward to it. So much so that a little Cellulites in his leg; a hospital visit two night before and a bag or two of IV fluids was not going to stop him from boarding the plane!

The morning had arrived and the brother in law (BIL) arrived promptly very early to take us to Sydney airport. Bags checked a quick look around the shops we went through immigration and into duty free heaven. FIL got himself comfy overlooking the new Singapore A380 sitting out on the tarmac (until about 200 people decided to come and have a photo taken in front of it) whilst the girls went shopping. I had a quick look around the camera and electronic shops for any bargains, nup!

Boarding was quick enough and we were soon taxing for a (rough) departure over the western suburbs, over our house, before heading out to sea and ‘over the pond’. Breakfast was served which was very scrummy. I had an omelette and chicken sausage, and L had the other which I can’t remember. Emirates in-flight entertainment was great with plenty of choices. I quickly decided and watched Hairspray, fantastic!

Three hours later, we were on approach into Auckland, and very quickly through immigration and at the hire car company. Paperwork was ready and walked over to ‘assess’ the car, thankfully! There was nothing mentioned on the paperwork, however, there was quite a large gash down the passengers side rear panel, see the pic. We quickly got it all sorted and on the road to Parnell, to our first of many accommodation, the Parnell Village Motor Lodge. This was looking rather different since last year, new owners, and was getting a lick of paint! The new owners, Helen and I can’t remember his name, were fantastic, very accommodating and friendly indeed. We recommend that if you’re in Auckland (Parnell) stay here you will not be disappointed!

After quickly unpacking we jumped into the car and to the Parnell Rose Garden, which was just packing up after the Rose festival! Had I know this, we would have travelled a day earlier!

So here are some pics of the car, some Iris’s and Roses from the Rose Garden

1. Nth Island Car, 2. Parnell Mini Purple Rose, 3. Parnell White Iris, 4. Parnell Rose, 5. Parnell Dark Red Rose, 6. Parnell Cream Rose, 7. Parnell Iris, 8. Parnell Pink Roses, 9. Parnell Red Roses

29 November, 2007

Vale: Wally

Just before going 'across the pond' to New Zealand, I was asked to (try) and get a family photo, as the 'next sister in law down's' dog Wally was quite ill, gravely ill in fact.

This was the last photo I took of about 50 shots. On our second day (of 14) in New Zealand, the next sister in law down called to say that they had lost little Wally. Arrangements were made before we left for him to be buried with all of the other pets at the family home, but instead, he is buried at thier place, under her bedroom window...

Paddy, holding crazy baby Buttons, Camille, holing little Riley and poor old Wally on the floor.

Wally and HIS family

*The mystery item from this post, was named 'Wally ...' in his honour, and will be posted about soon...

28 November, 2007

25 November, 2007

We're home..

Hey there,
Just letting you know, that at 10.47pm Sunday night, we have just gotten home.
And, as we are both tired, living on NZ time means that it is really 12.47am Monday morning, we will blog about our trip over the next couple of days. Bear with us??!!??

20 November, 2007

mystery post

internet access is precious on this trip, so I am going to leave you with a picture of one of my souveniers. He is quite a character, Any ideas? You gotta love the packaging at this stage, a pair of B's jeans and an old singlet of dad's, stuck in place with micropore.

Mystery Object

We are in Nelson again tonight and will travel to Kaikoura where we shall hopefully see a whale.

18 November, 2007

kia ora

we are one week down in our travels through New Zealand. Having completed the North Island leg, tomorrow we catch the Interisland Ferry to the South Island. The trip so far; Auckland (Days 1 through 4) that included a Ferry trip to Devonport, the Ellerslie Flower Show, Parnell Rose Garden, and Muriwai to view the black sand beach via the Waitakere Ranges; Rotorua (Days 4 through 6) taking in a visit to Hell's Gate geothermal park, experiencing Maori culture and a hungi at Mitai, ending our stay in Rotorua with the Polynesian Spa before heading off for Wellington (Day 6 through 7) via Napier, an art deco city, and Palmerston North, with its spectacular wind farm.

If we hadn't prebooked the ferry and the car, I think an extra day in Wellington would have been a good idea. We have really only had one day here having arrived late last night. We started the day by taking the cable car from the top of the botanic gardens down to the city and back again and the rest of the day at the Wellington Botanic Gardens which are really quite spectacular. An extra day looking around would have been great, there are some fabulous shops most of which were closed today, being Sunday. In some ways this has been a bonus given the amount of stuff we seem to have collected so far, photos will be shared in another post if not before we go home, some time soon after.

Needless to say, we are having a whale of a time.

10 November, 2007

me again

with less than 24 hours till we jump on the plane, I feel like we are on a roller coaster of sorts. Yesterday we booked the first few days of accomodation, the inter island ferry, and did some last minute shopping for things like cat food, so that the pets are adequately catered for whilst we are away, only to find out that my dad (mum and dad were/are to be travelling with us) has been on IV antibiotics at Royal North Shore Hospital and may not be able to travel. He is at home today and on strict instructions to rest up and let the antibiotics do their thing. Our fingers are crossed.

So today, whilst the old boy rested, mum, the next sister down, baby Riley, B, and I met at the Willoughby Arts and Crafts Centre annual sale for a bit of market therapy. There wasn't a great deal to tempt given we are saving the spending for NZ although I got some fabric to add to the stash, at $5 a bundle who could resist.

Quarters & Cake!
The next sister down, got a couple of items for baby Riley, which B and I dropped at her place on our way home. This also gave B and I the opportunity to spend some time with her long time four legged companion 'Wally' the dog, who is not too good at the moment. Our fingers, crossed again, that he makes it comfortably through the next couple of weeks, with all but the favourite brother being in town*.

On a high note, B bought my combined Birthday, Wedding Anniversary, and Christmas pressie today, I know what it is, but I am going to forget about it. It's a good one, or he would never have gotten away with a combined gift.

*the youngest sister and her family are in New York for three weeks.

09 November, 2007

hi, its me

the other half of this blog.

The countdown is now on, for our trip across the pond to NZ, and I am so excited that I finally have my very own copy of 'the Crafter's Compainion' resultant from our trip to Borders last night (and that we shall soon be on holiday). I am a little torn, as I bought a book a couple of weeks ago for the trip, but I have been waiting to get a copy of the Crafter's Companion for soooo long, and a sneak peak on the way home in the car, had me hooked. I couldn't possibly wait two weeks to read on. The solution is that I will probably pack both books.

Crafters Companion

Now the search is on for Bend the Rules Sewing by Amy Karol which was not on the register at Borders at all. I could get it from Amazon, but I would prefer an Australian supplier. I have just found Fishpond which looks suspiciously like Amazon but appears to be Australian so maybe that is the answer, if I had found this one sooner I could have ordered it with the Crafter's Companion, for free shipping and saved on the price I paid at Borders. Oh well, the irony is that today the emailed coupon from Borders was 35% off the full price of any book, but I don't care, I wasn't going to risk leaving it till such a coupon came along, even if it was the next day.

07 November, 2007

London 2004

London 2004

How many Big Red Buses can you count?

Wordless Wednesday # 14 Rosie Florence

Rember these...

Rosie Florence

Rosie Florence

Rosie's Christening

Rosie & Olivia

03 November, 2007

Riley Joe

Remember these lovely photo's of Riley?

Riley Joseph

Riley Joseph

Well, last Sunday, it was his Christening, and L is his Godmother. So, after a busy Saturday getting all around Sydney within the day collecting this and that, going over to 'The next sister Down' place and helping set up for the day (a feeble excuse really for L to hog have a hold of Riley) and then having to drive home to get ready for an impromptu dinner on the Saturday night, Sunday quickly came around for the 'Big Day'.
As L had front row tickets, we thought we had better be early, at least not late. So here we were, fluffing around the house (I was actually cooking my Asian Green Bean Salad) we noticed the time, 10.30 and I had not showered and the drive to the church was at LEAST 40 mins in no traffic!
So, without speeding, I managed to get us there just in the nick of time, I drop L at the door and went off to find a park.
Here are some photos at the church:

Stained Glass Window

St Josephs Enfield Altar

Pad Family and Godparents

Pad Family in St Joe's

Louise & Riley

Riley & Louise

It really was such a hot and muggy day, so as soon as were at the 'after party' I changed out of my suit and into some shorts! There was also so much food anyone would have been forgiven for thinking thousands of people were going to be there. Here are some random shots of the day:

Granny & Riley

4 Generations apart

Great Grandchildren

Sleeping & Beauty; Nan & Rosie

The Cake

The Family