19 November, 2009

Spa Repair

As it is getting hotter in town, and after doing a water change last week, the spa developed a problem... The circulation pump, which actually pumps water through the filter, went 'belly-up'! So I took it out, and off I went to the Poll and Spa shop only to find out that, even though the parent company Monarch, had gone out of business, the circulation pump was actually a cheap Chinese import, and that a NEW one (that will not match existing plumbing OR union joints) will need to be sourced, grrrrrr!

So the search began (by the pool shop) to find a newbie, and I headed on my way. That was Tuesday. This morning though, with the temp heading north of 35 today and 40+ over the next two days, I got a call telling me my pump was in, an Aussie one and everything will match up, YEAH!

So I drove to the shop, and the first thing I saw was that the end of the electrical cable was wrong, but I think I can make do with that... Simply open up the electrical box and swap it for the one on the old pump, right? Simple? Sure was!!!

Old (left)_New (right), originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Inside spa circ pump removed, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Spa Circuit Board, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Job Finished, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

As you can see, the Supervisory Cat was on duty...

Watch Cat, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

Whilst all of this was going on, me outside in the heat, where was Macc? Asleep of course (and I dare not startle him, as his head is UNDER the TV cabinet!

Sleepy Macc, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.


16 November, 2009

It's nearly harvest time!

It's nearly harvest time!!! But, some I will get and some I may not see... Ho hum! I planted the tomato's at the start of the season, just 3... I thought that would be enough for just me! I then thought of what else, so I planted some corn as well! Both of them have really kick on! The corn has started to set its 'ears' and the tomato's are nearing ready to harvest, just starting to blush.

Vege Patch, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
YUMM Tomato , originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

Today, I also headed on a road trip, up north... This was a hard trip to make as it was a service to farewell little Lewis who died last week, just 11 days old. Whilst it was a sombre service, his parents were incredibly strong throughout, and I was honoured to be there. We (EB girls and I) gave them a standard Rose, Mother's Love, which was very fitting we thought... Fly free little man!


10 November, 2009

Trying to stay ... OK!

Sunday, after doing the Schnitzel Challenge the night before, I was feeling a little so so (mentally, NOT sick or anything... just a bit flat), so I decided to go for a drive. I ended up heading up to the Nth Beaches and I found myself at Mona Vale. Not for any reason at all, it is just where I ended up stopping!

After sitting on the beach, pondering (not to mention getting wet as it was showering a little) I then headed for my other little spot and did a bit of 'spotting' at the airport. It is a well know little spot for spotting, but it is quite 'hidden' within the two parallel runways of Sydney Airport. I had been there for about 30-45mins, when this little black 4wd turned the corner, and OMG, it was friends of mine, D&A, with little B! They had been on a little adventure and low and behold, they found me!! This is not the first time this has happened either, when a few months ago, LH and her family had also driven there to pick-up another family member! Also, a couple of weeks back, D A were at at Hungry Jacks for a breakfast, and another mutual friend also happened to be there... WHAT ARE THE CHANCES???!!! lol

Anyway, Monday found us sorting through Lou's clothes and to try and find some missing bits of jewellery. It was a tough day, for both the MIL & FIL, and I tried so hard to keep it together. We went to the club for lunch and had the Buffet, which was really nice. It sort of picked us up a little. We went back past the townhouse where the Jacarandas were in full bloom, and even the White ones, before heading for home. We found almost all of the jewellery (Bolder Opal earring's yet to find) and I said farewell to M&J. Here is where it got tough, REAL tough. I ended up walking through the house, seeing all of her precious things out on display, and all of her work clothes, in piles (shirts, skirts, suits and dresses) and I fell into a blubbering mess. I was this way for about 30 mins, before pulling myself together as I had to meet up with a friend who had just had her first baby, a little girl, but my feelings of 'lost' and 'loneliness' came flooding back when I got back from the hospital... I went to see my GP today, and we have changed a few things, and set up some strategies to cope with it all. It is all a matter of all of the legal stuff, the sorting of stuff and her due day coming up, but I am trying (hard) to stay OK!


08 November, 2009

Schnitzle House Challenge: - FAIL!

Last night, we went to the Austrian SchnitzleHaus, to have dinner... It was actually have the Schnitzel Challenge, and I was somewhat scared, VERY scared!

From their website:

Do you love schnitzel ?Are you able to beat the challenge and eat our Giant Schnitzel ?$ 55.00

  • Fastest times set - 17 mins!
  • 1 Kg Schnitzel with chips and sauce of your choice
  • 1 Litre of Beer (Erdinger weissbier or Stiegl Beer)
  • Essential ...Bookings only for the Challenge... !!!
  • Select either Chicken or Pork
  • We are unable to offer the challenge without Pre-Ordering


  • The challenge is to be completed in 1 hour.
  • All the food on the plate,except garnish is to be eaten
  • NO sharing with anyone !!!!!!!
  • If you throw up.... you're out of the contest .
  • Finish the beer
  • Finish it all and you'll get a FREE Dessert, a T -Shirt, a Schnapps and your Picture on our "Champions "Wall of fame"!
  • No sharing or Take aways

Naturally we needed to ensure we had a 'dedicated driver' (thanks Sam) and as both Max & Will could not eat the Schnitzel, they (and mum) had the Meat Platter which looked amazing as well! Beers arrived and it was at this point I thought, What on EARTH have I done?

Bernie Alex Beer, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

Soon after, 'Cow Bells' started to ring and a fan fair as our platters arrived... OMG!

OMG Schnitzle Challenge Begins, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

There was 4, YES 4, Schnitzel's on the plate. After about 15 mins in, and wonder how on earth did someone finish it all in 17 mins, I was beginning to feel very full... Looking at Alex, he had started to look a little, well, 'seedy' and a bit 'green'! Sam, on the other hand was laughing and snickering, but also being a 'little' compassionate!!!

OMG Schnitzle Challenge, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
OMG Schnitzle Challenge Alex, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

At the 40min mark, I had called it a day, as with Alex. He at least got up and went for a walk, and the interest from the fellow customers in the restaurant was huge (not to mention the shear SIZE of the meal!). Both Max & Will had a Chocolate Mousse for dessert, and we left feeling rather bloated, to go home and watch Iron Chef, oh dear!!!

Max Choc Mousse, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
William Choc Mousse, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.


29 October, 2009

Blooming technical issues!

Over the last week or so, I have been having more than a few 'technical' issues with my laptop. It has been (for a little while) not good with SKYPE, and over the last week, really slow to start up. In fact, on Monday night when I finally decided to get off all my data, and do a clean install (thinking of W7), it took nearly 5 hours to transfer nearly 80GB. OK, I hear what you're saying, that's a lot of data... But it had a very slow bit rate as the processor was running at 100% on other things!!

After it was all done, I restarted the laptop (made a coffee, and watched the David Letterman Show as it was 11.45pm) and it was finally ready to start the reload of Vista. Following the instructions to use the recovery DVD, I got a message in big red letters ERROR! Can not read image on disc... ASUS, here we come! It is now back in at the tech desk, they know of the problem, and I should have it back as early as today!

BUT, in other bits around the house, some of the 'Hippies' L had planted have come into flower, the Dranuculus is about to flower again, and just for good measure, here is a pic of the pets... Do you think they are trying to tell me something (Jas looks comfy and resting after our trip to the vet, whilst Macc is excited; do you think he wants to come in?):

Comfy Kitty, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Jumping Macc, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Garden Flowers..., originally uploaded by AussiePomm.1. Passion, 2. Hippie1, 3. Hippie2, 4. Hippie3


17 October, 2009

Thought of the day...

Thought of the day..., originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

14 October, 2009

A visit to the long lost aunt!

Today, I took mum up to visit my auntie Dell. This meant another drive north up the freeway to the Central Coast. Auntie Dell is not 'really' my aunt, but her late husband came out from England with my dad, and as such, are as good as family as family themselves. She is also my Godmother and we even have the same birthday (albeit 30 years different!)!

They came down for L's funeral, and I had not seen them for many a year prior to that, so I thought it would be great to catch up properly. And to make it an even better trip, Maureen had recently had her second baby, Tristan, a brother for little Trinity! The girls, and auntie Dell, put on a fantastic lunch of chicken and salads, and we certainly didn't go hungry! And to top it all off, we even had Profiteroles for desert with coffee!

Maureen, Aunty Dell & Colleen, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Maureen Tristan, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Colleen Tristan, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Mum Aunty Dell, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Mum Anuty Dell Me, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

As you can see, auntie Dell (and even both Maureen & Colleen AND even my mum) are not very tall, and I was very much the odd one out. Yes, that's me standing behind auntie Dell who is ALSO standing! I do not know where I get my height, as I am head and shoulders above mum, from memory dad as he died in 1992, and my brother and sister!

We were up there much longer than I had thought we were going to be, as I wanted to get home so as mum could drive herself home before the peak hour rush... This was not the case, and after the 90 minute drive down the freeway, I was home very tired, but relieved to be here all the same. What a great day!


11 October, 2009

Picton Show 2009

Today, we went out to the Picton Show. I was invited to come along with A,S,M & W and L's mum & dad, J & M (are you with me still?) :). The forecast was a bit so so, but we headed out with a slightly overcast morning. A & S were on the look out for a couple more 'girls' to join Velma & Daphne in the chook yard as Daph as been a bit 'broody' since being confined to the chook run (she was enjoying being a free range bird in the back yard)!

So we got to the Showground and headed straight to the Chook Pavilion, where there were a couple of birds for sale, but not the breed they were after. There was also some very UGLY chooks there:

For Sale, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Are you looking at me, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

There was also a shearer who showed us how sheep are shawn! He was great in the demonstration, and really got the kids involved with handing around some of the wool. He also showed us how wool is graded, and traded, and how much they get paid per sheep!

Shearing Sheep, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Grading the Fleece, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Fleeced, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

The boys also had a couple of rides, dodgem cars together, whilst M went on the slide and W went on the train!

Max Slide, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Dodgem Cars, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Will Train, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

There was also a 'Snake Man' there who was doing a show, which was very informative, but one thing I didn't like was how he demonstrated how blind they really are! OK, he's an expert but with the worlds deadliest snake on the ground, did he have to show how close his foot can go to it? Here's W & M, with a Python, which is non poisonous...

Will Snake, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Max Snake, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.


08 October, 2009

Smelly flowers and a vege garden!

Today, was a day in and around the garden, off to do some shopping and finally to get my hair cut!

So today, the tomato's got a tidy up and tied up, the corn is 'kicking-on' and the lawns were all tidied up. Even Jasmine gave a helping 'paw'!

Jasmine Vege Patch, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Vege Patch 2009, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

Also in the garden, the 'Dracunculus vulgaris' we got at a Garage Sale about 4 years ago now, and although it flowered last year, we missed it coming up! This year though, I spotted it last week, and it is now staked and almost ready to open up. It is standing at almost 1m tall!

Dracunculus vulgaris, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Dracunculus vulgaris, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.
Dracunculus vulgaris, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

And finally, at the end of the day, I think a spa will be in order to rest my tired old bones... What do you think?

Spa House, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.

And then there's Macc, I think he is keen to go inside, don't you?

Macc wants IN, originally uploaded by AussiePomm.


05 October, 2009

Wet, bogged in the sand, but a great weekend!

This last weekend, was in fact a long weekend and a great chance to go camping, right? Well so we thought...

I got up to the camp site late Friday afternoon. Showers/rain had been forecast, but I would be ok, I have a Camper Trailer right? A,S & W arrived a couple of hours later, whilst M & I got it all set up. So all we had to do was get dinner ready, sausages, boiled potato's & salad. During the cooking, there was the odd drop of rain hitting the hotplate BBQ'ing the 'snags', but all was good and the kids were having fun.

Once they were in bed, we enjoyed a couple of 'refreshments' and having a chat through a brief thunderstorm.

Sat morning, we woke to a cold, overcast day, but not raining (yet). We had breakfast of eggs on fresh bread (YUMM) thanks to A cooking, and headed off on an adventure into Tea Gardens. Along the way back, we past an entrance to the beach, a 4wd entrance (remembering I have a 4wd...) and headed in. Looking left, there was a Nissan Pathfinder bogged, so I decided to go right, make a steady long turn and head back out. WRONG, I ended up bogged and the car was sitting on the chassis rails, and the tide was coming in! I remembered that the local garage had a service if in this situation, so I called them. BUT, just after I hung up, a passer by offered assistance, and winched me out, and then, using a 'snatch strap' (4wd recovery equipment) towed me to a safer location for me to go. It was here, that the recovery team arrived, and although I had already paid by credit card, $150, I did not care as I was out. Another 30 mins and it would have been having the incoming surf against it!

We had decided to pack up after both kids (and dad) were coughing and the rain was not abating. Within 60 mins or so, we were done and on the road heading home to dry out... What a weekend!