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Thursday, September 29, 2022

Teenage Memories…

Well it would be a few weeks ago now that I awoke to a text from DH’s cousin in California. The sms simply said, ‘RIP Queen Elizabeth’. Once again, a family member in a faraway land had had a news scoop of something that happened while we were sleeping. As the morning progressed it was obvious that media communications were completely dominated by what was happening back in the UK. And I got to thinking of something a friend and I did way back in 1966. At that time in Australia, there was great excitement as the then Prince Charles had come here to spend 6 months as a student at Timbertop which is part of the prestigious Geelong Grammar. 
 I suspected that she’d probably have forgotten our mischief but I started a Messenger
 ‘chat’ nevertheless. 

But I was wrong; my friend did remember! 

But of course there was no invitation to the funeral so in my inimitable style of never letting a chance go by, I dressed up to watch the event and DH and I enjoyed bubbles and finger food in our own version of a wake. 😍 

It was my daughter’s birthday and I’d made her favourite cake as usual. I made a smaller version for DH and I with the left over layer of cake plus the black cherries. 

The pomp and majesty of the monarch’s was second to none…

And in an amazing twist, after talking to Glenda, I actually found a photo of us at the school swimming carnival in February 1967. So a few months after we wrote that fan letter but we still looked the same! That’s me leaning on the railing at the Valley Pool Brisbane, and looking at the camera and Glenda is on my right with her arms crossed. 

Aaah memories. 🥰

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Wool on Sunday

 When I retired in 2011, I joined a group called Knitting for Brisbane’s Needy ( K4BN). This group made items of warm clothing for distribution by various groups and charities who give support to the needy in the community. As well as warm clothing, knitted and crocheted blankets and quilts, the group provided toiletries, sewn garments, knitted, crocheted or sewn toys and various other items such as school supplies that could help make people’s lives a little happier. The group had been started by Karen Croke who had seen a need in the community to help community organisations who endeavored to help the plight of the needy and disadvantaged in not only Brisbane, but also Queensland wide. Karen was helped by her husband Peter and I believe the group started with just a few people but the numbers increased as the word spread. 

The group had a number of Knit and Natter groups, which provided a social gathering as well as a collection point for donations. Over the last 16 years the group has distributed hundreds of thousands of items. 

At one stage in the last 10 years, I was a member of 5 Knit and Natters. One in a private home was disbanded about 5 years ago and a new venue was never found. Then in recent years I’ve had more calls on my time to do ‘Grandma Duty’ so not so many K&Ns for me. 

I’ve made lots of new friends over these years, been given lots of ideas and patterns by others and have had a thoroughly enjoyable time. 

But a few years ago, illness struck Karen…a severe illness at that. Then early this year Peter was also struck down by illness. 

So it really wasn’t a big surprise that in April this year it was announced that K4BN would be wound up. It was obviously a big decision and not one made lightly or without much soul searching. 

In a conversation with Peter, he indicated to me that they had decided to completely close and not merely do a handover to someone else to run this completely voluntary organization. In the 16 years he and Karen had built up a well deserved reputation of being reliable, as well as being supportive, compassionate and caring towards those who were doing it tough in our communities. They feared that if run/managed by others who didn’t have the same commitment to the needy, then the reputation they had built up would be tarnished. They just didn’t want to run that risk. 

Sure enough, after that announcement they were inundated with offers to take over. Eventually Karen wrote a post which I copied and saved at the time because it really showed how much this couple had done over the years…a lot of it, quietly in the background. I’ve masked the name of the member, who had suggested how the group should be run as Karen addressed this to her. 

So here we are in September and that means we are having our last K4BN Knit and Natters in these next few weeks. But that’s not the end of this story. Friendships have developed and even though some groups will disband, many of us are being ‘rebranded’ 😜 and will continue to meet regularly and will continue to  make items for needy people. But it will be on a much smaller scale as each group will make lists of community groups we’d like to help. 

For example my favourite K&N group at Albany Creek will now become ‘Knit, Crochet, Donate’ (KCD) Albany Creek and our ‘sister group’ is KCD Strathpine. We’ve had a meeting where we discussed the charities we’d like to support and we’ll only make what the charities need. The Albany Creek Library agreed to continue to let us use the meeting room for free as long as we donated to local charities…too easy! 
Many of us members have friends and family who have supported us by making and donating items to K4BN over the years and I’m forever grateful to these lovely people who have given me the most beautiful and useful items to pass on to K4BN. Hopefully this relationship will continue albeit scaled down somewhat. One thing KDC decided on, no fundraising so I won’t be pestering friends and relatives to buy raffle tickets any more! 😜
So wow! This post has been very wordy but it’s a post I felt needed to be written. 

Here’s a photo of Karen, such an inspiration to so many of us. Not only for her amazing compassion but also her dignity and determination as she lives with an illness that has taken so much of her energy 
, faculties, independence and mobility. 

Karen and Peter decided that despite closing down, that this year from September to the end of November they would accept items that could be used as Christmas gifts to the charities that the group usually supported. So I’ll finish the post with some photos of past years where members were packing the famous K4BN mini Christmas stockings. 

Goodbye K4BN and best wishes to Karen and Peter as they spend more time with their daughters and grandchildren. 

Friday, September 3, 2021


Tuesday saw the last day of Winter, ushering in the beginning of Spring on Wednesday. On Facebook that day, I noticed someone asking people to post photos of their Spring garden. Well there wasn’t much sign of the season change in my garden…even my beloved nasturtiums weren’t doing that well. The bromeliads had had flowers but #1 GD had asked the week before if we could pick them to make a bunch to take home to her mum…which we did! 

Never fear though, our household does have another Spring display but it’s in the dining room. #2 GD helped me last Friday to ‘pack up Winter’ from the hutch. 

Holly very carefully carried the china from the shelves to the table…( my job later was to give the pieces a wash and then put them away) 

She then helped me go through cupboards to get out items that had flowers on them…

Holly was very particular where items should go…

We looked in the box where I keep the mini quilts and Holly chose a lovely one given to me by a friend many years ago.

I was sure I had more floral pieces but waited until Holly had gone home to have a look for them. 

Most of the pieces have been gifts. Occasionally I fall in love with china in shops but resist temptation to buy these days…I have enough! 
This big bowl was a farewell gift/presentation in 2001 from the staff at one of my school postings…very much loved! 

And this vase was presented to me in 1981 when I was going on maternity leave at my first school posting  to have DD1. Another much loved item with lots of good memories. 

So hopefully the garden will catch up soon and put on a spring display as well…

Monday, August 30, 2021

Been MIA for a while…Life in Colour

 I haven’t blogged in quite a while…planned a lot of posts in my head…but never actually got around to writing them. For ages I had been getting regular emails from Google alerting me to the fact that my blog had ‘readability issues’ and I was urged to do something about it. I couldn’t see what the problem was as when I googled my posts, they looked fine. But I followed Google’s directions but still the emails came. A few years ago, the Blogger app became very unstable ( well for me anyway) so I bought an app which seemed to work okay but must have caused ‘readability issues’. Today I’m once again trying out Blogger 🤞🤞. 

But I thought I’d try something relatively easy…a Life in Colour post to finish off August. The colour for August is red. So here we go with some reds…

First photos are the Wiggles car which was on display in the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney in 2018 ( I think) 

Lovely old letterbox in Albany Western Australia…imagine, Queen Victoria was the monarch! 

Next is the little red stool from IKEA that we bought GD #1 for her first Christmas…my theory that it would be very useful turned out to be ‘spot on’! 

For many years, I’ve donated lollipops to the Christmas Stocking project that my knitting group does each year…here’s my trolley with my donations on a rare visit to Costco. 
A red tram coming into Glenelg in South Australia. 
Next photo is of the red netting and red canvas seats in an old air force plane at the museum situated at the Amberley Airforce Base here in Queensland.

Quite a few splashes of red on the wharf on Rottnest Island in Western Australia. DH and I didn’t hire one of those bikes…we caught the little train there on the island.

Santas crocheted by one of the members in my knitting group…these went to needy people in the community as gifts.

Some of the Christmas packages GD Anthea helped me do up for K4BN’s Christmas Stocking Project.

DH in his red shirt standing at a red tram stop in a tramway museum we visited.

The next picture is of a page of my Cliff Richard scrapbook that I made in my teens…somehow this book survived culls and declutters 😜. Without a doubt this book would be at least 51 years old! 
The last photo is a little block with an EPP heart made with a Liberty fabric. 
So joining in with Jude from Travel Words Here

Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Life in Colour

Well March is almost over so next Sunday Jude over at Travel Words here will select a new feature colour for her Life in Colour series. And I ended up finding lots of photos for the Green Theme so this post will be like the last hurrah for green. 😀

Greens on Lantau Island, Hong Kong.
Next up are some greens I spied in Brighton, UK. During our stay in London in 2019, we took a train to this seaside town...a lovely day and some wonderful memories. 

Next is a lovely tranquil spot in the Sun Yet-San Gardens in Vancouver...a delightful garden in that city’s Chinatown area. 

A ride at Santa Monica Pier...we just watched! 

In 2014 DH and I toured the old set of Coronation St, his favourite TV show...this is part of the outdoors set. 

Filming of the interior of the pub was in a set inside the main building at these now demolished studios. 

The next photo is in the Cotswold village of Bibury...I was fascinated by that plant that looked like it belonged in the tropics! 

Next photo is some green in Singapore...

Only a tiny bit of green in this next photo taken in Bunbury, Western Australia. Driving down this suburban street in this town, we just had to stop and check out this front yard. Marge Simpson of course is resplendent in a green frock. Not your average front yard I think! 

Next photo shows the different greens in this sunken garden in Mt Gambier, South Australia. 

The next photo is closer to home...I spied this at our local ( but smallish) shopping Centre. How times have changed since my childhood and even the childhood of my children! 
Looks fun! And the grownups don’t even need to rummage for coins! 

Yep! Just tap the credit card! 

Last Sunday was Palm Sunday which means palm leaves and palm crosses! 

We have a granddaughter who lost a leg due to sepsis. Here she is in a green dress having fun on a green slippery slide. 

My friends in the Sunday Stitchers group found out that there is an Amputee Awareness Month so in November 2019 they honored  Carrie at our monthly meeting by presenting me with 2 bags of story books for her. How special are these lovely ladies. 

The last photo is a meme attributed to John F Kennedy that I shared on my FB page a few years ago. For many years DsD1 and her husband lived on a grazing property and I naturally started to take an interest in the farming/grazing sector so I could be more informed of what the lifestyle entailed. 

How true this is!