Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Hiss and ...

Today my fears were confirmed.  Our bathroom modifications will not finish on Friday, as promised.  Sometime next week is as definite as they are prepared to go.

I am peeved, sad and overwhelmed.   I am also well aware that it is a very minor problem on a global stage.  Just the same, for the next day or so...




And I may not be colouring between the lines either...  So there.

I will put on my big girl panties again shortly.

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Sunday Selections #194

Sunday Selections was originally brought to us by Kim, of Frogpondsrock, as an ongoing meme where participants could post previously unused photos languishing in their files. 

The meme is now continued by River at Drifting through life.  The rules are so simple as to be almost non-existent.  Post some photos under the title Sunday Selections and link back to River.  Clicking on any of the photos will make them embiggen.

Like River I usually run with a theme.  We had a very wet day here on Tuesday.  The builders were feeling sorry for themselves... and I was feeling sorry for the birds.





The next day the sun came out, but there were still clouds around.  Which gave us a wonderful sunset.  Subtle to begin with, but blazing by the end.








On Friday the builders only made a brief and token appearance (drat them) and didn't manage to actually do anything,  As they sauntered in with their cocky tradie's walk they completely missed seeing the king parrot camouflaged in the camellia by our front door.  Their loss.





Sunday, 12 October 2014

Sunday Selections #193

Sunday Selections was originally brought to us by Kim, of Frogpondsrock, as an ongoing meme where participants could post previously unused photos languishing in their files. 

The meme is now continued by River at Drifting through life.  The rules are so simple as to be almost non-existent.  Post some photos under the title Sunday Selections and link back to River.  Clicking on any of the photos will make them embiggen.

Like River I usually run with a theme. Things have been a tad busy here (and yes that understatement is my English heritage coming to the fore).  Just a few photos this week.  The banksia rose and snowball tree along our back fence and the back deck - which is a haven of peace for much of the year.




I have really, really appreciated the support and the warmth of your comments on my last post.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.

So far only one glitch has raised its ugly head.  For unknown reasons the powerpoint for the bathroom has been installed inside the new shaving cupboard.  WTF?  And of course we only noticed it after the relevant tradies had left for the day - leaving no contact details.  It will be resolved next week.  Whether they realise it or not.


Monday, 6 October 2014

Tomorrow

For quite some time now for a variety of reasons I have been putting myself to the back of the queue and treating myself with ignore.

Which is wrong.  And I know it is, and am (slowly) starting to do something about it.

My MS is progressing and, like the unwelcome visitor it is, has made itself right at home.  My pain levels are up, my fatigue levels are up.  Other manifestations include a foggy and forgetful brain.  Muscle spasms.  Spasticity.   My hands and legs are reluctant to obey simple commands and I am never quite sure where they are.

Which has become dangerous.  Our shower is on a hob and I have to step up and over a metal lip to get into it.  I have damaged my toes multiple times and I am always bruised .  And I am well aware that a dramatic fall is a real possibility.  Probability even.

So I have bitten the bullet and we are having extensive bathroom modifications.  Extensive and obscenely expensive modifications.  Which will take three weeks to complete.

The existing shower will be ripped out and replaced with a walk-in one.  Which has to be located (for drainage reasons) on the other side of the room so the bath will have to go.  The floor will be pulled up and non slip tiles laid.  Grab rails.  And, since we are doing this much I have agreed to replace the vanity (which has to be moved anyway) with a wheel-chair accessible one (which with luck I won't need for some time).  As an aside, we cannot buy a wheel-chair accessible vanity here.  It has to be custom made.  A stand alone basin?  No problems.  One with a bench so I can have soap, a toothbrush and other things to hand?  Nope.  Hiss and spit.  Some drawers wouldn't go astray either.

I have been wishing painful haemorrhoids on most of the tradesmen who came to give us quotes.  Two of them gave us quotes which included items we hadn't requested and didn't want or need.  They also ignored things we had requested, and included vague statements such as 'if asbestos is present the quoted price will increase'.  When I asked questions they disappeared faster than speeding bullets. 

There is another bathroom in the house but it is, if anything, less accessible than the one that we are having modified.  The work starts at seven thirty tomorrow morning and the next three weeks look like being chaotic.  Builders, plumbers, electricians, plasterers, tilers and painters.  And the asbestos removal team because there is sheet asbestos in the bathroom.  The tradesman we selected tested for it.  $1400 to have it removed and disposed of.  Sigh.

Jazz loathes and detest visitors, particularly white van men, and will piddle copiously and inappropriately to express his displeasure and reclaim his territory.  Jewel will retire to the wardrobe and moult up a storm. Part of me sympathises with them both. 

I am tired and overwrought even before it starts and expect to be largely absent from the blogosphere.

And on a much more serious note my youngest brother is also having issues with asbestos.  Much more serious issues which make my heart hurt for him and his wife.

Between 1968 and 1979, a private contractor from Canberra known as "Mr Fluffy" (such an innocent sounding business name) insulated residential dwellings by pumping friable loose asbestos fibres into the roof cavities.  And my brother's home is a Mr Fluffy home.   The house was insulated before his wife bought it.  In 1990 when the danger of loose asbestos was better understood it was removed.  And we now learn that residual asbestos remains.  And there is no safe level.  At the moment it appears likely that the house will have to be demolished.  And they will get no choice about it.  A compulsory reacquisition and demolition.  When?  No-one knows.  Who pays for it?  No-one knows.  Has the asbestos contaminated their furniture and clothing?  Perhaps.  Testing will take place.  When?  No-one knows.  So they are in limbo.  And worried for their health, for  the health of his wife's children (who grew up in the house) and for that of the visiting grandchildren.  So I have my fingers, toes and eyes crossed.  Which adds to my mobility issues.

Have fun in my absence.  I will miss you, but will be back in the fullness of time.  And with luck will be able to stop in on the weekends at least.  


Sunday, 5 October 2014

Sunday Selections #192

Sunday Selections was originally brought to us by Kim, of Frogpondsrock, as an ongoing meme where participants could post previously unused photos languishing in their files. 

The meme is now continued by River at Drifting through life.  The rules are so simple as to be almost non-existent.  Post some photos under the title Sunday Selections and link back to River.  Clicking on any of the photos will make them embiggen.

Like River I usually run with a theme.  I am back in our garden this week.  The blood, sweat and tears I have expended in it have been paying dividends.  And I need to get back into it before the weather heats up any more.

The daffodils are largely finished now, but other things are coming out in droves.  Particularly the weeds.  All of these photos were taken in the last ten days or so.

Honesty - which does grow like a weed.









Delphinium




Wallflower
 

Sunday, 28 September 2014

Sunday Selections #191

Sunday Selections was originally brought to us by Kim, of Frogpondsrock, as an ongoing meme where participants could post previously unused photos languishing in their files. 

The meme is now continued by River at Drifting through life.  The rules are so simple as to be almost non-existent.  Post some photos under the title Sunday Selections and link back to River.  Clicking on any of the photos will make them embiggen.

Like River I usually run with a theme.   And this week I will be (mostly) focusing on splashes of colour.  When we were at Tulip Tops last week I was admiring the pansy and viola faces that were the underplantings for most of the tulip beds.  And as I took a photo or six I remembered that Delores likes pansy faces too...









 

And a clump of Spring Star Flowers (Tritelea) which are thriving in our garden.


And for something completely different, Jewel.  She loves boxes and bags, and is very skilled at getting our shopping bags out in the small hours and having a wonderful time playing...







Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Tulip Top Gardens 2014

My self indulgence in spring gardens continues.

Last week we went to Floriade and on Monday of this week we continued our spring garden pilgrimage.  Floriade and the Tulip Top Gardens are open for the same period each year.  Floriade is a local government initiative, and Tulip Top Gardens are the brain child and the blood, sweat and tears of a single family.

Tulip Top Gardens are a little way out of town, 13 kilometres from the showground, and in another state (New South Wales).  They are just off the highway - and a million light years from it.

Both gardens are a riot of colour but there are a lot of differences.

Floriade is free to enter.  Tulip Top Gardens charges $14 for an adult (with senior concessions).  Included in that fee is unlimited tea and coffee and if you arrive around lunch time a sausage sandwich is thrown in (which usually gives the skinny one a big lunch).  Despite the entry fee Tulip Top is a great deal less commercial.  There is one shop where you can buy food, one garden shop and a couple of other stalls.  And this year, on our way out we picked up some free pansy tubes.  They have been planted and are flowering their hearts out in a pot on our back deck.   

Tulip Top Gardens was established in 1997 by one couple, and is still owned and run by the same family.  Each year over half a million bulbs and flowers are planted by hand.  Which puts my efforts to shame.  There are over 1000 blossom trees, a waterfall and watercourse.  The sound of frogs is everywhere - and some day I will see one there.  Classical music is wafted from the trees and there are chairs littered around the garden to sit and absorb the splendour - or, as I noticed several people doing, to nod off in the sun.  It is set in 10 acres, and has a water course, a water fall and a stunning look out.

Like Floriade, Tulip Top Gardens are not fully out yet.  There are blossom trees still to come, and more tulips.  Unlike Floriade, we have every intention of going back next week or the week after to revel some more.

Less rabitting, more photos.  And be warned, there are many, many photos.  I have mentioned my lack of restraint haven't I?  Clicking will, as always, embiggen.

This is what greeted us at the top of the (steep) walk down to the gardens.  A walk I take every year despite there being level access for those who want or need it.  And, with luck, next time we go this path will be through an avenue of flowering crab apple.




Looking to the left.


Looking straight ahead.


Looking to the right, which is the direction I took when I reached the bottom.







The waterfall trickles into this pool.



Walking on.

 











The forsythia avenue is something I look forward to every year.  And the underplanting of pansies and violas sets it off beautifully. 




And then to the look out.  It is a steep walk, and one I find difficult.  Each year I wonder whether I can do it.  And perservere.  Wouldn't you?






Down again - with just a few more of the many, many photos I took.  Ok, I am a stranger to the truth.  Quite a few more photos.





















Isn't it beautiful?  I will go to Floriade each and every year but Tulip Top Gardens has first place in my heart.  And is considerably less crowded too.