All posts by Cathy

About Cathy

I may have retired from work but there's no way I've retired from life! 'So what do you do' someone asked me. 'I live, love and laugh' I replied. 'oh and travel as much as possible' Come along and join in my life and travels - I'll be happy to have you there with me.

I love it…

I certainly love it ….and am very grateful…….when the solutions to my problems are found in the most unexpected places.

I think I mentioned I have a new iPad and I’ve had a problem commenting on blogger/blogspot (what is the correct term?) blogs No problem whatsoever with the old one……pain in the a***** with the new one.

Yesterday John (Going Gently) had a similar problem – Rachel (Rachel Phillips) offered a solution.
So I downloaded the suggested Opera browser and Voila problem sorted.  
Thank you Thank you. Thank you

Now I’ve just got to remember to work through that browser and not go automatically to Safari which is the default.


Not Fun Friday

  • So we’re up in Mildura this past February having a week away with longtime friends from Adelaide. Well before the pandemic explosion, lockdowns and border closures.
  • We take a an evening sunset trip out to Mungo National Park, to the old sheep station along with the giant sand hills called The Great Wall of China.
  • My camera is clicking all the time, something I do willy nilly never knowing what I’ll ‘capture’
  • We’re leaving to make our way down to the bus – I see our friends (who’d had a little tiff earlier) had made up and were already on their way down the hill.
  • Never one to miss an opportunity (and without their permission) I snap away.
  • Certainly not well posed and with it getting darker by the minute this is their moment of togetherness
  • Framed and finally sent to them weeks later I wondered how it would be received

‘Love it Love it Love it’ was the reaction. ‘The two of us wandering off into the sunset – we’re growing old together and all is well with the world’

We get a phone call the other day. The husband had a prang in the car, all is well, just a bump on the head but precautionary body scan had discovered he had prostate cancer! Advanced into his spine! No signs….no symptoms…..picked up by chance.

All is not well with their world !

Chooseday….A day in the life…

It’s TUESDAY! Chooseday!
Today I Choose to Smile. Choose to be Happy. Choose to Love. 

It was a late breakfast for me after a late night spent ‘talking’ to o/seas sisters on fb. Birthday smiles for blond haired one along with thoughts about how life was on her 7th birthday in 1954. We spent it at the pool, one of our baby brother’s first outings since his birth in the July. Living on an airforce camp in Germany at that time was certainly different to life in the UK. And even though the sun was shining we were freezing – those were brave smiles in the water !

A little look at morning tv, general pottering (bed made, dishes done, tidy up) then I chose to have a lovely long daytime bath with Rebecca. Definitely a happy choice! Which took us up to the morning briefing…..I know, I know, I said no more facts & figures…..The Golfer had it on and had made coffee so I couldn’t be rude and walk away. Another 331 new cases plus 19 deaths here in Victoria! So much better (well 0 would be a far better number)than the recent 500/600/700 confirmed cases per day but worse on the death.

He made lunch as well! Gotta love a man who’s willing to feed me! Eaten out the back where it had turned ‘warmish’ enough to sit and knit, though the sun kept playing peekaboo and of course when it was behind clouds it went chilly, so now and again I left the knitting and turned to my cosy chair inside and had more time with Rebecca – which I’m thoroughly enjoying. I’ve discovered ‘the crime’ so there’s not much more to read.

All is not lost tho’ because there’s a Kate Atkinson plus the first in series by both Michael Robotham and Robert Bryndza waiting in the wings……part of the big stash I brought from the library way back in early July. Plus quite a few others I’ve been meaning to read, just sitting on the shelf waiting patiently for their turn.

In amongst the knitting and reading I managed a few weight exercises but my heart wasn’t in it….call me lazy 😊 – yesterday I had a long walk round trundling round the local park several times with some photo stops along the way so will take my allocated 1hr again tomorrow weather permitting (90% chance of rain). I also managed to get tomorrow’s main meal prepared…..plain ol’ savoury mince….now cooking away in the crockpot. Might be topped with mash as Shepherds Pie or maybe just served as is with veg.

It’s late afternoon now, nearly time for one of those quiz shows, then the early news followed by dinner which will also be courtesy of The Golfer – crumbed fish served with steamed veg.. Plain and simple….yes frozen prepared fish but something he can do if I’m not able…..or not here for one reason or another.

After the ‘proper’ ABC news at 7pm – what then? Who knows….
So how was your Tuesday? Did you make the right choices?

Monday Monday….

A little blessing I saw online – a little something for us all

Here’s wishing you….
A great start on Monday 
No obstacles for Tuesday
No stress on Wednesday
No troubles on Thursday
Many smiles on Friday
A joyful Saturday
And a relaxing peaceful Sunday

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

So here it is Monday….how shall I start?

I’ll be the first to say that my life’s been a bit me-me-me recently so knew it was time for me to stop feeling sorry for me and think about others for a change. The latest stricter change in restrictions had me news hungry again, facts and figures hunting……pointing fingers at suburbs with high case numbers, blaming, ‘what on earth are they doing on that side of town, if we can follow the rules why can’t they’. That had to stop, so to clear my head I ‘worked’ on the family for a while last week and was ‘rewarded’ with a couple of photos posted (publicly) on other trees

Say hello to an uncle of my paternal Gt Grandfather John….brother to my GtGt Grandfather John…..or if you prefer,  my 3rd Gt uncle!
 John and Ralph’s father was called Archibald and their grandfather was Ralph – lol….if I had a penny for every descendant in the family called John, Archibald or Ralph I’d be rolling in it. Born in Co Fermanagh, he migrated to Canada as a young married man in the early 1830s where….from the amount of DNA matches I have associated with him…..he grew a large family.

I’d like to introduce you to a sister of Gt Grandfather John, a niece of Ralph (above) … GtGt Aunt Eliza 😊. She’s new to our family…..well she’s obviously been there for a while but I’ve not long met her.   It was DNA matches that sent me to her family and the realisation she really was ‘family’ as in really close to a direct ancestor. Eliza (born in Co Fermanagh) also moved away……as a young married woman to Australia in the 1850s. Firstly to South Australia then on to Victoria! Once this ‘Rona problem’ is fixed and we are free to roam again I’m taking a drive over to Footscray Cemetery to ‘Hello’.

And now I’m ready for my breakfast, porridge fruit and coffee today.
How are you keeping your mind busy? Our 2nd wave here in Victoria doesn’t seem to be subsiding so I’m wondering if this 6 week hard lockdown is going to be enough.

Nothing to do and all day to do it…

One week of August gone and nothing on the calendar except for a hair appointment made weeks ago (not valid now due to stricter restrictions) and a GP appointment also made weeks ago (still valid – practice open following very strict guidelines)

It’s been one week of bitter cold weather that made its way up from the Antartica – I realise the weather gods will never please everyone but I’d much prefer the hot blast making its way to Europe from the Sahara (the one I’ve been reading about on some blogs). The snow came the other day….not actually in my garden but I could feel It in the air (and my bones)…… and now we have rain and high winds to look forward to….going to be interesting….I see there’s a severe weather warning plus a sheep graziers warning flagged……..let’s just say it’s a good job we don’t have anywhere to go to

We’re busy doing nothin’

Workin’ the whole day through 

Tryin’ to find lots of things not to do 
(Bing Crosby, Cedric Hardwicke, and William Bendix)

Looks like I’ll be taking my lead from the cat!

You know
Having nothing to do would be good if it wasn’t because of such a serious matter.


We’ve been there….

East Alligator River Crossing
aka Cahills Crossing.
Northern Territory Australia
Ford across East Alligator River where dangerous salt water crocodiles may be seen close – up or more safely from the track of the Manngarre Walk through a monsoon vine forest.

Something turned up on fb today that reminded me of a trip The Golfer and I took
up to the Northern Territory many years ago.
I wrote a little bit about it in another post HERE
(photos….which have deteriorated a bit…. were taken in 1992)

We drove from Melbourne to Adelaide
where we hitched a ride (both for us and the car) on The Ghan to Alice Spring
(It only went that far then)
and made our way on up the Stuart Highway to Darwin

We went out and about visiting as much as we could
Came across Cahills Crossing one day but decided not to cross
The water is tidal and deceptive. higher than you think
and the mention of ‘swimming handbags’ on signs
puts me off anything 😊

And this is what turned up in my feed that brought back that memory. The car in the video is going towards the high side, towards the side where I took my photos from.

Now for something different……

Wouldn’t it be great to say I’d done something different – unfortunately here in Victoria it’s still the same ol’ same ol’…….well that’s not quite true but it’s too involved to try and explain 😒

We have to look on the bright side though and I’m sure that in a few months time we’ll be able to do something different……again.

Mind you, over the last couple of weeks I did find something to do that I hadn’t done for a while – I put the ‘big boys’ knitting to one side and had a go at these…..again







Trawling through some older parts of the blog turned up this post from 2018 which along with this one from 2012 reminded me that giving should be fun……not just knitting from one end of the row to the other.

A couple of little Teds, and what look like squares which (if you follow the instructions in the 2012 post) will turn into basic fingerless mittens, are keeping me occupied at the moment.

I’m still feeling the disappointment of my last read so decided that it was time for one of those ‘I really should read this sometime’ books ……one that after being rescued from an op shop has been lying neglected on a shelf here at home for years.

So far so good, after a ‘strange’ courtship Maxim and his new wife have just arrived at Manderley. Small (tiny) print means it’s daytime reading, I have to concentrate so it’ll be read (and savoured) in small doses. Decisions Decisions – oh what to do….. read or knit. I suppose finishing Ted’s faces would definitely be a start 🙂

Ginny from Small Things hosts a monthly meme called Yarn Along  Sort of a ‘show and tell’ featuring the knitting and reading you’ve been doing recently. Do pop over and see what others have been up to.

Lower your expectations

I certainly didn’t expect the flowers in the little posy gifted from my daughter

To have deteriorated so much by the end of the week.
I had to cull the old and add some new to make what looked like brand new posy.

Honestly, lockdown 2 is doing my head in. I’m wondering what I did expect
When I had them in the lounge room with the heating on and as we all know,
fresh flowers and heating don’t go together.

I’m wondering what else my addled brain will let me do this coming week?

An it’ll do day….

Yesterday was almost perfect, one of those ‘just out of the bandbox’ days. A fraction chilly overnight (3°c) then bright sunny dry and for just a little while nearly warm enough for short sleeves. If all winter days were like that I wouldn’t mind being trapped in Victoria and not sunning myself in Qld. Looked outside first thing and thought It’ll be a perfect washing day then sort out the freezer day. I know I know, very humdrum but it has to be done now and again 😊.

Costco had trays of Osso Bucco cut of veal, good sized pieces, each with plenty of meat as well as the ring of bone filled with the lovely marrow, decided to slow cook that for today’s main meal. So looking in the freezer I’m thinking , I’ll just add some extra stewing beef that’ll stretch it to more than one meal, and also I can add the remains of the beef joint I sliced and froze thinking It could be minced and used for shepherds pie….which hasn’t happened and with a little extra liquid maybe I could squeeze 3 days from it.

Onions – tick. Tinned tomatoes- tick. Garlic – oops no fresh not even a jar of minced. Change of plan……plain tinned toms out – ones with added basil & garlic in. Oregano – tick. Thyme – no. Well there’s some mixed herbs in the cupboard which are Thyme Sage & Marjoram…..that’ll do A couple of Oxo cubes for the stock. The kitchen smelt good all day, It might taste a little different but I’m sure it’ll do 😊

Pumpkin soup making turned into an ‘it’ll have to do’ exercise as well. Had the pumpkin and onion chopped then realised no carrots left. Last time I shopped the supermarket was out of them; none loose or bagged not even the cheaper Odd weird shaped Ones. Looks like I forgot to get some from elsewhere. No sweet potato either in the fridge so I ended up cooking pumpkin and white potato soup. With the weather coming up next week it’ll do nicely for lunch.

What weather I hear you ask.
Well this was the forecast when I looked last night and if they’ve got it right today will be like yesterday, then it’s downhill as we’re in for a cool/cold wet week. Just a slight additional word on Tuesday and Wednesday that’s a little off putting. One of those four lettered words I’m not keen on – like wash, cook, iron, mend…….SNOW.
It mentions Mt Dandenong – that’s a bit close for comfort. Right on our doorstep, just a little drive up the road. Hopefully we won’t see it down here in the foothills but I think the soup’s going to come in handy!

It’ll be a day in the garden today – not sitting sunning my self in my sunnies with my knitting by my side but digging, weeding, raking. I’ve looked at it all winter and kept saying to my self – it’ll get done one day. That’ll be today I think. Hope your Sunday is a good one.

Over to you….

Friday’s here and it’s time for some fun

All those years ago I wasn’t a ‘real’Beatles fan, I might have known a lot of the words, they were hard to miss being played on the radio all the time but I didn’t wait with baited breath for their next album to be released….heck, I couldn’t even tell you the names of their albums.

Anyway I saw this somewhere and thought it would be good for Fun Friday 😊

I’ll go first with one I do remember – Yellow Submarine
Who’d like to go next??

Sometimes you do, sometimes you don’t……

Have you ever wanted something to happen but the more you keep hoping the less it seems to be happening.

I’m always looking for book recommendations, open to suggestions like ‘this is a good read or even a great read’, sometimes I react the same way as the person who gave it, sometimes I don’t.  Recently  I couldn’t get the actual novel recommended and because lockdown restrictions meant I couldn’t come and go as I wanted I plumped for another by the same author (an enjoyable read according to the blogger)…….now I wish I’d waited until the original choice became available at the library.

The Holiday – T. M. Logan

It was supposed to be the perfect holiday – a group of families enjoying a week together in the sun. Four women who have been best friends for as long as they can remember making the most of a luxurious villa in the south of France.

But Kate has a secret: her husband is having an affair. And a week away might just be the perfect opportunity to get the proof she needs – to catch him in the act once and for all. Because she suspects the other woman is one of her two best friends.

Oh dear, such a slow tedious start, too many characters each with their own back stories, too confusing, too many revelations and secrets in each and every chapter.                          Strange ending.

This was one that I didn’t enjoy – Lets just leave it at that 😊


It only takes one…..

Two constants during these strange times have been a High School bus going past at two minutes to eight 5 days of the week (some students are still having face to face lessons) and bin day for us on Monday! If those were happening it was almost as if all was well with the world.

Out here in the east we’ve been ‘lucky’..if that’s the right word…to have very few cases in our LGA (Yarra Ranges council/shire). With this 2nd wave we’ve followed the guidelines, accepted restrictions (willingly or otherwise), exercised locally, donned our masks, knowing all the ‘action’ has been on the other side of the city.

Just up the road from us (about 10 min walk) is a retirement/aged care village complex that’s been there for a very long time. With a very long waiting list for an independent unit plus same for accomodation in the attached nursing home it’s like trying to get a membership to the MCC (Melbourne Cricket Club)…….you’re going to be waiting a long time for one to become available.

Sadly (as has been the way with all the aged care clusters) an undiagnosed staff member has infected residents (as well as other staff) with more and more becoming casualties as the week has gone by. The case numbers have soared resulting in all the nursing home residents being ‘evacuated’ to local hospitals set aside for this purpose.

You know, after all these months it’s difficult to comprehend that even with the best of hygiene practices as well all the precautions necessary it still happens.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

With all that on my mind seeing this on fb today had me in tears. I know this rotten virus doesn’t discriminate where age is concerned but so many of the deaths have been older people who once in hospital could have no visitors. ‘Saying goodbye’ is an important part in life…..and death…..for everyone.

What will we do without them – Juan Lucena

Bin day for the street across the way is Wednesday…….I heard someone dragging a wheelie bin up a drive earlier on. The high school is still open for yr12 VCE students (at the moment)…..the bus will trundle past just before 8am tomorrow so I take it life will go on….just not quite as it was before because IT has found it’s way out east.

Stay Home – Stay Safe – Stay Well – Tell them you love ‘em

A week is a long time….

I’m sure we all have them.
A week of highs and lows. 
In no particular order here are some of mine from last week

The dreaded C virus is still wreeking havoc with life for us Victorians.
High case numbers each day, sadly high death numbers as well.  Well meaning ‘lectures’ on not taking this second lockdown seriously haven’t gone down well with some of the community.  Wearing a mask is now mandatory…..with no finish date supplied that also hasn’t gone down well with some.

I got to go to the hairdressers again!
Unlike other countries, here in Australia they are classed as ‘essential services’ so after last week’s approved ‘mask less’ appointment I made another another one…….it’s going to be interesting having a trim with a mask on.

Some of Mr Morrison’s money or to give it it’s ‘proper’ name – The Economic Support Payment’ was spent.   My very old iPad mini was replaced by a new one delivered to my door. Well, placed on the ground in front of the door after I’d identified myself.

For my needs there’s not a lot of difference, the main plus is it’s much faster and I can now load apps I couldn’t on the old one. I think I’ve got enough jigsaw apps to keep me entertained for a lifetime – here’s hoping this lockdown doesn’t last that long!

There are a couple of things I have to look into though – I can’t comment on blogger blogs, so have to use the old one. Can be frustrating! And the camera takes some strange coloured photos.  All I did on the camellia up above was not move position (where I was standing) but zoom in and the flower colour changed from wish washy to closer to true. This bloom is very early, the amount of buds is a promise of things to come later.

This is going to sound like a broken record……we had wet days, dry days, dull days, bright sunny days, beautiful sunrises followed by freezing cold days where the temp. did not reach the forecast.  The good thing is those sunrises are coming earlier than they were a month ago.  Yes, the season’s changes are becoming noticeable.  ‘Close the curtains’ time is getting later as well – for geeky readers, Sunrise, Sunset and Daylength (worldwide) can be found HERE

We have lived in this house for over 40yrs so why am I just noticing a draught round my knees.  

If the furniture hasn’t been rearranged for several years and they weren’t apparent before where are they coming from?   lol we haven’t spent a winter at home for years so maybe they’ve been there all the time 😊  It’s an older house so windows have been checked, doors closed,  I’m beginning to sound like my father when The Golfer goes outside……I have memories of him yelling ‘shut that b*******door, I’m heating a house not the whole b****** neighbourhood’! Roll on Summer!

Kathy ( kathy’s kampground kapers) lost her ‘wife’. Kevin had been a long time permanent at her van park for many years, Friday was the day we knew was coming but didn’t want to read about. This post is a beautiful tribute to her friend.

And to finish, this lovely little posy arrived the other day.  From our big girl, she knows her mother well…..the card read – just something to brighten your day’

I’m looking forward to my breakfast and a ‘nice cup of tea’……coffee later.  The Golfer has been experimenting with our oldish machine and different pods – a high and a low I’ll tell you about another day.  Oh and how was your week just gone?  Any highs or lows – you would like to share ?

Little did we know….

Back in early January this year we certainly didn’t know that these talented people would soon become household names and faces, appearing daily on our television screens.

Federal and State CMOs (Chief Medical Officers)…. acting, .deputy and recently retired
Thrown into the limelight with daily televised press conferences – they present facts and figures, taking and answering questions- all of them soft spoken, knowledgeable likeable lads.

They’re public servants not politicians – they serve the public in a different way
They are medical advisors – They care!

Victorian Health Officers
Australian Medical Advisors

Dr Nick Coatsworth.
Professor Brendon Murphy.
(Recently retired from position of Australia’s Chief Medical Officer)
Professor Michael Kidd 
Professor Paul Kelly 
Professor Brett Sutton – Victorian Chief Health Officer


Some things are passing me by…

Obviously I haven’t been taking much notice of fashion this year. What’s In and What’s Out has passed me by. Well, I suppose I could be forgiven because, what with all the restrictions and ’worry’ about you know what, I haven’t exactly been wandering round large shopping centres gazing in the windows of any clothing retailers. And not going out and about dining meant I didn’t get to see what anyone else was wearing either.

For some people there’s nothing worse than having someone else turn up to an event wearing the same dress – one of the perils of ‘High Street’ shopping.

So taking a break early last Saturday afternoon, catching up on the ‘daily figures’ I couldn’t help but smile and take a quick snap these two – not quite the same as turning up in the same dress but not far off😊

Miriam Corowa (abc news presenter) & Stephanie Borys (abc political reporter)

They both smiled – none of the kerfuffle of the 2017 ‘white shirt controversy’ that happened on another channel.

Looks like polka dot time snuck in under the radar…….It appears the Zoe Report mentioned their return in an article back in February this year (Which I must have missed 😊) obviously slanted at northern hemisphere readers but there are quite a few down here who always want to….maybe even for reasons unknown have to ….have and wear the latest fashion trends.

So I’m wondering ……..if by the time we are allowed out and about again and can dine properly, sitting down, being waited on, eating with proper cutlery as well, as opposed to takeaway food in a plastic container with supplied plastic cutlery ………and I wear my vintage polka dot scarf, will it be classed as a fashionable accessory……or will it have gone out of fashion (again) by then??  

(But then again it will come in handy – our State Government has decided there is a need to wear face coverings/masks outside the home…..from tomorrow)

These days I’m not a slave to fashion….truth be told never have been….but for some reason I do like to know what’s hot and what’s not. How about you ?

Little things

Shopping yesterday at two different supermarkets noticing :-

  • More mask wearers at the one in an area with an older population. Gov recommends (at the moment) only if you can’t ‘social distance’ say in a supermarket That will change on Thursday.

Driving yesterday noticing:-

  • The cost of fuel had risen. A big rise too. Since when did that happen? You can tell I haven’t needed to fill up for a while

Looking at my blog stats yesterday, for the first time in a long time noticing:-

  • An awful lot of hits from people (maybe real maybe otherwise) in China. On the actual URL not particular posts like bots do. Starting about the same time the Federal Gov. mentioned something similar……coincidence or not……surely they aren’t hoping to pick up ‘secrets’ from bloggers. Move along whoever you are, nothing to find here 😊

Well that gave me something to think about last night.

  • How will the younger shoppers cope – will they be willing to fork out $200 if caught sans mask outside their home?
  • Is the price rise on petrol a ploy to keep us all at home. So many have lost their jobs, money’s tight, we’re not supposed to be going out of our suburbs.
  • As far as the blog stats go – I’ve no idea, I can’t control it, best not to look at them. Cop out I know

Oh and there was stacks and stacks of toilet rolls available – still limited to 2 packs per customer. And for some reason only 1 pack of bacon per customer irregardless of size.

Today has been cold and wet and the only thing I’ve thought seriously about is whether we’ll have sausage and mash for dinner this evening or should I defrost the other half of the casserole I cooked on Saturday!

There were things….

There were things that were not being done.
Beds not being made properly – just pulled to.  Dishes piled high until the mood strikes.
Unless an effort was made meals were sort of an afterthought.
Blog reading and commenting here and elsewhere took a back seat
Even daily exercise took a battering.

Bands and weights looking very forlorn and forgotten on the outside table

All the oomph and energy seemed to have disappeared……The word ‘should’ was bandied around a lot……..Now the word is will !

All these I can do at home – inside – if it’s a bit chilly on the deck.
Reminders of how things were – and now I’m making an effort – the way things will be!

And with this fella there to encourage who could not try 😊

On the road again…the Road to Recovery

Just in time

I passed some of my recent ‘want to be alone’ time finishing off and packing up woollies from my donation box. Knitting all the pieces is the easy part, piecing together and finishing off is what takes the time…….and effort in some cases… picking up round the armholes and neck of these sleeveless vests.

The box had been emptied back in May when the charity started operating again, gosh there was so much in there it was full to overflowing but that was because of the original ‘lockdown’ when everything came to a standstill. So because I didn’t want them to build up again and just be sitting here at home rather than be available for distribution I decided to ‘move them on’ when I had half a dozen ready to go.

Once the ‘Big Boys’ Guernsey (mentioned in this post) was finished it joined a few others plus the vests and they were off and on their way. Just in time as we went back into hibernation lockdown a week later……unfortunately they’re going to be sitting around somewhere else waiting for the time the charity can reopen and begin sorting and filling orders again 😊

So now it’s on to other things – back to baby size or carry on with the 2yr old?
Now I’m feeling more myself I do have one thing on the go
Hey Linda – look at the new project!
Yes Teddy is in the making 😊

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
I’m trying out the newish editor – yes WordPress is going the way of Blogger!
It uses blocks and seems to have a very flat regimented look to it. Flown by the seat of my pants this time, I’m going to have to do some reading & learning I think.
Also I can’t find a way to vary the size of the photos – so big it is !