Where Have All The Flours Gone? Long time Passing.

This week I went to The Hospital to participate in a pretend ward round for the almost graduating doctors. They have a small replica ward and there were four patients and we all had a scenario to play. I was being me, with a relapse. An actor was playing a dementia patient and caused havoc all around the ward and he even ran away from his doctors!! Though the bed wasn't terribly comfortable, it was a very restful three and a half hours. I changed into my pyjamas and my next door neighbour gave me some honey bear lollies to eat. We had cups of tea and sandwiches at half time.

Pretend Hospital

Last week I did actually feel quite poorly and had a couple of days in bed. Luckily one was Wednesday and we don't go for a walk, and I roused myself to take The Labradors for a walk on Thursday and then I could sleep contentedly knowing they had their exercise. The weather has been typical Spring weather: hailstorms, heavy rain, wind and then warm sunny days. No-one knows what to wear or if they should take their umbrella or not.

Hedy has learned a new trick. When she plays with Sandy, she does evasive roly polys to try and get the better of him. She is so funny, and after all the rolling on the grass also very wet. Gilly doesn't play. She likes to wander about investigating all the smells, and (I am sorry to say) eating wallaby pooh.

Gilly went to see Dr David last week and we had good news again. Her blood results were all in the normal range and this week she only has to take one blue tablet each day, and we don't have to go back for a month!! Lorelai Gilmore is so happy, she wags her tail on her walk and she is naughty at home: I caught her in the kitchen!!!!

Gilly at the vet

She is still very hungry all the time and likes to eat her food up on the step, so she can be higher than Hedy Lamarr. Hedy likes to try and steal Gilly's food.

How Gilly eats her breakfast

Hedy is so big now and she can be quite defiant. She knows she mustn't jump up when someone comes home, so she sits perfectly: and barks crossly. If it is later in the evening, Gilly is always waiting at the gate, but during the day they are both there. They are not allowed at the back gate because they bark at dogs going past, but if I am at the car, I let them have a special gate treat!!!

Gilly and Hedy waiting at the gate

I had meant to blog last week, but on Thursday and Friday my internet was interrupted. Earlier this year I was without a landline for five weeks, and finally my ISP apologised and gave me some compensation and upgraded me to a better plan. I was very pleased, but no-one explained clearly that being upgraded meant an interruption to the internet!! It was all fixed by later on Friday, but I lost the will to bake and blog!!

Our knitting group had a Dessert Degustation. One of our number is undertaking a Hospitality course and she has been cooking with some famous chefs, like Tetsuya!!! We were lucky enough to experience these culinary delights from our talented chef:

Dessert degustation 1

Poh's White chocolate ganache tart with raspberries, creme caramel and chickpea brownie with berry compote and whipped coconut cream. I couldn't eat the chocolate brownie, and I couldn't even fit in a second slice of the delicious white chocolate tart!! The creme caramel was so smooth and the caramel so yummy.

Dessert degustation 2

The final dessert was Tetsuya's Granny Smith apple granita with apple jelly. We didn't know about the tiny hidden apple jelly cubes so they were a wonderful surprise. This may have been my favourite. To finish we had three truffles, I can't remember what the dark chocolate one was, but the other two were saffron and cumin I think, and then a spiced rum and coconut. It was a marvellous selection of desserts and no-one had room for dinner.

Hedy has also been using food, but not in a good way. While I was sleeping she chose some plain flour from the shopping bag and then opened it and played with it, in the loungeroom, on the carpet. I am not sure how to remove it as it has set in a crusty layer. The darker spots are where she has tried to nibble the flour. She is still very much a puppy.

Hedy's flour explosion

But look at her: even when she is lying in wait for Gilly half way up the steps, she is as cute as a giant button!! I think that might be flour on her nose.

Hedy waits to jump on Gilly

I am knitting a hat for WeeJock and Bessie's dad. It will be the Five by Five, Faith Hat and I am using some lovely soft Inca Spun Tweed in grey. I have knitted a ball of wool since lunch time and only have another 5cm to work until the crown decreases. I think I shall finish it tomorrow!!

5 by 5 faith hat start

Hedy always gets a sudden urge to play rough and rowdy rebel games at bedtime. There is an awful lot of refereeing to do and maybe a little cider vinegar squirting. Oh no, now she is blowing bubbles in the water bowl. She is fascinated by the patterns the water makes in the light, and so we have a towel under the inside water bowl now. Thank goodness for Lorelai Gilmore!!!


Now It's Music I've Found, And I'm Tired, I'll Sleep Sound.

Oh I am so tired. I am beyond tired. Today we went for a walk and unexpectedly met Rafa and his dad. Hedy played so much she had to have a little lie down.

Hedy the ball Rafa

Then I had my hair cut and this afternoon I went to be a Patient-Partner at the Hospital. Seven people searched for, found and then palpated my spleen.  An enlarged spleen is a rarity, so the almost newly minted doctors and their tutors were excited to feel my spleen. I also had to exert myself so that they could hear the murmur in my heart. And get on the bed, off the bed, several times. I want to go to sleep, but I know if we go to bed now, I shall be awake in the middle of the night again.

Lorelai Gilmore is feeling very well. We met a new puppy, Sebastian, but I don't have a decent photo of him. Hedy, Sandy and Rafa played with him. Gilly?? No, Gilly met Sebastian's human and ascertained immediately that she had treats in her pocket. Gilly has never met a pocket full of treats she doesn't love!!

Gilly, never met a pocket she didn't like

Lorelai Gilmore has her "asking for a treat" face and paw down pat. Look at that face.

Gilly asking for a treat

Hedy Lamarr never passes up a treat, she also never passes up a muddy puddle.

Hedy in the muddy puddle

When Hedy bites Gilly, I squirt a little diluted apple cider vinegar at her. I only had to do this a few times before she realised what it meant. After that I just had to show her the bottle and say "No!". Unfortunately I left the bottle on the desk and Hedy wrought her revenge quickly, chewing off the top.

Hedy's revenge

I have been knitting something from Craftsy's new free Autumn Knit-along . They say Fall, I say Autumn. It is a gift, so I have not shown it as it truly is. I am very pleased though. It was a fun knit and looks great too.

Some knitting

I've also been trying to eat more vegetables. Tonight I had peas, sweet potatoes and potato. Yesterday I had some carrots, Hasselback potatoes with bacon and broccolini (not shown).

Bacon-y potatoes

I am tired in other ways too. A female politician has said she felt bullied by a male politician. The male Premier has decided there is no case to answer and the male politician apologised for his tone, but not the bullying. Now he is saying that he is the victim. How is it that he seems to have turned the whole thing around and made it about him?? The Premier says there should be mediation, but I think there should be a proper third party inquiry. I don't believe that putting a bully, and the person they bullied together is a good idea. I think it can give more power to the bully. No-one really know what happened, but the male politician threatening to sue anyone who discusses it seems wrong.

It is still a man's world.

Today is International Day of the Girl and a survey released shows that two-thirds of girls believe that gender inequality is a persistent problem in Australia. 40% say they do more chores than the boys in their family and only 16% feel they are valued for their brains and ability. Things have changed, but not enough. It seems that because girls have been given the same opportunities as boys, boys feel they have had something taken away from them. And when women are given equal opportunities to men, men also feel that they have lost out: I am speaking generally. I think of the way Julia Gillard was, and Hillary Clinton is, treated so poorly by men and by the media. I despair of old rich entitled white men. Women and men are certainly different, but deserve the same opportunities and respect. A few weeks ago I found a credit card on the road behind my parked car. I took the card to the police station and I had to fill in a form. The form was all "he", "him" and "his". Not even a pretence of "s/he". I do feel not as equal when simple things such as government forms only have male pronouns. I would like to see all forms with just female pronouns and then tell men that these pronouns are inclusive. I don't feel included.

What else can I talk about?? The Plebiscite for Same Sex Marriage. I cannot for the life of me work out why I can have a vote-that-might-not-even-be-worthwhile about same sex marriage, but not one about going to war or the deficit. It does seem now that The Plebiscite might be off. I think couples should be able to be married in a civil ceremony. Everyone should have a civil ceremony and then they can have their marriage blessed, or whatever, in a church if that is what they choose. And churches should be able to refuse if they want to. I don't want to interfere in their religion. I can't think of one good reason why there should not be same sex marriage. The arguments used against it sound oh so familiar to those used against African Americans, against our Aborigines and against women. And saying that children deserve a mother and a father?: even fifteen years ago in my classroom most of the children's parents were no longer together in their original family unit. There were single mums, single dads, people who had remarried, people whose spouse had died, the list goes on. I believe children are better off with two people, or one person, who loves them, rather than with two people who hate being together and make their home an unhappy or unsafe place.

I feel like Hillary after saying all that!!

And I just can't even start thinking about Donald Trump.

There. I've managed to while away an hour. Time for a cup of tea, maybe another episode of Fringe and then sleep. Tomorrow there is no walk, we don't walk on Wednesdays, so I plan to sleep all morning.

And now I plan to press "Publish" and be damned.


Don't Go Cake-ing My Heart

Gilly is doing well. Dr David is very pleased with her progress, and my own GP thinks she is doing well too. She has the correct amount of platelets and her Red Blood Cells are below normal, but not terribly much so.  I didn't realise how well she was responding until we again met The Golden Retriever with the same thing. He has been very unwell, can't eat, has lot 3kg and has a large sore on his back. Gilly is doing very well indeed.

There are no blood tests this week, but we are going to visit The Vet and have some lovely pats and tasty treats so Lorelai Gilmore doesn't think going to The Vet is a not-very-nice thing. Still, there are Liver treats and Gilly thoroughly inspects the room to make sure she has them all.

Gilly at the vet

Gilly is enjoying her walks again and can keep pace, more or less, with Hedy Lamarr if she wants to. This is a terrible picture, but it shows how much Gilly has improved: she trots along, tail wagging, interested in what she can find and see.

Gilly and Hedy as normal

There are a lot of smells to be smelled.

Gilly on the trail of a scent

And her fur is starting to grow back properly at last.

Lorelai's fur growing back

Hedy Lamarr's friend Rafa the Border Collie is not coming for a walk, he's at The Kennels. Hedy loves to play with Rafa and her pretend stick. Rafa pretends to be cross and barks at Hedy, then they swap and he runs with the stick and it is Hedy's turn to be cross.

Hedy, stick. Rafa , bark

While Rafa is away, Hedy is playing with Sandy instead. Sandy has had a sore back, but he is well again.

Sandy and Hedy play with the toy

But Lorelai Gilmore and Hedy Lamarr especially love walking together. Hedy has learned not to bark incessantly in a shrill manner in the back of the car, and she is trying to learn not to bite Lorelai Gilmore. The little bottle of watered down Apple Cider Vinegar is a good deterrent, and most of the time I just show her the bottle and there is no need to squirt the vinegar. Hedy Lamarr is almost as big as Lorelai Gilmore, and she is 8 months old!!!

Hedy and Gilly happy on the walk

In the afternoon they snuggle up together on one too small cushion that Hedy has begun to eviscerate.

The Labradors on the cushion

I haven't done very much, other than look after Gilly and try to keep things ticking along: badly. I have almost finished the 2ply Loop de Loop. I have finished my BoHo not BooHoo socks,  which I started on 3rd July. They are lovely, and I have another same-but-different ball of green striped Nako Boho too, and a ball of Kiwi fruit inspired Opal too. I see more socks in my future!!

BoHo not BooHoo socks 2016

I should have suspected something when I caught both Gilly and Hedy in the kitchen on Saturday morning. I shooed them out and thought nothing of it. Little did I know they were on a fact finding mission. I baked a delicious chocolate orange fudge cake for MrsDrWho and left it to cool when I went out to dinner on Saturday evening. When I came home at 9pm I realised that I hadn't tied the baby gate shut and that the empty tin just inside the back door meant that they had eaten a whole cake. A cake that had 200g of rich dark chocolate in it. I rang the emergency number for The Vet and Dr Rob was on duty. He said that other than keeping a eagle eye on them, there probably wasn't anything to worry about. If they started vomiting or lost their balance they would need to go straight to The Vet and have a drip. The only drip was me, and now the baby gate into the kitchen is doubly secured with a green occy strap. $2-95 at Woolies, but priceless when it comes to peace of mind.

The reason I baked the cake a day early was because the power was off all day Sunday for power pole replacement. My next-door neighbour had the bright idea of taking the ingredients to MrsDrWho's house and baking it there, and so I did. It is an easy recipe (I didn't bother separating the eggs) and you melt and mix and it bakes in 25 minutes.

The Cake Emergency didn't break any hearts, or bank balances, though I may have just put a new pair of green sandals on lay-by today: new green shoes always cheer me up.

New sandals

And now we will all do what we have been doing an awful lot of: going to bed and sleeping. Lorelai Gilmore is taking fewer blue tablets, so she doesn't need to go outside so many times during the night, but I think the worry just makes me need more sleep. Hedy Lamarr doesn't always want to sleep, so sometimes we have to throw the Squeaky Toy until she's worn out. Hedy is a lovely girl, and we are so lucky to have her. She loves Gilly, and I think Gilly is glad to have a puppy to snuggle up with, but not one that bites her ears, so we are working on that!!

 

 


Happy Walk, Keep Walking Happy Walk.

Most recent first: Hedy Lamarr has been for her first walk with Lorelai Gilmore. It all went spectacularly well. Rafa's dad and mum pointed out that Hedy is much more obedient than Gilly, who is having a little regression while she gets used to Hedy. I am just glad Hedy came back when she was called. I cheated and left her lead attached as a bit of an impediment, so I might just have a chance of catching her if she didn't come back.

Into the wide green yonder

I am a tad puffed out, breathing heavily, it was Gilly and my second walk for the day. Every time we play the video, Hedy comes from wherever she is when she hears me call her name. She is so cute!!!

Hedy walks very well on her lead, though she occasionally goes the wrong way!!!

Hedy walking with Gilly

We all enjoyed our walk and look forward to more happy times at the dam together.

Gilly taking Hedy for her first walk

It  is also time to start leaving Hedy out of the crate when we go out. I popped up to the deli at the corner and when I came home The Labradors met me at the gate, safe and sound.

Gilly and Hedy good girls

Gilly enjoyed her last walk without Hedy yesterday. She loves the cool weather and the rain, and we have had plenty of rain and an electrical storm. If only we could have the rain spread out, rather than in one fell swoop. Lorelai Gilmore can't wait for Rafa to be let out of the car so they can run very fast together.

Gilly is ready to meet Rafa

Gilly actually meets Rafa

I have, no surprise, sewed some more grocery bags: bags 81-83 in fact. The first for a cat loving friend, and the next two for Mrs and then Mr Madcage. The duckies are a late Easter present!!!

Bags may 2016

I found the best sock wool ever for MrsDrWho: Rainbow Sparkles from Opal. Beautiful rainbow merges and glittery silver sparkles that are soft and don't feel scratchy at all.

Rainbow sparkle sock wool

To retain the gorgeous stripes I decided to tackle an afterthought heel. There are so many variations, but somewhere I read a tip that you should knit the heel and then measure on the person to see how long the foot should be. Fantastic idea. I knitted half the stitches for the heel on waste wool, and then slipped them back on the left-hand needled and knitted them again with the sparkly sock wool. Then it was just a case of pulling out the waste wool and picking up the top and bottom stitches. I decided to make the swirl heel from the Crystal socklet at Knitty.com. Here are the Sunshine Lollipop and Rainbow socks thus far.

Sunshine lollipop rainbow sock and heel

Mr Madcage also has a new birthday Forest beanie, knitted in Loyal 10ply with a twisty cable pattern. I do like the Loyal 10ply. It is soft and light and very warm and knits up beautifully. I did have a better photo, but it turned out I actually took a video and I don't know how to make a photo from a video.

Forest beanie 2016

For the very first time I decided to bake something Star Wars for May The Fourth Be With You. I watched a very helpful video and then made some Darth Vader black fondant helmets.

Darth Vader May The Fourth

I piped swirly red and chocolate two tone buttercream onto some fudgy chocolate cupcakes and topped each with a Darth Vader helmet. I don't think they are too bad at all, and MrsDrwho said the cakes were very yummy.

May the Fourth Darths

This week I am having a rest as far as possible. Last week I had a migraine, and then on Monday we had the NBN debacle- that's the National Broadband Network, where our house will be getting Fibre To The Home.  I met The NBN man a few weeks ago when he came to confirm that we will have the cable from the pole outside to the roof, as our house is built on a giant rock and there is no way to dig a trench. Easy, I thought. Ha!

During my five or six phone calls and Live Chats I was assured that the technician who was to come on Monday would do the outside and inside installations. I talked to my friends who have The NBN said they said this is not the way things are done, but I checked and checked again. On Monday the technician turned up and he was just the Inside Person. The Outside People had not done their job yet. The Inside had not talked to The Outside and so nothing could go ahead. Well, after all this, I ended up telling the ISP not to even talk to me until they had it all sorted out. And I shan't believe them even then, since I have had two separate communications, stating two different dates and times since then.

This week I am also going to drive an automatic car. I have only ever driven a manual car, but our car is too small to take two people and their suit cases to the airport. I am going for a drive tonight, just so I can get a feel for the car and learn it's super modern things like reversing camera and other things of which I know nothing!! Hedy is already having her post-lunch nap in her crate, Gilly is asleep on the  couch and I think a nap is definitely called for after all the tooing and froing.


Fortune Favours The Cold

For two glorious days it was 19*C , then one almost glorious day it was 22*C. Lorelai Gilmore and I were so happy. We slept all morning and then on Tuesday we went to bed at 7pm and slept all night in the wondrous cool.

Gilly and her close up

The cold is fading away now, but at least the nights are cool. And when the days were cold I managed to do more than a few things.

I finished knitting a shawl: there's a group where we knit along together and I metaphorically hold the hands of those new to shawls. I have to soak it and block it now.

If I Could shawl before blocking

I read on Esme's patchwork and quilting blog about The Splendid Sampler. There will be two blocks a week for fifty weeks, one hundred in all: and it is free. I bought a few plain greens to supplement those I already own and I have finished blocks 1 and 2. They are all 6 1/2 inches.

Tss 1 & 2

I also sewed one of the warm up projects: the Cathedral Window pincushion. It's wobbly and I had to join some pieces, but it still works a treat.

Tssextra

A few of my knitting friends and I went to a funeral this week. I think you should tell the people you love that you love them while they are still alive. I don't want to regret not doing that. At Leukaemia Support Group we learned about Advanced Care Directives. Basically you set down what you want to happen if you are in an accident or too ill to communicate in hospital. It is unnerving to think about. Uncomfortable. But since I am poorly with my weird illness, I have asked someone to be my 'person' if anything happens.

I just need to work out where on the form you write " and I want The Labradors to come and visit"!!

Cupcake
This afternoon I just fancied some vanilla cupcakes. I had some sour cream to use up and so I searched for a recipe and found The Perfect Moist and Fluffy Vanilla Cupcakes. I made half the recipe and used a vanilla bean instead of vanilla extract. I made one sixth of the frosting as that's all the butter I had!! Yum, delicious and vanilla-y and moist and fluffy as promised.

Lorelai Gilmore has FlippyFloppy Ear and we saw Dr Marion at the vet. A woman after my own heart, she agrees that anything over 25*C is tropical here!! Gilly's ears are improving in leaps and bounds. There is no new Puppy news. Be assured when there is Puppy news, everyone will know.

Gilly alert

Gilly is shocked: "What, a puppy you say?? What is this thing of which you speak?"

 


Don't Tell My Heart, My Eighty Eighty Heart.

It's actually eighty-two: that's how many fires are burning around the State at the moment. More than half are not controlled, they're burning wherever and whatever they like. Some small towns have been evacuated, but right now there are no direct threats. The State is blanketed in thick and hazy smoke. It has been here for two days and shows no signs of leaving. We can't see across the river. At all.

82 fires

The smoke seems to make the heat even more oppressive and for the next week we are expecting high temperatures. Next Wednesday it is forecast to be 21*C: what a relief. If only we could have some rain to put out the fires in inaccessible areas. And water the gardens and fill up the dams. Not only is our BassLink cable to The Mainland broken, and we rely on the cable to provide back up power when the Hydro dams are low, but the dams are low: and predicted to fall to 14% of capacity in the next month. It will be the end of March before the cable is expected to be repaired and they may have to cut the Internet fibre cable while the repair the power cable. Oh joy.

Apart from a morning walk, Lorelai Gilmore and I have been hiding inside. I worry about breathing in the smoke and it makes my eyes itchy and throat sore. Gilly has taken the opportunity to play in the paddle pool as soon as we get home in the morning. And at other times, especially bed time. I have no idea what the side eye is about.

Gilly pool fun

The weather is so dry that all the hopping marsupials are braving humans, and the picnic area, to try and find water.  Gilly is unaware there is a wallaby right behind her: Where's Wallaby??

Where's wallaby

Oh, there's Wallaby!! Do not fear that Gilly would ever catch a wallaby. There is a snowball's chance in Hell of that happening. It just hopped across the road in a single bound, well maybe two.

There's wallaby

I ventured out yesterday to Afternoon Tea for the two eldest HouseOf young women, turning twenty-one and eighteen. I made two zippy pouches instead of wrapping paper: the teapot was for the cutest teacup and teapot earrings and the Wonder Woman one because I didn't think Day of the Dead skulls would be very appropriate. I came home at 4pm and, apart from making Gilly's dinner and breakfast, we slept right through until 11-30 this morning. Which is how we have been spending most mornings as it is the coolest part of the day.

Birthday zippy pouches

I am knitting some socks for MrsDrWho's mum's birthday. They are made with some very pretty and soft Regia Design Line in Winter Night. I'm also knitting a cowl for MrsRenos'; birthday. I knitted it sporadically while I watched P&P, the Colin and Jennifer version, over the weekend. I can knit small or short things that don't lie on me and make me warm. Thought the cowl is long, it curls up on itself.

Socks and cowl

We didn't turn the computer on until an hour ago at 8-30pm. I have barely read any blogs or answered any emails. Rest assured that as soon as it is cooler, we will be back to normal programming at our house. So apart from drinking prodigious amounts of tea, nothing much has been happening at our house. We just all hope that the fires are soon out and that the fire-fighters, and everyone else, are all safe.

I must contemplate something that can be made with as little hot oven time as possible for my Friday food. I am planning on some sweet nibbles for MrsDrWho's Drinks and Nibbles for lots of her friends on Friday: little shortcrust pastry cases filled with lemon curd and topped with some cream and a berry. Pastry cases don't take long to bake and the lemon curd is just ten minutes stirring a saucepan on the stove. I think we can bear it.....


End It Like Beckham

I am not totally au fait with the whole soccer area, but this year has definitely thrown me a curve.  Mixing the baseball and soccer metaphors there, but it hasn't been a bad year, just tricky sometimes. In good news for me, my knee and its muscles seem to be healing at last: slowly albeit. It seems a cruel twist of Fate that the best treatment is heat, and it is so hot already. Mr Beckham seems to have exited his soccer career with grace and dignity. I am hoping for the same for 2015 and me!!!

It has been very hot, too hot to do much more than just be, and do what has to be done. We had a very merry Christmas and my mum and aunt came to visit as well. I have given away all pretence of being on time for Christmas and it has been very freeing. My family and friends are exceedingly understanding.

Gilly has received so many presents. She likes the edible ones best!! She has buried a few more big rawhide bones, but likes to actually eat the Christmas Cracker kind. Click Play to watch the little slideshow.

 There have been many, and varied, crafts this year. Not much garment knitting, but I sewed four good dresses that I wear all the time. And I am up to almost 70 shopping bags. Not all of my craft is in the collage, but it is a good representation.

Craft 2015 ish

Here are the last bags of 2015.

Last bags of 2015

I also sewed a bed for MrsDrWho's cats, well Caramello mainly. I found the colourful cat material and then the coordinating yellow and green. Gilly loves the bed. I can see that I am going to have to sew a larger one for her. She insisted on lying on it all afternoon, even though she was sure she shouldn't. I wasn't cross with her, she just looks very worried.

Cat bed, or is it

WeeMrSingapore has decided he likes "bling" so I baked him some Bling Biscuits: choc-chip chocolate fudge biscuits with chocolate ganache icing, painted with edible gold liquid and topped with a golden lozenge. Wow!! The 'gold' liquid is so very golden!!!

Bling biscuits

Our usual New Year's Eve is spent filling in all the days and dates in the Buffy Diary. This year I am down to my last Buffy Diary. There is only one left. I have looked all year to buy some more, to no avail. I shouldn't complain, I had a store of 15. I found an excellent solution: in Target there was a diary with the same clippy things as the Buffy Diary. Yay!! So I covered my diary with contact, removed 2015 and replaced it with the new innards for 2016. There were no days or dates to fill in and I had no coloured dots or stars. So it was a leisurely alcoholic ginger beer and some Brie and crackers, just crackers for Gilly, and our job was done.

New year's eve

We are looking forward to a week of mid 20s temperatures, starting on Friday. If it is too hot, I might have to visit MrsDrWho for some air conditioned cold. MrsDrWho gave me STAN for Christmas and so I have launched into a The West Wing marathon. As long as there is a cool breeze and a cup of tea we will be OK.

Not long to go now. We have watched the Children's fireworks through the trees already, but I think we will be in bed before the midnight explosions. Happy New Year, 2016.


Mourning Has Broken, Like The First Morning...

Lorelai Gilmore and I are working out our new dynamic: she's doing exceptionally well. We were very touched by the kind emails and comments when Peri died. Thank you.

Peri Naughty brought us so much joy, and it is nice to know The Labradors' antics, and endless pictures, may have amused and entertained others. It is hard to be sad when you have a bouncy and bright Labrador like Gilly. She's always busy doing something and then comes to report about her doings. She's always up for a cuddle, a pat and a rub on the belly. Oh and licking, there is always the licking.

I left Gilly by herself on the very first day because I had to go to The Hospital pharmacy. I have left her every day; I've left her in the car at the deli at the corner (on a cool morning with all the windows open for 2 minutes I hasten to add), I've left her at home in the afternoon and last night until 10pm when I went out to dinner at Mr and Mrs WeeJock&Bessie's. Their house is just along the road, and though I thought about her for the three hours I was away, she was perfectly fine and waiting for me at the gate. Usually she just goes to bed, but it rained and I think she was enjoying the rain.

She's been for a walk all by herself too. And she's had a walk with all of her friends: Jet, Rafa and Sandy.

Gilly's first walk alone

MrsDrWho bought her a huge chew bone. I thought she'd eaten it, then it 'appeared' again. This appearance also explained the sneezing. Gilly had buried the bone in the garden.

Gilly and the bone

Unfortunately, I saw where she buried it and she was not happy. I had to go inside and now I have no idea where the bone is, which is a great comfort and relief to her.

Gilly thinks I want her bone

I also left Gilly alone when I went to visit Auntie Dutch for afternoon tea. I sewed two bags for her birthday. I take such poor photos and unless it is a Labrador, I just take one. So if it is wobbly or hazy, that's the only photo I have. I know things are getting back to normal when I bust out two new shopping bags!!!
Bags for Auntie Dutch

I have sewed two new dresses. The Swirly Lime/Aqua dress needs to have a new hem. I need to undo the very long circle skirt hem and then make a new hem with biased binding, just to get 2cms more length. The Hawaii Dress needs a hem and then a belt of some kind. I am wearing it right now, regardless. Oh, and it needs ironing.

Two new dresses

My Pear Dress, which I made 2 1/2 years ago, has worn out. It has some holes and is not for wearing outside the house any more. I have some Apple material from the same range, so I will be glad to replace it with another fruity dress.

IMG_133534w

I have been poorly pretty much all the time this year and then Peri was not well and I have not kept up my Book List in the side bar of my blog. I plan to add all the books I have read, and I can, because I take a photo when I return a book to The Library. Three times this year The Library insisted I hadn't returned a book. I knew I had, but had no real proof: Now I do!!! Each time it seems the returned book wasn't scanned properly and when another patron tried to borrow said book, The System has a conniption and they found the 'lost' book. Now I keep track of each book when I return it by taking a photo. It can cost $100 to replace a Library book, so I am being canny and careful.

Library books

The weather is turning summery. The nights are warmer and the days hotter in the afternoon. I think we are heading towards a drought. The rainfall for October was 0.6ml. The lowest recorded rainfall since records have been kept was in 1949, when 9ml fell. It is either El Nino or La Nina.... It's El Nino.

Peri Pumpkin is home now, she lives in a little velvet bag on the mantelpiece with Vundy and Tori, who are in boxes, and Harki-Parki-Parker-Posey, who is in a  little velvet bag too. I got a little teary scrolling through photos looking for books, and suffered a few pangs of emptiness. But on the whole, I am glad she is in Dog and Cat and Other Small Animal Heaven. Her legs won't hurt and she will be able to run and play and eat all the Heavenly food she likes. There will be lots of sleeping in the sun, I imagine, whilst floating on a cloud.

It's Recreation Day tomorrow, where people in The North have our holiday for  The South's Regatta Day. It is a good day to start thinking about Christmas. I've already spotted a little sleigh made from some Nice biscuits and two candy canes. Soooo cute!! I'm making lists and planning my baking and crafting. I hope El Nino stays away during December when we want to bake. All Lorelai Gilmore's friends have gone to their shacks for the weekend, so we'll have a walk by ourselves tomorrow. We walk a little farther to compensate for the extra treats that Gilly has. She's spoiled, but fit!!!


Mental As Everything

This week is Mental As Week, not to be confused with Mental as Anything: which just makes me feel so old as I remember seeing them on Countdown performing The Nips Are Getting Bigger in 1979. Being 'Mental As' myself, I appreciate the efforts being made to help people understand what it is like to live with a mental illness. It is also such a relief to hear people like Garry McDonald talk about his mental illness and know that other people feel some of the same ways I do: anxiety is such an overwhelming and all-encompassing feeling and being able to live with it, and in spite of it, is a good feeling. I am so glad I asked for help and I feel very empowered by the great advice from my psychologist and the skills she has taught me.

Peri left Gilly right

It helps me cope when things are tough. It is tough at the moment because I can see Peri getting a little older and a lot more wobbly on her legs every day. Soon the day will come when she can't enjoy a walk and can't get about the house and garden. There is A Lot of Labrador Love at the moment. Still, she can be outside asleep, but the sound of the fridge opening or some crinkly paper and she is there like a shot.

Peri in the dog door

And then Gilly is there too!!!

Partners in crime

I have recovered from my dental work: having a temporary cap on my tooth, but I am poorly this week. I have a sore throat and mouth. I've been trying to soldier on, sleeping and resting, but I can't eat or talk without pain, and so I hope to see my doctor tomorrow. They fit me in because I have no immune system and can't fight back. I take antibiotics frequently to fight off whatever it is I have.

Teacup  tipcup

MrsDrWho is back from her holiday and, with her sister's encouragement, bought me a tea cup. It is very good. It brews an excellent cup of tea, you can tip the cup back the other way when you want to stop the brewing process, and it is quite nice to drink from as well. I am drinking some apple tea tonight.

Death star TARDIS

I don't think I have posted about the brooch and necklace I cross-stitched for MrsDrWho's birthday?? I bought the patterns from The Etsy and the cute tiny quilting hoops from Patchworks Plus online. I made a Death Star necklace and a TARDIS brooch.

I also remembered to take a better photo of my very own TARDIS bag.

TARDIS Bag better

The weather has been typically changeable and record breaking. We had the highest temperature for October since records began: 34*C . It was 33*C in Hobart, also a record, and then snow on the mountain the next day. It wasn't quite that hot here, but I am glad it is cooler again. Gilly loves the sun, she will lie in the sun until she is as hot as the sun, and then play in the paddle pool and dig a muddy hole.

Gilly here comes the sun

I went to Mr and Mrs Reno's for dinner last night. We ate delicious salmon and had lovely conversation. I made 2/3 of this cake recipe and all of the frosting. It's chocolate so I couldn't taste it, but both The Renos can recommend it .

All the Footy Grand Finals were on last weekend and so Peri, and sometimes Gilly, spent a lot of time at the fence at the party next door. The Labradors are always winners, no matter what the result.

Peri Party and Gilly at the fence

And now we are off to bed. I have been walking The Labradors, coming home and then going back to bed again until the late afternoon. I have no trouble whatsoever being tired again at bed time, but I can't breathe through my nose, so my sore throat wakes us all up during the night. The doctor's appointment can't come soon enough......


Vet Shop Girls

Where does the time go?? I meant to post yesterday because it was International Dog Day. We prepared for IDD by going to The Vet to see Dr David. Peri and Gilly were vaccinated and had a general check-up. Gilly is almost 7, so she pretty much qualifies as a Senior Dog now. Dr David said she looked and acted as if she was 3!!! Peri is old, but apart from her arthritis and dodgy eyes, she's doing well too. Neither of them are fat. Yay for us!!! Still, the Look of Love they give me when I am holding food, or shopping bags, is a sight to behold.

The look of food love

Yesterday after Morning Tea I went to MrsDrWho's class's history presentation. Lots of information about The First Fleet, and Richmond and early Colonial housing and way of life. There were hand dipped candles, letters written (badly) with a quill and ink, butter making documented and models galore, all topped off with some spiffy PowerPoint presentations the children made. And the icing on the cake?? The Hornpipe Jig and the singing half way through. Then it was Sewing last night, so after our walk we all had a Very Big Nap today.

Speaking of icing, I piped some Westie cup cupcakes for Wee Jock and Bessie's mum and dad. I followed the video they found and now I am addicted to the MyCupcakeAddiction YouTube channel.

Westie cup cakes

Not too shabby, and I am not very good at piping, so the video was at a fairly basic level!! Wee Jock and Bessie's mum and dad did the assistant chef jobs!!!

Wee jock and bessie

The weather been both ice cold and frosty, while at the same time warm and sunny in the afternoon. I fear Spring is on its way. Still, we enjoy our brisk morning walks.

Labradors on their walk

I have been doing a little bit of knitting: one almost finished Milo, except for the casting off, which was too tight:

Vest

and two hats: Lowline for Mr Reno and a Bus Hat for a donation. They are both free patterns, but I like High Line (LowLine) best. It is mainly purl fabric, and as I hate purling, I knitted it inside out with mainly knit fabric and turned it back the other way at the end.

Lowline and bus hats

I made some fudge, a Star Wars bag and some Spicy Pickled Red Onions for Uncle Dutch's birthday and Aunty Dutch made a cake for me!! In fact, I ate caramel cake from Mrs Reno and strawberry sponge for breakfast for four days!!

For uncle dutch

Aunty dutch made a cake!!

The cake had green tinted cream and icing. And lots of strawberries inside and out.

And now, even though I've barely been up today, we might just go to bed again. The Labradors are Very Happy because the backyard gardening man came and whipper-snippered everything weedy or tall. They can walk everywhere now, but they had to stay inside for two hours: oh the torture. We had to go out three times for a supposed wee. Nothing eventuated. They just wanted a stickybeak.

And perhaps, just perhaps, there might be Friday Food on an actual Friday tomorrow..........