29 Oct 2012

Anonymous - not any more!

Hello everyone, as some of you know I'm not a fan of word verification as I am on limited satellite broadband (only because I can't afford to buy more bandwidth) but I've had to change my settings from letting anyone comment (including anonymous) to limiting it to registered users. Word Verification may come later if this doesn't work as I don't wish to exclude followers who use other types of blogs by limiting my commenters to google blogger users only. If you have trouble commenting with this you may have to ensure you have an Open ID as this will still be accepted.

This all occurred as in the last 18 hours I've had 8 Anonymous comments with assorted links attached (one even in a foreign language!!) saying how much they liked my post and trying to scam me into going to their website where they will show me great ways to publicly show off my blog, take better pictures, promote my social network - you know....all the usual gaff.... and probably plant a noxious virus on my computer if I'm silly enough to fall for it...grrrr.

Apologies to the odd Anonymous viewers who have left complimentary/nice comments in the past as I do respect your wish for privacy but 8 comments in 18 hours for my blog is very exciting and then to discover they are only idiots with nothing better to do than try to scam me was a  big disappointment and a waste of my valuable internet time.

A more appealing post will be appearing on my blog later today :D. It will be accompanied by some photos, that may not be perfect quality, but will show you some items I have been working on.


20 Oct 2012

Camera Experiments - Apertures and Shutter Speed

I topped up my rose vinegar jar this morning and noticed the way the morning sunlight made patterns through the liquid. Definitely deserving of a photograph....and then I thought I'd take the opportunity to muck around with apertures and shutter speeds.

First I set the apertures and here's a sample of my results

The angle the photo is taken from can also affect the outcome. No yellow in the colour behind the jar.

Then I fiddled with the speed for some interesting results

I should have been trying this a long time ago instead of using auto most of the time and I haven't even tried playing with the white balance yet. In the future I'll use the tripod as I want to photo moving objects. LOL, I must find the "safe place" I've stored the operational CD for the camera and study it a bit more.

My thanks to Saffron Craig for the link in the inspirations section of her newsletter to Bijou Lovely's tips for better blog photos and also to Holly of bijoulovelydesigns for the link to The Pioneer Woman's  easy to understand, and sooo funny, posts on aperture and shutter speeds and how to use them.

I should be able to post much better blog photos soon and my scrapbooking layouts should also improve :D

Robyn xo

15 Oct 2012

Unnatural Sunset

I noticed this sunset and thought I'd snap a photo of it as this is coloured by smoke from either a controlled burn or, more likely, another bushfire on the other side of the ridges to the west.

Pretty, yes, but it can be pretty awful too when you see these. The sun was actually a red colour, like the aura around it but I couldn't capture it with my automatic camera.

Rob xo

13 Oct 2012

Weird weather

Yesterday was a miserable day like being back in the middle of Winter, icy winds, cloud cover but not much rain, we even lit the woodfire last night. Not very conducive to doing aything crafty and though I checked the vege garden I decided watering could wait as it was more likely that I would be the one becoming wet.

Today is a turning out nice as the air is still and there's no clouds. The dogs are having a nice run and I think I'll sit outside and soak up the sunshine and warmth while I have a cup of tea, then I'll water the garden.

Robyn xo

11 Oct 2012

Hello Possum, it's raining now!

 Hello Possums, my other little possum showed itself the other night (9Oct) though it's been rousing on us from the pencil pine next to the house frequently. This time the rousing was a bit more distant, and my dog jumped up and down the River oak trunk, so it wasn't difficult to know where Poss was.

As Poss is posh and wears a white dinner vest with his suit and tail(s) he's easy to spot :D.

The rain finally decided to arrive so when it stops there's a new vege bed being constructed because now I won't end up with back ache and sore muscles trying to level it up. The vege beds here need to be terraced because of where the garden is. I must remind DH to finish fencing the paddock area adjoining the garden so I can plant the zucchini, pumpkins, melons and any other vines I fancy or it will be too late to bother as the hot weather will be arriving in a few weeks.

I love the patterns the falling rain makes on the water.

Robyn xo

8 Oct 2012

DTE-ers..possible Christmas card swap creations!

If you are thinking of being in the Down To Earth Forum Christmas card swap then it may be advisable not to scroll down or you could see a card you may receive.

The school hols may be over but it's not peaceful enough for me to be trying to sew a pattern I've modified. So I decided to fiddle around with my scrapbooking stuff as I've put my name down for the above mentioned swap. This swap is a little different as we are receiving a list of 9 names of swappees, that is our group, so we post a card to each of the swappees and receive one from each in return.

I googled "handmade Christmas card" then clicked on images for some new ideas and then put my own twist on them and this is what I've made so far.

Not a wonderful photo as it was taken tonight but it shows the glittery bits, even though the star on top of the tree is gold not multicolour sparkles. I would have put a multicolour sparkly star on it if I had one :). It's been a while since I've played with my scrapbooking supplies so I'm quite enjoying this. 

Hope you are enjoying them and the Blogtoberfest too!

Robyn xo

7 Oct 2012

Aprons and Show clothes

Lol, so much for posting every day! I thought I'd set up the post for the 5th October to automatically post  itself  but it didn't happen, so much for thinking I was becoming better at blogging :(. So here it is.....

I need to make some goodies to sell at the Annual Anglican Church markets at the end of this month and aprons will be some of the items. A lot of the pre-loved fabrics I've acquired have come from the Anglican Op-shop and the pillow slips I'm making this apron out of are Sheridan brand and are hardly used. You can see how things become a bit messy when I start sewing and I'd barely begun!

This is the pillowslip with the sides seams cut off and laid out flat. I love that it has the same pattern in  slightly different colours on each side. Sorry about photo quality as the colours are more intense than this.

Making sure I have everything on my fold out cutting table and the fabric with the adjusted pattern pinned on it.

I hope to sew this together today but it may have to wait as DD returns to school tomorrow and I will be able to work uninterrupted then.

Yesterday I had to be out all day as DD needed some new cattle showing garb and the town that had everything was 2 hours drive, each way, from home. We had difficulty finding the boots and that was the item she needed the most as her old ones are beyond repair. The hat is needed as the first Akubra was purchased in a hurry, cheaply as it is a second, and it doesn't fit quite right. A big problem when the hat is held on by stuffing newspaper under the brim and it falls out every time you take it off - especially when you need to rush to the next class. She spied the showy shirt too and had to have it as her current ones are looking a bit used now. All the new gear was paid for by DD out of the money she's saved. As it went into the hundreds of $$ it paid to travel elsewhere as it would have cost over a hundred more to buy locally and she would have had to order the boots in.

DD graciously offered to pose for a photo this morning. Ginger decided to run in and help her at the last minute but you can still see one of the cowboy boots :D. The kid looks pretty good all smartened up and she had to make sure she was wearing her belt with the cowboy buckle she bought last year. Apparently it's not the same without the belt and the buckle!

Hope all the Aussies are having a nice first day of Daylight Saving. Personally I hate it as I figure the summer days here have quite enough daylight without messing with the clocks.

Robyn xo

4 Oct 2012

The 7 Year Itch

About every 7 years or so I become tired of having long hair so I have it cut - very, very cut.

This is what it looked like before

This is, mostly, what was removed as there was a little more trimmed to shape it and add a couple of inches to straighten out the waves

And this is the result

Much cooler for summer! Now if I could just trim the body as easily as you trim hair....??

Rob xo

3 Oct 2012

Beanz Meanz...

.....a different type of meal for us.

Yesterday I made a bean and rice salad from a recipe on one of the threads at DTE. I had some for lunch with a can of Thai green curry tuna and some home grown buttercrunch lettuce.

What do you think of my table decoration? LOL!

Last night we had vegetarian rissoles for tea and, after the usual whinge from Miss13 about suffering my vego food fads, she liked them so much she had extra and she’s taking some for lunch tomorrow at an Ag prac at her school :D.
I’m very pleased as they are tasty, cost around $3 for ingredients and will feed 3 people for 2 meals. They are also very filling. This “vego food fad” could become a weekly habit in this house.

Hope you enjoyed sharing our meals :).

Rob xo

2 Oct 2012

Blogtoberfest - 2012

I've just discovered this and I thought it might prompt me to see if I can manage a post a day. October is usually quite busy for me as the weather warms up and I'm often tired in the evening so don't expect anything brilliant or world changing.

My intention is to blog every day and visit some blogs I've never looked at before. Not just visit but leave a comment and I may find some that I'd enjoy following. I'm not a consistent blogger so I think that's enough for my first Blogtober.

Anyone else like to try this?

Robyn xo

1 Oct 2012

Views of the Week

So, I've been a bit slack posting but I have had my camera with me and these are a few highlights of my week.

I was in a potholder swap on DTE and my first partner let me down but I'd put my name down to be a swap angel as well so I was given someone else who hadn't received their swap to make a set for. They also made a set for me.

Potholders I sent (yes the yellow dot on the edging is a pin!)

Potholders I received - front


I love the FME!

My new partner did receive the potholders from her original swap partner so she now has 2 sets :).

A colourful, cheeky orange chewer

 A bit of a size difference....

 ...but they love to play together!

 It's bad when you have to find your own dinner.....

..and even worse when others expect you to share.

Reflections on a moonlit night

 A night prowler after her day's hunting

Robyn xo

24 Sep 2012

Gardening - Slip, Slop, Slap!

Yesterday I was making a new garden bed and it was fine, warm and sunny. A great day for the Spring equinox! So, living in one of the areas of the world where skin cancer is too common for anyone's liking, I slipped on a long sleeve shirt, slopped on some sunscreen and slapped on a hat :D. One advertising campaign in Australia that got it right and one that never goes out of date!

What do you think of my garden getup? I'm not much in favour of having photos taken of me let alone taking one of myself and displaying it but I thought it's time I put myself on show.... at least on my blog.

Just keep in mind that lenses on cameras put weight on - that's my story and I'm stickin' to it  ; P. Obviously the clothes are looser too so it's easier to move around when gardening.


20 Sep 2012

Adding a page

Please read before opening these pages!!

I decided to dedicate a page to horses and horse items in particular as there's times this could overrun the blog and for those unhorsey people it may be very boring. The link is in the sidebar.

Most of this will be to do with thoroughbred horseracing as that is one of our incomes - breaking, training and racing ours and other peoples thoroughbreds. It also has to do with raising them so I'm giving fair warning to my followers that some of the posts may contain text and photos of surgery to make an entire (a stallion) into a non-breeding male (a gelding).  This is part of what happens on the farm and as necessary as spaying a dog, who will not be used for breeding, as stallions can be dangerous on a much larger scale. 

A dedicated page is also necessary so as not to offend those who don't have the stomach for this. The first post on the 'Horses' page is Joe, the future racehorse's, surgery today so it may interest some of you who always wondered how this is done and may make others regurgitate their last meal  




16 Sep 2012

First rose of Spring!

This smells as pretty as it looks! I'll have to collect the petals this year for potpourri.

Robyn :D

15 Sep 2012

More harvesting and the mad cat

I collected these from the garden this morning and realised that I haven't posted any photos of the peas I've been picking as Miss13 and I have been eating them raw almost as soon as they are harvested!

It looks like a lot but by the time they are shelled there's about 3/4 of a cup. Another lesson learned -  3 metres of pea bushes is not enough for 3 people so if I double the rows it should be fine.

Absolutely nothing like the crisp sweetness of freshly picked!

It was chilly yesterday afternoon because of the wind and I think sitting in the kindling bucket  may have been Maddy's attempt to remind us we needed to bring in wood and light the fire in the combustion heater!

Hope everyone is having a wonderful weekend :).


11 Sep 2012

Snacks for the week

I haven't done any baking for the last fortnight as I didn't want to cough my germs all over everything so DH has been buying biscuits, NOT at my request though. He has these binges every so often but it's his money he's spending, not mine, so I don't comment.

I was feeling like something nice to eat for afternoon tea yesterday and I had some zucchini I wanted to use up, so I'd already decided to make zucchini bread, and I thought I'd also try the easy and cheap biscuit recipe of Paula's, that I'd copied from that thread, on the Down to Earth forums

My goodness, did it make a bunch of goodies!!

 30 choc chip biscuits and the same of sprinkles ones.....

....and 24 fat jam drops....Well, there were before the two legged mice dived into them!!

The biscuits are about twice the thickness of bought ones and 2" in diameter and the jam drops are roughly 3" in diameter. When cooled the biscuits went in the freezer but as I'd cooked the drops with the jam already in them they have to be eaten. **Note to self - cook drops jamless in future so they can be frozen!

I made the zucchini bread with wholemeal flour this time, as I used it for the biscuits, and it tastes wonderful. The recipe makes two loaves so I froze one loaf and gave half of the other (and some bikkies) to DH's niece as she and her two little ones have been ill and I thought a little treat for afternoon tea would be nice  ; ). It's a bit more-ish and I'm ashamed to say I've eaten quite a lot of the remaining half, with butter.

As I usually have a cup of tea around this time in the afternoon I think I'll have another piece of zucchini bread. Anyone want a slice...with butter or without?!


Working weekend

So much for trying to do a post a week. I've been suffering from a virus and my hayfever hasn't helped the recovery.

Much of the weekend was spent off the ground for the rest of the family.
DH and nephew were putting up struts for the roof over the roundyard. Nephew is the one wearing the hat! Lol, tractors can be so versatile :).

As Dad was building the apprentice horsebreaker had to lead out the unbroken horse. Most of the muscle is supplied by her 4 legged partner. She's the brains of the duo!



Even the insects were busy....bzzzzzzzz

These 2 loafers were spectating, and practicing being house cows, and decided to camp under the guava tree IN the house yard! Naughty babies!!

Hope you've enjoyed sharing our lovely weekend.