Wednesday, January 29, 2014

A Welcome Distraction

Around 9 o'clock today I got a phone call from a four year old who said "Gummy, can we come for a swim."  Of course I replied that that would be lovely so he, his Dad and two brothers came over for a swim and a few other activities. Our visit of course started with a fortyfying snack of juice and biscuits which little boys can always devour.  Unfortunately I didn't get any photos in the pool because I was enjoying the water with the boys. I did, however, manage to snap a couple of other activities.

Only one egg so far today
Spoiling the girls with some hand feeding
Little brother prefers to watch from a distance
BobBob showing the ropes
Learner Driver 1

Baby brother takes the wheel
Big brothers wait patiently
Last turn for biggest brother

Sunday, January 26, 2014

I did it!

For years I have hoarded books: the good, the bad and the indifferent. The only time I dispose of books is to lighten my load when travelling and I have a few regrets on that score.

I was prompted to rethink my policy by a few people. Blogger Susan Petersen has been very brave; in her downsizing effort she has just about discarded all of her her print library in favour of ebooks. My best friend is also about to move house and she has started to cull her book collection. I thought that if these bookaholics could do it then maybe I could too.

At home our bookshelves are overflowing and we really shouldn't buy more. The internet with its proliferation of online bookshops has given me access to places where I can buy a book for peanuts or I can purchase an ebook version of something I really want to own.

Last week I took the plunge and started to cull the fiction and biography shelves in our hallway.

Once I got started with the task I developed a loose policy. It was easy to dispose of mass market fiction titles like Robin Cook, Patricia Cornwell, John Grisham, Caril, Hiassen, Monica McInerney, James Patterson, Kathy Reichs, Minette Walters,  and some of the fluffy titles I read for light relief.

I baulked at tossing Australian authors and historical fiction so they still have a home. More difficult were the biographies; I was only able to dispose of a few that I considered poorly written or on uninteresting subjects. Those that told tales of travel had to stay because I may need to read them before setting out on a journey to foreign  parts. My collection of Agatha Christie's still has a home, whenever I reread one of these I find I can never solve the mystery!

Mr GeniAus has already taken one load up to our local Vinnies store and we'll be sending those pictured below for sale at the local Giant Rotary Book Fair.

I'm on a roll. I need to go downstairs to our garage where I have several bays of old library shelving bursting with books and find other treasures to move on. Some of the older books that are yellow, daggy and faded might just have to go into the recycle bin.

And because I have made space on my bookshelves I will be able to order a swag of books from my favourite online charity bookstore Brotherhood Books.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Slow and steady

Yesterday afternoon we set out for Victor Harbor but a couple of wineries with facilities for children got in the way so this morning we hit the road and didn't stop until we arrived at Victor Harbor about an hour south of Adelaide. The sun was shining, the sky was a brilliant blue but the breeze was fresh so we needed our cardigans and warm tops.

Many years ago we visited Victor Harbor and I remembered it as a pretty seaside town with a horse-drawn tram that takes tourists to the nature reserve at Granite Island. The tram ride has been on my list of thing to do for ages and I'm so glad to have experienced the ride with some of the family today. Before our ride we fortified ourselves with some lovely, warm cinnamon donuts, watched the passing parade and took some happy snaps of the pretty coastline.

After our tram ride that was surprisingly comfortable (slow and steady) we spent an hour roaming around the island while the kids visited the penguin refuge. Although the Island is rather desolate the views of the water, the wildlife and back to the mainland are spectacular.

Nice fresh sandwiches gave us sustenance after our return tram journey. After a walk around Victor Harbor we got back into our people mover for the trip back to our accommodation. The fresh air had worked its magic on two out of three little boys who were fast asleep soon after we departed.

Trying to get three little boys to pose for their Gummy is impossible

Our conveyance
Happy travellers
Towards the Island

Reminds me of Make way for ducklings
View back to Victor Harbor
Beach on Granite Island
Passing lane
Sheltered bay
Fishing from the pier
Remember to throw the undersize catches back
Back on the mainland
We opted for sensible sandwiches

Sunday, January 5, 2014

The Adelaide Hills

Strawberries, wine, beer and chocolates. We sampled them all during our expedition to the Adelaide Hills in South Australia today.

Taste Test
The Haul

Nepenthe Winery
Lobenthal Bierhaus

Tasting Paddle
Bridgewater Mill

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


Wishing you a New Year as bright as the 

New Year's Fireworks display in my city of Sydney.

We're all going on a summer holiday

Our next holiday with some of the family is to the beachside suburb of Glenelg in Adelaide, South Australia.

This advice that I found in an article on Trove from 1932 might come in handy.

1932 'HOLIDAY DON'TS FOR GLENELG.', News (Adelaide, SA : 1923 - 1954), 27 December, p. 5, viewed 31 December, 2013,

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