Sunday, April 23, 2017


The garden today
Sometimes Mother Nature sends a perfect day. Today is one of those.

The sun is shining but it is not too hot, the air is gentle with just a slight mumour of movement in the lemongrass leaves to show we are not living in a vacuum, the bees are buzzing, Sasanqua flowers drop onto the lawn and a little bird just flew down to suck the nectar from a flower on the little bottle brush bush I planted a couple of years ago as bird feed.

I just hung out the washing feeling a sense of deep contentment.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Harsh southern sun

Exposure to our harsh southern sun fades cotton materials very quickly. I made chair covers five years ago to protect my newly upholstered chairs from children's messes but it turned out the children were not a problem but rather our harsh sunlight was. The bright coloured cotton batiks I used faded so much the covers became unsightly.
Same material, different sun exposu
The blue dye faded almost away

This time I covered the chairs as protection against the sun. I have had new material (light coloured and sturdy) to re-cover the chairs for a while, but not the time for the project. While I waited, I used the project as a sleeping potion, falling asleep trying to figure out exactly how to cut the new cloth. A tired mind found it an insolvable problem but when I actually laid out the material this Easter weekend it turned out to be very simple. (If you are having difficulty falling asleep, try figuring out a mathematical problem.)
Try figuring out how to cover a chair - it will send you to sleep

Bright, even when the sun is not shining

Friday, April 14, 2017

Swimming on the windowsill

Window sill in need of some paint
The first thing I did when I moved into this house was to paint all the window sills.  However our brutal sun ages paint quickly, especially parts exposed to the western sunshine and in six short years the western windowsills have lost much of their original paintwork.

Today I began the repainting job. If I had realised what difference it makes to the feel of the rooms I might have repainted earlier (or maybe not). This has been an unplanned but rewarding Easter Friday project. 
Ceramic swimmer on the repainted windowsill.

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Bach Violins Concertos (and Haydn) with the ACO

Playing Haydn
Packed hall, mouse-quiet intent audience, immersed musicians, warmly-felt rousing applause.  This week's evening of Bach and Hayden with the Australian Chamber Orchestra was a winner and the audience was glowing as they left the concert hall.

The Bach Concerto for two violins (Richard Tognetti and Helene Rathbone) and Concerto for three violins (Richard Tognetti, Helene Rathbone and Satu Vanska) were examples of instruments/musicians playing in absolute accord ... but then the whole of the ACO does this with aplomb.

Horns, oboes and bassoon (baroque bassoonist Jane Gower) joined the orchestra for the Haydn. Haydn has to be played really well for me to enjoy it, and this was played really well.

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Horrible Harriet - 'awesome' but LOUD

Horrible Harriet set at the Sydney Opera House
Horrible Harriet is a children's theater piece currently at the Sydney Opera House Drama Theater.  It is based on the book of the same name by Leigh Hobbs, or perhaps one should say 'loosely based on' because the seven year old I was with said it was 'nothing like the book'.  That it was not like the book didn't seem to matter though as she later reported to her parents that 'it was awesome'.

There were only three actors in various guises and I couldn't help but admire their energy. You need lots of energy if you want to keep a whole mob of youngsters concentrating for over an hour.

There were also lots of songs - VERY VERY LOUD SONGS AND MUSIC. When I later related the deafening noise levels to my young charge's parents, her father remarked: "Oh all music mixers are deaf, that's why!"