23 September 2009

Red sky in the morning .....

6.18am - The REM song "It's the end of the world as we know it (and I feel fine)" came to mind this morning as I awoke to a red sky and scenes reminiscent of "Armageddon". The smell of dust hung solidly in the air.

"Large areas have been shrouded in dust as the state experiences severe winds and unseasonably warm temperatures", says the radio news - What? no kidding !! Does this account for the my inability to see the trees clearly out my back door and the god awful orange glare?

Bureau of Meteorology spokeswoman Jane Golding said dust had settled on much of the state, including Sydney. "It's pretty widespread," she told ABC Radio.

Hmmm - not sure I want to drive Christopher to school right now. Rachel has a study day as her Year 11 examination start tomorrow. It's not looking too good and I don't think it's about to get better anytime soon.

7.20pm - Turns out it was Australia's worst dust storm in 70 years and blanketed the heavily populated east coast in a cloud of red outback grit from Broken Hill and into South Australia. The event nearly closed the country's largest airport and left millions of people coughing and sputtering in the streets. John went to work but did not venture out of the office all day - his view of the Sydney Harbour Bridge completely obliterated for much of the day.
It started to clear late afternoon and now I have a thin later of fine red dust throughout every nook and cranny inside and a thick clinging layer over everything outside. Guess what I'll be doing tomorrow !!!

21 September 2009

All jokes aside ...

Christopher and his friend Jai are in charge of the joke segment of their current class radio project in 5R (they are currently studying media). Must admit I was a little concerned at the potential quality of the jokes they might decide to use but I needn't have worried.

I had a chuckle to myself when Christopher came home today to tell me one of the jokes they had used in their session.

Q. What does Mrs Claus use to make Christmas cookies?

A. Elf raising flour !!

20 September 2009

How's the serenity? ...

Dale Kerrigan: [voiceover] He loved the serenity of the place
Darryl Kerrigan: Hows the serenity?
Dale Kerrigan: [voiceover] I think he also just loved the word.
Darryl Kerrigan: So much serenity.

I loved the movie The Castle (1997). I think you need to be Australian to fully appreciate it - such a funny movie with so many memorable lines. I always think of poor Darryl when I visit St Joseph's Spirituality and Education Centre at Kincumber where we hold our twice annual scrapbooking retreats.

St Joseph's Boys' Orphanage was founded by Mary MacKillop and the Sisters of St Joseph in 1887 when they took 22 homeless boys from Sydney to live at the Kincumber site. For 89 years it was a shelter for homeless children, with thousands of boys, and later girls, passing through its doors. After the Home closed in 1976, St Joseph's became a centre for retreats, group gatherings, workshops, seminars and reflection days.

It's a beautiful spot - no doubt about it; there's an inner peace about the place that is hard to describe. The tension of everyday life seems to melt away as you walk around the grounds, taking in the glorious views and peaceful nature of the grounds. I always return from Kincumber rejuvenated and with a newly found appreciation for life. Yes Darryl - I feel the serenity.

14 September 2009

Heating up ....

Wow it's been hot - can't believe we are only at the end of the second week of September (and only two weeks into Spring) and we have had temperatures reaching 30 deg C already. It is not looking good for the summer season this year as there have been 60 odd fires in NSW alone in the past week and all the authorities are extremely concerned that this year the bushfire season will be a disastrous one. Let's hope they are wrong.

10 September 2009

The birds and the bees, the flowers and the trees ...

Headed over to the 23rd annual Springtime Flora Festival at Mt Penang. I've only ever missed two of these - the first one as we hadn't moved to Kariong and in 1998 as I was in hospital having just given birth to Christopher. This award-winning event is one of the largest and most popular flora events in Australia. There are flora displays and landscaped garden settings as well as displays by associated commercial suppliers of outdoor, garden, lifestyle and home living.

This year it was relocated to a new site at Mt Penang as the existing location has been taken over by the Department of Education and is currently a construction site for the new Kariong Mountains High School which is due to open next year. This I think has caused some significant headaches for the festival planning committee as it effectively has meant that they have had to start over. The new location is not as good as the previous one, nor is the vehicle access. I felt that the number of exhibitors (normally some 300) was down from previous years. It was still enjoyable but I couldn't help but feel that something significant was missing.

09 September 2009

To the nines ....


The day itself falls on a Wednesday and both Wednesday & September have 9 letters. The last of the single-digits dates for quite a while -- 92 years to be precise. It represents the last set of repeating, single-digit dates for almost a century (until January 1, 2101) or a millennium (January 1, 3001) depending on how it is counted. According to numerologists, as the final numeral, the number nine holds special rank, and is associated with forgiveness, compassion, and success on the positive side as well as arrogance and self-righteousness on the negative.

But 09/09/09 was significant for another reason. It was Christopher's 11th birthday and he thought it was pretty special celebrating his big day in this way. He told me it would have been even better had be been 9 on the 09/09/09 but turning 11 would just have to do.

At 09:09:09 am I was sitting at this computer checking my emails. Not earth shattering I know but that can't be helped. Both children were at school.

At 09:09:09 pm we were eating celebratory birthday KFC which we had picked up on the way home after seeing the school musical production of "Joseph and his Technicolour Dreamcoat" at school.
Christopher was in two class items as well as performing with the drum circle.

04 September 2009

Reality calling ...

Christopher has become quite good friends with a girl from his swimming and we have been taking her to the swim club meetings on a Friday night. Last week I could not help but smile at the conversation in the back seat on the way home. The two of them were busy telling each other jokes when Karrah said.

K - My brother tells really bad jokes.

C - Oh I know what you mean. My friend Kyle at school tells the worst jokes. He tells this one about a cow going into a bar; it's terrible but he thinks it's really funny. Proceeds to tell K the joke.

K - You're right Chris - it isn't funny.

C - No it's not but Kyle rolls around laughing his head off and I say "Kyle ! It's not funny".

K - Yeah well you're right Chris, it isn't.

C - I think its reality.

K - Yep its reality all right.

03 September 2009

Perhaps the eyes don't have it ...

I was having major issues with my eyesight while driving the kids to school the other morning. It was blurry and I was getting really uptight because I normally visit my optometrist every 2 years for a vision check and the purchase of new glasses and it is only 9 months since my last appointment. I was calculating in my head how quickly my vision was deteriorating and lamenting its steady decline. It was troubling not seeing correctly, the signs were just that fraction out of focus; not enough to totally hinder my driving ability but enough to bug me and make me aware of my eyes short comings. I made it home without mishap and decided perhaps a really good clean of the lenses might be helpful. It was then I realised I had driven all the way over and back wearing my reading glasses. No wonder my vision was off.

01 September 2009

Monday mentions ....

Today I am looking out at ... a beautiful sunny day. It's the first day of spring but our temperatures over the past couple of weeks are more like summer. It's lovely but I worry about how bad it will be this year for bush fires.

Today I might ... cook fish for this evenings meal.

Today I am reading ... An encyclopedia of an ordinary life by Amy Krouse Rosenthal.

Today my biggest priority is ... getting some classes set up on InDesign for Get It Scrapped!

Today I hope to see ... no-one at all; that way I can get some things done.

Today I hope to talk to ... dh on the phone - he leaves at 6am and I usually get more conversation with him via the phone than I do in real life.

Today I have already seen/talked to ... my children - we usually have a chat over breakfast.

Today I am watching ... the antics of my two cats - they always make me smile.

Today I am dreaming ... that I could find more hours in the day to get everything done.

Today I am wearing ... my pyjamas as I type this - it is still only 7.14am after all.

Today my mood is ... great.

Today I am going to ... conquer the world? No not really but I'd like to achieve a few things if that is at all possible.