Thursday, May 30, 2013

I love foggy/sunny mornings

One of my favourite mornings is when the sun breaks through the low-hanging fog and glistens on the dew-drops that are nestled in the leaves of my plants.  I love to take my camera out into the damp garden and experiment.

Here are a few of this morning's offerings for your pleasure.

Desert Rose

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Plans and ideas

First of all thank you for all the wonderful supportive comments about my previous post.  It is a strange situation to be in when one thinks that I am bemoaning my fate and yet I have everything I could wish for and more options than I could dream of.  How then have I fallen into the trap of being sad and cynical.

For the moment, I am doing as Davine suggested and just letting it hang out in the Universe.

I am dreading Ivan begin away for the next 4 weeks.  He has travelled (for business) almost all of our married life and everyone used to ask me how I coped.  It was never easy, but now it seems really hard.  I miss him and I get really lonely.  The children take up more of my time than they did when they were babies, but they don't really need me.

Oooh I am soooo frustrated!!!!!!!

So will end the post with no plans and no ideas; just hanging around and waiting.

Thanks again for the support and love.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Mid-life crises and all that stuff

I wonder if it is acceptable to have more than one mid-life crises.  I had one a few years ago and at the time decided it was time for me to return to my studies at university.  As such I completed a full year of study - over 2 years and then family and health, meant that I put it all aside.  It is still something I am contemplating returning to, to fill my days with learning and the power of inspiration.

But . . . after 6 months of focussing on my health and getting better . . . I am now on the verge of another mid-life crises.

I don't know what I want to do.  There are many things I have to do.  I still have a lovely home to look after, a garden that needs heaps of TLC, 2 adults and 1 teenage child that still need my love and attention and a husband who needs my support and let's not forget my parents - independent as you are.

But. . .  all of these things are not really for me . . . they are duty things. 

I have my writing, my novel and other writings, but . . . what is the purpose of that.  My first book was good and the second I know is just as good, if not better. But, what does it all mean?

So where am I heading?  I don't know?  Just meandering and wandering at the moment, maybe the path will flow out ahead of me, with a big signpost - saying 'Take Me!' 

I hope so.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Romantic Getaway 2

Saturday was so relaxing after our walk to the falls, we drove to Gallery Walk at Mt Tamborine and spent the rest of the day exploring craft shops - I had such a good time, forgot to stop and take a few photos.  Mt Tamborine tea provided a place for Ivan to try out a couple of new teas and splurge on a great cup. We decided against another big meal at the restaurant and settled for a couple of glasses of wine and a few snacks for dinner.
Ivan - the Tree hugger - this is the other side of the hollowed-out tree that I was standing in.
 Back at the room, this beautiful Currawong was quick to come and pinch a couple of pieces of bread that Ivan threw out for it.  They are the most beautiful singers in the forest and his 'thank-you' serenade was a delight.

Sunday morning after another lovely breakfast, we headed out to Cedar Creek Winery for lunch. Lucky to get a table we enjoyed the birdlife and some yummy food.  I loved this bird-feeder - great with the lockable doors, to keep out the rodents at night.  The rainbow lorikeets were so fat they could hardly fly.

Table in the sunshine at Cedar Creek Winery.

A lazy afternoon and a couple of games of Canasta (which I won) rounded off another great day.  Sunday evening the retreat had a birthday function on in the restaurant, and unfortunately, our room was right next door.  The music, laughter and talking was quite loud and not in keeping with the tranquillity of the place.  Frustration turned to laughter at 11pm, when 'Staying Alive' was played - such an 'oldie'.  Oh Well! It wasn't too bad.

Monday we were due to head back after breakfast, but had heard of a local winery that had a creek and pond that had platypus living in it.  These very shy creatures are almost impossible to see in the wild, but we thought it worth while taking a chance.

 Exploring the river banks was delightful. We then went into the restaurant and ordered a delicious morning tea; finding out that there were indeed platypus in the stream.

My mud-cake and Ivan's apple crumble

Below this tree on the right is a dark hollow - with the binoculars we spotted a platypus resting.
 After an hour of delightful sunshine, our imminent departure was delayed by the idea of a beer and a glass of wine.  A delightful way to spend our last morning of our break.


Butterfly beauty

I made use of the bench to catch a few rays of sunshine, the first since starting my chemo . . .

. . . while Ivan relaxed in the shade

Nothing else to say but . . . Aaah!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Romantic Getaway

After six months of chemotherapy and almost a year of health issues; plus Ivan's intense business travel schedule - I booked us a long weekend (3 nights) away together.  I found a wonderful rainforest retreat at Mt Tamborine - Pethers Rainforest Retreat.  The photos on the web, looked great, but we have been caught before, so was just hopeful for somewhere nice.

Well, it turned out to be SPECTACULAR.

Our super King-size bed

The Lounge and floor to ceiling windows overlooking the rainforest

Curled up in the huge armchair with a glass of complimentary bubbly

View from the windows

Spa bath view

Our cottage nestled amongst the trees

Main lodge & bar with huge fireplace
We arrived at 2pm on Friday afternoon and checked into our cottage - so private and so beautiful - the furnishings were luxurious and comfortable. We had a lovely dinner on Friday night - Ivan had duck and I had beef, with a magnificent wine and dessert. The fire was lit and the atmosphere so relaxing.

Saturday morning we went for a walk to Cameron Falls, at Knoll Point in the Mt Tamborine National Forest.
A very cool morning before we set out

A hollowed out tree that is still alive

Bird nest ferns

Cameron Falls and me - warmed up after my 1.3km walk

Amazing dragonfly

Top of the falls
The views and the trees were so beautiful and the air clean and cool.  What a great day/morning out.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

The Joy of Mother's Day

Time spent together, sharing a delicious meal and great conversation . . . and don't forget those lovely pressies.

My beautiful children spoiled me. From Elizabeth a great 'small' purple backpack and a new key holder - ours is full, with extra sets of keys now that we have more drivers in the house.
 Sarah spoilt me with this stunning red scarf - I have been admiring them in the store for ages, and from Matthew well he really went overboard. He bought me these stunning earrings. I think that I am loved.
 Mum invited us down to the cottage for a yummy roast lunch.  She is such a great cook and her specialty has always been great roast dinners. Today's fare was lamb, potatoes (cooked to perfection), veges and an added treat Yorkshire puddings. Yum!  There goes the waistline.
 Matching colour schemes, despite neither of us knowing what the other was wearing, just shows how close we are.  Andre Rieu's new album, some scrap-booking pages and of course what is Mother's Day without chocolates.
 My plate of food, looking so good.  I filled up on the yummy bits, with a few added veges for health.
I have been a daughter for nearly 50 years and a mother for 23 - what bliss!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Woman or Wo-mum ?

Today I realised that I am more a wo-mum nowadays rather than a woman and I feel a little sad about this fact. This weekend we will celebrate Mother's Day and I will be counting my blessings and enjoying the day along with mothers around the world, but in becoming a full-time mother, I have lost a little of the woman - who was Me!

At some time during the past 23 years, I have moved from the woman that I was into a role, where motherhood comes first. The most important thing to note about the above, is that I wanted and still want to be a Mum more than anything I have ever wanted.  I was very little when, I knew that this, was, and is, what my primary role in life was going to be.

Motherhood has been one of my greatest blessing. The day I miscarried our first little baby (March 26th, 1989 - yes I still remember) was the day that I nearly broke. My grief was so encompassing that I could not even breathe and it was only through Ivan's love and strength, that I faced the next day and the next. The gift of Elizabeth's birth just 10 months later, was one of the most wonderful days in my life. The subsequent births of both Matthew and Sarah, fulfilled my wildest dreams, overcoming the sadness that we were to feel on 2 further occasions of loss, between Elizabeth and Matthew's birth.

My children are wonderful - they fulfill me. I enjoy nurturing, teaching and encouraging them. They are not only my pride and joy, but also my friends. I connect with each one of them in a different way, and see traces of myself in them.

So why the sadness at Wo-mum, rather than Woman?

Well today I treated myself to Ricky Martin's Greatest Hits CD & DVD. The girls and I were watching the DVD and I remembered that I was one of 'those girls' who 'Shook her Bon-Bon' - I used to wear the sexy clothes and walk the talk, danced the dance and sang the songs of the sensual woman.  Over time and especially over the last few years, this woman has been subsumed by duty, work, motherhood and recently illness and I miss her.

So to all Mothers - celebrate Motherhood, but don't lose yourself - be a Woman as well as a Wo-Mum.

Thursday, May 9, 2013


Another great productive morning working on my book.  It is such a lovely feeling to once more dive into the world of my imagination.

Today I produced another 3000+ words of editing and I have realised that my original writing is quite good. The story needs some tweaking, but the characters are rich and interesting and the story line is moving along.

I know that Elizabeth would love me to be working on writing Book 4, but I need to edit and re-write Book 2 & possibly 3 first, as it may just change the story.

So total edited is now nearly 12 000 of the +60 000 words, a fifth of the way there.

Hopefully 2013 will now see the publication of Book 2 - The Destructors.

A few weeks ago this felt like and impossibility.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Writing again - at last!

This morning I finally put pen to paper - or should I say fingers to keyboard (it doesn't quite have the same ring to it - does it?).  Oh well, the good news is that I am writing, or should I say editing, again.

I have picked up Book 2 of The Guild Chronicles Saga and am working on the re-editing process. Still in the early phase - I find that the story is once more flowing, moving from 5307 words this morning to 8305 words after a few hours, allowing me to once more step into the world I have created.  Some of the story needs to be fully re-worked, but the delight I am experiencing in realising that I have written something that I want to read.

Over the last 10 months, writing has at times proved challenging, although I have today collated my Cancer Journal and have discovered that I have written a total of 13 587 words.  It was fascinating collating all my separate entries - reading my early posts, the dark times and the times of positive empowerment. So although my 'creative' novel writing has ground to a halt, writing and I have not been totally separated.

I have also loved hand-writing my daily diary - something I haven't done in years.  Starting on March 1st, I once more began an evening ritual of noting down my days activities and thoughts - another powerful tool in my writing arsenal.

Keeping up with Facebook has been good, and my occasional posts (sorry everyone) on Vesta have allowed me to keep in touch with the world.

Now I begin to live life again, outside a 3-week cycle, I face the challenges of what things in my life I will return to and what I will leave discarded.

Writing is the very big one, that I know I will keep with delight and JOY.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Celebrating the end of a journey

Elizabeth and I started my chemotherapy journey together six months ago. As we sat together at that first appointment, while they tried unsuccessfully to insert my portocath - my brave and amazing daughter has been by my side. 

To celebrate the end, she bought me this beautiful yellow crystal rose for my collection. Yellow Roses - the symbol of friendship.  Elizabeth you are my daughter, my friend and my rock!  I love you.

 Celebration dinner with Matthew and Elizabeth - no more chemotherapy.

The last three tablets - after 669 tablets.

 The joy of taking those very last tablets - an empty box - all over.  Now time to regain energy and enjoy life.
Thank you everyone for your love and your support.

I am still here on Planet Earth

I have not been swallowed by a great sea monster, or disappeared into outer space. In fact I am still in the same space that I was when I last posted, except a little more distracted.

The last month has seen so much happening.  Firstly the loss of my father-in-law Desmond, struck the family hard.  We are all so far away from Ireland and felt so helpless.  Then Ivan left for a 3 week overseas business trip and I began the last 2 weeks of my chemotherapy treatment.

As each day progressed, I began the countdown.  Calculating that I had taken over 670 tablets in the course of six months and finally getting to the last three, was a momentous moment.  Side-effects have been bearable and enjoying an increase in energy and positive outlook has filled every day.

. . . And then  . . .  my Dad, Brian, collapsed at home. He was rushed into hospital and diagnosed with a minor stroke.  The last 5 days have been concerning.  Luckily it has been really minor, although the worrying part is that the MRI has shown a serious of previous minor strokes. The good news is that he is home and feeling good.

So . . . soon I will be back typing regularly. Forgive Me.