Thursday, 26 May 2016

Busy, busy, busy...

...that's the way my life has been for the past fortnight and so I'm sorry, I haven't had time to just sit and write about my road trip yet. But I will get around to it eventually. Tomorrow I head south again for an overnight stay about an hours drive from home, with a group of girlfriends. Then I just want to hibernate at home for a week and catch up with my GKB :)
So without further ado here is my little collection of miscellany
 for Five on Friday over at Amy's blog.

1) The top two pictures are gifts I received from 
my girls for Mother's Day. Loved them.

2) It must be winter, I have started this jigsaw, 
all shades of pink and peach :)

3) Last Saturday evening Sis took Little Mother, my daughter and me to the ballet. She was the only one who had ever attended before, but we all enjoyed it. I have to admit though that I kept waiting for them to burst into song - I'm a fan of musicals. The ballet was The Wizard of Oz.

4) Feijoas - there is an abundant crop on the tree and even just picking up the windfalls we are getting a medium 
sized bowlful daily. I have been giving them away 
as well as eating them, I haven't had the time to cook
 any in any way but hope to be able to at least stew 
some next week. The tree belongs to the neighbour
 and overhangs our driveway. In the summer it is full 
of waxeyes darting about looking for insects.

5) And finally Leo. Leo is my friends' cat who I've written 
a couple of posts about in the past. Leo walked over 
the rainbow bridge yesterday afternoon and will be sadly
 missed by everyone who met him. He was a real character. 
RIP my little ewok.

Thursday, 19 May 2016

A road trip - spoiler

I went on a road trip this week with my sister.
Here are five photos of some of the
 places we stopped very briefly at, 
or passed through. I hope you enjoy. 
I will post about this trip later. 
Why don't you pop on over and see 
what others have been up to as well.

Sunset over the Tasman Sea.

A rainbow as we headed into Otira, Westland.

Tussockland in the Canterbury high country.

Near Castle Hill, Canterbury, 
with the Southern Alps in the background

Ducks and geese swimming in
 a braided river in South Canterbury.


Friday, 13 May 2016

A house or two

After we, my sis and I, had been walking on the rail trail one day, my GKB took us for a drive around the countryside. The area we were in is known as the Strath Taieri. Quite barren, as you can see.

One Tree Hill
 Not the official 'hill', that is in Auckland, but at least this hill had a tree on it. Someone cut down the one on One Tree Hill in Auckland, in protest at something or other.

As we were driving back to the camping ground we saw this little cottage way out in the middle of nowhere. Imagine being a settler lady coming to live in this barren landscape. I don't think I would have liked it. Not my cup of tea at all.

This is the same little house, zoomed. You can see the roof is missing and a tree is growing in the living area, it  rather took
 my eye. Further back down the road was this house, 
this one was occupied. They are built from local stone.

Above is the view from the road and below is one of the back of the house taken from the roadside as well. Can you see the sky dish? It rather spoils the effect of the old house , but I suppose even in a house of this age you want the mod cons. And look at those stock pens - this looks like a holding area for stock going to the works. (abattoir).

Across the road was this more modern cottage,
it looked loved with a nice tidy front yard and fresh paint.
I think these must be farm cottages, but I am guessing.

This little stone house was near the road and quite derelict as well. Not much of it left at all. I do wonder when these old stone cottages were deserted, and why? It seems a shame.

And that is it from me for the moment. Next week Sis and I are walking again, weather permitting. We'll be fine as long as 
the wind drops and it doesn't snow. If it does I certainly 
won't be walking anywhere.

joining Amy at:

Saturday, 7 May 2016

Netball and butterflies and other things in between

This morning my daughter rang to see if I wanted to go and watch the netball with her. Youngest grand daughter was playing a social game at 1pm. It's a while since I've watched her as she has played football (soccer) the past two or three years. I noticed she'll have to get used to using her arms again in defence, she hasn't been able to do that in footy. That's her with the topknot hairdo just under the ball. They played a good game for the first of the season and won 25 - 12. It was played inside where her brothers were playing futsal during the summer.

Autumn has arrived, the mornings and evenings are drawing in and getting just a tad nippy. The days are still warm though, in double figures, and in fact some of them are as warm as our summer days were. Anyway, I have finished knitting my daughter, same one as above, a snood for the winter. It's the same as the one I knitted for her sister a few months ago - I had several balls of  the wool left over so thought I could do that. There is still a ball there so I have decided that I will knit the beanie that is on the wrapper you can see around the wool. It is black I know, but it is fun wool and okay to work with once you get used to it.

I have finished my book for April and as I said I was going to do I picked one that was  light and trite. So much so that I can't remember what it was about. So if you want something light and easy to read and you don't have to worry about, this is a good one. 
That Certain Age by Elizabeth Buchan.
But having said that, I have read several others since. (Excuses, excuses). And I am well into the one I picked for this month. I think it could be classed as an autobiography but I'm not really sure. 
Pippa Blake - Journey.
It is the story of her life with Sir Peter Blake up until his untimely death at the hand of  bandits in December 2001. So far, so good. A Christmas gift several years ago from one of my children.

During the week I ventured down the yard to the roses thinking I would cut them back and then dead head the dahlias. Well the roses were not co-operating at all.  Only one of them had finished flowering and all the others are in bud and starting to bloom again. Honestly, even the plants think it is springtime. So I cut the one back or perhaps I should say I pruned it, and tidied up the rest of them. You can see one of them in full bloom below, with a bud ready to open just behind. Then I walked over to the dahlias to begin on them. They also have a lot of tiny buds on them, but I think the frost will get to them before they get to the opening stage. But who knows? So just the deadheading was done there as well.

Speaking of the garden we have noticed a lot of different butterflies this year, and more of them. Among them were the monarch butterfly which is so lovely. This a photo taken while I was still working. We had hatched some caterpillars in the dining room and released them outside when they were ready. This one flew onto branch just outside the window and stayed there for most of the day, much to the joy of the elderly folk inside. It is sad that they have such a short lifespan, only 2 - 5 weeks.

We also had visits from the Great White or as we know it, the cabbage butterfly. These are far more common than the monarch or any of the others we saw and gardeners regard them as a pest. As well we had visits from a black butterfly with white spots on the wings, which was quite common when I was a child but which I haven't seen often since I moved south. I have no idea what it is called as I have always, mistakenly, thought it was a codling moth! 

The other visitor we have seen is red admirals, I think. I say I think because it is a slightly different colour to the ones I remember, so perhaps these ones were yellow admirals? I used to see more of them when I was a child as well. Of course none of the more uncommon ones stayed on the foliage long enough for me to go in and get my camera, so no pics. But isn't that the way?

And that is it from me today.
I am going to join Amy for Five on Friday
 and hope you'll pop over for a look as well.