Thursday, December 14, 2017

Twenty!


















We were all delighted when Naomi told us she would be home for a week's holiday around her/their 20th birthday. Last year Naomi had only recently moved to Sydney and we were planning for a birthday apart - until Naomi unexpectedly turned up on our doorstep late one night!

Soon everyone was counting down the days until Naomi flew home and thinking of things to do while she was here. Being together was the primary focus and the younger girls set themselves goals to complete most of their homeschool studies by the time Naomi arrived.

 Our married son and his wife came 'home' for the birthday and my mother-in-love joined us also. Grace surprised Naomi with a beautiful ukulele as a birthday gift - although I'm sure she would have loved to keep it for herself.

The two things Naomi really wanted to do while home were to have a day trip to Iluka and to set up the Christmas tree. Both of these events are family traditions rich in memories. Our day in Iluka was beautiful, complete with pelicans, seeing the Iluka-Yamba ferry, water play off the pontoon in Iluka Bay and a visit to the bakery.

It was decided that the 1st of December was the day for setting up the Christmas tree. As we unpacked our big box smaller decoration boxes, amongst them I discovered a new Australia Post box with my missing Etsy quilt carefully tucked inside! Back in May I had looked for hours for this smallest quilt (when it sold) but it seemed to have vanished! This dismayed me and sent me scampering to quickly made an identical replacement. Well at last this mystery was solved!

Most of our family photo scrapbooks (my creative outlet for several years before quilting) are stored in the top of the cupboard beside the big Christmas decorations box. Before the empty smaller boxes are returned we usually linger over these special scrapbooks for a while, being amazed at how much everyone has changed and how cute they once were. I'm so grateful to have at least a few years of memories in physical form.

Before we knew it we were farewelling Naomi as she left for Sydney. It was great to be able to say 'see you in three weeks' instead of sad goodbyes. We are all looking forward to having everyone (including our eldest Miss E) home for Christmas.  :)


*** You may also enjoy my Instagram feed which I add to several times a week. You don't have to join Instagram to view either - just click on the little blue square camera logo under my blog profile (top right hand corner).

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Sunday, December 3, 2017

Yellow-Tailed Black Cockatoos in Town












I nearly overlooked them on my early morning walk as they scavenged for buried pecan nuts in the shade, then I saw movement and heard their loud distinctive wailing calls. Yellow-tailed Black Cockatoos! There were about a dozen of them in the shade of the house by the pecan nut tree down by the river! They are quite a large and spectacular native bird, certainly a treat to enjoy them here in town. 💛

 Although I have walked this way several times since, there was not a cockatoo in sight. I'm wondering if they had found all the buried pecans and have moved on in search of other food supplies. I'm grateful to have seen them and caught some photos while they visited and will keep an eye out for them again next year.


*** You may also enjoy my Instagram feed which I add to several times a week. You don't have to join Instagram to view either - just click on the little blue square camera logo under my blog profile (top right hand corner).

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Jacaranda Love





















 











There's something breathtaking about trees covered in masses of purple flowers. Mid Spring every year our town erupts into glorious displays of purple as the hundreds of jacaranda trees briefly flower in a magnificent display. Many of the these gracious trees are over 100 years old, with mature trunks and spreading branches attesting to their many years. 

Since 1935 Grafton has celebration this beautiful time of year with the annual Jacaranda Festival, a special time for both locals and tourists. Commencing on the last weekend in October through to the first weekend of November every year, the Grafton Jacaranda Festival is the longest running floral festival in Australia, complete with the crowning of a Jacaranda Queen, Princess and other 'royal' party members.

Many of the photos above were taken at or near See Park, our largest park in town which continues to be a favourite location for tourists and locals like myself who 'play tourist' with cameras at this wonderful time of year. There is also an increasing number of international visitors enjoying out purple streets, with quite a few choosing to have photos taken in their wedding clothes under the jacarandas. This year's street float parade even included a surprise proposal, to the delight of the would-be bride and the crowds.

Most of the jacarandas have almost finished flowering, although some linger longer. Soon these South American trees will be bare as their lush fern-like green leaves grow to provide a feathery green summer shade.

Further details of most photos will appear if you hover your cursor over the image.  :)


*** You may also enjoy my Instagram feed which I add to several times a week. You don't have to join Instagram to view either - just click on the little blue square camera logo under my blog profile (top right hand corner).




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