Sunday, February 28, 2010

The bay

I have some interesting photos but this was taken from one I took last week while we were walking, the most incredible skies and an almost flat sea with the Island just sitting there like a huge whale.
The skies are still not as I would like, and the scan isnt as true to colour as I would like either but I was quite pleased with this small watercolour.
It has been blowing like crazy today and the wind had whipped up the sea and I think people were waiting to see if we were going to see the tsunami but not much likelyhood of that here.
John and I went up to McLaren Vale today to look at a few galleries as I am feeling the need to see other peoples work. I will show some tomorrow as I havent done the photos yet.
We came home and had a not terribly long walk by the sea and then headed back as we had some ointment to put in one of the foals eyes, she has a nasty eye, probably a grass seed and may lose the sight in it. One of the nicest foals we have but sometimes these things happen.
As John says, when you have livestock you have to expect the best and the worst.
Talking of livestock we watched Hud on ABC2 last night, a young Paul Newman and done in 1963, we saw it then but I had forgotten a lot of it and as John said he doubted that it would be done like that now. The heartbreak of shooting the cattle after an outbreak of foot and mouth.
There was a lot more to this film than I remembered.
John actually sat and watched it with me, he doesnt watch a lot of television these days.
I wonder if this haiku by Issa is appropriate?
Old man with one ear
held close,
do I sound to you
like a buzzing gnat?

Friday, February 26, 2010

Dock seed, a book and beach finds

The dock has all gone to seed and is in the most wonderful rusty reds and browns, I sketched these early and decided not to add colour, maybe one day.
They were against the fence where they hadnt been mown down in the spring.
This absolutely wonderful book arrived today, I had found it at a good price here at Booktopia but was I think the last copy they had.
I am going to have many hours wandering through the pages of illustrations from all areas of Africa.
Finally not today's collection of beach finds but some from the other day, lovely worn rocks and a few shells, rocks, rocks and more rocks find their way here.
This morning before we braved Woolworths (and I mean brave, it is under re construction and every time I go things are in different places, I hope this is the final stage of the movement. I spend far more time looking than buying.), sorry to get back, we went for a walk around the bay and there were lots of shells washed ashore so I have a fine collection but not sorted out yet.
It was getting warmer as we walked and has got really quite hot now.
Come on autumn and the end of daylight saving, although the powers that be have decreed that for some reason we are to get up in the dark until the end of the first week of April, not early March.
I want rain and cooler days to get into the garden although it is doing very well by itself at the moment, so long as I water it.
Here is a bit of nonsense by Issa.
Withered tufts of grass...
Once upon a time
there was, and is,
an old witch!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Sketchbook and garden

I havent had time to do much sketching lately, except for some sad and odd stuffed doll and animal and odd creature designs.
My computer has been so slow over the last couple of days, that I have taken to having a small sketchbook by the key board so I can at least do something.
I am into owls at the moment and I rather like this very worried looking one wondering if he should eat one of the caterpillars
climbing on his tree and if the scream was him or some one else.
I have therefor broken my sort of rule that this blog is for sketches and the other one for photos and other stuff and put up a photo I took of the gaura flowering madly in the front of the house. Wonderful stuff, I believe it hails from Texas but loves our hot dry summers although not too dry and mildly self seeds around, just where I want it.
Actually we have had a couple of cooler days and it was the loveliest walk along the beach this morning, rather later than we normally go so not many dog walkers and the sun was out, a light cool breeze and the tide was low. Days like this are glorious.
I will not be in Adelaide today but friends will visit Mummy instead.
I had a friend over yesterday and we tried to price what I had for the show in April. She made some good suggestions but it means I am making a few more bits and pieces.
I have just finished reading a very fascinating book called Remarkable Creatures by the same author of The Girl with the Pearl Earring, Tracy Chevalier, all about the woman who found fossils near Lyme Regis.
Today I am back with a Haiku by Buson.
Hazy morning:
as in a painting of a dream,
the people passing.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Sketching at Goolwa

John had a meeting over at Goolwa which is about 1/2 an hours drive away where the Murray River enters the sea, when it can which isnt at the moment, and there is a lovely big surf beach.
They have filled up the bit of the river around Goolwa with water as at this time last year there was almost no water at all, I feel this gives a false impression of the state of the River Murray but that was the decision that was made.
Any way, politics etc aside I had a lovely morning wandering in to all the shops and only bought some remnant fabric from an interior design shop, only problem was it has labels left on it, and I wondered if any one had a clever idea of how to get them off, I can soak off the paper but am not sure if the glue will go with it or not, one piece definitely has glue on it. Any ideas will be gratefully accepted!
There were two interesting art galleries with new works in them as well, the one at Signal point was part of a larger one held in about 5 venues from Goolwa to Parachilna in the north called The Heysen Trail. I had a delightful wander, and the other had a lot of very interesting pastels in it by some one whose name I cant remember. I havent tried pastels but this stuff was really good.
I went down to the No 19 beacon and then came back to the beach and bought a cup of coffee at a rather nice kiosk cum cafe that seems to have opened there since last I came down. I had a wander on the beach after my coffee and then went back up to the river as I knew it was getting close to when John would finish and sat and sketched boats.
I love boats but I find getting them right ridiculously difficult.
It was a lovely few hours away from home and I should do it more often.
Another Haiku by Basho.
The darkening sea.
A wild duck calls -
in a blur of whiteness.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

It is such fun to doodle.

This was my hearts from the other day and then I added to it. Such a lot of fun, It is amazing how things suddenly grow from lines and curves
John went fishing to day and I had a bad nightso was a bit slow today, the hoses needed shifting pretty regularly, and I had the winter Olympics on for as much of the day as they show it, high drama in the two man bob sled when our no 2 team and a couple of others went down upside down, looks bone shakingly horrible. So glad our little girl won her gold medal she did a wonderful job, so at least we got one gold, the winter Olympics are always a hard one for a country that doesnt have much snow, and so often what we have is not good snow. I think the bob sledders practice on the NSW beaches!
So what did I do? I finished a couple of things which I will put up on my other blog here which include a small box and a doll I am rather fond of.
But I also managed to do this small beach stone and cover it in wire, not easy, I was going to start with linen but didnt have any that was waxed so had a go at this, it was annoying as the wire kept on kinking but I did it, I thought as I am having a class in April with Mary Hepmansperger I needed to know if I could see to do this. I have her book so sat fiddling for most of the afternoon while John went fishing, and came home with a bucket full of fish.
Still hot and sticky, hotter than they thought it would be, and heating up through the week.
I think this Haiku is apt it is by Onitsura.
The slightest breeze
blows and the sky's dry
shell is filled
with the voice of pines.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

More Chooks

I have some chickens so back to trying to have a bit of fun with pen and colour. Not that my lot look anything like this but it was fun to try.
As you can see still trying to do hens and roosters in a bright and colourful way.
Very hot today again, but humid as well so we are managing with the fans.
John cut the grass by the bedroom door this morning with the hedge clippers as our lawn mowing fellow still hasnt arrived. It doesnt look too good but at least it is of a manageable length. I cut back a few other things that have made it difficult to negotiate the path.
Came in very hot and red faced.
We went in to the Market this morning and got the papers and then walked along the bay, a bit hot there as well but there was a breeze.
John was supposed to go fishing this morning but it has been very windy with some strong gusts off and on all day.
I have spent most of the day trying to finish some textile stuff but it is taking longer than I thought.
I have used this haiku before but somehow it seemed appropriate, it is by Kikaku.
The rooster, fighting,
his ruff of feathers,
thinks he's a lion!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Port Adelaide street scape

From my sketchbook, this is a quick rendition of some of the older buildings in a corner of the Port by the docks. Odd shapes, brick and stone, plaster and corrugated iron.
Got my proportions a bit out but there you go, blind in one eye and at least I tried.
We had a lovely walk on the beach this morning before it got hot, sun shining on the sand was almost blinding and the tide was way out again. Nice to be alive.
On French Essence there was a lovely bit about a ski boot, and oh it did bring back wonderful memories of using the same brand of boot, but a lot older and now retired, skiing hard and fast down a black run.
Those were the days! now I cant bend zee knees nor can I see.
We were lucky we skied here in Australia, on good and not so good snow, in Austria and France and Switzerland and lots in New Zealand, on very often slopes with very few people on them.
Memories of taking our lunch up and sitting on your skis with some good food and sometimes a bottle of wine between about 5 of us. Great fun.
When I can I have been avidly watching the winter Olympics.
I couldnt find a Haiku about skiing but here is one by Chiyo, memories of white outs perhaps.
If the white herons
had no voice
they would be lost
in the morning snow.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A tinny in the bay

I started this little painting a few days ago after one of our walks in at the bay but somehow I didnt get it finished before we went to Adelaide. I must re scan it at some time as I obviously have a pint mark on the scanners glass.
Had a busy and slightly traumatic couple of days as we were in Adelaide early on Tuesday and then P and I went wandering around the beachside suburbs and down to Port Adelaide, which unfortunately is being totally messed up with new developments and some of the lovely old buildings going and the whole atmosphere of the port is going into yuppie madness.
Politicians seem to think this is progress. We are in the run up to an election and I have to say I find the whole thing quite awful as money appears from no where to prop up a government who have become complacent and dare I say it probably a little bit corrupt. When it is all over who ever gets in will not be able to make good their stupid promises.
Any way we had a lovely day but it was tiring. John was in and out as he had a seminar and dinner.
On Wednesday as I was going down to see my mother I was told she had a fall and needed to go to one of the emergency hospitals, wonderful, I cant see to drive and they need up front money before they will treat her.
Finally sense was regained and there is now a new ambulance service which will send out a paramedic to asses the situation, so when I arrived she was being sutured in her bed by a very nice girl who was the paramedic. It was traumatic enough without her having to go to hospital. She had 4 stitches right in the back of the head but was being reasonably good about it all and even cracked a smile as I was leaving when I said that the bandage that looked like a turban around her head only needed a feather and a bright brooch and she would look like a 1920's flapper, her era.
Needless to say my day was a mess and I have had a pretty slow day today to get over all the excitement. Another sister was going to see her today. She is a very tough old bird for her 97 years.
So I leave tonight's entry with this haiku by Kyoshi
Deftly the new moon
a silver haiku
on the tips of waves.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Doodling hearts

Its pretty obvious when I havent much to put up as I resort to doing a few doodles and tonight it was these three hearts, a bit late for Valentines day.
Sometimes I wonder why I have this compulsion to write up my blog, is it the exhibitionist in me? I dont really think that is quite me. I think maybe it isfrom years of writing up a small daily journal of my days doings.
My writing isnt even particularly good and I know I cant spell Virginia!
Perhaps it is to prove to myself that I am still here.
Perhaps it is that my life which is terribly boring should have some sort of record for it.
Whatever I am still here and I am still writing.
So what did I do today? No walk, but I did finish the ironing, which is one of those dreadful tasks I hate and put off till the last minute.
I picked a bunch of glorious roses from the garden and now cant remember the name of the bush, once I knew all my roses by name but since I have lost so many in the drought I think I have purposefully put them to the back of my brain, it is too painful to remember the ones I loved.
I am not replacing them either as the garden has really become too large and they dont at all like my deep sandy dry soil. However much I try to improve it.
My textile pieces are coming along slowly, but if you want to see them you will have to go here on my other blog.
We leave for Adelaide early tomorrow as John has a conference and dinner, I am going to stay with my friend P and see my mother on Wednesday on my way home so no blogging for a day or so.
Issa has this haiku for tonight.
A three-day-old moon
already warped
and twisted
by the bitter cold!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Dead fish and a walk

I sketched this dead fish on our walk this afternoon.
We managed a cliff walk from Petrel Cove along to wards Kings Beach.
Not the full walk but about 3/4 of an hour which is the most I have managed for ages and there was quite a pull up off the beach but the knee so far has coped.
We were not sure what sort of fish perhaps one of the gurnards.
As you can see from the photos it is a nice little beach with fabulous views.
Windy and quite cool so a good day for trying this.
The girls are terribly pleased with themselves as our Cob stallion went to a big all breeds show today and came home with Champion ridden stallion, and he hasnt been under saddle for very long, didnt go Supreme ridden but did go Supreme led of Show which was great. He needs to go out a bit as he really hasnt been to very many shows at all and tends to get a bit nervous.
John didnt go fishing today as it was too windy so I had him home on Valentines day and tonight he is cooking pasta, so I am very spoilt.
I hope every one had a lovely day, not that we observe it much here, just say nice things to each other, certainly no gifts.
I am late, must see the Dr Who that is on, havent seen it before, this one is the end of time. I have been a Dr Who fan since the beginning.
Tonight's Haiku is by Joso
Ripe heads of barley
bent down by a rain,
narrow my pathway.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

A crazy bird

I havent had time for much but decided that I needed a bit of light relief so this bird was born. I rather liked his multi colours and silly top knot.
We have had some rain, about 13 mm which has freshened things up and made the grass grow, which is a bit unfortunate for our lawn mowing guy who has pneumonia and I am not sure when he will be back to cut back the jungle.
Always happens, very dry, then the minute we get rain and humidity everything in the garden goes mad.
At the moment I am acting a bit like a grazing pony, pulling the long grass for the bantams but I dont make a very even go of it.
Yesterday was one of my grand childrens 18th birthday, Gaby who has baby Mason, so we gathered in one of the pubs to have a meal and toast her health and I had made a cake so Happy Birthday was sung and candles blown out, much to the delight of the 2 small ones. photo on my other blog here.
John went off today to get cockles for the May expedition to Coffin Bay, and I went in to the market and collected some blackberries from Tabby's girls.
I have been playing with textile stuff but nothing finished as yet, having a lovely time burning back things with my soldering iron.
We went for a late walk this evening at the bay, the terns were having a lovely time fishing so there must have been a school of small fish out there.
I have just done a new chicken recipe for dinner, quick and simple John doesnt much like chicken so I have to think of different ways for him to have it, I thought this was ok as it was but he felt he needed some sweet chili sauce with it!
I watched the opening of the winter Olympics this afternoon, love the winter Olympics, as an ex skier I find it far more interesting than the ordinary ones. Terrible about the Georgian competitor who was killed on a luge practice run.
There were a few hiccups with the opening ceremony but a delight for all that.
Tonight's Haiku is by Shiki.
One perfect moon
and the uncountable
drowned in a green sky.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Lino cut

This was what I put on the cards I gave yesterday to two friends that I had lunch with.
We had a combined Grumpy Goddess lunch for two birthdays and a leave taking.
One of the birthdays was mine, well and truly gone and one for a friend who has hers later in the month and the one who is leaving is 83 and following her family to Melbourne, very brave of her but all her support base has gone here and she has sussed out all the quilt shops and I will visit when I go to see the family, she is quite positive about it all but I think the selling up and actual packing up has taken its toll.
So a fun lunch with lots of presents and chat, catching up with those I dont often see and an incredibly full and noisy Italian restaurant with good food and desserts to die for, I was good, my diet is still sort of holding out.
It is finally raining today, this morning I went over to see Tabby and Gaby was there and the small children so that was fun and we went out to look at her lovely Cob foals and I finally saw mine close up.
As I came home there was a bit of a wet road, then it started raining in earnest, lovely soft, steady rain.
Everything in the garden is singing and it has cooled down, in fact I may have to find a windcheater.
I thought this Haiku was appropriate, it is by Shiki
Frog-school competing
with lark-school
softly at dusk
in the art of song...

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Tub of succulents

This tub of succulents is enjoying this weather but I am afraid I am not. A few more days of it is forecast too.
The tub is white but hasnt shown up very well on my scan, I can see it through the sun room window and I often paint it as it is so close to where I paint.
Not that painting in a sun room has been much fun these last few 37 to 38 degree C days.
We did walk this morning and I have done some textile stuff and have a couple of new books but as I have written about them on my other blog I wont here.
The haiku tonight is by Meisetsu.
The river leaping
roars away...
As the mountain smiles.

Monday, February 08, 2010

Not a sketch but a textile

I have been quietly sewing this little kimono while it is so hot, 37 degrees and very high humidity, again! I have been sitting in front of a fan and trying to stay cool.
This is part of the stuff I have for sale at the Exhibition in April. I just need to make a hanger for it.
It is nice having something I can just quietly sew and not worry too much about it.
We had an early morning walk on the beach at the bay again this morning, before it got too hot but John had a meeting afterwards and it was a bit hard to find somewhere cool to wait for him.
I have been really loving some of the snow photos that have been coming through on blogs, although I imagine there are a lot of people to whom enough has become enough.
Thank you for all who left messages on my blog about our anniversary, it is lovely to think people care.
To nights Haiku is by Bokusui.
A horsefly buzzes
in the shining hollow
of a temple bell.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Fifty first Wedding Anniversary

Dont we look pleased with ourselves, so young, 19 and 21, but so we should be pleased with ourselves, we have had our ups and downs but it has been a wonderful time with a terrific person who doesnt always give me what I want but tries hard and is fun to be with and most importantly is a friend as well as lover.
We have lived through droughts and good years with money and without, have raised 4 wonderful children and have 11 grand children and 1 great grand child.
Are we ready for retirement, I dont think so.
We live in a lovely valley in a glorious part of the world.
We have been lucky to see many parts of that world, perhaps not as many as I would like but more than some others.
We have lived a fortunate life.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Crazy chickens

Sometimes I want to just play, actually I probably have wanted to do that for a few days, I dont want to do something realistic, which I am not terribly good at doing any way.
So I spent a bit of time wandering the blogs and came away with a feeling that it is alright to play and so these chickens were born.
I would dearly love to do "proper" chickens and roosters but my ability in that area is not very good.
We have had a lovely day down here today and before 10 am I had had a walk on the beach at Encounter Bay this time and the tide was way out, picked up a small wardrobe for Gaby and been to the supermarket where once again, well we wont go into that.
I have fiddled around doing things I have wanted to do for ages so feel at least something small has been achieved.
To nights Haiku is by Basho again.
bell chimes fade,
and the scent of blossom

spreads in the twilight.
I think this will be true tonight, I have a green arum lily that has a glorious scent and it is out at the moment.

Friday, February 05, 2010


I wasnt going to blog today as I hadnt done a sketch or anything except finish this little owl. It was a freebie on cart before the horse blog here and is done on fabric but is all paint, I am not terribly good at doing this but he was fun to try.
It is amazingly cool here, but dry.
I had a fight with a shopping trolly when I was going back to the car this morning, a full shopping trolly, and the new development in their wisdom have made the areas that you can walk along slope, one which is under a verandah I have no idea why it was done as a full trolley has a mind of its own and heads towards the gutter and overturns. I was not at all pleased and ricked my back which has just been fixed. So I have had a bit of a slow day today.
No Haiku tonight, just a bit by me.
An owl
hooting in the dawn,
a scream
then silence.

Thursday, February 04, 2010


I am doing some textile stuff on Hole Moley run by Dale Rollerson of The Thread Studio and at the moment we are doing layers, her latest bit got me thinking so I did this preliminary paining to see if it would translate I think it will.
I loved this bit and I am dying to get on with working it through but there is never enough time in the day and other things to do first.
But then maybe I can sneak in some time somewhere.
Cooler but still sticky, we didnt get the promised rain, just what looked like it but nothing on the ground.
Hoses on again.
Just because I like it here is this Haiku by Basho.
A cuckoo calls
and suddenly...
The bamboo grove
lighted by moonbeams.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Japanese Pin tail duck

While looking at the little ducks I bought in Japan a few years ago and looking at this lovely duck on the Hakodate birding blog I really did have to sketch it. It has these incredible white stripes on its wings, a pink bit on its bill and looks totally unlike any duck one thinks of.
It has been awfully hot and terribly humid here today, they keep on promising rain but so far we have seen none.
This of course means I will have to go out and turn on the hoses again as the garden is dry dry dry.
John decided to put a coat of paint on the bathroom, of all days to do this as the air con doesnt really like this weather so he has the fan and I feel terribly uncomfortable.
I have painted a doll, fiddled with a few things but really dont feel as if I have been productive at all.
This Haiku is pretty apt at the moment as the flies are biting here, it is by Issa.
In my small village
even the flies
aren't afraid
to bite a big man.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

The worker

The proportions are wrong.
I was trying to give an idea of movement.
I dont know how that huge knee got there.
Hot and sticky and hard to concentrate on anything.
Please visit my other blog here it may be more to your taste.
There must be a Haiku about mountains.
Here is one by Meisetsu.
Beyond the mountain
I watched the rainbow
the sage's vision.

Monday, February 01, 2010

Dreaming of distant lands

Although having looked at this on the computer I think the turrets are going to fall on me if I actually went to Istanbul!
From a post card the children sent me last year.
A walk on the beach a meeting and some washing done.
Such is a house wife's lot, although the walk on the beach was a special bonus, we were ferrying cars to the repairer and decided we needed a walk, windy and cool but almost deserted, so different to during the school holidays.
I am patron of our local Women' s and Children's auxiliary and we have a very enthusiastic lot at the moment, looks like a lot of fund raising in the future, they made $10,000 profit on a fashion parade they ran while I was away last year.
The haiku tonight is by Buson.
Hazy morning:
as in a painting
of a dream
the people passing.