Monday, December 24, 2007







COLL :-}

Friday, December 21, 2007

Lunch with Special Friends & My Christmas Decos

Last Thursday I had a lovely long lunch with some very special friends, Sue from Junkit Junction, Jullie from Jullie's World & my dear daughter, Shannon from Paint Mine Pink. I know you all don't need any introduction to these lovely ladies. Julles & Sue live not too far from me in the beautiful Blue Mountains, so we took the opportunity of us all having a free day to get together for a pre-Christmas lunch. I, of course, forgot my camera, so no pics, but Shannon has already posted some on her blog.

Of course, the conversation did include the fact that I have not posted for quite awhile (feeling very guilty now), so here I am again.

I have tried to get some decent pics of our Christmas Decos & lights. I'm not the best at taking night shots, but they didn't turn out too badly. Trying to get the lights in between them flickering is a bit tricky.

This is our pretty wreath (made it myself) on our front screen door.

My little Christmas tree, plus sparkly reindeer underneath.

This is our tree at night. We have a curtain of pink star lights in the window, looks amazing.

More reindeer, candle holders & a pretty sparkly sequin tree (I pinched the little pink star from Shannon, hee hee). Last year the reindeer were gold, so I painted them & added silver glitter to their antlers.

My gorgeous big papier mache reindeer (think maybe I have a thing about reindeer-lol). They used to be gold too, but have had a paint job. I think they look very pretty with their big pink bows.

This is not a very good shot of our outside lights, they look much prettier than this.Part of our (brand new) icicle lights on the guttering aren't working either, thanks to a hungry cockatoo, who decided they looked good enough to eat, so he did. Rotten bird!

Obviously this is not our decos, but some of the Agapanthus Lilies in our garden & they are very much a part of Christmas in Australia. For all you gals in the cold climates, they flower madly here this time of year & they are often referred to as Star of Bethlehem. We have hundreds in our garden & they just look amazing. Because I am a blue gal at heart, I just adore them. We have lots of white ones too.

And last, but by no means least, Christmas wouldn't be the same without the old guy with the beard around (& no Shannon, I don't mean John, hee hee). He is a lovely vintage looking Santa made of tin. Isn't he gorgeous. And my latest little sparkly silver tree, cost me all of $3 at a market stall last week. You can never have too many Christmas trees.

And I'm sorry, but I don't think blogger will let you enlarge the pics when I centre them. I had a terrible time with it today & I was lucky to get anything where I wanted it to be. aaargh!!


Hugs, Coll :-}

Monday, November 12, 2007

Things that go "BLAAAAAA" in the night & Why do men panic in an emergency?

Well, I'm not sure if that is how you'd spell it, but it sure made one hell of a noise. Saturday night, busy counting zzzzz's, 3.25am, when all of a sudden "BLAAAAAAAAA".
I leapt out of bed like I'd been shot, my DH, of course, was still snoring. I knew straigt away it was his car, the little Excel. It has a horn all it's own!
Rushed out the front of the house to make sure it was his car, then raced back inside to wake him (still snoring!!). How in Heaven's name can men sleep through things like that? Just as well the house wasn't on fire! You have no idea how loud a constantly blaring car horn is at 3.25 in the morning.
Okay, so he stumbles out, turns every light in the house on, (I'm soooo wide awake by this time anyway it doesn't matter), almost falls over one of the dogs, who is obviously wondering what the....?
Then he proceeds to yell at me because he can't find the shifter to disconnect the battery. No hope of finding the right wire at this particular time. Talk about running around like a chook with it's head cut off!!
I, by this time, am laughing my head off. What else could I do. This did not go down well with my DH, but it was funny! Maybe you had to be there, but I'm not sure all the neighbours it woke up thought it was funny.
Anyway, finally he gets the thing disconnected, throws the shifter back in the garage cupboard & marches back to bed, muttering nasty things about car horns & people who have a weird sense of humour. Surely he didn't mean me!
The next morning he & our nextdoor neighbour spent a whole hour peering into the motor, trying to find the right wire to disconnect. I did volunteer the information that maybe they could disconnect it from inside, where it is connected on the steering wheel, but that was pooh-hooed. Stupid woman, what do I know? (lol).
Anyway, you guessed it. No wire found in the motor, not one they could get to anyway, so eventually it did get disconnected, from the steering wheel, but not until my DH had driven to the local shops and back, with the horn going "Bleep" every now & then. hee hee hee.
So today it's off to the car hospital to get fixed, a man can't live without a horn to Beep at us stupid women drivers, eh.

Anyhooo, on a brighter note, because we had lots of sunshine yesterday after a week or more of rain, rain & rain (which we desperately need), I took some pics of our little coffee nook on our back patio. Recognise the table, Sue? I've planted blue & white Potato Vines (sound ugh, but they are really pretty) on the sunny side of the lattice, and they are growing like crazy, so soon we will have gorgeous bunches of flowers hanging down all over. It's becoming my favourite place to collapse after working in the garden. And yes, the little yellow bird is real, that's my canary, William, and he whistles beautifully. Bit of competition for the cockatoos in the noise department, but much nicer to listen to.

Hope you all have a lovely week.

Hugs, Coll :-}

PS: Anyone for tea & a cupcake?

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Vinnie's Sale & some great buys

Shannon & I went to the Vinnie's sale this morning. Tracey, my eldest daughter, came along later & conned Mum into buying her some stuff too - lol. Vinnies only have this sale once every 6 months, so we get all excited the week before, wondering what bargains we'll find. Well, we weren't disappointed. Shannon got some great things she will work her magic on, with some paint & her beautiful roses & also bought herself some pretties for her house. As we know, you can never have too many pretties.
I also bought some pretty bits for myself, but mostly things to put on ebay.
Two pair of beautiful old silver candelabra, a couple of really pretty tins for my kitchen, the most gorgeous heavily embossed silver dresser set, mirror, comb & brush, just exquisite. The sweetest little tea set with pink roses & blue edging, two so pretty cups & saucers with pink roses (anyone would think I had a thing for pink roses), a pair of bunny s & p shakers (Amy, you'd love'em) & two vintage talc tins with pretty country scenes, for my bathroom. Also a white Marcella Q. Size Doona cover, white Damask large tablecloth with a rose pattern & a round crocheted white cloth. The linen has some stains, but a good soak in the old Sard's Eucalyptus and they will be better than new.

But the best of all was this fabulous, beautiful, divine vintage piano stool, covered in gorgeous pink velvet, which only cost me $15. There is some wear to the velvet (from years of bums, I guess - lol), but who cares. I may re-cover it, don't quite know yet. I'll wait & find out what my DH thinks first, he's gonna love it. What do you think?

Actually, Shannon is not quite talking to me yet, because I found it before she did - hee hee. (Just kiddin, sweetie).
Ok, now that I have spent all that money, I'd better get some photos done for ebay & get some of it back.

Hugs, Coll :-}

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I am just about to go to bed, but i have to tell you, "IT'S RAINING"!!!!
We've had "Mountain Mist" all day, but this afternoon it got a little heavier, and now it is rain. Just heavy enough at the moment to make a difference, good soaking rain, I can hear my garden jumping for joy!!
I hope & pray that the farmers who need it the most are getting some of this delightful dampness.
I also have to add our prayers for all our blogger friends in California affected by the terrible fires. I have watched them on the TV and I'm horrified to learn that most of the fires were started on purpose. What in the world is wrong with people? How can anyone do this to their fellow man.
I hope & pray that everyone in harms way is delivered safely.
Hugs, Coll :-}

Friday, October 19, 2007

Better late than Never, as they say

Well, I have just been going through some comments on my older blogs & I have discovered that, while I was MIA, I was very remiss (love that word) & missed out that I was tagged for a couple of things. Alison of Creative Art & Craft, tagged me for the "Name Game". So sorry Alison that I missed it, but just for you, I'll do it now. I don't actually have a middle name, after eleven kids (lol) I think my Mum & Dad gave up trying to think of one, so I'm just plain Colleen. I really wanted to be Linda (Lord knows why), so we'll use that.

L: late, I quite often am, although I hate to be, but there's always so much to do before I actually get out of the house.

I: independant, sometimes too much, I'd rather do things myself than let someone help me. Makes John mad.

N: nosey (well, there's no harm in a little healthy curiosity, is there?)

D: doting (yes, that is a word & I couldn't think of anything else). I dote on my kids & grandkids, the big people can fend for themselves.

A: angry. oh boy, I can get VERY angry (Irish temper, thanks Dad), you don't want to be around me when I am.

There you go Alison, all done.

Hugs, Coll :-}

A walk in the garden

It has been a pretty quite few days, apart from visiting Shannon & Sam and helping with the Halloween decos. The old knees have made me take it easy, so I've been pottering around, doing some tidying up (Spring fever - lol) & pulling out the odd weed in the garden. From a standing position, it ain't easy gals.
Anyway, grab a cuppa & come for a walk with me.
Considering we've had NO RAIN forever, the garden is coping reasonably well, although some things just refuse to come out of hibernation. My Easter Daisies, which are normally pushing their way up by now, are just sitting there.
However, lots of things are well established, so they are still doing their thing, with a little help from the times we are allowed to water by hand.
My Wisteria was glorious, until those pesky Crimson Rosella's got hold of it. C'mon guys, let me enjoy it for a little while, pleeeese. Does anyone know a way (harmless, of course) to keep them off the flowers?
And don't you just love the border of Forget-Me-Nots. We had a few in the garden when we bought this house and,

of course, me being basically a "blue" girl, I spread the seeds everywhere. Now they do it all on their own. Divine.
Hope you all enjoyed the little walk.
Hugs, Coll :-}
PS. eeek!! I have tried everything to move the pics, it is just not happening today. Sometimes this blog thing has a mind of it's own. :-}

Monday, October 15, 2007

Been MIA, but I'm back

Okey, a short explanation as to why I've been MIA for the past month or so. I have osteo-arthritis in both my knees, which has now become severe, to the point where I have to have surgery (eventually). AND I HATE HOSPITALS WITH A PASSION. I've never had anything much wrong with me, so this past month or so has been a bit difficult, coping with the pain (not well), the drugs (hee hee) the doc has me on, which send me to la la land & make me sooo tired I don't want to do anthing at all. Then I can't sleep properly because of the pain - vicious circle eh. Then, to top it all off, John (my DH) had to have surgery on HIS left knee due to a fall at work (nope, he wasn't drunk, even though he works in the liquor industry-lol). He is improving & is back at work now.
So, all in all, it's been a crummy month, but hopefully things will improve. Now have to join the you beaut top-of-the-list (and price) Health Fund and wait 12 months for surgery, or cough up $24,000. Yep folks, that's what it costs to get 2 new half-knees. On the bright side, I have 12 months to convince myself that this is what I have to do.
In the meantime, on good days I'm good and on bad days I'll just hibernate-lol. If I go missing again, you'll know why.
So, enough of that.
At the end of last week I received a HUGE parcel from Lori of Pink Faded Roses, my "Cotton and Candy Swap" had arrived!!! Yay!! You have no idea how excited I was. Presents, just the drug I needed. This huge box arrived, decorated with the most gorgeous pink roses. Yep, I'm keeping them, Lori.
Inside were all the most amazing things, all wrapped soooo beautifully, my pics don't do them justice. It was getting kinda late in the day and the light was bad, so the pics are not what they should be. Johnthought I was nuts taking all the pics, but it was just like Christmas!! Lori, to say you outdid yourself is an understatement. This was sooo worth waiting for, I love every bit of it.

A gorgeous little gift bag with the sweetest card inside. I just loooove these teapots, don't you.

And just look at how beautifully all my pressies are wrapped. Sweetest little tags on everything too. (That's my DH lurking in the background, he kinda likes candy. Fat chance).

This is sooo very gorgeous and obviously made by hand by Lori. Gorgeous old buttons, decoupaged dresses & the sweetest lil cherub you ever did see. And inside the box, another surprise, wrapped in the most gorgeous gold cherub paper, this lovely plate is now hanging on one of my pretty shabby shelves. Thank you Lori, I will treasure this always. How clever you are.

A gorgeous tablecloth, the most divine pinks. It's on my dining table already. Also a replica vintage Whitman's chocolates tin, a sweet cupcake box full of the yummy things for making cupcakes, like little flowers for decos, colourings, cupcake papers, plus a pretty hand crocheted jug cover, a Hershey Kisses pot holder & some candy bars (yum), a sweet basket with licorice allsorts and the prettiest Milkglass Candy Dish you ever did see. I just love Milkglass, how did clever Lori know that? And last, but by no means least, a box of Chocolate Turtles from the South Bend Chocolate Company. To-die-4!

I think the pics are a bit all over the place, I hope they are all there and you can see just how gogeous everything is. Thank you soooo much Lori, I love it.

Hugs, Coll :-}

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

We had a happy Father's Day

We all went to my eldest daughter's, Tracey, for a Father's Day Barbecue on Sunday. We had a great day, the Dads got some nice presents and we all ate far too much. Mind you, Shannon's Dessert, a very large plate piled high with REAL CUPCAKES, was a bit hard to resist. Yep, she even makes great real ones.
So I thought I would share some pics of the day with you all.

Sam & my sweet 4 yr old granddaughter, Kaitlyn. Digging for buried treasure, maybe?

Sam, just digging, cos he can.

A very relaxed Tracey, after lunch.

Scuba Sam. Think the goggles might be just a tad too big?

Alexandra, my 16 yr old granddaughter, doesn't look pleased about having her pic taken.

Tracey's partner, Todd. Big, sweet, gentle man. Not half as scarey as he looks - lol.

You will notice that there is no group photo. Trying to get this lot to all get together in the one spot is like trying to climb Mt Everest, almost impossible. Also, there is no photo of me. I figure Shannon has posted enough ghastly pics of me to keep everyone happy.

Hugs, Coll :-}

PS; I did have a pic of Shannon & Shane, but she made me remove it and like an obedient Mum, I did :-}

Friday, August 31, 2007

Father's Day, Sweet Memories & some tears

We have Father's Day this coming Sunday and I got to thinking while I was doing the dishes this morning.

John & I both have lost our Dads (& my Mum too). My Dad, Frederick (Fred) passed away almost 17 years ago, aged 89. He was in his mid forties when I was born, I was the last of eleven children. He was born in 1901. As you can imagine, he had a very tough life, coming from a not very well off family. His Mother was in a Mental Institution from the time he was 2 yrs old, Dad didn't even know she was alive until she passed away when he was 15. What can possess people to keep things like that a secret from children. He & his brother Gordon were mostly raised by his Maiden Aunt, Ida who, by all accounts, was an unloving woman & a strict disciplinarian. His father, it seems, couldn't cope with raising the 2 boys. He did have a couple of sisters, who he completely lost touch with.

He married my Mum, Minnie, when he was 18 & she was 17 and they raised all those children, through the Depression years when there was no work and Dad did all sorts of jobs, even chocolate making, to feed everyone. After the 2nd World War, he learnt a trade, Blacksmithing, which then became Welding and when he retired from the work force, he was one of the best in the business. He also had a wonderful singing voice, won many talent quests and I often think, if times had been different, what he could have been.

He was at times a hard father, but I always knew he loved us. I helped him through some tough times after Mum died 27 yrs ago, they had been married almost 60 yrs. He lost 2 children (& I lost a brother & a sister) during those 10 years. He carried me though some tough times after my divorce and thankfully, was around to see John & I marry 5 yrs later. This pic is of both our Dads at our wedding reception/party in my neighbours back yard, my Dad is on the left.

John's Dad, Edwin (Ed) passed away nearly 4 yrs ago, aged 86. He was a country boy from Victoria, he also lost his Mum early on and the family was scattered about. He came from a large family and fortunately, they managed to all keep in touch with each other over the years.
He was a train driver for most of his life and a heavy smoker for a lot of it and this resulted in him developing Emphysema, which eventually put a strain on his heart.
He & my Mum-in-Law lived in Queensland, and fortunately John had gone to visit them, because his Dad had been ill. His Dad had a massive heart atack that weekend & passed away in John's arms.
They were both wonderful, hard working men and loving husbands & fathers, grandfathers & great-grandfathers & we miss them very much.

RIP - Safe in God's arms. Happy Father's Day Dads, we love you.


Thursday, August 30, 2007

Sunny days, flowers, and butterflies

Today was absolutely the most gorgeous sunny day, not that I saw much of it. I was catching up on housework and taking pics for ebay, so mid afternoon I took my shadow, Maddie, around the garden for a walk with a cup of coffee (just me, not the dog, she's giving up caffeine). I took my camera with me, that's getting to be a bit of a habit now, never used to be. Finally sat myself down on our very shabby old garden seat in the back corner of the garden. We have some gorgeous African Daisies & an Abelia hiding a little compost heap up there. It's very sunny right up until the sun dips really low.
This is my mini camellia I planted last year, "Fairy Wand". Just falling over with flowers.

This is some gorgeous Iris, which haven't flowered the two years we've been here, but decided to this year. I think they like the drought. There's some lovely forget-me-nots sprinkled in there too. There's millions of them coming up in the garden, they seed like crazy.

A pair of butterflies, just the regular old Copper Browns, fluttered in amongst the daisies. Those daisies must be really sweet, because they kept coming back. Not only that, I lost count of the times one of them flew around me, across me and even alighted on the seat next to me several times, long enough for me to take a couple of pics. I've heard that it's really good luck if a butterfly flies in your Aura, so I must be the luckiest gal in town right now!

I still can't believe he/she stayed put long enough, I'm sure it knew I had a camera - lol. Anyhow, it is now an internationally travelled butterfly, in it's too short life, courtesy of blogger.
Hugs, Coll :-}

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Memories, Memories

Last week I bought a gorgeous old framed floral print on ebay, by a favourite painter of mine, Albert Williams. I have a beautiful HUGE print of his roses in my Lounge Room, and when I saw this one on ebay I had to have it. Only small, but gorgeous. So I bought it.

Ok, so today I decided to take the frame apart, clean everything up and paint the frame, which was black. Behind the print was all this old newspaper, from January 1964. John & I had a great old giggle about some of the articles, brought back lots of memories. So I thought I would share them with you. This is the colour the newspaper was, I didn't want to change it.

Oh, my goodness, how would the poor nurses feel if they had to wear that headgear these days.

And don't you just love the old ads. They were for some airconditioning system, but who would know. Love the headband.

I'm going to put it all back when I reframe the print. Who knows who will find it one day.

Hugs, Coll :-}

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Finally, Sunshine, Yippee!!!

Today we finally got some sunshine. This weather is insane, it rains like crazy until all my plants grow webbed feet, but it still doesn't rain where they need it most, in the country. Our farmers are still doing it very tough and that, of course, is pushing prices up on everything. But as usual, it isn't the poor ole farmer who gets the loot, it's the big chains of Supermarkets who keep getting richer and the farmers still struggle on the land. Our fresh food etc keeps going up in price and you wouldn't mind if the money went where it should. Same the world over, I suppose. Still, it stinks!

Anyhow, back to the sunshine. I worked last night and was really glad to get home today so I could get out into the garden in the sun. Had a wonderful time, pulled weeds, planted some more lavender and some primula (pink & white, of course) and gave lots of things a good feed, as well as the snails. I know, I know, they are God's creatures too, but could God ask them to please not eat my primula.

So when I finally stopped and sat in my favourite old cane chair in the sun to have a cuppa (and a chat on the phone with Shannon), I couldn't believe how beautiful the late afternoon sun looked coming through the boughs of my gorgeous flowering cherry, which is set to burst into beautiful blossom in a few weeks. I took some pics and I am amazed at how the camera picked up the light as the sun sank lower, especially in the last pic. Just like a rainbow. Moments like that, you just know there is a God.

Hugs, Coll :-}

Saturday, August 25, 2007

My pretty kitchen window

Did some re-arranging in my kitchen yesterday. I have this huge window, which looks out onto my garden, with a nice window sill, which is just perfect for putting stuff on. Pink stuff, of course. My kitchen is all blue, it's old and shabby and I just adore the French Blue. Painted by my darling Shannon when we moved in here 2 years ago. It was the most repulsive timber stained yuk you can imagine.

Anyway, I have hated the curtains since we've been here, pretty lace, but cream and just a bit either side. Very nothing.

So, through the week I had to get some other curtains out of lay-by (will post them when they are up), so I shouted myself some new ones for the kitchen.

What a difference. Gives it a whole fresh new look, I get more light in, as it's on the shady side of the house, and I can see all of my garden, even if it does look a bit dreary at the moment, rain, no sun forever, and just about at the end of winter.

Not only that, now I have lots of stuff on the window sill too.

Could probably get more on there maybe - lol. I "need" some more pretty salt & pepper shakers. I now have 3 sets around the kitchen, is that a collection starting?

Ok, gotta go, working this weekend. Taking my guys from work out for a drive in the country for afternoon tea today and I get to pick up some pretty purchases from ebay at the same time. Pretty good eh.

Hugs, Coll :-}

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Garage Sale-ing & To-die-for Mountain Homes

Iwoke up early this morning and it was so nice and sunny, I decided I may as well get up, have a cuppa with DH before he went to work and then toddle off up into the Mountains and go Garage Sale-ing. Lots of beautiful old homes up higher, gorgeous gardens. Even in winter they still look wonderful, a bit like England really. So I did a bit of driving around and sighing enviously as well - lol. You've gotta love the pink house. The other is called Maple Lodge. Sorry the pics aren't great, they're out of a local real estate book. I, of course, forgot my camera this morning. As you do.

So I got to the garage sales finally. I have no idea why we call them that, very odd. I think in the States they're Yard Sales, aren't they? Anyway. I got some great bargains. Lovely old & very heavy flower shaped mirror with a bevelled edge $10, (she wanted $20), which I will probably shabby up and keep, just gorgeous gilt mirror $10, Depression Glass Dresser Set $10 (bit much but I couldn't resist it), Woods Ivory Ware Sweet Set $5, Tole Lamp $5 (wanted $10), this will also get a paint job and probably the shade recovered, and the sweetest little porcelain roses, which I am definately keeping. So I was very happy with my finds this morning.

After having such a good time at the garage sales, I had to go to K-Mart to buy a new keyboard for my computer, since mine decided that the b & n wouldn't work, very awkward, because I couldn't sign in to anything.

Ok, so I get home, put my treasures away and get set to install the new keyboard. So now, of course, the rotten thing decides to work agan. You get that, eh.

Well, at least I will have one here should the thing decide to go off the rails again.

Now I'm off to make a cuppa, the weather has turned lousy again, so I think I'll sit down and do some more envious sighing over that real estate book. Maybe we could buy the pink house, it's only $895,000. (C'mon Shann, we could ALL live in it, it's got 5 bedrooms-lol).

Hugs Coll :-}

Friday, August 17, 2007

My Gorgeous Girls (& a guy)

Okay, I have missed a few days, but I've just done three 24hr shifts at work with only one day off in between, so there hasn't been much time for anything. But just see what my darling daughter (Shannon} made for me yesterday. A Tussie Mussie. I think this is the first one she's made. Isn't it gorgeous. Haven't quite found just the place for it, you know when you walk around the house with something in your hand going "hmmm, maybe here", until you find just the right spot. I have some lovely silk Sweet Peas that will look wonderful in it.
And speaking of darling daughters, I thought I'd show you my other talented daughter, Tracey. She doesn't blog and hardly ever ebays, but her creative talents know no bounds, as you can tell from this pic. She has created four of the most gorgeous girls on this earth (proud Nanny talking). From left to right, Jessica (14), Rebecca (18) & Alexandra (16) & Kaitlyn (4). With them is her wonderful, long-suffering partner of seven years, Todd, Dad of Kaitlyn. What a guy! All those women in the house, and a female dog as well.

This is what the eldest three used to look like. Disregard "Nanny" in the background. Oh My, how time flies. They are, along with their little sister Kaitlyn and my Sam, the lights of my life.
What did we ever do without grandkids. And I haven't even started on John's lovely daughter's little ones. More pics to follow.

Hugs Coll :-}

(The pics wouldn't move, no matter how I tried. Help Lori!!)