Lady of the Dead ~ A Halloween Makeup Session

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Who is that girl in the photo? I don’t recognize her! But that’s my clock, sitting on the mantle piece, right behind her!???????????????????????????????

Now that’s more like it, I know these two girls, my beautiful daughters, Emma and Hayley. Hayley loves playing around with makeup and creating different effects, so when Emma asked her to turn her into someone who even her mother wouldn’t recognize, eg, The Lady of the Dead, (as you can see in the photo on the phone in Hayley’s hand,) Hayley was all for it!???????????????????????????????

It began quite simply, just a big circle around her eyes……???????????????????????????????

Well that was a surprise….a bit dark, don’t you think????????????????????????????????

I thought Emma said she was going to the party as The Lady of the Dead, not a Panda Bear!???????????????????????????????

That softens it up a bit, Hayley is getting into her “Flower-Power” mode….she always did love drawing flowers when she was a little girl. :) ???????????????????????????????

Aww, that’s kind of cute, a little black nose…..???????????????????????????????

…..and funky little whiskers too; maybe she is going to the party as a cute little fury creature, after all. ???????????????????????????????

Oh, a cute little fury creature with white lines on its face…..I’ve got it ~ a white tiger…..or, or, or……a zebra!???????????????????????????????

Well that’s kind of pretty, in an odd sort of way, if you half close your eyes…..???????????????????????????????

What the….?!!! That can’t be Emma! She wouldn’t be caught dead with hair that messy!???????????????????????????????

I think a nice necklace would look better, Emma, don’t you????????????????????????????????

Here comes the special effects lady Hayley again, what’s she doing this time????????????????????????????????

I feel faint…….???????????????????????????????

Eeeewwwww………………that can’t be my beautiful girl, can it?

Thank goodness Halloween only comes around once a year!

Footnote : Emma enjoyed herself, didn’t drink too much, and went to bed reasonably early, if you call 3 am early!

The Muse Who Disappeared

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I haven’t had anything to say here for months. That’s not because I’ve had nothing to say, I’ve been talking plenty, both to the people in my physical life, and those who I know online.

Every now and then I have been visiting my blogging friends blog pages (as you will know!) and I love reading your thoughts, and hearing about what you have been up to. I have even continued adding a photo a day at blipfoto, which I really enjoy, as it keeps a daily record of what I’ve been up to, and I pop into Facebook nearly every day too.

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Then I go to the dashboard of my own blog ~~ and there’s nothing.

Why?!

I seem to be in some kind of slump, but I don’t know why. So taking matters into my own hands, rather than awaiting the return of my “Homelife Muse“, here I am. Babbling on about nothing.

But it’s a start…..right?

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I do have a rather wonderful event to talk of (maybe my Muse just came by for a visit!) My husband and I just had a four day trip away together, just a two hour drive from home, but the best part of the trip was that it was just the two of us!

Don’t get me wrong, I love my children to the moon and back. But you know, they are all so grown up now, they have their own lives. And I will always be here for them if they need me….but they can live their own lives now, independently of me….I can actually go away with their father for a few days without the sky falling in on them!

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My photos today were taken while we were away. I’ll tell you more about the area we went to another day (I don’t want to exhaust my Muse while she’s here!)

I took over four-hundred photos during the four days, and I’m still sorting through them all. But I’ll be back soon ~ Pinky Promise!

trio

“Mistress Creation keeps calling my name… I long for her, and she, for me… we will be reunited soon. In the interim, I bide my time dreaming of her, writing about her and stretching her across the vast landscape of my imagination. “Soon”, I whisper to her, “Soon”.”
~ Jaeda DeWalt

Last Night : The Lunar Eclipse.

April 12th.

April 12th.

The moon caught my eye a few days ago. Every night, the sky looked so bright and I would look up to see the moon dancing with the clouds. I took the photo above on Saturday night. And it looks very clear, very moon-ish, all cratery and rickety around the edges.

Last night when I took myself just a tad east of home, towards the Pacific Ocean, for a view of the Lunar Eclipse, when I first spotted the moon it looked like a red ball in the sky. Moments later though, the red had diminished. And the photos I took didn’t turn out as clear as the one taken on Saturday night either.

Here is what I saw last night. Actually, it’s what my camera saw, I saw the moon through a much clearer lens ~ my eyes. Perhaps the darkness of the eclipse didn’t agree with the eye of my camera, but it shows you a few stages of the eclipse and for that I am grateful.

6:34 PM

6:34 PM

6:42 PM

6:42 PM

6:43 PM

6:43 PM

6:47 PM

6:47 PM

6:49 PM

6:49 PM

6:50 PM

6:50 PM

6:56 PM

6:56 PM

By 7:00 PM, the moon looked like its usual self. The fun of the eclipse was over.

For future reference, I have made a note to myself to set an alarm to remind me to get outside to see the eclipse earlier, as apparently most of the Blood Moon effect showed up earlier than my photos began.

So mark your calendars, the next Lunar Eclipse is on October the 8th this year!

White on White : The journey continues around South West Rocks.

White on white.

White on white.

When Adam told me I would find an abundance of subjects to photograph at South West Rocks, he wasn’t exaggerating. It was the most beautiful area to visit, but the highlight for me was the lighthouse area in the early morning light.

Pacific Sunrise.

Pacific Sunrise.

As our visit to the area was during July of last year, the sun rose quite late, being winter here, so we enjoyed not only the crisp morning air and the beautiful white lighthouse against the backdrop of white clouds, but also the sun rising over the ocean.

A white spectacle awaits.

A white spectacle awaits.

Everywhere I looked, pristine white surrounded us ~ the clouds, the lighthouse, even the white wooden fence along the way….

Accommodation.

Accommodation.

….the quaint white house on the right can be leased to holiday makers. Can you imagine waking in the morning and beginning the day with this view? I’d think I had died and gone to heaven!

Sun-spot.

Sun-spot.

As the sun began to rise, we caught an occasional glimpse of it as it tried to peek its way through the clouds, forming a white sun-spot on the ocean.

A western glimpse....

A western glimpse….

Even as we walked along the path towards the lighthouse, glimpses of the ocean could be seen behind the rental accommodation, looking towards the west. I’m sure that every window in these houses must have a view of the ocean.

A touch of orange against the white.

A touch of orange against the white.

Even the flora here was magical. I could have taken photos all day!

Is this real?

Is this real?

The waves below looked surreal. How could so much beauty be real? Surely it was all an illusion!

Bottlebrush.

Bottlebrush.

These Australian natives are known as Bottlebrush trees, for obvious reasons. Again though, the colour seemed almost angelic.

Gumnuts.

Gumnuts.

I think these are a kind of gumnut, or a hard seed cone. There is so much wild beauty here, and so close to the ocean too. Incredible.

Who goes there?

Who goes there?

Do you ever get the feeling you are being watched? I did, and I was! These two magpies didn’t seem to be bothered by Adam and I visiting their territory though. Perhaps they are used to humans losing all sense of time when they are visiting their home. :)

 

Trial Bay Gaol.

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You may recall a post I wrote in September of last year. It’s an easy story to remember if you visited around that time, as I showed you photos of a pair of adult kangaroos, hopping around behind the bars of the entry to the disused Trial Bay Gaol, along with their joey.

It might be an idea to take a moment to look back at these beautiful animals, to either jog your memory, or take a first look, so here’s the link ~

Can you spot the kangaroos?

Can you spot the kangaroos?

If you look very carefully at the photo above, up towards the building on the right hand side patch of grass, you will see how I first saw this adorable family. They eyed me for a moment or two before approaching, although little joey wasn’t too keen on coming face to face with a fur-less, two-legged creature holding a black box that made clicking sounds, and quickly scurried into its mama’s pouch! I did manage to take a few photos of him though, before he disappeared into her pouch, head first!

Way back, in the days of the open gaol.

Way back, in the days of the open gaol.

Work began on the building of the gaol in 1876, although it wasn’t completed until 1886, due to “difficulties in working the hard stone, inconsistent funding and contractual problems”. A southern wing was added to the gaol in 1900, yet three years later the building was closed.

Barred, yet beautiful.

Barred, yet beautiful.

I prefer to see the gaol as a lovely, historic building. Even though I realise there is a need for prisons, as not all folk in society deserve to be integrated in our day to day life due to their own bad judgement in their actions, it bothers me to think of the way men were treated in the early days of Australia. Many men, and women as well, were judged as criminals for the slightest misdemeanor. I can imagine the number of tormented souls who continue to walk the halls of this ruin. It’s not a part of history that Australia should be proud of. But I suppose all countries have parts of their history that they wish to be not spoken of.

What a view!

What a view!

In an article I read, Trial Bay Gaol is described as “an experiment with humane prison reform”, so I would take that as a positive sign that the powers that be of the time were questioning the old ways of treating prisoners. On the other hand though, the gaol only remained in use for twenty-six years ~ perhaps the experiment wasn’t a success!

The view from the building is amazing though, looking out across the ocean from the top of a hill, from what is now regarded as a “Heritage Listed Building”.

Trial Bay Gaol is located at South West Rocks, and while I was visiting the area with my son Adam last year, he guided the way to a lighthouse there that he knew of, telling me that I would love taking photos of the area. He wasn’t wrong. And I will show you those photos next time. :)

Watching the Grass Grow.

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“Miss the simple pleasures like a friendly hello, an unexpected smile, really looking into someone’s eyes when speaking, random acts of kindness, and days doing nothing but lying on a blanket in the grass watching the clouds roll on by.” ~ Rita Said.

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Even though the summer sun inferno burnt brown patches throughout our lawn during the last few months, a whole lot of grass patches have shot up recently, probably on account of the cooler weather, then the rain, followed by more sunshine.

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Of course it is all weed, full of seeds to grow even more weeds, and this weekend will become the victim of our lawn mower, but in the meantime, doesn’t it look pretty?

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“The moment one gives close attention to any thing, even a blade of grass, it becomes a mysterious, awesome, indescribably magnificent world in itself.” ~ Henry Miller

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April.

“April came along like a blessing, and if it were a fine April it was so beautiful that it was impossible not to feel different, not to feel stirred and touched.” ~ From “The Enchanted April”, by Elizabeth Von Arnim.

A Misty Morning.

A Misty Morning.

Without meaning to let it happen, the month of March has passed me by without my adding a single post. I checked back to March of last year ~ it was the same ~ post-less. I seem to have formed a habit.

This summer has been hotter than usual. I know I spend every summer muttering under my breath about my intolerance to hot weather, but this summer, I wasn’t the only one. It wasn’t just hot weather, it was humid. And sticky. And sweaty. And dry. Not pleasant at all.

The rain arrives!

The rain arrives!

Now, I think the months of extreme discomfort may finally be behind us for another few months. The rain finally arrived in such abundance that our nearby river was on flood warning one day last week. But that’s okay. We needed the rain. The ground needed the moisture. Even the weeds were dying from the heat, not a bad thing when you think about it, but I lost some of my plants too.

Tess's Garden.

Tess’s Garden.

Between showers of rain last week, I started gardening again. We are extending an existing garden, which I call “Tess’s Garden”. It’s where our beautiful dog Tess was laid to rest in January, and I have planted “her” Azalea on her grave. The garden isn’t finished yet, but when it is I will show you the finished area. In my mind’s eye, I see a beautiful and relaxing area and it is beginning to take shape, now we can venture out into the garden again.

The Moody Mountains.

The Moody Mountains.

Early morning is the most delightful time of day right now! The air is so cool on my bare arms, the mist swirls around the mountains in the valley and often it is thick in my garden too, before the sun rises and melts it away.

Petals Falling.

Petals Falling.

Frangipani’s must love this kind of weather. The branches are still covered with leaves, when usually by this time of year they are all but bare. The rain last week knocked many of the last of the flowers to the ground. It looks so pretty though, seeing the dainty flowers on the ground. Whilst many other plants in the garden give up in the extreme heat, the frangipani’s thrive.

Eastern Rosella.

Eastern Rosella.

Every afternoon for the last week I have had a visit from a pair of Eastern Rosella’s, right near the front door. They love the flowers of the Grevillea tree, an Australian native, but they are so timid and it has been a challenge to sneak outside the front door without disturbing them! After a few attempts I finally managed to make it to the veranda and take a few photos before they took fright and flew away. As you can see, they are incredibly colourful. I have plans to plant more natives in the garden. I love to see the birds they attract.

Thirsty Work.

Thirsty Work.

You know that I always have a helper in the garden too, right? Little Miss Tibbs loves the garden too and really appreciates the watering can being filled to the top!

If I’m not mistaken, this is the time of year when the whole world rejoices at the change in weather. Here, we are loving the cool air, whilst in the northern hemisphere everyone is heaving a collective sigh of relief as they watch the snow melting and the green buds beginning to grow on the trees.

All is well with the world as April begins. :)

Rain Drops.

Rain Drops.