Friday, August 31, 2007


This is going to be quite a self-indulgent posting and I am not apologizing about that. I am finding this journalling process very cathartic and helpful to my chronic depressive state. Went shopping with my two daughters yesterday, Nat and Taz (Tarynne - but us Aussies have a horrible prediliction for shortening everyone's name, and often adding and O at the end). Accompanied, of course, by the two most beautiful children in the universe, my grandsons Dylan and Kieran (soon to be known as Dyl and Kier, or Dylo and Kiero and yes, I did point that out to their mother, but the young already know everything). Now, getting to the nub of this tale, my youngest, Taz casually informed me that :"Oh, by the way, Mum, did you know a Sue B.? Well she died." This woman was only my best friend in high school and we frequented each others homes like a bad smell between the ages of 14 and 18. Poor old Taz had no idea of course, how would she as we have since moved half a world away and I have only kept infrequent contact with Susan on the very rare occasion I have gone back to Canberra for a visit. These are usually solo trips as the family are quite scornful about the place (in the usual way of young people), nothing to do there, it's boring, it isn't a real city etc etc. So my immediately bursting into a flood of tears must have shocked the life out of her, not to mention Dylan next to me in his car seat, who tried to distract me by talking about trucks.
Last night, I was almost sleepless because, when something like that happens to you, not only does your own mortality hit you, but you keep revisiting those times you spent together. Susan was affectionately known as Sue-boo (highly original) and she was the second youngest of eight children. Her family were warm and kind and ALWAYS laughing. There was a large group of about 10 girls who hung out together (all girl Catholic high) and we were all of the same type. Highly amused by anything and everything, including plots to kill off some of the ancient nuns who "taught" us, even tho they should have been permanently posted to St Aloysius Home for Nun Senility. We had a music teacher we called Fang, because she had rather unfotunate eye teeth. We all hated music and usually waited til she sat at her piano to talk and laugh instead of singing (actually,Susan sang, because she was a bit of a goodie two-shoes in front of the nuns). She would turn around, instantly pick out the offenders and they would spend the rest of the lesson standing at the back of the room (laughing quietly). It took ages for us to discover that she could easily see us all in the reflection of that highly polished piano. Susan wanted to be a "good" girl, but we were determined to sabotage that goal, so we would convince her to skip weekly Mass and join us smoking on the sports bleachers (until we got caught and suspended) or nick out of the last class of the day and walk into the nearby city. She was always petrified, but laughing with the rest of us us we hoiked our ugly skirts up to our thighs, abandoned our compulsory hats and gloves and headed for the nearest ladies room to smother ourselves with truckloads of makeup that did little or nothing for our fresh young faces. They were such innocently naughty days - I mean we didn't do anything really bad - unlike the girl who had been expelled from the Church of England Grammar who was a compulsive shoplifter, even tho her family was wealthy. She tried to ally herself with us, but quickly found out that we did have our limits and weren't in her league. I recall that the only moment of sobriety in my senior high school years was attending the funeral of a classmate who had been tragically decapitated whilst out in a car with her boyfriend. It seems just a blur now, but I can still see the boy at the funeral (God, we were all only 17) with his arm in a cast and his face a sickly shade of white.
Susan married straight out of high school and straight away had 5 children. She and her husband had their struggles, of course as you do in the early years, but they always seemed to be happy and well matched. Imagine her shock when he told her after 25 years that he was in love with another woman and wanted a divorce. She told me she never saw it coming, God bless her for the naive and trusting sould she was. Shortly after that, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. I saw her about, I think, 5 years ago just after the big bushfires in Canberra when we had dinner with one of our other closest friends, Debbie. Sue had had chemo and radiotherapy and her hair had just started to grow back. She told us that the doctors had given her a reasonably positive prognosis, but every now and then, she has popped into my head. Of course I feel extremely guilty about not keeping in contact and I won't make excuses about that, except to say that we all become so consumed with the various paths our lives take as we get older, that it becomes harder and harder to keep all the balls in the air at once. (For me, anyway, that is true. I find that I can't even finish a novel - let alone a project since the depression splatted on top of me. Or maybe it's a side effect of the morphine?)
So - plan for the day is to aggressively launch myself at my art and hopefully have something to show at days end. It was so lovely to have Dylan yesterday afternoon even though he's still recuperative after a bad bout of chest infection. His endless chatter is distracting and so comforting. I get to have him again tomorrow from lunchtime to the next morning and that really is something to look forward to. So, while I might in some way envy my friend that she has made the passage to a better life(don't be scared folks it's only the big black beast that talks like that), how could I possibly go anywhere that my beautiful kids and my little angels are not?

Thursday, August 30, 2007


I have a friend. (Not just one!) She is such a sweetheart and she punctuates her conversation reularly with the word "luv" (referring to the co-conversant). My kids call her Luv and she is so eccentric, but the great thing is that she is fully able to laugh at herself - a very typically Aussie trait. I went to her house for lunch with a couple of other pals yesterday. The thing about Luv is that she has a bit of an addiction and its a strange one. She cannot resist buying all sorts of crap - mainly because it is bargain priced. Her cupboards and every nook and cranny are groaning with all sorts of goodies - mostly never been used, still in the packaging. Like, sheets, towels, bedding of all types, teatowels, sewing notions (cottons, zips, buttons,etc - but she cannot sew!) She has huge boxes of catering size clingfilm, baking paper, foil etc. She has every conceivable type of mustard you could think of, every kind of salt, soup and on and on. She has clothes for the whole family that have never had the tags and boxes removed, like the 25 men's ties I saw draped on her lounge chair. You never, ever leave her house empty handed because she is constantly giving you things she thinks you need. Like clothes. I cannot count the things she has given to me, some never worn, that she thinks I can alter to my size and make trendy things from. Yesterday she gave me 10 unopened packets of pantyhose!!!! Some would be over 15 years old. The classic, though, was the 120 chicken bags she produced. Even she admits it was a bit odd to buy this lot! You may know them, they are white paper bags outside and foil inside and shops use them to sell cooked chickens in. I took one to play with as there MUST be a way to either utilize them or make them into something wonderful. I'm not so great at the paper arts so SUGGESTIONS would be gratefully received.
That's what I leave u with today as I woke with a dreaded migraine (took my magic pill so it's lifting slightly) and I am going shopping with both my girls and my grandsons this morning to my favourite shopping centre.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Dog Farts!!!

My poor old dog Kahluah is the victim of my attempts to economize on the groceries by purchasing store brand dried dog bits to go with her evening bone. Her flatulence would eliminate the population of a small African nation. I finally figured it out yesterday when I sat at the computer to work and was almost asphyxiated with noxious gas filling the room. She hates to sit near me when she is guilty of such crimes and promptly plonked herself in my bedroom. When I entered that room later and was again assailed by the offending pong, I had that "aha" moment of realizing who was the offender (let's face it, not a difficult deduction given there are only two of us in this house).

My son Steve rang me to ask me the make and model of my car. A little alarming, as he has been using it exclusively for the last 3 weeks! He explained, to my relief, that he had buggered one of my tyres and was phone shopping for a new one. This leads into my explanation of my two hour excursion by bus and train to my daughter Nat's house which is normally a 10 minute drive away. The main problem with our public transport system, as I see it and I am a huge fan of the concept IN PRINCIPLE, is that bus drivers seem to have a rather offhand attitude to timetabling. This attitude permits them to fly past your bus stop 6 minutes early, because it is a less busy time, and totally ignore your flailing attempts to hail them from across the road while you ponder the value of your life versus plunging headlong through the stream of peak hour traffic flashing past. I should explain that the bus in question was travelling towards the outer suburbs, not the city and presumably he was fully focused on the meat pie awaiting him at the depot for morning tea.

Glad I vented all that. Needless to say, my whole day disappeared down the gurgler, because I was so exhausted when the excercise was REPEATED at the train station (I even contemplated that it would have been quicker to walk, except for the Scottish drizzle and wind). By the time I got back home, I needed a Nanna nap!!! The day wasn't a complete waste tho, as I bought a copy of Paper, Cloth and Scissors magazine that I had not seen before (always much grist in that little jewel) and saw my divine grandsons Dylan and Kieran. Oh yeah and I spun a web (but it needs improvement.

Monday, August 27, 2007


Last night I was lying in bed remembering the weirdness of something I saw on

Saturday on the noticeboard at the local shopping centre. It was a handwritten note that remarked "Found - deased cat.....", went on to name location of aforesaid dead pussy, described the dearly departed and requested that the owner come and collect it. Now, I don't know if it's just me and my strange sense of humour, but I frequently find myself coming across such peculiarities in life and proceed to make up little stories about them, based on certain deductions I like to make from the evidence.

In this case, I imagine the writer, a frail old woman well into her 90s (handwriting wobbly, but typically flowery style of that vintage), digging up her fresias or winter irises (because they are finished now) and coming across -----smelly dead old cat!! I can relate so much to this poor old thing because I clearly remember the day I came across the four paws of our old cat poking up stiffly through the ivy next to the letter box on a warm spring afternoon (and boy, was she whiffy).

Then, I ask myself a la Columbo, did she feel angry, cross or was she upset and sad for the owners of moggy???????????Is that why she grabbed her walker and shuffled down to post her notice straight away? Yes, it's a real puzzler. I feel that she was more sad than irate. I would guess she has her own little Socks and thinks empathetically (she is a woman after all) about how sad she would be if he vanished one day and finished up in someone's front border.

Then, the bleeding obvious question I asked myself - Where the hell is she keeping the body until someone claims it? It wouldn't surprise me if there's a suspicious parcel wrapped in Clingfilm in her humungous chest freezer in the garage. Actually, given her age and the fact that Pussy's owners are most unlikely to ever show up and admit to the burial, I wonder if she has forgotten what that parcel is? I can imagine her opening up the door of the freezer around Christmas time, picking up the frost enshrouded lump and wondering what the...??? Really, let's not go there!

What did I do yesterday (Sunday)? Think, think.. oh, yeah, vacced all the crap off the floor, put a few things away and made some laundry bags up for a friend. You know the kind you put your smalls into and then into machine. She had given me some bits of net and stuff to do it weeks ago and really, they are only 10 minute jobs, but I had been procrastinating to hell and back about doing them, all the time thinking about the 789560 other projects either swimming lazily in my brain or already half started and put away so carefully that I possibly will only ever come across them one mad day when I go beresk and clean out all the cupboards.

I did make an attempt a copying a bottlebrush flower. Now I am going to try again to put the photo down here (I have been reading the help thingy and I think I can do this), So if (NO<>

Sunday, August 26, 2007


I wanted to journal so much yesterday, but resisted the temptation and boy, I'm glad I did!!!! Still haven't finished the profile section.... add to eternal procrastination list/ just do it?? Yesterday was a BAD BAD day. Woke at 4 a.m. with screeching pain in back and could not get comfortable, but was so.o.o.o.o. tired, so tossed and turned until I figured it must be after 6 a.m. Well, it was. It was 6:01. Then, and I know all you chronic sufferers of depression will empathize, spent most of morning telling myself not to kill myself. You know how it goes - grit teeth, don't kill yourself, don't kill yourself. Sometimes every 10 minutes and sometimes every 10 seconds. Gave myself a good mental ticking off and decided to mindnumbingly work on my daughter's quilt which is very traditional, black and white pieced and OK, but not much room for creativity in my book. Also, found I had adapted an old song (I think by Ray Brown and the Whispers - God I was in love with Ray Brown in my youth). It went like this (my version):

Depression - torments my heart

Depression - tears me apart


Why torture me?

I've a feeling that the original word was Suspicion. Do you think I could get it out of my brain?Then, thought no - going to finish off the ATCs I want to swap with my newest blog buddy Arlee. Which reminds me, go to her brilliant site and read EVERYTHING - she is just the best!!! Twere she who inspired me to start my own blog. Here's the link : . To my total incredulity (is that right??) I finished them and she likes two. Here is the one remaining if anyone else wants a swap, the pic is up the top (dunno how that happened, but I will try to fix the next one (still learning). As my eldest daughter, Nat, is getting married next April and I have foolishly offered to create the bonbonniere, I decided to fiddle with that idea. I thought, use her theme colours - pale pink, blue, violet and green and make little beach basket things by weaving fabric strips in those colours and fusing onto interfacing, cut out pattern etc. They will be filled with tiny seashells and a coupla handmade chockies. To cut an extremely long and most painful story short, I ended up with a nice result but hardly worth all the time and effort and farting around - bearing in mind I need about 60 of the little buggers! Will try to put the appropriate photo HERE: Do you know what, I cannot do this just now, it is making me crazy - so look at the left hand side at the top!!!! I will definitely check out how to do it and practice tomorrow. I am playing around with making bottlebrush type of flowers and the prototype should be ready soon - BUT FIRST I HAVE TO GET OFF THIS GODDAMNED COMPUTER!!!!! The rest of my day is going to involve that quilt for Nat come hell or high water!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Hello hello hello

Hello World

This is my journal, day One. I am going to seriously try to give this a go and post as often as I can. I will spend time over the next few days writing a bit about myself. Primarily, I want to use this journal as a way to explore textile art which is a bit of a passion for me, even though I am almost completely self taught, a relative newcomer and consider I have lots and lots to learn - even at the advanced age of 57! Well, feeling as if I have dipped my toe in the water now, I might just see how I go at adding some photos I took today as I walked to the shopping centre. I live in Western Australia and I think it is safe to say that we are embarking on Spring even though it is technically still Winter (God I hate Winter). Here goes - well bit of a small boo boo, I added same pic twice, but at least I get it now. Aren't the bottlebrush great. I'm mentally wrestling with reproducing them, sort of along the lines of making fringing I'm currently thinking.
Hoping to see my daughter Nat and her eldest son, Dylan (2) tomorrow as they are both unwell and on antibiotics. I am such a sooky la la when it comes to my grandsons, I cry when they are upset or sick! Kids have a remarkable ability to get so so sick so quickly and then bounce back twice as fast with twice as much energy, but I guess a lot of recent publicity in Perth about littlies dieing with flu complications this year has made me quite a worry wart. As Scarlett says, though, tomorrow is another day ..........