Sharon's Journey Through Life

Monday, December 29, 2008

Drag Races

On Saturday we went to the drag races. Tony had taken the girls before but I hadn't gone. So this was my first time. We set up, went for a wander and watched some of the heats. And then it rained, and rained and rained :-( It wasn't really heavy, but it was enough to make you get under cover and they ended up canceling the meet. Tony went back the next day to watch the rest of the races by himself as we all had other things on.

Us all under cover (we were like this for over an hour!)

Tegan and Lucas

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Ho Ho Ho! Merry Christmas!

A very quick post to wish you all a very merry Christmas and to share my day with you.

We were awoken at 5.50 by Shelby, who was trying to get Tegan to get out of bed. Guess what? She wouldn't get up. So Shelby patiently waited until 6.30 and then we all got up and opened presents. Shelby was so excited ripping open gifts and finding treasures that she never thought that she would get :-) I think that Tegan is getting a little old for all the excitement (not that she doesn't like presents though).

Tony and I then went back to bed for a little snooze at 7 a.m. and didn't wake until 9.30. Oh dear! We had to get to mum's by 10.30! I had to wash my hair and get things packed and in the car, and then off we went. We were only 5 minutes late.

We spent the next 5 hours at mum's, relaxing with my sister, her husband Matt and son Brett.

Tony and I

Andy and Matt

Mum, Andy and I toasting Christmas
Tegan and Shelby at the park next to mum's

The Christmas table

Andy, me, Tony and Matt

Brett, Tegan and Shelby

I hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas and that you got to spend it with someone special. Now I'm off to relax before hosting Tony's brother and his family tomorrow, who are coming over for a barbeque.


Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Shopping Madness

Twas the day before Christmas and all the crazy people flocked to the shopping centre, including me, at 8 a.m. this morning. I had to get some lay-bys out and do some last minute shopping. I'm so glad we didn't plan on seafood this year - the lines for the fish shop were huge and apparently the fish markets in Sydney are bedlam.

Merry Christmas!!

Friday, December 19, 2008


Yippee! I am into count-down mode. Thirty minutes until I finish work for the year and go on holidays :-)

I won't be back (at work, that is) until January 27th. Five weeks of summer fun. I won't be as regular with my blog, but I will try and share my adventures with you and send warm thoughts to all those of you who are in cold climates.

Merry Christmas!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


I know that I am very late with this entry. I've been so busy with Christmas parties and the last week of work before Christmas that this was just put on the back-burner.

To see more Photo Challenge participants go to Brenda's Photo Challenge.

The girls and I usually spend a day on the first weekend in December putting up our Christmas decorations and the tree. It's always great fun and it is compulsory to play Christmas carols really loudly while we do it. The only bit I hate is packing up all my other stuff and packing it away under the house (too much like hard work).

This is our Christmas advent calendar. I made it when I first had Tegan and it goes up every year loaded with treats and the girls count down to Christmas.
It has a very Aussie flavour, don't you think?

Part of my Christmas bear cuddle.

My Santa collection is always in the lounge. I have a large variety of Santa's - traditional, wooden, tin, pottery. The more the merrier.

A few of my Christmas decorations on my
great-grandmother's sewing machine.

One of my favourite Christmas baubles.

A close-up of my gorgeous white Christmas tree.
The girls and myself love hanging all the pretty decorations.

My Christmas tree - as you can see it's all pastels and pretties :-)

My snowman collection - from pieces that I painted to
lovely pieces from Switzerland.


Our CRAZY Neighbour

I don't think that I have ever used my blog to vent, but I really feel the need to because of a really horrible individual who lives next door to us.

We have had a very scary man living next door for a few years now. He used to be okay - polite and kept to himself. Over the last few years though, he has lost the plot. He would come out his side door and start ranting and swearing and threatening to kill someone. REALLY UNPLEASANT! If we parked our four-wheel drive near his property and did some work to it (like change the tyres) he would park his car on his lawn with the exhaust pointed at Tony and leave it running, every now and again coming out to rev the engine.

Yesterday Shelby came running into the lounge room and told us that he had an axe and was chopping our palm down. We really didn't want to confront him - he had a tomahawk after all!!! - but I went down with my camera and took a couple of photos for evidence. I really should have videoed it, though I couldn't have posted it here - it would have been full of awful swearing and abuse, and I really don't want to hear that again.

Anyway, he saw me take the pictures and came running out his side gate screaming, swearing and carrying on. I spent the next hour trying to calm him while he screamed and yelled at us. I really can't describe how demented the man was, and still is. We are now going to cut down one part of the palm that is starting to lean into his fence to keep the peace. All the crazy man had to do was ask nicely. He has really lost the plot. He spent the first half hour carrying on and telling me he was a civilised man but that he would kill my husband. HELLO!! Civilised? Crazy bastard more like it!! I was really calm, but I did not back down and told him that he was an angry, rude man who was not civilised and was scaring my children.

And then suddenly he calmed down and was fairly reasonable. The neighbour from hell. From wanting to kill someone to wanting to give us a tomato plant. What do we do with people like that? He is really unpleasant and horrible and a really angry man.

The crazy neighbour coming out to "get us'.

The crazy neighbour taking the axe to our palm tree.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Christmas Blog Party - Late Entry!!

I am a naughty girl. I was supposed to do this on Saturday but I had five parties to go to this weekend and, even though I thought that I could be super-woman and fit in in, I couldn't. So forgive me and enjoy my contribution.

To read the other girl's Christmas blog party entries visit Gypsy Mermaid.

We only have a small family to celebrate Christmas with, Myself, husband Tony and the two girls, my mum, and my sister and her husband and son. We usually spend most of Christmas day together and have a big lunch. Sometimes we will have a 'sleep-over' on Christmas eve (especially if it's at Andy's on Christmas day) and wake up together and have breakfast together too. This year we are going to my mum's new place for lunch. We spend a lot of time with friends over the Christmas period, celebrating and having a good time.

What are my favourite five things that I love to do at Christmas time?
  1. Enjoy yummy food. My secret sin is mixing leftover Christmas cake with ice-cream and tucking in.
  2. Spending time with friends and family.
  3. Shopping and finding the perfect gift for someone.
  4. Watching people open the gifts that I gave them.
  5. Playing Christmas carols - loudly.
Here are a few things that we spend time doing each year.

What would Christmas time be without cockatoos? They travel in good sized flocks at this time of year, scavenging and creating a ruckas. This one was watching us pack up after a big get-together in a national park.

For the past few years good friends of ours have gone slightly overboard with their Christmas lights. It has now become a tradition to go up there every year for a barbeque and Christmas light party. It usually goes very late and the house and backyard are filled with friends, children and good cheer. There are normally people who sleep over too, having over-indulged in said good cheer :-) It's always fun, though for the last two years I have ended up having two functions on this night, so I go to dinner with friends and then meet my family at the lights party afterwards. Busy, busy, busy.

Every year for the past five or six years (ever since we joined the four-wheel drive club) we have gone to the kids Christmas party. For the last few years I have helped out with the catering. We provide lunch for everyone and all the kids (12 and under) get a gift from Santa. This year we only brought along one of the girls. Tegan, who's now 14, decided to spend the day with her boyfriend instead. She really is getting a little too old for all the kids games but she is too young to 'hang out' with the adults. Santa is always the most popular person of the day, arriving in a bright red four-wheel drive, usually so high that he needs a ladder to get down...LOL!

I hope that you have enjoyed my Christmas celebrations. Wishing you all a very merry Christmas and I promise that I won't be so late next time. As long as I can get into my superwoman costume...LOL!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Christmas Blog Party

Join in the fun. Gypsy Mermaid is hosting a Christmas blog party on December the 13th. Visit her blog and join in the festivities.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Strange Weather

We have had really unpredictable weather lately. Lots of nice, warm days and sudden downpours and some really windy days. This was a three o'clock special, so called because it always happens when the school bell goes and the kids are streaming outside to leave :-) These photos were taken from the library windows. It can be quite an amazing view, and as the only second story building, we get to see a lot more than everyone else. This downpour lasted about forty-five minutes.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Sky Watch Friday

This is another shot taken at Stockton Beach, north of Newcastle, in New South Wales. These small wetlands are found behind the first row of sound dunes. Really pretty but don't drive through them - we always see people get bogged :-)

For more Sky Watch photos visit here.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Gall Stones

I have suffered with non-cardiac chest pain for fourteen years and it was put down to reflux. I have been on medication for it for a number of years and still sometimes get the pain. I got jack of it recently and got a referral to a gastroenterologist, who sent me for an ultrasound to rule out gall stones.

Guess what? I have a large gall stone about 3 1/2 cms in diameter! I have now been referred to a laproscopic surgeon, who I see in the middle of January, to probably have my gall bladder removed. Finally, I may be free of the pain that I have weathered on and off for years :-)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Photo Challenge - FROM AN ANT'S VIEW

Miss Ant is having a lovely holiday at the beach, although it is a bit too windy. She is checking out this very interesting plant. Those lovely spiky leaves would be very good to hide under if something tries to attack her. Good to keep in mind, but she has to remember how to get back there.

Inquisitive Miss Ant is checking out some of the local flora in the sand dunes at the back of the beach for some up-market shelter from the wind. Those lovely furry leaves look very cozy.

Miss Ant is busy at the seashore investigating a sea urchin that has washed upon the beach. Lots of nice smells to investigate here, and maybe some good tucker too. Time for dinner. Bye!

For more Photo Challenge photos go to Brenda's Photo Challenge. Thanks to Jeanne at Life or Something Like It for hosting this round.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Our Annual Trip to Stockton

Last weekend, we traveled up to Stockton Beach, north of Newcastle, for our annual Blue Mountains 4Weel Drive Club trip up there. Tony and the girls made a long weekend of it, leaving Thursday night. I had to work, so I got a lift up Friday night with friends. A night of quiet and alone time Thursday was a rare treat (not that I don't love them dearly, but I never get the house to myself).

On Saturday morning we went on an adventure down Stockton Beach. Every year we stop at some old huts that were built years ago in the dunes by fishermen. As it is now State Forest you can't build any more but the existing huts can stay as long as they don't get swamped by the shifting dunes. This hut belongs to a friend of the trip leader's and we stop here ever year to take photos. It always looks different, depending on the weather and the amount of sand surrounding it. Last year you needed a gang plank to get to the front door because the sand had eroded away under the verandah that much. This year the sand had returned.

There are a few places where you can still see the tank traps that were laid during WWII to protect the air force base further inland. This row goes for a couple of kilometres and the concrete blocks stand about as tall as me (about 5'2"). There used to be a row of them in the dunes too, but they have been covered in sand over the years. Every time we travel up here we see new things that have been exposed because of the shifting dunes, but some things also disappear. We saw barbed-wire fences and some petrified forest this year that we hadn't before.

The Sygna, off Stockton Beach, is slowly breaking up. It was really miserable when we stopped there - very grey and gloomy and the wreck looked rustier than it's ever been.

This is an old firing range for shells used during WWII, located at the end of Stockton Beach. The sign is up the top of the embankment. Looks like it's seen a lot of target practice.

There are a number of old bunkers at Stockton at the back of the dunes where the scrub takes over. There are practice ranges and bunkers above and below ground. The one that we know of underground was full of water, thanks to the rain up there.

The way out at the end of the day. We were glad to get off the beach, even though it was fun, as it was so windy and we knew that we had to go back to camp and see what havoc the wind had wrought on our camp. The awning on our camper trailer had blown down and it took four adults to get it back up again in the wind.

Dinner was a sociable affair. We ordered fourty-odd pizzas. The poor pizza delivery guy's car was chock-a-block full. The windows had even fogged up :-) We all tucked in to a yummy dinner and raised money for the kids Christmas party.

The next day was a very windy and wet affair. Most people packed up in the morning and went home. A few people were staying Sunday night too, so a few of us headed into Nelson Bay for a drive and a delicious lunch at the RSL Club. When we got back to camp, I bid farewell to my family , as they were staying the extra night and I got a lift home with the friends that had brought me up. Off home to a quiet night at home, alone. Not something that I get to do often, and it's really enjoyable.