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Art- week 12’s lesson.

You know that “Evil inner critic” you know the one!

That voice that is inside you telling you “You can’t do that or this or the next thing” I know I am not the only one who has one. Well I know mine personally, up close and dangerously. I’ve listened to her through out my life and even now she’s dead I still hear her, there are several key phrases she likes to repeat to me, but just lately, and I think mostly it’s to do with my Bible study and councilling I’ve been having, that “Evil Inner Critic” is starting to loose her power!

Now when “She” starts in and starts telling me “You can’t do that!” I am starting (at 50 years of age!) to reply back, “Well maybe I can’t do that but I won’t know if I don’t try!” And by finally talking back to her and then actually doing what she tells me I can’t! I find I am stepping put of my comfort zone and into a whole new level of ME!

Last week was a classic example… with doing the Mary Cassatt piece, I decided to use the real Mary’s face as my model, I know parts of it were wrong, and sure enough in comes “Evil Inner critic” to rudely point out “That chins not right, paint over it and do it different” and then “There’s something wrong with her eyes” and so finally I put my paint brush down and walked away, nope I didn’t argue with her or get upset like in the olden days, I walked away, for quite a few hours, I told myself “I am waiting for the paint to dry” maybe I was and maybe I was running, whatever it worked, because when I went back, I could see what the problem was and I had an idea of how to correct it. In the mean time, I had shared a photo of the piece in Carrie’s group “Artist Strong” on Facebook, and complained how I had ruined her. Carrie replied ” it’s closer than you think” which gave me courage to have another look and see where I could improve it. The best bit about that day was when my cousin who hadn’t known I was using Mary’s face as the model, saw the painting of the Girl in the blue hat which Mary had painted and we were to recreate and the photo of Mary, my cousin asked “Did you take these two photos and morph them into one!” Why yes I did! Which means that my painting must actually have resembled Mary somewhat! I was so excited! It means that someone else had seen what I had set out to do.

So now fast forward to this week, Lesson 12 B was with teacher Tanya Cole another Aussie lady, and her subject was Monet and so in her lesson she wanted us to try and recreate a flower loosely like Monet did his flowers and then to add a portrait of Monet. I felt the prickles of apprehension run down my spine and then I recalled my cousin mentioning the “Morphing” of the two photos in the other lesson, so I wondered if I could do it again. I think, by George, I’ve done it!

Tanya used a hibiscus flower and a portrait of young Monet in a black beret. I like hibiscus 🌺 they remind me of tropical islands, but when I read “Monet” immediately I put him with water lilies. My husband took me and my Mother-in-law on a “Date Day” and we went to see the Monet exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria a few years back, and it was beautifully set up, but I remember that I was so so so disappointed at seeing these famous paintings up close. They were terrible up close, some art is much better from a far, his edges were unfinished and some of the brush strokes were lumpy and messy, I left there disappointed. Then speaking to people and learning about his failing eye sight and the whole “Impressionist” movement I eased up on him a bit. Doing this course has helped me ease up on him a bit more.

Anyways, So I decided to deviate from Tanya’s painting and do my own, Kara tells us to put a bit of ourselves into each piece of work we do. So I did! I painted water lilies and an older I think more handsome Claude Monet, not my painting is more handsome but that Claude was the older he got! So here is my version of week 12 with Tanya Cole and Claude Monet!

He turned out better than I had hoped! The water lilies leave a lot,to be desired BUT its impressionist after all!

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Tomorrow we leave!

For our trip to Moruya New South Wales, to collect our camper.

I promised to come back yesterday and tell you a bit more about Moruya, I’m sorry I missed out on coming back, I’ve been working flat out on a crochet project, I made a rainbow blanket for my daughter to give as a gift at her friends baby shower tomorrow. So I needed to finish that, so I could wash it and have it dried and wrapped ready for my daughter to collect. I must confess at the start I didn’t like the colour scheme I kept having this internal dialogue about the colours, but then I reminded myself this was “not for me it was a gift, I didn’t have to love it” needless to say by the time I’d come to the end of the blanket (which was 7:30am! This morning!!) l do love it and I will probably end up doing another one similar for my Grand Daughter Sweetpea, she was convinced “It’s mine Grandma” I kept telling her ” No its for a baby” she insisted it was for  “My bed now Grandma” so I guess I’ll be making her a rainbow blanket too! She’s such a funny little thing, she picked up my crochet hook before I could race back and rescue my crochet from her, and she tells me very seriously  “I do sticking” she meant of course my crochet hook, and she tried her best to poke the “stick” into the stitches. Maybe when she’s three I’ll start teaching her to crochet! My Aunt taught me when I was about ten, I started crocheting my own “granny squares” with the left over yarn that she was using to knit sweaters.

So thats why I missed yesterday’s post about “Moruya” 

Let me share some info about what I’ve found out about this little town, I’m so excited we are heading off tomorrow and will arrive mid afternoon Sunday!

Moruya

Town in New South Wales, Australia

Moruya is a town in New South Wales, Australia, situated on the Moruya River, on the far south coast situated on the Princes Highway 305 kilometres south of Sydney and 175 kilometres from Canberra. At the 2011 census, Moruya had a population of 2,531 people. The town relies predominantly on agriculture, aquaculture, and tourism. Moruya is administered by the Eurobodalla Shire council and the shire chambers are located in the town. Wikipedia.


I know right! I’d never heard of it either. But I am excited to get there and explore. There’s a museum there showcasing the dairy industry in the area, but mostly its poular for its nature based places, Moruya Head and National Park  walks like the Bingi Walking Track.. 

Follow in the footsteps of the Brinja-Yuin people as you walk the Bingi Dreaming track. Traditionally, Dreaming tracks or Song Lines link the places visited by Aboriginal people, the Bingi Dreaming track links campsites, ceremonial and trade sites, fresh water and plentiful coastal food sources. Along the way, you might see stone artefacts or patches of shell middens. The … Visit website for more info

For more information: http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au

I have a feeling that we won’t see all there is to do there, but thats Ok it just means we will have to go back again! 

So be sure to check back in the next few days where I’ll start posting my photos. 

Spring is here…

And typically also the rain, the near y creeks are flowing hard and today was just plain miserable.

I went out with my daughter and two of the Grandchildren to attend Squishy’s “Presentation” at his sports program, where I had the best time sitting and nursing my newest Grand daughter “Faery Girl” she’s 4 weeks old already! Then later this afternoon I went shopping with my second daughter and I was sure that I would have walked a fair distance to make up my 10,000 steps, but it was raining so we drove from shop to shop and I struggled to get my 10,000 today.

The rainy weather is however good for me to crochet, I am working on a rainbow blanket for a baby shower gift, but there in lies the dilemma, if I crochet, I’m not walking and if I’m walking and get my 10,000 I’m not crocheting to finish this blanket, there’s not enough hours in the day.

Tomorrow I will be a grown up and take an umbrella and walk in the morning, knock over the 10,000 steps and then spend the afternoon crocheting. It needs to be done by Friday at the latest!

How was your Tuesday?

Early morning blog post… Using our words wisely..

Good Morning everyone (spoken in my best teachers voice) its 7:37am Friday the 5th of August, its my Brother Bill’s birthday, I hope the card I sent him will makes it in time. Its also the day Marilyn Monroe died all those years ago, no Bill I wont reveal your age, but as he came into the world, she went out of it.

 I have just completed my bible study for the day, this bible study in on the Book of James with Courtney over at Good Morning Girls today we were instructed to read James 3:1-12. Then we choose a portion of the scripture that most appeals and we do the S.O.A.K method and colour code it. This morning I chose verses 3-6 and I’ll share it with you below so you know what I am waffling on about..

James 3:3-6New International Version (NIV)

3 When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. 4 Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherever the pilot wants to go. 5 Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. 6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.

So these verses tell us about how “things” including our tongues can be controlled. I am particularly drawn to the lines 

6 The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.

Lets read it again… The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body.

I am sure that whoever you are,  reading this blog post, (and whoever you are THANK YOU for taking time in your busy life to spend some time in my words.) that at some stage in your life or maybe even repeatedly you have been touched by words that have come from an evil tongue, and maybe even been the cause of the evil tongue lashing, I know I have been on both sides. We are born of men, we are all sinners, as long as we learn from the experience and ask for forgiveness its not a wasted experience.  But then you too, like me, know the power of those words and how much they sting and how once spoken they cant be retracted. It doesnt matter how many times someone says “Sorry” to you, or tries to tell you that they spoke in anger and “didn’t mean what they said” its STILL, sometimes years afterwards, those stinging words that come back and the pain is as fresh as if it happened only yesterday. I wish we knew the effect those stinging words would have on the person we said them to BEFORE we said them, before it was too late to take them back. 

Yes, I have been on the end of stinging words, from people closest, whom you thought were your family. And as much as I pray for their forgiveness, I struggle to be able to mute those words. I had a discussion with my sister-in-law a few nights ago, and she wisely told me that I have to let it go because its robbing me of being truly happy and being the best me I can be. Thats very true it is robbing me of that. And everytime I think I am past it, something happens to remind me and the words are back in my head and I’m right back there again. I, on the other hand, well I am mousey, I never have the bravery to stand up and say what I think, I never have. Prehaps that is a saving Grace, maybe that is God’s plan, he puts his hand over my mouth, so I wont say the things my mind thinks! I go one of two ways, I either bite my tongue and let it go, (as a wise man once told me “Pick your fights“) I am SUPER good at that, its a wonder I still have a tongue after all these years.  Or I sit down and think it all out and then I write my scathing replies usually in a flood of tears and a world of pain. I am REALLY good at that option. But l also found out from one of those recipents that after all these years its been 16 years since I wrote that letter, it haunts her like her words keep haunting me, she kept the letter and re-reads it, so she keeps herself in that pain,  really I am NO better than she was, I just thought I was. I wonder if while she was using her tongue to SAY all those things she got as much relief as I got WRITING all those words, setting the truth free?! I wonder if she at the time, walked away feeling better that she had cleared the air and voiced her opinion. I know writing the words and mailing the letter was healing for me, I quickly forgot all about the letter until I was reminded of it a few years ago. 

Today as I was working on my bible study the morning radio was on in the back ground and a caller phoned in to request a song it was a little after 7:00am and she was returning home from the gym, she said she had crossed paths with a fellow gym member who complimented her on how great she looked that day. A simple compliment made the whole difference to the caller of the radio show, she explained that in Feb. she had had surgery for a weight loss procedure and was new to the gym, but was trying really hard to loose weight and get fit, she told of the struggle to get out of bed this morning it was only 3C and its icy out there, but she forced herself to her work out, and then she receieved that compliment and it made the world of difference to her that someone was noticing. She also mentioned that since Feb. she had shed an amazing 36 kilograms of un wanted weight. Probably the Lady who made the compliment wouldnt have known any of that. It made me think about the lady who had used her words wisely and complimented the caller.. Did she feel good muttering those words as she passed by? Did she wake up this morning and decide that she would use her words wisely and start off complimenting someone at the gym? Even knowing the lady who used her wise words was running late, she took that time to make someone elses day seem brighter. I really wonder if the the Lady who made the compliment realised what a Huge difference she made to the caller? I REALLY hope the lady who made the compliment, has a super day today! i hope someone pays her a compliment so she will feel a little of what the caller felt. So the caller requested the song from Bob Marley “One love” and I stopped my bible study to really listen to the words of the song and it made me more conscious of using my words for good today. 

Friday will be “Use your words Wisely Day” for those of you who are not yet in Friday won’t you join me? I am going to try and only use Good words today, wish me luck! 

Thank you for stopping by to read my blog!

Bible study or more than one…

Oops I did it again… I slipped and fell into another bible study… I need to slow down or risk over doing it…

Over at Good Morning Girls we are currently doing the Book of Job. Last week I was doing The Book of Acts and The Book of Job at the same time, but thankfully today I finished The Book of Acts and so I am just doing Job. Today is Job 6 and here is the question for today..

“Job earnestly wants to know what he has done wrong and the lesson he needs to pull from this” Name a time in your life when you struggled to find what God was trying to show you?

Oh boy, there have been a few times in my life, where I have wondered “What did I do to deserve this?” That was before I started studying the Lords words and even back then I kind of thought there was a God but he wouldnt know me because I didn’t know anything about him, how wrong I was back then.. He KNEW me from when he grew me in my Mothers womb, my life is written in his book.. But back then I just wondered “What did I do to deserve this?” Now I look back and I can SEE what GOD wanted me to learn from those hard times and those painful places. Therapy and journaling have helped but now I know God’s got a plan for me and everything is a learning curve I am like “Ohh that makes sense” even when back then it hurt and didnt make sense.

 

 

Then I signed up for a bible study on Love, we all need that right?! So that is over at Cooking up faith. We are spending the year doing a study on 1 Corinthians.. Here’s a teaser from the website…

* Thank you for joining us in our Love in 2016 series. We are studying 1 scripture (1 Corinthians 13:4-8) throughout 1 year, to make 1 very big difference in our lives. Come back every Monday for a new post in our LOVE series.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.

So for the first week of this study, we studied

Jeremiah 14:22

“Do any of the worthless idols of the nations bring rain? Do the skies themselves bring down the showers? No it is you Lord, our God. Therefore our hope is in you, for you are the one who does all this”

Then we use the S.O.A.P method and we do a study on the Scripture.

Without sharing my whole study, I took this Gem from the scripture, “That there is only one God, he is the beginning and the end, he made everything in the world and so therefore we should not question him.”

The next Scripture we had to S.O.A.P was Isaiah 8:17

“I will wait for the Lord who is hiding his fac from the descendants of Jacob and Imwill put my trust in him”

“Isaiah trusted the Lord even when it seemed like he had turned his back on Jacobs people… Dont give up on the Lord he does things in his timing.”

The third S.O.A.P for week one was Michah 7:7

“But for me I will watch in hope for the Lord, I wait for God my Savior, my God will hear me”

if you read the whole chapter Michah is talking about how people turn on each other, Im sure we have all experienced that, it says “Sons against Fathers, daughters against Mothers, wives against husbands” but the Lord never turns away from us, which is why we should put pur faith in the Lord not in the “world” ( or people)

I am looking forward to week two of this study.

Then I got invited to take part in a study group on Facebook, I had asked last year and missed out on that study group, so the Lady remembered me this time and invited me. This one is through a webpage called Love God Greatly

Each day we are given a Scripture to read and again using the S.O.A.P method. Today was day one and we had to read Acts 41-47 and do S.O.A.P on Acts 2:42 which reads: “They devoted themselves to the apostles teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.” We were asked the question “How is prayer important to the Christian community?”

I believe prayer is important because its like our own private hotline to the Lord, so we can share our lives with him, in good things we thank and praise him, in worrying times we give him those worries and he eases the burdens. I personally often chat away to God through out the day, when the weather is nice or when something nice happens un expectedly I thank him for it all.

The verse for us to memorise this week is

” Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receieve mercy and find grace to help in time of need” Hebrews 4:16

So thats been my Bible studies for this week. I am also working through a study guide called “Plant my feet on higher ground”  by Victor M Matthews. This is unit #4 of 144 for my Diploma of Bilical studies.

2016 Brings…..

So everyone is choosing their word for 2016

I did that in 2014, and I did that in 2015… and I really don’t think it made much of a difference, I wonder if I am not doing it right?!

So this year I didn’t choose a word I continued on with last years word which is “Deeper” because I am still wanting to go “Deeper” with the Lord.

Since I decided to study the Bible in July 2014, I’ve read it every day I can honestly say I have not missed a day.. but I’m reading it so what?!

So I signed up for a Bible Study with Good Morning Girls It’s free and it’s online which at the time was good for me, because if I didn’t like it I wasn’t wasting money or time attending somewhere… I have to confess, I’m slightly addicted to my GMG daily study.  The new one for this year started today it’s “The book of Job“.. and I’m excited to get that started. While we were away on the Big Lap the group were studying “The Book of Acts” and I was really sick so I was late starting it and then I was too far behind, so I didn’t do it.. I am doing it now in the break to catch up with the group. I love that we read the Chapter usually one a day, and then we use the Soak method to journal about what we have read…

The SOAK Bible Study Method

S – The S stands for Scripture

O – The O stands for Observation

A – The A stands for Application

K – The K stands for Kneeling in Prayer

Bible Coloring Chart Bookmark 2

And then we use our colour chart to “colour” our bibles.

I found it hard to draw or colour in my bible.. life long learning about not scribbling in books.

But now I love to look at my Bible and see the coloured parts and read back over some of the things I’ve already done.

Then after I got good at doing my daily bible study and enjoying my morning ritual of waking up with God, I decided to reach out to the community and I found a real life group who meet fortnightly to study the Bible and so I joined that as well.

Then I found “ Emmaus” online study group, and they were offering a “Diploma in Biblical Studies” So I contacted them and they put me through to the Australian branch… Emmaus Queensland. They offer the same course, I have to do 144 units and every so often you get a certificate for an amount of units done, once you’ve done them all you get the Certificate for Diploma of Biblical Studies..

OK, So I know that it’s not a Diploma that I can use for very much, but it’s the principal of the thing. I want to get “Deeper with the Lord” and so by doing this Diploma course I am also learning more than I knew.. already, of course since I only started reading the bible in 2014 it’s ALL new to me.

So far I have finished three of my 144 units so I am under way, as well as I am onto my second 90 day devotional with Holly Wagner and God Chicks. The first one I did while we were away on the Big Lap, 1st December through till 29th December 2015. Each day we have a reading and in the back of the book she gives us a reading so that we can read through the Bible in a year… Currently I am started at the start, Genesis and Job, which ties in nicely with GMG’s study of Job. Love how it all comes together.

This way I spend a good 45 minutes each morning with my God Chicks, and my GMG’s study and each night I do some of my Diploma studies. I think I can honestly say “I’m going DEEPER with the Lord” in 2016!

So did you chose a “Word” for 2016? Did you pick some resolutions? let me know maybe we can buddy each other along to the finish line!

 

 

 

 

 

Big Lap WA 2015- Days 49- 53- Halls Gap Victoria. It’s almost over!!

Days 49- 53- Halls Gap Victoria, with the Grampians as our back drop… what more could you ask for?

Day 49- Friday 30th October 23015 –

Shall I rant or just calmly tell you about this place? I wanna rant so badly and yet, I can’t really because I loved it with my bestie and two of her three boys, we had a great weekend, we made the most of a stupid situation.

We arrived first and so we checked in and were told we had site 109 and Bestie and her family had 110.. Cool we would be neighbours.. so off we go and already I am thinking “sardines in a tin” it was already quite packed at 2.30pm. We found our site and almost could not believe our eyes at the size of it.. it was T-I-N-Y!!

It was about 5 meters wide ( 16 feet) by 8 meters long (about 25 feet long) we are camping in tents and so we are fairly flexible but Bestie and Mr Bestie were trialling their new camper van which was out for its first run.. tentatively named “Rhonda Runaway” now camper trailers have to be set up just so, you cannot just back it into a LONG thin site and hope it’ll work. We don’t have one but even we knew there would be trouble here.. so we didn’t do a full set up in case we needed to move things as they arrived. We have given this particular site the “Worst rating ever”

Bestie and her squad” arrived at about 8.00pm and since it was going to be dark soon we had to quickly work out how to make these sites work for us.. so we moved Star Son’s tent to the back of the second site and “Besties squad” took up the front of both sites.. it was tricky, but for the first night we made it work.

Saturday Morning…Day 50 (we’ve been travelling 50 days OMG!!) Halloween!

We decided to complain. when I saw “we” I meant Mr Bestie and the Bloke because I don’t complain I whine on my blog. Apparently there were suddenly a few spare spaces and we could move if we wanted to but then again, what if they were worse? Plus I don’t know about “Bestie” but I didn’t want to have to pack everything up just to move to a new site, so we said “Stuff it, let’s stay here” instead we moved our tent and Star Son’s tents over a bit more, which meant we were sideways on the site and we could have our awning up, which thankfully didn’t flap and blow around everywhere. “Besties Squad” set up across the front of the site and we set up their annex for some more shade… and the weather people said “thunder storms and torrential rain”ha!!

We made it work! we had a nice little square in the middle where we put our tables and chairs and then much later when the next door neighbours left we could spread out onto their site, we moved te fire pit into the central square!

Saturday was a nice casual day, sitting around chatting catching up on all the gossip. We walked over the shops and did the sight seeing things, and when the sun dropped a bit and it cooled down a little we did the first hike up the hill to “Venus Baths”

On the way back to camp we checked out the Botanical Garden and wandered around the camp ground, appreciating the wild roos that wandered through the park as though they owned the place. At 2.30am, we had a close encounter with one when I hear rustle rustle in the kitchen area of our camp, immediately I’m awake listening, then I hear a thump of something hitting the ground, so I quickly got up and rushed out.. I didn’t see the Roo but I saw my loaf of bread on the ground and where it had been rummaging through the chiller bag, so I brought them all into our tent. Next morning as I went to make toast I see the teeth marks in the opposite end of the bread bag!

Sunday 1st November 2015 – Day 51!

So today there is a local market which we girls wanted to visit (it was a disappointment) we also decided to drive up the Hill and visit some of the hiking trails and do some touristy sight-seeing. After struggling to find a park, because 64,000 other people had the same idea.. copy cats! We parked illegally and off we went. First stop was supposed to be “The Grand Canyon” well the path was closed one way so we went another way and it was blocked off there too… and by then Bestie and I were huffing and puffing like old steam trains ( I’ve really challenged my idea of my fitness levels this trip) so we decided to sit out the rest of the hike to “The Pinnacles” which was another 2.1 kilometres up and then the same back… we sat uncomfortably on the rocks and directed other people what track to take and wished them all good luck!! Mr Bestie with his eldest son and his youngest son and Star Son made the trek to the top, apparently the views were amazing, I was happy to sit and gossip with my Bestie.

After the hike we went into Stawell to find a supermarket, thinking this is Victoria surely something will be open!

Only Woolworths was open and so we went there and got supplies for some dinners before heading back to camp. On the way to camp we stopped at the local pub to peruse the menu and decided if we wanted to eat there, luckily none of us were fussy eaters and so we booked a table, but we couldn’t get in until 7.30pm… so afternoon tea was called for.. and a few drinks as well.

Dinner was so worth the wait I had chicken parma and every vegetable or salad thing I could find, I am so craving vegetables!

We got back to camp by 9.00pm and decided it was cool enough for a fire, so we sat around the camp fire chatting and playing the name game.. have you played it? The first person names a famous person, the next person must use the first letter of the first persons surname… for example I’ll say Marilyn Monroe, the Bloke will then have to think of an “M” name so he’ll say Maurice Gibb, so the next person has to pick someone with the name “G” the only rules are some one else HAS to know of that person! if we were playing with adults we would play it that you have 10 seconds to answer and if you can’t answer or you repeat a name already said you have to skull your drink… yes people it’s a drinking game! We use any famous person, and that could include authors, or singers, or sports or characters. On the Big Lap the Star Son and the Bloke and I used to play it with different things like “Fruit” if Star Son said banana, then The Bloke would have to think of an “A” fruit.. it gets you thinking and it’s a bit of fun.

Monday 2nd November 2015- Day 52

This morning we had a minor drama. The Bloke and Mr Bestie were talking about the coupling that holders the camper trailer to the car tow bar and the pin that slips into it to lock it into place and Mr Bestie went to get the pin to show the Bloke something.. and suddenly no one is quite sure where the pin is… so we all do a search which is hard because I didn’t take any notice of what it looked like on the set up night.. so I’m not really sure what I’m looking for… but it means that the camper trailer will NOT be locked onto the tow bar tomorrow if they don’t find it or get a replacement, so Mr Bestie starts making some calls and find a store in Stawell that sells them and so as a group we decide we’re off to Stawell. it’s about a 30 minutes drive, but at least we know today the shops will be open. So the men all head off one way and us Sheilas head off to see the shops. I brought myself a bamboo crochet hook and 5 balls of wool, just quietly I am going slightly mad not doing anything arty or crafty!!

After the shop saying “they had some” it turns out the guy on the phone didn’t even know what Mr Bestie was talking about so sells him two other options, and in the middle of the road we discuss “Will these fit?” right away one is too small and the other one while it might “just fit” what if it slipped off or worse? so Mr Bestie took them back to get his money back and we decided to go to the next town which was Horsham and have a look there.. more shops, more sightseeing and definitely camping stores and caravan stores. Anyways the guy comes out with a bigger locking pin and decides this one will fit for sure so that saved us another trip…. back at camp we lit the fire earlier to get some coals so we could make baked potatoes and the boys the young ones not the Blokes wanted to roast marshmallows. Then the weather turned cold.. and miserable and we even had a few spots  of rain BUT not the thunderstorms and torrential rain that was first predicted. We packed it in early we were all in our beds by 10 pm and I read my book until much later.

Tuesday 3rd November 2015- Melbourne Cup Day.

Ok, so if you are from overseas you may not know what “Melbourne Cup Day” is and why it’s a public holiday. Melbourne cup is the greatest horse racing event of Australia and it is literally the “Race that stops the nation” people in all states of Australia have either a BBQ or a party or take the day off work, people fly into Melbourne to attend the Cup, it’s world-famous, this year it had horses from Ireland and America and Japan racing in it. It’s a really good excuse to spend a lot of money on clothing and you MUST wear a hat ladies, so people spend stupid amounts of money to go there and dress up and get rip-roaring drunk, some might make some money but most lose their money, and their shoes and various other items of clothing and most definitely their dignity. I went once! Each year we watch the race on TV if we are not camping and we have guesses who will win.

So this morning was pack up day for us happy campers both families agreeing “We Will NEVER come back here again!” we might go back to Halls Gap but a different caravan park! We were all packed up in the cars ready to go by 9.45am which is some kind of record but I think we all had the same thing, people will be heading home the roads will be chaos. Well, we are still trying to add black lines to the map of Victoria, so we were taking every kind of back road we could find and we were back at St. Leonards by 1.00pm. In time to unpack, settle in and watch the Big Race at 3.10pm.

I’m funny about picking horses.. If I like the name or the colour or the pattern on the jockey’s riding top I’ll pick it. Unless we are in a group situation as in a BBQ or something we never bet money on the race, the Bloke and I both agree, we work too hard to get money to throw it away… BUT this year I so wish I’d put money down.. I picked three horses, to come first, second and third,  I picked “Gust of wind” because A- it was a girl horse, B- it was owned by a lady and C- she was the only girl horse! Then I chose “The United States” because I have a passion for anything American! funny the horse wasn’t from America or owned by Americans or anything. Next on the spur of the moment, I went for “Prince of Penzance” remember that movie from the 80’s with Christopher Atkins as the sexy Pirate.. I think it was a musical back then, but the thing about this horse that got me was it was ridden by the first female Jockey to ride in this particular race, “The Melbourne Cup” plus I’d heard of her before when she was younger she was thrown from a horse and cracked her vertebrae and they thought she might never walk again.. or something like that, anyways her name was familiar so I threw her in. And because we don’t bet for money, I didn’t look at the odds..

Michelle Payne became the first women in the world to ride the winning horse for the Melbourne cup and it was a 100/1 odds… OH MY GOSH, if I had put the rare $5.00 that I have previously I’d be rich!! I cried, because she made such a great speech about how it’s a male chauvinist sport and how other Blokes had tried to stop her from racing but the owners had stuck by her and now she said “they can get stuffed, coz we won!” Yay Michelle… Girl power!!

It was a great way to end a great weekend. Now we are planning more camping trips to take. But for now, a few days at Bel Far Niente before heading home to “the real world”

In my real bed that night, after having a shower and being all clean I thought back over the trip and the post I would write when it was all finished a final wrap up so to speak! The Best, the worst, the never to be repeated and the must go back and do again things.. coming soon to a page near you!!